Hoping it's 496 so "not doing it" is a viable choice for those choosing to raid heroic content
Blizzard said LFR wouldn't provide upgrade for raiders anymore, especially heroic raiders.
So I'm really expecting 496 LFR, 509 regular and 522 heroic.
Why? Current LFR needs 470 and drops 486... new LFR has a ilvl requirement of 480.. so.. 496 gear.
There is always a 19 item level difference between every tier. 19 is the magic number. 359 - 378 - 397..
Assuming HoF/ToeS are considered the t14 standard, which I am 90% sure they will be. Throne of Thunder has the following item levels; LFR: 502, Normal: 515, Heroic: 528.
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The current paradigm is 3 difficulty levels of gear (LFR, normal, heroic) per tier. 13ilvls between difficulties and 19ilvls between tiers. Sometimes there's a gear step up within a tier (e.g. MV to HoF or Regail Elite or deathwing in DS), then 6/7 ilvls seems to be rule.
Therefore, as other have said, we can expect 502 LFR, 515 normal and 528 heroic. Accordingly, 5.2LFR would not be an upgrade over any 5.0 heroic item (but equal with MV heroic ilvl).
There would even be leeway to have a gear step-up within 5.2: e.g. the latter parts of the raid drop +7ilvl gear. Then 5.4 LFR would probably start at 502+7+19=528ilvl, which again would make it equal to but not better than the worst 5.2 heroic ilvl.
While my 16/16N cleared on a casual ish schedule semi-casual butt does take some offence that LFR (where 1/4 the raid is afk it seems, or they actually are and are botting (yes, they exist)...) will drop better loot than N T14, between item upgrading things before 5.2 like N weapons/ 496 5.1 VP items/tier or getting more heroics down closer to T15 release, I think this is reasonable or OK. If they made LFR either harder and kept the +19 model or kept it at the current difficulty level and made it +13 (personal preference is +10) I think it would be better. Not making LFR T15 better than T14 N would also encourage people who get 480-485 ilvl after 5.2 releases to run N T14 and see more of the fight mechanics, etc.
Of course, if it's 502 and my main still has non 496 pieces and my alt still has some 476's/blue offhand, it will be good for filling those last annoying spots of gear, or alt catchup. I don't like the idea of doing all T15 LFR 2x/week but I already did that for a while with T14 so I guess it's not that big a deal. However, if LFR gear is 502, that will mean that Heroic raiders will likely run it for new set bonuses and offspec loot, regardless of Blizzard's intentions.
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Last edited by kamuimac; 2013-01-19 at 11:07 PM.