4.2 Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Get help with your character's gear

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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Digren » Tue Jan 04, 2011 11:24 am

jekoh wrote:Just my two cents, as I did not read it but maybe I missed
For lvl 3 set, I consider the ret head from justice points : Helm of Easeful Death - http://www.wowhead.com/item=58098

a slight better choice than the tank one in term of avoidance with his 182 mastery + 40 mastery gem bonus and a reforging of haste into dodge, parry or expertise or hit rating

When I made the list I ignored pieces with haste and crit, just to keep the list down to a reasonable size. However I didn't realize how awesome mastery was.

Honestly right now I'd rather take gear with, say, haste and mastery, over a piece with, say, dodge and expertise. That seems really counter-intuitive but that's the way it is.

Going back to add mastery gear regardless of the second stat will take a bit of work. I'll try to do this in the next few days.

Thanks!
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Digren » Tue Jan 04, 2011 12:51 pm

I've added a stat consideration section to the top gear guide, explaining the benefits of mastery and recommending gear with mastery over gear without. I still need to go through the individual lists, add mastery/threat gear with haste or crit, and then order the gear based on either total damage reduction or (more likely) combat table coverage.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby yappo » Wed Jan 05, 2011 7:55 am

Digren wrote:I've added a stat consideration section to the top gear guide, explaining the benefits of mastery and recommending gear with mastery over gear without. I still need to go through the individual lists, add mastery/threat gear with haste or crit, and then order the gear based on either total damage reduction or (more likely) combat table coverage.


I'm running into problems even with my failsafe list, which should pretty much correspond with your level 3 tank. Items with huge chunks of agility (assorted jewelery) as well as dps-plate with mastery/threat might very well supercede some designed tanking items for survival.

Thus I think even the failsafe tank has to start thinking in terms of three tanking sets.

1) I'm slowly being pummeled to death = avoid and mitigate
2) The damn designer is 'cheating' and zapping me with unavpidable damage = stamina
3) We're hitting enrage timers and/or dps are ripping targets left and right = threat

With a few exepctions this is probably quickly solved by shopping multiple copies of reputation-rewards (remember failsafe, so I can't accept any drops), very carefully selecting what JP gear to double/triple up on and then pay a reforger near you a visit along with your favourite chanter and jewelcrafter.

The exceptions are agility-jewelery (avoidance), 'dps'-jewelery (threat) and a few slots of dps-plate (mitigation, because the sucker is better for handling pummeling than the designated tank-plate).

You, however, are going to have to juggle drops, with some rather awful matching to do. An easy one, just to exemplify the kind of merry hell you have ahead of you, is the crafted tank-plate versus the JP plate. While a few tankadin-members have pointed at the lacking gem-slots resulting in an inconvenient lack of stamina, most seem to have missed out on the combination of lacking gem slots AND the epic plate sitting on a lackluster 228 parry/expertize while the blue chest has a apetizing 182 mastery / 162 dodge. That's a dealbreaker if I ever saw one.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Digren » Wed Jan 05, 2011 11:51 am

yappo wrote:1) I'm slowly being pummeled to death = avoid and mitigate
2) The damn designer is 'cheating' and zapping me with unavpidable damage = stamina
3) We're hitting enrage timers and/or dps are ripping targets left and right = threat

I'm still hoping that (2) isn't necessary, or is rare enough that it can be relegated to "gimmick" status and thus not worthy of coverage. Otherwise as you note maintaining recommendations for multiple gear sets is going to be hell.

So far I'm pretty much just focused on (1).
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby yappo » Wed Jan 05, 2011 12:28 pm

Digren wrote:
yappo wrote:1) I'm slowly being pummeled to death = avoid and mitigate
2) The damn designer is 'cheating' and zapping me with unavpidable damage = stamina
3) We're hitting enrage timers and/or dps are ripping targets left and right = threat

I'm still hoping that (2) isn't necessary, or is rare enough that it can be relegated to "gimmick" status and thus not worthy of coverage. Otherwise as you note maintaining recommendations for multiple gear sets is going to be hell.

So far I'm pretty much just focused on (1).


Ok, let's have a look at 1.

I have this nagging suspicion that the designed encounters already deviate from reality.

Looking at how the designed tanking sets are itemized I get the feeling that we're supposed to walk around in 30% avoidance, 50% block, 20% in your face and K raidbuffed health.

If I'm correct, then the fights are designed for this setup.

In reality we're starting to head into a 28% avoidance, 57% block, 15% in your face and (K - 15k) health. (actual numbers may vary as I'm mostly inventing them out of thin air)

Remains to calculate actual difference in damage taken per second between designed tank and real tank, correlate against the loss of health and see if it's worth it.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Baelik » Fri Jan 07, 2011 9:04 pm

Just wondering if Tia's Grace would find a spot for those gearing up for heroics since some trinkets are hard to come by. Does the mastery and +300 AGI stacked make it worthy? (I'd go with anything at this point since i've gone casual >_>)
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Kyoshkin » Fri Jan 07, 2011 9:40 pm

While I defer to the greater minds around here, the 252 or so Mastery is very, very nice. The Agi is more of a gimmick proc, and even if you ignore it, the mastery makes it a very nice trinket until you get something better.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Digren » Sat Jan 08, 2011 11:49 am

Here's my own stage two gear set, for the record.

[Headcover of Fog] : Req. Lev. 81 : The Vortex Pinnacle (Normal) Grand Vizier Ertan
[The Lustrous Eye] : Req. Lev. 85 : 1250 Justice Points
[Pharoah's Burial Spaulders] : Req. Lev. 83 : Ruins of Uldum (Quest)
[Shroud of the Dead] : Req. Lev. 83 : Ramkahen (Honored)
[Flynn's Favorite Chestplate] : Req. Lev. 84 : Twilight Highlands (Quest) Doing It Like a Dunwald
[Dunwald's Finest Bindings] : Twilight Highlands (Quest)
[Fingers of Light] : Halls of Origination (Normal) Rajh
[Girdle of the Mountains] : 1650 Justice Points
[Stone-Wrapped Greaves] : The Earthen Ring (Honored)
[Ramkahen Front Boots] : Lost City of the Tol'vir (Quest)
[Red Rock Band] : Ramkahen (Revered)
[Band of the Dead End] : The Vortex Pinnacle (Quest) A Long Way from Home
[Leaden Despair] : The Stonecore (Normal) High Priestess Azil
[Impetuous Query] : Lost City of the Tol'vir (Normal) BoE Random Drop or
[Elementium Dragonling] : BoE Engineering Only
[Dragonscorn Mace] : Twilight Highlands (Quest)
[Truthbreaker Shield] / [Twilight Mirrorshield] : Stormwind City / Orgrimmar (Quest)
[Namkhare's Cabochon Charm] : Req. Lev. 83 : Uldum (Quest) Lieutenants of Darkness

Obviously I had a lot of saved Justice Points so I could skip ahead in a few slots. But otherwise my first heroic was pretty easy in this gear set. Only one wipe - and it was on a boss about four minutes after the healer died nearly instantly (I kept myself alive in the interim).

I was grouped with a friend in a hard-core guild, and all of them had past heroic experience and outgeared me. However I held threat just fine and had a solid lead despite avoiding and reforging away threat stats. We did use CC which let me use ShotR on some occasions instead of just WoG.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby econ21 » Sat Jan 08, 2011 7:11 pm

Kyoshkin wrote:While I defer to the greater minds around here, the 252 or so Mastery is very, very nice. The Agi is more of a gimmick proc, ...


Whenever I look, the agility is stacked to 10. That equates to about 1% extra dodge, which - together with the mastery - makes it competitive with the best 346 avoidance trinkets.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Axxl » Mon Jan 10, 2011 12:01 pm

Digren,

A friend of mine referred me to your guide and I'm quite mindblown by this. I thought I was doing the good thing and I got hit-capped & exp softcapped.

Now it appears that you advice reforging to Mastery alot, which I understand but then I wonder, does it not matter at all that you aren't hitcapped or expertise capped?

My character is the following: http://eu.battle.net/wow/en/character/chromaggus/axxl/advanced

Thanks in advance for answering my question!

Greetings,
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby yappo » Mon Jan 10, 2011 3:37 pm

Axxl wrote:
Now it appears that you advice reforging to Mastery alot, which I understand but then I wonder, does it not matter at all that you aren't hitcapped or expertise capped?


Albeit not being Digren:

When was the last fight you lost aggro and it counted?

If it was AoE-spamming more adds than decent for "forgetting" to mark up CC, then it doesn't count :D

Since taunts were removed from 'missable' abilities we (almost) only need to keep a casual eye on Omen. Exception being a 'squishy' co-tank hellbent on doing 200% threat instead of a measly 150% threat on everything between Icecrown and Uldum.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Digren » Mon Jan 10, 2011 4:11 pm

Axxl wrote:Now it appears that you advice reforging to Mastery alot, which I understand but then I wonder, does it not matter at all that you aren't hitcapped or expertise capped?


Here's my perspective in a long, winding post. :P

I tanked my first heroic a bit undergeared -
at about 128k health buffed
about 68% avoidance+block
about 2.5% hit
around 15 expertise

with one DPS person I know and two other DPS members of his guild, all hard-core 10 man raiders running their Nth heroic, plus a healer from his guild new to heroics.

What problems might I have seen?
1. Losing threat?

No, I had no threat problem problems at all. Indeed, seconds into each pull I had a 50k threat lead on the top DPS player. On AOE pulls (where more than one mob reached me without CC) a single Hammer would attach the extras onto me.

Yeah I think a few times one of the CC mobs would run after a hunter, but each time I noticed and taunted them off before they arrived. And that's not threat generation at all. That's situation awareness, which is a completely different tanking ability (and one more related to the player than the character).

My DPS isn't great. It's not supposed to be. I really don't worry about my own damage output if I'm holding threat and alive.

2. Dying?

Well, we wiped once, when the healer died a few seconds into the pull. But we didn't wipe for a few minutes after that, while I kept myself alive. (One of the DPS shaman might have been healing me a little, but most of what I saw was my own WoGs.) We did get the boss down to like 30%.

--------

So that's the experience of someone going out of their way to avoid threat stats (by preferring mastery/avoidance gear over any other type). And given that situation, if there's anything I could change, it would be to extend my life further by taking away more threat stats. I would love to replace some of the strength on my gear with agility. I'd love to reforge more than 40% of a threat stat into mastery.

Sure, at some point I could give up so much threat that I can't hold aggro. That's too far. But 2.5% hit and 15 expertise is more than enough, but 128k and 68% is too little.

----------

I note that your gear is a stage and a half better than mine. (Mine is stage two / average iLvl 333 / ready for heroics, while yours is stage three+ / mix if iLvl 346 and iLvl 359 / normal raider.) And yet, my avoidance + block is now higher than yours. (I'm now at about 70% unbuffed, you are at about 68%.)

I take less damage than you do. Sure, your better gear means you have more stamina to absorb blows, so spikes are a smaller percentage of your health and it looks like you take less. That might make your healers feel a little less nervous, so they keep using more mana efficient healers for longer. But I'll get that stamina pretty much for free too when my gear is that good, and my avoidance+block will only go up.

-----------

So, overall:
1. Extra threat is unnecessary. My job is to tank not DPS.
2. Survivability matters. More is better until you just can't die. At that point who cares? But we aren't at that point by definition with progression content.
3. Gearing for mastery over threat reduces your damage taken by a gear stage or more, while only costing extra threat.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Digren » Mon Jan 10, 2011 4:18 pm

For the record, that first heroic was Vortex Pinnacle, which is I think one of the easier ones. My second heroic was Tol Barad, run with the same hard core hunter friend but three other members from my guild, all with gear similar to mine, all running their first or second heroics.

Tol Barad was much harder, yes, and we wiped quite a bit more (and eventually abandoned it before the last boss due to a cranky baby + hungry tank + other commitment thing). But all of the issues had to do with me dying due to massive blows to the head, or other people dying due to AOE. My threat was just as good.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby yappo » Mon Jan 10, 2011 4:42 pm

Short addendum to Axxl:

http://eu.battle.net/wow/en/character/s ... d/advanced

Our gear is about the same quality. I am, in order to put my money where my mouth is, pushing the extreme in covering the combat table. Our in-guild JC has yet to fix those 20 parry/mastery gems, after which I plan to drop another 1500 health.

While healer is far from optional in heroics, healers sure pump out a lot of dps when I'm tanking (with my head screwed on correctly, which isn't always the case) in order to see that blue bar diminish. In-guild runs are rapidly deteriorating into WotLK AoE-insanities in order to ensure I take measurable damage. 87% combat table coverage, with a solid 30% raw avoidance as a foundation removes a LOT of healer stress.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Digren » Mon Jan 10, 2011 10:48 pm

Jesus yappo you're gonna be block capped at T11 without setting foot in a raid.

Considered the old agility enchant to cloak? I think it's worth like 16 dodge rating equivalent.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Axxl » Tue Jan 11, 2011 6:56 am

Thanks a lot for the fast and clear response Digren & yappo.

I completely understand your perspective, when I'm tanking raid bosses and I look at Omen halfway through the fight i see myself at 4million threat and the next dps at around 2.5, this being on a boss where DPS hardly has anything else to do, you don't wanna know what it looks like when DPS has to do adds, etc...

I'm definetly going to reforge now and get my survivabilty alot higher, I've had my healers complain from time to time that I go down like a sack of potatoes (strangely enough most times on trash), you explained me know how this comes.

I thank you for your enlightening post and I will keep following your guide through the evolution of WoW in the Cataclysm patch!

Greetings,
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby yappo » Tue Jan 11, 2011 9:37 am

Digren wrote:Jesus yappo you're gonna be block capped at T11 without setting foot in a raid.

Considered the old agility enchant to cloak? I think it's worth like 16 dodge rating equivalent.


I HAVE thought about it, but 16 dodge-rating probably reduces long-time incoming damage less than 250 armour. I'm aiming for the lowest possible damage taken over time, so hypothetical trinkets at 4k armour each would see me remove mastery trinkets from the equation.

Anyway, I think 90% CTC is perfectly doable pre-raid.

Ahh, thought you were going for maximum combat table coverage for smoothest damage intake, which is different from lowest damage intake.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Gaxby » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:20 pm

How often is the statement Mastery/Avoidance > Mastery/Threat OR Avoidance/Avoidance > Avoidance/Threat true (given equal item levels)? For people like me who can't do the math before the roll timer expires (not to mention factoring diminishing returns/gem sockets), what's a good rule of thumb when comparing gear when rolling? Is there a super quick formula?
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Digren » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:54 pm

Gaxby wrote:How often is the statement Mastery/Avoidance > Mastery/Threat OR Avoidance/Avoidance > Avoidance/Threat true (given equal item levels)? For people like me who can't do the math before the roll timer expires (not to mention factoring diminishing returns/gem sockets), what's a good rule of thumb when comparing gear when rolling? Is there a super quick formula?

With the numbers I'm using, you'd have to calculate:

1 x Mastery + 0.8 x Avoidance

1 x Mastery + 0.4 x 0.8 x Threat

0.8 x 0.6 Avoidance1 + 0.4 x 1 x Avoidance1 + 0.8 * Avoidance2

0.8 x Avoidance + 0.4 x 1 x Threat

I don't have a percentage on this yet. However, I'm doing all this math ahead of time and ordering the gear as per the formula. (I also take into account stamina, armor, and gemming with socket bonuses, where the above only accounts for reforging.) Honestly I just keep my own guide up and refer to it by looking at the item order. I've kept pre-done gear lists for a decade through EQ and WoW precisely because the math is too hard to do on the fly. (Though admittedly it got pretty easy during WotLK because most only armor and stamina mattered.)
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby yappo » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:56 pm

Gaxby wrote:How often is the statement Mastery/Avoidance > Mastery/Threat OR Avoidance/Avoidance > Avoidance/Threat true (given equal item levels)? For people like me who can't do the math before the roll timer expires (not to mention factoring diminishing returns/gem sockets), what's a good rule of thumb when comparing gear when rolling? Is there a super quick formula?



Short answer: Always.

Long answer: Depends on your progression needs and current CTC. For example, if you hypothetically reached the 102.4, then extra mastery would be a waste. And, of course, to make you more frustrated, this is not always true, because getting extra mastery enough to reach 103.0 could enable you to reforge an item you already have, etc, etc.
Add that an item with a very minor extra mastery (together with a fairly uninteresting threat-stat) could come with a pretty huge strength-penalty. You now have to compare 25% of the strength-difference with the difference between 40% of the threat stats.


I'd personally go with the short answer when I have a roll-timer ticking away :D

And, please, do NOT set this advice in stone. Another nine months down the line we could find ourselves pumping threat-stats sky-high while collecting T13 because the new boss-fights one-shots the entire raid if a single interrupt is missed (ok, huge overstatement, but you get my point).

Edit: And Digren got me with his numbers-answer :D
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby fuzzygeek » Thu Jan 13, 2011 6:28 pm



Have you considered the agil/mastery shoulder enchant? :D
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby yappo » Fri Jan 14, 2011 3:48 am

fuzzygeek wrote:


Have you considered the agil/mastery shoulder enchant? :D


I did indeed throw a glance at Worldies last stunt, so, yep :D

Another two days MIGHT see me with the mastery/agil TB trink, so that should see me with another 1% block. After that my "pre-raid" gear is pretty much done as I don't want to spend another 20k gold on Soul Blade at the moment (while better than the tenderdizer it's not THAT much better).

For total mitigation (considering the content that I see, and probably the 10-man normal raids I'll eventually start wiping in, then a less than 15% from full CTC should be considered mitigation rather than RNG) I believe I should get myself a head with block-value.

I'm also thinking about the spell-dam reduction. It is after all a full reduction, and I can always swap helmets between fights.
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Janlaró » Fri Jan 14, 2011 1:00 pm

Is it intended that most of the slots have no numbering to see wich is better than the other?
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby Digren » Sat Jan 15, 2011 9:58 pm

Janlaró wrote:Is it intended that most of the slots have no numbering to see wich is better than the other?

That's more a function of me being my guild's only tank, so I'm spending my time running heroics instead of updating my guide.

Slots without numbers are still in iLvl order from pre-Cata launch. Slots with numbers have been ranked according to what we actually know now about how gear works.

The best items are the highest possible iLvl with mastery and either dodge or parry rating. The numbered order is just a quick-reference way to find these, and help sorting between lesser items if you have one and a different one drops.

Thanks!
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Re: 4.0.3a Tank Stages and Cataclysm Gear Guide

Postby koriolis » Sun Jan 16, 2011 7:16 am

I have to thank you for posting this. I'm returning to WoW after about a month or so off due to a new job a few days after Cataclysm came out; I was an endgame raider at the end of WOTLK but I feel like I'm coming back blind as to what's good or bad or what an "ideal" gear set I should be shooting for would be. Thanks to this guide, I'm a little more confident that I'll be doing things properly as I level to 85 and then gear up for raiding.

Just so I'm 100% clear, as I came from the end days of Wrath where the progression was fresh 80 -> regular ToC/FoS/PoS/HoR -> Grind Heroics nonstop -> Raiding, the way this is supposed to work is like this:

1) Hit 85 and have a mix of 81-84 dungeon drops, 83/84 quest greens and/or crafted gear (Stage 1: Fresh 85)
2) Do level 85 quests/regular dungeons/reputation to get all (or close to all?) iLevel 333 gear (Stage 2: Ready for Heroics)
3) Begin chain running heroics for gear/JPs to buy 346 level gear (Stage 3: Ready for raiding), if lucky get epic BoEs crafted

Is that a correct flowsheet? I'm going to read the thread more in depth once I start playing again (although before I stopped I only managed to get to 82 so have a bit to go)
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