Friday, April 22, 2011

Druid Tanking: Gear Drops in 4.1 Heroics

Content patch. Those words can either induce a shiver of delight or a vile shudder of disdain to us World of Warcraft players. We read about it for weeks - checking our class changes, determining if it's a nerf or a buff (I'll make it easy for you...it's a nerf), and searching for new drops to be hard-fought and won. Well it's here again with patch 4.1! All murmer on the intertubez says this patch is set to drop next week and with it tons of new content. Given it's the first major patch for Cataclysm, it's all eyes on it.

Today I'll talk a little bit about the gear choices you'll have coming patch day in the new heroics. For me I'm personally really looking forward to it, I can't get enough troll lore so bring it on. Also ZA was one of my most favorite places to raid back in BC. Read on bears read on.

Armor
Shadowtooth Trollskin Breastplate -This is one of the new items that really isn't that great at all. Two yellow sockets (I'm thinking perhaps Agility+Mastery) makes me want to commit ritual suicide while wearing this breastplate. Also the haste (gulp) is ridiculous for a tanking chest. Honestly there better itemized 346 blues than this piece of crap. If you have a cat set and no one else wants these, nab them. Otherwise roll for the crystal.

Leggings of Dancing Blades -These are some decent tanking pants. A red and blue socket are not too terrible (at least no yellow right?) however the socket bonus being expertise would nudge these the direction of being MORE for cat dps. Provided you are not over the expertise cap when you reforge any item with expertise to dodge (except if it has haste) these would not be a bad addition.

The Savager's Mask -I'm really excited about this item. Epic helms are just about as fucking hard to get as bracers (basically the BoE drop which is expensive and the T11 helm which is an end boss) and this makes obtaining one just that much easier. It has a metric assload of expertise (which you can either reforge if you need to bleed it) and a decent amount of crit as well for more SD bubblage. Tack on a meta socket and a red socket and you got yourself a nice little helm. Considering that the other two helms look more like tiaras, I'm really hoping this looks bad ass.

Tusked Shoulderpads - Why must you give us haste Blizzard, why? These are great for tanking (blue socket, solid crit) other than the haste. Just reforge it and strap these on if you are in need of some shoulders. The icon looks like a hawk with Death Knight eyes - I can't wait to see the actual model for these bad boys.

Fasc's Preserved Boots - These are great for tanking or for your cat offspec if you need epic boots. A red socket, expertise and mastery are a kitty-cats dream but you can utilize those stats for tanking too. I would reforge some expertise if you need to bleed some, hell maybe even regardless.

Belt of Slithering Serpents - While belts are not a real hard item to get (with great options in crafted belts, early raid bosses and heroic dungeon drops) this is still not a bad choice. Mantra mantra reforge the haste mantra mantra. A blue socket (plus another with a belt buckle) plus a healthy shot of mastery makes this a solid replacement to a heroic blue.

Amani'shi Bracers - While these are better itemized for cat dps, they are a viable upgrade in the impossible game of getting epic bracers for feral tanks. Make sure to reforge the haste before you leave the house but the expertise will serve you well in maintaining threat for those countless randoms you'll be tanking for the goodie bags.

The Frost Lord's War Cloak - We can assume this will be a drop off the holiday boss, Ahune. For those of you who remember a few years ago a glitch produced server wide messages stating "THE ICE STONE HAS MELTED" that stemmed from this boss. It was hilarious and some guild members I play with created a temporary religious sect all around the mighty Ice Stone. This cloak isn't too bad considering how good mastery will be for us in 4.1 but of course it has haste. Reforge that to something (anything) else. Preferably dodge.

Recovered Cloak of Frostheim - A nice nod to the community contributor, Frostheim, this cloak isn't the best choice for feral tanking. With changes to our interrupt mechanic hit is needed even less and haste is....well....haste. Take this if you have nothing else for the agility and stam increases.

Weapons and Jewelry
Jin'do's Verdict - This is the only really good feral weapon available in this item level. Along the general feral tanking theme of creating OP bubbles at a lower level, this staff sports a shitload of crit and mastery. The damage itself isn't bad as well. I know I'll be picking this up for my cat set as well.

Arlokk's Signet - A fun little ring for those who need them. Has crit and mastery which play together very nicely. If this drops and you don't have epic rings, /roll for sure.

Amulet of the Watcher - Similar to the ring above, this neck has crit and mastery - both very important to the facetanking types post patch 4.1! If you are not sporting an epic neck or are even hurting for mastery, this is a great choice.

Minature Voodoo Mask - This is the tanking trinket of the century! I mean what else could be better than 3 voodoo Gnomes called hench force to destroy your enemies? It's called tanking delegation LIKE A BAOWSS! I have the old school Tiny Voodoo Mask so I'm rolling on this trinket for sure.

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