A Major Upgrade, Or Is It?
“Despite the fact that, that group was full of mostly random people… that was pretty good!” Exclaims our Blue-Haired friend to his Druid and Rogue companions…
Last night I was able to “force” Aifel and a Healing friend of his, Bigblakbul, into going on a wild goose hunt in order to get a 10m ToC PuG together. Through much luck I was able to score us some pretty decent people and most of us got a piece of the loot. (Except for the Healers, SORRY VIVEK!) Now mine was a Trinket, as well as enough badges to buy T9 Tanking legs.
The Trinket is today’s discussion, well the base of it anyways. One thing that any Tank will need to do is to determine what is an upgrade, and what is not. Obviously each Tank is different, thus why there are so many different pieces of Tank gear and gems to gem with.
Eitrigg’s Oath is the bad boy who is now hogging space in one of my Trinket slots, so how about we break this down a bit? When you equip it you get a constant bonus of 114 Dodge Rating. Not bad, avoidance is always a bonus, because the more damage I avoid, the less strain the Healers have. Take a gander at the use effect, when I activate it, each attack against me will give me 1265 armor for 20 seconds, stacking up to 5 times. When hit 5 times I will receive an extra 6325 armor for those 20 sec, this means I have a new OH SHI- button, and one of my better ones. There is however a 2 min cool down so you should only use this when you know you will be taking some heavy damage from a special attack. (As with any OH SHI- button!)
Bubbling Brightbrew Charm was what was replaced however. The use effect is really bad, think of the Healing Stream totem, it is mediocre but nothing that will ever be missed compared to the use effect of Eitrigg’s Oath. The +170 STAM however gave me about 1.8k HP, which is obviously a VERY significant loss. The dilemma is obvious, which do I choose, which actually helps?
Avoidance: A better way to understand what to do is to understand the mechanics of each stat. Stamina gives a set number of HP per number of Stamina, this does not change and to my knowledge, will not change. Parry and Dodge however will change based upon how much of each you currently have, so if I have 0% dodge I will get the full effect of the +114 Dodge Rating, however if I have 26% Dodge, the amount I gain will be less than the guy with 0% dodge.
That my friends, is why we do NOT gem for avoidance (except for that one purple gem, depending on your gear/spec), the diminishing amounts that scale based on our gear/level is not worth gemming for. Besides which, we do not ALWAYS avoid attacks, we simply have a CHANCE to always avoid attacks. HP is always there, it is a stable stat so we will always set this as our gemming priority after we reach the Defense Cap.
With this knowledge we would be leaning towards the Bubbling Brightbrew Charm, a constant 1.8K HP is much better then 1-2% Dodge that we would squeeze out of the Trinket.
The Obvious part: The ilvl or the “item level” of any particular piece of equipment is a good indicator of what should or should not be an upgrade for you. The lowest ilvl when raiding in WOTLK is ilvl200, this drops off of Naxx10, OS10, Archavon, and any Heroic except for Heroic ToC 5m. My Bubbling Brightbrew Charm is a ilvl200, and it was one of the three Tanking Trinkets that dropped off of Direbrew during Brewfest. Eitrigg’s Oath is an ilvl232 and dropped in Faction Champions ToC 10m.
Now with VERY basic math skills we should understand that Eitrigg’s Oath has the larger ilvl and it came from tougher content, thus giving better gear. Without looking at the trinket as a whole we can get a general thought on which could be better just from the ilvl of it.
Is it an accurate way to go? Somewhat, Blizzard is good with naming ilvl items, the harder content gives “better” loot, so in turn this Trinket should be better than my old trinket. Just do not always go by assumption, I am training Death Knights, not robots!
The Use Effect: We have determined that Stamina should have priority over Avoidance, and that ilvls can help us out when we are in a tight spot for checking out what piece of gear SHOULD be the upgrade. Right now, it is a tie, so what is my deciding factor on which of these Trinkets to choose and in result, use until I find one that is better? The Use Effect of course! Now most Trinkets have a “use” and something will happen for a set amount of time, with of course a cool down.
The Bubbling Brightbrew Charm gives our party a “vigor” boost, IE an effect that can be compared to the Healing Stream Totem. It ticked about +121 Health every 2 seconds, and with HP such as mine +121 is barely noticeable in a bad fight! Obviously ditching this use effect will not be much (if even) a loss for me when I am in Tank Mode.
Eitrigg’s Oath, however, as we stated before is basically one of my BEST OH SHI- buttons. The 6325 (max) Armor bonus for 20sec outpaces my Unbreakable Armor, and is not a bad substitute for Icebound Fortitude when it is on C/D. This is totally not a use effect I am willing to turn down for that piece of shi- shown in the above paragraph.
This is a deciding factor, in the end the use effect for Eitrigg’s Oath is so GODLY that I am willing ot sacrifice 1.8k HP just to run around with it, and honestly, I could not be more pleased. Anubs was so much easier due to the extra OH SHI- button I had just acquired, so the choice is already clear. The Dodge is not a complete waste, but if it was a question of Dodge v.s. STAM and the use had been horrible for both Eitrigg’s Oath would not have been an upgrade.
Luckily since I scored my T9 Legs I actually did not “lose” HP in a sense, I still have about 100 HP more than I did with my old gear and the Stam Trinket. Although I could be running around with almost 34.5K HP, I think this was well worth it.
Moral of the Story: Some of our greatest treasures may actually have to be looked over before we use them. Is that not right, Muchy Ol’ Buddy?
“…I can… plainly see… that a salad… totally owns… a Gnome for… dinner…”
Well, you will have to eat them tonight, we have some 2v2 games to play!
“…Damn… Blood Elves…”