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Gearscore and Achievements June 4, 2010

Posted by Bezurk in General, Raiding.
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It’s like Marmite… you love it or you hate it. (Personally, I’m a fan. Of Marmite.) But it makes you wonder: How did we ever manage to play the game pre-3.2ish, and how did we ever manage pre-Wrath, before Achievements?

For me, the obsessiveness over Gearscore is downright annoying. Call me a hypocrite, yes, I do have the addon. But I use it to give a general idea of what a run ‘could’ be like, mostly in a PuG. When I run a raid, I don’t demand a certain level to satisfy egos, due to the fact it is a lie – Gearscore is not a measure of gear, it is an abstract measure of iLvl. Theoretically (though why eludes me) a plate wearer could have 6K Gearscore wearing cloth gemmed for Spirit with enchants for Stamina and Defense. Maybe if it was called ‘Item-level-score-but-only-item-level-don’t-bother-with-enchants-or-gems-Score’ I’d be more sympathetic (how many people would type that for a search?). But none of this is taken into account. Sometimes you’ll find an item with a lower Gearscore is better (cue Darkmoon Card: Greatness) than that of a higher Gearscore.

This brings me onto achievements. Now, when we win Wintergrasp for the first time that day, there’s a lot of ‘LFG VoA 10/25’. Then the raid leaders want an achievement to show you bumbled through a 4-boss dungeon (of which you maybe do 2) and are clearly pro because of this. Frankly, it’s moronic. It’s possible to receive boosts and be carried through raids by people that know what they are doing, but in doing so the guy who has spent weeks learning what to do, or has done it on 5+ other characters, will lose out to the noob who got a boost – all down to an achievement.

Don’t get me wrong – Gearscore and Achievements have their uses, but they should not be abused the way they are. Yes, you wouldn’t take someone with 3K into ICC 25 – they just aren’t geared. But you could probably have got that just by looking at their avatar / health / mana. And Achievements – the novelty ones that reward you for cool stuff are nice, like Loremaster or Master Angler of Azeroth, but again the necessity to get the achievement before you set foot in the instance is downright disgusting. It’s killing the game, and making it less fun. And not much is being done about it.



Caps, caps, caps (but not that kind of CAPS) May 14, 2010

Posted by Bezurk in General, Rogue.
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(EDIT: Armor Pen has been sorted)

Rogues live and die by ’em… Hit caps, Expertise caps, Armor Pen caps (even crit caps if you are stupidly well geared) – why so many? It’s always baffled me that rogues are so dependent on reaching these targets before they can flesh (Forsaken excluded)  out other stats, like Agility and Attack Power. Now, a new 80 Rogue is pretty much screwed trying to reach those – the only vaguely attainable one is the special Hit cap  in the early stages of gearing rogues, although expertise ‘could’ be reached by getting the Trollwoven crafted gear, although it sucks compared to easily available gear now for a lot less effort.

Here’s a run through of all of the various ‘caps’ Rogues need to be aware of:

Hit cap. There’s 3 of these for Rogues:

– The 8% hit cap, which guarantees your specials will hit (or more accurately, not miss, as they can still be dodged / parried without expertise: more on that later). This is 99 hit rating with Precision, and 263 without.

– There’s the 14% cap, which allows your poisons to always hit (they are resisted rather than missing – I don’t know if Spell Penetration affects this, as it lowers spell resists and poisons deal Nature-based damage). This is 315 hit rating with Precision – and is 479 without. Important note: Not only does Precision increase your chance to hit, it also increases poison’s chance to hit.

– Finally there’s the hard cap of 27% – this is 754 hit rating with Precision. In high-end gear it may be possible, but it will ‘gimp’ and neglect other stats so much that this isn’t worth bothering with. Just aim for the poison cap and you will be fine.

Expertise Cap. The soft cap (so you are never dodged) is 27 – however, 26 is also viable as you only leave a 0.06% chance to be dodged. The hard cap is about 56 – but this is assuming you stand in front of your target, which as a good rogue, you will never do, right? So ignore that one. Another note: Combat get 10 Expertise from talents. Assassination doesn’t, so you will need to gear / gem more for Expertise.

Armor Penetration: The Armor Penetration cap (to ignore 100% armor) is 1400. This does include trinket procs and the like, so if you can get something like the Needle-Encrusted Scorpion, which procs for 687 rating (with a ~10% proc chance on a crit, ~50 second internal CD for the number crunchers) means you would need 713 ArP from gems / gear to make up that cap. Currently, it seems that it’s the important one for Combat Rogues as most of their damage is physical (ie not from poisons). Assassination: Ignore this, not much good to you 🙂

Haste: Apparently there is a haste cap of around 32%, but rogues are naturally limited by energy regeneration anyway (as opposed to mana) – but more haste means more energy, via OH procs in Combat (Combat Potency)

Crit cap: This is a funny one. Dinaer at Forever a Noob did a great post explaining this a few months ago.  Crit cap post – This explains it really well, far better than I could put it.

By and large, that covers a rogue’s caps – get your poison cap, your expertise cap, and for the most part you’re sorted.

Raid Leading Appreciation May 11, 2010

Posted by Bezurk in General, Raiding.
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You gotta feel for those raid leaders out there. They put together a raid, willing to take responsibility for the group going a bit pear-shaped. If it does, it all goes crashing down on their heads – if it doesn’t then there’s ‘maybe’ a ‘k thx’ from one or two people (admittedly you get the master looters who ninja the loot and have trade for the next hour or two whining about how they didn’t get their epix, but that’s another matter).

We won Wintergrasp, and oddly there were no VoA groups going (as Hordies on our server it’s rare that we don’t have Tenacity 3+), so I made a 25 man. It all went smoothly, no whiners etc, and people stayed for a 10 man class run, which went well too. Now, only one member that was in both raid offered up a thank you – I don’t expect people to bask in the glory of the raid leader and stroke their mighty E-peen for setting up a raid that lasts a couple of minutes for a lottery on the loot that week, but it did lead me to reflect on how undervalued a good raid leader can be (not that I am one) – it takes a hell of a lot of co-ordination, perseverance and general ‘cojones’ to be willing to take the flak if it all goes wrong. So, maybe, next time, give that lovely raid leader who wasn’t an utter loot-hungry moron a thank you, and appreciate that raid leader (especially in a guild run!).