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Gearing up your Holy Paladin for Crit

Author: Zach Yonzon Source: wowinsider

by Zach Yonzon from wowinsider

Before we get all our gear, we have to have a clear idea of what we want from them considering Blizzard has seen fit to load some Plate with Haste and others with Crit. Protection Paladins have no problem because as soon as you see a Defense value, we'll know it's meant for us. Holy and Retribution don't have it as easy, and must often choose between Crit and Haste. Don't worry about Tier 7 and other raid epics - they're loaded with both. There are benefits to both, so we'll examine those are after the break.

Critical Strike Rating is still an important stat to pursue. We already heal for massive amounts, and crits inflate those numbers to eye-popping values. Needless to say, we need to get all the necessary talents to pump up our Crit, which means going down the Retribution tree for Conviction and Sanctified Seals. Gearing up for raiding, on the other hand, forces us to make a choice.

Here's a quick gear guide for those who choose to go the way of Critical Strike.

1. Head
The sad part about pursuing Plate gear with Spell Power and Crit is that most of the best items will be drops from dungeons. Take, for example, the Helmet of the Constructor, which drops from Skarvald the Constructor in Heroic Utgarde Keep. This awesome helm has meta and red sockets, great crit and good Spell Power. It also has Intellect, to boot. Prior to this, opening up The Crusader's Pinnacle in Icecrown, a soloable chain of phased quests, will reward The Argent Crown. It has comparatively good stats, and although it lacks sockets, it's incredibly easy to get.

Speaking of the Argent Crusade, if you're doing quests for them, anyway, you just might want to consider grinding reputation with them to obtain the Helm of Purified Thoughts, which can be purchased at Exalted. It's the best upgrade before Tier 7 and other raid drops, complete with meta and blue sockets.

2. Shoulders
While you're in the area, you might also want to hit up heroic Utgarde Pinnacle, which has Ferocious Pauldrons of the Rhino. These drop from Gortok Palehoof, the second boss, and should be obtainable with some luck. It also has a yellow socket for more raw crit, although the socket bonus is just gravy. Alternatively, you can open up more quests in Icecrown (there tends to be a lot of quest chains in the zone) and obtain the Pauldrons of Morbidus as a reward for the soloable The Flesh Giant Champion. Aside from the great blue reward, the quest itself is pretty cool and story-driven, and I highly recommend completing it.

3. Chest
It's slim pickings for chest pieces with crit, but if you're willing to dive into the headache that is the Oculus, you might luck out with Eregos' Ornamented Chestguard. The good news is that it drops in Normal mode, so you'll probably get this while leveling to 80. When you're doing Heroics, however, Utgarde Pinnacle is again a good place to hit up as the last boss King Ymiron drops Ornamented Plate Regalia. Although it has no crit, it has a red and blue socket with a minor Haste socket bonus. As a last resort, you can always have a Blacksmith craft you a Brilliant Saronite Breastplate, which has no Intellect (eww, I know), but has pretty good MP5, crit, and a lot of Spell Power.

4. Waist
There are two excellent choices for a belt, both nearly identical in stats, down to having a yellow socket. The only question being whether you're lucky -- in which case you can try and go for the Girdle of Ice which drops from Omorok the Tree-Shaper in Heroic Nexus -- or unlucky, in which case you grind your way to Revered with the Kirin-Tor and buy the Girdle of the Warrior Magi. Perhaps you can do both and represent the Kirin-Tor whenever you run Heroic Nexus.

5. Legs
I feel bad about recommending this next piece because I think the Frenzyheart Tribe are total jerks and don't deserve all the sucking up that you'll need to do in order to get Discarded Titanium Legplates. Available at Revered status, these are about the best pre-raid crit plate pants Gold can buy. If the smell of those Frenzyheart snobs make you sick, you can always try and get the Ironshaper's Legplates to drop from Sjonnir the Ironshaper, the last boss in Normal Halls of Stone. He also drops a boring, crit-less epic belt in Heroic mode just in case you want to visit him then.

6. Feet
For the best pre-raid plate boots -- outside of spending thousands for the Blacksmithing-crafted Brilliant Titansteel Treads, you'll need to venture into Heroic Gundrak and defeat Moorabi. He drops Mojo Frenzy Greaves, a pair of red socketed boots with crit. Make sure you're headed in there with the quest One of a Kind, so you can always walk away with Slippers of the Mojo Dojo in case Moorabi refuses to cooperate.

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