View Full Version : Stamina Vs. Avoidance

01-08-2009, 08:36 AM
I'm a pretty heavy Lurker of tank forums, such as this and the warrior section of EJ, and i'm having trouble finding the answer to a question i have, so i figured i'd buck up and ask it.

What do people feel is "Enough stamina"? I'm a Tauren, i'm a miner/JC with all three gems +41 stam, and i'm not even in 25man gear, and as of next patch i will be able to swing 31/32k HP unbuffed in just heroics/Naxx10 gear. The problem is that i don't know at what point i need to say "OK, this is enough stam, I should probably gem/enchant for avoidance/mitigation now."

There is tons of discussion going on about WHAT mitigation stats to put on, but i feel really weird when choosing my gems/enchants/gear. Should the general rule be that i should always gem/enchant for stam and only use my gear to do things like reach the expertise cap (If doable), provide mitigation/avoidance?

to simplify: is there a point where i should say "Enough is enough" with stam, and make sure that my avoidance is up to par before putting more stam on?

feel free to armory me if it is a more personal gear question, i'd be very curouse to know. (On that note, i'm remembered i'm not wearing most of my stam gear. to see how it worked, i put on more block rating stuffs for raiding nax 25 last night)

01-08-2009, 08:52 AM
It depends on what you tank. Personally I try to maintain 1200+ BV, 30k+ hp, 19%+ dodge, 25%+ block rating, 26 expertise, over 2800 AP etc. You can't get them all but frankly if you can gear up in a way that you don't have wild swings in stats then you're in pretty good shape.

You shouldn't typically wear gear that stacks one stat enormously over another, we can all get 31k+ if we go all stam but we'll lose a lot somewhere else, unless the encounter calls for it balance is the way to go imo. Not directly answering your question since I have no idea what you typically tank

01-08-2009, 09:02 AM
I am a DK, not a warrior but it should approximately the same.

I dont have a direct answer to your question, and I am wandering myself for the futur but before stam/avoidance, I am trying to (soft-)cap other things:
1) def of course; it's obvious but I put it cause for the moment most of my gems are still +def to maintain this cap. This will change with next patch as a DK
2) Hit: I am not sure hit cap is as much important for war than DK but I think it's still a good thing
3) expertise: to the dodge cap at least; same than hit, it may be less important for war

Then after that I will worry about stam vs avoidance; I am talking about gem and enchant only, I dont say that hit and expertise is more important on the gear, dont misunderstand me.

01-08-2009, 09:41 AM
What do you like better in the winter, vodka or whiskey?

The point of asking the above question is that it will vary depending on your tastes, where you are, and what you're doing.

There is no "given" answer to this question. The reality is it depends more on what your healers prefer and what you are tanking.

Personally, I've found that in heroic naxx and other 25 man gear there is already so much avoidance, even with DR that I generally just gear for stam or stam and expertise, unless I need a red gem for a meta or something. I'm actually finding that the problem is not suvivability but actually threat. When you have mages, rouges, and hunters in your guild that can pull 5-6k TPS you have to be on the ball to make sure they can do their best.

On my armory at the moment I'm in my threat gear, which tries to maximize my hit/expertise the best I can with the gear I have laying around, my survival tanking gear has me loose 3% block, gain .5% parry, 1.5% dodge, and 600 life.

It's more of a balancing act... how much dmg can I reduce being taken in this fight without getting too low on stam? Lotheb for example, I only have about 27k unbuffed life when I tank him because I put on a shield block set, but my shield blocks over half his average attack dmg and with 33% shield block in that gear, that's no joke especially after avoidance and using the shield block ability (where I litterally take no melee dmg for 10 seconds) (yes I know you're a DK but the same idea applies, except that for lotheb because you dont have SB stam would be better for you to stack). On a fight like patchwerk he hits soooo freaking hard in 25 man for the hatefulls that it's better to go for an aviodance set without going below 35 or so k life fully buffed. Tanking the adds for KT is a good place for stam, as the adds end up hitting hard enough that shield block isnt as great as it could be, and avoidance is alright, but you staying alive long enough for the dps to nuke KT is very important, so stam is a nice choice to stack there (but not at the cost of a MAJOR amount of avoidance). Another good example of a NEED STAM fight is the tank tanking sartherion when you try to do 3 drakes, he needs quite a bit of stam to survive when the last 2 drakes come down (mostly because his breath does a metric CRAP TON of dmg and you cant avoid that with avoidance).

You're essentually asking the age old question of EH vs Avoidance, and there is no real answer, the best is to simply make sure you know your stuff, gear for the fight at hand, and balance your EH and avoidance. The difference is that as a DK, due to no block, you either go for avoidance on fights that NEED avoidance, or you gem for everything else for the most part.... though I'm not sure how your dmg reduction works with defense rating, so that might change things a little bit, but I think you get the general idea.

01-08-2009, 11:32 AM
vodka all the way unless it's jack and coke =x

wait wuht are we talking about here?

balance your stats, keep different sets for different strengths, and for the most part (current content) reaching 30k unbuffed is a very strong benchmark for what is probably the heaviest tank gearcheck in game (25man Patchwerk OT).

01-08-2009, 12:23 PM
Thanks for the replys, really helps me put stuff into perspective. heh, in reality, I can already OT Patch no prob, so all this min/maxing is really just for something to do to compete with the other tanks in the guild =).

I'm agreeing with threat. Tons of people are saying that threat is basically a non-issue, and I disagree. Sure, my DPS never PULL aggro, but they are getting up there. I think for *general* tanking i'm gonna stick with around 30k unbuffed and then focus on making sure i'm dodge and hit capped.

01-08-2009, 01:27 PM
I would say you should have got a gearset for different fights...

And I would like to take the opportunity to ask if the tank should have got 3 different sets for maxium performance?
The Stam one, the avoidance and the threat wise one?
Im asking 'couse I'm not sure if we can consider the "avoidance tanking" act due to Dismishing return's rule.
Maybe it's better to just have the "threat" set and the "survival" set?

It's prolly dumb question but my tank expirience is not beyond Nax 10,Sarth 1D.

01-08-2009, 01:40 PM
Im asking 'couse I'm not sure if we can consider the "avoidance tanking" act due to Dismishing return's rule.

DR refers to the diminishing increase of the avoidance numbers, not the effect.
This change is actually a buff for avoidance stats, as you can "stack" them without already having really good gear (like in bc, where it's been "fixed" with sunwell radiance).

"[..] dodge/parry diminish at the rate they improve in value, so x dodge rating is always worth the same amount of incoming damage. Aka, like armor, avoidance stats can now be measured at a constant value for time-to-live."This is a nice quote on that topic from a pally guide.

01-08-2009, 03:13 PM
Too bad it's incorrect.

01-08-2009, 04:15 PM
I think that's the shortest post I've ever seen Hypatia make!

01-09-2009, 03:10 PM
Hmm, well i trusted a guide here....

I could do my own calculations on that but it would take me an hour to find all the information needed. So do you know the relation between pre DR avoidance and relative damage reduction ?

01-09-2009, 04:07 PM
the fact is that it still scales, it just isn't always worth the same amount.

01-09-2009, 06:20 PM
Let me see... the best analysis I've seen of it was a post by Whitetooth over in the EJ forums: Combat Ratings at Level 80 (http://elitistjerks.com/f31/t29453-combat_ratings_level_80_a/p13/#post928713) Could be that was proven wrong, but it still look sound to me (I should really read further on to see if there was more new stuff since I last read that thread).

What you can see is that the curve makes DR on most stats *almost* linear, just a bit below. Notable exceptions are defense (super-linear), and parry (drops by ~25% by 500 rating points). Note that he was only analyzing the avoidance benefits of defense: block chance isn't counted. The big "dip" in defense is when you get uncrittable--any non-druid tank will be over that point to start, so that doesn't matter. (Basically, that big hump is why we stack defense until we hit the uncrittable mark.)

The short form: For most avoidance stats at reasonable values, you can treat them as if they have linear returns (as opposed to the old super-linear returns). In actuality, though, the returns are slightly sub-linear, except for: parry rating is more strongly sub-linear, defense rating is still super-linear, and agility and dodge rating for druids are slightly super-linear.

If you really want to optimize your gemming and enchanting, take a look at Balancing Avoidance Ratings (http://www.tankspot.com/forums/f14/42074-balancing-avoidance-ratings.html) to get a feel for the kind of mix to aim for. In all likelihood, however, if you just stick with "defense best, dodge second best, parry sucks" when aiming to improve your avoidance, you'll be on the right track.

Edited to add: And yes, those graphs in my first link don't tell the whole picture, either. They're just the best thing I've seen to give a really simple image of how each avoidance stat behaves in isolation. Reality is more complex, because, for example, defense rating adds to dodge and parry and miss, and dodge rating adds to dodge. That means that the more dodge rating you have, the less defense rating is worth, and the more defense rating you have, the less dodge is worth. In general, though, the intuition given by those graphs is correct.

01-09-2009, 06:51 PM
Make a shieldblockrating set for grinding and maybe trash, go heavy
avoidance for the really hard hitters like patchwerk and go stamina for encounters with a lot of unavoidable damage like Malygos with his breath.

Well, that's what works for me.

On the other hand, even the hardest encounters in game don't require that much of a tank.

The strange thing is: the biggest upgrade for me wouldn't be health or avoidance atm, but expertise. (and after that hit) That would help my raid out the most: less chance of losing aggro on aoe packs and I would have a much easier time on Malygos.

I'd say, slap defense enchant on you cloak, then you don't need the Seal of the Pantheon anymore for uncritable. That way you gain flexibility: for one fight stamina trinkets, for another fight avoidance ones.

01-10-2009, 01:35 AM
As others have said it depends on what you tank. If you are going for Sartharion +3 achievements you are gonna eventually wanna have 32k unbuffed hps or higher. The debate is simply irrelevant as you need that much health to consistently survive his buffed flame breath without cooldowns.

In the gear you hit 32k hps with you will have more then enough avoidance for anything you may want to do. You will not need any gems or enchants for it. In fact you will probably need all of your enchants and gems to be stam unless you are a jewelcrafter in which case you can hit closer to 34k or 35k come next patch. Theres just no reason to give up 300 hps for a fraction of a % of dodge once you have all that gear. If anything at that point your concern will shift to threat over anything else as your guild's DPS will probably start catching up to you after a few weeks of farming and practice if they are good.

01-11-2009, 08:31 PM
The way i do it is:

Malygos: Stam, would be nice to have enough stam to survive one hit after his breath

Kel thuzad: stam in case mutiple frostbolts hit you.

sarth/ drakes: stam, same thing with breaths.

Patchwerk hateful soaker = more avoidance (you wont be able to stack enough stam to take 2 hatefuls in a row without being healed to full either way)

Everything else: BV, BR, expertise, Hit, STR for damage

01-11-2009, 08:33 PM
Thats not exactly true, as a deathknight with boneshield you can take 3 hatefuls in a row with out a heal if you have 36k buffed hp. It doesnt happen often but it did save our raid once on patch 25.

01-18-2009, 01:49 PM
Diminishing returns makes it all a bit more complicated, but if we disregard that, 1% of avoidance reduces the amount of physical damage we take by about 1% over long periods of time.

The problem, though, is that the variance is incredibly high on a single point of avoidance rating. If two tanks are identical and in identical situations with identical dice rolls, but one tank has 2% more avoidance, the two tanks could quite easily go an entire fight and not witness any difference in damage taken. I can't convince myself that going with the Valor Medal of the First War (84 Dodge rating) is ever a better idea than going with the Essence of Gossamer (111 Stamina) for this exact reason.

From my experience, if you're being healed by healers appropriately geared for the instance then it doesn't matter how you itemize (so long as you're crit immune). Your healers' HPS will be greater than the boss's DPS*. The problem is when your healers are, for whatever reason, incapable of healing you for a period of time. Then it becomes a matter of how long you can go between heals. The HPS vs DPS battle between the boss and your healers is moot if it takes 10 seconds between heals, but you die in 5 seconds. This is why HoTs are a beautiful thing, and this is also why you need to maximize effective health.

* This is because encounters are designed around mitigation, and mitigation is all about Armor. As we all know, Armor is basically identical for all items of the same item level.

01-18-2009, 02:52 PM
If two tanks are identical and in identical situations with identical dice rolls, but one tank has 2% more avoidance, the two tanks could quite easily go an entire fight and not witness any difference in damage taken. I can't convince myself that going with the Valor Medal of the First War (84 Dodge rating) is ever a better idea than going with the Essence of Gossamer (111 Stamina) for this exact reason.

That's RNG - on average the tank with more avoidance will see more fights where he takes less dmg, even if there are some fights where he takes as much damage as a low avoidance tank...

in the same way your avoidance might not "work" you could have no use of the extra hp from essence of gossamer (not dropping below the hp value the trinket gives).
hp prevents death from spike damage, avoidance keeps healers from running oom ( or allows you to bring more dps)

I'd suggest to find the worst case scenario of a fight and calculate how long you could survive (or have to survive) without a direct heal (with hots).

01-18-2009, 03:42 PM
Right now I got 26/27k hp (without/with Essence of Gosammer) and it feels quite right in naxxramas. Buffed I usually hit 32k hp.
I don't have real block value items now exept a belt which I only use for pvp ^^
(2on2 dual defftank, we really depend on high shield slam bursts ^^)

01-18-2009, 10:23 PM
My human warrior had 32.2k unbuffed two weeks ago in max stam gear for lulz. However in my raid gear I have about 30.4k unbuffed or so now. I had JC with 41 stam gems, but replaced two of those with 27 expertise. Right now my goal is to try to stack as much expertise as I can even though I'm past the soft cap. Hopefully soon I can hit the hard cap as well with expertise food and elixirs.

As for avoidance, I don't worry about it anymore. I replaced all my +8 dodge/12 stam gems with +8 exp/12stams.

I use Darkmoon Card Greatness also for tanking lately. The extra threat from the 90 str and 45 SBV even without the proc is mad nice.

01-21-2009, 05:39 PM
I'm starting to think that stamina tanks vs. avoidance tanks is sort of like the different healer classes (i.e. Paladin healers vs. Druid healers).

In some cases Hot's are preferred. In some cases big spike heals are preferred.

Similarly, in some cases maximizing effective hp is preferred. In some cases maximizing avoidance is preferred. The good news is, healers can't change classes, but tanks can build up multiple gear sets and/or get new enchants and gems.

Or.. there's always the third option of balancing your stats in between stacking stamina or stacking avoidance.

01-21-2009, 05:42 PM
Blizzard certainly seems to think that tanks prefer stamina seeing as how Ghost's explanation for not putting in a stamina enchant to weapon was that "Tanks would never use anything else" including avoidance and threat enchants.

They also talked about how they base the fights on the potential stamina achievable by tanks. Seeing as how they felt that +50 stamina would throw things out of whack and force them to rebalance encounters they must expect tanks to fully gear out in it for the difficult stuff.

01-23-2009, 06:38 AM
They dropped it because 50/75 Stam is much larger survival value than any other enchant currently available for tanks.

The fine print I think people miss a lot is WHY avoidance diminishes like armor. In both cases the more of the value you get, the smaller the amount of damage reduction you get per increment. Not real numbers but, the idea would be, if you get 500 armor and that reduces physical damage by 5%, the next 500 armor only reduces it by another 2.5%. Same thing with the avoidance stats, 50 dodge rating could give you 4% to dodge chance, and the next 50 would only give you 2% (NOT REAL NUMBERS =D).

Why do they do this? So we have to struggle to really improve beyond a certain level? No. What this does is regulate stats so that each one gives you a linear increase in lifespan. That means, for each stat, every increment will increase your lifespan by an equal amount regardless of what your ratings. The reason this works is because an even step in % towards 100% is actually an exponential step in survival, because it is closing a window.

Blizz are not dumb, there system is designed very carefully. People get nervous though because of a desire for control and reliability. In Blizz's modelling, they rely on the Law of Big Numbers. On an infinite sample size, avoidance is matched 1% for 1% with damage reduction from armor for survival, the math is pretty simple. People worry about the RNG and not getting an even value from their stats from fight to fight. "If I'm only taking 100 swings, what if the RNG only kicks in for half of my sheet %." This is fear, and it's psychology, but the system doesn't really work like that. I promise you. Take any boss fight (that's the highest stake part, normally, right?) and check your % avoidance to every other. I guarantee you won't see an overall deviation of more than 1-2%, sometimes higher sometimes lower, and that's usually measured in 1 or 2 swings. People have worshipped the utterly dependable value of Stam/Armor out of this fear, and in the old world that often seemed safer, since there was a lot more value from gems in terms of stam vs avoidance, and crushing blows threatened to make the swings that did get through MUCH more fatal.

Without crushing blows the liability is not the same. You say, "but stam doesn't diminish, that means it's better right?" This is faulty thinking. Blizzard aren't fools, they've balanced the stats to provide linear increases in lifespan, and stam is already a linear relation to that. Some folks have spent a lot more time with the formulae than I, and have found that some stats seem to fair better than others, but this is largely min/max concerns, and unless you're looking to squeeze the bitter optimum out of it, you won't likely notice the difference.

Nowadays we have the opportunity to not be so severely divided in terms of mitigation vs avoidance, because so much of the gear is stacked with some value of both. The end result is there are no true extremes. That being said, if you prefer to trend to mitigation > avoidance, you can expect a continual stream of damage that is smaller on each hit (physical anyway). And for those who trend to avoidance > mitigation you will see slightly larger hits, but they will be frequently staggered. At this point in the game I've seen neither being stronger than the other, as well it shouldn't be. I tank mainly as a DK, and I have about 65% functional avoidance against raid bosses, but the "spikes" of damage I take are nothing so awful to heal through, I've spent a lot of time comparing experiences among my fellow tanks and healers to see if there is a distinct difference. There just isn't among players of equivalent skill and gearing.

The real wash in this for me is that we get so much more value out of gear now and less from gems that really our gemming is just a way to flavor for personal tastes, not a vital part of your tanking. The different personal flavors are also simple:

0.) Survival vs Threat
Avoidance (miss/dodge/parry) vs Mitigation (armor/resist/block rating/value)
Hit, AP, Crit (block rating), (spellpower), (armor)

Expertise is a happy in-between of course. For a tank, to a value, it is worth double the value of hit rating for hit chance (removing dodge AND parry at values equal to hit removing miss %), but then the reduction in parry chance of the boss also reduces the number of swings the boss gets thereby further reducing our damage taken.

Each tank will decide, with item selection, gemming, enchants, talents, and glyphs, what is important to them. High threat, high avoidance, high mitigation, or just a balanced middle of the road setup. Honestly, I don't think you'll see a whole lot of difference these days between them, but you can't go wrong with balance.

01-23-2009, 07:50 AM
skimming through the other posts, its not about vodka or whiskey. its about what job/task your looking for.
a tank should start off by getting defence capped. after that, he needs Avoidance cap.
once that is achieved, add stam till u get about 25-26k then its all about avoidance
you initially increase your dodge and parry to replace all the block rating you got on your initial gear to achieve avoidance cap.
Avoidance cap is 102.4, the original uncrushable. it is shown that this factor will allow the tank to take mitigated damage each time a boss or mob strikes him/her
more dodge and parry and agility. depending on your class...
for prot pallies, agility is very efficient but not always on gear. your gear has your avoidance capability, stack stam gems unless u need a few different gems for meta gem.

01-23-2009, 07:54 AM
opps, the Avoidance (miss/dodge/parry) also includes shield block rating as a form of mitigation when its subjected to block value but when a boss hits you for 10k+, that is why it is nessecary to stack dodge/parry/agi with stam to replace block rating.
when you replace block rating, the meta gem that increases your block value by 5% will be less effective and when u get enough defence rating, make the switch for the 32 stam, 2% more armor one. Armor/Stam = life the amount of DR before death

Dariusii, Burning blade

01-23-2009, 08:20 AM
Block value and rating, though I haven't gotten to play with them, are only good mitigation value if you use them. Otherwise it is a mechanic you can get very little value out of.

Personally, if I were using a shield I wouldn't neglect it, but like I said, I haven't done enough playing with it to have a good sense of how it can be used next to other stats.