Raid Schedule for Next Week

“Saturday night progression we will be SKIPPING Coven and attempting Aggramar. Aka watch the posted videos in discussion and PM a raid leader if you have any questions.” – Zextol

Can I get a hell yeah?

And congrats to Symderella for making Raider this week! You get to be part of the Raid Team page, have more money to spend on repairs, and access to Raider tabs. There are a number of other potential raiders “on deck” for promotions soon, so be sure to keep your attendance up and you’ll get to be part of the team, too!

Weekly Raid Roundup: June 6 – 12

Wednesday: Heroic Farming

Wednesday was a generally successful run. We downed 5 bosses in relatively quick succession with one another before banging our heads against Kin’Garoth. We almost 1-shot High Command due to sheer numbers, but we do still need to manage our bombs better. It gets hectic on the second loop through.

Kin’Garoth, of course, gave us some trouble. DPS need to be smarter about moving sooner. Those assigned to purple add also need to remember to switch to red in the second add phase.

Regarding the Master Loot changes, you can see updates to the Rules & Regulations page with a clarification on Master Loot for tier bosses. We’ve also made a few other changes that retain the heart of the rules, while paring down excess verbiage.

Wednesday Logs

Saturday: Heroic Progression

Kin’Garoth was a big struggle for us again. It’s important for tanks to use proper mitigation  and save cooldowns for those big hits of Forging Strike. Thanks to Grim for taking over as the healer on ball-duty!

Varimathras was a struggle as well. Tank swapping became an issue. Remember, DBM timers are likely to be off – you can’t trust them entirely. Communication with the other tank is crucial.

We ended the night slamming our heads into Coven again. This boss is becoming a combination DPS and RNG check. Please practive Heroic Coven in your downtime!

Raid Lead Comments: Please keep the comms clear. We’ve had 20+ raids multiple times now, so commentary during fights is absolutely problematic. We’re going to start coming down on people who keep talking even when told to be quiet. Tanks need us to be quiet unless it is a Raid Lead making calls! If you are not a Raid Lead, do not make calls or talk over the raid leads unless directed to do so.

Props to Wyte for coming to lend us a hand on heals and for killin’ it in spite of being “undergeared” and not having joined us previously. Thank you to the PUG who put up with our many wipes for so long as well.

We welcomed Tiv as a new Raid Leader and Lunzzul as a new Raider. Congrats to you both!

Saturday Logs

Monday: Alt Night, Lots of New Faces!

Monday was a big raid for us – 23 people! Lots of new or returning faces, which was great to see.

Garothi Normal has Decimation issues, but was otherwise an easy kill. Aggramar and Argus we each wiped once. Agg had an initial “whoopsie” for tanks, but after understanding the mechanic, we took him down easily. Argus wiped us once and we took him down the second time. Raid Lead Comments: please be paying attention to the markers on your head. Match them to the marker on the ground in Phase 2. Please move the buffs in phase 1 to the right, and move blight to the back.

Next we tackled heroic Garothi. Raid Lead Comments: Please move Decimation out of the group. DBM is a great tool, but only if you bother to use it!

We actually had three legendaries drop on Monday. Most notably, Zextol got the Amanthul’s Vision trinket.

Monday Logs

More Info for Raiders

We’ve got a number of new things posted this week on the site to help our raiders!

First, we have a new Raid Attendance management system. Take some time to read about what it means and how we track your attendance for Raider status.

I wrote up an in-depth look into Warcraft Logs for DPS (though I suggest tanks and healers reading it, too!). This will help you determine the proper talents, trinkets, and rotation to increase your output.

We’ve updated the Raiding Rules and Regulations so please take a look.

Finally, we have a few Website Changes that include a new Raiding sub-menu to make the raid-related pages easier to navigate, and added a Roster to show off our illustrious Raiding Team. I will be tweaking these two features for the next several days to improve their use.

Website Changes

Made 2 changes to the website today – one functional, one fashionable.

First, I’ve added a new submenu to all Raid-related pages. The raiding homepage, NEW Raid Team page, Raiding Rules & Regulations page, and the Raid Attendance page are all easily accessed from one-another. When you’re on a non-raid page, the submenu disappears to conserve space.

Second, and more exciting, I’ve added a Roster page. This page has a small badge for each Raid Lead, Raider, and their Alts. Raid Leads have red backgrounds (just like in Discord), Raiders have orange background (like in-game and in Discord), and alts have grey backgrounds.

Different classes have matching color names, avatar border, and ilvl text. Clicking on a character’s image will bring up a full view of their transmog in their class hall. Clicking their name will bring you to their WoW Armory page. Hovering over the items will show you their name, stats, etc.

Now, our Raiders have an extra incentive to maintain their status – and up-and-comers have an extra incentive to keep coming.

(Note: This page may load slowly from time to time as a result of API calls to Blizzard servers. This is normal.)

Over the weekend I updated Uro’s transmog on the About the Ministry of Defense page, and added Telanlan and Foxxiê. They now have access to the site to post content of their own.

I continue to try to push out quality of life changes and add new, useful, and fun features to the website for the guild. If you have an idea or a suggestion, fill out the Feedback form and let me know! Is something broken? Submit a Bug Report!

Warcraft Logs for DPS

Most of the time when we raid, someone ends up running a Warcraft Log (WCL) for us. We’ll paste the link in the #raiding-logs channel and discord, people will glance at their parse number, and move on. But WCL is an amazing tool that can help boost your damage and survivability, if you spend the time to dig around in it. Today I’ll dig into how read the charts to improve your DPS. For Healers and Tanks, you’ll want to pay attention to Method 1 to see how your talents and trinkets stack up with others. Otherwise, feel free to take a nap during today’s class.

Warcraft Logs Basics

When you open up a WCL report, you’ll see something sort of like this. You can click on any fight’s name to see the statistics for it. Let’s investigate Imonar, since he’s a relatively straightforward fight, and is not an easy fight to cheese to pad numbers (we’ll get into how some WCL reports can be misleading later). Click on the Damage Done tab, and scroll down.

Perf% refers to your performance compared to all characters of your class, regardless of ilvl. iLvl% shows how you perform in comparison to those in your ilvl bracket (usually 2-3 ilvls, so 960-962 for example). If your number is orange (95%+), you’re in perfect shape. If you’re purple (75%+), you’re in very good shape. Blue (50%+) is above average. Green (25%-50%) is below average, and grey (<25%) is substandard. Ideally we want people to be purple and up.

How to read your own numbers

Sometimes, looking at the numbers can be frustrating, because you’re not sure what you’re doing wrong or what you can compare it to – doing lots of damage and having grey or green parses can be especially frustrating. Let’s take a look at one of our raiders and see if we can figure out a way to maximize their output (keep in mind, I don’t play any class but druid, so my advice is best taken with a grain of salt into the specifics – but the general info will still be on-point). Let’s tease Lineda today – she gets enough loot drops in a night that it seems only fair 🙂 Click on her name.

Clicking on Lineda’s name will show a graph of HER damage specifically, as well as all her ability casts and procs beneath it. You can see the number of times an ability is cast, the average damage it’s done, crit percent, etc. Her top 3 abilities are Chaos Strike at 20% of her damage, Annihilation at 14% of her damage, and Death Sweep at 11%.

Click on the Summary tab and we’ll get a more in-depth look at Lineda during that fight. Scroll down and we can see her chosen talents and items, stats, and more. There’s other information available as well, but this is what we’ll be focusing on.

OK, so we’ve got all this information on Lineda. But how do we know what can be improved upon?

Easy. We compare it to other Demon Hunters at her level!

Comparing Your Numbers: Method 1

Click the menu button in the upper left. Make sure Antorus, the Burning Throne is selected…look for Imonar, and – opening in a new tab – select the “rankings” button.

Next, make sure you select the proper statistics for other rankings. We want the Heroic boss, for Havoc Demon Hunters, at her ilvl.

The first thing you’ll notice is the top talents, trinkets, and the #1 legendary used by people at this level. That’s good information to keep note of. You’ll want to remember it!

Since we can’t read Korean, and are Horde (LOK’TAR OGAR NO LAME ALLY PARSES ALLOWED), let’s look at Uorokku’s WCL information. He did 2 million DPS – almost twice as much as Lineda. We can see what he’s got for talents and trinkets to the right, but let’s look more closely. Just like before, select his name, and make sure you’re in the Summary tab.

Right off the bat, we can see what the two have in common, and what’s different. Look down at the items. They both have 4-set, so that’s can’t be the discrepancy cause. They both have the same trinkets and the same legendaries. Looks like Linea is doing a lot right so far!

Taking a loot at talents, though, you can see that the first 3 talents are different. Some talents are very dependent on playstyle (for example, as a Druid I take Renewal, even though most people suggest Displacer Beast), where others can change your rotation or strongest abilities. I don’t know Demon Hunters. But seeing a discrepancy like this, you can ask yourself: Is this a defensive talent change? An offensive talent change? Am I hurting my DPS by taking something different in this talent tier? Consider how even a movement ability (like Displacer Beast for druids) might help your DPS by creating less downtime.

Right, let’s see what his Damage Done graph looks like.

Wow, that’s very different! Lineda’s top 3 abilities were Chaos Strike at 20% of her damage, Annihilation at 14% of her damage, and Death Sweep at 11%. Uorokku’s Annihilation is 47% of his damage – 3 times as much damage as his next ability, Chaos Strike. Finally, his third damaging ability is Eye Beam, at 10% of his damage. Lineda cast Annihilation 36 times, whereas Uorokku cast it 118 times.

Generally when something like this happens, it means that your rotation is off. On this fight, Lineda might be best off prioritizing Annihilation as a spender. “But how do I know when I should be casting it? What do I need to change up?”

On the top right-hand side of a WCL report, you’ll see “Tables” “Timelines” “Events” and “Queries”. Click Timelines, and scroll down.

You can see his whole rotation throughout the entire fight! You can then compare it to your own, and see what you’re doing wrong. Maybe you’re using the wrong spender or builder? (Spenders use resource; builders add resource.)

Now, this was all for damage. You can also compare buffs and damage taken this way, but I won’t be getting into that today.

Comparing Your Numbers: Method 2

There’s also another way to compare your numbers. It requires a little less work, and comes with its own advantages and disadvantages.

In the top-right hand corner of a WCL report, you will see a “Compare” option. At the bottom, You can search for “similar” parses. You can decide whether you want them to match the raid size, ilvl, fight length, and more.

This will bring up a whole list of parses, and tell you how much of a match they are to your own parse. You can then click on one of these…

…and, in spite of the language barrier, see about the same results: Annihilation should be cast more frequently. You can dive into this view a lot more as well, but I won’t be covering that as much – it’s very similar to the previous method discussed.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Each Method of Comparison

Comparing yourself to the top overall parser (method 1) isn’t always a good thing. Some parses are easy to cheese. For example, top parses on Hounds and Coven often stack the bosses together to get insane cleave damage. But that’s not exactly useful information for us. So, you’ll want to compare yourself to parses who aren’t doing that – and generally, Method 2 won’t have that issue.

Method 2 has problems where there’s going to be more people who have crappier trinkets, substandard legendaries, and missing 2 or 4 set bonuses. As a result, they may have totally differnt rotations or goals, depending on what your BIS legendaries, trinkets, and 2/4 set bonuses are. They get matched with you because of fight duration, raid size, etc. But it’s good for easily looking at stats to make sure you’re on the right track.

You’ll want to look at the best of the best to see what you should be aiming for in regards to gear fairly often. What are the best legendaries? What are the best trinkets? What talents are the most popular? (Just again, be on the lookout for cheesy suggestions)

Check Yourself or Wreck Yourself

Every fight is different. AoE fights, heavy movement fights, single target fights…they will all require different trinkets, talents, and legendaries. Just because you have perfect gear for Imonar doesn’t mean your setup is perfect for High Command! Check yourself on each fight to see what you can improve. Learn from the best your class has to offer. Join class discords and read their FAQs and resources. There’s a ton of resources available out there. You don’t have to do all the work figuring it out yourself. Be lazy, but be resourceful 🙂

Take it Easy

Chances are, you might have to change up your rotation, talents, or on-use items if you want to be putting out more damage. It’s going to take a while to get used to these changes. Don’t sweat it. Nobody is perfect. Spend some time practicing on dummies in your order halls. If there’s another member of your class & spec in the raids, tag-team with them to share resources and practice skills together.

And as always, I’m happy to help anyone with questions on WCL, how to analyze, and more.

What’s next?

First, I’ve added a new post category on the website: Player Performance. I’ll be adding posts to this category like this lesson and the Potions of Prolonged Power analysis. If you don’t want to follow all the Raid posts or the Announcements, you can still keep an eye on this category for gameplay advice!

Tiv (Foxxie) and I discussed how many in the Discord are using Raidbots, but don’t have up to date crucible information. Keep an eye out for upcoming posts about improving the accuracy of your Raidbots sims, and how to use Pawn strings to figure out stat weights!

I will eventually take the time to dig into Buffs in warcraft logs…but those are a bigger pain in the tail-feathers to read and organize, so that’s for another day. We’ll call that a “201” lesson.

Want to contribute? We’re always looking for it! Not only is there a Member Content page, but I’d love to have other kinds of analysis and information for guild members to enjoy on the site. Get in touch!

Apologies to Lineda for singling her out without her knowledge or consent. Big fluffy feather hugs!

Credit for amazingly cute Boomkin artwork to Divine Tofu

New Raid Attendance Management System

(Author note: This post and the page this post discusses are best viewed on desktop rather than mobile due to the size of the content)

In light of some recent changes and to keep our Raiders better informed, I’ve taken all of the attendance information from May and June and added it to a Raid Attendance page. You can access this right from the Raiding homepage, under the basic rules and to the right of the raid times. This new system has a few bells and whistles, so let’s dive in and see what you can do!

Basic Interface

Attendance

At the top of the page you can select when you would like to see the attendance records. By default, it begins with the start of the raid tier through the present day. The percentage number next to each characters name denotes that person’s overall attendance through the selected date range. Currently, all attendance is logged under one character, rather than per character / per alt. For example, Zextol and Ryzin are logged under Ryzin.

Raid Loot

Beneath the attendance information is a log of all loot received in the current raid tier for all characters, including alts. You can hover over each item to see a Wowhead-esque tooltip. We are unlikely to make much use of this, but it can be useful for tracking what was acquired on a specific raid night, as well as what has been acquired on non-raid nights by members who attend PUGs or LFRs. On a side note, this tracks the final owner of all trades, rather than simply who the item was dropped for.

Player Breakdown

Click on a character’s name in the top of the page to see a more detailed Player Breakdown of attendance. Let’s take a look at our resident Moose Man!

Attendance Stats

On the left you’ll see an up-to-date icon, followed by your attendance stats. These stats are incredibly useful to see at a glance. Remember: 2 weeks of absences is an instant demotion from Raider rank. You need to maintain 66% attendance over a 1-month period to retain Raider status.

Each line in the graph represents a different statistic. The blue line goes to points of your attendance for that raid night. If you were present, you’ll be at the 100 line. If you were absent, you’ll be at 0. If you arrived late or left early, you’ll be at the 50% mark. (Side note: some people who are never absent but sometimes show up late or leave early may have a graph that starts at 40 instead of 0. Be sure to read the left side if you think your graph is incorrect.)

The red line represents your average attendance percentage. This is useful for both you and for Raid Leads to see who has been making progress with their attendance, and see who has been slipping. A person who use to come sporadically but has recently been coming to every raid will have a fast rising red line, while a person who stops showing up will have the opposite effect.

The yellow line represents the raid average for a given raid night. You can see how you compare to the rest of the raiders.

You can hover over each of the lines in the graph to see small dots where attendance has been logged.

Attendance Entries

Beneath the graph you’ll see your attendance date entries. 1.00 means you attended; .50 means you were late or early; 0.00 denotes an absence.

Presently, there’s also a “Dispute” button. I don’t have that option implemented (yet?). It would allow someone to dispute their attendance record for the night, in case I made an error in their entry. At the moment, if you believe that you have an incorrect entry, you should submit a bug report and let me know the date you believe was incorrect. It would help if you had a link to something like this Warcraftlogs calendar to back you up as well. If there is enough interest in implementing a dispute function I will spend the time to do so.

Caveats

I’ve copied over all information from May and June. Attendance records before May are neither counted for nor against you. I am currently not going to mark a person as “absent” until they show up for their first heroic raid (people gearing up on alt nights should not be penalized for not coming to heroic nights twice a week).

For some reason, all dates show as a day after the fact (6/6 shows up as 6/7). Not a big deal, but puzzling. Don’t get hung up over this too much.

If you believe that I have missed logging an alt to your name (it isn’t showing in the loot tables, or I’ve missed your attendance on those days), then you can either submit a bug report on the website, or message me in Discord with that information.

And just in case it wasn’t clear, you do not have to do anything to log your attendance. That is on us (:

Weekly Raid Roundup: May 29 – June 4

Wednesday: Single-Target Boss Runs

Whether by plan or by accident, Wednesday was spent working on single-target bosses we haven’t gotten many kills on.

Imonar the Soulhunter had a late wipe on account of too many dying during the bridge crossings; 3 died before the first one was complete, and too many died on the second crossing. Some people also criss-crossed lasers. By contrast, the second run (and subsequent kill!) had nobody die from either bridge crossing or lasers, so there was much improvement.

Kin’Garoth was more of a struggle. Too many people are not moving fast enough – maybe to Ruiner, maybe away from purple balls, maybe moving their mechanics to the outside edge. Eventually, we had to cull a few people just to get a kill on the boss. Raid Leader Tips: Look around! Be alert! You need to be incredibly cognizant of the location of other raid/party members. Much like Coven, running into one of your allies can lead to both of your deaths from botched mechanics.

Remember, there’s a set timer for when he can and cannot take damage:

0:00: Kin’Garoth Damage
0:30: first add phase
1:10 : Kingaroth open to dmg
2:30: 2nd add phase
3:10: Kin’garoth open to dmg
4:30: 3rd add phase
5:10: Kin’Garoth open to dmg

This means you should use 30 second cooldowns at the start of the boss fight; 1 minute CDs when he opens up to damage after the first adds; 2 minute cooldowns on the first add phase; and 3 minute cooldowns at the second add phase. Alternatively, you could use your 3 minute cooldowns on the first add phase, to have it up for the 3rd add phase. RLs may be revisiting strategies on this boss.

Wednesday’s Warcraft Logs

Saturday: More Coven Practice and Easy Kills

Unfortunately, our planned “hand picked” group had too many absent members, so we ran with a group that included several people we did not anticipate running with and who were not as well prepared for the boss fight (I was also on an unfamiliar computer. RIP my timers and addons). We never progressed past 50% health on the boss. We still have a lot of people dying to avoidable damage. But, there was much better organization on add kills (assuming the RNG wasn’t poor in combination with Storm). We also had 2 people go from being the most killed last week to being some of the least killed, so it shows great improvement and that practice does work. With luck this week we will down the boss.

After it became apparent that there wasn’t going to be any real progress on Coven beyond 50%, we brought our spirits up a bit by doing some quick kills on Eonar and High Command. Eonar was about the cleanest and fastest we’ve ever done it – most mobs didn’t even make it to the tree. High Command was likewise very clean – only one (late) death throughout the whole fight from too much bomb damage.

Raid Lead Comments: if you intend to ever do Heroic Coven with us, you should be practicing Heroic Coven in other groups during the week. Also, we will start running Normal Coven on Mondays so people practice the Normal mechanics.

Saturday’s Warcraft Logs

Monday: Alt Night and Cheevo-Chasing

Monday was a good night all around. There was one wipe the whole night, on Aggramar, from a “whoopsie” tank moment where adds did not get repositioned. Otherwise, clean throughout. This says good things about some of the up-and-comers, as well about the patience and skill from our seasoned raiders. On a side note, alt-night Argus often takes us over 10 minutes. For  a fast kill, we should consider lusting at the beginning of the fight, just to get his HP pool down.

Most interesting, we got the present members a few achievements towards Glory of the Argus Raider. Specifically, we did Worm-Monger, Hounds Good to Me, and Spheres of Influence.

Monday Warcraft Logs (not useful on Garothi or Felhounds)

Wow Audit Spreadsheet

Do you feel like you can’t keep track of your gear, or what your next goal should be? Maybe the Wow Audit Spreadsheet can help. Take a look at this post on another useful tool for Raiders.

Wow Audit Spreadsheet

(Author note: This post and the attached link are best viewed on desktop rather than mobile due to the size of the content)

A few weeks ago, I added a link to the Raid Announcements channel on discord: a Ministry of Defense WoW Audit.

https://wowaudit.com/us/aerie-peak/ministry-of-defense

This is a useful tool for Raiders and Raid Leads alike. I’ll walk through the basics of each sheet.

Summary

The Summary is not really an important page. It’s a neat comparison to see how you stack up with other Raiders on ilvl, artifact traits, and other (generally) inconsequential stats. There is a useful “missing enchants/gems” box in the upper corner that covers all raiders, but we’ll get to that later. The ilvl shown is “all bag items”, not necessarily what you’re wearing.

Overview & Rankings

This is useful for Raid Leads especially, though is easy enough to read for Raiders as well.

At a glance, you can see whether you’re missing any gems or enchants (whoops, time to go enchant my cloak!), what tier pieces you have / are in your bags, and what ilvl your pantheon trinket is. You can also see your ilvl and artifact traits, much like on the Summary page. Raid Leads intend to pay more attention to this on farm / alt nights to see what bosses we should be focusing on. For example, we can tell at a glance that most people have back pieces (High Command) and Chest (Eonar), but not a lot of people have the head piece (Aggramar) or shoulders (Coven). Depending on raid comp, we may decide to forego or nail down specific bosses for tier sets.

Roster

The Roster page is not immediately useful to a guild like ours. In larger raiding guilds, this would be used to more easily pick who will be filling what roles, who should be on what spec / character for good loot rolls, etc.

Single View

This is the most useful page for an individual to view. You’ll see links to your Raider.io score, Warcraft Logs, and more. Next, you get a quick glance at your missing gems and enchants. You also get to see what you have equipped and can follow Wowhead links to each. On the right you’ll see your tier pieces. In the middle, there’s also some need flavor information about your total collected mounts, pets, reputation, etc.

The bottom column, “legendaries owned”, is a bit finicky. Apparently it only tracks legendaries it has seen you wear, so it’s not the most accurate thing. Also, in the column above, the third relic slot can be tricky as well. I do not, in fact, have an 870 relic.

Raids

The last page, Raids, shows how many of each boss you’ve killed in each raid tier and each difficulty. This is useful for tracking what bosses you need the most practice on, or for understanding why you haven’t gotten certain loot drops yet.

Final Thoughts

Just like addons and Warcraft Logs, the Wow Audit is just a tool. It’s up to you to use it strategically. My suggestion would be to check it before raid starts, just to make sure you have all your best bits in place. You can also have a more informed opinion of what bosses you’d like to tackle in a given night.

Also, as a caveat: the audit sheet automatically updates every 3 hours or so from the armory. This means you need to log out and wait a while to see any changes.

Not a part of the WoW Audit? For the most part, only regular raiders are included (regardless of Raider status) because of limited spots. Show up more regularly and you’ll be tracked! Or, remind Quetzie, and she’ll add you, if she’s forgotten.

New Discord bot: Raidbots!

Those of you active on the Discord may have noticed a new channel and feature: a Raidbots bot.

For those unfamiliar, Raidbots is a dps simulation website that runs off of SimulationCraft / SimC. (Sorry, tanks and heals, you’re unsupported at this time.) You can download the SimC addon and run your information in game, then paste the result into the site, for the best results.  You can also compare gear in your bags or compare talents to find out what will output the most DPS on a per-fight basis.

We’ve added this functionality to our Discord server to make simming your dps even easier for you!

Quick Sim

A “quick sim” shows your current DPS in a single-target, no-movement style fight, use the following command:

!sim [yourname]

However, the Raidbots commands can be much more complex, allowing you to test almost anything available on the full site.

Change Fight Style

To test your damage in a fight like Varimathras, you might run the following command:

!sim [yourname] -fs HeavyMovement

In this case, “fs” stands for “fight style”. The above simmed fight style is heavy movement.

There are a ton of different options for fight styles :

Patchwerk: 1 boss, no movement
LightMovement: Infrequent movement – Move 50 yards every 85 seconds
HeavyMovement: Frequent movement – Move 25 yards every 10 seconds
HecticAddCleave: Regular add spawns, frequent movement
CastingPatchwerk: Patchwerk that is always casting, can be useful for simming interrupts
HelterSkelter: Movement every 30 seconds, interrupts every 30 seconds, boss invulnerable every 120 seconds
Ultraxion: [no information given] Beastlord:  [no information given]

Change Boss Count

Lots of fights have more than one boss. To change the boss count, just add the -ec command

!sim [yourname] -ec 2

This spawns a sim with 2 bosses. You can add up to 10 bosses with the “ec” command.

Talent Compare

If you’re not sure how certain talents stack up per-fight, Raidbots can lend you a hand.

Each tier of talents has 3 choices. Going left to right, choose the number of the talent on that tier. In the above image, the talents on the left would be 3133232, while the right would be 3133112.

To sim and compare these talents, you’d use the following command:

!sim [yourname] -ct 3133232 3133112

Compare Items

Let’s say that you get a sweet new drop. But, you’re not sure if it’s better or worse for your damage than your current gear. Or, maybe you have a few items to compare.

First, look up your newfound item on wowhead. Select the correct version of your item using the “Item Versions” dropdown, and then click the “links” button. Select the “SimulationCraft” box, highlight it all, and copy it.

To compare the item to one you’re already wearing:

!sim [yourname] -ci trinket1=acrid_catalyst_injector,id=151955,bonus_id=3610/1472

There are two ways to compare items. The first is on an individual basis: “Is this tinket better than this trinket? Is this shirt better than this shirt?”

You can query both of these at once by using -ci for each item you want to compare:

!sim [yourname] -ci trinket1=acrid_catalyst_injector,id=151955,bonus_id=3610/1472 -ci chest=bearmantle_harness,id=152124,bonus_id=3610/1472

You can also compare sets of items. For example, you can ask “Is this trinket and shirt combination better than my current trinket and shirt combination?” To do this, you separate items with a space only (no additional -ci notation):

!sim [yourname] -ci trinket1=acrid_catalyst_injector,id=151955,bonus_id=3610/1472 chest=bearmantle_harness,id=152124,bonus_id=3610/1472

Multiple Queries at Once

Let’s say I want to run a quick sim to see what sort of damage I can do in a fight like Coven of Shivarra – but then I remember that I don’t have my multi-target talents selected.

No sweat! Choose your correct talents, change the enemy count total, and set the boss fight style.

!sim Quetzie -ct 3133112 -ec 2 -fs HeavyMovement

Crucible Information

The first time you run a sim in the Discord, you may get a little error message (even though the sim still runs):

Notice: No Crucible data available. Run a Quick Sim (https://www.raidbots.com/simbot/quick) on the website using input from the SimC addon to populate Crucible data for your character.”

You may also get a warning instead:

Notice: Armory and Raidbots Crucible data do not match. Run a Quick Sim (https://www.raidbots.com/simbot/quick) on the website using input from the SimC addon to update Crucible data for your character.”

Without the correct Crucible data, your sim damage will be lower than it should be. Run a quick sim on the website to get your Crucible information, and then you’ll be able to sim within Discord until you change your relics.

Raidbots Documentation

Full command list:

Command prefix: !raidbots!rb, or !sim
Character format: region/realm/character
Alternate character format: -z region -r realm -c character

-s-scaling Run a stat weights simulation
-i-iterations Iterations (default: 10,000, options: 5,000–50,000)
-fs-fightstyle Fight style (default: Patchwerk)
-fl-fightlength Fight length (default: 300)
-ec-enemycount Number of Enemies (default: 1)
-v-version SimC version (default: nightly, options: nightly, weekly)
-ptr Run sim using PTR data
-ci-compareitems Add an itemset
-ct-comparetalents Compare a talent set
-rl-resourcelinks Include links to Armory, WCL, etc
-pt-pantheontrinkets Set the number of Pantheon Trinkets in your raid (uses the legendary Aman’Thul’s)

Fight styles: Patchwerk, LightMovement, HeavyMovement, HecticAddCleave, CastingPatchwerk, HelterSkelter, Ultraxion, Beastlord

For more information, including how to set your defaults, check out https://medium.com/raidbots/raidbots-discord-bot-5a342f19809b

A Final Thought

Remember, Raidbots is a simulation. Your numbers may vary. Use your results as a guideline, not a book of law. Not all fights are easily simmable. Run your own Warcraft Logs if you really want to see how your choices stack up.

Weekly Raid Roundup: May 22 – 28

Time for the third installment of our weekly roundup!

Wednesday: Heroic Farming

Notably, this was the first week we 1-shot Varimathras. We went from bashing our faces in with a dozen wipes to a 1-shot in a matter of weeks. Great job, everyone!

Kin’garoth gave us some trouble because people are not paying attention to the positioning of the giant purple orbs, or the location of their explosive circles. Remember, run explosives to the outer edge! Save movement cooldowns for Ruiner+explosives, so that you don’t kill the raid trying to escape.

We gave Coven a few shots, just to get a taste for it, and it went about as well as could be expected.

Wednesday Heroic Logs

Saturday: Coven Practice

Hoo boy. We knew going into this it was gonna be rough. Guys, make sure you’re watching the videos. The Raid Leads can’t stress it enough. It became painfully obvious that some people either have not watched the videos on Coven, or have not watched them in a long time.

Over time, it was clear that our patience and practice was working. We were getting further into the fights, and Storm was causing fewer problems than at the start. In the end, our farthest push was to 42% health.

However, there are quite a few issues. People are not paying attention to themselves or their neighbors when they have Fulminating Pulse around them. This is especially deadly when combined with Storm of Darkness. Please be careful. Storm is also deadly combined with Fury of Golganeth. Don’t just hone in on rushing the adds once the Storm clears!

A trick for Storm: get to a corner. There are usually at least 1-2 circles within quick running range of one of the tanks. Ranged DPS or high mobility classes might want to aim to get to a corner opposite the tanks, so that those Storms don’t get too crowded for other mechanics.

Melee DPS, there is never a reason to be attacking Noura. Attack one of the other two bosses instead. They share a healthpool, and being on top of Noura is too risky.

Tanks had trouble swapping the bosses, causing undue work for not only the other tank, but also healers.

It’s almost a guarantee that you will have to re-talent on this fight compared to other fights, just to get the proper CC. Druids must take Mass Entangle, for example.

If you’re curious how you stack up, here is a graphic showing the time you died on a boss VS the total time spent on the boss:

Pink/low numbers died sooner than yellow/high numbers. Your average is on the left; individual fights are on the right. If you are consistently in the pink zone, you are dying too soon (one or two times may just mean that you got unlucky, or someone else killed you with a bad mechanics. It happens.). You are putting undue stress on healers, wasting battle resses, or simply outputting 0 dps/hps for the duration. Figure out how you need to adapt. Are you not getting to storm quick enough? Are you taking tons of fire damage? Examine the logs. I (Quetzie) would be more than happy to sit down and work with individuals to analyze their combat logs and figure out what is killing them and when.

This is very important:

The Raid Leads have reached a consensus that we will be assigning specific people to specific roles. This is to ensure that we have the best chance of downing this boss. We will also be hand-picking people to sit in or sit out. If you are assigned to a role that you don’t enjoy, or are asked to sit, please take the time to reflect on why it is that you were or were not chosen for a specific role. This is not us “playing favorites”, this is us ensuring the majority of the raid gets AOTC before the deadline. Low DPS, constant early deaths, or other fuckups will cause you to be sat. This is one of the few bosses where fewer people = greater chance of survival, as mechanics get more difficult in a bigger crowd. We may also be prioritizing ranged DPS slots over melee. Practice the fight on your own throughout the week. We can tell who has done a lot of work and who has not!

We are likely to start employing a more strict policy over who is and is not able to come to heroic raiding from here on out. While there are 4-5 bosses we have on farm, the rest we are pushing true progression on, and cannot carry those who simply mess up too many mechanics. 940 is not enough anymore to secure your slot. You must also pull your weight.

Coven Wipefest Logs

Potions and YOU!

I’m going to repost this here, because it’s “part one” of my planned “buff breakdown” analysis to help people improve. We’re starting with one of the easy ones – potions of prolonged power. Check out my writeup and stay tuned for future writeups on how to best manage your buffs and steroids.

Monday: Alt Night

OK guys, I get it. “It’s alt night, who cares!” Well, we care. Please ensure you have Discord, DBM/Big Wigs, etc. And that you not only have DBM, but that you fucking pay attention to it, holy shit you guys. Things like DBM / Big Wigs are great tools, but they’re only great if you actually use their potential. That being said, our only wipe was on Argus at above 95%, so even our lowbies did well. We got lots of tier for lots of people (including some new 2 set bonuses), and even a legendary for kitty Lvana!

Alt Night Logs

Potions and YOU!

One of joys of Raid Leading is number crunching and analysis.

…I promise, Raid Leading IS a joy.

In order to get through Heroic, we need everybody to use every buff, boost, and steroid they’ve got available to them.

Right now, I’m looking at DPS specs and Potion usage (healers and tanks have different needs, though pre-potting is still important). Specifically, I’m tracking Potions of Prolonged Power.

Here is a usage chart for Potion of Prolonged Power on May 12th:

There were a number of DPS that did not use a second potion during the fight, and a few that didn’t always remember to use 1. There are also DPS missing from the chart entirely – those who didn’t use any at all. This is a lot of damage that we are missing!

What Good is a Potion?

“Who cares? How much of a damage difference can a single potion make, anyway?”

I sat in my order hall and spammed Solar Wrath for 1 minute on 1 target dummy. I did a total of 25,318,538 damage. I had 3 trinket procs, but I otherwise did not buff my cast times, damage, etc in any other way.

Next, I popped a Potion of Prolonged Power, and repeated the experiment. I did 49,836,519 damage…and had only 2 trinket procs. I did almost double damage for a full minute just by using a single potion. Now, there were probably a few other factors at play between the two tests, but pure luck and RNG can’t account for a 24 million damage difference between the two! Consider the damage boost if I combine it with well-timed trinket procs, steroid spells, and other buffs available.

Pre-Potting

There is a term you’ll hear us throw around, called pre-potting. Normally, you can only use 1 potion during a given fight/encounter. The potion remains on a permanent cooldown until combat ends. However, there’s a small “cheat” you can use to take advantage of how Blizzard timers work, to get 2 potion uses during a raid fight.

Every raider is required to have DBM, and thus every raider gets the pull timers. (For those that don’t have timers enabled, we do yell out “three!” when the counter hits 3.) This is when you use your first potion. The potion starts to go on cooldown, because you aren’t in combat. This gives you a 57 second bonus on your opener damage. This is your pre-pot, or “pre-fight potion”.

Combat Potting

Knowing when to use your potion during combat (second potion, or “post-pot”) is a little more tricky. I generally find it useful to break down the fight into the following flow chart:

 

Coincidentally, this is also a great flowchart to use when determining if you should use your “steroid” spells and buffs.

Remembering to Use Them

The easiest way I’ve found to remember to use my Potions is to situate them on my bars in a spot close to my other steroids / buffs. As a Troll Boomkin with no on-use trinkets, that looks like this:

Berserking, Celestial Alignment / Incarnation of Elune, and Potion of Prolonged Power are all very close. When I hit one, chances are, I’ll remember to hit the others! (I also have a WeakAura that displays when my buffs are active, just in case I miss something).

Example Potion Usage in a Raid

(ignore percent numbers; those are irrelevant to the chart)

  • On a week with 10 pulls and 6 kills, a “perfect” use of potions would be 16 potions spent. That’s 10 pre-pots and 6 post-pots.
  • An “average” use of potions would be 10-15. Generally, that means 10 pre-pots, and forgetting about the post-pots.
  • Anything less than 10 would be “below average”; they didn’t use all their pre-pots, and probably didn’t use any post-pots.
  • Multiple people weren’t even on the above chart, as they’d used 0 potions at all.

I will be tracking potion usage during Heroics every week, and calling out those who need improvement – or congratulating those who have shown improvement 🙂

Final Thoughts

Don’t stress out about perfect usage if you’re only just starting to use potions. Set yourself a reasonable goal – shoot for half of all pre-pots. Then, the following week, shoot for all pre-pots. The week after that, shoot for all pre-pots and all bloodlust pots…so on and so forth.

Also, feel free to use Potions of the Old War instead of Potions of Prolonged Power, if they’re better for your class. They’re more expensive, though, and most people will be OK using Prolonged Power, especially since the guild will supply any members who need them.

Remember, this is mostly aimed at DPS. Healers and Tanks will all want to pre-pot, but they will know when the boss enters phases for them to use their own potions – usually when they pop big cooldowns during major damage phases, which is usually the opposite of when most DPS will be popping theirs.

Comic credit to kagesatsuki.wordpress.com
Screaming Moonkin “Crit Chicken” credit to twitter.com/jstroopek