[GUIDE] Resilience explained (4.3)

85 Goblin Rogue
9745
1. Introduction
2. General concepts
3. FAQ
- 3.1. Is resilience affected by diminishing returns?
- 3.2. Is there a resilience cap?
- 3.3. Is there a resilience soft cap (or magic number above which resilience becomes less useful)?
- 3.4. Resilience or stamina?
- 3.5. Can I do PvP competitively without PvP gear?
4. Formulas and curves


1. Introduction

If there's one thing in WoW that has caused lots of confusion over these years, that's resilience. The effect of resilience in the game has changed many times since its appearance in TBC, and I would go as far as to say it has never been fully understood by the majority of players.

Currently we have a relatively simple "resilience" that, instead of affecting damage over time, mana drains, critical hit chance... just reduces all damage coming from players and their pets. That should be easy enough, but the way resilience scales with gear is still a common topic of debate because it's not intuitive to most people, and trying to find the optimal balance of offensive and defensive stats has never been trivial, exactly. I keep finding posts from people asking or showing misconceptions, so I decided to write this guide to make things more understandable.

It is similar to the one written by Eldacar - Boulderfist US in US forums ( http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/3229086381 ), but I decided to write it in a different way especially since the formulas were slightly off back then (he did a great job obtaining them and they were very accurate, but the real ones seem to be true exponentials, as he admitted later).

I'm almost sure everything I say is facts (well, there's a pinch of opinion in 3.5 ;D), but if anyone has corrections or comments to make, please go ahead!

2. Concepts

To avoid misunderstandings I'll use some words in a very specific way (they're found in different contexts in the game).

Mitigation: Damage reduction by resilience. When you go to your character sheet and move your mouse over "Resilience", saying "Provides X% damage reduction against all damage done by players...", that's what I'm talking about.

Resilience: When I say "resilience" I always mean "resilience rating". Resilience rating is the stats value shown by gear. A given amount of resilience is turned into a certain mitigation.

Effective health: Effective health is the health someone with zero resilience should have to show the same survivability. Simple example: if you have 150k health and 50% mitigation, your effective health is 300k hp because someone has to deal 300k damage (before resilience is applied) to kill you.
Edited by Kriis on 26/01/2012 23:31 GMT
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85 Goblin Rogue
9745
So, how does resilience stack, in simple words?

Resilience rating provides you a certain amount of mitigation, but the mitigation increase is smaller as your resilience increases. However if you increase your resilience by a given amount the damage will be reduced by the same relative amount, regardles of your total resilience. This is what's called an exponential decrease. Let's go with an simple example to understand this better.

You need about 830 resilience to reach 10% mitigation, and if you increase your resilience by 830, incoming damage will be reduced by 10% no matter what your resilience was before the increase. If you stack 1660 resilience your mitigation won't be 20% but 19%. Why? I've explained that the relative effect of resilience doesn't change as you stack it, so if 830 resilience decreases damage taken by 10%, if must be so at 0, 830, or any other amount. If you're already at 830 and add 830 more, you're not decreasing by a total of 20% but by 10% twice, so 90% of 90% damage taken is 81%, or 19% mitigation.

One of the implications of this is that replacing PvP gear with PvE is increasingly expensive in terms of survivability as item level increases (people doing this lose more mitigation with every season), because the resilience you lose is greater. Nowadays, people using PvE weapons instead of the Cataclysmic versions die about 5% faster.

The effect of this on your effective health is an approximately linear (or proportional) increase, meaning that the same amount of resilience will roughly give you the same extra effective health. In practice this is only true for low resilience (up to about 2k~3k depending on your criteria), and your effective health will increase faster the more resilience you have. Going back to our simple 10%/19% example, if you have let's say 150k health, with 10% mitigation your EH is about 166.7k, while with 19% it becomes 185.2k; the first 830 resilience bought us 16.7k while the additional 830 gave us another 18.5k. Stacking resilience is always good for your survivability.

3. FAQ

- 3.1. Is survivability from resilience affected by diminishing returns?

No.

This is a common misconception. First I'll explain what diminishing returns (DR for short) are. DR is sometimes used when talking about crowd control, but this is not the case. With diminishing returns people mean that as you stack more of a certain stat (be it resilience, dodge, parry..) the smaller the % increase per rating is.

Some people will say "but the mitigation you get from resilience is lower the higher your resilience is! That's DR!". Yes.. but no. It is true that a certain amount of resilience increases your mitigation value by less the greater your resilience is, so you could say the resilience formula shows DR, but that doesn't mean your mitigation increase is proportionally worse!

Example: What's the effect of 25% extra mitigation when you already have 0% or 25% mitigation? If you have 0 resilience your mitigation is obviously 0%. If you add 25%, for each 100 damage you're dealt before mitigation is applied, you take 75. You've logically reduced your damage by 25%. What happens if you go from 25% to 50%? Instead of taking 75 you take 50 damage, so by increasing your mitigation by 25% you've actually reduced incoming damage by 33%.

The effect of an absolute ("fixed") increase of mitigation is higher the higher your mitigation is, but just because resilience doesn't provide an absolute increase of mitigation it doesn't mean it gets proportionally worse. In fact the resilience formula makes sure that your survivability increases per resilience rating by exactly the same % no matter what your resilience is, which means your effective health actually increases faster as you stack resilience. Survivability per resilience point is increasingly better and better.
Edited by Kriis on 19/01/2012 17:44 GMT
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85 Goblin Rogue
9745
- 3.2. Is there a resilience cap?

No. Stacking resilience is always beneficial.

- 3.3. Is there a resilience soft cap (or magic number above which resilience becomes less useful)?

No. You have to keep a balance just like with other stats.

- 3.4. Resilience or stamina?

Overall resilience is better, but some classes may benefit more from stamina once they have good PvP gear. See a longer explanation below.

- 3.5. Can I do PvP competitively without PvP gear?

Generally speaking, no.

Resilience increases your effective health. Nowadays people usually have in the order of 40% mitigation. That means their effective health is multiplied by 1/(1-0.4)=1.67 If you think you can deal 67% more damage or heal yourself by 67% more by swapping your PvP gear for PvE stuff, be my guest.

Sure, you can kill people faster, and it will work if nobody's looking at you or your oponent is dead before they can take the initiative, but that's about it. In any remotely-close-to-balanced fight where everybody gets to do something you'll be in disadvantage because your gear will be inferior.

This also means tanking specs shouldn't wear their PvE tanking gear in PvP either, because they will die fast. The only two things tanking gear provides are frontal mitigation and a bit of stamina, and in PvP these won't make up for the lack of resilience, not even against melee classes (rogues have PvE tanks for breakfast), especially when you're being attacked by many (can't dodge/parry/block from behind or while stunned!) Overall, a PvE geared tank with 200k hp is considerably weaker and harder to heal than a PvP hunter with 150k!

4. Formulas and curves

My formulas are empirical. I think I got the exponential idea from an article from Elitist Jerks but I've been unable to find it; anyway I haven't taken anything for granted and adjusted it on my own with data from the in-game character sheet, and they seem consistent.

Mitigation(%) = 100*(1 - e^(-R*0.000127))
Effective health(%) = 100 / (1 - Mitigation/100)

Mitigation versus resilience: http://img26.imageshack.us/img26/5240/resilience01.jpg
Effective health versus resilience: http://img207.imageshack.us/img207/5650/resilience02.jpg

If resilience provides mitigation that increases your effective health it is clear that part of it behaves as stamina. One interesting topic is whether it's worth stacking stamina or not if resilience provides a comparable benefit for your survivability.

In terms of equivalence of item budget, a rare gem socket can hold 60 stamina or 40 resilience. 40 resilience provides about 0.5% mitigation, whereas 60 stamina without modifiers is equivalent to 840 health. You can easily see that just with 150k health that amount of resilience is equivalent to about 750 health, which is in the same order. For some classes/specs it can be better, as stamina affects spells or abilities based on % health like Drain Life, Recuperate, Blood Craze.., besides health multipliers like Bear Form. However all other healing and absorption spells will be amplified by resilience, since your EH is increased (as resilience makes each health point last longer). Healers and players being healed through regular spells will benefit more from resilience, and in any case you'll still need a good amount of it.
Edited by Kriis on 21/01/2012 14:30 GMT
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85 Blood Elf Rogue
7575
Good. One thing, could you add a post with the resilience scaling along with effective health gained?

Remember that link i gave? Ill find it again for you if you can't.

Request sticky.
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85 Goblin Rogue
9745
Ugh, I don't remember where that was... However I've added two pictures, I hope that's clear enough! If you find it please link.
Edited by Kriis on 17/01/2012 13:47 GMT
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85 Blood Elf Rogue
7575
http://eu.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/2723298573?page=2#27

It would be nice if you would fill it in with the more common season 11 150k health pool ;)
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85 Goblin Rogue
9745
Yeah I avoided tables because I wanted to keep it simple but that kind of info deserves some attention. I'll make some more figures later!
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85 Blood Elf Rogue
7575
I would say its simple :p

But yeah, good good.
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85 Blood Elf Rogue
7575
How is this not stickied yet?

Chopchop mods :/
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MVP
85 Night Elf Rogue
9420
Seems like a great guide.

One remark on the guide itself: maybe you can add a link to a guide written by Eldacar for if anyone needs some more information:
http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/3229086381
Edited by Dalrian on 17/01/2012 17:55 GMT
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85 Blood Elf Rogue
7575
This one deserves it though -_-
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85 Blood Elf Rogue
7575
Better! :D
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Community
This is an excellent guide on how resilience works Kriis. I hope that you receive plenty of feedback on how to improve it even further, as this will definitely help players in better understanding how the resilience stat works! :)
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85 Human Priest
10840
So.....does this mean that players no longer bounce when dropped......./hides

Great guide tho :)
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85 Goblin Rogue
9745
Thanks for the blue attention and the sticky tag! I'll expand it a bit later today, because I tried to add some stuff just now and realised I have to split it over three posts (I'm very close to the size limit at the moment) I'll also extend the mention to the US thread.
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90 Night Elf Druid
19450
Nice one. :)

There is one thing I have to disagree. :p

In 3.1 you state that there is no DR on Resilience, contrary to dodge. With the first part I agree: To paraphrase your statement in my own words: The increasing returns due to percentage calculations are as strong / stronger than the implemented diminishing returns.
However: Basically the same is true for dodge. ;) Well, this is the PvP-forum, the thread is about PvP so my last statement is probably not true in all cases. However: In a PvE environment without any hit/expertise and with avoid increasing talents (you might not have in PvP) its pretty much working the same way.

Just saying so you won't confuse any tanks stumbling around here. :p There are enough already that argue against Avoid due to the DR ...
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85 Goblin Rogue
9745
Nice one. :)

There is one thing I have to disagree. :p

In 3.1 you state that there is no DR on Resilience, contrary to dodge. With the first part I agree: To paraphrase your statement in my own words: The increasing returns due to percentage calculations are as strong / stronger than the implemented diminishing returns.
However: Basically the same is true for dodge. ;) Well, this is the PvP-forum, the thread is about PvP so my last statement is probably not true in all cases. However: In a PvE environment without any hit/expertise and with avoid increasing talents (you might not have in PvP) its pretty much working the same way.

Just saying so you won't confuse any tanks stumbling around here. :p There are enough already that argue against Avoid due to the DR ...


You're right, the DR used for dodge/parry were implemented for similar reasons (let's all remember 100% avoidance rogues tanking Gruul), it's one of the things I should rewrite. I wanted to give an example of DR in the context of stats but the truth is the effect is comparable and my comment probably made things worse :) Thanks!
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90 Human Paladin
16965
Now i'm a tank so you need to factor in the 15% extra stam I get from prot spec, but for me:

(All unbuffed)

609 stam = 10290 health
609*1.15 = ~700
10290/700 = ~ 14.7 per point of stam

From char sheet 10364 stam increases health by 144836 (13.97 per point)
or if i respec to ret but keep prot gear on

8584 stam increases health by 119916 (13.969 per point).... I suspect the 10 health per point should change to 14 per point...

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85 Goblin Rogue
9745
Now i'm a tank so you need to factor in the 15% extra stam I get from prot spec, but for me:

(All unbuffed)

609 stam = 10290 health
609*1.15 = ~700
10290/700 = ~ 14.7 per point of stam

From char sheet 10364 stam increases health by 144836 (13.97 per point)
or if i respec to ret but keep prot gear on

8584 stam increases health by 119916 (13.969 per point).... I suspect the 10 health per point should change to 14 per point...


Yes, you're right, actually it's exactly 14 health per point (there's some correction for the first points). It used to be 10 before Cataclysm (patch 4.0.something?) but I forgot and the armory website seems to show 10 so I made that mistake. I'll correct it, thanks.
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85 Troll Mage
6335
Tho some may say that its a nice guide, i cant really find the reason why you made it.

for me resi is just a stat to take less dmg from other players, tho it may help for player who are trying to get the most ammount of hp in pvp, i still can find the use, since... well its just a stat and if you need info on it there is WowWiki, and you dont really need a guide.

I make youtube guides myself, but thats not to a point of how a single stat value works, more to the point of how to use it to youre benefit, for example, int allso grants you SP, so more Int = More Dmg, for spell casting classes... oh well.
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