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Death Knight: Cataclysm Simple Q & A


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#21 Rynok

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 04:53 AM

I'm considering a race change to an actual DPS race since I've now stopped tanking but I'm very undecided right now with all the inaccurate information flying around so figured I'd ask before wasting my money on picking the wrong race.

I've obviously been stuck trying to decide between Orc and Goblin. Since my guild is progressing on Rag Heroic my choice will be mostly dependant on that boss, more specifically the DPS race/check in P3. As you might or might not know you have 135 seconds to burn the boss from ~40% to 10% on Heroic. Which lets you Pillar three times and Blood Fury twice. This is also where most guilds blow Bloodlust (as do we). With that bit of background info I'd like some assistance picking Race. Mind you that racechanging for one boss is a little stupid so if the difference is marginal that would obviously affect my choice. I obviously understand that the Rocket Jump is a little hard to weigh in terms of usefulness.

I've done some napkin maths and the Rocket Barrage just doesn't like that hot to me adding a "whopping" 55k damage over a 16 minute fight? Recent reports say that Goblin is slightly better than Orc but I just don't see how with how little damage Rocket Barrage does (~6k with all procs) how it wins out over Orc...

Is there just stuff that I'm missing? Does the Orc pet racial not work for Ghouls as Frost or do they still get benefit?


CortDK has one of the most recent sims (found here) regarding Goblin and Orc viability as Frost. Both races are equally viable, but Goblin pulls ahead by a few hundred DPS due to Rocket Barrage, the ability to Rocket Jump into a fight just a few seconds early, and the Haste racial.

To answer your question, Orc is superior to Goblin when rolling Unholy, because the Orc racial affects permanent pets, which the Unholy ghoul is, however, the Orc racial does not extend to temporary pets such as Frost ghouls.

#22 Illundai

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 04:57 AM

I did read that post and it's one of the reasons I'm asking really. The only intention I have of going Unholy would be when I get Heroic Sulfuras, but it's something to keep in mind I guess. I figured that the Command racial would benefit non-permanent Ghouls. I swear that they used to? Guess I might've imagined it then.

So in reality it's only Blood Fury and 3 Expertise vs 1% haste and Rocket Barrage/Rocket Jump for Frost. Still a hard choice, I do like to PvP occasionally so I guess Goblin would be a bit more beneficial in that regard ._.

#23 Rynok

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 05:13 AM

I did read that post and it's one of the reasons I'm asking really. The only intention I have of going Unholy would be when I get Heroic Sulfuras, but it's something to keep in mind I guess. I figured that the Command racial would benefit non-permanent Ghouls. I swear that they used to? Guess I might've imagined it then.

So in reality it's only Blood Fury and 3 Expertise vs 1% haste and Rocket Barrage/Rocket Jump for Frost. Still a hard choice, I do like to PvP occasionally so I guess Goblin would be a bit more beneficial in that regard ._.


The prevailing notion seems to be that it's rather difficult to lower your exp rating enough in the current BiS for the 3 exp to truly have much benefit (which, looking at the BiS list, does make some sense).

#24 Boyscout80

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 09:09 PM

I was wondering what the haste rating were for getting extra ticks from our diseases and if there is a point while speccing UH to put some extra stats into mastery as opposed to haste if you can't reach certain haste milestones for the extra disease ticks?

#25 Charybdis

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Posted 27 August 2011 - 10:03 AM

The haste percent needed for each extra tick starts at 5%, then goes up 10% each time. (15, 25, etc) The actual haste rating needed for this will depend on what buffs are up since different sources of haste are multiplicative.

That said, haste's impact on disease ticks is so small it's not discussed at all here. Unholy's list of notable haste benefits is:

Faster rune regen
Faster melee swings
More DC from those faster melee swings thanks to Sudden Doom
More rune regen through DC from Runic Corruption
Higher uptime on Dark Transformation from more DC
Faster Ghoul and Gargoyle strikes

As one of the previous Unholy guides said, "Haste is truly the master stat."

Edit: After the reminder from Malicii, I confirmed with WoL that haste doesn't affect a DK's diseases. My memory is fuzzy on whether it ever did, but given its current behavior it probably didn't. Even if it were to gain extra ticks from haste, the actual damage from diseases is so negligible that haste adding onto it would barely make any difference.

#26 Malicii

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Posted 27 August 2011 - 11:45 AM

Haste does absolutely nothing to the number or frequency of DK disease ticks. They always tick every 3sec no matter what your haste is. The only way to get 'extra ticks' is from Epidemic, which only extends the duration of the debuff and doesn't make them tick any faster.

#27 Nêxxûs

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Posted 29 August 2011 - 07:04 AM

Hi! What is better to enchant for the Back (Uh-DK): [Enchant Cloak - Greater Critical Strike] = +65 crit o. [Enchant Cloak - Greater Speed] = + 23 Haste? I thinking Haste.

#28 krekot

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Posted 29 August 2011 - 01:10 PM

Stay of Execution - Item - World of Warcraft what you think about that trinket? It's good for DK tank or not?

Blood Shield can absorb that damage? Can it absorb magic damage?

Trinket ticks 5 times
2 sec = 4558.4 damage
4 sec = 4558.4 damage
6 sec = 4558.4 damage
8 sec = 4558.4 damage
10 sec = 4558.4 damage

After the effect ends, you take 22792 damage over 10 seconds. It's 40% from 56980 damage absorb.

Trinket absorb 20% of incomming damage up to 56980 and it have 2 min cooldown. How long I will have that effect on me in 10 and 25 raids (boss attack speed)?

#29 Woundheir

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Posted 06 September 2011 - 03:09 PM

My DK is an alt, but I am curious, with haste affecting rune cool-down how does it compare to traditional defensive stats? Faster runes are more Death Strikes and Blood Shields, but I wouldn't know how to even begin theory crafting that.

#30 Asphyxialol

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Posted 06 September 2011 - 03:27 PM

You never want to actively gear for haste as a tank, however outside of hit and expertise it is the most beneficial dps stat for dk tanks. As an example if you had a choice between a crit/mastery weapon and a haste/mastery where the secondary stats are the same value, you'd prefer the haste/mastery.

It's easy to see the vast improvements on DS spamming when you run around in 5 mans in a haste oriented DPS set, but unfortunately it's not optimal for raids.

Typically speaking when gearing your priorities should be:

Enough stamina to survive any foreseeable burst -> mastery -> hit/exp or dodge/parry depending on which route you're taking > dodge/parry or hit/exp depending on which route you decided to take > haste > crit.

Many DKs tanking in high end FL 25m raid guilds have opted for the heavy stamina/hit/exp setup (see etain, otou, or myself for gearing/gemming choices) rather than the heavy mastery/dodge/parry route (see riggnaros as an example) because it's our only real way to combat the burst we are susceptible to, but for T11 content (normal and heroic) and 5 mans it's far from necessary to gem towards stamina and you're best off going with a heavy mastery route.

There is also different gearing choices for 10m vs 25m in FL. 10m bosses hit drastically lower for a single swing and as a result you're able to maximize your survivability through mastery instead of increasing EH via stamina to survive the incoming burst damage. Stargazer (US) and Tyvi (Euro) are armory choices to look at for 10m raiding.

#31 Woundheir

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Posted 06 September 2011 - 08:42 PM

It's easy to see the vast improvements on DS spamming when you run around in 5 mans in a haste oriented DPS set, but unfortunately it's not optimal for raids.

Typically speaking when gearing your priorities should be:

Enough stamina to survive any foreseeable burst -> mastery -> hit/exp or dodge/parry depending on which route you're taking > dodge/parry or hit/exp depending on which route you decided to take > haste > crit.


I understand burst-wise how stam and mastery would be a better defensive stat than haste, but why dodge/parry and how would I compare the defensive values to haste. In other words given a choice between a mastery/haste piece and mastery/dodge piece how would I compare the defensive value of haste and dodge? I'm looking for something to calculate it quantitatively.

Also how is hit making it above dodge/parry in any raid gearing choice, confused on what you mean by that. Threat buffs and all would think you would want all defensive stats.

#32 Asphyxialol

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Posted 06 September 2011 - 09:40 PM

I understand burst-wise how stam and mastery would be a better defensive stat than haste, but why dodge/parry and how would I compare the defensive values to haste. In other words given a choice between a mastery/haste piece and mastery/dodge piece how would I compare the defensive value of haste and dodge? I'm looking for something to calculate it quantitatively.

Also how is hit making it above dodge/parry in any raid gearing choice, confused on what you mean by that. Threat buffs and all would think you would want all defensive stats.

Until the change comes in with landing DS consistently hit/exp is viable (review my armory, otou or etains, all 6/7h dks who actively tank each fight). Avoidance has some severe DR in the higher gear levels and sacrificing ~4% avoidance in favor of a 13% (exp soft cap) to 21% reduction in missrate on DS provides more consistent shields when you need them allowing you to choose how to smooth out your damage.

With 0 hit and 0 expertise you have a miss rate of 28.5% (14% parry, 6.5% dodge, and 8% miss), with 26 expertise (781 rating) you reduce that to a 15.5% chance at the cost of 4.41% avoidance. With hit and parry caps it's a little closer and debatable whether it's worth doing. I'm personally aiming for spell hit cap because I *hate* outbreak missing, and let the other ~2% melee hit kind of float there. For Alysrazor you could always throw on LtS for cap, etc.

This obviously ends up being less than a 4% loss because of how itemization already is in that you're not strictly trading avoidance for expertise/hit and avoidance DRs kicking in to effect (close to 1-2% at our levels).

In terms of haste it's a little trickier, as haste has specific 'breakpoints' with rune regen where it would impact death strike in a significant way and no one has really bothered to figure that out because it's obvious that the amount of avoidance (and most likely mastery) lost to achieve the haste break points would exceed the benefit of haste in the first place. It's fine for 5 mans because you never take enough damage in a single swing to put you remotely in to death category, but on anything that hits hard enough, and especially fast hitting or multi-mob pulls, avoidance will win out (avoidance already wins out on any fight where you can't actively time your DS between the majority of the hits - such as Baleroc).

#33 Panthros

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Posted 08 September 2011 - 09:50 AM

I had a dream: is it possible to equip Scaces of Life Trinquet AND its hc version?

#34 Rahlar

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Posted 08 September 2011 - 10:49 AM

I had a dream: is it possible to equip Scaces of Life Trinquet AND its hc version?


Unique-Equipped: Scales of Life (1)

This has never been possible for any unique equipped item.

#35 VanDante

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 01:45 AM

I am thinking about using an Unholy spec for certain fights in Firelands for the extra raid cooldown, i notice Anti-Magic Zone has around a 38k limit to its absorbtion amount. My question is, does that absorb 75% of all magic damage from a single hit (beyond the 38k) or does it cut off, allowing the rest of the spell to do its damage as normal, for example, would it absorb 75% of a cleave from Majordomo in scorpion form, or would it absorb 38k and let the rest through?

#36 Illundai

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 03:12 AM

If you time it well, then it'll do what you think - absorb 75% of the damage on everyone. This is most probably not the intended behaviour, I guess it's more of a byproduct of latency if anything.

#37 FacelessMinion

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 07:04 PM

I will admit that I am not sure whether this question counts towards the simple or towards the outright moronic... But what would a good and proper sim for estimating DPS be? I have used Rawr for gearing, but it seems to be less than accurate as far as DPS sims go.

#38 Roop

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Posted 14 September 2011 - 01:51 PM

I am trying to look into the % of absorb that Dark Simulacrum does when used on a boss, but seem to be struggling to find any discussions about it. This is from a tanking perspective as used as a damage reduction tool, but also as DPS to trying to minimise the damage taken if I can avoid it.

Has anyone done any work into this? Just asking this before I embark on looking into it simply to find out that someone else beat me to it.

/edited "cause I spell like a retard"

#39 NEloi

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Posted 14 September 2011 - 03:58 PM

I am trying to look into the % of absorb that Dark Simucration does when used on a boss, but seem to be struggling to find any discussions about it. This is from a tanking perspective as used as a damage reduction tool, but also as DPS to trying to minimise the damage taken if I can avoid it.

Has anyone done any work into this? Just asking this before I embark on looking into it simply to find out that someone else beat me to it.

/edited "cause I spell like a retard"


You'll find zero discussions about Dark Simulacrum and the % of absorb because it doesn't say anything about providing an absorb % in its description and not many bosses cast absorb shields that allow you to copy them.

What it says in the tooltip is and I quote "Against nonplayers, only absorbs some harmful spells." maybe this is poorly worded, but what it means is that there will be spells that NPCs do that aren't going to be copied.

#40 tapdov

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Posted 15 September 2011 - 07:09 PM

I will admit that I am not sure whether this question counts towards the simple or towards the outright moronic... But what would a good and proper sim for estimating DPS be? I have used Rawr for gearing, but it seems to be less than accurate as far as DPS sims go.


AFAIK, there is currently no reliable sim or other tool for analyzing DK dps. Which probably explains the lack of any stat weights in the UH thread, and the Frost weights being labeled "preliminary".




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