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On Making Intelligent Stat Choices for Protection

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Hi fellow protection paladins,


I am new to Icy-Veins and fairly new to WoW (started playing about a month ago for the first time since WOTLK, which I only played for about a month) and I'm really enjoying the Protection Paladin playstyle, skills and tanking in general. I have read and watched tanking guides pretty much wherever I can find them and follow them as far as I can understand them without much experience.


Now that I'm level 100 and have a few items collected (three Truesteel items [chest, pants, shield]) I really want to get stuck into running dungeons, on Normal at first, before attempting Heroic dungeons and maybe even some LFRs. The issue I currently have is how to balance the random nature of upgrades with statistics, or in other words, ilvl vs. stat priority.


So according to guides and some common sense the stat priority goes as follows: bonus armour, mastery, versatility, crit


Now the question is how much I actually need to comfortably tank normal dungeons now, and heroic dungeons later? (I know these are low goals, but I'd rather get the important stuff down early) Back in WOTLK there were hard guidelines - you needed 45% block, 5000 armour, 15 parry etc to tank Naxx as Paladin and so forth. Are there any such guidelines for WoD?


Secondly, at what ratio does one stat become more useful than another? Here I will use an example. Today I got two helm upgrades (I was wearing a ilvl610 crit haste helm):
 - inv_plate_draenorlfr_c_01helm.jpgMorgo's Unstoppable Ramming Helm

 - inv_crown_02.jpgCrown of Desolation

So, Morgo's gives a large chunk of Mastery, the second-most useful stat to a prot (a whole 1.01% block, getting me to 37.20% block and 13.89% mastery unbuffed) while the Crown only gives crit (which does increase parry by 1.26%, but leaves me at 36.26% block and 12.88% mastery).
Is it at all worthwhile to hang on to Morgo's? Or do the extra points of strength and stamina on the Crown make up for the 1% block chance and mastery loss?

Thirdly, is there a rough guideline for inclusion of less-important stats on a Protection Paladin such as 10% haste or 12.5% crit for overall balance on the character or would the perfect Protection setup only have Bonus Armour, Mastery and Versatility?


Any guidance would be appreciated.

In addition - I have unlocked Heroic Dungeons but I've basically been too scared to queue for them because I don't know whether the character is actually ready to attempt tougher content with its current gear, ilvl and stats.


My armory:

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Firstly - its great that you're taking some care to be knowledgeable about your class. However, you're at the very low end of content, to the point that it doesn't really matter at all what you're wearing. Don't put tons of effort in to gear at this stage, because you will (hopefully) be replacing 90% of it within a week or two. Perhaps when you start doing Heroic Highmaul raids it might start to make a bigger difference, but at this stage just focus on experience.


The Sacred Duty blog does a very good job of explaining and calculating the stat weights for prot paladins in both survivability and DPS.


At the moment, focus on increasing your item level. Higher iLevel items will have better Stamina, Strength and (base) Armour, all of which are significantly ahead of secondary stats in priority.With those two items you linked, the epic crown gives 47 stamina, which is worth about 100 mastery on its own!


The relative values of stats will shift a lot as you gear up, especially depending on the talents you choose and whether you're going for higher survivability or DPS, though it seems likely that Mastery will remain on top for a while. 


There are no particular gear levels you need to achieve now. With the simplification of gearing and the combat table, you can pretty much just jump in to heroics the moment you unlock them. With your 627 iLvl you pretty much outgear them already! Just tell your party members that its your first time tanking it and I'm sure they'd be alright. If you're not comfortable with the mechanics, watch a youtube tutorial, run it in normal once or twice, or do it as a DPS to see what the tank does.





Blizzard just announced hotfixes active as of now increasing the value of haste for all players by 11.1%  and for prot paladins by an additional 25%. This probably puts haste at or equal to mastery for protection. Obviously Blizz read Theck's blog as well (he suggested both of those changes verbatim) though I wonder if they perhaps put a little too much stock in what he says offhand.

Edited by Trasvi

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Thanks for the sacredduty link and advice Transvi,


I will be going headlong into heroic dungeons as soon as I have some mastery enchants on my rings and cloak at least (until the whole mastery vs. haste has been figured out). As I understand it (after reading up a bit more) Mastery will still be slightly more valuable to my Paladin because of the Holy Shield talent, which is both more noob and survival friendly. However, the pieces with haste on it are no longer complete trash, which is quite nice.

But this does also mean I'll need to reroll my Truesteel pieces which are all Mastery and Versatility and maybe get one that's Mastery and Crit or Mastery and Haste. It's also probably a good investment because I'll be wearing them for a long, long time (almost ready to upgrade one piece!).

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