Hi there, and welcome to the newest Warrior 5.4.7 guide! This guide is targeted at more advanced players (2.2-2.4), in contrast to Flavour's guide, which is targeted at newer players. As such, this guide will skip the more basic elements of warrior and the game as a whole such as keybinding and movement, and jump right into a higher level warrior explanation. So, let's begin!
Recent Changes for Warriors in 5.4.7
In 5.4 warriors received a very important, albeit needed, change that really helped out the casters among our ranks – a nerf to the very annoying Disrupting Shout ability. The AOE pummel was previously able to be used in conjunction with or straight after a pummel, often requiring double faking from the caster and granting the warrior a ridiculous uptime on them for the first ~20 seconds of the game. Whether you play caster or not, I think we can all agree that this was an appropriate nerf to warriors, and took them one more step backwards towards ‘strong’ from ‘retarded’.
TL; DR – Disrupting Shout is now mediocre.
On a more general note, the new season started! And with it, more resilience! Resilience is now at a staggering 80% damage reduction, slowing the game down immensely. At the time of writing, slower comps like WLS or LSD work much better due to lack of burst and more spread pressure combined with dampening thanks to longer games. This will most likely change in the next few weeks though, as more and more people get weapons. Battle Fatigue is also up to 60%, slowing down healing. (Including Second Wind IIRC!)
Talents and Glyphs
Warriors have been, for most of mop, quite cookie cutter in their spec. Some variations exist, but I feel that is better covered below.
The “Regular” Spec;
This is what I use. This does, in my experience work well. It also seems to generate controversy over Double Time! Let me justify this. When I play Double Time it doesn’t give me a free pass the second I can’t slam the target to charge them; it means I have to play with it intelligently. This gives you pretty much 100% uptime on Mages, Hunters, Druids, other Warriors, Monks, and any other class I can’t think of right now that can use a blink/jump ability to get away from you. Generally saving one will pretty much always guarantee you can get back on a target only if you need to, for example if a mage blinks into a wall just into charge range; don’t charge him. As I don’t feel I’ve explained this very well; I’ll simply do some diagrams with epic photoshop skills.
Heh. Anyway, this is “Situation A”. The Mage has just blinked away from you; and you have one charge on your charge left. The mage also has a 3rd partner who I forgot to draw, the druid, who has a clone out of the poly the mage just POM’d on your healer, who I also forgot to draw. Intelligent thing to do is to charge the druid on clone. Don’t charge the mage.
There is no situation B. I’m not putting myself through photoshop ever again. Anyway, it should be simple enough. Use Double Time smart, and it becomes much better than Juggernaut in my opinion.
TL; DR – Double Time versus high mobility casters/some melee/hunters, Juggernaut otherwise.
Second Wind, the tier 30 talent of choice for every warrior is simply the best – this is not up for discussion! It heals the most of all three talents, has 100% uptime (JK stunned.) and doesn’t require a keybind/button press.
TL; DR – Really? Its three lines. Go Second Wind.
Tier 45. Disrupting Shout vs Piercing Shout. This is something that sparked a debate in the other guide regarding which is better; in my opinion both are good! Piercing works well in pretty much every situation, hence it getting my preference. It is great for peeling, much better than the third alternative, staggering shout, as this breaks instantly on damage – this can save a shaman/holy paladin’s life versus KFC (I’m looking at you, Luddex.) or TSG. It can also land kills, say your other DPS is soloing something across the map and you got polied in Jamaica, saying hello to African children, you can slow the nearby healer without having to change target, slowing the time he can reach the target in and thus perhaps landing a kill. However, IMHO, Disrupting is still VERY viable, despite the recent nerfs. Against double caster teams I would argue this is a must, as landing a double kick on say, a Haunt + Lava Burst often could save defensive CDs. However outside of landing double interrupts it loses its value. Honestly, this tier is personal preference.
TL; DR – Disrupting is better versus double caster and Piercing versus pretty much everything else, however both can work well.
Bladestorm or Shockwave?! In previous patches Bladestorm has been very strong and viable, often carrying several different players to victory. No names. It typically works well in train the healer comps that already have a stun or in conjunction with storm bolt, also pretty good versus :rogue: :mage: :druid: / :priest: – if you are quick, Bladestorm can be used as an extra trinket to get out of stunlocks, perfect for when you fuck up and trinket before bomb! The spread pressure from Bladestorm and Bloodbath is also beyond retarded if you time it well so the enemy team has double targets for you to cleave down. Although, any real Warrior uses shockwave. This spell has infinite utility, with unlimited targets, a short cooldown if you aren’t suffering from brain haemorrhaging, and actually ok damage in full gear. I won’t go into the full usage of the spell in every aspect. It’s an instant, AOE stun. I would use this 99% of games.
TL; DR – Shockwave is best IMO, however Bladestorm has some nice utility. (It breaks hunter traps/polies though so be careful!)
Safeguard is best here, MSR is no longer viable due to the added mobility from Safeguard. Not much else to say other than use it intelligently, make it a macro like the one that will be included down below, to intervene your teammates and thus they receive the damage reduction.
TL; DR – Safeguard.
Finally, Stormbolt or Bloodbath. Bloodbath works well with Bladestorm, I have also heard reports of killing monks in 2v2 with Bloodbath + Shockwave. It really has limited uses outside of this though. Stormbolt is 100x better IMO. Using it in KFC is a must, for trapping off of stuns and also in TSG or Kitty, where every quarter DR stun matters. Ranged stun, good damage on fully DR’d stun targets. Only real downside is the travel time, making it easy to meld or pregrounding (for trap afterwards.)
TL; DR – Stormbolt 9/10 times, Bladestorm for YOLOswag
On to the glyphs! Glyphs are simple for warriors, with only one interchangeable one IMO! (However, even this is debated, however I will discuss this in a moment.)
Glyph of Death From Above – This gives you a 15 second cd reduction on Heroic Leap, making this glyph disgustingly overpowered. Must have for every comp/matchup in the game.
Glyph of Colossus Smash - Some warriors play without this. I personally wouldn’t. The damage difference on plate or even mail is noticeable and it feels really shitty applying weaken armor 3 globals every swap.
3rd Optional Glyph
Glyph of Shield Wall - This is sick versus teams that games last <2 mins against. RMD/P as notable examples, trinket + wall allows for them to restun you in the bomb and you should live if you wall at a reasonable time. 60% damage reduction is pretty fucking amazing.
Glyph of Mortal Strike - This glyph pretty much has the same overall effect as Shield Wall glyph, saving defensive CDs from both you and your healer, however is better suited to longer games, dotcleaves, and anything that doesn’t have a rogue. (Smoke Bomb counters you. Don’t die in it.)
Glyph of Bull Rush - When you simply are never, ever swapped to be a team, this gives you more damage. I don’t usually take this but if a TSG is just training shaman or something similar, it becomes alright, however even in this situation Blitz is stronger.
Glyph of Blitz - Perfect for peeling double melee. Not much else to save about this glyph. Combined with Double Time it becomes even stronger.
Gearing and Gemming
Warriors are pretty cookie cutter with their gearing and gemming, much like talents. Max crit is currently the best way to go for Warrriors without a doubt. Crit gives enrage. Enrage = More rage + flat damage increase = damage increase. Also, Slam crits hard. And Recklessness and Skull Banner scale with Crit chance. So yeah. Everybody loves crit. Here is the typical gear layout for a warrior.
Mainset Helm, no other options here. No enchants available.
Grievous Gladiator’s Choker of Proficiency i.e Expertise + Crit. No enchants available.
Mainset Shoulders, no other option here. Enchant with Greater Tiger Fang Inscription.
Grievous Gladiator’s Cloak of Alacrity i.e Haste + Crit. Enchant with Superior Critical Strike.
Mainset Chest, again, no other options. Enchant with Glorious Stats.
Grievous Gladiator’s Armplates of Proficiency i.e Expertise + Crit. Enchant with Exceptional Strength.
Mainset Gloves, no other options. Enchant with Super Strength.
Grievous Gladiator’s Girdle of Prowess i.e Mastery + Crit. Enchant with a Living Steel Belt Buckle.
Mainset Legs, no other options. Enchant with Angerhide Leg Armor.
Grievous Gladiator’s Warboots of Cruelty i.e Crit + Mastery. Enchant with Pandaren’s Step.
Grievous Gladiator’s Signet of Accuracy + Grevious Gladiator’s Signet of Cruelty. Enchant with the ring enchant if you are a JC.
Double on use trinkets if human, if not proc trinket and Crit PvP trinket works best for orcs with engineering. (This is pretty much a must if you aren’t human.)
Meta Gem: Get two helms late season; one with the Tyrannical Meta Gem for teams that you can die against, otherwise play with a Reverberating Primal Diamond.
Yellow: Smooth Sun’s Radiance
Blue: Radiant Wild Jade
Red: Inscribed Vermillion Onyx
Notes: Gem two Smooth Sun’s radiance in legs, ignoring socket bonuses. Otherwise adhere to socket bonuses.
Reforging: 3% Hit = 3% Expertise > Crit > Mastery > Haste
General Tips N' Tricks + Macros
The most important thing about playing a warrior is positioning and trinketing. If you can’t master these two things, you won’t get very far as a warrior. You should be able to know when and where a trap is coming; this was fairly easy for me to pick up personally as playing a priest I had to learn to death scatters and thus this aspect was relatively simple. I’ll try to explain this as best I can; the easiest way is to learn the people you fight against. This is more difficult at lower ratings where teams are sporadic but this is a guide aimed at 2.2+ where often there is maybe 5-10 teams queuing at one time. This can lead you getting the advantage by learning how the enemy hunter traps. Does he scatter first, or wyvern? Or perhaps off of storm bolt every time. Either way, acting like a druid or shaman preactively by leaping or intervening onto a trap destination before it’s even thrown is instrumental in your success rate. This really sets the men apart from the boys when it comes to Warriors.
The second most important thing is trinketing. As you only have one trinket (barring Zerker!) you are often a good swap target for stun teams like :rogue: / X / X ( :D ). Thus, against rogue teams I save trinket for bomb. If they bomb on you, often trinket + wall is a good decision if they pop blades. If they blind you and swap healer, you should trinket if you can help out and then you have to hold trinket for the next bomb. It sucks, but without trinket you have lost the game. This goes for deeps as well, however you can live through a deep without death.
As you play more games and gain more experience with your class, you will become better and better at pre swapping stances before swaps on you. If you get caught in battle stance in a dance/orb, they will force your trinket, meaning you have to end within a minute if they have bomb up. I can’t really give tips for this. It’s more of a general awareness thing – watch for the enemy team’s positioning, if they dot you up when they previously hadn’t, unleash elements from a Ele, etc. Just be careful and swap to D if you take damage. Bullrush comes in handy if you have to sit D stance but in no danger of dying, giving you much more rage.
Damage Rotation; Colossus > Mortal > Slam with CDs up, during CS window, or against casters. Overpower against melee, or hunters. Can also be good versus resto shamans / ele shamans.
Here is Veev's take on Slam vs Overpower.
"Slam does ~32994 damage on average for 25 rage (1320 damage per rage, counting the bonus damage from Colossus Smash). Overpower does ~14102 damage for 10 rage (1410 damage per rage, counting the increased crit chance). Overpower is not only more rage efficient, but also reduces the remaining cooldown of Mortal Strike (which in turn grants more rage and a more frequent chance at proccing the Enrage buff). And Overpower cannot be blocked, dodged, or parried. Slam has a 1.5s GCD, giving it around 21996 DPS, while Overpower has a 1.0 GCD, giving it around 14102 DPS. That DPS number is not including any of the added benefits mentioned for Overpower, which are difficult to quantify.
So while Slam does do better instantaneous DPS, it does not provide nearly as much sustained damage as Overpower. For this reason, I try to use Overpower as much as possible, except during burst windows where I may be able to score a quick kill. My damage priority order looks something like this: If Colossus Smash and Mortal Strike are available, use them (while trying to minimize clipping of CS debuff). If using one of those is going to put you over the rage cap, use a Heroic Strike as well. After that, if you have 70+ rage, use Slam -- otherwise, use Overpower. Try to avoid using Slam on enemies with a high dodge chance.
Finally, mocking gets stealth teams out. It works like flare and works amazing versus RMX that don’t expect it. This can save massive cds in the opener by preventing their opener.
Tier 60 Macro, i.e 'all in one bind'. Requires the macro to be called ''-'' (w.o quotes)
/cast Dragon Roar
/script n_vt=GetSpellInfo(46924); n_pf=GetSpellInfo(46968); n_dm=GetSpellInfo(118000)
/run SetMacroSpell("-", GetSpellInfo(n_vt) or GetSpellInfo(n_pf) or GetSpellInfo(n_dm))
On-Use + Bloodbath
Stormbolt target + stopcasting, useful to stop cc/a heal halfway through a shatter.
/cast Storm Bolt
Focus stormbolt + stopcasting
/cast [@focus] Storm Bolt
Cancel Bladestorm/Bop (To do something while in a ''cc'')
/cancelaura hand of protection
/cast [@focus] Charge
Demo Banner, for getting out of roots
#showtooltip demoralizing banner
/tar Mocking Banner
/tar Demoralizing Banner
/cast [help] Intervene
/cast Demoralizing Banner
/cast [@Intelivsød] Vigilance
/cast [@Intelivsød] Intervene
/cast [@focus] Intimidating Shout
/cast [@focus] Disarm
/cast [@Hypersphere] Vigilance
/cast [@Hypersphere] Intervene
Random Intervene (useful in 2s or bgs when you haven't made macros!)
Mocking Banner, for getting out of roots
#showtooltip mocking banner
/tar Mocking Banner
/tar Demoralizing Banner
/cast [help] Intervene
/cast Mocking Banner
/cast [@focus] Pummel
/cast [stance:1] Defensive Stance
/cast [Stance:2] Battle Stance
Helm swap, I used this to swap between tyrannical meta and 3% crit.
/equip Grievous Gladiator's Plate Helm
/equip Grievous Gladiator's Plate Helm
/cast Skull Banner
Viable Comps + Streams
Warriors are in a really strong position this season, being one of the more viable classes among the dozen melee. They have the most viable comps available to them, and together with the comp illustrated above, is one of the easiest and best classes in the game to reach high rating with. Take it from me ;). Here is a simple list of the best comps for warriors. This is done in DPS/DPS/Healer format.
:warrior: :warlock: :shaman: - WLS is one of the strongest comps in the game at the time of writing, with the lack of strong burst in the game the warlock slowly rots the whole team down while the warrior does whatever he wants. The main strat here is to spam fear as much as possible, do max PvE damage, and have the warrior swap on whatever he can hit. If you ever played RLS in cata, it feels pretty similar. Probably one of the easier warrior comps.
:warrior: :hunter: :shaman: - KFC is also probably one of, if not the best comp in the game. The sheer damage and cc this comp has is ridiculous. From a warrior's point of view you have two jobs; take traps and do damage. If you want to get plus 2.4 you also may need to throw a stormbolt into trap though ;). Tunnel one target all game, force all cds with reck and then kill with raw damage. I generally pop cds as soon as my proc trinket procs or when we land the first trap, which normally forces dispersion/block/bubble etc.
:warrior: :hunter: :paladin: - Paladin KFC; Similar to above, just slightly weaker due to hpaladin getting cc'd much more. Is definently viable though.
:warrior: :deathknight: :paladin: - Paladin TSG; Stupidly good, but not as good as monk is at the moment. Lack of gear means it isn't actually outhealable.
:warrior: :deathknight: Monk - TSG with monk. Oh boy. The main thing about this comp is to have your monk pop his cds instead of yours. This guarentees you win against every single RM/X team. Monks will never ever die, but you will. If rogue pops dance + blades in opener, have him bubble you and you can sit it (either dk or warrior.) and maybe AMS/Parry out if really needed but it shouldn't be. Freedoms + Sprint from monk is stupid for dk, considering their only weakness is mobility. I actually play stuns here, and have my dk go chillblains. Charge>Shockwave>Stormbolt>Gnaw>Strang will for sure force a trinket or a kill, either way. Pop cds early as soon as they have used the cc they have, and can't peel you that well.
:warrior: :druid: :paladin: - Kitty is super strong right now, feral mobility and your damage is enough as long as you train casters. Can be tough versus teams that spam cc though, or hunters who know how to scare beast. Main tactic is similar to TSG - TRAIN TRAIN TRAIN.
:warrior: :druid: :shaman: - Shaman Kitty; same as above with purges and less survivability.
- Boomer/Warrior; Train casters and turtle between beams; against no hex dispel teams should go similar to this; charge, stormbolt or shockwave, beam vortex/root, hex, double clone, restun. Strength comes from CC and healing output.
:warrior: :mage: :druid: - WMD; Stupid CC and pve damage every minute. Not going to talk about this comp.
:warrior: :shaman: :druid: - Thunder; not that strong ATM but will become more viable with more and more gear. If the druid can spam clones just hit whatever and hope for procs, as you get more damage the comp becomes better.
- Turbo; better version of kitty, same tactics, more cc.
:warrior: :shaman: :paladin: - Paladin turbo, ^.
:warrior: :priest: :shaman: - WPS, One of my favorite comps in the game, really nice swaps to healers and survivability. Charge>shockwave>blanket>restun>disarm stun on a healer with no trinket and 3 orbs is pretty much a gg no re.
And finally, good warrior streams!
https://www.twitch.tv/swifty - <3
And that’s it! Done! Thank you all for reading. Good night people! :D