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Madness Sorcerer Guide by Milas [post 2.8]

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes > Sage / Sorcerer
Madness Sorcerer Guide by Milas [post 2.8]

JDotter's Avatar


JDotter
06.13.2014 , 12:45 PM | #1
Hello swtor community I've finally decided to make a guide for how to play madness in PvE. I've always thought about it considering the amount of PM/whispers/mails I get in game. I finally decided to write it with the 2.8 changes and the influx of new madness sorcs/sages that will be raiding. Anyhow I hope you all enjoy it.

About me

I'm milas GM of Zorz, I've been on the top end of SWTOR progression dating back to 1.2. I've been in three guilds Memories of Xendor, HATRED, and Zorz. I currently have the #1 ranked Sorcerer/Sage parse as of 2.8 (6/13/14). When Nippon departed the game I was one of the players he recommended take over his job as class lead.

Goals & Disclaimer

The goal of this guide is to spread awareness about the class and spec. I feel I'm the best person suited in terms of actual in-game experience as I've always first cleared content on the class and at a world progression level. While I feel that I am not a spreadsheet person nor a theory crafter. While those are excellent tools and valued everything I write in this guide is from first hand experience and what I do. I'm not the person to ask if you run x crit will damage increase/decrease and other questions like that.


Skill points/builds
Spoiler


Stat Allocation & priority

Spoiler


Parsing and advanced rotation
Spoiler



Raiding and advanced raid tips/suggestions

Spoiler



Appreciate any and all feedback.

Mr_Fuzzle's Avatar


Mr_Fuzzle
06.13.2014 , 01:18 PM | #2
already answered. Thanks!

michaelsith's Avatar


michaelsith
06.13.2014 , 01:23 PM | #3
For the opener, i normally use CT before DF, not sure the full difference since we're so close together, but seems like a very good guide
Forever remembering Rambeezy

JDotter's Avatar


JDotter
06.13.2014 , 01:25 PM | #4
Quote: Originally Posted by Mr_Fuzzle View Post
already answered. Thanks!
Opener four ticks of FL is fine, I'll run further testing and see though. To answer your question clipping 100% time will kill your force at like 5 mins. Most parses I end @ like 30% force

Citruzz's Avatar


Citruzz
06.13.2014 , 02:02 PM | #5
Nice read and absolutely logical
Nadinä | Sorcerer | T3-M4
subscription canceled

KeyboardNinja's Avatar


KeyboardNinja
06.13.2014 , 04:59 PM | #6
Interesting guide! A couple things…

It's "Nibbon", not "Nippin". :-)

It occurs to me that, due to the same timing glitch in the buff system exploited by assassin tanks, it is possible for Madness to get three effective stacks of Recklessness when timing things absolutely perfectly. Specifically:

DF (first) > FL (clip at *4* ticks) > LS (second expires)

Basically, the second charge of Recklessness is removed by the engine after the final tick of Force Lightning damage, but you can actually sneak damage into the brief interval before it is removed if you clip before the end. Since it is possible to clip Force Lightning while still getting four ticks, this allows you to get the full crit-buffed channel of Force Lightning followed by a crit-buffed Lightning Strike even after consuming the first charge with Death Field. I strongly suspect that most high-parsing Madness sorcs are already doing this without realizing it, because clipping Force Lightning in this fashion happens pretty naturally if you have optimal APM.

On the subject of clipping (specifically, at 3 stacks)… One of the things I've been playing with is doing a full 4 tick channel when I need to regain a fraction of a GCD such that the rotation times out with Affliction. The bane of my existence when I play Madness is the fact that Affliction needs to be refreshed immediately after it falls off, but Force Lightning is greater than one GCD (but less than two). I've been experimenting with using a full channel Force Lightning to "fill in" a bit of time such that my other (clipped) Force Lightnings time out correctly with Affliction. I'm not actually sure if this is a good idea or not, and I'd be really interested in feedback.

The nice thing about occasionally doing a full channel is your force drains much more slowly. Using this approach, I can actually sustain my DPS over a full 1.5 mil parse, generally running out somewhere around 6:30.

Another question that I'd like some feedback on is the GCD between Affliction and Creeping Terror. Most of the time, this times out such that I can use Death Field, Crushing Darkness or a proc'd Lightning Strike in this gap. However, once or twice per fight, the timing is such that I need to refresh Affliction immediately following a proc'd Lightning Strike but not before, meaning that I go into the re-DoT block without 3 stacks of Wrath and with Death Field on CD. In order to preserve the 1 GCD gap, I have generally been hard-casting Lightning Strike here. Is there a way to rectify the timing such that this just doesn't happen? (e.g. is it better to delay the DoT refresh long enough to get a FL channel and build Wrath?)

On the subject of the spec, it sort of surprises me that the alacrity talent is superior to the crit talent. I'll take your word for it, I just find it somewhat surprising.
Computer Programmer. Theory Crafter. Dilettante on The Ebon Hawk.
Tam (shadow tank) Tov-ren (commando healer) Aveo (retired sentinel) Nimri (ruffian scoundrel)
Averith (marksman sniper) Alish (lightning sorcerer) Aresham (vengeance jugg) Effek (pyro pt)

JDotter's Avatar


JDotter
06.13.2014 , 05:30 PM | #7
Quote: Originally Posted by KeyboardNinja View Post
Interesting guide! A couple things…

It's "Nibbon", not "Nippin". :-)

It occurs to me that, due to the same timing glitch in the buff system exploited by assassin tanks, it is possible for Madness to get three effective stacks of Recklessness when timing things absolutely perfectly. Specifically:

DF (first) > FL (clip at *4* ticks) > LS (second expires)

Basically, the second charge of Recklessness is removed by the engine after the final tick of Force Lightning damage, but you can actually sneak damage into the brief interval before it is removed if you clip before the end. Since it is possible to clip Force Lightning while still getting four ticks, this allows you to get the full crit-buffed channel of Force Lightning followed by a crit-buffed Lightning Strike even after consuming the first charge with Death Field. I strongly suspect that most high-parsing Madness sorcs are already doing this without realizing it, because clipping Force Lightning in this fashion happens pretty naturally if you have optimal APM.

On the subject of clipping (specifically, at 3 stacks)… One of the things I've been playing with is doing a full 4 tick channel when I need to regain a fraction of a GCD such that the rotation times out with Affliction. The bane of my existence when I play Madness is the fact that Affliction needs to be refreshed immediately after it falls off, but Force Lightning is greater than one GCD (but less than two). I've been experimenting with using a full channel Force Lightning to "fill in" a bit of time such that my other (clipped) Force Lightnings time out correctly with Affliction. I'm not actually sure if this is a good idea or not, and I'd be really interested in feedback.

The nice thing about occasionally doing a full channel is your force drains much more slowly. Using this approach, I can actually sustain my DPS over a full 1.5 mil parse, generally running out somewhere around 6:30.

Another question that I'd like some feedback on is the GCD between Affliction and Creeping Terror. Most of the time, this times out such that I can use Death Field, Crushing Darkness or a proc'd Lightning Strike in this gap. However, once or twice per fight, the timing is such that I need to refresh Affliction immediately following a proc'd Lightning Strike but not before, meaning that I go into the re-DoT block without 3 stacks of Wrath and with Death Field on CD. In order to preserve the 1 GCD gap, I have generally been hard-casting Lightning Strike here. Is there a way to rectify the timing such that this just doesn't happen? (e.g. is it better to delay the DoT refresh long enough to get a FL channel and build Wrath?)

On the subject of the spec, it sort of surprises me that the alacrity talent is superior to the crit talent. I'll take your word for it, I just find it somewhat surprising.
This all correct,

In dulfy's guide both Handcuff/I let the secret out.

http://imgur.com/cfWX0my
http://imgur.com/2tevv1o

I always kept it to myself cause I couldn't tell if it was a crit or was basing your next ability off of the remaining tick of recklessness.

While I posted a static rotation I don't follow it as a bible or law. 30% of madness comes out to pre-planning 4-6 gcds (generally having GCD Up for DF + dots) I'll also do a full FL channel if it means I can go FL > CD (ticks) > FL> DF >LS. As mentioned in the guide CD dots are bad and ruins deathmarks potential. Its fine if you don't apply affliction/ct as the last tick expires but 2/4 following gcds would need to be it or you'd run into CD eating even more deathmark ticks.

If you are going to reapply dots get 3 stacks of wrath. FL-DF-dots-LS-FL is fine.

Alacrity vs 2% crit to me personally is something you will always have vs something that is reliant on abilities critting and I hate crit% in any game regardless of genre. Suppose I could run 10 parses of each and get a result.

KeyboardNinja's Avatar


KeyboardNinja
06.13.2014 , 06:54 PM | #8
Quote: Originally Posted by JDotter View Post
If you are going to reapply dots get 3 stacks of wrath. FL-DF-dots-LS-FL is fine.
So, are you saying I should delay my DoTs to get 3 stacks of Wrath before reapplication? Also, how are you using LS after DoTs in the above? Are you not preserving the 1 GCD gap between Aff and CT?

Here's the situation I'm looking at:

Force Lightning > Lightning Strike > (1.5 seconds on Affliction duration)

What do you do in the above? Do you channel Force Lightning to get three stacks? What if it's even less time, like 0.5 seconds (happens sometimes due to Polarity Shift and/or Force Master proc)? This is particularly relevant now that Creeping Terror buffs FL ticks.

Obviously, the following situation should never happen if I'm playing correctly:

Force Lightning > (Affliction expires) > Lightning Strike > uh…

Clearly that would be bad planning.

Quote: Originally Posted by JDotter View Post
Alacrity vs 2% crit to me personally is something you will always have vs something that is reliant on abilities critting and I hate crit% in any game regardless of genre. Suppose I could run 10 parses of each and get a result.
I'm just thinking about the surge talent on DoT ticks. I could probably sit down and theory craft a definitive answer pretty easily, but I'm sure it's not going to make an enormous difference either way. Going for the alacrity rather than the crit is certainly going to reduce variance between parses, which is an appreciable boon for raids.
Computer Programmer. Theory Crafter. Dilettante on The Ebon Hawk.
Tam (shadow tank) Tov-ren (commando healer) Aveo (retired sentinel) Nimri (ruffian scoundrel)
Averith (marksman sniper) Alish (lightning sorcerer) Aresham (vengeance jugg) Effek (pyro pt)

TACeMossie's Avatar


TACeMossie
06.13.2014 , 07:18 PM | #9
Im wondering, for a longer fight where force issues could start showing up, would it be better to move a couple of points from the corruption tree into Subversion for the increased force regen rate? (as you said, you use lightning strike a lot) Cause for a while I actually thought the 3/7/36 build was 3% crit, get subversion from lightning, and then go full madness. It never had force issues, but now I see the 2 in lightning is supposed to be for Convection and its making me question my decisions...
Kwerty, Level 65 Vanguard/Powertech on The Harbinger

3.0 Guides: Vanguard DPS Guide | Powertech DPS Guide
4.0 Guides: Advanced Prototype | Pyrotech

JDotter's Avatar


JDotter
06.13.2014 , 07:48 PM | #10
Quote: Originally Posted by KeyboardNinja View Post
So, are you saying I should delay my DoTs to get 3 stacks of Wrath before reapplication? Also, how are you using LS after DoTs in the above? Are you not preserving the 1 GCD gap between Aff and CT?

Here's the situation I'm looking at:

Force Lightning > Lightning Strike > (1.5 seconds on Affliction duration)

What do you do in the above? Do you channel Force Lightning to get three stacks? What if it's even less time, like 0.5 seconds (happens sometimes due to Polarity Shift and/or Force Master proc)? This is particularly relevant now that Creeping Terror buffs FL ticks.

Obviously, the following situation should never happen if I'm playing correctly:

Force Lightning > (Affliction expires) > Lightning Strike > uh…

Clearly that would be bad planning.



I'm just thinking about the surge talent on DoT ticks. I could probably sit down and theory craft a definitive answer pretty easily, but I'm sure it's not going to make an enormous difference either way. Going for the alacrity rather than the crit is certainly going to reduce variance between parses, which is an appreciable boon for raids.
In my theory its assuming CD is on cooldown and I'll use wrath procs on LS. If it wasn't on CD I'd might go CD not sure would depend on DF CD/deathmark ticks. Though I always catch myself going LS for wrath if CD is about 2-3 seconds off CD.

In your situation 100% wait the final tick out. Use FL get stacks and apply dots. If its like < .5 second I'd probably wait if it was. My FL channel is 2.6 ( x4 focal light) and I get wrath stacks required to LS @ 0.8-1 second on cast time to clip. So it takes me 1.5 seconds to get three stacks.

Feel free to test out the ratios if you want I'd add it to the guide.