Found In the Woods

June 16, 2009

Heavy Lifting

Filed under: WoW — bsullivan @ 3:24 pm

Let me set the scene… You’re in a raid and you’ve just downed a new boss. You clicky on the boss to see what he dropped and you see it’s a cloth item. You wear cloth. It’s a head piece. Your head piece is already pretty good, but you wear cloth! It’s a DPS caster piece. You’re a DPS caster! OMG! Well, the loot master is calling for rolls on the item now, time is ticking and you are going cross eyed. Do you roll? Is it an upgrade? Is it a cross-grade? Is it a downgrade? Does that dirt-eating warlock need it more? I’m gonna give you my own perspective on some of these things as well as try to help you understand how I personally figure out what loot I roll on, what I search for and how I do it.

Stat Weights

One of the most useful and underused tricks in WoW is applying weighted values to stats on gear and then using those weights to rate the gear in the game. For example, let’s say you value Intelligence over Spirit. Therefore, a weighted Int value may be 0.78 and Spi might be at 0.49. A complete weight might look something like this:

Stat Holy Priest weight value
MP5 1.0000
Spirit 0.5222
Intellect 0.6890
SP 0.6000
Crit rating 0.3763
Stamina 0.2000
Haste rating 0.3059

** Stat weights from BobTurkey

How do we get these numbers? Well, we read blogs, try things out and follow trends, or do lots of math. There is a huge, vibrant blogging community out there covering nearly every aspect of the game when it comes to classes. Many of these bloggers are wicked smart great with math or know of a good source to get the numbers from. Often you can find links on their pages to their weighed gear ratings which you can borrow/adapt/modify for your own use. This is kind of what I’m going to do (remember, I’m not reinventing the wheel here, just passing on how I do it for myself).

Really this is one of those “I get by with a little help from my friends” situations. I suck at math. I really do. I took one math class and got a D in it, which was enough to continue without retaking it. Moving on… the folks who are good at maths and at WoW and enjoy theorycrafting are passionate when it comes to fine tuning and calculating good stat weights. Take for example BobTurkey’s Priest blog – here he goes into tremendous detail in a 6 part Priest Theorycrafting post, culminating in his stat weights for Holy & Discipline priests. Brilliant! Depending on which blog you read or what spec you are, stat weights are going to vary drastically. Figure out what fits for you.

Note: If you are sort of lost on where to find blogs, don’t worry. Besides using Google to just bluntly search for blogs, you can visit the Twisted Nether blog list which is a great starting point.

Applying the Weights

OK, so I’ve got the stat weights, now what? Well there are a few things you can try, but probably the easiest will be to build a gear list for yourself, and for this your best friend is Loot Rank! This awesome website allows you to customize the stat weights and gear sources and really custom build a gear list that is tailored to your needs. It’s incredibly flexible and fast, has a ton of options (make sure to play around with all of them) and easy to use. If you are lost and can’t find gear stat weights that suit your fancy, you can always try their default stat weights or visit the Loot Rank forums for more! Just plug your stat weights into the Loot Rank page, check the boxes you want/need/don’t want and voila you’ll end up with something like this. This is a Holy Priest rank, using the BobTurkey weights. I’ve unchecked boxes for the raids I wasn’t doing (at the time), checked off my professions, excluded TBC items, forced gem colors in sockets and even entered in my character’s name & server so that his current gear items appear on the loot list for quick reference. If I start progressing into a new dungeon, take on a new profession, etc. I can change the Loot Rank page to fit my needs. It’s just that easy!

Additional resources

More? Yes, more! So, let’s say you don’t want to have to tab-out of WoW or play in windowed mode to look at and peruse your loot lists, and would rather have something in-game. There are a few options, nothing as powerful as Loot Rank, but still some nice choices. Right off the bat, probably the simplest is something like Pawn, Gear Wizard and Rating Buster. I myself have only used Rating Buster, since I’m looking at Loot Rank all the time (I play in windowed mode), but I’ve heard good things about Pawn and Gear Wizard looks pretty promising too.

Why bother?

If you’re like me, you’re a WoW player who strives to be better; to eek out that little bit of whatever it is you need to win the battle your raid/guild is working on. Sometimes you may find that a different spec works better for you, so you switch, you do your research, you figure out what gear works best for that spec, and you hunt it down. You regem. You change your consumables. You get a few new enchants and trinkets. Knowing what to roll on and what not to roll on is your duty as a competent raider in your guild/raid in order to give everyone a chance to improve the maximum amount. Some people won’t improve, no matter how much gear you throw at them, and for others it will make a huge difference. I’ve seen both sides; people stuck at 700-900 DPS for weeks upon weeks, and others going from 1500-2200 DPS in a matter of days. It’s awesome to be able to pass something to someone who can use it and use it well. If you are rolling on gear simply because it’s purple or has a number or two higher than what you currently have, you are failing yourself, your guild and the raid. Do yourself a favor and try out the Loot Rank page or a couple of these addons. At the very minimum give Rating Buster a shot because it’s definitely the simplest of them all.

As usual, thanks for reading and I appreciate any feedback you might have.

One Response to “Heavy Lifting”

  1. BobTurkey Says:

    Nice overview of stat weights.

    If you can get your hands on a good set of stat weights Pawn is very useful for applying them in game.

    Thanks for the links.

    Gobble gobble.

Leave a Reply