4.3 Item Enhancement Guide

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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Digren » Tue Jan 04, 2011 11:21 am

I'm looking more into it in terms of a baseline stamina for a given stage, the going mastery above that. So far that works out to be:

around 115k as a stage one (new 85) tank
around 130k as a stage two (ready for heroics) tank
around 150k? as a stage three (ready to raid) tank

Again these aren't mathematically justified yet, but if other tanks can survive heroics with 130k health and all their gear reforged into near-useless hit and expertise, then I can certainly survive with 130k health and all my gear reforged / partially gemmed into mastery, and healers will love me more.

Anyway that's the strategy I'm using for now, because quantifying this (especially in the presence of a healer - and with WoG I'm a healer - is still very complicated).
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Vigilant » Thu Jan 27, 2011 12:18 pm

My question is certainly a few steps down the intelligence ladder from the preceding comments, but I spend a lot of time on TankSpot, where 90% of the gemming advice tends to go as follows:

blue: mastery/stam
yellow: mastery
red: parry/mastery
prismatic: mastery

As opposed to this guide's advice, which if I understand it correctly can be summed up as:

blue: mastery/stam
yellow: mastery/stam
red: parry/stam
prismatic: mastery/stam

I'm currently hovering around 150k, at right around average ilevel 346, and gemming and enchanting following this guide's advice. I am all for being more "dense", i.e. less stam. w/ more mitigation via mastery, but I have understood what I have read on this site to say that the tradeoff in going from gemming strategy #2 above, to gemming strategy #1 above is not worth it. In short, one looses way more stam. than is justified by the return in avoidance and mitigation. Is this very rudimentary understanding correct? I get the idea that the proponents of gemming strategy #1 may, by and large, be warriors?
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby yappo » Thu Jan 27, 2011 3:35 pm

Vigilant wrote:
I'm currently hovering around 150k, at right around average ilevel 346, and gemming and enchanting following this guide's advice. I am all for being more "dense", i.e. less stam. w/ more mitigation via mastery, but I have understood what I have read on this site to say that the tradeoff in going from gemming strategy #2 above, to gemming strategy #1 above is not worth it. In short, one looses way more stam. than is justified by the return in avoidance and mitigation. Is this very rudimentary understanding correct? I get the idea that the proponents of gemming strategy #1 may, by and large, be warriors?


Depends on what is trying to smash your face in. For running heroics (and Baradin Hold counts as a weekly, very easy, hc), go #1 all the way.

I'm reading conflicting experiences concerning raid-content. Less so from those running hard-modes where stuff REALLY want to smash you head in (give me my stamina before that boss chews my face off again). I'm getting a mild impression that raid-content on farm (even though the guild may still be progressing further into the instance) have seen tanks geared to the extent that they, once again, move away from stamina to CTC. I'm unclear if this kind of gearing is used for progression content though.

Keep in mind, though, that those tanks are NOT walking around in average ilevel 346 gear any longer.
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Vigilant » Thu Jan 27, 2011 10:15 pm

yappo wrote:Depends on what is trying to smash your face in. For running heroics (and Baradin Hold counts as a weekly, very easy, hc), go #1 all the way.

I'm reading conflicting experiences concerning raid-content. Less so from those running hard-modes where stuff REALLY want to smash you head in (give me my stamina before that boss chews my face off again). I'm getting a mild impression that raid-content on farm (even though the guild may still be progressing further into the instance) have seen tanks geared to the extent that they, once again, move away from stamina to CTC. I'm unclear if this kind of gearing is used for progression content though.

Keep in mind, though, that those tanks are NOT walking around in average ilevel 346 gear any longer.


Yappo,

Thanks for your response. I came up when ICC was already on farm, and tank gearing, gemming, and enchanting could be summarized as, "Stack stam, all the armor you can find, and more stam." All conversations concerning the validity of using avoidance sets in raid content in 3.3 were quickly shot down. One optimal strategy was codified, and in that certainty I rested peacefully, being confident that what I did was optimal.

I'm a little less certain these days. I've followed Digren's Gear Guide, and this, his Item Enhancement Guide, for 4.0.x , much as I did during 3.3.x, however debated variants are much more common, and all things seem less certain. I definitely fall into the category of the guy who's face is going to be getting smashed in by heroic 5-man bosses 95% of the time, with the occasional PuG raid boss as I happen across a group.

That being said, getting away from Digren's "balanced" (mastery/stam, parry/stam) strategy towards a more mastery-centric strategy kind of scares me, and I may go do some digging around to see what the maths say about x stamina being a good trade off for y mastery when z of your damage intake is physical mitigable damage. Then I'll see how much stam I would lose and mastery I would gain if I started gemming mastery/stam, mastery, and parry/mastery in blue, yellow, and red respectively, and if it is indeed a mathematically proper trade off.

I will definitely never be a high end raid tank (my 1GB freaking integrated graphics card MacBook sees to that), but I aim to be the very best tank I can be in any group I step into.

Thanks again.
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby yappo » Fri Jan 28, 2011 12:14 am

Vigilant wrote:
That being said, getting away from Digren's "balanced" (mastery/stam, parry/stam) strategy towards a more mastery-centric strategy kind of scares me, and I may go do some digging around to see what the maths say about x stamina being a good trade off for y mastery when z of your damage intake is physical mitigable damage. Then I'll see how much stam I would lose and mastery I would gain if I started gemming mastery/stam, mastery, and parry/mastery in blue, yellow, and red respectively, and if it is indeed a mathematically proper trade off.


I'm not raiding neither, and won't be until raiding pugs start to form on our low-pop server.

In my average 353 gear I'm sporting all of 139k unbuffed health, so you can guess how I gem. I've pretty much stopped marking anything up. Just rush in and bomb away like WotLK days. My health is NOT an issue.
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Digren » Fri Jan 28, 2011 10:30 am

There are two questions here.

If you go for effective health, you would probably prefer mastery over avoidance, and combat table coverage over damage reduction. Surprisingly, almost no one who looks at the math prefers to sacrifice avoidance for CTC. People might run the macro for CTC and make poor decisions based on that limited bit of information, but you look at total damage taken almost everyone prefers to gear for less.

For effective health, though, you would prefer stamina over mastery. After all mastery isn't even partially EH until we can block cap. This could mean pure sta in blue gem slots, etc.

But... with Cata things have changed. I no longer feel like I'm going to die at any given time. My inherent stamina bulk has given me a level of durability without having to stack stamina in every nook and cranny. And I have a full bank of hotkeys dedicated to keeping me alive, which I am free to use regularly and frequently. I feel like I have more inherent and on-demand EH (which I do), and so I can afford to aim for less through gear.

Hence, I changed the recommendations from pure sta in blue slots, etc., to use combo gems everywhere.

Should I go a step further and suggest pure mastery? I think for someone who is working on farm content, yes. Farm content could favor mastery over stamina in all cases. However, I don't usually recommend for farm content. Heck, if you can survive and hold aggro, holy gear works fine for farm content. I think, though, that pushing progression content still warrants a nod to stamina, and thus my recommendations reflect a balanced approach.
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby yappo » Sat Jan 29, 2011 6:52 am

Digren wrote:Should I go a step further and suggest pure mastery? I think for someone who is working on farm content, yes. Farm content could favor mastery over stamina in all cases. However, I don't usually recommend for farm content. Heck, if you can survive and hold aggro, holy gear works fine for farm content. I think, though, that pushing progression content still warrants a nod to stamina, and thus my recommendations reflect a balanced approach.


Well, is farming the result of gear or learned execution? Say you have a guild with 6/12 on farm since three weeks. They should be pretty decently geared by now. Progression is, I assume, more a matter of poor execution than a lack of gear (or they'd be wiping on heroics mode by now).

A tank in average 355 gear would still be progressing in normal mode raids, but will that tank have more use for stamina than CTC?
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Fivelives » Sun Feb 06, 2011 5:40 am

I'm curious about the head enchants. Wouldn't the 35 mastery on the Wildhammer/Dragonmaw arcanum be better for survivability than the 35 dodge rating on the Earthen Ring arcanum, thanks to diminishing returns? 90 stamina is a good chunk, but unless it pushes us over the "one more hit" breakpoint, wouldn't we get a better benefit from the mastery?
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby econ21 » Mon Feb 07, 2011 7:48 am

I think head enchants would be an example of where Digren's old wotlk principle of efficient stamina trade-offs would be useful. The mastery head enchant would give you (a little) more melee damage reduction and particularly CTC, but the cost in stamina would be much higher than almost any other such trade off we make. I suspect it would only be for people who valued MDR/CTC extremely highly relative to stamina (e.g. gemmed pure mastery across the board, used only mastery trinkets etc).
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby yappo » Mon Feb 07, 2011 7:58 am

econ21 wrote:I think head enchants would be an example of where Digren's old wotlk principle of efficient stamina trade-offs would be useful. The mastery head enchant would give you (a little) more melee damage reduction and particularly CTC, but the cost in stamina would be much higher than almost any other such trade off we make. I suspect it would only be for people who valued MDR/CTC extremely highly relative to stamina (e.g. gemmed pure mastery across the board, used only mastery trinkets etc).


While I'm (almost) one of those, give me my stamina head-chant will ye? Sure, I'll do something funny in the future if it brings me above 102.4, but, well, funny is only that :D
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Digren » Mon Feb 07, 2011 9:51 am

I think those ratios will be coming back, though this time I'll probably call them mastery stacking ratios instead of stamina stacking, and it will be stamina/mastery instead of the old avoidance/stamina.

It's looking like that will be necessary so that people can figure out when they need to dip back into stamina to bulk up in preparation for tackling progression content, and when they need to take mastery and smooth out once geared for the content.
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby yappo » Mon Feb 07, 2011 10:02 am

Digren wrote:I think those ratios will be coming back, though this time I'll probably call them mastery stacking ratios instead of stamina stacking, and it will be stamina/mastery instead of the old avoidance/stamina.

It's looking like that will be necessary so that people can figure out when they need to dip back into stamina to bulk up in preparation for tackling progression content, and when they need to take mastery and smooth out once geared for the content.


While we're far from there. Hypothetically T13 fights could two-shot a tank taking two unblocked hits in an environment where it's perfectly possible to reach 102.4. In that case progression gearing would require mastery-stacking, but, sure, crystal-ball calculations have little worth until we know what will come.
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Digren » Mon Feb 07, 2011 3:43 pm

yappo wrote:
Digren wrote:I think those ratios will be coming back, though this time I'll probably call them mastery stacking ratios instead of stamina stacking, and it will be stamina/mastery instead of the old avoidance/stamina.

It's looking like that will be necessary so that people can figure out when they need to dip back into stamina to bulk up in preparation for tackling progression content, and when they need to take mastery and smooth out once geared for the content.


While we're far from there. Hypothetically T13 fights could two-shot a tank taking two unblocked hits in an environment where it's perfectly possible to reach 102.4. In that case progression gearing would require mastery-stacking, but, sure, crystal-ball calculations have little worth until we know what will come.

You say that, but someone like Theck is already taking all mastery options over stamina, except the head enchant trade off (which is a huge pile of stamina to give up for relatively little mastery). Thus, such a ratio already exists, and is being used, but it hasn't been quantified. That means people may be applying it inconsistently, something that I would want my guides to help correct.

By choosing combo mastery/sta gems in blue, yellow, and colorless slots, I've effectively chosen a ratio of about 1.5. (By choosing parry/sta over parry/mas for red slots with good bonuses, I've slightly tipped the ratio below 1.5.)

A lot of other people - Tankspot - big names here - are using pure mastery in yellow/colorless/poor bonus slots, mastery/sta in blue and parry/mas in red good bonus slots. Hence others have already picked a different ratio, and it's above 1.5. Where above? I don't know for sure. Is anyone using Enchant Chest - Greater Defense instead of Enchant Chest - Greater Stamina because the dodge option provides better combat table coverage? I sort of hope not, but someone out there probably thinks the CTC is better. That same person might by using combo sta/mas gems, and I can help them by pointing out this inconsistency.
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby theckhd » Mon Feb 07, 2011 11:13 pm

And to add another wrinkle to this discussion, take a look at some of the tanks in top guilds. They're all gemming very heavily for Stamina (sta in blue, mas/sta in yellow, parr/sta in red).

Paragon: http://eu.battle.net/wow/en/character/l ... l/advanced
vodka: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/character/a ... o/advanced
Blood Legion: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/character/i ... m/advanced
Adept: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/character/b ... o/advanced
Method: http://eu.battle.net/wow/en/character/x ... kie/simple
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Poclain » Wed Feb 09, 2011 5:30 am

Treckie even uses the Heavy Savage Armor Kit. Is having a bigger Health Pool so much more important in the high-end content?
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby lythac » Wed Feb 09, 2011 7:03 am

Poclain wrote:Treckie even uses the Heavy Savage Armor Kit. Is having a bigger Health Pool so much more important in the high-end content?


Seems it is not as important enough to use TBC's +18sta to shield over +40 Block. Haven't seen anyone go that far yet.
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Error_Demon » Wed Feb 09, 2011 10:38 am

Digren says, "With no defense gem, this list pretty much boils down to stamina and something, where something is 2% armor, 1% shield block value, or 2% reduced spell damage. For physical, blockable damage, 1% block value reduces incoming damage more than 2% armor once your avoidance+block is about 85%."

Avoidance + Block, it is just a Dodge + Parry + Block? Or something else is counted here too?
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Re: 4.0.3a Item Enhancement Guide

Postby KysenMurrin » Wed Feb 09, 2011 11:07 am

5% base miss chance is also counted.
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Re: 4.0.6 Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Fenris » Tue Feb 15, 2011 7:11 pm

* Professions
o Engineering Target Dummies are no longer able to taunt boss-level creatures.

From 15/2 hotfixes.

Guess this will kill the cardboard assassin,if i'm reading it right
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Re: 4.0.6 Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Gab » Wed Feb 16, 2011 7:18 am

Fenris wrote:
* Professions
o Engineering Target Dummies are no longer able to taunt boss-level creatures.

From 15/2 hotfixes.

Guess this will kill the cardboard assassin,if i'm reading it right


It sucks, but it doesn't necessarily "kill" the cardboard assassin. CA still works on Nef adds, Maloriak adds, and probably other boss "adds".
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Re: 4.0.6 Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Arothand » Wed Feb 23, 2011 6:28 pm

I would be interested in seeing some theory behind the choice of Stam/Mastery versus pure Mastery. I had been using the following gemming strategy:

Blue: +60 Stam
Yellow/Colorless: +20 Stam/+20 Mastery
Red (good bonus or meta): +20 Parry/+20 Stam
Red (otherwise): +20 Stam/+20 Mastery

But after asking for some advice regarding Cho'gall (namely the fact he was beating the snot out of me during my guild's attempt) on Wowhead (not the best place for advice, I know, and I would trust the advice gotten here much more than there) I was told go pure Mastery, not Stam/Mastery, and I regemmed accordingly replacing all my Stam/Mastery gems with +40 Mastery gems. I didn't see a large spike in Mastery (maybe a percent or two) nor a significant loss of health, but I'm wondering if I should go back to Stam/Mastery now that I've gotten some epic gear.
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Re: 4.0.6 Item Enhancement Guide

Postby theckhd » Mon Feb 28, 2011 6:10 am

Changing from a stam-heavy to a mastery-heavy gemming strategy (or vice versa) is unlikely to make a significant difference in your ability to kill bosses. The swings are just too small; you can at most trade ~10-20k health for ~5-10% block or so with gems and enchants. The best advice is to talk to your healers and see what they prefer; some would rather have the bigger buffer of extra hit points, others would rather have the extra mitigation. It has more to do with their play style and reaction time than it does with anything you do.


Digren: I'm not sure where else to put this, as I don't think it warrants its own thread, but I wanted to plug askmrrobot.com as a gear/enchant/reforge optimizer. I helped them fine-tune their stat weights for protection paladins a few weeks ago, and they now produce very reasonable gear sets. It might be worth mentioning them in the guide. If nothing else, their algorithm automatically takes care of diminishing returns, and will thus balance dodge/parry properly for you, saving the headache of doing it by hand.

The default stat weights favor a mastery-heavy gearing strategy, but changing the stamina weighting from 66 to 67+ will switch it to a stamina-favoring gear strategy.
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Re: 4.0.6 Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Forgrim » Mon Feb 28, 2011 6:33 am

I used Mr. Robot a couple weeks back, and noticed a heavy Stam favor for gems/enchants and didn't like it one bit. Today, I noticed it's favoring mastery gems, which is what i favor'd so I was happy.

Then i find out it was your doing Theck? You never cease to amaze me.
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Re: 4.0.6 Item Enhancement Guide

Postby Ezharon » Mon Feb 28, 2011 12:45 pm

theckhd wrote:Digren: I'm not sure where else to put this, as I don't think it warrants its own thread, but I wanted to plug askmrrobot.com as a gear/enchant/reforge optimizer. I helped them fine-tune their stat weights for protection paladins a few weeks ago, and they now produce very reasonable gear sets. It might be worth mentioning them in the guide. If nothing else, their algorithm automatically takes care of diminishing returns, and will thus balance dodge/parry properly for you, saving the headache of doing it by hand.

The default stat weights favor a mastery-heavy gearing strategy, but changing the stamina weighting from 66 to 67+ will switch it to a stamina-favoring gear strategy.

I had reforged parry to dodge on some of my gear and I found that Mr. Robot was telling me not to on a few pieces. I was surprised and at first I thought that it was better optimized when fully buffed (taking better care a diminishing returns that I've done manually).

But then I found that the unbuffed parry/dodge as shown by Mr. Robot weren't the same (and were higher) then my stat as shown in game on the character sheet. So the fully buffed optimized stats were wrong too.
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Re: 4.0.6 Item Enhancement Guide

Postby theckhd » Mon Feb 28, 2011 2:14 pm

You might want to post that on their forums Ezharon. The last time I checked my gear, it lined up almost exactly with what I had on the character sheet. I haven't checked it recently though (as in, in the last week).
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