Wednesday, July 8, 2009

[Druid, 3.2] The effects of agility/dodge change

I wanted to see if any other blogs would pick this up first - but so far I've seen nothing.

One of the documented changes to the PTR is a change to avoidance in general. Here's the overall text:
  • Agility: The amount of agility required per percentage of dodge has been increased by 15%. This change required recalibrating the amount of dodge a player has with 0 agility by a slight amount as well, so all players will see their dodge percentage vary a small amount.
  • Dodge Rating: The amount of dodge rating required per percentage of dodge has been increased by 15%. This is before diminishing returns. Combined with other changes, this makes dodge rating and parry rating equally potent before diminishing returns apply.
  • Parry Rating: The amount of parry rating required per percentage of parry has been reduced by 8%. This is before diminishing returns. Combined with other changes, this makes dodge rating and parry rating equally potent before diminishing returns apply. Parry still diminishes more quickly than dodge.
15%? Wow, that sounds like a lot, right? And since druids are the only tank without parry, it's a pure nerf! It's time to freak out!

Don't freak out.

Here's the thing about being a tank that's based around talents primarily: nerfing stats doesn't hurt nearly as much. As an example, let's take...well, me. I'm not totally Ulduar-geared yet, but I have a good chunk of pieces and have mostly gone for stamina, only using agility when I had a shared piece of gear. I have minimal PvP gear.

Here are my stats currently, raid buffed (courtesy of Rawr):

Health: 47931
Agility: 1787.513
Armor: 32645.03
Stamina: 3640
Dodge Rating: 194
Defense Rating: 91
Resilience: 105
Dodge: 50.271%
Miss: 8.145%
Avoidance PreDR: 71.102%
Avoidance PostDR: 58.416%

So what will I lose? Effectively I'll lose 15% of that agility and 15% of that dodge rating. That means I lose 268 agility and another 29 dodge rating on average*.

That would mean pre-DR, my avoidance would go down by:
dodge/agility * agility + dodge%/dodge rating * dodge rating
1/41.67 * 268 + 1/39.3 * 29 =
6.43 + .737 = 7.16%.

So a 7.16% dodge rating reduction before diminishing returns. Or a total, Pre-DR value of 63.93% avoidance overall.

What does that mean after diminishing returns? Well, this is 7% dodge at the top, not the bottom - meaning it's getting hit the 'hardest' by DR. But in practice this means all we need to do is in Rawr reduce our stats by the above and see our post-DR results.

And if you do that...the post-DR results are a mighty 46.1% dodge.

So it's about a 4% loss for me, give or take.

Except...Rawr does things like average out procs for an overall dodge value. Which means things like DM:G are counted as having 100 agility instead of 0 some of the times, and 300 other times. Same with Heart of Iron and Mongoose. The long and short of it is that overall dodge rating is going to not decrease quite as much, but the procs are going to be slightly worse than they were before overall.

In any case, 4% dodge is not really wonderful to lose, but it's definitely not a huge deal. It should bring druid overall damage closer to inline with paladins and warriors, though druids will still take the least amount of damage per hit without cooldowns coming into play. And for the most part, you'll not notice it.

If you're curious about the other tanks, because of the parry change DKs almost are unchanged in terms of raw avoidance (they gain parry and lose dodge), and warriors and paladins lose a small amount (about 1-2 % depending on how they geared).


Copey said...

I’ve seen you post before, and here again that you go for stamina most of the time. Despite this, I’ve stacked some agility in my gear. I use the 3 +41 stam JC gems I have for stam of course, but I use 16 agility for all my red slots, which there are many.

My thinking: Dodge and Armor = Sweet

This puts my dodge up pretty high, but I kind of spaced Diminishing Returns. I’d give you numbers, but I logged out in my moonkin gear, and don’t recall all my gear and gems off the top of my head.

I guess I have been trying not to be a mana sponge by upping my avoidance. Is this flawed thinking? Perhaps I’m thinking too hard on it since I know that my dodge (not counting cool downs) isn’t as high as yours yet. I’m a tier behind you in gear. Basically I’m trying not to stack one stat way over board of another. Seems like a lot of bears I see have 100% stam gems in every possible slot.

So the question is, should I be looking at stam more over agility in the future, seeing as the new gems come out and I’ll be buying my recipes the first day? Or should I stay kind of balanced like I am now?

Anonymous said...

Nice write up thank you.

to Copey, I wouldnt worry about being a mana sponge, because healers are mana fire hoses :) Its a great parntership. So sponge away. As an example, I tanked steelbreaker25 through p1 & p2 with only a single disc priest healing me - and his mana was way over 50% when we got to p3. By far the biggest amount of total raid damage is on the single steelbreaker tank in those phases, so I think this was proof enough that stamina beats avoidance for progression. Naturally I had almost no avoidance gems or enchants with that gear set. Some people are experimenting with high avoidance for hardmode vezex because mana conservation is the essence of that encounter - but that's a special case.

Jacemora said...

I want meh armor back... waahhhh

Seriously, I miss having 43K armor.

Shamad said...

Pretty much what I expected, my mental math had it at about 5% reduction on the average Ulduar tank but I guess I underestimated DR a bit then. Knew I could count on you to confirm it ;)

Copey; EH(stam+damage reduction) is key for progression. Avoidance simply isn't reliable, and when tanks get hit for as much as 30k in a single blow, you want to come as close as possible to suriving two in a row, so 50k+ is a minimum for hard modes in ulduar 25man. In practice, this means just stacking tons and tons of stam and ignoring agi. Agi becomes worth it again when you reach a EH that allows you to take those 2 consecutive hits.

Kalon said...

Copey - as others have said, every tank by encounter design must essentially be a mana sponge. The sole exception to this is Vezax, where avoidance is somewhat desirable. And even then, only just; you still need enough stamina to survive a surged attack with cooldowns.

Everywhere else though, stamina is king. I should restate that, actually - stamina and armor are king. Agility helps with armor some, but mostly it's just health.

I don't stack stam in every single slot for my 'base' tanking set, but I certainly lean that way when it makes sense.

I don't know yet what it's going to be like in the Coliseum, but my suspicion is that it'll be more of the same: big things that hit really hard.

Anon - that's really impressive being healed for so little for Steelbreaker. We've been trying that recently, and one of the many problems we had was that occasionally our tank would keel over and die in P2. I think I'd probably have a bit easier of a time of it.

Jace, it's weird, but so do I. I know intellectually that I'm much less squishy than I was thanks to no crushes and PotP, but there was something irrationally nice about having such a huge armor value. I take solace in that I have a huge stamina value instead. :) Last night I broke 77k with survival instincts. Not as high as Darksend, but it was still a nice thing to see.

Shamad, it's going to be a bit less than what I mentioned, actually, due to how procs work. I suspect that for most druids it'll work out to be about 3.5% less dodged attacks overall. Really, it's not a big deal. It's a lot like the kitty nerf - it looks scary at first and should quiet down some of the random folks who say druids are OP and need moar nerfs! - but the reality is that it won't really change how effective druids are.

Xarnen said...

Do you think this ups the value of expertise some? If you are going to avoid less I'd want even more SD uptime, and less hastened attacks from parries.

Copey said...

Ok, so a resounding response of “L2 Stack Stam nub”. Got it. I logged in my tank gear, and looking at it I guess I only have three 16 agility gems in it in red sockets. Soooo….what should I have put in there instead? Perhaps a Shifting cut for stam/agility? Or maybe a Guardian’s cut for Stam/Expertise. Regal cut for stam/dodge might be nice. Since the socket bonus is also stam on two out of three of them I’m assuming a purple gem for the red sockets. Since I have more a dps hat that socket bonus in there is for haste, which if I have no threat problems (I currently don’t) I probably should just stick a Solid 24 stam cut in there eh?

Or hell with it and go all Solid, all the time until 3.2 drops and makes my Dragon’s Eye cuts not automatically activate my meta?

Here I am:

Kalon said...

Xarnen, thanks for posting. No, I don't really think that Expertise will suddenly be more valuable. If anything, the argument that more SD uptime is more valuable would mean you should go for more avoidance, since avoidance is much better at keeping SD uptime than # of hits are. Still, SD is so much more minor of an ability and is reasonably uncontrollable that gearing for it isn't worth it. If you are going to gear for it - agility is still going to be very strong.

Copey - 3 agi gems is almost certainly fine. I have two sets, personally. My stam set which stacks as much stam as humanly possible, and my normal set, which swaps out some of those pieces for shared cat/bear stuff. But yeah, things like haste bonuses? Ignore them. For bear, the only socket bonuses I care about are stamina and agility.

The one big error I can see? Never put one of your JC gems in the prismatic socket for belts. The big strength of it (at least right now) is that it's prismatic, and you're throwing that away. If you instead socketed your shoulders with that prismatic stam gem and socketed the belt with a solid, you'd still have the socket bonus but have an additional 24 stamina. Or you could just swap the gems, and still be better off.

Anonymous said...

Thx for all the feedback. I love these discussions.

Yes, I was surprised a druid was so easy to heal through steelbreaker 1&2. We've tried it with DKs, and you know, for all this talk abut DK OPness on steel & vezex, and fusion being magic damage and so on.... well, its not the fusions that kill the DK - its good old fashioned melee, at some random time. Druids survive fusions with 51k stam just fine, and they also survive melee really well too. Maybe the DK needs to l2p, but when i tanked it, we got to p3 with no tank death issues every time.

This is the only encounter where I currently use OON, and I've maxed out feral aggression & infected wounds especially for this one. Stamina all the way :) I'm glad I did it, I feel much less squishier than my shield bearing counterparts.

Shamad said...

Sounds to me like he left Steelbreaker standing in a power rune and got creamed as a result. Other than that, steelbreaker damage isn't really the hard bit of the Hard Mode IC.