Protection Warrior Playstyle and Rotation Guide

Patch 10.2.5 Last Updated: 24th Jan, 2024
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Playstyle & Rotation

General Rotation:

Outside of cooldowns your general rotation is something like this:

  1. Shield Block if it’s not up or you are about to cap charges
  2. Ignore Pain if you have more than 75 rage and are about to cap on rage
  3. Shield Slam
  4. Thunder Clap
  5. Revenge


Your opener for Single and Multi-targets as protection is the same

  1. Ravager from range
  2. Charge + Avatar + Demoralizing Shout
  3. Shield Charge
  4. Thunderous Roar
  5. Shield Slam
  6. Thunder Clap
  7. Revenge


A few rules need to be adhered to when playing Protection to maximize your damage and survivability. First, use Shield Slam the second it comes off cooldown, either naturally or via a reset from Devastator. Second, your Violent Outburst procs should ALWAYS be spent on Shield Slam. The extra rage generated from Shield Slam with a Violent Outburst proc allows you to super feed into Anger Management. Third, Shield Block is also an offensive buff; it increases Shield Slam damage by 30%. That means it’s beneficial to keep it up even when not actively tanking just for the damage boost to Shield Slam. And lastly, with the 10.2 Tier set, you want to be instantly using Thunderclap when you get a reset after a Shield Slam.

Surviving as a Protection Warrior

Surviving as a Protection Warrior is actually fairly straightforward. You just need to do a couple things and you’ll be golden.

Keep Shield Block up while you are actively tanking

Between Shield Block blocking all melees and Ignore Pain providing passive damage reduction, you won’t be taking a lot of passive white damage. This will negate the largest amount of damage you take as a tank, especially in keys.

Don’t starve yourself of rage

Starving yourself of rage is one of the easiest ways to get yourself killed as a Protection Warrior. If you have no rage, you can’t Shield Block, or Ignore Pain. Likewise, your cooldown reduction of Avatar and Shield Wall gets reduced, which means less rage, damage, and damage reduction overall as well.

Use your cooldowns and use them often

Because Protection has so much upfront damage reduction, one of the biggest mistakes people make when playing it is not using their big damage reduction cooldowns. Shield Wall has a 60-90 second cooldown between Anger Management and Impenetrable Wall. Having a 40% damage reduction on that short of a cooldown is incredibly strong. Use it often. The same goes for Spell Reflect and Spell Block. Use them often, but not together. A Weak Aura linked below will tell you when Spell Reflectable damage is incoming.