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PvE Gear Vs. PvP Gear, Can You Use One for the Other?

PvP Gear Vs PvE Gear

The PvE Gear Vs. PvP Gear question often comes up:

  • Can I (or should I) use PvP gear in PvE?
  • Can I (or should I) use PvE gear in PvP?

So what about it, then? First off…

  • I Don't Have My PvP GearReslience is a stat that reduces damage done to you by other players. It used to be on high level PvP gear, but it was removed in patch 5.3. It still exists on lower level gear. In patch 5.4 the resilience number is 72%, regardless of the gear that you’re wearing. So that shot you do to another player does not hit for 100k, it hits for about 28k. It’s completely irrelevant in PvE.
  • PvP Power only appear on high level PvP gear and adds to the damage you do to players, and only players, much like Attack Power or Spell Power. It’s also completely irrelevant in PvE.

Skip to: Chest PlateWarrior AxeCaster StaffPriest GlovesConclusion


Ret. Paladin Armor

Currently the  addition of the above PvP stats to gear does not diminish the other stats on that gear. The PvP gear may well have more total stats, before adding in the PvP power, but the PvE gear might have more sockets and, therefore, a bigger socket bonus. For example, two pieces of Paladin Plate, Chest, at item Level 522, the PvE Gear Vs. PvP Gear:

PvP gear Vs PvE gear, Armor

So let’s compare

Grievous Chest
  • +80 Str
  • +247 Haste
  • +744 PvP Power (Total includes gem bonus)
  • Set bonus: 1500 PvP Power + another 1k from Crusader Strike
Lightning Chest
  • +1 blue socket
  • +115 Exp Vs Gladiator’s Crit number
  • +100 net Str total  (Incl. gem bonus)
  • Set bonus: More Holy damage
Clearly the Grevous chest is better for PvP and the Lightning chest for PvE, but the PvP piece has that Haste edge and a nice PvP bonus when you get the set, plus the Crusader strike bonus. The PvE piece has some applicable PvP bonuses.For PvE the PvE piece’s bonuses are useful, but only the one 4 set bonuses on the PvP piece is useful.


Warrior Weapons

PvP Weapon, two iLevels higher, hasPvP gear Vs PvE gear, Weapons

  • +23 Str
  • +34 Stam
  • +15 crit
  • +16 Mastery
  • +6195 PvP Power

For PvE, the PvE weapon is better since you can drop a Crystallized Terror into that sha-touched slot, giving it a 477 Str advantage and the PvP Power doesn’t count. 

Clearly, for PvP, there’s no contest. That 6195 PvP Power far outweighs the 477 Str.

Hover over the link to view the item:


Caster Staff

mage staves

Stave Comparison:

Note that the Stam, Spell Power, and DPS numbers are basically the same on both items.

Grievous Gladiator’s Battle Staff
  • +80 Int (+20 int, Suen-Wu has the socket bonus)
  • +192 Mastery
  • 7775 PvP Power
Suen-Wo, Spire of the Falling Sun (PvE)
  • +59 Haste (Vs Crit)
  • Red socket
  • +60 Int Socket bonus

For PvE it’s pretty close. The gem socket makes up for the stats edge on the PvP item, giving the PvE piece a small edge.

For PvP it’s no contest. 7,775 PvP power obliterates the PvE item.


Healer Gloves

One last comparison… We’ll stick to the 522 gear, for Priests, the comparisons should be similar with lower level items or other armor types. Currently there is no higher PvP item level.

PvP Gear Vs PvE Gear, Priest gloves

The Comparison

Note that Stam and Int are the same and both have the same socket bonus. Healers only get half the value of PvP Power, as compared to damage dealers, but that’s still nearly 1k PvP power for the set bonus on the Grievous gloves.

Grievous Gladiator’s Mooncloth Gloves
  • +108 Haste
  • +462 PvP Power
  • Psychic Scream cooldown reduced
  • Set: 1,500 PvP Power (healers get 1/2 the value)
  • Set: P of M Spark
  • Set: Holy gets a big chakra reduction, Disc gets a change to Spirit Shell.
Handwraps of the Exorcist
  • +82 Spirit
  • Set: P of M boost.
  • Set: Golden Apparition

Aside from the PvP Power the set bonuses on both look pretty good. Psychic Scream won’t be much use in raids and such, but the other bonuses will.

For PvP: The Grievous item obviously has an strong edge, esp with the Psychic Scream cooldown.

Por PvE: It looks like either piece would be just fine.


PvE Gear Vs. PvP Gear – Conclussion

Generally speaking it looks like PvP gear, if the item levels are at all close, is definitely superior for PvP.

For PvE (raids, instances, etc.) the PvE gear is better, but not by a lot. You could get by with PvP gear as a starter set for your heroic dungeons and early raids, then upgrade.

Once upon a time, the PvP gear was definitely inferior to the PvE gear for PvE situations. This is no longer the case. Once upon a time the reverse was also true, as PvE gear had no Resilience and so the survivability was much less. Nowadays (patch 5.4) Resilience is 72%, regardless of gear, so PvE gear doesn’t take quite the hit. You could gear up in, say, the Timeless Isle, hop into the BGs, and do Ok while you get into the Tyrannical Honor gear. That would be much better than using your level 90 green gear from questing and even better than the, very expensive, Crafted Malevelent gear set on the Auction House.

In World PvP (events, battles, ganking) the much higher item level available with PvE gear will make it more effective than PvP gear, with the possible exception of the weapons. The big Stamina edge will help out, too. PvE gear is, as of this post, topping at item level 553 and can be upgraded to 560. That should give you a nice edge over the 522 Gladiator set.

In instance PvP (Battlegrounds, arena) the PvE gear is down-rated (to about 500 as I write this) and the PvP gear will be much better.

So what do you think about PvE Gear Vs. PvP Gear?

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