Using the Combat Log to Improve Your DPS

The last few days, Stormshaper has been taking part in 10 man content. There hasn’t been a lot of success in terms of drops – in fact, not a single piece of gear has dropped that she can use. No matter, this is all good practice for improving her DPS.

As well as in-game items, such as enchants and gems, another way to increase your DPS is by studying the content of your combat log. There are a few ways to do this, and one particularly easy way is using an on-line service, such as World of Logs, or, my preference, WowWebStats.

How these online services work is, they allow you to upload your combat log, or a portion of it which pertains to the time you spent raiding, and it breaks down every event in the combat log, and presents it to you in an easy to read format, showing any number of things that you might be interested in.

I’ve been using WoWWebStats for a few years now, it’s fast, its easy to read their output, its a decent method of improving your overall performance.

I’m going to write a couple of posts on how to use WowWebStats, and what you should be looking for, as an enhancement shaman taking part in a 5, 10, 25 or 40 man raid.

WoW Web Stats

Okay, if you don’t have an account with them, you should make one. There’s a link to the account creation area on their main page. There’s no catch to this, you receive no spam from them at all, its just to allow you to logon to their service, save raid reports, and a myriad of other things. You can find out more about the services available though WowWebStats here When you’ve created an account and verified it, you’re away.

The next thing you need to do is download their Java client. The Java client will present you with a dialog for you to select your combat log.

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Once selected, you can give it a comment, such as “10 man Trial of the Crusader” or whatever, something meaningful for you. Once you’ve done that, simply click “Host Report” and the Java client will start its parse of your combat log, upload it to the WowWebStats website where you can then review any number of reports about the content.

Here is an overview of our 10 man raid that took out XT-002 Deconstructor in Ulduar as part of the weekly raid quest available in Dalaran.

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As you can see, the fight lasted for a total of 2 minutes and 39 seconds, and Stormshaper was present for 95% of the fight. (This means it took her a few seconds to run across and get in the correct position for her to start whaling away at the XT-002 Deconstructor and his exposed heart. In the time she was active, she caused 941854 damage to XT-002 Deconstructor, amounting to 16% of the overall damage.

That’s a fairly easy to follow report, and it shows you some key components such as overall damage, your percentage of the raid damage, your overall DPS (6,586 DPS for Stormshaper – go go raid buffs!).

You can drill down into the report to get some in-depth information about how your damage was done, i.e. what attacks you used, and how much damage they did. To view this report simply click the name of the player in the raid you want to view (yes, the report contains all the information for every player in the raid, not just you), and you will see the more detailed screen.

If anyone bothers to click my name, you’ll see that I have a tremor totem down, for no good reason other than we went to Ulduar after doing Faction Champions in Trial of the Crusader and I never changed my totem set up back to how it should be. *BLUSH*

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Okay, so, we know looking at that, that Stormshaper’s DPS could have been improved by her using a Strength of Earth totem rather than a tremor totem. She could also get an improvement if and when she completes the achingly long quest chain to unlock the incredibly boring Sons of Hodir dailies to get her shoulder enchants. That’s a given. However, she was doing over 6K DPS without those two items.

So, what else contributed significantly to her DPS? Her swings caused 267,700 damage, or 29%. More tellingly 9% of her swings missed the target which would account for approximately 24,000 damage. A significant amount. So, looking at that tells me that Stormshaper’s hit rating needs a slight adjustment. Windfury and Lightning Bolt attacks were her next highest attacks, rattling up 13% and 11% damage.

Another thing the report tells you is the damage done by your pets. So you can see Spirit Wolves accounted for 68,289 of Stormshaper’s total damage. Her Fire Elemental accounted for 110,345 damage. Substantial by any means.

This is a high level overview of the information offered by combat log parsers. In the next post I’ll delve into other issues, such as how long were totems up for. In a fight like XT-002 Deconstructor, the totem times will be pretty near to Stormshaper’s total time in the fight. On a fight that requires a bit of movement, like Krick and Ick in Pit of Saron, these timings will be less, as you have to evade the poison and the explosive charges rather than standing there smashing away at the boss. So we’ll see what can be learned from static versus mobile fights as an enhancement Shaman.

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