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11-27-2009 @ 4:29PM
Great article. The long and short of effective health is that there is no current content where tanks are dying because they are getting hit too hard by melee swings, which is really all effective health will measure. You don't die on Gormok from his melee. You die from a combination of his melee + the stupid high bleed damage. You die on Vezax because he's designed to kill you if you stand there with no cooldowns while he smacks you for 35K+ every second or so. You die on Sarth from a 70K Flame Breath. None of these is a melee boss. Those days are over, and so are the days of effective health. I for one welcome our new cooldown overlords. It makes tanking much more interesting, although Chill of the Throne is going to put a little bit higher priority on EH over avoidance for physical survivability now.
11-27-2009 @ 4:50PM
"You don't die on Gormok from his melee. You die from a combination of his melee + the stupid high bleed damage."That sentence is self-contradicting, much like the article itself. If you died to a combination of melee and bleed, and since the bleed is unavoidable, then the melee is what finished you off. CD usage is whole different story altogether. It's class/raid dependent and always important regardless of how much EH or avoidance you have.
11-27-2009 @ 5:26PM
To William:Gormok does a crap ton of melee damage, but short of the bleed ability, no geared or experienced tank should die only to that. His melee isn't all that terribly different from the amount of health you'd expect to see lost on the Patchwerk offtanks before you outgear the encounter. It's not burst damage, it's just high damage, and healable damage at that. If a tank is dying to Gormok's melee before the bleed even comes into play, then one of two things is wrong:a). The tank isn't really geared for the encounter, or:b). You don't have a tanking problem on your hands, you've got a healing problem.Now, after the bleed becomes an issue, the raid logs may well show a tank death to Gormok's melee, but it's still Impale indirectly killing the tank, in much the same way that tanks could die to pre-nerf Gurtogg's melee damage, but that's not what was really killing them.
11-27-2009 @ 5:44PM
@AllisonYou are right that clearly a tank shouldn't die "only" to the bleed ability. However, what a tank does die to is the massive spike of damage that occurs when unfavourable RNG lines up 3 of Gormok's abilities occur within 1-2 seconds of each other (Impale DoT + Impale Hit + Melee swing). That's a near instant spike of upwards of 50K HP on a TOC-25 geared tank. The bleed itself is not burst damage, but the combination of his 3 hits together very much is. Since the Impale DoT + Impale Hit are unavoidable, the only way to survive is to have enough HP left to make sure the melee swing doesn't finish off the tank. In essence, it is very much the melee hit that kills the tank, which makes stacking stamina (EH) and/or using CDs mandatory.
11-27-2009 @ 6:38PM
To William:I think you misread that, or that it wasn't otherwise clear (rereading it, I'll just say I wasn't that clear). No tank should be dying solely to Gormok's melee damage, period. If they are, that's a sign that the tank isn't geared for the encounter or that there's something going wrong with the heal team or what have you. A geared and experienced tank on that encounter can die to a combination of Gormok's melee and Impale ticks as you describe, but I think you're undervaluing avoidance somewhat here as well. Decent avoidance isn't necessarily about avoiding that one hit that would otherwise have killed you -- it's about avoiding the chain of hits taken that forms the 50K health/2 second scenario you describe. To say that EH is the *only* means of surviving this is somewhat misleading, when a geared tank doing ToGC-25 is extraordinarily unlikely to be rocking less than 50% avoidance.Where EH comes into play is a scenario Ciderhelm's previously described -- which is to say that over the course of a 3-minute or longer boss fight, the odds of hitting at least one bad avoidance streak are basically 100%. Ideally this doesn't happen in the midst of a nasty Impale tick, but sometimes it will. That's when EH is important, whether it's in the form of what you had walking into the encounter (armor/health, although -- as we've noted -- Impale ignores half of that) or the temporary form it assumes by way of a cooldown.
11-27-2009 @ 6:45PM
You're agreeing with us, William. Yes, it makes CD's mandatory. That's the entire point. The Impale and the bleed from the Impale are unavoidable and the DoT is not affected by armor. The only part of your equation that utilizes effective health is the melee hit and the bad luck of possibly having the Impale land near a melee swing, which is a VERY rare occurrence. When he has 4 stack of Rising Anger, you either have a tank that stacks stamina (not armor, not effective health, but raw stamina) or you blow cooldowns. Regardless of which you choose, the strategy for tank survival in that encounter is not to stack effective health.
11-30-2009 @ 9:19AM
"When he has 4 stack of Rising Anger, you either have a tank that stacks stamina (not armor, not effective health, but raw stamina)"You and Allison are both missing the point of Effective Health, and using the term incorrectly.The true definition of Effective Health is "the amount of raw damage a creature has to deal to kill you." Most mathematical definitions (see Satrina's work for example) have made the assumption that this is physical damage, and formulate their derivations using Armor as the primary mitigation stat. This is because when those derivations were performed in Burning Crusade, physical damage was usually the type of damage that caused spike deaths.However, nothing in the definition of EH says that it needs to be physical damage. I have derived a formula for EH that is valid for ANY type of damage over at maintankadin (which I would gladly link you to if I could, but MT is down at the moment). It is basically a weighted average of the inverse of your mitigation for each type of damage.That means that for a fight with a considerable amount of incoming damage from magical or bleed sources (where armor does nothing), your Effective Health needs to be calculated differently. You still need enough Effective Health to survive the worst-case burst scenario (with or without cooldowns, as appropriate for the fight).Saying that "Effective Health" has to die is somewhat silly, since Effective Health is not a game mechanic. It is a tool that measures survivability, nothing more. The fact that people don't understand the tool, or use it improperly as you have in this article, doesn't make it a bad tool. As an analogy, a hammer doesn't become a bad tool because some people choose to try and use it to drive in a screw. A tape measure doesn't become a bad tool because someone tries to use it to measure the distance between two cities. One has to make sure they're using the tool appropriately and in the right scenarios (for example, EH is a fairly useless tool for Faction Champions).-Theck
11-30-2009 @ 10:33AM
Maintankadin is back up. Here's the link:http://maintankadin.failsafedesign.com/forum/index.php?p=514810&rb_v=viewtopic#p514810
12-01-2009 @ 4:39AM
@Theck:I don't have a problem with effective health, although WHY I don't have a problem with it was mostly addressed in a previous article. I wound up breaking up a very lengthy piece in order to avoid what journalists call the MEGO - My Eyes Glaze Over - effect.As a TL:DR, I have a large problem with how EH is used as an excuse for everything that goes wrong during an encounter, but the concept itself is sound. All of the points you've made in your comment are points that I've made in either the article above, the previous article, or in the comment thread here (e.g EH is not solely impacted by the interaction of armor and health, the original version was calculated for a time where burst physical damage posed a routine threat, etc.), I won't elaborate on this too much apart from saying I agree with you. But I feel obligated to note that the statement "Effective health needs to die" was not intended as a blanket condemnation of the idea, but rather its frequent and just as frequently-erroneous use on the Tanking forums.I'm finishing up this week's Shifting column as I write this (not on EH, a moonkin piece this time out), and when I get a moment I would be very interested to check out what you've written over at Maintankadin.
12-01-2009 @ 9:28AM
Allison,Whether "EH needs to die" was meant as a blanket condemnation or not, that's how it reads. I have read both articles, and I understand your complaint. Unfortunately, while the message is reasonably clear from the article (that you're frustrated with the over-emphasis and misuse of EH on the blizzard forums), the title is doing you a great disservice by suggesting to your readership that you think the either the concept itself or the underlying game mechanics that make it a useful metric are at fault.Perhaps a better title for the article would have been, "Why EH isn't everything," or something similar. In other words, something that more accurately reflects your point rather than misrepresenting it.Furthermore, you make some fundamental errors in both articles that distract from the argument. As another commenter pointed out, you're not even using the proper form of the old EH definition, which was Health / (1 - Mitigation). You've jumped directly to the version that assumes "mitigation = armor." While that may be representative of the type of erroneous uses you see on the Tanking forums, it isn't the correct definition, and gives informed readers the impression that you know little more about what EH means than the posters you're chiding in the article.This also leads to mistakes like this one:"but death knights weren't overpowered in Tier 7 and Tier 8 because they were the highest-HP tank. They were overpowered because they always had a cooldown up to trivialize the high-damage boss attacks that occurred at predictable intervals during the fight."This is *still* an issue of Effective Health. A mitigation cooldown is a temporary increase in effective health. By chaining mitigation cooldowns, a DK was able to have on-demand EH, which was very strong for fights which were patterned with large, fairly predictable damage spikes. The fact of the matter is that they were able to achieve the highest EH of any tank, on demand, exactly when it was needed.In several places, you suggest that because attacks are magical or bleed sources, they don't reward EH stacking. Again, this is a mistake borne out of the incorrect definition of EH. Any time a tank encounters burst damage, it becomes a question of "Do I have enough EH to survive this burst?"In another comment, you said you didn't like how this article came out. I think that the problem is that you're trying to fit too much into one article, and aren't able to do it all justice as a result. I think this article (meaning just "Part 2") would have been stronger if it had been split into two:-one focusing on "This is the *wrong* definition of EH, this is why it's wrong, and here's the right one" -another focusing on how cooldowns and raid buffs interact with EH, how other factors influence tank death as much or more than just having enough passive EH, and showing that this is why the "my class needs more EH" argument falls flat on its face."Part 1" did a decent job of giving the history of tanking balance and how EH was thought up in the first place. But "Part 2" just feels like it's trying to tackle too much content, and doing so insufficiently in the process.
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