Who has cheesy music running through their head now? I do! Don’t tell me I am the only one who remembers Europe’s The Final Countdown.
Patch 3.0.2, Echoes of Doom, has been confirmed for October 14, leaving us 11 days until a slew of changes, a new chapter in the history of WoW will begin. There will be a multitude of changes, be it class, UI, video engine, game mechanics changes. My goal here will be to write about those changes as I have experienced them on the PTR, and what you need to be ready for, about once a day. Hope I can keep up the pace!
I can wholeheartedly say that protection warriors have nothing but awesomeness to look forward to. I was unable to find anything that I don’t enjoy. A lot of warrior talents and abilities have changed, there are a lot of new talents, so I’ll have some info to cover.
Today however, I am looking at how you can prepare for one of the more drastic changes for protection warriors in tanking epics: how to remain uncrittable.
Upon first logging in after the patch, prepare to have lost between 10-30 points of defense. If you have 5/5 in Anticipation, you will have lost 20 points of defense right away, as the new Anticipation provides dodge rating instead of defense. All tanking gear from raid content and badges has been adjusted to provide strength to work with the new tanking mechanics, and in return, defense has been cut, to balance out the item budget. If you e.g. sport the Chestplate of Stoicism the new version comes with 34 strength, but defense goes from 51 to 34. Prepare to lose about 10 points of defense total from your gear.
There are several ways you can prepare for the loss of defense: enchantments, gemming, using different gear. This should be the priority order in fixing the deficiency.
- Enchant Bracer – Major Defense: 12 defense rating to wrist
- Enchant Chest – Defense: 16 defense rating to chest
- Enchant Cloak – Steelweave: 12 defense rating to cloak
Using all enchants gets you a total of 40 defense rating, which makes your defense go up by about 17 rounded up (2.4 points of defense rating are 1 point of defense at level 70). If you didn’t spend talent points on Anticipation that should be enough to get you back to uncrittable status.
You got badges lying around and nothing to spend them on, before WotLK? How about buying some nice epic gems and boosting your defense that way? There are two different cuts for epic gems that award defense rating: Enduring Seaspray Emerald and Thick Lionseye. The uncut gems cost 15 badges each. If you don’t have the badges for such an endeavor, you can always buy the rare versions Enduring Talasite or Thick Dawnstone, the difference between the epic and the rare version is pretty minimal.
If you’re still not back to the sacred grail of 490 defense, your last option is using gear with more defense. Veneretio did all the legwork for me and posted a list of all items with maximum defense values on them. I shall just pretend it was my masterplan to make him do my legwork.
The natural choice for changing gear are trinkets. I knew there was a reason that I saved my defense trinkets in the bank, now is a good time to use them again. The default defense trinket is Adamantine Figurine from second boss in Shadow Labs. If you don’t have it anymore, it should be easy enough to farm.
The information here should assist you into getting back to 490 right after the patch hits. Farm enchant mats now, see if you can snag the gems cheap (some realms report really low gem prices as people burn their badges) and look if you still have defense trinkets and other high defense gear lying around in the bank. Be prepared!
Tomorrow I’ll have a look at the game mechanics behind the new protection warrior, like abilities that scale with Attack Power and the ever so precious Block Value.
Please also see:
- Countdown Part 2: Abilities scaling with AP and SBV
- Countdown Part 3: The Emperor’s New Clothes, old abilities re-visited
- Countdown Part 4: Brand-new toys in the protection tree
- Countdown part 5: Raid changes and the rest of the world