Icecrown Citadel Gear Set

Updates to my Gear Sets

I recently amended my thread on MainTankadin about gear sets to include a general set for use when tanking progression encounters under the influence of Chill of the Throne. This set is compiled with the intention of main tanking progression content in ICC. The philosophy and reasoning behind the higher value of stamina is due to the fact that the relative benefit of avoidance ratings are less as you avoid less attacks from the Chill of the Throne. As a result, stamina is the most powerful stat due to its lack of diminishing returns and ability to directly increase your survival.

The Chill of the Throne Set

This set is being introduced to deal with gearing and gemming philosophies and gear choices while under the influence of Chill of the Throne. Chill of the Throne automatically negates 20% of your chance to dodge when you enter any of the Icecrown Citadel Raid instances. The concepts of this gear set are mostly geared around Effective health, and Theck’s new formula for Effective health. This differs in regards to the normal “effective health” set above in the fact that we are forsaking avoidance and buffering for a combination of magical and physical damage. Based on a detailed discussion on Chill of the Throne, the vast majority of the paladin tanking community agrees that maximizing your ability to take the hits (aka stamina stacking) is the best course of action.

This set can be altered based on the encounter to provide the best amount of “Effective Health” as long as you understand the types of damage that you are going to face (e.g. Physical, Magic, Bleed). There are certain goals that you want to achieve in order for your ICC set to be effective with Chill of the Throne Active. Above all, Stamina is king. While the understanding that if you were in favor of avoidance before, you can still favor it and do well is true. The best relative increase in your time to live is from pure stamina, as it does not suffer from harsh diminishing returns.

There are certain goals that must be achieved in order for your threat set to be effective. I will say this as part of each and every set, but you must maintain your defense minimum of 540, there is no way around this. Once this has been achieved, you can start to look at your other priorities: Stamina, Stamina, and then some armor. The set will contain dual stamina trinkets, and all of your sockets save one will be gemmed for stamina. You will also want to place stamina enchants on most of your gear, as long as you stay above the defense minimum.

DISCLAIMER – It is important to know that there will be times when the other sets listed above will be better for tanking encounters in Icecrown Citadel. Each set has its time and place for use. This is a general utility set to maximize time to live while under the influence of Chill of the Throne, not the only set you should wear in ICC.

The Basics of a Chill of the Throne set –
540 Defense
Stamina Stack
Bonus Armor when possible
Ensure Double Stamina trinkets
Ensure 26 Expertise

The Gems and Enchants Specific to a Chill of the Throne set –
Gem for Stamina
Austere Earthsiege Diamond
Armor to (gloves and) Cloak
Mongoose to Weapon
Stamina / Resilience Shoulder Enchant
Super Health to Chest
Stamina to Bracers and Boots
Agility or Stamina to Gloves


12 Responses to “Icecrown Citadel Gear Set”

  1. December 21, 2009 at 4:35 pm

    Another thing for this, since the patch I’ve started to swap some dodge out for parry as I’ve been going along since dodge is pretty much useless now in ICC. I do agree that now stamina is king and any tank heading to ICC should try and get as much stam as possible.

  2. 2 Morlin
    December 21, 2009 at 7:42 pm

    Tangoguy, I think you’re a bit misinformed. Dodge is not useless now. If ever dodge was “useless” it was in To(G)C. If you are gemming for avoidance, you still want to gem dodge over parry, depending on your dodge/parry ratio, which should be as close to 1.88 as possible. But yeah, going for EH is (generally) the best way to go for progression tanking.

    • December 22, 2009 at 9:53 am

      Probably wrote that a little wrong. Gemming dodge over parry is still the right way to go but dodge isn’t as useful on gear as it has been. If there has been a swap of dodge to parry on a piece of gear with similar numbers (and it is a good upgrade as well) I will take it because I know that that extra bit of parry will probably help me a little bit more. I do agree though that dodge isn’t useless but it’s a shame it isn’t as useful as before…

      • 4 Wrathy
        December 22, 2009 at 11:53 am

        Really this is still slightly incorrect. Parry is still subject to steeper diminishing returns than dodge, and this is why we say that dodge is “better.” If you are having problems making decisions on what piece of gear you should pick up, and Chill of the Throne is effecting those decisions, just remove Chill from the equation. The way you gear outside the instance is the same way you should gear inside the instance. The only difference in your gear and your stats is that when you walk into ICC, you lose 20% dodge off the top.

        Regardless of this fact, if your ratio of Dodge to Parry is less than 1.88, you will gain more avoidance by gearing for dodge, than you will for parry. There is a significant amount of parry on the gear in ICC and we will more than likely be getting less and less out of parry than we did int he past. All this is compounded by the fact that our Tier gear is full of avoidance. Right now, unless you are tanking Deathbringer Saurfang, you would want to sacrifice avoidance for other stats, namely Stamina, armor, and to a lesser extent, expertise.

      • December 22, 2009 at 12:26 pm

        Hmmm, I guess you’re right.

      • 6 Morlin
        December 22, 2009 at 12:28 pm

        What Wrathy said.

        When Blizzard announced that they were going to implement Chill of the Throne for 3.3, they weren’t doing it to discourage tanks from stacking avoidance. They admitted that avoidance across the board had gotten too high, due to extra iLvLs of gear because of hard modes, etc. They said that tanks that liked to balance their stats, and go more towards stacking avoidance would continue to like doing that. They also said that tanks that preferred to stack stamina everywhere they could, would continue to like doing that. Generally, for progression tanking, you’d want to go for as much EH on your gear as possible. But for those fights where avoidance is king, you can still switch to your avoidance set, and dodge is still the best avoidance stat.

        The main reason dodge was targeted to be reduced was because it’s the only avoidance stat (other than straight defense) that affects all four tank classes.

  3. December 22, 2009 at 10:53 pm

    Personaly I don’t understand the need to nerf dodge on tanks, tanking is a tough enough job already. But, you think stacking pary over dodge rating is the better way to go, so I think Ill give it a try.

    World of Weirdcraft.net your source or all things WOW

    • 8 Morlin
      December 22, 2009 at 11:23 pm

      No! Stacking parry over dodge is NOT the better way to go! I think you misread something up there. Dodge is still better to stack over parry unless your dodge:parry ratio is above 1.88, which with Chill of the Throne, is not likely to happen for a long time.

    • December 27, 2009 at 5:24 am

      The reason why they added Chill of the Throne is not to make the lives of tanks and healers more difficult, it’s actually to give them the design freedom to make encounters challenging, without relying on RNG melee hits.

      Do you remember Ignis the first week Ulduar was available? When he was hitting tanks for 30k-35k? And survival was completely dependant upon the tank never taking two unavoided hits in a row? Yeah, no skill, no fun, pure RNG.

      Encounters are designed with a basic healing throughput minimum required. What’s changing is the distribution of that throughput.

      Let’s say, hypothetically, that an encounter is designed to to require 10k hps throughput on the tank in order to survive. Looking at a ten second window, with a two second swing timer, there are two linked variables that the designers take into consideration to achieve that requirement. The first is tank avoidance, the second is swing damage. In t7 content, most tanks had around 40% avoidance. This means that in a ten second window, a boss would be expected to hit the tank 3 times. To achieve 10k hps, you’re looking at a boss hitting for roughly 33k a swing. Going into ToC, a well geared tank was pushing 60% avoidance, all of a sudden, to achieve the same throughput, the boss is hitting for 50k. And in full 264 gear, some tanks will be pushing almost 80% avoidance outside of ICC. In order to put the same strain on healers as in previous similarly tuned encounters, a boss would only be expected to hit once every 10 seconds, but that one hit would be for 100k. Anything less would be trivial for healers, but we’ve reached the point where tanks would be one shot by unavoided attacks.

      The solution was to hack down avoidance. They’ve accomlished this through several means, the first is Chill of the Throne, a flat reduction on all tanks avoidance. This has varied affects, and winds up hitting druids too lightly, and death knights a little bit too hard. They also set up a high EH, low avoidance set that’s very attractive, and accessable. This allows them to design encounters based upon tanks having 40%-50% avoidance, rather than 70%-80%. That’s the difference between a boss hitting for 33K, and hitting for 100k.

      Case in point would be Deathbringer Saurfang, who’s average melee hit is a meager 10.5k, however, he swings every second, resulting in the need for 6k-7k HPS on the tank. Take chill of the throne out of the picture, and all of a sudden the throughput requirement drops to 4k-5k HPS.

      Also, do not stack parry, because of the interaction between Chill of the Throne and diminishing returns, dodge is still better until you’ve got 1.88 time the dodge rating as you do parry rating. Chill changes nothing. It just means your healers are going to have to work a little harder.

  4. 10 Dmoney
    December 23, 2009 at 1:23 pm

    Do you think I should gem just stamina gems and ignore the socket bonus or still shoot for the socket bonus even if im socketing with dodge,def,etc..?

    • 11 Wrathy
      December 23, 2009 at 6:08 pm

      Gemming is a personal choice on how to customize your character, however that is the route that I have chosen to take after months of debate on MainTankadin. I used to be a die hard avoidance supporter, and I still love it, however the basic math of relative gains of avoidance versus stamina have proven that 30 stamina will give you more than the same relative avoidance rating while under the influence of Chill of the Throne.

  5. 12 Vallium
    December 29, 2009 at 12:48 pm

    Don’t underestimate the benefits of gearing Agi/Stam gems for those Red sockets if you really want the bonus. It may not do much on fights like Lady Deathbringer, but it’s a great overall stat where most of the damage coming in is physical like Lord Marrowgar. Assuming you’re geared from ToGC25 that is. In lower gear levels the dodge/stam may be a better combination.

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