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Shifting Perspectives: Awesome Moonkin gear - The Finale

Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting druids and those who group with them, brought to you by David Bowers and Dan O'Halloran.

NOTE: Mages, Warlocks and Shadow Priests may be interested in these lists as well.

This last set of equipment slots are better tailored to Moonkin than the visible slots covered earlier. Because the neck/ finger/weapon/trinket slots have to cater to all dps casters, we see more pure +spell damage items and less equipment watered down with +healing. Also, the relic slot has items specifically tailored to Moonkin.

Since there are so many choices for these slots, the format of this guide is going to be more of level based list, than the conversational approach of Part I and Part 2. Each section will have a few recommendations followed by a complete list of non-raid Outland alternatives.

The best part is that because there are so many choices, you're pretty much guaranteed solid upgrades no matter your style of play (i.e. solo, group, PvP, etc.) Finally, at the end of the guide is a link to two excellent Moonkin guides for gems and enchantments found on the Balance of Power blog.

Enough build up! On to the pre-Karazhan equipment extravaganza after the jump.

Neck: Early levels present separate Hellfire Peninusla quests for Alliance and Horde, but the results are the same. For the Horde, they get the L60 Felforce Medallion (18 sta, 12 int, 15 dmg) [H] and the Alliance get the L60 Telhamat Pendant (10 sta, 10 int, 21 dmg) [A]. Alternatives:
  • L59 Pendant of the Marsh (13 sta, 10 int, 9 spi, 11 dmg, 4 mp5) [A/H] starts with a random drop (Drain Schematics) from the Naga in the Zangarmarsh.
  • L62 Lunatic's Choker (16 sta, 11 int, 13 dmg, 4 mp5) [A/H] Terokkar Forest quest reward, but you may want take bracer reward instead.
  • L62 Necklace of Bloodied Feathers (24 stam, 15 int, 19 dmg) [A/H] Group quest out of Terokkar Forest
  • L63 Dragonbone Talisman (8 int, 7 spi, 15 crit, 16 dmg) [A/H] Another group quest in Terokkar, this time killing a bone dragon
At midlevel, the L65 Torc of the Sethekk Prophet (18 int, 21 crit, 19 dmg) [A/H] is guaranteed since it is a quest reward from killing first boss in Setthek Halls. There's also L64 Earthen Mark of Power (13 int, 23 crit, 12 dmg) [A/H] from a Nagrand group quest chain or head to the Auction House to look for the world drop L63 Amulet of Unstable Power (23 crit, 18 dmg). Alternatives:
At high level, there are many options, but only one choice: Natasha's Ember Necklace (15 int, 10 crit, 29 dmg) [A/H] a great 9 part quest chain out of Blade's Edge that can be done with 1-2 players and results in the best non-raid Balance neck in the game. If you've already done the quest and chosen a different reward (they are all excellent), there are many, many options. Quest alternatives:
Mob drop alternatives: Other alternatives: Finger: The low levels of Outlands offers more options than usual for the finger slot. Horde get a solid dps ring out of the gate with L60 Carinda's Wedding Band (18 sta, 12 int, 14 dmg) [H] from a 4 part quest chain out of Helffire Peninsula. Alliance must either grind the Hellfire instances for rep to get L60 Sage's Band (15 int, 14 crit, 18 dmg) honored with Hellfire Peninusla Alliance faction: Honor Hold (Horde version: L60 Farseer's Band (15 int, 14 crit, 18 dmg) honored with Hellfire Peninsula Horde faction: Thrallmar) or hope to find L60 Witching Band (16 sta, 14 int, 21 dmg) 17% drop in the Fel Iron chest that spawns near the end of Hellfire Ramparts. Alternatives:
At midlevel, you are guaranteed the L65 Wildlord's Band (8 int, 11 crit, 25 dmg) [A/H] since it is part of the Natasha's Necklace quest in Blades Edge. Otherwise:
At high level, everyone will get L66 Band of the Guardian (11 int, 17 crit, 23 dmg, 15 pen) [A/H] since it is a quest reward for finishing the Black Morass quest line. Quest drop alternatives are:
Mob drop alternatives:
  • L70 Arcane Netherband (18 sta, 18 int, 21 dmg, 15 pen) 20% drop from Thorngrin the Tender in Normal Botanica
  • L70 Sparking Arcanite Ring (13 sta, 14 int, 10 hit, 14 crit, 22 dmg) 7% drop from Epoch Hunter in Heroic CoT: Old Hillsbrad Foothills
  • L70 Cobalt Band of Tyrigosa (16 sta, 15 int, 33 dmg) 12% drop from Nexus-Prince Shaffar in Heroic Mana-Tombs
  • L70 Ryngo's Band of Ingenuity (12 sta, 14 int, 14 crit, 25 dmg) 19% drop from Wrath-Scryer Soccothrates in Normal and Heroic Arcatraz
  • L68 Scintillating Coral Band (14 sta, 15 int, 17 crit, 21 dmg) 17% drop from Hydromancer Thespia in Normal & Heroic Steamvault
  • L70 Exarch's Diamond Band (19 sta, 19 int, 25 dmg) 13% Exarch Maladaar in Heroic Auchenai Crypts
Other alternatives:
Trinkets: Upon entering the Outlands, both Alliance and Horde immediately embark on a long quest chain in Hellfire Peninsula that culminates in trinket rewards that won't be replaced for a long time. Both factions get the L58 Vengeance of the Illdari (26 crit & 120 dmg / 220 heal : 15 sec @ 1.50 min) [A H].

For the second trinket slot, both factions get a reward from an amazingly simple Zangarmarsh two part quest. This reward won't be replaced unless you start raiding. Alliance receive L62 Glowing Crystal Insignia (26 dmg & 104 dmg : 20 sec @ 2.00 min) [A] and the Horde variant is L62 Ancient Crystal Talisman (26 dmg & 104 dmg : 20 sec @ 2.00 min) [H].

The only non-raid trinket that surpasses the Zangarmarsh trinket requires 41 Badges of Honor (i.e. 41 heroic boss kills): L70 Icon of the Silver Crescent (43 dmg & 155 dmg : 20 sec @ 2.00 min). I'm guessing we won't be replacing the Zangarmash trinket until Wrath of the Lich King goes live.

There aren't too many options to replace your Illdari trinket. Two Heroic only drops and two Revered faction rewards:
  • L70 Quagmirran's Eye (37 dmg, Equip: see link) 9% drop from Quagmirran in Heroic Slave Pens
  • L70 Arcanist's Stone (25 hit & 167 dmg : 20 sec @ 2.00 min) 9% drop from Epoch Hunter in Heroic CoT: Old Hillsbrad Foothills
  • L70 Scryer's Bloodgem (32 hit & 150 dmg / 280 heal : 15 sec @ 1.50 min) Scryers Revered
  • L70 Xi'ri's Gift (32 crit & 150 dmg / 280 heal : 15 sec @ 1.50 min) Shatar Revered
The rest of the trinket alternatives are not upgrades to the Illdari or Zangarmarsh trinket, but are good alternatives if you missed out on those two:
Two-Handed Weapons: Early on the Horde get the advantage here with a quick Hellfire Peninsula quest that nets them L60 Totemic Staff (33 sta, 22 int, 80 dmg) [H]. Alliance have to hope for L60 Crystalfire Staff (34 sta, 34 int, 16 crit, 46 dmg) a 13% drop from Omor the Unscarred in Normal Hellfire Ramparts.

After that, there's no options until midlevel. Then there's only one option: L65 Battle Mage's Baton (45 sta, 31 int, 30 crit, 85 dmg) [A/H] from a very fun Ring of Blood event in Nagrand. You shouldn't have a problem getting a pick up group for this event as there is an excellent weapon upgrade reward for almost every class. If you are having problems with any of the fights, you can have dps help from outside your group.

The Baton will last you until high level. Then your options open up considerably. I would recommend doing the relatively short Netherstorm group quest chain that nets you L68 Ameer's Impulse Taser (27 sta, 27 int, 26 spi, 17 hit, 27 crit, 103 dmg) [A/H] If you're eventually going to raid, you can always do the Cypher of Damnation quest chain out of Shadowmoon Valley that rewards L68 Oronok's Ancient Scepter (27 sta, 45 int, 25 crit, 103 dmg) [A/H], but that's a very long quest for a reward that is comparable to the much shorter Netherstorm quest.

After that there are four more or less comparable staff upgrades:
  • L70 Bloodfire Greatstaff (42 sta, 42 int, 28 crit, 121 dmg) 12% drop from Aeonus in Normal & Heroic Black Morass
  • L70 The Bringer of Death (32 sta, 31 int, 42 crit, 121 dmg) purple world drop
  • L70 Warpstaff of Arcanum (37 sta, 38 int, 16 hit, 26 crit, 121 dmg) 10% drop off Warp Splinter in Normal & Heroic Botanica
  • L70 Auchenai Staff (46 int, 19 hit, 26 crit, 121 dmg) Aldor revered
Finally, there is this bad boy with a low drop rate and a high drool factor: L70 Terokk's Shadowstaff (39 sta, 41 int, 35 crit, 150 dmg) 5% drop from Talon King Ikiss in Heroic Setthek Halls.

One-Handed Weapons: I wouldn't call one handed Moonkin items "easy to get" as there are no questable ones and little choice until max level. Even then, they aren't easy or cheap to come by. That being said, here are the pre-raid options. In early levels there aren't many choices:
In midlevel, there is only one option:
  • L66 Time-Shifted Dagger (15 sta, 15 int, 13 crit, 85 dmg) 19% drop from Epoch Hunter in Normal CoT: Old Hillsbrad Foothills
Finally, at high level, you can find some decent one handed alternatives.
I would recommend staying with a two handed weapon until you hit 70. Then, if you have your heart set on a one handed item either commission an Eternium Runed Blade from a blacksmith or grind your Lower City faction to Exalted for the Gavel of Unearthed Secrets. You will already be at Revered with Lower City anyway if you completed your druid epic flight form quest. Pair one of those with Saga of Terrok listed below or Khadagar's Knapsack.

Off-Hand Weapons: Like one handed weapons, there are few choices for Moonkin off hand items. At the early levels the Horde get a distinct advantage with L58 Demoniac Soul Prison (6 int, 10 crit, 19 dmg) [H] a midquest reward out of a quest chain in Hellfire Peninsula. But when Horde can get the 80dmg Totemic Staff two handed staff out of HFP just as easy, it makes the Soul Prison a hard sell.

At midlevel there is only one option, but it is one of the best in the non-raid game for Moonkin off hand: L65 The Saga of Terokk (23 int, 28 dmg) [A/H]. This is a very easy quest to finish since it requires you to pick up three items in Normal Setthek Halls which you are going to run a few times anyway.

At high level, there are only two off hand items that are upgrades to the Saga of Terrok: L70 Khadgar's Knapsack (44 dmg) which requires 25 Badges of Honor and L70 Lamp of Peaceful Radiance (13 sta, 14 int, 12 hit, 13 crit, 21 dmg) a 13% drop from Harbring Skyriss in Normal & Herioc Arcatraz. Other options at high level if you don't have the Saga are:
Relics: Which relic to get really depends on your style of Moonkin play. Do you pewpewpew? Then the L60 random world drop Idol of the Moon (Moonfire 33 dmg) is for you. Do you spam Wrath like a green cannon? Then head to Shadowmoon Valley for the long and involved L67 Idol of the Avenger (Wrath 25 dmg) [A H] quest.

Do you call down Starfire for the big numbers and chance of stun? Test your mettle against Grand Warlock Nethekurse in either Normal or Heroic Shattered Halls for a 1 in 5 chance of winning the L68 Ivory Idol of the Moongoddess (Starfire 55 dmg).

Finally, at the end of your druid epic flight form quest, you will not only get your coveted Swift Flight Form, but also the L70 Idol of the Raven Goddess (9 crit to Moonkin Aura).

Gems & Enchantments: For gem choices by slot and enchantments by slot, I highly recommend checking out Fiordhraoi's excellent Moonkin blog, Balance of Power. He also has some well written articles about Moonkin talent specs as well as the importance of int/mp5/spell crit/etc gear.

That's it for this week. As usual, if I missed any solid alternatives, leave a comment below. In two weeks, the beginning of pre-raid Resto gear list.

Filed under: Druid, Items, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

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