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    • Site Maintenance (Updated 11-12-15)   10/01/15

      Site has been updated to IPS as of 12 November Known Issues So Far: Old wowhead "item" tags are depricated. They may be re-added to fix some issues with older guides, but for most part it's better to just use the modern wowhead.js which auto parses actual wowhead links automatically into tooltips/names. Just post wowhead links in guides and the js will do the rest. You don't need a special BB code for items. Old article links will be broken do to IPS 4 changing url path to remove some pointless "/_/" directory. The articles are still there and can be found in guides menu. You just may not be able to click links from any threads linking to them without editing out the "/_/" part of url. I'll fix most of this little by little when more important stuff is taken care of. External links/google search results may run into same problem. That will just rely on waiting for google to reindex new paths. After you login, you may be thrown to an error page saying page cannot be found if you logged in from the forum index. Harmless though. Just click "forums" and you'll get forum index since redirect after login is busted. The benefactors bar seems to hang/timeout sometimes.


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  1. [Balance] New 6.0 Rotation Discussion

    The evolution of the Balance rotation For patchnotes, see: http://www.wowwiki.com/Patches Classic-mid Wrath talent calculator: http://www.wowprovider.com/Old.aspx?talent=1234211_11 Late cata calculator: http://freecode.hu/wowtal/eng/?DU#.63-!-1,-1,-1,-1,-1,-1,-1,-1,-1 It should be worth noting that the first occurance of Eclipse happened during Wrath. Before that there was no mechanic like it for balance druids. Classic At the start of Classic, there were no moonkins. The vast majority of all druids both leveled and played as resto. Though I wasn't personally leveling quick, I was one of the odd ones mainly going down balance. Balance had nothing special to the rotation back then, no procs and no cooldowns. All it had was moonfire, wrath, and starfire. You would apply the dot, and cast the nuke that did the most dps. Starfire had a 3.5 sec cast, where Wrath could be talented from 2.0 down to 1.5 sec. It did have Hurricance as a 1 min CD, but needless to say, the gameplay would by todays standards perhaps not be called exactely engaging... With the arrival of patch 1.8, a few things changed. We got the now iconic moonkin form, and hurricane was made baseline. Moonkin itself was a powerful form, giving us the same armor as a dire bear, and a 5% crit aura, though it locked us out from using any non-balance spells. We also got access to Insect Swarm by talenting down resto, and got to reduce the casttime of Starfire from 3.5 sec down to 3.0 sec. Another change was that Natures Grace now started to reduce the casttime of the next spell after a crit by 0.5 sec, rather then only working on heals. I'm not sure if my memory fails me, or if it was lagg, but I seem to recall being able to cast 1 sec wraths back to back, making full benefit of the 1 sec casttime wrath. Assuming this was correct, this would obviously make NG benefit Wrath more then SF. I also think that before NG, the DPS of SF was higher then Wrath, which could give a sence of a rotation, Wrath on NG procs, otherwise SF. Since you have no way to predict a crit, however (at this time...), this was nothing you could play on. I mention the crit prediction specifically because at some point they made wrath criticals trigger NG on spell completion rather then hit. The reason being that you otherwise would not be able to use the NG proc on the spell following the crit. A sideeffect of this change was that when you got the NG buff, you knew the wrath flying through the air would crit. Not that you had any way to take advantage of this effect while chaincasting though. As far as I can recall, no further changes were made to Balance during Classic, which brings us into Burning Crusade. The Burning Crusade The start of Burning Crusade altered the talent trees, and gave us a few more toys. Most notable was the addition of Force of Nature, giving us our 3 lovely tree companions. They were melee at the time, and at one point had a quite interesting bugg, where they caused neutral mobs around the (player) target to also attack the player. There was also a change to Moonkin Form, where we could melee to return mana based on our attackpower. The return was quite significant if switching to a feral weapon (which at that time for druids-only had bonus AP). Other then that, the only real change was streamlining of the talent trees and adding in more DPS talents, along with moving Insect Swarm over to balance. One thing to note is that Balance at the time had no threat reduction. Our heavy hitting starfires and preferance of crit made me consistently pull aggro in heroics if the first 2 or 3 starfires crit. You could usually tank it though, for the short time before it died. Remember we had a big bonus to armor back then. In 2.1 you could talent into a 20% threat reduction in Resto. It was fairly deep and expensive in the talent tree, which made you unable to get all mana reduction and raid dps increasing talents, resulting in a DPS loss to pick up the reduced threat. And that was all happening to balance during Burning Crusade! Wrath of the Lich King Comming into Wrath, we got some quite significant changes, with the first introduction of Eclipse. The obvious reason being to have a reason to change nuke, not just pick the highest DPS one and spam it until the boss is dead. We also saw Starfall for the first time in WoW, which at first did splash damage, to later become what we know now. Another big thing was the first introduction of the improved moonkin form, which tried to share some of the flavour we got from NG to raid members. It later become just a haste aura. The basic for what eclipse did then, was give Starfire crits a chance to make your Wrath do more damage for a certain time, and have wrath get a chance on crit to increase the critchance of starfire for some time. How exactely it worked changed a few times from Alpha until live. This will be my main focus for Wrath, as it was the main reason for any form of rotation from this point onward. At the start of alpha it had the same chance from both wrath and starfire crits to increase the critchance of starfire (wrath proc) or damage of wrath (starfire proc) for 12 seconds. It had no stated cooldown, but to my knowledge you could only proc one of them. This would give us a rotation where we calculate which nuke does most dps, cast the other until the proc, and then cast the best one. Alternatively if the proc was too weak, cast the best one until the proc, then switch spells for the duration of the proc, then go back to the first and repeat. The next few alpha patches they increased the duration of the buff to 30 seconds, then added a 2 minute cooldown. With the start of the beta, they removed the moonkin form melee for mana, in favor of giving 2% of maximum mana on spellcrits. At the end of the beta(, it was changed to a 100% chance on crit for starfire to trigger, and a 60% chance on crit for wrath. The duration was reduced to 15 seconds, but the cooldown to only 30 seconds. The effects had separate cooldowns, but could not trigger while the other was active. It was also changed to make the starfire get 30% critchance by wrath only gain 20% damage. When Wrath went live, they changed the moonkin form mana regeneration to only work for single target spells. Additionally, the GCD for wrath was reduced by 50% while NG was active, allowing chaincasting and not bumping into GCD. In 3.1, they also made wrath gain 30% damage increase from the eclipse, along with Nature's grace being redesigned to grant 20% haste for 3 seconds rather then -0.5 sec from the next spell cast. Cataclysm I will not go into much detail on when or what exact changes happened, because most are probably quite familiar with what happened in Cata, but I will give a brief overview of them. Eclipse changed from a talent to the implementation we are familiar today. Insect Swarm was removed, but Sunfire could be talented. We also got Shooting Stars and Euphoria from talents. The first with a static procchance, the second with a chance to trigger when outside of an eclipse. We got our mushrooms and our starfall, and for movement DPS we had Lunar Shower, though at that time Lunar Shower stacked when you moved, rather then by casting multiple times. Nature's grace weren't triggered when reaching the next eclipse, bur rather when casting moon- or sunfire, though reaching the next eclipse reset the cooldown. Moonkin form was also changed to give a haste aura rather then crit, as it previously had. Reflections Where did I want to come with all this? I realise that perhaps not all who play Balance now have done so for a long time, or even been in the game since the start. Druids have a rich herritage with lot of flavourful things that have previously been a core thing to our class that have since been forgotten. We have many tools which we could get inspiration from to make Warlords the best incarnation of balance there have been. Some things that I like about the Warlords balance changes is the return of bonus armor in moonkin form, along with a perk further increasing it. Though it is not as strong as it used to be, it is a step in the right directions. Moonkins are supposed to be bulky and be able to take a beating. Another thing I am very happy to see altered is Starfall, to become closer to what it was in Warcraft 3 and the effect we briefly had in wrath, where it was used for AoE. It is a cool spell that fits the nich and style of Balance very well. Other things I miss or would like to see changed is to make Stellar Flare into Insect Swarm instead. It's a spell we had for a long time that for a time was as central to the rotation as moonfire. In my opinion it should also be made instant and the initial damage shifted into the dot instead. Having yet another dot with initial damage, even when it have a casttime, bring it in my opinion too close to moonfire/sunfire area. It would also give us something to do while moving, letting us have a movement option in the talents. Along with that, I would like to see more crit interaction, particularly to casting speed, return. Critting to get Nature's Grace was a strong part of being a moonkin for the first 2 expansions, and something I would like to see again. I feel there is a chance for this too, and make the spec feel more dynamic to play by making Starsurge instead of granting bonus damage, give haste for the affected spells. It should probably be fairly substantial, in the order of 33% haste (a slight buff from now). This would be the limit before it would also need to reduce the GCD for Wrath. Not only would this change the feel of the spec, but also make it easier to fit spells on eclipse peaks. Along with this, and to further make the spec more dynamic, I would like to see Starfire and Wrath crits grant (or have a chance to grant) Starsurge charges. If I missed something or my memory and research was flawed, please point it out!
  2. [Balance] New 6.0 Rotation Discussion

    I was about to make some post on how balance used to be and have evolved... Will probably do it in a while, with what I miss and things I'd like to see back to get us back to our roots, while having depth of gameplay. But until then, play around with this: http://www.wowprovider.com/Old.aspx?talent=1234211_11 Yes, that is a talent calculator for all patches until Wrath!
  3. [Balance] New 6.0 Rotation Discussion

    That seem to fit quite well with my napkin math then. You've lost half the peak mastery at the midpoint, which would put it at about 35%. That would give us 1.7/1.35=1.26 damage increase going from the midpoint to the peak, close to the 25% I calculated based on your dots.
  4. [Balance] New 6.0 Rotation Discussion

      First impressions: I found it very interesting to look at. I noticed that you mostly used a second SS during lunar, do you think that is worth more then using a single during solar? Since there are two dot refreshes during solar, and none of them is exactely at the peak, I imagine it is easier to fit 3 wraths closer to the peak then 2 starfires. Using a starsurge right before lunar peak, I noticed that you never fit in the second starsurge before you were well down the lunar slope, atleast at 70% or lower. An unbuffed starsurge also hit only marginally harder or as hard as a regular starfire.   Checking in more detail: Rechecking opening, 5.2k SS and 4k buffed SS during lunar peak with what seem like trinket procs for both. Due to this, I believe that you should consider shifting your starsurge use 1 spell earlier during the lunar cycle to fit two fully buffed SF along with the moonfire during the peak. Though you seem to hit a 4.5k SS -before- you reach the lunar peak, about halfways up. What's up with that, it gets boosted by both solar and lunar or just a huge damage range? Going towards the solar peak, you get a double trinket SS crit for about 9.6k very close to the peak. That would make it "only" 4.8k with the second trinket proc before crit. I would have expected more at solar peak and double trinkets. With the second trinket up then, your wraths hit for 3.2k each, which would place them at about the same DPS as starfire, assuming equal mastery. About to enter the second lunar, you launch a wrath that hit for 1.9k very close to the switch. Coming out of the second lunar, you land a SF for 3.2k right before the switch. Both were no SS buff or trinkets. It seem to place them again close in DPS. The SF seemed to be a bit during lunar still. Looking at moonfire ticks placed right at the peak, and sunfire right as a fresh solar is entered, the eclipse damage difference between lowest and highest seem to be 25%,  with 726 damage moonfire and 581 damage sunfire. It also appears as if moonfire/sunfire snapshot trinkets, as their periodic damage doesn't alter with those procing or fading during the spells duration. At the second solar peak, you land 3 unbuffed Wraths, hitting from 2.1k-2.6k, which seem to indicate about the maximum damage range of wraths. With the damage difference of minimum and maximum of solar of 25%, this would place midpoint wraths at 1.7k-2.0k, which seem close to what we have observed. Going up to the third lunar, an unbuffed SF hit for about 3.8k close to the peak, a buffed one hit for 5k what seem to be right after the peak. At the third solar peak, with 1 trinket up, the SS hit for 4.6k, followed by 2 wraths hitting during the peak, for 3k and 3.2k respectively, with the third wrath right after it for 3.6k. All affected by that trinket. Going out of the third solar, a wrath hit right before it is left for about 1.9k. At the forth lunar, 2 buffed SF seem to hit at or very close to the peak, both hitting for 5.1k. At the same time, we have two SS during the same cycle, both hitting outside the peak with no trinkets, with one for 3.8k and the other for 4.5k, which still seem to indicate quite the damage range.   Considerations: I could check the numbers further indepth, but at this point I don't think that would give us much. Some conclusions we can draw from this is that it seems that the damage range of SS is quite big, and that our dots as of that patch snapshot trinkets. Combining the fact that SS doesn't seem to hit considerably harder then a SF with that SF and wrath seem close in DPET along with the desire for a moonfire at the lunar peak, as of now I would suggest that instead of the base SS at lunar peak, try it at solar. You can more consistenly fit all the buffed spells at maximum benefit and not disrupt the desired rotation. To further strengthen this conclusion, SS in this itteration had a casttime, which would keep it at or close to the peak while allowing the wraths to reach maximum damage. Another thing to note is that spells seemed to check their eclipse value on cast completion and not spell hit. It is somewhat hard to judge as we only have traveltime on SS and wrath, but it seemed to indicate so from wrath casts, and is also what we would expect. Personally, I quite like the flow of the rotation with a casttime SS. It gives a nice feel to the rotation, although when you press keys doesn't change and when damage happen relative to other things only shift back and forth 1 GCD, I still liked the look of it, traveltime spells look better to me shot from standing then jumping.  
  5. [Balance] New 6.0 Rotation Discussion

    I understand their desire for Euphoria, and I am personally also very intrigued by it. The faster eclipse cycles would make you switch spells faster and give more of a "flow" in the rotation. Taking only 20 seconds for a full cycle, it would be only 10 seconds from one peak to the next (naturally), so there would be quite freqent shifts between spell use. This would be a skill in its own, more so then for the slower cycles, as you would have to go more on feeling with switching spells, if you could fit in another SF before wrath would be better, and so on. I don't know if that's how the starsurge charges works now, but if it doesn't, I would very much like that you got one charge for each cycle. I realise that this would give Euphoria a base SS use double that of the other talents, but I think this would fit well with the theme for the talent; you do everything faster, and be easy to balance to not be stronger then the other talents.
  6. Warlords of Draenor death knight discussion

    This post will be about blood, as it is the spec I'm most familiar with and feel more strongly about. Recently I've also been thinking about how we could move on into Warlords with all the changes comming and how to address our problems.   The main problems for us right now as I see them, are our negligible survivability scaling with damage stats, and how our survivability so massively depends on the damage you take. I will talk about the survivability problems first, as the changing of those ultimately will lead to changes in how we scale with damage stats.   Survivability. The minimum sized death strike heal need to go. This is what allow us to be completely self sufficient in low damage situations, but the closer we get to 20% of the damage we take exceeding 7% our maximum health, the worse we are of. That the heal depends on the actual health lost just further inflates this issue. While some self sufficiency is expected and arguable required, we are completely self sustained to moderate damage. After that, our self healing does not increase -at all- until much higher damage. And then it's still only 20% of what we took after blood shield. There are some maths and related discussions in the spoiler if you're interested.   Enough problems, let's talk about ideas and solutions! Let's add the change I've mentioned: Death Strike - Heals you for X% of the damage you have sustained from non-player sources during the preceding 5 sec. With the removal of minimum death strike heal, there would have to be something to offset this. Let's call it: Blood-Caked Blade (passive) - All physical (?) damage dealt by you also heals you for Y% of the damage done. The name is of course a legacy of an old blood talent, which I find fitting. The intent of this is to bring back a "static" component to our survivability, while letting DS scale dynamically with the damage we take. Perhaps magical damage could be included, but I feel that disease cleaving might become too good then. Not only would this provide a more static portion to our survivability, but it would also allow us to pick damage stats to increase our survivability. Thought it doesn't scale with mastery. Yet: Mastery: Efficiency - Increases the healing done by Death Strike and Blood-Caked Blade by Z%. This is obviously to make both our main survivability tools scale with mastery. Though with the removal of minimum size blood shields, you can't prepare for incoming bursts of damage. Efficiency fits really well as a mastery that you increase, but at this point our blood shield have become pretty iconic and a big part of blood playstyle. But don't worry: Blood Shield - Each time you overheal yourself in Blood Presence, you gain 100% of the amount overhealed as a Physical damage absorption shield. There may be preferable to just have Blood-Caked Blade and Death Strike add the shield, but I thought it would be interesting to be able to pre-shield yourself with Death Pact and Lichbane, or even Death Siphon. That's the changes I've been thinking about for WoD. I think they would address most of the irregularities of our damage reduction abilities and also allow for easier tuning. With vengeance going all towards defensive stats, it could be completely removed from us. I'd actually like that, fitting it onto our model wouldn't serve a real purpose.
  7. Assuming that I understood you correctly, and DRW give DC full benefit, while RS gets nothing from weapon damage, the new formula should be: ((0.514*x + 1133) * 1.05 * 1.10) * 2 = (((((x/14) * 3.3 + 29475 * 0.5) * 2) * 0.68 * 1.04 * 1.15) * 2 - Wolfram|Alpha Which give a breakpoint at 108k AP. That should put it as the optimal use of RP when tanking multiple mobs, as you often cannot spent it fast enough, and you would pretty much always have more then 108k AP.
  8. A note on the legendary cloak, is that it "saving you from death" absorb seem to be capped to your full health. I had a series of really shitty tries on Immerseus yesterday, ending up trying to solo tank parts of it. I repeatedly find myself taking corrosive blasts where the combat log looked like: "X damage taken (Y absorbed) Z overkill" where Y was my maximum health. Related to this aspect of the cloak, I tried to figure out any way to be able to survive 3 breaths. The second one hits at around 2 million and the third at 3.5 million. I couldn't come up with any way to survive both the second and the third breath. While this isn't particularly common, it does limit the cloaks ability to cheese mechanics. Combining it with purgatory may be the only option to bypass very hard hitting mechanics, when the effective health gained from the 100% of health absorb isn't enough to let you live.
  9. [Resto] Mists of Pandaria 5.4

    Higher spirit levels allow you to blanket and use more spells through the fight then with lower spirit. The lower spirit come with increased healing for each individual spell, however. Unless there are fights that require you to blanket large part of the raid for long periods of times to survive, it comes down to if you prefer stronger heals with arguably more thought behind (as you can't afford to waste heals as much) or blanketing with weaker heals. I'm not saying that any way better or more skilled then the other, and both have their places. It is largely a choice, as Hamlet points out, of what you prefer and are good at doing.
  10. [Resto] Mists of Pandaria 5.4

    I haven't done the math, but the thing with intellect vs secondary stats is that intellect is a static boost, while secondary is percentage based. The stronger your heals are already, the more worth secondary stats are. While intellect adds the same chunk of healing as it did before, it will be comparatively less the higher your intellect are already.
  11. For a master frost DK (DW), are there any simple rule of thumb for when you should use tanking gear of higher item level instead? If you for example assuming you have a LFR DPS piece, two potential "upgrades" could be a 516 piece with mastery+expertise when already softcapped, or a normal piece with mastery+dodge/parry. It's slightly easier to "count" the useful strength+mastery on the later piece in this example and judge from that, but when you start to have partly useful stats such as expertise it gets more tricky. So are there any easy to follow guideline that doesn't make you have to sim every individual piece to compare them? Such as +12 item level if expertise but +20 if it contain dodge or parry.
  12. [Resto] Mists of Pandaria 5.4

    If you start from 12k mastery and can drop 9k of it, you should only need to drop 1k spirit to reach the 13k hbp, as they gem/reforge 1:1. There are also no situation where a lower haste build should get more procs (and as such higher stacks) of HLG then a high haste one. You probably had some bad RNG when you ran with the 13k hbp. When you have trinkets with RPPM mana regen effects, a high spirit+high haste build should always end up with more mana regen then a high spirit+mastery build. That is of course when you have enough mastery to just drop that to reach the break point. If you need to drop spirit it gets more complex.
  13. I'm assuming that's for the full duration of the DoT however. How much is it worth delaying the eclipsed dot before it's a loss? Is that modeled with the expected proc waste, and if so, while it may be true for single target, it may not be valid for multiple. Naturally it would not be worth chaining SS to the point that all your dots fall of the targets, but if you delay one of the dots by 1 second in favor for a SS proc, it might be a gain. If you knew you could get 2 instant starsurges but delay an eclipsed dot by 1 second, would you do it instead of 1 starsurge and 100% uptime? We don't know before when things will proc however, and I highly suspect that napkin math would have a hard time dealing with this, so I'm not even going to try...
  14. [Resto] Mists of Pandaria 5.4

    I like the idea of turning DoC into a atonement-like talent for us. The main reason is for those times when there really aren't much damage going out, and right now it seems to me as if wrathing just isn't worth the mana. Basically, you just stand there regaining mana and perhaps keep your lifebloom up with the occational WG when the other healers aren't topping people with absorbs/passive heals. For this reason, it feels as if there would be some value for something like atonement for those situations. As already pointed out, it's pretty much always worse then NV -even- for damage right now. As a response to this: Is there a major problem with having DoC increase wrath damage by something like 100% instead, and then perhaps reduce healing to 60% of the damage if you are to keep HPS unaffected? The main concern is that this might reduce the value of HotW (200% damage increase), so I did a test. Fight duration: 253 seconds (time to OOM with no innervate) Damage done: 6.872M DPS: 27.1k Damage breakdown: Wrath 80.8% (130 casts), MF DoT 17.1% (148 ticks), MF DD 2.2% (18 casts) This was done against a target dummy with no debuffs and only MotW on me. I had HotW but did not use it in the fight, nor did I use Berserking or SotF for moonfire. Gear was what I have for balance spec, admitedly a weak 502 item level, with 6.633 haste (8 ticks) and 5.948 crit. Trinkets were Breath (got 2 procs) and Essence of Terror (3 or 4 procs, gives 9 ticks), both LFR version. A few things to keep in mind here is that this is with the 6% passive intellect increase from HotW. It should affect both portions in a similar sense, but removing it while buffing wrath would further inflate the damage difference of the two. With my gear, it would take 70% increase in wrath damage to push moonfire out of a single target resto DPS rotation. Is this a bad thing? Probably not, resto doesn't have to keep an interesting DPS rotation after all. But lets compare the numbers for the imaginary DoC to HotW. HotW: Assume that damage during the HotW use is not further inflated by other abilities. Burst DPS: 3 x 27.1k = 81.5k "fight" DPS: (45 x 81.5k + (253 - 45) x 27.1k) / 253 = 36.8k Sustained DPS: (45 x 81.5k + 315 x 27.1k) / 360 = 34k DoC: Assume 100% damage increase, but loss of HotW reducing damage by 4% (likely overestimating damage), and dropping Moonfire from the rotation. Sustained DPS: 2 x 5.55M / 253 / 1.04 = 42.2k Note that I used the full numbers and not the rounded for all calculations (6872625 total damage, 27165 DPS, 5551665 wrath damage). Comparsion, HotW vs DoC: Burst DPS: 193% "fight" DPS: 87% Sustained DPS: 80% Comparing those numbers, we can easily calculate that if more then 21.5% of your DPS time is covered by HotW, you will deal more damage then using DoC [solve: 1.93X + 0.8(1 - X) = 1]. With the overestimation of DoC damage and ignoring "gaming" HotW by refreshing MF at the last second or taking place during things like berserking, this is likely closer to 20%. The added benefit of HotW being burst "on demand" and as such likely come at more convenient times, should make a 100% damage increase on wrath a viable damage alternative but not undermine HotW from that standpoint. Add the fact that HotW get a constant 6% intellect benefit to healing while DoC have no healing benefit before its use, and it would still be an interesting choice. This should hold true even for "farm" content, as the quicker kills would give a higher portion covered by HotW buff. Comparing it to the numbers provided by Quincunx on page 55 for NV vs DoC, this should keep the HPS the same, but inflate the damage, and would place it at about 44%/28% HPS/DPS or 47%/35% with crit gearing. I don't think the damage should be boosted much beyond 100% increase, but if the healing turns out too weak that can easily be increased. Something to keep in mind is that it cost extra to use DoC, while NV is free. It does look much more interesting and might be a valuable picks with those numbers, however.
  15. I just realised how they could make haste interesting and not punnish us too much for needing to keep runes on cooldown. Make haste also increase the death strike window, so 20% haste would make it the last 6 seconds for example. I reaslise that in some situations this could be vastly supperior by fitting 1 extra damaging attack in the same deathstrike window, and there might also be certain "softcaps" you aim for. The most obvious being where Rune cooldown=Death Strike window. If you see any obvious flaws or problems with this implementation, be sure to point them out! If they made something like this, I would probably gear for exp+hit/haste, because I always enjoyed maximising my damage while tanking.