Protection Paladin Tank Gear and Best in Slot — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.1.5
On this page, you will find the best gear and best in slot items for your Protection Paladin in World of Warcraft Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.1.5.
1. Best in Slot List for Protection Paladins
We are currently not providing a Best in Slot list for general gear slots, this is due to the fact that farming specific items in the hopes of getting them Titanforged is not very realistic.
We are currently not providing a Best in Slot list when it comes to most gear, as the item level of the items always comes into question, thus a list to blindly follow will not do much good. All items except for Azerite Armor from both raids and Mythic+ can be competitive if it comes with a socket, or if it is sufficiently Warforged/Titanforged. Defensively, item level is almost all that matters and you should simply go for the item with the highest level. The only thing to really try to avoid are rings with Critical Strike. Rings should be 5 to 10 item levels higher, depending on how much Critical Strike is on it, OR have a socket to really compete with a piece that has Haste and Mastery/Versatility.
1.1. Azerite Gear
With the inclusion of Titan Residuum, it is now possible to choose specific Azerite Pieces that drop in dungeons which may have exceptionally strong traits. These items which you can buy are listed below. As mentioned in the Azerite Traits page, we heavily recommend to have at least one Inspiring Vanguard, as well as one Soaring Shield in your set-up. Once you have made sure your gear features these two traits, it is recommended that defensively you go for three times Bulwark of Light if possible. Note that the Third Ring as well as Fourth Ring also matters, so do not blindly go for the previously mentioned combination. Below, we mention some of the best Azerite pieces you can specifically buy for each slot from Titan Residuum, but keep in mind that pieces with Inspiring Vanguard and Soaring Shield will lose some value if you already have one of those traits:
- Soulspun Casque: Inspiring Vanguard, Bulwark of Light, Overwhelming Power as well as either Gemhide, and Impassive Visage. This Helm only has exceptional traits.
- Helm of the Raptor King: Bulwark of Light, Inspiring Vanguard, Azerite Veins, and Impassive Visage. This Helm only has great traits as well, with Azerite Veins being great in Mythic+, but slightly weaker in Raids.
- Helm of Abyssal Malevolence: Bulwark of Light, Soaring Shield, Overwhelming Power, and Impassive Visage. Overall, just great traits as well, as long as you can get Inspiring Vanguard somewhere else.
- Skyscorcher Pauldrons: Inspiring Vanguard, Righteous Conviction, Ablative Shielding, and Gemhide. Great defensive traits if you do not get Inspiring Vanguard from somewhere else.
- Lockjaw Shoulderplate: Bulwark of Light, Soaring Shield, Elemental Whirl, and Stalwart Protector. While the Third and Fourth Rings are not great traits, you need to obtain Soaring Shield and Bulwark of Light somewhere.
- Breastplate of Arterial Protection: Bulwark of Light, Blood Rite OR Soaring Shield, Azerite Veins, and Gallant Steed. Allows you to choose Blood Rite, which is a great trait if you already have one Soaring Shield trait.
- Harpooner's Plate Cuirass: Soaring Shield OR Inspiring Vanguard, Bulwark of Light, Lifespeed, and Longstrider. Fair Third and Fourth Rings, but allows you to choose between Inspiring Vanguard or Soaring Shield, depending on what you need in your gear.
- Ashvane Warden's Cuirass: Soaring Shield, Inspiring Vanguard, Strength in Numbers, and Bulwark of the Masses. While it has no Bulwark of Light, it offers good AoE tanking survivability with Strength in Numbers and Bulwark of the Masses, and guarantees you have both Soaring Shield and Inspiring Vanguard if you lack it elsewhere.
2. Crucible of Storms Gear
Crucible of Storms comes with a lot of fun and interesting new effects on normal pieces of gear. In fact, every single piece that drops has some form of effect at the cost of having slightly fewer secondary stats allocated on the piece. All the pieces which Protection Paladins can wear are generally considered worth using, especially if it is the highest item level piece you have. They are mentioned below, along with a short description of their powers.
Idol of Indiscriminate Consumption provides us with very strong self healing once every minute. This is definitely a strong choice of trinket when used correctly. Unlike Light of the Protector, this does NOT require a global cooldown to be cast. This means that, for a Protection Paladin, this trinket serves as a very powerful heal, should you need one before your global cooldown has time to get ready, or a great tool if you need a heal while Light of the Protector is on cooldown. The damage output is also rather high in AoE tanking situations, as it will deal damage to enemies as well. When you are not AoE tanking, you are simply more likely to drain health from allies instead and the damage gain is irrelevant.
Abyssal Speaker's Gauntlets provide a sizeable shield proc which will definitely be worth a fair amount of damage reduction. As a tank, the gained Haste while the shield is active is likely to go away in an instant and not be much use for us. Despite having Critical Strike on them as the only secondary stat, they are still going to be a solid choice to pick up, as it will be a good defensive option.
Mindthief's Eldritch Clasp is a very important tanking item found in the Crucible of Storms raid, as it will bring you out of harm's way whenever you drop to low HP (once every 3 minutes). It comes at a very small cost compared to items of its own item level with slightly less secondary stats on it, and this effect most certainly makes up for it.
Lurker's Insidious Gift is worthy of an honorable mention, due to being a damage dealing trinket which tanks can benefit more from; this is due to their ability to stay alive longer for the Mastery effect, due to their higher survivability. This trinket will be fairly strong for sustained damage output for Protection Paladins.
Legplates of Unbound Anguish are, unlike the other options, a straight-up damage increase piece and they do nothing for us defensively. The legs also feature less secondary stats than legs of that item level, thus it is not advised to use these should you have others with a higher or the same item level. The effect from these legs sacrifices part of your health to deal damage to your opponent. While this can seem like a really bad idea for a tank, realistically, the damage you take is so absolutely minimal that it is very unlikely to ever cause any issues. For damage output, they are more than fair, but as mentioned before, they do nothing defensively.
3. Trinkets for Protection Paladins
3.1. Non-Raid Trinkets
In Battle for Azeroth, Strength provides solid damage reduction in the form of strengthening your Shield of the Righteous, and you will find Strength on most trinkets one way or another.
Jes' Howler is a good and balanced defensive as well as offensive trinket, as it will not only buff you, but also your group with a small amount of Versatility.
Vial of Animated Blood gives passive Mastery, so it reduces overall damage, with a Strength on-use effect to boost your Shield of the Righteous quite a bit. The amount of Strength decreases over 18 seconds, so when used correctly, it can be fairly good for burst survivability or damage.
Mchimba's Ritual Bandages provides passive Strength with a rather weak on-use effect to shield you. This is, however, the only use trinket available for on-demand absorb, which can make it very strong against encounters with big burst abilities but it performs poorly against sustained damage.
Lingering Sporepods provides passive Strength, as well as a fairly decent but unfortunately low amount of healing. Its impact is very weak and it is not a great option compared to other trinkets of the same item level.
Darkmoon Deck: Blockades is a crafted trinket that is rather easy to obtain, but suffers due to its low item level compared to other easily available gear. With basically passive Strength and Stamina, it is a solid starter option since there are very few trinkets that are very tanking-oriented. The heal it provides when it shuffles the cards is rather negligible, and you would want it for its passive Strength and Stamina.
Darkmoon Deck: Fathoms is a crafted trinket that is rather easy to obtain. This trinket provides passive Strength with a pure damage proc. This is a very good damage option, and defensively it does still offer Strength as most other trinkets.
3.2. Raid Trinkets
3.2.1. Battle of Dazar'alor
Bwonsamdi's Bargain is a strong defensive trinket during progression. While it puts a healing absorb on you, with the amount depending on how big the attack that would otherwise kill you is, it is easy to heal off as a Paladin. This is best used during progression, when you are still unfamiliar to the encounters or their damage patterns. Once you get accustomed to the fight, it loses a lot of value.
Diamond-Laced Refracting Prism is a nice trinket for overall healing, however it will not make a huge impact in terms of survivability. Its healing will always be effective, even over periods of not actively tanking. It is a great throughput trinket when trying to limit overall damage intake.
Everchill Anchor is a pure damage dealing trinket with passive Strength. While the damage values might change, the trinket will likely be a very good trinket for dealing damage compared to alternatives.
Grong's Primal Rage is an on-use trinket, offering an incredible amount of damage during its cast. While you are unable to move or use abilities during its channel, you can still dodge, parry, and block abilities while channeling this trinket. This is likely going to be an ideal damage dealing trinket, as it scales with secondaries gained from gear and Seraphim.
Ramping Amplitude Gigavolt Engine increases Haste as well as Speed in an interesting way. Since it accelerates the rate you gain the stacks, it means you start out gaining them very slowly, until about half of its duration when you get the rest of the stacks within seconds. As far as trinkets with Haste goes, this is a very good one as it is on-demand and also a lot of Haste after a couple of seconds.
Unfortunately, there are not many decent defensive options on trinkets from this raid, and you should be looking at mainly Mythic+ to obtain defensive options.
Xalzaix's Veiled Eye is pretty weak for Protection Paladins in most raid situations. Protection Paladins rely on safely going low in health before healing back up again, and this trinket will proc too easily to really be useful in raids. The trinket does however have a lot more use defensively in Mythic+, where it can proc rather frequently to help offset damage intake.
Syringe of Bloodborne Infirmity is one of the better damage trinket available. Sadly it gives critical strike which has very little value defensively, but for damage this is a great trinket.
Disc of Systematic Regression is another good trinket for damage, but mainly due to the relative ease of which you can obtain it in high item level. Its damage is increased slightly for each target it hits up to a point.
Vanquished Tendril of G'huun is another damage trinket with little to no defensive value outside its passive Versatility. The damage from the tendrils is not especially high either.
- 14 May 2019: Updated Crucible gear recommendations.
- 15 Apr. 2019: Added Crucible of Storms gear.
- 20 Jan. 2019: Added BiS Azerite from vendor, and Battle of Dazar'alor Raid Trinkets
- 10 Dec. 2018: Minor revisions on trinkets.
- 04 Sep. 2018: Added Raid trinkets.
- 22 Aug. 2018: Added Darkmoon trinkets.
- 13 Aug. 2018: Updated for Battle for Azeroth launch.
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