Tip of the Moment: Lucky Charms (aka Target Icons)

I promise that I have an actual non-WoW related post coming one of these days. Overdue for a short anime or book review. I like how all of my posts are either when: I am eating lunch at work, right before I go to bed, or at 2pm. One huge ass trick to making just about every instance smoother is crowd control. Especially important in heroic instances where you can't realistically tank more than one mob at a time (depending on the mob and instance I suppose).

The raid icons make it stupid easy to let individual party members know exactly what spell needs to be applied on what mob. Make sure to define the icons clearly before the run starts and to use them consistently. Only the party/raid leader or promoted raid members are able to use the icons. The icons can be applied on both friendly and unfriendly targets. I think the targeting icons are unbound by default so you will need to hit escape, go into the key-binding options and bind them to a set of unused keys. Otherwise, you can just use the WoW API to make a macro:

[code]/script SetRaidTargetIcon("target", x);[/code]

Where 'x' is a number that corresponds to the following symbols:
0 = Clear
1 = Star
2 = Circle
3 = Diamond
4 = Triangle
5 = Moon
6 = Square
7 = X

Most people for example, denote the skull as "DPS this target." Make sure to change the DPS icon mid fight so your party members know which target to focus on.

10 Raid Guild Application Tips

Edit: June 17th, 2008: What the fuck happened to the formatting? Fixed.

…because guild applicants and guild officers don’t always see eye-to-eye in terms of membership application and evaluation procedures. Raiding guilds take themselves very seriously, perhaps too much so in many cases. If you don't like that, you don't have to apply.

1. Follow directions!
Some guilds have really specific application procedures, read the forum stickies, etc. Here's a protip: How well you follow read and follow directions is often a part of our prospective member evaluation procedure. Also, some guilds like long apps, some like short apps…it really varies.

2. Read the guild documentation
This includes, the guild guidelines, the charter, DKP rules, anything stickied, etc. When you apply to a guild it is assumed that you have read all guild information provided and have agreed to all terms. If you have a question regarding loot rules, guild policies, or whatever, ask an officer for clarification.

3. Read the schedule and raid times
What time zone is this guild in? What times and days do they raid? Can you consistently make all guild events on time and for the entire duration? Can you make a long term commitment? No one likes new members who vanish a week after being ginvited due to real life situations that they "forgot" to mention.

4. Learn about the guild's culture before applying
Some guilds are prudish, some spout sex jokes every 5 seconds, some are composed of adults, some are composed of 12 year olds, some are casual, some are not. Guild officers not only want good decent, but people who will mesh well with preexisting players. Hint hint hint: a guild isn't going to get up and change just because dick jokes make you feel uncomfortable. Deal with it or don't apply.

5. Don't apply or trial for multiple guilds at the same time
I know it may seem more efficient, but this offends many guilds…who will instantly deny you any chance of membership for applying on another site. Remember: Guilds are looking for members who are committed to their guild, not every guild on the server.

6. Don't schedule multiple trials
Basically the same answer as above. I've had people schedule multiple trial runs with multiple guilds at the exact same time and wonder why their application was denied. WTF?

7. Don't make a "copy and paste application"
Most guild sites have a specific form that they wish to be filled out. Use that format, not your own. There are two reasons why: 1. It shows that you can to some extent read and follow instructions, 2. Having all applications in a standard format makes it easier for the officers to read.

8. Spell check
Use properly punctuated English, spell check and make sure that your application isn't one huge block of text. Most guild officers have an instant bias against applications that they are unable to read. If you can't give me the time of day to write a readable application, I'm not likely to give you the time of day for a trial. (By extension, please please don't write Walls of Text. Paragraph = friend).

9. Don't lie
Why do people outright LIE on applications? We can see your gear and spec in the armory, we can determine approximately how much experience you have in certain instances by looking at your rep, and we can also find your REAL guild history as well as interview your former GMs. Honesty, even from people with colorful guild histories, is appreciated.

10. Don't omit information
If there is a question that you can't answer or wish to keep private, just say so. Omitting important information looks suspicious.

2.1 PTR Paladin Changes

Overall threat buff from the talent changes and an increase in damage mitigation in the sense that Holy Shield won’t proc off as easily with 8 charges instead of 4. Nerf to tanking duration. Talents aside, what about reitemizing our gear? WTB more stamina, damage mitigation, and spell damage…NOT int and mana/5. Threat buffs are nice, but threat really isn’t our problem at the moment.

  • The Spiritual Attunement nerf shouldn’t be that much of a problem in raids due to the amount of healing recieved, but I worry a little about our tanking duration in the 5-mans. I have to budget mana as it is…
  • The Improved Holy Shield talent is very nice. More damage means more threat and more charges means that Holy Shield won’t likely expire unless you are fighting a mob that attacks extremely fast.
  • Avenger’s Shield changes are good. Though dead zone elimination is a buff, given the high cooldown, mana cost, and tendency to break nearby CC, how useful will AS be? …and will we have enough mana to cast this with the Spiritual Attunement nerfs.
  • I’m not sure that 5 points is worth 5% more damage from all sources (and aggro for that matter), but then again, deep deep down in the tree, there might not be anything else worth spending 5 points on.
  • Argent Defender: Even with the reduction from 50% to 30%, the threshold increase from 20% to 35% should be nice, need to crunch some numbers to see for sure. It’s still pretty easy to leapfrog though…


Illumination nerf, spell crit has been effectively devalued by 50%. It’s not completely useless, but it’s going to force many healadins (and devs?) to re-examine their healing gear and healing style. Itemization wise, the nerf sucks hard, being a class that’s very much dependant on gear. Are they going to change the stats on T4 and T5? The spell crit on level 70 healing plate items ain’t lookin’ so great at the moment.

Flash of Light duration isn’t that super affected; stacking on mana/5 still means that you can chain FoL and almost never run out of mana. You can’t do that with Holy Light…unless they add UNGODLY amounts of mana/5 on our sets, HL spam duration still depends on getting crits and getting mana back. So, what about being the main healer in heroics? It’s not as if you can heal heroic instances on Flash of Light alone…not with mobs hitting for 2 to 4k on plate.

So again, itemization: Nearly ever paladin is going to have to take a look at their healing set and gearing goal. It’s not a devastating class-ending blow, but it will hurt a lot…

The Vengeance change is interesting. Does it refresh with each crit (in the same way that SoV does)? How does this affect the ideal 2H DPS weapon speed? Slower weapons mean larger crits (3.8 is "ideal" for SoC), but it also means less of a chance to refresh the buff within the 15 second time frame. So, is this a buff, debuff, or sidegrade?


Full Paladin Patch Notes

  • "Ardent Defender" (Protection Talent) now reduces damage taken by 6-30% when below 35% health.
  • "Avenger’s Shield" no longer has a minimum range. It may be used onany target within 30 yards.
  • "Avenger’s Shield": The damage portion of this ability will now be applied even if the victim is immune to snare.
  • "Divine Shield": This ability no longer removes or prevents the "Weakened Soul" debuff.
  • "Eye for an Eye": Some spells did not trigger "Eye for an Eye" correctly. That has been fixed.
  • Fixed some data errors that caused "Seal of Command" and "Seal of Blood" to generate more threat than intended.
  • "Forbearance": It is no longer possible to use a macro to gain the benefit of "Avenging Wrath" and "Divine Shield" at the same time.
  • "Greater Blessing of Kings": The cost for this blessing is now twicethe cost of "Blessing of Kings", instead of a fixed cost of 150.
  • "Greater Blessing of Sanctuary 2": The range on this spell was incorrectly set to 30 yards. It has been changed to 40 yards.
  • "Greater Blessing of Wisdom 3": The range on this spell was incorrectly set to 30 yards. It has been changed to 40 yards.
  • "Hammer of Wrath": Rank 4, damage increased.
  • "Holy Concentration": This talent now affects "Binding Heal".
  • "Illumination": This talent now only gives 50% of the mana cost of the critical heal. It also now returns the correct amount of mana when used with ranks 4 and 5 of "Holy Shock".
  • "Improved Seal of Righteousness": The percentage increase in damagefrom this talent is now applied after all bonuses from items and effects which increase your spell damage.
  • New Protection Talent added: "Improved Holy Shield", 2 ranks: Increases damage caused by "Holy Shield" by 10/20% and increases the number of charges of "Holy Shield" by 2/4.
  • "One-Handed Weapon Specialization" (Protection): Now increases all damage caused by the paladin by 1-5% while a one-handed weapon is equipped.
  • "Seal of Blood": This seal will no longer cause additional chances for weapon procs to trigger.
  • "Seal of Righteousness": This seal will no longer cause additional chances for weapon procs to trigger.
  • "Seal of the Crusader": The rank 7 tooltip has been fixed to read the same as other ranks of this spell.
  • "Spiritual Attunement": First-aid generated healing will no longer trigger this ability. However, "Lifebloom", "Earth Shield", and "Improved Leader of the Pack" will now trigger it correctly. The tooltip has been adjusted to indicate it only works on healing from spells.
  • "Spiritual Attunement": Mana is no longer healed if the paladin is at full health.
  • "Stoicism" (Protection) should now properly affect all magic effects cast by the Paladin and no longer applies double its intended benefit to "Blessing of Might" and "Blessing of Wisdom".
  • "Vengeance" (Retribution Talent) now increases Holy and Physical damage by 1/2/3/4/5% for 15 seconds following a critical hit, but the effect now stacks up to 3 times.
  • Vindicator Aesom at Blood Watch will now correctly train a full range of paladin spells.

The “490 Defense Cap” Clarification

To clarify the following statement that I made regarding the "490 defense cap" in this post:

490 is also the CAP for defense in relation to critical strike mitigation (unless they raise the maximum mob level beyond 73). Tseric was quoted as saying, "At 490 defense, the math caps out.

490 defense is the cap for critical strike mitigation only (confirmed by Tseric on the US WoW boards). You will still get miss, dodge, parry, and block (14.7875 defense rating for 0.25% to miss dodge parry and block, 1% total mitigation/avoidance). You will still benefit from defense past 490. At 490 defense you become uncrittable to any mob in the game. After reaching 490 you want to work towards raising your block% + dodge% + parry% + Miss% to 100% total so that you will be immune to crushing blows.

Block is technically the most efficient way of raising mitigation, but it is also the hardest to obtain since it’s not really found on a whole lot of things or chantable. Dodge is second I would say because it’s raisable via agility as well as +dodge (ratio isn’t that bad either). Dodge is nice because dodging means you recieve no damage. (I need to double check my ratio formulas for tanking stats, don’t think some are correct).

Nostromo n52 Gamepad and WoW

Note: I wrote a more recent article on the Belkin n52te, an updated version of the n52, if anyone is interested in reading a comparison.

It took a about week for me to find the “perfect” WoW button configuration and a week or two more to get really comfortable using the n52 in multiple situations and on multiple characters. Once you pass the adjustment time frame, it really is a great gaming accessory to have, seeing that you can map pretty much every single ability and macro onto your left hand. 

The n52 has 3 rows of buttons (2 rows of 5, 1 row of 4 on the bottom), a D-pad where your thumb sits, a red button above it, a large button below it, and a clickable scroll wheel between the keypad buttons and the D-pad. It also has 3 different shift states (red, blue, green) which can be bound to any button. You can set each shift state to “momentary” (only active while holding the button) or toggle (active until you press the button again). If you aren’t sure what a shift state is or need more information, read the literature on Belkin’s website.

Anyways, I don’t know how useful this post is to anyone, but when I was Googling for information on WoW n52 setups, there wasn’t a whole lot of useful information available. I tried to make my setup as generic as possible to avoid having to tweak settings in the Nostromo software. So swapping ability positions means just swapping where I keep spells on my action bars in game.

Button Configuration
There are basically two ways in which people have the D-pad bound: a. using it to control basic movements or b. using it for shift states (shift, control, alt, and then jump or whatever). I do the former, binding it in this manner: forward, back, strafe left and strafe right (using the mouse to turn of course). Using it to control basic movements is actually what takes the most getting used to, since WASD is the norm. Even if it takes some time to get used to I would recommend binding the D-pad in this way, it will leave more of the keypad buttons open for abilties and shift states.

I have red shift set to momentary bound to the large red button above the D-pad and blue shift on toggle bound to scroll up. Normal (not red or blue) is used for spells and abilities, red is used for the non abilities (the map, social screen, battleground score, bags, etc), blue is bound to the raid icons (aka lucky charms) and other junk.

Shift (top action bar in WoW), alt (self cast), and control (pet bar) are bound to the leftmost keypad buttons on each row. The remaining 11 buttons on the three rows are bound to abilities. I have my most frequently used abilities bound to the middle buttons on the middle row because that is where my fingers naturally rest.

Scroll up is bound to blue, scroll down is bound to the key that switched my action bars in WoW (bar 1 is for frequently used abilities, bar 2 is used for buffs), and scroll click is used for jumping. I have the button on the bottom bound to tab targetting. It seems like it would be a good place to bind jump but it really isn’t since you can’t use the D-pad and press it at the same time (not unless you were born with a second functioning thumb).

End Stuff
Oh by the way: The black hand rest is removable and adjustable; the manual just doesn’t really say how to do it. Hold the n52 firmly on a table and pull the black part straight up, it might require a bit of force. If you have large hands, you can move it down a peg, otherwise just remove it or leave it where it was.

I stated this at the beginning of the post but: the n52 takes some time to get used to, it has a fairly steep learning curve depending on how you choose to bind your keys. Give it some time, it might take a week or two to get used to.

Attached to this post is the .n52 file for my WoW configuration profile if anyone is interested.

Creative X-Fi Fatal1ty FPS

I picked up a new toy for my computer last Friday. I started turning the backgound music in WoW back on because it just sounds absolutely rich and phenomenal in comparison to my old Audigy. Just FYI: The X-Fi Xtreme Gamer is pretty much the same card as the Fata1ty FPS, just $100 cheaper and without the front audio panel and remote. What can I say? I like shiny buttons…

I guess my only major complaint about the card is that the X-Fi uses a shared audio input/output "flexijack" for all non speaker related connections. So if you have multiple devices, a microphone and whatever else, you will probably have to swap them in and out. That isn’t a problem though if you have the front panel.

Word of advice to anyone trying to enable use of the maximum number of sound channels in WoW: It’s disabled by default for some reason. Go into your WoW directory, open the WTF folder, and then open "config.wtf" At the very bottom of the file, add this line:
[code]SET SoundOutputSystem "1"[/code]

Otherwise, if you don’t have a sound card that supports 128 sound channels, keep moving the slider down one tick at a time until you can hear things /shrug. I’m not sure why they aren’t labeled, it’s sort of annoying.

Also, a lot of people seem to be having crackling and popping issues with Creative cards (X-Fi included) and nForce 4 boards. I haven’t had any of these problems yet, knock on wood, but there isn’t a good solution to this problem yet to my knowledge, so it is something to keep in mind if you are thinking of purchasing one.

18 Grouping & Instance PuGing Tips

In an attempt to make PuGs suck less:

  1. Clearly define loot rules before the run starts and stick with them. Nothing creates more drama than loot issues. Don't forget to state rules for: Recipies, BoE epics, BoP epics, resource nodes, and chests.
  2. Don't be greedy, it will drop again. The only thing that people seem to like less than an asshole is a loot whore (or both!). Need is defined as: An item that is a direct upgrade. Something that you (not a guildmate and not a friend) can immediately use.
  3. Class balance: Some of the instances are quite class sensitive. A party of 5 priests isn't going to work very well. Invite smartly.
  4. Repair your gear and buy any regeants or consumables that you need before joining a group.
  5. Make sure that you have enough time to complete the instance before joining or starting a group. In general, set aside 1.5 to 2 hours of consecutive playtime.
  6. Let people know if you need to AFK and for how long. If you have to AFK frequently or for longer than 5-minutes, you probably should have stated so at the beginning or not have joined the group.
  7. Use the raid symbols to mark targets (the lucky charms). For example: Skull = kill, star = sheep, circle = trap, and so forth. Marking everything makes CC heavy runs infinitely better. Don't forget to CLEARLY define what each symbol means ahead of time.
  8. Establish a kill order, use a main assist, or at least change the raid symbols on the fly to key your party members in on what mob to kill next.
  9. Let everyone know what you are doing before you do it.
  10. Don't break CC. Don't DoT the sheep, don't consecrate the traps. Please.
  11. If you haven't done an encounter or are new to the instance let everyone know. If you are the party leader, you might want to ask everyone this question. It's better to tell people than to wipe because you didn't know what to do.
  12. Make sure that everyone knows their role in the party (politely). If it's not bleeding obvious you might want to make sure everyone knows who these people are: Main tank, Off-tank (if needed), Main healer, Assist healer (if needed), Crowd Controller(s).
  13. Play your role appropriately. If you are tanking, do so with a sword and board not dual wield. "I can hold aggro better this way" isn't a valid excuse. If you are the main healer, put on some healing gear and throw some heals out when needed. Letting your party members die because you suddenly decided that going shadowform was more intersting isn't a very good thing to do either.
  14. Know the instance or at least read a summary of the boss fights. Don't be afraid to assert yourself if people need someone to clue them in on what they need to do.
  15. But that said, don't be bossy. No one likes an elitist asshole.
  16. It's probably a good diea if everyone can comprehend enough English (or whatever your server's primary language is) to understand basic commands and explanations. I've had…problems with this issue in the past.
  17. Don't wander off on your own and don't wander ahead of the Main Tank. There are often stealthed mobs, mobs with a large aggro range, or mobs hiding around a corner just waiting to gank a clothy or aggro your entire party.
  18. Don't TOUCH anything. Don't click on anything with the cogwheel mouse icon and don't talk to any NPCs. Doing so might prematurely start a boss encounter.

Above of all, just have fun. This list is just a general guide of my personal opinions, not the holy WoW bible.

Mega Man 2

Mega Man 2 is a futuristic platformer that was released for the NES in 1988. This game is kicks ass, there’s really not much more that I can say (but I will anyways), it’s a classic. 

Though the original Mega Man started the series, it was it’s sequal that popularized it and set the standard for just about every Mega Man game to come. Several improvements were made in Mega Man 2 over it’s predecessor. Most notable: More robot bosses were added, more detailed graphics, energy tanks, and the password system. Mega Man was one of the very few series with an intuitive password system. It was a grid system that involved the placement of red dots, as opposed to writing down a 32 character alphanumeric string (lolz Faxanadu).

Mega Man 2 wasn’t as hard as it’s predecesor, but what it lacked in difficulty it more than made up in awesome level design. Not being frustrating and evil to the point of wanting to hurl your controller through the screen in NES rage isn’t a bad thing though (energy tanks good). It’s reasonably difficult for a notice to average player, but it’s not going to provide you with a Contra level challege. Either way, don’t let that deter you.

The graphics in general look more polished and sylish that it’s predecessor, and adds more distinctivness to the series. The backgrounds in Mega Man 2 are for the colorful and animated without being seizure inducing or distracting. There are a good amount of unique graphics, enough to give each stage a distinct feel. The sprites in this game are also very good. There’s a pretty wide variety of enemies, most of which are creative and well drawn.

Campcom, at least for the games that they made for the NES, set a high bar in terms of sound and music. Mega Man 2 is no exception, each track is memorable and catchy. I would even go as far as to say that it has the best soundtrack of all the Mega Man games. The Wily Fortress 1-2 theme has to be one of my favorite game tracks period.

If I had to make a list of my all time favorite NES games, Mega Man 2 would have to be pretty high up in rank (top 5 at least). It’s still a fun excellent game to play, even now. That’s pretty rare.

Paladin Approximate Threat Generation

Even more WoW math, though I didn’t have time to check it over. I should just move all of of these posts into one large tanking guide, but that’s for another day when I’m bored. I don’t know the threat generation for warriors, but they have plenty of threat guides that list approximated values (I am pretty sure that Wowwiki had one). Our threat values are harder to calculate since they aren’t fixed values. This is pretty much just theorycraft by the way, take it as you wish.

I’ll run up a chart comparing warrior threat generation and paladin threat generation as well as one comparing various weapon speeds/spell damage values…one day in theory :P. This page assumes a 1:1 ratio between each point of holy damage and each point of threat without Righteous Defense. Also assume the following:

  • Weapon speed: 1.8 (…because that is the speed of my weapon)
  • 3/3 Improved Righteous Defense (1.9x threat vs 1.6x)
  • 200 spell damage
  • Average Unmodified Damage: (Base Max Damage + Base Min Damage)/2
  • Recall that all threat modifiers are now multiplicatives as of patch whatever

Judgement of the Crusader at the maximum rank will add up to 190 spell damage. So, just use 190+200 spell damage for the calculations instead of 200 (note to self: make another chart for the JotC modifier). I didn’t list Seal of Vengeance because I don’t really use it often. I find it hard to keep up on most mobs…that or the mobs just DIE before SoV stacks high enough to generate meaningful damage or threat. SoR is much more reliable. That’s just based on my findings/gear/guide though (it’s not like it’s hard for paladins to aggro anymore, power to us!).

As a comparison, an average rank 14 Frostbolt does 655 damage. That’s 655 threat, without talents or aggro-reducing buffs, assuming a 1:1 ratio.

Spell Damage Coefficient Average Unmodified Damage Damage after modifier Threat
Seal of Righteousness 9.2% per 1.0 weapon speed (1-hander) = 9.2*1.8 = 16.56% 78 16.56%*200 + 78 = 111.12 1.9 * 111.12 = 211.128
Judgement of Righteousness 73% 218 73%*200 + 218 = 364 1.9 * 364 = 691.6
Holy Shield (35% additional threat per block) 20% (5% per block) 155 per block 5%*200 + 155 = 165 per block 1.9 * 1.35 * 165 = 423.225 per block
Consecration 95% 598 95%*200 + 598 = 788 total (98.5 per tick) 788 * 1.9 = 1497.2 (187.15 per tick)
Avenger’s Shield 10% 548 10%*200 + 548 = 568 (per target) 1.9 * 568 = 1079.2 (per target)

The Attack Outcome Table & Damage Mitigation

Edit 11/7/07: This page is a little old and confusing. Updating it with the 2.3 changes and what not at some point.

Assumed Information
When I say defense by the way, I am talking about defense skill not defense rating. The same goes for block (block value increases the amount you block, block rating increases the frequency). Assume that all statistics on this page are calculated for a level 70 player with maxed out skills against a level 73 mob. This page is only relevant for white damage.

  • Player Weapon Skill: Level * 5 = 350
  • Player Defense Skill: Level * 5 = 350
  • Boss Mob Weapon Skill: 365
  • Boss Mob Defense Skill: 365
  • Critical Hit: Against a player with a defense rating equal to the mob’s weapon skill (350 vs 350), the mob has a 5% chance to crit.
  • Crushing Blow: Level difference * 5 = (73 – 70) * 5 = 15

The Attack Outcome Table
When a mob hits you there are 7 possible outcomes: Miss, parry, dodge & block. All of these items are mutually exclusive, meaning that you can either block OR parry OR take a crit. You can never block crits, parry crushing blows, etc. For the sake of organization, I’ve separated these outcomes into two categories:

Avoidance/Mitigation: Miss, parry, dodge & block – ways that you can mitigate or completely avoid attacks.
Actual Mob Hits: Crits, crushing blows, normal hits – types of attacks that you can receive if they are not avoided or mitigated.

The green items are good: Green outcomes that mean you have either avoided or reduced the damage of an attack. The red ones are bad: Red outcomes that mean you have either taken a hit from the mob that either does normal damage or increased damage. Ignore Critical Hits for now and assume that it’s at 0%. Crits are reduced via defense, (at 490 defense you are uncrittable) I will explain that below.

The table is calculated in this exact order. So when you make the green items larger, the red items on the bottom get “pushed off” of the table, starting with Normal Hits. When all of the Normal Hits get pushed off, Crushing Blows will start to get pushed off. Ultimately, your goal is to increase the green items to the point where there are no red left. That means that ALL attacks against you will either be misses, parries, dodges, or blocks.

  Possible attack out comes (against lvl 70 player by lvl 73 mob)
Miss: Base 5% + 0.04% * (Your Defense – 365)
Parry: (see your character stat window)
Dodge: (see your character stat window)
Block: (see your character stat window)
Actual Mob Hits
Critical Hit: 5% – (0.04% * (Player Defense – Mob Weapon Skill))
Crushing Blow: 15%
Normal Hit: Whatever is left, 100 – (Miss + Parry + Dodge + Block + Crit + Crushing

Attack Table Keynotes:

  • The entire table must add up to exactly 100% at all times. So, if your total Avoidance/Mitigation is 70%, Actual Mob Hits will be 30%
  • All items on this table are mutually exclusive, meaning that for example, a block can never be a critical hit and so on.
  • Furthermore, the outcomes are calculated in this exact order: Miss, parry, dodge, block, critical hit, crushing blow, normal hit. So, even if you increase your Avoidance/Mitigation to 80% and decrease Actual Mob Hits to 20% (let’s just suppose that the mob has 0% to crit you), your chance to receive a crushing blow will still be 15%.
  • In order to eliminate crushing blows completely off of the table, you will need to completely eliminate the mob’s chance for an unmitigated and unavoided hit.
  • Your goal, as a raid tank, should be to increase your total Avoidance/Mitigation to 102.4%.


The 1-Roll Theory
The current theory is that, the server generates a single random number, then compares it against the hit table to determine the attack outcome (there are literally tomes of speculation and theorizing on this topic, but that’s not what this guide is for). So with this information, we can construct an outcome table for our fictitious tank:

Timmy the Tank’s stats
Timmy the Tank’s
attack outcome table
(server side)
Miss: 10% 0 to 9
Parry: 20% 10 to 29
Dodge: 20% 30 to 49
Block: 20% 50 to 69
Crit: 5% 70 to 74
Crushing: 15% 75 to 89
Normal: 10% 90 to 99

Explanation: A (level 73) mob attacks Timmy, in doing so the server “rolls” one random number between 0 and 99 in order to determine how Timmy responds to the attack. If the server generates a 52 Timmy blocks, if the server generates a 78 Timmy receives a crushing blow, and so on.


Mitigating Critical Strikes
Every point of defense increases your critical strike mitigation by 0.04%. So, against a level 73 mob, 490 defense will render you immune to critical strikes. That would be: Base 350 + 15 (to compensate for the 3 level difference) + 125 (to compensate for the mob’s base 5% crit chance).

490 is also the CAP for defense in relation to critical strike mitigation (unless they raise the maximum mob level beyond 73). Tseric was quoted as saying, “At 490 defense, the math caps out. ” What this means is that: Once you achieve 490, Defense will not reduce critical strikes any further. It will though, still increase your miss, parry, dodge, and block chance.

Resilience also decreases crit chance as well as crit amount, but it’s a PvP stat…so don’t bother collecting it. Remember that Defense not only decreases your crit chance (to 490 at least), it also increases your avoidance/mitigation…resilience only affects crit. 490 Defense is also really pretty easy to achive in pre-raid gear.


Eliminating Crushing Blows
A crushing blow is a hit that is 150% of normal damage and can only be dealt by mobs (not by players). It occurs whenever a mob has 15 or more points in Base Weapon Skill over a player’s Base Defense (in other words, a level 73 mob vs a level 70 player :P).

So if you have skilled your character’s Base Defense out to 350 (base means 350 WITHOUT any gear and WITHOUT any talent bonuses), only a mob with a Weapon Skill of 365 will be able to hit you with a Crushing Blow; in other words, a mob of level 73.

Unlike Critical Strikes, there’s no real way of directly mitigating the percentage of Crushing Blows that a mob will deal. BUT, as explained above, since all outcomes on the hit table are mutually exclusive, you can completely eliminate crushing blows with 102.4% Block + Miss + dodge + Parry


Where Did The Extra 2.4% Come From?
For each level a mob has over you, 0.2% needs to be subtracted from Block, Parry, Dodge, and Miss. It’s basically comparing your base defense (350) to the boss’ base weapon skill (365) to my knowledge. Just think of it this way: Every point of defense that you have increases your miss, parry, dodge and block….it’s something similar in an opposite way.

All Burning Crusade boss mobs are at level 73, that is a 3 level difference. So you need to subtract 3*0.2% from your dodge, defense, parry and miss. That is a total of 4*3*0.2% = 2.4%.


Mitigating Normal Hits
Normal melee hits that is. Level 70 reduction formula: Reduction Percentage = (AC / (AC+ 10557.5)) * 100. Caps out at 75%