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The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Expertise and hit in WoTLK


There are the aspects of playing the warrior class that are flashy, obvious and fun... 7k shield slam crits, dual wielding huge, berserking enchanted weapons, bladestorming... and it is right and proper that we should gush about those aspects of the class to the high heavens. However, sometimes you have to get down to the nuts and bolts of things, as it were.

We got an email this week from Sean which stated that he wanted us to talk about the importance of hit and expertise on tanking gear. Now, we've talked about those stats before, but it's a whole expansion later and as such, we should re-familiarize ourselves with hit rating and expertise for tanks and DPS warriors, because both specs need both stats but weight them differently. This week, we'll talk about tanking gear. Why does tanking gear have hit and expertise and why is it good that it should have those stats?

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Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Bosses, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors, Wrath of the Lich King

Acme Anvil of the Righteous

Quite awhile ago now, I wrote about how playing a Protection Warrior made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Or I guess, cold and hard inside? I'm not really sure, but the gist of it was that the graphical appearance of Prot Warrior abilities combined with their sound effects made for a very visceral play experience. It was believable that I was up in a mob's face, keeping its attention focused on me, and taking everything it could dish out while remaining standing. Bashing things in the face with my shield was awesome, and it gave the illusion of being a very ferocious strike, which added a lot to gameplay. Without the sounds and images associated with it, it wouldn't have been nearly as fun.

I return with additional thoughts on that: My Protection Paladin, while it still has a very special place in my heart, isn't nearly as fun as my Warrior directly because of a lack of graphical and aural appeal. The visuals and sounds associated with Protection Paladin spells? Lacking, to say the very least. Where a Warrior's Shield Slam looks and sounds like you have busted a skull open with your heavy shield and powerful blow, a Paladin's Shield of Righteousness somewhat sparkles at an opponent threateningly, with an utter lack of aural flair.

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Filed under: Paladin, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Wrath of the Lich King

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Raiding Gear III the Gearening

And at last we finish our look at raiding gear, including emblem of valor and emblem of heroism gear. Last time while covering Naxxramas, we forgot (well, I forgot) to cover capes, so before we move on to Malygos and Emblem gear, we'll take a look at tanking and DPS capes for warriors in Naxx.

Naxx 10 provides three options for warriors: the Cloak of Armed Strife for tanking (dropping from Maexxna and Gluth, as we're by now used to), the Cloak of Darkening from Razuvious and Gluth as a DPS option, and finally Sapphiron drops the Cloak of Mastery for DPS as well.

Naxx-25 gives us the Shadow of the Ghoul, a very nice tanking cloak from trash, and the Cloak of the Shadowed Sun which drops off of four bosses. For DPS, we see the Drape of the Deadly Foe off of KT himself and the Aged Winter Cloak off of another quartet of bosses. This pretty much shuts the door on Naxx, allowing us to move on.

Before we get started, though, I should admit that I'm having one of my usual mood swings on the Horde/Alliance axis lately, so if I start posting a lot of pictures of a tauren here don't be alarmed. The fact that I'm done with raid content as a player and Ulduar is a ways away is also making me want to spend time Horde-side as well. Maybe get back to my prot roots. Maybe not, who knows?

Anyway, on to Malygos and Emblems.

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Filed under: Warrior, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors

The Queue: That's a lot of J names


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft.

Last time on The Queue, I answered a question about potential hero classes. Zoidberg asked about Archdruids, but there wasn't a whole lot to say. It's a rumor, and a rumor without much weight behind it, just an interview comment taken out of context as the WoW community (yes, even WoW Insider sometimes) likes to do. Since answering that question, I've been thinking about it a little myself.

Do I, personally, think Archdruids will be the next hero class? Nah, I don't think so. Just the name is the big issue for me. Archdruid suggest Druid+ or Druid 2.0 and that's just not cool. You can differentiate them from Druids as much as you want, Archdruid still suggests that it's a better Druid. That's pretty awful. Even if the new hero class (if there is a new hero class) has all of the features we'd expect from an Archdruid, it'll probably be called something else. Maybe a Keeper or something like that.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Bugs, Wrath of the Lich King, The Queue

The Light and How to Swing It: Shine on! A 2008 review


What a great year 2008 has been for Paladins. While 3.0 overhauled the game in general, the class was retooled throughout the year, particularly Retribution, and became one of the most fun classes to play. In fact, Paladin popularity, while never a problem, rose incredibly. Even as I mourn the decline of Warlocks, I shudder at all the Paladins coming out of the woodwork like roaches. No, really, all the Paladins who have now specced Retribution because it's viable but can't break 1,400 DPS even with an epic 2-hander make me want to kick little kittens.

But never mind how I feel about that. The truth is that this is all good for the class, if not necessarily the game. I mean, did we ever dare dream that people would actually look for Retribution Paladins in trade or general chat? When you say you're a Retribution Paladin nowadays, nobody flinches. Nobody laughs. Nobody says, "haha, lolret." Or if they do, you Divine Storm their ignorant butts to kingdom come. Seriously, the most badass character in all of Wrath of the Lich King -- the one guy who spanked Arthas' sorry Death Knight butt -- is a Paladin. That feels pretty good. So, 2008. One heck of a year, wasn't it?

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Filed under: Paladin, Analysis / Opinion, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It, Wrath of the Lich King

The Queue: Plate, plate and more plate


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft.

Good afternoon, WoW Insider! I have nothing useful to say in my preface today, because I need to go put my new power supply and video card in my PC so I can actually play WoW again. Man, have you seen some of the newer video cards these days? If I had enough of these things I could build a fort capable of surviving a nuke out of them. This thing is a beast.

Trech asked...

A couple questions regarding DK tanking... How much Defense rating am I going to need at level 80 to hit 540 defense skill. How much base defense skill will I have at 80? I'm levelling Unholy with a DPS build. If I throw on a few pieces of +def gear can I safely go tank Nexus or Utgarde Keep at level 72?

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Filed under: Paladin, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Death Knight, The Queue

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Transitioning your role

Well, I've been thinking about doing this for almost half a year, ever since Titan's Grip was announced, and now I have. I'm a raiding fury warrior again. My job is to hit things until they are dead, or in some cases to hit them until they are dead and have the common decency to stop moving around like that.

It was a decision made harder by the glory of prot spec in its current form, but as Adam's post this week pointed out, fury is getting some nice changes that will make it even more viable, and when you come down to it, I have wanted to dual wield 2h weapons for years now. When an old friend of mine 'put the band back together', so to speak, and told me that the guild I'd raided all the 40 man original raid content with was back and that they were looking for a fury warrior for Wrath, it took a lot of time for me to decide what to do. Changing guilds was hard, as the guild I'd raided with in TBC was an excellent one and i know they'll have lots of success in Wrath, but in the end I felt like this was a move that would help keep the game fun and interesting for me.

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Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Guilds, Odds and ends, Expansions, Raiding, Talents, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors

The Queue: The spirit of betrayal


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft.

Today, I'll cut the crap and not pretend to be funny, for your sake. Tomorrow, though? Tomorrow, the gloves come off. I will pretend to be absolutely hilarious until the cows come home.

matthew asked...

So I did a quest in Sholazar to kill Artruis and accidentally changed from Oracle to Frenzyheart. How exactly do I change back to oracle because I want to get the egg?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Leveling, Wrath of the Lich King, The Queue

The Queue: Mystery of the missing goggles


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft.

It's Friday, the second best day of the week, in stark contrast to Wednesday which was the worst day of the week. What is the number one best day of the week? Well, that's for me to know and you to find out! Or guess, or form your own opinions. You know, whatever.

Oh right, the questions! Canth asked...

As a Holy Paladin I picked up Engineering for the goggles. However, it seems that for level 72, they only have Ret and Prot versions of the epic goggles. Is there a Holy (something with int/SP on it) equivalent anywhere? Did Blizzard forget about us?

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Filed under: Paladin, Fishing, Analysis / Opinion, Wrath of the Lich King, The Queue

The Queue: Death Knight jamboree


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft.
Yesterday the topic of profession daily quests came up, and there was a little confusion around it. The way the question was phrased combined with how my response was phrased made it sound like most professions have daily quests in Wrath of the Lich King with a couple of exceptions. That is, unfortunately, not true. Of the primary professions, I believe only Jewelcrafting has daily quests. Of the secondary professions, only Cooking has daily quests. Skinners can sometimes skin an Arctic Fur off of beasties in Northrend, and those are used as tokens to purchase recipes. Enchanters do something similar with Dream Shards. They have no normal daily quests, though.

Now with that cleared up, the Q&A! We'll start with Stormscape's question...

Does Crusader Aura or On A Pale Horse affect vehicle speed?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Mounts, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King, The Queue

Some Paladin changes announced for patch 3.0.4

A lot of hints and news on the upcoming patch 3.0.4 have been dropped on the forums recently, so like other WoW Insider writers have mentioned on and off, I wouldn't be surprised if we saw it on the PTR in the coming weeks. Before we get ahead of ourselves too much though, there was a lot of neat Paladin stuff announced by Ghostcrawler yesterday. A lot of it is simple stuff we've sort of expected would happen, but there's still some interesting new stuff in there.
  • Divine Shield: Penalty changed so that all damage done is reduced by 50% instead of an attack speed penalty.

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Filed under: Paladin, Patches, Analysis / Opinion

The Light and How to Swing It: Starting zone upgrades in Northrend


Did you pack well enough for the cold? Allie gave great advice on some basic things we need while we're in Northrend, like food and other consumables. Depending on your level of progression or gear, your approach to questing or leveling out here will vary quite a bit. For well-geared players, it'll be a breeze to go through most of the zones as gear of item level 146 and beyond (Tier 6 / Season 3) will last a fair bit past Level 75 or so.

While the bare attributes on those items such as Intellect or Strength will often be superior to most quest rewards, other statistics will begin to fall behind such as Hit, Crit, or even Haste as we level and the ratings we need for those to scale become bigger. Here is where lesser geared players get a bit of a helping hand. The plate greens of Northrend, as well as the occasional blues are loaded with Hit, Haste, and other important stats. If you're going to Northrend dressed in blues or even item level 120-123 epics, you'll be able to quickly replace pieces that have scale appropriately with your level. In the end, it will all even out.

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Filed under: Paladin, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Leveling, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Weapons between 70 and 80


Unfortunately we ran out of time in our Care and Feeding of Warriors series on gear for Wrath of the Lich King ;ast week, just as we were about to cover the weapons to be looking to acquire. This week, post launch, here's a concise list of blues to be had in the 70 to 80 Northrend instances. We've already covered rep rewards, but we may go over some of the same ground here for convenience.

We'll be covering tanking and DPS weapons of both the one and two handed variety. Not all warriors will be taking Titan's Grip, after all. Oh, stop looking at me like that, you know it's true. I stated a fact, I didn't kick a puppy, you can turn off the big sad eyes now.

Yes, of course I specced fury for leveling. Oh, I'll go back to prot once we're all 80 and raiding again, but there was no way I wasn't going fury. I've written ballads about this talent, you think I'm passing up the chance to use it? Oh my word no.

What follows is all pre-raid gear. 5 mans, quests, heroics and badges, but no raids. It's light on PvP gear, because I figure you know how to get that stuff. (Hint: you PvP for it.) Sometimes I mention it if it feels like a category of weapon will be very empty without it, though. Axes, I'm looking right at you here.

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Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Instances, Quests, Expansions, Guides, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors, Wrath of the Lich King

Wrath of the Lich King class changes roundup

Over the last two days, the WoW Insider team has been busy reviewing and gathering all of the still-current class information to bring you up to speed for your first steps into Northrend. You've probably had a chance to get a handle on your class since most of the changes were pushed through in patch 3.0.2, but you have an extra ten levels ahead of you, an extra ten talent points, and a whole bunch of new skills and abilities you're going to need to learn. Don't know what to expect? We're here for you. If you do know what to expect? Well, I guess you can keep reading if you want. We'll let it slide just this once.
  • Death Knight - Being the new class on the block, there's certainly been a lot to talk about in the recent months. Daniel Whitcomb points you toward much of it, including leveling builds, in-depth looks at their core abilities and mechanics, as well as some sage advice from Allison Robert.
  • Druid - Speaking of Allison Robert, she'll be your guide today if you're looking for more on the Druid class. Talent builds, a glimpse at raid healing as Restoration, the rise of the Moonkin and much more can be found within.

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Mage, Paladin, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warlock, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King

Wrath of the Lich King: Warrior roundup

Wrath of the Lich King. It's here. You're ready. At least, you think you're ready. You recall the last time we all went off to a new place to kick some butt, some guy said something about not being prepared, and you don't want to be unprepared. So let's go over all the coverage we've done on the site that might be of interest to you.

Talents and Skills


Leveling Builds

  • Try out a Prot Grinding Build - 0/8/53 for soloing groups of mobs as well as tanking.
  • This Fury/Prot build brings Titan's Grip with a touch of Improved Thunder Clap and Incite for moderate tanking viability and damage.
  • Here's a heavy Arms build - substitute your weapon specialization of choice.

Gearing guides


Hopefully this will get you started in Northrend. Have fun killing things and taking their stuff!

Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Wrath of the Lich King

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