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Hand me Downs: Warrior

July 15, 2010

Welcome to the fourth instalment of my 10 part series on how to best prepare for levelling a new character of a given class. This time we look at the rough-and-tumble plate wearers, Warriors! This guide will cover levelling specs, heirlooms and professions. It also assumes you have access to a level 80 character and a reasonable amount of gold.

Arms Levelling

This is one of Warrior’s two DPS trees. It is more efficient for levelling than Fury, as Fury is optimised around a Dual wield of two handers that only starts to be competitive with Arms at level 60. Fury aficionados may wish to stick with it, but if you already knew all about Warriors, you wouldn’t need this! Arms is excellent for Soloing and for DPSing in groups. If you are leveling as Arms, you would be well advised to use a spec and glyph set up like this:

52/19/0

You should fill up the Arms tree before moving on to Fury. Also, when purchasing Glyphs, you want to be using the Rend Glyph as soon as the slot opens up, and Mortal Strike Glyph next time you get a new major. The Bladestorm Glyph should be saved till last, as Bladestorm isn’t talented until Outlands level. When soloing and in a group, you want to maintain Battle Shout all the time. Be aware that this is the strongest attack power buff unless you come across a Retribution Paladin, and asking for Might in groups is pointless (you will overwrite it with your shout and could benefit from Kings instead.) Make sure to make good use of your Charge, and later Intercept abilities. They build up rage as you charge, and it saves downtime. Don’t be afraid to stop and eat or use bandages, until high level Warriors cannot restore their own health in other ways. Your basic rotation should look something like this:

Overpower, Rend, Mortal Strike, Overpower, Execute, Slam

That rotation is simplified. There are all sorts of conditions which will change your priorities, but discussing them goes beyond the purpose of a simple FAQ.

Heirlooms & gearing for Arms

Weapon: Bloodied Arcanite Reaper Enchanted with Crusader
Shoulders: Polished Spaulders of Valor
Chest: Polished Breastplate of Valor Enchanted with Enchant Chest – Greater Stats
Trinket: Swift Hand of Justice x2
The enchants are not vital, the main part you need is the Shoulders and the Chest for the experience bonus. The other items are just for optimum speed and levelling. You want to be looking out for preferably plate Gear with the following stats on it: Strength, Crit, Attack power, Stamina or Agility.

Professions for Arms

The main recommended profession for Arms is Blacksmithing – you will be able to craft lots of gear for yourself to wear, all the way from 1-80, and in Northrend levels you will be able to add sockets to your gear for extra gemming, giving you more of the stats you desire. Recommended Secondary profession can be Mining to support it, or Enchanting for the extra Attack power in Northrend, but that one is more up to you.

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Protection Levelling

The second way to level is Protection spec. This spec is the primary Tanking talent tree for Warriors, and has the largest toolbox of the 4 tank capable classes. They can hold threat in most situations and have potential for soloing content. This spec is not recommended as to level solo, however if you wish to level through the dungeon system, this will get you into Queues fast and be great training if you want a level 80 tank. If you are leveling as Protection, you would be well advised to use a spec and glyph set up like this:

15/3/53

You should fill up the Protection tree before moving on to put talents in the other two trees (which are nonetheless vital for competative threat generation). Also, when purchasing Glyphs, you want to be using the Blocking Glyph as soon as the slot opens up, and the other two won’t come into play till much later, as Devastate isn’t trained until Outlands level and the need for the Taunt Glyph in Northrend. As mentioned above, it’s not an ideal spec for soloing. Roughly follow the guide above if you wish to attempt it. In groups, typical tanking knowledge is good; be aware of your health and how many mobs you can comfortably pull, make sure the healer has mana and is awake, and be mindful especially at low levels of DPS who think they can tank heal and dps all in one. Charging into a pack of mobs and using thunderclap (and later shockwave once you’ve shuffled round to behind the pack) is a great way to get aoe threat. Don’t be afraid to use your taunt or your Last stand/Shield wall if you think they are needed. The cooldowns aren’t that long and in most dungeons the trash is more likely to be the time where you’d die thanks to morons overpulling. Protection doesn’t really have a rotation, they just use the moves that are needed to keep threat. Single target? Sunder Armor and Heroic strike. Multi target? Cleave and Thunderclap. Once you get the Warbringer talent, you will be able to use Charge and Intercept in combat, which means both less downtime between trash packs (as you don’t have to wait for combat to fall off) and quickly getting to something that’s chasing a group member. It goes without saying protection uses Defensive stance.

Heirlooms & gearing for Protection

Weapon: Venerable Mass of McGowan Enchanted with Fiery Blaze Enchantment(Reward from a Badlands quest, easy for an 80 to go and fetch, check the link for more details)
Shoulders: Polished Spaulders of Valor
Chest: Polished Breastplate of Valor Enchanted with Enchant Chest – Major Health
Trinket: Swift Hand of Justice x2

The enchants are not vital, the main part you need is the Shoulders and the Chest for the experience bonus. The other items are just for optimum speed and levelling. Sadly for Protection, there is no such thing as an heirloom shield. You want to look out for Plate only gear that is high in Stamina, block, dodge, parry or defence.

Professions for Protection

The main recommended profession for Protection is Blacksmithing – you will be able to craft lots of gear for yourself to wear, all the way from 1-80, and in Northrend levels you will be able to add sockets to your gear for extra gemming, giving you more of the stats you desire. Recommended Secondary profession is Mining, as you will be able to support Blacksmithing and benefit greatly from the Stamina bonus.

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So there you have it! I hope this guide is highly useful to you. Watch this space for the next class to be covered, and happy levelling!

-Zal

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