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Posts with tag dps

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Keep yourself alive

Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Care and Feeding of Warriors, the column dedicated to arms, fury and protection warriors. Despite repeated blows to the head from dragons, demons, Old Gods and whatever that thing over there was, Matthew Rossi will be your host.

One of the most important lessons I was forcibly reminded when killing heroic Yor'sahj this week was that dying makes you useless. Even if you can be given a battle res, that's not only lost damage time for you, it's lost damage or healing time for the person bringing you back from the dead. It means that battle res won't be available for a tank as the fight progresses, it's just a big mess. This was further reinforced by our Ultraxion kill. Killing Ultraxion on heroic means not only does everyone need to hit a minimum DPS threshold of about 33k sustained throughout the fight, they need to do this while performing nearly flawlessly on Hour of Twilight and Fading Light.

Having tanked the past couple of weeks, it was a lesson I needed to relearn. DPS players can't rely on being the target of a dedicated healer -- there's usually two or three healers at most in 25 man raids (and less, perhaps just one in 10's) focusing their attention on the raid as a whole. Even if they break the healing up into assignments and don't deviate, there's still several people at any given time needing the healers attention. While they certainly usually do their best, if we don't help them out we're only hindering ourselves. The days of 'meh, they'll heal me through it' are long gone.

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Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors

Ol' Grumpy and the crushing disappointment of roles

There are no pure DPS classes in World of Warcraft that use two-handed melee weapons to deal damage and only one pure DPS class that can even equip them. There are literally hundreds of two-handed melee weapons in this game. This has always annoyed me, because I love big weapons. I know you know this about me.

One of the reasons I hate the argument that pure DPS classes should have dibs on top DPS weapons is that in order for me to play a character that uses a two-hander, I have no choice but to play a hybrid. In fact, in order to play as melee DPSer at all, I either have to play a rogue (all three rogue trees dual wield small, fast weapons) or a hybrid. Those are my options. If I wanted to play ranged DPS, I could pick from one of three possible pure classes, but if I want to melee, I'm forced to either give up the weapons I enjoy and take up a playstyle I don't like or accept that I will be forced to DPS at a penalty and be expected and/or pressured to tank.

This to me is asking me to pay twice, and it's unacceptable. Last week, Ghostcrawler posted an excellent discussion on class and role that I highly recommend everyone check out, and it seriously has me pondering what design I'd prefer for World of Warcraft and indeed how I feel about classes and roles entirely.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Cataclysm

Retribution paladin DPS broken after realm restarts [Updated]

ret dps
According to several reports, including the official forums, World of Logs, and several of our own staff, retribution paladins are experiencing a bug after tonight's rolling realm restarts. The bug has retribution paladins dealing several times their normal damage, with new records on World of Logs easily exceeding 100,000 DPS on any given Dragon Soul encounter.

The bug appears to be related to Seal of Truth, as it's dealing over 60% of the affected ret paladins' damage, vastly dwarfing all other sources. The bug seems to be affecting PvP and PvE, as there are many reports of retribution paladins being nigh unstoppable in Battlegrounds tonight. One group of retribution paladins toppled Lord Rhyolith in under 15 seconds.

There has been no official word from Blizzard just yet on these developments, although we can be sure that there will be a change deployed to fix this bug as early as possible.

Reminder from the editors: Do keep in mind that abusing things like this is considered exploitation. Blizzard does have the right to ban you for abusing this if you're using it to bypass content à la our old friend Karatechop. Don't make Blizzard's job harder, and don't risk your account.

Update 10:00 a.m. EST Blizzard is aware of the problem and is looking for a way to solve it. They also issue the same warning we did -- don't exploit this.

Zarhym -- Ret Paladin DPS Bug
We're aware of this issue and looking into it right now. It's likely we won't have further updates for you until we're back in the office in the morning PST.

Just as a reminder from the Terms of Use:

C. Rules Related to Game Play.
(i) Using or exploiting errors in design, features which have not been documented, and/or "program bugs" to gain access that is otherwise not available, or to obtain a competitive advantage over other players.




Filed under: Paladin, Bugs

Random raid factors and the high cost of failure

Klepsakovic over at Troll Racials are Overpowered has a thought-provoking post asking how Blizzard's advancing raid model is affecting players and how they relate to each other. In particular, he zeroes in on a point that I think a lot of players sense but never really articulate: Not every player in a raid is going to be equally stressed by a fight, and when the stressed party or parties is randomly determined, things get ugly fast.

Compare this to encounters where the primary difficulty is role-specific or even player-specific. Good DPSers pushed their output to the limit on Patchwerk, healers learned to anticipate damage during Malygos' Vortex while one or two people got good at yanking sparks into the raid, and tanks grew experienced with fast pick-ups on Kael'thas. But the average raid group, even when experienced, probably tripped over and over again on encounters like Teron Gorefiend or Anub'arak. When you can't control who gets targeted by Shadow of Death or Anub'arak's spikes and when the randomness limits the experience that any one player can get ... Well, it's easy to see how certain fights acquire the nightmare moniker.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

5 ways to keep your DPS players happy in 5-man heroics

OK, you can't pretend you didn't see this one coming after the healing and tanking editions. As I may have mentioned, I have less DPS experience than tanking and healing, but from that time in Azeroth, I have gathered that there are things everyone can do to make their DPSers happy bunnies rather than melancholy murlocs. Actually, being a murloc would be pretty cool. One of my GMs does an awesome murloc impression.

So, tanks and healers, and other DPSers, how can you keep your DPS buddies happy?

1. Mark your targets. Tanks, or whoever is experienced, or whoever is taking on that role in the dungeon, mark your targets. Telepathy is not a standard talent in any tree, and while sure, it's possible to click the tank and then use an assist macro, you can easily keybind or add a button to your action bars that marks your target with a skull, a cross, a moon and so on.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

5 ways to keep your healer happy in 5-man heroics

While much of Azeroth has been busy engineering the repeated demise of the big Dee-Dubya, many of us are still running 5-man dungeons. Maybe it's for valor points, maybe it's to hit the ilevel required to take a pop at that dragon, or maybe it's while frantically levelling another character to 85. With every 5-man instance comes a healer, and you really ought to be showing your healer some love.

Before you say Pah! I don't need to do anything to keep my healer happy -- I massively outgear all the 5-man content the game has to offer. This advice is worthless!, spare a thought for those who don't. The new healer who wants to get a look at some Hour of Twilight. The player with bags overflowing with PvP gear to cheat the ilevel requirement. The fresh 85s who are facing these dungeons for the first time. They need this advice, and if you're running with them, you could consider reading it too. And if you think it's not your responsibility to help your healer out now and then, remember: You don't do any DPS when you're dead.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Shifting Perspectives: 4 tips for intermediate ferals

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. Welcome to our feral cat edition, brought to you by Chase Hasbrouck, aka Alaron of The Fluid Druid blog. Let the face clawing begin!

This week, we're going to break away from Mists of Pandaria talent speculation and look more at concrete matters: how to improve your DPS in a raid. Judging from the mail I've received recently, several newer feral players have mastered the basic rotation but are having troubles dominating the meters. Forgive the Cosmopolitan-esque title, but I've compiled four helpful tips to help ferals in their quest for blood, destruction, and nice purples.

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Filed under: (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

State of DPS in Firelands

Patch 4.2 is winding to a close, patch 4.3 is on the PTR, and we've recently seen Ghostcrawler (lead systems developer) making some public comments about DPS balance in the Developer Watercooler -- in particular, discussing the increase of the AP buff for melee classes. All of this makes it a great time to take a look at the state of DPS among all of the specs.

Of course, we don't have nearly as much data as Blizzard has access to; however, we do have better data than ever before. In particular, the best data source we have comes from raiders who upload raid parses to World of Logs, which then makes these tens of thousands of parses available to all of us. Next, we have Raidbots, a site that automatically parses this data for us, letting us very easily sort through those massive numbers of raid parses.

One of the things that I think too many players get caught up on with this data is looking at the rankings -- and I've certainly been guilty of this myself. It's just so easy to look and say "Hey, my class is ranked 10 of the 22 specs." But of course, that's not terribly helpful -- after all, I don't care if I'm ranked 21 if I'm only 50 DPS behind number one.

Join me after the cut as we take a look at a different way of examining the data to see how all the DPS specs are performing in Firelands.

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Filed under: Raiding

Reader UI of the Week: I am Jack's multi-purpose

Each week, WoW Insider and Mathew McCurley bring you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to readerui@wowinsider.com, and follow Mathew on Twitter.

Greetings, Reader UI of the Week fans. Everyone seems to have some sort of food poisoning or stomach problems this week, and I have no idea what is up with that. We have a national stomach epidemic here in the United States. Here's something that won't upset your delicate bodily balance; Jack's smooth and slick user interface setup, centered around grouping, dungeons, and questing.

While I am a raider at heart, my recent obsession has been with players and nonraiding UIs. Not that I think that there is anything wrong with a raiding UI, but as someone who primarily lives in raiding content, it is interesting to look and see what 5-man-focused UIs are built around. With the coming of the Raid Finder in patch 4.3 as an introductory raiding system, more and more players are going to have to adapt their 5-man UI setups to a raiding environment if they want to succeed in taking down the big bosses of the raiding world. Jack's UI is a competent setup that can make the change and stands up on its own two legs.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Is it time to kill pure DPS?

Hi guys, you may remember me from last week when I threw a rock into a hornet's nest. I was frankly blown away by the responses, some of which were very well thought-out, that supported, refuted, or elaborated on the issue of tanking and if it is here to stay or on its last legs. Since I find that kind of discussion valuable, I thought, "Well, I can always find another rock, right?" And so here we are.

The DPS classes in World of Warcraft present us with a conundrum. If we consider the holy trinity of tanking, damage dealing and healing to be a pyramid that the game relies on, then the base of the pyramid is most easily envisioned as cornered by the tanking and healing classes and the apex occupied by the DPSers. The issue is, only four classes can hold up the tanking corner, only four can hold up the healing corner (and two of those classes are also in the tanking corner), and absolutely every single class in the game can stand on the top of the pyramid. This results in a pyramid that's metaphorically heavier on top than at the bottom.

Furthermore, of the game's 10 classes, four of them (the rogue, mage, warlock, and hunter) can only stand at the top. Whether or not they want to do something else is immaterial (although one assumes that they do not, elsewise they might have chosen a different class), because they simply cannot do so -- at least if we continue to visualize the game as based around the tanking/damaging/healing triad. So what to do?

Well, we can get rid of DPS classes entirely.

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Paladin, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warlock, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Death Knight

Is it time to kill tanking?

Please note I said "tanking" and not "tanks." If you know a tank, give him or her a hug. He or she isn't clad in cold metal or an angry bear that will tear off your face because of you; it's those pesky mobs.

The tanking system has long been somewhat problematic in World of Warcraft. While it scales to some degree, from 5-man dungeons to 10-man raids, the scaling falls apart when we get to 25-man raiding, which currently demands about the same amount of tanking as 10-man. You can get through most of Firelands with two tanks, no matter your raid size. Majordomo Staghelm only requires one tank, again, no matter your raid size. This means that the scaling from five to 10 works, but as soon as you go from 10 to 25, instead of needing 2.5 times more tanks, you need no more tanks.

The other problem is simply that there already aren't enough tanks for every 5-man group. When the Call to Arms feature was announced for the Dungeon Finder tool, it was created out of the simple fact that we're not seeing the distribution we'd expect in the playerbase. In order for the Dungeon Finder to work without significant group queues, we would need 20% of the people queuing up to be tanks (1 in 5 = 20%). This is not the case.

People simply don't want the perceived group responsibility of tanking. It's why changes were made to CC mechanics that allow groups to CC on the fly without pulling. It's why Call to Arms exists. And yet, despite both of these changes, tanking was still so unattractive to players that threat itself needed to be redesigned. All of this work to try and get people to tank. Maybe the problem isn't the players here, though. Maybe it's the role.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Death Knight

Reader UI of the Week: Hunting and scaling with Elleyna

Each week, WoW Insider brings you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to readerui@wowinsider.com.

Welcome to Reader UI of the Week, WoW Insider's weekly sojourn into other people's lives by looking through their eyes. I am always looking for more submissions from players, so keep sending those screenshots and emails and you could see your setup on the site. Plus, you get to bask in the wonderful advice of our awesome community in the comments, which is what this is all really about, isn't it? Send those user interfaces to readerui@wowinsider.com today!

This week, we've got a nice, solid hunter UI from Elleyna, who admits to a cluttered bottom screen but keeps the pieces working cleanly. I think that the community can learn a lot from this UI, mostly because I want to promote that lived-in look that is so popular these days with user interfaces and jeans. There is no shame in not being perfect, because the beauty of customizable user interfaces is that they are customizable to our liking. Settling into a UI is uniquely you.

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Reader UI of the Week: Bloom with Skoddie's UI

Each week, WoW Insider brings you a fresh look at reader-submitted UIs as well as Addon Spotlight, which spotlights the latest user interface addons. Have a screenshot of your own UI that you'd like to submit? Send your screenshots along with info on what mods you're using to readerui@wowinsider.com.

Welcome, friends, to another exciting week here at Reader UI of the Week. I am your ever-vigilant host, Mathew McCurley. Before we begin, I wanted to remind everyone about the submission process for sending your Reader UI to be thrust into the spotlight for all readers to see. First, send images, not videos. I appreciate you taking the time to put together a video showing how your UI works, but for the purposes of the column, I do need some screenshots to go along with it. Second, "here's my UI, I hope you like it" is great, but it cannot be the only content you send along. We need more! What do you like about your UI? What was your design goal? Do you have any pieces of the UI that you just can't live without? You don't have to write a novel, I swear.

Other than that, submissions are easy! Big screenshots, please, and your WoW character's name is suitable. If I cannot tell what gender you are from the screenshots or your name, a gender-identifying pronoun will be provided for you at random. Submit your UI to readerui@wowinsider.com!

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Filed under: Add-Ons, Reader UI of the Week

Shifting Perspectives: Tanks, bribes, and player behavior, part 2

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, we are still not sure if we can be bribed, but have reached the conclusion that others might be.

This week we return for the conclusion of our series examining the likely impact of the new Call to Arms system debuting in patch 4.1. If you're looking for last week's article, you'll find that here: Shifting Perspectives: Tanks, bribes, and player behavior.

To summarize the observations and argument of the first article as quickly as possible, Cataclysm returned players to the difficulty of The Burning Crusade instancing model without the benefits that tanks gained from building a reputation as competent players -- namely, the reasonable expectation that groups would cooperate with kill orders and any requests for crowd control. The dungeon finder, arguably a tool better suited to the ease and speed of Wrath of the Lich King heroics, has left tanks in an unfortunate position: They now attempt to lead groups through more difficult content with the unreliable vote kick as their sole defense against obstreperous players. That DPS queue times have soared under the present circumstances shouldn't arrive as a shock.

I'm going to try to explain why Call to Arms may very well result in more tanks queueing for 5-mans through the dungeon finder and who we're likely to see if and/or when this happens.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Death Knight

Shifting Perspectives: Tanks, bribes, and player behavior

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, we are not sure if we can be bribed.

As most of you are probably aware, Blizzard recently announced a new incentive structure for the dungeon finder system called the Call to Arms. In essence, it rewards players for performing what is then the most-needed role in the dungeon finder with a BoA bag containing gold, flasks, and, potentially, mounts and pets.

The Tuesday Shifting column covers the two roles most likely to receive the "goodie bags" -- tanking and healing (I don't think anyone's laboring under the delusion that groups can't get off the ground due to a lack of DPS) -- and the ensuing firestorm on the forums caught my eye. Predictably, players have mixed feelings about the change. Many (I think correctly) blame players' rudeness and uncooperative attitudes for driving off the tank population, but even more are indignant that Blizzard is "bribing" tanks for something they feel should have been addressed by role redesign.

Examine all the arguments in their totality, and I think there's only one real conclusion: I don't believe that Blizzard failed in its effort to make tanking more interesting and enjoyable.

I do believe that developers are struggling to deal with a problem created and driven almost entirely by player behavior. Modern heroics aren't fun, not because the content is bad (it's not) or overtuned (it's fine), but Cataclysm combines parts of The Burning Crusade and Wrath of the Lich King 5-man experience that don't play well with each other. The dungeon finder contributes to these problems, but not in the way that you'd think.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Death Knight

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