A Short Rant About Stat Weights

Everyone likes their stat weights. The problem is that the way stat weights are used doesn’t actually match up with how they’re generated.

For starters, weights generated by simulation tools are all about adding a set amount of a stat & working out the damage gained. So if Versatility is valued higher than Crit it means you should add more Versatility to your current gear rather than equipping, gemming & enchanting for lots of Versatility. Generally theorycrafters will publish massaged stat weights that don’t match anything that can be generated but will be usable by players in addons like Pawn.

Secondly, if anyone talks about “stack X up to Y%” then unless there’s specific breakpoint stuff going on (which is a rarity these days as it was primarily a DoT/HoT thing with haste) they’re probably either completely mis-interpreting stat weight changes or are talking out of their ass.

This is because stat weights will always change, and stacking more of one stat will cause the others to increase in value to a point where an absolute “C>H>V>M” type priority will change.

Lets just focus on 2 of the 4 secondaries for a minute. Crit involves occasionally doing bonus damage, while Haste is about doing more things that cause damage. As you increase your crit chance it means the average damage of abilities will increase, which means that the value of using more abilities also increases. The reverse also applies. It’s like a sea-saw or scales: increasing the weight on one side lifts the other side up higher.

Balancing all four secondary stats is like having 6 overlapping scales between 4 points with complicated relationships defining how they affect each other, and the perfect balance is only really found when your secondary stats all have roughly equal stat weights.


  • Know your general priorities (eg: Ele in 7.1 is C>H~=V>M)
  • Items with +10 ilvls will generally be better (+5 can depend on secondaries)
  • There are no magic “stack until X%” numbers

About binkenstein
I'm a geek, living in Christchurch, New Zealand.

10 Responses to A Short Rant About Stat Weights

  1. Dermaderp says:

    I’ve found one key thing is that Earthern Rage makes Haste become the priority stat once you hit a certain level of Crit. I’m at 28% Crit and 30% Haste and haste still sims better. Pretty sure you know the reason why Bink so if you could enlighten me that would be great.

    • binkenstein says:

      It’s because stat interactions are complicated and you have enough crit to make adding more haste worthwhile. In other words it’s pretty clear that you didn’t read or understand my post.

      • Dermaderp says:

        No I think you didn’t read or understand my post mate, I was asking why Earthern Rage scales with Haste better than Totem Mastery does

  2. Shifty Grifter says:

    There actually are quite a few classes in which “stack haste till x%” is still extremely relevant.

    -Take, for instance, Frost DK using the Icy Talons talent. At exactly 3% bonus haste (depending on latency), you are able to use 3 abilities in between refreshing Icy Talons using Frost Strike instead of 2. More haste than that, and you’re stuck either using 4 abilities and letting the stacked Icy Talons fall off, wasting idle time before refreshing it, or refreshing it early and getting power starved.

    -As an ele shaman, haste’s value goes down exponentially, as the cooldowns of other core abilities or empowerments are not affected by haste. Not to say the extra haste in and of itself is bad, but the stat points would have benefited more allocated elsewhere. However, you DO need ENOUGH haste (haven’t calculated the exact % yet) to ensure that when lava burst procs Power of the Maelstrom, that you’re able to ensure they are all used while weaving in any lava surge procs AND hardcasting Lava Burst if Elemental Focus fell off . Once this point is reached, the value of mastery overtakes that of haste.

    -As a demonology warlock, there are several breakpoints in which more imps can be summoned in between dreadstalker casts.

    Additionally, surpassing the amount of haste on any class with an active haste steroid (Like Elemental Mastery or Power Infusion) that would bring their global cooldown to under .75 seconds (which is the minimum allowed) is wasting stat points.

    • binkenstein says:

      You’re starting to talk about specific cases, of which I know that the Elemental one is just wrong. Delaying Lava Burst in order to maximise Focus uptime is a loss.

      • Haste breakpoints are still here, but they’re less important than they used to be because they cause a smaller leap. For example, I think haste might have some minor breakpoints revolving around getting in an extra cast when Ascendance, Elemental Blast or certain boss-specific mechanics (if a boss has a 12 second bonus damage window, getting 7 casts in instead of 6 can make a difference). However, they’re not really worth micromanaging your haste for, or ensuring you’re above a certain percentage.

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