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Four transmog sets for today's retro-bution paladin

Four transmog sets for today's retrobution paladin WED
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Before we jump into our completely serious, no-nonsense discussion this week, I suppose we better touch on the one piece of retribution-related news coming from the 5.3 PTR:

Sword of Light now increases damage with two-handed melee weapons by 30%, up from 15%.

Naturally I, like many of you, got a warm fuzzy feeling reading that particular sentence. Higher overall damage from weapon-based attacks? Sign me up!

While I don't mean to bite the hand that feeds, I am concerned that this is merely a bandage meant to keep ret from lagging too far behind until 6.0 and, as such, ultimately fails to address the cause of the problem.

I'm just spitballing here, but there was talk at the tail end of Cataclysm and the very beginning of Mists that in our calculated stat weights for T14H BiS, strength was already somewhat devalued in comparison to secondary stats, especially haste, and that this could lead to ret scaling much less efficiently than other melee using similar gear.

Regardless, the buff is appreciated, but I'm more looking forward to what the next expansion has in store for our spec.

Paladin transmog is best transmog

Initially I resisted the very idea of transmogging my gear. To me, my gear was a point of pride, even if my belt was enormous or my weapon was disproportionately tiny. It took a lot of time and effort to get heroic raid gear, and I wasn't weighed down by nostalgia of tiers gone by, so why would I ever want to cover up my trophies?

Well, with the advent of LFR and increasingly accessible raiding, those trophies came to mean less and less to me. As petty as it was, seeing every other paladin wearing the same thing cheapened the emblematic sentiment it once had. It was then that I slowly began to realize that my character was not the sum total of his achievements.

Finding exactly what to turn my gear into wasn't an easy decision. Lots of sites compiled lists of BoE green sets or non-tier, offset loot that didn't quite seem to have the same color scheme. A great many paladins readily snatched up the ever-popular Judgement and Lightbringer sets. I wasn't sold on any of this, so I started to look around at some of the lesser-used tier sets from days gone by. Allow me to share some of my favorites.

Justicar Armor I played on a poorly equipped rogue during TBC, meaning I unfortunately didn't get to don this set even though I saw plenty of its tokens drop in Karazhan, one of the only raid instances I frequented that expansion. You can see Justicar Armor in action just below, but if you're looking for the pieces here's where you'll find them:
Notable alternativesTorch of the Damned is not a bad substitute if you can't get the Hammer, though personally I think the Torch fits more with T5 than T4.

Also, the Boots of Valiance ride pretty high on human females, so if you have some spare JP and don't like the thigh-high look, grab Silver Sabatons of Fury from your Justice Point Quartermaster.

Turalyon's Battlegear Ah Trial of the Crusader, how woefully we look upon you now. My fledgling paladin was Horde throughout Wrath of the Lich King, save for one brief period of time at the beginning of tier 9. When I faction transferred I got to see what the hideous Liadrin's set became when you switched allegiances. I was floored by Turalyon's Battlegear.

The tier is available for purchase from Aspirant Forudir at the Argent Tournament for a total of 2,729 Justice Points, though you will have to grab the non-tier pieces elsewhere.
Notable alternatives – I've been unable to find a good fit for weapons this tier. Justicebringer would be another decent fit, but still not quite on par with the colors and feel of the Turalyon's.

Engineers can substitute Justicebringer 3000 Specs in place of the tier helm to look as snazzy as Knight-Lieutenant T'Maire Sydes.

Additionally, Blizzard seems to have reused a lot of T9 models in their Jade Forest quest rewards like Greatsword of Kofinna Kottr and Landfall Burnished Greaves, so if you're unlucky with raid drops and either saved those quest rewards or never did the quests in the first place, look no further!

(My apologies to Horde players, but Liadrin's is truly awful. I'm sure you understand.)
Four transmog sets for todays metrobution paladin
Valorous Aegis Ulduar will probably remain my favorite raid in all of WoW. The scope, the difficulty, the hard mode toggles – that old Titan complex had it all. On the 10-man raid size, the instance also dropped an amazing paladin tier, Valorous Aegis Battlegear.

Sadly, since the release of patch 5.2 the legs are now actually legplates, no longer a kilt or dress, though I hear it's a bug that Blizzard hopes to fix soon™.
Notable alternatives – Again, I was unhappy with my weapon options here. If you have suggestions, please do comment below, but nothing I found sat right with me.

Quest item substitutes for the boots and belt that I've found match T8 quite well are Jade Tiger Warboots and Jade Tiger Girdle.

Avenger's Battlegear This set took me a bit by surprise. One evening I decided to run through a number of old raids, partially for possible transmog fodder, mainly out of sheer boredom. I jumped into Temple of Ahn'Qiraj, the 40-man raid instance from Vanilla, and set the goal of getting lucky enough to get the Red Qiraji Resonating Crystal to drop for the feat of strength. Instead, I ran into three quest givers after the first boss. For the mere price of some scarabs and idols (which you can get off of the copious amounts of trash in the instance) and epic drops from various bosses, they will fork over our old tier 2.5, Avenger's Battlegear.

I'm still working on assembling this transmog – I have everything except for a good pair of gloves. I'll tell you how to get the set if you promise to let me delude myself into thinking I'm the only one wearing it.
Notable alternatives – If you're having trouble with belt drops, you can always try for either the Royal Qiraji Belt from Twin Emperors (two belts from one boss, what a country!) or Girdle of the Fallen Crusader from Chromaggus in Blackwing Lair work just as well.

I have it on good authority that Flameguard Gauntlets from Molten Core or the green BoE Hyperion Gauntlets match T2.5 well. I'll have to track some down to finish off my collection.
And if you really, really can't get the sword to drop, Felsteel Reaper seems to be an alright replacement.

I think what sells me on a particular set is how well the weapon fits with the armor -- it's pretty much all or nothing as far as I'm concerned, which is why the T8 and T9 sets, while gorgeous and memorable, haven't last nearly as long as my T4 transmog has.

The Light and How to Swing It teaches you the ins and outs of retribution paladins, from Ret 101 and how to gem, enchant and reforge your retadin, to essential ret pally addons.

Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It, Transmogrification

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