Elkagorasa to the rescue! Last Friday there was a nice little post over at Elk's site in response to my Reforging for Dummies article. The article generated a lot of Twitter buzz, because, as we discovered, there is a moderate amount of confusion among Affliction 'locks about what to reforge. Some were thinking Mastery was better, and that Crit should be our prime candidate for expulsion (as opposed to my published negativism toward Mastery).
After some research and discussion, we verified that, for the most part, Mastery is going to be our least favored stat, though Crit is a close second. Still, my advice should hold from the article. Yet, I was unsatisfied. I didn't feel optimized, but I certainly didn't want to go and try to figure it all out manually. Surely there is a resource out there to do this for me.
Enter Elk and a Friday endorsement of the Ask Mr. Robot website that is even now linked in my resource area. Having been sucked in to the article by the piece of blog candy that sucks in all of us e-writers (yes, a link... and I'm jk, Elk is firmly ensconced in my reader anyway), I was rather intrigued by the site. I had been using WoW-heroes for many moons now, but find it woefully lacking for reforging advice.
Mr. Robot does it for you. Check out Elk's article for some wonderful screenies and a quick run down of what the site does. That's what I did. Then I went and tried it out for myself. Wonder amongst wonders, the site was not yet caught by the work filter, so double bonus. It loaded my character from the armory, populated it's lists, and even gave me an Affliction stat weighting that looked pretty decent with what I expected.
Click, click... optimize... and we're off! Mr. Robot crunched all the numbers for me and offered an optimized solution in a manner of seconds. Over the weekend, I decided to take the plunge and blindly follow the advice. It's only gold, right?
Reforging at the behest of the laudable Mr. Robot found me completely rearranging everything from gems, to enchants, to gear stats. When I was done, I had followed all of the reforging advice, all of the enchanting advice, and most of the gemming advice. (I will not cave and ruin my color matching OCD, though Mr. Robot even takes whether or not the bonus is worth it into account it seems.)
After dropping about 1k of gold to do all this (with some help from the guild bank as far as gems), I got a chance to run a heroic. Imagine my surprise when I found myself about 2k higher. 2k! From just rearranging stats. (Side note: I was trying to add Shadowflame when I could as well, so that may have slightly skewed things upward too, but I wouldn't call its addition successful because I have a compulsion against running into 8yd range. One which I didn't overcome as much as you'd think. Fwiw - I went from around 11/12k to around 13/14k.)
So I'm going to jump on the band wagon here. It doesn't get much simpler than letting a Robot crunch the numbers for you. For the casual among us, the default stat weightings seem to be grounded well enough that they'll be applicable (Elk notes that the devs make use of SimC for this). For the more hardcore theorycrafters, you can tweak until your heart's content to get the perfect weighting. After just a short weekend of trial and error, I love this site, and it's definitely improved my damage output. The initial investment to get on board was high, but I did replace one piece of gear after my initial foray and re-ran the optimizer. I was pleasantly surprised that I only had to shift around a few things. Carrying on like this should be minimal, especially since I really shouldn't have to re-gem or re-enchant, having obtained all my hit from gear reforges.
So, to you, Ask Mr. Roboto: Domo arigato!