February 14, 2008

Faction-Based PvP Gear In Patch 2.4

Patch 2.4 is poised to transform the face of PvP for the better, and as someone with two alts doing casual 2v2s, there's a lot I'm excited about.

By now everyone's probably aware that 2.4 heralds the removal of diminishing returns. This should increase honor gains dramatically, especially in turtling battlegrounds; Amanda Miller at WoW Insider has estimated that straight PvP combat will be nine times as lucrative than it is now.

But the thing I'm really excited is something that we saw in the patch notes, but I just recently found more information on: uncommon-quality PvP gear that will be available for purchase through faction vendors. The sets are ilvl 115, which makes them superior to the belt and legs from Halaa rewards but still inferior to Season One arena gear.

Although I'd initially been thinking this gear would be available via battleground reputation, it turns out that's not the case. Instead, each piece will be a reputation reward purchasable for gold from a different Burning Crusade faction. Shoulders and gloves will require honored reputation, but you'll need revered to obtain leg and chest pieces (strangely, hats seem to be inconsistent from one class to another).

The actual faction required for each piece varies from one set to another, but it looks like each set contains one piece each from the Sha'tar, Cenarion Expedition, Thrallmar/Honor Hold, Keepers of Time, and Lower City quartermasters. For the moment, you'll have to check MMO-Champion's screenshots or the PTRs to see which piece requires which faction, but I've linked to the Wowhead page for each set below.

Resto Druid - Kodohide Battlegear
Balance Druid - Wyrmhide Battlegear
Feral Druid - Dragonhide Battlegear
Hunter - Stalker's Chain Battlegear
Mage - Evoker's Silk Battlegear
Healy Priest - Mooncloth Battlegear
Shadow Priest - Satin Battlegear
Rogue - Opportunist's Battlegear
Resto Shaman - Seer's Ringmail Battlegear
Elemental Shaman - Seer's Mail Battlegear
Enhancement Shaman - Seer's Linked Battlegear
Warlock - Dreadweave Battlegear
Warrior - Savage's Plate Battlegear

As you might be able to guess from the names, it looks like all of this gear will share the same bonuses as the arena sets, allowing you to pair two rep PvP pieces with two pieces of arena gear for two +35 resilience bonuses.

For me, this is a really excellent addition that helps rebalance gear progression for new level 70s. I'm not one to cry welfare epics, but as previous seasons of arena gear have become available for purchase by honor, I've felt less and less compelled to send my alts into regular PvE instances at all. At the same time, the arena gear disparity at the 1500 mark feels so huge -- you can hit extremely well-geared players who have just formed a new team, or brand new 70s without any resilience or experience.

Providing a PvE reputation path to obtaining stepping-stone PvP gear will mean more folks running vanilla instances, will help normalize casual arena play so that it's more dependent on skill, and will reduce the currently massive time investment required to go from unbearably squishy to moderately survivable in PvP. As I see it, these are all fantastic outcomes.


Nasirah said...

It looks like the Resto and Feral sets are swapped. Kodohide (listed here as feral) is the better healing set, while Dragonhide (listed here as resto) has the strength and agility of a feral, along with a boost to healing.

Girl Meets WoW said...

Huh, you're right. I had to look twice, but I see exactly how I made the error... I wasn't expecting feral gear to have +healing bonuses on it at all, so I just assumed the first thing with +heal was the healing set, the first thing with +dmg was the moonkin set, and whatever was left was for ferals.

This just goes to show how little I know about druids. Good thing half the WoW bloggers out there can correct me when I screw up...

Leiandra said...

Thanks for the head's up. Good stuff. Even though I'm quite epic in PVE... these will be great additions to my completely lack-luster PVP set. Maybe I can survive for more than 5 seconds. :)

Rickles said...

Do we still BG grind honour to buy them, ie what is the currency? or is this a straight gold + faction reputation grind?

They'll fill those last few slots until i've got the BG/arena honour to upgrade them

Excellent news if gold+factions as i'm exalted with all a few dailies will get the gold sorted.

dorgol *us boulderfist) said...

I was going to spend a good long time @ 69 on my mage to get full S1 gear before hitting 70.

This change means I may not have to worry about that so much.

Girl Meets WoW said...

The currency is gold, not honor, so you "buy" these in the traditional sense of the word.

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