What's going on team, Killchang here, and we've had a pretty solid start to Dragonflat. If you were a guide is up on the channel if you have not yet seen it, and if that strikes your fancy, an info card will be up in the top-right-hand side of the screen and that'll send you on your way.
But it's very important to maintain a healthy balance in all things. You're going to want to keep your Prot Warrior skills sharp and up-to-date for fighting conditions. So, today, we're going to temper your nerves into a Star War Behemoth that will absolutely clap the competition -- Prot Warrior guide for all us off-speccers, ready to queue big into Mythic Plus and beyond, kicking enough.
Protection Warrior Builds
There are two predominant builds with this Talent specialization that are more or less the same strict setup with very minimal alterations based on raiding and Mythic Plus requirements, with some flexibility on Choice nodes for more defensive prowess or offensive pressure. It is definitely worthwhile keeping in mind that the offensive pressure side of things can be changed if you're easily able to attack certain encounter in a raid environment for example, but need that extra damage boost for certain phases or a DPS check.
Green highlights are your standard pickups which you'll see on the specialization side of the tree. There are literally no changes in flexibility, purely comes from the Choice nodes themselves on the class side of the tree.
Two notable changes are dropping Uproar, the modifier for Thunderous Throw and Bounding Stride, the modifier for Heroic Leap, in favor of picking up Storm Bolt and Shockwave in your Mythic Plus setup. It is important to note here that if your particular five-man comp you're running with is heavy on stuns already, it actually may be worth not picking up this extra typical CC to avoid hitting the stun diminishing returns.
The specific specialization Choice nodes you can swap around are Sudden Death and Show Stopper, typically swapped on an AOE or single Target basis if and when your haste levels help rage generation feel pretty comfortable and the cooldowns on your primary rage builders in Shield Slam and Thunderclap are in a solid spot. You can opt for Heavy Repercussions instead of the usual Time to Unstoppable, as this will help uptime on Shield Block, which may be quite needed given the recent 10% Global tank Nerf. This depends on how your defenses are feeling.
If you aren't the primary tanker and there is generally no threat of death in a particular encounter, and during defense, you can swap in for Massacre, further boosting your uptime on Execute for single Target damage. This works great in tandem with another Choice node, dropping Unstoppable Force in favor of picking up Juggernaut, again just further boosting your Execute damage.
With the one setup, it's all based on Choice nodes and the flexibility comes purely from those nodes.
Protection Warrior Stats
Next, we'll tackle stats. Haste comes in at number one by actually a fair margin as it contributes to so many things as a Protection Warrior. It reduces the global cooldown, reduces the plethora of all the short cooldowns that form the core part of your rotation like Shield Block, Shield Slam, Thunderclap, Ignore Pain, etc. We have a number of shorter cooldowns that form that part of our moment-to-moment gameplay. This, along with the physical auto swings, helps increase your rage generation through Shield Slam and Thunderclap, which currently means more rage to then be able to dump on damage or mitigation through Revenge, Execute, Shield Block, or Ignore Pain.
Second, we have Versatility. Pretty typical stat for most tanks, simply just increasing your damage done by X and reducing damage taken by Y. But it's a very reliable stat. This will come in at number two.
Coming in in the rear will be Crit, followed by Mastery. Crit actually does help affect Parry rate, but again 99% of scenarios, you're not really going to have Parry rate be super important (doesn't work on boss range attacks, spells, etc.). But in a Mythic+ environment where you've got a whole bunch of enemies whacking away at you, then by all means, Parry will obviously help in all those scenarios, as long as you're facing the enemies—please for the love of God, don't forget to face your enemies if you want to Parry! It also boosts your damage output, which is also useful, especially again in a Mythic+ or even in a raiding environment—you want to try and at least be efficient with your damage output as well.
Mastery obviously doesn't have an offensive element to it. However, do keep in mind that while it just helps increase your block chance and critical block chance, it will also allow Mastery to help impact Spell Block if you're using the Spell Block talent. Typically, you can't block spells, but by using this particular talent, unfortunately the reality is that one and a half minute cooldown for a 20 second uptime on Spell Block isn't quite really on par with the regular Shield Block. But that would be a little OP if we could just block all spells as well. But there will be certain dungeons that—like Azshara's Eternal Palace, for example—could actually see some real use for Spell Block. So that is where Mastery will come into play.
Protection Warrior Consumables
Consumable-wise, starting off with the enchantments, the weapon is going to want to have Sophic Devotion, a nice little cheeky primary stat buff for there. Nothing fancy, but it's our best option. An argument could definitely be had for having a second weapon with Frozen Division on it for Mythic+ environments.
However, the usefulness of this particular enchant for a Pro Warrior is a bit of a bell curve - the damage obviously increases up to a max of five enemies hit, and it's simply a damage proc - there's no defensive element to it whatsoever, and most of the areas similar have a soft cap of five or eight in some cases as well. The difference is, Sophic Devotion has a defensive element to it - the more strength you have, the more you'll be blocking and things like that, as well as the strength increases all abilities including ones that do damage with a reduced effect beyond a certain number of targets. Strength tangibly affects and increases things, like Thunderclap, to all targets hit, whereas obviously Frozen Devotion caps out its increase of damage beyond at the five targets.
So, the Cloak of Regenerative Leech is the way to go here - a nice little bit of leech and out-of-combat healing. Chestpiece we grabbed the Sustained Strength primary stat buff, as well as a nice chunk of stamina. Bracers - Mirror of the Cloak that we want the devotion of leech for our bracers.
Legs - go ahead and grab the same as the DPS Warriors - we get the Fierce Armor Kit. Boots - Watches Loam for the stand buff. I guess if you really want to be a speedy boy you can grab Plane Runner, but in terms of just what you're supposed to be - he's a Protection Warrior - we're already quite mobile, to be brutally honest - Watches Loam will be the best go to here. Lastly, the Rings - we definitely want to grab Devotion of Haste again, as the stat section of this video resource, haste is literally this.
When it comes to a secondary stat, that's the way to go for there. The Mythic+ our best file or [vial] (someone in the comments is gonna have to teach me how to pronounce that word!) will be Ineffable Truth - provides a stacking strength buff based on the number of enemies that recently hit you - literally perfect for Mythic+. This is definitely the go-to bar for that.
For tanking raids, though, Elemental Chaos will likely be our best option here. There's always a discussion to be had about Static Empowerment - there's just so so many fights that are not gonna allow you to stand still to get the best benefit out of it in any sort of realistic scenario. I just don't think this file is honestly going to be used - I'd avoid it for now, for sure.
For consumables, nothing fancy - just like DPS Warriors, we grab the Elemental Potion of Ultimate Power, which increases our primary stats, like strength, by even more. Stock up as well on refreshing healing potions for your typical heal-up, however Potion of Breathing Vitality can always be used as well for those odd occasions when you need the extra snap heal, but rely on your healer or your own self-healing to help mitigate the ticking damage after you've done that initial heal.
No sharpening stones again, uh - sad day for Blacksmiths there, but we want to grab the Howling Rune from the scribes - flat haste buff for our weapon. As for the yummy food, fries are always going to be the best option, but stock up on some personal food as always - Timely Demise will help you get the haste buff that you'll be wanting if there's no feasts available.
As for our gems, Primeless Gem is going to be the Fierce Limited Diamond with all the other gem slots basically being some variation of haste or haste and versatility based on what Sims you have. Yes, there's always going to be certain breakpoints where haste might dip in usefulness, etc., but we have the Quick Emerald being the flat haste, Energized Semaral being the haste high and verse low, and then the Energized Malagite being the versatility high and haste low gem, so you can mix and match whatever this happens to sim the best for that.
But, a good rule of thumb is, we always know that, yeah, if you're starting to push ridiculous 32 or more haste, then it's time to start flowing in some versatility on new gems, as well as above 32 cases when you start hitting diminishing returns, and it gets even worse as you get above 39 haste - I believe it goes to 20 diminishing return above 39, I believe. (Don't quote me on that, but I know those numbers are roughly correct.)
Protection Warrior Rotation / Priority List
Finally, we're going to leave off on the rotation, although it would more accurately be called a priority list. Protection Warrior definitely has a lot of abilities to micromanage compared to their Fury DPS counterparts, so I want to go ahead and categorize them as best I can to give you a good insight on how you might want to group, position, and keybind these abilities to work well with each other.
We obviously have abilities that generate rage and spend rage, so your primary rage generators are going to be through Shield Slam and Thunder Clap. Maxing the usefulness and hitting these strictly on global cooldown, including when they get the free resets, is really going to help you overall, even in a defensive nature, as well. Although these abilities are physically doing damage and there's no direct correlation with any defensives, there is indirect correlation with defenses. The fact that you're maintaining good rage generation, which allows you to spend rage on the defensive abilities as we go forward, is important.
There's going to be three resets from Shield Slam with the Devastator Talent. There's going to be Thunder Clap weaving through Avatar, thanks to the Unstoppable Force Talent. Practicing that is going to be paramount to making sure you get the most out of your Avatar. You're going to be reading Thunder Clap every second global cooldown, so if you're in a pretty comfortable position and want to focus on throughput and rage generation, you'll be swinging through Shield Slam, Thunder Clap, Revenge, and Thunder Clap.
Think offensively, but if you're in a dicier position and not quite sure what decision to make, or if you feel okay but not 100% confident, then play more defensively. It's better to be safe than sorry; dead tanks don't tank crap. So then you'll be weaving your Thunder Clap with Ignore Pain, Shield Block, etc.
Actual rage spenders, though, defensively, and most importantly, Shield Block. Maintaining that as close to 100% uptime as you can is going to be of the most importance and it immediately separates a good from a bad Warrior. So practice that, train your eyes--especially in lower keys and easier rating counters--to track the Shield Block. You'll get two charges of Shield Block, plus the actual Shield Charge ability, with Charge. Weak Auras will also give you a third source of Shield Block uptime.
Your second defensive rage spender will be Ignore Pain. Very powerful and typically I would suggest going to this in most scenarios to maintain some sort of Ignore Pain, especially with Brutal Vitality. As long as you have normal pain on you, you'll help maintain that through the Brutal Vitality Talent, as well.
If ever in doubt, always be safe.
The offensive rage spenders are Revenge, which is going to be used in most scenarios as it's definitely the best for AOE and single target. We won't have any other option until you're in execute phase. Then, by all means, if you're in a single target position and execute is available, then that'll be your best rage spender.
As long as you're feeling pretty comfortable in terms of defensives, then that'll be your best bet. There are going to be a lot of moment to moment decision making gameplay elements to a Protection Warrior that will take a little bit of time. Don't stress. Always play defensive first.
Hopefully that gives you guys a bit of insight, and I hope it's helpful in some way, shape or form. More videos will come now that Dragonflight Season One is officially out. It's been an absolute pleasure. I hope you guys learned a thing or two from the guide. Thanks very much!
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Like the video if you dig it and yeah, thanks for watching. Catch you guys next time. Peace.