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Defense or Shield/Absorb for the Jugg?

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes > Guardian / Juggernaut
Defense or Shield/Absorb for the Jugg?

MPagano's Avatar

01.30.2012 , 04:43 PM | #21
As some have pointed out here, the armor and defense stats are subjected to very harsh diminishing returns ( plots all the stats' DR curves if you're curious). They're definitely the best mitigation you can get, though.

Shields are a huge deal, and should not be discounted as second rate defensive stats. Try to keep shield chance and absorb pretty close to the same values (i.e. 25% shield chance 25% absorbtion). And play around with it and find your own sweet spot. I personally have stopped stacking defense for now (i'm around 22 or 23%) because my absorb is pretty low (only 22% while my shield chance is like 35%). The high shield stats really help smooth out the damage, especially when you're holding multiple mobs. With big packs, it just looks like I have a shield on permanently because it's proccing so often!

Ardelia's Avatar

01.30.2012 , 05:41 PM | #22
New game, same old misconceptions and tangled terminology from the last 4-5 games.

Quote: Originally Posted by MPagano View Post
the armor and defense stats are subjected to very harsh diminishing returns ( plots all the stats' DR curves if you're curious). They're definitely the best mitigation you can get, though.
Defense isn't mitigation. It's avoidance. The difference is not just semantic.

DISCLAIMER: None of what I'm about to write is intended in any way, shape, or form to downplay the importance of defense in favor of mitigation stats (or vice versa). In fact, it's intended to do exactly the opposite.

The problem with trying to equate avoidance and mitigation to get a neat mathematical equivalency is that they're two different terms that don't belong together in the same mathematical's rather like trying to prove that the square root of Chicago is "fish".

For example, Gankstah's "mean mitigation" work, that tried to put defense and mitigation stats into the same expression for formulaic use was an accurate, brilliant piece of math that, unfortunately, doesn't model real tanking.

Yes, avoidance does reduce damage taken over time by avoiding some damage entirely....if you have 20% defense (avoidance), you will "mitigate" 20% damage over time.

The problem is that any random system only models the theoretical distribution over sufficient time, and actual tanking doesn't take place over that kind of time scale. You can't go into a 5-minute fight, with 20% avoidance, and claim that you'll mitigate 20% of the potential damage, and you certainly can't tell your healers that you'll only take 4 hits out of every 5; local spikes will always exist in any random system, and those local spikes are the scale tanking (and healing) occupies.

Mitigation, however, does operate that way; if you have total mitigation of 40%, you can confidently tell your healers that you'll only take 40% of incoming damage...and that number will be true on a scale that matters to them.

I think tanks have a blind spot when it comes to optimization and theory; we tend to forget that our goal is NOT to take as little damage as possible. Our goal is to be as healable as possible; we tend to forget that we're one half of a two-headed system.

So, from a healer's perspective, what kills tanks? Two things do....spikes, and running out of resources.

Avoidance doesn't help a healer deal with spikes...a 40% avoidance tank that takes 4 hits in a row requires just as much work to heal up as a tank with 20% avoidance who takes 4 hits in a row. Mitigation (and in this case, we can count shield/absorb as mitigation, since it's on a separate roll) does; it reduces the amount of damage taken on a local scale, meaning that less healing is required to stabilize the tank.

By the same token, mitigation doesn't help a healer deal with resource management; reducing incoming damage by a certain amount creates a gap that still has to be healed, while avoiding attacks entirely allows them to not cast a heal, therefore conserving their resources.

So, if a game's properly designed, there's no "optimal" stat between the two; it's entirely situational. Are you dying to spikes of damage that your healer can't heal in time? Then you need better mitigation for that fight. Are you dying because your healer's running out of resources? Then you need more avoidance for that fight (make sure the primary damage sources are actually avoidable first). Are you dying to neither? Then you don't need to worry about survival stats...might as well stack some damage, OR add to both roughly equally to improve in a well-rounded fashion.

The whole "avoidance is useless" thing comes from late-period WoW (among other games), where Blizzard's response to gear inflation was to make bosses hit like trains in (often unavoidable) spikes, and where healers could spam forever without risking running out of resources. in that system, yes, EH (health and mitigation) became king, and avoidance's value was severely limited.

This, however, is not that game, and not that system. Both defense and mitigation have their just need to figure out what's (potentially) killing you, and gear appropriately.