5.2 is nearly here, and some of you may have noticed that the PvP gear changes are getting silly and confusing. Need some help decoding it all? Well Thundering Hammer Clan is here to help!
Basically Blizzard has decided that you should not be going into LFR with PvP gear, so to preclude this they are making changes to the Malevolent (Conquest) gear so that gear purchased after 5.2 will not meet the ilvl requirements for Thunder King LFR. Yes, you read that correctly, convoluted PvP design decisions are being made based on PvE design principles (namely that you should take a linear progression path through PvE raid content.)
The consequence of this decision is that the Malevolent gear that will be purchasable for Honor in two weeks is inferior to the Malevolent gear that is currently available for Conquest. The current Malevolent gear is flagged as ilvl 483 (or 491 if upgraded 2/2) whereas the 5.2 Honor version of Malevolent is ilvl 476 and will not be upgradable at all as the Item Upgrade NPC is being removed in 5.2. This will have dramatic consequences for gear choices between now and the patch.
As a concrete example, a 2/2 upgraded Mage’s Malevolent chestpiece currently has 1751 STA and 951 INT, whereas the 5.2 version has 1522 STA and 855 INT. That’s nearly 2k health and a respectable chunk of spellpower – and just on the one piece. Aggregated across the entire gear set this results in a substantial differential between currently fully Malevolent players and those who will upgrade out of Dreadful into the new 5.2 Honor Malevolent gear. Naturally those in 2200 Malevolent (Epic Conquest) will be even further ahead.
So what should you do? Here are some suggestions to help you plan your next two weeks of PvP currency spending:
1- Get your 1800 Conquest each week.
If you care about PvP at all and would like to enjoy your time in bgs you have to at least get your Random cap filled each week. Conquest gear will ALWAYS be a pre-requisite to being competitive in PvP. Honor gear will always keep you squishy. Get out of it and into Conquest ASAP.
Random BGs can make this process long if you get unlucky in the PuGs and wind up on the wrong side of losing streak so find someone you don’t mind spending a couple hours each week in Arenas with. Trust me on this – even a pair of badz can pick up 1800 in 2s in 2-3 hours. Space it out over a week, and supplement that with a daily Random win and you really won’t be spending all that much time on PvP in one block. Or do it all at once and be done in one evening of Arenas. PvP is no different from PvE in this respect. If you aren’t willing to do your dailies (Random and 2s) then you won’t progress.
2- Don’t hoard conquest. Spend it as soon as you get it.
When it gets down converted to Honor in two weeks it will buy less in terms of stats, resil and power than it does now. Spend it while the value proposition is higher.
3- Upgrade existing Malevolent before you buy new Malevolent.
Spend every Conquest point you have on making sure that your chest, pants, hat and shoulders (in that order) are 2/2 Upgraded. Since the space mummy is going on vacation for at least another two months you will not get another shot at this, and the honor gear you buy in two weeks will not compete with a 2/2 upgraded piece now. Moreover you will get more stats, power, and resilience out of those eight (4 pieces x 2 levels) upgrades than you would get from upgrading both Dreadful ring and trinket slots to Malevolent items that you will not be allowed to upgrade after the patch.
4- Cap out Honor before the patch.
(Again: DO NOT STORE CONQUEST. SPEND IT.)
You will keep any Honor you have up to 4000 pts when 5.2 drops. Honor only gets converted to gold if it goes above the 4k cap. So make sure you are at the cap Monday before the patch drops and you will be able to snap up 2-3 immediate upgrades if you still have Dreadful pieces on your character. Those upgrades won’t be equal to SSN 12 Malevolent, but they will still be superior to Dreadful.
So there you have it. Yes, 5.2 gear and currency has some twists and turns thrown in this time around, but if you spend smart you can still come out ahead on patch day. Best of luck out there, and see you on the field!