Friday, March 23, 2012

Holy Pally Gearing Speculation

  Perhaps the issue with intellect plate deserves a bit more than the somewhat sarcastic treatment I gave it a while back. I think also that the issue needs to be framed properly.

  First off, this is not at all a problem in PvP, due to the personally specific, non-random progression of gear. This is only a problem in PvE. Secondly, the only gear slots in question are: head, chest, wrist, hands, waist, legs, and feet. All the other gear slots have other class/specs to compete with.

  In PvE, there are several areas to consider. Leveling (quest rewards and dungeon drops), gearing up (5man heroics) and raiding. (This is mostly speculation)

  I argue that rewards while leveling are not insignificant. One of the major reasons I am not leveling my Pally with a Holy spec is the low rate of intellect plate in leveling content, combined with a lack of intellect plate helm or chest heirlooms. After poking around a bit on forums and blogs, it seems that many people consider keeping a decent Holy Pally set while leveling near impossible.

  While grinding heroics for the latest gear, I imagine the prelude to raiding gear issues must set in. This is where Holy Pallys are guaranteed no competition other than ninjas, (which I assume is an added headache, but I digress). Drops are limited to the combined loot tables of a short list of bosses, but are partially alleviated by quest and vendor rewards.
  • The first heroic ilevel (346) has 22 total intellect plate rewards, 7 of them from vendors, with all slots covered. 
  • The second round of heroics (353) had a paltry 6 drops, though BoE boots and 3/5 T11 gear available for JP alleviates that.
  • The final heroic ilevel (378), has only 4 drops and 1 quest reward. Again, BoE bracers and 3/5 tier 12 for JP cover gaps.
  At  each level of pre-raid progression, there are no glaring gaps in Holy Pally gearing. This leads me to suggest that at this juncture, Holy Pally loot is successfully designed.

  In raiding there are two additional factors:

  The first is competition. Suppose that of the healing class/specs, 23% are Paladins (old source). This means that the likeliness of competition is 46% in a 3-heal 10-man. In a 6-heal 25-man, however, that chance climbs to 115%. I wonder, though, if this is more or less than most other class/specs within their armor type. I would wager less.

  The second additional factor is armor tokens. This removes the issue of uber-specialized loot from 5 of the 7 armor slots, with waist and bracers remaining. Waist items were available as drops or rep on each level of progression, with a crafted BoE and a Molten Front option as well. Bracers were similarly available as drops and a crafted or vendor BoE.

  Now that I am waist and bracers deep in speculation, I will say that I believe Holy Pally raid loot to be successful. There are no glaring gaps, and competition may even be lower than other class/specs contend with.

  There is of course the assertions that intellect plate drops more than would be expected due to chance. I have no response to this but "Show me the data."

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