As long as I'm repeating myself

As long as I’m repeating myself, , or *ahem* being recursive…

One of the things about writing a blog that, every once in a blue moon when the stars align, tries to be helpful is that once you post about something… you tend not to repost about the same thing.

I said it once. Saying it again would be redundant and wasteful of your time, right?


Yeah, um… I’ve been writing this thing a long time now.

Some of you… some of you may not have been around reading this tripe when I posted about somethng I use and find enormously helpful, say, a year and a half ago.

I never assume that new readers go back and read the archives.

I just assume I never get new readers.

I keep on going, assuming I’m talking to the same crowd that’s been hanging out since I started.

So, sure, why would I tell you all the same stuff? You already know it.

But I DO have newer readers, and there is one software tool that is well worth my reminding you of, or telling you about, just in case you haven’t come across it before.

And that is the ever awesome Rawr.

In the words of the author;

Rawr is a program for comparing and exploring gear for Bears, Cats, Moonkin, Healadins, Retadins, Mages, ProtWarriors, Trees, Hunters, Tankadins, HealingPriests, ShadowPriests, EnhShams, and DPS & Tank Death Knights, in the MMORPG, World of Warcraft. Rawr has been designed from the start to be fun to use, and helpful in finding better combinations of gear, and what gear to obtain.


  • Extremely user friendly, graphical, fast, easy to use interface.
  • Automatically handles items. The ability to load your character from the Armory, automatically download info about items it doesn’t know about, download info about possible upgrades, and download info about specific items you tell it to, ensure that you won’t need to type in any item stats with Rawr.
  • The most comprehensive, and most accurate system for calculating your character stats, and ratings for individual items, based on your current gear, enchants, and buffs.

I have used Rawr in it’s various forms for years. It may not be perfect, but it’s an incredibly powerful tool to help you figure out what gear upgrades you should be looking for, and where they come from for a LOT of different classes and specs.

If you used Rawr in the past, it used to only be for Druids, and feral druids at that. They’ve consistently expanded and added new classes and specs though, so go back and give it a shot. It’s a lot of fun to tinker with. 🙂

Sometimes there are items in it’s database that may indeed exist, but aren’t available to you to find from Wowhead, so it can be a mite difficult to track down where these upgrades actually can be found. It does happen.

But honestly… give it a go, have fun, and see what you think of it.

There are a lot of mods and addons and software choices out there. This is one that, if you are so inclined, ought to see a few donations from those that can, because the work and effort that has gone into making this a quality job is pretty great.

And for those of us that HAVE been using it for a long time… tell me what your personal experiences with Rawr have been for you. Have you found inaccuracies in it’s gear choices for your talent spec, even after you entered in your talents and your rotation in it’s guts? Did you just disagree with some of it’s recommendations? Or did it rock your world, chula, and make you a god among players?


18 thoughts on “As long as I'm repeating myself

  1. I started using Rawr tree model a little during BC but never got serious enough back then. When I started raiding Naxx I picked it up again and loved it. We didn’t allways agree but it helped a lot by reducing the number of items I had to compare myself. Then I started using the cat and the bear model too and the only major issue I had was the value it seemed to place on bunus armour even after the change, that’s when I wished it was possible to see the numbers used to weight stats.
    I’ve stopped using it though, but that’s only because when 3.1 hit us the first few Rawr versions after that was supposed to have the tree model updated when actually only parts of it was updated. I’m sure they have fixed it by now and if I get back to Ulduar I’ll probably check out the latest version. At that time however I felt I would be better off not using it compared to using a tool that was only partially up to date.

    Overall it’s a great tool but remember to use your brain too, because it’s even better 😛 A good tip I saw once was to look at the top 3 upgrades and then personally evaluate them.


  2. I’ve used Rawr extensively for over a year now, and absolutely love it. I started using it for my feral druid back in BC, but mostly pull it up for my raiding mage – as Staris said it’s fantastic to have up in the background to check possible upgrades on the fly as they drop so you can feel more confident about doing your /roll or spending that dkp.

    I will say that it takes some setup initially – often it will place a higher emphasis on a stat that you may not consider as important (or ignore others, such as hit), but frequently that’s because the user needs to tell the utility what the fight statistics are and pick raid buffs that are available (long fights with no replenishment will weight gear with more spirit or mp5 for casters, for example, until you tell it not to).

    Also, I find one of the more useful ways of using Rawr is for optimizing gear with your current raid. I use it every raid to mimic what raid buffs we have present so I can swap out gear if needed (if we have no draenei, shadow priests, or boomkin, I swap gear to pick up hit – if we do have those, I know I can trade out hit gear to pick up other stats, and always know what percentage my hit will be at just by checking/unchecking the raid buffs in Rawr).

    Excellent resource!


  3. Tried using it for my Prot Paladin. Apparently, the best gear you can get outside of raids still won’t get you defense capped. I hit up every single defense enchant, put on the best non-raid gear in slot (counting BS recipes from Ulduar) will only give you 527 defense. I think this has something to do with the gem priorities: every single gem was automatically placed as stamina when a couple defense gems here and there would’ve helped a lot. Not to mention trying to match the socket bonuses for that defense. It’s got a few things it could to work out.


  4. I use Rawr, believe me I understand. I’ve been telling my guild for the past year about it. Seems like I take every opportunity to mention it and every time I do, the majority of the responses are “huh what’s that?”

    I think it’s always important to investigate different sources. There are going to be mistakes and there are going to be items that elude fancy calculators like Rawr. With that said, for the most part it’s a small wonder to have it available. On raids I often run at or near the top. I’m slowly helping convince people that druids can still tank. My Rawr data shows my total combined mitigation at 89% now and the results I have lead me to believe that is accurate. There’s just no way I’d be doing this well without it.

    As for hit rating. I never ever worry about my hit rating. Rawr values items with hit well enough for me, so if I’m under the cap I don’t worry. Hit rating is also more valuable to some classes than others. For instance, one of the reasons druids need agility so much is because of the massive boosts we get from talents. Pure boosts to our stats, boosts to crit damage, and bleeding crits, make agility excessively worthwhile and hit less worthy in comparison.


  5. Hey Wind this is Occulus the one and only Lord of the Tiny people. my game card is up and probably for the final time. I dont think ill ever be logging on WoW again until they make it some what more interesting. any how I thought of all the people I ever played WoW with you would be the one to tell that you shalt see me again. I havent deleted my toons or anything im just excessively bored of seeing the same content day after day with no new changes to anything. But if you can see my E-mail feel free to email or add me to Msn if you have it. So Farewell and I Hope our paths meet again.

    From yours truely Occulus Lord of the Tiny people. Teysa Keeper of a 1000 Wolves.


  6. I use Rawr for my shadow priest. I love the way it suggests gear based on what you need. For example, if you are low on hit, it suggests gear with hit. Once you have met the hit cap, it will suggest the next thing you need (spell power or crit).

    I love it and keep it open in the background when raiding so I can tell which are upgrades for me!

    Two thumbs up!


  7. Night: I noticed the same thing when I was upgrading my hunter. I don’t use rawr though, but when i was going from blues/BOE purples to naxx10 gear, some of that stuff I thought there was no way it could be an upgrade, turns out it was.

    My strong advice is, if you get an item which is a higher iLvl, see if you can make it work by regemming/re-enchanting, and above all else, test it on a target dummy.

    For example if a upgrade drops your hit but massively boosts your AP, it may still give you higher dps. Same thing goes for any other stat.

    Its okay if you are not hit capped but still doing more dps than your previous hit capped gear.

    For myself I mostly use pawn, the in-game tool. Rawr is vastly better but I don’t raid any more.


  8. The lead developer, Astrylian, is a feral, so the feral model (especially dps) gets probably the most attention and is very, very good. When I tested it out a few months ago, though, I was kinda disappointed with the default choices in resto weighting, particularly its heavy emphasis on haste. Haste is good– very good– but only once you have “enough” of the other stats, particularly spirit and mana regen, and I feel I’ve only recently hit that mark once stacking up some Ulduar gear. He actually joined my guild a few weeks ago (I feel special!) and when I mentioned my experience to him, he did admit the resto model has always been pretty weak. I’ll probably check it out again soon to see where it is these days.


  9. I’ve sworn by Rawr for bear theorycrafting since BC. Back then I noticed a little overvaluing on stam, but that was mostly in terms of trinkets, like when it ranked my Moroes’ Pocket Watch very low because it was all dodge, when I liked it perfectly well. Since my druid is an alt I’m just now getting back into the bear/cat theorycrafting, and just now investigating the hunter module.

    The biggest thing I’d say Rawr has going for it is how vastly easier it is to use than the massive (MASSIVE) and extremely arcane spreadsheets hunters have tended to use. No offense to Cheeky and the other developers of said sheets, because their work and research is phenomenal, but since my laptop runs Open Office and not real Excel, that was one hurdle for me, and if I hadn’t already had some general expertise with Excel I might have been scared off completely. The fact that Rawr looks just like one’s own character sheet, updates instantly with bar graphs, shows (saveable!) gem options in nice big icons, and lists buffs and rotation options (when available) in nice neat checkboxes, makes theorycrafting more like fun and playing the game and a lot less like doing one’s taxes.

    Of course, the more streamlined interface means that shot/ability rotations and such are harder or impossible to fine-tune, but when the desired outcome is finding ballpark figures and a sense of “is this set bonus worth it”, Rawr does just fine.


  10. I have been using RAWR for a long time as well for feral tanking gear upgrades and it is very useful to see where you are gear wise, and what gear you should be looking for. But I will have to agree with Nighthawque with the gear ranking system. Sometimes it seems to assume that the player is already hit capped (not sure why it can’t detect if you are or not) and ranks peices of gear that (for tanking) has stam over everything else, including stam gems over other gems. I just use a personal “Common Sense Filter” when looking at recommended upgrades and go from there, but it is nice to have a good starting point to be able to go from. I also love the fact you can load in your character from the armory, including your talents and glyphs. And now that the program also supports almost all classes and specs (still some bugs with the lock module), I use it for all my alts as well for maximum DPS spell rotations as well as gear upgrades. BIG THUMBS UP here


  11. I have long used Rawr for my feral (cat) side. One note is at my gear level it seems to value agi over all else. Hit seems to be a much lower priority. I currently am below the hit cap and few if any of the upgrades listed (that I could reasonably obtain) have any hit on them. My hit will drop to totally unacceptable levels if I upgrade a few items. Interestingly I have started to look into it for my tree and it does seem to work out pretty well.

    Overall I love this resource!


  12. I’ve used the ret paladin and prot paladin modules. They are both pretty good. Rawr overall is very nice. It presents the same information as various spreadsheets, but in an easy-to-use form. My main complaint is that it seems to massively overvalue armor, at least for prot paladins. Basically any item that has extra armor on it ends up near the top, even over items var above its ilevel, which seems like it cannot possibly be correct.

    I should give them some money.


  13. Rawr is good i’ve only just recently been using it but u can filter out anything for each slot and see what is better for your spec./gear/enchants


  14. I’ve been watching this for a long time, waiting on the rogue module. It’s finally got someone who is developing it. Sure wish I had the expertise to help them out as this tool looks very nice for gear planning/DPS analysis


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