Jun 192011

So, new patch notes. Huge change for ferals. I thought I’d take a closer look at the numbers here. (All numbers derived using 4.1  and 4.2 Mew; as always, big ups to Yawning, tangedyn, and Leafkiller for their work. I get to just use the thing and report results.)


When looking at ability rotations, one of the key metrics used is DPE, or “Damage Per Energy.” It’s a measure of how efficiently energy is being used; typically, given a long fight, you’ll want to prioritize high-DPE abilities over low-DPE abilities. The ability changes from the patch notes have shifted our DPE around a bit- let’s look at the numbers for toons in BiS ilvl 359 and ilvl 372 gearsets (assuming full buffs, etc).

AbilityDPE(359) 4.1 4.2 Gain
Rip 4271 4173 -2.3%
Rake 1773 1945 9.7%
FB 688 964 40.1%
Shred 542 567 4.6%
Mangle 399 415 4.0%


AbilityDPE(372) 4.1 4.2 Gain
Rip 4770 4667 -2.2%
Rake 2005 2217 10.6%
FB 767 1069 39.4%
Shred 616 651 5.7%
Mangle 456 480 5.3%

So, going from worst-DPE abilities to best: Mangle and Shred are slightly buffed, with the scaling buff having a stronger effect than the strength nerf. FB gets a HUGE buff in terms of DPE, which I’ll talk more about in a moment. Rake gets a nice bump from having the initial Rake hit powered up to full strength. I still need to confirm if the initial Rake hit is still affected by crit depression (the reduced crit chance when attacking higher lvl targets). I’m assuming yes; if not, that’ll bump it up a bit more. Finally, Rip got no buffs, so you see the impact of the strength nerf.

Of course, the burning question: What about FB above 25%  boss health? In 4.1, the loss in Rip/SR uptime (and hence lost DPS) by incorporating FB was too large. Now, though: It’s close. VERY close. I’m still testing different simulator configurations, but as far as I can tell, conservatively using FB and not using it at all are almost DPS-identical, while aggressive FB use remains a DPS loss. (Conservative/Aggressive, in this context, means the amount of time left on Rip/SR.)  Out of all the configs I’ve tested, the best I’ve seen is a ~25 DPS gain from using FB, which is hardly consequential. Blizz needs to bump this just a bit more, and I’ll be happy.


In order to cross-reference with combat logs, here’s what the ability DPS breakdowns should look like in an ideal (Patchwerk) scenario. Obviously, actual fights will look slightly different due to movement, randomness, lag, error, what have you.

AbilityDPS%(359) 4.1 4.2
Rip 26.07 23.87
Shred 25.71 25.85
Rake 19.44 20.23
Melee 18.96 20.28
FB 2.81 3.23
Mangle 2.77 2.67
Fury Swipes 3.64 3.29
Ravage 0.58 0.56


AbilityDPS%(372) 4.1 4.2
Rip 26.31 23.94
Shred 25.09 25.42
Rake 19.71 20.62
Melee 19.03 20.21
FB 2.83 3.28
Mangle 2.86 2.74
Fury Swipes 3.57 3.21
Ravage 0.59 0.57

As you can see, Rake and Melee (from the SR buff) come up a bit, and Rip drops off significantly. This is great – the more damage that comes from frontloaded abilities, the better we’ll do on things like adds.

Total DPS

Ok, TL;DR, you just want the final DPS numbers? Fine.

TotalDPS 4.1 4.2 Change
359 23050 24793 7.6%
372 25624 27748 8.3%

Yep, that good. Hope you’re excited about 4.2, if you weren’t already. :)

 Posted by at 11:00 pm

  15 Responses to “The math behind my ramblings”

  1. My question is with the shreds flat hitting harder is it going to be better to go with hit/exp cap or haste my inital thinking would be that with the change hit/exp cap might be even more desirable. Have you guys done the sims with secondary stat switches yet or can that not be done until 4.2 is live?

    • I have a further post coming on secondary stats, but they’re all exceptionally close in value.

      • Figures, I am wondering if mastery looses even more bang though. Way to take a stat that should have been best after hit cap and mangle it Blizzard. I mean they had the perfect way to balance classes and blew it terribly.

  2. Yanwing did some testing last night while we were chatting on IRC and said that using an aggressive FB approach during Berserk was a dps up, even without the t12 4 piece bonus.

    I plan to spend some time this week testing out the rotation itself. I will be providing a new script once I am done and will include an updated Atramedes style fight so we can at least how that affects dps.

  3. How is Ravage only 0.5%?

    • Heli nailed it – I’m only simulating a single Ravage at the beginning of the fight.

      • One plus is we can still make use of ravage for target switching on fights that spawn adds….which is pretty much all of them. It will never be the 5% of our damge done like it was for T11, but we can still make as much use of it as possible.

  4. My guess on ravage: since they are fixing the feral charge thing, charge+ravage without leaving the hitbox will not work any more, so unless you’re ready to sacrifice a few seconds of melee, the free ravages are relegated to target switches.

    And I admit, I actually like this…..

  5. Any conclusions on how to apply to the 4 piece T-12 buff? Is it best to start with combo points before casting Berserk to maximize the uptime?

    • Haven’t looked too much at 4pT12 yet; focused on 378 at the moment. Good question, though, and I’ll give it some thought.

  6. Any insight into which offpiece we will use with 4pc T12? With respect to a 359 to 372 perspective…

    • Waiting until a little closer to patch day to see if any more loot trickles out of the PTR (loot lists seem huge, but for a 7-boss only tier, there’s still a few items missing, possibly)
      That said, you should have a good bit of freedom to pick and choose your offset – more when I throw up my gear guide.

  7. The legs seems the best T12 offpiece right now by a great margin.

  8. With the buffs we are seeing to SR in 4.2 are we going to see a shift to ensure we are Hit capped? I personally like being hit capped and expertise capped and I hope this will provide and even further boost to my dps once 4.2 lands.

  9. I lvoe your posts, Alaron! Looking forward to read more from you :D

 Leave a Reply