SoComm Versus Vengeance/Corruption

More numbers and graphs!

Just in time for the holidays, Theck has created more pretty colored graphs! This time we have some definitive information regarding Seal of Command, aka SoComm. The reason that there is so much buzz going around about this SoComm is because of the fact that Blizzard very stealthily put in a change to our biggest snap threat mechanic in the arsenal, Shield of Righteousness. ShoR now is considered melee damage, and can be dodge or parried, where as before that was not the case. While most of you sharpen the pitch forks to complain that we just had a threat loss, hold that thought. Because ShoR has been changed to become a melee attack, it now procs SoComm as well! What this means is that you have a seal of absolute crazy mad dps when tanking packs of three or more mobs, and should be using SoComm as your seal of choice.

SoCom, an Old Friend with Big Numbers!

What you see above is Thecks latest headache, a graph that illustrates the different dps disparities between Seal of Vengeance / Corruption, and Seal of Command. As you can see by the legend, he has four different graphs that show a mob with three stacks of Vengeance / blood corruption, with and with out the Libram of Valiance and a mob with five stacks of Vengeance / blood corruption, with and with out the Libram of Valiance. According to Theck, here are the particulars:

The vertical axis is the difference between SoV DPS and SoCom DPS, so a positive number means that SoV does more damage, and a negative number means SoCom does more damage.

The plot is pretty clear, but it’s also misleading. If you can maintain a 5-stack on every mob, then in the many-mob limit SoV is bound to win since SoC is limited to 3 procs. In that sense, the plot seems to reflect things accurately. As you drop to 3 stacks of HV, SoCom gains enough ground that it’s a better choice for 2-4 mobs.

What makes the graph misleading is that it ignores ramp time. It takes a few seconds to build a 5-stack on a mob, but it takes over 10 times as long to build and maintain a 5-stack on 10 mobs. For ballpark figures, if it takes 5 seconds to build your single-mob stack, it takes nearly a minute to build a 5-stack on 10 mobs with tab targeting. So if the mob pack dies before that minute is up, SoV’s value drops thanks to ramp-up effects. It also ignores fall-off, which is a distinct worry for large packs of 6 or more.

What this means is that unless you are the master of tab targeting constantly on mobs with very large health pools, SoComm will be your best bet for pulling large trash packs, and dealing with more than 2 mobs in any situation because of ramp up time. To sum up the rule of thumb, Theck gives us the lay mans term TLDR…

Rule of thumb for choosing seals:

  • SoV for 1-2 Mobs and bosses
  • SoV for AoE tanking things that live for 40+ seconds and that you can reasonably maintain a 5-stack on (so ~6 or fewer mobs at most)
  • SoCom for 3+ mobs that die in 30 seconds or less, and basically anything else

Alternatively, if you’re lazy and don’t feel like tab-targetting, you can simplify this to:

  • SoV for 1-2 mobs/bosses
  • SoCom for 3+

“I’m ok, my TPS is awesome” or “I dont know what to drop”

Oh contrare mo fraire! (sorry for the Van Wilder reference and spelling debacle) Firstly, you TPS may be just fine on trash, and you may be able to wrangle in those adds, but your snap threat is not as good as if you use SoComm, and your DPS and TPS are definitely less than what they could be if you respeced. In ICC this past tuesday, I was second on the dps meters on trash with a whopping 8.7k dps for a sustained fight of pulling the entire first room. Don’t ask me why the rest of our dps were sucking, they turned around and all broke 15k on the next round of trash, but I definitely woke them up when they realized that they were not going to pull off me.

SoComm is a great utility to use and it is not that hard to pick up. While I am a die hard tank at heart, and I have two protection specs as my dual spec options, each accompanied with different glyphs, you dont have to do the same thing. You can take the point out of Conviction (aka 1% crit) and place it into SoComm. For those of you who live a bit more on the edge and want to dual spec prot, I would suggest the following spec with glyphs to boot. This is what I use on our Hard Mode Anub’arak kills, and I usually pull 6k dps. While the Glyphs are specifically tailored for me to interrupt the mobs, you can remove the Glyph of Holy Wrath and replace it with HotR, giving you a nice dps boost.

All in all, I would suggest that any tank that ever ventures outside of Trial of the Crusader, and has a trash pack or two to deal with, pick up Seal of Command and use it. It works best on any trash pack, as well as tanking Lady Deathwhisper and your Ship’s portal on the Gunship Battle.


16 Responses to “SoComm Versus Vengeance/Corruption”

  1. 1 UFTimmy
    December 17, 2009 at 6:26 pm

    I believe I read if you don’t have JotJ then SoC won’t proc on HotR. Theck posted it on Maintankadin.

    • 2 Wrathy
      December 17, 2009 at 8:47 pm

      You are partially correct. JotJ procs off of Judgement, and not HotR. My spec isnt showing correctly on the armory, apparently it didn’t update.

      My conversation with Theck in the same thread pointed out that I wasnt paying attention when I speced and got caught speccing wrong and didnt have time to do it again.

  2. December 17, 2009 at 9:33 pm

    Thanks for pioneering this Wrathy. I’m looking forward to taking this spec for a spin in lfg this weekend and shaming/bewildering many a pug.

  3. December 17, 2009 at 9:51 pm

    I’m not sold on it for general raid use, personally. But that’s only because I’m not willing to take 45 seconds to respec/rebuff between the aoe trash, and the loot-dropping trash. While it’s fully possible that I could buy that time back by doing 2k more dps, I think raid momentum might suffer if everyone was standing around waiting on me.

  4. December 17, 2009 at 10:40 pm

    Wondering if you could use that spec as a off spec for “Protec DPS” spec. I always been fond of the idea of having 2 Protec spec my main spec and a off spec for DPS but still able to tank in it in a pinch.

  5. December 18, 2009 at 11:34 am

    Nice post here! Stumbled over here from Adrent Defender, and decided to make my own comments based on all this. Should be fun to have even more AoE prowess to lord over our other sheild-tank bretheren!

  6. December 22, 2009 at 1:24 pm

    Just a minor correction or two:

    “SoR now is considered melee damage, and can be dodge or parried, where as before that was not the case.”

    1) ShoR! SoR is Seal of Righteousness!
    2) ShoR was changed to be a melee *attack*, not damage. It’s still Holy damage. It’s just no longer considered a ranged attack, and thus it procs seals.

  7. December 28, 2009 at 7:02 pm

    Hmm Wrathy what “Libram” are you using when your using Seal of Command?

      • 10 Morlin
        December 28, 2009 at 11:35 pm

        Why? Valiance doesn’t affect SoComm. Unless you don’t think it’s really neccessary to swap out librams when using it.

      • 11 Wrathy
        December 29, 2009 at 10:54 am

        I only use SoComm in situations where gear is not a factor in survival, aka trash packs of 3 or more. As a result, I wear my threat gear which includes the Libram of Valiance. The 200 extra strength is a huge threat boost. With this as an option, I see no reason in selecting any other libram for max threat/dps in heroics and ICC trash.

      • 12 Morlin
        December 29, 2009 at 2:03 pm

        Yeah but you only get that 200 extra strength if you’re using SoV…so it gives you no benefit whatsoever if you’re using SoComm in heroics and ICC trash. That’s all I was saying. No doubt it gives the best threat if you’re actually using SoV for bosses, but running SoComm would make the libram give no benefit.

  8. 13 Kaanman36
    December 30, 2009 at 3:38 pm

    the SoComm spec is awesome! I have not had so much fun running heroics since Naxx was fresh and new (the second time).

    • 14 Kaanman36
      December 30, 2009 at 3:54 pm

      Just as a side note, I use Libram of Reciprocation when in my SoComm spec. The crit rating helps with damage output.

      • January 2, 2010 at 9:34 am

        I understand what Morlin is asking and saying above with the Libram of Valiance when you have SoComm active. I’ve thought of that as well.

        However I guess the answer is a individual choice given whatever your gear sets are on gear switching. As for me I have my gear sets and what I did personally for me was just to make a macro that everytime I activate SoComm it switches to a specific Libram of choice to use given the seal I have active. My gear set Libram is still a specific one to gear set. Just when I activate SoComm that changes to a predetermined Libram as well. As well when I switch to SoV that to changes to a different Libram. This works for me.

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