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Thread: Few Protection Warrior tanking questions:

  1. #1
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    Few Protection Warrior tanking questions:

    Hello there Tankspot users.

    This being my first post on tankspot so a brief introduction of my self is in order:

    My character name is YmÓr on Grim Batol EU Alliance. I have played the game since 2007 January swiching between tanking and DPS between the expansions. Last time I have tanked was Ulduar 25HCs, after wich I went DPS untill MoP.
    For Mists of Pandaria I came back to tanking as it seemed interesting enough again with the active mitigation changes. Now after such a long break from tanking, I am wee bit puzzled about how to gear, gem, enchant and such.

    I have read the Harsh Words and Steel: A Protection Warrior Guide and Theck's Blog trying to grasp as much I can from those.


    Now what I have seen is most of the guides seem to prefer Hit>Exp>Mastery=Stamina>Parry>Dodge or Hit>Expertise>Stamina>Parry>Dodge>Mastery depending do you use Shield Block or Shield Barrier.

    I have been clearing ToT Normal 10 man + 1HC, and having continuing progress on the heroics there. This week I tested the Shield Block gearing and gemming suggested in Harsh Words of Steel in ToT in comparison to my old Sbar spec and what I found out was on most of the fights it either felt more bursty and sponge like than the Sbar I have got used to.

    The general feeling I got from Shield Block gearing was that with bad Crit Block luck, my damage intake became more bursty than with a smart usage of Shield Barrier. Of course then on the otherhand if I got good streak of critical blocks, the damage taken was quite minimal.
    What I also found was that damage from several raid mechanics were either unblockable, or genereally magical DoTs and such wich Shield Block generally helped very little to mitigate.



    How do you guys generally feel for Throne of Thunder at the moment, considering mechanics, the damage type you get and the things that can most likely cause a tank death, is Shield Block or Shield Barrier more effective in mitigating these?

    Best option of course in heroic progression would be to Regem and Reforge / swich gear for every new encounter, wich I am considering doing.
    I feel that on some fight shield block can really shine and make the damage intake lesser while on some encounters shield block barely does nothing due to mechanics, and shield barrier gets to shine.

    Also what I have found is, like I said before is that I somewhat tend to dislike mastery being wee bit random. You can get those awesome streaks of critical blocks, during wich you can nom on your sammich and watch TV, and sometimes none during wich your brain yells "OMG BUTTONS!" and you try your best to survive.
    With Shield Barrier I have found, that for all the damage I take, I always have a way to mitigate it, I can plan more ahead for the incomming damage and generally tend to get less panic moments.



    Now to small list of questions and TLDR:

    1. For Throne of Thunder, would you generally gear, gem and reforge for Shield Barrier or Shield Block, if you do not consider Reforging and Regemming for every encounter in progress individually an option?

    2. For Shield Block the gemming and gearing seems to be quite straight forward, but how about Shield Barrier? From Sacredduty.net "Overall, Iíd go with Hit/Exp > Avoidance > Mastery if I were spamming Shield Barrier." Most guides tend to have mastery gems, and hybrid mastery gems in high regard.
    How about using gems such as [Confounded Wild Jade] / [Perfect Confounded Alexandrite] for the yellow slots?
    Wouldnt using Hit + Stamina gems free you more item budget to be reforged for parry / dodge? Same with the enchanting, using Hit / Expertise enchants instead of stamina ones, free more item points to be used on avoidance in reforging remembering you do not have avoidance enchants on some of the slots.

    3. If Mastery is at the bottom of the priority list for Shield Barrier gearing, what would you gem for in your sockets?

    Blue sockets; Pure Hit / Pure Stamina, Parry+Stamina Hybrid, Expertise+Stamina Hybrid, Hit+Stamina Hybrid or Dodge+Stamina Hybrid?
    Yellow Sockets: Pure Dodge, Hit+Stamina Hybrid or something else?
    Red Sockets: Pure Expertise, Pure Parry, Expertise+Stamina Hybrid or Parry+Stamina Hybrid?

    At the moment I am gemmed basically Pure Stamina on Blue Sockets, Hit+Stamina for Yellow Sockets and one Expertise+Stanina for my shield's red socket.

    4. How do you feel about Shield Block Vs. Shield Barrier on mitigating big physical attacks such as Tortos Snapping Bite? Do you rather Shield Block and critically block it with good chance, and quaranteed normal block, or Shield Barrier it for more static amount every time snap comes.
    I somewhat dislike the idea of making healers surpriced on the damage taken by bite, depending if you critically blocked it or not.



    I would like to give my Battlenet character site; http://eu.battle.net/wow/en/characte...%C3%AEr/simple and for additional information, our healer setup for 10 man ToT is Holy Paladin + Disc Priest with a Resto Druid as offhealer if needed, wich we haven't needed so far.

    Ps. I aplogise for typos and such, English ain't my native, and generally noobish questions.

  2. #2
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    1. I think you've missed the point. You would use shield block for most of the fight, and then drop a 60 rage Sbar to coincide with attacks that are unblockable or otherwise need more than just a block's worth of mitigation. You have to be fluid and choose the right ability to counter the current largest threat to your HP, this means you need to know how much attacks hit for, how much vengeance you currently have, how much rage you currently have (and thus how big an absorb your Sbar will be) and if the special is blockable. It's generally not a case of "for this encounter use exclusively use shield block/barrier", Generally it's shield block against white swings, shield barrier against dangerous specials. That said I would for heroics general go with a Hit=exp>stamina>mastery

    2. I agree with Theck. For just spamming Sbar Mastery loses a lot of value. Most guides aren't built on the premise of spamming Sbar which is why they rate mastery and mastery hybrid gems highly.

    as far as gemming hit/stams in yellows, yeah why not? if i'm not ignoring socket bonuses and gemming pure stam, it's 160 secondary stat. if I'm under the cap Hit is better than dodge, if I'm over the cap dodge is better than hit. it doesn't really matter where the stats come from as long as as i get 2550 hit rating and 5100 expertise from somewhere whilst not sacrificing stamina.


    3. keep in mind that the only time I would be Sbar spamming would be if the boss did entirely magical damage (like Lei Shi)and my gemming will reflect that

    Blues: stamina
    yellows: stam/hit if I cant reach the hit cap or if the socket bonus is a net stam gain, otherwise Stam
    Red: stam/exp if I cant reach the exp cap or if the socket bonus is a net stam gain, otherwise Stam

    4. Ideally I would have both. See this is the is the major point I'm trying to make. It's not a case of "Shield Block, I choose you!" it's about spending rage properly. There's no reason why you can't watch the DBM timer, pool some rage before hand, get a shield block off less than 5 seconds before the bite, and then pop a 60 rage (or whatever) SBar as he's casting it.


    On your armoury; I am really confused. Why do you have 10.74% hit? the cap is 7.5% anything above that has zero value, that's 1102 rating you could lose and suffer no ill affect. you could literally turn all your confounded gems into stam PVP resilience and it would have no effect on your PVE survivability. additionally, if this is an Sbar spam setup why are you reforging out of avoidance into mastery on your gloves, and why have the glyph of Heavy Repercussions?
    Harsh Words and Steel: A Protection Warrior Guide
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    Hunters, Just get a Sporebat, most LFRs will be missing that buff.

  3. #3
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    Hello and thank you for ansvering my questions.

    Straight after you pointed out my hitcap I had to check it my self too, and there seems to be something dodgy with Reforge Lite after I socketed those Hit+Stamina gems, wich shouldnt really exist in game anymore, but they do (blue+blue gem = green). I reforged in a rush as I was just about to go play disc golf, so had barely time to put settings how I wanted to, and then left to play. Need to check out that, as atm it seems Reforge Lite doesn't want to touch my hit rating with any settings, after I used those gems in my gear.

    Edit: Seems like just way overcapped hit, thats what you get for gemming and reforging in rush. So much hit on gear and gems atm, can not get it lower it enough so need to regem alil.

    And counter ansvers and continuation questions for you:

    1.

    I was generally prefering to Shield Barrier Spam with varied rage amounts vs. keeping shield block up.
    What I have found out when playing with high expertise/hit setup, and shield block / mastery gearing is that even when you do keep shield block up as often you can, when you have to Shield Barrier for some bigger attack, you will be out of rage straight after to continue keeping shield block up reliably. This at times tends to lead to bursty scenarios if you end up not having rage for shield block, and you have to panic barrier to give healers some slack. Also at times it feels that due to RNG you dont always have the chance to keep Shield Block up, and have the extra rage available for Shield Barrier.

    2.

    Gemming wice I meant as you can not reforge in to stat item already has on it, so I was wondering if you should gem for stats you have to cap, to release more of the stats to reforging in to stats you have hard time come up with gemming, due to that kinda hybrid gems not existing, or socket bonuses not matching.

    3.
    So is there anything concrete that Shield Block up vs Shield Barrier "spam" or smart usage makes damage taken less spiky and damage taken less even if the damage is completelly physical. 60 rage used to Shield Barrier or Shield Block. wich ignores more damage on physical attacks only and wich one makes it less spiky, considering cases of 20-60 rage barriers?

    4.
    And that was pretty much exacly my question, somewhat.
    Wich way would generally cause more damage mitigated, keeping up Shield Block, or smart usage or Shield Barrier, remembering you do not have infinite rage and you can't keep both up constantly.

    What I meant basically was that as it seems most bosses have alot of unblockable, magical, dot damage that diminishes the value of shield block, making it feel like rage wasted. Lets say you have 80 rage to use at a case, you have a white swing hitting you for 100k, DOT hitting you for 100k at the same time. Now if you use shield block for 60 rage you will ignore 30% for sure, and with good chance double. So that white swing ends up with something between 70-40k hit on you with 20 rage left for shield barrier wich could take some damage off that dot vs. using 60 rage shield barrier, getting hefty bubble wich will ignore same amount of damage every time, with no RNG of the Crit Block, and then when you see shield barrier dropping off using the last 20 rage for 2nd barrier.


    Don't know if this helped at all to clarify what I meant with my questions.

    Basically wich one wins in smoothness of healing required.

    Block up as often as possible, and Barrier on big attacks when enough rage available.
    Or Shield Barrier up as often as possible with variable amounts of rage, and rage saved for big attacks for 60 rage barriers.

    Edit: Not the best or most readable English seen in the internet, wee bit tired after the disc golf course.
    Edit2: And thank you for the patience, like said after very long break out of tanking there is alot of rust to shake off my self and alot of reading to be done.
    edit3: And to the glyph and reforging, I was in raid last night till 23:20 or so with shield barrier gearing, gemming and reforging, and was just changing back to "shield barrier spam" ones while writing my post and rushing a bit to get to play disc golf, so everything there aint in order.
    Last edited by Ymir; 04-02-2013 at 11:41 AM.

  4. #4
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    1. Glyph of unending Rage allows you to pool rage rather more effectively and removes alot of the "rng" of rage as does timing things like your shouts and berserker rage. if you're panicking you should be reaching for health stones or last stand before sbar


    2. There is no hard and fast rule, i prefer to reforge to hit expertise first and then make up the difference with gems as necassary as reforges are limited by the stats already on there. It really doesn't matter as long as you're getting the stats you need/want from somewhere. if i'm reforging 160 hit from parry to reach the cap and thus can gem 160 mastery or if i reforge 160 mastery from parry and gem 160 hit it's the same at the end of the day. its literally a case of if you gem x you have to reforge y, or if you reforge x you can gem y.

    3. You said you've read Theck's blog, if his maths isn't concrete enough for you, nothing I write will be. Smart usage is always better than spam. Shield block is better for making damage intake smoother, it's just better at removing damage spikes, Shield Barrier provides more total damage reduction. if you you spam shield block you will take more damage overall but it will be spread out over time. If you spam Sbar you will take less damage but sometimes it will all come very quickly as one spike. Total damage redcution (TDR), and preventing damage spikes are two very different things, and you almost certainly cannot gear optimally for one without compromising the other. TDR is not a very good metric for measuring survivabilty

    4. Shield barrier mitigates more damage, but that doesn't actually matter. you have to look at it in the six second window. assiming 1,5s swing timer and a similar tick timer, you're gonna take 4 swing sand 4 ticks with Sbar you're going to fully absorb the first 2 swings and 2 ticks. with sblock you're going to mitigate about 55% of each melee hit and take a full dot tick. with Sbar you takke 0 damage for the first 3 seconds and then 200k every 1.5s (so 400k in 3 seconds), with sblock you take 145k every 1.5s (680k over 6 seconds). Tanks don't die to continual damage, they die to spikes. they die when there healers run out of time to heal them up


    WHich one wins in smoothness. Shield Block. and with proper gearing and playing saving 60 rage to sbar against boss specials should not be a struggle.
    Harsh Words and Steel: A Protection Warrior Guide
    MoP RPS Calculator

    Hunters, Just get a Sporebat, most LFRs will be missing that buff.

  5. #5
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    Thanks again for ansvers.

    1.

    Yes it does indeed. And ofcourse I use those cooldowns too, but same time if I am around 10% health or so and below rage needed to shield block, I tend to use the shield barrier to get instant bubble for not dying, instead of wait a global or cooldown to get off a shield block.

    2.

    Ok, my gearing is hardly optimised in any way. Been quite low item level so have tried to just get atleast some upgrades to drop off some very low item level pieces. This ofcourse leaves very little room for optimising generally, wich you could see when I regemmed and reforged in rush and got way overcapped hit unintentionally.

    3.

    Yes I have read it, not understood all but your explanations do help quite abit. Basically what I am wondering is, yesterdays raid I tested the Shield Block gearing and reforging and gemming, according to your guide, and on some bosses the damage intake felt alot smoother and easier to be healed. But otherwice I saw some dangerous spikes on me. Communicated with healers and they were quite indifferent on how it felt to be healed, said possibly lil more bursty. This ofcourse could be because of my unpracticed use of Shield Block and being unfamiliar with it. Basically what I was trying to do is to keep shield block up always, save rage for Shield Barriers during attacks I knew to be unblockable / unavoidable / magical.

    4.

    Ok thanks for that ansver. Now what if instead of thinking you use 60 rage shield barrier same time you would be using 60 rage shield block, you would use 20 rage shield barrier, shield slam, 20 rage shield barrier, revenge, 20 rage shield barrier. Wich one you think in that kinda scenario would cause least bursty damage, and most damage mitigated?

    Thats kinda the idea I have been asking here is the use of Shield Barrier with 20 rage when you do need only static not so dangerous damage mitigated, and pooling 60 rage with before a bursty mechanic attack lands.

    Last question I would like to ask is generally the stat weight of mastery and what annoys me is that with increasing damage taken from other sources than physical blockable damage, the stat weight of Mastery Should go down and end up with lower priority. While Shield Barrier always ignores the same amount, no matter the damage source.

    With the conversation with you, I am starting to think the problem with my lesser success with Shield Block and generally negative attitude towards it, is due to not being accustomed to it and practiced in using it, ie playing it bad. I guess I shall try to train it lil longer time and test how it goes.
    Last edited by Ymir; 04-02-2013 at 12:36 PM.

  6. #6
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    response to 4: it's not as good as straight up shield block because of the differences in GCD and boss attack speed. Shield block is ALWAYS better to use against melee attacks, save shield barriers for either big attacks you know you're going to take and/or magic effects (such as shadow breath on Tsulong)

    Mastery: really the answer here is "well there's no other good choice". Avoidance is complete crap, so once you get hit/exp caps, then mastery is the only thing to reforge to. From there the only thing is gemming, and if you have just crap tons of stam, no reason not to get some more mastery.

    Really it boils down to prot war tank stats are kinda un-interesting after hit/exp. As long as you're not stacking avoidance and hit your exp/hit caps, you'll probably be fine.
    "If the world is something you accept rather than interpret, then you're susceptible to the influence of charismatic idiots." -Neil deGrasee Tyson

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  7. #7
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    Ok thank you for your input and patience again.

    I checked some world of logs sec ago, and I noticed that over all the bossfights in ToT highest amount of physical, blockable damage taken was around 48%. The damage taken from blockable sources varied between 12-48%. Dont you think that, in atleast the lower end scenarios such as that 12% physical damage taken Shield Barier 20, 20, 20, "spam" or more so intelligent use would be better than keeping shield block up?

    I will try the shield block and barrier usage in todays raid and see how it goes, tho my gear doen't really put my mastery too high yet wich might be a problem.

  8. #8
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    huh?
    I'm not clearing ToT but melee hits in themselves are about 40% of my total dmg taken for 1st to 9th boss this week. Where are you down to 12%?
    I'm not exactly stellar at avoiding stuff on the ground either...

    I can see an argument for spamming barrier on a fight where the physical dmg intake become negligible relative to unblockable dmg taken (I think heroic guardians in MSV were close).
    I've found myself using it on the fire head of Meagara, with poison explosions all over the place feeling more dangerous than the melee hits.

  9. #9
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    First off what boss are you only seeing 12% of the damage as blockable? i checked the 10HC (or 10N if 10HC didn't exist) highest rankings for prot warriors and the lowest I got was Iron Qon at 24% the highest was Dark animus with getting on for 70%. and then you've got to realise this is the % we're seeing is after mitigation so you have factor into account that we're only seeing the unblocked portions of those blockable attacks.

    If you have fights where significant amounts of tank death comes from unblockable sources then yes, you should favour shield barrier. I don't think any of the current fights do. the problem with the 20,20,20 idea is that whilst it works, due to the ganualrity of rage (rage doesn't come in smooth it comes in packets of 25,20,15,10, and 1) you sometimes only get 20 rage over a six second slot so you put up your bar minimum shield it absorbs maybe 1 melee hit and a tick and they you eat full 3 ticks to the face at the same time you eat 3 melees swings too, and of course you can't choose to just spend 20 rage, if you have more it'll dump that too. and due to how things scale the more magic damage you take (or the more marginalised the blockable damage is) the shorter the absorb lasts (test it on lei shi) so you again run into the problem of granualrity rage meaning those times when you get [SS>Dev>dev>dev] you end up eating 4.5 seconds of sit with your face.

    SHield block on the other hand you're really only going to have 3 second gaps between them, the exception being when you need to use an Sbar to mitigatea breath attack ot the like in which case you're pretty much having to deal with either spike damage now or maybe spike damage later (maybe i'll get lucky with avoidance) which puts it in the same boat as 20,20,20 is in all the time. Furthermore on fast taunt swap fights (24 seconds or less) you can chain Sblocks together so that you have it up all the time whilst tanking and let the charges full recharge when not.
    Harsh Words and Steel: A Protection Warrior Guide
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  10. #10
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    Okay if the picture disappears let me know. Anyways in this post there's supposed to be a graph. Here's what I did:

    The blue line is damage reduced by sbar if you are pressing it just before each time you get hit based on the boss's swing timer, for this graph the boss has a 1.5 second swing timer and this assumes you have a perfect rotation and are hitting your GCDs exactly. This also assumes you get lucky as crap with revenge procs and the rotation is as follows:

    shield slam (20) -> revenge (15) -> revenge (15) -> shield slam (25) -> revenge (15) -> revenge (15) -> shield slam (20) -> revenge (15) -> revenge (15) -> shield slam (25)

    etc. etc. etc.

    This is an amazing rotation that generates 11.875 RPS, which is crazy, btw. Giving sbar a lot of slack here.

    The red line is assuming shield block is up for all 24 seconds it can be, and I do the graph just over 24 seconds for simplicity's sake. Gets a bit fuzzy after that with using an sbar as filler and you'll take some shots, and I graphed that out too in an earlier version and it got messy but looked about like the sbar one... but I digress. I'm giving sbar a LOT of slack here, so I'm also giving sblock that bit of slack.

    This also has a random function in it that calculates a 25% critical block chance. This also assumes zero dodges or parries.

    This theoretical boss has a 1.5 second swing timer and hits for 100,000 against armor.

    I also assumed that every 20 rage absorbed roughly 30,000 damage with sbar, so a 60 rage sbar would absorb a maximum of 90,000 damage, however with the granularity of the fight mechanics and spamming sbar, the biggest you can get is a 30 rage sbar on a 1.5 second swing timer.

    Anyways, this is the result. Also I call shenanigans on TDR too b/c:

    Total damage taken spamming sbar: 1,172,500

    Total damage taken with shield block: 1,060,000
    Last edited by Aggathon; 04-04-2013 at 03:08 PM.
    "If the world is something you accept rather than interpret, then you're susceptible to the influence of charismatic idiots." -Neil deGrasee Tyson

    Twitter @Aggathon || @Tankspot || Twitch.Tv/Aggathon

  11. #11
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    I also guess if you're getting this many revenges you are pretty much dodging everything......... I can't decide if that helps or hurts sbar, 'cuz I was originally assuming "Lei Shi fight" vs "regular melee fight" since Lei Shi has zero melee damage, and then just made up this ficticious rotation.... thoughts? Anyways... gonna posted the 2.0 swing timer next.
    "If the world is something you accept rather than interpret, then you're susceptible to the influence of charismatic idiots." -Neil deGrasee Tyson

    Twitter @Aggathon || @Tankspot || Twitch.Tv/Aggathon

  12. #12
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    Total Damage Taken with sbar: 772,500

    Total Damage Taken with sblock: 750,000



    Thinking more I may try to add in some random dodge/avoidance mechanics and try to clean up the rotation some...... we'll see.
    "If the world is something you accept rather than interpret, then you're susceptible to the influence of charismatic idiots." -Neil deGrasee Tyson

    Twitter @Aggathon || @Tankspot || Twitch.Tv/Aggathon

  13. #13
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    QUADRUPLE POST! Paddin' the post count:

    Anyways, regardless of anything else, you can definitely see what we mean by "damage smoothing" sometimes with sbar you block quite a bit of damage, especially the longer the swing timer is, sometimes you just take it to the face.
    "If the world is something you accept rather than interpret, then you're susceptible to the influence of charismatic idiots." -Neil deGrasee Tyson

    Twitter @Aggathon || @Tankspot || Twitch.Tv/Aggathon

  14. #14
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    K, so... just adding in 30% avoidance seems to help Sbar a lot....
    "If the world is something you accept rather than interpret, then you're susceptible to the influence of charismatic idiots." -Neil deGrasee Tyson

    Twitter @Aggathon || @Tankspot || Twitch.Tv/Aggathon

  15. #15
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    makes sense that avoidance benefits Sbar more from a TDR point of view... How is the spikyness (that's totally a word) looking?
    (some day we really have to make a calculate-able unit for dmg spikes... dmg turbulence or something)

  16. #16
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    Maximum Deviation from mean iDPS. I like spikyness better.


    and Agg, you're only going to have ~7.4 RPS over a fight with SBar spam 8.2 with Sblock
    Harsh Words and Steel: A Protection Warrior Guide
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    Hunters, Just get a Sporebat, most LFRs will be missing that buff.

  17. #17
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    Oh it's still hella spikey, probably even MORE spikey with avoidance. Here's a sample (still trying to figure out how to sim the rotation better in a spreadsheet, heh):



    The amount damage reduces is VERY random though based on the avoidances, in this example:

    Damage taken while using Sbar: 455,000

    Damage taken using Sblock: 440,000

    so for this random series sblock just happened to BARELY come ahead, I can run this a few times though and sometimes sbar comes out way ahead.

    For example:


    Damage taken using Sbar:572,500
    Damage taken using Sblock: 640,000
    Last edited by Aggathon; 04-04-2013 at 05:39 AM.
    "If the world is something you accept rather than interpret, then you're susceptible to the influence of charismatic idiots." -Neil deGrasee Tyson

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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aggathon View Post

    shield slam* (20) -> revenge (15) -> revenge (15) -> shield slam* (25) -> revenge (15) -> revenge (15) -> shield slam* (20) -> revenge (15) -> revenge (15) -> shield slam* (25)

    etc. etc. etc.
    Since shield block costs 60 rage instead of generating 20, I assumed you meant Shield Slam.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gregasaurous View Post
    Since shield block costs 60 rage instead of generating 20, I assumed you meant Shield Slam.
    No.... that's the rage GENERATION rotation, I mean shield slam, and it generates 20 (or 25) rage.
    "If the world is something you accept rather than interpret, then you're susceptible to the influence of charismatic idiots." -Neil deGrasee Tyson

    Twitter @Aggathon || @Tankspot || Twitch.Tv/Aggathon

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aggathon View Post
    No.... that's the rage GENERATION rotation, I mean shield slam, and it generates 20 (or 25) rage.
    Perhaps i was unclear, your original post says S Block instead of slam and I fixed it for you.

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