Elitist Jerks Weekly Recap 7/27/12

Every Friday Tabana brings you the latest discussions straight from the Elitist Jerks forums with a recap of what was discussed and links to the full posts so you can stay on top of the latest in hunter theorycrafting.

Level 90 Formulas 7/24/12

In the Mists of Pandaria thread, Rivkah wrote, “I thought it might be useful to compile a list of the level 90 formulas we know currently, so I put together what I have so far. I’ve verified most of these formulas semi-recently, but they do tend to change sometimes without notice, so take them with a grain of salt. Note that for multi-target abilities I have only listed the primary target effect.”

One thing to note, I noticed is that all the weapon damage based shots I tested seem to use the aimed shot style of weapon damage modifier now, where it actually applies the multiplier to the entire shot instead of the weapon damage portion. I’m not sure if Blizzard intends to keep them this way.


  • Aimed Shot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2 + RAP * .724 + 9970.4) * 1.6
  • Arcane Shot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2 + RAP * .0483 + 4611.3) * .65
  • Barrage: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2) * 3.2 (total damage to the primary target over 16 ticks)
  • Black Arrow: RAP + 4661.16 (total damage, split over 10 ticks)
  • Chimera Shot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2 + RAP * .732 + 1794.67) * 1.15
  • Cobra Shot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2 + RAP * .017 + 306.559) * 1.15
  • Explosive Shot: RAP * .311 + 517.21 (per tick, there are 3 ticks)
  • Explosive Trap: RAP * .0546 + 246.767 (initial damage), RAP * .0546 + 32.4038 (per tick, there are 10 ticks)
  • Glaive Toss: (RAP * .05 + 218.102) * 8 (to the primary target, 2 will hit)
  • Kill Shot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2) * 3
  • Multi-Shot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2) * .6
  • Powershot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2) * 4 (damage to the primary target)
  • Serpent Sting: RAP * .097 + 2030.22 (per tick, ticks every 3 sec)


  • Bite/Claw/Smack: RAP * .36 + 329
  • Blink Strike: pet melee dmg * 2
  • Kill Command: 1.8 * (.516 * RAP + 1021.96)
  • Melee: RAP * .2572 + 560

Summoned Pets:

  • Dire Beast: RAP * .5715 + 1246.5 per hit (may have changed since last test, does about 8 attacks)
  • A Murder of Crows: RAP * .1142 + 313.8 per hit (based on Esoth’s tests, 54-57 attacks)

Lokrick replied, “[…] I’ve copied your list below where I will annotate comments based on the simc implementation. I’ll edit the post as implementation or status changes. I use “MATCH” to mean not only that simc agrees, but also that all the data was extracted from the client meta-data rather than from data gathering in game. While there could be a meta-data errors (e.g. tooltip issues), if the tooltip and in-game behavior match, that’s pretty high assurance.”


  • Aimed Shot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2 + RAP * .724 + 9970.4) * 1.6 – MATCH
  • Arcane Shot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2 + RAP * .0483 + 4611.3) * .65 – MATCH
  • Barrage: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2) * 3.2 (total damage to the primary target over 16 ticks)
  • Black Arrow: RAP + 4661.16 (total damage, split over 10 ticks) – MATCH
  • Chimera Shot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2 + RAP * .732 + 1794.67) * 1.15 – MATCH*
  • Cobra Shot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2 + RAP * .017 + 306.559) * 1.15 – MATCH*
  • Explosive Shot: RAP * .311 + 517.21 (per tick, there are 3 ticks) – simc bug now fixed
  • Explosive Trap: not yet tested
  • Glaive Toss: (RAP * .05 + 218.102) * 8 (to the primary target, 2 will hit) – MATCH
  • Kill Shot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2) * 3 – MATCH
  • Multi-Shot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2) * .6 – MATCH
  • Powershot: (avg weapon dmg + RAP * .2) * 4 (damage to the primary target) – MATCH
  • Serpent Sting: RAP * .097 + 2030.22 (per tick, ticks every 3 sec) – MATCH


  • Bite/Claw/Smack: RAP * .36 + 329 – different
  • Blink Strike: pet melee dmg * 2 – MATCH
  • Kill Command: 1.8 * (.516 * RAP + 1021.96) – MATCH*
  • Melee: RAP * .2572 + 560

Summoned Pets:

  • Dire Beast: RAP * .5715 + 1246.5 per hit (may have changed since last test, does about 8 attacks)– I took these numbers from you.
  • A Murder of Crows: RAP * .1142 + 313.8 per hit (based on Esoth’s tests, 54-57 attacks)– I took the parameters from Esoth. simc models 8 summons attacking every 2 seconds for 16 seconds. That results in 7-9 hits per crow (though 9 is rare).

*For some matches, the RAP coefficient is buried in the tooltip only rather than an explicit typed meta-data field. Those are both more likely to be out of date and require manual propagation to simc code if the meta-data changes.

Explosive Shot
Simc is still using the Cata formula. In theory, it’s also changed to ignite mechanics. Have you noticed that in game? That will be next on the MoP simc hit parade.

This looks very different. From the meta-data:
$M1 = School Damage: physical (2) Base Value: 146.004 – 207.945 (1) – average 176.9745
Description : Claw the enemy, causing ${$M1+(($RAP*0.40)*0.20)} damage.

This corresponds to: 176.9745 + 0.08*RAP. I’m pretty sure simc doesn’t actually do that either, however, so I’ll need to do more investigation.

Rivkah replied, “[Explosive Shot:] I didn’t test the changed mechanics in detail (just verified the formula was matching up relatively closely to my results), but I did verify that applying explosive shots before the previous ticks had expired would increase the tick damage on subsequent ticks. I didn’t verify if the math on it was working accurately.”

[Claw:] I don’t recall the formula ever perfectly matching what was described in the tooltip on live either, although it’s been awhile since I looked at it. I always wondered if I misinterpreted the way that formula was meant to work. The numbers I have are based on dummy tests so I can’t say if the exact multipliers and +dmg are accurate, I can just say they’re in the right ballpark and that testing at various RAP levels I was getting results which fit the formula. If I recall I think when you look at the ability tooltip the numbers it gives don’t match what you get attacking the target, so it’s possible the meta-data was just never updated.

Starfox replied, “ES does not use ignite mechanics.”

It always ticks the same as the initial hit, but seems to use DOT_REFRESH, else I can’t explain why the last shot would give me 3 ticks afterwards

Lockrick replied, “The last shot has 4 ticks of 5433.5, the first of which happened to crit (hence 10,866). Thus, the data you posted matches ignite for shots of 4106, 4060, and 4530. The ‘Total’ column is Damage * Ticks; that should be how much damage is remaining to be done. ‘After Tick’ is simply the total after taking the tick represented by the line (i.e., Total – Damage). “New shot” is The Total from which the current tick will be computed (on the current line) minus the the previous ‘After Tick’, all divided by 3. Thus, it assumes that the new Total is “New Shot”*3 + previous ‘After Tick’.”

Damage Crit Ticks Total After Tick New Shot
4106 3 12318 8212 4106
4106 2 8212 4106
4072 4 16288 12216 4061
4071 3 12213 8142
5433 Y 4 21732 16299 4530
5433 3 16299 10866
5433 2 10866 5433
5433 1 5433 0

This doesn’t mean that the mechanics are ignite mechanics, but it does work for this case, and regular dot mechanics does not work for some of the other cases (e.g., where tick damage it outside the possible damage for that weapon/PA combo.

Edit: StarFox pointed out that the 4530 above it too high for the variance allowed by ES. So the model is still up in the air.


Starfox replied, “As we talked in irc, ES is a clusterfuck at the moment, it seems random when ignite behaviour triggers. I worked out my screenshot. My hunter’s ES tick range is 4050 – 4144 (should be 98 point range, so there is still 4 points of leeway up and down). We start with a pool of 0 of course, ES hit is the process of adding to the ignite pool (base tickdmg * 3), a tick is when the pool ticks down. The damage when ES lands is HIT (+pool) followed by a recalculation of the tick dmg and a TICK (-pool).

Crit ticks only deal more dmg, the don’t add or substract more from the pool than normal ticks.

hit tick change Pool next tick
0 0 0 0 0
4107 0 +4107*3 12321 4107
0 4107 -4107 8214 4107
0 4107 -4107 4107 4107
4072 0 +4072*3 16323 5411
0 4072 -4072 12251 ?????

It seems like the 2nd ES did not even trigger ignite behaviour, there should be still damage left in the pool, so the tick should be way higher than 4k. So if we discard the 1st ES dmg we get

hit tick change Pool next tick
0 0 0 0 0
4072 0 +4072*3 12216 4072
0 4072 -4072 8144 4072
0 4107 -4072 4072 4072 (would be)
4076 0 +4076*3 16300 5433 (recalculated: pool/3)
0 5433 -5433 10867 5433
0 5433 -5433 5433 5433
0 5433 -5433 0 5433
0 5433 -5433 -5433 0 (faded)

This works out like a charm, the first ES hits for 4072, building the pool up to 12216. Then we have 2 ticks, which drain the pool down to 4072. After that the second ES hits for 4076, adding 12228×3 = 16300 and the tickdamage recalculated to 5433. At the end we have _4_ tick events, this seems to be a problem with refreshing so it adds a tick, but the damage als already calculated with pool/3, that’s 5433 free damage that came out of nowhere.

Read full posts

SimulationCraft For Hunters (Panda Edition) 7/22/12

Lokrick created a new thread, SimulationCraft For Hunters (Panda Edition): “This thread is for discussion of the hunter module for SimulationCraft, including issues, features, action lists to describe particular dps strategies, etc. This post automatically updates to reflect the latest results at simulationcraft.org. Click on the charts below for details”

Watch the changelog for updates to the SimC hunter model. It may take a few hours for new changes to be reflected in the results.

Lokrick added, “The hunter module in simc has undergone a LOT of work due to the large amount of mechanics changes in MoP. In the initial release, all level 85 abilities are (re)implemented, and the default profiles have been adjusted for the expertise cap. T14 and several level 86-90 abilities are implemented; the remaining ones are in progress.”

We incorporate changes as we hear about them; the ability characterization, bug reporting, and action-list development from the community has been invaluable. Please keep it up and let us know about any inaccuracies. […] No Lynx Rush. That’s going to be after Barrage.

Adarant replied, “If I am reading your results correctly, all three specs are using Thrill of the Hunt. I have two questions about that choice. First question, how many free Arcane Shots are you providing when Thrill procs (I assume that you won’t use Multi-Shot in a single target sim)? I believe that the talent provides just two free Arcane Shots, but your results show that it can stack to 3. Also, I see that there is some uptime for the buff thrill_of_the_hunt_3, which indicates to me that you might be stacking the buff too high.”

Second question, why did you choose Thrill of the Hunt for that talent tier instead of Dire Beast or Fervor? I fully understand if the answer is, “that’s all that I have implemented,” but I am curious about the comparison between all three talents. After this latest round of changes to the tier, I feel that the talents are well balanced but small differences will surely arise. For example, I think the Focus provided to our pets with Fervor will cause that talent to be best for BM, but your sim uses Thrill of the Hunt. Is there a way to customize this selection, or do you report just the best talent?

Similarly, I am curious about the Blink Strike, Murder of Crows, Lynx Rush tier. I realize that Lynx Rush is not yet implemented, but is it possible to see a comparison between Blink Strike and Murder of Crows?

Lokrick replied, “I’m so glad you asked! Little if any optimization has been done yet, and some of the default action list configuration right now is to enable testing. I originally had TotH as the default talent for that tier because it was the only one in that tier that was substantially different than in Cata (e.g., recall that Readiness used to be there instead of Dire Beast). It was also quite good before the recent change. Now it’s still the default because it’s the most problematic from a priority point of view: the action list needs to decide where to prioritize taking a free arcane shot. For example, even a free arcane shot is not worth delaying Murder of Crows, Chimera Shot, etc. for. My impression is that the current TotH is extremely weak, but actually verifying that will indeed require comparison and playing with the action list. I think the reason for the high uptime on the TotH in the current sims is that the current default priority list simply has other things to do than spend a precious GCD on a fairly weak ability.”

If you look at the TotH ability on wowhead, it is supposed to provide 3 stacks currently. They’ve already indicated they intend to change TotH further (to reduce the cost by 20), again changing it’s priority.

Your latter questions are the important ones, and are best answered by downloading the tool at the above link and trying it out. The character files contain a spec, a talent set, and the default action list. We rely on people in the community to download the tool and try different combinations. As people post improved talent and action list strategies, I’ll incorporate them as the defaults. To do comparisons, copy the file, change the name, and then run a single raid with both parties (that’s how the current hunter comparison is generated).

Note that the T13 hunter is level 85, so the last talent selection will be irrelevant. To actually play with strategy details, copy an existing file and modify it (make sure not to use “default_action=1” or your new action list will be ignored). My level 90 example is still in progress; feel free to start from it for your own experiments:

[see the original post for action_list entries]

The action_list entries are evaluated in priority order, so you can change them and try different strategies. To compare the barrage profile (which isn’t actually very smart about when to use barrage) with powershot:

  • copy it
  • give the hunter a new name (e.g. hunter=”Hunter_BM_T14_powershot”)
  • make the last talent digit 2 (since powershot is the second entry on the 6th tier of talents)
  • delete the “action_list+=/barrage” line
  • add a line with “/powershot” wherever in the priority you want it to be
  • run simc with all files for everyone you want to compare

There’s of course much more flexibility in simc than I can explain here; more information is available at the links above. Once I get to optimization, I’ll also post those here, of course.

Lokrick added, “In comparing Zeherah’s numbers for explosive shot, I realized that I hadn’t moved Explosive Shot to the “ignite” mechanics as described in Frostheim’s post. I’ve made an initial fix to Explosive Shot that does partially close the gap between SV and MM/BM. Currently it is modeled as an initial impact with two dot ticks (that use ignite mechanics). As currently implemented, the ticks individually crit. Three additional mechanics questions need to be answered from logs:

  1. Does an impact just extend the dot with 3 ticks or is there a tick on impact as currently modeled?
  2. Do the ticks crit individually or is the crit computed on impact and distributed?
  3. If Curse of Elements or some such is applied to the target between ticks, do later ticks deal more damage?

While the answers won’t have a significant dps impact in the simple case, having a trinket proc from the first tick could have a non-trivial impact on later ticks.

Edit: Zakalwe and I did some testing. For item #1, the jury is still out. The event sequences look a little like overlapping dots. This may just be vagaries of event reporting, however.

For item #2, all the damage comes out as SPELL_PERIODIC_DAMAGE events. Each tick can individually crit. The most telling sequence was: 8286, refresh, 4118, 4117, 4117, refresh, 4108, 4108, refresh 5438, 5438, 5437, 10875. The 8k and 10k events are tick crits.

For #3, Zak dropped a CoE on the dummy after one tick of an ES, and we got 690, 725, and 725. Therefore, the target debuffs are considered at each tick.

Finally, in trying to verify that it followed ignite semantics, we found an anomaly. 8181, refresh, 8150, 4075, 4075, refresh, 4101, 4101, 4101, 4102, simply ignoring crits to determine the ES damage leads to shots of 4090, 2706, and 4109. 2706 isn’t possible given the relatively small variation in the ES damage formula. But if the entire value of the crit is subtracted from the remaining damage when the refresh happens, then you end up with 4090, 4070, and 4109, all of which are plausible damage values. We still need more logs to characterize this, but it looks like it doesn’t recompute the base damage until there’s a refresh (thus a crit on the first tick won’t reduce later ticks, but will reduce the carry-over to overlapping shots). If this is the case, then it would reduce the actual damage of ES, and reduce the value of crit for ES.

Edit 2: Blizzard said that the current misbehavior is a bug. I’ll save further changes for explosive shot till after the next build.

Read full posts

Old Raid Gold Nerfs 7/25/12

In the Soloing Old Instances for Fun and Profit thread, Arcane36 wrote, “The dark times are coming Old raid gold nerfs – Forums – World of Warcraft

According to Blizzard:

In general, enemies in raids and dungeons drop significantly more gold than outdoor foes, specifically because we are assuming that the gold is going to be split 5, 10, or 25 ways. As player power rises over time, it obviously becomes possible to complete old content with significantly fewer players, such that the gold rewards become disproportionately high.

In the past, our only solution was to drastically reduce the gold dropped by legacy content across the board (e.g., Magtheridon, much of Karazhan, etc.). In Mists, we have a new system in place that normalizes gold yield based on the number of players involved in the kill. If a Black Temple enemy drops 100 gold today on live, and you kill it with a 25-player raid group in Mists, it’ll also drop 100 gold and each player will get 4 gold. If you solo Black Temple, that enemy will also give you 4 gold. If you do it with 4 friends, it’ll drop 20 gold and each of you will get 4.

In other words, the gold obtained from killing raid or dungeon creatures no longer depends upon how many people you bring, or do not bring, with you. This system does not apply to anything in the outdoor world.

If this is the case, will the original gold values of the bosses in Gruul’s Lair, Magtheridon’s Lair and Karazhan be restored so groups will once again get more gold from the boss than from a single trash mob?


I personally hate this decision.

Steevnash replied, “Yeah I don’t really get it. For the time invested, going back and solo’ing all the old raids is lucrative, but only moderately so. You could easily make more money using professions and being crafty with the AH.”

I guess what makes gold coming from raid bosses OP is that it’s actually fun. Spending 3 hours solo’ing old content is far ‘easier’ than spending 3 hours gathering and crafting items for the AH, even though professions will net you more income, since for the most part Proffs this late in an expansion are boring. If something like BWL was repeatable I can MAYBE see this making sense, but since that’s not the case… I just don’t see the point.”

Caribald replied, “[…] I think it does make sense to moderate gold drops from old bosses. In my opinion the best way to do so is to have the previous expansion’s bosses drop good amounts of gold before a bit less and so on, so that vanilla bosses would drop near nothing in mop.

A great example for MoP would, in my opinion, be:

10 man 25 man
MoP 500g 1250g
Cata 250g 625g
WotLK 100g 250g
TBC 50g 125g
Vanilla 25g 25g

For the next expansion, each expansion would move 1 slot down, and Vanilla would “create a new slot” in which the gold drops are even less than 25g. The new ‘current’ expansion would then still drop 500g in 10 man and 1250g in 25 man. Again, these are just examples, and the numbers could easily be tweaked, but I feel consistency would make it easier to understand and at the same time the gold drops reasonable.

Having each boss drop x gold per player instead of a set amount shared by however many players you are makes it so that there is no reason to kill a boss again after you kill it solo for the first time. Those who like to solo will still do it for the challenge, but after killing something for the first time, there is no reason to go back and do it again. Why would I do Ulduar if bosses drop 10 gold each for me and I’ve done everything there is to do? It’s boring enough as it is now, but the gold drops at least kept me doing it for several resets after being able to do full clears. With this change, I would probably do it once and then never come back.

Read full posts

A full index of all Elitist Jerks posts recapped at the Wow Hunter’s Hall is maintained in the Index of Elitist Jerks Hunter Forum Posts. Posts with discussions regarding soloing are archived in Hunter Soloing, from Classic to Pandaria: Tips, Guides, Strategies, and Videos.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)