Battleground PvP Gear in Cataclysm Patch 4.0.6


Another patch has come and gone, and we continue to fight the good fight. Cataclysm patch 4.0.6 has brought a few new items to consider while gearing up for PvP, but nothing that changes the tiers of gear outlined in my Season 9 PvP Gear post.

Of note:

  • Glorious Conquest weapons – the upgraded versions of the Vicious weapons which require 2200 rating to acquire – are still unavailable. They will only become available when PvE progression gets to a point where they will not be substantial upgrades for raiders.
  • Tol Barad rewards have changed to make it worth your time to participate for Honor Points. Losing the battle awards 75 Honor Points, not zero, making it now worth participating in even if you lose.
  • New PvP enchants are now available.

Let’s take each of these in a little more detail.

UPGRADED CONQUEST WEAPONS

They’re on hold. The upgraded weapons you could get with a 2200 rating were first made unavailable due to some problems with the Conquest Point cap early in the season, then delayed further because they are better than most raiders could get at this time. The previous date of January 25th has been pushed back indefinitely, until progression raiding catches up.

This is really a minor inconvenience, especially for the tradeoff of not making raiders feel like they need to PvP to a 2200 rating to get decent weapons. Not having the upgraded PvP weapons isn’t sending Arena players into raids to try to get better stuff – it’s just not there yet. Parity between the two worlds is hard to achieve, and this delay is an interesting way to handle it.

TOL BARAD IS A NOW GOOD PLACE TO GEAR UP FOR PVP

Finally. When I first wrote my Season 9 PvP Gear guide, Tol Barad didn’t have much to offer over grinding regular battlegrounds. The honor return was good if you won, but lackluster if you lost, and there was no reason to collect commendations from the victory or the dailies.

No longer.

After some major flip flops in Tol Barad’s rewards, the battle has now settled in to:

  • 360 Honor Points for an offensive victory,
  • 180 Honor Points for a defensive victory, and
  • 75 Honor Points for a loss.

This is  actually a pretty good return on your time if you’re grinding Honor Points. A loss will usually net you around 100-125 honor for 25 minutes, about as much as a good AV or IoC victory. If you sneak in near the end of the battle, your Honor Per Minute goes way up, but it’s hard to gauge when it’s going to end, and it’s best to just queue for it when you see it’s up.

Furthermore, 4.0.6 has added new PvP enchants, available at both the Tol Barad quartermasters – Quartermaster Brazie for Alliance, Pogg for Horde – as well as the Honor Quartermasters in your capital city.

  • Head enchants give you 60 of a primary statand 35 Resilience. They cost 1000 Honor Points or 40 Tol Barad Commendations.
  • Shoulder enchants give you 50 of a primary stat and 25 Resilience. They cost 2000 Honor Points or 80 Tol Barad Commendations.

The naming convention is also somewhat clearer than previous versions of these enchants, with the Arcaniums of Vicious Agility, Intellect, and Strength for the head enchants, and the Greater Inscriptions of Vicious Agility, Intellect, and Strength for the shoulders. Having the season name in their titles leads me to believe that these enchants may be upgraded over different seasons, but that’s just a hunch. It certainly is nice to keep them all straight!

Finally, there have been some changes to the victory conditions in Tol Barad – it’s easier for Defenders to keep 0/3, easier for Attackers to take the last base at 2/3 – until we’ve seen them in action. It’s not going to change the fundamental structure of the battleground, but it is at least going to – perhaps – make it less frustrating overall.

GEARING STRATEGIES

I like having alternate currencies to play with when talking about how to gear up a character. They make it interesting – it’s not just all about how many points you can grind out.

So, I’ve slightly modified my own recommendations from the original guide:

  1. Get the crafted pieces made as soon as you can.
  2. Supplement with good items gained from PvE.
  3. Participate in Tol Barad whenever possible, win or lose. Do dailies for Commendations for PvP enchants.
  4. PvP in regular BGs to grind as much Honor Points as you can to get Bloodthirsty gear, focusing on offset pieces and the 2-pc set bonus.
  5. Participate in as many rated PvP matches as you can, up to the limit of Conquest Points you can gain this week.  Focus on gaining Vicious set pieces and weapons first. (As Taugrim points out in the comments below, if your class depends on their weapon, get the weapons first, before anything else.)
  6. Once your Vicious set is complete, start replacing Bloodthirsty offset pieces with Vicious.
  7. Once you’ve upgraded your offset, upgrade your weapons to the Glorious versions.
  8. Skip upgrading the Conquest armor unless you have points to burn at the end of a season (and even then, just consider stockpiling them at the cap.)

It’s nice that with a few changes of gear and reward, Tol Barad has become a place that is at least worth a PvPer’s time to visit.

Good changes, overall. I’m glad to see some PvP enchants in the mix finally.

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13 Comments

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13 responses to “Battleground PvP Gear in Cataclysm Patch 4.0.6

  1. Pingback: Battleground PvP Gear in Cataclysm Season 9 | Cynwise's Battlefield Manual

  2. Regarding this:

    4. PvP in regular BGs to grind as much Honor Points as you can to get Bloodthirsty gear, focusing on offset pieces first.
    5. Participate in as many rated PvP matches as you can, up to the limit of Conquest Points you can gain this week. Focus on gaining Vicious set pieces and weapons first.

    You have to take into account the class/spec of the player.

    All weapon-damage based classes (i.e. all MDPS and Hunters) should go for Vicious weapon first with Conq points – the increase in damage (and survivability) is huge.

    I would also recommend going for 2-pc Bloodthirsty first over offset pieces – regardless of class – because the 2-pc +400 Resil set bonus and +90 stat bonus is huge.

    • That’s a great point. I’m caster-focused, so I tend to forget details like “weapon damage matters, silly.” And a great point about the 2-pc bonus that I’d forgotten.

      Updated, with thanks!

  3. I’m not sure that it’s necessarily a great place to farm honor based on those numbers. Mind you, I am woefully sleeping on the job (curse getting alts to 85 and being distracted by shinies!) so I don’t have hard numbers available…but my gut impression doesn’t put TB much above the other ones in terms of HPM.

    • Over the entire battle, I agree. It’s about equal to a win at AV and IoC – a pretty good return on your time, all told. But if you come in with… oh, 2 minutes left? Your HPM shoots through the roof.

      It’s best to go in and try to win it, on offense OR defense. It’s totally worth it. But if you miss the beginning of it and see that the battle is in progress, it’s still worth your time to queue up. If you get in (and that varies wildly from server to server, from battle to battle) the Honor Point return is good.

      • Well that holds only because the amount of honor you get just for participating is disproportionately large, given the numbers you cite. 75/100 or 75/125 = 60-75% of your honor coming just for showing up, whereas in an actual BG that bonus honor is a much smaller piece of the pie, 25-35% if memory serves.

  4. Also, I’m confused on your last segment of the gear path…I can upgrade my vicious weapons? I thought there were only two tiers of weapon, the one from conquest points and then the 2200 one. And if it’s the latter you meant then you really should have included the “x. Get to a 2200 rating” step…it’s a pretty major one ;-)

    • You can’t upgrade them yet, but you will be able to…. someday. Just not yet.

      And yes, I suppose I should have included the bit about getting the 2200 rating. An excellent point. :-)

  5. Pingback: Planning for PvP: Shadow Priest « Psynister's Notebook

  6. Thanks for the outline! The Love Fool achievement required a visit to Arathi Basin and I wanted to contribute to the battle, not just visit, /pity and drop. I was able to follow Step One this weekend and prepared my mage for some PvP! I’m sure it made a difference, although I don’t know how to measure it from a single battleground visit. I made sure to show my appreciation. (My Blog Entry)

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