[Warrior] Critical Block Mechanics
I just made a post with this on the official beta forums and figured I would cross-post it here for those who cannot post there:
Being curious about how critical block currently works on beta compared to live, I sat myself in front of a low-level NPC and did about 30 minutes of testing to get an idea of how things currently function.
Obviously, it's very hard to get definitive answers with a limited set of data, but I have gathered enough data to make some general observations.
The current mastery description states that we have a 10% chance to Critically Block (without Hold the Line) and thus if it were a one-roll system with Critical Block I should see roughly a 10% Critical Block rate.
I performed four tests each against a level 50 melee mob, some Dodge itemization was removed to roughly compensate for the higher miss rate of lower level NPCs:
1) No Hold the Line talent, weapon unequipped to lower avoidance to very low levels, 10 minutes
2) No Hold the Line talent, weapon equipped adding Parries to the test, 10 minutes
3) Same as 2), with 2 points in Hold the Line, 10 minutes
4) Same as 3) with 3 NPCs over a 5 minute period
I used Shield Block on cooldown to attempt to determine if it was one-roll or two-roll by filling up the combat table with Blocks as much as possible. If it was one-roll, we should observe roughly 10% Critical Blocks while if it was two-roll, we should observe roughly 10% of the full Block count as Critical Blocks.
Test 1 - Low Avoidance, No Hold the Line:
Total Attacks: 292
Total Hits: 91 (31.16%)
Total Misses: 39 (13.36%)
Total Parries: 0 (0%)
Total Dodges: 28 (9.59%)
Total Blocks: 134 (45.89%)
Total Normal Blocks: 120 (41.1% / 89.55% of Blocks)
Total Crit Blocks: 14 (4.79% / 10.45% of Blocks)
Test 2 - Higher Avoidance, No Hold the Line:
Total Attacks: 244
Total Hits: 55 (22.54%)
Total Misses: 33 (13.52%)
Total Parries: 30 (12.3%)
Total Dodges: 22 (9.02%)
Total Blocks: 104 (42.62%)
Total Normal Blocks: 92 (37.7% / 88.46% of Blocks)
Total Crit Blocks: 12 (4.92% / 11.54% of Blocks)
Test 3 - Hold the Line Talented:
Total Attacks: 300
Total Hits: 53 (17.67%)
Total Misses: 36 (12%)
Total Parries: 41 (13.67%)
Total Dodges: 23 (7.67%)
Total Blocks: 147 (49%)
Total Normal Blocks: 117 (39% / 79.59% of Blocks)
Total Crit Blocks: 30 (10% / 20.41% of Blocks)
Hold the Line Hits: 161 (53.67% / 55.1% of Blocks)
Test 4 - Hold the Line, 3 NPCs
Total Attacks: 360
Total Hits: 106 (29.44%)
Total Misses: 43 (11.94%)
Total Parries: 59 (16.39%)
Total Dodges: 43 (11.94%)
Total Blocks: 109 (30.28%)
Total Normal Blocks: 91 (25.28% / 83.49% of Blocks)
Total Crit Blocks: 18 (5% / 16.51% of Blocks)
Hold the Line Hits: 349 (96.94% / 98.17% of Blocks)
The numbers seem to indicate that it is still a two-roll system or that the numbers are implemented in a strange fashion. I only reached 10% of the total hits with Hold the Line having over 50% uptime. In both other tests, the total number of Critical Blocks was less than 5%, or around 10-11% of the total number of Blocks.
In the final test, despite the very high Hold the Line uptime, my Critical Block count was extremely low. I am unsure how to explain this other than it being a display about the volatility of a two-roll system when both rolls can fluctuate a fair amount.
Being apparently a two-roll system as on live, we can draw a few conclusions with Critical Block in its current state.
1) Hold the Line offers a fair increase in Critical Block levels, but a low increase in survival. At base Mastery levels, it had a major impact on the rate of Critical Blocks, however it still only offers roughly 1.5% damage reduction for 2 talent points, or 0.75% damage reduction per point. This is low in the new talent system.
2) The Critical Block portion of our Mastery is currently low in value, offering less than 1.5% damage reduction. Oddly enough, the normal Block increase of 10% is much more substantial in benefit, offering twice the value of the Critical Block portion. This seems strange, given that the Mastery is named after the Critical portion.
3) At level 82 it takes roughly 80 Mastery Rating to gain 1.25% Block and Critical Block from Mastery. Quick napkin math puts this at roughly 0.42% damage reduction. However, for the same amount of Dodge Rating I would gain nearly 1% Dodge. This makes the Critical Block Mastery in its current form fairly redundant and inefficient of a stat, only viable at high ranges of Dodge/Parry diminishing returns.
4) In addition to this budget shortfall, in a two-roll system Critical Block may scale inversely with Avoidance. Avoidance pushes Block off the table and as Critical Blocks are a percentage of the total blocks, with Shield Block active it would stand to reason that the number of Critical Blocks would decrease at higher avoidance levels.
5) For Critical Block to become attractive, it will probably require either having much higher numbers than 10% or be preferably converted to a one-roll system with its own entry on the combat table. Shield Block would then ideally increase both your Critical Block and Block chance by 100%.