PvE Frost Death Knight Stat Priority & Reforging

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In this section of the guide, we will go over each stat that a Frost Death Knight requires and explain how they function along with any possible stat caps that you will have to consider. Frost Death Knights have a similar stat priority to other Strength-based DPS specs.

Stat Priority

  1. Strength
  2. Hit Rating
  3. Haste Rating
  4. Mastery
  5. Critical Strike Rating
  6. Expertise Rating

Strength is a primary stat, being the most important stat for Frost Death Knight as it increases our Attack Power and the Attack Power of our pets! We will want to stack as much Strength as possible.

Hit Rating is the most important secondary stat after your primary stat, Strength, as you will require it to land hits on your target. You will need an 8% Hit Chance for Melee Attacks and 17% for your Spells. Luckily, we gain access to Runic Focus which grants us a 9% Hit Chance for our spells, meaning that we will only need to reach the 8% Melee Soft Cap.  Each 120.25 Hit Rating grants a 1% Hit Chance.

Haste Rating is the most valuable secondary stat after reaching the 8% Hit Chance Soft Cap. This stat increases our Attack Speed, reduces our GCD, and increases the rate at which our runes regenerate. You will want to stack as much Haste Rating as possible as a Frost Death Knight.

Mastery is a new stat introduced in Cataclysm that increases all of our Frost Damage through the Frozen Heart effect. This stat should be prioritized after the Haste Rating, even if the Critical Strike Rating is close in terms of performance to Mastery.

Critical Strike Rating is a stat that increases our chance of dealing critical strikes! This stat is valuable for Frost Death Knights as we have the Runic Focus passive effect which makes our spell critical strikes deal double damage. However, it should be prioritized last since we already have a guaranteed way of dealing consistent critical strikes through the Killing Machine effect. Each 179.28 Critical Strike Rating will grant a 1% Critical Strike Chance.

Finally, Expertise Rating allows us to prevent our target from dodging or parrying our attacks. We will need 26 Expertise to reach the Soft Cap upon which our target can’t dodge your attacks. and 56 Expertise to reach the Hard Cap upon which your attacks won’t be parried. We will only want to reach the Soft Cap. Each 30.0272 Expertise Rating will grant 1 Expertise.

While Expertise Rating is very valuable for us as Frost Death Knights, we will prioritize it last as we will regain both Runic Power and Runes if an attack is parried. This means that while we will surely want the Soft Cap for Expertise, we can leave it last, prioritizing the rest of the stats instead.


Reforging is introduced in Cataclysm as an additional way to adjust your equipment’s secondary stats. Through reforging, we can acquire a plethora of different stats in exchange for a portion of our current gear’s secondary stats. However, we may not replace any of the main stats on a piece of equipment such as Strength or Stamina.

The main stats that Frost Death Knights will reforge any non-beneficial stats into are Hit Rating and Haste Rating. After reaching your Hit Rating Soft Cap, you will want to reforge as many stats as possible into Haste Rating, since the Rune Regeneration effect is extremely impactful for our gameplay.


About the Author


Hey there folks, I am Nevermore and have been deeply passionate about WoW for more than a decade. Whether we talk about the hidden mysteries of Azeroth or the otherworldly Outland, my journey brought me here to share the things that I have experienced with you all.
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