Warrior Class Overview

Last updated on May 07, 2024 at 00:00 by Abide

Masters of combat, Warriors are a staple of war since the beginning of time. Combining strength, leadership and a mastery of all weapons and armor, Warriors aim to wreak havoc in combat. Arming themselves with sturdy shields or deadly weapons, a Warrior must harness their Rage in order to inflict devastating attacks upon their foes.


Introduction to Warrior

Warrior Class Crest Cataclysm Guide Warriors are a melee oriented class, having a unique resource system called Rage. Rage is generated through combat from both dealing and taking damage. The more damage you deal or take, the more Rage you generate. Most of the abilities available to Warrior cost Rage to use, so always be mindful of how much you have available at all times.

In addition to Rage, Warrior also has a second unique mechanic, stances. Each of these stances offers a different buff and has a general, unique purpose. Mastering these stances and utilizing them properly is required to unlock the full potential of your Warrior. Battle Stance Icon Battle Stance is mainly used while leveling, and by the ArmsArms specialization. Defensive Stance Icon Defensive Stance is almost exclusively used by ProtectionProtection Warriors. Berserker Stance Icon Berserker Stance is the main stance used when speccing into the FuryFury talent tree. Regardless of the specialization you choose, you will want to know about all three of your stances and use them at the appropriate times.


Warrior Specializations

Warriors can fulfill either the damage dealing role, or the tanking role depending on which specialization you choose. Having the option to tank if needed can make it much easier to find groups, as the tanking role is often in short supply. Warrior Warrior is able to choose from three specializations: Arms Arms, Fury Fury, and Protection Protection.

  • Arms Arms — Seasoned experts of two-handed weapons, utilizing devastating attacks and intense ferocity to vanquish their adversaries.
  • Fury Fury — Enraged berserkers brandish a weapon in each hand, unleashing a rapid onslaught of strikes to dismantle their adversaries.
  • Protection Protection — Resolute guardians who choose to arm themselves with a shield to defend their allies from harm.

What Specialization Should I Play?

Each specialization available to Warrior is unique and has its' own playstyle. Ultimately the spec that you find the most enjoyable to play will come down to your own personal playstyle; we recommend trying out each spec on your own to get a feel for them and see how much you enjoy them.



ArmsArms is the primary spec in Cataclysm for both PvE and PvP content, focusing on dealing damage with 2-handed weapons. This spec has multiple different procs, giving it a very active playstyle that will keep you always watchful and ready to act. In addition, this specializations playstyle revolves around small "burst windows", where you will have multiple, powerful abilities ready to use back-to-back. This makes ArmsArms especially deadly in PvP, as you can easily burst down your target by catching them off guard.



Rather than using a single weapon, FuryFury chooses to wield a weapon in each hand. You can choose between Titan's Grip Icon Titan's Grip, which allows you to wield a 2-handed weapon in each hand, or Single-Minded Fury Icon Single-Minded Fury, which increases your damage dealt when wielding two 1-handed weapons instead. FuryFury has a very active playstyle, always having an ability ready to use. Unfortunately, this spec does not start off strong and requires very high end-game gear to fully unlock its potential.



ProtectionProtection is the tank specialization, where you will focus on taking damage as your primary goal rather than dishing it out. ProtectionProtection can be classified as easy to learn, hard to master. This spec only has a few main abilities in its rotation, but it also has multiple procs that require quick reactions to utilize. The nature of a tank also requires high awareness of the situation at all times, as you will need to be ready to adapt to anything the content throws at you.


How Viable is Warrior in Cataclysm?

Warrior Class Art Warrior is very viable in Cataclysm. ArmsArms is one of the strongest DPS classes in the game throughout all phases. FuryFury is fairly weak starting out and only really does well towards the end of the expansion in full end-game gear, but remains a decent "middle ground" DPS option otherwise. ProtectionProtection is strong enough to clear all content in the game, but falls behind other tanks due to a low number of defensive cooldowns, limited utility, and generally are lacking crucial stats until obtaining later raid gear.


Races For Warrior

Warriors are the only class in the game that can be played as any race, giving you a very wide selection of options to choose from.


Alliance Races

  • Dwarf Dwarves have a few notable racials. Mace Specialization Icon Mace Specialization grants 3 expertise skill when wearing a mace. At level 85 it takes 30 expertise rating to equal 1 expertise skill, making this racial only worth 90 stats, being on the weaker side of racials. The main appeal of this race is Stoneform Icon Stoneform which removes all poison, disease and bleeds when activated and reduces all damage taken by 10% for 8 seconds, making this an extremely powerful race for ProtectionProtection.
  • Human Humans are weaker overall in Cataclysm compared to previous expansions. They still have Mace Specialization Icon Mace Specialization and Sword Specialization Icon Sword Specialization, giving 3 expertise skill when wearing a mace or sword. As mentioned before, 3 expertise is 90 expertise rating at level 85, making this a weaker racial at max level when compared to others. Will to Survive Icon Will to Survive remains as a PvP trinket and keeps Humans as one of the best races overall for PvP gameplay.
  • Night Elf Night Elves are the best race for the ProtectionProtection spec as they have Quickness Icon Quickness, helping them reach the 102.4% easier and increasing your critical block chance.
  • Worgens Worgens are one of the two new races added in Cataclysm. Viciousness Icon Viciousness is the main racial offered, granting 1% crit chance. At level 85, 1% crit chance is 180 stats, making this the best racial for both ArmsArms and FuryFury Warriors on Alliance. You will also get Darkflight Icon Darkflight, giving you a 2 minute movement speed cooldown.

Horde Races

  • Goblin Goblins are one of the two new races added in during Cataclysm. Their main racials are Rocket Jump Icon Rocket Jump and Rocket Barrage Icon Rocket Barrage. Both of these abilities share a cooldown and are on the global cooldown, which makes Rocket Barrage almost completely useless. Rocket Jump is a powerful movement cooldown that will come in handy whenever a boss encounter has high movement mechanics. Goblins also have Time is Money Icon Time is Money, giving 1% attack speed, but this is a weak stat for Warriors. ProtectionProtection has no real best race for Horde, making Goblins a good choice for the additional movement ability from Rocket Jump.
  • Orc Orcs remain the preferred choice for Horde DPS Warriors. They offer Axe Specialization Icon Axe Specialization and Blood Fury Icon Blood Fury; Axe Specialization gives 3 expertise skill, which is 90 stats at level 85, making this a fairly weak stat value. Blood Fury gives 1169 Attack Power at level 85 and can be used with other cooldowns. Overall Orc is the best option for maximizing DPS for both ArmsArms and FuryFury Warriors because of the Blood Fury cooldown. Axe Specialization has minimal value as none of your best in slot weapons are Axes.
  • Tauren Taurens are technically the best tank race for the ProtectionProtection spec, as they offer Endurance Icon Endurance, giving you 5% base health. Note that the base health is only the raw health that you gain from levels and does not scale with your gear at all, making this only about a 1% increase in total health at maximum level in raiding gear. War Stomp Icon War Stomp is also a handy AoE stun that you can use when tanking trash in dungeons or raids.

Gearing and Stats

Warriors are able to wear Cloth, Leather, and Mail armor by default, and are able to wear Plate after reaching Level 40. While you can wear any armor, you will want to primarily focus on wearing Plate armor exclusively to take advantage of either Plate Specialization Icon Plate Specialization if you are specced as either ArmsArms or FuryFury, or Plate Specialization Icon Plate Specialization if you are playing as ProtectionProtection.

Warriors are able to equip all weapons in the game aside from Wands. This allows many different weapon choices, such as choosing a weapon that matches your specific racial bonuses, if you have any. In Cataclysm you will typically want to aim for the highest item level weapon with Strength on it as this will usually be the highest DPS weapon you can get.

Both ArmsArms and FuryFury Warriors desire the same stats, letting you mostly use the same gear if you are interested in playing both specs. Your main stat priority will be: Strength > Hit Rating (8%) > Expertise (26) > Critial Strike > Mastery. Following these stats will grant you the highest damage output possible and truly maximize your character.

ProtectionProtection Warrior will want to focus on tank stats exclusively, following a main stat priority of: Stamina = Mastery > Parry > Dodge. Threat is no longer an issue in Cataclysm as Defensive Stance Icon Defensive Stance has been buffed to increase all threat generated by 500%, making threat stats no longer needed, letting you entirely focusing on defensive stats.


Warrior Addons and Macros

Addons and Macros can greatly improve your quality of life during Cataclysm. Listed below are some of our recommendations on Addons and Macros to help get the most out of your time playing the game.



  • 03 May 2024: Page added.
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