It’s been a little while since 5.4 was released, and I’ve still been tweaking my WeakAuras here and there as I go. I’ve finally made enough tweaks that I thought it was worth sharing with the class.
Again, the updated Paladin auras can all be grabbed at http://www.sacredduty.net/weakauras-strings/ along with auras for all of the other class/spec combinations I use regularly.
The first change is actually the removal of an aura that doesn’t have much meaning anymore. Now that Crusader Strike applies Weakened Blows, there’s no reason to be tracking it’s uptime. So I’ve removed that aura entirely and shifted the Eternal Flame & Sacred Shield icons over to fill the empty space.
Priority Row Shuffle
I’ve tweaked the order of the spells on the priority row a bit. I’ve been using Holy Prism more frequently lately – or to be more specific, I’ve been swapping that talent more frequently and using all three choices. Nowadays, my sims are telling me that all three of these choices fall above Consecration in priority. And more importantly, I found that I tended to forget about those spells since I had their icons so far off to the right.
So I’ve re-ordered the last few icons on the priority row. I’ve moved Execution Sentence, Light’s Hammer, and Holy Prism to the left and moved Consecration and Sacred Shield to the right. Now the order looks like:
CS – J – AS – HW – HoW – (ES/LH/HPr) – Cons – SS
Swapping Consecration and Sacred Shield is a last-minute change that I made after recording the videos (and taking the screenshots) shown later in this post, so in those Consecrate appears to be way off to the right. It looks a little cleaner now with that last-minute change though (which is why I decided to make it!).
Tier 16 4-piece Indicator
The first new indicator is one that tells you the status of your Tier 16 4-piece bonus. When you reach 3 stacks of Bastion of Glory, you get a buff called Bastion of Power that makes your next Word of Glory or Eternal Flame free. It’s a very simple matter to track this buff in WeakAuras so you know when it’s available.
The indicator pulses if you have a 5-stack of Bastion of Glory to remind you that it’s at full strength. As per this comment on last week’s blog post, refreshing the buff immediately at 5 stacks of BoG tends to be an ideal strategy in the steady-state (i.e. at constant Vengeance). In practice you’d want to consider your current Vengeance level, of course.
Eternal Flame Stoplight
To that end, I’ve added a new indicator. In this comment, Zil asked me if I could write an aura that would tell you whether refreshing Eternal Flame would give you a larger or smaller HoT. So I wrote up this “stoplight” indicator to give us that information.
Every time you cast EF, it calculates the strength of that EF and stores that value (much like the text indicators store the effective HP used, BoG level, haste, and AP you had at the time of the cast). It then calculates the value of a new EF given the current conditions and compares that to the stored value.
If the new value is at least 10% larger than the existing one, the indicator turns green. If it’s not, it stays red. Yes, this is the reverse of how I have the text indicators working, but if that bothers you the colors are easily tweaked on the display tab of each aura. I tend to think of green as “good,” in this case the stoplight means “It would be good to cast EF” while the text auras are telling me about the status the existing EF (“Your current EF is good, don’t mess with it”). I suspect most people will only use one or the other anyway.
There’s also a text indicator that shows exactly how much better the new EF will be. It’s literally just showing you (new EF value)/(old EF value) as a percentage, so if it reads 115% (as it does in the image above) it means recasting EF at this point will be a 15% increase in healing throughput. Note that this percentage can get very large in cases where you have a one-HP Eternal Flame active and you’re sitting on 5 stacks of Bastion of Glory.
Note that this indicator takes into account everything, as far as I know. It should accurately reflect changes in mastery, haste, Bastion of Glory stacks, spellpower, holy power, crit, and even Avenging Wrath. The only thing I’ve omitted are constant factors like the 50% increase from self-casting (which you should always have) and the 5% Seal of Insight healing bonus (which you should probably also always have, since I don’t think many players are switching to Seal of Truth/Righteousness).
The video below shows the indicator during development at 4x the final size to make it easier to see how it works:
It didn’t occur to me to write a Sacred Shield stoplight until writing this post, but I’ll probably put one together in the next few weeks. I’ll toss it on pastebin, update the WeakAuras page with a link to it, and probably tweet about it, but probably won’t give it it’s own blog post.
Jan 15 2014 edit: SS stoplight added, bundled with the EF stoplight. Also added crit scaling to the EF stoplight.
Aura Group Re-organization
Finally, I’ve had to re-organize the aura groups a little bit. Adding the code to support the EF Stoplight aura caused one of the other groups to get too large for Ace Serializer, which in turn broke importing. So I had to split them up. They’re now organized a little differently. The three big groups haven’t changed:
Those aura groups are all independent and work perfectly well all by themselves. You can import any combination of those and they should work seamlessly.
All of the auras that give you specific information about Vengeance, Sacred Shield, and Eternal Flame now have a dependency: the “Vengeance/SS/EF Helper Auras” group. This group contains the code that saves a snapshot of your stats when you cast EF or SS, which is why it’s required for the other aura sets to work. They all perform calculations on that information to determine what to display, so without it, they don’t work.
Vengeance/SS/EF Helper Auras (required for the three sets below)
And finally, the auras that display EF and SS information; again, none of these work without the aura group linked above:
(Technically speaking, the simple Vengeance text indicator doesn’t require the helper auras, so if you’re a non-paladin tank class and want that, you can just grab the “Vengeance/SS/EF text indicators” group and delete everything with EF/SS in the title and that Vengeance indicator should still work).
And after all of that, here’s how it looks in practice on a target dummy:
If you want to see the Vengeance Bar indicators at work, check out the old 5.4 video on the WeakAuras Strings page. And as always, that page contains the auras for all of the other classes I play or have played. If you have a question about what addon I’m using to create a certain UI element, check out the UI Construction and Key Bindings post, which should still be mostly accurate. If that doesn’t answer your question, feel free to ask in the comments.
A handful of quick comments regarding Simulationcraft stuff before I go:
- There’s a bug with Execution Sentence in Simcraft at the moment (in 542-1 at least, and several earlier builds). For some reason it’s not ramping up the damage of each tick appropriately for protection, even though it works perfectly for retribution. This is a non-trivial issue caused by some piece of code deep in the core, and at this point I couldn’t even give you a completely satisfactory answer for why it happens. But top men (meaning: people more competent than I) are on it. Top men, I say. Hopefully should be fixed for next build.
- There’s also a small bug in the last couple revisions that causes Eternal Flame to be slightly undervalued. I put some code in there to handle the hotfix applied in September (when EF’s self-healing bonus was nerfed from 100% to 50%) and forgot to take it out once the spell database was updated to include that information. So EF was only getting a 25% bonus from being self-cast rather than a 50% bonus for a while, thus being undervalued by about 17%. Oops. Bad Theck. This will be fixed in version 542-2.
- I’m almost done with the MATLAB automation code that runs the rotation simulation. This turned out to be a much larger and more annoying project than I expected (and I already expected it to be large and annoying). It’s arguably the most complicated of all of the sims because I had to allow the possibility of using different glyphs and talents for each rotation. Luckily, I should be able to finish it this week and have it ready for a blog post next week. Also luckily, the rest of the automation sims should be far easier to code than this one was.
- Once those are done, I have the fun job of deciding how to make them translatable to other classes (if at all). I have to see if any of this code runs in Octave or FreeMat (unlikely, I use a lot of fancy structure and cell stuff), and if not, decide whether to translate all of this to another language so that other theorycrafters/players can contribute and use the code. I could also entertain the possibility of integrating some of these features into SimC itself in the long run (ex: a talent simulation would be pretty simple, I think), but that’s something I’ve yet to discuss with the other SimC devs.
That’s it for today.