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    [7.2 Guide] Protection - Back with Vengeance

    7.2 Protection Warrior Guide - Back With Vengeance!
    This guide will always be a work in progress as changes occur, and will be continually updated to reflect those changes.


    Table of Contents

    Frequently Asked Questions
    Game Mechanics and Changes from Warlords
    Rotations and Priorities
    Talents
    Artifact
    Stats and Stat Weights
    Gearing
    Heroics and Mythics
    Emerald Nightmare
    The Nighthold
    Legendaries
    Item Sets

    Consumables, Professions, Racials, and Glyphs
    Addons
    Advanced Play
    Helpful Resources
    Changelog

    Welcome!
    Greetings, shield brothers and sisters! It is both my honor and privilege to welcome you to the Legion Protection guide!

    The most important thing I’d like to stress is that this guide isn’t meant to teach you to tank, exactly, but rather to deepen and sharpen your understanding of Warrior tanking. There are other resources that teach the very basics of tanking that you need to succeed.

    The information presented in this guide is gathered from various places. Some of it has been my own testing on the Beta, and others have greatly contributed to this work. Special thanks to Marok, Macrologia, Clutch, Agromat, Yse, and all of the other frequenters of the Skyhold Discord server, as well as those based right here on MMOC.

    Most of the information gathered here is presented based on:
    1. Basic knowledge of math and game mechanics.
    2. Extensive testing on the Legion Beta.
    3. Discussion and analysis with other Protection Warriors.

    It’s entirely possible that something posted here is wrong. Simulations aren’t exactly the end-all, be-all for tanks, as it’s difficult to simulate a real-world scenario for tanks. This guide will be updated frequently to ensure the information is as correct as possible.

    Feel free to talk about this guide in the thread below. Alternatively, myself and others are always available to answer questions in the Warrior Discord server, Skyhold! Continued discussion and analysis is always good and helpful for all of us.

    About Me
    Hey all. I’m known around here as Shadow the Edgehog (long story), although some of you coming from Skyhold may know me better as Sal. I’ve been maining a Warrior since Vanilla, but haven’t really done much community-wise up until now. I’ve raided most content from Vanilla to Cata at high levels, stopping for most of MoP and WoD (where I played casually), before I’ve returned to mythic raiding. Warrior is, without a doubt, my favorite class in this game, and I don’t foresee myself stopping anytime soon.

    Frequently Asked Questions
    Q: How good are Protection Warriors in Legion?
    A: The general consensus is that Prot Warriors are currently in the top half of tank rankings in Legion.

    Q: Can I level as Protection in Legion?
    A: Yes. You deal less damage, but you can pull every mob around you at once and AOE them all down without dying, so you complete quest objectives pretty quickly. The speed is about even when compared with Fury and Arms.

    Q: How does Rage from damage taken (RFDT) work?
    A: The simple answer is you get 1 Rage when you take or absorb damage equal to about 2% of your max health from gear (i.e. not counting bonuses from talents, Last Stand, Shaman healers, etc). The complicated answer is here: >Click me!<

    Q: Because of RFDT, is it beneficial to remove gear like we did in BC and Wrath?
    A: Short answer: No. Long answer: Technically, yes, the Rage you generate relative to your health pool increases; however, it is not typically steady-incoming damage that kills us, it’s high amounts of burst. The possible benefits of gaining “more” Rage aren’t worth the stat losses.

    Q: Are there any default Pawn strings?
    A: No, and there won't be. SimCraft is not currently working for Prot, and tanks are notoriously hard to sim for because it's nearly impossible to sim perfect weights - they'll change from fight to fight, so it's easier to follow a stat priority.

    More of these will be added as they get asked repeatedly.


    Game Mechanics and Changes from 7.1

    Abilities:
    Some baseline abilities have been removed or changed:

    • Focused Rage has been removed.
    • Intercept now slows the target's movement speed and Rage generation has been increased from 10 to 15 Rage.
    • Revenge's damage has been increased, the cooldown has been decreased to 3 seconds, and it now has a 30 Rage cost instead of generating 5 Rage. Dodges and parries cause your next Revenge to become free.
    • Shield Block cost has been increased from 10 to 15 Rage.
    • Shield Slam's cooldown can now be reset by Revenge and Thunder Clap, in addition to Devastate.
    • Thunder Clap's damage has been increased and now generates 5 Rage.

    With this, our basic rotation has been changed greatly. This has been expanded upon in the Abilities section.

    Talents:
    Many talents have been changed or removed:

    • Anger Management now reduces Demoralizing Shout's cooldown as well.
    • Best Served Cold causes Revenge to deal 5% more damage per target hit, up to 5 targets.
    • Booming Voice causes DS to generate 60 Rage, up from 50, and increases damage by 25%, up from 20%.
    • Crackling Thunder only increases Thunder Clap's range by 50%, down from 100%.
    • Devastator removes Devastate as an ability, adding the damage to your auto attacks and also causes them to generate 5 Rage.
    • Heavy Repercussions now only causes Shield Slam to increase Shield Block's duration by 1 second, down from 1.5 seconds.
    • Into the Fray's radius is now 15 yards, up from 10.
    • Never Surrender now causes Ignore Pain to ignore up to 100% more damage, up from 75%.
    • Ravager's damage has been increased and the Parry chance has been increased from 30% to 35%.
    • Safeguard now transfers 30% damage, up from 20%.
    • Shockwave now stuns enemies for 3 seconds, down from 4 seconds.
    • Ultimatum has been removed.
    • Vengeance is now activated by Revenge, in Focused Rage's place.
    • Warbringer now stuns for longer.
    • Warlord's Challenge now also reduces the cooldown on Berserker Rage by 15 seconds.


    Rotation and Priorities

    The Protection Warrior rotation is shown based on the priority systems shown below. Note that this doesn’t take into account your survival abilities - those are given their own section. These rotations are created with maximizing your Rage generation in mind.

    Single Target:
    1. Use Shield Slam.
    2. Use Thunder Clap.
    3. Use Devastate.

    This is the basic priority rotation is as shown above for single target situations. Shield Slam is by far our hardest hitting ability, as well as generates the most Rage - you want to use it as soon as possible every time it’s available. Thunder Clap does a fair amount of damage, as well as generates Rage and having a chance to reset Shield Slam. Devastate is your filler ability, dealing hefty damage and having a 30% chance to reset Shield Slam’s cooldown.

    Cleave and AoE:
    1. Use Ravager (if you’ve taken this talent).
    2. Use Shield Slam.
    3. Use Revenge.
    4. Use Thunder Clap.
    5. Use Devastate.

    Here, your objective it to keep generating as much Rage as possible while keeping threat on all targets you can. Throw down Ravager wherever you are intending to tank the mob groups, using any damage increasing abilities you have while you do so, such as Avatar. Use Shield Slam on cooldown. Thunder Clap deals moderate damage and generates threat on all targets nearby, so use it on cooldown as well. Cast Revenge when it procs for free or you’re about to cap Rage. If you’ve nothing else to press, fill empty GCDs with Devastate.

    Mitigation:
    Your rotation is simply to keep up Shield Block as much as possible, while spending as much Rage as you can on Ignore Pain.

    This is harder than it looks on paper, and as such, a section going deeper into this portion of your kit is included in the Advanced Play section below.

    Defensive Cooldowns:

    Warriors have a variety of defensive cooldowns, and in accordance with Legion changes to tanks as a whole, many of them have longer cooldowns than we had in Warlords. Most of them are slight nerfs, but Spell Reflection has gotten a buff, reducing the magic damage we take while it’s active.

    Generally, you want to save Shield Wall and Last Stand for the boss abilities that hit heaviest. Demoralizing Shout is great for AoE situations (especially if you have Booming Voice talented), and for reducing damage during a point where you are getting hit especially hard hard. Spell Reflection should be used whenever you can when magic damage is being thrown at you, as magic damage remains our biggest weakness.

    It should be pointed out, however, that with the increased cooldown times, smart usage of your defensive abilities is more vital than ever. Every fight is different, so use your best judgement when deciding when and where to use these abilities.

    Offensive Cooldowns:

    Generally, your best usage out of Battle Cry will be using it on cooldown. If you can, line it up with your other cooldowns (such as. Avatar or Demoralizing Shout, if talented into Booming Voice) for increased damage done.

    Utility Cooldowns:

    These abilities are highly situational. Berserker Rage will make you break and become immune to Crowd Control abilities - not especially useful for PvE, but there are some situations. Heroic Leap remains much the same as ever, dealing negligible damage and resetting the cooldown of Taunt. Intercept can be used to move around quickly or take some strain off the current tank if you’re not doing anything else.


    Talents

    Starter Builds:
    Here are some quick-start talent builds. More in-depth discussion and analysis of individual talents and talent tiers are below.

    Easy:
    Spoiler: 


    Good choices suited for players just starting out with tanking or Warriors. Doesn’t add any complexity to the baseline rotation.

    Dungeons:
    Spoiler: 


    Gives some utility, generally makes your job of rounding up and controlling mobs in dungeons easy. Adds some extra complexity to the base rotation.

    Raids:
    Spoiler: 


    Good for raids with pre-planned strategies and high tank damage. Adds significant complexity to the base rotation.

    World Content / Leveling:
    Spoiler: 


    Lots of control and significant AoE damage suited for leveling up as Protection.


    These are recommendations meant for people who are new and learning the spec – the best talents are always those picked based on the fight or situation at hand.



    Tier 15 - Stuns:


    • Shockwave: Great for controlling large amounts of mobs at once. It’s good for add pickup, threat, and CC, so it’s a really good choice for both 5 mans and raids.
    • Storm Bolt: Focuses on locking down a single target. It’s also a ranged ability, so it’s a nice way to get some quick threat on a targetout of your immediate range.
    • Warbringer: Adds some minor utility to Intercept, giving you a reliable stun you don’t need to worry about, rolled right into your base kit.

    It’s important to note that none of these are worth prioritizing for damage - they damage they do is minor at best, and a DPS loss in most situations.

    Verdict: Shockwave is great if your group has no big AoE stuns. Warbringer will still see some use, as it's stun isn't on a DR with other stuns, during weeks like Necrotic.

    Tier 30 - Protection:


    • Impending Victory: Gives you a moderate heal on a 30 second cooldown. Good for situations where you need the self-healing on a moment’s notice.
    • Inspiring Presence: Your allies within 60 yards gain 3% Leech, healing them for damage they deal. If you find that you don’t need to use IV or Safeguard, this is a safe choice to lessen the burden on your healers. It is worth noting that you do not gain the benefit of your own Inspiring Presence.
    • Safeguard: Intercept gets some extra utility, and this is decent in a situation where you spend a significant length of time not actively tanking.

    Verdict: Impending Victory is better for soloing things (WQs, etc), while Inspiring Presence is the de-facto choice for raids.

    Tier 45 - Damage:


    • Renewed Fury: A simple damage increase. You can take this and forget about it - Ignore Pain is our main source of mitigation, so you will be able to keep the damage buff up often without having to worry too much about it.
    • Best Served Cold: Glorious for fights with a large number of adds or high mythic keystone dungeons. Revenge is now a large source of our AoE damage, so this talent shines.
    • Avatar: Purely a burst talent, and will be best of fights where heavy damage is needed in a small window - places where you want to stack all your other offensive cooldowns as well, such as Battle Cry and Ravager.

    Verdict: Renewed Fury for pushing high M+ keys, or if you don't have trinkets to burst with. Avatar synergizes extremely well with Booming Voice, especially if you have something like a high ilevel Draught of Souls.

    Tier 60 - Utility:


    • Warlord's Challenge: Changes our Taunt into a talented Monk Taunt, and is really useful if there are threat issues and you need to spam Taunt a lot (such as Xhul'horac, as anyone who has tanked with a Protection Paladin can attest to).
    • Bounding Stride: Immensely useful for fights with heavy movement or where you need to quickly pick up adds that spawn far away from you.
    • Crackling Thunder: Awesome at getting Threat quickly on mobs as they come near you (for those overzealous DPS we all love and hate), and is actually more useful than people give it credit.

    This tier focuses on a wide margin of talents, another tier where your best judgement is needed. If a fight calls for heavy movement, Bounding Stride is infinitely more useful than Crackling Thunder.

    Verdict: Bounding Stride will probably see the most usage on any given encounter. Warlord's is nice if you need to Taunt multiple things quickly (ex. Adds on Tichondrius), but it's utility is lacking. Crackling Thunder is losing it's niche with how often we cast Thunder Clap - it's no longer really necessary.

    Tier 75 - Efficiency:


    • Devastator: Essentially adds Devastate to each auto attack, and causes each A to also generate 5 Rage. This is a talent that requires far more awareness than the others, and should not be used unless you are very skilled.
    • Never Surrender: Potentially powerful, if you’re comfortable enough with playing the health game. The increase is a linear increase, so the lower your health is, the bigger your Ignore Pains will be (ex. At 75% health, it’s a 25% increase, 50% increase at 50% health, etc).
    • Indomitable: Increases your maximum health by 25%, and increases the effect of Ignore Pain by 25%. It’s a passive bonus you don’t need to worry about, just click once and done.

    Indomitable is decent. It's a huge passive boost to survivability, one that doesn't rely on trying to game your health and freak out your healers. See this explanation and comparison by Marok for a more in-depth comparison.

    Devastator provides a very, very large increase to both damage and survivability. Aside from a few, very niche situations, there is no reason not to take Devastator over Indomtiable, ever.

    With the nerf to Never Surrender, it's even worse of a talent than it was before. Never,ever, ever use it, ever.

    Verdict: Devastator in 99.99% of situations, Indomitable for the other 0.01%. If you use Never Surrender, you can and will be made fun of.

    Tier 90 - Rage:


    • Vengeance: Saves a lot of Rage over longer fights, as well as give a lot more damage. It also adds some complexity and a playstyle reminiscent of the furious button smashing that we were used to in Warlords of Draenor.
    • Into the Fray: A great tool, giving some passive Haste for simply tanking. Capped at 15%/5 enemies.
    • Booming Voice: Good if you need another DPS cooldown or Rage at a moment’s notice, and can provide powerful burst damage when lined up with Avatar and Ravager.

    Vengeance is the best tool here, in terms of both rage generation and sustained DPS. Into the Fray is okay, but isn’t really comparable to the other two talents here. Booming Voice is spectacular if you can line it up with all your other DPS cooldowns on large AoE packs (which you should be doing in high mythic keystones).

    Verdict: Vengeance for survival, Booming Voice for DPS. Vengeance essentially doubles your Rage spent efficiency, and adds a ton of self-healing if you have our bracers. Booming Voice is useless as a survival talent, but adds a ton of burst damage, especially if stacked with Avatar and on-use trinkets.

    Tier 100 - Ultimate:


    • Anger Management: Great if you find yourself consistently needing to use your defensive spells often.
    • Heavy Repercussions: Extremely powerful choice if you can use it well. With enough Haste and skill, a Warrior using this talent can keep Shield Block active almost indefinitely. This boost greatly increases the benefits from our Tier 19 set bonuses, which are outlined later in this guide.
    • Ravager: if you need some damage, especially on AoE fights when stacked with other DPS cooldowns, and has the added benefit of increasing your parry greatly.

    Heavy Repercussions is immensely powerful as a damage and mitigation tool. AM turns reduces the cooldown on your offensive and defensive spells by a large amount over time. Ravager is useless - the parry is weak, and it's damage is less than that of a Revenge cast; complete waste of a talent slot.

    Verdict: Heavy Repurcussions for survival on most fights, Anger Management for DPS on any fight (and survival on a very niche few).

    Final Thoughts
    Most of these talents will see use in some form or another. Some of them are clearly better than the other choices on their tier, such as Warbringer, while others serve very niche purposes, such as Safeguard. Others are completely useless and should be avoided like the plague. As always, use your best judgement and use whichever talent is best suited for the situation you face.


    Artifact
    An impenetrable shield crafted from a scale of the black Dragon Aspect, Neltharion the Earth-Warder, before the Old Gods' corruption overcame him. The formidable vrykul king Magnar Icebreaker carried this shield into combat and won victory after victory in the face of grim odds. When he finally fell in battle, it was due to treachery by servants of the Val'kyr Helya. The shield is now entombed with King Magnar's body in the Path of Kings in Stormheim.

    Our artifact is a sword and shield combination based visually and thematically on the Dragon Aspect of Earth, Neltharion the Earth-Warder (prior to his corruption by the Old Gods).

    The ability granted upon earning the weapon is called Neltharion's Fury, a powerful defensive cooldown that makes you critically block all attacks for 3 seconds, as well as dealing damage in a cone in front of you. You should throw this into your defensive rotation, but be wary of where and when you use it - you cannot move for the duration, and stuns, knockbacks, and other forms of crowd control will interrupt the channel.

    As with other artifacts, for each trait you purchase, your stamina is increased by 0.75% and your damage is increased by 1%. These bonuses stack up to 34 times.

    Visual guide of the artifact power spending, courtesy of Marokk of <Infinity> on Mannoroth:

    First Path:
    Head up the right-hand side of the tree towards Dragon Scales. This pathway gives hefty defensive increases, as well as moderate damage boosts.

    Strength of the Earth AspectShatter the BonesIntoleranceDragon SkinReflective PlatingDragon Scales

    Most of these are passive bonuses to damage, a Rage cap increase, and even a small bonus to the effectiveness to Ignore Pain. The two big guns of this side of the tree are Reflective Plating and Dragon Scales. Reflective Plating turns Spell Reflection into a power magic defense for us, even moreso than it was prior.

    Dragon Scales is your first Golden Trait, and provides a good defensive boost. The 40% boost to Ignore Pain is very, very good, and you will see absurd sizes once you start learning how to play around the proc.

    Second Path:
    Head over through the middle of the tree, moving down towards the next golden trait, Scales of Earth.

    Wall of SteelLeaping GiantsScales of Earth

    These next traits provide minor utility bonuses to Intercept and Heroic Leap. Scales of Earth is your second Golden Trait, dealing moderate damage and providing a massive mitigation boost via armor.

    Third Path:
    Move over to the left-hand side of the tree, up towards Might of the Vrykul.

    Vrykul Shield TrainingWill to SurviveRumbling VoiceMight of the Vrykul

    The traits during the first pass give you some more passive mitigation bonuses, and most notably a significant boost to Last Stand’s effectiveness. The last two traits, Rumbling Voice and Might of the Vrykul, increase the benefits of Demoralizing Shout immensely.

    Finishing:
    Grab the last three traits to finish up the artifact tree, in this order:

    ToughnessRage of the FallenThunder Crash

    The last three main traits grant a little bit of extra passive mitigation and some damage.

    7.2 Traits:
    Once the first part of the tree is completed, an extra trait called Unbreakable Bulwark is unlocked that acts as a bonus trait. This purchase increases your armor by 10%, and allows you to pursue the questline that unlocks the new traits added in 7.2, shown in the bottom right-hand side of the tree, as well as adding a 4th point to some of the minor traits. You want to purchase the new traits in this order:

    Protection of the ValarjarBastion of the AspectsGleaming ScalesNeltharion's Thunder

    Once you have these, you can purchase the minor traits in two ways; one that focuses on survival, or one that focuses on damage. The default path will focus on survival, and is this route:

    Vrykul Shield TrainingDragon SkinToughnessRage of the FallenShatter the BonesThunder CrashWill to SurviveLeaping GiantsIntolerance

    After all of these are pruchased, another new "infinite" trait called Concordance of the Legionfall is available to be purchased, and increases your primary stat by a certain amount (depending on how many points you have in it) for 10 seconds. This trait has 50 ranks, so you'll be spending Artifact Power on it for a long, long time.

    Relics:
    Relics are the primary way to increase the overall item level of your artifact, as well as add in a little bit of customization in the form of extra trait ranks. Our shield has three relic slots: One for Iron, one for Blood, and one for Fire. The Fire slot is gated behind the class campaign, and you must complete it to gain the full use of your weapons.

    In general, the highest ilevel relic is the one most worth using for that slot. The trait ranks granted are fairly small overall, so take it as you see it. Are you fine with surviving? Perhaps take a relic that gives Rage of the Fallen over Will to Survive. Need some more sturdiness? Choose on that gives Dragon Skin over one that increases Shatter the Bones.


    Stats and Stat Weights

    Stat Weights:

    Raids: Haste to 40% > Mastery >= Versatility > Haste over 40% > Critical Strike

    Dungeons (Mythic+): Haste to 40% > Mastery >= Versatility > Haste past 40% > Critical Strike

    Why the Thing is a ThingHaste is the best secondary per point for mitigating blockable damage taken until you have 100% Shield Block uptime whilst tanking. For 100% overall shield block uptime you need 35-40% haste for this. Until that point, haste is the best secondary per point defensively in general.

    This does not mean you need that amount of haste, nor should you take lower ilvl gear just to get haste.

    In-Depth:

    Haste: Reduces your global cooldown, as well as the cooldowns on almost all of your abilities. Increases your Rage per second from abilities.

    Mastery: Increases your chance to block and critically block, as well as increasing your attack power. Increases your passive mitigation through blocking and increases the size of your Ignore Pain.

    Critical Strike: Increases your damage and parry rating, via Riposte. Only Revenge gets direct benefit, allowing parries to reset its cooldown. It’s not as strong as it used to be, and is largely only beneficial for DPS, as the scaling for diminishing returns on parries were heavily increased.

    Versatility: Increases your damage and healing done, as well as reducing damage by half that value. It reduces damage by a percentage amount; it’ll be useful in quite a few situations because of this, especially in situations where we take heavy magic damage. Ignore Pain benefits double from this, as the first half increases the size of the absorption shield, and the second part reduces the damage you take through that shield.

    Here is an in-depth look as to why our stats are the way they are from Macrologia, Marok, and gray_hound.


    Gearing

    With the advent of the Titanforged system of gearing, creating a world wherein an absolute best-in-slot list is obsolete. Instead, I’ll point out a few specific, really decent trinkets, since those are the slots that will affect you the most.

    Jewelcrafters can create a BoE neck, Raging Furystone Gorget, that causes Intercept to generate 25% more Rage. This is a great neck item for gearing up, as it can be increased from item level 815 up to 855, as well as having a guaranteed gem socket.

    A full list comparing all the trinkets suitable for us can be found here, for a quick "cheat sheet", or here for an in-depth comparison done by @Lysozyme / Macrologia.

    Heroics and Mythics
    The two best defensive trinkets for the Protection Warrior are easily Darkmoon Deck: Immortality and either the Gnomeregan Auto-Blocker 601 or Valor Medal of the First War./ Both the Auto-Blocker and Valor Medal are only 805, but they are extremely overbudgeted and, as a result, extremely powerful in comparison to even raid trinkets. Armor is by far the greatest defensive stat we have access to, and it's what makes these trinkets so extremely powerful.

    Some others that are extremely good are Coagulated Nightwell Residue, Raven Eidolon, and Shivermaw's Jawbone. Nightwell Residue is essentially a mastery stat stick with a powerful absorb on it, useful for situations where you know you'll be taking a lot of damage in a short time. Eidolon is, more or less, just a Stamina/Mastery stat stick - the On-Use is pretty worthless. Jawbone is a great trinket for dungeons, but less so for raids.

    Two others worth noting are Ember of Nullification and Parjesh's Medallion. Ember is a trinket that you should pick up for high magic damage situations - it’s a decently high chance of a silence, plus the stats are a huge modifier for IP (which is essential to surviving magic damage for Warriors). Parjesh’s is an ok trinket for both progression and newer tanks to pick up to help with survivability. The proc has a low chance (only proccing when you dip below 35% health), but it’s a decent health buffer and a very large mastery proc, which will help you mitigate damage until your healers can get you stable again.

    Emerald Nightmare and World Bosses
    The raiding trinkets are a little more diverse. For Emerald Nightmare and the World Bosses, there are only a few worth talking about here. Grotesque Statuette is pretty much the only trinket worth it from raids, and even then, onlky. Statuette is just insane for mitigation, although only in single target situations. The proc is a reliable and powerful damage reduction, but is on RPPM and only procs on one target (though incurs the cooldown). Macrologia's guide gives a more in-depth explanation of it.

    One of the world boss drops, Unstable Arcanocrystal, is an extremely powerful stat stick, heavily increasing all secondary stats. The other, Ettin Fingernail, isn't quite as potent, but still pretty good.

    The Nighthold
    The Nighthold trinkets are, by and large, pretty crap. Most of the tank ones get outshined by high ilevel dungeon trinkets, or even just plain ol' stat sticks. Even most of the damage trinkets suck, largely in part due to the hotfix Blizzard applied nerfing them by up to 50%.

    Still, there are a few that shine brightly. Animated Exoskeleton is awesome for a fight like Krosus, or if you're the soak tank on Gul'dan. Fang of Tichondrius is likewise okay-ish, though more for niche things like Necrotic weeks or the Tank Challenge from the Mage Tower.

    Another gem is Draught of Souls. A high ilevel one, coupled with Avatar, the Booming Voice talent, and Battle Cry is absurd burst DPS. It's nigh useless for mitigation of course, outside of the static Haste on it, but there's no reason to not run a DPS trinket or two at this point.

    Legendaries
    To start with, you will only be able to equip one legendary item. Once you reach the last research stage, which costs 15,000 Order Resources and lasts 14 days, you can equip another. These restrictions may be lifted, but until then, I’ll go over the legendaries we can use as Protection and which ones are worth taking a look at:

    All of these are pretty good and fairly big game changers with all of what they do. The 3 biggest ones, however, are Mannoroth’s Bloodletting Manacles, Kakushan’s Stormscale Gauntlets, and Thundergod's Vigor.

    Mannoroth’s Bloodletting Manacles are a simple tool, passively healing for just going through your normal playstyle. It may not seem like much, but since we ignore so much damage via Ignore Pain, the healing with these will make us much harder to kill.

    Kakushan’s Stormscale Gauntlets is another item that rewards you for doing your regular rotation. It adds a fair bit of Rage over time, and the damage is pretty decent as well.

    Thundergod's Vigor reduces the cooldown on Demoralizing Shout every time you hit and enemy with Thunder Clap. This scales with linearly with multiple targets, leading to hilarious shenanigans in places like Lower Karazhan, especially if you have Booming Voice talented.

    Item Sets
    Class Hall - Battlelord's Plate:

    Tier 19 - Warplate of the Obsidian Aspect:

    Tier 20 - Titanic Onslaught Armor:


    Consumables, Professions, Racials, and Glyphs

    Consumables:
    Food: The various Haste foods are your favorites here:

    Flask:
    There are two flasks available:

    Use the Stamina flask only if you find yourself really needing the survivability. Otherwise, use the Strength flask for DPS.

    Potions:
    There are 3 potions available:

    Use the Old War potion for single target damage, and the Prolonged Power one for AoE. The Unbending Potion is for survivability. The "Bonus Armor" is a misleading term, as it no longer exists in it's Warlord's incarnation - it's pure defensive power now.

    Rune:

    There is no empowered, permanent version at this time.

    Gems:

    You can only use a single Strength gem, but for us, it’s only more DPS, as we gain only a minimal survival benefit from it. You should be using Haste gems otherwise.

    Enchants:
    Enchants have been redesigned for Legion. Weapon enchants no longer exist. Neck enchants have different effects based on your other enchants.

    Cloak: Enchant Cloak - Binding of Strength (Best, Expensive), Enchant Cloak - Word of Strength (Lowest, Cheap).
    Neck:

    Use Heavy Hide for survival and the Hidden Satyr for Single Target DPS - Claw is better for constant AoE, such as Mythic+. 3000 Armour is an absurd amount for a defensive proc, and is unbeatable by any of the other enchants.

    Rings:

    Racials:
    There are very, very minor differences between races and racials. Some of them remain very strong (ex. Pandarens' Epicurean), others have been changed and will become stronger the further we gear up (ex. Humans' The Human Spirit). Choose whichever race you wish to play most.

    Alliance:
    Spoiler: 
    • Draenei:
    • Dwarf:
      • Frost Resistance: Reduces Frost damage taken by 1%.
      • Might of the Mountain: Critical strike bonus damage and healing increased by 2%.
      • Stoneform: Removes all poison, disease, curse, magic, and bleed effects and reduces all physical damage taken by 10% for 8 sec.
    • Gnome:
    • Human:
      • Every Man for Himself: Removes all movement impairing effects and all effects which cause loss of control of your character. This effect shares a cooldown with other similar effects.
      • The Human Spirit: You gain 2% more of all secondary stats (Haste, Critical Strike, Mastery, Versatility) from all sources.
    • Night Elf:
      • Nature Resistance: Reduces Nature damage taken by 1%.
      • Quickness: Increases your chance to dodge melee and ranged attacks by 2%, and your movement speed by 2%.
      • Shadowmeld: Activate to slip into the shadows, reducing the chance for enemies to detect your presence. Lasts until cancelled or upon moving. Any threat is restored versus enemies still in combat upon cancellation of this effect.
      • Touch of Elune: Increases your Haste by 1% during the night. Increases your Critical Strike by 1% during the day.
    • Pandaren:
      • Epicurean: Your love of food allows you to receive 100% more of the stats from Well Fed effects.
      • Quaking Palm: Strikes the target with lightning speed, incapacitating them for 4 sec, and turns off your attack.
    • Worgen:
      • Aberration: Reduces Shadow and Nature damage taken by 1%.
      • Darkflight: Activates your true form, increasing current movement speed by an additional 40% for 10 sec.
      • Viciousness: Increases critical strike chance by 1%.


    Horde:
    Spoiler: 
    • Blood Elf:
      • Arcane Torrent: Silence all enemies within 8 yards for 2 sec and restores 3% of your Mana, 15 energy, 15 rage, 15 focus, 1 Holy Power, 1 Chi, or 20 runic power. Non-player victim spellcasting is also interrupted for 3 sec.
      • Arcane Acuity: Increases critical strike chance by 1%.
      • Arcane Resistance: Reduces Arcane damage taken by 1%.
    • Goblin:
      • Time is Money: Cash in on a 1% increase to haste.
      • Rocket Barrage: Launches your belt rockets at an enemy, dealing fire damage.
      • Rocket Jump: Activates your rocket belt to jump forward. Other effects which slow the rate of falling cannot be used within 10 sec after using this ability.
    • Orc:
      • Blood Fury: Increases melee and ranged attack power for 15 seconds.
      • Hardiness: Duration of Stun effects reduced by an additional 10%.
    • Pandaren:
      • Epicurean: Your love of food allows you to receive 100% more of the stats from Well Fed effects.
      • Quaking Palm: Strikes the target with lightning speed, incapacitating them for 4 sec, and turns off your attack.
    • Tauren:
      • Brawn: Critical strike bonus damage and healing increased by 2%.
      • Endurance: Increases your Stamina (scales with level).
      • Nature Resistance: Reduces Nature damage taken by 1%.
      • War Stomp: Stuns up to 5 enemies within 8 yds for 2 sec.
    • Troll:
      • Regeneration: Health regeneration rate increased by 10%. 10% of total Health regeneration may continue during combat.
      • Berserking: Increases your haste by 15% for 10 sec.
      • Da Voodoo Shuffle: Reduces the duration of all movement impairing effects by 15%.
    • Undead:
      • Cannibalize: When activated, regenerates 7% of total health and mana every 2 sec for 10 sec. Only works on Humanoid or Undead corpses within 5 yds. Any movement, action, or damage taken while Cannibalizing will cancel the effect.
      • Shadow Resistance: Reduces Shadow damage taken by 1%.
      • Touch of the Grave: Your attacks and damaging spells have a chance to drain the target, dealing 1932 to 2244 Shadow damage and healing you for the same amount.
      • Will of the Forsaken: Removes any Charm, Fear and Sleep effect. This effect shares a 30 sec cooldown with other similar effects.


    Professions:
    Professions no longer influence combat. Pick whatever you'd like to make money or suit your needs. Many of them directly benefit us, such as Jewelcrafting or Blacksmithing.

    Glyphs:
    With the release of Legion, Glyphs no longer offer any changes to abilities, and are purely visual in nature.


    Addons

    There are many, many addons out there, and everyone's setup will be different. Here are a few that are worth mentioning:
    • WeakAuras: The addon for tracking anything and everything. Here are a few that might come in handy for you (Thanks to Marok, Macrologia, Agromat, and the others for these!):
      • Ignore Pain Absorb Tracker: Tracks the total amount your IP shield will negate and how long left the buff has before it expires.
      • Vengeance Tracker: Tracks both of the Vengeance buffs and shows you which one should be pressed next. Has no use if you aren't specced into Vengeance.
      • Shield Block Tracker: Tracks the duration of your current Shield Block. Works with Heavy Repercussions.
    • Deadly Boss Mods / BigWigs Bossmods: Either one of these is completely necessary for tracking boss abilities - as a tank, knowing exactly when an ability is coming is essential to surviving it.
    • Tidy Plates: Tidy Plates is a great addon for tracking enemy NPCs, which is handy during combat with a large number of adds.


    Advanced Play

    Mitigation: As outlined above in the Rotation and Priorities section, you basically want to keep Shield Block up as much as possible while weaving in Ignore Pain. This gets a little more complicated when you throw in our artifact ability, which is 3 seconds of 100% critical block chance, as well as the semi-unpredictableness of Rage income from tanking.

    Ignore Pain is a little more tricky. It's cost ranges anywhere from 20 to 60 Rage, with the absorb amount increasing the more Rage you use, similarly to Shield Barrier. You can stack multiple IPs back-to-back, up to a certain cap (3 60-Rage IPs normally, changed to 6 60-Rage IPs when talented into Never Surrender). You want to use as much Rage as you can on Ignore Pain, as it is what will reduce the most damage and make it easier for you to survive.

    The artifact ability should be weaved into this priority on a fight-per-fight basis. It's a 3 second channeled ability, one that allows you to still use defensive abilities, but you can be knocked or stunned out of it. As well, using it while Shield Block is already up is wasteful, since they do the same thing - Neltharion's Fury just does it better. Use it where you can to reduce the most damage to you, such as a period of heavy add damage or a large boss melee attack.

    Heavy Repercussions: Heavy Repercussions is one hardest talents to effectively use. When you have Shield Block active, every Shield Slam you have adds 1 second to the remaining duration on it. Add in high amounts of Haste, good Shield Slam resets via Devastate, Thunder Clap, and Revenge, and you've got almost 100% effective uptime on Shield Block - guaranteed 30% damage reduction on blockable damage, and 60% on those you critically block. This is huge for reducing incoming damage, enough that learning how to use your abilities is vital to smoothing this damage.

    Essentially, the way you play with this is that Shield Slam should always be on the ability you prioritize if Shield Block is currently up. If Shield Block is coming off-cooldown within the next two globals, you can hold Shield Slam and wait for that; otherwise, always hit is as soon as it’s available. Now that it only increases the duration of Shield Block by 1 second, this is even more important than ever.

    Vengeance: Vengeance is potentially a very powerful talent, one that can dramatically increase your damage done and reduce the damage done to you. Using Ignore Pain makes the next Revenge cost 20-Rage, and using Revenge causes the next Ignore Pain to cost a maximum of 39-Rage (but absorb as much as a full, 60-Rage IP).

    This is huge for damage reduction, since you can get that same amount of DR and more damage for less than what a max IP was before. Chaining from one to the other is easy to do with some practice (made even easier with the weakaura linked above), but becomes a bit more chaotic to keep track of in the midst of combat with watching for boss abilities.

    Quick Guide to using Vengeance:
    1) If you are going to die if you don't cast IP, cast IP.

    2) If you have Vengeance: Revenge
    2a) If you have an Revenge proc: Cast Revenge
    2b) If you do not have a proc, cast only if you have 58 rage or higher

    3) If you have Vengeance: Ignore Pain:
    3a) If you get a Dragon Scales proc: Cast IP if Dragon Scales is about to run out, but wait as long as you can (without delaying your ordinary rotation) in case the other conditions are fulfilled
    3b) If you get a Revenge proc: Cast IP then cast Revenge before you cast your next Shield Slam, but wait as long as you can (without delaying your ordinary rotation) in case the other conditions are fulfilled
    3c) Have 39 rage or higher

    Note that you shouldn't necessarily cast Ignore Pain even if (3)(a)-(c) are all fulfilled. It may be better to save your rage for later, because the damage you're taking now may be irrelevant compared to a large hit that you're going to take soon. Alternatively you may want to wait a very short period before casting it so that you can be healed up during it rather than casting it when on full health. Naturally it is often worth not casting it such that you can spend rage on Revenge instead, and this should be taken into consideration with proper play.


    Helpful Resources

    Skyhold Discord: Come on in and join us! Discussion happens regularly, both technically and casual ones. There are both desktop and mobile apps, so you can keep up with us both at home and on the go.

    Warcraft Logs: A fantastic website used for combat logs. Simple and easy to use and shows information directly from the combat log, can be used to look at your rotations and ability usage, and will help us help you if you have any questions.


    Changelog

    08/16/2016: Updated from Prepatch guide to Legion guide.
    08/16/2016: Updated with today's hotfixes.
    09/07/2016: Updated with stat priority and new trinket listing.
    10/31/2016: Updated with stat priority and new trinket listing.
    1/09/2017: Updated to Patch 7.1.5.

    Last edited by Sal the Shieldhog; 2017-05-25 at 07:18 PM.

  2. #2
    Field Marshal Encenoa's Avatar
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    Can I ask why Haste > Mastery in 7.0?

  3. #3
    Pit Lord
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    Quote Originally Posted by Encenoa View Post
    Can I ask why Haste > Mastery in 7.0?
    Because you gain more shield slam etc, which leads to more rage -> more / larger ignore pain. Shield block is also down to a very low cost, which leads to no downtime, but ignore being stronger than crit block.
    Prot is my off spec, but was my main during cata and MoP.
    I'm not saying I am a pro tank, but the above would be my answer...

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Encenoa View Post
    Can I ask why Haste > Mastery in 7.0?
    Haste reduces the cooldown of the GCD and certain abilities. With enough Haste and Heavy Repurcussions, you can have very high uptime on Shield Block.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow the Edgehog View Post
    Haste reduces the cooldown of the GCD and certain abilities. With enough Haste and Heavy Repurcussions, you can have very high uptime on Shield Block.
    So haste will actually be weak (compared to mastery) if you already have enough to maintain shield block during the periods of time which you actually tank blockable abilities?

    Also why is crit so low, is it just the diminished returns on parry or do parries no longer reset revenge?
    Last edited by Knightwolve; 2016-07-19 at 05:37 PM.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Knightwolve View Post
    So haste will actually be weak (compared to mastery) if you already have enough to maintain shield block during the periods of time which you actually tank blockable abilities?

    Also why is crit so low, is it just the diminished returns on parry or do parries no longer reset revenge?
    Revenge still resets on dodges and parries. But yes, diminishing returns for avoidance (parry) was significantly increased. That combined with the negative synergy parrying has with RFTD causes us to value crit much less.

  7. #7
    The Patient Lycanthat's Avatar
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    Heroic Strike, you will be missed...

    RIP in Pieces
    2004-2016
    https://www.heroicstrike.org/

  8. #8
    so if you use ignore pain before the damage absorption from the last ignore pain is used, it will just keep stacking right?

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Dankdruid View Post
    so if you use ignore pain before the damage absorption from the last ignore pain is used, it will just keep stacking right?
    Yes, it does stack. But I believe there is a hard cap, probably need to run a few more experiments on that though

  10. #10
    If i recall correctly the IP hard cap is 3*IP at max rage or 6*IP at max rage if Never Surrender is taken as talent

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Volardelis View Post
    Yes, it does stack. But I believe there is a hard cap, probably need to run a few more experiments on that though
    Quote Originally Posted by Faceless Jim View Post
    If i recall correctly the IP hard cap is 3*IP at max rage or 6*IP at max rage if Never Surrender is taken as talent
    thanks for the info, i read on icy veins that it caps at 1.5x your health. do not know if that is true.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Dankdruid View Post
    thanks for the info, i read on icy veins that it caps at 1.5x your health. do not know if that is true.
    Well, no. Now IP is calculated with ( 28 * AP * (1 + versatility modifier)). Your health has nothing to do with it, in a previous version it scaled as a % of your health so that's probably why they calculated the cap as a function of health.

  13. #13
    I made an account since no one has mentioned this.

    Intercept is currently broken. It's so strong.

    Intercept is off global cd. Intercept can be used point blank on a friendly target and has no animation when used point blank. Intercept generates 20 rage.

    That means, you can use intercept as a rage generator. That means every 15 seconds you can gain 20 rage. You can also intercept twice to a friendly target before a pull in order to start with 38 rage.

    I made a macro that intercept my off tank, so that I can intercept constantly. It helps so much when you need 20-40 rage quick.

  14. #14
    SO with my 200k apexis that will be doing nothing, time to find haste gear and empower it, eh? Good times.

    Of the Feverflare - Haste, Mastery
    Of the Aurora - Haste, Versatility

    IP was fun last night. Only reason to use SB was to buff shield slams. When I forgot to use it felt like I caught healers off guard because with constant usage no real healing was needed.

  15. #15
    Hey everyone, so now that Enraged Regeneration is gone, is there something we can take or use to replace it?? I do a lot of Solo content and Enraged Regeneration was a life saver sometimes

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by 7yphon View Post
    Hey everyone, so now that Enraged Regeneration is gone, is there something we can take or use to replace it?? I do a lot of Solo content and Enraged Regeneration was a life saver sometimes
    With IP you won't need a heal. You can Absorb almost all the damage you take. And for that little that gets through there's impending victory on a 30 sec cd.

  17. #17
    I created a WeakAura for tracking Vengeance that you might find useful:

    http://pastebin.com/F1AZfr9p

    It's a simple icon that appears whenever you have either Vengeance buff. If your next Focused Rage will be 50% off, it shows the Focused Rage icon. If your next Ignore Pain will be 50% off, it shows the Ignore Pain. So you can just glance at it and see what button to press next.

    If you don't have the rage to use the next ability yet, the icon is greyed out. If you have enough rage to use the next ability at full effectiveness (30 rage or more for Ignore Pain, 15 rage for Focused Rage) then the icon glows.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Faceless Jim View Post
    With IP you won't need a heal. You can Absorb almost all the damage you take. And for that little that gets through there's impending victory on a 30 sec cd.
    I didnt see we now have a talent Called Impending Victory :P which I has seen this before :P

    I'm new to the whole Prot warr

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Agromat View Post
    I created a WeakAura for tracking Vengeance that you might find useful:

    http://pastebin.com/F1AZfr9p

    It's a simple icon that appears whenever you have either Vengeance buff. If your next Focused Rage will be 50% off, it shows the Focused Rage icon. If your next Ignore Pain will be 50% off, it shows the Ignore Pain. So you can just glance at it and see what button to press next.

    If you don't have the rage to use the next ability yet, the icon is greyed out. If you have enough rage to use the next ability at full effectiveness (30 rage or more for Ignore Pain, 15 rage for Focused Rage) then the icon glows.
    Did the same with a couple Raven conditionals. Really all you need to track though is the V:FR portion. Everything flows from it anyhow.

    And anyone else seeing bigger Absorb totals with Indomitable? I never get low enough for Never Surrender to make much of a difference. I am sure it will be better at 110 though. Protect against those bigger hits when we are sitting lower on the health bar.

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Uaeko View Post
    And anyone else seeing bigger Absorb totals with Indomitable? I never get low enough for Never Surrender to make much of a difference. I am sure it will be better at 110 though. Protect against those bigger hits when we are sitting lower on the health bar.
    Yeah, Indomitable is better if you vastly overgear the content and sit above 75% health pretty consistently. Once we hit Legion and we start to spend a lot more of our time below that, Never Surrender gets better and better.

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