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BfA Beta Simulator: status update

The simulator is ready for BfA for all specs, including tanks and healers, and all of the Azerite powers. It’s still on because it hasn’t been tested enough. So don’t take results as concrete “facts”!

It’s also worth noting that Artifacts and Legendary effects are disabled in the BfA simulator since they won’t work for level 120 characters.

What’s ready?

“Single Simulations” are fully functional. That includes all of the following:

  • All Azerite powers are implemented.
    • You can see each one on the Theorycraft wiki. (choose your spec, then look for the “Spec Azerite Powers” section, and the “General Azerite Powers” section)
    • If an Azerite power needs more testing or something looks odd, we make a note at the top, like Lunar Schrapnel (Balance Druid).
  • All trinkets are implmented, except for a couple pet-summoning ones where we need more data.
    • Trinkets also have notes at the top, including a note if it isn’t implemented (like the pet ones).
    • Some trinkets need more testing to verify how they work. For example, the splash damage from Briny Barnacle, indicated by a note at the top.
  • All class talents and spells are implemented.
  • Every class has a ‘base’ rotation – it is intentionally simple, which also helps find bugs.
  • Healers are fully functional, measuring HPS and Ally Deaths. We’ll have an article series soon that walks you through the in’s and out’s of healer simming.
  • Tanks are fully functional, measuring TUF (replacing NPS), and Death Chance. We’ll have a writeup soon on TUF – the short version: it measures how TOUGH you are (yep, that’s what it stands for. Smile, it’s fun!)

Continue reading

Azerite guide & infographic: fully explained

This Azerite guide is for all of you data junkies out there. For those of you who can’t get enough information about Azerite gear and need to know more, more, more! While I’m at it, I’m going to overachieve the heck out of this, and share it all in an infographic.

So here it is: your BfA Azerite InfographicAzerite guide infographic

For those of you who don’t like infographics (do you hate puppies too???), or if you want longer explanations, keep reading for the text version. Continue reading

Pre-patch issues & how to fix them

Around expansions, so many systems change that sometimes things get a bit out of whack. Here are the things we know about and how to fix them:

Caching Issues on Ask Mr. Robot

If you do Best in Bags or an optimization and see a giant increase to your score, you’d be right in assuming… that’s probably not right ­čśë I mean, Mr. Robot is really good at his job, but even he can’t get you a 47,000% increase. Continue reading

Mr. Robot’s pre-patch advice and details

If you do Best in Bags and see a giant score % increase, it has to do with caching. Also, your Artifact weapon might not show as the right iLevel until you reimport from the addon when the game is back up. I have instructions on how to fix these things here.

Pre-patches… oh how things always seem like they’re spinning out of control!

Players are dying to know what’s good and what’s bad. Content creators want to provide the answers, but struggle with the problem that the power of individual talents and spells are still in flux.

A few early opinions start to form which get morphed into black-and-white statements like “This class sucks,” and “This class is so overpowered.” People start switching mains and worrying if they’ve made the right decision.

I think a lot of the stress everyone feels comes from the uncertainty. As players, we are used to having so many tools to evaluate every little thing about World of Warcraft, from simulators, to combat logs, to expert opinions.

We really have none of that right now, we’re flying blind. Continue reading

Mr. Robot’s BfA Timeline

All of the new BfA talents are here with the pre-patch, and our shiny new gear is soooo close.

You’re probably wondering when you can play with those on our site. Or maybe not.┬á Maybe you are in game having too much fun to worry about optimization (that’s my advice!).

Still, it would be nice to know what to expect on our site, and when, right?┬áHere’s a TLDR and image that covers the basics. Continue reading

BfA Tank Diminishing Returns

Diminishing returns shows up in many places in Battle for Azeroth: damage reduction from Armor, Stagger and blocking attacks, and chance to dodge, parry or block attacks are the most prominent. Calling it an “often misunderstood” topic isn’t quite right… most people get it. People tend to argue about it a lot more than they actually misunderstand it, because there are a lot of valid ways to look at it… it’s like the Necker cube of WoW.

We are going to talk specifically about Armor, but the same logic applies to block amount, dodge chance, etc. — they all use a fundamentally similar formula. Continue reading

Diminishing Returns & Other BfA Tank Formulas

In Battle for Azeroth, how does diminishing returns affect Armor, Block Amount, Stagger, Dodge, Parry, and Block Chance?

Some things haven’t changed and you’ll be familiar with them. Other things are a little different with Battle for Azeroth. We’ve figured out everything you need to know through data mining and a dizzying amount of in-game testing. Continue reading

Master Loot Removal: A robot’s study on human feelings

With some math, some simulations, and one infographic, Mr. Robot showed how losing Master Loot has almost no impact on your personal or team’s progress (outside of split raids, of course).

But what he didn’t talk about, were our human┬áfeelings on the matter. Continue reading

Personal vs Master Loot for BfA – Infographic

Blizzard announced that guild raids will no longer have a Master loot option – all loot will be Personal loot.

As it stands right now – on Personal loot if you win an item that is a higher iLevel than any other item you own for that slot, the item┬ácannot be traded. If the item is equal or lower iLevel, it can be traded.

In a recent dev Q&A, Ion Hazzikostas (Warcraft Game Director), explained some reasons for this change:

  • All other loot in game has been on the Personal loot system (dungeons, world bosses, etc)
  • Master loot puts your fate in someone else’s hands, and you no longer have any control over it
  • If you help kill a boss, you should have a chance to get loot
  • It was not to take away split runs, however, they mention that is a welcomed side effect. (A split run is where a team takes their roster of 20 and split them up into 4 farm teams, for example. Each team consists of 5 ‘real’ players and 15 alts. All items that drop are Master looted to the 5 ‘real’ players, allowing the team to gear up faster).

The dev Q&A video from April 26 is queued up to the Master loot / Personal loot question below:

Watch Live Developer Q&A with Ion Hazzikostas from Warcraft on

This change is pretty controversial. A lot of people really love it, or really hate it.

The Internet is full of debates on the merits and flaws of each system. Instead of adding to that, I’ve done what we do best:┬árun the numbers and let┬áthe data do the talking. (Click for full size) Continue reading

Battle for Azeroth Developer Q&A – Off GCD Change

BfA GCD Change - Dev Q&A

The Warcraft developer Q&A on Thursday spent the first 15 minutes talking about the off-GCD change. It’s probably the most controversial change so far.

Let’s take a look at what this change is, why Blizzard made it,┬áthe possible downsides, and how it might impact gameplay.

What is the Off-GCD ability change?

If you haven’t had the chance to keep track of all the changes in the BfA alpha, the Global Cooldown (GCD) has been one of the biggest. In the alpha, some abilities that were not on the GCD were put back on the GCD. You might see this referred to as off-GCD or OGCD.

If you didn’t have a chance to watch the video yet, here are some resources that might interest you:

That seems like a simple change, but it definitely affects a lot of different aspects of the game. The latest developer Q&A addressed the reasoning behind this decision.

Why did Blizzard make this change?

This is the big question everyone has been asking. In the dev Q&A, Blizzard explained that one of the main reasons for this change was to bring back some more meaningful decision-making in-game. When things are off the GCD, then there is no choice between A or B, you simply use them both. Continue reading

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