One thing I’ve noticed playing on Caelestrasz is the frequent linking of Epic and Superior to determine the value of a player when forming groups. Raid Leaders forming groups ask for it and players looking for a group advertise these two achievements.
First off let me explain how these two achievements work. Any item that you equip with an item level of 187 or higher will give you a mark towards completing the Superior achievement. If you eventually equip an item in each equipment (17) slots of item level 187 or higher you will earn the completed achievement. But you can link the achievement at any time and people will be able to see a partially completed achievement. The same holds true for [Epic] but it requires you to equip items with an item level of 213.
I think it best I explain rarity for readers new to World of Warcraft. When you head to your local Auction House next, select armor then choose a rarity from the drop down list. Search and see what comes up.
Rarity in World of Warcraft
Common items are coloured using white text.
They are found everywhere and may be of some use to players.
Uncommon items are coloured using green text.
Equippable armor or weaponry that drops from mobs everywhere.
Rare items are coloured using blue text.
Instance bosses drop most of these items and they are much more likely to be Bind on Pickup.
Epic items are coloured using purple text.
These mostly drop from raid bosses. Some can be crafted.
Legendary items are coloured using orange text.
These can be acquired from very very difficult end game raids and take a lot of work.
So you can acquire an epic of any item level but don’t assume it will count towards the achievement Epic. That doesn’t make it any less Epic. Ironfoe, which sits in Xata’s bank, is an epic of item level 60.
Addons like Auctioneer (full suite) will provide additional tooltip information and can display item levels.
Where it falls apart
So how good is this system at determining the worth of a player? In my opinion, not very good at all.
First off understand that you can cheat the achievement somewhat. If you win a lovely new ring that counts towards your Left Ring Slot Superior achievement, just swap it with your other ring and it will also grant you your Right Ring Slot trick. 1 ring, 2 sixteenths of the way there. The same applies to trinkets which is good to know because I find trinkets are very difficult to acquire. The second one never comes easy.
At the end my first level 80 normal and heroic instances I would go through my bags and equip anything I could that I had happened to win, then vendor it immediately afterwards. I never rolled need on an item in order satisfy the requirements of an achievement but I was tempted.
I could roll need on every item that drops in my next Naxxramas 25 man if I believed that any item counting towards the Epic achievement must be an upgrade. This is simply not true. Many of my low item level epics have more suitable stats for my character than most of the drops in Naxx 25.
I don’t see this behaviour as often on Barthilas. Raid leaders on Barthilas are more likely to require potential raiders to head down to the Eventide and /wave the raid leader for a gear inspection (at least it’s no longer at the Ironforge bridge). While I’m sure this is more time consuming and more off putting to some, this is one tradition that I strongly support.