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Thread: Frequently Asked Questions

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2007

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Offensive Stats

    What's the expertise cap?
    There are actually two: The point at which you remove dodge from the mob's combat table, which we call the soft cap, and the point at which you remove parry from the mob's combat table, which we call the hard cap. The caps vary with the mob's level.
    • For level 83 (raid bosses) the soft cap is 6.5% dodge or 26 expertise (214 rating), and the hard cap is 14% parry or 56 expertise (460 rating)
    • For level 82 and below (heroic bosses and trash) the dodge and parry caps are the same. You won't need more than about 24 expertise.
    (The 14% figure comes from Elitist Jerks based on WLK specific testing. If anyone can show me proof (WWS, screenshot, etc.) of them getting parried by a boss at 56 expertise, I'll gladly change that up.)

    How do I figure this out when I take my expertise talents into account?
    Those usually give you expertise skill straight up. You're better off looking at the expertise skill stat and not worrying about adding up expertise rating.

    What's the hit cap?
    • For yellow damage attacks, 8% (262 hit rating at 80)
    • For shield and 2h users, the white damage cap is also 8%.
    • For dual wielders it's at most 27% (886 hit rating at 80), but the amount of rating needed varies based on talents, glyphs, and the like. Look here:
    • For spells, the cap is 17% (446 rating at 80), but the amount of rating actually needed may depend on talents, glyphs, and the like.
    Wait, isn't the hit cap 9%?
    It used to be, yes. Research at Elitist Jerks has confirmed that the hit cap has changed to 8%
    Last edited by Satrina; 06-07-2010 at 03:36 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Defensive Stats

    What's the defense cap at level 80?
    Defense cap is a terrible term - it's not like you will stop adding defense. I like critical minimum instead.
    • For raid bosses (level 83) you need 5.6% reduction in critical hit chance. That's 140 defense skill, or a total of 540 defense (at level 80, that's +689 defense rating from gear).
    • For heroic bosses (level 82), you need 5.4% reduction in critical hit chance. That's 135 defense skill, or a total of 535 defense (at level 80, that's +665 defense rating from gear.)
    I added up the numbers on my gear and I should have +500 defense, why does the character sheet only show 501 total?
    You have 500 defense rating from your gear. Every 4.92 points of defense rating makes 1 point of defense skill, so 500 rating becomes 101 skill. Adding 101 to your base 400 skill (for level 80) gives 501 defense skill. Welcome to the combat ratings system. More on defense:

    More on combat ratings: and WoWWiki: Combat rating system

    I have over 540 defense skill, but I have less than 689 defense rating, halp!
    You're a Deathknight with Stoneskin Gargoyle on your weapon. It adds 25 defense skill directly which is equivalent to 122 defense rating, but the SSG rune doesn't increase your defense rating total, only your defense skill total. Yes, you still have the required 5.6% crit reduction.

    Why does my defense keep going down as I level?
    Because at each successive level, you need more defense rating to make 1 point of defense skill. At level 80 you need 4.92 rating to make 1 skill. At level 79 you only needed 3.05 rating to make 1 skill, and so on.

    What is the difference between dodge and parry?
    When you dodge an attack, you avoid all damage it would have caused. When you parry an attack, you avoid all damage it would have caused and your next white damage attack is sped up (this is called parry haste).

    Why do I have so much less avoidance than I did in Burning Crusade?
    1) As with defense above, you need more dodge or parry rating to make 1% at every level past 70 than you did at 70. For example, at level 70 you needed 18.92 dodge rating to get 1% dodge. At level 80, you need 39.35 dodge rating to make 1% dodge.

    2) Your dodge, parry, and chance to be missed are all subject to diminishing returns now.

    Diminishing returns, what?
    For dodge and parry rating (which convert directly into percentage), each point of rating is worth slightly less percentage than the point before. For defense, each point of rating always converts to the same amount of skill, but the amount of dodge and parry you gain from the defense skill diminishes. See here:

    Chance to block does not diminish whether it comes directly from block rating or defense skill.

    What? That sucks!
    Maybe you liked Sunwell Radiance?

    Are the numbers on my character sheet after diminishing returns or not?
    • The dodge and parry numbers shown on your character sheet do have diminishing returns taken into account (look here for how that works)
    • The miss chance on the defense tooltip does not have diminishing returns taken into account
    • Block chance is not subject to diminishing returns at all

    Does a boss that parries me get parry haste?
    Most do, yes. Generally, bosses that hit very hard, like Patchwerk, do not.

    How come people make fun of parry stacking?
    Because even after the 3.2 changes, parry is still generally inferior to dodge.

    Okay then, how should I stack avoidance?
    Read here:

    Does my crit reduction from defense have diminishing returns?
    No, and neither does crit reduction from resilience. You can see this by taking your defense skill, subtracting the base 400 (assuming level 80) and multiplying by 0.04%. For example, my defense skill a the time I wrote this was 553. Subtract 400, leaving 153, and multiply by 0.04% gives me crit reduction of 6.12% - exactly what the tooltip tells me I have. (Whether I actually have 6.12% or 5.6% is a different discussion)

    I heard that block has diminishing returns now?
    Your chance to block still is not subject to diminishing returns. Nor is the amount of incoming damage that you can block - you can stack that as high as you want. What has happened is that the contribution of block value to damaging abilities such as Shield Slam and Shield of the Righteous have become subject to diminishing returns. Basically, a maximum of 2760 block value will be applied to these abilities when calculating their damage. More detailed information is here:

    Can I combine defense and resilience to become uncrittable?
    Yep. 82 Resilience = 123 Defense Rating = 25 Defense Skill = 1% less chance of being crit. You want 5.6% reduction for a boss, so 460 Resilience = 689 Defense Rating = 140 Defense Skill = 5.6% less chance of being crit. Mix and match as needed.

    What about uncrushable?
    Only mobs at least 4 levels higher than you can perform crushing blows now. Most tanks will never need to worry about them. See here:

    I took a crushing blow! It's right here in my combat log!
    Crush - Spell - World of Warcraft is not a crushing blow, it's an effect that happens to be called "Crush". If you actually take a crushing blow, you'll see something like "Soandso hits you for 4578 (crushing)". You can see this if you are under the effects of Thorim's Unbalancing Strike where any arena adds that are hitting you can crush you (though Thorim himself has had his crushing blows disabled.)
    Last edited by Satrina; 08-25-2009 at 12:13 PM.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Formulas and Conversions

    - Increases armor by 2 for every point of agility
    - Increases the chance to dodge an attack and chance to critically hit.
    Class          Dodge       Crit
    Death Knight   0.0136%     0.0160%
    Druid          0.0240%     0.0120%
    Paladin        0.0192%     0.0192%
    Warrior        0.0136%     0.0160%
    The amount of dodge actually gained is subject to diminishing returns - see here

    - 1 strength makes 2 attack power for death knights, paladins, and warriors
    - Two points of strength increases your block value by 1 for paladins and warriors

    Attack Power
    - Attack power increases your base melee DPS by 1 for every 14 attack power.

    Critical Hits
    The way WoW calculates crit rate is over ALL attacks. Crit rate is not based on hits only. In other words, if you have a 5% crit
    rate, that 5% chance includes misses. All crit rate adjusting abilities, items, and talents add the flat % to the base % crit
    rate. So if I have a 5% base crit rate and then use an item or talent that increases that crit rate (let's use Improved Backstab
    talent for example - +30% crit), my new crit with backstab is 35%.

    Regarding how defense decreases the rate of critical strikes, each point of defense that a target has over the attacker, the
    attacker loses 0.04% chance to crit. So, for example, if a level 60 Rogue is attacking a level 60 Warrior who has 25 defense,
    the rogue's crit rate will be decreased by 1%.

    To Hit
    +ToHit items subtract from your chance to miss. So, ignoring all defensive actions (Block/Parry/Dodge/etc..) if I have 20% crit
    chance, 20% miss chance, and 60% hit chance and I equip an item that gives me +5% toHit and +5% crit, my stats become 25% crit,
    15% miss chance, 60% hit chance. You can reduce your chance to miss with dual wield below 18% by piling on +toHit items.
    New hit chance = (Original hit%) + (toHit modifiers) - (crit modifiers)
    60% + 5% - 5% = 60%
    New crit chance = (Original crit%) + (crit modifiers)
    20% + 5% = 25%
    New miss chance - (Original miss%) - (toHit modifiers)
    20% - 5% = 15%

    Mitigation due to armour is capped at 75%.
    Armour cap versus a level 80 mob is 45698
    Armour cap versus a level 83 mob is 49905

    Rating Conversions
    At level 80:
    -  4.91850 defense rating  = 1 defense skill
    - 122.9625 defense rating = 1% dodge, parry, and miss chance (subject to diminishing returns)
    - 16.39450 block rating = 1% block chance
    - 45.25019 dodge rating = 1% dodge chance (subject to diminishing returns)
    - 45.25019 parry rating = 1% parry chance (subject to diminishing returns)
    - 32.78999 hit rating = 1% melee hit chance
    - 26.23199 hit rating = 1% spell hit chance
    - 32.78999 expertise rating = 1% reduction in opponent's chance to dodge and parry
    -  8.10000 expertise rating = 1 expertise skill
    - 45.90599 critical strike rating = 1% critical strike chance (melee or spell)
    - 32.78999 haste rating = 1% haste (melee or spell)
    - 81.97498 resilience rating = 1% less chance of being struck by any type of critical strike, 
               and 2% less damage taken from critical strikes
    Stat Caps
    There is a cap for each class, for each avoidance type:
    Class		Type	cap
    Death Knight	Dodge	88.129021%
                	Parry	47.003525%
                    Miss    Unconfirmed (probably 16.0%)
    Druid		Dodge	116.890707%
                    Miss    Unconfirmed (maybe 16.0%)
    Paladin		Dodge	88.129021%
           		Parry	47.003525%
                    Miss    16.000000%
    Warrior		Dodge	88.129021%
           		Parry	47.003525%
                    Miss    16.000000%
    Base Stats
    Class            Dodge
    Death Knight     3.66400
    Druid            5.56970
    Paladin          3.45430
    Warrior          3.66400
    Last edited by Satrina; 08-05-2009 at 04:17 PM.
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007

    What talent spec should I use?
    Take a look at There's probably a guide for your class that covers common talent specs.

    What's the new macro for calculating avoidance?

    What's up with the defense tooltip anyway?
    The defense tooltip is a bit of a mishmash. The dodge, parry, and chance to be missed that is granted by defense is subject to diminishing returns as above. Whatever you see on the character sheet for dodge and parry chance is the final number with diminishing returns already factored in, so whatever that tells you is correct for attackers that are the same level as you -- your dodge and parry will be slightly lower for higher level attackers, and slightly higher for lower level attackers.

    How does Unbound Firestorm keep critting me all the time when I have over 540 defense?
    They buff themselves with Afterburn, giving them +50% chance to critically hit. Since they're level 81, they would normally have a 5.2% chance to crit you, which bumps to 55.2% with Afterburn up. At 540 you reduce that by 5.6% (as noted, "cap" is a terrible term), and they still will crit you a lot.

    I got crit by other mob X at more than 540 defense, what about that?
    Sure, you're going to get crit once in a while. Mobs that dual wield can be rogue types with increased crit chance. Your feral druid buddy gets mind controlled, giving the mobs that 5% extra to crit. Other mobs may buff their crit chance, or debuff your crit reduction. Maybe you just sat down by mistake (you have unbound sit/stand from the very easy to hit X key, right?)
    Last edited by Satrina; 04-25-2010 at 05:29 PM.
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    The Rest

    My question wasn't answered here, what now?
    First, take a look at Odds are pretty good that your question is answered in one of the guides. If not, please take the time to read TankSpot's Posting & Chat Rules, then go post your question in the appropriate forum!

    Hey! Where'd my comment go?
    I should have figured I'd need a few contiguous posts at the start to expand in. I deleted it to make room for my reserved posts. Sorry!

    Hey, you made a mistake!
    You should add X
    Shoot me a PM, please. Keeping this up to date is a priority, since lots of people read it!
    Last edited by Satrina; 03-06-2009 at 11:37 AM.
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