Protection Warrior Best Covenants, Soulbinds, and Conduits — Shadowlands 9.0.2

Last updated on Jan 16, 2021 at 12:44 by Mwahi 11 comments
General Information

Covenants, Soulbinds, and Conduits are the most important character customization options in Shadowlands. They have a substantial impact on your toolkit and performance as Protection Warrior. This page's purpose is to help you pick the right options according to the content you intend to do in Shadowlands.

1.

Introduction: Prerequisites

This page assumes that you are already familiar with Covenants, Soulbinds, and Conduits. If that is not the case, we have a number of pages that can help you get up to speed:

  • Covenants Guide, which explains what Covenants are, what perks they bring, and how you can join one;
  • Warrior Covenant Abilities, which lists all the abilities that Warriors gain by joining each Covenant;
  • How To Change Covenant?, which tells you how you can switch Covenant (rejoining a former Covenant will require you to perform a number of tasks to regain their trusts);
  • General Soulbind Guide, which explains what Soulbinds are and how you can pledge yourself to them to open up their Soulbind tree;
  • Warrior Conduits, which lists all of the Conduits available to Warriors.
2.

Summary of the Best Covenants, Soulbinds, and Conduits

We advise this all-purpose Pelagos (Kyrian) tree for Raiding, Mythic+, and Torghast as Protection Warrior. For more in-depth information about Soulbinds and Covenants as Protection Warrior, please continue to the Choosing the Right Covenant section below.

2.1.

Best Conduits for Protection Warrior

Conduits are something that are shared between all Covenants. There is only one exception to this and these are the Potency Conduits that boost your Covenant class abilities. If the Conduit you are looking for is not mentioned here then read below to find out the reason why.

2.1.1.

Best Potency Conduits for Protection Warrior

  1. Piercing Verdict Icon Piercing Verdict / Destructive Reverberations Icon Destructive Reverberations
  2. Show of Force Icon Show of Force
2.1.2.

Best Endurance Conduits for Protection Warrior

  1. Stalwart Guardian Icon Stalwart Guardian (synergy with Anger Management Icon Anger Management and The Wall Icon The Wall)
  2. Unnerving Focus Icon Unnerving Focus — In Mythic+.
  3. Brutal Vitality Icon Brutal Vitality — Needs to be in range of enemies for it to gain maximum value.

Unnerving Focus Icon Unnerving Focus gains value in Mythic+, especially when running Bolster Icon Bolster so it should be taken instead of Brutal Vitality Icon Brutal Vitality.

2.1.3.

Best Finesse Conduits for Protection Warrior

  1. Inspiring Presence Icon Inspiring Presence
  2. Safeguard Icon Safeguard
3.

Conduits for Protection Warriors

The Conduits mentioned under each sub-section are ranked from best to worst.

3.1.

Protection Warrior Potency Conduits

Piercing Verdict Icon Piercing Verdict is a really strong option for us as it increases the damage and Rage gained by Spear of Bastion Icon Spear of Bastion. Spear is only on a 1-minute cooldown meaning that we will be gaining a lot of extra Rage over the course of the encounter which in turn leads to more mitigation/damage.

Destructive Reverberations Icon Destructive Reverberations provides us more damage on Ancient Aftershock Icon Ancient Aftershock while also reducing the cooldown of it. While the damage part is great the cooldown reduction actually de-syncs the ability from the rest of our kit. It still leads to higher Rage/damage gains so the clunkiness is worth it.

Show of Force Icon Show of Force makes your Revenge Icon Revenge increase the damage of your next Thunder Clap Icon Thunder Clap. To get the maximum out of this you should try to use Revenge Icon Revenge before Thunder Clap Icon Thunder Clap to get the damage increase. Abilities like Shield Slam Icon Shield Slam should still take priority over casting Revenge Icon Revenge unless you are purely going for AoE DPS without worrying about survivability. Something to keep in mind is that when running Unstoppable Force Icon Unstoppable Force then you more than likely will not be able to buff up each Thunder Clap during the Avatar Icon Avatar window.

Harrowing Punishment Icon Harrowing Punishment makes Condemn Icon Condemn hit harder and provides a slightly bigger shield for each enemy near you. Considering we are not always able to use Condemn due to Rage limitations and the buff itself being pretty underwhelming (especially in single-target) it is just not that good.

Veteran's Repute Icon Veteran's Repute provides us a solid Strength boost but the cooldown of Conqueror's Banner Icon Conqueror's Banner is just too long for this to actually turn into a good one leaving it in a awkward place.

Ashen Juggernaut Icon Ashen Juggernaut makes Execute Icon Execute even stronger. Unfortunately Execute also costs Rage making keeping the buff up almost impossible for Protection Warriors. As the 20% threshhold is often one of the hardest parts of the encounters we will be forced to use the majority of our Rage on mitigation like Shield Block Icon Shield Block and Ignore Pain Icon Ignore Pain leaving very little left.

3.2.

Protection Warrior Endurance Conduits

Brutal Vitality Icon Brutal Vitality's damage dealt increases your active Ignore Pain Icon Ignore Pain. This is a nice passive Conduit that we do not have to think about. While we are using Ignore Pain frequently in our rotation, we can not guarantee that we will be in range of enemies to actually damage them and gain the value of this Conduit.

Stalwart Guardian Icon Stalwart Guardian reduces the cooldown of your Shield Wall Icon Shield Wall. This Conduit on its own is nothing special but when paired together with Anger Management Icon Anger Management and The Wall Icon The Wall it becomes a decent defensive option. These have the potential to make a normally 4 minute cooldown Shield Wall Icon Shield Wall into a 1- to 1.5-minute cooldown.

Unnerving Focus Icon Unnerving Focus causes Last Stand Icon Last Stand to increase your Rage generation. While Last Stand is on a 3-minute cooldown, picking Bolster Icon Bolster makes it a 2-minute cooldown causing this Conduit to increase in value. Unfortunately getting the maximum out of this 15-second window is pretty hard as it requires a lot of planning on when to use your biggest Rage generating cooldowns. You should also be using Last Stand Icon Last Stand pretty much on cooldown to get the most Rage, but this is not optimal. This should be taken over Stalwart Guardian Icon Stalwart Guardian in Mythic+ scenarios.

Fueled by Violence Icon Fueled by Violence makes Deep Wounds Icon Deep Wounds heal us. Due to Revenge Icon Revenge applying Deep Wounds, it is safe to say that we will always be benefiting from the healing provided by this Conduit. Unfortunately Deep Wounds does not do that much damage meaning that the healing is also quite low. This gains value in AoE situations due to having multiple enemies to debuff.

Indelible Victory Icon Indelible Victory makes your Victory Rush Icon Victory Rush also have a healing over time effect. It is a very lackluster effect that is made even worse by the fact that Victory Rush Icon Victory Rush can be used only after getting a killing blow on the enemy. It gets slightly better when paired with Impending Victory Icon Impending Victory but it is still one of the weakest Conduits.

3.3.

Protection Warrior Finesse Conduits

Inspiring Presence Icon Inspiring Presence increases the health provided by Rallying Cry Icon Rallying Cry by quite a bit. Rallying Cry by itself is already a considerably powerful cooldown, but together with this Conduit it becomes even better. It especially shines in group environments like Raids and Mythic+.

Safeguard Icon Safeguard makes Intervene Icon Intervene reduce the damage taken by the target. This Conduit has the potential to be strong in heavy tank damage fights where you can use it on your co-tank as a extra external cooldown to keep them healthy.

Disturb the Peace Icon Disturb the Peace lets us use Shockwave Icon Shockwave a bit more often. Paired together with Rumbling Earth Icon Rumbling Earth in AoE situations, it provides us with a very short cooldown AoE stun. Something to keep in mind in group content like Raids and Mythic+ is that other classes also have abilities that stun meaning that there is a higher chance for diminishing returns.

Cacophonous Roar Icon Cacophonous Roar makes Intimidating Shout Icon Intimidating Shout slightly stronger. In general we are using Intimidating Shout as a extra interrupt so this Conduit does not provide anything on top of that.

4.

Choosing the right Covenant

Before going more in depth about Covenants it is important to understand that any of the 4 Covenants can be played as Protection Warrior. There will definitely be better and worse options but the choice will not be hindering your daily activities.

While all of the Covenants are definitely usable there are some that shine more than others. Kyrian and Night Fae are the two that stand out the most for Protection Warriors due to their powerful class abilities and Soulbinds.

  1. Kyrian — Best for Raiding / Mythic+
  2. Night Fae — Competitive alternative to Kyrian in Mythic+ and Raids
  3. Venthyr — Usable in Raiding but falls off in Mythic+
  4. Necrolord — Mediocre in Mythic+ and Raids.
4.1.

Kyrian Protection Warrior

Kyrian is the best option for Protection Warriors. It provides us with two very powerful abilities that help cover some of our class weaknesses fairly well.

Spear of Bastion Icon Spear of Bastion is a damaging ability that generates 25 Rage baseline and also tethers enemies hit to its location. While being solid on single-target fights it mostly shines in AoE situations like Mythic+ and Torghast. Being able to tether enemies to a set location for its duration helps us control them more efficiently and kite if needed. Due to it being a 1 minute cooldown it can be rough to line it up with our other cooldowns like Ravager Icon Ravager,Avatar Icon Avatar and Booming Voice Icon Booming Voice but it is still a strong ability even by its own.

Summon Steward Icon Summon Steward summons a servant to provide you with various services but the strongest of them is the Phial of Serenity Icon Phial of Serenity. This restores 20% of your health and more importantly removes all diseases,poisons, curses and bleeds affecting you. These are all the various damage types that most tanks struggle with and Protection Warriors are no exception. Being able to remove any of these deadly abilities on demand is just too strong to pass up on.

4.1.1.

Kyrian Soulbinds

While Pelagos, Kleia and Forgelite Prime Mikanikos all provide their own strengths, Pelagos should be the one to pick. Focusing Mantra Icon Focusing Mantra, Let Go of the Past Icon Let Go of the Past and Combat Meditation Icon Combat Meditation are really strong options as we already mentioned how beneficial Phial of Serenity Icon Phial of Serenity is.

As an alternative you can also use Kleia. Valiant Strikes Icon Valiant Strikes, Ascendant Phial Icon Ascendant Phial and Pointed Courage Icon Pointed Courage make Kleia a solid choice, especially in group content. You can also go for a more group oriented route by picking Mentorship Icon Mentorship and Resonant Accolades Icon Resonant Accolades.

Mikanikos is unfortunately lacking behind the other 2 options and should not be used currently.

4.2.

Night Fae Protection Warrior

Night Fae is another strong option for Protection Warriors. Much like Kyrian they provide us with 2 very beneficial abilities but unfortunately these are a lot more situational.

Ancient Aftershock Icon Ancient Aftershock is a frontal damaging ability that generates Rage and continuously knocks down enemies standing in its effect. It generates a lot more Rage than Spear of Bastion Icon Spear of Bastion in AoE but it does this over 12 seconds rather than instantly. It also deals more damage than Spear of Bastion in AoE but this requires the enemies to remain standing in the ground effect it leaves behind. While the 1.5-minute base cooldown of this ability lines up well with Avatar Icon Avatar, Ravager Icon Ravager and Booming Voice Icon Booming Voice it can easily be de-synced when choosing to use Destructive Reverberations Icon Destructive Reverberations. While being extremely strong in AoE it falls behind on single-target where both the Rage gain and damage suffer.

Soulshape Icon Soulshape is the second ability Night Fae provides. This is a simple movement tool that lets you teleport a short distance and increases your movement speed. While not being as strong as Phial of Serenity Icon Phial of Serenity it can still have its uses when trying to avoid mechanics or kite enemies in Mythic+, Torghast and Raids.

4.2.1.

Night Fae Soulbinds

Niya is the most offensive option of the choices. Grove Invigoration Icon Grove Invigoration will provide us with some extra Mastery and Health which is further enhanced when ever we use Ancient Aftershock Icon Ancient Aftershock. Niya's Tools: Poison Icon Niya's Tools: Poison and Niya's Tools: Burrs Icon Niya's Tools: Burrs at the final row are both also DPS focused.

Korayn Wild Hunt Tactics Icon Wild Hunt Tactics and Face Your Foes Icon Face Your Foes are both extremely useful. First Strike Icon First Strike could also be used in Mythic+, as the extra crit should be active at the start of each pack as long as you damage the enemies first.

Dreamweaver's Social Butterfly Icon Social Butterfly and Field of Blossoms Icon Field of Blossoms can both be very solid options if you can play around the positioning requirements. You are unfortunately also forced to pick Podtender Icon Podtender which is not optimal for tanks due to the 10-second inability to do anything.

4.3.

Venthyr Protection Warrior

While Kyrian's and Night Fae's class ability is really strong in AoE and fairly mediocre in single-target, Venthyr's ability is all about single-target.

Condemn Icon Condemn is a strong single-target damage choice for us. It replaces Execute Icon Execute, makes it deal Shadow damage and be usable on enemies above 80% health and below 20% while also providing a small shield. Having 2 Execute windows is really strong in Raids as it deals a lot of damage and the shield it provides is a nice bonus. The downside to this is that it costs Rage. As tanks our main goal is to reduce our damage taken and staying alive. Due to us having access to limited Rage we might not have enough resources to keep on using Condemn while also trying to keep Shield Block Icon Shield Block up. This means that we would have to make a decision on either dealing more damage or using our defensive abilities.

Door of Shadows Icon Door of Shadows is a targeted teleport with a short cast time. Much like Soulshape Icon Soulshape its main uses can be found in avoiding mechanics. Due to it having longer range it can potentially also be used to skip some packs in Mythic +.

4.3.1.

Venthyr Soulbinds

Nadjia the Mistblade provides us with Thrill Seeker Icon Thrill Seeker, which grants us a solid haste boost and either Exacting Preparation Icon Exacting Preparation or Dauntless Duelist Icon Dauntless Duelist which can both be extremely beneficial in Raiding scenarios. While going for Dauntless Duelist, we are forced through multiple Finesse Conduits, which is not always optimal while going for Exacting Preparation gives us an extra Endurance slot.

General Draven on the other hand enables us to pick multiple Endurance Conduits while also providing Service In Stone Icon Service In Stone which reduces our damage taken when low on health and Enduring Gloom Icon Enduring Gloom that grants us with a shield every time we use Door of Shadows Icon Door of Shadows. Built for War Icon Built for War can be used for generic scenarios while Hold Your Ground Icon Hold Your Ground can be used for the extra health when needed. He is the tankiest of all the choices here and should be used only when the situation requires it.

Theotar the Mad Duke is a solid middle ground between Nadija and Draven. Soothing Shade Icon Soothing Shade and Refined Palate Icon Refined Palate / Wasteland Propriety Icon Wasteland Propriety are all useful in certain scenarios and the Conduit slot choices are also well placed.

4.4.

Necrolord Protection Warrior

As always with options there has to be a worst one and for Protection Warriors that is Necrolord. The 2 abilities it provides are fairly lackluster next to what the other Covenants are offering.

Conqueror's Banner Icon Conqueror's Banner sounds like a very complicated ability but is actually fairly straight forward. The first part plants a banner into the ground providing 10% critical strike chance to yourself and 2 allies while remaining near the banner. The second part provides you with extra stacking critical strike damage while spending Rage and killing enemies during its duration. It is unfortunately a very weak option for Protection Warriors when comparing to any of the other 3 Covenants. It could be used to boost some of your party members critical strike chance but this requires a lot of coordination and standing near the banner which is usually not possible.

Fleshcraft Icon Fleshcraft provides you with a shield every 2 minutes which gets stronger if channeled near dead enemies. Having to wait 2 minutes and then channel the ability for 4 seconds just to get a fairly weak shield is very lackluster.

4.4.1.

Necrolord Soulbinds

Emeni will provide us with a versatile kit for various situations. Lead by Example Icon Lead by Example paired together with Veteran's Repute Icon Veteran's Repute will increase our Strength by a marginal amount but unfortunatenly Conqueror's Banner Icon Conqueror's Banner still has a long cooldown so the buff is not up that often. Meanwhile Gnashing Chompers Icon Gnashing Chompers will increase our haste every time we defeat enemies. While gaining extra haste after the enemies are dead is not that beneficial you can still maximise the effect of it by chain-pulling. For raiding scenarios you would preferably pick Gristled Toes Icon Gristled Toes over Gnashing Chompers Icon Gnashing Chompers just for the second Potency slot which should be used for Show of Force Icon Show of Force.

If Emeni is not for you or if you are more focused on Raiding then it would be advisable to pick Bonesmith Heirmir. The increased crit from Heirmir's Arsenal: Marrowed Gemstone Icon Heirmir's Arsenal: Marrowed Gemstone is a decent boost to our damage, but it locks us in with triple Endurance Conduits. An alternative to this would be to pick Heirmir's Arsenal: Gorestompers Icon Heirmir's Arsenal: Gorestompers which gives us an extra Potency slot for some increased damage. Forgeborne Reveries Icon Forgeborne Reveries might just help you get a kill on the Raid boss in the extra 10 seconds. Serrated Spaulders Icon Serrated Spaulders will also provide you with some extra damage.

Plague Deviser Marileth has some solid choices like Volatile Solvent Icon Volatile Solvent and Ooz's Frictionless Coating Icon Ooz's Frictionless Coating that will provide you with a shield once every 30 seconds if you drop below 50% HP. If the fight makes you drop below 50% of HP constantly due to the sheer amount of damage then it is worth considering picking up Marileth for the extra shield.

5.

Changelog

  • 16 Jan. 2021: Updated Covenant conduit trees to prioritize Stalwart Guardian and Unnerving Focus.
  • 07 Jan. 2021: Modified Nyia's Tree and added explanation about Unnerving Focus priority.
  • 14 Dec. 2020: Updated information about Covenant options.
  • 08 Dec. 2020: Added suggestion for Unnerving Focus in Mythic+ content.
  • 22 Nov. 2020: Added alternative Soulbind paths for all the Covenants.
  • 15 Nov. 2020: Page created.
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