Joined: 01 May 2010
Location: Raleigh, NC
|Posted: Tue Nov 18, 2014 8:32 am Post subject: Gearing Up in Warlords
|I've been having a rather difficult time figuring out a fun way to gear up for raiding after hitting 100 and I thought I'd share what I've found with everyone so that you can find the method that most appeals to you. The good news is there are a lot of options, the bad news is that most of them are slower than previous expansions.
What Does Raid-Ready Mean?
There is no item level requirement for Normal raiding, it looks like Blizzard is recommending that you gear up from dungeons to start so an item level of 610 is probably a good idea. You only need 535 to queue for LFR when it releases and that drops ilvl 640 gear so LFR is still a very viable way to gear up (it just doesn't drop tier pieces). Normal raids drop 655 gear and BMR is only asking that folks have a minimum 625 for heroic raiding so in theory you could be heroic raid ready just by running LFR and completing your silver medal in the proving grounds.
Pretty much everyone is familiar with this method. You queue for dungeons, you get a chance at an item upgrade. Because of the random nature of drops, there's no way to calculate how long it would take you to fully gear up with only this method considering you could run dungeons over and over but luck is a huge factor.
Each instance has an increasing difficulty and subsequently increased rewards. You can do the first four before you even reach level 100.
Normal Dungeon: Gear ilvl
Bloodmaul Slag Mines: 530
Iron Docks: 550
Shadowmoon Burial Grounds: 615
Grimrail Depot: 615
The Everbloom: 615
Upper Blackrock Spire: 615
Heroic dungeons require a silver medal in the proving grounds for your chosen role as well as an average item level of 610. Having that 610 item level should make the silver medal relatively straightforward so this is a pretty classic approach. Completing the bronze proving grounds gives you a 610 weapon, which is a nice new feature since weapons have been historically rare to upgrade.
Gear from all heroic dungeons is 630 (with a small chance for it to be warforged and 636).
Simply completing a challenge mode dungeon, regardless of your time, awards a box with a random 640 item appropriate for your spec. Getting bronze, silver, or gold only awards vanity perks.
Apexis Crystals (630-655)
If daily quests are more to your liking, you can pick one of two up from your garrison every day. The "solo" quests award 800 and the pvp or group quests award 1000. I quoted solo because (at least in the initial weeks of the expansion) it's very difficult to actually complete these solo with so many other players competing for spawns in a limited area.
- Crystal gear is ilvl 630 and requires 3000 -5000 crystals to purchase.
- Exceptional gear is ilvl 645 and requires the Crystal item plus 9000 – 11500 more crystals.
- Flawless gear is ilvl 655 and requires the Exceptional item plus 14500 – 20000 more crystals.
This is a reliable method of gearing up but exceptionally slow. Assuming you do the 800 crystal quest every day (because your only options are two 800 crystal version or you cannot do the pvp/group version if it's available), it would take you 237 straight days with no exceptions to gear up completely using this method.
Leaving aside the challenge of gathering garrison resources for now. You can add a slow trickle of resources through work orders (4 hours each) with the appropriate buildings and use those to craft epic items. It's better than having only a single daily cooldown to generate these rare materials and they are competitive with heroic dungeon loot in terms of item level (630-640). You can only have 3 crafted items equipped at once however and since you could replace any of these items with a single lucky roll in a heroic dungeon this is really only recommended if you find an item that doesn't drop in heroics that you need to upgrade.
If you actually have the matching profession for these crafted items, you can boost their level from 630 or 640 to 655 by crafting a (very expensive) consumable. It requires Savage Blood which means you must have a Tier 3 barn or buy it on the AH. In addition, it will take you 10 days to buy both recipes needed for the item level boosts--you can only create one “Secret” item per day and it takes 5 Secrets for each recipe. This is on top of spending “Secrets” on recipes for actual gear. Again, the worst case scenario for this would only be three items but assuming you're totally self-sufficient (meaning you have a T3 barn and the appropriate profession buildings) it could be done in as little as 25 days for the recipes plus 15 days of work orders per upgrade and 10 days of work orders per item, varying depending on your luck and follower attributes. That works out to 145 days for those three items.
There is a weekly garrison invasion quest available that can award items and mounts. If you manage to obtain a Gold Victory in the invasion, you get a chance at a 645 helm, shoulder, weapon, or boots.
There are garrison missions available that award player loot between ilvl 615 – 655. These missions are relatively infrequent and require your followers to be level 100, have good gear of their own from garrison missions that award follower gear, and (of course) having higher quality followers helps quite a bit with their chances to succeed. This is a lot of randomness in this method, so it's not reasonable to calculate a timeframe for gearing up this way.
Legendary Quest Ring
There is a long quest chain that involves dungeons and raids that eventually awards an ilvl 640 ring that can be upgraded to 680. Blizzard has already said that they plan for future parts of the quest to improve that to 690 and 710. I won't go into details here as that's big spoiler territory.
10th Anniversary Raiding
Completing Molten Core's level 100 version for WoW's 10th anniversary awards an ilvl 640 helmet! Limited time only (Nov 21st – January 6th). This will be a 40-man LFR run so look forward to doing that for the helmet and other rewards like mounts, pets, and illusion enchantments.
World Bosses and Big Crates of Salvage have a chance to drop ilvl 655-665 BoE items.
If you made it this far, congratulations! There's an even more detailed guide on wowhead (http://www.wowhead.com/guide=2688/gearing-up-in-warlords-of-draenor) with links to specific items, loot tables, and so on to help you plan. It looks like however we gear up, it will be a long time before we feel like we're done with this expansion.