Posted 25 January 2009 - 01:13 PM
Honestly, I believe that they have already implemented enough changes to ease the need for DoT timers. It results in perhaps slightly less DPS, but that's the way it should be - the higher the DPS, the tougher it should be to get to that point. Right?
Consider the following priority lists:
1. Corruption during double-trinket proc and all spell buffs/debuffs stacked. Corruption damage is not rechecked when refreshed as a result of Everlasting Affliction, so when you can get an extra 1055 spellpower from your trinkets (assuming IoDS and Dying Curse) and 4-piece T7 proc, an extra 17-20% spellpower and 17-20% crit from caster raid buffs/debuff, and a multiplicative 51% overall damage increase from Haunt, Shadow Embrace and Death's Embrace, you could well be increasing your overall DPS 20% just by manually refreshing your Corruption at the right time.
2. Haunt - This gives by far your best DPS-related debuff, and is a decent nuke while you're at it. Recast it before the debuff breaks every time (it can be done in most situations). This should be what keeps your Corruption up in all but the most unusual of circumstances.
3. Unstable Affliction/Immolate - By casting Unstable Affliction and Immolate in succession, the dots end in time with each other. This set of DoTs will cause the second greatest DPS and are important to keep in the rhythm of your priority. By separating this set with an extra SB the first time, you will be able to increase your Haunt uptime percent.
4. Curse of Agony/Siphon Life - Similarly, with improved Curse of Agony, these two dots last the same period of time, and should be cast together. Also, if cast after UA/Immolate, this will rotate cleanly after every two casts of the UA/Immolate group (unless Haunt interrupts it).
5. Life Tap - When all of your afflictions are up, and you've used enough mana to not fill up entirely with one life tap, cast it (and only once!). This allows your Fel Armor to regen your health as you cover the rest of the buffs (most healers will still overheal you though), as well as procs your T7 4-piece. It's not a bad idea to tap this right before popping your trinket and following through on priority 1, even if you aren't getting mana out of it.
6. Shadow Bolt - When everything is up and you have an extra 5-6 seconds, this is your spam buttion. Know it. Love it. Use it. But know that this spell does less damage per cast than any of your DoTs (even Siphon Life all by itself).
As you can see, Haunt unfortunately breaks up what is otherwise a manageable (I can't call it easy) rotation. If the current priority list results in frustration for you, or you need more flexibility during your fight, consider the following priority list:
2. UA/Imo (cast a Haunt and 1-2 SB after this to ease timing when you first put your DoTs up)
4. LT (once again, if you'd get a couple of extra casts out of it from the extra mana)
The Haunt debuffs will not be able to be counted on at all times, but they will be available consistently enough to keep Corruption running. You may wish in the rotation above to use this macro:
/castsequence reset=4 Haunt, Shadow Bolt, Shadow Bolt
Edited: (I suck at macros, and generally don't use them unless I absolutly need to, so the old one was totally wrong).
This will give you one less button to concern yourself with during the fight... Maybe a new place to put your Soulshatter :-)
On a side note, if you are required to fulfill the 13% spell damage debuff (no Balance Druid or Ebon Plaguebringer DK), this will not be an end-all DPS killer for you. In fact, chances are so long as there are at least two or three other casters in the group, CoE will be a net DPS buff for your group - not to mention you'll have an extra 2 seconds in the minute to cast an extra shadow bolt.
One strategy that I need to test at some point is using CoD instead of CoA. While it requires one less UCD and less attention during DoT rotation, it does not help keep the Molten Core proc up (you already have 3 shadow dots and some Haunt/SBs proccing it, so no big worries there), but more importantly does not benefit from many of the damage-increasing buffs we can apply to CoA. It also results in an extra second of DPS time every two minutes, meaning the resulting rotation from the priority list may oscillate a little more than desirable, perhaps resulting in a missed/clipped DoT. As a result, I theorize that CoA will actually provide more DPS, but I cannot confirm this.
I'm new to the theorycrafting world (this is my first post!), so I am incredibly supportive of any constructive criticism you may offer - or statistic evidence to back this up. Eight buttons (seven with macro) , with two pairs always cast in succession and the third nearly always. A priority list of five sets of abilites is quite manageable, especially given that Destro locks (the nearest comparison) are also rotating a priority list of five sets (CoA, Imo, CB, Inc, Conf/SF*3). And you don't even have to consistently burn shards to do it!