First off, I want to apologize to my readers, commenters and people that have sent me e-mails recently. My real life has been very hectic recently with the birth of my second child a little over a week ago. As a result I haven't had as much time to blog, or respond to comments and e-mails.
My Ulduar Gear List:
Most of this post will deal with questions and comments made about the gear list. Most of the questions and comments have been insightful and helpful, but I want to remind everyone that the list is still in flux and am trying to improve it. However, that takes time and given my life lately it is taking more time than usual. That said the list will be updated with changes in my thinking, changes in the game, and with the addition of new items.
My Stat Weights: Smo (aka Randomsmo and Staticsmo) made a post on the wow forums doubting my stat weights. It turns out that Smo uses a more complete model to evaluate the stats.
I've always known that my numbers weren't 100% accurate because I didn't include IS, MF, or Eclipse. However, I assumed that the impact would be small or not that meaningful. After, seeing Smo's numbers I decided I had to bite the bullet and build a better model. Its not completely done yet, but so far the results are confirming Smo's position.
I will go into how the model is built and probably make it available on File Front as some point in the future, but here are the few results I have right now. Using a Lunar rotation, my new model still has SP as the standard with a value of 1. I estimate the value of Haste rating at 0.77, and the value of Crit rating at 0.55.
I'm not surprised that Haste went down a little bit, because haste has very little impact on instant cast dots like MF and IS. However, I didn't expect the value of Crit to go down as much as it did. There are a couple of reasons for it though. The first is the new Natures Grace. Since it affects more then one spell now it limits the impact of any single crit since it is more then likely refreshing Natures Grace. The second reason is Lunar Eclipse. Having 30% extra crit reduces the value of Crit rating dramatically.
There is a lot of work still to do on the new model, but I am excited about it. It gives me a new way to look at things like set bonuses, idols, glyphs and other things. Hopefully I will be able to publish it soon.
Amice of Inconceivable Horror: I have gotten several comments saying that this is a Priest only item. I understand where these comments are coming from because the picture I linked from MMO Champion says that it is a Priest only item. However, I seriously doubt that is the case.
First off all, where are all the other class specific items? If priests had a unique item but none of the other classes did it would be a firestorm of QQ. Blizzard knows that, and wouldn't do it.
Second, no one has actually seen this item yet in game. We only know about it because of data mining from MMO Champion, and they said that there were some errors in their modeller. My guess is that the program assumed that it was priest only because it uses the Priest tier design.
I can't confirm my position until we see it in game but it makes a lot of sense. It is highly unlikely that we wouldn't have already found the other class only items if they were included in the game. Plus, it is highly unlikely that Blizzard would create just one class specific item. Therefore I'm assuming that this item can be used by everyone.
Gear Drop Locations: Several people have asked that I include the drop locations as a part of my gear list. I would love to do that, but in reality that just isn't possible for me at this time. The list as you see it know was a huge data entry project, and adding drop locations would be an even bigger pain.
That said, if someone is willing to do the work for me then I would be very happy to provide the locations and give them credit for the work. If you are a masochist and this sounds like a job for you then I ask that you use the following format: Instance - Boss - Hard Mode (if applicable). For example the Embrace of the Spider would look like this: "Naxx10 - Maexxna". The Pennant Cloak would look like this: OS25 - Sartharion - Hard Mode.
The Set Bonuses: I am also getting a lot of questions about the T8 set bonuses. When the set bonuses were first released I made this post. The 4T8 bonus was a complete unknown and the 2T8 set bonus clearly underpowered and not worth dropping the 4T7 to get. At the time I suggested that the 2T8 bonus had to be increased from 6% to 15% to make it competitive to the 4T7 bonus in terms of DPS. Blizzard also saw the problem and increased the bonus.
So, I like the updated 2T8 bonus. It's probably not quite as good as the 4T7 set bonus in most fights due to movement and such, but it is close. In my opinion it is worth it to break the 4T7 bonus.
The 4T8 set bonus was a mystery until recently. I did some math a couple of weeks ago and posted it on the EJ forums here. Basically it looks to increase you DPS some where between 190 DPS and 270 DPS in my poor napkin math. I will have to find a better way to evaluate it further, but I feel confident in saying it is worth equipping. With a 15% proc rate and no internal cooldown this is a good set bonus. (Thanks to Ryuujin for showing that this doesn't have a cooldown. Link.)
The New Spirit: It is official Improved Moonkin Form now increases the amount of Spell Power you get from Spirit from 15% to 30%. Obviously this is a welcome change, but it doesn't really change the way I feel about Spirit. I wrote a pig post on the forums regarding our problem with Spirit. You can find it here.
It is hard to summarize my post in a couple of sentences, but my basic position is that if blizzard wants Spirit to be a more prominent stat then they need to completely commit to it in a fair way. Moonkin shouldn't have 4 tier pieces with Spirit while all other caster DPS has only 3. I also think they should eliminate the wonderful items with no spirit or hit, but both crit and haste. Those items are just to good then and every caster in the game will want them.