Back on to warlocky goodness, today’s little post is about the enchant ‘Subtlety‘. It’s a pretty basic, yet pricey, enchant. It is applied to Cloaks, and reduces threat to the wearer by 2%. Now, 2% might not sound like much at all to you, but sometimes it is enough to save your scrawny little warlock rear.

I recently got an upgrade to my cloak. Now, in all honesty, I should not be wearing my new cloak, because I haven’t gotten it enchanted yet. However, me being the little damage loving freak that I am, wanted to do more DPS darn it! I could have shelled out the gold for it, but I am in the midst of one of my stingy ‘will farm all mats!’ phases since I am perpetually poor. So, I have been raiding with my new, unenchanted cloak. Nasty stuff.

In my spec I have an inherent 10% threat reduction to my Destruction spells through the talent Destructive Reach. Since I only use Destruction spells (excepting Curse of Doom where appropriate), it basically means I generate 10% less threat. In raids, I also have Greater Blessing of Salvation on at all times, which is another 30% threat reduction. So I have 37% threat reduction (38% with Subtlety) *See comment below for the math, thanks heaps Higgins!* . Why is this 2% so important you ask?

First, because I like to gloat, lets look at the damage meter for our fight against Morogrim Tidewalker yesterday.

Now, if I was an intelligent creature, I also would have also screened the ‘threat’ part of the damage meter. Since I didn’t, we will just have to work with what we have. For this fight, most of my DPS was on the boss – so one tank had to consistently stay above me in threat to hold aggro. For the AoE parts of the fight, I was water tombed, or just plain ignorant, so I did very little AoE damage. The vast majority of my time was spent on Tidewalker.

On the threat meter, much of my time was spent hovering between just below the MT, to above him but just short of the ‘pull’ mark. Since monsters are lazy, ranged DPS can exceed the MT’s threat by up to 29.9% before pulling aggro (monsters just can’t be assed running!). I had determined that I would try and save Soulshatter to when Morogrim was at 50%, because the length of the cooldown is so prohibitive. This meant that I did have some times where I had to ease up on the pedal and let the tank get a bit more of a lead. Time not casting is lost DPS, lost DPS means the whole raid is disadvantaged. So the extra 2% threat reduction means perhaps an extra cast. A little less dependence on Soulshatter. A bit more of an advantage to the raid. Think of it as a +damage enchant even!

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2 Responses to “Subtlety – the best chant money can buy!”
  1. As a warlock with a feral druid alt, I have to say that I’ve really enjoyed reading your blog. One thing that mentioned in this post, though, that is not entirely correct involves the relationship between subtlety and other aggro reducing mechanisms. Unfortunately, the buffs stack in a multiplicative manner rather than an additive one. So, in the scenario described above the total aggro reduction would be a little more than 38% (1-(0.7*0.9*0.98)=0.3826) rather than 52%. In this case, a similarly talented warlock with salv but lacking subtlety would enjoy a 37% aggro reduction (1-(0.7*0.9)=0.37). That having been said, you are absolutely correct in your statement that subtlety is the best cloak enchant for a raiding warlock. Again, I appreciate your blog and look foward to continuing to read it!

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  2. Thanks very much for the correction on the math (it’s not my strongest point by any means!). I will fix that right now, and thanks again for the feedback!

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