Avoiding Kitty Melee DPS Min/Max hell.

This is my first guest post over at BigHitBox.com, Thanks to Stoney for having me


Let me be the voice of reason here.

  • Do not spend all your time not playing WOW, playing WOW.
  • Do not put 50 more DPS above enjoying a good movie, a good book, or even grinding for a little raptor pet.
  • Do not constantly switch gear, gems, or enchants just because a simulator told you to.

It is possible to do great DPS without min/maxing yourself to death.

Whenever I get a new piece of loot I find myself falling back into my min/max ways… and I hate it.

To avoid this here are some general rules to follow.

  • Plan ahead and know what upgrades will have the biggest impact. Items with small gains don’t fret over, if you get them fine if not don’t go crazy. 5 items with little 20DPS gains only add up to 100 more DPS… not a raid slot breaker. Use RAWR as a guide to determine where the big upgrades are and worry about those, the ones with an increase of over 100DPS.
  • Try to keep your hit around 230ish. If you find yourself without a Draenei in your party be aware of your hit (without one in 30 yards you lose the racial Heroic Presence) and try to maintain a mix of gear to move around to minimize misses (The hit cap is 263). Gear is all about flexibility and that can change between fights or even raid nights depending on what races or classes are there and who is playing them. Don’t toss gear until it is a couple of levels old for this reason.
  • Balance. Remember that there are still times people might need you to tank whether in raid or 5 man heroics. Threat is becoming more and more important and you can’t depend on all old gear for your tank set. Don’t go crazy gemming ArP on gear you can use for both roles, the difference in DPS is just not that great and bag space is never a bad thing. Of course if you are lucky enough to have the Mjolnir Runestone hitting the soft ArP cap should be a priority.
  • Try to keep you Crit% about 55% when raid buffed. I am still a firm believer in Crit.
  • Don’t blindly follow the tools or simulators. Take these numbers as an example from FbN simulations…  DPS: 8406 +/- 1 (Min-Max variance: 34.671%, Lower dps sample: 6600, Upper dps sample: 9514.4). On a string of bad luck I can do as little as 6600K or if I have good luck 9500K. Tell you what, find out how I can gear to minimize that variance and I would be thrilled to do 500 less DPS on average. Bottom line, the RNG component in DPS is alive and well so don’t stress over some minor adjustments that you might not even see once you factor in the randomness of each encounter. Personally looking at numerous WoL data my DPS does not fluctuate that much so don’t let that example above from 100,000 simulated fights freak you out.
  • Check patch notes from Blizzard when they are released in case there are any big changes to the mechanics of your class or melee dps in general. Check a couple blogs for an explanation if the changes confuse you.
  • Understand your class and DPS rotations. Know when to break the rotation due to different encounter dynamics such as running from a boss, switching targets, or the inability to shred from behind. Know when changing a couple items of gear can boost DPS such as an idol change, you wouldn’t want to use an idol that boosts shred damage when you can’t shred a target for example. Remember that you can change your idol with one global cooldown during combat in case you forgot to change it before engaging the boss or even if between 2 phases of a fight where one would outshine another. This is game play min/maxing which separates the men from the boys and can have a large impact on your dps as opposed to gear min/maxing.
  • Look good. Sure, why not. Give up 20 DPS to match or look sexy… DO IT, break your Min/Max ways!

I fear min/maxing is a fast way to burn out playing WOW from an endgame standpoint. It is too easy to get caught up thinking you have to have certain pieces of gear in order to be a successful DPS player and getting something you thought would have a big impact and then doesn’t can bring you down as well. Couple that with a grind for some particular trinket or item that never falls and constant tweaks and changes from Blizzard and you have a recipe for “needing a break”.

I lost the roll for the 2nd time last night for the Mjolnir Runestone and I didn’t lose one ounce of sleep over it.  I guess it helps to know that it will be possible to hit the hard armor pen cap without it in BiS ToC gear. For a stat Blizzard is getting rid of they sure did put it on just about everything dropping in ToC.  I wonder once ArP is removed what the proc will be on one of the most sought after melee DPS trinkets in the history of the game. I don’t remember another DPS trinket that people built their entire gear set around.

3 Responses to Avoiding Kitty Melee DPS Min/Max hell.

  • Aleanathem says:

    I’d say min/maxing is okay, but when you go to the extreme of it affecting your real life then you need to back off. I think that’s more of an addiction/personal issue than a min/maxing issue. Min/Max your gear, but don’t take it off the computer. Go watch tv, go to a movie, etc and leave the game on your computer. Then again half the guys at my store play WoW so I get a full dose there as well.

    Plus with Cataclysm coming out in a year or so I think min/maxing will be gone. Or it will take on another form. Great post though! Simulators, etc aren’t the end all, be all of gearing. You gear more by what drops that what can drop. =)

  • Jacemora says:

    Indeed! 🙂

  • lily says:

    Right, I go a bit further. I don’t plan upgrades per se. I do see what might drop and if it would help, if I happen to see it drop I roll. But the runs I do are more casual, and I don’t need to spend DKP.

    I don’t see any reason, with badge gear, to not have Bear gear with stamina gems and Kitty gear with arp gems. I have a Grim Toll, so I especially see no reason not to. My dodge is plenty high enough that I like having the effective health increase, anyway. I consider the Sta gems to be even more important than the Arp gems.

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