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View Full Version : Tanking Reevaluating Stamina vs. Armor (ICC)



Inaara
03-17-2010, 11:54 AM
I'm terrible at math so I'm not even going to bother making up numbers to look impressive, rather this is just one of my ponderings O.o

While the tanking community may not agree on everything there are certain general facts that we can agree on. Armor is good and the more you have the more your health is worth (EH). The general consensus is at around 42-43k unbuffed health it becomes more beneficial to stack armor wherever you can manage to find it instead of continuing to fill your slots with stamina trinkets (excluding magic fights, id Sindragosa). Some would argue that stacking armor at all times is the better course of action and I'm inclined to agree with that camp.

The basic equation taking buffs into consideration is that 1 stam = ~11 armor. My pondering lies with the recent ICC buff, Hellscream's Warsong and Strength of Wrynn. At the moment it sits at 5% and every few weeks it will go up another 5% till it caps at 30%. Considering the new buff to health at what point, if any, does it become better to start stacking stamina over armor? Should we continue to gear and chant as we have been and take the increase to existing health as a pure bonus or do we take advantage of the buff and put as much stamina as we can in every slot possible?

I've been having the discussion with a few of my tank buddies and my argument is that we should continue to use items like Glyph and continue to ride the armor train since the benefit of damage reduction will make the HP gained worth more than the extra HP gained without the additional damage reduction.

Thoughts?

Bodasafa
03-17-2010, 11:57 AM
ride the armor train since the benefit of damage reduction will make the HP gained worth more than the extra HP gained without the additional damage reduction.

This is what I plan to do.

Bashal
03-17-2010, 11:57 AM
...should continue to use items like Glyph and continue to ride the armor train since the benefit of damage reduction will make the HP gained worth more than the extra HP gained without the additional damage reduction.

I'd buy that for a dollar. :)

MellvarTank
03-17-2010, 12:15 PM
So I either get to keep my armor and get more health...... or lose some armor to stack health and get hit harder.....

I'll keep my armor... :D

luv2tank
03-17-2010, 12:25 PM
id love to rock the reg and heroic version of putricides unidentifiable organ. LIGHTS OUT 4k more armor +4k more health in combat pretty much. Have to say that would be one of the best combo's for armor stacking.

Inaara
03-17-2010, 12:30 PM
So I either get to keep my armor and get more health...... or lose some armor to stack health and get hit harder.....

I'll keep my armor... :D

Aye that's my stance. Their argument is that as the buff gets bigger and bigger the .5%, .7%, 1.3% reduction in damage (Whatever the number depending on what you're getting out of the item), will not outweight the extra health gained. IE when the buff eventually hits 30%, Skeleton Key will give you an increased 684 HP (not taking ANY buffs into consideration besides the zone buff) where as you will get no additional gain from an armor item.

Andenthal
03-17-2010, 12:40 PM
I think the only item slots where you can really do this is the trinket and weapon slots. I'm not sure if the weapons have huge differences in stamina, but I think they're pretty close. So we're basically talking about replacing 1 easily obtainable trinket, with another.

The buff is meant to give a boost to those that could otherwise not clear content. IMO, the +dmg part of it is going to be the biggest component. Unless your raids are wiping from tank deaths, I'm not sure it will make a difference what trinket you're wearing.

I'm considering swaping out my ranged weapon, necklace and perhaps 1 trinket to DPS items once I can hit ~65k buffed.

Muffin Man
03-17-2010, 04:56 PM
Aye, in the end the buff is just 3 ways to up raid dps.

5% damage done is a direct buff.
5% hp and 5% healing done means you can start dropping a healer to get more dps in there.

Personally, I'm not going to change my gearing b/c of the buff. For the simple reason that we're not getting this buff in Cataclysm or in the next raid (Assault on Ruby Sanctum) I don't think. And as mentioned, it's really only the trinket where you can swap out hp for armor (you can't gem armor and the +armor pieces sacrifice avoidance not hp for it).

Dreadski
03-17-2010, 08:34 PM
I'm going to take upgrades. Health and/or armor.

Naqaj
03-18-2010, 05:37 AM
The buff is simply another multiplier in the EH equasion, and adding another multiplier doesn't change the relative value of the other parts.
So if you are at a point where armor is really more beneficial then STA without the ICC buff, it should also be better with the buff.

Ryoku
03-18-2010, 06:35 AM
The buff is simply another multiplier in the EH equasion, and adding another multiplier doesn't change the relative value of the other parts.
So if you are at a point where armor is really more beneficial then STA without the ICC buff, it should also be better with the buff.

Atually I would disagree since this multiplier is only applied to health part of effective health and not the part that amor plays in increasing your EH. Ergo the balance shifts.

Naqaj
03-18-2010, 06:49 AM
The thing with multipliers is, they don't care what part of an equasion they are applied to, as long as there are only multipliers in it.

If your basic formula is EH = x * y * z, then
(x*y)*z
is the same as
x*(y*z)

Satorri
03-18-2010, 06:57 AM
The interaction is simple but malleable. It varies with your value of health and armor.

The raid-wide buff increases the value of Stamina *and* health buffs.

Obviously, as always, armor only helps on the physical damage, so it will inflate or deflate the value of stamina based on what portion of the damage is non-mitigate-able.

Also, as always, on the plus side you are not usually choosing between stamina and armor, with trinkets as the one exception. So, use your trusty EH calculator and figure out which is more delectable for you. It is actually possible that the armor trinket isn't better for you on physical damage, no way to know until you plug it in.

Then there is the Unidentified Organ. Truly a complicated beast. I would suggest finding an average health value granted based on uptime, though that won't be universal either as it will vary with avoidance and fight. I'd wager on average it is still one of the best EH trinkets available though.

Loganisis
03-18-2010, 01:27 PM
The thing with multipliers is, they don't care what part of an equasion they are applied to, as long as there are only multipliers in it.

If your basic formula is EH = x * y * z, then
(x*y)*z
is the same as
x*(y*z)

Yeah. The question about stacking sta over armor is not impacted by the buff at all. Because the buff is linear and affect eh equally no matter how applied.

The question about effective hps - stacking sta over armor is a question of when the diminishing returns of armor (if ever) fall below straight up stamina.

I don't know the numbers, but there is a point where the returns of the next unit of armor over the next unit of stamina tilts in the favor of stamina. I wonder if anyone has worked out the curved relationship showing how much armor you need to gain for each additional point of stamina to be worth more.

There has to be some sort of inflection point where each additional unit of armor chosen instead of a unit of stamina starts to return less EH than straight stamina. It's how any curve works - increasing at an increasing rate of return - inflection point - increasing at a decreasing rate of return (still positive, but less than stamina) until the 75% hard cap is reached.

*****

Of course the other question is which is better for the raid? Is a lower HP pool that takes smaller hits better than a larger that takes bigger hits, which would be less taxing the raid healing even if the effective health was equal. It may be that for non-EH reasons, armor stacking to the 75% cap is always preferred over stamina stacking for raid dynamic purposes.

In other words, giving up a little for the good of the raid (like the a dpser taking time out for interrupts on healing spells). I know this is off on a slight tangent from the way the thread wove, but:


I've been having the discussion with a few of my tank buddies and my argument is that we should continue to use items like Glyph and continue to ride the armor train since the benefit of damage reduction will make the HP gained worth more than the extra HP gained without the additional damage reduction.

Basically - there probably is a point (without knowing all the numbers I don't know for sure) where another standard unit of stamina would cause a larger increase in the EH pool than another standard unit of armor (another way of thinking is it would take less stamina to be worth the same amount of armor increase).

However - from a raid effectiveness standpoint - if you had to choose between:
Tank A with higher armor and lower HP with 60,000 EH
and
Tank B with lower armor and higher HP with 60,000 EH

Tank A would be the preference, everything else held constant, because the smaller gross HP pool (but equal effective HP pool) would be less taxing to keep filled... As long as it was sufficiently large enough to give the healers SOME reaction time (10k HP with 75% armor reduction still would equal death.)

swelt
03-19-2010, 04:20 AM
I'm not going to enter into the maths and theory here, but I think it would be worthwhile considering what actual choices you are talking about. There are very few cases where you sacrifice stamina to get more armour, because by and large, items with bonus armour have the same or very similar stamina to other items of their tier, and because you can't gem armour.

There are a few common cases to consider:
- Trinkets. Various trinkets with passive armour/stam and different effects
- Gear with bonus armour from one tier compared to items without bonus armour from the tier above. Example, pillars of might compared to heroic t10 or marrowgar heroic legs (wowhead (http://www.wowhead.com/?compare=51223;49904;50612&weights=Warrior%20-%20Protection%20%28Tank%29;22:45:42:43:21:46:44:20 :117:119:114:96:41:103:77;100:90:86:81:67:67:48:48 :19:10:10:7:6:1:1)) - Probably similar discussions about Cataclysm chest and Kraken gloves.
- Saurfang 10 bracers (normal and especially heroic) - a rare item with less stam than it's counterparts but more armour
- Weapons. At what point do you stop using Crusader's Glory because of it's extra armour.

Perhaps rather than talking about generic things, it would be worth thinking about these specific cases.

Satorri
03-19-2010, 05:59 AM
I think you're right Swelt, specifics would be more appropriate (though again to be clear, the only place where you are trading stam for armor is on trinkets, otherwise it is always avoidance for armor).

Loganisis you seem a little confused though about the significance of the health buff for the EH equation.

The buff *does* affect your EH normally, yes, but it does affect the relative values of Stam vs Armor in the equation because it inflates the value of Stamina only, not armor. Normally, 1 Stamina = 10 health. Tanks get % Stam modifiers from talents, and raid buffs, so suddenly 1 Stam on gear becomes more than 10 health, because (random numbers for illustration) 1 Stam on gear = 1.26 Stam on your character = 12.6 health. The 5% raid buff to health means that that 1 Stam now equals 1.26 Stam = 13.23 Health.

This means that your Stam value is inflated on the end where we punch it into the equation so it will shift the balance. But because the balance is multiplicative that doesn't mean Stam is necessarily better, it just means your health is in a different point in the balance between where armor or health is bumping your EH more.

I'm not going to push all the math out here, but just highlight the how-to:
If you have 40,000 health and 31,000 armor (65% dmg rdx), then essentially you have 40,000 / (1 - 0.65) = 114,286 "effective" health

*remember that EH would be compared against the unmitigated damage if you were trying to compare that to in-game values*

So let's do a step from that point to illustrate the equivalency:
If you have 45,000 health (+5k) and 31,000 armor (65% dmg rdx, no change), then essentially you have 45,000 / (1 - 0.65) = 128,571 EH
==> So, +5k health = +14,285 EH from this starting point, so 1 health = 2.857 EH

If you have 40,000 health (no change) and 36,000 armor (68.4% dmg rdx, +5k), then essentially you have 40,000 / (1 - 0.684) = 126,582 "effective" health
==> So, +5k armor = +12,296 EH from this starting point, so 1 armor = 2.459 EH

So in this (simplified) situation 1 health = 1.162 armor against physical hits.

If you want to do this properly, and if you want to figure out the value of Stamina rather than just health, you'll want to account for the following elements:
1.) Your modifier(s) to armor (Toughness means 1 armor on gear = 1.1 armor on your sheet for non-bonus armor, same for Frost Pres on DKs)
2.) Your modifiers to Stamina and Health (talents, kings/sanc, ICC raid buff if applicable)
3.) Your damage reduction effects from talents and buffs (you can also check to see the skew if you use your cooldowns, like Shield Wall or Last Stand as they will inflate non-armor damage reduction or health value)

Remember that armor has no impact on magic damage, but resistance does (which comes from raid buffs, auras, or gear in some cases), and health is always relevant.

That said, EH is EH so where the appropriate reductions are relevant it doesn't matter if the EH comes from armor or health, you will live the same amount of time with that same EH, but with more armor you will take less damage against your smaller health, and with more armor you will take more damage against more health.

So, there is an interesting take-away thought for the future:
Healers don't know EH, they know required healing. So, if you have more health but take more damage (where without heals you'd live the same amount of time) you will require more healing and more mana to keep alive provided an appropriately sized heal (if their heal is so huge it overheals easily then it may not matter as they are already being inefficient).

That means that if Blizzard finds the balance they're trying for in Clysm, mitigation/avoidance will be more desirable than raw health because it will be less taxing on your healers' mana pools when they're using an appropriately sized heal.

WiiMote
03-19-2010, 09:38 AM
Something many people seem to miss about armor that Inaara mentioned... More armor means heals are worth more. Unless your healer can cap you off every single heal, armor is more valuable. It's better to be at 45k health and taking 35% damage from physical attacks than at 200k health taking 70% damage, because the healers won't be able to keep up with all the damage your taking in the latter case. Even if you work out the math and find that the effective health you get in case 2 is much higher, the healing you receive won't be worth nearly as much.

Since the tank should always be receiving heals, reliable armor is almost always the way to go ("reliable" because of procs, which are unreliable), even if it means your overall EH taking a hit.

Loganisis
03-19-2010, 10:36 AM
I'm not going to push all the math out here, but just highlight the how-to:
If you have 40,000 health and 31,000 armor (65% dmg rdx), then essentially you have 40,000 / (1 - 0.65) = 114,286 "effective" health

*remember that EH would be compared against the unmitigated damage if you were trying to compare that to in-game values*

So let's do a step from that point to illustrate the equivalency:
If you have 45,000 health (+5k) and 31,000 armor (65% dmg rdx, no change), then essentially you have 45,000 / (1 - 0.65) = 128,571 EH
==> So, +5k health = +14,285 EH from this starting point, so 1 health = 2.857 EH

If you have 40,000 health (no change) and 36,000 armor (68.4% dmg rdx, +5k), then essentially you have 40,000 / (1 - 0.684) = 126,582 "effective" health
==> So, +5k armor = +12,296 EH from this starting point, so 1 armor = 2.459 EH

Hmm... Maybe I didn't explain myself well... I do that more of then than I like as I miss steps in explaining my thinking. I think also that my still growing understanding of the armor tables and not using concrete examples added a lot of mud to the picture.

And that's a good point - this is purely from a physical boss-fight stance. Magic damage intensive fights would favor higher initial stamina than armor.

The buff affects both cases, whether you start with 40k health or 45k health. The math you've provided only buffs one of the two situations. It's an apples to oranges comparison. The question was does the buff help the guy with 40k HP and 36k armor or the guy with 45k health and 31k armor. The EH would be the same going in (pre-buff) - does the difference in HP make a significant difference in the EH after the buff too? That would answer the question is stacking Sta more valuable than stacking armor when looking at EH. I was never suggesting that only one of the two tanks would get the buff.


Using the numbers you provided I was a little surprised when doing the math that there was a difference afterward.

If you have 45,000 health and 31,000 armor (65% dmg rdx), then you have 45,000 / (1 - 0.65) = 128,571 EH
If you have 45,000 health +5% buff = 47,250 HP and 31,000 armor (65% dmg rdx, no change), then essentially you have 47,250 / (1 - 0.65) = 135,000 EH

If you have 40,000 health and 36,000 armor (68.4% dmg rdx), then you have 40,000 / (1 - 0.684) = 126,582 "effective" health
If you have 40,000 health +5% buff = 42,000 and 36,000 armor (68.4% dmg rdx, +5k), then essentially you have 42,000 / (1 - 0.684) = ~133,000 "effective" health

The higher armor version, pre buff had 98.45% of the EH of the higher HP version
The higher armor version, post-buff had 98.52% of the EH of the higher HP version

Even though the raw gap in this example in EH is 11 points greater, the comparative gap is .04% closer. But how often do you choose between 5k HP and 5k Armor?

Essentially equal - the 5% buff has no meaningful effect, post-buff on the comparative EH of the two tanks. They have basically the exact same ratio of EH to each other pre buff as they do with the buff.

****

So this becomes a question of which is better for the raid - the lower HP higher armor tank or the higher HP lower armor tank if they have roughly the same EH.

I think the answer is the higher armor version. While the EH is the same, the bigger hits require more healing, requiring more mana, so the larger HP tank is less efficient to the raid than the lower HP tank in physical fights.

****

Going back to Inaara's arguement with his friends - it would seem that the best thing for a tank to do, when choosing between Sta and Armor that will result with roughly the same EH impact after equipping is to go with the armor.

If there's a situation where there's a significant difference in the resulting EH between the two items favoring stamina, then choosing sta over armor is probably the better choice, but if there's essentially no difference (as the 5k/5k example illustrates), then the tank choosing the armor likely allows for more efficient healing, assuming the healers are dialed in and is better for the raid.

I hope I made the thoughts in my head a little clearer this time ;-)

Aggathon
03-19-2010, 01:14 PM
Too lazy to read it all, there are some walls of text up in this hizzie, but the TL;DR version is:

EH = HP/(1-armor reduc) therefore as HP increases, the relative value of armor does too. 5% does not change the stat priorities of armor or stam. As your HP increases so does the value of armor.

As far as choosing gear goes, i still maintain that you should use whatever gives you more calculated EHP, be it armor or stam (especially since the buff also increases healing done, which means that even if you have more HP that needs to be healed, you'll be healed for more).

Agmar
03-19-2010, 01:36 PM
The only time that you're trading armor for stamina is with your trinkets. Organ is crazy good depending on the situation. On the rest of your gear, it's a trade off between avoidance and armor.

With the way the game is currently, you pretty much want to use all those + armor pieces.