4.2 Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Get help with your character's gear

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4.2 Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Digren » Tue Oct 05, 2010 10:53 am

Notice

I lost my raiding group with the 10/25 exclusivity, and I'm not that interested right now in finding somewhere new. Having not raided since January, I've found it to be harder and harder to maintain a gear guide primarily directed toward people who were actively raiding. I don't want to steer people wrong by giving them advice that I can't relate to myself at all.

And honestly, I only made a gear guide during WotLK because Maintankadin didn't have one. My original priority was my Item Enhancement guide, and yet I spend 90% of my maintenance time here instead of there.

So I'm unsticking this guide. (Edit: I don't seem to have the ability to unsticky any more.) If I get a chance to raid again, and time to work on this, I'll bring it back.

Thanks for your understanding.
Digren

Tank Stages

Introduction

Giving generic advice to all tanks isn't easy. What a tank needs as a new 85 differs greatly than what he or she needs deep into Cataclysm raiding. However, the process is greatly simplified if tanks are categorized into tiers, each based on a step in the development process. Hence: tank stages.

Blizzard's gear strategy fit well into this. With each raid tier, old Valor gear becomes new Justice gear, letting a new raider "catch up" with relative ease. This means that patches don't add a new tank stage - they just shift the average iLvl of the old ones - keeping a simple stage model viable.

This represents the latest information in the form of my own experiences as well as others here on Maintankadin. If you see a mistake or have a comment, post it!

All content for this guide is by Digren, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0, except the following:
  1. Best for EH, Best for Block, and Best for Threat icons, as well as names of places, items, and lore, may be the property of Blizzard. I make no claims on them and use them in good faith as a third-party fan site.
  2. Tip icon by YasmineMrabet licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0. Thanks!
  3. Quotes and comments from others used in good faith. Let me know if you want them removed.

-- Digren

What are Tank Stages

Level 85 tanks can be roughly divided into five stages based on the equipment they have and the content they're equipped for.

    Image

    Image New 85. A new level 85 tank has gear that he or she acquired while leveling, through quests or dungeons, or has gear buyable or craftable within an hour of reaching level 85. This tank wants to get into dungeons and build a (normal) dungeon gear set, which, when reached, makes the tank stage two.

    Image Ready for Heroics. The dungeon finder has a strict requirement - average iLvl 329 - to queue for Cata heroics. Thus it's less easy for an undergeared tank to slip into them wearing new 85 gear. Hence, an intermediate dungeon stage is warranted, for tanks who have been running normal dungeons and are now equipped for heroics.

    Image Ready for Raiding. A stage three tank has a complete set of heroic dungeon gear, plus the best quest and craftable items outside of raids. He or she is ready for raiding. Alternatively, a stage three tank who does not raid has reached end game, and is seeking a best-in-slot set for farming heroics.

    Image Normal Raider. A stage three tank is a normal-mode raider on either 10 or 25. He or she seeks a best-in-slot set for non-heroic gear. For some tanks, this is the peak of ability. Others, depending on guild and playstyle, will use this as a stepping stone to reach stage five.

    Image Heroic Raider. A stage five tank is a heroic raider on either 10 or 25. He or she can face the toughest encounters in game and emerge victorious. This tank seeks best-in-slot for all pieces.

    :idea: By knowing your stage of progression as a tank, you know how to read and use the recommendations in my guides.

Rules for Gear by Stage

These are the rules I use to classify gear by stage, as well as a baseline health and combat table coverage (avoidance+block) someone at a given stage should expect.

Stage One: New 85

Digren says, "So, you're level 85. Now what? This is what you should already have, or what you should buy, before you fire up the dungeon finder and get a group. Most people you encounter with the normal dungeon finder will be similarly geared, but be prepared to be blown away by a jerk DPS player who owns your threat and doesn't want to play nicely. It happens, and it doesn't mean you're doing anything wrong."

Rules for stage 1 gear:
  1. Able to be acquired within an hour of reaching level 85.
  2. If from crafting, at a reasonable cost.
  3. If from questing, from a pre-85 quest.
  4. If from a dungeon, from a pre-84 instance.
  5. If from a faction, from one that can be acquired while leveling, at no more than honored.
  6. If from "points", from a small amount that can be earned while leveling.
A stage one tank will have about 115k health, and around 65% avoidance + block, when properly equipped with reasonable enhancements.

Stage Two: Geared for Heroics

Digren says, "Blizzard demands average iLvl 329 to use the heroic dungeon finder While you can be carried through heroics with less, this set will ensure you can pull your own weight. Obviously if you do get into a few heroics early, a few pieces of better gear could pull up your average quickly."

Rules for stage 2 gear:
  1. Able to be acquired within three weeks of reaching level 85.
  2. No raiding or heroic (85) instances required.
  3. No super rare, super expensive BoE raid drops.
  4. Nothing that requires exalted reputation.
A stage two tank will have about 130k health, and around 70% avoidance + block, when properly equipped with reasonable enhancements.

Stage Three: Geared to Start Raiding

Digren says, "No one likes a fresh 85 who wants to be carried in a raid. Upgrade to this gear set and you'll be able to pull your own weight."

Rules for stage 3 gear:
  1. Able to be acquired within a few weeks of unlocking heroic dungeons.
  2. No raiding required.
A stage three tank has at least 145k health and 78% combat table coverage. An average iLvl of 346 should help ensure the tank is taken for PuGs.

Stage Four: (Normal) Raider

Digren says, "Whether 10 or 25, whether the end of your game or a stepping stone to heroics, this gear set defines you as a raider."

Rules for stage 4 gear:
  1. No heroic raids required.
A stage four tank has about 155k health and is approaching 85% combined avoidance + block.

Stage Five: Heroic Raider

Digren says, "There are no rules for stage five gear. Anything goes!"
Last edited by Digren on Wed Jan 05, 2011 12:31 pm, edited 10 times in total.
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Gear and Stat Strategy

Postby Digren » Tue Oct 05, 2010 10:53 am

Gear and Stat Strategy

Gearing Strategy

Shocking as it sounds to some people, tanks can wear more than one set of gear. When fighting the biggest, baddest, hardest-hitting bosses, a gear set that maximizes survivability is vital. When mowing through trash on the way to the boss, threat is more important. Combining both tasks in the same gear fails to maximize either.

So what gear is required? In the absence of other gimmick-style encounters, tanks need two gear sets:
  1. A maximum survivability set, made up of the best acquirable gear.
  2. A threat set, made up of next-best, old, and alternative gear.
When reviewing the following gear lists, one item at each gear level is marked with Image to indicate that it is the best option for survivability. One or more other items are marked with Image to indicate that they would make the basis of a good threat set.

    Image Do I have to carry two full sets of gear?
    Image Goodness no. You can likely maximize threat by switching 3-4 threat pieces into your survivability set. Take a look at the threat character models provided for ideas.

Stat Considerations

With Justice/Valor points, reputation gear, crafted epics, and so forth, more and more tanks are able to choose what they equip. This means gear is less "take what you can get" and more "take the best". Thus a stat consideration section is necessary now for a gearing guide.

Survival Stats

    Mastery Rating
    Mastery for tankadins provides block chance, and blocks provide damage mitigation. In Burning Crusade, reaching 102.4% combined avoidance + block chance pushed +50%-damage crushing blows off the combat table, reducing incoming damage by far more than just the tank's measly block value. With the removal of crushing blows in WotLK, this strategy fell out favor.

    Now, however, block again reduces incoming melee damage by a significant amount - 40% (or more with the correct meta gem). Once again trying to push "regular" hits off the combat table makes sense. In Cataclysm, consider blocked hits the norm, and unblocked hits as +70% damage. Welcome back crushing blows!

    But wait - mastery gets even better. In terms of itemization points, mastery rating is 75% better than armor. (See section two, 1/0.5714 = 1.75 or 175%.) And when avoidance+block is sufficiently high, the 1% block meta is better than the armor meta.

    Of course mastery rating only reduces incoming damage for physical, blockable attacks. However, it is one of only a few stats not subject to diminishing returns. 179.28 points of mastery rating yield one mastery, and each point of mastery yields 2.25% block chance. Cutting out the middle stat, that means 79.68 mastery rating yields 1% block chance. Keep in mind that a regular stage 1-4 tank might have 50-90% avoidance+block, so an additional 1% block chance converts 2-10% of incoming full hits into blocked hits.

    The equivalence of stamina to blocking is more difficult and encounter-dependent, but in general, mastery rating is better than all other (non stamina) stats. Besides from gear, mastery rating can be acquired through reforging at minimal cost (by replacing unneeded threat stats and dodge or parry rating).

    The fact that mastery rating reduces incoming damage so well, smooths damage spikes, and isn't subject to diminishing returns, makes it one of the best survival stats. Much of this gearing guide and the companion item enhancement guide is designed around getting you as much mastery as possible.

    Stamina
    Each point of stamina provides [14 x 1.05 x 1.15 x 1.05 = 17.75025] health. Stamina is still the best way to survive bleeds and magic damage, which are not blockable or mitigated by armor. However, for most encounters the majority of incoming damage is physical and blockable, making encounters that differ often called "gimmick" encounters tanked by "gimmick" tanks (like mages) or in "gimmick" gear (like a resist set). Thus the comparison between mastery and stamina is not easy, and is very encounter dependent. This guide uses a baseline recommended health at each tank stage, and then suggests gearing for mastery above that level.

    Dodge and Parry Rating
    Both dodge and parry rating yield pure avoidance from avoidable, physical damage. Both are subject to diminishing returns. While it varies based on the Holy Shield model used, per Theck's derivations, 1 mastery rating is better than 1 dodge or parry rating once the respective rating is somewhere between 10.19% and 12.76%. Thus for pretty much everyone, mastery rating is better than dodge or parry rating. Dodge and parry rating are still better than threat stats, though.

    Armor
    There aren't many options for bonus armor any more. Per Theck's derivations, 1 mastery rating is worth approximately as much as 7 armor, given a simple Holy Shield utilization model.

    Strength
    Strength provides about 28.35% of the parry of parry rating. This appears as parry rating in your character sheet total, so there's no behind-the-scenes secret parry to worry about. Do keep it in mind when evaluating gear, in that this (and, something, only this) makes a strength piece better than an agility or even an intellect piece with otherwise equivalent stats.

Threat Stats

    See Theck's stat threat comparison.

    Hit Rating, Expertise Rating, and Strength
    Expertise and hit rating plus strength are the "better" threat stats. That said, at this point threat is still pretty trivial. When tanks are dumping Holy Power into WoG instead of a threat ability, clearly threat doesn't matter. These stats should not be sought out (and indeed, in many cases they should be reforged into mastery). But, when unavoidable, they are somewhat more useful than any other threat stats.

      Image Wait a second! Didn't 4.0.6's nerf to Holy Power generation mean we must aim for the hit and expertise caps?
      Image No! While focused on the nerf, everyone overlooked the buffs to other threat abilities. You only need to cap to guarantee Holy Power generation. You don't need the cap to hold aggro. At most, switch to Seal of Truth with its glyph for some "free" expertise.

    Expertise is the best threat stat, up to the dodge soft cap where its value fades somewhat and hit takes over. Above the hit melee cap, however, expertise is again king, up to the expertize parry cap. Strength - the best threat stat for WotLK - is a distant third. For threat sets, aim for expertise up to 25, then hit up to 8%, then expertise up to 55, before attempting to stack any other threat stats. Above the melee cap hit rating is wasted.

    Keep an eye out for gear that could form part of a threat set; preferably this gear would have threat/mastery bonuses and be for a slot with a good hit or expertise enchant.

      Image Wait a second! Didn't 4.1's change to interrupts make hit rating worthless?
      Image With 4.1, it's no longer necessary to have hit rating to interrupt. But that doesn't really affect hit rating's threat generation. It's still a good threat stat for threat sets. Just don't bother with any in a survival set.

    Haste and Crit Rating
    These "lesser" threat stats don't appear on tank gear. However, they do regularly appear on DPS pieces (such as ret gear) alongside mastery rating. Given how good mastery rating can be for tanks, occasionally gear with these stats will appear in a tank gear guide. In general, the only value that these stats provide is as something to reforge to dodge or parry rating (because the items already have mastery rating). Gear with haste or crit but without mastery does not appear in this guide and is not considered tank viable.

    Agility and Intellect
    Agility provides crit, and intellect provides spell power, but neither are great options for threat. The only reason you should ever see these on your gear is if the equivalent strength-based piece has eluded you or isn't equivalent at all.

Gear Selection

When selecting gear, choose to
  1. Maintain the recommended health baseline for your stage, and
  2. Reduce spikes and incoming damage via mastery
Other stats are secondary or are provided automatically in most cases (like armor). Of course this is very dependent on the gear. A piece with just 60 mastery rating might not be as good as a piece with 200 dodge rating, all else equal, depending on your specific diminishing returns. In general, though, gear is rated based on the two "green" stats as follows.
  1. Mastery / Avoidance
    Gear with mastery rating and either dodge or parry rating is usually the best possible gear. Everything else is second tier. This gear only needs to be reforged to balance dodge and parry diminishing returns, if necessary.
  2. Mastery / Threat
    Gear with mastery and a threat stat - either a good or "lesser" stat - is good if there is enough mastery rating. Reforge the threat stat into either dodge or parry rating. This gear is about as good as avoidance / avoidance gear, so any two pieces need to be compared directly to identify the better option.
  3. Avoidance / Avoidance
    Gear with two avoidance stats is good. Reforge one of the two avoidance stats into mastery rating. This gear is about as good as mastery/threat gear, so any two pieces need to be compared directly to identify the better option.
  4. Avoidance / Threat
    Gear with either dodge or parry rating and a threat stat isn't as good, because only a small portion of mastery can be created with reforging, and the remaining threat stat isn't useful. This is the lowest tier of tank gear. Refer to a reforging guide for information on how to correctly reforge these items.
Last edited by Digren on Sat Dec 11, 2010 9:49 am, edited 10 times in total.
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Leveling 80-85 without ICC Gear

Postby Digren » Tue Oct 05, 2010 10:53 am

Leveling 80-85 without ICC Gear

Most tanks leveling from 80 to 85 will no longer have ICC gear. Sure, there will be some tanks who quit during late WotLK, and now want to catch up, just as there may be some well-geared tank alts who haven't been addressed yet in Cataclysm. But overall, most tanks will be either low-geared or brand-new alts.

In general, as always, what you do while leveling doesn't really matter. If you want to spec protection, here are some tips to help you level.

  1. Lacking level 80 raid/points gear? Use Vash'jir or Hyjal quest rewards, run Blackrock Caverns a few times at level 80, or buy Hardened Obsidium.

    Digren says, "The gear you'll get by leveling is plenty good. If you'd prefer to be overgeared for the first few instances, though, consider the Hardened Obsidium set. The set only requires level 80 to wear, and any blacksmith can craft it for you."

  2. Reforge your gear for mastery.

    Digren says, "Mastery increases block chance and isn't subject to diminishing returns. Block's new 40%-off mechanic makes it much stronger than before, effectively setting a new baseline; consider blocked hits the norm and unblocked hits as +70% damage. While leveling, pretty much any piece that is a higher iLvl and has mastery is an upgrade. Take it.

  3. Plan your leveling strategy.

    Digren says, "Look ahead at the stage one gear list, and plan your leveling strategy accordingly. You should pick Hyjal over Vash'jir to be ready for the Molten Front. Note in particular the large selection of stage one items available from Twilight Highlands quests. Even if you otherwise level up through grinding, PVP, or a gathering profession, completing the Twilight Highlands quest lines will yield a reasonable gear set to begin level 85 play. Don't forget to visit the leveling dungeons too!"
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Character Models

Postby Digren » Tue Oct 05, 2010 10:53 am

Character Models

Digren says, "I created these models to give realistic examples of viable gear sets per stage. These certainly aren't all-inclusive options, but they should give you a target set to reach the health and combat table coverage expected at each stage."

Tank Stage One - Engineer / Enchanter - Survival Gear

    Digren says, "My goal for this set was to build a realistic target for a new 85 tank. Questing through Vash'jir yields enough Earthen Ring faction to buy the greaves once 85; a lucky run through each of Vortex Pinnacle and the Stonecore provide two drop and one quest pieces. One Justice Points piece is included (1250 points), but there are suitable near replacements if you don't have points banked from level 80 play. Everything else comes from Uldum or Twilight Highlands quests."

    Stage one survival model

    A character with this gear set has:
    • 122k health
    • 25.4% dodge+parry+miss
    • 42.7% block (for a total combat table coverage of 68.1%)
    • 3.15% hit and 15 expertise including glyph (18 for a human)
    The character is well-equipped to begin normal dungeons.

Tank Stage Two - Engineer / Enchanter - Survival Gear

    Digren says, "With a few reputations pushed to honored, and a few lucky dungeon drops, a tank can become ready for heroic dungeons."

    Stage two survival model

    A character with this gear set has:
    • 132k health
    • 28.8% dodge+parry+miss
    • 41.7% block (for a total combat table coverage of 70.5%)
    • 2.35% hit and 20 expertise including glyph (23 for a human)
    The character is well-equipped to begin heroic dungeons.

Tank Stage Three - Engineer / Enchanter - Survival Gear

    Digren says, "This set is typical of a stage three tank looking to move into raiding. Several factions have been pushed to exalted, and heroic drops and targeted purchases fill in the gear set. No Valor gear is included as it's not likely a raiding tank will spend enough time at this stage to gather points."

    Stage three survival model for a new raider

    A character with this gear set has:
    • 148k health
    • 29.9% dodge+parry+miss
    • 51.0% block (for a total combat table coverage of 80.8%)
    • 2.26% hit and 15 expertise including glyph (18 for a human)
    The character is well-equipped to begin normal raids.

Tank Stage Three - Engineer / Enchanter - Heroic Farming Gear

    Digren says, "For some tanks, stage three is end game. These tanks can't or won't raid, but can over time build an optimal, best-in-slot non-raiding set for heroics. If this is you, consider the following set."

    Stage three heroic farming model

    A character with this gear set has:
    • 142k health (less than the raider model because the heroic farmer doesn't need the padding)
    • 27.5% dodge+parry+miss
    • 60.8% block (for a total combat table coverage of 88.3%)
    • 3.25% hit and 20 expertise including glyph (23 for a human)
    This character is well-equipped to for heroic farming. Note that, for this set only, some attention has been given to threat; as the content is over-geared it's fine to make threat mindless (and allow for a sloppier rotation).

Tank Stage Four - Engineer / Enchanter - Survival Gear

    Digren says, "A stage four tank with this set is ready to tackle heroic raids. Not every piece is best in slot, taking into account the random nature of raid drops."

    Stage four survival model

    A character with this gear set has:
    • 156k health
    • 30.5% dodge+parry+miss
    • 55.1% block (for a total combat table coverage of 85.7%)
    • 1.28% hit and 13 expertise including glyph (16 for a human)
    The character is well-equipped to begin heroic raids.

Tank Stage Five - Engineer / Enchanter - Survival Gear

    Digren says, "This model represents an end-game tank. I didn't attempt to achieve the block cap in this set; it's optimized for maximum damage reduction. A second mastery trinket, and a pair of hit or expertise trinkets, can provide variety as required. For a tank walking blind into cutting-edge content, consider using dual stamina trinkets over the stamina/mastery pair suggested here, as this will provide extra buffer for unexpected damage in an unblockable form."

    Stage five survival model

    A character with this gear set has:
    • 166k health
    • 32.6% dodge+parry+miss
    • 59.6% block (for a total combat table coverage of 92.2%)
    • 1.27% hit and 13 expertise including glyph (16 for a human)
    The character is well-equipped for all game content.
Last edited by Digren on Sat Jan 08, 2011 2:36 pm, edited 54 times in total.
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How to Understand the Gear List

Postby Digren » Tue Oct 05, 2010 10:53 am

How to Understand the Gear List



Additional Notes

4.0: T11 Gear Acquisition

T11 normal gear can be bought with Valor Points (for some slots) or Forlorn tokens (for other slots). Don't confuse these tokens with the ones sold by the Valorous quartermaster, which are used to convert T11 gear into T11.5 gear.

There are two different methods to acquire heroic T11 gear, as follows:
  1. Option One: Slot specific tokens
    • Halfus heroic drops 372 chest token; that plus 359 chest yield 372 chest.
    • Maloriak heroic drops 372 leg token; that plus 359 legs yield 372 legs.
    • Magmaw heroic drops 372 glove token; that plus 359 gloves yield 372 gloves.
    • Cho'gall heroic drops 372 shoulder token; that alone yields 372 shoulders.
    • Nefarian heroic drops 372 helm token; that alone yields 372 helm.
  2. Option Two: Essence of the Forlorn
    • Al'Akir heroic drops Essence of the Forlorn; these can be turned in for any of the five 372 armor tokens, which can then be turned in as per option one.

4.2: Upgrading to Firelands Heroic Gear

New to patch 4.2, Blizzard is offering a way for heroic raiders to upgrade their non-heroic gear without flooding boss loot tables. Each Firelands boss drops a Crystallized Firestone. Turn in the firestone and one of a select list of normal mode items, and you'll receive a heroic version. This works not only for some normal raid drops, but also for vendor-bought gear, marking the first time that vendor gear can be "made" heroic.

Items that upgrade in this fashion have their source marked as "Firelands (Heroic) Crystallized Firestone + Normal Version".
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Gear List: Head to Foot

Postby Digren » Tue Oct 05, 2010 10:54 am

Gear List: Head to Foot

Note: Starting with patch 4.2, some lists exclude items that have been made wholly redundant. For example, I don't list every possible neck item available in patch 4.1, because any tank can, shortly after reaching level 85, walk into Molten Front and buy a Fireheart Necklace. Places with items removed are indicated with ellipses. (...)

    Head
      1. Image [Helm of Blazing Glory] : Firelands (Heroic) Baleroc
      2. Image [Greathelm of the Voracious Maw] : Firelands (Heroic) Alysrazor
      3. Image [Immolation Faceguard] : T12.5 : Firelands (Heroic) ???
      4. Image [Dragon Bone Warhelm] : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Maloriak
      4. Image [Helm of Blazing Glory] : Firelands (Normal) Baleroc
      5. Image [Greathelm of the Voracious Maw] : Firelands (Normal) Alyzrazor
      6. Image [Daybreak Helm] : Bastion of Twilight (Heroic) Valonia
      7. Image [Dragon Bone Warhelm] : Blackwing Descent (Normal) Maloriak
      8. Image [Immolation Faceguard] : T12 : Firelands (Normal) ???
      9. Image [Daybreaker Helm] : Bastion of Twilight (Normal) Valonia
      10. Image [Reinforced Sapphirium Faceguard] : T11.5 : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Nefarian or Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      11. Image [Reinforced Bio-Optic Killshades] : BoP Engineering
      12. Image [Reinforced Sapphirium Faceguard] : T11 : Blackwing Descent (Normal) Nefarian or Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Al'Akir
      13. Image [Helm of Easeful Death] : 2200 Justice Points
      13. Image [Spiritshield Mask] : Zul'Aman (Heroic) Nalorakk
      14. Image [Anomuran Helm] : Throne of the Tides (Heroic) Mindbender Ghur'sha
      15. Image [Helm of the Proud] : 2200 Justice Points
      16. Image [Headcover of Fog] : The Vortex Pinnacle (Heroic) Grand Vizier Ertan
      16. Image [Helm of Setesh] : Halls of Origination (Heroic) Setesh
      17. Image [Grinning Fang Helm] / [Crown of Wings] : Dragonmaw Clan / Wildhammer Clan (Revered)
      18. Image [Helm of Setesh] : Halls of Origination (Normal) Setesh
      19. Image [Headcover of Fog] : Req. Lev. 81 : The Vortex Pinnacle (Normal) Grand Vizier Ertan
      20. Image [Gatekeeper's Helm] / [Helm of Durable Hatred] : Req. Lev. 84 : Twilight Highlands (Quest) Precious Goods / Precious Goods
      21. Image [False-Face Mask] / [Great General's Crown] : Req. Lev. 83 : Uldum (Quest) The Great Escape / Salhet the Tactician

      Digren's advice:
      Image The heroic tier helm's lack of mastery pulls it far down in a CTC ranking. The heroic Helm of Blazing Glory is perfectly itemized and is best-in-slot.
      Image The T12 normal helm just isn't that good. While it may work fine in a threat set, the two dropped options are better choices for survival. The normal Helm of Blazing Glory is perfectly itemized and is best-in-slot for non-heroic raiders.
      Image Non-raiders get no love for their helm slot in patch 4.2, with the engineering goggles remaining best in slot. Alas, my hope to see new cogwheels each tier (to keep the goggles up-to-date) is dashed. Past that, the Helm of Easeful Death and newer Spiritshield Mask are just about tied. Despite the iLvl different, the Easeful helm offers significantly more mastery rating, while the Spiritshield offers less-valuable stamina and avoidance. Such is the result of gearing for combat table coverage. If you are pushing the block cap, use the Spiritshield for its stamina and higher iLvl.
      Image If you have the Justice Points, the Helm of Easeful Death is a clear favorite while gearing up for heroics due to its high mastery once gemmed and reforged. If 2200 Justice Points are out of reach pre-heroics, however, the Twilight Highlands faction piece is easy to get and an acceptable substitute.
      Image The Vortex Pinnacle drop wins due to its large allocation of parry rating - leading to sufficient mastery rating via reforging. It's the best piece to be wearing when you reach 85.

    Neck
      1. Image [Firebound Gorget] : Firelands (Heroic) Crystallized Firestone + Normal Version
      2. Image [Firebound Gorget] : Firelands (Normal) BoE Raid Drop
      3. Image [Caelestrasz's Will] : The Bastion of Twilight (Heroic) Sinestra
      4. Image [Stoneheart Necklace] : 1250 Valor Points
      5. Image [Permafrost Choker of the Rockslab] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      5. Image [Permafrost Choker of the Bedrock] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      6. Image [Rage of Ages] : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Nefarian
      7. Image [Permafrost Choker of the Rockslab] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Al'Akir
      7. Image [Permafrost Choker of the Bedrock] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Al'Akir
      8. Image [Permafrost Choker of the Bouldercrag] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      8. Image [Fireheart Necklace] : Molten Front (Unlockable Vendor) Zen'Vorka
      9. Image [Buc-Zakai Choker] : BoE Dungeon Drop
      9. Image [Rage of Ages] : Blackwing Descent (Normal) Nefarian
      ...
      10. Image [Amulet of Protection] : Zul'Gurub (Heroic) Gri'lek
      11. Image [Carrier Wave Pendant] : Blackrock Caverns (Heroic) Ascendant Lord Obsidius
      ...
      12. Image [Mountain's Mouth] : Guardians of Hyjal (Honored)
      12. Image [Elementium Guardian] : BoE Jewelcrafting
      ...

      Digren's advice:
      Image The best-in-slot heroic Firebound Gorget is an easy upgrade from the normal version.
      Image The BoE Firelands drop Firebound Gorget is best, but a Stoneheart Necklace isn't that far behind for those with time but no money-making skill. On the other hand, if you expect to make it to heroic raids, only the Gorget is upgradeable (for now).
      Image The BoE Firelands drop Firebound Gorget is best, but a Stoneheart Necklace isn't that far behind for those with time but no money-making skill.
      Image Your Fireheart Necklace will last until you buy one of the top stage three options.
      Image As soon as you reach level 85, go start the Molten Front quest line. You can very quickly unlock Zen'Vorka and pick up a free iLvl 365 necklace.

    Shoulders
      1. Image [Immolation Shoulderguards] : T12.5 : Firelands (Heroic) ???
      2. Image [Immolation Shoulderguards] : T12 : Firelands (Normal) ???
      3. Image [Pauldrons of Roaring Flame] : Firelands (Heroic) Ragnaros
      3. Image [Spaulders of Recurring Flame] : Firelands (Heroic) Alysrazor
      4. Image [Pauldrons of Roaring Flame] : Firelands (Normal) Ragnaros
      4. Image [Spaulders of Recurring Flame] : Firelands (Normal) Alysrazor
      5. Image [Pauldrons of the Great Ettin] : Bastion of Twilight (Heroic) Halfus Wyrmbreaker
      6. Image [Pauldrons of Edward the Odd] : BoE World Drop
      6. Image [Heaving Plates of Protection] : The Bastion of Twilight (Normal) BoE Raid Drop
      7. Image [Reinforced Sapphirium Shoulderguards] : T11.5 : The Bastion of Twilight (Heroic) Cho'gall or Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      7. Image [Pauldrons of the Apocalypse] : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Nefarian
      8. Image [Pauldrons of the Great Ettin] : Bastion of Twilight (Normal) Halfus Wyrmbreaker
      8. Image [Pauldrons of Sacrifice] : Zul'Aman (Heroic) Hex Lord Malacrass
      9. Image [Skullpiercer Pauldrons] : Zul'Aman (Heroic) Daakara
      10. Image [Earthshape Pauldrons] : Grim Batol (Heroic) Drahga Shadowburner
      10. Image [Pauldrons of the Apocalypse] : Blackwing Descent (Normal) Nefarian
      10. Image [Raz's Pauldrons] : Blackrock Caverns (Heroic) Ascendant Lord Obsidius
      11. Image [Reinforced Sapphirium Shoulderguards] : T11 : The Bastion of Twilight (Normal) Cho'gall or Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Al'Akir
      12. Image [Missing Diplomat's Pauldrons : The Deadmines (Heroic) Glubtok
      13. Image [Sunburnt Pauldrons] : 1650 Justice Points
      14. Image [Earthshape Pauldrons] : Grim Batol (Normal) Drahga Shadowburner
      15. Image [Pauldrons of the High Requiem] : 1650 Justice Points
      16. Image [Pharoah's Burial Spaulders] : Uldum (Quest) Harrison Jones and the Temple of Uldum
      17. Image [Pauldrons of Unholy Rituals] : The Stonecore (Quest) Followers and Leaders
      18. Image [Song-Reflecting Spaulders] / [Shredder-Salvage Spaulders] : Twilight Highlands (Quest) Siren's Song / Mo' Better Shredder
      19. Image [Wyrmhunter Spaulders] : Twilight Highlands (Quest) Blackout
      20. Image [Raz's Pauldrons] : Blackrock Caverns (Normal) Ascendant Lord Obsidius
      21. Image [Staffseeker Shoulderplates] : Uldum (Quest) Just the Tip
      22. Image [Terrath's Rocky Spaulders] : Deepholm (Quest) Resonating Blow

      Digren's advice:
      Image The tier piece with best-in-slot mastery and high stamina stands out well above all the rest.
      Image The tier piece with best-in-slot mastery and high stamina stands out well above all the rest.
      Image There's no love for non-raiders in 4.2; Edward or Heaving are still the best available.
      Image Actually I would skip the Sunburnt Pauldrons and save up for one of the items atop the stage three list, or just take anything you can get as a stepping stone to raids.
      Image Uldum's conclusion provides the best starter shoulders. If you can't stand Uldum, then choose from the selection of quest rewards from the other zones.

    Back
      1. Image [Dreadfire Drape] : Firelands (Heroic) Lord Rhyolith
      2. Image [Ruthless Gladiator's Cloak of Prowess] : 1250 Conquest Points (or 1250 Valor Points)
      2. Image [Permafrost Cape of the Rockslab] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      2. Image [Permafrost Cape of the Bedrock] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      2. Image [Dreadfire Drape] : Firelands (Normal) Lord Rhyolith
      3. Image [Mantle of Patience] : Mount Hyjal (Quest) The Vow
      4. Image [Durable Flamewrath Greatcloak] : Avengers of Hyjal (Friendly)
      5. Image [Wrap of the Great Turtle] : Guardians of Hyjal (Exalted)
      5. Image [Permafrost Cape of the Bouldercrag] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      5. Image [Permafrost Cape of the Rockslab] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Al'Akir
      5. Image [Permafrost Cape of the Bedrock] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Al'Akir
      5. Image [Twilight Dragonscale Cloak] : BoE Leatherworking
      6. Image [Burned Gatherings] : Blackrock Caverns (Heroic) Karsh Steelbender
      6. Image [Floating Web] : 1250 Justice Points
      7. Image [Icebound Cloak] : Slave Pens (Midsummer Festival) Ahune
      7. Image [Hex Lord's Bloody Cloak] : Zul'Aman (Heroic) Hex Lord Malacrass
      7. Image [Billowing Cape] : The Vortex Pinnacle (Heroic) Asaad
      7. Image [Ironstar's Impenetrable Cover] : Blackwing Descent (Normal) BoE Raid Drop
      7. Image [Permafrost Cape of the Bouldercrag] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Al'Akir
      ...

      Digren's advice:
      Image Blizzard itemization strikes again. The heroic Dreadfire Drape with its two red, juicy sockets, just waiting for some fractured amberjewels, is best in slot by a wide margin, even ignoring the agility. So stick with your Permafrost cape or PVP cloak until your DPS players will let you take this one.
      Image I think Blizzard is providing the Mantle of Patience (along with a similar easy-to-obtain neck item) to compensate players who had geared for agility. Regardless, run the quest and pick up the best-in-slot (for normal raiders and nonraiders alike) piece. Changing spec and the quest isn't available? Buy a Wrap of the Great Turtle or Durable Flamewrath Greatcloak.
      Image New to 85? Use a Mantle of Patience. Spec change? Buy a Wrap of the Great Turtle.
      Image Use your Mantle of Patience.
      Image As soon as you hit 85, pick up a Mantle of Patience.

    Chest
      1. Image [Carapace of Imbibed Flame] : Firelands (Heroic) Beth'tilac
      2. Image [Breastplate of Shifting Visions] : Firelands (Heroic) Majordomo Staghelm
      3. Image [Immolation Chestguard] : T12.5 : Firelands (Heroic) ???
      4. Image [Carapace of Imbibed Flame] : Firelands (Normal) Beth'tilac
      5. Image [Breastplate of Shifting Visions] : Firelands (Normal) Majordomo Staghelm
      6. Image [Reinforced Sapphirium Chestguard] : T11.5 : The Bastion of Twilight (Heroic) Halfus Windbreaker or Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      7. Image [Immolation Chestguard] : T12 : 2200 Valor Points
      8. Image [Reinforced Sapphirium Chestguard] : T11 : 2200 Justice Points
      9. Image [Battleplate of the Apocalypse] : The Bastion of Twilight (Heroic) Cho'gall
      10. Image [Elementium Deathplate] : BoE Blacksmithing
      11. Image [Chestplate of the Steadfast] : 2200 Justice Points
      12. Image [Icebone Hauberk] : BoE Dungeon Drop
      12. Image [Battleplate of the Apocalypse] : The Bastion of Twilight (Normal) Cho'gall
      13. Image [Lord Walden's Breastplate] : Shadowfang Keep (Heroic) Lord Godfrey
      13. Image [Beauty's Plate] : Blackrock Caverns (Heroic) Beauty
      14. Image [Phantom Armor] : Shadowfang Keep (Heroic) Lord Walden
      15. Image [Hardened Elementium Hauberk] : BoE Blacksmithing
      15. Image [Breastplate of the Risen Land] : Halls of Origination (Heroic) Earthrager Ptah
      16. Image [Battleplate of the Amani Empire] : Zul'Aman (Heroic) Timed Quest
      17. Image [Flynn's Favorite Chestplate] / [Skyshredder Battleplate] : Req. Lev. 84 : Twilight Highlands (Quest) Doing It Like a Dunwald / Krazz Works!
      18. Image [Breastplate of the Risen Land] : Halls of Origination (Normal) Earthrager Ptah
      18. Image [Harbinger's Breastplate] : BoE Dungeon Drop
      18. Image [Redsteel Breastplate] : BoE Blacksmithing
      19. Image [Breastplate of the Witness] : Grim Batol (Quest) Closing a Dark Chapter
      20. Image [Gateshattering Hauberk] / [Gateshattering Hauberk] : Deepholm (Quest)
      21. Image [Beauty's Plate] : Blackrock Caverns (Normal) Beauty
      ...

      Digren's advice:
      Image While non-tier pieces are technically listed first, chest is likely the slot to use when picking up the four-piece set bonus.
      Image While non-tier pieces are technically listed first, chest is likely the slot to use when picking up the four-piece set bonus.
      Image The T11 chest is well-worth buying if you can get the two-piece set bonus, at least while working on the T12 chest.
      Image Flynn's will last until you can pick up a T11 chest with justice points.
      Image I was wearing the Keg-Sized Chestplate when I reached level 85, but I replaced it quickly with Flynn's.

    Wrists
      1. Image [Bracers of the Fiery Path] : Firelands (Heroic) Majordomo Staghelm
      2. Image [Bracers of the Fiery Path] : Firelands (Normal) Majordomo Staghelm
      3. Image [Bracers of Regal Force] : 1250 Valor Points
      4. Image [Gigantiform Bracers] : 1250 Valor Points
      5. Image [Bracers of Impossible Strength] : The Bastion of Twilight (Heroic) Halfus Wyrmbreaker
      6. Image [Ricket's Gun Show] : Molten Front (Unlockable Vendor) Damek Bloombeard
      7. Image [Bracers of Impossible Strength] : The Bastion of Twilight (Normal) Halfus Wyrmbreaker
      8. Image [Alpha Bracers] : Halls of Origination (Heroic) Anraphet
      8. Image [Terborus's Rotating Bands] : Deepholm (World Rare Spawn) Terborus
      9. Image [Sandguard Bracers] : Ramkahen (Exalted)
      10. Image [Alpha Bracers] : Halls of Origination (Normal) Anraphet
      11. Image [Shackles of Undeath] : Shadowfang Keep (Heroic) Lord Godfrey
      12. Image [Amani Armguards] : Zul'Aman (Heroic) BoE Dungeon Drop
      13. Image [Armguards of Unearthly Light] : Halls of Origination (Heroic) Isiset
      14. Image [Armguards of Unearthly Light] : Halls of Origination (Normal) Isiset
      15. Image [Dunwald's Finest Bindings] : Twilight Highlands (Quest) A Steady Supply
      16. Image [Ankh-Inscribed Bracers] : Uldum (Quest) A Favor for the Furrier

      Digren's advice:
      Image Not much choice here.
      Image Ricket's Gun Show are barely an upgrade from your non-heroic Impossible Strength. From there, either hold out for the new raid drop or grind out the valor.
      Image Pick up a pair of Ricket's then get working on valor points!
      Image Unless you get lucky with a dungeon drop, just keep wearing Dunwald's until you've unlocked Ricket's Gun Show.
      Image Every new 85 Alliance tank should be wearing a set of Dunwald's Finest. Horde tanks - sorry.

    Hands
      1. Image [Flickering Handguards of the Rockslab] : Firelands (Heroic) Baleroc
      1. Image [Flickering Handguards of the Bedrock] : Firelands (Heroic) Baleroc
      1. Image [Immolation Handguards] : T12.5 : Firelands (Heroic) ???
      2. Image [Fireskin Gauntlets] : Firelands (Heroic) Lord Rhyolith
      2. Image [Flickering Handguards of the Bouldercrag] : Firelands (Heroic) Baleroc
      2. Image [Gravitational Pull] : The Bastion of Twilight (Heroic) Elementium Monstrosity
      2. Image [Flickering Handguards of the Rockslab] : Firelands (Normal) Baleroc
      2. Image [Flickering Handguards of the Bedrock] : Firelands (Normal) Baleroc
      2. Image [Immolation Handguards] : 1650 Valor Points
      3. Image [Eternal Elementium Handguards] : BoE Blacksmithing
      4. Image [Reinforced Sapphirium Handguards] : T11.5 : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Magmaw or Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      5. Image [Fireskin Gauntlets] : Firelands (Normal) Lord Rhyolith
      5. Image [Flickering Handguards of the Bouldercrag] : Firelands (Normal) Baleroc
      5. Image [Gravitational Pull] : Bastion of Twilight (Normal) Elementium Monstrosity
      6. Image [Reinforced Sapphirium Handguards] : T11 : 1650 Justice Points
      ...
      7. Image [Fingers of Light] : Halls of Origination (Heroic) Rajh
      ...
      8. Image [Bone Plate Handguards] : Zul'Gurub (Heroic) Zanzil
      9. Image [Gear-Marked Gauntlets] : The Deadmines (Heroic) Helix Gearbreaker
      10. Image [Gloves of the Greymane Wall] : Shadowfang Keep (Heroic) Baron Ashbury
      11. Image [Fingers of Light] : Halls of Origination (Normal) Rajh
      12. Image [Klem's Rusted Gauntlets] / [Klem's Rusted Gauntlets] : Twilight Highlands (Quest)
      13. Image [Gloves of Gnomebliteration] : Uldum (Quest) Gnomebliteration
      13. Image [Oath-Bound Gauntlets] : BoE Dungeon Drop
      ...

      Digren's advice:
      Image Take the tier piece.
      Image Take the tier piece.
      Image The T11 piece is a good standby until you can buy the T12 piece.
      Image If you can afford them, the T11 gloves are a good option. Otherwise stick with what you have until you can get into heroic dungeons.
      Image Either Klem's pieces or good old Gnomebliteration are mainstays for a new 85 tank.

    Waist
      1. Image [Uncrushable Belt of Fury] : Firelands (Heroic) Shannox
      2. Image [Uncrushable Belt of Fury] : Firelands (Normal) Shannox
      3. Image [Jumbotron Power Belt] : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Magmatron
      4. Image [Thunder Wall Belt of the Rockstab] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Nezir
      4. Image [Thunder Wall Belt of the Bedrock] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Nezir
      5. Image [Girdle of the Indomitable Flame] : Avengers of Hyjal (Honored)
      6. Image [Sky Strider Belt Faultline] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Nezir
      7. Image [Thunder Wall Belt of the Bouldercrag] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Nezir
      8. Image [Thunder Wall Belt of the Rockstab] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Nezir
      8. Image [Thunder Wall Belt of the Bedrock] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Nezir
      8. Image [Hardened Elementium Girdle] : BoE Blacksmithing
      9. Image [Jumbotron Power Belt] : Blackwing Descent (Normal) Magmatron or Acanotron
      10. Image [Belt of the Ferocious Wolf] : Guardians of Hyjal (Exalted)
      11. Image [Coils of Hate] : Zul'Gurub (Heroic) High Priest Venoxis
      11. Image [Sky Strider Belt of the Faultline] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Nezir
      12. Image [Garr's Reinforced Girdle of Memories] : Mount Hyjal (BoE Rare Elite Drop) Garr
      12. Image [Thunder Wall Belt of the Bouldercrag] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Nezir
      13. Image [Beech Green Belt] : 1650 Justice Points
      14. Image [Garr's Girdle of Memories] : Mount Hyjal (BoE Rare Elite Drop) Garr
      14. Image [Girdle of the Mountains] : 1650 Justice Points
      15. Image [Iron Will Girdle] : Shadowfang Keep (Heroic) Lord Walden
      16. Image [Sand Dune Belt] : Lost City of the Tol'vir (Heroic) Lockmaw
      17. Image [Sand Dune Belt] : Lost City of the Tol'vir (Normal) Lockmaw
      18. Image [Stoutwaist Girdle] / [Skyfallen Plate Belt] : Req. Lev. 84 : Twilight Highlands / Azshara (Quest) The Loyalty of Clan Mullan / Twilight Skies
      18. Image [Belt of Guardianship] : BoE Dungeon Drop
      18. Image [Hevna's Eye Socket] : Uldum (Quest) The Root of the Corruption
      19. Image [Redsteel Belt] : BoE Blacksmithing
      20. Image [Gryphon-Seeker Waistplate] / [Krazzworks Climbing Belt] : Twilight Highlands (Quest) Finding Beak / Parting Packages
      ...

      Digren's advice:
      Image Only one option for 4.2. The normal version is good enough to be a worthwhile stepping stone on the way to heroic Firelands.
      Image The Uncrushable Belt of Fury is significantly better than the alternative.
      Image The Hyjal exalted rep belt is a good stepping stone for non-raiders, while waiting to acquire funds/orbs for the crafted item.
      Image Buy the Justice Points belt if you can, or save for the Mount Hyjal faction belt at stage three.
      Image Stoutwaist / Skyfallen makes a good starting belt.

    Legs
      1. Image [Immolation Legguards] : T12.5 : Firelands (Heroic) ???
      2. Image [Lavaworm Legplates] : Firelands (Heroic) Alysrazor
      3. Image [Legplates of Frenzied Devotion] : Firelands (Heroic) Shannox
      4. Image [Immolation Legguards] : T12 : 2200 Valor Points
      5. Image [Thunder Wall Greaves of the Rockslab] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      5. Image [Thunder Wall Greaves of the Bedrock] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      6. Image [Lavaworm Legplates] : Firelands (Normal) Alysrazor
      6. Image [Legplates of Frenzied Devotion] : Firelands (Normal) Shannox
      6. Image [Reinforced Sapphirium Legplates] : T11.5 Ret : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Maloriak or Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      7. Image [Thunder Wall Greaves of the Bouldercrag] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      8. Image [Sky Strider Greaves of the Faultline] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      8. Image [Thunder Wall Greaves of the Rockslab] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Al'Akir
      8. Image [Thunder Wall Greaves of the Bedrock] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Al'Akir
      8. Image [Reinforced Sapphirium Legguards] : T11.5 : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Maloriak or Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      ...
      9. Image [Reinforced Sapphirium Legplates] : T11 Ret : 2200 Justice Points
      10. Image [Legguards of the Unforgiving] : Zul'Aman (Heroic) Daakara
      ...
      11. Image [Reinforced Sapphirium Legguards] : T11 : 2200 Justice Points
      ...
      12. Image [Legguards of Winnowing Wind] : The Vortex Pinnacle (Heroic) Asaad
      ...
      13. Image [Triton Legplates] : Throne of the Tides (Heroic) Neptune's Cache
      14. Image [Stone-Wrapped Greaves] : The Earthen Ring (Honored)
      15. Image [Redsteel Legguards] : BoE Blacksmithing
      16. Image [Legguards of the Winnowing Wind] : The Vortex Pinnacle (Normal) Asaad
      17. Image [Sunwatcher's Legplates] : Uldum (Quest) The Scepter of Orsis
      18. Image [Fungus-Stained Legplates] : Deepholm (Quest) Wrath of the Fungalmaster
      19. Image [Legplates of Cooled Magma] / [Legplates of Riven Futures] : Twilight Highlands (Quest) Magmalord Falthazar / Paint It Black
      19. Image [Greaves of Orsis] : The Vortex Pinnacle (Quest) Vengeance for Orsis
      ...

      Digren's advice:
      Image The tier pants are leaps and bounds better than the alternatives. Easy choice.
      Image The tier legs are significantly better than the raid drops.
      Image Either T11 pair (ret or prot) make a good stepping stone while saving up valor for the T12 legs.
      Image Either T11 pair make a good stepping stone if you have the justice points. The Greaves of Splendor (no longer shown) have been made redundant; pick up the Stone-Wrapped Greaves if you don't have the points.
      Image One of the quest sets will serve you well.

    Feet
      1. Image [Mirrored Boots] : BoE Blacksmithing
      2. Image [Cracked Obsidian Stompers] : Firelands (Heroic) Lord Rhyolith
      3. Image [Molten Tantrum Boots] : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Magmaw
      4. Image [Cracked Obsidian Stompers] : Firelands (Normal) Lord Rhyolith
      4. Image [War-Torn Crushers] : The Bastion of Twilight (Heroic) Sinestra
      4. Image [Massacre Treads] : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Magmaw
      5. Image [Gryphon Rider's Boots] / [Boots of Sullen Rock] : Wildhammer Clan / Dragonmaw Clan (Exalted)
      6. Image [Molten Tantrum Boots] : Blackwing Descent (Magmaw) Normal
      7. Image [Massacre Treads] : Blackwing Descent (Normal) Chimaeron
      7. Image [Pyrelord Greaves] : Molten Front (Unlockable Vendor) Zen'Vorka
      8. Image [Treads of Savage Beatings] : Blackwing Descent (Normal) BoE Raid Drop
      9. Image [Skullcrusher Warboots] : Zul'Aman (Heroic) Timed Run Reward
      10. Image [Rock Furrow Boots] : 1650 Valor Points
      11. Image [Baron Silverlaine's Greaves] : Shadowfang Keep (Heroic) Baron Silverlaine
      12. Image [Ramkahen Front Boots] : Lost City of the Tol'vir (Quest) The Source of Their Power
      ...

      Digren's advice:
      Image The Cracked stompers aren't that far behind the blacksmithing piece, but why settle for less than the best when they're so easy to obtain?
      Image Just keep wearing your Wildhammer / Dragonmaw boots until you can buy the blacksmithing piece.
      Image Pick up the Wildhammer / Dragonmaw faction piece while you wait for the price of Mirrored Boots to fall.
      Image Stick with the Pyrelord Greaves.
      Image Pyrelord Greaves are one of your rewards for reaching level 85; visit the Molten Front for your victory lap and pick 'em up.
Last edited by Digren on Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:23 am, edited 33 times in total.
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Digren
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Gear List: Accessories

Postby Digren » Tue Oct 05, 2010 10:54 am

Gear List: Accessories

    Fingers
      1. Image Adamantine Signet of the Avengers : Avengers of Hyjal (Exalted)
      2. Image [Dargonax's Signet] : The Bastion of Twilight (Heroic) Sinestra
      2. Image [Deflecting Brimstone Band] : 1250 Valor Points
      3. Image [Theck's Emberseal] : Firelands (Heroic) Crystallized Firestone + Normal Version
      3. Image [Permafrost Signet of the Rockslab] : Throne of the Four Winds(Heroic) Nezir
      3. Image [Permafrost Signet of the Bedrock] : Throne of the Four Winds(Heroic) Nezir
      4. Image [Lylagar Horn Ring] : Molten Front (Unlockable Vendor) Varlan Highbough
      5. Image [Cloudburst Ring of the Faultline] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Nezir
      6. Image [Theck's Emberseal] : Firelands (Normal) BoE Raid Drop
      6. Image [Ring of the Battle Anthem] : 1250 Justice Points
      6. Image [Permafrost Signet of the Rockslab] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Nezir
      6. Image [Permafrost Signet of the Bedrock] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Nezir
      7. Image [Permafrost Signet of the Bouldercrag] : Throne of the Four Winds(Heroic) Nezir
      8. Image [Red Rock Band] : Ramkahen (Revered)
      8. Image [Umbriss Band] : Grim Batol (Heroic) General Umbriss
      8. Image [Bile-O-Tron Nut] : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Chimaeron
      8. Image [Band of Bees] : 1250 Justice Points
      8. Image [Blauvelt's Family Crest] : BoE Dungeon Drop
      8. Image [Cloudburst Ring of the Faultline] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Nezir
      9. Image [Ring of Three Lights] : Lost City of the Tol'vir (Heroic) Siamat
      9. Image [Ring of the Numberless Brood] : Zul'Aman (Heroic) Jan'alai
      9. Image [Felsen's Ring of Resolve] : Therazane (Revered)
      9. Image [Signet of the Elder Council] : The Earthen Ring (Exalted)
      9. Image [Elementium Destroyer's Ring] : BoE Jewelcrafting
      9. Image [Permafrost Signet of the Bouldercrag] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Nezir
      9. Image [Elementium Moebius Band] : BoE Jewelcrafting
      9. Image [Punisher's Band] : BoE Jewelcrafting
      10. Image [Umbriss Band] : Grim Batol (Normal) General Umbriss
      10. Image [Nemesis Shell Band] : Molten Front (Unlockable Vendor) Varlan Highbough
      10. Image [Ring of the Darkest Day] : Lost City of the Tol'vir (Heroic) High Prophet Barim
      10. Image [Bile-O-Tron Nut] : Blackwing Descent (Normal) Chimaeron
      10. Image [Signet of Transformation] : Blackrock Caverns (Heroic) Corla, Herald of Twilight
      11. Image [Temple Band] : Twilight Highlands (Normal or Heroic) BoE Random Drop
      11. Image [Ring of Three Lights] : Lost City of the Tol'vir (Normal) Siamat
      11. Image [Terrath's Signet of Balance] : Therazane (Revered)
      12. Image [Talonguard Band] : Zul'Aman (Heroic) Akil'zon
      12. Image [Ring of the Darkest Day] : Lost City of the Tol'vir (Normal) High Prophet Barim
      12. Image [Phosphorescent Ring] : The Stonecore (Heroic) Corborus
      12. Image [Galrond's Band] : Guardians of Hyjal (Honored)
      12. Image [Entwined Nereis] : Throne of the Tides (Heroic) Lady Naz'jar
      13. Image [Dark-Eye Ring] : Twilight Highlands (Quest) Eye Spy
      13. Image [Shard-Heart Ring] : Twilight Highlands (Quest) Eye Spy
      ...

      Digren's advice:
      Image Dargonax's ring stays suprisingly high on a CTC ranking, while Theck's ring is sadly low. Whichever you choose, couple it with the Avenger's reward.
      Image You pretty much have to grind out the valor + reputation.
      Image A Ring of the Battle Anthem and Lylagar Horn Ring are reliable options while working up to a Deflecting Brimstone Band.
      Image A Red Rock Band and Felsen's Ring of Resolve are guaranteed options to ready you for heroic dungeons.
      Image An Elementium Destroyer's Ring, despite being agility based, is the best ring you can buy for a reasonable cost when you hit 85. Couple it with an Elementium Mobeus Band, or something all the way down to the Shard-Heart Ring if you must.

    Weapon
      1. Image [Mandible of Beth'tilac] : Firelands (Heroic) Beth'tilac
      2. Image [Obsidium Cleaver] : Axe : Firelands (Heroic) Crystallized Firestone + Normal Version
      3. Image [Mandible of Beth'tilac] : Firelands (Normal) Beth'tilac
      3. Image [Mace of Acrid Death] : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Maloriak
      3. Image [Obsidium Cleaver] : Axe : Firelands (Normal) BoE Raid Drop
      4. Image [Unbreakable Guardian] : BoE Blacksmithing
      4. Image [Stormwake, the Tempest's Reach of the Faultline] : Throne of the Four Winds (Heroic) Al'Akir
      5. Image [Mace of Acrid Death] : Blackwing Descent (Normal) Maloriak
      5. Image [Elementium-Edges Scalper] : Axe : BoE Blacksmithing
      6. Image [Stormwake, the Tempest's Reach of the Faultline] : Throne of the Four Winds (Normal) Al'Akir
      6. Image [Soul Blade] : The Bastion of Twilight (Normal) BoE Raid Drop
      7. Image [Elementium Fang] : The Stonecore (Heroic) High Priestess Azil
      8. Image [Renataki's Soul Slicer] : Zul'Gurub (Heroic) Renataki
      8. Image [Axe of the Eclipse] : Axe : The Vortex Pinnacle (Heroic) Altairus
      9. Image [Darkheart Hacker] / [Darkheart Hacker] : Axe : 85 Tol Barad Commendation
      9. Image [Bloodlord's Protector] : Zul'Gurub (Heroic) Bloodlord Mandokir
      9. Image [Sun Strike] : Halls of Origination (Heroic) Rajh
      9. Image Image [Cookie's Tenderizer] : The Deamines (Heroic) "Captain" Cookie
      9. Image [Buzz Saw] : The Deadmines (Heroic) Foe Reaper 5000
      10. Image [Mace of Transformed Bone] : Grim Batol (Heroic) Erudax
      11. Image [Sun Strike] : Halls of Origination (Normal) Rajh
      12. Image [Dragonscorn Mace] / [Mace of the Gullet] : Twilight Highlands (Quest) Narkrall, The Drake-Tamer / Fury Unbound
      13. Image [Elementium Fang] : The Stonecore (Normal) High Priestess Azil
      13. Image [Mace of Transformed Bone] : Grim Batol (Normal) Erudax
      13. Image [Axe of the Eclipse] : Axe : The Vortex Pinnacle (Normal) Altairus
      13. Image [Riftrent Waraxe] : Axe : Deepholm (Quest) The Binding
      ...

      Digren's advice:
      Image The top two are pretty close; take whichever unless you need to avoid the axe.
      Image The top three are relatively close; take whichever unless you need to avoid the axe.
      Image Either the Obsidium Cleaver or Unbreakable Guardian are the best non-raid options, depending on whether or not you wish to use an axe.
      Image If you can't get a Sun Strike, stick with a quest weapon.
      Image The Twilight Highlands quest reward is the best weapon available to a new 85 with limited gold.

    Shield
      1. Image [Shard of Torment] : Firelands (Heroic) Baleroc
      2. Image [Shard of Torment] : Firelands (Normal) Baleroc
      3. Image [Akmin-Kurai, Dominion's Shield] : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Nefarian
      4. Image [Elementium Earthguard] : BoE Blacksmithing
      5. Image [Blockade's Lost Shield] : BoE World Drop
      5. Image [Extinct Turtle Shell] : BoA Archaeology
      5. Image [Akmin-Kurai, Dominion's Shield] : Blackwing Descent (Normal) Nefarian
      6. Image [Shield of the Blood God] : Zul'Gurub (Heroic) Jin'do the Godbreaker
      7. Image [Shield of the Four Grey Towers] : 950 Justice Points
      8. Image [Shield of the Iron Maiden] : Blackrock Caverns (Heroic) Rom'ogg Bonecrusher
      9. Image [Bulwark of the Primordial Mound] : Halls of Origination (Heroic) Earthrager Ptah
      10. Image [Bulwark of the Primordial Mound] : Halls of Origination (Normal) Earthrager Ptah
      10. Image [Bulwark of the Scorned Man] : BoE Dungeon Drop
      11. Image [Truthbreaker Shield] / [Twilight Mirrorshield] : Stormwind City / Orgrimmar (Quest) A Villain Unmasked / Traitor's Bait
      12. Image [Shield of the Iron Maiden] : Blackrock Caverns (Rom'ogg Bonecrusher)

      Digren's advice:
      Image The only new heroic raid option is best in slot.
      Image The Shard of Torment is great.
      Image The Elementium Earthguard remains best in slot for nonraiders, though the Extinct Turtle Shell is close and is Bind on Account, making it useful for those with many alts.
      Image Shield of the Four Grey Towers is cheap to buy and can last into raiding.
      Image The quest shield from the Twilight Highlands chain is sufficient for all players new to 85.

    Relic
      1. Image [Deathclutch Figurine] : Firelands (Heroic) Crystallized Firestone + Normal Version
      2. Image [Deathclutch Figurine] : 700 Valor Points
      3. Image [Relic of Khaz'goroth] : 700 Justice Points
      3. Image [Stalagmite Dragon] : The Stonecore (Heroic) Slabhide
      3. Image [Relic of Tortolla] : Molten Front (Unlockable Vendor) Varlan Highbough
      4. Image [Record of the Brotherhood's End] : The Deadmines (Heroic) Vanessa VanCleef
      4. Image [Notched Jawbone] : BoE Inscription
      5. Image [Namkhare's Cabochon Charm] : Uldum (Quest) Lieutenants of Darkness
      5. Image [Stalagmite Dragon] : The Stonecore (Normal) Slabhide
      5. Image [Shore-Cleansing Standard] / [Blackblood Freedom Standard] : Twilight Highlands (Quest) Landgrab / Insurrection
      5. Image [Ashes of Youth] : BoE World Drop
      ...

      Digren's advice:
      Image Finally, a heroic relic for heroic raiders.
      Image The valor relic is best in slot.
      Image The valor relic is best in slot, followed by a host of others including the new easy-to-obtain Relic of Tortolla.
      Image You can buy the Notched Jawbone if you have spare cash or to boost your average iLvl; otherwise stick with Namkhare's charm until you unlock the Relic of Tortolla.
      Image You can buy the Notched Jawbone if you have spare cash or to boost your average iLvl; otherwise stick with Namkhare's charm.

    Trinkets

      Digren's advice:
      Trinkets are different. They offer a large amount of a focused stat in an easily-swappable form. Keep several handy and you can swap the feel of your entire gear set. I recommend acquiring two each of mastery, stamina, and threat, and learning when to use them. Note that I don't list avoidance trinkets; unless one has an amazing on-use ability, they are simply inferior to mastery trinkets (for the vast majority of players under the block cap).

      Mastery

      Image [Lifebound Alchemist Stone] : Mastery/Stamina + Survival : BoP Alchemy
      Image [Spidersilk Spindle] : Mastery + Survival : Firelands (Heroic) Beth'tilac
      Image [Spidersilk Spindle] : Mastery + Survival : Firelands (Normal) Beth'tilac
      Image [Essence of the Eternal Flame] : Mastery + Threat : Avengers of Hyjal (Revered)
      Image [Mirror of Broken Images] / [Mirror of Broken Images] : Mastery + Resistance : Baradin's Wardens / Hellscream's Reach (Exalted)
      Image [Impatience of Youth] / [Impatience of Youth] : Mastery + Threat : Baradin's Wardens / Hellscream's Reach (Exalted)
      Image [Figurine - King of Boars] : Mastery + Threat : BoP Jewelcrafting
      Image [Volatile Alchemist Stone] : Mastery/Threat + Survival : BoP Alchemy
      Image [Impetuous Query] : Mastery + Avoidance : Lost City of the Tol'vir (Normal and Heroic) BoE Dungeon Drop
      Image [Elementium Dragonling] : Mastery + Pet : BoE Engineering Only
      Image [Baradin Footman's Tags] / [Baradin Grunt's Talisman] : Mastery + Pet : Baradin's Wardens / Hellscream's Reach (Honored)

      Stamina

      Image [Lifebound Alchemist Stone] : Mastery/Stamina + Survival : BoP Alchemy
      Image [Scales of Life] : Stamina + Survival : Firelands (Heroic) Crystallized Firestone + Normal Version
      Image [Scales of Life] : Stamina + Survival : Firelands (Normal) Raid Drop
      Image [Symbiotic Worm] : Stamina + Mastery : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Magmaw
      Image [Moonwell Phial] : Stamina + Avoidance : Molten Front (Unlockable Vendor) Ayla Shadowstorm
      Image [Vial of Stolen Memories] : Stamina + Avoidance : The Bastion of Twilight (Heroic) Valiona
      Image [Symbiotic Worm] : Stamina + Mastery : Blackwing Descent (Normal) Magmaw
      Image [Vial of Stolen Memories] : Stamina + Avoidance : The Bastion of Twilight (Normal) Valiona
      Image [Leaden Despair] : Stamina + Survival : The Stonecore (Heroic) High Priestess Azil
      Image [Figurine - Earthen Guardian] : Stamina + Avoidance : BoP Jewelcrafting
      Image [Za'brox's Lucky Tooth] / [Za'brox's Lucky Tooth] : Stamina + Mastery : Twilight Highlands (Quest) Four Heads Are Better Than None / Four Heads Are Better Than None
      Image [Leaden Despair] : Stamina + Survival : The Stonecore (Normal) High Priestess Azil

      Threat (Expertise Rating)

      [Heart of Rage] : Expertise + Threat : Blackwing Descent (Heroic) Chimaeron
      [Heart of Rage] : Expertise + Threat : Blackwing Descent (Normal) Chimaeron
      [Magnetite Mirror] : Expertise + Threat : The Stonecore (Heroic) High Priestess Azil
      [Magnetite Mirror] : Expertise + Threat : The Stonecore (Normal) High Priestess Azil

      Threat (Hit Rating)

      [License to Slay] : Hit + Threat : 1650 Justice Points
      [Might of the Ocean] : Hit + Threat : Throne of the Tides (Heroic) Neptulon's Cache
      [Right Eye of Rajh] : Hit + Threat : Halls of Origination (Heroic) Rajh
      [Soul's Anguish] : Hit + Threat : BoE Dungeon Drop
      [Right Eye of Rajh] : Hit + Threat : Halls of Origination (Normal) Rajh
      [Might of the Ocean] : Hit + Threat : Throne of the Tides (Normal) Neptulon's Cache
Last edited by Digren on Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:29 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Changelist

Postby Digren » Tue Oct 05, 2010 10:54 am

2011-02-12: Added new items from 4.0.6: Hornet-Sting Band, Volatile Alchemist's Stone. Reranked items modified in 4.0.6 (as necessary): Daybreak Helm (both versions), Hardened Elementium Girdle. Other item modifications yielded no change in ranking.
2011-03-28: Added the heroic Necklace of Strife (thanks Klorak).
2011-04-25: Corrected methodology to acquire tier 11.5 gear (thanks Rhiannon).
2011-06-01: Removed heroic Ring of Rivalry as it no longer has mastery rating (thanks Boneyjellyfish).
2011-06-26: Finished adding all the 4.2 gear. Ready enough for patch.
2011-06-28: Adjusted stat comparison text for dodge and parry based on new formulas.
Last edited by Digren on Sat Dec 11, 2010 10:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 4.0 Tank Levels

Postby Digren » Tue Oct 05, 2010 10:59 am

What I need to help:
Petrus has been gathering a list of all the Cataclysm available gear. I haven't yet had time to parse that list and bin the items by tier. Which pieces can a tank reasonably expect to acquire pre-85? What pieces comprise the dungeon sets? Are there any raid gear stats yet.

I'll get to this. :P But if someone else has sorted through it all, knows this, and can contribute, I'll get the guide done that much faster. :wink:

Once I know what gear is available for each tier, we can build overall sets. Then, let's review what stats are short and what is possible. Can a new level 85 tank hit the block cap by gemming, enchanting, and reforging everything for mastery? Is that even a good idea? If so, we'll build a model of an ideal tank level 1 character with typical gear and enhancements. Then, that model drives my item enhancement guide selections for that level.

Are dungeons a cakewalk for survivability but every tank needs to work on threat? If so, then level two could recommend threat enhancements over survival enhancements, and I'll back port those recommendations to the gem and enchant guide, too. There are still many unknowns, but that just means there's still a lot to explore.
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Re: 4.0 Tank Levels and Gear Guide

Postby sally » Sun Nov 07, 2010 4:22 pm

Here's a list I finished last night for reference when I'm getting my own gear. It's not perfect but it might help you speed up the listing!

Thanks for the list! - Digren
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Re: 4.0 Tank Levels and Gear Guide

Postby Neptuno » Mon Nov 08, 2010 11:59 pm

should adjust the discussion for the BV changes for rank 0 since we won't be block capped completely while leveling
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Re: 4.0 Tank Levels and Gear Guide

Postby Digren » Tue Nov 09, 2010 11:00 am

Neptuno wrote:should adjust the discussion for the BV changes for rank 0 since we won't be block capped completely while leveling

I'm going to wait and see if they change it all up again before I update that bit. :D I know it's different now on beta than it was when I wrote that text a month ago, but as far as I can see so far reforging for mastery is still the best option.
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Re: 4.0 Tank Levels and Gear Guide

Postby Braundo » Wed Nov 10, 2010 2:15 pm

Have you intentionally listed the Ret T11 legs rather than the Prot ones in the Level 3 list? Is it going to be optimal to go 4/5 Prot for the 4-piece bonus and then taking the Ret legs because of their stats? Or was this just an oversight?
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Re: 4.0 Tank Levels and Gear Guide

Postby Digren » Wed Nov 10, 2010 4:56 pm

Braundo wrote:Have you intentionally listed the Ret T11 legs rather than the Prot ones in the Level 3 list? Is it going to be optimal to go 4/5 Prot for the 4-piece bonus and then taking the Ret legs because of their stats? Or was this just an oversight?

I stumbled across them, realized that they had no bad specs*, and then determined that they'd make the foundation for an awesome threat piece for a protection paladin. I stumbled across them because my level 85 premade had them in his inventory.

I haven't listed the prot legs because my premade was given Legplates of the Unseen instead for his prot set. They'll be listed when I do a more exhaustive search.

* behold the power of mastery
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Re: 4.0 Tank Levels and Gear Guide

Postby Kelaan » Mon Nov 22, 2010 12:40 pm

I had made a listing of some of the gear I'd encounter while leveling, and where it's from. It's really only for the path TO 85 (so not a lot of info on heroic gear or raiding stuff), but it was helpful for me to see which dungeons I want to focus on, and where the good questing is.

Edit: Also, I love the threat/mastery gear pieces, which double as ret gear. I figure that when leveling, worrying about having 4-5% less avoidance is not really a big deal. I wrote this before I knew when I could properly go to Deepholm, and have since decided to try to cap Mining and Archaeology before I start doing most of this, anyways.

Key:
"R" : Bought from a reputation vendor.
"Q" : Quest reward
"C" : Crafted
(Source) : I note zones, reputations, and dungeons here.

I ordered these by level, generally, and included things that I can craft or buy (so BoEs and Engineering toys). I also separated (sometimes ;)) the leveling gear from the at-85 gear.

I can't get {code ...} to give me anything but a really small unreadable window. Sorry. I thought about making it a Quote section for text formatting, but then I'd lose the tabs. Let me know if you'd prefer it in Quotes, as then it will be readable all at once.

Gear by Level and Zone
Code: Select all
===================================
GEAR BY LEVEL AND ZONE
===================================

-- [80] Blackrock Caverns
   // Get portal. Shield + ring + bracers.
78   (BRC) Beauty's Plate (BRC) - tank
78   (BRC) Bracers of Cooled Anger - dps
78   (BRC) Raz's Pauldrons - both (hit/mastery)
78   (BRC) Signet of Transformation - dps (haste/mastery)
80   (BRC) Shield of the Iron Maiden - (Rom'Ogg)
80   (ICC) Libram of Three Truths (crit/haste)

-- [80] Hyjal:
   // Quest to get Revered rep.
   //
80    Q   (Hyjal) Chestplate of Viridian Renewal - dps
80    Q   (Hyjal) Crown of Chelonian Freedom (Hyjal) - dps
80    Q   (Hyjal) Forgemaster's Shattered Shackle - tank
80    Q   (Hyjal) Nemesis Crushers - dps (hit/mast) (tank?)

83    R   (Hyjal honored) Galrond's Band - dps
83    R   (Hyjal honored) Mountain's Mouth - tank

85    R   (Hyjal honored) Waywatcher's Boots - dps
85    R   (Hyjal exalted) Wrap of the Great Turtle - tank
85    R   (Hyjal exalted) Belt of the Ferocious Wolf - dps

-- [80] Underwater / Throne of the Tides
78   (Throne of Tides) Eagle ray Cloak (haste/mastery) (dps)
80    Q   (Shimmering Expanse) Emerald Dragonet Choker - dps


-- [81] Deepholm / Stonecore / Earth
   // Quest for upgrades, rep.
   //
81    Q   (Deepholm) Fungus-Stained Legplates - dps/tank
81/83 Q   (Deepholm) Amulet of Reconstruction
81/83 Q   (Deepholm) Riftrent Waraxe
81   (Stonecore) Elementium Fang (Azil)
81   (Stonecore) Hematite Plate Gloves - dps (crit/haste)
81   (Stonecore) Phosphorescent Ring - tank
81   (Stonecore) Stalagmite Dragon - tank
81   (Stonecore) Swd of the Bottomless Pit (Ozruk) - haste/mastery
81    Q   (Stonecore) Crystal Shimmer Cloak
83/81 Q   (Stonecore) Axe of Earthly Sundering (3.3 spd)
83    R   (Earthen Ring honored) Stone-Wrapped Greaves - tank

-- [82] Vortex Pinnacle -- 82-84
   // Skip these in favor of doing Uldum Questing.
   // Do it once or twice. Quests are inside.
81   (Vortex Pinnacle) Billowing Cape (Asaad)
81   (Vortex Pinnacle) Headcover of Fog - tank
82    Q   (Vortex Pinnacle) Band of the Dead End - hit/mastery


-- [83] Uldum
   // Quest the hell out of Uldum; chains have good rewards.
   // ilevel 325
83    Q   (Uldum) Gloves of Gnomebliteration - tank
83    Q   (Uldum) Necklace of the Dead City - dps
83    Q   (Uldum) Pharoah's  Burial Spaulders - tank
83    Q   (Uldum) Statue Climbers - dps (haste/exp)

83    R   (Ramakhen honored) Shroud of the Dead - dps
85    R   (Ramakhen revered) Red Rock Band - dps/tank
85    R   (Ramakhen exalted) Gift of Nadun - dps
85    R   (Ramakhen exalted) Sandguard Bracers - tank

-- [83-84] Lost City
   // Quest for boots, don't obsess on rest.
   // ilevel 333.
83    Q   (Lost City) Ramakhen Front Boots - tank
83/84   (Lost City) Ring of Three Lights - tank
84   (Lost City) Sand Dune Belt

-- [83-84] Halls of Origination (84 recommended)
   // Many farmings :)
   // ilevel 333
83    Q   (Halls of Orig) Offline Greaves - dps/tank (crit/exp)
83/84   (Halls of Orig) Seedling Pod - dps
83/84   (Halls of Orig) Alpha Bracers - hit/mast
83/84   (Halls of Orig) Armguards of Unearthly Light - tank
83/84   (Halls of Orig) Breastplate of the Risen Land - both
83/84   (Halls of Orig) Bulwark of the Primordial Mound - tank
83/84   (Halls of Orig) Fingers of Light - tank
83/84   (Halls of Orig) Helm of Setesh - tank
84   (Halls of Orig) Sun Strike - (1H)

-- [84] Grim Batol (84 recommended)
   // ilevel 333
83   (Grim Batol) Umbriss Band - both (hit/mastery)
84   (Grim Batol) Belt of the Forgemaster - dps
84   (Grim Batol) Wild Hammer - 2H (haste/mastery)
84    Q   (Grim Batol) Breastplate of the Witness - tank

-- [84] Stormwind
   // Do this before THL
84    Q   (Stormwind) Truthbreaker Shield

-- [84] Twilight Highlands / Wildhammer
   // ilevel 333
84    Q   (Twilight Highlands) Cloak of the Red Flight
84    Q   (Twilight Highlands) Dragonscorn Mace
84    Q   (Twilight Highlands) Flynn's Favorite Chestplate - dps
84   Q5   (Twilight Highlands) Oversized Oblique Ogre Obliterator (3.3 spd)
85   Shield of the Four grey towers (Justice points?)

85    R   (Wildhammer Revered) Crown of Wings - tank
85    R   (Wildhammer Revered) Gryphon Talon Gauntlets - dps
85    R   (Wildhammer revered) Arcanum of the  (str/mastery)
85    R   (Wildhammer Exalted) Gryphon Rider's Boots (Wildhammer exalted) - tank

-- Professions
81   Obs Executioner: crafted
85    C   Elementium Guardian (JC crafted)
85    C   Twilight Dragonscale Cloak
85    C Elementium Earthguard

Engy  C   Reinforced Bio-Optic Killshades - both
Arch  E   Scimitar of the Sirocco (tol'vir)
Arch  E   Zin'Rokh (troll)


--- Heroics / raids
85    E   Soul Blade / Lava Spine / Mace of Acrid Death
85    H   (many)
85    H   <several>
85    H   Fingers of Light (Halls of Orig) - tank
85    H   Hematite Plate Gloves (H.Stonecore) - dps
85    H   Legguards of Winnowing Wind (Vortex Pinnacle) - dps/tank
85    H   Shield of the Iron Maiden - BRC (Rom'Ogg)
85    H   Sun Strike / etc
85    H   Swd of the Bottomless Pit (3.8)
85    H   Triton Legplates (throne of tides) - tank
85    H Stalagmite Dragon
85    P   Bloodthirsty Gladiator's (crit/res)

85    R   Arcanum of the Earthen Ring (revered) (stam)
85    R   Blade of the Fearless - (Baradin's revered)
85    R   (Therazane Revered) Felsen's Ring of Resolve - tank
85    R   Gorsik's Band of Shattering (Therazane Revered) - dps


Gear by Slot
Code: Select all
===================================
GEAR BY SLOT
===================================

2H weapons:
--
81   Obs Executioner: crafted
81*   Swd of the Bottomless Pit - Stonecore (Ozruk) - haste/mastery
83/81 Q   Axe of Earthly Sundering (3.3 spd) - Stonecore
84   Q5   Oversized Oblique Oger Obliterator (3.3 spd) - Twilight Highlands
84   Wild Hammer - Grim Batol (haste/mastery)
--
85    R   Blade of the Fearless - Baradin's (revered)
85    H   Swd of the Bottomless Pit (3.8)
Arch  E   Zin'Rokh (troll)

1H weapons:
--
81   Elementium Fang - Stonecore (Azil)
81/83 Q   Riftrent Waraxe - quest (Deepholm)
84    Q   Dragonscorn Mace - quest (Twilight Highlands)
84   Sun Strike - Halls of Origination (Rajh)
--
85    H   Sun Strike / etc
85    E   Soul Blade / Lava Spine / Mace of Acrid Death
Arch  E   Scimitar of the Sirocco (tol'vir)

Shields:
--
80   Shield of the Iron Maiden - BRC (Rom'Ogg)
83/84   Bulwark of the Primordial Mound
84    Q   Truthbreaker Shield - quest (Stormwind)
--
85   Shield of the Four grey towers (Justice points?)
85    H   Shield of the Iron Maiden - BRC (Rom'Ogg)
85    C Elementium Earthguard

Relic:
--
80   Libram of Three Truths (crit/haste)
81   Stalagmite Dragon - Stonecore (Slabhide)
--
85    H Stalagmite Dragon
85    P   Bloodthirsty Gladiator's (crit/res)

Head:
--
80    Q   Crown of Chelonian Freedom (Hyjal) - dps
81   Headcover of Fog (Vortex Pinnacle) - tank
83/84   Helm of Setesh (Halls of Orig) - tank
--
85    R   Crown of Wings (Wildhammer Revered) - tank
Engy  C   Reinforced Bio-Optic Killshades - both


Neck:
--
80    Q   Emerald Dragonet Choker (Shimmering Expanse) - dps
81/83 Q   Amulet of Reconstruction (Deepholm)
83    Q   Necklace of the Dead City (Uldum) - dps
83    R   Mountain's Mouth (Hyjal honored) - tank
83   Seedling Pod (H.Orig, Ammunae) - dps
--
85    C   Elementium Guardian (JC crafted)
85    R   Gift of Nadun (Ramakhen exalted) - dps


Shoulders:
--
78   Raz's Pauldrons (BRC) - both (hit/mastery)
83    Q   Pharoah's  Burial Spaulders (Uldum chain) - tank
--


Cloak:
--
78   Eagle ray Cloak (haste/mastery) - dps
81   Billowing Cape - Vortex Pinnacle (Asaad) - tank
81    Q   Crystal Shimmer Cloak (Quest, Stonecore) - dps
83    R   Shroud of the Dead (Ramakhen Honored) - dps
84    Q   Cloak of the Red Flight (Twilight Highlands) - dps
--
85    C   Twilight Dragonscale Cloak
85    H   (many)
85    R   Wrap of the Great Turtle (Hyjal exalted) - tank


Chest:
--
78   Beauty's Plate (BRC) - tank
80    Q   Chestplate of Viridian Renewal (Hyjal) - dps
83/84   Breastplate of the Risen Land (Halls of Orig) - both
84    Q   Breastplate of the Witness (Grim Batol) - tank
84    Q   Flynn's Favorite Chestplate (Twilight Highlands) - dps
--
85    H   <several>


Wrist:
--
78   Bracers of Cooled Anger (BRC) - dps
83/84   Alpha Bracers (Halls of Orig) - hit/mast
83/84   Armguards of Unearthly Light (Halls of Orig) - tank
--
85    R   Sandguard Bracers (Ramakhen Exalted) - tank


Gloves:
--
81   Hematite Plate Gloves (Stonecore) - dps (crit/haste)
83    Q   Gloves of Gnomebliteration (Uldum) - tank
83/84   Fingers of Light (Halls of Orig) - tank
--
85    R   Gryphon Talon Gauntlets (Wildhammer revered) - dps
85    H   Fingers of Light (Halls of Orig) - tank
85    H   Hematite Plate Gloves (H.Stonecore) - dps


Waist:
--
80    Q   Forgemaster's Shattered Shackle (Hyjal) - tank
84   Belt of the Forgemaster (Grim Batol)
84   Sand Dune Belt (Lost city)
--
85    R   Belt of the Ferocious Wolf (Hyjal exalted) - dps

Legs:
--
81    Q   Fungus-Stained Legplates (Deepholm) - dps/tank
83    Q   Offline Greaves (Halls of Orig) - dps/tank (crit/exp)
83    R   Stone-Wrapped Greaves (E.Ring honored) - tank
--
85    H   Legguards of Winnowing Wind (Vortex Pinnacle) - dps/tank
85    H   Triton Legplates (throne of tides) - tank

Boots:
--
80    Q   Nemesis Crushers (Hyjal) - dps (hit/mast) (tank?)
83    Q   Statue Climbers (Uldum) - dps (haste/exp)
83    Q   Ramakhen Front Boots (Lost City) - tank
--
85    R   Waywatcher's Boots (Hyjal honored) - dps
85    R   Gryphon Rider's Boots (Wildhammer exalted) - tank


Finger:
--
78   Signet of Transformation (BRC) - dps (haste/mastery)
81   Phosphorescent Ring (Stonecore) - tank
82    Q   Band of the Dead End (Vortex Pinnacle) - hit/mastery
83    R   Galrond's Band (Hyjal honored) - dps
83   Umbriss Band (Grim Batol) - both (hit/mastery)
83   Ring of Three Lights (Lost City) - tank
--
85    R   Red Rock Band (Ramakhen revered) - dps/tank
85    R   Felsen's Ring of Resolve (Therazane Revered) - tank
85    R   Gorsik's Band of Shattering (Therazane Revered) - dps


Head Enchant:
--
--
85    R   Arcanum of the Earthen Ring (revered) (stam)
85    R   Arcanum of the Wildhammer (revered) (str/mastery)


Shoulder Enchant: Therazane Honored/Exalted


From this, I drew some conclusions about which reputations and dungeons I want to farm.

Reputations: Hyjal and Ramakhen
It's interesting that there's DPS + tank gear on both the Ramakhen and Hyjal rep vendors, both at exalted and at revered, for levels 83 and 85. Questing in Hyjal and Uldum should unlock the level 83 blues, which LOOK like they should be good entry level 85-dungeon gear (though perhaps not for heroics). (If you want tank/healing gear, there are other factions that give those.)

Questing
Hyjal: Available at 80, many blue upgrades to anyone not in 277 gear.

Vash'jir: Get the Throne of Tides portal, eventually. I didn't see much reason to quest here.

Deepholm: At 81 (82?), there are quests for tank legs, dps weapon, and a necklace. I'm not really motivated to quest here, except that I will likely hang out here a lot to mine.

Uldum: Mother lode of quest items. Tanking gloves/shoulders, dps neck/feet. First ilevel 325 gear. Ramakhen honored gives a dps cloak. (Higher rep gear requires level 85 anyways.) I plan to quest the hell out of Uldum.

Stormwind: At 84, it looks like there's a quest before Twilight Highlands which has a good mid-level shield: Truthbreaker Shield. It's itemized for level 84, and the upgrades are from either justice points, crafted, or heroic BRC.

Twilight Highlands: Wildhammer rep is important, and there are several gear upgrades here. Rewards are ilevel 333.

Dungeons

Blackrock Caverns: For new 80 tanks, this is great stuff. If you're in 251+ gear, you probably won't get much out of here. I hear it's fast XP to farm this with a skilled group, though. There's a shield, and shoulders.

Stonecore: Many plate upgrades, for tank and dps. Tanking relic and BIS 2H sword for a while. These look great.

Vortex Pinnacle: Good quest reward, tanking hat, and a cape. I'll do it once or twice.

Lost City: Do the quest (tanking boots), run it once or twice for tanking ring/belt, but don't obsess over it. Ilevel 333.

Halls of Origination: Farm it from 83 on. Plate upgrades for both specs in almsot every slot; improved armor and stamina means that even DPS gear will likely be tanking upgrades. Ilevel 333. It looks like heroic Halls of Origination will also have lots of plate upgrades as well, so I may as well learn the place.

Grim Batol: Also Ilevel 333. Quest for tanking chest, and drops DPS upgrades. Also a hit/mastery ring which I'll love.

Once I get to 85, I'll know a lot more about where I'll want to push my reputations and stuff, but the dungeon drops really do seem to be heavily skewed to make us focus on only a few dungeons. I like that, frankly, as it makes farming it with a like-minded group fairly fruitful.
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Kelaan
 
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