Well there we have it. You ask, and you receive. These nerfs are not what you would expect though, so let’s discuss why I am calling it a nerf, and how you can maximize your potential here.
First of all, the nerf comes in the form of item upgrades being further extended. How it will work, is when 5.4.8 launches, ANY peice of gear from 5.4 content will now have 4/4 upgrade slots, up from 2/2. For those wondering, this counts for Timeless Isle gear, and any gear from LFR, Flex, Normal, or Heroic SoO.This means another EIGHT item levels for each peice total, on top of the 8 you have already gained. If an entire 25 man heroic guild gains 8 average item level, even if it takes many weeks, this acts as a SIGNIFICANT nerf to the raid, especially considering its turned for less than 570 item level. I can EASILY anticipate getting to 585 item level with these changes, making me nearly 15 item level over whats recommended, even for the last few encounters.
The ultimate goal then, will of course be to upgrade your gear as fast as possible and now we will discuss how to facilitate this.
I realize this may not be the case for every players, but its likely that if you have been raiding weekly for the past many months, you are already very close to the 3k valor cap, because you simply have nothing to spend it on.
This was the case for me about 3 months ago, and I decided to just upgrade all my off spec tanking gear, spending 2500 valor doing so. I’ve managed to get back to 3k just from raiding and doing like 4 challenge modes along the way, so while it may not be likely, I am expecting that in this time, you can get very close to, if not at 3k. We will continue to operate under this premise.
Now, the second crazy change in the patch is the implementation of an item known as Deeds of Valor.
This may not sound that important to you, but what it will do is allow you to make a big play and combo multiple types of preparation for your extreme benefit.
The way the Deeds of Valor token works is, you purchase it on the Timeless isle for 3k Timeless coins. Once you have it, you consume it for 100 valor points. This will NOT exceed the cap, but what it does do is allows you to stockpile coins now, and then get an instant 1k valor on a Tuesday before raid, extending the nerf even greater the first week.
So basic math tells us
100 valor x 10 is the cap,
While 10 x 3000 coins = 6.
Wait no, that can’t be right. Hold on let me use the WordPress Calculator function.
OK, its 30000 (30k) coins, got it!
So ya, that means you can stock pile 30k coins for the week 5.4.8 drops and have an immediate 4k valor, if we are assuming the first part is still true.
For those who haven’t figured it out past that, this means you can upgrade 8 pieces the extra 2/4 that remains for your item.
250 Valor per 1/4 = 500 per completed item (assuming 2/4 previous.)
4000 Valor / 500 = 8 pieces total week one.
Knowing this, we also know our character has 16 slots, unless you have a staff or two handed weapon, then you only have 15. On top of this, we learned that our Legendary cloaks will automatically get the 4/4 completion, as they did when we first purchased them. This makes it so, with a staff, you have 14 slots to upgrade. So when you do so, your first week you will upgrade 8 out of 14 slots which means:
8/14 = 0.57, where
0.57 x 8 (ilvl gained) = 4.57 average item level!
I can not express how amazing gaining this much stats is, especially for certain classes. Just the extra health alone will be a HUGE nerf to the raid, and the extra damage?! Forget it, its unreal. Especially when you can get the full set done, the extra 4~ average item level gained will be a massive nerf.
Many people would also ask what pieces they should upgrade first, so let’s discuss that as well while we are here.
Your first priority should be BIS pieces, if any.
This will mostly only include Heroic Warforged items, but its best to examine your current scope of progression when discussing things like “BIS.” For example, if you are in a guild that will only kill 4-5 Heroic bosses, and you have a heroic warforged piece from Immersius, then treat it as Best in Slot, as the version that would replace it in an ideal world may never be yours, or will be yours after having enough valor to start over.
Past this, I would recommend Trinkets, Chest Pieces, Weapons, and legs first. They give the most stats per upgrade, and are typically some of the most important pieces you will get anyway. From here, Off-hands, Shoulders, and Helms are my next choice, followed then by Boots, Gloves, Belts, and Bracers. Rings round off the final peices to upgrade, as you will get the least stats from each 500 valor increment. A general rule to follow is simply examine how many stats each piece has. The more it has, the more you will gain. Always do the pieces with the most stats first, unless you expect to immediately upgrade it.
Also, trinkets can vastly out weigh anything else, depending on the spec. IE Black Blood for Affliction or Shadow. This will be on you to figure out.
Anyway, this is a really important topic, so I’d like to continue the discussion in the forums. If you have any questions at all, or want to give your comments, please feel free.
The topic can be found by following this link:
UPDATE #1 – Cloaks are off the list and no longer have 4/4 by default. You’ll still get around 4 average item level though! Upgrade your cloak and trinkets first now!