Eloquence – Forget It
September 24, 2010 103 Comments
I was originally typing something up on GC’s first blue post of the day concerning Runic Empowerment and GCD capping. Long analysis short, his post was excellent except for the line where he (once again) falsely attributed our GCD problems to haste rating (despite math/simulations showing the opposite and despite it easily being experienced by anyone on beta that even with 0% haste we’re locked).
Unfortunately, I never completed that response because then he made a new post where he basically said that we only get global capped when we get procs (which is true), and that’s ok because it only happens some of the time not all the time (which is only somewhat misleading). You see, his logic is faulty – yes, where RNG is involved you can’t use absolutes. That’s a fact of life. Sometimes we’ll get lucky on procs and get way overcapped. Sometimes we’ll get unlucky and sit for a few seconds twiddling our toes (much more fun then twiddling one’s thumbs, I assure you). Neither situation is the norm, however. Over time, on average, we will get a sufficient amount of procs to use all of our available globals and then some. Period. Extreme situations, such as those mentioned above, don’t skey things much one way or the other over the long run. Kahorie ran some numbers a week or two back using his sim, and was able to show us using 98% of our total GCDs. That’s pretty much as capped as you can be when RNG is involved!. Saying that if you ignore procs you’re not limited, and procs are rng, thus you’re fine because sometimes they won’t happen, is just nonsensical. The vast majority of the time they will happen more than enough for us to cap ourselves.
Anyways, my second entry was much more thorough, but then I had to scrap that one too!
A new beta build has been uncovered, and with it a change which negates half of the above discussion to pointlessness:
- Unholy Presence now reduces the GCD on your abilities by 0.5 sec.
- Improved Icy Talons now increases the melee and ranged attack speed of all party and raid members within 100 yards by 10%. (Down from 20%)
The Improved Icy Talons nerf is relatively meaningless. The same was done to Windfury and the other, similar buffs. Hardly matters; our dps will be balanced all the same regardless of what number this one specific buff lies at. If anything, it just means a slight dps boost when soloing or other scenarios where the buff isn’t present.
That out of the way, it should be pretty obvious that the Unholy Presence change is what’s most interesting and relevant to the topic at hand!
Suffice is to say, this takes care of all of our GCD problems by a safe margin. I could conjure up a spreadsheet and I’m sure Kahorie will update his sim appropriately soon, but it doesn’t take any complex math to know that reducing the GCD by 33% (thus allowing us to fit in 50% more abilities in any specific time frame then before) solves the capping issues handily.
There’s no denying this was the easiest, quickest, most direct solution. But it’s far from a perfect one;
- For one, it doesn’t help Frost, who is suffering as much as Unholy. More specifically, Frost 2H is in a rarely poor spot at the moment – if it’s overcapped without MotFW, you can just picture how it looks with the talent. Unholy has already been pulling ahead of Frost in terms of change from live and overall tree flow, and now that it’s also less flawed… not good. Even if the numbers are equal between the two trees, who would go Frost with the additional headache that is RE, the lack of synergy that is the new KM and the mastery, and the problem that is severe GCD capping? Unholy is just so much better off and, yes, although some of it is certainly subjective, even the objective aspects are heavily favoring it.
- It causes PvP issues. As always, the usual disclaimer that I’m not terribly well versed in this aspect of the game, largely because I just don’t care much for it. But it doesn’t take a gladiator to see how Unholy is shaping up compared to Frost – Desecration verse Chillblains, the ease of grabbing Resilient Infection (or Unholy Blight), the way Necrotic Strike fits into your “rotation”, Anti-magic Zone, pet stun/charge/interrupt, and so on. On top of it, 1 second GCDs? Seems like it will be quite tough to balance it all. Time will tell, I suppose.
- Ghostcrawler has stated in the past that they don’t like lowering the GCD if they can help it. I’ll dig up the blue post for referrence later. It makes me wonder why they went this route – there were other answers, to be sure.
At any rate, it works. It does what we need it to do, for at least one spec. It has faults, sure, but a slightly flawed solution is better than no solution, so I’ll take it!
All in all, I dare say that Unholy is nearing completion (number tweaking aside). It’s more streamlined – you can get all the dps talents you would want (even if you then only have a couple raw utility talents). It’s more synergistic – Sudden Doom, Shadow Infusion, and Dark Transformation just work wonderfully together. It’s more changed the rotation and what have you is totally changed from Wrath. It’s more focused – almost everything feeds into or benefits another aspect of the spec. And now, it has empty GCDs.
It’s pretty much perfect – or as perfect as we can reasonably expect. If I had to name one more change for the tree at this point? Death to Virulence!
Now, here’s to hoping Frost (and Blood) undergo some similarly amazing transformations.