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[Guide] The Watchmen and Combat PvE basics

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes > Jedi Knight > Sentinel
[Guide] The Watchmen and Combat PvE basics

Lukahatt's Avatar


Lukahatt
01.13.2013 , 09:55 AM | #121
Ok, so I'm a Sentinel lvl 50, gear is half Columi, half Black Hole (on process of replacing the Columi).
When I traded the Columi chest piece for the Black Hole, my damage went down a bit, but Critical Chance and Multiplier went up - I imagine it is a worthy trade-off, correct? Or should I customize the chest piece?

Couple of extras questions: which lightsaber crystal (for PVE) should I be using? Both of mine are +41 Power.
And second, is it worth to replace Rakata Relic of Forbidden Secrets (on use gives +175 to Crit Rating and Surge) for Dread Guard Relic of Boundless Age (on use, +350 Power) ?

Thank you

BlznSmri's Avatar


BlznSmri
01.13.2013 , 12:19 PM | #122
Crit/ Surge relics are a complete waste. You get to your Crit and Surge caps from your gear. Get the DG Power Relic.

You don't want to sit at any less than 150 Crit or any more than 350 rating. Cap Surge and Accuracy then stack Power all the way. It doesn't really matter what crystal you use, just so long as your other mods and enhancements are balanced.
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IAmViiOLENT's Avatar


IAmViiOLENT
01.13.2013 , 02:59 PM | #123
Quote: Originally Posted by BlznSmri View Post
Do you have a name so I can see said parse?
Its got some weird alt codes on the e's and I don't know the codes for them, but we're on the Harbinger; his name is Creep .

EDIT:

Found it, without any edit he's at 1985 dps after combat ends. TBH, Its pretty damn impressive, seeing as I've never managed to break 1900 in the spec. I can sit at 1850ish on a good day in Rage lol

http://www.torparse.com/a/91531/4/0/Damage+Dealt

Bughugger's Avatar


Bughugger
01.15.2013 , 09:08 AM | #124
I just translated Omophorus his post from your Marauder thread to make it easier to understand for Sentinels.
I hope I made no mistakes. Here his post, but with the names of the Sentinel's abilities.

Quote:
There are 2 primary Precision Slash patterns, which you basically alternate due to CDs (Precision Slash at 15s, Master Strike at 27-30s).

Precision Slash > Master Strike > Blade Storm
Zen > Precision Slash > Blade Rush x3 > Blade Storm

You do not want to delay Precision Slash use more than 1 GCD past coming off CD (0 of at all possible) so you ideally want each Precision Slash window to start with a fresh Combat Trance,
or at the very least the Blade Rush buff (for the Master Strike window) to minimize the chances of missing a forced crit Blade Storm.

For your second question, no, not exactly.

The primary goal with Combat is to use Precision Slash to CD. If it's sitting up off CD, you're losing DPS fast.
The 2 Precision Slash patterns above have different Focus needs to support.
-The Master Strike pattern requires 3 focus (1 for Precision Slash, 2 for Blade Storm)
-The Zen Blade Rush pattern requires 6 (1 for Precision Slash, 1 per Blade Rush, 2 for Blade Stom).

Thus, in between Precision Slashes, your goal is to ensure that you have what you need available for the next Precision Slash.
For Master Strike, this means a minimum of 3 Focus, and preferably the Blade Rush buff and a fresh Combat Trance if at all possible.
For the Zen pattern, it means a minimum of 6 Focus and 30 stacks of Centering (which you can, if necessary, get the final stacks out of Precision Slash and fast-finger Precision Slash > Zen > Blade Rush to still squeeze 3 into the window).

The secondary goal, after the Zen Precision Slash pattern, is to burn any remaining stacks of Zen ASAP so that you can begin building Centering again.

Advanced players may throw Cauterize in as well for a little extra DPS, but that's not something to worry about at the moment.

For all intents and purposes, you're using Zealous Strike as often as possible to keep Focus up, and then using as many Blade Rushes in between Precision Slash windows as possible without leaving yourself short for the next one (and using Strike to keep things balanced).
It's not quite build-then-dump, because you have very deterministic time targets with very deterministic needs that you need to be planning ahead for.

Without taking damage, Centering becomes the tightest resource, but in actual content it's not a big deal and Zen should be up when needed.
There is a bit of a balancing act needed to ensure that you spend enough Focus to have 30 Centering every other Precision Slash, but not leave yourself resource-starved and thus cost yourself DPS during your peak times (or delay Precision Slash, which is just as bad).
Alwiin - Combat Sentinel on The Red Eclipse
http://swtor.askmrrobot.com/characte...2-ea9ea6491243

poneez's Avatar


poneez
01.18.2013 , 06:41 AM | #125
As a SWTOR noob (but NOT an MMO or DPS noob) I appreciate your work. Math is not my forte either.

Since my Sentinel is only 19, this is going to give me a lot to work with.

I only have one other comment: If you are a DPS class, your first job is always "moar dps". Everything else is secondary, including your own survivability
Your stupidity is making me raise my perfectly shaped brow.
Valsharan Devereaux, Marauder
Revenge is not the Jedi way. Accidents, however, will happen.
Acelyn Devereaux, Guardian

BlznSmri's Avatar


BlznSmri
01.18.2013 , 07:14 AM | #126
Quote: Originally Posted by poneez View Post
I only have one other comment: If you are a DPS class, your first job is always "moar dps". Everything else is secondary
I was of the same opinion until I got tired of eating dirt and having my healers ***** at me. Remember, Dead DPS is No DPS, so learn to not take avoidable damage and use defensive cooldowns when necessary. Your ultimate (final) goal as a dps is "moar dps," but you have to be alive to do that.
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IAmViiOLENT's Avatar


IAmViiOLENT
01.18.2013 , 07:35 AM | #127
Quote: Originally Posted by BlznSmri View Post
I was of the same opinion until I got tired of eating dirt and having my healers ***** at me. Remember, Dead DPS is No DPS, so learn to not take avoidable damage and use defensive cooldowns when necessary. Your ultimate (final) goal as a dps is "moar dps," but you have to be alive to do that.
Ie-
If toth is smashing, don't you dare eat it.

Omophorus's Avatar


Omophorus
01.18.2013 , 07:58 AM | #128
Quote: Originally Posted by Bughugger View Post
I just translated Omophorus his post from your Marauder thread to make it easier to understand for Sentinels.
I hope I made no mistakes. Here his post, but with the names of the Sentinel's abilities.
Since I wrote that post, I stepped up my own game a little, so a change is in order.

I'd originally commented that the 2nd Precision Slash window should close with Blade Storm. My rationale for saying so was that reversing the order made it challenging (due to ability delay of Force Scream specifically, and I do not know how Blade Storm compares in that regard) to reliably land 3 Blade Rushes before the ArPen buff goes away.

By adjusting my ability queue delay (how long ahead of time you can input your next attack) shorter and paying ruthlessly close attention to the GCD, it is actually very easy now for me to get all 3 into the window. So my original rationale for doing it "wrong" is pretty much dead.

I was working off the assumption as well that if I couldn't do it right, I couldn't recommend to others to try it. I can do it right, so I can and will recommend that others do it that way.

The reason this matters is that moving the Blade Storm to the beginning of the ArPen window means it comes off CD between ArPen windows with just enough time to use (if you use it IMMEDIATELY off CD) and have it come off CD again just in time to use again after the next Master Strike. In other words, 3 uses per 30s instead of 2.

If you have Combat Trance active, Blade Storm still hits harder than Blade Rush, even without Precision Slash, so it's one of your best uses of Focus as a filler between ArPen windows, provided that using it doesn't prevent it from being off CD during said windows.

The one thing to be careful of, if you choose to make the same change yourself in search of additional DPS, is that the changed order and when you're dumping Zen'd Blade Rushes can lead to being stuck without Combat Trance for the Blade Rush in the next Precision Slash window (after Master Strike). The easiest way to avoid this, when feasible, is to pop Zen early and dump up to 3 Blade Rushes just before Precision Slash comes off CD, so that you don't have all 6 stacks to burn after the start of the ArPen window.

Edit:
Quote: Originally Posted by BlznSmri View Post
Crit/ Surge relics are a complete waste. You get to your Crit and Surge caps from your gear. Get the DG Power Relic.

You don't want to sit at any less than 150 Crit or any more than 350 rating. Cap Surge and Accuracy then stack Power all the way. It doesn't really matter what crystal you use, just so long as your other mods and enhancements are balanced.
LagunaD's simcraft showed that one could go as low as 123 (in BH gear) without DPS loss. Anything below that is a net negative and should be avoided. 100-300 for Combat/Carnage is the happy zone, with the theoretical highest DPS at the low end, though in actual practice it's not going to matter much, if at all. In short fights, like what happens in actual combat, you'll see higher and lower numbers with a higher Crit Rating, and the average will wind up near-identical either way.

If you want to rule the leaderboards on TORParse, stack more Crit, because it'll increase the odds on having a stand-out run (when the Crit Gods are kind to you).
Srs'bsns the Eternal Warrior || Assassin 55
<Proper Villains> of The Ebon Hawk

poneez's Avatar


poneez
01.18.2013 , 09:04 AM | #129
Quote: Originally Posted by BlznSmri View Post
I was of the same opinion until I got tired of eating dirt and having my healers ***** at me. Remember, Dead DPS is No DPS, so learn to not take avoidable damage and use defensive cooldowns when necessary. Your ultimate (final) goal as a dps is "moar dps," but you have to be alive to do that.
True, but a large part of DPS survival is being smart DPS who knows how to manage aggro and knows how to avoid or reduce mob effects. If you are constantly trying to off tank or snatching aggro or not getting out of the way when mob effects are going off, which causes healers to swear at you, you are not good DPS regardless of how you are spec'd.

I will always go dmg first BUT I am someone who while not an experienced SWTOR player, is experienced DPS
Your stupidity is making me raise my perfectly shaped brow.
Valsharan Devereaux, Marauder
Revenge is not the Jedi way. Accidents, however, will happen.
Acelyn Devereaux, Guardian

Elizar_Naki's Avatar


Elizar_Naki
01.23.2013 , 10:45 AM | #130
While I do think this is a great guide, and have been using it to try and optimize my Watchman Sentinel's gear as I go, I noticed a couple of basic tenets the OP put forth that seem to be in conflict with each other:

1. focus on Strength over Power, since Strength also contributes to crit. chance and Power doesn't (presumably, this would also translate to focusing on Strength over Crit Rating for the reverse reason, but I don't completely know).
2. utilize only the "basic" mod parts (mod part ## as opposed to mod part ##a or ##b) because you want to avoid any mod part that has more Endurance than Strength or secondary stats.

The problem I've noticed with these two tenets, as I said above, is that they seem to conflict a bit. Example: the Deft Mod 26 gives 53 str, 32 end, and 41 pwr while the 26a version gives 68 str, 41 end, and 12 pwr. Yeah, the 26a has more end than pwr, but it also has more str than pwr. Same with the potent versions (same stat ratios, but with crit instead of pwr): the 26a has more end than crit, but it also has more str than crit. I've been trading in the basic 26 mods while putting together an "optimized" version of the Campaign Weaponmaster set, as the OP suggested, but I keep seeing my str drop along with my base damage, and I can't tell if the increase in bonus damage and crit chance from the higher pwr and crit is enough to offset the str drops I get from each mod I trade in (not sure about my damage stats, but my crit chance is already above 33% even without a Smuggler buff). Is this something I even need to be concerned about (I'm not a theorycrafter, so I don't pay attention to stats to this great a degree ordinarily)? Should I start using some of the 26a mods to get higher str at the expense of a little pwr/crit, or should I just stick with the basic 26 mods (and eventually the 27s as well, but I'm not there yet)?
"The Force isn't supposed to be a quick solution to every problem...although it does help."

"Peace through fear and suppression of freedom isn't peace worth having."