Warlords of Draenor and Hunter Stat Weights

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Don't use blogger. I was lazy and decide blogger would be easy. As you probably noticed, I lost interest in documenting the hunter-world through Siege of Orgrimmar. If you see me return to the writing world for Draenor it probably won't be here, but I've received quite a few questions about hunter stat weights and gear in the wake of raid start this coming Tuesday and figured I'd publish my posts on the Might hunter forums in a more public venue.

So here are those posts, take from them what you will. They may help you with other information out on the Internet or make things even more confusing.
The main draw for folks here is their own research for pre-raid setups and seeing multistrike so high for their Marksmen:  This is true pre-raid, and I'll personally be using a multistrike scope (still crit enchants) until picking up highmaul gear. This is only a phenomenon in pre-raid items, but it's important to note that the difference between full crit and full multistrike is still relatively small. If you're already set up for crit don't sweat it.
edit; I should just clarify that below there are a lot of stat scaling charts from the simC 17N+P profiles. These will always change and be dynamic based on time, number of targets, variation, encounter and gear setup, so it's important to take them only as a general observation rather than something specific to your own character / situation. The best thing you can do there is to simply sim it yourself with your stuff.

My mentioned forum posts...

  1. Marksmanship Stat Weight Discussion
  2. Beast Mastery Stat Weight Discussion
  3. Highmaul Gear and Trinkets


Here's the 17N marksman APL at 0% variation for 300s @ 31k under TotH, MoC, GT and LN, our typical ST load out:

Written straight from that chart it'd look:
MS = Vers >= Crit > Mastery >> Haste
But we'll see the most consistent gains from Critical Strike and Versatility, with the most reliable jumps from Multistrike, meaning for this single target I'd say:
Crit = Vers >= MS > Mastery >> Haste

This gets muddled when we add in various targets... For example,
Here's the same ST loadout @ 39.5k with 3 Targets:

Without any play modification all the stats blur together the more targets there are, with the most stat jumps coming from Crit and Multistrike.

And here's a 39.6k 3 Target load out with SF, MoC, Barrage, LN and an APL change to pool for Barrage:

Clearly showing the appropriate stat weights for Marksmanship: Crit >= Multistrike > Haste = Vers = Mastery

AoE should be a no brainer after the above patterning, but for the sake of completeness here's ST and AoE @ 8 Targets.

Single target TotH, MoC, GT and LN @ 45.4k:

Haste is vastly more useful at a high AoE load especially under a reliance with TotH and Glaive Toss but sullies the relation with multistrike.

AoE SF, MoC, Barrage and LN @ 50.6k:

But we can see here that once we re-implement Barrage multistrikes value sky rockets. All other values from the previous chart remains the same (versatility rises a bit to equal mastery more closely), so someone with a keen eye would go: "OK, so multistrike loves barrage, maybe we should check that the current simulationcraft variables between barrage and multistrike are working correctly?"
Which is something I will check, but I would imagine that's the case and a perfectly normal dynamic.

The thing to take away from this is:
Talent choices are going to change stat dynamics, so on a case-by-case basis we have to re-evaluate what will be the most useful for us on each encounter. If we are going to do a cleave fight but run a single target set up, this will look different than our needs on the same cleave fight with an AoE set up - in one case we'll see "higher DEEPS" but in the other we'll see more "focus FIRE".  IE, tectus cleave versus brackenspore cleave.

For example, with SF and barrage we will see a more even spread of that 51k - but with TotH and GT it we will see a more focused concentration of the 45.4k. Furthermore, an evaluation has to be done based on the haste dynamics for focus regeneration against the time limit of the fight to decide whether or not Focusing Shot is a valuable addition to the fight -- IE, a low movement patchwerk like the Butcher at a low item level with slow focus regen.

Here's the same ST 17N marksman APL at 0% variation for 300s @ 30.1k modified for TotH, MoC, GT and FS to simulate the butcher (down 0.9k):

And again at 0% variation for 300s @ 30.2k under TotH, MoC, Barrage and FS:

And the same with 8 targets, the first GT (50k, up from 45) and the second barrage (54k, up from 50):


OK, to start this off.. Beast Mastery is dumb and should be deleted, so working on beast mastery is painful for me. Sorry. 

Second, as said before, all the stats for beast mastery are pretty evenly weighed -- this is for a few reasons, the main being Beast Mastery's constant history of well-built synergy. Your main stat considerations will come from what you want beast mastery to do and your current setup:  for example, I could say you should enchant/scope for crit at 630 but if all your gear has crit on it then that won't actually be true. It'd make more sense to balance something else. Same thing for any other possible combination of loot and stats, but the good news is it will almost always have an equal level of gain versus your planned use.  Min-maxing in this regard falls down to RNG, ability sync and situation, which means there's almost never a wrong answer. 

Third, while all that is true in the general scheme of things there will also be a clear cut winner for ST or AoE at any given point in situation/gear. In most cases if you are AoEing you are also, to some degree, conducting ST, whether this is through a focus kill target that's getting the bulk of your pets melee, what you're cleaving multishot off, or high HP targets that are left standing alone. Therefore when I do a ST setup (1t), a cleave setup (3t) and an aoe setup (8t) they're to be taken as three parts of a whole to be compared with and weighed based on predicted use. Beast Mastery is more a series of small events rather than any predictable sustain (in contrast to survival, and to a lesser degree, marks - which only does 'one job'). 

The real differences will be seen in talents. So quickly there:  tier 60 between steady focus, dire beast and thrill of the hunt has two choices.  Dire Beast for single target, which will find its best scaling stats in mastery and haste respectively.  Steady Focus for AoE, since the increased focus regen for sustained cleave and higher maintenance of wild hunt bites to also cleave trumps the rest. SF doesn't overly scale with anything: haste will cast it faster but haste also increases focus regen, which is already being accomplished -- casting faster also doesn't overly matter when neither kill command nor focus fire interrupts your steady focus. Thus its a typical scale consideration on cobra shot: crit and multistrike (cobra shot ain't much of your damage ever regardless). You'll see the stat balancing already... The single target talent favouring AoE stats and the AoE talent favouring ST stats. 
Tier 90 between glaive toss and barrage for ST vs AoE comes up again, but I can't think of a point in time where you would run beast mastery and glaive toss together. Simming between the two is a near irrelevant consideration, one that doubles in favour for barrage when there's more than one target. And there being more than one target is why you're beast mastery to begin with. As above regarding MM, barrage teams extremely well with multistrike.

Take these DPET as example. This DPET is an 8T 150s 0% var running a set of full mastery enchants / scope:

Whereas this DPET is an 8T 150s 0% var running a set of full multistrike enchants / scope:

Whereby you have a collective jump across the board for all things wearing multistrike, but a significant bulk from kill command in mastery (and all passive pet attacks, of course). Just to drive my point home, here's a quick pop quiz: after some hard work trashmobbing, you're doing a single target CM boss. You have dire beast and barrage. Mastery or Multistrike? hint - trick question. 
edit;  the image didn't get included, but a mastery stacked dire beast has a higher DPET than kill shot. 

To enunciate the sameness of the stats on beast mastery, here's a pre-raid stat scaling on 0% var 150s DB/Barr:

Between 20 686 and 20 487 (a pitiful 200 dps difference) each stat spikes above or below several other stats in several locations. At a gain of +30 stats Mastery = Versatility = Crit = Haste > beneath Mult. At 50 stats this becomes Mastery > Haste = Mult = Verse > Crit. At 75 stats this becomes Mult = Mastery > Vers = Haste > Crit. At 100 stats this becomes Multi > Vers = Crit = Haste >= Mas. In other words, you could gear/enchant for any of these in an attempt to eek out that 200 dps and most likely never see any feasible difference in combat. 

Now, as with Marksman, the more targets you add the more fluctuation in stats you'll see. With marks we don't overly care about this: With beast mastery it's the main point of action. Nonetheless you're competing for stat fluctuation spikes of synergized abilities all affecting different talents in different ways -- AoE talents benefiting from ST ability stats and vice versa. But the main themes to keep in mind are...

1. You're probably optimizing for an opening sequence, stacking skills together. Your scope choice affects this: when you open, you're opening with bestial wrath/CDs and your scope proc. You will capitalize most from a mastery proc AoE, or a multistrike proc ST. 
2. When not working around bestial wraths 1m CD, you're working around barrages 40s CD based on the targets you'll be facing now / in the immediate future. Holding barrage to hit more targets is just as important as anything else. And barrage loves multistrike. 
3. Your choice of full AoE with Steady Focus / Barrage versus an ST hybrid with Dire Beast / Barrage is going to largely factor in to what you're using BM for and the group comp. Eeking away a few seconds from a boss kill with dire beast is just as effective as eeking away a few seconds from a trash pull, dungeon permitting.
3b. IE, dungeon A has lots of trash but they're short aoe bursts, and has long boss fights = dire beast (+prob MS for barrage burst). Dungeon B has lots of trash that are long and can live through stuns, and medium boss fights = steady focus. 

I put several combinations of T17P (pre-raid) profiles against 8T 150s in order to gauge the various effects of stacking one stat or another through enchants and scope procs, as the largest variation field will always be the high target sims. In list, these were [click for useless stat scaling]:
61 688 DB, Barr - full mastery
61 679 DB, Barr - haste, mastery scope
60 849 DB, Barr - multistrike, mastery scope
60 619 DB, Barr - full multistrike
59 570 DB, Barr - multistrike, crit scope
62 827 SF, Barr - haste, mastery scope
62 479 SF, Barr - multistrike, mastery scope
62 376 SF, Barr - full mastery
62 233 SF, Barr - full multistrike
61 056 SF, Barr - crit, mastery scope
To take away from these: full mastery and full multistrike are in both DB and SF comparisons with vastly different results. With DB there's a 1070 preference for mastery, from mastery scaling, whereas with SF the difference is entirely negligible (under 200). In all five cases for DB the stats jump and merge based on the weight amounts of the others:
crit > vers = mas > haste >> ms // haste > mas > vers > crit > ms // haste > crit = mas > ms = vers // haste > mas = vers > crit > ms // haste = crit = ms = mas > vers

In other words, the smartest thing you can do for Beast Mastery is get items with Multistrike + X or Y then enchant based on your strongest missing link: in AoEs case, especially at low ilevel, this is more than likely going to be haste or mastery. As you gear out of heroics/CM oriented work to more raid oriented work, this will lean heavily towards mastery (hard AoE and dire beast ST) and multistrike (hard barrage burns and sustain BC). 
When considering your scope, you'll consider first and foremost your opener: if it's single target and you're running DB, capitalizing on Bestial Wrath with a mastery scope proc is quite strong. But so is opening with a multistrike scope proc and barrage. So is opening with beast cleave under either mastery, multistrike or crit.

So when you assholes said, "Hey Jade! Do BM!" what I heard was, "Hey Jade! Disappoint us with really complex information that doesn't give us a clear white or black answer!"  

Just kidding. Sort of.

Here's a final few sets of conditions under the same gearsets as above (T17P):
To support st ms >= crit with less interest in has/mas = 
20 507 DB, Barr - full ms

20 487 DB, Barr - crit, ms scope 

3T cleave to combine with information from ST and 8T (keep in mind haste will tone itself down):
28 888 DB, Barr - full mas
28 836 DB, Barr - mas, ms scope
28 786 DB, Barr - full ms
28 782 DB, Barr - haste, ms scope
28 219 DB, Barr - crit, ms scope

Keep in mind all of the numbers on the Y axis (the dps variation) for these charts. With Marks you had variations as wide as 900, whereas nothing here crumps 200, even on 8T comparisons. So the main advice I can give Beast Mastery..
- Grab multistrike + X and Y, where the second stat can be mastery = haste > all else on your GEAR.
- enchant for haste if still relevant, otherwise full mastery. Scope for mastery (opener) or multistrike (barrage/sustain). 
- if your gear is mastery, inverse this. 
- SIM YOURSELF.  Sim your ST at 45s and 150s, your 3T at 45s and 150s, your 8T at 45s and 150s then anything else relevant to the CM you're planning on doing. IE, if you're going to do a dungeon one trash group at a time then you want to listen to 3T/6T sims. If you're doing them two trash groups at atime you want to listen to 8T/12T sims. Base how long your sim should last on your barrage duration (3s * x) and bestial wrath uptime (10s * y). 
Raid BM:
- Grab multistrike + X and Y, where the second stat can be mastery = crit > haste > all on your GEAR.
- enchant for haste if still relevant, it shouldn't be.  Otherwise full mastery or full multistrike, base this on sims for the encounter (tectus vs brackenspore vs arcane adds, etc). Scope for multistrike (cleave) or mastery (aoe). 
- if your gear is mastery, inverse this and resim it just in case because haste will be volatile and confusing for the first few tiers. 
- etc etc etc
- Seriously, if you want min-max it has to be done with your gear setup in a simC profile because it's all so horrifyingly similar. 


note: too lazy to fix the item URLs here, sorry.

ilevel > all, so I'll assume these are all ilevel > x highmaul items.
Preliminary pass. 

Head: Hood of Dispassionate Execution
Neck: Odyssian Choker (This is the item I missed in the other list)
Shoulders: Living Mountain Shoulderguards
Cloak: Cloak of Creeping Necrosis  (This [Magic-Breaker Cape is a BoE and equal)
Chest: Moss-Woven Mailshirt
Wrists: Bracers of the Crying Chorus
Hands: Grips of Vicious Mauling
Belt: Belt of Imminent Lies
Legs: Leggings of Broken Magic
Boots: Face Kickers
Ring: Spell-Sink Signet
Weapon: Crystalline Branch of the Brackenspore

Trinkets: I'll sim the above setup at 670 and get back to you on these two.
Trinket 1: Captive Micro-Aberration
Trinket 2: Double Sided Lucky Coin
Trinket (3): Scales of Doom 

Both heroic CMA and SoD are good for us. CMA is slightly better than SOD (within 1%). DSLC beats heroic SoD (similar variation). 
Skull of War3 is within 200 DPS of SoD. Keep an eye out for trinket nerfs. 
#1 = CMA + LDSC, #2 = SoD + LDSC, #3 = SoW + LDSC, #4 = CMA + SoD, #5 = CMA + SoW, #6 = SoD + SoW

edit; I got a question about why I've put CMA #1 on this list. The main thing to take away from my post here is that all the trinkets were simming nearly identical insofar that which one you got didn't overly matter. This remains true... For heroic highmaul, your best bet is to pair the DSLC with one of the two trinkets out of highmaul. Which one doesn't matter. Probably going to be preference, or whichever one you can steal from the other agi users.

The trinkets were also buffed since I made that list. For an up to date list of trinkets keep up with the main hunter resources. As of this edit, Azortharions bulk sims for the mythic trinket pairings is accurate enough.

The Highmaul trinkets still sim relatively similar to each other. The double LDSC+MDT listing with a dps difference of ~40 shows the margin of error between the pairings. With mythic, and if given a choice, you would lean in favour of the SoD. 


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