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Thread: DK Talent: Spell Deflection

  1. #1
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    DK Talent: Spell Deflection

    This is my first post here, but I've been trolling the forums for a while now and the information I've found here has been immensely helpful. Thank you!


    So my question is about the talent Spell Deflection. It's my understanding that it only effects Direct Damage spells, and not AoE or Breath Weapons. While it seems to be a decent PvP tool it seems bad for PvE tanking, especially in 3.10 with the Blade Barrier nerf. There just don't seem to be enough damage spells that are effected by the talent to make it worth taking. Yet as I look at people's spec's I keep seeing it rear it's ugly head, is there something I am missing?

  2. #2
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    It can be a points filler, but I have been told repeatedly it works on anything that targets you. At this point, my 'testing' has been 3D Sartharion MT'ing, but it appears to work in that scenario.

    As such, I think that if the ability actively targets you, the deflection component will work. An Onyxia style Deep Breath across an area or mage Blizzard spell would not be valid.

  3. #3
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    If it works on Sartharion Breath and those kind of skills then it is starting to look like a much better use of skill points. Esch, have you verified it in your logs? I've already done all my raids for this week so I'll have to test it next week if no one has a firm answer.

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    I can't speak with great authority on what it actually affects, since I haven't live tested it extensively, but I can offer a couple tidbits:

    Blade barrier is being nerfed, yes, for most DKs that is a 33% reduction in our total parry % (~30% => ~20%), but Spell Deflection is also getting a magnitude buff, it now reduces the damage by 45% with 3 pts (up from 30%). It definitely has it's uses, though it's the magic half of the spectrum.

    There are several classifications of spells, some of which may have nuances that may affect this.
    Single Target (ball/bolt/channel) = single target direct damage
    Volley = bolts cast at everything in range, direct damage aoe-esque
    Burst AoE = like Arcane Explosion, non-direct, hits everything in the AoE
    Zone AoE = like DnD, non-direct hits everything in a static or independently moving zone
    Cone = Sarth Breath, Grobb slime, hits everything in a frontal cone. Normally this would be indirect, but I'm getting the sense that it's treated as direct for the mob's target

    Every sort of magic damage effect can be lumped into one of these categories, and from what I can see, Spell Deflection covers a lot of them, particularly the big ones. As for physical damage vs spell damage overall, usually physical damage is a more significant % of the overall, but there are particular instances where taking less magic damage can be very valuable (Sarth breath, Sapph aura, KT frostbolts), and in general, less damage taken is good for a tank. =)
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zee View Post
    If it works on Sartharion Breath and those kind of skills then it is starting to look like a much better use of skill points. Esch, have you verified it in your logs? I've already done all my raids for this week so I'll have to test it next week if no one has a firm answer.
    I've looked at my log, but my primary healer in Sarth is Disc Priest. Added to a slight use of FR gear, I get a lot of resists/absorbs which would probably include spell deflection procs. If you have a mod that can track resist/absorbed damage, I'ld love to use it as Recount isn't helping me get definite 'usefulness' of gear/spec changes.

    However, I did previous attempts using a 'normal' 9/11/51 spec. After switching over to my current 25/5/41 spec, I noticed a significant decrease in spike damage. I still take 30k breaths if I didn't use a cooldown, but the rate of 'absorbed' damage increased. As such, the risk of a breath followed by melee hit(s) killing me has decreased and I'm typically the last tank down. (Aside - Yes, Imp IT > Toughness.)

    Or, finally, the first tank to loot the corpse (first kill last night) .

  6. #6
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    Spell Deflection works on Direct Damage Spells....

    There are really only 2 kinds of spell damage: periodic and direct

    Periodic would be things like DnD, UB, Blizzard, all DoTs

    Direct would be Fireball, IT, CoC, HB, AE

    Sarth's and Maly's breaths are the only thing in the game that would be worth picking up this talent for at this time. Other than that its a filler talent.

    Come 3.1 I cant see a good reason to spec for this. With the "nerf" to BB (nerf in that its an avoidance nerf) and the fact that no one should be gemming/gearing for parry, our parry rating will be like 20 to 25% which isnt enough of a proc chance for me to bother with (it isnt now really). I might use it as a filler talent if I was specing blood, but its either this or imp Rune tap and im pretty sure id rather have imp Runetap.
    I cast the spells that make the people fall over.

  7. #7
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    Mmm, as I think about it, Ray is most likely right, it's not the targeting style, it's the damage type. Direct vs Periodic instead of Direct vs Zone targeting.

    Though I disagree about the value beyond the breaths. Those just happen to be the fights where it could save your life in a drastic and distinct way.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Horacio View Post
    Who f-ing divided by zero?!?

  8. #8
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    Well, im thinking about in a min/max situation where blood would be my boss tank spec (IDK if this is the case yet) as I would never use it to tank trash. And when I put my spec together, its really a choice between that and imp runetap. Both of which are situational and will be determined by the encounters of Uldar.

    Aside from that, the whole point of being a blood tank is effective health and not avoidance. So a random chance to "dodge" half the dam of a magic attack sounds good in theory, but as an effective health tank your not overly concerned with avoidance due to the spam healing being done to you. And if it was a high magic damage fight I would most likely opp for my Unholy build due to it having Imp AMS and AMZ for extra CDs on magic dam and straight magic reduction.

    Bottom line, its a blah filler/flavor talent that must be compared to Imp RT. IMO, imp RT > SD for most situations.
    I cast the spells that make the people fall over.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ray View Post
    Bottom line, its a blah filler/flavor talent that must be compared to Imp RT. IMO, imp RT > SD for most situations.
    Dunno. Imp RT is great, but still has a 30 second CD versus a passive (though RNG based) effect. I think it's a wash. The key detail is the passive nature, where the incoming killing blow can be deflected without any action on your part. In comparison, RT has both a CD and must be used after taking damage, assuming you survived.

    I look at the 3.1 Spell Deflection from the view of 20% parry, 45% reduction, or average of 9% reduction per spell. Noteworthy, but random enough to not be reliable. Unholy does have better (overall) magic mitigation, but Spell Deflection gives Blood a secondary option without relying on another spec.

  10. #10
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    Incidentally, I'm about 90% settled on Blood primary as my tanking spec in 3.1, and I'm not planning on taking Spell Deflection, I just see its value. =)

    I do on the other hand LOVE Rune Tap. Full improved it's silly strong, 20% of your health every 30 secs. And I can use it, time it on the boss's swing, which is pretty easy once you're used to it.
    The (Old) Book on Death Knight Tanking
    The New Testament on Death Knight Tanking
    -----------------------------------------
    Quote Originally Posted by Horacio View Post
    Who f-ing divided by zero?!?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Satorri View Post
    Incidentally, I'm about 90% settled on Blood primary as my tanking spec in 3.1, and I'm not planning on taking Spell Deflection, I just see its value. =)

    I do on the other hand LOVE Rune Tap. Full improved it's silly strong, 20% of your health every 30 secs. And I can use it, time it on the boss's swing, which is pretty easy once you're used to it.
    I'm going to have to play blood (fully) to decided if Spell Deflection is worth having as a permanent talent, or if it fits the more gimmick "Tank B" spec I'll build with the dual spec option.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Esch View Post
    I look at the 3.1 Spell Deflection from the view of 20% parry, 45% reduction, or average of 9% reduction per spell. Noteworthy, but random enough to not be reliable.
    I really think that ends up being the crux of the issue. Spell Deflection is useful in a limited number of situations, and where it IS useful it's random nature makes it less than ideal. The points seem better spent elsewhere.

  13. #13
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    I did some tallying to gauge relative amount of spell damage in Naxx last night. 3 wings (all but Construct), and as MT I took 63% of my total damage taken as physical damage. Of the spell damage only 10% of that remaining portion was periodic (not subject to Spell Reflection). Bear in mind that I have 20% baseline magic damage reduction (Frost Presence + Magic Suppression), that I use AMS frequently for expected magic dmg, and I used AMZ several times last night.

    Accounting for the upcoming limitations of AMS (only prevents up to 50% of your total health), not having AMZ as Blood, losing the 15% magic reduction for 5% all damage reduction plus 5% from Blade Barrier, and the uncertainty of unavoidable magic dmg in Ulduar...

    It will not be a wasted talent, but always be aware that it is a reduction of a fraction of your incoming damage. Regardless of the RNG aspect it could easily be a life saver with some of the magic damage numbers I've seen from Ulduar testing, but similarly, it's not a lifesaver you can use on demand.

    It is yet another in a long line of choices between survival (and the brand thereof) and threat.
    The (Old) Book on Death Knight Tanking
    The New Testament on Death Knight Tanking
    -----------------------------------------
    Quote Originally Posted by Horacio View Post
    Who f-ing divided by zero?!?

  14. #14
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    Spell Deflection does work on blizzard, go find a mage freind and duel em. Watch the 30% absorbs roll...

    This talent is lack luster in Naxx in the same way Unholy's Magic supression and AMZ are. Naxx offers no real threat of dieing to magic based attacks for a tank, in fact nearly nothing in Naxx offers a real threat of death to a decent tank and healer.

    So far there are a large number of magic based attacks in Uldaur, despite BB being destroyed i would highly reccommend any tank that can fit spell delfection into their spec without much fuss do so intially for uldaur. Phase it out later as gear comes, but initially the random absorb of 45% will be very helpful on healers, and may save your life.

  15. #15
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    Heh, don't confuse lack of risk of immediate death from one big hit, for a solid reduction in damage taken. Every reduction in damage is an ease on your healers and an improvement to your survival. Magic Suppression and AMZ are far more limited in value by the tank's ability to use his moves. On that note, I'm generally dismayed with the number of dps rogues and DKs who fail to use CoS and AMS respectively while raiding to benefit the raid. There's a preponderance of thinking where all that matters is your damage output at the expense of all else.

    Like you said though, there are some big magic hits in Ulduar, so it will be easier for people to justify protecting themselves from it.
    The (Old) Book on Death Knight Tanking
    The New Testament on Death Knight Tanking
    -----------------------------------------
    Quote Originally Posted by Horacio View Post
    Who f-ing divided by zero?!?

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