Thursday, July 29, 2010

Multiple Tanking Sets? DON'T BRING ME DOWN!!!!!

Over the last two days, I managed to pick up the two tanking items I was saving for over the last couple weeks. (and for once, I logged off with my Tank gear equipped, so I can actually look at it in an easier to see place)

What I got were:

Saronite Sword Breakers (wrist)


Boots of Kingly Upheaval (feet)

(actually, I got them in the reverse order, which caused me a bit of an arrythmia. My old boots had defense, the new ones don't - EEK! Fortunately, the new wrists do, and my old wrists didn't)

If you click on the picture above (a screen cap of my equipment from you will notice that I am missing 3 gems and 3 enchants (well, I'm a blacksmith, so it's actually 4 gems and 2 enchants, but eh...)

And yes, it's on my brand new items. Given what I know, I am mulling things over.






Anyhow, there are 3-4 MAJOR stats for pally tanks: (and are important for other tanks, just the numbers vary)

  • Defense (prevents bosses from get crits on you - Capped at 535 or 540. I've heard both)

  • Hit (lets you not miss, which helps immensely with threat. Melee capped at 230 for a Drae Pally)

  • Expertise (helps reduce/eliminate parries, blocks and misses on the boss - 26 is soft cap, 54 is hard cap )

  • Stamina = Health

If you look at my stats above, you will see:

I am one point below def cap (or 4 points over) Regardless, a single gem swap will fix that. (yes, there are 4 blue items on me, and I have two rare gems on that blue belt :P I never wanted to invest an epic gem on a blue item, to increase defense by 4 points)

  • I am hit capped

  • I have 189 Expertise points which is roughly 24 rating.

  • I have 27k unbuffed

Clearly, I am not "all the way there" yet.

What is kind of scary is that, at a 4,700 Gear score (whatI have now) I am considered "ok, but rough" for doing ICC 10, which would say I significantly over-gear Naxx and Ulduar, yet I would need to gem for even MORE expertise to hit soft cap, which would limit me to only 2 more stamina gems, and not that much more health...

Back in the Naxx/Uld days, how the f**k did tanks get by with that low of health, barely being hit & def capped, and no WAY were they expertise capped?!?!?

Yes, I know they would have multiple sets of armor:

  • one for EH (effective health, which is basically stamina and armor)

  • one for avoidance (there are also stats for dodge parry and block, which I'm not even going to touch here)

  • one for threat

  • and maybe one or two or three with various resists (nature, shadow, fire, etc)

So, you could optimize one set with mega stamina and armor, while perhaps being below def cap, or hit cap or expertise cap, and have another set with defense, parry, dodge, and another with hit, expertise and strength boosts.

But wait, I *ALREADY* have 3 sets of armor - DPS, Tank and PvP. SO no, I'm not going to have multiple tank sets. Not only because of bag space, but also because I simply can't afford to buy (or farm for) multiple sets of gear.

So, I'm going to try to make a single "best of all worlds" Tank set and live with it.

As it stands I desperately need 3 new tanking pieces:


(remember how I keep stressing that you should use wow-heroes/etc to check your gear occasionally? This is what happens when I don't can't easily check my tank gear)

I could also use a couple new rings, but eh, it is what it is. The bummer is that PvP gear is useless for tanking gear. It can work well for DPS, but not so much for tanks...

I t hink I'll just fix my one Def gem, add one expertise gem, and push everything else into health/stamina.

Unless anyone reading this hasa better/wiser suggestion?


  1. "Caps" for defense are 535 for heroics and 540 for raids. Going over won't kill you, but would likely better serve you elsewhere.

    What ARE you gemming btw? I notice a lot of yellow/purple gems, and honestly, I shouldn't see much but stamina unless you have a rocking set bonus that gives at least +12 stamina.

    Pick up the Black Heart from ToC. Buy the badge cloak and corroded skeleton key.

    Do not stress over your hit/expertise caps at the cost of solid tanking gear--it's better to be under the cap on those items and able to take a hit than to be a threat monster with not enough of a health pool.

  2. Thanks for the insight, Windsoar!

    OK, the Heroic vs Boss thing explains the difference in def caps. THANKS!

    Let’s see, my gems...

    I still have some Hit gems, that could be replaced (but I’m still not hard/spell capped, so not sure there – maintankadin isn’t too clear, IMHO, about where to stop) I put them on before a couple upgrades that had hit, and I’ve just never replaced ‘em.

    Lots of Def gems

    1 stam gem

    and 3 agi-stam gems, (+10 agi, +15 stam) because I get +12 stam (helmet) +9 stam (chest) and +4 dodge (Shoulders) for socket bonuses. I think the helm is a solid bonus to get, the chest is fair, and yeah, I need to replace that shoulder gem.

    I’ve run ToC a number of times (always as DPS) but I have never seen that trink drop. (I have never been able to get a group together to just farm the thing)

    The set bonuses are (and I have 4pc):

    (2) Set: Decreases the cooldown on your Hand of Reckoning ability by 2 sec and increases the damage done by your Hammer of the Righteous ability by 5%.
    (4) Set: Decreases the cooldown on your Divine Protection ability and reduces the duration of Forbearance by 30 sec.

    I am still trying to get all my DPS T-10 gear, so my frosties are still going there. (2 pieces left to buy, and I have ~50 badges)

    So, I guess take 3 stam gems for 3 of my 4 “new” slots.

    Replace the shoulder agi-stam gem with stam

    Replace both hit gems with stam.

    With that, I get 6 stam gems, for 180 additional stamina.

    That leaves one gem that *if* went with expertise, would get me 20 points closer to the soft cap (I’m at 189, and I soft cap is 214)


    Hmmm… I may also grab the Shieldwarder Girdle (28 emblems of conquest) as it is a true tanking belt and would let me drop a couple def gems.

  3. I wouldn't gem for anything that wasn't a mix X+stam except perhaps a straight defense gem and only then AFTER you've enchanted defense where available. Without a linky to an actual profile, I can't check enchants very well.

    I surely wouldn't put your tank set before your DPS one, but if that's the case, put the tanking cloak as your first badge priority for your tank set. It's BiS (10-man list) until the next expansion.

    This topic at Maintankadin is also AWESOME for gearing/getting gear in ICC-10 (I'm assuming 10-man, if I'm wrong, just correct me ^^)

    Regarding expertise and hit rating: While you should welcome these stats as they occur naturally on your gear you SHOULD NOT enchant or gem to increase these stats. Read that again. Got it? Good. I'm such an autocratic hound, I know :)

  4. Thanks again.

    Unfortunately, I logged off as Ret, so my gear isn't show up, so I re-logged, so hopefully it will switch.

    Here's my wow-heroes link:

    Here's my wowarmory:

    And here's a screen cap:

    Note, I put on 8 stam gems tonite, got a new belt and a new neck. With only Blessing of Sanc, my health was up to 34k. (31.5 k without the blessing, I think)

  5. Oh, the stam gems certainly helped, but popping 8 of them on didn't make the huge difference I had hoped. (only added about 2,500 health)

  6. Not that I know a damn thing about pally tank gearing but Rhidach has some guides, and he seems to know his stuff.

  7. Thanks Zelmaru! I'll head on over :)

  8. I'm currently 7/12 ICC-10 and about 36k unbuffed :) You can check out my profile here (, although I wouldn't consider it very helpful as my remaining pieces are largely Naxx/Uld holdovers and I completely missed ToC.