Battleground Gear in 3.3.2

So Arena Season 8 is here at last, which means new fashions have pushed last season’s dowdy looks to the closeout racks. It also means that the purchasing imbalance between PvE emblems and PvP currency that existed at the beginning of 3.3 has been resolved, and it’s now safe to PvP for your gear again.

Patch 3.3.2 has introduced two new sets of gear: Wrathful Gladiator gear for Arena and new Titan-Forged offset pieces at Wintergrasp. Just like earlier seasons, the new rated Arena gear means that older seasons are now available for cheaper currencies. Since Arena points are available from the Daily Battleground quest, battleground enthusiasts can get very good gear without stepping foot in an Arena. It will just take a long while.

Here’s the breakdown of what you can buy with each currency.

  • Wrathful Gladiator (ilvl 270): Arena Points + Arena Ranking
  • Relentless Gladiator (ilvl 251): Arena Points + Honor Points
  • Furious Gladiator (ilvl 232): Honor Points
  • Titan-Forged (ilvl 245): Wintergrasp Marks
  • PvP Enchants: Stone Keeper’s Shards or Honor Points

This model is consistent with the PvE vendor gear model, with three tiers of gear rewards and offset pieces available through reputation. And while we can argue about the relative difficulty of Battlegrounds vs. Arenas, it is in many ways the same argument as the difficulty between Heroics, 10-man and 25-man raids, and ultimately futile. No matter how much you like Battlegrounds, if you want the top gear you play Arena.

Let’s talk about that top gear for a minute. The Wrathful sets are the design culmination of several seasons of gear, each one building upon the elements of the one before. Looking them over, I like them a lot.  I like the design idea that these are the product of our faction’s craftsmen and not looted sets from various Northrend dungeons; there’s a sense of consistency and evolution absent from the PvE Tier gear.  Plus, the different seasons tend to match, unlike Tier gear.

The downside is that there isn’t that much variety between sets, unlike PvE. So if you’ve got a great look going (like Warlocks do) the look of Wrathful gear may be enough to pull you into Arenas. But if you don’t (sorry, Paladins), you’re stuck with the look you’ve got. It can be a problem.

Setting aside the look of each set, the Wrathful gear is a no-brainer upgrade from Relentless. Itemization remains the same between pieces, there’s just more of it.

The new ilevel 245 Titan-Forged gear is a welcome addition and is a good way to get high-quality gear without burning your other currencies. There are essentially three new pieces for any given spec:

These new pieces are not sold by the mammoth vendor, but instead by Champion Ros’slai or Marshal Magruder, who are so new they’re not even on Wowhead yet.  They’re right next to the mammoth vendor, like so:

So Wintergrasp returns as the best place to spend your time while grinding for gear. Do all the weekly quests for honor and shards, and win Wintergrasp for the Marks and access to VoA.

The progression of battleground gear then returns to the same form it was during 3.2, namely:

  • Levels 10-59: Old-world (Marks of Honor) PvP rewards
  • Levels 60-78: Level 60 and 70 (Marks of Honor) PvP sets
  • Levels 70-78: Guardian (Marks of Honor) PvP sets
  • Level 78: Blue (Crafted) PvP sets
  • Level 80: Furious (Honor) PvP sets and offsets
  • Level 80: Titan-Forged (Wintergrasp) PvP offsets
  • Level 80: Relentless (Honor + Arena) PvP sets
  • Level 80: Wrathful (Arena) PvP set

Keep in mind you can’t walk into the Arena in ilvl 187 crafted blue gear and expect to be competitive right away.  You will need to work your way through an honor grind to get yourself into Furious/Titan-Forged gear first.  The best way to do this is:

  1. Wintergrasp whenever possible.
  2. Do the Daily Battleground quest until you win.
  3. Alterac Valley, Strand of the Ancients, and Eye of the Storm for Honor Points.
  4. Round robin of the remaining battlegrounds for marks to convert into honor.

If a particular BG is having a Holiday weekend, give it a go.  The important part is to win quickly, as that keeps your Honor Per Minute very high.  (If you haven’t looked at Ihra’s number crunching on the HPM for holiday battlegrounds, you owe it to yourself to take a look.)

Once you have yourself into a good set of Furious/Titan-Forged gear, you’ve gone about as far as you can go in the Battlegrounds.  (Update: you can still get Relentless/Wrathful offset pieces, and should. Thanks for the tip, Devv!)  You may be able to afford a piece or two of Relentless with the Arena Points you’ve acquired from the daily quests, but you’re going to need an Arena rating to get the top-end gear.

Making the transition from Battlegrounds to Arena, however, is an entirely different post.

Happy shopping!

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14 Comments

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14 responses to “Battleground Gear in 3.3.2

  1. skinnemuva

    Great post, I was looking for this information somewhere, since I haven’t been in game since the new patch, and couldn’t find it all in one place. You came to the rescue. :) Happy grinding.

  2. Spiffy goggles. I think I may have seen them somewhere before… ;)

    Well, I’m glad you have an idea of where to get this stuff. If I’m going to be jumping into the arena this season, then I better get started on my gear.

    • Yeah, yeah. I have one toon on my entire login screen who doesn’t have goggles on, and I’m perfectly okay with that.

      And don’t feel you have to Arena with me if it takes away from other parts of the game. I totally get it if you want to step away from Bel for a while. :-)

  3. I had read on a couple places that the i187 crafted stuff isn’t even worth getting — that it’s so completely outclassed by current dedicated pvp gear that you’d be much better off just pvping your pve gear (gasp!) until you can use emblems to buy some furious set pieces. i187 was fine when people were wandering around in Savage gear but…i270 wrathful people will destroy you in 187 pvp gear or 232/245 pve gear either way, so you may as well not take the massive stat hit from downgrading your gear.

    I wish I’d read this first, I just checked the mammoth vendor, saw there was nothing new, and cashed in all my marks for honor instead of buying some of that other stuff I could’ve gotten. OTOH, I got a nice 264 piece out of VOA on launch day so I guess it kind of balanced out :-p

    • I can agree with that at level 80. The 187 Blues are still good at 78-79, though, and at least you have something to tide you over while waiting for the T9 to come in. :-)

  4. There is a bug with the feral shoulders sold at the WG vendor:

    http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=22748822953&sid=1

    The lack of shoulders is definitely a bug and Blizzard is working on fixing it.

  5. “Once you have yourself into a good set of Furious/Titan-Forged gear, you’ve gone about as far as you can go in the Battlegrounds. You may be able to afford a piece or two of Relentless with the Arena Points you’ve acquired from the daily quests, but you’re going to need an Arena rating to get the top-end gear.”

    Not true. You can acquire a Wrathful ring, trinket, necklace, cloak, and bracers as well Relentless boots, belt, trinket and ring without ever stepping foot in Arena. You’d be better served bypassing most of the Furious gear (except the head, chest, gloves, and legs for the set bonus) and picking up those higher level offset items.

    • You are absolutely correct. While in my head I was thinking of the Furious main pieces, the offsets you can get with honor are much better.

      Thanks for the correction!

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