Jan 30, 2009

Numbers, Numbers, Numbers

Last night, we cleared Naxxramas in record time and even pulled in a few new achievements. First up was the Arachnid Quarter, and even though the majority of us had already completed Arachnophobia, we did it again without an issue. We then moved on, completed Momma Said Knock You Out and then cleared the rest of the instance, including achieving The Hundred Club without an issue. Next up, we'll either start trying to have some fun 8-manning Naxx or going for some of the more difficult achievements.

We did have some interesting drops though. For the most part, leather, mail and plate dropped. Caster drops were few and far between. However, the Gown of Blaumeux, Cowl of Sheet Lightning, and Heroes' Frostfire Circlet dropped, leading me to have to run some numbers this morning. In the end, I won the Cowl of Sheet Lightning, the Tier 7 head piece went to our wonderful healy druid, Vetarra, and the Gown went to Matnocuido.

I knew the Gown was a slight upgrade, but it was a large upgrade for Matnocuido, so I passed my roll to him, especially after I had already gotten the Cowl of Sheet Lightning and I didn't know if I wanted to break my four piece Tier 7 bonus for the Gown. Which led me to wonder, if the Gown is better than the Tier 7 piece, and the Cowl is better than the Tier 7 piece, but I want to keep my Tier 7 four piece bonus, how do I do it? And that's where the numbers come in.

If you compare the Heroes' Frostfire Circlet and the Gown of Blaumeux to the Cowl of Sheet Lightning paired with the Heroes' Frostfire Robe, the Circlet and Gown come out ahead:

Circlet + Gown = +20 STA, +4 INT, +39 HIT, +11 HST, +11 DMG, -15 MP5, -2 Yellow Sockets.

Assigning values of 1.3 to Spellpower, 0.89 to Crit & Hit, and 0.95 to Haste via the Theorycraft-O-Matic (Hit actually receives a value of 0, but since I can swap Hit and Crit gems equally, I assign the same value to both), the Circlet + Gown give me 25 extra "points."

But in the mean time, the Cowl was a huge upgrade over the Hat of Wintry Doom, giving me 12 "points" though the Gown would have given me 30 "points" over my frostfire robe, but then I'd lose my 5% extra damage on crits via the 4 piece set bonus.

Given that I crit 48% of the time on bosses (from last night's full Naxxramas clear) and my average crit is 8,345, that means that my average four piece tier 7 bonus results in extra damage of 397. I crit 386 times last night, which equals 153,390 extra damage from frostfire bolts alone. Factoring in all my other offensive spells, my 5% extra crit gave me increased damage of 233,464. Considering I did 10,381,794 damage last night, overall, the 5% increased crit damage bonus increases my total damage output by 2.25%. The question now is, what additional combination of spellpower, crit, haste, and hit would allow me to up my damage by 2.25%?

In the end, upgrading to the Cowl of Sheet Lightning and the Gown of Blaumeux delivers: +46 STA, +12 INT, -120 SPI, -94 CRIT, +45 HIT, +107 HST, +16 DMG, +15 MP5, and 2 fewer yellow gems. Using TCOM point values, it's a gain of 35 "points." But is it 2.25% damage? I'm not sure. Throw out stamina, intellect, spirit and mp5. And I lose 94 crit for 45 hit, 107 haste and 16 damage. Given that 107 haste equals 3.2% faster casting, I'm inclined to say that the tradeoff is worth it. If you can cast 3.2% faster, you can do 3.2% more damage - right? Losing the 94 crit though really hurts, but at 1:1 with hit, it's really a loss of 49 crit. With crit at 0.89 and damage at 1.3, the gain of 16 damage offsets 21 crit, so I lose 28 crit total. Now obviously, 107 haste is better than 28 crit. But if 28 crit equates to 26 haste, we have a net gain of 80 haste, or 2.45% faster casting. So running the numbers, it looks as if the Gown + Cowl is better than the pieces of Tier 7.

So now that I have that information in the back of my head, next week when we run Naxx, if the Gown drops, I'm needing it and I'll be set. I'll take the Tier 7 head piece just to have the full set, but I won't use it, so it'd be a purely cosmetic roll, coming after any need or greed rolls.

Next up, tonight we have Malygos. Last night I was lucky enough to win the Key to the Focusing Iris which will turn into the Chain of the Frost Wyrm after completing the quest tonight. I didn't initially think the Chain was that much better than the Necklace, but it's about 28 "points" better with the following stats:

-1 STA, +7 INT, -41 CRIT, +30 HIT, +37 HST, +7 DMG, Blue instead of Red Gem (Boo), +Spellpower instead of +Intellect socket bonus (yay!). However, I'll probably throw a +19 damage red gem in it since the +5 spellpower bonus is outweighed by the +10 you get over a blue gem which only has +9 damage. So in the end, it's just a 4 intellect loss on the socket from the bonus.

But I'm hoping that the new Chain tonight, paired with my Cowl from last night will up my DPS a bit. Also, I haven't been casting Mirror Image at all while raiding. I thought it was a spell in the Arcane tree that I never spec'ed into. But all the time, it's just been sitting there, extra damage for the low cost of a global cooldown. It has now been added to my uber-damage macro and will be cast every time it is up during a boss fight (every 3 minutes).

Jan 25, 2009

2 Days, 2 Titles

On Thursday, our rag-tag bunch of adventurers stepped into Naxxramas looking to clear as much as possible, little did we know, a full clear was within our grasp. Taking about four hours, we cleared the whole place in one night, leaving Friday night open for Sartharion and Malygos. We quickly down Sartharion (after a couple of attempts with one drake up) and then made our way to Malygos.

We had seen Malygos one week before, but only got to the final stage a couple of times. But this week, we had over 3 hours to work on him, and we would not leave without him going down! So after about 5 or 6 wipes, including a couple of tries at his last phase, we realized, we didn't have the stacks working for the last phase and we'd never get him down. So we took a break, stepped outside, and went to practice on the daily quest, Aces High. After a bit of practice there, we stepped back in, revitalized, and ready to go. We had a couple of missteps, but in the end, Maylgos was defeated! And there were quite a few people in our raid who obtained the awesome title, Champion of the Frozen Wastes.

Skip ahead a day and the Lunar Festival had returned to Azeroth. I awoke at 7, ready to go get my coins. After collecting about 40 coins, Aravic and Eleazarjr awoke from their slumber and we set out to rescue the elders in the Northrend dungeons. After four heroic dungeons, I was left to go back to coin collecting. I quickly snapped up the rest of the coins throughout Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms and then looked for a group for some other instances. I found a pick up group going to Nexus and we quickly found the elder in there and I was left with just a couple of elders left. I took a quick side trip to Moonglade where I defeated Omen and bought a nice pant suit. I ported back to Dalaran and quickly found a group for my remaining coins in my wonderful guild. We got the coins, and in just under 12 hours, I was Elder Tiddlywinks.

The next morning, I woke up, started fishing for a sewer rat, and was waiting on the last book I need for Higher Learning to spawn when Rylara asked me if I wanted to go kill C'Thun. Heck yeah, I wanted to kill C'Thun! So I ported to Theramore, flew to Cenarion Hold, and made my way into the Temple of Ahn'Qiraj. We quickly dispatched of C'Thun (even though I died in his stomach), and I was finally able to complete my Classic Raider achievement!

In all, it's been a crazy couple days. Two titles received, Malygos and C'Thun down, and over 230 achievement points. I'm hoping my book spawns soon so I can receive another pet and my weekend will be complete!