Hey everyone, 1.2 will bring some major gearing changes for PvPers both in terms of accessibility and also in terms of adding/removing certain armor sets. As the changes can be a bit overwhelming, I want to go over some of the big changes with you so that you will be prepared when patch 1.2 hits on the live servers in early April. Note that the PvP changes are aimed at level 50s. Sub-50 PvPing has not be changed.
Centurion & Champion armor no longer sold and replaced by Recruit
Centurion and Champion armor are no longer sold in game. Any Champion and Centurion armors you have on yourself, companions or in your inventory/bank will remain untouched. If you like the look/colors of your Centurion/Champion set then it is time to stock them up because once patch 1.2 hits, you will lose the ability to purchase them. You can see a clarification/confirmation from one of the game devs here.
Since patch 1.2 will be opening up the armoring slot for modification, your Centurion/Champion gear will be fully moddable. As you can see on the PTS(Public Test Server) where patch 1.2 had already deployed, I was able to put in level 58 armoring from my Rakata to my Champion armor. Note that set bonus from the pre-1.2 armor will not be transferred with the armoring (set bonuses are "bound" to the item). Only the new 1.2 armor (Q61/Rating 146 and above stuff) will have set bonuses transferable with their armoring. You can see a clarification/confirmation from one of the game devs on the set bonus transferring issue here.
Recruit is is a new PvP set. It has identical looks to the old Champion set but its not moddable and only blue in quality (rating 128, old Champion had a rating of 136). Stats wise, it is inferior to the old Champion set but it does have a lot more expertise. It is going to be the starter set for PvP once 1.2 rolls around. Unlike the current PvP gear, there is no barrier for obtaining the Recruit set. If you have around 300k credits, you can easily buy a full set and jump into PvP right away.
If you are still wearing the Centurion PvP set, once 1.2 is deployed on live servers you will want to switch to the Recruit set as the stats differences are not too big and you get a lot more expertise. If you are wearing Champion, it is not so easy as you do lose a lot of stats if you switch from Champion to Recruit even though you do gain quite a bit of expertise. I will give you some sample comparisons here to demonstrate what I meant.
Here is a comparison between Centurion and Recruit for the Force-Master set (sorc/sage DPS).
Here is a comparison between Champion and Recruit for the Force-Master set (sorc/sage DPS).
As you can see, the difference in expertise between the old Champion set and the new recruit set is 246, which is equivalent to 4.3% PvP bonus under the new diminishing returns in patch 1.2 for expertise. The Centurion vs Recruit gap is much larger, 7.66% PvP bonus.
Battlemaster reitemized and no longer has a valor requirement
To further reduce the barrier to PvP, valor requirement has being removed from all Battlemaster (BM) gear. BM gear can now be purchased directly using normal Warzone Commendations. Battlemaster gear has also being re-itemized to provide a lot more expertise and some secondary stats (crit, surge, power etc.) also got shifted around. Here you can see a sample of what is happening to the sorcerer set. Note the huge expertise jump between the old and new BM sets that provide close to 7.3% difference in PvP bonus.
Here are the new costs for the Battlemaster gear.
If you already have obtained some BM pieces, your pieces will be automatically upgraded. However, if you have swapped mods out and put in "foreign" mods, these mods will not be upgraded. The new mods on the BM pieces have expertise on the mods/enhancement slot than current BM sets do not have. You can see a dev response/confirmation here (note while the dev response was directed at Rakata - the PvE armor set, the same should be applicable to the Battlemaster set).
So if you want your mods to be upgraded, I suggest going back and put in the original mods in. If you don't have the original mods anymore, it isn't too big of a deal to just buy another BM piece once 1.2 rolls around or just trade in for the new War Hero armor.
War Hero - new PvP armor to grind
Speaking of War Hero, it is the newest PvP armor tier to be added. It has 146 rating and two versions exist. There is the Rated version and the Unrated version. Unrated version can be obtained by trade in your Battlemaster piece of the same set that fits in the same slot (i.e. trade in Force-master's Battlemaster chest for the Force Master's War Hero chest). In addition to the trade in, you also need to provide some Ranked Warzone Commendations.
Now don't get confused betwene Rated/Unrated and Ranked/Unranked. Rated/Unrated refers to the armor versions of War Hero armor while Ranked/Unranked refers to the Warzone type. You need to play Ranked Warzones to obtain Ranked Warzone commendations as they will be required to purchase both the Rated and Unrated version of the War Hero armor. Normal (Unranked) Warzones will give you normal (unrankd) Warzone Commendations which are necessary to purchase the Battlemaster gear for trade in.
Here is a screenshot of the Unrated War Hero gear, as you can see at the top it requires the corresponding BM piece to trade in and Ranked Warzone Commendations.
One additional thing I need to mention is that War Hero Ears/Implants do not require a trade in of the corresponding BM Ear/Implants but requires normal Warzone Commendations instead.
Now for the Rated versions. Only armor pieces have Rated versions: ears/implants/offhand/mainhand do not have Rated versions. Bracers/Belts also have Rated versions but they require you to trade in the corresponding Unrated War Hero bracets/belts. For the 5 armor pieces (Chest, Gloves, Pants, Head, Boots), you do not need to trade in the Unrated pieces but the Rated pieces themselves are just empty shells with no stats (fully moddable). Rated pieces also have a PvP rating requirement (your performance in Ranked Warzones) to wear.
You might be baffled about the purpose of Rated War Hero gear if it has no stats on them. Rated armor is just meant to show your experience in PvP by providing a different (and often better) color variation than the Unrated version. It is not meant to be another step in the gear progression.
Here is a list of all the costs for the Unrated and Rated versions of the War Hero armor.
(Ranked WZ Commendations)
(additional Ranked WZ Commendations)
|Ear||1225 +200 Normal|
|Implant||1225 +200 Normal|
|Relic||1075 +200 Normal|
|Total||21750 +600 Normal|
What is happening to my old commendations?
With the removal of Centurion/Champion vendor and the change that made Battlemaster pieces purchasable using Warzone Commendations, you might be curious if your old commendations are going to become useless.
That is somewhat subjective question but for me personally I would say yes. Here is what going to happen to your old commendations. You can take a look yourself and decide.
- 1 Centurion - Standard Small Credit Case
- 12 Centurion - Ancient Premium Storage Box
- 30 Centurion - Ancient Prototype Storage Box
- 45 Centurion - Grade 6 Crafting PvP Box
- 1 Champion - Heavy Small Credit Box
- 7 Champion - Ancient Premium Storage Box
- 20 Champion - Ancient Prototype Storage Box
- 30 Champion - Grade 6 Crafting PvP Box
- 1 Battlemaster - Baradium Flux
- 1 Battlemaster - Grade 6 Crafting PvP Box
- 20 Mercenary - Warzone Expertise Adrenal
- 20 Mercenary - Warzone Medpac
- 30 Mercenary - 10 Warzone Commendations (note this is 30 Mercenary to purchase 10 Wz Commendations, one way exchange)
- 750 Mercenary & 750 Warzone - Longspur Recon (Valor50)
Baradium Flux, a grade 7 PvP crafting material used in the construction of Blue, Cyan, Purple, and Yellow Expertise color crystals
Grade 6 crafting PvP box that randomly rewards crafting materials as well as Mission Discoveries and Expertise color crystal schematics.
Personally, I will be spending my commendations getting a full set of Centurion/Champion before 1.2 hits as I am not a crafter. Since the current cap on Warzone Commendations is 1000 and the new cap in 1.2 is 2000, you might want to purchase Mercenary commendations after you capped on the Warzone Commendations so you can stock up and exchange them for Warzone Commendations at the unfavorable 3:1 exchange rate once 1.2 hits. This will get you a small headstart on getting BM pieces.
How should I prepare for 1.2 PvP changes?
A common and valid complaint I see from many PvPers who are already decked out in full Battlemaster is that the 1.2 PvP changes will invalidate their work. To some extent, this is true but you are also at the apex of the gearing changes. You can jump into Ranked Warzones right away and start earning Ranked Warzone Commendations and trade in your old BM pieces for War Hero. Casual PvPers like myself who are no where near valor 60 will need to do many normal Warzones before have enough for a BM set to trade in.
That being said, if you are close to valor 60 right now, you should probably focus your attention to get to Valor 60 and get some BM pieces to get you a leg up once patch 1.2 hits. Stock up on Warzone and Mercenary Commendations so you can exchange them for the remaining BM pieces once the patch deploys.
If you are no where near valor 60 and don't feel like grinding for something that will be useless after 1.2, then you can just stock up on the normal Warzone and Mercenary Comms to trade in.
Oh, if you like the look of Champion/Centurion armor sets, definitely grab a set. Even if you don't like their look, they might be worth getting to put in your bank if you are a collector of useless items!