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Armilus

guide
Prot Warrior guide by Armilus v2

42 posts in this topic

Threat Abilities

Threat per rage is included in (brackets) beside the ability name. Defensive stance and 5/5 defiance are assumed.

Sunder Armor (25 untalented, 32 with talents)
Sunder armor generates 260 base threat. Modified by defensive stance and 5/5 defiance -> 260 * 1.30 * 1.15 = 388 threat. Sunder armor continues to generate the same amount of threat after the mob has 5 applications of the debuff.

Heroic Strike (NA)
Rank 8 adds 138 damage and a flat 145 threat to your auto attack (157 damage and 175 threat with Rank 9 from AQ). Combined that is 283 base threat.
To get your total threat multiply by 30% for defensive stance and again by 15% for defiance. It comes out to 423 threat per heroic strike.

Heroic Strike replaces an auto attack and does not generate any rage. Since an auto attack generates rage you have to add the rage that would have been generated to the rage cost of heroic strike. In short, a Heroic Strike has lower threat per rage than sunder armor so in any situation where you care about the threat per rage, spend your rage on sunder armor instead of heroic strike. This is why the threat per rage is listed as NA, if you care at all how much threat an ability is generating per rage point, then you don't even want to look at this ability.

When you have plenty of rage and are not concerned with the threat per rage of the ability, then heroic strike is excellent because it can be used at the same time as your other abilities. Since heroic strike has no cooldown, the only restriction on how often it can be used is the speed of your weapon. The ability always adds the same amount of threat so the faster your weapon, the better this ability is.

In order to compare weapon threat based on speed it's easiest to look at the threat per second. Simply divide the total threat from heroic strike by the weapon speed for the total threat per second.

Thunderfury - 1.90 speed -> 423 / 1.9 = 222.632 tps
Alcor's - 1.30 speed -> 423 / 1.3 = 325.385 tps

As you can see, heroic strike will generate 102 more tps with a 1.3 speed weapon than a 1.9 speed weapon.

Shield Slam (45+ increased by 1 for every 13 block value)
Shield slam has a flat +250 threat modifier on top of threat from damage. Shield slam crits can do over 1500 threat. 

This ability has the highest burst threat and is by far your best option for quick agro at the start of a fight. When it comes to threat per rage, Shield Slam is the only ability that sees a large increase on a crit (a heroic strike crit is a lost opportunity for an auto attack crit which actually makes the threat per rage even lower than a hit).

Revenge (63 with rank 5, 71 with rank 6)
Revenge can only be used after you block/dodge/parry. It uses a very low amount of rage and causes a little bit of damage but has 315 bonus threat (355 with Rank 6 from AQ).

This ability has the highest threat per rage so always use it in place of sunder armor when it is active.

Cleave (NA)
Cleave has a flat threat modifier of 100 threat on top of damage caused. The threat is applied to both targets hit by cleave, not just the primary target. Cleave should always be used instead of heroic strike when tanking 2 or more targets. After threat modifiers Cleave adds 197 threat to the primary target and 197 + auto attack threat to the secondary target.

Much like Heroic Strike, Cleave replaces an auto attack and should only be used if you have rage to burn.

Battle Shout
Battle shout causes 55 threat PER party member buffed with battle shout. This results in 411 threat (after stance and talent modifiers) divided among all mobs in combat; however, all party members must be within 20 yards to receive the battleshout buff.

Demoralizing Shout
Demo shout causes a small amount of threat to each target that is debuffed. With 3-4 targets this isn't enough to keep agro off your healer; however, when tanking a large number of mobs, (for example the imps on the way to luci in MC or the goblins in the BWL lab packs) the healing agro is spread among so many mobs that you can keep agro by spamming demo shout. The reason why is because healing threat is divided among all of the targets that the healer is in combat with. That means if you get healed for 4000hp while tanking 10 mobs, each mob is only getting 200 threat from that heal (less if the healer has threat reducing talents/buffs). After 2-3 demo shouts even a big crit heal shouldn't pull agro.

In a 5 man with 1 AOE caster this isn't enough as that one caster will have to do 100% of the damage to kill all of the mobs, which works out to way too much threat (you'd have to stand there spamming demo shout for 5+ minutes just to hold agro until the mobs die). In a raid, we have a lot more AOE casters which means the total threat generated in killing those mobs is divided among many casters.

In short, demo shout can be used to hold aoe agro, but only really in a raid setting.

Bloodrage

Bloodrage gives you 10 rage (15 with talents) and a 10s buff that gives 1 rage every second.

This ability generates a small amount of threat on use and on each tick. If you are an off-tank and have this buff ticking while your raid pulls a boss with lots of adds, they may all head straight for you on the pull. This is the leading cause of bad pulls and boss wipes in MC for many guilds.

On the other hand, if you are tanking a 5man instance it might be a good idea to use blood rage just AFTER pulling as it will add little bit of threat to each mob.

Don't be afraid to use bloodrage in combat if you are low on rage, even if you haven't lost agro yet. Keep in mind that it does damage you slightly so be smart and refrain from using it in combat if your are low on health or the healer is running out of mana.

Mocking Blow

This ability requires battle stance and functions like a mini-taunt. It does not change your threat like taunt but it does force the mob to attack you for 6 seconds. Otherwise the ability causes threat just like any other warrior ability and it does have a threat bonus.

This is another stance dancing ability. A good warrior will be able to quickly stance dance and use mocking blow when taunt is resisted. It does not solve the problem completely but it does buy you time to wait for your taunt coodlown or try to increase your threat above the player who pulled. Unfortunately, most players don't understand what is happening when your taunt is resisted (even if you announce that taunt was resisted in voice chat) and will continue to DPS hard after you use mocking blow. You should be prepared to lose agro as soon as mocking blow runs out.

Edited by Armilus
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Interesting topics about threat and various weapons / procs.

Thunderfury proc

The following information assumes infinite rage and heroic strike spam. On servers using the lower rage generation formulas, this information is really only applicable to Vaelastrasz.


TF is a bit more work to calculate, first we have to break down all the components of the proc that cause threat.

300 Nature damage, primary target -> 300 base threat
Attack speed debuff, primary target -> 92 base threat
NR debuff, all targets hit -> 149 base threat

In total that's 541 base threat on the primary target per proc. Multiplied by defensive stance + defiance -> 541 * 1.3 * 1.15 = 808.80 threat per proc.

Now we need to get a tps estimation in order to compare with alcor's 102tps bonus due to heroic strike.

The easiest way to do this is to spread out the threat from the proc across all attacks that can cause a proc. In short fights this will be wildly inaccurate but in a boss fight it should come out to a pretty close approximation.

We have 2 types of attacks that can proc TF, auto attacks / heroic strikes and instant attacks on the global cooldown, which are sunder armor and revenge. These two sets of attacks do not interact with each other so we'll treat them as two different independent sets and add the tps together at the end.

Auto attack / heroic strike is one attack every 1.9 seconds. TF has a 15% proc chance so let's add 15% of the total threat from the proc to each attack -> 808.80 * 0.15 = 121.32
Now let's account for the 1% resist chance, again, the easiest way is to just factor the resist chance into every proc by reducing the threat per attack by 1% -> 121.32 * .99 = 120.107 threat per attack.
Now we account for the attack speed -> 120.107 / 1.90 = 63.214 threat per second

Now let's look at sunder and revenge. These attacks are on the global cooldown so they occur every 1.5 seconds BUT we are also using some attacks on the gcd that can't proc TF, mainly shield slam. Assuming we use a rotation that is something like this: 0.0s Shield Slam -> 1.5s Revenge -> 3.0s Sunder -> 4.5s Sunder -> 6.0s Shield Slam. We can see that we are getting in 3 attacks that can proc TF every 6 seconds then the rotation restarts. 

3 attacks every 6 seconds is 1 attack every 2 seconds, now we can do the same calculations that we did for auto attacks and heroic strike but using 2.0 as the attack speed instead of 1.9, since the calculations are exactly the same until the last step, let's just do the last step with the new attack speed -> 120.107 / 2.0 = 60.054 threat per second.

In total that is 123.268 tps, ~20 tps higher than a 1.3 speed weapon. 

If you are horde and have access to windfury, then thunderfury is even better. The proc can occur on your extra attacks but windury does nothing for a 1.3 speed weapon.

It shouldn't need to be said but thunderfury is the absolute king when it comes to tanking multiple mobs. The NR debuff adds threat to every target hit by it and each hit by your cleave/WW should be able to proc individually.

Note: Alcor's also has a damaging proc that increases it's threat generation a little bit but it is much lower than 20 tps.

Edited by Armilus
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Will add tanking advice here eventually. Mostly for tanking in 5mans, tanking with early gear and tanking pre-60.

Edited by Armilus
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Will add list of references to other useful threads eventually.

Edited by Armilus
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Imo, focus on some practical tips rather then putting in numbers and theory craft. Guides that look just like one you start writing can be found all over the internet, and to be frank with you I never really payed much attention to all those numbers and yet, I consider my self to be capable tank. Putting in some useful tips rather then focusing on numbers or theory crafting will, first of all, make your guide more unique, and secondly, be much more accessible for new tanks. We already touched on this topic in post made by guy who asked for some tips on tanking trough leveling process, so feel free to copy/paste them in your topic and add anything else that we may have missed, but you feel it's important.

And btw,  nice effort to write all this things down :)

Edited by Elviss
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14 minutes ago, Elviss said:

Imo, focus on some practical tips rather then putting in numbers and theory craft. Guides that look just like one you start writing can be found all over the internet, and to be frank with you I never really payed much attention to all those numbers and yet, I consider my self to be capable tank. Putting in some useful tips rather then focusing on numbers or theory crafting will, first of all, make you guide more unique, and secondly, be much more accessible for new tanks. We already touched on this topic in post made by guy who asked for some tips on tanking trough leveling process, so feel free to copy/paste them in your topic and add anything else that we may have missed, but you feel it's important.

And btw,  nice effort to write ll this things down :)

Ya I was going to add practical tips later. When I wrote this guide on nost there was already a crap load of practical advise but a lot of people were failing to realize when to apply that advise due to a lack of understanding the basic game mechanics. If you understand everything in this guide, you can make your own decisions and don't need the practical advise, that is what I was striving for since tanking is a lot more dynamic than DPS or healing. There is no standard rotation or standard gear set or standard talent spec that is 100% ideal is all situations.

Edited by Armilus
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This was a great read! Thank you so much for taking the time. I actually enjoyed the breaking down of all the numbers, and it gave me a much deeper understanding of warriors than before. I'm looking into making my first ever tank so this was exactly the sort of information I was looking for. For me, understanding the mechanics behind abilities makes me remember how and when to use them better, so for me, this is an all around great thread so far.

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Great post as always.

A few things I think you could do to improve this for Crestfall:-

  • I think the Thunderfury proc should be at 25%, not 15% as listed. 
  • Use one of the second or thread reserved posts to talk about Rage Generation. This will be a key difference on Crestfall. See my post in the Ironfoe thread.
    • Alcor's will not be a viable TPS weapon with this formula, as rage starvation will be massive with Kalgan's rage formula from damage taken. @Darkrasp further expands on this issue in the same thread talking about rage not being supplied through damage from gameobjects or DoTs here. So during beta we can test these TPS weapons and figure it out. At the moment I think you can extract all these extra information from your guide until they are confirmed.
    • TF vs Alcor's won't be close without infinite rage here. It will obviously be TF here. Additionally, we should test Ironfoe/Deathbringer in the beta to compare with TF. Esp with Windfury. 
  • Furthermore to make it more interesting, we can talk about gearing options; migiration & threat gear early content on Crestfall. My optimal tanking sets spreadsheet is quite outdated and it is based on Nost's itemization updates. I already made an updated 1.12 Mage gear calculator so people can make gear sets through menu selections without manual input. It will just be a matter of making a tanking version with Crestfall items whenever the beta is out.
  • Also consumables/aura stacking is something we have to test in beta to figure out the ideal consumables list for Crestfall. 
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Also, request for sticky! It's one of the most comprehensive guide to Prot Warrior ability/weapon mechanics and tanking in general. 

Edited by Walgrave
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3 hours ago, Walgrave said:

Also consumables/aura stacking is something we have to test in beta to figure out the ideal consumables list for Crestfall. 

This!

We're used to have almost everything stacking with everything on many other p-servers, which wasn't the case on Nost. It would be really nice to kn ow the situation in this regard after open beta.

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Good post, stickied.

 

We've been looking into our rage and threat mechanics, and it looks like we're going to have to do some updating to the code in order to get it right.  It's pretty simple stuff, it's just not high priority right now.  When the core systems are done and we're looking at perfecting player classes, this is going to come more to the forefront.

We have rage generation sorted out entirely, that stuff we have very good data for, so we're confident that will be working perfectly by release time.  Threat is a different story, though, and it's one we very much want to get right.  I'd love to see a verified table of all abilities with bonus threat, and the amount of bonus threat they provide.  You say Sunder Armor provides 260 bonus threat.. that is correct for the top rank, but there's no way that is the correct amount across all ranks, and yet I'm struggling to turn up any kind of useful table of bonus threat for lower-rank skills.  We do have a table for this in our database, but I've found it to be incomplete in some cases, and aside from the well-known ranks, we haven't been able to verify the other data we do have.  Anyone happen to know where we could dig up that information?

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On 30/10/2016 at 3:37 PM, Armilus said:

Interesting topics about threat and various weapons / procs.

Thunderfury proc

The following information assumes infinite rage and heroic strike spam. On servers using the lower rage generation formulas, this information is really only applicable to Vaelastrasz.


TF is a bit more work to calculate, first we have to break down all the components of the proc that cause threat.

300 Nature damage, primary target -> 300 base threat
Attack speed debuff, primary target -> 92 base threat
NR debuff, all targets hit -> 149 base threat

In total that's 541 base threat on the primary target per proc. Multiplied by defensive stance + defiance -> 541 * 1.3 * 1.15 = 808.80 threat per proc.

I'm going to nit-pick a little here (sorry :P ) because I saw the same stuff in the Ironfoe thread and it's wrong.

The more we let them go forward like this they start getting thrown around like fact. Same as happened with bad Ironfoe data.

The actual number for TF proc alone as you compute is.

270 * 1.495 + 350 = 753.65

Explanation.

Unless you tank in something other than defensive all your attacks have a 0.9 defensive stance damage modifier.

So 300 * 0.9 = 270.

Secondly if you are using this EJ thread as the source for your TC, you're unintentionally mixing up 2 different versions of threat modifiers (additive vs multiplicative)

The OP doesn't say anywhere which one they use, they just say that with defensive and 5/5 defiance included the extra threat from both the NR debuff and the slow comes out to 350 total (216 + 134).

Then some other guy tries to derive base values by dividing with 1.45 (= the additive version). We don't know which one the OP used but we do know for sure you can't take values produced with the additive version and then go for modified threat using the multiplicative version that you use (1.3 * 1.15 = 1.495).

It is just safer to use the raw data from the source material when dealing with -NR debuff and slow.

Edited by Roadblock
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Alright. I did a lot of digging for Sunder Armor lower ranks. 

It appears all the vanilla guides suggest Rank 5 generating 260 threat points per debuff, including Kenco through KTM. Rank 6 (TBC) sources all report either 300 or 301 per applied debuff.

From there we can try to reverse engineer the formula as the discussion I found below talks about.

Threat scaling through ranks. 

It can be theorized that the threat for sunder armour, no matter ranks, is ~0.58 per armour reduced. You can check this with an easy test:

    Rank 6: 520 armour reduced, 301 threat. [301 / 520 = 0.57884615385] which is ~0.58.
    Rank 5: 450 armour reduced, 261 threat. [261 / 450 = 0.58].

So, the following ranks should be:

    Rank 4: 360 armour reduced. [360 * 0.58 = 208.8] Around 208-210 threat.
    Rank 3: 270 armour reduced. [270 * 0.58 = 156.6] Around 155-157 threat.
    Rank 2: 180 armour reduced. [180 * 0.58 = 104.4] Around 103-104 threat.
    Rank 1: 90 armour reduced. [90 * 0.58 = 52.2] Around 52 threat.

Utarius 2:30, 17 August 2007 (CEST)

One thing I believe we need to avoid is low level "Battle Shout" private server tanking. Any experienced tank leveling on private server will have noticed this anomaly. Rank 6 Battle Shout generates 55 threat at max level per person. Useful for P1 Nefarian adds initial aggro if you are using the tactic of stacking all on one side. 

Say servers lower the threat down by an arbitrary number. Eg. Rank 2 (attained at lvl 12) generates 8 threat per person (1/7th of max rank). That's 40 threat per person on a single target mob at the cost of 10 rage (BS). Threat per rage = 4. While your first rank Sunder Armor as we theorized above does 52 threat at 15 rage. Threat per rage = 3.46.

Not to mention if you pull 2 or 3 mobs, you're evenly splitting that threat between all the mobs. So you're getting even more out of Battle Shout. It's a strange anomaly and difficult to feel out.

Anyway a source on Battle Shout threat for lower ranks is nearly impossible to find, as the sources for threat testing max level rank is rare enough in Vanilla. From my experience, other projects have either have been generating too low threat on lower rank Sunder Armor, or generating too high threat per member on Battle Shout for the correlating rank available for that player level. Both skills rank up nearly at the same level range if you compare.

  • NA | Rank 1 Battle Shout - Level 4 
  • Rank 1 Sunder Armor - Level 10 | Rank 2 Battle Shout - Level 12
  • Rank 2 Sunder Armor - Level 22 | Rank 3 Battle Shout - Level 22
  • Rank 3 Sunder Armor - Level 34 | Rank 4 Battle Shout - Level 32
  • Rank 4 Sunder Armor - Level 46 | Rank 5 Battle Shout - Level 42
  • Rank 5 Sunder Armor - Level 58 | Rank 6 Battle Shout - Level 52
  • NA | Rank 7 Battle Shout - Level 60

Something to balance out, to ensure Threat Per Rage is higher on the Sunder Armor rank than Battle Shout rank for the equivalent low level player.

Edit: Thought about it a little more. If we use max level tanking as a model, BS rank 6 does 411 total threat if all members are within 20 yards, on a single target mob. SA rank 5 meanwhile does 388 (after Warrior stance/talent modifiers), quite equivalent actually. Lower level combat inherently allows for party members to be close to each other thereby creating a more responsive Battle Shout threat than perhaps Sunder does. Interesting thought. 

Max level tanking seems to be different, as Battle Shout is only used for initial aggro on group pulls. This rage formula is going to force people - tanks and DPS  - to play differently, making tanking a lot more distinctive (and budgeted) than other servers. 

As for lower ranks, a derivative approach based on max rank skill threat values should work. For example; Tier 1 - Max rank Shield Slam/Shield Bash/Revenge/Sunder/Battle Shout/Demo than Tier 2 should be the rank below that available, work downwards with the same spell priority being checked using Sunder Armor as a base or another spell with a more accurate reference. 

Edited by Walgrave
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Walgrave and Roadblock.  What would we do without you?  I'm noting all this for later testing.  Thanks for taking the time to go into that for me.

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Were changes made to the amount of threat generated through using battle shout in Burning Crusade compared to Vanilla where it offers smart tactical use?

Edited by dormantoak
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<snip> I'll come to this tomorrow with a clear head.

Edited by Roadblock
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19 hours ago, Roadblock said:

I'm going to nit-pick a little here (sorry :P )

 

Sorry?? For correcting something that is wrong?? Pfffft

 

I went with 300 instead of 270 because every server I've played on did not reduce proc damage with def stance. I may have looked into it at one point but I can't remember. Did you have proof it should reduce it in the ironfoe thread?

The other stuff is interesting. I'm busy the next couple days but I will look at it as soon as I have time and update the guide accordingly.

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On 2016-10-31 at 11:20 AM, Darkrasp said:

Good post, stickied.

 

We've been looking into our rage and threat mechanics, and it looks like we're going to have to do some updating to the code in order to get it right.  It's pretty simple stuff, it's just not high priority right now.  When the core systems are done and we're looking at perfecting player classes, this is going to come more to the forefront.

We have rage generation sorted out entirely, that stuff we have very good data for, so we're confident that will be working perfectly by release time.  Threat is a different story, though, and it's one we very much want to get right.  I'd love to see a verified table of all abilities with bonus threat, and the amount of bonus threat they provide.  You say Sunder Armor provides 260 bonus threat.. that is correct for the top rank, but there's no way that is the correct amount across all ranks, and yet I'm struggling to turn up any kind of useful table of bonus threat for lower-rank skills.  We do have a table for this in our database, but I've found it to be incomplete in some cases, and aside from the well-known ranks, we haven't been able to verify the other data we do have.  Anyone happen to know where we could dig up that information?

I've tried to find info on lower ranks and it's basically impossible. Nobody bothered to test lower ranks in retail.

The best source I've seen for threat data is the KLHT threat meter source but it's incomplete and I have no idea if the lower ranks are accurate.

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10 minutes ago, Armilus said:

I've tried to find info on lower ranks and it's basically impossible. Nobody bothered to test lower ranks in retail.

The best source I've seen for threat data is the KLHT threat meter source but it's incomplete and I have no idea if the lower ranks are accurate.

We have a pretty good idea for various lower rank formulae but personally I'd prefer it's not posted public until server is in closed/open beta.

Edit: Before I'm misunderstood, I'm not trying to prevent anyone from speculating or sharing their findings, I'm just saying I won't do it.

 

Edited by Roadblock
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Got most of them, just Cleave, Heroic Strike, Disarm and Thunderclap left to figure out right now.

Really hung up on Cleave.  I can't figure out a formula that makes sense for it.  Haven't even looked at the other ones yet.

I'll have a closer look at it when I finish assisting Asura with building the aura stack groupings.

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HS and cleave should be the same if I recall correctly.  The base threat values will differ with Heroic Strike being more Threat per second.

Cleave should give a base threat for the 2 mobs hit by it + damage done.  Same as Heroic strike, a base threat for the 1 mob hit + damage done.

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12 minutes ago, Undertanker said:

HS and cleave should be the same if I recall correctly.  The base threat values will differ with Heroic Strike being more Threat per second.

Cleave should give a base threat for the 2 mobs hit by it + damage done.  Same as Heroic strike, a base threat for the 1 mob hit + damage done.

Do you have any proof for this? At least that's not the way it's worked on other servers since when you had a bad tank you could use cleave instead of heroic strike with excess rage in order to not overaggro. Also the tooltip for Heroic Strike explicitly says "and causes a high amount of threat", cleave has no such reference. Other abilities that has a tooltip like this such as mind blast does have an additional threat modifier.

Edited by Adelinemdr
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