The purpose of Weapon Expertise

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The purpose of Weapon Expertise

Postby Alixander » Thu Jul 05, 2007 7:07 pm

Aka "Why getting Parried is really bad if you're a tank"

An excerpt from a post of a guild that I'm friends with that is attempting Azgalor (Mt. Hyjal).

24:03.6 Methos's Heroic Strike was parried by Azgalor.
24:03.7 Azgalor hits Methos for 7874 (867 blocked)
24:04.9 Methos's Devastate was dodged by Azgalor.
24:05.2 Methos's Heroic Strike missed Azgalor.
24:06.1 Azgalor hits Methos for 6740 (997 blocked) (1742 absorbed)
24:06.6 Methos's Devastate was parried by Azgalor.
24:07.2 Azgalor attacks. Methos parries.
24:09.5 Azgalor attacks. Methos parries.
24:11.1 Tauren Warrior attacks. Azgalor parries.
24:12.0 Azgalor attacks. Methos parries.
24:12.9 Methos crits Azgalor for 421
24:14.2 Azgalor hits Methos for 7176 (691 blocked)
24:15.0 Tauren Warrior attacks. Azgalor parries.
24:15.3 Tauren Warrior attacks. Azgalor parries.
24:15.7 Azgalor hits Methos for 10247 (561 blocked)
24:15.9 Horde Grunt's Strike was parried by Azgalor.
24:16.2 Horde Peon attacks. Azgalor parries.
24:16.2 Azgalor hits Methos for 9973
24:17.1 Methos dies.


Now, for what that translates to:

1st strike: 24:03.7 *
2nd strike: 2.4 seconds later
3rd strike: 1.1 seconds later *
4th strike: 2.3 seconds later
5th strike: 2.5 seconds later *
6th strike: 2.2 seconds later
7th strike: 1.5 seconds later *
8th strike: 0.5 seconds later *

Attacks with an asterisk were immediately following Azgalor parrying an attack. On all strikes it would appear as if Az is getting a pretty significant boost in attack speed...
I want emphasize the time between the 7th and 8th strike where there were Azgalor parried twice and they combined to reduce his attack time to .5 seconds, both attacks around 10k damage, which amounted to 20k damage in .5 seconds.

Now, all this information is important in three ways. First and foremost, parries are bad. We knew this kinda, but I don't think we really had such strong evidence of it until now. If anyone but the tank is attacking the front side of a mob or boss in a raid, they are so wrong it hurts... literally. Even a single parry can cut off up to ½ of the time of an attack, which can be ridiculously deadly if enough attacks are getting parried. To all raid tanks, you need to make it absolutely clear that any non-tank melee not looking at monster ass is wrong.

Second off, in a situation where mobs have 2.5 attack speed or close to it, the potential for a parry is deadly to a warrior. With a single parry half of the attack speed can go away, which could mean 3 or 4 attacks in a 5 second period. If they get unlucky and don't get missed, dodge, or parry, it's "Hello Mr. crushing blow." But that will never happen to paladins. Why? We all know why. 8 blocks in 10 seconds. If the boss is doing more than 8 attacks in 10 seconds and it's from parries, our last concern is crushing blows. We're probably dead from normal damage. But under normal circumstances this won't be a death sentence for us and works to our advantage in that we can keep control of a bad situation.

Final point: Weapon Expertise. For the longest time many of us (myself included) have decried it as a useless talent, and a waste of space. We've said that it does nothing more than increase our chance to hit. But we were wrong. It lowers misses, blocks, dodges and parries. In fact we are the only tanking class that has a talent that will increase our weapon skill in our tanking tree. Yes, it's true that warriors have Weapon Mastery, but that's in their Arms tree, and it's on the 6th tier. How many guilds want a tank with 27 points in their arms tree (leaving only 34 points for the prot tree) just for a measly 4 point increase in weapon skill? We are the only ones with the innate ability to increase our weapon skill, thus decrease chance for parries.

Again, Blizzard had foresight that we didn't. They have been and (I am convinced) they will continue to mold us into the premier melee mob tanks. We may not be there, but we are on the path to our destination and destiny.
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Postby Aergis » Thu Jul 05, 2007 8:05 pm

Very true, although I think I tested this with weapon expertise and the number of parries was not lowered, but dodge and miss were by alot. I'll see if I can digup the screenshots of pre-WE and post on the same mobs.

Also, off topic, but why is his block value so dramatically shifting around?

(867 blocked)
(997 blocked)
(691 blocked)
(561 blocked)

That range seems really odd to me...
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Postby Alixander » Thu Jul 05, 2007 8:12 pm

Aergis wrote:Very true, although I think I tested this with weapon expertise and the number of parries was not lowered, but dodge and miss were by alot. I'll see if I can digup the screenshots of pre-WE and post on the same mobs.
I'll await this patiently. :)

Aergis wrote:Also, off topic, but why is his block value so dramatically shifting around?

(867 blocked)
(997 blocked)
(691 blocked)
(561 blocked)

That range seems really odd to me...
I didn't really notice that. >.> I'll check. Very good question.
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Postby Myotis » Thu Jul 05, 2007 8:15 pm

Aergis wrote:Also, off topic, but why is his block value so dramatically shifting around?


Well for one, there is his Glyph of Deflection but it does not explain why he went from 867 to 997 and then from 691 to 561. Perhaps he either had a temporary strength buff or debuff. Though Azgalor does not seem to have that kind of debuff... Maybe an add ?
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Postby Alixander » Thu Jul 05, 2007 8:30 pm

Actually, what I think it was the 2 piece bonus of the Destroyer set combined with Shield Mastery.

His profile is here: http://armory.worldofwarcraft.com/chara ... r&n=Methos

Note the helm (if it's still there). It gives 100 block value for the next attack after a Shield Block. Combine that with the 30% increase from Shield Mastery explains where they mysterious 130 was coming from.

EDIT: Also, I stand corrected. I quoted this from a friend's guild's forums thinking it was them. Need to quit reading so fast.
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Postby Chevalier » Thu Jul 05, 2007 9:36 pm

Did a two sample t-test (used levene's test and was able to assume equal variances) with null hypothesis that the two were equal against the alternate hypothesis that the parried strikes took less time then the normal strikes and got a p-value of .066, meaning there's a 6.6% chance that this data could have happened randomly. Up to you whether that is enough evidence or not. :)
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Postby Alixander » Thu Jul 05, 2007 9:47 pm

Chevalier wrote:Did a two sample t-test (used levene's test and was able to assume equal variances) with null hypothesis that the two were equal against the alternate hypothesis that the parried strikes took less time then the normal strikes and got a p-value of .066, meaning there's a 6.6% chance that this data could have happened randomly. Up to you whether that is enough evidence or not. :)
Layman's terms, please. :?
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Postby Chevalier » Thu Jul 05, 2007 9:55 pm

You need more data, imo.
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Postby Myotis » Thu Jul 05, 2007 10:15 pm

On a totally unrelated note :

Heres what a paladin would look like with Methos's gear. Replace the Destroyer helm with the Crystalforge helm, the Brutalizer with the Tempest of Chaos.

Methos
15097 hp
16254 armor
527 defense
24.60 dodge
22.18 parry
25.23 block

Paladin X
13480 hp
16117 armor
520 defense
22.53 dodge
18.66 parry
24.17 block

The lack of dodge, parry and block comes from the Helm, the Weapon and the Gun. The gap in hp... the base gap + the gun. Block value is about the same for both.

Now if you replace every gems with Solid Star of Elune, ignoring the socket bonuses. Replace both trinkets with two Darkmoon cards ( 51 stam each ) All the while remaining uncrushable, Mr.X becomes:

Paladin X2
15207 hp
16117 armor
493 defense
21.38 dodge
16.54 parry
21.10 block

If we want to keep up in the hit points department, we have to badly lower our avoidances. However, if something was to prevent us from tanking it would have to be the warriors's unique abilities VS ours. While Paladin X2 might have less avoidance, I do think that would not prevent him from tanking as well as a warrior.

Note: My calculations are probably wrong somewhere, though I don't think the numbers would change significantly.
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Postby Alixander » Thu Jul 05, 2007 10:36 pm

Chevalier wrote:You need more data, imo.
If the data needed is to determine whether or not parrying reduces the attack speed of the next incoming swing, this is a known fact (hence why parry rating costs more than any other type of avoidance).

From WoWWiki post of Formula Mechanics for Parrying:
Parry Functionality
Swing Timer

When a player Parries, their next normal melee swing becomes a counter-attack sped up by as much as 50%. There does not appear to be a discernible pattern which determines the amount of swing-time reduction a player receives, and it may indeed be possible for the attack to be sped up even faster depending on the circumstance.

It was previously posted that a Parry reduced swing-time by a flat amount of 40% and could not reduce it to less than 20%. Combat log parsing (taking server latency into account) shows this does not appear to be the case.

Here is an example combat log using a 3.7sec speed weapon:

13:53:22.312 You hit Player for 224.
13:53:23.641 Player attacks. You parry.
13:53:24.533 You hit Player for 228.
13:53:24.752 Player attacks. You parry.
13:53:25.660 Player attacks. You parry.
13:53:26.395 You crit Player for 451.
13:53:26.739 Player attacks. You parry.
13:53:27.662 Player attacks. You parry.
13:53:28.413 You hit Player for 222.
13:53:28.773 Player misses you.
13:53:29.790 Player attacks. You dodge.
13:53:30.666 Player attacks. You parry.
13:53:31.605 You hit Player for 215.

The above shows a timer reduction range between 14% and 50% and does not abide by the 40/20 rule. With more extensive combat log parsing, timer reductions do not appear to line up to set numbers but instead cover the entire range. It appears based on server delay and the time the Parry occurs -- in many cases, it appears the counter-attack occurs about 1 second after the Parry (though this does not always hold true, either).

Due to swing timer reductions, Parry receives it's greatest benefit from slower weapons where the net return from a Parry will be greater.
A larger range of attacks could be shown, but the results will still be the same. Now, if I misunderstood what you were saying, and you weren't questioning if parry actually speeds up the individual attacks, would you elaborate on what you mean?
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Postby Myotis » Thu Jul 05, 2007 10:50 pm

Well according to this blue post, http://blue.cardplace.com/newcache/en/166546791.htm

1 weapon skill gives the following:

+0.2% hit
+0.2% crit
-0.1% chance to be dodged
-0.6% chance to be parried

Weapon expertise could indeed be quite usefull... Now if only it was a 2 point talent.
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Postby Alixander » Thu Jul 05, 2007 11:23 pm

Myotis wrote:Well according to this blue post, http://blue.cardplace.com/newcache/en/166546791.htm

1 weapon skill gives the following:

+0.2% hit
+0.2% crit
-0.1% chance to be dodged
-0.6% chance to be parried

Weapon expertise could indeed be quite usefull... Now if only it was a 2 point talent.
Unfortunately that bit about parry is the biggest question. Assuming it's correct, yes it is. But some basic testing shown in the EJ thread mentioned on the other Weapon Ex thread made it quite questionable. One possibility is that the blue guy made a typo and it's actually -0.06% (which when you think about it makes a lot more sense compared to the dodge). It's also possible that certain things are not being taken into account and that the blue post is correct. Note: My original post was before I was reminded about the EJ thread.

Even if Weapon Skill is worthless as many of us believe, we still come out on top vs. melee mobs because parries do increase the swing speed of the forthcoming attack, which means our increased amount of charges in Holy Shield comes into play again, givings us a distinct advantage.
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Postby Candiru » Fri Jul 06, 2007 2:50 am

TBH if you are that worried about being parried just turn off auto-attack and use judgement/consecration/holy shield.

No parries! and you have only lost 25% ish threat.
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Postby Chevalier » Fri Jul 06, 2007 4:49 am

I thought the point of this post was to present evidence that the enemy parrying attacks was similar in function to a player parrying attacks...so yes thats what I was questioning, using statistics instead of just looking at it...and it holds up for the most part, except you could use more data...im confused, what is the point of presenting this data if you claim it is a known fact?

We're back where we started, so how much parry does weapon expertise really give? Now that would be some juicy info :)
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Postby Mortehl » Fri Jul 06, 2007 5:27 am

People wonder why I dropped 3 points in precision for weapon expertise. Heh.
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