An Ex-Gnome Tank's World

Just how good is Titanium Plating?

January 29th, 2009 Posted in Theorycrafting

(Warning: this post contains Math.)

There’s a new shield enchant in town - Titanium Plating. And the question that has been going around my mind is – is it any good, or should I stick with the old favourites of 20 defense rating or even 18 Stamina?

To make the numbers easier, I’m going to make a few assumptions. The “typical” warrior who I’m going to use as my example will have:

  • 25000 health
  • 20% Dodge
  • 20% Parry
  • 20% Block
  • 1000 Shield Block Value
  • No raid buffs, such as Horn of Winter, or Blessing of Kings.
  • Talents: 3 / 3 Vitality and Improved Shield Block (Protection warrior, right?)

Let’s look at the easy one first. The 18 Stamina enchant adds 191 health (180+6% from Vitality), leaving a total of 25191 health, an increase of 0.7%. Not that impressive, right? And as we add more health from food buffs, Power Word: Fortitude and Commanding Shout, its comparative value decreases. But for the minute, we’ll call it a 0.7% increase in health.

Now, 20 defense rating. Again, it’s not too hard to work out the benefit of this enchant:

20 defense rating = 4 defense skill (ignoring the remainder). That’s the same as 0.16% dodge, 0.16% parry, 0.16% to miss from the boss and 0.16% block. That’s an additional 0.48% avoidance, plus 0.16% block. That’s almost a half a percent avoidance, plus a 1000 HP reduction in one hit in every 625 – or an average reduction of 1.6HP per hit (ie, 0.16% increase in effective mitigation). While defense rating is subject to diminishing returns too, it scales somewhat more slowly, so as we get to 27000 health or more it’s probably going to be better to take the defense rating – 0.48% avoidance plus 0.16% mitigation sounds good to me.

And, finally, Titanium Plating. This is where it gets tricky:

20% block rating means that, on average, 1 out of 5 attacks will be blocked. So our average increase in health saved will be 40 over 5 attacks, or 8 health per attack.  so that’s a 0.8% increase in average block value. Doesn’t sound so impressive, does it? We’re forgetting one thing, though – shield block. If we assume we keep shield block up as much as possible then for 30s we will see a 0.8% increase in block value, followed by a 10 second period where everything is blocked, for twice the usual shield block value. But because the usual block value doubles as well as the enchant, we can disregard this in terms of percentages. So our new average increase is as follows:

(30s  0.8% increase) + (10s  4%) = average increase of damage reduction - 1.6%

Sounds good? Of course, 1.6% more damage mitigated does, but shield block isn’t necessarily going to be used that way. It might be used to generate extra threat, or as an extra crutch if healing starts to slide slightly. So we can’t assume that it will be up for 10 seconds in every 40. That is merely the absolute best case. And this additional reduction is going to be a much lower percentage of the incoming damage from a boss, who hits hard every 2.5s than it will be from an AoE trash pack which will be constantly beating on you.

Of course, Shield Block Value is also useful for threat, from Damage Shield and Shield Slam. Because our average block value (in the best possible conditions) has increased by 1.6%, so too will our threat from these damaging abilities. A 1.6% increase doesn’t sound much, and at the moment it probably isn’t, but in the future it may well turn out to be useful at higher gear levels, even though by then the percentage will be diminished. It’s also a benefit neither of the other two enchants will grant.

So, which is the better enchant? 18 stamina might have cut the mustard when 15k health unbuffed was the norm for tanks, but it’s starting to show its age. No, both the new enchants are, somewhat unsurprisingly, better. On reflection, I’d rather have the 20 defense on a slow-hitting boss. For AoE trash packs, where keeping up shield block is an excellent passive threat move, the extra threat from the plating wins out. Again, though, as shield block value increases the additional percentage mitigated by the plating is reduced. The higher the gear level, the more valuable the avoidance will be, as it diminishes at a lower rate, being spread across three stats (dodge, parry and miss).

  1. One Response to “Just how good is Titanium Plating?”

  2. By Kittoes on Feb 1, 2009

    20% Chance to Block
    100 Attacks
    2.0 Attack Speed
    2/2 Shield Mastery
    3/3 Critical Block

    200 seconds of attacks would mean you could use Shield Block 5 times total. Like you said that sometimes it’s not always used as soon as it’s up but you should be using it often so we’ll assume you hit it 4 of those 5 chances.

    ((10*4)/2)*104= 2,080

    Since 40 of those seconds are guaranteed block we can’t count them in the rest of the math so we’re left with 160 seconds or 80 attacks.

    80*0.20= 16
    16*0.30= 4.8 (we’ll say 5)

    11*52= 572
    5*104= 520

    So now in 200 attacks that brings the total damage reduction to 3,172.

    20 Defense Rating will allow you do avoid almost half an attack (@0.48%) in those same 100 attacks and a 0.16% chance to prevent 1,000 damage. So assuming the boss hits for an average of 7k, 0.48% of that damage is 3,360.

    So overall your gain from 20 Defense is relatively the same as the 40 block value in terms of the amount of damage it prevents. Of course really hard hitting bosses like Patchwerk change this entirely but the average boss doesn’t hit all that hard. The added benefit of the block value is that you not only “avoid” a comparable amount of damage but the amount of damage you take in is much more consistent and that’s a lot easier to heal than spiky damage (speaking as a former healer). And of course that added threat on Shield Slam, Damage Shield, etc are nice things as well.

    Just my 2 cents and I’m bored as hell at work =P.

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