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    Default Guardian for Dummies! (TSO)

    General Information
    Worldwide Guardian channel: guk.guardians
    (Good place to get questions answered in real-time.)

    Second, some general EQ2 stuff... if you're lagging whatsoever, turn CPU Shadows off, particles per character to 0 (particles are needed or at least recommended for some mobs, e.g. varsoon in Palace of Ferzhul, the last boss in Maidens Chamber, etc., but for the most part, you rarely need it, and it does create a lot of lag), and also go into the user interface tab, combat bubbles, and turn off third party damage. Turning down your textures and Anti-Aliasing would be a good next step if those changes do not allow you to play without client-side lag. No matter what class you're playing, not lagging is essential.

    Play in third person (mousewheel out) and turn autoface avatar to on. It's under alt+o, controls, view options. All you need to do in order to get facing the right direction is turn autoattack on and move your character an inch or two. No more facing the wrong way like an idiot.

    Once you have your hotbars worked out, disallow dragging the hotbar icons by right-clicking the hotbar and turning it off. Don't be a dumbass and accidentally drag an icon in the middle of a fight. Your group won't appreciate that you're not pushing any buttons, and you're going to screw the whole thing up. Lock the window too.



    User Interface (UI) & Hotbars
    Your hotbars should look something like this:



    The top two hotbars on the left are a macro for dual wield (top left -- notice how it's away from any button I'd normally press -- there's a reason why), my mount, run/walk, a dumb, temporary leash icon for a moors quest, miracles, self-buffs (ogre racial self-buff near bindwound), recapture, stone sphere, two macros with the decimate icon ("inc in 10/5 seconds" or other macros like "curse in 30/15" for the fight in BF:NA, and a macro to equip my Savage Wall (far right).

    Third row down has cure potions (A, E, N, T), stifle/stun pot, fear/root pot, clarity pot, and intercede, sustain, unyielding vigilance, and moderate. This is a must-have hotbar. Use your damn potions. Profit's click-to-cure is a bit buggy. It doesn't always work. Hotbar'd potions won't always work either -- even if you remake them. Sometimes you just have to keep a bag open.

    Everything on the bottom 3 hotbars should be 100% familiar with the exception of the icons that look like a gray Sentry Watch (to the left of Sentry Watch) and the red & white one on the left of Shield Bash. They're Ogre racials.

    If any icon other than those two on the bottom 3 hotbars looks unfamiliar, you need to find out what you're missing. If for whatever reason you were not aware of, for example, the reinforcement temporary buff, you need to get acquainted with it and use it.

    The one under my chat has my signets, hearts, shards, etc.

    The thin black window on the left is my detrimental window. I make it opaque and put it where I can see it because detrimental is fucking important. Also on the left is the raid window, and in the empty spot at the bottom-left, the group window.

    Also, install Profit UI. The raid window is great if you go into the advanced mode. It's essential for raiding healers and raid leaders, and recommended for everyone else.



    About The Class
    Pros
    - high HP (paladins have roughly the same amount of HP from Blessing of the Paladin + STA 4)
    - stoneskins (though they are not available when we are disarmed)
    - mitigation buffs


    Neutral
    - worst plate tank single-target aggro, though we are not too far behind and can still do somewhat well at it; single-target aggro is ~75% that of a paladin or SK
    - must sacrifice some survivability gear for dps gear in order to hold aggro

    Cons
    - reliance upon buffs from others to keep aggro, even on single target
    - horrible AE aggro
    ; worst by far in this category; multi-target aggro is about 30% of other plate classes, but will increase from agi3 and trak shield
    - worst plate tank snap aggro (Although ours are up just as quickly, their effectiveness is low. Paladin's holy ground/sigil of heroism and SK's grave sacrament blow reinforcement away.)

    - no heals
    - worst death save of all the plate tanks; although it is good for short fights, for long fights, it is nearly useless unless the mob is just about to die);
    --- unavoidable death 36 to 66 (with AAs) seconds after it goes off
    --- must be timed (crusader death saves are "until canceled")
    --- long recast (7.5 mins vs., for example, Paladin's 4.5 mins*)

    * it should be noted for those not familiar with Paladin that, unlike our death save's Death's Door, the negative side effects on the Paladin death save can be canceled with a macro ("/cancel_maintaned Divine Favor")


    - worst raidwide buff amongst tanks:
    --- Paladin: 5-7.5 to base heal and 820 physical mitigation to non-fighters
    --- Shadowknight: 5-6.2 to base spell damage
    --- Monk: 9.6 spell haste and 24 attack haste
    --- Bruiser: 5 to base CA damage and accuracy
    --- Zerker: raidwide dps mod buff
    --- Guardian? ... 29 defense.




    AA Trees
    The Warrior Tree has some variety in it. Str3 and 4, agi 3, sta 3 and 4, wis2, int 2, 3, and 5 are all good.

    Int line is pretty much a staple for warriors and probably the best thing to go for first. Every single guardian should have it.

    The rest depends on whether you want to be spec'd for single target (sta3) tanking or AE (agi3) tanking. Agi3 is more for instances and offtanks. Sta 3 & 4 for single-target MTs in raid.

    A good instance spec would be something like 4/4/8/8 str, 4/4/8 agi, 4/1 wis, 4/8/8/2/2 int.

    A good single target raid spec would start with 4/4/8 str, 4/4/8/8 sta, 4/8/8/2/2 int, leaving you 5 points to put wherever you want. You can grab the sta endline, which isn't great, but not entirely useless... or you can get 4/1 agi, giving you an extra AE... or you can grab wis 2 (1250 or so physical mit debuff), which is what I currently have. While you cannot knock a raid mob down, which is required for wis2 to be used, you can apply it at any time whatsoever after an assassin has used Point Blank Shot (standard AA for assassin) at least once on the mob.

    If you somehow manage to put together an incredible amount of melee crit, you can drop str line and go agi, sta, and int... or... /gasp... go into the wis line. The vast majority of guardians, however, should get at least 4/4/8 str.

    EoF tree is pretty much the same for all guardians. There's no need for the riposte end-line AA if you have mythical. Block endline is essential, and the 9% DA is pretty good. The AE immunity AA is useless in almost all fights -- the exception being fights with two mobs that both have AEs. Obviously, it would only block the AE of the mob that you're not tanking. Put 5 points into reinforcement, taunting blow, overpower, battle cry, hunker down, and tower of stone, and get the block end-line and probably 9% DA end-line as well. Put 1 point into Lay waste. What you want to do past that with your extra AAs is up to you. I have 5 points in overpower, gut kick, and precise strike. Even though Slam is a bigger hitter, the damage/reuse time on the smaller hits is better and a 10% increase in the damage of Overpower will net you more than a 10% increase in Slam.

    In the TSO AA tree, you want to get 5% Max HP, Overpower, Battle Hardening, Sneering Assault, Rallying Cry, Aggressive Nature, Veteran's Shielding, Added Const, Guardian's Will, Reversal, Sent strike, and Defensive Minded. Some people aren't fans of mit so they don't get Veteran's Shielding and instead get Absorbing Blows or Shield Bash AA.

    The best TSO AAs are going to be Sent Strike, Defensive Minded, Reversal, and Sneering Assault. They're great. Sent Strike is going to be 4-5% of your dps, and even more threat than dps, so if you're a baby guardian and are having a ton of trouble holding aggro, go questing and get as many AAs as possible. Sent strike increases your threat generation more than either M2 impede or AD3/M1 infraction.



    Proximity (Body) Pulling
    NPCs are "social" if they assist NPCs outside of their encounter. I'd say about 70% of mobs in instances and raid zones are social, but they are spread enough apart that you can arrow pull quite a bit without having any problems.

    Sometimes, however, if you pull with an arrow, you're going to get a whole bunch of crap that will probably wipe your group. That's where Proximity / Body Pulling comes in. It allows you to pull single encounters instead of the entire room.

    To Proximity / Body Pull you run just inside a mob's aggro range. Use angles to your advantage, if you have two mobs close to each other, approach from an angle that keeps the one you don't want as far away as possible while pulling.

    If you are attempting to pull a multi-mob encounter, wait until all mobs from the encounter you're pulling are away from the other encounter before you hit any sort of taunt. The position of every NPC within the encounter you're pulling is important. If you start taunting and attacking when one mob is straggling behind and still near mobs from other encounters, those other encounters will assist.

    Interceding your defiler prior to proxy pulling encounters is a good idea. Sentry Watch, Battle Cry, and Stone Sphere will also help a lot to protect your group if you have to wait for all the mobs from a multi-mob encounter to come to your group.



    Keeping Aggro
    Keeping Aggro will depend somewhat on AA selection, a lot on how many AA you have (a low-AA guardian will have a lot of trouble holding aggro -- sneering assault will help, and sent strike is badass), gear, and also knowing what you're doing.

    Most of your aggro will come from DPS. In raids, when you have a dirge and coercer, this is especially the case. Hit your taunts in raids anyways since they're so fast to cast, but know that they're going to be only a fraction of your total threat generation... anywhere between 4% and 12% depending on if you're DW'ing, what's going on, how good your hate xfers are, etc.

    In instances, your autoattack will be less beefed-up, but you will still probably be able to get away with dual-weilding on trash mobs. Get an offhand that matches up with the delay of your mainhand weapon. Nox Noctis is somewhat easy to get and a good choice. There are better for dps, but NN isn't bad defensively and probably going to end up being what you're going to get. Even if you DW, your taunts are going to be a higher percentage of your threat generation in a typical instance group. Anywhere between 10% and 20% will be typical.

    Your best friend other than pressing buttons while timing autoattack is going to be reinforcement. In raids, pop rescue on the pull and use reinforcement about 5 seconds after you get the mob on you. Dispatch should be hitting 4-8 seconds after the mob gets on you, and assassins will be going on their concealment chains (continuous backstabs). Reinforcement is the single-most effective effective thing you can do for aggro. Use it.

    Rescue and Sneering Assault are pretty simple and straightforward.

    If you have a memwiping mob, don't use Rescue/SA until you're at least at 30% on the threat meter unless you want to blow multiple snap aggro abilities. It's easy to jump past the healers on the aggro list; there's no point in rescuing past them if you are down to just one snap aggro ability. The 5-40% range will be saturated with players, so if you hit rescue at 10%, you willl probably only jump about 20% on the threat meter. If you save it for 35% or higher, you will likely jump to 80% or higher. Reinforcement can also be saved for memwipes, but you can hit that right when it wipes. Cry of the Warrior is good to try for memwipes, but don't rely on it -- it gets resisted a lot. Make sure you have something else up for a memwipe.

    If you're having trouble keeping aggro in T8 defensive stance, use a lower-level defensive stance or offensive stance. You do not have to use offensive stance if you can't keep aggro in T8 defensive stance. Try the level 4 defensive stance unless aggro is completely out of control. You'll still get the 15% (or 20%) mit increase.

    Hate mod caps at 50. If you have a dirge + coercer, they will get you to around or over 50, so there's almost no point in getting gear with hate gain on it. The str4 AA is not useful for raiding other than the increased base taunt amount, but it is "ok" for instance tanking.

    Moderate a wizard, warlock, or ranger and put your avoidance buff on a melee scout instead of vice verse, assuming both are causing aggro issues. Intercede on the scout if the mob turns towards him. This way, the mob doesn't run around, and people who stand close to the mob are a lot less squishy than people in cloth. There are a few exceptions... some wizards and warlocks can tank, and assassins can also be pretty squishy, but as a general rule, moderate on the range and avoidance on the scout is the right thing to do the vast majority of the time.

    If somebody in your group is about to die, hit Sentry Watch... especially if it's because you lost aggro to that person. Also hit Sentry Watch on pull if the mob you're about to pull is going to stun or stifle you.

    If all else fails, equip some dps gear. If you have a ridiculous wizard or warlock in the group, and you still can't hold aggro off them, either go DW or put moderate, unyieling vigilance, and sustain on them. They WILL be able to take a lot of hits with all of that crap on them, so long as you're near them.

    Some decent items for holding aggro that are extremely or somewhat easy to get:
    Pristine imbued tynnonium band of strength (3 plat or so)
    Band of Thuuga (easy but somewhat lengthy quest line)
    Circlet of Najena's Assassin (upgraded version of a ring from WoE)
    Captain's Moldering Flesh Cord (one of the first two named in ToMC)
    + slashing/mana regen belt (from WoE)
    + dps mod/CA dmg belt (from WoE)
    Darkened Naga Flesh Strap (Snake in ToMC)




    Group Setup
    Hate transferring classes are: (best to worst, significant xfers in green)
    Swashbuckler (16-27%)
    Assassin (16-19%)
    Coercer (15-22%)
    Wizard (3-9%), though they will likely cause more harm than good
    Warlock (3-9%), though they will likely cause more harm than good


    Other classes that will increase your hate mod or will otherwise somewhat help you hold aggro are: (classes are roughly put into teirs)
    Dirge (15% DA, Battle Cry, +slashing, CoB, luck of the dirge, maybe some other stuff, and a significant hate mod buff which they will turn it off if you don't need it)
    Coercer (dps mod and hate mod buff, peaceful link on a dps)
    Troubador (negative 30-34% hate gain for nonfighters, 10% group DA, 12% group melee/spell crit, 26-30% group haste, 6% group casting speed buff, and possibly UT and jcap, if they feel you need it)
    Warden (Instinct: +70 or so to slashing -- if your warden does not give you this when you're having aggro problems, they are a fucktard. The icon is a dog/wolf thing with... I think an orange background. If they say the scout needs it, tell them to go fuck themselves, the scout already has a 90% or better autoattack hit rate.)
    Illusionist (haste for you, 0-25% DA for you [rapidity AA and IA], tandem for casters, maybe some other stuff, and TC, but they never give TC and IA because they usually whore them out for some other buff such as UT)
    Inquisitor (dps mod, some other stuff too)
    Fury (Feral: buff that procs 57+ to dps mod and haste -- if your fury does not give you this when you're having aggro problems, they are at least mildly retarded. The icon is red with what looks like a fist)
    Shamans (Ritual of Alacrity, but it will go to someone else if aggro is fine)
    Assassin (poison DoT proc)
    Warlock (damage proc + and AA that I think is called propagation -- increases trigger chances)
    Wizard (damage proc)


    Note: People who buff haste are not as good as those who buff dps mod. One of the reasons for this that you should already have at least 100 haste (40 from haste item, 38 from int2, 18 from int3, 4+ from +atk speed items), so anything past that is not going to give you very remarkable returns. It's best to have a balance of haste and dps mod, and since you start off with 100 haste and only like 35 dps mod, you should obviously go for a dps mod buff class (coercer/dirge) instead of haste buff class (esp illy if they're not going to give IA).

    Classes that you will have trouble keeping aggro off of most often are: brigand, warlock, wizard, ranger



    Casting Order
    Use Bind Wound, Battle Cry, and Sentry Watch before pulling a named.

    Your casting order should be something along the lines of:

    Decimate
    Acc Strike
    Precise Strike
    Ruin
    Sever
    Shield Bash

    (Master's Rage)
    Taunting Blow
    (Sentinel Strike)
    Exec Strike
    Slam
    Retaliate
    Lay Waste

    Head Trauma
    Overpower
    Gut Kick

    (White = pretty standard initial hits; green = defensive; yellow = early aggro)

    The hits in white are pretty standard because 1) decimate has a 100% chance to hit, it hits pretty hard, and it increases the chance of the ensuing autoattack landing, 2) Acceleration Strike will get your haste up, so it's a good idea to use that one pretty early, and 3) Precise Strike has a good chance to hit, and it hits somewhat hard.

    Other people will skip ruin/sever and go straight to the yellow section, which is full of big hits/aggro. By doing this, they have good early aggro, but on the other hand, they will be without the early debuffs and have significant reuse issues.

    Fit taunts in wherever. Getting some taunts off before the mob reaches you is always a nice place to use them. If it's a mob that comes out of nowhere (Stranger Stalker, Switchmaster, etc.), and that's not possible, decimate and rescue are certainly the best things you can to use to get very quick initial aggro.

    If it's a named mob, consider using defensive minded on pull, consider rescuing on pull, and definitely hit reinforcement within the first 10 seconds unless there is some sort of special circumstance during the fight (e.g. adds that you will need to reinforcement + siege in order to keep them on you, memwipe, etc.).



    Tanking
    Your mit buffs, the block AA, Tower of Stone, Plant are your friends for tanking. Ruin and Sever too, but that's sorta moot since you should be pushing those for dps purposes anyways.

    Pop your mit buffs if you're going to be in trouble (e.g. death touche, AE, adds, etc) in the next 20 seconds. The reuse on Hunker Down starts when it expires, so if you need to cancel that one early in order to synch it up with AEs, go for it. Another thing that helps before an AE is using Shield Bash if you have the 4-piece fabled.

    Use Plant... again, before an AE is good, especially since scouts jousting out means debuffs will be dropping off the mob, but whenever you need help tanking. If all of a sudden being rooted puts you in a bind, just click it again to cancel it.

    Next, rely on the block AA. I have it as #1 on my hotbar so that I can hit they 1 key quick without wasting the half of a second it takes to get my mouse over the correct button on my hotbar.

    Make a Tower of Stone macro (see below) to equip your second-best shield. Keep the shield on until your three stoneskins go off, and then use a macro that equips your best shield back on. ToS takes a while to cast. If you're just about to die and don't mind using both block and ToS, use block first if you are most afraid of melee. It's much faster casting. After you hit block, hit your ToS macro.

    Stone Sphere... only use it if the mob you're fighting doesn't have a significant AE, or if you have faith in your AE callers. The range on it is 10 meters, so if the group is jousting or you know there is no AE coming, go for it.

    Hit Unyielding Will if you are out of things to press, your healer has died, or if the fight is almost over.

    Tank in a corner if the mob you're fighting has a KB, or at least make sure the tards in your group don't get between the KB'ing mob that you're fighting and other encounters. Usually tanking in a corner takes care of that, but sometimes not.



    Potions, Signets, Cures, Tinkering, etc.
    Detrimental -- it's important. Anybody from any top raid guild can tell you that a lot of the stuff that is sitting in your detrimental window is very, very important to get cured.

    Use cure potions -- it's easy. You can put the potions on your hotbar in alphabetical order: Arcane, Elemental, Noxious, and Truama. It "AENT" hard to use potions, so fucking do it. They all have different icons in the group and raid window, and it's even easier if you use profitUI's click-to-cure.

    Other useful potions are ones that cure stun & stifle, fear & root, and clarity potions for mana.

    There's signets as well -- they'll do stuff like heal you, give you power, allow you to rez people with 40% hp/mana, etc.

    Get a mage(s) to spam their arcane cure on you whenever it's up on fights with an important arcane debuff (e.g. Switchmaster).

    Do Tinkering. If you're not doing tinkering, you're not doing everything you can do to be a good tank. Items that you get from tinkering include Feign Death items (all on different timers), Manastones (which are on different timers and give 15% and 20% mana -- use them only when you're out of mana), Pacemaker (25% chance to prevent death and restore 40% hp/mana), and a repair bot.



    Equipment
    Do the Najena's Lab Equipment blue shiny collection. It gives a good tank earring.

    Equipment with uncontested avoidance is good. That's shield block, shield effectiveness, 3% parry wirst adorns, 3% riposte weapon adornments, and any other gear that has either a percentage listed or +1 "parry/riposte/dodge chance" (e.g. grunblig's coil). "Mit Increase" and crit mit gear is also good. Ward gear, assuming the stats on it are ok, is very good.

    Get the +77 mit forearm adornments instead of the +8 parry ones -- the extra parry will only make you look good when you're not in a raid. In a raid, your parry will be capped. The mitigation ones are also about 25 plat cheaper. Due to the nerf to the lambent balanced strut (since shield block was nerfed), it isn't really any better than the +77 mitigation one, but you get the lambent balanced strut anyways since it *might* save you from getting one-shotted against a mob that debuffs (BF:NA trash, Switchmaster, Ultaclypse, etc.)

    Get a Long Arm bow. It has 50m range, and you should be using +5 range arrows. Bows are pretty much only for pulling on guardian. Even if you need to stay ranged on a mob, your ranged dps is garbage, so don't worry about it.

    If you're a raid tank, put Brutemarrow Infusion (or Bruteflesh Reduction), Cranberry Flavored Cockatrice Blood, and Expert's Elixir of Constitution on autoconsume.



    Adornments
    Important ones in bold and first in list, color-coded for fabled, legendary, etc.:

    Shoulders: Scintillating Rugged Straps (+100 hp)
    Forearms: Smoldering Reinforced Splint (+77 mitigation)
    Neck: Smoldering Judicious Clasp (+12 dps mod)
    Rings: Smoldering Rugged Polish (+100 hp)
    Wrists: Smoldering Balanced Fastening (3% parry)
    Primary: Smoldering Ayr Stone (3% riposte)
    Ranged: Smoldering Judicious Composite Gear (+12 dps mod)

    Head: Smoldering Savvy Imprint (+16 wis) or Scintillating Epiphanic Imprint (+100 power)
    Chest: Smoldering Prismatic Applique (+7 to all stats)
    Legs: Smoldering Gritty Brace (+16 sta)
    Feet: Smoldering Agile Spurs (+16 agi)
    Cloak: Smoldering Metaphysical Lining (+4 in-combat mana regeneration)
    Hands: Smoldering Agile Stitching (+16 agi)
    Belt: Smoldering Spry Buckle (+3 atk speed) or Smoldering Combative Buckle (+30 CA dmg)
    Earrings: poison, disease, heat, or cold resists
    Shield: Lambent Balanced Strut (1% shield effectiveness)
    Secondary Weapon: Smoldering Phantom Handle (power proc) or Smoldering Ayr Stone (3% riposte)



    Deity
    Tribunal is probably the most common choice for guardians. It gives 20% mitigation to all damage for 10 minutes, so it's a pretty decent deity to have. The miracle choices are not very good, however.

    Mithaniel Marr has a 10 stoneskin miracle that lasts for 20 seconds. The blessing choices are not very good, however.

    I use Bristlebane because I think it's the best for tanks, and although it is/was not a common deity to have, it's becoming more popular amongst tanks. It gives a blessing comparable to the Tribunal one, and it gives a miracle comparable to Mithaniel Marr. You get the best parts of Trib and MM all in the same deity.



    Macros
    You should have Tower of Stone and potions macro'd.

    To make a macro, press "o" and click one of the blank macro spots ("click to edit"). Name it, and then add in the steps.

    Your ToS macro should be a "/cancel_spellcast" command, followed by a shield equip (use your 2nd best shield, and your 3rd best on your back-up ToS macro), then a cast of ToS.

    Once your stoneskins have gone off, click another macro that equips your best shield back on. Swapping equipment does not need a cancel spellcast. You can swap gear in the middle of a cast.

    Your potion macro should be a "/cancel_spellcast" command, followed by the appropriate potion. Alternatively, if you like to cure through profitUI's click-to-cure group/raid windows, you can hover over your name in the group or raid wnidow and press the "C" button, unless it is already cancelling your spellcasts to cure.

    A good way to tell if you have the "/cancel_spellcast" done correctly is to cast your call home or call to GH, and then test all of your ToS and potion macros. Since it's such a long spell cast, you know for sure whether or not it was cancelled.



    DPS Calculations: DA vs. MC

    Both DA and crit give linear gains, calculated off of non-crit attacks (for crit calculations) and a non-DA autoatack round (for DA calculations). In other words, you can't crit a crit and you can't DA a DA. (You should be able understand this easily if you keep reading.) As such, it is nonsense to say that 1 crit will increase your dps by .6% just because the 40 dps or so you gain from going from 0 crit to 1 crit magically happens to be .6% of your 0-crit dps. As you increase your dps, each additional 40 dps increase becomes a smaller fraction of your dps.

    Assumptions: (You can do these calculations on your own if you know how.)

    1) A crit on an AA increases your average non-crit AA by about 75%.
    2) A crit on a CA increases your average non-crit CA damage by about 40%, due to the fact that CAs have worse "spreads"
    3) A double attack increases your average non-DA AA by 100%.

    To find out how much, say, 1 DA is going to increase your dps, you can throw away CAs and procs, focusing only on your autoattack. If you go from 0 DA to 1 DA, this will obviously increase your AA by 1%, as you are going from 1.00 swings per round to 1.01, and (1.01 - 1.0)/1.0 = 1%. If you go from, say, 80% DA to 81% DA, you would increase your AA dps by .01/1.8, or .55%, since you are going from 1.8 swings per round to 1.81, which is not a 1% increase from the 1.8 in respect to itself, but rather a .55% increase of the original 1.8 swings per round.

    Although the returns here are not diminishing in absolute value, due to their linear nature, they are diminishing in respect to the increase, by percentage, of your total dps. This, coupled with the fact that your AA dps is a function of the product (i.e. multiplication) of both crit and DA multiplied together (i.e. the more you get of one, the more you're going to get out of the other), is why it isn't best to try for only crit or only DA.

    At any rate, assuming we have 0 DA and 0 crit, let's calculate how much 1 DA is worth compared to 1 MC.

    1 DA = 1% chance to increase AA by 100% = (.01)(100)% AA
    1 MC = 1% chance to increase AA by 75% and CA by 40% = (.01)(75%)AA + (.01)(40%)CA

    To find out when they are equal, you can just set these equations equal to each other.

    .01 AA = .0075 AA + .004 CA
    .0025 AA = .004 CA
    AA = 1.6 CA

    When you're at 0 DA and 0 MC, and AA dps is 160% of CA dps, 1 DA is worth just as much as 1 MC. When AA dps is less than 160% of CA dps, 1 DA is worth less than 1 MC -- and vice versa.

    Problem is... who is at 0 DA and 0 MC? Well, nobody. So how do you calculate it? This is the #1 mistake you'll see on eq2flames by people who are moderately intelligent -- they will say so-and-so amount of points in crit will increase your dps by x%, but they are calculating from 0 melee/spell crit, 0 dps/spell mod, etc. IT'S WRONG! Assuming typical gear is better than assuming a naked character, but in the case of DA and MC, it's not really any more difficult to actually get it very accurate, so do it.

    Here are the equations to calculate DA and MC benefits based on your current DA and MC on a level 80 mob:

    1 DA = (.01/(1+Current_DA)) AA
    1 MC = (.0075/(1+Current_MC)) AA + (.004/(1+Current_MC)) CA

    (SEE NOTE #1)


    If you have 50 DA, one more DA will increase your AA dps by (.01/1.5), or .66% -- not 1% like some people might assume. Similarly, if you crit 50% of the time, and you then crit 51% of the time, your AA dps will go up by (.0075/1.5), or .5%, and your CA dps will go up by (.004/1.5), or .27%.

    This will give you a highly accurate method -- possibly even a perfect one -- by which to evaluate the benefits of DA and MC.

    Plug your in-raid (or in-group) DA and MC into Current_DA and Current_MC, and plug your AA dps (slashing) and CA dps (don't include procs) from ACT into AA and CA. Whichever equation gives you the higher number will give you the higher benefit.

    Since DA works only on AA and MC works on both AA and CA dps, it should be obvious that MC is going to benefit you more when you're a gimp and/or don't have buffs since CAs will be a higher portion of your dps. It's hard to buff CA damage, but our AA dps increases faster with better gear for a number of reasons (due to "better spread," having mythical instead of fabled epic, etc.) and increases again by about 125% in a raid (dps mod, slashing buffs, haste, strength). It's actually more than 125%, but that's due to debuffs, which we largely can't control by changing our gear and which will make proportionally equivalent increases in CA dps. If you're gimp or not raiding, keep in mind that you should be less concerned about your DA than a raid tank and that, if you're agi spec'd, you can't DA an AE autoattack.

    Note #1: The only possible change that you will have to make to these equations is that if you have crit bonus on your gear only (increased crit bonus on CAs due to TSO AAs is already accounted for), you will have to include it by using:

    1 MC = (1+MC_Bonus/100) * ((.0075/(1+Current_MC)) AA + (.004/(1+Current_MC)) CA)

    e.g. 1 MC = (1.01) * ((.0075/(1+Current_MC)) AA + (.004/(1+Current_MC)) CA)

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Guardian for Dummies!

    Anything I missed? :O

  3. #3
    <Dunamis>
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    Default Re: Guardian for Dummies!

    Nice post!

    A few things I noticed:

    I didn't see Lay Waste anywhere. Lay Waste is much better than Siege when fighting single targets. And the TSO Siege AA affects Lay Waste as well.

    Maybe add Double Attack Potions and Melee Crit Weapon Stones if you need a bit more dps?

    Small Correction on the hate transferring classes: Dirge doesnt transfer hate, he increases hate. Technically both Sorcerer Classes transfer hate as well but we know how groups with stacking Warlock Hate go.

    Casting Order: Personally I like to use the big hits for initial aggro after Decimate / Acc Strike: Mar, Lay Waste, Retaliation Strike, Exact Strike.

    If you put Dirge's Battle Cry in the helpful buffs list you may want to put Illusory Arm and Haste (Illusionist) in there too?

    Guardian / Sentinel Sphere: The Level 50 version of the spell has the same amount of stoneskin procs but a lower intercept chance (if people are worried about the intercept damage). The Sphere is a good Pre-Pull buff as well to alternate with Fortify / Wall if you are pulling fast.

    Maybe you want to add a list of signets as well? (Stun Immunity etc.) Maybe note that the upgraded guild level 70 version does not share the reuse timer of the lower guild level 50 ones?

    Very nice writeup, well done.
    Halbaradx - Guardian
    Roccox - Dirge | Halbarat -Inquisitor

    Dunamis - Splitpaw

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Guardian for Dummies!

    nice writeup... difficult to think of things to add to it. prepull buffs, on big bosses I use stone sphere, sentry watch and fortify. Sphere only if the mob isn't crazy ae:er as that can kill me quickly. but having spehere and sentry watch up increases initial aggro to mob so makes it easier to get aggro and increases survivability to me and the group.

    Also perhaps explain that the reason you give moderate to ranged DPS is so the mob doesn't run away even if you lose aggro.

    Also about setting your particles per character to 0 I would advice against that, there's other things one can change with particles to reduce lag, like range and size of them, alot of TSO bosses show when they're about to cast things with particles (like varsoon most notably, but even the raid targets) So i'd put it below things like Anti aliasing etc. Another thing you can do to increase frame rates is not to have too many chat windows, and not using smooth fonts. think you could link to the official forums thread about how to optimize performance.

    For UI I'd also add to get hotbar UI that shows the remaining time in seconds before you can use something again, and the same for Maintained window, showing time left, quite nice to know how many seconds is left on ToS when it's up etc or how long before you can recast it.

    "The ultimate lack of self-preservation is probably to call the tank a chicken." - Ravengash

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Guardian for Dummies!

    Could mention that both hate gain and hate transfer cap are 50%, and that generally for raids +hate gain AAs and items will be useless (Dirge+Coercer)
    Pfft.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Guardian for Dummies!

    Quote Originally Posted by Halbarad View Post
    Nice post!

    A few things I noticed:

    I didn't see Lay Waste anywhere. Lay Waste is much better than Siege when fighting single targets. And the TSO Siege AA affects Lay Waste as well.

    Maybe add Double Attack Potions and Melee Crit Weapon Stones if you need a bit more dps?

    Small Correction on the hate transferring classes: Dirge doesnt transfer hate, he increases hate. Technically both Sorcerer Classes transfer hate as well but we know how groups with stacking Warlock Hate go.

    Casting Order: Personally I like to use the big hits for initial aggro after Decimate / Acc Strike: Mar, Lay Waste, Retaliation Strike, Exact Strike.

    If you put Dirge's Battle Cry in the helpful buffs list you may want to put Illusory Arm and Haste (Illusionist) in there too?

    Guardian / Sentinel Sphere: The Level 50 version of the spell has the same amount of stoneskin procs but a lower intercept chance (if people are worried about the intercept damage). The Sphere is a good Pre-Pull buff as well to alternate with Fortify / Wall if you are pulling fast.

    Maybe you want to add a list of signets as well? (Stun Immunity etc.) Maybe note that the upgraded guild level 70 version does not share the reuse timer of the lower guild level 50 ones?

    Very nice writeup, well done.
    Yeah, I thought dirges had a small xfer as well, but nope.

    And yeah, sorcs have a hate xfer. Didn't put it in there since they cause more trouble than good, but I just did... and made a note that they cause more trouble than good. =P

    Illy is garbage for melee, but I'll add them anyways... otherwise, they'd complain and start giving me a lecture about how great their class is.

    Will add Lay Waste stuff.

    Hate mod cap added.

    Trying to keep this somewhat short, though, so let's try to not get much more intricate. =P

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Guardian for Dummies!

    Very nice write up, it was a good reading and will help newer Guards develop if they listen to what you put down.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Guardian for Dummies!

    Your best friend other than mashing buttons is going to be reinforcement. In raids, pop rescue on the pull and use reinforcement about 5 seconds after you get the mob on you. Dispatch should be hitting 4-8 seconds after the mob gets on you, and assassins will be going on their concealment chains (continuous backstabs). Reinforcement is the single-most effective effective thing you can do for aggro. Use it.
    While reinforcement is your best friend. I would not burn it on the pull or shortly after. Best bet is to save it when you notice certain people in the raid wizzy, ranger, warlock, OT or someone is gettin a bit to close to your hate. If your going right and timing your CA's you should be able to hold aggro most of the time just with normal DPS. IMO reinforcement, rescue, sneering assault are more of incase shit happens deal. Only time I use rescue on pull is on strange stalker to prevent anyone from getting punched right away.

    *Edit*
    A good instance spec would be something like 4/4/8/8 str, 4/4/8 agi, 4/1 wis, 4/8/8/2/2 int.
    Ive tried alot of AA setups, probably the best one I have found thus far for instance running was: 4/4/8 str, 4/4/8 agi, 4/4/5 sta, 4/4/6/8/1 int. But like I said thats my Opinnion. You still keep your AOE auto attack, gain another 15 DA. and that 8% hate gain is minimal, if you are having a ton of trouble with hate in instances either A: Bring a dirge or Coercer, or B: Get a Raging Leviathan Girdle, gives another 20% hate (while its not always up, but with the amount of multiple mob encounters and using DW and O stance you should get hit enough to proc it up rather quick).

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Guardian for Dummies!

    Quote Originally Posted by Ixer View Post
    While reinforcement is your best friend. I would not burn it on the pull or shortly after. Best bet is to save it when you notice certain people in the raid wizzy, ranger, warlock, OT or someone is gettin a bit to close to your hate. If your going right and timing your CA's you should be able to hold aggro most of the time just with normal DPS. IMO reinforcement, rescue, sneering assault are more of incase shit happens deal. Only time I use rescue on pull is on strange stalker to prevent anyone from getting punched right away.
    There's two scouts in my guild that wear this ring. The mages also don't pull any punches just because it's early in a fight, and the zerker and paladin like to use their gibe & holy ground. I gotta work to keep stuff on me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ixer View Post
    Ive tried alot of AA setups, probably the best one I have found thus far for instance running was: 4/4/8 str, 4/4/8 agi, 4/4/5 sta, 4/4/6/8/1 int. But like I said thats my Opinnion. You still keep your AOE auto attack, gain another 15 DA. and that 8% hate gain is minimal, if you are having a ton of trouble with hate in instances either A: Bring a dirge or Coercer, or B: Get a Raging Leviathan Girdle, gives another 20% hate (while its not always up, but with the amount of multiple mob encounters and using DW and O stance you should get hit enough to proc it up rather quick).
    Also an acceptable spec, but there's really no need for all that extra parry, imo.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Guardian for Dummies!

    Quote Originally Posted by Halbarad View Post
    Nice post!

    Guardian / Sentinel Sphere: The Level 50 version of the spell has the same amount of stoneskin procs\

    soe nerfed this at some point between rok and tso T5 sphere now only has 5 triggers and T7/T8 has 6 :\ i use T7 since it has slightly less dmg intercept.

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