Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Life Tap... the new PVE version.

This is all about the Life Tap change I heard about on the test server thing. Where lifetap goes from 528hp/mana to 15%hp/mana. I've heard this described as a nerf. To me it looks amazingly like a buff to affliction/destro and not much change to demo.

Let me explain. Now for the purposes of my numbers on hps and stats I'm using a demonology Warlock I found in the armory. 566 stm 467 int. 9239 hp and 9620 mana. The only buff I see is Fel Armor.

He has 7/45/9 with 2 points in improved life tap.

So his life tap gives 696 mana for 528 health.
Two life taps gives him 1392 mana for 1056 health.

Under the new system he'll get 1731.6 mana for 1385.85 health. Which is 4.94% more mana than before. So as a Demonology lock he's getting a tiny buff.

Of course... 5 min after writing this I was trying to look up an affliction lock to show how great they are going to get it and found one with 10640 hps and 8020 mana. Poor affliction lock. He's getting nerfed. But maybe thats his fault for stacking up 733stm and only 379 int. Granted he might be wearing PvP gear, as might the demonlogy warlock.

For myself? Lifetap changing like this would be a HUGE buff. I would be getting almost a 59% increase in the mana I get per health I spend. And I know I would gear differently at top end.

It is a change. It will require you to gear differently and stm will not be as priceless as before, but as long as you have 1 mana more than you have hps than its a change for the better. Is stm suddenly worthless? No you need the hps for pvp and to buff your pet. Does it hurt your regen? Not if you have 1 more mana than hps... and the more mana you have the more it becomes a buff. You -will- be life tapping less. About half as much. Because now(with equal hp/mana) you'll be spending and getting a little more than twice as much.

But please stop calling it a nerf(It is a pvp nerf I know). It just changed how you prioritize stats a bit.

My two copper.

p.s. I just hit level 39 yay.

p.s.s. Feel free to correct me. I know that purple level 70 gear has a TON of stm. But I also know that I looked at several locks at level 70 in purples and they had wildly varying hp/int ratios.

p.s.s.s. Ah the Affliction lock IS in pvp gear. Gladiator this and that. Which explains the hps.


Gwaendar said...


Check the Tiered Set itemization for another look at the change.

T4: +1830 HP vs +2355 Mana - OK there
T5: +2400 HP vs +2190 Mana - you start seeing the issue
T6: +2780 HP vs +2370 Mana

The tiered sets starting with T5 are itemized wrong in regards to the new method, and that's where you can find a PvE issue with it.
Add in the standard 5 points in Demonic Embrace you'd find in every single build using the demo tree and you only worsen the picture - a solid talent becomes a lot more marginal as it works against the new mechanic.

Dammerung said...

Point taken. AFter T4 it is a nerf according to the gear. With out talents and using only gear stats.. you would get:
1.29% of hp spent from t4
91% of hp spent from t5
85% of hp spent from t6

And with Talents:
154% of hp spent from t4
110% of hp spent from t5
102% of hp spent from t6

Still I think* if you stacked int gems/enchants?(not sure what T6 people prefer) and int gear on your non-set spots you'd be able to pull your mana back above your hps and avoid the nerf.

All percentages rounded to avoid decimals and the math was done with a fussy baby in one hand.

Although a question... are you including the sunwell plateu pieces?

*All thinking subject to occasional stupidity.

Gwaendar said...

No, just what's currently in the game.
Enchanting or socketing may not necessarily work either, as a raiding warlock may deprive himself of other vital stats like +spell hit or +spell damage he'd need to perform his role to the fullest.

Full disclosure, though, my lock is level 60 since TBC and I haven't looked into what a level 70 raiding lock really needs. Still, the above are just a couple of very basic elements which explain why raiders sure don't like the change either. I'm quite convinced there's a lot more to it.

Ratshag said...

Me kid brother Gogmoth is gonna take a hit from this, at least until he can get some new gear. At 60 (demo spec), he's got a lot more health than mana. He's been stocking up on high STA gear, not because the bugger wanted to destroyify in PvP, but because that were what worked best fer a solo alt making his way through the world. Come 2.4, not so much. Not a catastrophe by any means, and I won't be lodging complaints on his behalf, but it is fair to say he's taking a hit.

Dammerung said...

Meanders about meaninglessly.

After much thought I'm thinking that my original main reaction was... Huh, *I* always have more mana than health because *I* don't like to have to life tap 8 times after every fight... so this change will be awesome and *they* are just whining because they don't like having lower hps

But thats playstyle differences for you. And this is distinct nerf to the high hps play style, and is against the general trend of the BC gear.

My response was a bit too quick(mostly because I was high on the feeling of pretend theory crafting) and discounted the high health thing as "well they should just change how they play".

Trollin' said...

You must also remember that the current Lifetap gets a portion of your spell damage added to mana returned, whereas the new Lifetap does not.

Beowulfa said...


I had not heard that.


Anonymous said...

I would link my alt warlock but logged in pvp gear so little point.

But essentially if you are wearing mage gear with more crit/spirit then ideal it has plenty of int. Specialist warlock gear tends to be higher in stam.

Despite that, its not so bad that I would socket int:( Spell damage, spell hit,spell crit,haste.


Anonymous said...

I can verify that the change will hurt me greatly. Currently, my guild is:

1. Clearing all of Kara
2. Claering Gruul's
3. Killing 3 bosses in ZA
4. Killing Void Reaver

I'm equipped in T4 equivalent gear with a mix of pieces from all 4 of the above instances. Raid-buffed, I have:

hp: 13,890
mp: 9,125

At +1200 shadow damage, my current lifetap does (going by memory here, so feel free to correct me):

hp: -1,300 ish
mp: +1,700 ish

Under the new system, I'll have to tap:

hp: 2,778
to get:
mp: 1,825


Being an affliction warlock, I don't want to gem up with +INT since the majority of my damage (DoTs) don't have a crit mechanic, so I'd be massively reducing my damage potential if I removed my +hit/+dmg gems. Blizzard has itemized warlock gear with lots of +STA, moderate +INT, and lots of +dmg (or +shadow dmg - see Rittsyn's pendant (sp?)). For them to change the mechanic after 3 years of steering us down one itemization path is pretty rotten.

Right now, I can sustain about 800 dps. If I play with the dps calculators out there, theroycrafting with my stats show I should be able to sustain similar dps. I played with regemming to +INT and saw a disheartening drop to just 650 dps. Ouch ouch ouch. Remember, each +damage gem isn't just +damage to a nuke that we spam (like mages). It's a bonus damage to several insta-cast dots that we stack and THEN the nuke that we spam, so +dmg is much more efficiently used by locks v. other damage casters.

No other single change to any class in any time of the game has resulted in such a massive ~20% drop in dps. I hope Blizzard rethinks their knee-jerk change. Eyonix said the sole reason for the change was to make arena locks take a bigger hp hit when tapping. Most locks in arena admit they rarely tap anyway since they are an early focus fire target and rarely live long enough to empty their mana pools.