Pookies Is Not A Bear

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Have you got what it takes to break Steelbreaker before he breaks you? June 22, 2009

Filed under: Raiding — Pookies @ 8:43

They say that Steelbreaker is a mad DPS race. But just how mad is it? I tried to find numbers for normal mode online, but nothing came up. So while I’m sure that someone has considered this already, here’s my rendition of the calculations.

Tank damage and Overwhelming Power

First, let’s talk about how we’re going to factor tank damage into the equation. Estimates for tank damage in a fight usually range from 0.4 to 0.5 of a DPS. That’s all well and good, but how do we factor Overwhelming Power into the equation?

Well, let’s look at the tooltip for Overwhelming Power first to see what it even does.

Overwhelming Power
60 yd range
The target becomes overwhelmed with power increasing damage done by 200% and causes a meltdown after 1 minute

You have to look closely at the wording here to determine that whoever is under the effect of Overwhelming Power is dealing three times normal damage. (That’s right. The target has his damage increased by 200% as opposed to dealing 200% damage.)

The math here is important. We’ll use some simple calculations involving fractions to determine just exactly how many effective tanks we have (in terms of tank damage dealt) for P3 in two different scenarios.

The first scenario is a two minute P3. In this scenario, your first tank picks up Steelbreaker and tanks him for one minute with Overwhelming Power before running off and exploding. Near the end of the first minute, the second tank taunts Steelbreaker to give the first tank time to get away and gains the debuff, tanking Steelbreaker for the second minute. For my calculations, I am assuming that we had a Soulstone or battle rez available for the first tank and that the first tank comes back to DPS immediately.

So for the first scenario, we have:

1) tank 1 dealing triple damage for the first half of the phase and then dealing normal damage for the second half, and
2) tank 2 dealing normal damage for the first half of the phase and then dealing triple damage for the second half.

If we take the damage of a tank to be T, then:

1) (3* T * 1/2 + T * 1/2) for tank 1, and
2) (T * 1/2 + 3 * T * 1/2) for tank 2.

Combining these two equations yields a total of 4T damage from our tanks in the scenario of a two minute P3. Note that if you do not have any kind of combat rez available in your raid, then you will have to make do with less 1/2T (total of 3.5T tank damage). Now, this calculation is very intuitive. Of course if you have a tank doing triple damage for each half of the fight while the other does normal damage, your total tank damage will be four times base tank damage. However, hear me out.

There is a second scenario that requires the use of a combat rez. The first tank gets up immediately, rejoins the fight, and then tanks Steelbreaker again after the second tank dies. In this case, we don’t assume the presence of a second combat rez to bring up the second tank after he dies. Also, the fight now lasts up to three minutes instead of two.

The calculation is a straight-forward extension of the one already done for the two minute P3 scenario. The result is 11T/3 (7T/3 from the first tank and 4T/3 from the second). This means that we have T/3 less contribution to damage on the boss, but because of the extra minute of fight time the DPS requirement from the rest of the raid is far more lax.

Steelbreaker’s health

Steelbreaker begins the phase healed up to full health. In normal mode, this is 3 000 000 hit points.

One thing that we can not ignore is that every time someone dies—which includes deaths by Overwhelming Power’s Meltdown—Steelbreaker will be healed by 15% of his maximum health. Ouch. The heal-blocking effects of Mortal Strike, Wound Poison, and Aimed Shot work here, meaning that the healing on Steelbreaker can be reduced to 7.5% per death.

The calculation here is simple. Take Steelbreaker’s base hit points, count up the number of tanks you expect to die (1 or 2), and then add 15% or 7.5% to Steelbreaker’s base hit points for each death depending on whether or not you’ll have Mortal Strike, Wound Poison, or Aimed Shot in your raid.

For reference (this is also a very straight-forward calculation), the value of heal-blocking in this phase is 1875 DPS for a 2 minute fight and 2500 DPS for a 3 minute fight. These numbers will vary slightly (increase) as you shave seconds off your kill time from the minute milestones.

Finally, some answers

From total health comes total required raid DPS, and with our tank-DPS equivalents we are ready to see some DPS numbers.

In order to determine how much DPS each DPSer in the raid must put out, we simply divide Steelbreaker’s total health by the fight time (in seconds!) and then further divide that result by the number of effective DPS we have available.

For my raid, I expect that we will run 2 healers (6 DPS) and have the DPS to finish Steelbreaker off in two minutes. I will assume that we do have some kind of heal-block in the raid. I am also going to assume that each tank can do 40% of the DPS of a DPS raid member. First, we calculate the DPS contribution from the tanks:

DPS(tanks) = 4T = 4 * 0.4 = 1.6.

Now, we can figure out how much DPS we need for one DPS raid member to put out:

DPS(each) = Steelbreaker’s total hit points (as damage) / fight time (in seconds) / no. of DPS available;
DPS(each) = 3 225 000 damage / 120 s / (6 + 1.6) DPS;
DPS(each) = 3 635 DPS per DPS.

So the DPS required for this hard mode actually isn’t that high and should be easily achievable by all classes even in T7 quality gear. Remember the assumption I made about tanks. Each tank is expected to help out with 40% of the DPS of a DPS raid member. This works out to 1 454 DPS in this scenario (before the effect of Overwhelming Power is applied), which is a pretty conservative number when you consider what most tanks in this content are capable of putting out.

Refer to the chart below for an extension of this calculation to the different possible scenarios.


Remember that we have made some oversimplifications, particularly in the seconds that we lose or gain here and there from tank swapping and the delay before the first Overwhelming Power is cast after the second Assembly member dies. Who knows, this may all balance out. Or maybe the errors are being compounded. Does it matter? Who wants to do the sensitivity test on the variable T? Not me.

Also, these calculations do not take into account the proficiency of your healer-tank team in keeping the tanks alive through Fusion Punch and the raid alive through the now relatively potent Steelbreaker AOE (2 250 damage every 3 seconds to each member of the raid). Cooldown coordination will probably be required by the time your second tank is tanking.


2 Responses to “Have you got what it takes to break Steelbreaker before he breaks you?”

  1. Daigeil Says:

    Possibly the most useful information I’ve ever read about this or any other hard mode. As a 10-man only raiding guild now pushing into hard modes, it’s incredibly frustrating that every damned blog, guide website and forum I read is discussing 25-man hard modes and declares that 6k DPS is a base requirement – which feels completely unattainable with 10-man gear and limited buffs.

    To know that we need less than 4k DPS per member really is comforting. Ta for the info!

  2. Pookies Says:

    Glad someone found it useful. 🙂 All of the discussion in this blog will be about 10-man since that’s all my guild runs as well!

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