I debated with myself for a while whether or not I was going to write one of these, but I figured, “why the hell not?” I’ve seen several gear lists floating around, but they’re mostly for healers and such. I honestly hadn’t seen a single pre-raid gear list for bears OR blood DKs, so… why not me, right? Anyway, gearing up a blood DK will, by and large, not be any different come MoP than it is today. There may be a little more call for hit/expertise, but generally it’s going to be Mastery > All else. Avoidance (dodge/parry) are still going to come out on top of hit/expertise, but by a lesser margin than before… although, admittedly, it will still probably be a larger margin than it is for bears.
Anyway, same deal goes here as it did for the bear list. This is all PRE-raid gear. Heroics, craftables, and BoEs. You *shouldn’t* have to step into any raid to get any of the gear on this list. That said, this is still beta info, and is subject to change at any time really. Here’s hoping that with just over a month till Mists, that this won’t change much. Any crafted epics (with the exception of trinkets) are pretty much ALWAYS going to be better than heroic blues simply because of stat scale. More stam and more str (which means more parry), and generally, better sockets as well.
Durable Plate of the Golden Lotus – Parry/Mastery, no sockets. Drops from a dungeon quest maybe?
Hateshatter Chestplate – Expertise/Mastery, red socket (60 str). Drops from Taren Zhu in H-Shado-Pan Monastery.
Canine Commander’s Breastplate – Dodge/Parry, blue socket (60 str.) Drops from Houndmaster Braun, in H-Scarlet Halls.
Breastplate of Wracking Souls – Parry/Expertise, blue socket (60 parry). Drops from Instructor Chillheart in H-Scholomance.
Breastplate of Ancient Steel – 476 epic. Dodge/Mastery, 2 yellow sockets (180 stam). Blacksmithing.
Unyiedlding Bloodplate – 496 epic. Dodge/Mastery. 2 blue sockets (180 stam). Blacksmithing.
As far as the blue items go, the winner of this slot is the Breastplate of Wracking Souls. 60 parry is a… weird socket bonus, but with a blue socket, you could drop a Mastery/Stam (green) gem in, or simply ignore it and go for pure mastery. The Canine Commander’s Breastplate is an oddity, at best, because it gives you a strength socket bonus, but has dodge and parry. It’s not terrible, really, but it would probably be one to avoid. Of course, if you can afford it, the Unyielding Bloodplate is unquestionably the way to go, just for pure stat numbers alone.
Stonestep Boots – Dodge/Hit, yellow socket (60 str). Drops from Lorewalker Stonestep in H-Temple of the Jade Serpent.
Wraithplate Treads – Parry/Mastery, yellow socket (60 str). Drops from Jandice Barov in H-Scholomance.
More odd socket bonuses found, in two pieces that have CLEAR tank stats, but give strength for their socket bonus. I guess it doesn’t matter much, as they’re both yellow gem slots, so go to town. Technically, the Wraithplate Treads are better (because mastery), but you could pretty safely pick up either one and be okay.
Hive Protector’s Gauntlets – Hit/Mastery, no socket. Drops from Raigonn in H-Gate of the Setting Sun
Gauntlets of Resolute Fury – Dodge/Mastery, no socket. Drops from Mastery Snowdrift in H-Shado-Pan Monastery.
Axebreaker Gauntlets – Parry/Hit, no socket. Drops from Xin the Weaponmaster in H-Mogu’shan Palace.
Gauntlets of Ancient Steel – 476 epic. Parry/Mastery, red socket (60 dodge). Blacksmithing.
Gauntlets of Battle Command – 496 epic. Parry/Mastery, red socket (60 parry). Blacksmithing.
To be perfectly honest, either of the first two would be the ones I pick up. Dodge/Mastery wins out, but i’m sure you’ll want SOME amount of hit rating at the start of things. Make your own choice to fit your own gear. At first, I almost scanned right by the crafted gloves, but either one of those will do you better than any of the blues. Again, use your own judgement and based on what you can afford.
Sightfinder Helm – Crit/Mastery, meta, red socket (180 str). Drops from Commander Vo’jak in H-Siege of Niuzao Temple.
Helm of Rising Flame – Parry/Hit, meta, blue socket (180 str). Drops from Brother Korloff in H-Scarlet Monastery.
Reinforced Retinal Armor – 476 epic. Variable stats through cogwheels, meta & 2 cogwheel sockets (180 str). Engineering ONLY.
The crafted helm is probably better left to DPS, but you could put an obscene amount of mastery on this helm through cogwheels if you like. The Str/Stam is, of course, a solid amount higher than the heroic blues. Speaking of, at first sight, Sightfinder Helm appears to be better suited to plate DPS (and it probably is), but I included it for 2 reasons… First – it still has mastery on it, and second, there’s really only one other plate tanky helm if you’re NOT an engineer. Feel free to grab whichever one you prefer.
Sap-Encrusted Legplates - Dodge/Parry, blue socket (60 parry). Drops from Vizier Jin’bak in H-Siege of Niuzao Temple.
Legplates of Durable Dreams - 476 epic. Hit/Haste, no sockets. BoE.
Those legplates may be labelled epic, but they kind of fall short of really convincing me of it. No socket, whereas the blue pants DO have them? Also, hit and haste… You’d probably be better off going with the heroic blues instead… I know what I said at the beginning of this blogpost, but this time, honestly, you’re not getting anything BUT more str/stam. It hardly seems worth it. Don’t waste your money on the BoE’s unless you’re looking to fill out an offset (and even then, you could probably do better).
Spaulders of Immovable Stone – Dodge/Parry, red socket (60 parry). Drops from Wing Leader Ner’onok in H-Siege of Niuzao Temple.
Vigorsteel Spaulders – Parry/Hit, red socket (60 hit). Drops from Darkmaster Gandling in H-Scholomance.
Spaulders of the Scorned – 476 epic. Parry/Mastery, no socket. BoE.
I’m a little thrown off by some of the weird itemization shown here. 2 out of 3 pieces with no mastery, red sockets on tank plate, one piece with a “Hit” socket bonus, and the highest ilvl piece with NO socket. /headshake. In spite of the lack of socket, the 476 shoulders are most likely your best bet, if you can find them. I don’t know where they drop, so prices will most likely be high for some time. Of course, the Vigorsteel Spaulders are still a fair alternative, because of hit rating as it’s side stat, and socket bonus. If you’re looking for blues, feel free to go whichever direction you prefer.
Sparkbreath Girdle – Dodge/Parry, no socket. BoP zone drop from H-Shado-Pan Monastery.
Waistplate of Imminent Resurrection – Dodge/Expertise, no socket. Drops from High Inquisitor Whitemane in H-Scarlet Monastery.
This would be another flip of the coin, depending on if you prefer pure avoidance, or having some threat stats to help your self healing along. Sparkbreath will probably be easier to find, as it technically can drop off *any* mob in Shado-Pan.
Bubble-Breaker Bracers – Dodge/Parry, no socket. Drops from Hoptallus in H-Stormstout Brewery.
Ri’Mok’s Shattered Scale – Dodge/Expertise, no socket. Drops from Commander Ri’mok in H-Gate of the Setting Sun.
A lot of the same itemization. No mastery in this slot, again, has me a bit confused, but sure… why not. Pick up whichever fits your preference better.
Soulrender Greatcloak – Dodge/Parry, no sockets. Drops from Thalnos the Soulrender in H-Scarlet Monastery.
Phantasmal Drape - Dodge/Hit, no sockets. Drops from Jandice Barov in H-Scholomance.
Zom’s Rain-Staned Cloak – 476 epic. Dodge/Expertise, no sockets. BoE.
Finally some pieces that favor dodge over parry… From what i’ve seen, you’ll probably be sitting on more parry than dodge, so any of these would be good to pick up (but of course, I could be completely wrong. Base it off of your own gear requirements, of course). The winner is, of course, the 476 purple.
Necklace of the Dark Blaze – Dodge/Expertise, no sockets. BoP zone drop from H-Scholomance.
Armsmaster’s Sealed Locket – Parry/Mastery, no sockets. Drops from Armsmaster Harlan in H-Scarlet Halls.
Durable Necklace of the Golden Lotus – 489 epic. Parry/Mastery, no sockets. Quest Reward in Vale of Eternal Blossoms.
The 489 necklace as a quest reward is a curiosity (but it’s by far the best)… it makes me wonder if I bypassed one for bears when doing my other gear list (i’ll have to make another list because it turns out there ARE several things I did miss… I’ll make a secondary post to hopefully encompass both bears and DKs before this weekend, I think.) I’m assuming that quest reward is going to be your big thing for finishing the entire zone up, but it seems worthwhile, even bypassing the Raid Finder necklaces.
Crystallized Droplet – Dodge/Hit, no sockets. Drops from Wise Mari in H-Temple of the Jade Serpent.
Lime-Rimmed Signet – Parry/Mastery, no sockets. Drops from Yan-Zhu the Uncasked in H-Stormstout Brewery.
Always go for the mastery, folks.
Trinkets – As per usual, folks, these are going to vary a lot depending on your personal preference, and your guild/raid group’s setup, as to which trinkets you prefer. I’ll do my best to list the viable ones, of course.
Iron Protector Talisman - 1270 Stamina, 15s dodge proc. Drops from Gekkan in H-Mogu’Shan Palace.
Heart of Fire - 847 Mastery, 20s dodge use. Drops from Master Snowdrift in H-Shado-Pan Monastery.
Bitterest Balebrew / Bubbliest Brightbrew Charms – 470 epics. 1356 stam, pointless use. Drops from Coren Direbrew (during Brewfest ONLY).
Brawler’s Statue – 470 epic. 904 Dodge, 20s dodge use. Drops from Coren Direbrew (during Brewfest ONLY)
Relic of Niuzao - 476 epic. 12s dodge use. Darkmoon Ox Deck.
As I mentioned in the Bear gear lists, the darkmoon trinket is exceedingly disappointing for it’s item level. Yes, the on-use ability is a LOT of dodge (about 10% if these numbers I have are correct), but with no base stats to back it up, and nothing to reforge into/out of, then that’s ALL it is… and that leaves it just being pretty mediocre, especially given what it’s liable to cost for at least the first few months of MoP. If it were me personally, i’d shoot for the Talisman and the Heart of Fire, and try to pick up the Brawler’s Statue as well to hold on to as back up (extra mastery, since you can reforge that base 904 dodge). Feel free to pick up whichever you like though.
Weapons – Weapons are funny things for DKs… they always have been. I’m not going to list every single 2h strength weapon, but if they have a stat we can make GOOD use of (mastery/hit/expertise/dodge/parry), then it’ll go in the list.
Warmace of Taran Zhu – Crit/Mastery, no sockets. Drops from Taran Zhu in H-Shado-Pan Monastery.
Lightbreaker Greatsword – Expertise/Mastery, no sockets. Drops from High Inquisitor Whitemane in H-Scarlet Monastery.
Mograine’s Immaculate Might – Haste/Mastery, no sockets. Drops from Flameweaver Koegler in H-Scarlet Halls.
Gravetouch Greatsword – Hit/Crit, no sockets. Drops from Instructor Chillheart in H-Scholomance.
Goresoaked Headreaper – Crit/Expertise, no sockets. Drops from Rattlegore in H-Scholomance.
Masterwork Spiritblade Decimator - Crit/Mastery, no sockets. Blacksmithing.
Mogu’Dar, Blade of the Thousand Slaves – 476 Epic. Hit/Crit, no sockets. BoE.
Aside from the 476 pulling away based on Str/Stam alone, your best choice here would be the Lightbreaker Greastword. Haste and Crit are useless stats for Blood DKs as a whole, and all of these items has at least *one* of them, except that sword. Expertise/Mastery is hardly the ideal combination, but given the cirucmstances, it would be the one to shoot for until the price on Mogu’Dar goes down, or you happen to have BOATLOADS to drop on a BoE… or you get painfully lucky.
Now then, I mentioned earlier that I would have to make a follow-up post to this, and I will… I discovered only a few hours ago that there will be items from rep vendors that will be purchasable at Revered with valor points. When I started making these gear lists last week, I *completely* omitted VP gear, because I wasn’t entirely sure where it was… it wasn’t showing up as it normally does in Wowhead’s gear listings, so I just completely overlooked it. Now that I know exactly what i’m looking for (rep gear, not vendor gear) I will make a follow-up before this weekend, probably encompassing both bears and blood DKs, covering the rep items I passed up.