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-   -   Basic guide to Affliction DPS (http://wowmb.net/forums/f106/26423-basic_guide_affliction_dps/)

Canadianpimp May 17, 2008 08:09 AM

Re: New to this whole DPS raiding thing...and I suck
 
*** This post has been copied out from it's original thread (here) for easy finding. It was written for one individual, yet can be used by all. There was talk of a re-write to make it universal, but for the time being, this shall suffice. ~ Akasha ***




Ok, so pay attention. I'm going to show you how to analyze your own WWS for the future. Let's look at the Gruul kill since generally that's the best way to measure and analyze your DPS.

Concern #1, DoT Uptime

DoTs are your priority as Affliction spec to keep up and do the majority of your damage. DoTs have the best damage per cast time and damage per mana investments, so you need to have them up as much as possible.

The first thing you want to do is click your name, then go summary, to see how long the fight lasted and how much DPS time you had. You were DPSing for 98% of the time and the fight lasted 5 minutes and 18 seconds. Ok that's fine. The next thing you do is divide the number of seconds in the fight by three (how often your DoTs tick). This shows you the optimal number of ticks your dots should have. In this fight, the fight lasted 318 seconds, and 318/3 = 106 ticks. That's the optimal number of ticks you should have on your Dots.

Now, something that's important as Affliction is that you keep up all five of your Dots at all time. UA, Corruption, Siphon Life, Immolate and Curse of Doom/Agony (if you are assigned to it). If you aren't using a DoT timer like DoTimer, you're seriously doing your damage and raid a disfavor. I wouldn't raid Affliction without a timer for your DoTs. Blizz's one just doesn't cut it.

Two things stuck out to me. First, your DoT uptime was poor. You weren't keeping up your DoTs and weren't really close to the potential 106 ticks. You had:

  • 81 Siphon Life ticks
  • 73 Corruption ticks
  • 54 Unstable Affliction ticks
  • 39 Immolate ticks
I'm not counting CoA and CoD since you used both and CoD is technically 60 seconds per tick. But anyway, all of those are pretty far off from 106. Out of a possible 424 ticks, you had only 247 ticks. 247/424 is only 58% of possible ticks. That's not that good.

So why was your DoT uptime low? Well a lot of it was probably because you probably weren't paying attention or didn't have a DoT timer. Another thing is you really slacked off on your Immolate and Unstable Affliction casts. Those DoTs always need to be up. Ideally you want all your DoTs to tick around the same number of ticks. Another reason why your DoT uptime was low is that you were overlapping ticks of your DoTs, meaning that you didn't let them finish their duration sometimes (like refreshing a UA after only 10 seconds), but then forgetting about it for 30 seconds after that.

Compare your DoT uptime to mine real quick. The reason why my damage is pretty bad is because I'm 23/38 PvP spec and didn't want to lay down the gold to respec lol. I also didn't flask or use any consumables, and I'm waiting to get the new badge gloves so my hit rating and gems are a little out of wack until I get that sorted out. No excuses though!
Kobekid - WWS

Anyway, the parse lasted 3 minutes and 26 seconds, meaning that 206 seconds/3 seconds per tick = 68 possible ticks for my DoTs. I had 58 corruption ticks, 59 siphon life ticks, and 58 immolate ticks. I hit 166/204 ticks, which means that I got 86% DoT uptime. Not perfect, but there's not too much room for improvement. Plus, you can tell that I refreshed my DoTs quickly after they fell off because of the equal amount of ticks.

That covers DoT uptime. The two things to take away from this are dividing the number of seconds by three seconds to find your DoT uptime and to see if you had any discrepancies between your DoT ticks so you can see which DoTs you need to work on keeping up more often.


Concern #2, low Shadow Bolt damage
You had really low Shadow Bolt damage and was another big factor on why your DPS was low. As Affliction, you want Shadow Bolt to do around 35-45% of your damage. A higher percentage of Shadow Bolt damage usually means that you weren't paying enough attention to DoT uptime and a lower Shadow Bolt damage percentage means that you were paying too much attention on using DoTs. You only did 19% of your damage with Shadow Bolt. At first I thought this was because Shatter accounted for a big part of your damage and the numbers were skewed because of that, but I looked at the Mag fight and your Shadow Bolt doing a low percentage of your damage seemed to be a trend.

Like I said before, low Shadow Bolt damage means that you're usually paying too much attention to your DoTs, but this didn't seem to be true since it doesn't really seem like you did pay attention to your DoTs a whole lot. You casted 21 Shadow Bolts in 317 seconds. Remember to add up your normal hits + crits + misses (you have to filter in the crits and misses in by clicking the column tab on the right side and then checking the box for "Nb" for crits and misses).

21 Shadow Bolts * 2.5 second cast = 52.5 seconds casting. Normally, you will spend a little over half the fight casting Shadow Bolts in an ideal situation. 52.5/318 = 16.5% of your time. That's a huge problem. It's too bad we can't compare you to another Affliction lock in the same raid, but if you look at my WWS parse I linked above, I casted 12 more Shadow Bolts than you in about 2 minutes less time than you (note that I have one less DoT to keep up though).


Concern #3, Total Ability Time
So what the hell what wrong? Essentially, your DoT uptime was poor AND your Shadow Bolt damage was very low. To figure this out, I'm going to do one last calculation, the addition of all abilties' cast times that you used during the fight. I'm going to discount the fact that you got Drums of Battle twice during the fight (look at Buffs and Debuffs section to see that). Remember that the fight lasted 318 seconds. You did:
  • 21 Shadow bolt * 2.5 second cast time = 52.5 seconds
  • 73 Corruption ticks / 6 ticks per cast --> 13 casts * 1.5 GCD = 19.5 seconds
  • 54 UA ticks / 6 ticks per cast --> 9 casts * 1.5 GCD = 13.5 seconds
  • 81 SL ticks / 10 ticks per cast --> 9 casts * 1.5 GCD = 13.5 seconds
  • 34 CoA ticks / 8 ticks per cast --> 5 casts * 1.5 GCD = 7.5 seconds
  • 10 Immolate casts * 1.5 second cast time = 15 seconds
  • 3 CoD ticks / 1 tick per cast --> 3 casts * 1.5 GCD = 4.5 seconds
  • 9 Life tap casts * 1.5 second GCD = 13.5 seconds
Add it all up and we get -----> 139.5 seconds.

What that tells us is you were casting for 139.5 seconds out of the 318 possible seconds in the fight. That's really not good. 139.5/318 seconds = 43.8% of the time you were casting. I know Ground Slam and Shatter are a part of that fight, but you don't have to worry about positioning and not dying for for three of the five minutes of that fight. What I'm concluding is that you probably canceled a ton of casts by moving right before your spell finished, or were just too awestruck by your surroundings to concentrate on pumping out as many spells as you could. Were you out of mana and scared to life tap because you didn't want to die? Did you find yourself canceling casts because you thought you were going to get hit by a cave in? Were you jumping around a lot for real no apparent reason? It sounds stupid, but I think that may have just what happened. You seemed to just have stand around a lot and do nothing. Work on your DoT uptime and work on casting at all times and your DPS can literally double.


Concern #4, Miscellaneous tips and tricks
I'll give you a few tips and tricks here.
  • I noticed you guys weren't using any curses like Curse of Shadows/Curse of Elements/Curse of Recklessness. CoS and CoE absolutely need to be up to improve raid DPS. You're specced for Malediction. Take charge and put CoS up, and whisper one of the other locks, even if they're more experienced than you, and tell them "I'm putting CoS up, can you cover CoE?" Get in this habit with communicating with other locks so you can also talk about HS and SS management as well. You guys should work as a mini-team inside the raid.
  • Another big thing that was weird about your parse was that your imp was attacking. This is bad for two reasons. One, he is no longer phase shifted and will probably die to damage and your group will lose the Blood Pact buff and you are not able to Dark Pact freely. You didn't use Dark Pact once as Affliction, and you really need to. Dark Pact is basically exactly like Life Tap but instead of taking your own health for mana, you just take your imp's mana and can readily use it. If your imp is phase shifted also, he regains mana pretty quickly, so you can Dark Pact pretty often. You will still have to Life Tap though, as it's really only worth using Dark Pact if you are getting the full benefit of the spell. For example, it's not worth using Dark Pact if your imp is at 20% mana because you are able to get more mana for your global cooldown. Use it when he has over 50% mana only, and if he doesn't have that much mana and you need mana, just Life Tap instead. No shame in that. People also suggested getting your imp buffed by unphase shifting him before the fight. That's fine as long as you remember to rephase shift him for the fight so he doesn't die.
  • A tip that I always thought was great for maximizing damage as Affliction is to only Life Tap/Dark Pact when all your DoTs were up and in place of casting Shadow Bolt. Shadow Bolt, as said before, is your filler spell and is worst in damage per cast time and damage per mana, so it makes sense to cast LT/DP during times you would be casting Shadow Bolt. For example, if Corruption has fallen off and you have the choice of either using Shadow Bolt, Corruption or LT/DP, always refresh Corruption first to keep up your DoT uptime, and then LT/DP, followed by Shadow Bolting if none of your other DoTs have fallen off.
  • If you have an on use trinket like Scryer's Bloodgem or Icon, use that trinket as often as you can and ideally, before putting on DoTs since they benefit most from extra spell damage.
  • Manage your instant casts and global cooldowns wisely. Remember that you can still cast instants while moving, and that can be very handy in keeping up your DoTs and mana. For example, during Mag's earthquake, you can Life Tap/Dark Pact to keep up your mana, or if one of your instant DoTs are falling off, cast that during the earthquake. Say you knew Mag was going to do his Earthquake in 3 seconds, and you had to put up Immolate, UA, Corruption, and SL as soon as you can. The smartest thing to do would be putting up UA and Immolate first before the earthquake, and then during the earthquake you can use Corruption and SL without any penalty because they are instant. If you used SL or Corruption before the Earthquake, you would have to wait until after the earthquake for all four of those DoTs to be up. Understanding this is key to maximizing your DoT uptime. Same thing applies for Nightfall. If you need to move, you can always cast it on the move.
  • NEVER DO NOTHING! This is one of the most common mistakes people make. Time is damage. Make sure as much time spent on the encounter is contributing to your damage. Try to minimize wasted time. Say for example your Corruption falls off in a second. You're full on mana, and all your other DoTs don't need to be refreshed anytime soon. What do you do? Cast a Shadow Bolt. Don't wait that second to refresh it instantly just to maximize your DoT uptime. You're wasting a whole second by doing that. By casting that Shadow Bolt, you are gaining 2/5 of that Shadow Bolt DPS because you are not standing there doing nothing. You can refresh the Corruption DoT immediately after the Shadow Bolt. I'll give one more example just because this is so important. Your UA and Corruption are both falling off simultaneously in 2.5 seconds. All your other DoTs are fine and you are at 70% mana. What do you do? Life Tap or Dark Pact to regain mana even though you don't desperately need it. This will take 1.5 seconds from the GCD, so you have 1 second left before those 2 DoTs run out. Start casting UA since it has a cast time of 1.5 seconds, and after the cast time, immediately stick up Corruption with it again. This maximizes your efficiency.
That's the jist of it. Hopefully you and others can take something out of this and learned how to analyze your WWS for yourself and learned some tips about maximizing your efficiency.


Slamtojackson May 17, 2008 08:41 AM

Re: New to this whole DPS raiding thing...and I suck
 
Wow... That was some really good info. Deserving of its own post in the guides section. Concise, solid, easy to read and understand. I know my DPS will go up having read it. Thanks Canadianpimp! Once again you have done the warlock community a solid.

Keep your pimp hand strong!

Theleb May 17, 2008 08:48 AM

Re: New to this whole DPS raiding thing...and I suck
 
I'd like to get that stickied as a basic guide to Affliction DPS Mr Pimp, if you have anything else to add, or if you think of anything, add it and we'll work some forum magic - yeah, its aimed at one individual in particular so might need a slight re-write to make it "universal" if you're up for that?

:)

xTAGx Wizard May 17, 2008 09:35 AM

Re: New to this whole DPS raiding thing...and I suck
 
WoW that was a great post Mr. Pimp. I especially loved the part about explaining the WWS reports. I never really knew how to analyze them for myself. I know my personal DPS will go up having read that. Thanks!!!:)

Canadianpimp May 17, 2008 09:50 AM

Re: New to this whole DPS raiding thing...and I suck
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Theleb (Post 185921)
I'd like to get that stickied as a basic guide to Affliction DPS Mr Pimp, if you have anything else to add, or if you think of anything, add it and we'll work some forum magic - yeah, its aimed at one individual in particular so might need a slight re-write to make it "universal" if you're up for that?

:)

Sure, let me get midterms out of the way later in the week and then I'll have some more free time.

Malfeaseance May 18, 2008 03:15 AM

Re: New to this whole DPS raiding thing...and I suck
 
Good Lord...That was awesome and a lot more then I expected...I'm going to reread that like 100 times


Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you

To answer some of your questions....yes I was afraid of dying sometimes, that was only the second time I've been in Gruuls/Mag as a lock and honestly I stressed out about positioning more than anything...the last thing I wanted was to shatter into someones face (or a lot of people's faces) so I moved a lot I know the slam throws you randomly but I figured the less I was clumped the least likely I would land next to someone. I only think I pulled the imp out at the end to attack when the fight was almost over...I guess I was thinking I could squeeze a little more damage since I wouldn't need to get mana from him. I didn't dark pact once? Jeeze I have no excuse for that...
I do have a DoT Timer I apparently just am not paying enough attention....which I guess is worse...


That is way too much information for me to process at once so I am gonna bookmark this thread. Once again thank you.... I have read your gearing guide BTW so you have my double thanks.

Demon2Some... May 18, 2008 12:49 PM

Re: New to this whole DPS raiding thing...and I suck
 
Mr Pimp, you are the man and take way too much care of us newbie raid locks.

I'm just about to go into Kara and I was looking to beat my rather sad 600DPS last time I was there, and you've given me a lot of food for thought.

So again, thanks.

theeffect May 19, 2008 07:32 AM

Re: New to this whole DPS raiding thing...and I suck
 
very nice covering of how to analyze a WWS-report - I really appreciate it.
To all the new raiding warlocks: to know the fight is crucial to your dps (beside a stand & nuke fight) even more than gear is. to know when to move where because of which ability will in- or decrease your dps by a large margin. And dont blame yourself - its absolutley normal to have a learning curve @ any boss encounter. You can't compare your 2nd attempt to the 10th - even if you have the same gear.

@Malfeaseance: As the Cpimp already told you - give your 1k+ dps locks your impr. CoS. It benefits the whole raid and you have just 4 dots to get into your rotation

Overlock May 27, 2008 05:13 AM

Re: New to this whole DPS raiding thing...and I suck
 
I found that WWS and other tips from Cpimp really useful too, thanks.

Akasha June 16, 2008 07:16 AM

Re: Basic guide to Affliction DPS
 
/promote

This post has been copied out from it's original thread (here) for easy finding. It was written for one individual, yet can be used by all. There was talk of a re-write to make it universal, but for the time being, this shall suffice.


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