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View Full Version : Warrior Rage, Threat, and Talents in WotLK



Xav
07-21-2008, 08:06 AM
This is the second part of a series of articles regarding WotLK that will be presented over the coming weeks. Xav (http://www.wowarmory.com/character-sheet.xml?r=Alleria&n=Xavastrasz) was asked to write this due to experiences and knowledge as a tester and as a main tank for Premonition of Alleria-US.

Right now, in current WoW, the biggest faults or weaknesses when it comes to the warrior class and tanking, are, in my opinion: Rage generation, synergy with other classes, and support roles when done tanking, so I'm going to attempt to address things with that in mind.

Rage Generation
Stalwart Protector (http://wotlk.wowhead.com/?spell=46944), the talent that grants you 2 rage every time you dodge or parry an attack, is nice. But, it could be so much more. Right now, in a raid environment, a warrior needs a steady rage bar to put out acceptable levels of threat in high end content and bursty nature of things. A hit for 5000 damage will give a warrior approximately 50 rage, and such an ~8000 hit would give around 80 rage. The problem comes when a warrior avoids several attacks in a row, and the rage generation drops down to 0. A not-so-great bandaid solution tanks can do is to turn their back, but that has its faults as well, and shouldn't be something tanks have to do.

Stalwart Protector is introduced and appears to acknowledge this problem, but does so in a very weak manner. So now when we dodge or parry those 50 or 70 rage hits, we're granted... 2 rage. Two. So the difference is going to be hardly noticable at all. The talent should be reworded, in my mind, to something like:

Stalwart Protector 1/2

You gain 20% (40%) of the rage you would have gained from the hit that you dodge or parry.

At weaker levels of mobs (5 mans, aoe pulls, etc), this will probably be less rage than the current version of Stalwart Protector, but those are the least important pulls anyways - as Shield Specialization is always proccing so much on multi-mob pulls and AoE pulls that you get steady rage from that.

I believe Stalwart Protector and rage generation is an important thing to address because of the removal of Salvation.


Threat Changes
Which brings me to something else I want to discuss and that I'm concerned about: the threat changes.

Blessing of Salvation is removed in WoTLK, and they're attempting to fold in all of the threat differences into the tanking classes abilities. Warriors in defensive stance now generate 145% threat by default instead of having to spec into defiance; however, due to the way threat scales (multiplicative instead of additively), warriors currently generate 1.30 * 1.15 threat (Defiance * Defensive Stance) or 149.5% threat modifier. In WoTLK, it's all folded into one, and thus is 145%, which is nearly a 5% difference to start with.

Then, salv's passive 30% threat reduction on everyone that the game has been balanced around, is gone. So, we're going to have to expect a minimum of 35% more threat generation from all of our abilities (to account for the defiance difference too). A tank generates *roughly* double their DPS in TPS. So if a tank is doing 600 DPS right now, they're doing around 1200 or so TPS generally. If we need to be doing 35% more threat to counteract the salv/defiance changes, we're going to need to be doing 600*1.35 or 810 DPS, which is rather significant.

Revenge with talents will do 25% more damage, but does not appear to scale with AP. Shield Slam will be hitting 10% harder via talents, with a potential option for double damage if you use shield block before hitting Shield Slam. (New shield block, +100% block value for next block, if it works anything like 2 piece T5, you'll be able to combine it like that) every 20 seconds. Vigilance will give us 15% more crit chance on our Heroic Strikes, which will help when rage dumping, but not much in low-rage scenarios.

I'm skeptical that the few damage-increasing changes so far are going to cover the no-salv difference, but we will have to wait and see.


Other New Talents
Sword and Board (http://wotlk.wowhead.com/?spell=46955) had a lot of potential, but it's been worked out and apparently wont be much more than about a 17 rage gain a minute in ideal circumstances. Perhaps it should also cause the free shield slam to have a 100% crit chance. This would allow for some nice 'controlled' burst when we get a proc: S&B procs, use a block clicky trinket or two, then hit shield block + shield slam. You'd see some huge numbers and a big jump in threat, which would be nice to match the ridiculous burst threat feral druids in particular can put out. Hell, this could also help in PvP if you're ever stuck doing that as prot, having a reliable shield slam crit, our only form of "burst".


Vigilance (http://wotlk.wowhead.com/?spell=50720)
Vigilance was originally a pretty good talent. It helped out big time with the protection warrior's synergy, especially with other tanking classes. The first version didn't have the passive threat reduction attachment to the 5% dodge gain. Now, it does. So instead of being a 5% dodge buff you can slap on another tank in the raid, it's something you have to use sporadically. Possibly use it on another tank when they're taking massive damage (or about to), but, that's about all you can do. Any longer and you're hurting their threat gen, unless their target won't be killed for a while. Overall, pretty weak. It's clearly going to be kind of nice for small 5 mans when you can just put it on whatever DPS is going to be pulling aggro the most so you can mindlessly spam taunt and not have to really bother to tank (this will be a lazy tank's dream, AFK thunderclap + shockwave + bloodbath with gaze on your aggro puller, and spam taunt on everything that turns away).

At the very least, we get a mini salv buff we can put on people now...


Shockwave (http://wotlk.wowhead.com/?spell=46968)
Shockwave seems like a true gimmick ability. A 51 point talent.. for five mans and heroics. So we get a short duration partially-AOE stun that does high threat. The range isn't too big, so we basically have to initiate the pull, thunderclap so it stays on us (Or bloodbath, if that's any good), then back up a bit and Shockwave to stun it all. I have a feeling it's going to have too short of an area of affect and be too cumbersome to use, so we'll end up using it as a second Concussion Blow. It'd have to also be an enormous amount of threat for it to be worth using on non-stunnable targets.

This is the talent spec I'll most likely be using, of course, subject to heavy changes as it's still in beta...

8/4/59 (http://wotlk.wowhead.com/?talent=LV0cZmZVctGe0zfxsgzAo)

The 3 talent points in Imp. TC may be taken out if Curse of Weakness stays as it is (innate 20% attack speed slow), to put into either Cruelty, Safeguard, or Improved Defensive Stance.

Ciderhelm
07-22-2008, 12:26 AM
Great read, thanks for writing this.

Ewanar
07-22-2008, 03:31 AM
Just pointing out, on the WoW head calculator your spec was an 8/4/59, not 49 as it said in the post =)

Great information.

Ciderhelm
07-22-2008, 03:45 AM
I updated the 49 to 59.

Arudar
07-22-2008, 04:10 AM
Great read. You are certainly right about Stalwart Protector - I love that we finally have a talent for rage generation on dodge and parries, but it should be much better. The 20%/40% idea of yours sounds much more on the mark.

My main worry still remains rage generation - especially when you consider the nudging towards more stuns with improved concussive, shockwave and improved revenge. When mobs are stunned, our rage bar pretty quickly empties. I'm actually unsure if improved revenge is then worth taking - 25% extra damage is lovely, but I don't want the mob constantly stunned.

Urhan
07-22-2008, 04:52 AM
If 5 points in Sword and Board really works out to only a 17 rage per minute again, 3 of those points in Imp HS would and one in anger management (assuming you keep the imp TC) would save you much more than that. You'd only need to use HS once every ten seconds (i.e., 6 times per minute x 3 rage) to break even on the imp HS trade, and AM on its own does 20 rage per minute.

Urhan
07-22-2008, 04:59 AM
Oops, read "gain" where I said "again", doesn't look like you can edit news comments.

Xav
07-22-2008, 06:10 AM
Yeah, I know, that's why Sword and Board seems a little weak. However, picking up Imp. TC, heroic strike, and Anger Management may not be feasible at all (I already never spec that deep in arms, only up to TC), and now imp TC may be unnecessary due to the curse of weakness change. I haven't really worked it out yet or thought into it much because it's so early, but it's very possible that using weakness over TC is a net gain for the ret due to the tank saving many GCD's and rage, as well as talent points.

So then the only other spot to increase rage efficiency/threat, in the Prot tree, is S&B.

Xav
07-22-2008, 06:11 AM
Fail, net gain for the raid, not ret. And yah, why can't I edit my posts here? :[

rychel
07-22-2008, 07:26 AM
I just dont know if i read it wrong, but i think that Stalwart Protector (http://wotlk.wowhead.com/?spell=46944)
works just fine when you have enough avoidance it seems to generate a lot of rage, since i dodge and parry a lot of times :D Shield Specialization helps too...

am i wrong?

rychel
07-22-2008, 07:27 AM
I just dont know if i read it wrong, but i think that Stalwart Protector (http://wotlk.wowhead.com/?spell=46944)
works just fine when you have enough avoidance it seems to generate a lot of rage, since i dodge and parry a lot of times :D Shield Specialization helps too...

am i wrong?

Shortypop
07-22-2008, 08:16 AM
RE: TC. I guess it depends on if bloodbath is usable in defensive stance, cos then the points form imp TC might be better in "imp bleed"?? (purely from a multimob tanking build pov)

Aldragoriad
07-22-2008, 08:27 AM
Very theoretical, but I'm curious as to whether speccing deep into prot will really be the best bang for your buck. I'm wondering, if as you say on the changes to Curse of weakness if a hybridish build such as [/COLOR]"]37/34 could end up being better from a TPS standpoint given the possible changes to Curse of Weakness, and the itemization changes intended to make warrior threat scale better with AP.

Aldragoriad
07-22-2008, 08:34 AM
Yay for getting so concerned about making the link work that I forgot to finish the thought.

Anyway to continue, I'm wondering if the build I linked earlier, or one similar since I just pulled that one out of my ass, also wouldn't be better given the speculation on some parts that crits are going to be returning to the game, fueled by the changes to anticipation and the limited availability of + def items seen so far.

I really don't see much of anything higher in the prot tree that really excites me any, and while I'm a little leery of giving up devastate, I can't help but wonder if it might work better to do so.

Urhan
07-22-2008, 08:50 AM
It's not that awful. Looking at our MT's numbers from BT last week, he would've gained about 28-33 rage per minute on the tank-and-spanks, depending on the fight, which is pretty good relative to other talents. (If it worked as Xav suggested above, giving 40% of the missed rage, he would've gotten about 77 rpm on a light hitter like Najentus, and would've been 250+ on Gorefiend.)

(The above doesn't factor in how much over-rage would be wasted because the bar stops at 100, that'd knock the numbers down quite a bit for the hardest hitters.)

Urhan
07-22-2008, 08:52 AM
Oops again, that was directed at Rychel, not Aldragoriad.

Aldragoriad
07-22-2008, 08:55 AM
/sigh nobody ever talks to me, even when I post outrageous crap to try to get a response.

Taelas
07-22-2008, 09:22 AM
While I am in perfect agreement that the 1/2 rage isn't that hot... they can't realistically do a "20%/40%" thing. How would the game know what 20% or 40% is? You weren't hit, after all, so you didn't take damage -- and passive rage generation is based on damage intake.

phaze
07-22-2008, 11:07 AM
they can't realistically do a "20%/40%" thing. How would the game know what 20% or 40% is?
Well, if they really wanted to add it in, it's possible to modify the calcs so that the 'what if' value is known. But that would mean an overhaul on how the combat code operates, and I doubt the devs are interested in pursuing that.

While the concept behind SP is nice, I feel the numbers could be beefed up. Instead of 1 rage per talent, how about 5? With 2/2 SP, that'd be 10 rage gained on a parry or dodge; that would make this talent competitive for me, when choosing where to allocate points.

Kazeyonoma
07-22-2008, 11:12 AM
hell 3 or 4 yielding 6 or 8 rage 2/2 would be more significant than just 2. that's just insane.

Xav
07-22-2008, 11:14 AM
The reason I don't think making the flat values any higher will work is because it will become extremely powerful on weak hitting mobs. Shield Specialization already serves well there, multiple weak mobs will give you a steady 'flow' of rage from it, and with the current SP, a bit more.

But if you suddenly make it 5/10 rage or something, you're going to be getting 400-500% as much rage as you normally would when those mobs hit you normally (if a mob's hitting you for 300, you might barely get 3 rage, and now you'd be getting 10 rage if you dodge it instead? that doesn't make sense).


I also do believe the 'code' for finding out what you would have been hit for is already in place, and wouldn't be hard for them to do at all.

As for that hybrid spec - I'd be extremely surprised if going without Devastate would be worth it. And as for that being a threat spec, you could've placed your points a little better to make more sense, if someone were to actually spec that. (Prioritizing threat > mitigation on same tiers)

Aldragoriad
07-22-2008, 12:14 PM
Like I said, pulled it out of my ass, while half asleep after waking up I might add. Which caused me to do dumb things like not take TM while making a bloodthirst tanking build. It was more a starting point for a discussion than a well thought out theorycraft. Devastate would be hard to lose, I admitted as much, but, depending on added abilities, like bloodbath, and the scaling of TC etc with AP, you might not miss it that much as a rotation would consist of BT, SS, Rev, and refreshing sunder, bloodbath, TC, etc.

It was more of a curiosity to see what other peoples thoughts were than any serious attempt at coming up with someting though.

Ciderhelm
07-22-2008, 12:57 PM
Fail, net gain for the raid, not ret. And yah, why can't I edit my posts here? :[

I'll have to bump permissions around a bit. It's a forum-wide restriction that posts can't be edited while they're currently news; that way I can safely move topics in here from anyone without them being changed unexpectedly (i.e. if I were to move something out of General Discussion; not meant to restrict authors).

Give me a few minutes to alter that.

Alkahn
07-22-2008, 02:22 PM
I'm a little confused where the 17 rage per minute number comes from on Sword and Board. Ignoring lag for a second, and assuming you have 40 GCDs per minute, 30 of those will be devastates or shield slams in a ss, rev, devx2 cycle. 10% of which (3) would proc this ability.

Now one of two things happens when it procs:

1) You proc right at the point in your rotation you would have shield slammed anyway. This is a pretty straightforward 17 rage savings.
2) You proc somewhere else in your rotation (best case, w/ another shield slam) in which case you will re-prioritize your rotation to take advantage of shield slam and will basically drop a devastate from your rotation to make room. This saves you 9 rage from the devastate and gives you more threat from being able to do another shield slam.

So 3 PPM would save you between 27-51 rage, depending on how you count it. It either saves you a ton of rage with no TPS gain, or a modest amount (but more than AM) and increases your threat. Seems pretty decent to me.

I may be totally wrong, I just don't quite understand where 17 rage per minute comes from.

Taelas
07-22-2008, 02:54 PM
I also do believe the 'code' for finding out what you would have been hit for is already in place, and wouldn't be hard for them to do at all.

They couldn't do it with Resilience -- then again, that was quite a bit different.

Archfiend
07-22-2008, 03:36 PM
I share some of these concerns as well, but I think that the Sword and Board talent is being a little underrated, as Alkahn pointed out, and I think that Stalwart Protector deserves a little more scrutiny.

It's hard to tell what kind of avoidance values we're going to have at level 80 at this point, so I'm going to assume 20% dodge and 20% parry for simplicity's sake, for a combined 40% avoidance (at least, the portion of avoidance we care about when considering SP). Regardless of any other circumstances, thanks to the single roll system for melee combat, we can predict that over time, we'll always have a 40% proc rate on SP. Let's look at two different situations:

A hard-hitting boss with a slow swing timer - to keep calculations simple, we'll say 3 seconds. That's easy enough - there will be 20 normal swings per minute on average, not including parry haste or specials, or time when the boss is not focusing on the MT. Avoiding 40% of those swings will result in 8 SP procs, or 16 rage per minute.

A fast-hitting boss with dual-wield - let's say two swings per 2 seconds, for a total of 60 attacks per minute, again, not including outside factors. A 40% avoidance rate should result in 24 SP procs, for a rage gain of 48 per minute.

It should have been obvious to everyone already that SP would be more effective with more avoidance and the more often that you get attacked, but in the not-so-unlikely situation that you're being attacked up to 60 times per minute, you can expect to gain half of a full rage bar over the course of a minute on average.

What do we do with this information? There are two ways to look at it: over the same span of time, NOT avoiding those attacks would have resulted in vastly more rage. In terms of sheer threat generation, it would have been better to not avoid the damage and just be healed through it all. That perspective in impractical to a huge degree for reasons not really relevant to the situation at hand. What IS relevant is that you are going to avoid those attacks anyway. The other way to look at the talent is that for 2 points, you're gaining at least as much rage as you would have generated from Anger Management in a worst-case scenario, and under ideal circumstances, you may generate several times more rage. In my mind, you're also gaining this rage when you need it most. SP will not proc as often against the super heavy-hitters, but a single hit will nearly fill your rage bar anyway. On fast-hitting bosses, we'll see a more continuous income, which is consistent with what we already see, but will only continue to improve our ability to spam our moves. On trash, we should have no problem spamming cleave, thunderclap, and bloodbath.

My concerns remain with Vigilance - this seems situational at best, and is not compelling enough for me to spend a talent point on - and Shockwave, which I really want to like... but it seems to me as though Shockwave would be better off taking the place of Vigilance as the 31 point talent and successor to Concussion Blow, and we should get an entirely new 51 point talent.

Archfiend
07-22-2008, 03:43 PM
Also, while I'm thinking about it...

After 4 years, I have this creeping suspicion that bloodletting (aka, improved-improved-rend) may finally make itself useful, and more than that, actually become highly desirable. Am I going crazy, or is anyone else thinking the same thing?

ivanstone
07-22-2008, 04:02 PM
One thing that's been suggested is the making Strength a better threat stat for prot warriors. Early WotLK gear follows a basic Str/Stam(lots)/RandomDefensiveStat pattern. I imagine the epics will have diverse statistics but follow the same pattern. Most protection abilities will gain some form of advantage by having greater strength. Revenge doesn't have any AP scaling. Bloodbath is still a question mark.

This in itself may do something to alleviate the upcoming threat changes. The change to Block Value to a 2Str:1BV ratio is a big change. This eliminates the need for Block Value gear and gives a more generic scaling stat. I'm guessing that warrior threat stats will revolve around Strength, speed and accuracy. Better then the current situation where each tanking ability requires a different stat or gains little in the way of any scaling.

Mardran
07-22-2008, 04:27 PM
I'm not sure if anyone has looked at the new gems yet either, but it is looking like we are going to have a lot more options on our hands for socketing gems into items with not only the addition of a hit rating and stamina green gem (finally), but also various expertise gems and armor penetration gems, both which have versions coupled with stats like stamina, strength and hit rating. Take a look at them here:

Profession - Jewelcrafting (http://www.mmo-champion.com/index.php?page=768)

With the way the threat changes are shaping up and the highly increased importance of strength to a warrior, I'm starting to think that maybe gearing just strictly stamina gems (in this case all +24/+30 stamina gems) may not be the very best option compared to filling some gem slots threat stat gems (or threat stat gems that are coupled with stamina, such as hit rating and stamina, etc.)

Pasucon
07-22-2008, 04:55 PM
Proposition:

Give shields a new "rage on block" stat. Everytime you block, you get that amount of rage. High quality shields are owned by players whose gear prevents a lot of damage, but they get rage from their kick ass shields. Crappy shields don't have it, but the players who are using them are getting plenty from getting hit. Please forward to WoW devs. ty :D

rhen
07-22-2008, 08:05 PM
Warriors already get a "rage on block" talent as part of shield specialization, which is 1 rage per block now, and 2 rage per block in Wotlk. I think this value should scale with block value, especially in the light of being able to achieve massive block values in Wotlk.

Right now a hit of ~100 generates 1 rage, and a blocked attack that would have hit for 100 generates ~1 rage. In sunwell I typically run with around 500-600 block value, hence if I should be hit for ~600 damage, I should generate 6 rage. Every time I block I get... 1 rage (+ rage from excess damage). If you put on your best block gear and trinkets, you can get over 1200 block value, but when you block, you still only get 1 rage. You should get ~12 rage in that senario, which is enough for an additional heroic strike.

This lack of scaling is only going to get worse in WotLK, considering the better scaling of strength -> block value, talents like critical block, etc. And I know they can determine what our block value will be at the time of impact, and generate a rage figure from it so it shouldn't be too difficult to implement. Whether they go with "generate the rage you would have gotten if not blocked" or scaling it down is up to them, but I would definitely like to see this scale.

Pasucon
07-22-2008, 10:17 PM
Yes, I realize that we get rage on blocks. The point was that it should scale with your gear, which could be achieved by adding a stat for the amount of rage you get when successfully blocking. It accomplishes the same thing you are suggesting; rage gain based-off of block value would be fine, as well. Either way provides a way to scale rage gains from blocks with itemization and a metric to gauge those gains. Why Blizzard doesn't recognize this need, I'm not quite sure.

Xav
07-22-2008, 10:24 PM
I'm pretty convinced the warrior changes aren't even close to being finished. I tanked an instance, on the WoTLK beta, today. I wore my full threat suit (was close to 1k block value with the changes), and capped hit/expertise for the level of the instance.

Nothing scales with attack power currently except for Shockwave, which is extremely weak. It hardly causes any threat and has a long cooldown with an annoying radius and range. Not high enough level to use Bloodbath yet, but I care more about single target threat abilities.

The no-salv change that implied the threat difference is being folded into tanking abilities doesn't appear to have gone through at all yet. Combinations of abilities that would normally give me plenty of threat on mobs given the DPS had salv was no longer keeping things stuck to me.

If I had to guess, I would assume that they haven't boosted the innate threat of our tanking abilities at all yet, Shockwave's AP->dmg/threat coefficient is going to be ramped up significantly, and Revenge will be given an AP->dmg/threat coefficient as well.

Urhan
07-23-2008, 01:47 AM
Another possibility: the increase in defensive stance's threat modifier is un- or mis-implemented. I hope it's something as simple as unfinished changes, because it's a little worrying to see a guy who can sustain 2k tps on Gorefiend saying he's losing aggro.

phaze
07-23-2008, 07:13 AM
The reason I don't think making the flat values any higher will work is because it will become extremely powerful on weak hitting mobs. Shield Specialization already serves well there, multiple weak mobs will give you a steady 'flow' of rage from it, and with the current SP, a bit more.

But if you suddenly make it 5/10 rage or something, you're going to be getting 400-500% as much rage as you normally would when those mobs hit you normally (if a mob's hitting you for 300, you might barely get 3 rage, and now you'd be getting 10 rage if you dodge it instead? that doesn't make sense).

I'm not opposed to allowing SP to become very strong for trivial encounters. I can easily equip enough BV to surpass the hit values of lv70 dungeon NPCs, to take 0 damage on a block. With roughly 30% SBR in that gearset, I'm immune to 30% of attacks. That makes as much sense as large rage returns from SP. And that's fine by me; I outgear that level of content, so I'm not worried about it.

SP is similar: by the time you're dodging/parrying 50% of the attacks, you've outgeared the weaker content. So allow SP to be strong enough for when you want high dodge/parry: raid content.

Is 5 rage per talent too much? Hard to say at this point; it'll depend on how much they beef up threat from increased damage done.

From my current perspective as a lv70 raid tank:
2/2 talents for 2 rage per block/parry = I'll pass; I have better choices
2/2 talents for 10 rage per block/parry = I'll take it; it's worth the talent cost

Sparan
07-23-2008, 09:46 AM
While I agree that Stalwart Protector is a bit underwhelming at only 2 rage per dodge/parry I think that it's a worthwhile pickup nonetheless and Blizzard throwing anything more out to us with this talent would be overkill. See, all of the analysis of this talent so far has been compared to the rage we would have received if in fact we were hit, or how many rage per minute would be gained with this talent versus another, but this doesn't really make for the best approach. Encounters are tuned around tanks having a particular level of avoidance, and rage generation from damage taken is tuned partially around anticipated net damage incomes from encounters factoring in avoidance, so except in very rare cases the net rage income is just fine for us for all encounters and our rage per minute more than suffices (assuming gear of the appropriate level).

The issue, in fact, is one of rage starvation where we have long strings of dodges and parries (either by sheer luck or b/c we outgear the encounter) and can't generate enough rage to keep up any kind of rotation whatsoever. Now of course it would be nice in a sense if Blizzard made a talent where even when I was taking no damage I could mindlessly keep up one type of rotation b/c I perpetually had enough rage to do whatever I wanted, but the thing I like about tanking on a warrior is that I need to constantly monitor my rage and plan my globals accordingly to get the best return on investment (and why bother with a rage bar if it's never in danger of being empty? ask warlocks...). It's really annoying when I dodge 10 consecutive attacks and I can barely muster the rage to devastate and I think this talent will solve precisely that problem, and hopefully solve it without turning warrior tanking into a mindless button-mash.

Another point to be brought up for those still unconvinced is that rage generation from damage dealt will be considerably higher if Blizzard is indeed making AP a more essential threat stat, so in cases where rage generation is nerfed by avoided attacks, white damage should carry you somewhat further than it does currently.



Also, Xav have you found any evidence to support the idea that the strength to block value formula has or will be modified to give much more block from strength to warriors? I've read it a few different places now and I'm on pins and needles to find out the truth.

byechee
07-23-2008, 10:22 AM
I think SP needs definite testing and tweaking, but giving 40% of the rage you would have generated from a hit landing seems a bit excessive. Blizzard thus far has done an adequate job of balancing the threat needs of an encounter to the threat generation limits of tanks. Even if you may become rage starved during periods here and there, that pretty much *should* happen if you overgear or overly stack avoidance for a fight (i.e. it makes sense for it to happen). Such periods of rage starvation play into the RNG factor that makes WoW the game it is, and requires tanks to manage their rage effectively (e.g. when to HS when not to, etc). 40% means on the majority of the attacks from an avg 5k dmg hitting boss, you either generate 50 or 20 rage. Unless we somehow gain a huge chance to be missed, or bosses all attack ridiculously slow, this would more or less trivialize tanking from a threat point of view (assuming the other issues with threat that Xav brought up get worked out and at least return to current levels).

i actually have fun when i go back to bt and have to actively be concerned about my rage to threat generation. Spamming abilities with (potentially) unlimited rage for every boss just seems too mindless.

Danach
07-23-2008, 11:04 AM
So I got bored and wrote a quick program to model 200 hours worth of combat. Miss/Parry/Dodge is ignored and unlimited rage is assumed. No Heroic strikes are used, it goes on a SS, rev, dev priority scale for which ability to use.

Original: Rage: 4440000 Threat 456000000
SwordBoard: Rage: 3953929 Threat 466628000 Savings: 621367 Num Procs: 36551 PPM: 3.045917 Threat Increase: 2.33% Pct Rage Savings: 10.95%
Imp Revenge: Rage: 4440000 Threat 483000000 Threat Increase: 5.92%
Imp ShldBash: Rage: 4440000 Threat 474000000 Threat Increase: 3.95%
Everything: Rage: 3955161 Threat 513047250 Savings: 620925 Num Procs: 36525 PPM: 3.043750 Threat Increase: 12.51% Pct Rage Savings: 10.92%

Xav
07-23-2008, 11:28 AM
Strength converts to block value at a 2:1 ratio. That is, every two points of strength is one point of block value, currently, on WoTLK Beta.

I don't think playing the rage-starvation game is fun, and other tanks don't have to deal with it the same way we do. Druids generate enormous amounts of rage from their hits, we generate 4 or 8ish when we swing. Higher strength will very slightly increase the rage we generate from our white hits.

I'm just going to wait and see how beta shapes up and what they do with the warrior talents and abilities. I will say though that it is amusing that shield slam does not share a cooldown with bloodthirst, so right now my titan's grip fury spec using Apolyon and Sword Breaker's Bulwark is pretty damn fun.

phaze
07-23-2008, 11:32 AM
Even if you may become rage starved during periods here and there, that pretty much *should* happen if you overgear

The counter-argument to this, is of course:

No, your tanking capacity shouldn't be penalized by improving your tanking gear.

What's one of the leading complaints from geared tanks going back to help with older content? "Being rage starved in my tank gear is annoying."

There's no real 'wrong' or 'right' on this subject; just different viewpoints on what should happen when you overgear content.

Sparan
07-23-2008, 12:01 PM
Strength converts to block value at a 2:1 ratio. That is, every two points of strength is one point of block value, currently, on WoTLK Beta.

This is extremely good news. Strength-stacking has a much better shot at being the best way to increase threat with a change like this than I had originally thought possible.


I don't think playing the rage-starvation game is fun, and other tanks don't have to deal with it the same way we do. Druids generate enormous amounts of rage from their hits, we generate 4 or 8ish when we swing. Higher strength will very slightly increase the rage we generate from our white hits.

Of course having literally zero rage when you have a raid full of Sunwell-geared (and threat-inconsiderate) guildies trying to set a world record for dps on Teron, but I really think that even at the highest gear-levels with Sunwell-Radiance-compensating gemming that this scenario is not terribly common. Further, I think if scenarios like this are possible on Wrath as they have been in BC then 2 rage per swing should be sufficient for you to SS->rev->dev->dev till the cows come home at least. And I think you're understating the effect of strength-stacked itemization on white hit damage. In my current gear (everything from sunwell save helm, chest and gloves) I sit at 830 block value... I know it's unrealistic, but even giving me a 2:1 conversion (opposite the 2str = 1 bv that you mentioned above, so 4 times less advantageous) on that number I'd sit at 415str before kings: effecively more than doubling my AP. We may be in line to be receiving 8-12 rage per swing. And why shouldn't they give us something that even remotely matches the rage generation that druids have already?


I'm just going to wait and see how beta shapes up and what they do with the warrior talents and abilities. I will say though that it is amusing that shield slam does not share a cooldown with bloodthirst, so right now my titan's grip fury spec using Apolyon and Sword Breaker's Bulwark is pretty damn fun.

That's amazing! I was so eager to start up on the beta just so I could test out a bloodfrenzy tanking build. Imagine the utility of being an extremely high-threat tank who can guarantee 100% BF uptime!

Kazeyonoma
07-23-2008, 12:21 PM
That's sick, Apolygon/Bulwark

Cheater!

Roana
07-23-2008, 01:13 PM
I honestly think that it's impossible at this moment to tell how rage generation will work in the endgame without seeing the endgame and the endgame gear first.

Just for starters, strength is likely going to be for warriors what agility is for druids -- a combined mitigation and threat stat. If gear is itemized accordingly, then you're not only dealing more damage than right now, but you will also generate more rage from white attacks.

Nor does anybody know if one tank vs. one raid boss is going to be the common tanking scenario in WotLK. For all we know, tanking a boss and adds at the same time might be the more common case (especially since we're going to have fights that need to have at least some similarity between 10- and 25-mans).

We may also see more fights with tauntable bosses or otherwise threat-insensitive fights, where rage starvation is less of a concern (the two most recent WoW instances, Zul'Aman and Sunwell Plateau, do have a few tauntable bosses, after all).

The reason why I've been thinking about this is primarily because Blizzard simplified tanking mechanics a bit (mostly taking Shield Block spam off the table for warriors). I've been wondering whether the bigger purpose of this is that they want to make raid-tanking more complex, so they simplified the menial aspects a bit.

Urhan
07-23-2008, 03:21 PM
Interesting thread on Shockwave in the beta forums:

WoW Forums -> Feedback - Shockwave (http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=8202466342&sid=2000&pageNo=1)

The short version: shockwave will do decent threat - if you stack +STR gear. BC endgame tanking gear, of course, has little or no strength on it. I guess that's the downside of having better scaling - the old gear isn't necessarily set up to take advantage of it.

SuperFlounder
07-24-2008, 08:27 AM
With the str to block changes, I kinda wonder if I can just have two sets of gear, pvp gear a tank mitigation set. While pvp gear is already great to throw in for threat, the strength changes make it probably about 3 times more useful, especially in the mitigation sense.

mero12513
07-24-2008, 09:47 AM
Nor does anybody know if one tank vs. one raid boss is going to be the common tanking scenario in WotLK. For all we know, tanking a boss and adds at the same time might be the more common case (especially since we're going to have fights that need to have at least some similarity between 10- and 25-mans).

I have a feeling that 1 tank for 1 boss will never be the case in WotLK, and not just because of adds. The new Paladin skill (30% shared damage) and the similar Shaman skill make single tanking a super-hard hitting boss a thing of the past. Healers will rejoice....there is twice as much leeway in 2 health bars than 1.

byechee
07-24-2008, 02:44 PM
The counter-argument to this, is of course:

No, your tanking capacity shouldn't be penalized by improving your tanking gear.

What's one of the leading complaints from geared tanks going back to help with older content? "Being rage starved in my tank gear is annoying."

There's no real 'wrong' or 'right' on this subject; just different viewpoints on what should happen when you overgear content.

If you overgear content, just wear more threat gear. All tanks have more than one set for a reason. To think that there should be one end-all-be-all set for all tanking just dumbs down this game even further.

byechee
07-24-2008, 02:51 PM
omgawd assuming MS is the same way with SS, could this actually be viable for pvp??? at the very least in those situations where a warrior is forced to sword and board they could still deal some good damage. must... get... key...

Archfiend
07-24-2008, 06:44 PM
I was playing around in the Nexus today and had similar problems holding threat... until I took off my tanking gear and put on my pvp gear.

I was regularly critting 1400+ on Shockwave, and even Thunderclap was performing surprisingly well. I may have to re-evaluate my estimation of shockwave as an end tier talent. The associated stun is just cake - my biggest concern at this point is having TOO MANY abilities - which I think could be helped greatly if Sword and Board was changed to an automatic SS use rather than a buff.

Kazeyonoma
07-24-2008, 09:21 PM
i hate you for having a beta archfiend lol, good to see that shockwave isn't turning out useless.

rhen
07-24-2008, 09:36 PM
I am worried about how they will itemize shield block rating. It will become useful to warriors now they cannot use shield block to block 2 attacks every 5 seconds. Druids and deathknights don't block, and paladins still have a working (and slightly buffed) holy shield. Therefore it won't be pernient to allocate block rating to gear that is supposed to be usable by all classes.

If they remove shield block rating from gear itemization, the only way to increase shield block rating is via shield specialization (talent) and defense. I would hope they buff the amount of shield block rating provided by defense if this is the case, but I can see this creating an imbalance and I can't come up with a good solution.

Failing this, I can see me getting around with 15%-20% block chance, thus making critical block much less appealing (30% chance on 20% of attacks). 1 guaranteed block every 30/20 seconds is not enough to sway me on this talent.

Roana
07-24-2008, 09:41 PM
If they remove shield block rating from gear itemization, the only way to increase shield block rating is via shield specialization (talent) and defense. I would hope they buff the amount of shield block rating provided by defense if this is the case, but I can see this creating an imbalance and I can't come up with a good solution.

Check out the Blade-Binding Bulwark (http://wotlk.wowhead.com/?item=37810).

Archfiend
07-25-2008, 03:47 AM
At this point, I'm actually kind of worried that Devastate won't keep pace with other warrior abilities. My gear isn't perfectly suited to the task of Wrath tanking, but when I can shield slam in excess of 800 on non-crits and I'm only hitting around 300 on devastates with The Decapitator... okay, that may not be the best example... let's say I'm hitting about the same amount on my thunderclaps and shield bashes - unconventional tools for single target tanking, but they'll easily replace Dev in a six second rotation, and they'll continue to scale with strength while Devastate is reliant upon weapon damage... and you're still going to want a fast weapon to take full advantage of heroic strike, which hits harder than ever, especially with incite, and that's only going to make dev hit even softer.

I'm hoping we can get devastate to have an AP modifier attached to it similar to the death knight strikes... if not, it'll be hard to justify a deep prot build when it'll just be so much more fun to go fury and tank with a shield and a 2-hander.

SuperFlounder
07-25-2008, 07:43 AM
Devestate won't have an AP component to its damage, however it does have an AP component to its threat done. So its unlikely you'll see bigger devestates, but it will hold agro competitively with other talent. I think they didn't add the AP component to the actual damage because it probably gave prot warriors too much damage in the developers eyes. Spamming devestate in beserker stance was probably just a bit too much balance wise.

Roana
07-25-2008, 08:16 AM
I'm hoping we can get devastate to have an AP modifier attached to it similar to the death knight strikes... if not, it'll be hard to justify a deep prot build when it'll just be so much more fun to go fury and tank with a shield and a 2-hander.

Devastate's damage is already based on attack power. Has always been. When it says "half weapon damage", that means both the listed damage on the weapon and your attack power contribution, normalized for a swing speed of 2.4.

Taelas
07-25-2008, 09:25 AM
Yes, Devastate scales with AP.

(weapon DPS / weapon speed)*(AP/14) = average weapon damage with attack power.

This does mean, of course, that Devastate scales worse with AP than Heroic Strike.

phaze
07-25-2008, 09:45 AM
Yes, Devastate scales with AP.

(weapon DPS / weapon speed)*(AP/14) = average weapon damage with attack power.

Your formula is a bit off / missing some terms. For reference, here's Armstrong's Devastate FAQ (http://www.tankspot.com/forums/tankspot-library/31910-devastate-faq.html).



Devastate scales worse with AP than Heroic Strike.
True, but it'll take a lot more AP before HS catches up to Devastate for DamagePerRage. ;)

Since HS isn't on the GCD, a direct DPS comparison isn't as useful.

Roana
07-25-2008, 03:24 PM
This does mean, of course, that Devastate scales worse with AP than Heroic Strike.

Huh? Other than through the avoidance of glancing blows (do they still exist in WotLK?), Heroic Strike does not scale with AP at all?

Kazeyonoma
07-25-2008, 04:15 PM
Heroic strike uses the same "weapon damage" formula as Devastate, except devastate is / 2 and adds 35*5.

Archfiend
07-25-2008, 05:29 PM
Alright... I stand corrected :p

2 howevers:

1) The AP scaling is very small - read barely noticeable between 800 to 1500 attack power. If the trend is that we're going to be jumping in strength significantly between levels 70-80, then dev is going to fall behind rapidly.

2) Wanting to keep prot warriors from doing significant damage is an out-dated concept when druids and death knights are tanking and putting up high damage numbers as well. Even looking inside our own class/build, we now have plenty of options to do significant damage while tanking. This isn't just a 'keeping-up-with-the-jones' complaint - a lot of people have been worried about the need for prot warriors when you have three other tanks that fill a specialization, but I see a very real concern for bringing prot warriors when arms and fury can fill the role just as well. If people start looking at warriors as dps/off-tanks, then why even spec prot? To be clear: I'm not jumping on the sky is falling bandwagon - I think warriors are still the best at what we do, there's just nothing to make us stand out... and that is a problem.

Would increasing the damage on devastate solve this? No, but it would alleviate some concerns.

Roana
07-25-2008, 11:20 PM
Heroic strike uses the same "weapon damage" formula as Devastate, except devastate is / 2 and adds 35*5.

Since Heroic Strike replaces a white attack, that is inconsequential. Glancing blows aside, Heroic strikes adds a fixed damage bonus that scales with nothing except the rank of Heroic Strike and crit/to-hit/expertise. The AP-scaling part of the attack would have happened with or without Heroic Strike.

Now, you cannot neglect glancing blows, of course, but I believe you will find that the scaling from that is significantly less than what you get out of Devastate.

Roana
07-25-2008, 11:24 PM
1) The AP scaling is very small - read barely noticeable between 800 to 1500 attack power. If the trend is that we're going to be jumping in strength significantly between levels 70-80, then dev is going to fall behind rapidly.

Don't get mesmerized by big numbers. 2500 threat every 20 seconds is much, much less than 600 threat every global cooldown. Devastate is an attack that you can use every single time you've got a free global cooldown. That's why it can't be much better, or it would be overpowered.

Taelas
07-26-2008, 03:32 AM
Since Heroic Strike replaces a white attack, that is inconsequential. Glancing blows aside, Heroic strikes adds a fixed damage bonus that scales with nothing except the rank of Heroic Strike and crit/to-hit/expertise. The AP-scaling part of the attack would have happened with or without Heroic Strike.

Now, you cannot neglect glancing blows, of course, but I believe you will find that the scaling from that is significantly less than what you get out of Devastate.

You're right, of course. I wasn't thinking it all the way through. ^^ Mea culpa.

Still, Devastate's scaling with AP really isn't that awesome.

Roana
07-26-2008, 11:38 AM
Still, Devastate's scaling with AP really isn't that awesome.

Yes, but people also expect too much "awesome" from a game that is based on the concept of stacking incremental benefits.

Awesome stuff needs to be balanced by rarity, or it would break the game, because when you stack awesome, you get god mode.

Taelas
07-27-2008, 09:29 AM
Well, obviously. Perhaps I shouldn't have said 'awesome'. Devastate's scaling is down-right horrid -- it could easily be better without being overpowered, especially considering the idea that Blizzard wants tanks to do more damage.

Xav
07-27-2008, 11:58 AM
Well, obviously. Perhaps I shouldn't have said 'awesome'. Devastate's scaling is down-right horrid -- it could easily be better without being overpowered, especially considering the idea that Blizzard wants tanks to do more damage.

Devastate and Heroic Strike are two completely different abilities, if that's what you're still comparing. Devastate scales fine - so does heroic strike. Whenever you're min/maxing your threat gen, Heroic Strike will always be the last thing you throw in your rotation, due to it being the rage dump and inefficient Rage:Threat compared to anything else.

Roana
07-27-2008, 05:16 PM
Well, obviously. Perhaps I shouldn't have said 'awesome'. Devastate's scaling is down-right horrid -- it could easily be better without being overpowered, especially considering the idea that Blizzard wants tanks to do more damage.

It is scaling very well for a spammable ability. For better scaling, you'd have to live with something like a six second cooldown and a 30 rage cost.

Roana
07-27-2008, 05:23 PM
Just to clarify, right now Devastate does more damage per point of rage than Mortal Strike does, and you can use it often enough to leverage that benefit. In short, its damage scales better with attack power than Mortal Strike.

Taelas
07-27-2008, 10:26 PM
Now you're being silly. :p That's just not true.

Devastate gets exactly half as much out of AP as Mortal Strike does. :P

Xav, I am well aware they are different abilities. That doesn't change the fact that Devastate scales poorly.

Xav
07-27-2008, 10:39 PM
Now you're being silly. :p That's just not true.

Devastate gets exactly half as much out of AP as Mortal Strike does. :P

Xav, I am well aware they are different abilities. That doesn't change the fact that Devastate scales poorly.

Devastate scales very well. You didn't read what Roana said - per point of rage.

There's a Dmg:Rage cost stat to look at, and Threat:Rage cost. Heroic Strike is at the bottom of both lists, devastate, however, is rather great for both.

Taelas
07-28-2008, 01:50 AM
I did read it. Devastate has a good base cost for threat-per-rage. It does not scale well, however.

Darmon
07-28-2008, 02:42 AM
I didn't saw much information on this thread about expansion gear reset.
At start of TBC, tanks who had Naxx gear had a huge advantage, and that helped them overcome the total mess prot warrior was ( the most important improvements came much later after tbc release - rage formula changed, TC on def stance for aoe threat, devastate changes, etc).
Taking a peak on beta warrior forum, i can notice the complains about the T6+ tank gear, which can be sold in the first day, since most of the threat has been moved to be STR(AP) based. That gives most end game tanks ( Illidan/Archie guilds, maybe some swp bosses also) a hard time in terms of leveling up to 80 and starting first raids.
Is there any other tank class who got such a radical gear reset and is the only solution to start pvping for some s3/s4 gear or take the dps gear drops from raids?

ivanstone
07-28-2008, 06:30 AM
I did read it. Devastate has a good base cost for threat-per-rage. It does not scale well, however.

Randomly give 100 Str to a warrior.

Devastate gains 2.4*200/14/2 = 17.14 dmg
Mortal Strike gains 2.4*200/14 = 34.28 dmg

Completely untalented 2 Devastates gain the same amount of damage as 1 Mortal Strike. I'm sorry Devastate really doesn't scale that badly considering that its spammable and dirt cheep to use.

Roana
07-28-2008, 10:12 AM
Let me also note that the whole "scalability" thing is a bit of a non-issue.

Throughout the Burning Crusade, Blizzard has adjusted threat mechanics and gear to ensure that tanks could generate as much threat as they wanted. Aside from the "outgearing old content" problem, which is not a scalability issue, threat generation was generally where they wanted it. Paladin threat was too low? Have some spell damage gear. Warrior threat too low? Okay, let's introduce expertise and splash it all over tanking gear.

If they think that a tank class is falling behind at a given tier of content, all they need to is put a quest trinket for the introductory raid boss for that tier out that, aside from having nice tank stats, also buffs threat accordingly. Or use set bonuses for a similar effect. (See, for example, the tier 6 set bonuses for druids, paladins, and warriors.) If a class is overperforming, threat-wise, they can just put less effective stats on their gear (such as block rating for warriors or paladins in TBC).

What they accomplish by making threat more scalable by strength (which it always was, just not that well) are two things: First of all, they will hopefully need less ad-hoc adjustments throughout WotLK. Second, warrior tanking gear is not going to be pure tanking gear anymore. It will likely not be as good for DPS purposes as dedicated DPS gear, but it should still be plenty good. That saves bag space for tanks and reduces the number of items that Blizzard has to create.

They also create a potential balance problem, though. If threat scales too well, then they have to reign that in, too, leading to ad-hoc adjustments in the opposite direction. And we all know how players react to perceived nerfs (though you can often hide threat nerfs better than others).

Endyllion
07-29-2008, 09:49 PM
I am wondering how much actual avoidance are we talking about (symmetrically) at level 80?As we are now today, a well geared T4-T5-badge geared warrior goes to an evasion level of 30% dodge, ~25% block ~20% parry with a descent stamina 17k+. If we follow the additions to dodge (+5%) and the addition to block and parry from the levelling and the emminent gear, i believe we are looking at capped evasion ( if we also consider the to miss chance) at a raid geared warrior---( out of my mind now but we could be looking at quite possible values of 40%+ dodge, 35% block and 25% parry ). As such, the shield block (+ 75% chance to block) becomes obsolete, and would also explain the + 2 rage/parry dodge that we are getting.

I think this might explain the removal of the former shield block from our arsenal. I would like to hear your opinions.

Endyllion

Prunetracy
07-29-2008, 11:30 PM
I am wondering how much actual avoidance are we talking about (symmetrically) at level 80?As we are now today, a well geared T4-T5-badge geared warrior goes to an evasion level of 30% dodge, ~25% block ~20% parry with a descent stamina 17k+. If we follow the additions to dodge (+5%) and the addition to block and parry from the levelling and the emminent gear, i believe we are looking at capped evasion ( if we also consider the to miss chance) at a raid geared warrior---( out of my mind now but we could be looking at quite possible values of 40%+ dodge, 35% block and 25% parry ). As such, the shield block (+ 75% chance to block) becomes obsolete, and would also explain the + 2 rage/parry dodge that we are getting.

I think this might explain the removal of the former shield block from our arsenal. I would like to hear your opinions.

Endyllion

I think you're forgetting about rating decay. That is, the 35 dodge rating on Sunguard Legplates won't provide 1.85% dodge rating at level 80. By the time you get to level 80, you'll lose a lot of your avoidance, essentially resetting your avoidance levels to blue (or lower) quality armor again.

Stubbi
07-30-2008, 12:04 PM
Looking through the changes to shield skills in the talent calculator, but it only tells part of the story.

Improved Shield Block (2/2) reduces the cooldown by 10 seconds. Can you tell us what the cooldown is without the talent to give it a frame of reference?

How much extra key spamming is required to get all these new abilities into play? Examples of skill rotations would be helpfull.

Looking through the posts about the other tanking classes has me wondering if I should be quickly grinding up a Paladin instead because it looks like they are getting all the love to make them at least equal to us on single target and far better in multi-target scenarios which seems to be becoming the norm.

Giving up Imp HS & AM means even more rage gimping, and when one looks quickly at the math, thats 3.5 rage every HS/GCD loss vs a increase of 2 rage per parry/dodge. I'm sure someone brighter then me is doing the math, but to me that seems to indicate that you must fight at least 2 targets at once just to break even AND dodge/parry them (I note that block is not listed). As others live & die by our threat generation, a more expensive HS seems less then appealing to me unless something else is making up for it from a threat standpoint. As it is not bound to the GCD, it is a free rage dump/threat generator only constrained by weapon speed.

Kazeyonoma
07-30-2008, 01:39 PM
shield block is 30sec cd untalented now.

there's a thread talking about wotlk rotations, we can't say for sure yet but it will look something like:

Shockwave, SS, rev, dev, in that order.