The frantic folk at MMO Champion
are digging up major loot finds in the upcoming Patch 2.4, including what appears to be new Tier 6
pieces -- boots, bracers, and belts. These pieces can be obtained by exchanging tokens
that likely drop from Sunwell Plateau. This marks an unexpected return to eight-piece sets hearkening back to the days of Molten Core, Blackwing Lair, and even Naxxramas (although Tier 3
was officially 9 pieces). Despite the additions, however, the item previews don't appear to show any new bonuses beyond the existing 4-piece bonuses for Tier 6. This comes as a moderate surprise considering Blizzard has said in the past that they liked the 5-piece set format. On the other hand, it's probably a good thing considering there is no official Tier 7, and these pieces cater to set completists as well as giving more flexibility in obtaining (or keeping) the set bonuses.
On an interesting note, the Tier 6 Lightbringer's Battlegear
or the Paladin Retribution boots, bracers, and belt show hints of what the patch notes state as "Items intended for Retribution Paladins have had their stats adjusted. Retribution Paladins should see an increase in dps as a result."
We can see from MMO Champion's screenshot
that the raid set has scrapped Spell Damage -- similar to the Vengeful Gladiator's Vindication
of Arena Season 3 -- in favor of Haste rating. If all other Tier 6 Retribution pieces -- or even better, all other Burning Crusade
Tier set pieces -- will be retroactively changed to remove Spell Damage and add Haste rating, it means a massive DPS upgrade for Retribution Paladins as promised. After all, Retribution Paladin DPS is basically auto-attack plus