1. Normal Dungeons:
Normal dungeons award a mixture of gear, item level 410 from Temple of the Jade Serpent and Stormstout Brewery, and 435 from Shado-Pan Monastery and Mogushan Palace. The required item level for Heroic dungeons is 440, so in order to progress along this gearing route you will need to also gear via one of two routes. It’s advisable to do dungeons to amass Justice Points before you hit 90 and can no longer queue for random dungeons if you wish to gear without dailies.
2a. Quest Rewards
Several quests offer rewards which will increase a player’s average item level enough to enter heroic dungeons. There are shoulders from The Mariner’s Revenge, belts from Overthrone and feet from Fires and Fears of Old available with item levels of 450 in the Dread Wastes, and rings with an item level of a rather surprising 489 from Shadow of the Empire in the same zone. In the Vale of Eternal Blossoms, Battle Axe of the Thunder King awards an ilvl 463 chest. The Secrets of Guo Lai in the same zone awards ilvl 440 rings. The Arena of Annihilation quest, which can be collected on a player’s first entry, awards an ilvl 463 weapon. The Sha of Hatred in Townlong Steppes awards ilvl 442 helms, The Point of No Return gives a 442 chest, and Terror of the Dread Wastes offers 442 rings. The latter quests are also in Townlong Steppes. It should be noted that several of these quests are the last quest in a long chain! Use Wowhead via the provided links.
2b. Honor PvP Gear
Since the 5.0.4 changes to PvP gear, using it as a substitute for a similar level of PvE gear has become far more viable. PvP-specific stats PvP Power and PvP resilience no longer replace primary stats, instead adding to them. Honor PvP gear is of the same ilvl as Justice PvE gear, and the stat differences are minimal. If you have amassed a good number of Justice Points by doing dungeons while leveling, the choice is yours as to whether to spend them on PvE gear, or convert them to honor in Stormwind or Orgrimmar to obtain PvP gear. For my PvP-focused gearing method, it was very useful indeed to obtain Honor gear. Full sets of ilvl 458 PvE gear are also available in return for Justice Points from various vendors with no reputation requirement.
3. World Bosses
The two World Bosses, the Sha of Anger and Salyis’ Warband, or Galleon as he is better known, are both excellent sources of PvP and PvE gear. Both drop 496 gear, and the Sha of Anger will furnish players with a quest item that can be redeemed for ilvl 476 boots on the first kill.
4. Heroic Dungeons
Heroic dungeons largely drop ilvl 463 loot, but there is a chance on ilvl 476 weapons being dropped from the last boss of each Heroic Dungeon. With the shortage of weapons available of this level, this is a boon. The required item level to enter Mogushan Vaults normal mode is 460, with all the steps above this should be easily obtained.
5. Conquest PvP Gear
Conquest PvP gear, much like Honor PvP gear as discussed above, is of a high item level and has excellent stats. Conquest gear ilvl is 483, so more than high enough to help players along their way to raiding average item levels. Conquest points can currently only be gained via arenas and random or rated battle grounds, so if you’re not a fan of PvP this may not be the option for you.
6. Valor PvE Gear
We posted here on GAMEBREAKER a while back about PvE gear reputation requirements being rolled back. Since October 2nd, the reputation requirements to purchase certain pieces of Mists of Pandaria Valor Point gear have been reduced from Revered to Honored (which you can be just from questing). These include:
Klaxxi – neck items
Golden Lotus – rings
Shado-Pan – cloaks
August Celestials – bracers
If you’re not doing dailies it’s highly unlikely that you’re going to have honored with any faction, except perhaps the Klaxxi. Do head over to their Quartermaster and see if the neck items are available to you, and check your other reputations just in case!
Most professions have the capacity to craft items of Raid quality, and many of the patterns are Zone Drops or require only honored reputation with Golden Lotus. Nonetheless, Golden Lotus Honored is very likely to require daily quests, and that’s not our objective today. Should you happen to have Golden Lotus Honored already, check out what you can buy. Have a look at your professions, a great one is Inscription which allows the creation of several ilvl 476 weapons. Engineers can yet again craft helms, ilvl 476 this time and recipe drop crafts award 496 items..
8. Raid Finder
This has been left ’til last, simply because, as I mention in the hit, it’s not been kind to me. I have run the raid finder several times in an attempt to get gear, but always been unlucky. So, I haven’t got a single piece of loot from it, and I’m at a 470 ilvl. Granted, a lot of that is from PvP gear, but you win some you lose some! Raid Finder drops from the only Raid Finder instances currently available are ilvl 476.
The Heart of Fear, and later the Terrace of Endless Spring Raid Finder modes have an item level requirement of 470 for entry, and both drop ilvl 483 gear.