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Eggwolls

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re: SimulationCraft and You!

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Some people may not know what simming is, but this post is here to teach you all the general basics and maybe even some in depth things that will help you in the long run.

There are huge benefits to simming your character regularly, but first what is SimulationCraft? It's an application tool that you use to see what your stat weights and priority stats are. It's going to tell you basically what stats you should be reaching for in your gems and your reforges. That being said: I can really only recommend the usage of SimCraft for maximizing dps, not heals or tank mitigation.

SimCraft will not teach you how to play your class, how to glyph or how to talent. You still have to do that research on your own.  Off the top of my head, people should be looking at ElitistJerks, MMO-Champion class forums and Icy-Veins for information on your class. You can also talk to other people who play your class well and get advice from them, but I will always, ALWAYS prefer people do research outside of another person's point of view because a lot of classes can have multiple play styles.

Another thing to note is that simming your character any time you get an upgrade is an amazing idea because stat weights can change at any given number interval. If you fail to sim often, you may find your dps slipping because your upgrades have changed your stat weights.

 

If you already have SimCraft but want to make sure you are using it correctly, skip this first part!

Finding and Downloading SimCraft:

First off, you need to download it. So you'll want to go to simulationcraft.org and click Downloads at the top of the website. Once you do that, you'll see a list of options you can click to download like so:

You want to choose between 32 or 64bit. Choose whatever operating system version you are using. If you don't know what you're using, I suggest a google search to find out because ain't nobody got time for dat explanation.

Once you click whichever one is correct for you, a download will start. Once it's finished, open it and you'll see one folder inside like so:

At this point make a new folder named SimCraft and drag that file into it to unzip it and keep it in a safe place. You can also choose to copy everything inside of that folder and move it over to your new one but for simplicity's sake, we'll keep it in it's original folder.

 

I want to make a note here to always check to see if you have the latest SimCraft version every time you sim your character!

So now that you have your new folder, go ahead and open it up and open up the folder inside there and you'll see a whole bunch of files. The only one you care about is the executable file.

Note: If you get a security warning when you try to open it, no worries, it's a false alarm. I swear I'm not infesting your computer with nasties. (:

 

Learning how to use SimCraft:

So now you have your SimCraft open I hope and it should look like this:

I highly recommend reading the top 3 Table of Contents: How This Interface Works, Navigation and Tips and Tricks. I am going to show you the gist of the important things, but reading that helps your understanding.

So the first thing you want to do is Import your character, so click Import at the top. Since it defaults to Battle.net search that should be what opens up. We are definitely going to use armory to import our character because it's the easiest way to do it. So just search for the character you want to sim in the search bar. Make sure it's on your armory page. For example, I'll show mine:

Once you've got your character showing, click the Import button on the bottom as shown.

It should automatically send you to the Simulate tab like so:

But before you do anything else, click the Options tab at the top. We have some things to explain and change first.

You should be seeing this:

The first thing you want to change is Iterations to 10000. This will give you a more accurate dps number when you sim. Generally you want to keep Fight Style as Patchwerk, but I want to explain some other important types that you may want to use depending on what fight you have in mind.

Patchwerk: This is your stand still full on single target dps fight. The only fights that are quite close to this in SoO are Malkorok and Juggernaut. When you sim this style you will get the most accurate single target dps for yourself.

HecticAddCleave: This is your mix of single target and AoE/cleave dps. It's when during intervals of the fights you have to quickly AoE/cleave adds such as in Sha of Pride and first phase Garrosh.

HelterSkelter: This is also a mix of single target and AoE but it's more random such as on Immerseus, Protectors, Norushen, etc. It's for any fight where you find you can randomly cleave or AoE because of RNG mob placement/spawns. *this is my understanding of HelterSkelter but if someone else knows better, let me know!

Alright, so you have those changed, there's one more thing to do before simming. Still under Options, click over to Scaling:

You'll want to check off Analyze All Stats. This just, again, ensures the most accurate dps number.

Alright! You've changed everything you needed to for this sim, so now it's time to actually do it. With the way the interface is set up, you just need to click Simulate down at the bottom and it'll start!

 

How to Read a Sim:

This is definitely where it can get confusing so bear with me.

Once your sim is done, you should see this:

Okay. So let's start from the top.

So the first thing it shows you is the first thing you probably care about. Your DPS. The DPS number is what you SHOULD be pulling on a stand still single target fight. If you find that your DPS is significantly lower than what your sim says, then you need to think about your playstyle while you raid. Are you maximizing your uptime on the boss by placing yourself in good positions? Are you using instants when possible while moving? Any downtime on the boss is a huge loss of dps and all classes have ways to either get to where they need to be quickly and/or using something to attack while moving. Min/Maxing isn't just about your gear, it's hugely a part of how you play.

 

Next up is stat weights. In my opinion, this is the most useful part of simming.

So Scale Factors are the exact same thing as your stat weights. Basically what this tells you is what stats are the most important for you in YOUR CURRENTLY EQUIPPED GEAR.

Now that you have a basic understanding, you're probably looking at your sim and seeing hit to be incredibly high. Note here that hit is only that valuable if you are UNDER hit cap. So if you are under hit cap (and expertise cap for melee), then yes, the stat weight applies and you need to reach that cap.

Well because we are using my sim as an example, I'm definitely at (and over) hit cap, so let's move onto Intellect. You're probably thinking, "Wow, intellect is so much higher than everything else, I bet you gem all intellect." Wrong!

Think about our current gems. You get 160 of a primary stat (Intel, Strength, Agi) and you get 320 of a secondary stat (Haste, Mastery, Crit). 320 is double that of 160, so what you need to do is double the value of your secondary stat weights.

Let me illustrate:

  • Intellect stays 7.84.
  • Crit gets doubled to 7.74.
  • Haste gets doubled to 10.52.
  • Mastery gets doubled to 8.7.

Now you can actually see your true stat weights and now Haste shows to be my top secondary stat with Mastery coming in second.

An easier way to determine what your best stat is, is to look at the normalized numbers where Intel is 1. If your secondary stat is over .5 then it's better.

So what is this telling you? Because my haste value is bigger than my intellect value, that means I should be using Intellect/Haste gems in red sockets NOT full intellect gems.*Please see the post below for another alternative. For yellow sockets, I use Haste gems. And for blue sockets, I'll use Intellect/Spirit gems ONLY if I can use the hit. If I can't use the hit, I can go for Intellect/Stam. *Non-spirit users should note that you use hit, not spirit. ;P All of these values are interchangeable for what your sim says, even if you are an agi or strength user. I'm just using myself as an example. This gemming rule is the MOST IMPORTANT when your socket bonus is your primary stat (i.e. Intellect, Agility, Strength) which most socket bonuses are. However, if your socket bonus is not a primary stat, you can still choose to follow this rule as it is still good, but it may not be the absolute best. Math is used to determine what is the best to use (which I can make a post about later).

That being said, my class/spec is not overly complicated with haste breakpoints and all that, so having knowledge about your class and spec before simming is a must. Some specs have multiple ways to gem/reforge that are all viable and it's dependent upon your preference. SimCraft is a number simulator to aid you to better dps, but it's not going to teach you everything you need to know.

I am more than willing to continue helping anyone who is still confused about simming and even how it pertains to your class. I fully enjoy min/maxing and theorycrafting myself so if anyone needs to help, I can provide that or find someone else who can also give you the information you need.

 

If there's any questions or concerns, you can ask me here so that I can have time to get out a thorough reply or if it's something simple, you can ask me in game.



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Mojadø

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re: SimulationCraft and You!

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I just want to add something about red sockets. Instead of using an orange primary/seconday gem, you may also opt to use an exp/secondary orange gem. This is only true if the normalized value of the secondary stat you are stacking is >0.50 and that you are also able to take use of all the expertise that you will gain with the gem.

Let me give a quick example.
In this example lets say the normalized stat values are;
Int: 1, Haste: 0.61, Crit: 0.42, Mastery: 0.47, Hit: 1.43

My Legendary cloak has a red socket with a 60 intellect bonus, what do I gem in it?
Your first thought may be 160 int, or maybe 80 int and 160 haste.

However, since haste is so strong in this scenario (the value is over 0.50) you may use an expertise/haste gem. This expertise will allow you to reforge out of hit and more into haste on other pieces of your gear. This effectively gives you even more haste on your gear. Just remeber, this only applies if you can use all of the expertise without going over your cap(15% hit for spell and 7.5% hit and exp for melee).

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