Fire Mage Pve Gear & Best In Slot (bis) (wotlk)
  • Author: Nevermore
  • Date: January 8, 2024
  • Updated: January 10, 2024
  • Expansion: WotLK Classic

Equipment will be the main source of your character’s power, contributing the biggest bulk of your stats. It is therefore very important that you choose the correct equipment for each slot — commonly referred to as “best in slot” equipment – in order to maximize your power.

This guide is divided into two sections. The first section is basic lists, providing you full sets for a fresh level 80 pre-raid, a level 80 preparing for their first foray into Trial of the Crusader, and an example of ideal gear to aspire to from Trial of the Crusader. The second section provides more alternatives for each slot, giving an example of gear progression between these three areas of gearing.

Heroic++, otherwise known as Defense Protocol Beta drops gear from 10-man Ulduar and Naxxramas. Heroic+, otherwise known as Defense Protocol Alpha, drops gear from 10-man Naxxramas, as well as regular Heroic gear. Future Phases are likely to add further Heroic difficulties.

Alternative: Runecaster’s Mantle

Alternative: Dark Soldier Cape

 Alternative: Girdle of Bane

Will be the best Item for this Slot

Will be the best option for this slot

Alternative / Main Hand: Flameheart Spell Scalpel
Alternative / Two-Hand: Staff of Draconic Combat

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Valorous Frostfire Circlet will be your best option for this slot.

Wyrmrest Necklace of Power will be your best option for this slot.

Valorous Frostfire Shoulderpads will be your best option for this slot.

Pennant Cloak will be your best option for this slot.

Valorous Frostfire Robe will be your best option for this slot.

Unsullied Cuffs will be your best option for this slot.

Valorous Frostfire Gloves will be your best option for this slot.

Cincture of Polarity will be your best option for this slot.

Leggings of the Wanton Spellcaster will be your best option for this slot.

Boots of Impetuous Ideals will be your best option for this slot.

This combination of rings will be your best option.

Alternative / Two-Hand: Greatstaff of the Nexus

Gemmed Wand of the Nerubians will be your best option for this slot.

Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Hood will be your best option for this slot.

Pendant of Fiery Havoc will be your best option for this slot.

Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Shoulderpads will be your best option for this slot.

Drape of Mortal Downfall will be your best option for this slot.

Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Tunic will be your best option for this slot.

Grasps of Reason will be your best option for this slot.

Pharos Gloves will be your best option for this slot.

Starwatcher’s Binding will be your best option for this slot.

Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Leggings will be your best option for this slot.

Boots of Fiery Resolution will be your best option for this slot.

This combination of rings will be your best option.

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Scepter of Lost Souls will be your best option for this slot.

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Those will be your best options for your ring slots.

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Alternatives:

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Those will be your best options for your ring slots.

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Progressive List

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Engineering
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
The Oculus

As a Fresh level 80, you’ll have several choices for your head slot. One of your first choices will be Visage Liquification Goggles if you’re an Engineer that is, if you’re not an Engineer the next best option will be the Crown of Unbridled Magic from normal Oculus.

With the release of Phase 2, we get the introduction of Heroic+ dungeons which move normal raid gear from Naxxramus 10 man into heroic dungeons, with this introduction you’ll have access to Hereos Frostfire Circlet which will be one of the best options you can pick up as a fresh level 80 due to the set bonuses with another option being the Cowl of Sheet Lightning which will give you haste instead of crit and slightly less spell power

Pre-raid

Item
Source
Kel’thuzad 25m Naxxramas
Malygos 25m
Gothik the Harvester 25m

Valorous Frostfire Circlet and Hood of Rationality can be interchanged as they’re both incredibly powerful depending on what other tier pieces you are using/not using. if you are using 4 other pieces of tier Hood of Rationality will be better than Valorous Frostfire Circlet, but if Valorour Frostfire Circlet is one of the 4 tier pieces you are using then it’ll be better. Gothik’s Cowl is mainly just an upgrade over the fresh 80 items.

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
Mimiron 25m Hard Mode
Emblem of Conquest Quartermaster
Razorscale 25m Normal Mode

With all 3 being incredibly good options, Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Hood is only good if it’s needed for the 4 set bonus and if the massive amount of hit is needed. Both Crown of Luminescence and Collar of the Wyrmhunter are both incredible pickups depending on if you need the hit from the latter or not

Fresh 80

Item
Source

Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Trash Drop)
Emblem Vendor
Jewelcrafting

As a fresh 80 you’ll have several different options available to you with necks, if you have enough emblems you can purchase Encircling Burnished Gold Chains for 25 emblems, if not you also have the option to purchase Titanium Spellshock Necklace from your local Auction House. A couple other necks you’ll be able to pick up that’ll last you a decent amount of time would be Thunderstorm Amulet which is just slightly better than Encircling Burnished Gold Chains or Chain of Latent Energies which is just below the Pre-raid neck

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
Sapphiron 25m Naxxramas
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)

Pre-raid wise Wyrmrest Necklace of Power will be the strongest neck you can aquire with Thunderstorm Amulet and Encircling Burnished Gold Chains being the next best 2

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
Steelbreaker 25m HM
Flame Leviathan 25m HM

For Arcane these are the only 2 really good options as most of the other necks from Ulduar lack stats compared to these two with Sapphire Amulet of Renewal being the better of the 2 if the hit from Pendant of Fiery Havoc isn’t needed

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
BoE Drop
BoE Drop

With the few amount of shoulders to choose from our best to grab during this time is out tier shoulders, after that it’ll be 2 BoE drops that you can buy off the Auction House

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
Emblem Vendor
Heroic+ (former Naxxramas 10 Drop)

As we get into our pre-raid gear, we only have 2 different options as they both give us our set bonus.

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
Togg-Saron Ulduar 25m
Thorim, Thorim (Hard) Ulduar 10m
Togg-Saron Ulduar 10m

With the release of Ulduar we have the option to grab 3 different sets of shoulders. 2 of which are our tier shoulders which will help us get out 4 set bonus, while the other is only a option if you want your shoulders to be the off piece from your set, in which case you go for Amice of Inconceivable Horror.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Emblem Vendor
Tailoring/Auction House
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)

Disguise of Kumiho is one of our best cloaks to get as a fresh 80 with Deathchill Cloak a very close second which is available before you hit level 80 due to the Auction House.

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
Sartharion 25m
Kel’Thuzas Naxx 25m
Emblem Vendor
Tailoring/Auction House

With our Pre-raid we have 2 options with the most powerful being Pennant Cloak as it has a gem slot to activate our meta gem, our only option outside of Pennant Cloak before using Fresh 80 gear, is Cape of the Unworthy as it provides more stats than the other cloaks.

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
Heroic: All is Well That Ends Well (Ulduar)
Steelbreaker Ulduar 25m

With Ulduar we only have 2 real options for cloaks, with Sunglimmer Cloak being our more powerful option unless Hit is needed from Drape of Mortal Downfall.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Emblem Vendor

As a Fresh 80 you only really have one option due to the set bonus mage t7 will give you causing all other items to be lower in damage and availability.

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
Sartharion 1 Drake
Naxxramas 25 man or Vault of Archavon
Emblem Vendor

With Pre-raid gear being from the previous phase, The The Sanctum’s Flowing Vestments will be one of your strongest options if you have the other 4 tier sets, if not then the tier chest will be the next best option.

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
Hodir Ulduar 25 man
Yogg-Saron 10 man
Kologarn Ulduar 25 man

With the tier sets in ulduar allowing us to have a 2nd use of Missile Barrage the tier chest is one of the better options to get for the 4 set bonus. If you go for the tier gloves you can grab Robes of the Umbral Brute as the next best option.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
The Oculus
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Emblem Vendor

With pre-raid we have access to 3 different wrist combo’s with Cuffs of the Shadow Ascendant being available off the Auction House but also being the weakest of the three, Cuffs of Winged Levitation is our best option as a Fresh 80 as it gives us the most bang for our buck in terms of stats for arcane.

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
Sartharion 3 Drake 25 man
Grand Widow Faerlina, Naxxramas 25 man

With our pre-raid coming from the previous raid tier, Unsullied cuffs are one of the strongest bracers we can get in this time, as they are also second bis for us in Ulduar our next option is Punctilious Bindings which is basically Unsullied cuffs but without a gem slot.

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
XT-002 Deconstructor Ulduar 25 man HM
Sartharion 2 Drake 25 man
Kologarn Ulduar 25 man

With the release of Ulduar Grasps of Reason take the bis slot easily with Unsullied cuffs being right behind it, our next best option is Bracers of Unleashed Magic.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Auction House/Naxxramas 25m from Faerlina and Gluth
Emblem Vendor
Tailoring
Heroic+ Former Naxxramas 10 Drop

With the release of Heroic+ our glove options are surprisingly simple, with Gloves of Token Respect being out main go to option if we don’t go for the tier gloves for our 4s bonus. After those two Spellweave Gloves and Handgrips of Turmoil are the next best options with Spellweave Gloves being slightly better

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
Auction House/Naxxramas 25m From Faerlina and Gluth
Sartharion 25man or Vault of Archavon

with our pre-raid gear, we only have 2 real options to choose from, either our tier gloves or Gloves of Token Respect, with the latter only being chosen if not using tier gloves for the set bonuses.

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
Algalon the Observer Ulduar 25 man
Emalon the Storm Watcher, Vault of Archavon 25 man
General Vezax, Ulduar 25 man HM

with our gloves, there is only one clear winner with that being Pharos Gloves being significantly better in terms of optimization of stats for us with the next best option being our tier gloves for the set bonus or Handwraps of the Vigilant if gloves aren’t needed for the set bonus.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Emblem Vendor

Due to the lack of options as a fresh 80, Plush Sash of Guzbah will be one of the best options to get as it’s also from the Emblem Vendor

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
Malygos 25m
Thaddius 25m

Upgrading from Plush Sash of Guzbah you only have two real options, with one being more of a hit option compared to the other, with Leash of Heedless Magic being better unless hit is needed in which case Cincture of Polarity will be better

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
Tailoring
Algalon, Ulduar 25m HM

With the release of Ulduar we gain access to Sash of Ancient Magic as it’ll be a tailoring pattern inside Ulduar which will be one of our best options with Starwatcher’s Binding being the next best option if hit is not needed.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Heroic Halls of Lightening

As a fresh 80 we don’t have many options for our legs which make our tier legs and Woven Bracae Leggings the best option by far.

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
Emblem Vendor
Malygos 25m

With our pre-raid gear being our previous’s tier bis that puts our 25m tier legs as our best option for this slot, with Leggings of the Wanton Spellcaster right behind it if hit is somehow needed.

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
Freya Ulduar 25m HM and Emalon the Storm Watcher Vault of Archavon 25m

In Ulduar bis, 4 set bonus is extremely strong specially with how much hit comes on the gear for it. If you are using tier gloves you can use Leggings of the Enslaved Idol instead as the off piece.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Wyrmrest Accord – Exalted
Malygos 25m or Auction House

For our Fresh 80 bis items, Arcanic Tramplers is by far the best as they’ll last even past Naxxramas 25m gear. However, if you can afford to get them as a fresh 80, Sandals of Crimson Fury are your next best as you’ll only need exalted with Wrymrest Accord to buy them.

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
Malygos 25m or Auction House

As our pre-raid gear is our bis from the previous phase, Arcanic Tramplers will remain our bis even at this point.

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
Flame Leviathan 25m HM Ulduar
Yogg-Saron 25m HM Ulduar

Both of these are extremely close together so either one can be used over the other.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
6800g from Harold Winston at Exalted with Kirin Tor
Emblem Vendor
Culling of Stratholme Heroic
Utgarde Keep Heroic

With our rings we have 4 options with Signet of the Kirin Tor being the most expensive but easiest to get with it also being one of the best rings we can get as a fresh 80. Our other best option is Band of Channeled Magic which will also be our pre-raid bis. Our other two options if you choose to not spend the excessive amount on Kirin tor ring are Band of Guile and Annhylde’s Ring.

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
Kel’Thuzad Naxxramas 25m
Emblem Vendor

Our Pre-raid Rings are extremely simple with Band of Channeled Magic making a return with Signet of Manifested Pain.

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
Algalon the Observer 25m
Mimiron 25m HM
Kel’Thuzad Naxxramas 25m
Ignis the Furnace Master Ulduar 25m

With our Ulduar bis gear we only have two options that are miles ahead of other rings with those being Nebula Band and Conductive Seal. The two next best options would be Signet of Manifested Pain and Pyrelight Circle.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Emblem Vendor

Sadly as a Fresh 80 we only have 2 real options for our trinkets with these being by far the best 2.

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
Heroic+
Naxxramas 25m
Sarth 25m

For our pre-raid trinkets Embrace of the Spider is by far one of the best we can get with Dying Curse being the next best and Illustration of the Dragon Soul being the next best option behind the two.

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
General Vezax 25m HM
Thorim 25m
Razorscale 10m

With our trinkets in Ulduar we only have 2 extremely good options with Eye of the Broodmother being a decent option incase one is missing.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
2H
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 drop)
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 drop)
1H
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 drop)
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 drop)
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 drop)
OH
Emblem Vendor
Emblem Vendor

For our fresh 80 options with two Hand weapons, Sulfur Stave is one of the best options if Hit is needed on your weapons, along with Charmed Ceirge being an incredible option if hit isn’t needed.

Out of our 1 Handed options we have 3 different options with The Soulblade being an incredibly powerful if hit is needed, otherwise both Blade of Dormant Memories and Grieving Spellblade being the next best options if hit isn’t needed.

With our Off hand options we have a couple options with 1 providing hit and another providing haste

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
1H
Ke’Thuzad Naxxramas 25m
Gothik the Harvester Naxxramas 25m
OH
Maexxna Naxxramas 25m
Patchwerk Naxxramas 25m

With our Pre-raid gear being our bis from Naxxramas, Turning Tide is by far the best weapon for us, with Life and Death being the next best option out of our Main Hand options.

Matriarch’s Spawn is by far the best Off-hand option for us with Surplus Limb being the best option if hit is needed.

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
2H
Hodir Ulduar 25m
Ignis the Furnace Master 25m

1H
Algalon the Observer and Mimiron 25m HM
Yogg-Saron 25m
Mimiron 10m HM

OH
Algalon 25m HM

With our Ulduar bis, we have a couple options with the Main hand + Offhand being the best option with the other options being a decent upgrade.

The best option for us as Fire will be StarShard Edge + Cosmos with Soulscribe and Fusion Blade being incredibly good options as well.

For our Staff options, Intensity is a good choice if you need the hit on a weapon, otherwise, Staff of Endless Winter is the best option by far

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 drop)
Utgarde Keep H

With our Fresh 80 gear we have 1 extremely strong option with that being Wand of the Archlich, if hit is a issue though you can use Wand of the San’layn

Pre-Raid

Item
Source
Heroic+ (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Naxxramas 25m Anub’Rehkan

with our pre-raid gear Wand of the Archlich is the best option with Gemmed Wand of the Nerubians being extremely powerful if hit is needed

Phase 2 Best in Slot

Item
Source
General Vezax Ulduar 25m
Freya Ulduar 25m

With our Ulduar bis we have 2 extremely strong options with Scepter of Lost Souls being extremely powerful if hit is not needed and Petrified Ivy Sprig being extremely powerful if hit is needed.

Before proceeding to the in-depth part of our guide, we will grant you some very important tips that you will have to keep in mind, especially as you progress through your journey and come across many different items.

As a fresh level 80, you have several choices for each separate slot. You will either be able to directly buy BoE items from the Auction House and other players, or, you will go through a progressive item hunt from Normal Dungeons, Heroic Dungeons, and the brand-new Heroic ++ Dungeons. Depending on your group, you may be able to directly join a Heroic ++ Dungeon, effectively skipping a harsh gearing process.

With the release of Phase 3 of the expansion, the new Heroic ++ Dungeons will grant you both T7 and T8 items, per Boss Kill, with a guaranteed former Ulduar 10 (225) Ilvl drop. Heroic++, otherwise known as Defense Protocol Beta drops gear from 10-man Ulduar and Naxxramas. Heroic+, otherwise known as Defense Protocol Alpha, drops gear from 10-man Naxxramas, as well as regular Heroic gear. Future Phases are likely to add further Heroic difficulties

However, those dungeons no longer provide any blue gear, meaning that if you seek a particular rare (Blue) item, you will have to venture through the Heroic version of the Dungeon.

Your Pre-ToC options will often be defined by the BiS items from the previous raid tiers, and any other new dungeons or raid BoE items that arrive with the new phase.

Your Best-in-Slot items will often vary depending on the rest of your equipment and the situation you find yourself in. Depending on the class itself, the specialization, the phase you find yourself in, and the PvE encounter you currently face, your BiS items can completely change to better adjust to whichever situation you may find yourself in. In some cases, you will find a single BiS set that can be 100% functional in any situation, while in other cases, you will need to adjust your item sets from one PvE encounter to another.

As a Fire Mage, you will want to prioritize items with Hit Rating, Critical Strike Chance, and Haste Rating over any other items! You will need at least a 14% Hit Rating to generate the best possible damage output while also focusing on gear that increases your overall Critical Strike Chance in order to empower Hot Streak as much as possible! You can achieve this by either using items that grant Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating as secondary stats or items that grant Haste Rating as a secondary stat and Spirit as a baseline stat. Spirit as a baseline stat will increase your overall Critical Strike Chance through your Molten Armor!

One thing you have to keep in mind is that the majority of the ToC/Onyxia’s Lair items are extremely similar between all the Mage Specializations, meaning that you can expect a very similar BiS Progressive List with only a few individual differences between each Mage Specialization.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Trial of the Champion – The Black Knight (Heroic)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former The Obsidian Sanctum 10)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10)

With the release of the new Heroic ++ Dungeons, you will now have easy access to some of the most powerful options from the previous phases of the expansion. Your options will vary between items that grant Hit Rating/Critical Strike Chance or Hit Rating/Haste Rating paired up with tier bonuses or items that simply grant a mix of Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating/Spirit in modest amounts.

The best possible option for this slot will be the Valorous Kirin Tor Hood as it grants a large amount of Hit Rating/Spirit and access to the powerful T8 item-set bonuses. Ideally, you will want to prioritize this item over any other since we want to activate the 4-item set bonus as fast as possible.

If you can’t acquire the T8 Hood yet, you can use either one of the Cowl of Icy Breaths or the Gaze of the Unknown as a viable Hit Rating alternative since they both grant similar amounts.

The rest of the available options depend entirely on the rest of your gear slots and how much Critical Strike Chance you currently have. If you are low on Critical Strike Chance, you will want to prioritize items such as the Enamored Cowl, Heroes’ Frostfire Circlet, and the Cowl of Winged Fear. If you already have items with similar stats in your other gear slots and you find yourself low on Haste Rating, you will want to prioritize items such as the Lifespark Visage and the Cowl of Sheet Lightning.

However, you should keep in mind that those options are viable only if you have enough Hit Rating! If you severely lack Hit Rating, your overall damage output will be reduced significantly.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Ulduar – Thorim (25)
Ulduar – Mimiron (25) HM
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Ulduar – Razorscale (25)

The best possible option for the Pre-Toc gearing phase will remain the BiS from the previous phase of the expansion, namely the Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Hood. Ideally, you will want to activate the T8 4-item set bonus, reserving only the Gloves Slot for an Off-Piece item. The reason why we want the T8 Hood in this slot is due to the massive Hit Rating bonus that it grants!

The Valorous Kirin Tor Hood will be the next-best alternative since it grants the exact same types of bonuses, only with a lower overall stat yield. The most important aspect that we want to achieve by using this item is activating the 4-item set bonus!

If you can’t acquire either version of the T8 Hood and still require Hit Rating, the next-best alternative will be the Collar of the Wyrmhunter. The only issue with this item is that we will lose a portion of our Critical Strike Chance due to the lack of Spirit as a baseline stat or Critical Strike Chance as a secondary bonus. On the plus side, we gain a considerable amount of Haste that can be very beneficial with a few tweaks to our set.

If you already have access to the T8 4-item set bonus and also have plenty of Hit Rating, the next-best alternative will be the Crown of Luminescence. This is due to the major amount of Critical Strike Chance that we gain from using this item, both from its Critical Strike Chance secondary stat and its baseline Spirit.

However, you should take into account that the Crown of Luminescence is not the best Off-Piece item that you can acquire. The actual best Off-Piece item is the Pharos Gloves!

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Crusade Tribute Chest (25) Heroic
Onyxia’s Lair – Onyxia (25)
Ulduar – Thorim (25)
Ulduar – Mimiron (25) HM
Ulduar – Razorscale (25)

The best possible option for this slot in the third phase of the expansion will be Khadgar’s Hood of Triumph. This item will be one of our main sources for increasing our overall Hit Rating while also granting access to the T9 item-set bonuses. Since we will want to use the 4-item set bonus at all costs, should only use an Off-Piece for this gear slot only if you have all the other T9 items.

Naturally, the next-best alternatives will be its 245 Ilvl version, Khadgar’s Hood of Triumph, and its 232 Ilvl version, Khadgar’s Hood of Conquest, since both items grant the exact same types of bonuses, with the stat yield itself being the only difference between each version. No matter which version you choose, the T9 item-set bonuses will remain the same!

The Netherwind Crown is another viable alternative that grants a considerable amount of Hit Rating! The main two differences between this item and the T9 Hood are the access to the T9 item-set bonuses and the fact that the Netherwind Crown will grant you Critical Strike Chance while the T9 Hood will grant you Haste Rating. Normally, we will benefit more from Critical Strike Chance than Haste Rating, however, it will be mandatory for us to activate the T9 4-item set bonus. This means that this item is only viable if you already have 4 other T9 items in your gear slots!

The same concept applies to Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Hood which should only be used as a viable Hit Rating alternative until you can at least acquire either one of the Netherwind Crown or Khadgar’s Hood of Conquest. The only exception in which you should maintain the T8 Hood is the situation in which you have the T8 4-item set bonus active while using ToC items in your other gear slots. For example, you may choose to use 4 T8 items and fill the rest of your gear slots with ToC items without a huge DPS loss. However, this tactic heavily relies on the T8 4-item set bonus effect and it’s RNG, meaning that we do not recommend you to use it for ToC 25 or ToGC 25 as it is way too chaotic.

Lastly, the Crown of Luminescence may be used only as an alternative if you reached a 14% Hit Rating on your own while the Collar of the Wyrmhunter can be used as an initial Hit Rating alternative if you can’t gain the T8 Hood or enough Emblems of Triumph for the 232 Ilvl T9 Hood.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former The Eye of Eternity 10 Drop)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)

Depending on the current Hit Rating your other gear slots provide, you will either want to use the Pendant of the Shallow Grave if you have plenty of Hit Rating or the Pendant of the Piercing Glare if you haven’t managed to gain the majority of your Hit Rating items yet. Realistically speaking, the Fresh 80 set will provide more than enough Hit Rating if you manage to collect all the items, meaning that you will want to prioritize the Pendant of the Shallow Grave.

All the other options can be treated as a downgrade of the Pendant of the Piercing Glare since they all provide Hit Rating but have lower overall stat yields. You will want to use the Chain of the Ancient Wyrm as the next-best alternative to the Pendant of the Piercing Glare, and any of the Naxxramas options if you can’t manage to gain either of those two.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Ulduar – Flame Leviathan (25) HM
Ulduar – The Iron Council (25) HM
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)

The best possible option for the Pre-Toc gearing phase will be the Pendant of Fiery Havoc. Just like with the Cloak Gear Slot in the Pre-Toc gearing phase, you will want to prioritize Hit Rating for this slot. However, the Pendant of Fiery Havoc is the only viable Hit Rating option that you can acquire, meaning that you will most certainly be forced to tweak the rest of your gear slots until you can acquire it.

The next-best alternative will be the Sapphire Amulet of Renewal as it grants a great amount of Spirit/Haste Rating, provided you have plenty of Hit Rating. The Pendant of the Shallow Grave and Watchful Eye of Fate are two other viable alternatives that provide a very similar damage output due to their stat spread. While previously they were available as drops from different Ulduar Bossess, now they can be acquired with Sidereal Essence. Since they both have the same cost, you will want to use the Pendant of the Shallow Grave as your primary choice since it provides a higher amount of Critical Strike Chance. You may choose to use the Watchful Eye of Fate if you managed to acquire it while it was an Ulduar drop.

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (25) Heroic
Ulduar – The Iron Council (25) HM
Ulduar – Flame Leviathan (25) HM
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (25)
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (10) Heroic
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (10)

The best possible option for this slot will be the Cry of the Val’kyr! This is due to its great Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating secondary stat combination, paired up with the fact that it grants the highest overall stat gain among all the ToC items. As long as you maintain your Hit Rating from your other gear slots, the next-best alternative will actually be the Sapphire Amulet of Renewal.

In case you choose to swap some of your Hit Rating items in favor of items that grant increased Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating, you will want to use the Pendant of Fiery Havoc instead as the next-best alternative after the Cry of the Val’kyr.

The rest of the options are generally weaker than the previous BiS options from Ulduar and should be treated only as a progressive path until you can either acquire the Ulduar items or simply gain the Cry of the Val’kyr.

The 245 Ilvl version of the Cry of the Val’kyr will be fairly similar to the Pendant of the Shallow Grave in terms of damage output, with only a minor difference between the two items.

The Darkbane Amulet works as a Hit Rating alternative that you can acquire if you can’t gain the Pendant of Fiery Havoc or any other Hit Rating items for your other gear slots. It is closely followed up by its 232 Ilvl version, Darkbane Amulet, which offers the same bonuses in lower overall amounts.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Animated Constellation – 19 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Trial of the Champion – The Black Knight
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)

The majority of your options as a Fresh 80 Character will provide you with a considerable amount of Haste and Critical Strike Chance. The only two items that are slightly different when compared to the others besides their overall precise stat yields will be the T7 and T8 Shoulders. This is due to their respective item-set bonuses which make them stand out, as they have similar types of stats with all the other available options.

The best possible option from a stat yield point of view will be the Amice of Inconceivable Horror. This item will also act as one of the best options during the Pre-ToC gearing phase due to the sheer amount of stats it grants. It is closely followed up by the Valorous Kirin Tor Shoulderpads in terms of stat yields, however, the Valorous Kirin Tor Shoulderpads is better if you have the opportunity to activate the 4-item set bonus by using it.

Both Underworld Mantle and the Mantle of the Preserver can be used as viable alternatives if you can’t find any of the previously two mentioned items, with the former option being stronger due to the Haste Rating it grants. Generally speaking, you will want to prioritize Critical Strike Chance but you will not want to completely avoid items with Haste Rating!

Lastly, both Mantle of Inconsolable Fear and Heroes’ Frostfire Shoulderpads can be used as initial alternatives that have a similar stat yields to the Ulduar item. As mentioned above, the major distinction will be the access to the T7 item set, but you will only find yourself using it for a brief period of time, if ever.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Ulduar – Yogg-Saron (25)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Animated Constellation – 19 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)

The best possible option for the Pre-Toc gearing phase will be Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Shoulderpads! This is mainly due to the access to the T8 item-set bonuses but also because of its great stat yield! While it might not grant the traditional Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating secondary stats that we desire, the Spirit granted by the item will grant a significant increase in Critical Strike Chance.

Naturally, the next-best alternative will be the Valorous Kirin Tor Shoulderpads as it grants precisely the same type of stats and access to the T8 item-set bonuses. The only difference between the two items is the stat yield itself, which is lower for the Valorous Kirin Tor Shoulderpads.

If you can’t gain the T8 Shoulders for some reason and you already managed to activate the T8 4-item set bonus from your other gear slots, the next-best alternative will be the Amice of Inconceivable Horror. It grants the exact same type of stats as the T8 Shoulders, albeit, with a slightly different stat yield. In terms of pure stat yield, it is stronger than Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Shoulderpads which results in a higher damage output, but only if you already have the T8 4-item set bonus active.

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Crusade Tribute Chest (25) Heroic
Animated Constellation – 19 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)

You will want to reserve this slot for items that grant Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating! As such, the best possible option for this slot will be Khadgar’s Shoulderpads of Triumph! This is not only due to the Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating secondary stats but also due to the access to the T9 item-set bonuses. Since it is mandatory for us to activate the 4-item set bonus, any version of the T9 Shoulders will be the BiS option for us!

Naturally, the next-best alternatives will be the 245 Ilvl version of the T9 Shoulders, Khadgar’s Shoulderpads of Triumph, and the 232 Ilvl version of the T9 Shoulders, Khadgar’s Shoulderpads of Conquest, since both items grant access to the T9 item-set bonuses. They will represent the best options in case you can’t find the 258 Ilvl version, even if their stat yields are considerably lower.

You can use the Pauldrons of Revered Mortality as a viable alternative to the T9 Shoulders, however, you can do so only if you already have all the other T9 items in your gear slots. Ideally, you will want to use the Skyweaver Robes as your Off-Piece item in this phase of the expansion, although you can choose to use this item if you already have the T9 Chest. The only issue with this item is that it shares the same cost as the T9 232 Ilvl Shoulders.

A more suitable alternative than the Pauldrons of Revered Mortality due to a lower price cost will be the Amice of Inconceivable Horror. It provides the exact same types of bonuses, in lower overall amounts. Realistically, you will want to use this item until you can acquire Khadgar’s Shoulderpads of Conquest. If you already have the T8 Shoulders along with other T8 items, you may choose to ignore all the alternatives until you can acquire the 232 Ilvl T9 Shoulders.

The Mantle of Catastrophic Emanation is another viable alternative if you maxed out the rest of your gear slots and you badly need to increase your Hit Rating. However, this alternative is only suitable if you already have the T9 4-item set bonus active and a considerable amount of Haste Rating paired up with it.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Animated Constellation – 19 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)

With the release of the third phase, we will now have easy access to one of the strongest possible items that you can acquire for this slot. We are talking about the Drape of the Messenger, an item that works in a similar fashion to the BiS from the previous phase of the expansion. This will be the only option that grants Hit Rating as a Fresh 80 from this slot, meaning that you will have to tweak the rest of your gear in order to gain Hit Rating until you can acquire this item.

However, you will not be able to access it right away as you will need to gather plenty of the new Sidereal Essence Currency in order to acquire it! In the meanwhile, all the other alternatives grant a variation of either Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating or Haste Rating/Spirit. This means that you will want to use them in the order listed above, with the Drape of the Spellweaver being the strongest item, followed up by the Shawl of the Caretaker and the Disguise of the Kumiho.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Ulduar – The Iron Council (25) HM
Animated Constellation – 19 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
The Obsidian Sanctum – Sartharion (25)

The best possible option for the Pre-Toc gearing phase will be the Drape of Mortal Downfall. While you will not want to prioritize Hit Rating for this slot when you start gathering ToC items, in the Pre-ToC set you will most definitely want to gain Hit Rating from this slot. The next-best alternative will be the Drape of the Messenger as it grants the exact same types of stats, only in lower overall amounts.

If you can’t gain any of those items to increase your overall Hit Rating, you may want to tweak the rest of your gear and use the Sunglimmer Cloak as a potent alternative. The Sunglimmer Drape is the lower ilvl version of the Sunglimmer Cloak, offering the precise exact same types of stats in slightly lower amounts.

Lastly, you may still find the Pennant Cloak from the first phase of the expansion to be one of one the strongest options that you can use for increasing your overall damage output. Of course, this only applies if you managed to tweak your Hit Rating from your other gear slots!

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Tribute Chest (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Tribute Chest (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Tribute Chest (10) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Tribute Chest (10) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Faction Champions (25) Heroic
Ulduar – The Iron Council (25) HM
Trial of the Crusader – Faction Champions (25)

For this slot, we will split our items into two categories: Items that grant Critical Strike/Haste Rating & Haste Rating/Spirit and Items that grant Hit Rating/Haste Rating & Hit Rating/Critical Strike Chance. The best damage output will be generated by items that have either Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating or Haste Rating/Spirit!

Ideally, you will want to gain Hit Rating from your other gear slots and reserve this slot for items from the first category.

The best possible option for this slot will be Jaina’s Radiance. This is due to the extraordinary stats that it grants, having the highest overall stats & stat spread among all the Phase 3 cloaks. Since Fire Mages rely a great deal on Critical Strike Chance, this item will provide the best possible damage output and the best chance to trigger Hot Streak.

Bolvar’s Devotion will be the next-best alternative, even if it does not grant Critical Strike Chance per se. The sheer amount of stats that it grants paired up with the Spirit which gets converted into Critical Strike Chance will provide a very similar damage output.

On a similar note to Jaina’s Radiance, the Drape of Bitter Incantation grants the same types of bonuses, only in a lower overall amount. You will most likely use it as your main item until you manage to gain access to the 25 HC Argent Tribute Chest!

The Shawl of Fervent Crusader is yet another viable alternative that fits the same pattern as Bolvar’s Devotion. It grants a slightly lower damage output than the Drape of Bitter Incantation yet both items are fairly similar when compared in multiple simulations. This means that while you will want to prioritize the latter option, you can still use the former if it’s the first one to drop.

The Cloak of Displacement will be the best alternative if you still lack Hit Rating from your other gear slots! It is closely followed up by the Drape of Mortal Downfall with only a 50 DPS difference between the two items. Of course, the simulation results are based on you having all the other BiS items in your other gear slots!

The Sunglimmer Cloak is yet another Haste Rating/Spirit alternative that you will want to maintain until you can gain any of the previously mentioned items as it is considerably weaker. The only case in which you will want to maintain the Sunglimmer Cloak is the one in which you only have access to the 232 Ilvl of the Cloak of Displacement.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Trial of the Champion – The Black Knight (Heroic)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former The Eye of Eternity 10)
80 Emblem of Heroism/Vault of Archavon (Archavon the Stone Watcher)

The best possible option for the Chest Slot as a Fresh Level 80 will be the Valorous Kirin Tor Tunic. This is mainly due to the access to the T8 4-item set bonus which you will want to activate at all costs but also due to the great amount of Critical Strike Chance it offers. You may keep this item even as a valuable option for ToC/Onyxia’s Lair if you can’t manage to find its upgraded version.

If you can’t access the T8 Chest yet or if you simply opted for the other T8 items in order to activate the T8 4-item set bonus, you have the option of using items that increase your overall Hit Rating or items that increase your overall Critical Strike Chance.

For items that increase your overall Hit Rating, the best possible alternative will be the Raiments of the Corrupted followed up by the Gown of the Spell-Weaver. Since both items grant the exact same types of stats, the only difference between them is the stat yield itself, which is lower for the latter option.

For items that increase your overall Critical Strike Chance, the next-best alternative will be the Embrace of Madness due to its Gem Sockets, followed up closely by the Vestments of the Piercing Light.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Ulduar – Hodir (25)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Ulduar – Kologarn (25)
Ulduar – The Iron Council (25)

The best possible option that you can use for the Pre-Toc gearing phase will remain the BiS option from the previous phase of the expansion, namely the Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Tunic. Besides the great amount of Critical Strike Chance we can gain from this item, we mainly want it due to the access to the T8-item set bonuses.

As such, the next-best alternative for it will be its lower Ilvl version, the Valorous Kirin Tor Tunic, due to the same T8 4-item set bonus. Even if the stat yields themselves are lower, the T8 bonus will remain the same!

If you decided to use this slot for your Off-Piece item instead of the Pharos Gloves as your primary Off-Piece, you can use the Robes of the Umbral Brute as the next-best alternative to the Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Tunic.

The Raiments of the Iron Council is also a valid alternative that produces a fairly similar damage output to the Robes of the Umbral Brute. However, since it provides a lesser Critical Strike Chance, it will result in lower damage output.

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Fjola Lightbane (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Crusade Tribute Chest (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Icehowl (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Fjola Lightbane (25
Trial of the Crusader – Anub’arak (10) Heroic

You will want to specifically reserve this slot for your Off-Piece item since the other main gear slots will have the T9 items acting as their respective BiS option. Since we want to ensure that we have the minimum amount of 14% Hit Rating as a Fire Mage, the best possible option for this slot will be the Skyweaver Robes! Besides its great amount of Hit Rating, it will offer the highest possible stat yield when compared to any other possible Off-Piece for a Fire Mage.

If you don’t have the T9 4-item set bonus activated from your other gear slots and you chose another high-end Off-Piece, you may use the Khadgar’s Robe of Triumph as a BiS alternative. Since it also grants a fairly high amount of Hit Rating, you will produce a similar damage output if the majority of your set has all the BiS options. If you can’t yet access the 258 Ilvl version of the T9 Chest or the Skyweaver Robes, you may use both of their 245 Ilvl versions efficiently until you can gain their respective upgrades.

You may also use the Vestments of the Sleepless as a potent Hit Rating alternative if you can’t find any of the other items as it grants a very high amount of Critical Strike Chance besides its Hit Rating. In terms of pure performance, this item generates a close damage output to both the 245 Ilvl version of the T9 Chest and the 245 Ilvl version of the Skyweaver Robes.

If you already have the T9 4-item set bonus active and you can’t access the Skyweaver Robes, you will be able to use the Flowing Vestments of Ascent as one of the most potent offense-oriented options. However, you will need to cover up the loss of Hit Rating through other gear slots such as your Weapon Slots or Feet Slot.

Lastly, if you seek a quick and potent initial option that will grant a solid damage output, you can directly buy Merlin’s Robe. If you choose to use this option, you should focus on swapping some of your other gear slots for Hit Rating items while you progress through ToGC. Ideally, you will want to focus on gaining all the other T9 items in order to activate the 4-item set bonus while using Merlin’s Robe as your initial Chest Slot option.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
The Oculus – Cache of Eregos (Heroic)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Trial of the Champion – Grand Champions

Depending on the rest of your gear slots and your current amount of Hit Rating, you will either want to focus on items that grant Hit Rating for this Slot or items that provide a mix of Haste Rating/Critical Strike Chance. Generally speaking, you will want to choose a Hit Rating item early on, and transition into a Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating item during your first days as a Fresh 80 and even during the Pre-ToC gearing phase.

The best possible item for increasing your Hit Rating will be the Combustion Bracers. It will be closely followed up by the Bindings of the Wicked as both items grant almost the same amount of Hit Rating.

Once you manage to gain Hit Rating from your other gear slots, you can transition into the Runetouch Wristwraps which will result in a higher overall damage output. You can also use items such as Cuffs of Winged Levitation and Resurgent Phantom Bindings to achieve a very similar damage output, with only a slight difference in DPS. The difference between those two items and the Runetouch Wristwraps is only around ~ 50 DPS in multiple simulations, meaning that the choice is entirely yours.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Ulduar – XT-002 Deconstructor (25) HM
The Obsidian Sanctum – Sartharion ~ 2 Drakes Left (25)
Ulduar – Kologarn (25)

For the Pre-Toc gearing phase, we will want to reserve this slot for items that increase our overall Haste Rating/Critical Strike Chance. You can either opt for items that increase Critical Strike Chance through secondary stats or through Spirit as a baseline stat.

The best possible option will be the Grasps of Reason since they grant the highest possible stat yield from the Ulduar item rooster. It grants exactly the type of stats that we seek, with a fairly high amount of Haste Rating as a secondary stat and a fairly high amount of Spirit which transitions into Critical Strike Chance.

The next-best alternative to it will be the Unsullied cuffs as they grant the exact same types of stats, only in a lower overall stat yield.

However, if you don’t manage to gain enough Hit Rating to reach a 14% Hit Rating without outside buffs, you will want to use the Bracers of Unleashed Magic as a potent alternative until you can tweak the rest of your gear. Depending on whether you have the option of tweaking your gear or not, you may choose any optimization path as long as you manage to deal an optimum amount of damage in ToC 10 & ToC 25.

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Anub’arak (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Lord Jaraxxus (10) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (25)
Ulduar – XT-002 Deconstructor (25) HM
Trial of the Crusader – Anub’arak (25)

The best possible option for this slot will be the Bindings of Dark Essence. This will be the most convenient item for increasing your overall Hit Rating, however, there are other possible options for increasing your overall Hit Rating from your other gear slots. If you choose to increase your Hit Rating from your other gear slots, such as your Necklace Slot or Feet Slot, you will want to use the Armbands of the Ashen Saint as your actual BiS option.

The next-best alternative in case you choose to use the Bindings of Dark Essence will be the Felspark Bindings, since they grant a considerable amount of Hit Rating. The 245 Ilvl Bindings of Dark Essence will be weaker than the Felspark Bindings due to the lack of a Gem Socket Slot.

However, if you choose to pursue the path of gaining Hit Rating from your other gear slots and reserve this slot for Haste Rating & Haste Rating/Critical Strike Chance items, the next-best alternative to the Armbands of the Ashen Saint will be the Grasps of Reason. It is closely followed up by the Bejeweled Wizard’s Bracers, with both items producing almost the same damage output. The difference between the two items in terms of pure DPS is ~1-2 DPS, meaning that either option can be used confidently until you can gain any of the previously mentioned items.

Lastly, the Armbands of the Ashen Saint are weaker than any of the other Haste Rating items due to a lower stat yield and the lack of a Gem Socket.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Animated Constellation – 19 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Naxxramas (BoE)
Trial of the Champion – The Black Knight
60 Emblem of Heroism/Vault of Archavon ( Archavon the Stone Watcher)

Since there are multiple available options for a Fresh 80 Character for this slot, your choice depends entirely on the current state of the rest of your gear slots. If you already have all the best options in the rest of your gear slots, you will want to use the Valorous Kirin Tor Gauntlets as the best possible option. While we already have a high amount of Hit Rating by using the Fresh 80 Set, you will want the T8 gloves in order to activate the T8 4-item set bonus which drastically enhances our overall damage output.

If you already activated the T8 4-item set bonus from the rest of your gear slots, you will want to use the Pulsar Gloves as the next-best alternative. Depending on whether you use the Elemental Focus Stone or not, the Hit Rating granted by this slot for the Fresh 80 Set may be crucial.

In case you can’t find any of those items and you still require Hit Rating, the other viable options will be either one of the Static Charge Handwraps or the Heroes’ Frostfire Gloves. You should aim to acquire the former option as the latter option is considerably harder to gain due to the steep Emblems of Heroism cost. The only other viable alternative for acquiring the T7 Gloves without spending that steep amount of emblems will be through the VoA raid, but that is entirely dependent on your luck and if you find a group that is willing to take a fresh character along with them.

If you currently have more than 14%-15% Hit Rating without any external buffs, you will want to use Handwraps of Resonance as the best possible alternative besides the T8 Gloves and the Pulsar Gloves. However, you will want to make sure that you have the T8 4-item set bonus active from your other gear slots if you plan on using this item.

Both Gloves of Token Respect and Handwraps of Surrendered Hope are fairly similar alternatives that can be used to generate a close damage output to the Handwraps of Resonance.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Ulduar – Algalon the Observer (25)
Ulduar – General Vezax (25)
Animated Constellation – 19 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Ulduar – Mimiron (25)

The best possible option for the Pre-Toc gearing phase will be the Pharos Gloves. Since we used the rest of our main slots for the T8 items, we can entirely reserve this slot for items that increase our Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating. The next-best alternative to it will be the Handwraps of the Vigilant since it provides a massive amount of Critical Strike Chance, albeit, it grants no Haste Rating.

The Pulsar Gloves are another viable choice, however, they grant Hit Rating which doesn’t benefit us if we have the rest of the BiS options. You will be able to use it as a far better option than the Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Gauntlets if you already have the rest of the T8 items and the 4-item set bonus active. If you don’t have the 4-item set bonus active, the Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Gauntlets will be the better choice instead of the Pulsar Gloves.

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Crusade Tribute Chest (25) Heroic
Ulduar – Algalon the Observer (25)
Trial of the Crusader – Anub’arak (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Anub’arak (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (10) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (10)

The best possible option for this slot will be Khadgar’s Gauntlets of Triumph. This is mainly due to the access to the T9 item-set bonuses but also due to the perfect Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating secondary stat combination. Among all the Critical Strike Chance & Haste Rating items, this item will grant the second highest possible stats, even when compared to powerful Off-Piece items.

Naturally, the next-best alternatives in our current setup will be its 245 Ilvl version, Khadgar’s Gauntlets of Triumph, and its 232 Ilvl version, Khadgar’s Gauntlets of Conquest as they grant the same exact types of stats. Even if the stat yield itself will be lower, the T9 item-set bonuses will remain the same, no matter which Ilvl version you choose.

The Pharos Gloves serve as the next-best alternative to the Khadgar’s Gauntlets of Triumph, offering the highest possible stat yield when compared to any other Off-Piece item. The only other item that grants a near similar stat yield is the Gloves of the Lifeless Touch. Since both items are very similar in stat yields, the DPS difference between the two is only about ~30-40 DPS. This means that you may use whichever item you come across first as a potent alternative to the set piece.

In case you still require Hit Rating, the best possible alternative will be the Gloves of Looming Shadow, followed up by its 232 Ilvl version, the Gloves of Looming Shadow. Ideally, you will want to reserve this slot for items that grant Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating, but you may use Hit Rating items as a placeholder until you manage to tweak the rest of your gear.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Trial of the Champion – Argent Confessor Palatress
Trial of the Champion – Eadric the Pure

Depending on the rest of your gear slots, you will want to use the Waist Slot to increase your overall Hit Rating or you will want to reserve this slot for items that specifically enhance your Critical Strike Chance and Haste Rating. At the beginning of your gear journey, it will be easier for you to acquire Hit Rating from this slot. One great example of an item that will bring a major Hit Rating yield and can be directly bought with gold from the Auction House or a Tailor is the Sash of Ancient Power.

The only other viable alternative that you can use as a fresh 80 for increasing your overall Hit Rating from this gear slot will be the Belt of the Churning Blaze. While it grants a decently high amount of Critical Strike Chance and overall higher Hit Rating than the Sash of Ancient Power, it will be a weaker option since it lacks Gem Sockets.

However, if you are somehow lucky and come across powerful Hit Rating items from your other gear slots, you will want to prioritize the Cord of the White Dawn as the best possible option for a fresh 80.

Other viable yet weaker alternatives for increasing your Critical Strike Chance will be the Binding of the Dragon Matriarch, the Conductive Cord, and The Confessor’s Binding. All of the three options grant the exact same types of stats with fairly similar stat yields, with the exception of the last option which will grant you a Gem Socket while having lower overall baseline stats.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Ulduar – Algalon the Observer (25)

The best possible option for this slot will be the Starwatcher’s Binding. This is due to the major stat yield that it grants, offering a large amount of Critical Strike Chance. Since our Pre-Toc set has other gear slots dedicated to increasing our overall Hit Rating, we will want to focus on primarily increasing our overall Critical Strike Chance from this specific gear slot. You may also use items that offer both Critical Strike Chance & Haste Rating or items that solely focus on Haste Rating.

If you can’t gain access to the BiS, you may choose to use the Cord of the White Dawn as it is a convenient replacement. This item is especially useful since it can be directly bought from the Auction House or from a Tailor! In terms of damage output, the difference between the two items is only ~70-80 DPS, meaning that if you struggle to find the Starwatcher’s Binding, you may use the Cord of the White Dawn confidently instead.

If you don’t have a 14% Hit Rating from your other gear slots, you may sacrifice this slot in favor of a Hit Rating item and use the Sash of Ancient Power as the best possible option. Besides its high Hit Rating, it will also grant a high amount of Haste Rating which will make up for the lost Critical Strike Chance.

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Faction Champions (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Faction Champions (25)
Trial of the Crusader – Icehowl (10) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Icehowl (10)
Trial of the Crusader – Icehowl (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Icehowl (25)
Ulduar – Algalon the Observer (25)

The best possible option for this slot will be the Cord of Biting Cold since we will want to dedicate this slot for increasing our overall Hit Rating! Besides a large amount of Hit Rating gained by using this item, you will also gain a considerable amount of Critical Strike Chance which will further empower our Hot Streak.

The next-best alternative will be the 245 Ilvl version of the Cord of Biting Cold as it grants the closest stat yield to the 258 Ilvl version. You can also use the Icehowl Cinch as a viable alternative for its high Hit Rating, however, you will generate a lower damage output since all the other stats are lower than the Cord of Biting Cold.

However, if you choose to sacrifice another Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating item in favor of a Hit Rating item in your other gear slots, you will want to use the Belt of the Tenebrous Mist as the best possible option. It follows the same pattern just as many of the previously mentioned items, granting a very high amount of Haste Rating as a secondary stat and increased Critical Strike Chance through the Spirit baseline stat that it offers. It is closely followed up by its 245 Ilvl version, the Belt of the Tenebrous Mist which provides the same precise types of stats, only with a lower overall stat yield.

Lastly, you will want to keep using the Starwatcher’s Binding as the best option until you can attain any of the previously mentioned ToC items!

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Animated Constellation – 25 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Trial of the Champion – Eadric the Pure
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)

The best possible option for a fresh level 80 character will be the Leggings of Profound Darkness! Generally speaking, you will want to activate the T8 4-item set bonus from your Valorous Kirin Tor Items, however, you will want to reserve this slot for your Off-Piece as a fresh level 80 since the Leggings of Profound Darkness generate the best possible damage output. Of course, this is statement is true only if we don’t take into consideration the ToC patterns as it will take a few days after release until they can become available!

If you choose to use the Valorous Kirin Tor Leggings in this slot instead of using an Off-Piece item, you will have to tweak the rest of your set as you will already have a large amount of Hit Rating. However, if you haven’t acquired the rest of your Hit Rating gear, you will actually want to use this option as the best possible Hit Rating item that you can acquire as a Fresh 80 Character. On the same note, you may use the Heroes’ Frostfire Leggings as a Hit Rating alternative if you can’t find the T8 Leggings!

The rest of the options are akin to the Leggings of Profound Darkness, with each of them offering a variant of either Critical Strike Chance or Haste Rating. The next-best alternative to it will be the Leggings of Unstable Discharge, followed up closely by the Leggings of the Haggard Apprentice and the Leggings of the Instructor.

The Leggings of Sapphiron is the weakest in terms of pure damage output, however, it can be a useful item if you completely stacked the rest of your gear slots with Critical Strike Chance and you lack Haste Rating completely.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Ulduar – Freya (25)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Ulduar – Freya (25) HM
Animated Constellation – 25 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)

The best possible option for the Pre-Toc gearing phase will be the Conqueror’s Kirin Tor Leggings. This is due to two main reasons: The first reason why we want to prioritize the T8 Leggings is due to the large amount of Hit Rating that they offer. While there are other items that provide a similar amount of Hit Rating, the second reason why we want those specific leggings is due to the access to the T8 item-set bonuses. Since the T8 4-item set bonus is especially strong for a Fire Mage, you will always want to utilize the 4-item set bonus, even if you choose to use an Off-Piece for this specific gear slot!

The next-best alternative will be the lower Ilvl version of the T8 Leggings, namely the Valorous Kirin Tor Leggings. Since we want to activate the T8 4-item set bonus, the lower stat yield won’t result in a massive DPS loss.

In case you chose to use an Off-Piece for this slot, the next-best alternative to the T8 Leggings will be the Leggings of the Enslaved Idol. The item grants the exact same types of stats as the T8 Leggings, with the only difference being the stat yield itself.

In case you already have your 4-item set bonus active from your other gear slots and you also have plenty of HIt Rating, you can use the Leggings of Profound Darkness as a potent alternative! You can also just use the item as a placeholder until you can acquire any version of the T8 Leggings or the Leggings of the Enslaved Idol.

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Crusade Tribute Chest (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Lord Jaraxxus (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Lord Jaraxxus (10) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Anub’arak (25) Heroic
Ulduar – Freya (25) HM

The best possible option for this slot will be Khadgar’s Leggings of Triumph! Besides its great set of stats and impressive stat yields, the most important aspect of this item is the access to the T9 item-set bonuses. Since we want to activate the 4-item set bonus as fast as possible, this item can be considered one of the top priority items from this list.

Naturally, the next-best alternatives will be its 245 Ilvl version, Khadgar’s Leggings of Triumph, and its 232 Ilvl version, Khadgar’s Leggings of Conquest, as they grant the same precise types of stats and access to the T9 item-set bonuses. Just as we mentioned with the other T9 items, using any Ilvl version of the T9 item does not impact the bonus itself!

If you somehow find yourself in a position where you tweaked the rest of your gear slots and decided that you wish to use this slot for an Off-Piece item, the best possible alternative will be the Leggings of the Soothing Touch! This is mainly due to the very high stat yield that it grants, with the Haste Rating itself being a great bonus. This is especially true if you changed the rest of your gear slots towards stronger Critical Strike Chance items at the expense of Haste Rating. If you instead actually changed the rest of your gear slots and gained more Haste Rating at the expense of Critical Strike Chance, then the Leggings of the Demonic Messenger will be the next-best alternative as they grant an amazing set of stats tailored towards Critical Strike Chance.

In the event that your item tweaks resulted in a loss of Hit Rating, you may use either one of the Leggings of the Deepening Void or the Leggings of the Enslaved Idol to increase your overall Hit Rating while also gaining a considerable amount of Critical Strike Chance.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Animated Constellation – 24 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
The Eye of Eternity – Malygos (BoE)
Trial of the Champion – The Black Knight
Wyrmrest Accord – Exalted
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)

For this particular slot as a Fresh 80 Character, you will have an abundance of options that can increase your overall Critical Strike Chance & Haste Rating. However, there will be only one viable alternative for increasing your overall Hit Rating! Since the majority of the Fresh 80 set already offers an abundance of Hit Rating, you may simply choose to use either one of the Starlight Treads or the Spellslinger’s Slippers as your best option in order to maximize your damage output.

If you can’t acquire any of those options yet, the Treads of the Dragon Council and the Arcanic Tramplers provide the closest damage output in relation to the first available options. The rest of the options are simply downgrades that you may encounter during your gearing journey. As they all have the same types of stats and similar stat yields, it doesn’t precisely matter which option you choose apart from those 4 initial options for maximizing your damage output.

If you find yourself in a situation in which you haven’t encountered the other Hit Rating items from the Fresh 80 set, the only available option for increasing your overall Hit Rating will be the Boots of the Crackling Flame. Since they drop from a normal dungeon, you can safely farm them until you gain them to come as close as possible to the minimum 14% Hit Rating requirement.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Ulduar – Yogg-Saron (25) HM
Ulduar – Flame Leviathan (25) HM
Animated Constellation – 24 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)

For the Pre-Toc gearing phase, you will ideally want to gain items that increase your overall Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating! The best possible option will be the Treads of the False Oracle as it grants the highest stat yield possible. It is closely followed up by the Boots of Fiery Resolution. While the latter option doesn’t grant a direct Critical Strike Chance, the high amount of Spirit granted by the item will transition into a considerable amount of Critical Strike Chance.

If you can’t find any of those two options, you may use the Starlight Treads as it can be easily acquired now with the new Sidereal Essence Currency. In terms of pure performance and damage output, the Starlight Treads will be considerably weaker than the other two options since the item doesn’t grant any Haste Rating. However, you should not expect a massive DPS loss as the difference between the third option and the other two is roughly around ~ 40-55 DPS.

The Spellslinger’s Slippers will be the last possible alternative due to its overall weaker performance when compared to the rest of the items. However, the main advantage of this item is that you can directly buy it with gold, either from the Auction House or from a Tailor. This means that if you lack enough Sidereal Essence or you simply haven’t been lucky with Ulduar drops, you can simply use this item to gain a spot in ToC or Onyxia’s Lair.

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Faction Champions (25) Heroic
Ulduar – Flame Leviathan (25) HM
Ulduar – Yogg-Saron (25) HM
Animated Constellation – 24 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Trial of the Crusader – Faction Champions (25)
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (10) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Anub’arak (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Faction Champions (10) Heroic

Just like with many of your other gear slots, you will have to make a choice between increasing your overall Hit Rating or increasing your overall Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating in order to empower Hot Streak. Ideally, you will want to reserve this slot for an item that increases your overall Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating.

If you chose the Critical Strike Chance path, the best possible option for this slot will be the Boots of the Mourning Widow. This is due to the major amount of Haste Rating and Spell Power it grants, paired up with a very high amount of baseline stats. The Spirit granted will also transition into a considerable amount of Critical Strike Chance.

The next-best alternative to it will be the Boots of Fiery Resolution, followed up closely by the Treads of the False Oracle. While both items have a different set of stats, they both result in the same stat yields, respectively, Critical Strike Chance & Haste Rating, The DPS difference between those two options and the BiS is around ~35-65 DPS, with the former option being stronger than the latter.

The Starlight Treads is yet another valid alternative that is slightly stronger in terms of pure DPS to the 245 Ilvl version of the Boots of the Mourning Widow. The main reason why the item is stronger is due to the two Gem Sockets it grants. The Boots of the Grieving Soul have the exact same types of stats as the Starlight Treads and almost the same stat yield, however, they will be the weakest option since they only grant one Gem Socket.

If you choose the Hit Rating path, the best possible option will be the Footpads of the Icy Floe as it grants one of the highest available Hit Rating stat yields across the ToC items. The only other viable alternative to the Footpads of the Icy Floe which grants similar results will be the Sandals of the Silver Magus. While it doesn’t grant the exact same types of stats, the sheer amount of stats themselves will result in a very similar DPS output.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Animated Constellation – 19 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Harold Winston – Exalted with the Kirin Tor
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Trial of the Champion – Argent Confessor Palatress (Heroic)
Trial of the Champion – Eadric the Pure

The best ring combinations for a Fresh 80 Character in the third phase of the expansion depends entirely on whether or not you have attained a minimum 14% Hit Rating! If you already have the necessary Hit Rating, the best ring combination will be Nebula Band & Signet of Soft Lament due to the very high Critical Strike Chance this pair yields. If you don’t have the necessary Hit Rating yet, the best possible ring combination will be Nebula Band & Shimmering Seal.

If you don’t have enough Sidereal Essence yet, the most powerful ring that you can acquire for a moderate amount of gold will be the Etched Signet of the Kirin Tor. This is due to its massive stat yield with a perfect combination of Critical Strike Chance & Haste Rating. If you don’t have enough gold to acquire this ring, you may opt for items such as Lady Maye’s Sapphire Ring or the Signet of Purity to achieve a similar result.

As for possible Hit Rating options that you can acquire if you find yourself unable to gain the Shimmering Seal, you will be able to use the Emerald Signet Ring as the next-best alternative, followed up closely by the Sinner’s Confession.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Ulduar – Mimiron (25) HM
Animated Constellation – 19 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Ulduar – Ignis the Furnace Master (25)
Harold Winston – Exalted with the Kirin Tor
Naxxramas – Kel’Thuzad

The best possible Ring combination for the Pre-Toc gearing phase will be the Conductive Seal & Nebula Band. This is mostly due to the incredible stat yield that they produce, granting both Critical Strike Chance and Haste Rating. Those two rings will be powerful enough to even be used as possible BiS options for the entirety of the phase 3.

Ideally, you will want to maintain the Conductive Seal as your main option, however, it will be far easier to acquire the Nebula Band since you can now directly purchase it with Sidereal Essence.

The next-best alternative to those two rings will be the Signet of Soft Lament which can also be acquired with the new Sidereal Essence. It is closely followed up by the Pyrelight Circle in terms of pure damage output. Realistically, you can compare the Pyrelight Circle to the Nebula Band as it provides the exact same types of stats, only in a lesser overall amount.

If you can’t gain access to any of those items and you have spare gold in your pockets, the Etched Signet of the Kirin Tor will produce a similar damage output to the Pyrelight Circle, presenting a perfectly valid and quite potent alternative. You should also choose this option if you don’t consistently raid Ulduar 25.

Lastly, you can still use the Signet of Manifested Pain from the first phase of the expansion, as a potent option that is comparable to the Etched Signet of the Kirin Tor. The reason for this is that it grants the precise exact same types of stats with a nearly identical stat yield.

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Anub’arak (25) Heroic
Ulduar – Mimiron (25) HM
Animated Constellation – 19 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Trial of the Crusader – Anub’arak (25)
Trial of the Crusader – Lord Jaraxxus (10) Heroic
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Trial of the Crusader – Lord Jaraxxus (10)

The best possible ring combination for the third phase of the expansion will be Band of Deplorable Violence & Conductive Seal. This is due to several factors: The first reason why this combination is especially powerful is due to all the Spirit you can gain from both items with pairs perfectly well with the Glyph of Molten Armor and the T9 2-item set bonus. The second reason is the massive amounts of Critical Strike Chance & Haste Rating that you can acquire. The third and final reason is that those two specific items grant the highest possible stat yield when compared to any other ring available to us in this current phase of the expansion.

Ideally, you will want to maintain the Band of Deplorable Violence as your primary ring and swap the Conductive Seal with any other viable alternatives, however, there are cases where you can effectively swap both items and still reach an optimum setup. The rings you currently use will be heavily influenced by the rest of your gear slots.

The Nebula Band will be the best possible alternative to the Conductive Seal and in some cases, you may even choose to pair the two items together if you can’t acquire the 258 Ilvl version of the Band of Deplorable Violence yet. If you can only acquire one of those items, you can choose to pair them together with the 245 Ilvl version of the Band of Deplorable Violence to produce a similar yet slightly less powerful damage output.

You could also use the Signet of Soft Lament as a viable alternative for increasing your overall Critical Strike Chance, however, it will be the weakest option among all the other available rings.

If somehow you chose to tweak the rest of your gear in favor of a higher Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating and you drop below the 14% minimum Hit Rating, there are several alternatives that you can use.

The most powerful Hit Rating option for this slot will be the Firestorm Ring as it grants a fairly high amount of Hit Rating paired up with Critical Strike Chance. It is closely followed up by the Shimmering Seal which provides a fairly similar damage output. While you might expect its 232 Ilvl version, the Firestorm Ring, to be stronger than the Shimmering Seal, the reality is that the latter will produce a higher damage output by simply having access to a Gem Socket.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)

For the Fresh 80 trinket slots, the majority of your trinket options will have a main common feature. All of the available trinkets that you can use will feature On-Equip effects that grant either a large quantity of Spell Power or a large quantity of Haste Rating. Ideally, you will want to use the Eye of the Broodmother paired up with the Elemental Focus Stone the best combination of Haste Rating/Spell Power.

The Embrace of the Spider is the best possible alternative to the Elemental Focus Stone as it grants the precise same On-Equip effect. Depending on your current Hit Rating, the Elemental Focus Stone will be the weaker option if you already have more than 14% Hit Rating on your own.

The Sundial of the Exiled will be the only possible alternative to the Eye of the Broodmother. However, it will provide a slightly lower damage output, with the difference between the two items being 60 DPS in favor of the latter.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Ulduar – General Vezax (25) HM
Ulduar – Thorim (25)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Ulduar – Razorscale (25)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)

The best possible trinket combination for the Pre-Toc Gearing phase will be Flare of the Heavens & Scale of Fates. This is due to the massive amount of Spell Power granted by the Flare of the Heavens which can’t be compared to any other trinket from our list paired up with the On-Use effect of the Scale of Fates. Since you can use the Scale of Fates whenever you desire, you can efficiently combine it with the Flare of the Heavens‘s proc. You may also choose to use it while Heroism/Bloodlust is active to massively increase your overall damage output.

You will want to use the Flare of the Heavens as your main trinket while replacing the Scale of Fates in case you need to tweak your build. The Eye of the Broodmother is the next-best possible alternative as it grants a very similar damage output to the Scale of Fates through its consistent Spell Power buff.

If your build currently lacks a large amount of Hit Rating, you can use either of the Living Flame or the Elemental Focus Stone as potent alternatives. The former option grants an On-Use effect that you can trigger on choice together with the rest of your offensive cooldowns for a perfect synch while the latter option is completely RNG dependent. Both options are very similar in terms of damage output, however, the Living Flame is stronger since you can synch it up perfectly with the rest of your cooldowns.

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Anub’arak (25) Heroic
Ulduar – General Vezax (25) HM
Trial of the Crusader – Anub’arak (25)
Ulduar – Thorim (25)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Ulduar – Razorscale (25)
Trial of the Crusader – Faction Champions (10) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Faction Champions (10)

The best possible trinket combination in the third phase of the expansion is the Reign of the Unliving &Flare of the Heavens. Reign of the Unliving fits perfectly with the Fire Mage specialization as it is heavily reliant on Critical Strikes. The only issue with this trinket is that it doesn’t trigger on Living Bomb as well, however, that would have been unbalanced if we think about it realistically. Since we can’t combine Reign of the Unliving with its 245 Ilvl version, Reign of the Unliving, we will want the massive increase in Spell Power granted by the Flare of the Heavens.

The next-best alternative will be the Scale of Fates, closely followed up by the Eye of the Broodmother. The former option can be extremely powerful if used properly, especially if you stack it with Heroism/Bloodlust and Potion of Speed. The latter option brings a much more stable buff, even if it’s considerably lower in terms of raw numbers. The consistency of the buff and its uptime will grant you a very similar damage output!

If your build currently lacks a large amount of Hit Rating, you can use either the Living Flame or the Shard of the Crystal Heart as potent alternatives that also grant you powerful On-Use effects comparable to the previously mentioned items.

The Talisman of Volatile Power and its 232 Ilvl version, Talisman of Volatile Power, can be considered viable options that come with a specific quirk involved in your gameplay as a Fire Mage. In order to efficiently reach all 8 stacks in the shortest possible amount of time, you will have to use a combination of Fire Blast and Scorch. As our rotation mainly involves Fireball or Frostfire Bolt, this will require a bit of specific timing. It’s best to use this item in conjunction with Heroism/Bloodlust and Potion of Speed to benefit from its effect as much as possible.

Fresh 80

Staff
Source
Animated Constellation – 50 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former The Eye of Eternity 10)

While the best possible weapons for a Fire Mage in this phase of the expansion will be a Main-Hand & Off-Hand combination, you can also use Staves as viable options as long as you tweak the rest of your gear slots.

The best possible option that you can acquire as a Fresh 80 will be the Icecore Staff as it grants a very high amount of Haste Rating and a decent amount of Critical Strike Chance through its baseline Spirit. You will also be able to use this option as one of the best options during the Pre-Toc gearing phase!

As for the next-best alternatives to the Icecore Staff, you may use either one of Devotion or Pillar of Fortitude as viable alternatives since they fit the same stats pattern. While their overall stat yields are considerably lower, they will still result in a decent damage output.

However, if you require Hit Rating instead of items with Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating, the best possible option will be the Unraveling Reach. It is closely followed up by the Greatstaff of the Nexus. While their stat yields are fairly different with one option granting Haste Rating while the other grants Critical Strike Chance through Spirit, their respective damage outputs are fairly similar.

Main-Hand
Source
Animated Constellation – 38 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Trial of the Champion – The Black Knight (Heroic)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)

The best possible option for a Fresh 80 Character when it comes to your Main-Hand Weapon will be entirely dependent on the rest of your current gear slots. Your main options will vary depending on whether you already have plenty of Hit Rating or if you still require more in order to reach the minimum 14% Hit Rating. You will have access to three main Hit Rating options while the rest of the possible items focus on increasing your overall Critical Strike Chance & Haste Rating.

The best possible option for increasing your Hit Rating will be the Fusion Blade. It is closely followed by the Firesoul as its next-best alternative. While both items grant different types of stat yields, their general damage output is extremely similar. It all depends on whether or not you currently managed to amass a decent amount of Haste Rating or not.

You may also use The Soulblade as a viable Hit Rating item, however, since its stat yield is the lowest among the Hit Rating options, you will want to swap it as fast as possible.

As for items that specifically increase your Critical Strike Chance or Haste Rating, the best possible option will be the Plasma Foil, closely followed up by the Stormtip and Spectral Kris.

The Grieving Spellblade and the Blade of Dormant Memories are also viable alternatives that fit the same pattern. However, since their overall stat yields are considerably lower, with Spell Power being heavily reduced, their damage output will be considerably weaker. You should treat those two items as initial options that you can confidently utilize until you come across a potent upgrade.

Off-Hand
Source
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)

The best Off-Hand for a Fresh 80 Character depends entirely on the rest of your current items. Among the most powerful items, you may use the Igniter Rod if you have plenty of Hit Rating or the Watchful Eye if you still require more Hit Rating.

You can use the Handbook of Obscure Remedies as an alternative to the Igniter Rod, however, since it costs 25 Emblems of Heroism it will be considerably harder to acquire.

The Ward of the Violet Citadel actually provides more Hit Rating than the Watchful Eye, however, it will be harder to acquire since you will need to buy it for 25 Emblems of Heroism. Since the Watchful Eye can be acquired in the new Heroic + Dungeons, it will be easier for you to use it as a viable alternative until you can get a far stronger upgrade.

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Staff
Source
Ulduar – Hodir (25) HM
Animated Constellation – 50 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Ulduar – The Iron Council (25)
Ulduar – Ignis the Furnace Master (25)

Just as mentioned previously, you have the option of using Staves as your BiS Weapon as long as you tweak the rest of your set to match the minimum requirement of 14% Hit Rating.

The best possible option for the Pre-Toc gearing phase will be the Staff of Endless Winter due to the massive amount of Critical Strike Chance it offers. It is closely followed by the Icecore Staff in terms of pure damage output. Even if both items have a fairly different stat yield, their respective outputs are quite close, with only a ~100-150 DPS difference.

While not as strong as our two main options, you may use Rapture to achieve a similar result. However, since its Stat Yield is considerably lower while also not having any Gem Socket, its damage output will also be considerably lesser than the other two options.

There is one other viable option that you may use for this slot which is viable in our current set without changing any of the other BiS options. You can use Intensity to massively boost your Hit Rating, however, it will result in a lower damage output than the damage output generated by a Main-Hand Weapon & Off-Hand.

Main-Hand
Source
Ulduar – Algalon the Observer (25)
Animated Constellation – 38 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Ulduar – Yogg-Saron (25)

The best possible option for your Main Hand will depend on the rest of your gear slots, more specifically, it will depend on whether you chose to fulfill the minimum 14% Hit Rating requirement from your other slots or not. In our current set, the best possible option will be the StarShard Edge as we will want to dedicate this slot to gaining additional Hit Rating.

The next-best alternative will be the Fusion Blade as it basically grants the same types of stats. While it may not directly grant Critical Strike Chance as a secondary stat, it will increase our overall Critical Strike Chance through the Spirit baseline stat that it offers.

If you chose to modify our current set and you already reached the minimum 14% Hit Rating, you will want to use the Soulscribe as your actual BiS due to its amazing stat yield. This option will also be viable while progressing through ToC/ToGC/Onyxia’s Lair as its stats result in a fairly high damage output.

Off-Hand
Source
Ulduar – Algalon the Observer (25)
Ulduar – Flame Leviathan (25)
Ulduar – Kologarn (25)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)

The best possible Off-Hand in our current set for the Pre-Toc gearing phase will be Cosmos. This is due to the massive amounts of Hit Rating and Critical Strike Chance that it offers, with a stat yield so high that it will even be considered one of the best choices towards the end of the third phase.

The next-best alternative for it will be the Leviathan Fueling Manual since it will grant us a decently high amount of Hit Rating. However, its other stats are quite bad in comparison, meaning that you will precisely want to acquire Cosmos.

If you can’t manage to find any of those two options, you will be forced to modify the rest of your gear slots in order to reach a minimum of 14% Hit Rating. As such, you may use either one of the Ironmender or the Igniter Rod as a perfectly valid alternative. The former option will be stronger since it increases our Critical Strike Chance, however, the latter option may be more beneficial if you are completely lacking Haste Rating.

Best-in-Slot

Staff
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Crusade Tribute Chest (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (10) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Anub’arak (10) Heroic
Ulduar – Hodir (25) HM
Animated Constellation – 50 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)

While Staves are not the best option for a Fire Mage in this current phase of the expansion, you may still choose to use one if you so desire. The best possible will be Clemency, due to the massive amount of Critical Strike Chance that you can gain. The main issue with the item is that you will lose a considerable amount of Haste Rating while also being forced to tweak the rest of your gear to make up for the lost Hit Rating.

Enlightenment will be the next-best possible alternative that fixes the Haste Rating issue that Clemency. However, its damage output will be weaker since its overall stat yield will be lower. As it also grants no Spirit, it will also reduce your overall Critical Strike Chance gained from your Molten Armor.

Cold Convergence works in the same way as Enlightenment, however, it provides almost identical stats with the only difference being slightly different stat yields and one less Gem Socket.

Until you can find any of those ToC items, if you insist on using a Staff, you may use either one of the Staff of Endless Winter or the Icecore Staff as a valid alternative as they both grant a fairly similar damage output. The former option will be overall better since we benefit more from Critical Strike Chance while the latter option will be more beneficial if you already stacked your build with Critical Strike Chance but you lack any form of Haste Rating.

Main-Hand
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Crusade Tribute Chest (25) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Icehowl (25) Heroic
Ulduar – Algalon the Observer (25)
Trial of the Crusader – Faction Champions (10) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader -Argent Crusade Tribute Chest (10) Heroic
Ulduar – Yogg-Saron (25)
Animated Constellation – 38 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)

For your Main-Hand options as a Fire Mage, the best possible options will be either one of the Blade of the Unbroken Covenant or the Blade of Tarasque. This is heavily reliant on the rest of your gear slots and whether or not you have enough Hit Rating to reach the minimum of 14%. The Blade of Tarasque will be the best option for increasing your overall Hit Rating while the Blade of the Unbroken Covenant is the best option if you already have a minimum of 14% Hit Rating.

We will segment this category into items that provide Hit Rating and items that increase your overall Critical Strike Chance & Haste Rating.

Since our build already uses an optimum amount of Hit Rating, we will focus on the Blade of the Unbroken Covenant as our primary option. The next-best alternative will be Blade of the Silver Disciple as it grants the most similar damage output while also granting us decently high amounts of Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating.

If you can’t gain any of those items yet, Soulscribe will provide the next-best damage output as it grants the precise same types of secondary stats. While its stat yields are considerably lower, this item will still help you generate a high damage output. The difference between this item and the Blade of the Unbroken Covenant is around ~300-350 DPS.

If you focus on Hit Rating items while filling your Hit Rating slots with Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating items, the next-best alternative to the Blade of Tarasque will be the Starshard Edge, followed up closely by the Spellstorm Blade. The only issue with the former option is the fact that you will lose a medium amount of Haste Rating, however, you will gain an overall higher stat spread than the latter option.

Lastly, you will want to use the Fusion Blade as a Hit Rating alternative if you chose this path until you can gain any of the ToC items!

Off-Hand
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Lord Jaraxxus (25) Heroic
Ulduar – Algalon the Observer (25)
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (10) Heroic
Trial of the Crusader – Lord Jaraxxus (25)
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (25) Heroic

The best possible Off-Hand option for a Fire Mage in our current setup will be the Symbol of Transgression. This is mainly due to the vital amount of Hit Rating that it grants combined with a large amount of Critical Strike Chance. You may choose to use the Chalice of Searing Light instead if you tweaked one of your Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating items from the rest of your gear slots to gain more Hit Rating.

As for the next-best alternatives for the Symbol of Transgression, the BiS from the previous phase of the expansion, Cosmos, will bring the highest possible stat yield. It is followed up by the Chalice of Benedictus, with the only difference between the two items being that you will trade Critical Strike Chance for an increased Haste Rating by using this option.

Lastly, you can use the 245 Ilvl version of the Symbol of Transgression, however, it will produce a slightly lower damage output since it doesn’t grant any Gem Socket.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Heroic ++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic + Dungeons (Former Naxxramas 10 Drop)
Utgarde Keep – Prince Keleseth (Heroic)

The Petrified Ivy Sprig will actually be the best possible option throughout the entirety of phase 3! Since you can now acquire it easily from the new Sidereal Essence Vendor, you shouldn’t worry about replacing it until the next phase of the expansion. However, there are plenty of options that you can use as alternatives if you prioritize other items that you can only acquire with the new Sidereal Essence Currency.

Either one of the Nurturing Touch or the Wand of the Archlich can be used as a potent alternative if you manage to gain the 14% Hit Rating cap from your other gear slots. If you gain access to both of them, you should choose the former option as it’s considerably stronger than the latter due to the sheer amount of stats it grants.

Lastly, you can use the Wand of the San’layn as an alternative to the Petrified Ivy Sprig. However, it is considerably weaker and should only be used until you can manage to gain the Petrified Ivy Sprig!

Pre-ToC/Onyxia’s Lair

Item
Source
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Ulduar – XT-002 Deconstructor (25)
Ulduar – General Vezax (25)

Just as mentioned previously, the best option will remain the Petrified Ivy Sprig, even if we look among all the other possible options from Ulduar 25. The reason for this is that we will mainly want to focus on gaining Hit Rating from this slot while we empower ourselves with Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating items from our other gear slots.

If you still don’t have enough Sidereal Essence to acquire the Petrified Ivy Sprig, you can use the Quartz Crystal Wand as the next-best alternative since it grants a fairly similar amount of Hit Rating!

If you already have plenty of Hit Rating from your other gear slots, you will actually want to use the Scepter of Lost Souls as your BiS for the Pre-Toc gearing phase as it grants fairly high amounts of Critical Strike Chance and Haste Rating.

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Ulduar – XT-002 Deconstructor (25)
Trial of the Crusader – Icehowl (10) Heroic
Ulduar – General Vezax (25)
Trial of the Crusader – Icehowl (10)

Just as mentioned previously, the Petrified Ivy Sprig will be the BiS option for this slot due to the Hit Rating it grants. It is closely followed up by the new Brimstone Igniter which can be acquired with Emblems of Triumph in case you don’t have enough Sidereal Essence or if you simply don’t wish to farm more. The damage difference between the two items is quite minimal, with only a ~50-70 DPS difference on multiple simulations.

In the unlikely event that you can’t gain any of those two options, you may still use the Quartz Crystal Wand as a valid alternative for increasing your overall Hit Rating.

In case you tweaked the rest of your gear slots and you already have plenty of Hit Rating, you will actually want to use the Rod of Imprisoned Souls as the BiS option due to its Critical Strike Chance/Haste Rating secondary stats. The Scepter of Lost Souls will be the next-best alternative to it, producing a higher damage output than the 232 Ilvl version of the Rod of Imprisoned Souls.

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Heroic++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic+ Dungeons (Former The Obsidian Sanctum 10)

Pre-ICC

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Crusade Tribute Chest (25) Heroic
Onyxia’s Lair – Onyxia (25)
Ulduar – Thorim (25)
Ulduar – Mimiron (25) HM
Ulduar – Razorscale (25)

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Icecrown Citadel (25) – Heroic Gunship
Icecrown Citadel (25) – Gunship
Trial of the Crusader – Argent Crusade Tribute Chest (25) Heroic

Fresh 80

Item
Source
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Heroic++ Dungeons (Former Ulduar 10)
Heroic+ Dungeons (Former The Eye of Eternity 10 Drop)

Pre-ICC

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (25) Heroic
Korralin Hoperender – 60 Defiler’s Scourgestone
Ulduar – Flame Leviathan (25) HM
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (25)
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (10) Heroic
Animated Constellation – 15 Sidereal Essence ( Sidereal Essence Vendor)
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (10)

Best-in-Slot

Item
Source
Trial of the Crusader – Eydis Darkbane (25) Heroic
Icecrown Citadel (25) – Heroic Gunship
Icecrown Citadel (25) – Gunship