With having a new level 80 mage, I presented myself an interesting challenge. How many pieces of 213+ gear could I get with nothing but Emblems of Triumph or lower. The answer is pretty much all of it. Here is my list of gear to get with nothing but Emblems of Triumph. I will try to do this with moonkins and bear tanks later, but you can follow a similar thought pattern in order to how to downgrade to get the gear you need.
One note with this. This is just the base iLevel 200 5 mans dungeons. You can get better gear in the 5 man ToC and the 5 man ICC dungeons. This list is doing nothing but the original dungeons. Also, this is assuming you have not stepped in a single raid yet. Even a VoA can net you better gear than this list. This is not a BiS list, this is a starter list for a new mage.
Head: [Hood of Fiery Aftermath] – 75 Emblems of Triumph
Neck: [Evoker’s Charm] – 19 Emblems of Conquest = 19 Emblems of Triumph
Shoulders: [Khadgar’s Shoulderpads of Conquest] – 30 Emblems of Triumph
Back: [Disguise of the Kumiho] – 25 Emblems of Valor = 25 Emblems of Triumph
Chest: [Khadgar’s Robe of Conquest] – 50 Emblems of Triumph
Wrist: [Wraps of the Astral Traveler] – 60 Emblems of Valor = 60 Emblems of Triumph
Hands: [Khadgar’s Gauntlets of Conquest] – 30 Emblems of Triumph
Waist: [Sash of Potent Incantations] – 28 Emblems of Conquest = 28 Emblems of Triumph
Legs: [Khadgar’s Leggings of Conquest] – 50 Emblems of Triumph
Feet: [Xintor’s Expeditionary Boots] – 40 Emblems of Valor = 40 Emblems of Triumph
Ring 1: [Band of the Invoker] – 35 Emblems of Triumph
Ring 2: [Heartmender Circle] – 35 Emblems of Triumph
Trinket 1: [Shard of the Crystal Heart] – 50 Emblems of Triumph
Trinket 2: [Talisman of Resurgence] – 50 Emblems of Triumph
Wand: [Brimstone Igniter] – 25 Emblems of Triumph
Just a few notes about this gear. I chose the head as the off tier piece because the piece is simply incredible for casters. When we get to the moonkin gear list, the head will likely still be the choice because of the stats and itemization. Also, I know the Heartmender Circle is a healer ring with MP5, which is useless to mages. However, you are not going to find a ring with better stats, even if you downsize your Triumph badges. Also, I know the Shard of the Crystal Heart is not the most ideal trinket, but considering that the hit cap is higher for arcane mages than moonkins, it still will be preferred. In addition, the lower trinkets are not as good. Also, you will notice there is no weapons to buy with emblems. There is an iLevel 200 offhand you could buy, but you could also get something from the dungeons that is comparable.
So for the low, low price of 602 emblems (which if you think about it, you ran dungeons leveling up so you probably have about 30 going in), you can get your mage to have at least 213 gear in every slot except for the weapon and offhand slots, full 4T9, and well on their way to raiding. These are all the stats you would get from this gear alone:
282 Critical Strike
And all of this is before enchants, gems, racials like 5% intellect bonus by gnomes, etc. Also, because I am not a math theorycrafter, there is talents to convert the intellect and spirit into more spellpower, which will increase it even further. This is also before stepping into raids, where even raids like VoA or ToC can get you better gear than this. For example, with my mage, the first time I stepped into VoA, I got the 251 T10 legs. In that case, I picked up the T9 head piece to get my set bonus until I can break it with my next piece of T10. At that point, I will probably go and get the 245 helm.
This is the first part of a 3 part series. Next post will be about the emblem gear for the new level 80 moonkin. The third part will be about gearing a feral tank with nothing but Emblem gear.