More milk for less moo!

Let me see if I can describe a scenario, and you see if it sounds at all familiar to you.

You’re playing a DPS class and join a PuG or group of folks that you don’t normally run with.

You have Recount installed, Omen is updated, you have ammo/reagents, pots, food and are repaired. You’ve played your class for a while, and gotten a feel for things, even if it’s an alt.

You’ve even read up on your class on a few blogs, or visited the official WoW forums class page and read some tips on ability cooldowns and the efficient use of your skills, although you have never taken the time to actually sit there and do any math, or visit Dr. Boom, to try and determine the perfect optimized shot rotation or ability sequence.

In short, you feel reasonably certain you won’t look like a complete idiot in front of these strangers as you play.

You know that, compared to some of the things you’ve read, you’re not nearly at the point that it seems serious raiders are at, where they discuss the perfect optimized point to Rip to gain maximum benefits from Energy regen ticks and Combo Points without wasting them, and you still occasionally flub a moment or two when you try and position yourself behind the target, or you get flustered sometimes repositioning yourself when an Ice Trap breaks early, so you know you aren’t doing the best possible DPS a player could. You feel a little bad about that, but you do the best you can to play well. 

So there you are, you are feeling pretty confident that you’re about to have fun and kick some butt, and you are naturally curious as to the kind of gear the other players are rolling with, so you inspect them.

Oh… My…. God… they are decked out in all purples! And some of those are drops from 25 man raids! Ohmigod, the Rogue has the Dragonspine Trophy, that drops off Gruul! The Shaman has some Tier 5 and 6!

Oh holy heck, they are all serious raiders… I’m going to look like an idiot!

But you relax, and put your game face on. You go on your run, but you’re nervous, and you’re trying your best to play well and not look like an idiot… and above all else, you do not want to make a bone head move that wipes the group.

Just thinking about the possibility of being the one to wipe the group makes you feel dizzy.

You move along in the isntance, and you’re trying your best. You’ve got mostly blues and maybe a badge reward or rep reward Epic or two, but you figure, hey, they probably inspected you and knew that going in, so they obviously are willing to put up with your lack of DPS. Just please, oh please, don’t let me screw up.

The run goes smoothly, everything was mostly okay. You had a good time, bosses were killed, loot was handed out or sharded, some badges were earned. All good. You feel like you contributed well, and that you learned a thing or two by how the group handled the encounters.

There were a few times you feel like you messed up, there was lots of ‘bang-bang-bang’, but a few times your Trap cooldown wasn’t ready for a second Trap in case your first was resisted after the pull so you ran around kiting while waiting for those last few seconds of cooldown to get over with, and there were a few times when, in the heat of the moment, you weren’t right on top of sending your pet back into battle on another target after your first died, so you lost time that coulda been spent having your pet get some Claws into some butts. 

But overall, you’re pretty happy. You watched your threat, used your threat reduction abilities when necessary, kept up your DPS and also used your utility spells, and feel pretty solid.

And there is always room to improve, right? It’s a great learning experience to run with an experienced team.

The other players thank you for coming, and say how much they enjoyed having you run with them. You thank them for having you along, and wish them all well.

Then you decide to check your Recount stats, to see how badly you fared against someone who played your same class on the run (or another class you play a lot). It doesn’t really matter to you one way or the other, but you can hope to look at what their most commonly used abilities were on the Recount individual charts, and see what abilities you might not be using enough, or see where you need to stack more Crit or Hit Rating so you can do better next time.

That’s when you stop dead and stare in disbelief.

Your actual damage done during the run was higher than some of the other DPS classes.

Well, that ain’t right.

Their spike DPS shown was certainly higher than yours… but as you look at individual fights in Recount, even on single boss fights where it was straight ‘do massive damage to burn down the boss’, your amount of actual damage done was higher than the others.

How the heck is that possible? Hmmm… is my Recount wrong?

Does that scenario sound familiar to anybody?

I’ve done quite a few PuGs here and there, and I know I’ve seen this happen before.

Most of the time, in my experience, what it comes down to, is that you can have some great gear and Epics, know what stats best benefit your class and spec, and even have the most recommended spec for your class to do what you want to do, but it all breaks down if you don’t use your abilities to their best advantage.

And it can be very difficult to know if what you have worked out as a shot rotation, or sequence of attacks, is really the best one to use as a starting point… and when is the right time to improvise around it.

Even if you haven’t taken the time (and effort) to maximize your shot rotation efficiency, or break down the timing to the nanosecond on your abilities to nest cooldowns within each other, or set up a macro to pop ‘on use’ Trinkets whenever off cooldown to boost DPS, the fact remains that for most classes, what order you use your abilities, and which ones you use, and when you choose to trigger them can make a far more massive difference to your DPS than your gear.

For DPS, it’s not about survivability, like it is for us big bears, after all.

For da bear, you gotta be able to take a few punches, as I told Shrinn last night. As a bear, you have certain goals you have to meet to feel confident that you are bringing enough gear to do your part to survive. The challenge for a bear is all about applying enough threat to the right mobs to keep them using you as a punching bag. When people check out your gear, they are typically looking to see if you’re gonna be able to live when Prince enters Phase 2.

But for bears, it can be hard to quantify where exactly you can improve in terms of skill. Yes, you show up on Recount as DPS, but the final measure of success is, “Did you establish and hold aggro?”

With that as a guideline, it can be hard to see where you can improve if you are already holding threat, even on multiple mobs.

I’ve already talked about using Omen as a live TPS threat meter to work on your threat generation by heading out to Blades Edge Mountains with a healie friend and picking on trees that take a long time to kill, so you can try different rotations and methods to find the one that spikes threat the highest for you, and get a solid feel in a safe environment on how your threat generation works. And since tree adds spawn, you get to work on holding aggro on multiple mobs, too.

And of course, bears should be using Recount as an after-action report to see how many Parries or Misses you generated with various levels of Hit Rating or Expertise as well.

But for DPS… it’s all about generating the most damage you can without exceeding a target’s threat, and while conserving your mana at the levels you need to in order to last for the duration of the fight. Right?

Where am I going with this?

Well, for me personally, I know that the only emails I generally get from folks about posts on my sidebar that they found useful are; the bear tanking gear list, the consumables list… and the Cat DPS breakdown.

And of the three, Cat DPS comes surprisingly close to edging out the bear gear list, simply because it’s rare to see someone post a suggested combat sequence for a spec, and then link to it so new readers can easily find it.

I know that I do what I feel is great DPS on my Shadow Priest, not because of any great skill or knowledge on my part, but because of the hard work that the folks in the Shadowpriest forums did FOR me, and how easy they made it for me to find their info.

And I contrast that with how incredibly hard it was to find a suggested Retribution Paladin combat rotation or sequence when we tried to optimize what Cassie is doing so she is pounding the bad guys as hard as she can.

So what I am doing here, is simply reminding my readers of how easy it can be to get caught up in the chase for better gear, and that in many ways HOW you fight contributes more to your success than what you are fighting with (and that what you may have gotten into the habit of doing is not necessarily the best way), so make sure you periodically take the time as you level to try out different things.

And also to encourage my fellow class bloggers to take a look at your website, and if you have already written awesome guides or posts that provide helpful suggestions, strategies or techniques, to please take the time to add links to those articles on your sidebar, so that we can find them, learn from them, and thank you properly.

And if you haven’t offered your suggestions or tips on how to set up your combat sequence to get the most bang for your buck, then why not go for it? Even if yours isn’t the absolute best first time out, I’m sure that you have some great readers that will be glad to also offer their suggestions that you can use to improve it into a long lasting and helpful guide.

The new Patch will be bringing new Talent trees… and I think it’s a good time now to put your current thoughts and suggestions in place, and when the Patch does roll out, you’ll be able to take what we had before, and test out the new changes, and play around until we get a good feel for what new suggestions can be made.

Oh, and the post title?

I worked with an efficiency expert contractor who liked to say his job was to get called in to help a production line figure out how to build the most product in the least amount of time, with the fewest defects… and that working with managers was a lot like trying to improve productivity on a dairy farm… all the farmer wants to know is, is how to get the most milk out of the cow, with the least amount of moo. 


43 thoughts on “More milk for less moo!

  1. I’ve had exactly that happen before on my hunter up against a much better geared hunter with the same spec as me. My dps came out higher in the end which I was really really surprised at. It really goes to show though that the people who put in the effort to learn their class can surpass a better geared player who didn’t put in the effort.

    I haven’t had a dps meter installed for awhile now and am allways really surprised when someone posts the stats and see where I am compared to the rest of the group.


  2. This is a great reminder. I usually find that I’ll edge out several DPS who are listed on Recount as having larger DPS, but when you get the web stats, its easy to see why…. my Time on Target (% dps time) is usually much much higher. Its about optimizing your damage, your time on target and your rotations to really get the most damage out.

    As I told one guy… its great that you can do 1000 DPS, but your DPS drops to zero when you die… and when you have to spend half the time sitting there with your thumb up your butt and I keep dpsing non stop… I’ll beat you ever time.


  3. I must confess I’ve been on both sides of that line.

    I’ve been to instances where I wanted to show what I can do, and did awesome damage (within the limits of my skill).
    And then once I got hold of T5 level gear, and you’re back to doing instances with other “over-geared” players. It becomes different.
    The stress is off. You know you have the gear to complete the instance, the tank has enough hp/armor/mitigation, the healer tons of +heal, mp5 & mana.
    And there are fights where you just sit back and auto-shoot while the boss slowly goes down. And while the boss slowly goes down, you chat in party chat. Hanging out, and relaxing.

    It’s at the point where you know (for the level of content) that you do not need to be fully buffed, maxed out and using every trick in the book to beat it, where you just do it for fun. Time to hang out. And if you do wipe, go back in, and give it some extra push to get past that part.

    The rest of your group could maybe easily have out-dpsed you, but they were having fun knowing they were in no danger of wiping. And if a situation had come up, I’m sure their dps would have suddenly spiked as they turned on their A-game. But sometimes, 5-man instances are a nice relaxing break from stressfull 25-man progression.



  4. Could it be a case of the blahs too? I know, as someone who raids T5 and T6, that I’ve been guilty of not putting my all into 5-man runs… /shame. I mean, I’ll be going as tank, and I’ll be paying attention, but I’m not nearly as needle-point focused as I am during raid night, or even as focused as I was when I started tanking.

    It IS however, VERY nice to see stuff like that, I’ve always lamented the fact that WoW is so gear-dependent and it’s nice to see that, while the zomg epics make lives easier, they’re not enough to buy skill.


  5. ^^ What Canth said!

    The first time I stepped into Kara, it was “oh my god I’ll look like a fool” since I was in blues and (gasp!) greens. But I beat out some of the T5 geared dps.

    I went into Kara a few weeks ago, geared in my T5/T6 gear and, guess what? An alt in blues and rep purples beat me on the dps meters. And it’s because I wasn’t flasked, wasn’t oiled, didn’t eat any buff food, and probably used my trinket twice in the entire run. It was a “chill and relax” run for me, so I didn’t put in the same amount of concentration I do on T6 bosses.


  6. Canth, whatever in the world made you think I was relating a single real life event? Why do people keep making assumptions and then rant about it based off your assumption, rather than just ask me if that’s what I meant first?

    Why even rant at all? Do you really think that all players with great gear know everything already, and the only reason someone with less gear does higher overall damage is because the higher geared person let him? That’s silly.

    Hmm, and Isis agrees with you. So I guess that the only reason anyone with less gear obtains higher results is due to laziness on the better geared players’ part? Is that really the point you’re making? Interesting.


  7. Yay Bear for being a good hunter! Warms my heart to see more o’ those. ❤

    I do think that it really boils down to “skill not gear”… well, in most cases anyway (we won’t talk about the guy in full T6 who shattered my DPS into little pieces, peed on it, and tossed it out the window)


  8. Why even rant at all? Do you really think that all players with great gear know everything already, and the only reason someone with less gear does higher overall damage is because the higher geared person let him? That’s silly.

    Is assuming someone who’s in T6 did less DPS then someone in blues just because ‘they’re doing it wrong’? That sounds just as silly. 🙂

    The point they were trying to make is that there could always be another option. They’re just relating to your scenario rather than your Actual Point(tm).


  9. If you are getting beat by someone way undergeared compared to you… how much more do you think they would be beating you if they had the same gear? Laziness is really a poor excuse if it is the reason and still comes down to the person behind the gear. Also consumables can’t make up the gap between blues and tier5-6 gear…


  10. Gear =/= Skill

    I know people who can’t DPS their way out of a wet paper bag that just happened to have a friend in a high end raiding guild… wind up decked out like Elizabeth Taylor in Cleopatra.

    Or healers who can’t heal, same deal. Tanks are a bit different… most places won’t take a ‘tank’ if they can’t do their job… but unless they’re a warrior, they can go in as something else — healer probably — and get ‘offspec’ gear until they have enough to make it their main spec, then they can’t tank a baby mouse.

    It’s sad. I know a lot of REALLY good players, who if you give them the gear, would blow up the server… but because we aren’t in a progression raiding guild because of time constraints, friendship ties and other obligations… aren’t.

    Which is good for the server, but sad when we out DPS the epic’d out people.

    So, I reiterate… gear =/= skill.

    As for Cassie’s paladin… my favorite ret paladin guide is located at


  11. Sadly, I too can say I have been on both sides. Coming up as a pally healer, my guild didn’t have any others, so they threw awesome loot, chants, gems my direction. I was #1 healer from day one. But, on my Mage, who is 1 bar from 70 (OMG it’s taunting me) my DPS has been below tanks at time and I am starting to figure out how to bring it up, but the first few runs left me feeling that I was NEVER going to get her in a raid.

    I live by the mantra Gear =/= Skill…..I have seen uber geared people play in ways that dumbounded the whole raid. I have seen people geared in blues in greens being given a shot in Kara and outhealed all healers but me. Some who had been healing for a long time.

    I really think it’s just a person learning to really know their toon, the toons abilities, what they are capable of. I think that you have to always challenge yourself to try and kill that elite, or that group of five to your one, just to see if you can do it. It helps build that skill.


  12. BBB, I have a 70 hunter in modest gear (some s2, two heroic drops, and some rep purples, then blues and greens), as well as an upcoming feral (the reason I read your blog), and I can tell you that I’ve out-DPSed end-game raiding hunters & other DPS classes before, too.

    I find that some of the “well-geared” hunters either use sub-optimal shot rotations or just use auto shot.

    It surprised me when I got into a 25-man raid and I pulled in the 2nd highest DPS in fights with my engineered gun and scope, when I know I wasn’t using the absolute best shot rotation or perfectly maximizing all my cool downs.

    Gear can get you a long way, but knowing your class and not being lazy are just as critical. That’s the reason I’d take an average-geared guild mate over a T6-geared stranger any day of the week. I know my guild mates take the time to learn their class and how to play them. A random stranger… not so much.


  13. Very good point you make at the end. Nowadays, and I dont care who it is… if a dps player boasts about his gear and his dps, I’m immeditaely suspicious of his skill level, and tend to ASSUME he’s an low skilled player who I wouldnt want to take on a 25 man run. Simply because, as you say, his/her focus is in all the wrong places. Most of the time this turns out to be the case. Same for healers who boast about their total healing. The give away is the boast: skill & reliability & maturity trumps gear + stats for endgame success.

    btw, I suspect both recount & omen often give false results. I have no proof, but I’ve seen completely weird readings on the meters that have nothing to do with what just happened in game. Another reason to put the stats lower on your priority list when you decide who to bring to a raid and who to sit.


  14. Definitely familiar… obviously gear plays a big role in dps and total damage in general, but skill and knowing how to play one’s class is over 50% of that total, in my opinion…

    We have several dps classes in my guild who have been wanting to come to raids, but when they show up, their dps is terribly low, despite being in all blues with maybe a few epics here and there… my shadow priest is in about half-and-half blues and epics, and he’s usually second on total damage in a raid, under the hunter I usually run with, who is completely decked out. When I’m tanking Karazhan on my druid and I’m sitting on 3 times as much dps as a warlock, that’s just not right… lol.

    I really think it’s up to the individual players to do the research and find all those posts you mentioned, where other people have figured out the exact math, and optimal spell rotations, etc… there’s nothing worse than people who expect you to both get gear for them, AND tell them how to play their class. >_>


  15. If anything, I wish that skill were even more of a factor than the gear. It’s nice to think that sometimes the pendulum swings to the skill side, even in the level/loot WoW world.


  16. Jive, I absolutely agree with you… there are certainly more reasons why a person could not be performing to where they *could* be. Agree 100%.

    I just felt like it was a little over the top to focus on that as something to be angry about and rant about.

    I presented a single hypothetical situation, kind of a mish mash of lots of times I’ve seen it happen, and then pointed out where you could see one thing that might be the cause, and took that as a starting point for the post. I was going with the happy thought that both people were actually trying, and were focused on doing the best they could rather than goofing off or texting.

    My objection really is just to wonder why people get all ticked off and rant about stuff right off the bat, about a side concept that wasn’t even part of the post.

    The post wasn’t an angry diatribe about players in great gear that don’t perform like gods, a topic worthy of being slapped down. It was about how you should aspire to playing your class the best way that you can, and how easy it can be to get caught up in the idea of seeking gear upgrades, rather than improving your playstyle. To encourage people to try and learn how to best use your abilities and talents and get the msot out of them.

    If the point of the article had been to go off on some lousy single experience I had with epicced out Tier5/6 players, well, shoot. I could certainly see folks getting irritated at me for jumping to assumptions. But I sure wasn’t thinking anything of the kind whatsoever.

    As I was tooling into work this morning, I just happened to be wondering what to write about, and thought of the nice email I got last night thanking me for my kitty DPS post from a year ago.

    So it occured to me that enough time had passed to just remind other bloggers that I dearly would love to see them offer their own thoughts on improving play and using skills and abilities for the classes they write about.

    I love the comments about Ret Pally articles, btw. Thank you all very, very much.

    Just… why can’t we all just get along?


  17. BBB- It all boils down to this.
    Ya gotz a jarhead with an M-16 (or is it M-4 now?) and yer typical army groundpounder with the same gun.
    As much as it pains me to admit this, my money is on the marine to produce a higher dps. Same weapons, so why bet on the marine? Superior training and skill, the marines take the time to make sure they get the most out of what they have. It ain’t what you got to use, its how you use what you got…


  18. Yeah Manny… you can get away with saying that… in the Army, you carried a tank. 🙂

    Now tell me you think Marine tankers have better target acquisition… bet that ain’t gonna happen.


  19. Thanks for the pally links. I do have to admit I have those 3 already bookmarked. I told BBB last week that I had done some desperate pally research (like going to google blogs and doing random searches) *shudder*

    I found all 3 of these and have gone through them to confirm some things we already figured out and found some great new resources from links on these sites.

    Just hadn’t had a chance to actually share all that stuff with BBB due to the craziness that has been our life for the last week or so.

    But keep the pally links coming since even though I’m level 63, I still feel clueless at times. I’m ret now, but plan to go holy eventually (was going to be at 70, but now that will likely be about when the expansion is coming out, so may extend the ret solo leveling til 80).

    Thanks again!


  20. I’ve been in Kara runs with my Mage where the people I am running with are in T5-T6 gear and I’m in greens and a few Merciless pieces, and when the dust clears, I’m in the top 3 DPS. Why?

    Well, I have come to find out that most people that raid Black Temple on a regular basis do Kara, it is without care. They do not give 100%. Most of them don’t pot or flask up. No scrolls, no nothing. They want to be lazy and muscle through 22 badges in a few hours and that is totally understandable, but I always give 150%.

    Now, if I were to go to BT with them, they would smoke my mage in DPS, but when it comes to Kara runs, my ego is falsely inflated… aqnd I LOVE IT.



  21. One thing I always notice is that best Raid Spec/Ability Rotation does not equal the best Instance Spec/Rotation. Raid specs are really tuned for Raid boss fights. Trash and Instance boss fights go fast and most Raid specs are tuned for much looonger fights. In a prolonged fight, they will beat you — but in a short fight, they can’t get going fast enough to really shine. For example, my Hemo Swords builds always consistently out-DPS Combat Swords in trash fights because the combo point generation is much better.


  22. I’m ridiculously confident while playing my priest (having have close to ten rolled and played them for years helps!), but always have that feeling while playing my hunter despite being that Tier 6 raider who does extensive theorycrafting and knows the ins-and-outs out my preferred DPS class.

    However, your scenario does happen quite a bit to me as well. I remember in particular a Serpentshrine Cavern run that I was invited to as my hunter with one of the leading raiding guilds on the server. I was in perhaps a single piece of Tier 5 while all of the rest of the raid — DPSers and hunters in particular! — were decked out in Tier 6 or equivalent. I Was ridiculously certain that I was going to end up at the bottom of the damage meters just below a healer, but ended up doing the most damage by a significant amount!

    I still gloat about that night.


  23. There was a druid on my server for a short time who had been through to M’uru. He had the Stanchion, every tier piece, the legs from Felmyst, every single trinket you could imagine.

    He used Tiger’s fury when DPSing. He used the Ashtongue Talisman trinket for DPSing. He used ferocious bite when DPSing. He had as many mangles as shreds. He didn’t use armor rings because he couldn’t afford the defense hit, and he refused to look at resilience enchants. With his gear he barely broke 1100 DPS on Teron.

    He was horrible. But he was through M’uru.

    Gear in no way is equivalent to skill and understanding. I say that because I’ve met plenty of skilled players who have no idea what the optimal rotations, gemming, enchantments or anything are. But they rock, and when you teach them those things they become insane. But unless you’re looking at S4 gladiator shoulders, you’re not talking about gear being any measure of skill. There are at least two guilds on our server that sell T6 runs. There are plenty of people in every guild that barely study their class and spec and barely know what to do right.

    There are plenty of people who are carried.

    This is one reason I’m looking forward to WotLK in theory – that with the rebalancing goal being all classes are useful, all provide buffs that are replaceable and the primary differentiation is skill, not class, hopefully we’ll stop the days where LFG tank gets ‘loldruid’ or ‘lolprot’. I can at least hope that’s the case.


  24. Shadow priest T6 quality,if im in a pug chances are anyone could beat me on dps cause im hammered…i drink,i pug…thats it.
    I go all out on raids or progression but on 5 man stuff it got so boring so long ago i barely even register what i do these days 😦


  25. gear != brains

    a point brought starkly into focus this evening with a fellow priest whinging that if they weren’t top o’ healing meter it was cause me and the pally were OH.

    said whinging priest had OH% in the 60s

    but yeah, takes a certain kind to admit that gear is not the be all and end all. PvE is just one aspect, look at the people who think resi = skill.


  26. BBB, first of all i love your blog. I am however disappointed. for a man who wrote not one, but two posts about damage meters to write this is a little contradictory. How much threat room was available. As a shaman no matter how good you are your dps is limited by the threat. I keep hearing about t6 peeps with no skillz. I accept the possibility even though i have yet to meet one personally. The reality is skills, shot rotations etc can make up a LOT, but not enough. Fankly i agree with canth. As a healer – always concentrating. As a raid mage, always concentrating. In a heroic as dps, auto-pilot. I am there to hang with mates. Now if i am challenged on dps at the start of the instance, sure, but otherwise cruise mode. It is supposed to be fun, chillin wit ma peeps. But make no mistake, with threat room and a concious challenge, i expect you would have been dead in the water. At t5 i am over 1 k dps continuous, can the hunter really pull that out in blues and greens? if so nerf bat pls. Otherwise keep it up.


  27. I’ve been on both side of the coins where I optimized my dps output in raids or simply spam fireball in Kara. But what’s also important is knowing when to optimally use trinkets or other short term buff to your advantage. Some people simply use trinkets when the CD is up, or do I wait for the shammy’s Bloodlust so it can stack? Or use other class’s debuff to your advantage. Lock’s Curse of the element, mage’s Scorch, shammy’s Bloodlust, Combustion, Icey Veins, Drums of Battle, Shrunken Head trinket, tankful of mana, can pack quite a punch when when boss is <20% health.

    Granted a person might have the newest uber purple, but unless the know their class skills and when to use certain special abiities…it doesnt make a damn difference somtimes.

    BTW. helps w/ suggestions of gears and attack sequence to optimize you DPS.


  28. See, this is exactly the kind of comment that just makes me scratch my head.

    I said “Oh… My…. God… they are decked out in all purples! And some of those are drops from 25 man raids! Ohmigod, the Rogue has the Dragonspine Trophy, that drops off Gruul! The Shaman has some Tier 5 and 6!”

    And then I said “You’ve got mostly blues and maybe a badge reward or rep reward Epic or two, but you figure, hey, they probably inspected you and knew that going in, so they obviously are willing to put up with your lack of DPS. ”

    Jorani then decided, apparently, that this disparity wasn’t enough to be irritated about, so it became “I keep hearing about t6 peeps with no skillz.” and “can the hunter really pull that out in blues and greens?”

    Now, this is what I’m talking about.

    Let’s ignore the fact that I already commented that I don’t understand why people went right into rant mode about the completely made up example, which was I thought pretty tastefully phrased so as to show the player was not looking to stroke his epeen by gloating over damage meters, but was instead trying to use recount graphs as a tool after the fact to help him improve his own performance.

    How today’s example contradicts my posts from a year and a half ago where I said I hated people that act like idiots pulling aggro and ignoring anything other than DPS in order to inflate their DPS on a damage meter, and then broadcast it in the raid group to actively gloat, completely befuddles me. But okay, thats fine.

    No, what I want to know is, what posses people to so want to rant at me that using what I actually say isn’t good enough, you have to reinterpret what I say to be mad about it.

    So that instead of using my example of a group where one DPS has all epics (of unstated quality) and the dragonspine trophy from Gruuls Lair, not exactly saying he is a Sunwell rogue thank you, and the shaman has SOME Tier 5 and Tier 6, and you have all blues and a few epics, which is saying you know you have less shinies but it’s not that far down the chain, just not at the same level, suddenly it’s about me claiming a group of tier 6 geared people doing 1000 DPS have no skills and can be out DPSed by a hunter in blues and greens.

    Seriously, do you have any idea how offensive it is to me to have something I say exaggerated to that extent just to tell me I’m wrong in something I didn’t even say?

    And it’s not like this is isolated, this happens quite a bit. It’s taken almost a year of it, but yes, it is finally starting to get to me.

    I don’t care if I sound like a whiner about this stuff anymore, I’m tired of trying to have a conversation, and some folks don’t contribute anything other than reinterpreting and rephrasing what I say so that they have something to get pissy about.

    If you don’t like what I say, please continue to tell me… THAT’S NOT WHAT BUGS ME! Yes, I can totally be an idiot. I have no problem with you calling me on it!

    Just PLEASE do me the courtesy of diasgreeing with the words I actually SAY.


  29. Lol, I foresee people searching out things they don’t like, quoting them, and then nailing me on it… it’s a fair cop. D’oh!


  30. Cassie reminded me… last time I got upset over trends in comments, it was because I was flamed by hundreds of comments to my personal email about stupid things I said about PvP gear.

    I do want to thank you all for the fact that I do now get ZERO hate on my personal email.

    No really, I do thank you. That was very unfun.

    Now if people would just start calling me an idiot for what I say, and let’s face it, what I say is plenty stupid enough to give you lots of ammunition, without exaggerating it, then I can be a happy camper.


  31. Scaling for a BM hunter… lvl 68 – 500dps, 70 with greens – 550dps, 70 with decent blues / PVP gear – 700dps, All kara/gruuls epics – 1000dps, Brutallis – 2000dps

    Scaling for a Combat Rogue… lvl 68 – 300dps, 70 with greens – 350dps, 70 with decent blues / pvp gear – 600dps, All kara/gruuls epics – 950dps, Brutallis with Windfury, Battleshout and Ferlol Drood buff – 2400dps Brutallis in a tank group (like a hunter normally gets) – 2000dps

    Rogues are way more situational then hunters… and if they arent getting everything, they will not perform as well as a hunter in the same gear…


  32. Wow i really pushed a button. Sorry, if nothing else its good to get an opportunity to clarify. The problem often in discussions is interpretation/”reinterpret”. What you think you are writing is not what someone reads. (with me being guilty today).

    One comment you made “Oh holy heck, they are all serious raiders”. Wearing t5/t6 implies certain things “to me”. (the rest being t4/ZA min).Being a “serious raider” implies certain things “to me” (researched their class). There are exceptions for sure, but to me they “are” the exceptions. i.e very few and far between.

    From “i hate damage meters”, the bit that stuck out to me when i read it was the paragraphs around “The hunter, on the other hand, is running around trapping and retrapping targets”. (see above “Your actual damage done during the run was higher than some of the other DPS classes.”). If you have 2 cc and one is a reliable mate you use them (i have a hunter friend i often use to chain trap in preference to a pug mage). DPS hit. i.e that meters don’t tell the whole story.

    you originally stated “You’ve got mostly blues and maybe a badge reward or rep reward Epic or two”. mostly = 65-75%ish for me. So with 17 slots, there is about 12(11.1-12.75) blues, + 1(2) badge/rep reward leave 4(3) green. Not trying to use math to argue, rather showing my interpretation. For that scenario, blues/greens is not too much of an exageration. You then changed to “you have all blues and a few epics”. To me they are different (1 or 2 does not equal few and “mostly” should have been “all but” 1/2…). gotta love english. In my mind there is a huge difference to pre-kara (where i thought the hunter in this example was) to well post-kara (where i thought the others were). quite different if you meant “epics (of unstated quality)”. also i interpreted t5/t6 as starting/running t6 content and part way through upgrading gear, which as i see it is a t6 raider (i.e. me on my mage, even though with only 3 t6 equiv gears). Sorry if this offended you but maybe you can see my reasoning now.

    Note you ignored my threat limited dps, and that i actually agreed but only within limits. The comment to me that stuck out was “even on single boss fights where it was straight ‘do massive damage to burn down the boss’”. This bit i disagreed with. Unless it was a boss that favoured ranged and you beat a melee. I can understand how you can win on trash. Fast reaction and focus really make up a lot, multishot, traps on aoe etc. But in my experiaence on single target bosses the higher dps tend to come out on top. (on trash you make up damage while they are inactive. it all adds up, but on a boss only a small amount of inactivity at the start, then they should pull way ahead). Its funny how when people read the same thing you take different bits out of it.

    To me the focus of my comment was when in 5man cruise mode is often used. And this is okay. You done the hard yards, your gonna go through easily, with no wipes, why not? It is a game after all. Your just hanging with mates, and the pug gets first crack at everything. So win win.
    And that skill can make up a lot, but if the gear difference is too high then the dps was because other must be an ebay player equivalent.


    I hope this makes more sense (really hope). Note also the comment about t6 players, the more i raid and the opportunities i have been given to go to higher instances, has almost convinced me that gear is a HUGE indication of skill. The number of noobs i have met with good gear is in fact 0. Kara epics yes. T6 no, and that many comments are suggesting the opposite. I should be more specific with my feedback.


  33. Oh Bear. /pat

    You’ll never be able to control how people will interpret or react to your writing. Such is ze life of a blogger, or any writer really.

    I can say that in reading the post originally, the story you thought was awesome, I read and hovered over the comments link thinking ‘someone will jump on that’. I don’t think the things you’re saying are ‘stupid’, even the PvP gear stuff – it was a rant that invited conversation all over – you just have to not be so quick to flare up if someone doesn’t get it or doesn’t agree.


  34. Here’s my take as a burned out raid hunter. I’m mostly T6 geared and routinely do over 1000 dps. However, I’m capable of throttlling back, alot. Mainly because a) i don’t want to drink after each pull b) the tank can’t handle my threat anyway c) I don’t really care that much since the boss will go down anyway. So when i go to kara its always viper and no flaks or really anything, maybe oil. I usually get away with 5 super mana pots in a typical kara run, vs 25 fel mana in a BT run.

    When I was younger as a hunter I cared a great deal about dps meters. Now I don’t. They don’t mean too much. And those people who are always demanding a meter? Avoid them. They are looking to stroke their e-pen and not focused.

    If people in your same class and gear level are doing way more dps than you (ie more than 10%) then you are doing something wrong if it’s a progression attempt or T6+ raid. If the raid is overgeared for the effort, then it really doesn’t matter how much dps you do (to a point, obviously you want to do more than 200 dps. Usually when i don’t try i do 700-800 dps).

    So yeah, totally agree w/ your philosophy BBB. Further, WoW is all about fun. When it’s not fun, time to stop. I did my last BT raid Tuesday, and it wasn’t fun, and I decided I’d rather do things that were fun, so I’m done raiding after a year of serious 3-4x a week raids.


  35. Threat capping is a huge problem with dps especially at higher tiers when you over gear an instance… but if you are comparing yourself as a hunter to another hunter there really is no excuse not to be bringing the pain. You still can see big somtimes huge discrepencies in dps between people who know how to play and people who just have gear especially with hunters. Most classes have ways to drop threat with the exception of a few one for instance being my druid and I understand how hard it can be to stay under the threat cap.


  36. I don’t care if you’re all in purps…Spirit Bond and Pathfinding just don’t cut it.

    Sometimes it’s cruise mode, sometimes it’s suck mode. Checking Talents and rotation can often tell you the difference.


  37. well there could be a number of reasons why a fully geared tier 5/6 player would do less damage than green/blue.

    firstly you have the fact that t5/t6 spends some of its itemization points on high amounts of stamina so when you have those raid bosses that will drop your health 8k and be totally unavoidable you can survive this.

    secondly you spend alot of your itemization points on hit rating, bosses are ranked with a skull which is 3 levels higher than your current level so raiders need more hit rating for raids than they do for instances, wasting alot of their stat points in an instance to an under used hit rating and lets face it hit rating is quite an expensive stat in comparison to raw dps.

    and you ofc have the already stated possibilities that some high end raiders can’t play for love nor money they just have friends in the right places or the fact that when you have that level of gear you don’t need to focus in instances, you’re trying to have a bit of fun and not relive those 12hrs+ a week that you spend dedicating every moment of your concentration avoiding constructs, watching out for tainted cores etc…..


  38. Long time reader. First time poster. I love saying that.

    I’ve been on the other end of the stick. I’d been playing my hunter in a number of pugs and starting to get frequent re-invites from people. While trapping or not I was managing to keep my damage quite consistent and figured I knew my stuff. I wasn’t topping the dmg but was keeping pace (checked after each instance).

    Till one shocking day … managed to have a second hunter in the group and his spec was nearly the same as mine.

    He destroyed my dmg by a substantial margin. I outgeared him by a fair margin but he made it look like I was throwing pebbles rather than fiery arrows of death. Turns out I was getting re-invites because I was a consistent trapper.

    That infamous day prompted me to go back to the drawing board on all my chars. Start from scratch and re-evaluate the skills I use, the order I use them in and how I use my trinkets. The end result? Some chars I made no changes to how I play, some minor corrections (like my bear tank in ZA) and some were a complete revamp like my poor hunter. Changing how I played him nearly doubled my dmg.

    Some sites have wonderful guides on how to optimize my rotations such as what I found on this site. Others have the information hidden inside 60 or 70 pages of posts. While others are nearly impossible to find (Retribution gets no love).

    While some players in pugs may have low dmg for their gear because they are lazy, bored, chilling out or drunk, there are players who don’t know how to play and need to be pointed in the direction of useful guides. I was one of em.

    So now I prowl around the blogs, looking for guides of various chars and various specs for me and my guildies. It’s not constructive to say “lrn2play”, but I wish someone had told me “Check out BBB’s guide on making things angry at you”. I need more guides like yours BBB that I can point people at (and maybe glance at myself).


  39. As a feral druid (gee, I wondered why I was visiting this site) with Kara entry level gear (on my Alliance toon), I have concentrated on bear tanking, while picking up kitty gear along the way. I am constantly finding myself in pugs as dps, and while I do ok on boss fights, overall I manage to do better than the tank.
    This is as it should be. I am playing “off-spec” on a utility class.
    Then there are the 5 man runs (with similarly geared toons) where I beat warlocks, or hunters, or rogues.
    And the time recently where I was off-tanking a kara pug, switched to kitty gear for the Maiden fight and was 2nd on the dps.
    These are the times B3’s original post is talking about, to me. Where people are (or should be) putting in. Where everyone is aiming to get the boss down ASAP.
    I know my gear isn’t the best; I know my class isn’t the best for dps; yet with a little bit of knowledge (gained from other people generously sharing their hard earned experience) and a bit of personal testing, I can optimise my output and get some warm fuzzies about not being there to just make up the numbers.


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