Archive for the Gear Category

The Upgrade that Wasn’t

Posted in Gear with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 18, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

When is an upgrade not an upgrade?  When everyone you are competing against gets the exact same upgrade as you.

Imagine if you will, you try and try and try and TRY AND TRY to get an upgrade over your pvp weapon, the Titansteel Destroyer.  The vast majority of people you are pvping against seem to either have the Titansteel Destroyer or the Colossal Skull-Clad Cleaver.  You run Ulduar every week hoping Ironsoul or Stormedge will drop.  All of the 2-handed dps in your runs have gotten their upgrades, the only thing standing between you and a massive weapon upgrade is the stupid thing dropping.

Then, the unthinkable happens.  3.2 comes out.  Weapons of the exact same quality (in fact they are better) are dropping in a 5-man Heroic!  Why slam your face against Ulduar droprates when you can just run Heroic Trial of the Champions every day and hope it drops there!

Finally, you get that upgrade you’ve been looking for!  You are ready to go out there and face the world with your awesome new weapon.  You go into Arena and what happens?  Everyone and their stinking brother has done the exact same thing as you.

This is my story.  I’ve tried for months to get my hands on an upgrade to the Titansteel Destroyer so I could go out there and rock the competition.  I’ve run Ulduar, Naxx25 and even a few Naxx10’s in hopes of Death’s Bite dropping.  My luck has been, abysmal.

Finally a shortcut.  Heroic TotC.  So I run it for a week and finally Marrowstrike drops.  I’m happy!  I’m thrilled!  I’m deceived.

Make no mistake about it, Marrowstrike & Edge of Ruin are Titansteel Destroyer 2.0.  These weapons aren’t upgrades if everyone else is using the same weapon!  Sure, if I still had Titansteel Destroyer it would be even worse, but upgrading to Marrowstrike has taken me to the exact same level I was before!  Right next to everyone else!

Now what?  Now I have to find the next upgrade.  Unfortunately the next upgrade is just not very accessible to me.  Taking a look at Rawr, I can see the following weapons would be upgrades for me.

(Listed in reverse order from smallest upgrade to largest)

  • Hoperender – This is attainable for me, but it’s not really an upgrade.  It’s a sidegrade or a downgrade if anything.  Drops off of 10-man General Vezax.
  • Betrayer of Humanity – 25-Man Kel’Thuzad.  Easy enough to get KT down, but there are always 409817984174098 2-handed DPSers gunning for this weapon.  Plus it’s not a huge upgrade, as it only has 19 more top-end damage.  If it falls into my lap, sure, but I’m not sure about actively seeking it out.
  • Lotrafen, Spear of the Damned – Drops off of 25-man General Vezax.  Probably not going to see this weapon anytime soon.
  • Fordragon Blades – Drops off of 10-man Anub’Arak in Trial of the Crusader.  I believe this will be attainable by my guild, but we have to wait for Anub’Arak to be available for killing.  That means a month at least, probably longer.
  • Any 1850 Furious Gladiator Weapon – This MIGHT actually be one of my best bets, as I’ll be doing arena and hopefully gaining rating anyway.  A long uphill climb, but if I ever hit 1850 I will pick up one of these fine weapons.  This is also a huge 114 top-end damage increase oveor Marrowstrike.
  • Voldrethar, Dark Blade of Oblivion – 25-man Ulduar Hard Mode General Vezax.  Um, not likely.
  • Archon Glaive – 25-man Anub’Arak.  Probably not going to see this.

So there you have it.  The only true upgrades I see for myself are Betrayer of Humanity, Fordragon Blades & Furious Gladiator weapons.  Ugh.


Marrowstrike Explanation

Posted in Gear with tags , , , , , , , , on August 17, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

Reposted (with some revision) from my comment on Marrowstrike versus Edge of Ruin

I realize that my post declaring Marrowstrike superior to Edge of Ruin was a little crazy.  However, when you look at the big picture, along with an additional stat on Marrowstrike, things start to make sense.

The whole thing took me by surprise as well. I can tell you how I tweaked the spreadsheet which hasn’t updated for 3.2 yet to get the numbers.

I took my current gear, which I pulled from the Armory.

I plugged in Stormedge to get the 5% additional crit & crit damage from Poleaxe spec.

After that, I just edited the stats to fit Edge and Marrowstrike respectively.  My numbers for Marrowstrike were 4,195 dps and my numbers for Edge were 4,167 dps.

If you look at my SEP numbers, STR is worth 1, Agil is worth .7168, ArP is worth .9248, Crit Rating is worth .8674 and 2 AP is worth .8741 for me at my gear level.

If you add up the numbers for each weapon.

Edge of Ruin

  • STR = 121 (121 * 1)
  • ArP = 70 (76 * .9248 rounded)
  • Crit = 54 (62 * .8674 rounded)
  • Total = 245


  • AP = 67 (154/2 * .8741 rounded)
  • Agility = 76 (106 * .7168 rounded)
  • ArP = 55 (60 * .9248 rounded)
  • Crit = 49 (57 * .8674 rounded)
  • Total = 247

As you can see, Marrowstrike narrowly edges, Edge of Ruin.  Yes, STR is that good, but when you throw on another dps stat altogether (Agility) it makes things murkier.

As my crit goes up with gear, Edge could turn out to be a better choice due to Crit having being less useful the more you have.   I’ll just have to wait and see.  For now, however, I’m very glad I managed to snag either of these great weapons.

The fact of the matter is, you should take whichever drops first.  If you want to put forth the effort to get Marrowstrike after Edge drops, go for it.  It’s worth about 30 dps (at least for me).  If you want to put in the effort to go after Edge after Marrowstrike drops, go for it.  It’s good for Fury and may be better after my crit gets up a little higher as I gear.

Bottom line, either of these would be a great upgrade over Titansteel Destroyer, Heroics, Naxx10 and non-KT Naxx25 weapons.  For Arms, they are an upgrade over Ironsoul as well, just because Poleaxe spec owns Mace spec.  If you are hit capped, they rock Stormedge too.

So there you have it.  Once Landsoul gets his spreadsheet updated for 3.2, this will be a lot easier to figure out.  I had to go in and custom gear all my 3.2 gear, including the weapons.  Hopefully he’ll get that updated soon and take a lot of the work out of this process.

Quick Post

Posted in Gear, Warrior, World of Warcraft with tags , , , on August 14, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

Being that I’m very busy today, I don’t have time for a real meaty post, but I did want to put an update out there.

I am now the proud owner of Marrowstrike.  Funny how that works out isn’t it?  Yesterday I discovered that Marrowstrike was actually better for me than Edge of Ruin, after I had passed on Marrowstrike the previous day!  Then last night Marrowstrike drops and I get it.

I have been so single-minded in my pursuit of a 2-handed upgrade that I don’t even know what to do with myself now.  I suppose I should bust it out in some pvp.  My arena partner is gone to GenCon, but I can definitely hit up some BGs.

Now to work on Kered’s weapons.

Marrowstrike Versus Edge of Ruin

Posted in Gear, Warrior, World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 13, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

or…I passed on the better weapon

A couple posts ago I posted a comparison between Ironsoul, the 2-handed Mace out of Ulduar and Edge of Ruin, the 2-handed Axe out of Heroic Trial of the Champion.

Okay, so I missed a tiny little fact.  Marrowstrike drops from the same instance.  Marrowstrike is a Polearm with Agility, Stamina, Attack Power, Crit and Armor Penetration.

Let’s be specific, shall we?

Edge of Ruin (iLevel 219)  212.3 DPS, 3.5 Speed, 594 – 892 Damage

121 Strength, 97 Stamina, 76 Armor Penetration and 62 Critical Strike Rating.

Marrowstrike (iLevel 219) 212.3 DPS, 3.5 Speed, 594 – 892 Damage

106 Agility, 101 Stamina, 154 Attack Power, 60 Armor Penetration and 57 Critical Strike Rating.

Oh, Marrowstrike also has a yellow socket with a +4 Agility socket bonus.

Which is better?

According to Landsoul’s Warrior DPS Spreadsheet, which can be found at, Marrowstrike is better for both Arms and Fury!  (I’m a newb, you can’t DW polearms as Fury)

At least, at my level of gear, which is a mix of Naxx10 & Ulduar10.

For Arms, Marrowstrike offers a 23 point DPS increase and for Fury, Marrowstrike offers a 21 point DPS increase over Edge of Ruin.  In both of the simulations I used a +16 Strength gem in Marrowstrike.  Without the gem, Marrowstrike offers a 6 point DPS increasne for arms and a 3 point DPS loss for Fury.

This is in a buffed environment, with Kings.  It’s about the same with no buffs.

So what do we make of this?

First, I passed on a better weapon than Edge of Ruin, because I was blinded by Edge’s Strength.  In my defense, I was in a pug and specifically asked to be allowed to roll (I was tanking) on Edge at the beginning, but I didn’t mention Marrowstrike.  Why?  Because, quite honestly, I had forgotten about it.  I think I knew, somewhere in the abyss that is my brain that it existed, but I put it out of my head because it was a “Hunter weapon”.

Secondly, yes…this is a Hunter weapon.  If you steal it from a Hunter, they are going to be cranky.  Who is right?  You are.  (If you are a warrior, and you should be)  A melee weapon should always go to the melee class before the ranged class.  That doesn’t mean the Hunters aren’t going to cry foul.

Lastly, keep an open mind.  Strength does not always mean better, as is the case with Marrowstrike.

Oh, just a little warning.  Edge of Ruin, which I haven’t seen yet, drops off of the first boss.  Marrowstrike, which I have, drops off of the Priestess second boss.  Technically, you should have a 50% less chance of seeing Marrowstrike drop than Edge, since you could get the Paladin as the second boss instead of the Priestess.

What this all boils down to is this, if you are toting around the Titansteel Destroyer, grab whichever of these drops first.  If you want to continue gunning for the other, knock yourself out.

Why yes, those are my purple legs!

Posted in Gear with tags , , , , , on February 20, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

I managed to snag these beauties on a Heroic Violet Hold run.  I was pretty thrilled, as they replaced the Daunting Legplates I was wearing.  I’m starting to see what happens as a warrior tank gets epic’d out.  My defense is plummeting.  I believe I’m at 542 at the moment.  I would check, but I logged out in DPS gear and I’m at work.

Since my Raid Leader and his woman are going out of town this weekend, it looks like I’m going to have the opportunity to hit up some Heroics in search of purplez.

I have two pieces of gear in my sights.

The Ancient Aligned Girdle will replace my lowest level item, the blue Tempered Saronite Belt.  The girdle drops off of Anub’arak in Heroic Azjol-Nerub.  I’ll be taking a hit in the Defense department, but if all else fails I can socket it with a defense gem using the Eternal Belt Buckle.  I LOVE Blacksmithing.

The other piece I’m shooting for are the Bracers of the Herald.  They drop off of Herald Volazj in Ahn’kahet: The Old Kingdom.  If I can get these, that should help with any Defense lost arming the Ancient Aligned Girdle, since they have more defense than Svala’s Bloodied Shackles, which I am using now.

On a side note, I am super stoked about Dual-Specs.  Since I’m pretty much trapped in my tanking position (a trap I’m perfectly happy with), I’ll probably be going Prot Tank/Arms PVP.  I love pvp, I just hate paying to respec.  This is going to make me happy.

Icebane Chestguard, Ghetto Tanking Piece

Posted in Gear with tags , , , on February 16, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

Today’s lesson, how to turn a situational chestpiece into a pretty solid tanking chest.

To review, I am currently rolling with the level 80 blue Reanimated Armor, which drops off of Gortok Palehoof in regular Utgarde Pinnacle.  This is a pretty decent tanking chest if you haven’t got anything from Heroics or Raids.  It served me just fine  in OS, VoA, & Nax10.  The enchant I was using on this piece was the +18 stam Heavy Borean Armor Kit.

Now on to the lesson.

Step 1:  Create through Blacksmithing or purchase from a Blacksmith, the Icebane Chestguard.

Step 2:  Create through Jewelcrafting or purchase from a Jewelcrafter, a Regal Twilight Opal, Vivid Forest Emerald and a Solid Sky Saphire.

Step 3:  Create through Enchanting or purchase from an Enchanter Enchant Chest – Greater Defense.

Step 4:  Wear pimped out Icebane Chestguard.

Let’s break down the stats for those who love that sort of thing.

Reanimated Armor

  • 26,141 Hit Points
  • 22,770 Armor
  • 549 Defense
  • 19.56% Dodge
  • 17.05% Parry
  • 15.96% Block Chance
  • 884 Block Value
  • 2,279 Attack Power
  • 161 Hit Rating
Icebane Chestguard

  • 27,261 Hit Points
  • 23,000 Armor
  • 544 Defense
  • 19.57% Dodge
  • 16.16% Parry
  • 15.76% Block Chance
  • 836 Block Value
  • 2,137 Attack Power
  • 169 Hit Rating

With the Icebane Chestguard I net:

  • 1,120 Additional Hit Points
  • 230 Additional Armor
  • 5 Less Defense (still Crit Immune)
  • .01% Additional Dodge
  • .89% Less Parry
  • .20% Less Block Chance
  • 48 Less Block Value
  • 142 Less Attack Power
  • 8 Additional Hit Rating
  • Let’s not forget the 115 Additional Frost Resistance.

Overall, I’d call it an upgrade.