I would’ve written this earlier, but I hadn’t received confirmation until now that 5.1 would actually be coming out tomorrow. Actually I got confirmation while I was still at work. Which is a bummer. Then I had to raid. But now I can tell you what you need to care about in 5.1 (and start updating the Guardian Guide and Guardian Gear Guide accordingly). In any case, here we go!
Tooth & Claw
The most important change in Patch 5.1 for Guardians is easily a new ability called Tooth & Claw. I’ve previously done an extensive writeup on this new ability based on research Wens and I conducted during PTR. It’s basically ridiculously overpowered for what it does. I’ve included a small summary below:
- Your primary AM button will not change on a fight-by-fight basis. Both SD and FR are still more powerful-per-Rage than Tooth and Claw.
- Haste becomes more valuable than Crit (imo) for encounters where Tooth & Claw prevents damage. Not only does it affect you, but it also reduces damage to your co tank on applicable bosses with taunt swaps.
- Since Maul has a hard RPS cap of 10 (or 15 during Incarnation) Rage generation stats in general suddenly become more valuable for those fights.
- Tooth & Claw applications stack on top of each other (in terms of value), but are used up on the first melee attack that hits the target.
For more details, check out the post linked above.
In 5.1 Symbiosis will now grant your co-tank a small cooldown. For some *coughProtWarriorscough* it is still useless, but for others (practically everyone else) it’s really good. Back on your co-tank Symbiosis goes.
New Reputation & Gear
With the new patch also comes a new reputation to grind. This isn’t a problem for me, since I’ve already ground everything else to Exalted. As with any new reputation the only reason you actually care about it is the items. I’ve prepared a list of the ones you should care about.
- Signet of the Shield Wall is available at Honored for 1,250 Valor.
- Crab-Leather Tabi is available at Revered for 1,750 Valor.
- Prevenge’s Swashbuckling Cinch is also available at Revered for 1,750 Valor.
- Arrowflight Medallion is again also available at Revered for 1,750 Valor.
Out of those, I’m expecting everyone will gun for the trinket as quickly as humanly possible. It’s an incredible item. The ring and belt also provide a Crit/Mastery alternative if that’s your thing. All-in-all some interesting choices, and you should be out there grinding to Revered as soon as possible.
Valor Upgrade System
I don’t really know much about this beyond being able to use Valor to upgrade pretty much any item. Perc did a quick writeup over at Wowhead about how it works. I suggest you check that out (seems pretty simple to me). As for when to do it? If you’re going to otherwise waste VP, obviously go ahead and upgrade something. Things that have Armor always go first over ones that don’t.
That’s pretty much it in terms of the vital stuff. I’ll be updating the Guardian Guide (likely tomorrow since no raid) with the new changes soon.
And yes, I did predict November 27th as 5.1 launch like a month ago.