Current as of patch 4.3, enjoy!
- Race Choice
- Stat Priority
- Cookie Cutter Spec
- Slam or Incite?
- Optional Talents
- Gag Order
- Playstyle Guide
- Tips and Tricks
- Competitive Setups
All 12 races in the game can be warriors. I've narrowed it down to the best three races for each faction and any racial bonuses that directly affect warriors:
Every Man for Himself frees up a trinket slot otherwise used for your PvP Trinket. If you can get a nice trinket from raiding it can really make a difference. The 3 free expertise when using a sword or mace is nice too.
Escape Artist gets you out of one root. Warriors are constantly sitting in roots which makes this an excellent racial.
Shadowmeld is a great defensive racial. It completely negates the effects of any harmful ability when used at the same time. Quite difficult to pull this off but it can game-breaking. Enemies also de-target you when this is used. So if you see a mage pop his cooldowns and cast a Frostbolt at you while you're in a nova, Shadowmeld and he will have to re-target you and re-cast . You also get a 2% reduced chance to get hit by any abilities and some nature resistance.
Blood Fury gives you a decent amount of attack power and you get 3 expertise when using an axe. The attack power bonus can be used with your dps trinket, I highly recommend playing this race as horde, the racial bonuses synergize well with the class.
Arcane Torrent is a two second AoE silence. Use it to interrupt heals or to get that little bit of lockout you need to finish a caster/healer. This spell shares DR with all other silences.
Will of the Forsaken gets you out of charm, fear or sleep effect. This shares a 30s cooldown with your PvP trinket. Also, best looks and character animations
All crafting professions were made to give about 80 of your primary stat before the introduction of epic level gems.
Access to special gems that give 67 strength: Bold Chimera's Eye. Up to three can be used at the same time.
Access to flask that gives 80 strength: Flask of Enhancement.
Access to +40 strength on your rings: Enchant Ring - Strength
Access to 130+ strength to bracers: Draconic Embossment Strength
Access to shoulder enchant adds 130 strength and 25 crit rating: Lionsmane Inscription
Access to two extra gem slots. One on bracers, one on gloves: Socket Gloves and Socket Bracer
Cloak enchant proc for 1000 attack power: Swordguard Embroidery
Access to 480 strength proc on gloves: Synapse Springs
If you take any of these 2 professions you should be fine but if you really want that little bit of extra strength you can take blacksmithing for an extra 20 strength. Using two Bold Queen's Garnet you get 100 extra strength rather than 80 from the rare gems.
5% Hit (601 Hit Rating) > Strength > Crit/Resilience > Mastery > Haste
Why are crit and resilience together?
This is really a matter of what comp you are playing/playing against and personal preference. Let's say we have a Kittycleave versus WLS. Ideally, the warrior on the WLS team will most likely be playing with a lower amount of resil since he expects the Kittycleave to make swaps to, or focus, the lock and shaman. Anywhere from 4.2k - 4.6k resil should be fine. The warrior on the Kittycleave is most likely the kill target and will want to run close to 5k resil. I like to play with around 4.4k resil regardless of comp.
Once again, this is a matter of personal preference. I like to play with 20 expertise which makes it so that casters cant dodge my abilities. However, rogues/ferals/DKs will still be able to parry and dodge. Some warriors like to stack almost 30 expertise. With the amount of ferals/rogues/dks in arena this might not be a bad idea. It all comes down to a safety stat vs crit.
Red - Bold Inferno Ruby/ Bold Queen's Garnet
Yellow - Resplendent Ember Topaz / Resplendent Lava Coral or Inscribed Ember Topaz/ Inscribed Lava Coral
Blue - Etched Demonseye / Etched Shadow Spinel
Meta - Reverberating Shadowspirit Diamond
Head - Arcanum of Vicious Strength
Shoulder - Greater Inscription of Vicious Strength
Cloak - Enchant Cloak - Greater Critical Strike
Chest - Enchant Chest - Mighty Resilience
Bracers - Enchant Bracer - Major Strength
Hands - Enchant Gloves - Mighty Strength
Legs - Dragonscale Leg Armor
Boots - Enchant Boots - Lavawalker
Weapon - Enchant Weapon - Landslide
In the Prime slots, there isn't too much of a debate as to what glyph to pick, we want:
Glyph of Bladestorm
Glyph of Mortal Strike
Glyph of Overpower
In the Major slots we have a selection of glpyhs to pick from:
Glyph of Piercing Howl
This one is a must have imo. Having a 15 yard AoE slow is just too good to pass up. Helps you connect to targets that are running away from you.
Glyph of Long Charge
5 extra yards on charge is even more essential ever since most ranged abilities are 40 yards.
Glyph of Rapid Charge
This seems underwhelming but you'll most likely be using charge off cooldown. The one extra second off each charge really makes a difference in the long-run.
Glyph of Spell Reflection
Not that great since spell reflect is 25 seconds anyways
Glyph of Shield Wall
I think this major is underrated. The game is highly likely going to end in the five minutes after you use shield wall, so I think having a 60% reduction outweighs the irrelevant increase in cooldown.
Glyph of Sweeping Strikes
Takes off the 30 rage requirement for sweeping strikes, which is a good amount of rage. A must have glyph if you spec into SS.
I like to use both charge glyphs and piercing howl.
Cookie Cutter Spec
This is the backbone of all specs, most warriors will have these talents (Don't count the 1/2 in Blitz, I just needed it to get 31 points in...):
Slam or Incite?
This has been a huge topic of debate for warriors. Once again it comes down to personal preference. here is an overview of the two talents to help you decide
Let's look at Incite first:
Incite increases your Heroic Strike crit chance and allows these critical strikes to trigger another guaranteed crit (Yo dawg...).
This significantly increases our overall damage and you will be seeing a higher amount of damage done for most arena games. Since Heroic Strike is an instant and of GCD it is extremely easy to use properly. Use Heroic Strike whenever you have excess rage (>60) and you are using it in the most efficient way possible. Another thing to note is that since Heroic Strike is instant, you don't really need a high uptime to get the most out of this talent.
Unfortunately Incite scaled only with attack power and hits for relatively low amounts (about 5k non-crit on 4k resil) and as such it does not contribute to burst damage as much as Overpower or Mortal Strike, even with cooldowns popped.
Now Improved Slam:
Improved Slam shortens your Slam cast time to a very fast 0.5s and increases its damage by 20%. This seems to be the preferred schoice for most high rated warriors. Hoodrych explains why he chooses to use slam in his video:
Sinix also explains why he chose to use slam:
"It's simple, with incite you're trading an ability for a crit proc. If anything Incite is better if you have high uptime because you can you can still crit without it. But you're not going to be slamming without Improved Slam. You're missing out on a ton of burst by not taking slam. To get the amount of burst that you have with slam you'd need to use heroic strike 2-3 times which definitely isn't happening since Heroic Strike cost 30 rage."
Simply put, slam is more burst but less overall damage. It requires a higher amount of uptime to be effective and is a bit difficult to weave in at times, but is extremely powerful when used during cooldowns. Slam scales with weapon damage so its effectiveness should increase with the T2 weapon.
Note that with Improved Slam you get 3 talent points leftover, whereas with Incite you only get 2.
Drums of War
Great for warriors who have trouble managing their rage. Ensures that you can always pummel or fear.
Gives your charge an AoE to its stun and increases its rage generation. Most warrior take 1 point here.
Gives your offensive abilities a cleave, very powerful versus cleave teams and can open up swap opportunities when used correctly.
Nice little damage bonus when you lock out a cast. When setup with an addon like tellmewhen, it's an easy way to tell if you got juked or locked out a cast. Don't put more than 1 point into it though. The second point doubles the duration of the buff and pummel is only a 10 second cooldown.
Here's a spec that drops Piercing Howl and Blood Craze for Gag Order: http://us.battle.net...YeheQhW!ad!kaag
Gag order gives you a 3 second silence Pummel and Heroic Throw and lowers its cool down by 30 seconds. You can also move around the points from slam into some utility talents if you wish. Honestly Gag Order doesn't merit the loss of a 15 yard slow and blood craze. Your forced into incite and you need to dump two points into Toughness, a useless talent. This spec could possibly be beneficial if you're running TSG, where the DK will be supplying most of the snares/roots.
Most of the macros I use have /cancelaura Bladestorm in them. The reason for this is so that you don't have to click off Bladestorm buff if you really need to cancel it.
/cast [nostance:1/3]Battle Stance
/cast [nomodifier] Charge
/cast [nomodifier] Rend
/cast [modifier:shift, target=focus] Charge
Puts you in Battle Stance if you are not in it and charges. Shift modifier to focus charge. I also have Rend in this macro to save a keybind. Uses Rend when in melee range.
/cast [modifier:shift, target=focus] Pummel; Pummel
Simple pummel macro. Pummels target or shift modifier to pummel focus target. It's also useful to have a macro like this for Throwdown.
#showtooltip Heroic Leap
/castsequence [target=focus, exists] reset=combat/3 !Heroic Leap, Pummel; !Heroic Leap
Neat little macro. Leaps over to your focus target and pummel him with the same button, great for catching those casts quickly.
/cast [stance:2] Disarm; [stance:1/3] Defensive Stance
Puts you in the correct stance and Disarms.
/cast [stance:1/3]defensive stance
/cast [help] [target=Joe, help] Intervene; Intervene
Replace Joe with the name of your healer. puts you in the correct stance and intervenes your healer when no friendly target is selected. If you target your other partner it will intervene him instead.
#showtooltip Shield Wall
/cast [stance:1/3]Defensive Stance
/equip *name of 1h*
/equip *name of shield*
/cast Shield Wall
/cast Shield Block
Cancels Recklessness, puts you in defensive stance, equips your 1h and shield and casts shield wall.
#showtooltip Spell Reflection
/cast [stance:1/2,equipped:Shields] Spell Reflection; [stance:3] Defensive Stance
/stopmacro [equipped: Shields]
/equip *name of 1h*
/equip *name of shield*
Puts you in defensive stance, equips 1h and shield and spell reflects.
The best thing a warrior can do in an arena is damage. As sad as that sounds, its true. We don't offer much utility compared to the other classes, but we have great sustained damage. So how do go about maximizing our damage output?
- Maximizing Sustained Damage
Slaughter stacks are gained through the use of Mortal strike, stacking up to 3 times and giving us 10% extra damage with each stack. This is where all our damage comes from, try everything you can to keep 3 stacks once you have them. The buff lasts 15 seconds, if you find its about to fall off and you cant reach your target, just look around for pets or totems to hit to keep the stacks up.
Always make sure rend is up on your target, after the first application, Mortal Strike re-applies it, so it's not too hard. Never miss a Taste for Blood (Overpower) proc, Overpower's high crit chance and low rage cost of 5 makes it a high dps/dpr ability.
- Double Overpower
The Taste for Blood buff lasts for 9 seconds with a 5 second cooldown. That means if you do not use overpower before 3 seconds left on the buff, you will have 'wasted' an overpower since it's been replaced by a new one. However if you time it right and use overpower between 3-4 seconds left on the buff, you will get a new proc in between the global cooldown. Landing back-to-back overpowers as opposed to using it as early as possible allows for moments of burst damage that would otherwise not be possible.
- Colossus Smash
Colossus Smash (CS) is a powerful burst cooldown on a very short CD. However, it's easy to waste and quite hard to use effectively. The cooldown on CS can be randomly refreshed by any of your attacks, try use colossus smash as soon as you get these procs, known as Sudden Death procs, but never CS when low on rage.
Colossus Smash last 6 seconds. If you factor in the GCD it takes to use it, you have 4.5 seconds, or 3 abilities you can use before it falls off. The best way to maximize damage during CS is to use the double overpower trick:
Mortal Strike -> Overpower -> Overpower
KEEP YOUR TARGET SNARED.
This is so friggin' important its not even funny, either you or your partner needs to keep some kind of snare on your kill target. Keeping your target snared helps you keep him in melee range and thus allows you to do damage. Damage is good. One more time:
KEEP YOUR TARGET SNARED.
Bursting as a warrior is all about cooldown management (Deadly Calm, Reck) and smart CS usage. You should always CS before you pop a burst cooldown, you want the damage you gain from the armour penetration.
Start off by building up 3 stacks of lambs. Pop Deadly Calm and on-use trinket, Colossus Smash (hopefully you lined this up with you double overpower) and then:
Mortal Strike + Heroic Strike -> Overpower -> Overpower + Heroic Strike
Heroic Strike is on global cooldown and can be used with your other abilities. Continue to use Heroic Strike off cool-down and use CS when its available.
The same concept applies to Recklessness. Try to use Reck when you have a near full rage bar so that you can use the two Heroic Strikes with your Colossus Smash Debuff.
- Heroic Leap
- There are a few places you can leap 'up' onto on z-axis maps, Hoodrych has a great video on how to do this:
Hoodrych - how to heroic leap in arena by hoodrych
- When using Heroic Leap as a gap closer on moving enemy, remember that there is a travel time to it. Lead a bit in front of your target so that you land right on top of them.
- If you really need to land a charge stun on someone you can leap away to get distance from your target, then charge back for the stun. This is especially great for when you throwdown a priest/paladin aura mastery and they trinket. Landing that charge ensures they wont get that heal off.
- Focus charging heals is a great way to set healers behind. I don't recommend doing this that often against wizards since you will almost always need charge as a gap closer, but against melee cleave this it can be very effective.
- Don't forget that you can't charge anyone on the pillars in Ring of Valor while they're down. Stupid bug that hasn't been fixed yet :/
- Most hunter and rogue CC is effected by intervene. What I mean is that if your healer has the intervene buff and a rogue/hunter uses blind, scatter shot, kidney shot, etc. it will go onto you instead. Intervening CC is an amazing way of reducing the pressure on your healer.
- Battle shout and intervene your healer out of the gates if its a rogue team and try to get him to get into combat as soon as possible. Most rogues don't expect this and they will have sap twice before they can get your healer.
- Use intervene as a gap closer as often as you can. Is your partner on the target but your getting kited? Intervene him and continue to smash his face in. Is your priest going to land a fear on a healer and the dps you want to swap to? Intervene him and get swappin' (the fuk does that even mean).
- Retaliate when a warrior blade-storms and he will take massive damage.
- A good way to create pressure while being focused by melee is to improve hamstring and then retaliate. They wont be able to kite it and will take a ton of damage.
- Intimidating Shout
- Intimidating Shout is not entirely useless against shamans, you can still use it as another interrupt.
- Demo Shout/Thunderclap
- Keep both of these up against melee cleaves, the amount of damages mitigates is significant. Not only does it slow the attack speed by 20% it also reduces energy regeneration (rogues, ferals) and rune regeneration.
WMP - /
Kitty Cleave - /
KFC - / /
Gladius - A custom arena party frame addon that shows trinkets, cast bars, DR's etc.
TellMeWhen - Shows buffs/debuffs, cooldowns, procs etc. on any target of your choice in a customizable area on your screen. Draaxx has a video on how to set this addon up: Draaxx - How to setup Tell Me When addon. FukkenZuzah also has an image guide on this as well: FukkenZuzah - Official Guide For IB/TMW
LoseControl - Shows the duration and type of CC on yourself by displaying them in a moveable area onscreen.
If you would like to comment or add to this guide in any way please PM me and I will add you to contributor list when I am finished. More coming to playstyle section soon, I really feel that its lacking.