Play time OMG

Ok, having turned on the parental control to kill the realID thing, I now have an easy way to keep an eye on my play time.  Problem is: it's not play time which is measured, it's connection time.  And when you have the habit of leaving your character logged in when eating/cleaning the apartment/etc. the two can diverge.  But how much?

So I decided to do a test: instead of leaving my character around, for one week I decided to log out immediately every time I do nothing.  Of course dungeon finder queue time, which I spend doing something else, will still be there, but that's small compared to the rest of the afk time.  I also had some AH afk going on, but less than usual.
The result was surprising.  I usually hover at 30-33 hours/week (1800-2000 minutes), this week I was at 1520.... That's 6.35 hours less "playing" than what I thought (even without parental control I always considered 30h/week).

It looks that I'm more distant from the "heavy duty hardcore" threshold (45-48h/week) than I thought!  I'll have to play more :)


Some Fundamental Reading

Begin quote:

If it's a talent that provides a 10% dps increase or offers an ability you'll use constantly, fine. It's hard to argue that won't benefit most players. But when I see players obsess over talents that provide a theoretical 1% dps increase that is vastly overshadowed by the noise of their own performance, I shake my head a bit. Want to see what I mean? Compare a parse of yours on the same boss from week to week. You'll probably see a dps variance of 5-10% or more. That's the role of your skill, latency, bad luck, lacking the perfect raid comp or whatever else. Worrying about that 1% dps talent was a rounding error. Let's not forget that what may be 1% on one boss probably is not on another.

End quote.

This is something that all min-maxers know: all optimization models used to calculate stat/talent weights are approximations.  And as all approximations they have a domain of applicability and they have limits.
This is where simulationceraft is a nice tool: it doesn't only give you only the "magical" average DPS value, it provides also a distribution.  And from that distribution you can see the +-5% deviation.  And that 5% deviation is in an ideal simulation where everything is perfect.  In a real fight, which is never identical to a simulation (except for Patchwerk with 0 latency), there are a lot more variables which come into play. That 1% is a drop in the ocean.  Sure, it adds water, but good luck if you expect the level to rise.

So, next time someone goes "OMG you have one wrong gem!!!  OMG with another enchant you could gain 0.1% DPS!!!" show them that message.  And if the guy says that he knows better than whoever wrote it, tell him you found it HERE, and that the author is Ghostcrawler and that if he knows better than either he should go and apply for a position at Blizzard, or (a lot more likely) he's an idiot.


RWF release 0.1.2

New version available!  Notable changes:

- energy reconstruction takes into account Revitalize
- CP spent on SR are now indicated
- added a total value for the pie charts
- CP wasted for target switching and end of combat are now correctly taken into account
- the energy cost of FB has been fixed (OOC / Berserk interaction)
- it is now possible to analyze multiple combats/logs without restarting the program
- added tracking of OOC-equivalent energy generation

As usual, you can download from the RWF place.

From an user's point of view, the big one is that you can now analyze all the combats in a log without being forced to restart every time.
Energy reconstruction is still approximate and somewhat wrong (in the totals, you always have a lot more regen than used, which should not happen -- actually since RWF assumes 100 energy at start, the regen total should be lower....).  There still are some events I don't take into account, notably shapeshifting/Furor.  I'll add tracking of SPELL_CAST_FAILED due to "Energy too low." to improve the quality of the energy tracking.


Cataclysm: bear 12984

The last Cataclysm patch has brought good things to the bear.  Apart from some numerical changes (Mangle = massive damage, Lacerate = more upfront, less bleed), the big change is the second effect of Berserk: Lacerate ticks now have a 30% chance of resetting the mangle CD and providing a 6-second buff which makes the next mangle cost 0 rage.
This means that:
- the rotation is not static anymore: Mangle does so much damage than using the Berserk procs ASAP is a priority,
- keeping up Pulverize is not as expensive as before, since you'll still get decent TPS from reapplying Lacerate,
- we have more rage to spend on Maul.

What I don't like is that apart from the crit boost helping with SD, threat and survival are still very much separated with "skills/cycle = threat" and "CDs = survival".

I'm thinking about resurrecting my tanking simulator and updating it for Cataclysm to see what are the numbers.... but it would take a lot of time.  Maybe.

The next version of RWF is advancing, I've fixed some CP errors and added some more stuff.  I'm still unable to reexecute the analysis without crashing the program, I'll see if I can fix it during the week and release.


RWF release 0.1.1

A new version of my log analyzer is available for download!

As usual: sources ready for compilation on linux or windows (requires Qt 4.6), or a windows executable + the required dll files.

Download from the RWF place.

If you have no idea what I'm talking about then check the README, or have a look at the example pictures.