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Guardian/Shadow - Tanking - Confusion

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes
Guardian/Shadow - Tanking - Confusion

Kitru's Avatar


Kitru
01.22.2012 , 09:23 PM | #11
Quote: Originally Posted by ScarletBlaze View Post
I disagree with you. I have yet to have any problems with my Shadow. I have yet to have a problme with any threat generation on my shadow. You have to know how to play your shadow and have to know your play style to play a Shadow effectively. Copying what someone else does will not work as each player has a differnet style

With the exception of one or two guardians I wind up keeping the agro on my shadow more than they do and they also die quicker than I do.

What it bascially comes down to is knowing your weakeness and knowing your play style.
And I haven't had any threat problems on my Shadow either. It still doesn't change the *fact* that Shadows are outright *worse* at AoE threat compared to Guardians and VGs. The capacity isn't a binary condition: you aren't either amazing or worthless. Shadow are simply the worst by a *very* large margin. The fact that a single power with *way* lower resource cost and animation consumption is even *competitive* with the 2 AoEs that Shadows have is pretty telling. Even if we *did* have similar AoE threat gen, we are still burning *way* more resources to accomplish the same goal (which also means we're getting less damage on primary targets while we struggle to wait on the AoE).
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Quote: Originally Posted by Fende View Post
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Arbegla's Avatar


Arbegla
01.22.2012 , 09:30 PM | #12
Quote: Originally Posted by Kitru View Post
And I haven't had any threat problems on my Shadow either. It still doesn't change the *fact* that Shadows are outright *worse* at AoE threat compared to Guardians and VGs. The capacity isn't a binary condition: you aren't either amazing or worthless. Shadow are simply the worst by a *very* large margin. The fact that a single power with *way* lower resource cost and animation consumption is even *competitive* with the 2 AoEs that Shadows have is pretty telling. Even if we *did* have similar AoE threat gen, we are still burning *way* more resources to accomplish the same goal (which also means we're getting less damage on primary targets while we struggle to wait on the AoE).
Ya know, if you didn't have me on ignore you could very easily see just how wrong you really are. Shame at that though.

Animation time MEANS NOTHING. Here is the thing Kitru, Force Sweep is used every 12 seconds, for free. But, besides a melee cone attack that may not even hit all the mobs you need to hold aggro on (due to them being behind you) that costs Focus (which needs to be built up, and popping cooldowns to build focus so an attack might work is just plain stupid) what else can a Guardian do to hold threat on AoE?

Its basically Force Sweep - wait 12 seconds - Force Sweep again. And hoping that it is good enough.

Really Kitru, spend more then 5 minute glancing over the first pages of either the Guardian forums, OR the Juggernaut forums and you'll see that AoE is a MAJOR issue for them. Because all they really have to use is Force Sweep/Smash.

Shadows can spam Whirling blow 3 times in the 12 seconds that Guardians are waiting on Force Sweep, and build 30% more threat from 30% more damage doing it. That isn't accounting for ANYTHING else the Shadow may do (like Force Breach, or Slow time)

PBAoE and TAoE (point blank, and targeted Area of Effect) abilities are INFINITELY better then Cones. Even if said cone hits 3 times are hard, the fact that you don't have to reposition very much for TAoE or PBAoE powers makes them far more useful.

AVAstronaut's Avatar


AVAstronaut
01.22.2012 , 10:21 PM | #13
So I'm kind of right back where I started in that I don't know what to play.

I don't want to play a tank with horrible AOE capabilities. But I don't want to play a tank who struggles to get healed and has no mitigation.

ruminate's Avatar


ruminate
01.22.2012 , 10:24 PM | #14
Quote: Originally Posted by Kitru View Post
A vast majority of the tanks that I've met are complete and utter idiots and a large number of those idiots have grouped themselves around the most "obvious" tank class: the Guardian/Juggernaut (obvious in that they are pretty much the standard applied most other MMOs with a 1 handed weapon, a shield, and heavy armor). Since a large number of people that expect simplistic tanking mechanisms concentrate on a class is no reason to say that the class itself is actually sub-par. If most of the tanks were focused on Vanguards, I'm pretty sure that anecdotal evidence would say that VGs have terrible AoE threat even though we know this simply not to be true: any intelligently played VG is going to completely wipe the floor with the other tanks.

Now, as to the napkin math, it's important to realize exactly *how* amazing Force Sweep *is*. Talented, it's on a 12 sec CD and deals 45% more damage than base, along with a 9% Str advantage from talents. Just going off of the standard damage listed by TORhead, Force Sweep would deal roughly 2484 damage every 12 seconds for free (Courage pretty much guarantees that you're going to have the 3 stacks within 2 seconds if you're in *any* reasonable tanking scenario) and a single GCD; Slow Time deals 1027 damage (1541 threat) every 8 seconds for 30 Force, and Force Breach deals 470 damage every 15 seconds for 20 Force. So, ignoring the Whirling Blow and Cyclone Slash (I'll get to those later), Guardians get 207 damage/sec for .25 Focus/sec and 12.5% animation consumption while Shadows get 160 damage/sec (224 threat/sec) for 5 Force/sec and 28.75% animation consumption.

Now, with just a cursory analysis, we can see Guardians generate more damage and only marginally less threat than a Shadow with no resource cost (or, at worst, a marginal cost) and drastically less animation time. This does ignore the size of the relevant AoEs, but, in my experience on my Guardian (yes, purely anecdotal), the fact that the AoE is smaller is almost perfectly counteracted by the fact that it is centered on you rather than the target (so you can explicitly choose where it is centered rather than requiring the target be near its friends).

Now, on to the Cyclone Slash v. Whirling Blow comparison. First off, Whirling Blow deals less base damage than Cyclone Slash, regardless of what TORhead says: Cyclone Slash has a coefficient of .88 while Whirling Blow has a coefficient of .71 (coefficients are directly tied to base damage since they are proportionate to the basic damage dealt by your basic attack). Furthermore, the talents that augment the given abilities are drastically different: Applied Force is a 6% increase in damage whereas Pacification is a 15% increase in damage, so the end coefficients between the two are ~.75 and ~1.0 for Whirling Blow and Pacification, respectively. Purely based off of the coefficients, Whirling Blow is *vastly* inferior to Cyclone Slash. As to the costs, it takes about the same amount of time to regenerate the given resources to use the abilities: Guardians take slightly longer to regenerate the focus, but they have many more Focus free abilities as well as general Focus generators coupled with lower comparative costs compared to the maximum resource so, honestly, it's easier to spam it than Whirling Blow.

All in all, Guardians blow Shadows *out of the water* for AoE threat. The only reason that a Guard/Jugg will have *worse* AoE than a Shadow/Sin is if the Guard/Jugg is exceptionally poorly played such that it can't take advantage of the excellent tools at its disposal. Player skill matters. If *any* tank runs into a fight and expects to faceroll its way to AoE threat, it's going to be disappointed; that more Juggs are inexperienced and follow this mentality compared to Shadows (which tend to be of a higher caliber players since it's a much more demanding playstyle) isn't indicative of an inferiority of design for Juggernauts.
I like how you go off the damage listed in torhead for Force Sweep vs. Slow Time, but go off coefficients for Cyclone Slash vs. Whirling Blow. I also like how you list 45% Force Sweep damage from talents but neglect Slow Time's 30% damage increase and Force Breach's 15% damage increase. I also like how you neglect to include Combat Technique's internal damage proc.

You also act as though the two classes have similar resource systems, which is absurd.
Assassins regenerate 15.6 force per GCD and an additional 3 force every GCD "if you're in any reasonable tanking scenario".
Juggernauts gain 1 rage every two GCDs, an additional 2 rage every three GCDs if you sacrifice a hard hitting move, 1 rage every GCD if you sacrifice a hard hitting move, and 6 rage every fourty GCDs.

It doesn't matter if Smash and Sweeping Strikes(Cyclone Slash) hits hard. Their AoE DPS is completely shot due to their resource and cooldown limitations. That still stays true even if you compare the AoE of a Juggernaut that starts the fight with a full rage bar.

It also doesn't matter how much damage an AoE does if it can't even hit a target. Smash has half the radius of Wither/Discharge, 3m less than Overload, and Lacerate is a 360 degree AoE vs. Sweeping Slash's cone AoE.

Kitru's Avatar


Kitru
01.22.2012 , 10:49 PM | #15
Quote: Originally Posted by ruminate View Post
I like how you go off the damage listed in torhead for Force Sweep vs. Slow Time, but go off coefficients for Cyclone Slash vs. Whirling Blow.
The base damage listed on TORhead for Cyclone Slash is completely off because it has separate calculations for Sentinels (dual wielding) and Guardians (single weapon), so it can't be trusted, so I went with the coefficients to more easily compare them. When I get my Guardian to 50, I'll start yanking the info from the game to give the most accurate information possible. As it stands, I did the best with the tools at my disposal.

Quote:
I also like how you list 45% Force Sweep damage from talents but neglect Slow Time's 30% damage increase and Force Breach's 15% damage increase.
I like how you just made the comment rather than reading the numbers and doing the math to see that I actually *did* include the 30% additional damage for Slow Time and 15% additional damage for Force Breach. If you want to call me on something, try to prove it before you spout it off.

Quote:
I also like how you neglect to include Combat Technique's internal damage proc.
Which only affects a single target every 1.5 seconds for a tiny amount of damage? Seriously? You could more easily fault me for not factoring in the additional 9% Str that Guardians get since that has a bigger impact.

Quote:
You also act as though the two classes have similar resource systems, which is absurd.
Assassins regenerate 15.6 force per GCD and an additional 3 force every GCD "if you're in any reasonable tanking scenario".
Juggernauts gain 1 rage every two GCDs, an additional 2 rage every three GCDs if you sacrifice a hard hitting move, 1 rage every GCD if you sacrifice a hard hitting move, and 6 rage every fourty GCDs.
They also don't follow even remotely similar resource *consumption* models. Everything a Shadow does eats Force. Probably half of what a Guardian does eats Focus. Having actually *played* both at a high level, I can actually say that Guardians have a *much* easier and readily available resource model. It's virtually impossible to make a direct comparison between the two, but, honestly, it's not as if they are so *vastly* different that they cause you to play completely differently: both styles force you to intersperse low damage attacks into your strings regardless of how you play. Guardians do so by requiring you to use a specific attack (Sundering Strike) in order to regularly generate focus effectively while Shadows simply have costs that are such a large proportion of your resource bar that your only recourse is to use Saber Strike.

Quote:
It doesn't matter if Smash and Sweeping Strikes(Cyclone Slash) hits hard. Their AoE DPS is completely shot due to their resource and cooldown limitations. That still stays true even if you compare the AoE of a Juggernaut that starts the fight with a full rage bar.
Actually, it does. First off, Smash and Force Sweep are functionally *free* since Courage/Revenge reduce the cost by 3. If you're in an AoE situation and *not* getting those 3 charges within 12 seconds, you're doing it wrong. Secondly, Sweeping Strikes and Cyclone Slash hit harder than Whirling Blow and are, honestly, easier to use. You can make all the claims you want about it, but I've played them both. 3 Focus is *way* easier to get a hold of than 40 Force, especially for an AoE burn. From full Force/Focus (you can pretty much start any fight with full Focus with Combat Focus>Throw>Leap), it'll take 3 GCDs until you can't sustain Whirling Blow spam for less damage for *each* Whirling Blow while you can go 4 GCDs without running out of Force for Cyclone Slash spam and that's assuming you *aren't* intelligent about it throwing in a Sundering Strike for the easy 2 Focus in there as well.

Quote:
It also doesn't matter how much damage an AoE does if it can't even hit a target. Smash has half the radius of Wither/Discharge, 3m less than Overload, and Lacerate is a 360 degree AoE vs. Sweeping Slash's cone AoE.
As I have said before, in my own experience, I've had *way* easier time using Force Sweep than Slow Time simply because it's centered on me rather than my opponent. The expanded radius really only serves to make up for the fact that enemies *really* don't like standing where you want them to stand. If you're having a problem with Cyclone Slash's AoE, you're also doing it wrong. Any reasonably intelligent player that can actually *use* the given tools beyond facerolling (re: using the GCDs to place yourself appropriately) will actually be able to actually use them appropriately. As I have said time and time again, the fact that most Guards/Juggs are incapable of using the tools of their class appropriately doesn't mean that they are somehow underpowered *especially* when it's not even a hard capability to take advantage of: placement of the player is a joke and, honestly, should be considering a basic playing skill rather than an advanced skill like some expect. Just by *leveling* you should be able to grasp the basic fundamentals of how to use the abilities appropriately without blaming the abilities themselves as somehow being fundamentally flawed such that, even though they blow the comparative abilities of another class *completely* out of the water, the class is somehow *weaker* due to some players' inability to grasp a *very* simple skill.
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Quote: Originally Posted by Fende View Post
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ruminate
01.22.2012 , 10:54 PM | #16
Quote: Originally Posted by Kitru View Post
I like how you just made the comment rather than reading the numbers and doing the math to see that I actually *did* include the 30% additional damage for Slow Time and 15% additional damage for Force Breach. If you want to call me on something, try to prove it before you spout it off.
I'm only going to respond to this just to show people how skewed your agenda is:

Smash coefficient = 1.35(1.9575 with talents)
Wither coefficient = 1.18(1.534 with talents. Wither has an additional 0.5 threat coefficient)

Kitru's Avatar


Kitru
01.22.2012 , 10:55 PM | #17
Quote: Originally Posted by ruminate View Post
Smash coefficient = 1.35(1.9575 with talents)
Wither coefficient = 1.18(1.534 with talents, 2.301 threat coefficient)
Those numbers *fit* the numbers that I provided explicitly. Wanna try again?
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ruminate
01.22.2012 , 10:59 PM | #18
Quote: Originally Posted by Kitru View Post
Those numbers *fit* the numbers that I provided explicitly. Wanna try again?
"Force Sweep would deal roughly 2484 damage every 12 seconds for free"
"Slow Time deals 1027 damage"

Arbegla's Avatar


Arbegla
01.22.2012 , 11:05 PM | #19
Quote: Originally Posted by ruminate View Post
"Force Sweep would deal roughly 2484 damage every 12 seconds for free"
"Slow Time deals 1027 damage"
See, neither one of you are accounting for base damage, which could be the reason why Force Sweep is showing so much more damage, but I full heartedly agree with Ruminate. If for no other reason, then Kitru is comparing the wrong powers, and assuming 'spam this button forever' situations.

1 Force Sweep in 12 seconds = Damage of Force sweep/12 = Total Force Sweep DPS

3 Whirling Blow in 12 seconds = (damage of whirling blow * 3)/12 = Total Whirling Blow DPS

Just accounting for Coefficients, Whirling Blow does 30% more damage (and thus TPS) then Force Sweep.

Same amount of force/focus uses (0 for Force Sweep due to Courage, 4.8 force GAIN off whirling blow, due to innate force recovery)

Gankstah's Avatar


Gankstah
01.22.2012 , 11:33 PM | #20
Quote: Originally Posted by Arbegla View Post
And Cyclone Slash is melee CONE power, meaning it might not be possible to get all 5 targets (say, if some are behind you)
That's why BioWare blessed you with an "S" key. You tap it once and all of a sudden all of your surrounding targets are in conal range. Now, if you have so many targets surrounding you that the artificial collision takes hold and they will not spot properly... well then you have bigger problems on your hand. Because in NMM, that means you're about to wipe.

So this, isn't even a factor. I don't blame you for this and I'm not trying to taunt you. This is a common oversight people make who haven't actually played Juggs/Guardians. Positioning is a non-issue in PvE. It really is.

Quote:
When you compare that to Whirling blow, being used 3 times over 12 seconds...
Whoa, whoa, whoa. Slow down there. You do know that Whirling costs 40 Force, right?

Ok, we all need to take a step back because people are starting to throw out some seriously wishy washy "what if's". The theorycrafting in here is wholly lacking. What you guys need to do is start plotting. So, to save you the time, I'll do it for you. Actually, instead of plotting it out, because people unfamiliar with plotting might get confused, I'm going to do this via chart. We're going to use the posited situation the above reader presented and then compare it to a similar situation via the Guardian.

So, first let's set the parameters. The reader was positing a 12 second time frame. 12 seconds = 8 GCDs. He also listed 10.4/sec as the Force regen factor. For simplicity's sake I'm going to list regen gain every other round so I don't lose the reader.

Code:
GCD     Action       Force Total
1          Slow T           70
2          Whirling         50.8
3               *               --
4               *              71.6
5          Whirling         31.6
6               *              52.4
7               *               --
8          Whirling         33.2
As you can see, it can be done but you have near zero wiggle room to do it and only 1 of those 4 "*" rounds could be allotted to doing anything that costs force. Now let's compare it to a Guardian AoE rotation. Remember, Soresu grants 1 rage/3 sec when spec'd. For simplicity's sake we will list this at the end total of every other GCD. Also, let's assume that Sweep is at full cost to start out and that Revenge doesn't factor.

Code:
GCD     Action        Focus
1          Sweep           9
2          Sunder          9
3          Cyclone         6     
4          Cyclone         4              
5          Sunder          6 
6          Cyclone         4
7          Assault          5
8          Cyclone         3
And ^this^ is assuming Revenge doesn't factor.

If you want to compare apples to apples then compare apples to apples. Too often I see these discussions and no one actually bothers to do any plotting. You can't, I repeat CANNOT, have these discussions without plotting. It's like engineering without a calculator. You have to do this.

Now there are two things we have to remember.
1.) No sane Shadow/Sin is going to use that rotation. You'll be energy starved so often that you will be of no actual use to your party. You try to pull THAT rotation in NMM and you will get kicked because you're not going to be doing any meaningful aggro control.

2.) We're assuming that the Guardian/Warrior is at full Rage/Focus. Which, to be honest, isn't at all far fetched. But it's still an assumption. If we were to do something more along the lines of a 60 second plotting we would get a much more accurate sustained plotting that you would see in NMM. Something more along the lines of this:
Code:
GCD     Action        Focus
1          Saber T         3
2          Leap             7
3          Sweep           6   
4          Sunder          9              
5          Cyclone         6 
6          G Slash         4
7          C Focus        10
8          Cyclone         8
9          Cyclone         5
10        Sunder          8
And you just carry on. Overall, yes, the Warrior/Guardian has a little bit better AoE threat than the Sin/Shadow on paper. They can cycle more over a longer period with greater sustainability. The Sin/Shadow mathematically cannot. I can do this all day long. Really, I can. But I trust I've made my point. Sins/Shadows aren't INFERIOR tanks. They have many strengths that Warriors/Guardians do not. It's just that AoE isn't explicitly one of those strengths.

That is how the game is designed. That is called BALANCE. And I don't care who is talking or what your "experience" may or may not be. You can be the all time gamer pro of the year and I still wouldn't care. Sins/Shadows do JUST FINE with tanking. Both in AoE and single target. They have a little bit of a disadvantage with AoE but as I said before, they have a toybox of utilities that Guardians/Warriors aren't afforded.

Finally, theorycrafting is all well and good but at the end of the day theory rarely resembles reality. As a Juggernaut I can tell you right now, thanks to the state of the game no matter what theory you throw down it will never be accurately represented in game. Mostly because of the GCD interruption issues that Tanks are facing across the board.

Everyone in this thread needs to take a step back and try not to take everything so personal. If your class is at a disadvantage in a given situation it's not a personal assault on you as a man/woman. People take these things waaaaaaaaaay too personally. As if someone just insulted their firstborn.

Do you see me arming for war because someone says that Jugg Immortals are crap in PvP? No, you don't. It's just a game guys. Take a step back and relax.