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Blood | DK endgame tanking [4.x]


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#1 GravityDK

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Posted 01 December 2010 - 06:43 AM

Reserved.

#2 Tyvi

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Posted 02 December 2010 - 01:55 AM

To elaborate a bit on your post:

I'd include the macro in the OP for Lichborne:

#showtooltip Lichborne
/cast Lichborne;
/cast [@player] Death Coil

Usage:
Replace Lichborne on the action bar with this and spam the button to trigger LB and the self heal at once. Generally Lichborne will be the most potent for the first 2-3 Death Coils because you can pretty much ensure that those 2-3 DCs will not be overheals if you use it right after a big boss burst. While the subsequent DCs are not completely useless, anything past 2-3 DCs has a higher chance to be partial to full overheal. That obviously means you will want to save 60-80 RP for the Lichborne combo before using it. Anything else over that is just the icing on the cake.

As for the spec, I'd suggest you leave it at 31/6/2 +2 instead of pre-allocating the last 2 points into Abomination's Might. I know you mention that later in the post but I figured it would be good to have it all under one spot here as well.

The 31 points in Blood are pretty straight forward; you pick anything that adds survivability. You get a minor choice between 3/3 Bladed Armor or 3/3 Scent of Blood but due to diminishing returns on SoB with a slow weapon the gains between 2/3 and 3/3 are negligible which means 3/3 Bladed Armor trumps that (and it adds more healing to Death Coil, too).

Frost is also obvious, there are no choices. Dual Wielding is dead as you said so it's going to be Runic Power Mastery and Icy Reach.

From here on it's trickier. You have 4 points to play around with, 2 which should be in Epidemic so you only need to refresh Frost Fever every 30 seconds (makes it align nicely with Outbreak and Scarlet Fever innately lasts 30 seconds anyway). That is unless you are on interrupt duty; then you should definitely go for 3/3 Virulence and 1/3 Epidemic instead. The loss of 4 secs on FF is rather minor compared to freeing up 3% spell hit from your gear for proper survival stats. The hit values to be spell hit capped are:

2/3 Virulence: 11% spell hit, 1126 hit rating. This equates to 9.3% melee hit which is 1.3% over the melee cap.
3/3 Virulence: 8% spell hit, 820 hit rating. This is equates to 6,8% melee hit.
0/3 or 1/3 Virulence: Don't even bother. If you are required to interrupt, go respec.

For the glyph section, can you link where it was concluded that Vampiric Blood glyph is recommended? It's basically 15% more healing from outside sources (read: your healers) and from your own Lichborne while active versus losing the option to use VB as a weaker Last Stand to survive burst that would otherwise kill you and 4% smaller self heals from Rune Tap, Death Pact and min Death Strike heals and at the cost of one glyph slot.

That said, that might be one of the things that are encounter dependent but you should atleast list DRW as mandatory since I don't see that one ever being swapped out.

Other stuff:

- Blood Shield is not affected by anything that increases healing done to you as you already noted (including VB) but that also works the other way around: Mortal Strike effects do not decrease Blood Shield potency either. Atleast it's consistent but it's still a bit baffling why Vampiric Blood doesn't get to be an exception to this considering the existence of a VB glyph which is negatively affected by this.

- For the rotation you can generally force UF and/or Death Runes to proc if you keep one Blood Rune on CD permanently and only use the 2nd just before the former nearly cooled down. That way you can create situations where your UF and/or Death Runes are on CD and eligible for RE refreshes for around ~4-5 seconds whereas your Blood Runes will never will be and you will keep up Blood Barrier as well.

- Dark Command cannot miss at all anymore. Even without any hit. I am pretty sure that Death Grip still requires hit though (no clue if it's spell or melee hit now).

#3 VanqIson

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Posted 02 December 2010 - 12:30 PM

- Dark Command cannot miss at all anymore. Even without any hit. I am pretty sure that Death Grip still requires hit though (no clue if it's spell or melee hit now).


Prior to patch 4.0.1 it could miss as in the grip ability (actual gripping of target) but the forced attack (taunt) still remained. Now it cannot miss, can only be immune but the forced attack still remains.

#4 Asgorath

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Posted 02 December 2010 - 04:14 PM

I'm a little confused by the wording here:

Death Strike and Blood Barrier
...
DS is not multiplied by Vampiric Blood.

Details:
...
Blood Shield is NOT affected by Vampiric Blood, Death Strike is.


Given the first statement, it's not clear what you mean by the second statement. When I first read the latter paragraph, it sounded like you were saying that DS is modified by VB (but Blood Shield is not), but that contradicts what you said earlier.

#5 Ekeln

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Posted 02 December 2010 - 04:45 PM

I'm a little confused by the wording here:



Given the first statement, it's not clear what you mean by the second statement. When I first read the latter paragraph, it sounded like you were saying that DS is modified by VB (but Blood Shield is not), but that contradicts what you said earlier.


The heal from Death Strike is affected by Vampiric Blood; Blood Shield isn't.

#6 Asgorath

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Posted 02 December 2010 - 08:33 PM

I understand that, my point is that this:

DS is not multiplied by Vampiric Blood.


suggests that it is not. My initial reading is that these statements are inconsistent and contradictory, and it might be worth clarifying or removing this to avoid confusion.

#7 GravityDK

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 01:47 AM

I have updated OP to reflect all prior input, thank you.

Tyds, on the vampiric blood glyph I drew a conclusion that it's a good choice on the basis of (a) the environment of high-stamina, low boss DPS (B) probability that encounter design will not have a fight where you can just die through lack of Effective Health assuming you're in mostly epic tanking gear or better, © that gems may be better as Mastery than Stamina because at some point you will have enough HP for HP to no longer be a survival factor.

This was discussed here, but you're right it did not reach a consensus about the glyph. I thus softened the wording in OP about VB glyph.

#8 Insolence

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 08:08 AM

Taunt does not miss anymore at all, regardless of hit. The taunt glyph is gone.


Are we sure about this? Last I heard it was moved from Spell Hit to Meele Hit.

Also, as far as Professions:

It appears JC / BS / LW / Enchanting remain the best choices for Stamina with little divergence between them, so you do not need to change professions.

Leatherworking's Stamina Bracer Enchant still pushes it 75 Stamina ahead of any other Profession due to the lack of a Level 85 +75 Stamina Bracer Enchant. For some reason they just upped the Level requirement on the +40 Stamina one from WotLK...

#9 ZaoZao

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 09:10 AM

Minors: Death's Embrace is only mandatory. Other two slots are flavour.


I'd go as far as to say that BT is also mandatory, since it's the only one that has some use.

The DG glyph is useless for a tank
HoW will probably be used more often than every 2/3 minutes, and the "stronger debuff" can be solved through a /cancelaura macro, which you need for Battleshout anyway, even when glyphed.
PoF is situational at best
Raise Ally
is also more of a situational glyph.

#10 Tyvi

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 09:55 AM

Are we sure about this? Last I heard it was moved from Spell Hit to Meele Hit.


It is for all intents and purposes a melee ability since Dark Command can proc anything a melee swing can (Fallen Crusader, trinkets etc). It is not 100% sure that it can never miss but from my experience and that of others, there has been no report of a taunt missing since 4.0 even if you are below the hit cap. So until anyone shows proof otherwise, consider Dark Command one of the few abilities in the game that cannot miss. For what it's worth, Outbreak was the same on Beta and could never miss but until we can test the 4.03 version it's not worth including since abilities can still change (i.e. on Beta Glyph of Death's Embrace did not refund 20 RP if even 1 point of DC healing was overheal; on live it refunds RP even on 100% overheals).

On the topic of Leatherworking: I would not change to LW just yet. WotLK also was not shipped with an updated stamina enchant but got one patched in during 3.03 so there is a good chance that will happen for Cataclysm as well. And on the off chance that it does not happen, we can still use an enchant of equal item budget. We really don't know if stamina stacking will be as mandatory as it is now. And who knows, maybe they will also fix the tank flask in the same patch because it's underbudget. Again. :P

On the topic of minor glyphs: I agree Blood Tap should be listed as the second required glyph. PoF as 3rd for bosses that can knock you into the air and Raise Ally for everything else. HoW glyph is utterly worthless so if you glyph that, you are doing it wrong.

#11 ZaoZao

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 10:38 AM

Just did a bit of testing with 0 hit. Didn't have a single taunt miss in 77 casts.
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#12 riggins

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 10:51 AM

(i.e. on Beta Glyph of Death's Embrace did not refund 20 RP if even 1 point of DC healing was overheal; on live it refunds RP even on 100% overheals).


???

Either I'm missing something or you tested this in a way earlier build that was later changed. It def refunded RP everytime I used it the last month or so on Beta, regardless of OH (ie testing on a target dummy).

#13 Tyvi

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 11:18 AM

???

Either I'm missing something or you tested this in a way earlier build that was later changed. It def refunded RP everytime I used it the last month or so on Beta, regardless of OH (ie testing on a target dummy).


That's possible. It happened in a patch that fixed some Unholy exploit (something about spamming Death Coils on your pet with Sudden Death and gaining RP) that broke the glyph for Blood. It probably got fixed for Blood later on but I didn't retest it.

#14 Seref

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 03:29 PM

How would you effectively use Blood Tap? If you're "forcing" RE procs, Blood Tap becomes tricky.
Because you'd want to use the Death Rune, but using it would cause you to now have a "sleeper" Blood rune. Allowing your RE procs to not be FU...

And anyone know if could be a viable tanking trinket for certain encounters? I don't know if there are any magic-heavy encounters in Cata, but if there are any with an "oh crap I need magic mitigation" moments it might merit looking into.

#15 Tyvi

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 05:59 PM

For the rotation you can generally force UF and/or Death Runes to proc if you keep one Blood Rune on CD permanently and only use the 2nd just before the former nearly cooled down. That way you can create situations where your UF and/or Death Runes are on CD and eligible for RE refreshes for around ~4-5 seconds whereas your Blood Runes will never will be and you will keep up Blood Barrier as well.


Small addendum to this:
If you are going to force RE procs on FU Runes make sure you refresh your Blade Barrier with around 4 seconds left on the cooling down Blood Rune so you have time to Heart Strike twice in case the first one misses or gets avoided (which it will at some point; you aren't going to run around with hard capped Expertise and Hit for challenging fights obviously). You will still have plenty of time to use atleast 2 Rune Strikes per Blade Barrier cycle.
If you want to trade damage for reliability, which would be wise in situations where your threat is secured but your survival is not, you can swap out the second Heart Strike with Blood Boil because Blood Boil always puts a Blood Rune on CD even if it misses (the irony of a PvP nerf being beneficial to "game" RE in PvE is not lost on me :P).

How would you effectively use Blood Tap? If you're "forcing" RE procs, Blood Tap becomes tricky.
Because you'd want to use the Death Rune, but using it would cause you to now have a "sleeper" Blood rune. Allowing your RE procs to not be FU...


Assuming you aren't saving Blood Tap for anything specific (which should not be a problem since your Rune Tap CD will be 2-3 secs at worse if you only use Blood Runes to keep up Blade Barrier) then yes, it does get a bit trickier.
It is still not impossible to pull off though since you (generally) know which Blood Rune will be refreshes as Death Rune if both your Blood Runes are cooling down: The first one/left most in the set. And since we know that we can try and create situations where said Rune will be the one that is fully cooling down after being used for a DS whereas the 2nd Rune is close to being refreshed again. From there you go on as usual. You may have to use said converted Death Rune for something else than DS if you don't get another Death Rune to couple it up with and Blade Barrier is close to running out, but that just happens sometimes and it would be a good idea to refresh either Frost Fever with it (if you are responsible for the debuffs), use it on Bone Shield or just Heart Strike as usual.

Since this sounds more complicated on text than it should be (either that or I really suck at explaining things), I made a short video to demonstrate what I mean:

YouTube - Blood Tap fun

(Keep in mind that the goal in the video was to maximize the amount of DSes through RE and that the top left Blood Rune in my UI corrensponds to the left most Blood Rune in UIs that display their Runes in one row.)

- On the first RP dump phase starting at 0:11 I get an uneven number of RE procs so I decide to use Blood Tap at around 0:20. Since the second Blood Rune is fully refreshed I get it on CD first, then BT to pair up the left over Death Rune with the Death Rune I got from BT.
- Same thing happens again at 0:53: Left over Death Rune gets paired up again through BT. I get the second Blood Rune on CD again, then BT and can DS.

In both cases the Death Rune I got from BT are eligible to be refreshed by RE.


Also if anyone got any critique about how to improve said rotation, I am all ears. :)


PS: The trinket you linked is weird. The use effect is obviously useful for magic heavy encounters so you'd expect stamina on the trinket instead of mastery. That said, it is still not a bad trinket, especially since it is a PvP reward AFAIK so you aren't wasting any DKP or Justice/Valor Points to get it (and mastery is still good for DKs). Can't really say more about it until we get to see the encounters in depth though.

#16 Seref

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 07:21 PM

Well lets say you have 1 Blood rune fully charged and one charging, and 1 unpaired Death Rune (from uneven RE procs/etc.):
Bb,xx,xD
And you Blood Tap, it'd then be: BD,xx,xD
You proceed to Death Strike (Bd,xx,xx)

My main concern is this; to keep forcing FU RE procs you'd have to use that 'B' right before the 'd' recharges thus wasting ~10sec of Death Rune use.
And then when it comes time to use the 'D' right before the 'b' recharges (bD,xx,xx), theres a chance for BT to run off thus only equaling to about 1-2 Death Rune uses from Blood Tap.

[edit] And given the minimal difference between HS/BB and the fact that BB debuffs SF, would/could it be viable to just use your Blood Runes to BB instead of HS/BBtodebuff? (Probably stupid, but I'm kind of lazy and don't want my bars clogged up with useless junk.)
Is rebuffing Bone Shield really worth losing half a Death Strike? Because I just pop Bone Shield before pulling and forget about it for the most part.

#17 Tyvi

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Posted 03 December 2010 - 09:14 PM

It can happen that you Blood Tap and DS with an unpaired Death Rune and at some point look at at the scenario you described. To illustrate:

Posted Image

Since the game will not prioritize a Blood Tap'd Death Rune over normal DD or FU pairs you will sit on that Rune after the Death Runes at 3 secs are used for a DS.
But this situation can only happen once during one Blood Tap if you put the 2nd Blood Rune on CD before BTing. Now your point is that doing so puts the Death Rune on a longer CD than it needs to, which is correct. But if you let the the first Blood Rune fully cool down and then BT you will usually bug out your Runes (atleast that's what happens to me - might be addon related, not sure): not only do you get a Blood Rune converted to Death Rune but it also refreshes another random other Rune. And whenever that happens to me the game blocks me from doing anything for a while. Assuming that bug is fixed (or that it just affects me for some reason), I am not sure if your method is better - it's worth considering atleast. If there is a way to keep up Blade Barrier and still be able to RE without proccing a useless Blood Rune, that is. I just do it the other way because getting the top 3 D Runes on CD gives you 3 chances to proc RE and keeps up Blade Barrier much more easily.

As for your other questions:

Bone Shield vs half a Death Strike depends obviously. If you don't need to save the BS for a specific boss ability, you aren't exactly wasting it if your lone Death Rune is not doing anything.

HS vs BB: HS is always better than BB on single target. It should do nearly triple the damage of BB in 359 epic gear and you will still want to HS early in a pull for threat. Use BB for the debuff and only if you want to ensure that your Blade Barrier stays up.

#18 Yörgle

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Posted 04 December 2010 - 08:29 PM

HoW will probably be used more often than every 2/3 minutes, and the "stronger debuff" can be solved through a /cancelaura macro, which you need for Battleshout anyway, even when glyphed.

Actually, you don't need the glyph anymore. If there's a stronger debuff, the spell will "only" grant you 10 PR.

#19 dr_AllCOM3

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Posted 05 December 2010 - 05:03 AM

I've added a Blood Shield display and a DS heal prediction to my rune addon. Maybe you can test it a little bit. It's very hard to get enough damage for a nice fat DS when you're soloing ;).

I calculate the heal when a DS is successfully used, based on the incoming damage in exactly the last 5s.
I do not consider any heal buffs or debuffs so far.
The damage/5s is reset (is that correct?).
Maybe I should make the bar empty for the base heal and increase it from that point.
max( maxHealth*deathStrikeHealPercentBase, damage*deathStrikeHealPercent*( 1+( 3*0.15 ) ) )

I calculate the Blood Shield when a DS is successfully used. There should always proc one.
deathStrikeHeal*masteryRating*bloodShieldPerMasteryRating/100


#20 Mericet

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Posted 05 December 2010 - 05:36 PM

The damage/5s is reset (is that correct?).


If I understand what you're asking, no it's not correct. I just tested by dueling a mage (this was done without improved death strike for simplicity): I took off gear until I had about 25000 health so he would be sure to deal enough damage to get the heal above the minimum amount, which was around 1800. He hit me with 1 fireball for 11000 damage and I immediately used death strike twice in succession. The first healed me for 2200, the second for 2600 (higher due to an ignite ticking in between the hits).

It's tougher to do more complicated tests, but at least it definitely shows using death strike once does not reset your 'damage taken over the last 5 seconds' to 0. It seems like it just uses a sliding sum of damage taken in the previous 5 seconds regardless of what else is going on.




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