Saturday, March 7, 2009

[Druid] Savage Defense on the PTR



Savage defense has finally made it to the PTR. I got to test it a little bit tonight. Nothing insane, but at least stuff that lets us do some basic theorycrafting about it.

It's learnable at the trainer. It requires no talent points.

It has no internal cooldown that I could find. It would proc on any crit, and it would proc after pretty much every swipe on large enough pulls.

It has a 10-second uptime (or until it's used).

SD procs after you already have an SD will refresh the timer, but will not stack. Or, basically, the new proc overwrites the old one. (This is important for later stuff)


And yeah, the buff icon looks unlike the actual skill icon, and looks like frenzied regeneration.

The graphic and animation is that you stand up and get a little reddish bubble in the middle of you. SD looks a lot like an enrage effect in that respect, and it's very easy to miss the bubble. The bubble is basically entirely contained inside of you. I think. In any case, it's not a big graphic, and you're not running around in a super simian sphere.
It does not proc on DoT effects when they crit.
It does proc on the application of DoTs, however - like the first attack of lacerate.
It does not proc on faerie fire.

It does appear to have similar issues to spell reflect, in that multiple attacks can be absorbed by one shield if they happen close enough to each other:
01:48'05.625 Feltest gains 3 Rage from Natural Reaction.
01:48'05.625 Feltest gains Savage Defense.
01:48'05.625 Feltest's Savage Defense is refreshed.
01:48'05.641 Feltest's Savage Defense is refreshed.
01:48'05.641 Feltest's Savage Defense is refreshed.
01:48'05.641 Feltest gains Reflection of Torment.
01:48'05.641 Feltest's Savage Defense is refreshed.
01:48'05.641 Feltest gains 3 Rage from Natural Reaction.
01:48'05.672 Demon Hunter Supplicant #79 attack was absorbed by Feltest. 01:48'05.672 Demon Hunter Supplicant #59 attack was absorbed by Feltest.

The big one for me: it is heavily affected by latency, as far as I can tell, and still has significant bugs. Not that that's a surprise, but keep them in mind. I'd often see a SD proc happen a second or so after actually critting a mob - even after the LotP proc that would trigger. In my testing above, I also came across parts where the log said I'd gain SD but the shield would not absorb anything. I think this is due to it breaking when facing significant amounts of mobs (I was pulling supplicants at BT as a test). Here's an example:

01:48'02.812 Feltest gains 3 Rage from Natural Reaction.
01:48'02.812 Feltest Swipe hits Demon Hunter Supplicant #56 for 911 Physical. (Critical)
01:48'02.812 Feltest Swipe hits Demon Hunter Supplicant #68 for 911 Physical. (Critical)
01:48'02.828 Feltest Swipe hits Demon Hunter Supplicant #60 for 442 Physical.
01:48'02.844 Feltest Swipe hits Netharel #2 for 443 Physical.
01:48'02.844 Feltest Swipe hits Demon Hunter Supplicant #59 for 911 Physical. (Critical)
01:48'02.844 Feltest Swipe hits Demon Hunter Supplicant #58 for 911 Physical. (Critical)
01:48'02.844 Feltest Swipe hits Demon Hunter Supplicant #69 for 442 Physical.
01:48'02.844 Feltest Swipe hits Demon Hunter Supplicant #66 for 442 Physical.
01:48'02.844 Feltest Swipe hits Demon Hunter Supplicant #70 for 443 Physical.
(at this point, I should receive a SD proc)
01:48'02.875 Demon Hunter Supplicant #70 melee swing hits Feltest for 72 Physical.
(and naturally I don't, and get hit anyway)
01:48'02.922 Demon Hunter Supplicant #79 attack was dodged by Feltest.
01:48'03.172 Demon Hunter Supplicant #66 attack was dodged by Feltest.
01:48'03.187 Netharel #2 attack was dodged by Feltest.
01:48'03.187 Netharel #2 attack was dodged by Feltest.
01:48'03.203 Demon Hunter Supplicant #68 died.
01:48'03.203 Demon Hunter Supplicant #60 died.
01:48'03.203 Demon Hunter Supplicant #58 died.
01:48'03.203 Feltest gains 3 Rage from Natural Reaction.
01:48'03.203 Feltest gains Savage Defense.
01:48'03.219 Feltest's Savage Defense is refreshed.
01:48'03.219 Feltest's Savage Defense is refreshed.
01:48'03.219 Feltest's Savage Defense is refreshed.
(now I gain the SD proc - and it's refreshed multiple times. Presumably because I got a total of 4 crits, and each crit separately can make an SD proc - and they all overwrite each other).
01:48'03.250 Demon Hunter Supplicant #55 attack was dodged by Feltest.
01:48'03.250 Demon Hunter Supplicant #55 attack misses Feltest.
01:48'03.578 Feltest melee swing hits Demon Hunter Supplicant #55 for 825 Physical.
01:48'03.578 Demon Hunter Supplicant #70 attack was dodged by Feltest.
01:48'03.609 Demon Hunter Supplicant #66 gains Evasion.
01:48'03.609 Feltest gains 5 Rage from Primal Fury.
01:48'03.625 Feltest gains 5 Rage from Primal Fury.
01:48'03.625 Feltest gains 5 Rage from Primal Fury.
01:48'03.625 Feltest gains 5 Rage from Primal Fury.
01:48'03.625 Feltest gains 3 Rage from Natural Reaction.
01:48'03.625 Feltest gains 3 Rage from Natural Reaction.
01:48'03.625 Feltest gains 3 Rage from Natural Reaction.
01:48'03.625 Feltest gains 3 Rage from Natural Reaction.
01:48'03.656 Demon Hunter Supplicant #79 melee swing hits Feltest for 81 Physical.
(this is where I should have used the shield. I did not).
01:48'03.656 Demon Hunter Supplicant #59 attack misses Feltest.
01:48'03.656 Demon Hunter Supplicant #69 attack misses Feltest.
01:48'03.875 Demon Hunter Supplicant #80 attack misses Feltest.

More testing is required, of course, but my suspicion is that the multiple 'refreshes' confuses the system and causes you to effectively lose your shield. I also think it's somewhat flawed that the shield happens so long (relatively speaking) after the actual event; it means that if you happen to crit in between the first crit and the shield proc, you will just overwrite the shield instead of having it used on any attacks in the meantime. Is that problematic in practice? Not exactly. But it makes it less effective than it should be.

The tooltip is interesting, in that it implies that the shield's absorption is not tied to your AP at the time you spawned it - only at the time that you get hit. Not sure why this would ever matter, but I plan on testing it at some point.

Things I'll be testing:
whether or not it does absorb 25% of your AP (only tested against weak mobs tonight)
whether a DoT tick or something else like it (reflective damage, for example) will remove the shield
If the absorption is based on AP at the time of proc or at the time of use
further testing to see if I can narrow down when you get a shield or not (the bug above)

Any requests for testing that you'd like to see? I'm limited in time and what gear I have, but I'll try my best to oblige.

45 comments:

Shamad said...

It would be interesting to see how it works on the patchwerk tank-test, how much it ends up actually mitigating over time on a single boss. O/c that's a "ideal" boss for it, anything that hits for smaller amounts and faster is more likely to not make full use of the shield and also you'll have SD up for a smaller percentage of hits.

So basicly, unless it's INSANELY good on the tank-test, it's going to be overall quite weak as every other scenario is less than ideal for it. And o/c as the damage scales upwards, SD loses out to the armor we lost.

Basicly still not a fan of this :/

Karthis said...

Not triggering on bleed crits is a bit of a let down. I guess Primal Gore won't be necessary in a tanking build after all.

My main interest is in coming up with a useful model of how important the offensive stats are for our mitigation with this shield... more from a boss tanking perspective than anything.

Peter said...

Thanks for the heads up. I just tried it myself and saw similar results: proccing with no CD, but not always absorbing damage. Seems pretty cool though, I love the idea of it. I hope they spruce up the graphic and icon a little more.

Phil Jackson said...

Let's hope these issues get addressed. I'm looking forward to having another stat to at least pay attention while gearing up. I'm already looking for other pieces that are high in AP for the off chance we want a "shield block" type gear set for a fight. While I don't think we'll need it, it can't hurt I guess. All this does make me happy to know that I have all the AP buffs in my 25 man raid :-)

Copey said...

The idea of making AP important for me is interesting for one reason: Food buffs. I spend about 3 hours a week fishing and doing daily cooking quests so I can provide fish feasts for my raids.

Yet, I don’t even use them myself, as I prefer the 40 agil/40 stam food buff from dragon fin. So, there is more time invested just for food buffs for me. If AP was a stat I wanted to stack, I’d be more than happy to save my self the time fishing the over fished dragon fin spawns and just sit down with my raid mates to a nice little fish feast.

Olvar said...

From the tooltip it was quite clear to me that it wouldn't proc on DoTs, since these don't really count as melee hits.

It's a shame that it doesn't work against spell damage. That way the current stamina nerf hits us even harder.

I really hope that the lag issues are fixed, otherwise the effectiveness of SD will be quite reduced, especially against big trash groups.

In other news:
I did some emergency tanking in Naxx25 yesterday. The second tank on Gluth kept dying (5 deaths in two tries!), so I repeatedly jumped in. I also jumped in on our first Thaddius try, as the tank on Stalagg died for some reason.
After the hateful prot pala died on Patchwerk died, resulting in a wipe, I was ordered to stay behind as a backup tank (after I told the raid leader that it doesn't make sense to tell a retri pala to step in, only because he used to be prot in other raids).
It's a real pain to have so many "real" tanks (ie. def warriors and prot palas), because I never get to tank anything unless there is an emergency.
At the moment one of the reasons might be that my computer is about 5 years old and I have around 3 FPS in heroic raids during combat. I guess I'll order a new computer this week. But if this keeps up even with a decent frame rate I'm going to be really pissed.
Obviously I'm good enough to tank heroics and I even outranked the other tanks in HP for the first time yesterday, but in raids it's always "real tanks first" - thanks a lot!

Icarus said...

"My main interest is in coming up with a useful model of how important the offensive stats are for our mitigation with this shield... more from a boss tanking perspective than anything."

this is what I am really curious about too. It would be fun to have a high stam set a high dodge set and a high "block" set which has lots of crit and ap. I also am really curious to see how this is against a single target/ Multi mobs it should be great due to all the crits from swipe... but Id love to see math on how effective it will be with a normal rotation.

in response to copey.. Unless I am mistaken 40agi will still be the best food to use and now will actually be even better since the sheild is based on CRIT as well as AP of which agi gives both on top of the other benefits of dodge.

Yakari said...

Hi,
I was curious about how Savage Defense was initially defined as part of this definition lack here.

As far as I remember, there was a condition for shield to keep up. You had not to give a single hit or shield fall off.

Maybe it's me that is getting confused about this point, but I didn't see anything about it. Is it still effective, or has this point been removed ?

PS: So sorry for my poor English.

Olvar said...

@Icarus:
Agi only provides AP for cats, not for bears. Thus the bear has only the benefit of the crit and dodge increase.

Andrew said...

@Olvar:
"From the tooltip it was quite clear to me that it wouldn't proc on DoTs, since these don't really count as melee hits."

We didn't have a tooltip at our disposal until this post.

Mekias said...

I assume Savage Defense works with cat form too. I don't see anything mentioning Bear Form exclusively.

Overall, it seems rather weak to me still. Hopefully they can figure all of this out before we become the worst tanks.

Phil Jackson said...

Kal quick question, does it proc off of critters? If it does, I know I'll be looking for critters before a pull for the extra shield.

Anonymous said...

Peter I hope you are happy with your stamina nerf now. You want it now you have it

Ackward said...

The first thing i did after reading this post was to download the PTR client and copy my feral tank (which also is my main).

In naxx10/25 I've been able to tank patchwerk even with the dps set. In my guild we are 2 feral tanks and the common agreement is that we are better tanking (and generating aggro) than anything else (even when the warriors have much better equipment... maybe it's just the people behind them, I don't know ).

In a mixed naxx25 dps/tank set with 35k hp selfbuffed (42k raid buffed) and 35k ar (38k ar in raid), in the ptr my druid has 32k hp (-2.5k hp) and only 28k ar (almost 7k armor loss).

Anyway in bear form (selfbuffed) I've 5k ap (6.2k in raid). That's a shield absorbing just 1.5k hp, which I think a bit low, because even if I could manage to increase the ap to the 7Ks or 8Ks, the shield would just absorb 2k hp.

I've already told in my guild that for Ulduar I'm going as dps, not only because more than 90% of dps items are going to be valid for tanking but also because there're fewer tanks so it's easier to roll for tank items as off.

Maybe it's time to reconsider jewelery and trinkets with ar again... 25% doesn't seem to scale too much to me.

Mitch said...

"25% doesn't seem to scale too much to me." - Ackward

I agree, it really doesn't. Besides for weapons you aren't seeing huge AP upgrades so it only accounts to a few extra damage points per upgrade. I haven't really been a fan of tanking in general with the expansion and thankfully I was used for my DPS (except recently I've been OTing for farming purposes, whatev, and for stam tanking).

With the boost to kitty dps and complexity I've had *a lot* more fun pewpewing rather than spamming my maul/swipe buttons >:-|

Kalon said...

Hey all -

Shamad, it ends up mitigating a fairly small amount. This isn't that surprising. Others did some testing (notably Fasc on the main forums) and it does about what you'd expect; 50%-60% of the overall attacks were mitigated, doesn't reduce a ton on really heavy hits.

It's pretty nice on heroics though.

Karthis, that's my goal as well. And it's...difficult, to say the least. The most promising stuff I've seen is on EJ, where they simply use a simulator and run it a lot of times, and see what effect stats have on overall damage. The rough findings have AP valued at anywhere from 20 AP=1 agi to 75 AP = 1 agi depending on how hard the mobs hit (20 AP is weaker, 75 stronger). I suspect that it'll scale well with multiple mobs, so that against multiple mobs you'll get closer to about 10 AP to 1 agi. But I also expect it to be quite poor. Crit rating barely scales at all in this setting.

Peter and Phil - that's my big concern. I was fine with SD and fine with the armor nerf, and I'll deal with the stam nerf. But I don't want a new ability that doesn't work some of the time. That's very, very frustrating.

Copey - see above. Also, 40 strength is still going to be better than 80 AP food, but yeah - 40 agi is where it's at. 1% dodge pre-DR is still far better than 20 absorption of attacks 25% of the time.

Olvar - grats on being the hero bear. Quite frankly, if I were a raid leader I'd never let a druid tank right now if it were a choice between them and another tank and I wanted to bring both them and a tank, and assuming they were reasonably skilled. Paladin and warrior DPS is so poor when not tanking, and druids simply don't bring anything to the table.

Yakari - there's no condition to keep the shield up. It goes up on a crit (barring bugs) and goes down on being hit. It's that simple.

Mekias - savage defense does not work with cat in any way. It's strictly bear-only.

Phil2 - I'll try that tonight, but I would presume so. Critters will provide rage and shields! Poor rats.

Ackward and Mitch - Armor pen appears to be very, very good for cats now. Partially this is because of the nerf to boss armor. Partially this is because sunder armor is being changed to a percentage reduction. Partially it's the extra 25%. All of that adds up to a fairly significant boost to overall damage. I've seen it as the second best stat behind agi to stack for cats. Heck, I've seen it as the best stat. Don't discount it yet.

Peter said...

re stamina nerf to anon: its more the idea of nerfs that ppl hate, rather than the actual change itself. Given that noone I know has raided in the PTR with the reduced stamina + SD, and been able to post to Blizzard: hey, bears fail as tanks now, plz buff our stamina... its all pure whinage. Yes, I'm very happy, because I was overpowered with my stamina, and I was a better choice for progression than warriors & pallies. When we learned Maly, they would get 1-shot, whereas I survived. No doubt the healers were at fault or learning, but thats the power of effective health for you.

Kal, why would you not bring bears to a raid? What if your bear was your number 1 tank and GM/officer :P ? You gonna just sit toons because of perceived changes to stats in ptr, or greater OT/dps utility? According to some restos, they should all be sat too. Oh and dont forget about DKs: tanking is now impossible as a DK, and no fun either.

Seriously, surely keeping your players happy is more important than an extra bit of dps. Duel specs are just around the corner: now there's no reason prot warriors cant go dps either. Share the OT love, thats what I say. If I was in a guild where I was "sat" because of imagined inadequacies, I'd move guilds.

Shamad said...

Suppose that's in line with what I expected, basicly SD is just something for making us better casual tanks, and serves as an excuse to nerf us for progression tanking. Druids getting tankingspots in progressionraids will depend fully on how the DK nerfs pan out, but I'd guess at most we're looking at getting to tank any hard/slow physical fight to begin with, but being replaced by DK's as ulduar gear means parry+dodge allows them to bypass us in avoidance again by a country mile.

Shamad said...

Peter;
Your stance is clearly that of a casual raider. Being myself in a guild where we actively want to work towards being a competitive progression guild(ranked 3rd on one of the most competitive servers in the EU), we've been discussing benching bear tanks for a while now. I would never advocate that in a casual guild, but for guilds that want to do hard modes and such, I'd say think long and hard before you use a bear tank for any particular encounter.

On the other hand, I see no reason at this time to now let feral cats in the raid with a strong bear offspec. But they would not be my first or second choice for OT, most likely only going bear for fights requiring more than 3 tanks.

ps. Resto Druids are not quite so broken as some think, although manaregen will need some heavy fixing as it looks right now, guildm8 has said his manaregen is actually below old T5 levels on the PTR...

Shamad said...

*no reason not to let feral cats in the raid

Pesky typo :/

Kalon said...

Peter, if they're the #1 tank and the GM, that's great. That's probably why they'd come. But if I were that GM, I'd plan on working on my DPS spec and making sure the other tanks got prio on any shared loot.

Like I said, if it's a choice between a druid tanking and a warrior/paladin/DK tanking, I'll likely pick the other ones and bring the feral as DPS. They're more likely to have a better set of gear that they can use for DPS at this point, they're getting buffed for it and there's nothing that they bring as tanks that's all that unique compared to a warrior or paladin.

Peter said...

Just so you know Shamad - since you're patronizing me anyway... I'm not a casual guild, I'm in a very hardcore guild, and I took a quick look at your own... hahaha I'd say we beat you, judging by achievements, and dates obtained.

This proves your can be a highly ranked guild and still use unfair, anti-social ideas about how you run your guild (imo of course) Justifying those descisions with concepts of "hardcore progression" means nothing and proves nothing, when other guilds with entirely different management policies are doing better than you. Dont assume you speak for everyone because you do not. It is after all a video game, and for many of us, myself included, hard modes are ridiculously easy. Why? Because it's a video game. I think you take too much of the wrong sort of pride in your video game achievements.

Kalon said...

Shamad, he's got a point. Please don't assume something about someone just because of their reasoning. Plenty of successful progression-minded people have not min-maxxed insanely to get things down.

And Peter - I agree, I'd totally bring ferals to OT. They're great at that role right now, better than any other class. I guess it bothers me that I see myself falling into one of two roles: either I tank on some gimmick fight because I have huge health that no other tank can match, or I DPS because the other tanks suck at it. That's disappointing to me personally. But I'm in a pretty shitty mood about WoW right now anyway, so I should likely stick to more math-oriented things.

Shamad said...

Sorry if I made an incorrect assumption about you then Peter, and I'm not saying that on current content ferals are not good, but that for ulduar hard modes I don't personally see ferals as being a optimal choice for most situations.

I'll also agree that the only hard modes that really count at this time are sarth3d on 25man and 10man. You may argue Immortal is also important but it's quite a bit about RNG too.

As far as my own guild goes, I expect us to be a lot faster in Ulduar, we had about a weeks loss of raiding time since key people were away for the first week of WotLK, so they got going leveling a good bit later than others and also meant we started 25mans about a week late. For Ulduar we've strengthened our ranks and ironed out the kinks we've had(after all, we were formed for WotLK, so this has still been a bit of an trial-run), and I personally think we're looking very strong for the next content patch.

Anonymous said...

"Absorbs physical damage equal to..."

I thought this was going to be of assistance against casters. I guess not if it's physical only.

Yakari said...

Thanks for your answer Kalon.

Mekias said...

Yeah, not having this shield work against magic is like a kick in the nuts. We were already the worst against casters and with the stam nerf, it's now not even close. But I could always deal with this deficiency if it could mean some benefit against melee. But, of course, we're being nerfed there too. This shield isn't going to make up for 6-7k armor.

Don't get me wrong, our health and armor were too high. Our scaling on those two were going to cause problems in the future. But the reason why we had those 2 things was due to our lack of avoidance, poor magic defense, and no shield block. We get a simulated shield in 3.1 but still have poor avoidance and magic protection.

I've pretty much made the decision to be a cat in the future. There's no way I would take a bear as MT for a hard-mode Ulduar run. The healers could probably keep him up by why tax them more than necessary.

Anonymous said...

Kalon is sad to see you agree with Peter. For us to scale the high stamina we need to sacrifice a lot of dodge, AP and Crt. So you guys saying SD is better or equal to parry and block? A bubble that will only work if you crit. a bubble that is useless if you are tanking multiple mobs also a bubble that is useless for PVP. I am not saying druids are not going to be able to tank with the stamina and armor nerf but why you are going to bring a druid to tank on a progression raid when the other 3 classes have better cooldowns and better avoidance? High armor and high HP was a druid tank characteristic. Be honest with your self Peter when yo are n a hardcore progression guild what you bring to the raid is the best of the best since you want to progress and with this nerf druids are the last option for tanking right now on a progression raid. And right now SD is not even working properly.

Mitch said...

Hey Kalon, I think Ackward was talking about the 25% scaling of Savage Defense. It just doesn't seem like it will scale well. We may get another 30 AP on an item, but that only possibly reduces damage by 7.5 on an attack. And for a fight light tanking Sarth with 3D? I don't plan on doing it after the patch. 10% less stam, the bubble doing absolutely nothing for me (because it doesn't work for the breaths and I stop meleeing so I don't get parry gibbed anyhow), and a boatload less armor? Screw that.

My only point is I don't care where bears are headed at the moment and I hate the way they've marginalized tanking in general. That's why I'm happy I'm used more for DPS because I find it more fun and challenging anyhow.

Also, thanks for the tips, now Alliance first 'of the Nightfall' on my server =D

Taran said...

I understand (somewhat) why they made these changes, but they're going to be painful. I'm in a very small, casual guild and I'm one of two tanks. Period. That's all we got - me and a protadin.

We've mastered some of the smaller raids (OS and VoA, of course, but we have done OS with any drakes up yet) and are working are way through Naxx (just about halfway, DPS is coming along slowly). This is going to be a tough blow to our progression since we don't even have the option to sub in a warrior to take over the tanking duties.

Now that I'm done whining, a quick question: it seems as if agility/stamina is still the way to go if we're stacking stats. However, do these changes alter the marginal importance of hit rating or expertise? Is there a minimum level of either of those stats I should be aiming for, and do these new abilities change that at all? Thanks for the posts, Kalon.

Anonymous said...

The problem is SD as Kalon and others have seen in testing is that it’s subject to latency. It seems that there is simply too much going on to effectively implement SD. The server code needs to detect whether a Crit occurred. Then it needs to calculate the amount of the shied and proc it to absorb that next attack. Given the speed at which most raid bosses hit, I don’t see how the server can keep up with all the incoming hits and outgoing crits, to keep the shield working as intended. The only way I see it working right now is to allow it to stack, effectively leaving it up mostly all the time. This problem is directly related to trying to make a tanking spec fit into DPS gear. It’s a square peg in a round hole that will never really fit right no matter what changes they make. I’m the raid leader of my guild, and as Kalon has said I see no reason to bring a Bear tank to any raid, they simply bring more raid viability as cat DPS. It’s a lot easier to innervate and battle res when there isn’t a boss smacking on you. I’m going to ask my ferals’ to put 3 points in survival of the fittest just incase there is some add trash on a boss fight I need them to OT, and have them put the rest of their talent points in cat.

Emi said...

All your ferals should have 3 points in SoF wether they are bear or cats.

ciopo said...

it's not on savage defense itself, but i HAVE to point it out, since i don't know how otherwise contact you.

crushing blow aren't tied to defense skill
i was too thinking the level+4 actually means weapon skill of 20points above of our defense skill.
this is not the case, i have hard proof.
i got crushed with my level 77 death knight alt tank from a level 81 bosses( hall of lightning, first bosses), this with 530defense skill.

this is most likely a GOOD thing, since thorim will NOT have a miss/dodge/crush attack pattern on us under unbalancing strike

Kalon said...

Anon -

So you guys saying SD is better or equal to parry and block? A bubble that will only work if you crit. a bubble that is useless if you are tanking multiple mobs also a bubble that is useless for PVP.

I don't think that SD is as good as block. It's certainly better than parry, given that druids have almost no defense and no parry currently, and the items with parry are pretty universally bad compared to the other gear even if they did get them. From what I've seen, SD is equivalent roughly to having about 25% block with 1500 block value. That makes it worse than paladins (who block significantly more) and warriors (who block significantly for more). But it's still better on multimob encounters than what we have now.

I am not saying druids are not going to be able to tank with the stamina and armor nerf but why you are going to bring a druid to tank on a progression raid when the other 3 classes have better cooldowns and better avoidance?

Presumably you'd bring them when you want higher armor (which bears still have) and higher HP.

Mitch - yeah, AP doesn't scale significantly even with the change to SD. It's still not that big a deal. It's just slightly less worthless than it was before.

Taran -

Now that I'm done whining, a quick question: it seems as if agility/stamina is still the way to go if we're stacking stats. However, do these changes alter the marginal importance of hit rating or expertise? Is there a minimum level of either of those stats I should be aiming for, and do these new abilities change that at all? Thanks for the posts, Kalon.


Hit and expertise will both increase slightly in value; each 1% hit/expertise will increase your relative value of crits by 1% * your crit rate. That's still not a lot, but at least it's something. Both hit and crit rate are better for overall mitigation than AP is, especially in the case of single-target tanking. I'll need to do some more simulation work to determine exactly how much this helps though, and what is exactly the most valuable.

Ciopo - crushing blows are tied directly to the difference between the weapon skill of the attacker and the BASE defense of the defender. Added defense does nothing for crushing blows; just base values that are based on level. And they've made it so that the difference is no longer 15 points, it's 20 - which coincides with a 4 level difference in most cases. You can also be crushed when someone reduces your base defense down significantly; Amanitar in OK will do so occasionally, and will crush you.

ciopo said...

.. isn't it strange, to say so?
if crushing is indeed tied to base defense skill, it should work both way, either if i have *increased* or *decreased* defense skill via gear/outside buff/debuff?.

I mean, it's either on the base or the modified value, if it's "lowest one between base and actual" feel.. awckard to say the least.

taking amanitar as example... given i had *not* checked extensively on it, but if crushing is indeed tied to defense skill, with an increased change per difference( ..2% each defense point, something along these line??)it would still be below crit in the attack table, -500defense skill equal to 20% crit, assuming about 40% avoidance, this would be 40% crush change more-or-less( IF it's correct that crush isn't fixed but the less the defense the higher the change),whinch is quite a noticeable amount

Peter said...

Surprised to see the argument still raging! All in good fun, I hope. I still dont see what the fuss is all about - "progresssion" guilds not taking druids. Lets just get our facts sorted; for progression guilds, the entirety of wrath has been a walk in the park. Hell, I'm not sure my health ever dropped below 30% - ever - when we were *learning* the fights. So that extra 30% health was unnecessary, by definition, on all but sarth+3. The only time I've been 1-shotted as a tank due to tank weaknesses (not healer/dps error) was during sarth+3... and yes, maybe a Dk would have been better on our progresion nights but so the hell what? We wiped an extra 20 times in total because druids are a bit underpowered compared to DKs????? Who cares? The bottom line is that we dont use our DK tank for Sarth because he's not as reliable. So go ahead, sit all your druids. Its a joke, because the view comes from the assuption that every player is operating at absolute max perfection, and the theorycraft differences are going to hold you back. But believe me, if your guild operates at that level of perfection, you're going to be 1-shotting every hard mode Ulduar boss anyway no matter what tank you take, and going back next week to make novelty videos. The week after, you'll be selling runs to your server. You can count the number of such guilds and players on one hand.

ciopo said...

did some testing on amanitar earlier.

did not remove mini, turned my back to the boss to remove the avoidance factor.
stayed here 3 minutes( i found there was no point to stay here any further)
the incoming attack fitte in a miss/crush/crit pattern, percentaces on such a small pool was about 3%/86%/11%.

i conclude that it's indeed on base defense, applying any "minus defense", but not apply "plus defense" if it puts us above base defense.

to test: our defense skill below (our level maximum-5), but wearing defense gear enough to go over it: crushed/notcrushed by mob 3 level above us.


sincerely, what a mess, what kind of sense have it that debuff apply but buff don't? >_>

Shamad said...

Peter;
I don't know about you, but my guild doesn't tend to recruit wildly disparaging levels of players. Each of our tanks are expected to perform at about the same level, which means the class differences is the main issue for us when deciding on what player to use. If you fail to live up to the common level of play, you won't last very long in the guild.

Mekias said...

Crit % shouldn't be affected by hit. I think the same thing is true for expertise too but I'm not sure when a creature's dodge or parry calculation is performed.

If you have a 50% chance to hit and have a 45% crit chance, you'll crit 45%, have regular hits 5% and miss the remaining 50%. With 40% more hit, you'll still crit 45% of the time.

Kalon said...

Mekias - that's true for normal (white) attacks. For all specials it's commonly understood after fairly rigorous testing that they use a two-roll system for determining crits - so you first check for a hit, then for a crit. This is (for example) how you can get a blocked special attack which crits (which have been observed). That would be impossible in the 1-roll system.

And since yellow attacks are the bread and butter of a bear's crits, hit and expertise tend to be more important.

It's not clear to me whether maul is a 1-roll or 2-roll system. My suspicion is that it's a 1-roll, but I've not done extensive analysis on it.

ciopo said...

i can comment on maul, i had occurrence of partially blocked maul, so i'ts either ona 2roll unless it have a class of itself ("on next hit" after all are a mixture of white damage/special attack)

Shamad said...

There was a comment from GC recently about on-next-hit actions where he stated they can proc effects such as the +5 rage from a crit, which would indicate that the game treats them much like white attacks, but that's just speculation.

Kalon said...

Shamad - that's true, but it's true for white attacks as well. So it's not really conclusive.

Basically, you'd have to do a very weird test where you took off all your bear gear and fought a paladin with holy shield up. You should either get maul crits that were blocked or never see one.

Anonymous said...

Little hesitant to ask this what with the negative attitude I'm seeing here to bears as main tanks.

But I am main tank and have either a warrior or death knight as off tank. What happens in a situation where I switch to off tank for Patchwerk to take the hateful strikes. I find I have to be very careful not to exceed the other tank's threat. I usually spend a lot of time on just auto attack white hits and casting fff and demoralizing roar, then throw in a few lacerates and when I see the threat gap wide enough I throw out some mauls and mangles till I've closed the gap then go back to white hits for a bit.

So would there be enough crits to get the savage defense protection? How does this affect a bear's ability to be the soaker in this type of fight?

Kalon said...

Anon - hopefully we're not too hostile towards druids. :)

For something like Patch where it's aggro-sensitive, I'd probably just lacerate. A lacerate attack will still crit and trigger a SD proc, and it doesn't do that much threat. Between that and maul/white hits you should be okay for staying below threat okay.