With patch 5.4 well underway, we're to the point where we can make some solid observations on the state of the class and take a look at what matters to death knights in this raiding tier. This week's column will attempt to answer some basic questions I've seen floating around the web from death knights about some of the basic realities of patch 5.4.
How are death knights in PvE?
Death knights, simply put, are doing pretty well. We're upper-middle of the pack DPS wise, which is a solidly comfortable place to be, and so far, there haven't been any hot fixes to change that. Frost is still edging out unholy on DPS for most fights, but unholy is close enough that you should be able to spec into it without being too much of a drain on your raid.
Death knight tanks are doing well, especially with a fix that allows Purgatory to "stack" with the legendary tank cloak proc. Assuming you have adequate stamina, mastery is still our best stat for survival, but Riposte ensures that if you need more threat, you can add some avoidance and get good DPS without sacrificing as much survivability as you otherwise would.