Protection Warrior Tank Gear and Best in Slot — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.1
On this page, you will find the best gear and best in slot items for your Protection Warrior in World of Warcraft Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.1.
1. Gearing Strategy for Protection Warriors
Firstly, there is no such thing as an overall "Best in Slot" list anymore. This is for a number of reasons. The main one being that Warforging/Titanforing exists. You could try to go for specific gear that has certain stats, but if you come across different gear that Titanforges to be +15 item levels, then you will, of course, want to go with that gear. Secondly, certain gear is great in certain situations, and not so great outside those situations. Everything is situational, so trying to come up with a list for gear that is "best" in all situations would not be possible. All gear has the potential to be competitive. Point being, there is a lot of gear that has the opportunity to Warforge/Titanforge, gain a socket, be situationally useful, etc. Making a best in slot list for every slot would be pointless and unhelpful.
You can, of course, look at the loot tables for specific dungeons/bosses and try to farm for a specific piece with your best stats in hopes that it Titanforges, but since the chance for that is so low, your time would be better spent doing something else, such as farming Azerite.
Now, there definitely are cases where specific gear can be best in slot. For example, some trinkets have special effects that are extremely powerful, and you will want to seek them out regardless of item level. Sometimes there are necks or rings that have special effects that out-weigh item level increases or the benefit of specific secondary stats.
As a general rule of thumb, any increase in item level is an upgrade. For Protection Warriors, the value of all the secondary stats is close enough together that you should only look at what secondary stats a piece has if you are comparing across the same item level. Not only that, Stamina and Strength increases are important as well, with Strength particularly because of the survivability that you gain from Vanguard.
All in all, if you come across gear that is an item level upgrade (or has a socket and your current piece does not), equip it. If two pieces of gear are the same item level, equip the best piece according to the stat priority. Finally, be aware of gear where the item level does not matter as much, which is the case for certain trinkets, gear with special effects, etc.
The above guidelines do not apply to Azerite gear (that is, the helm, shoulder, and chest slots). There is specific Azerite gear you will want to go for.
2. Azerite Gear for Protection Warrior
For information about what Azerite traits to choose and what the best items are, see our Azerite page.
3. Trinkets for Protection Warriors
- Darkmoon Deck: Blockades, if you can afford it, is your best option in terms of pure survivability. It is a crafted item that can be traded or purchased from the auction house.
- Jes' Howler is your second best option assuming you can obtain it at a decent item level. It is looted from Jes Howlis in Tol Dagor.
If you are not able to get your hands on the above trinkets, the following are decent alternatives:
- 'Bygone Bee' Almanac has an extremely low chance to drop from enemies in Zandalar/Kul Tiras. It can be traded or purchased from the auction house.
- Galecaller's Beak, looted from Azurethos, a world boss.
- Rezan's Gleaming Eye, looted from Rezan in Atal'Dazar.
- Vial of Animated Blood, looted from Unbound Abomination in The Underrot.
As with everything, these suggestions assume equal item level.
If you have a Jes' Howler, and you can obtain one of the above alternatives at a significantly higher item level compared to it (say, 15+ item levels), then use that alternative instead. Additionally, if you recieve one of the above trinkets at a significantly higher item level compared to your Darkmoon Deck: Blockades, replace your Blockades.
There are also some trinkets with decent effects (i.e. Strength base + secondary stat proc) that are rewards from World Quests, so keep an eye out for those as well.
3.1. Uldir Trinkets
Currently, none of the trinkets from Uldir are worth using for survivability, even at high item levels.
4. Shields for Protection Warriors
A good shield is a rather important piece of gear. Shield upgrades provide a much larger defensive boost compared to upgrades to other non-Azerite slots.
There are two shields that you can acquire from Uldir:
Barricade of Purifying Resolve has better stats.
You can also acquire high item level shields from Mythic+ and the Mythic+ weekly chest. The following shields are the available shields from dungeons in rough order from best to worst:
- Disc of Indomitable Will, looted from Rezan in Atal'Dazar.
- G0-4W4Y Crowd Repeller, looted from Coin-Operated Crowd Pummeler in The Motherlode.
- Improvised Riot Shield, looted from Jes Howlis in Tol Dagor.
- Bulwark of Brimming Potential, looted from Galvazzt in Temple of Sethraliss.
- Targe of the Ancient Warder, looted from Sporecaller Zancha in The Underrot.
Use the highest item level shield you can, regardless of its secondary stats.
- 10 Dec. 2018: This page has been reviewed and there are no changes necessary for Patch 8.1.
- 10 Sep. 2018: Updated gear suggestions for Uldir.
- 22 Aug. 2018: Updated trinket suggestions.
- 18 Aug. 2018: Updated trinket suggestions. Added Shields section.
- 13 Aug. 2018: Updated for Battle for Azeroth launch.
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