Best 2h Weapons

Discussion in '49s (Vanilla)' started by Persuasive, Sep 24, 2019.

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  1. Persuasive

    Persuasive Member

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    Hi everyone, I'm working on a 49 warrior right now and researching my options for 2h weapons. I understand conventional wisdom favors Executioner's Cleaver in this bracket, and I agree that it's a strong contender, but there are a lot of strong contenders, so I thought I'd share my notes on the subject.

    I'm curious to hear what people who have played warriors in the bracket have to think about the 2h options. I ran a lot of these through the wowhead calculator, and I'm not sure how precise that is, but it did come up with some unexpected results.

    [Edit 10-20-19]: The formulae below were all previously based on Vanilla WoW weapon damage, pre-normalization (oops). I've revised all the calculations to reflect normalization, and I've also changed the calculations to reflect the full damage range.

    • Glowing Brightwood Staff: 127-191 Damage, 3.1 speed, 51.29 dps, 15 stam, 9 spirit
    • Kang the Decapitator: 136-205 Damage, 3.6 speed, 47.36 dps, 560 damage bleed over 30 seconds
    • Soulkeeper: 141-213 Damage, 3.8 speed, 46.58 dps, 26 spirit
    • Resurgence Rod: 139-209 Damage, 3.8 speed, 45.79 dps, 5 HP/5
    • The Judge's Gavel: 122-187 Damage, 3.4 speed, 45 dps, chance to stun for 3 seconds
    • The Rockpounder: 126-190 Damage, 3.7 speed, 42.7 dps, 5 str, 2% crit
    • Stoneslayer: 133-200 Damage, 3.9 speed, 42.69 dps, chance to increase damage by 10 for 8 seconds
    • Executioner's Cleaver: 127-191 Damage, 3.8 speed, 41.84 dps, 23 str, 1% hit

    All of the examples below assume our warrior has 650 attack power. These values are normalized weapon damage, meaning this formula is what gets used for instant attacks. If a weapon has Strength, the formula will be adjusted accordingly.

    The formula for normalized instant attack damage is:
    (AP/14) * Normalized Weapon Speed (3.3 for 2h) + Base Weapon Damage.

    Here are the damage ranges I came up with.


    Executioner's Cleaver
    ((696/14)*3.3) + [127-191] = 291-355
    Expected Mortal Strike Damage: 401-465
    Expected Mortal Strike Crit: 802-930
    Normal Attack Range: 315-380
    DPS: 91.48

    Soulkeeper
    ((650/14)*3.3) + [141-213] = 294-366
    Expected Mortal Strike Damage: 404-476
    Expected Mortal Strike Crit: 808-952
    Normal Attack Range: 317-390
    DPS: 92.94

    Glowing Brightwood Staff:
    ((650/14)*3.3) + [127-191] = 280-344
    Expected Mortal Strike Damage: 390-454
    Expected Mortal Strike Crit: 780-908
    Normal Attack Range: 270-335
    DPS: 97.65

    Stoneslayer:
    ((650/14)*3.3) + [133-200] = 286-353
    Expected Mortal Strike Damage: 396-463
    Expected Mortal Strike Crit: 792-926
    Normal Attack Range: 313-381
    DPS: 89.05

    Kang the Decapitator:
    ((650/14)*3.3) + [136-205] = 289-358
    Expected Mortal Strike Damage: 399-468
    Expected Mortal Strike Crit: 798-936
    Normal Attack Range: 302-372
    DPS: 93.72

    Resurgence Rod:
    ((650/14)*3.3) + [139-209] = 292-362
    Expected Mortal Strike Damage: 402-472
    Expected Mortal Strike Crit: 804-944
    Normal Attack Range: 315-386
    DPS: 92.15

    Rockpounder:
    ((660/14)*3.3) + [126-190] = 281-345
    Expected Mortal Strike Damage: 391-455
    Expected Mortal Strike Crit: 782-910
    Normal Attack Range: 300-365
    DPS: 89.77

    The Judge's Gavel:
    ((650/14)*3.3) + [122-187] = 275-340
    Expected Mortal Strike Damage: 385-450
    Expected Mortal Strike Crit: 770-900
    Normal Attack Range: 279-342
    DPS: 91.36


    Executioner's Cleaver ranks 4th in normalized weapon damage in the bracket as far as I can tell, behind Stoneslayer, Resurgence Rod and Soulkeeper. It also ranks 4th in top-end white damage.

    The 1% Hit on EC is good, but with the results being so much closer together than I was expecting between damage ranges, there are a lot of different utilities to work with here for different purposes. The biggest possible difference in a mortal strike CRIT at the top-end range of all these weapons is only 52 damage--and that's before damage mitigation from armor. That's less than 6 stamina.

    Another variable to consider is axe spec vs. sword & mace spec, or skipping all three specs in favor of other talents and wielding a staff.

    Just some general information for other number dorks who want to puzzle over the best options. Obviously, mileage will vary here by class and spec.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2019
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  2. Tuskbreaker

    Tuskbreaker Veteran

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    I'd personally opt for Stoneslayer just for the sword spec burst on its own. Good post!
     
  3. Jh2125

    Jh2125 Member

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    Bro Great stuff right here!
     
  4. hom

    hom Veteran

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    You're splitting the damage by hairs here. I'd say that with the 23 Strength & 1% hit would prop the damage of Executioner's Cleaver above the rest. Especially for world pvp where you'll be going after those 50+
     
  5. LecolaEU

    LecolaEU Veteran

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  6. OP
    Persuasive

    Persuasive Member

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    The weapon damage calculation for EC factors in the 23 strength already.
     
  7. Jh2125

    Jh2125 Member

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    As an orc would you then rate the +5 axe skill and 1% hit to outweigh staves at that point?

    Edit: PM'd ya
     
  8. hom

    hom Veteran

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    Ah, sorry for missing that.

    I think that Axe Specialisation (5% Crit) + Cruelty (5% Crit) justify the use of axes & Executioners Cleaver is top of the axes at 49
     
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  9. OP
    Persuasive

    Persuasive Member

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    Well, to be clear, I made this thread because I don't have all the answers, but I think context is important here.

    If you're an orc specced 5 into axes and leaning towards crit-centric gear, maybe you want to do the EC since it's unquestionably the best axe in the bracket.

    But all things being equal, I suspect humans wielding Stoneslayer, specced 5 into swords might have the advantage in burst potential, if not reliable damage. And many times, in PvP, burst is more valuable.

    Also, though this may be controversial, I don't think you can rule out Rockpounder & mace spec as an option in certain contexts (again, particularly as humans). If nothing else, I want to sort of break open the myth that EC is the only viable option and give people some options to play around and experiment.

    The last point I want to make is that even if you lose out on putting points in a weapon specialization by going staves, you aren't losing those 5 points overall. They're still going somewhere--maybe somewhere just as valuable. Filling out Two-Handed Spec, picking up Improved Charge, filling out Deflection, etc.
     
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  10. Famousatnight

    Famousatnight New Member

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    this is... interesting.
    The +1 to hit that cleaver gives is worth a ton as it is very hard to get hitcapped at 49.

    Also, I don't play warrior but don't a lot of warrior abilities (heroic strike, cleave, ect) rely on weapon damage? Which makes a weapon like kangs (205 top end dmg) better for those abilities than say stoneslayer (200 top end dmg)? All your calculations are about white dmg or basic melee swings, which is really a limited view of what overall dmg will look like imo.
     
  11. Hermione

    Hermione Member

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    hi,
    I personally am not a fan of weapons with a poison/bleed effect per/sec in a PvP situation.
    Having an uncontrollable bleed has its problems - Deep Wounds is the same but It's only 12sec, while Kang is 30sec.
    Might be over-thinking this cause my knowledge mostly comes from a rogues perspective, where Bloodrazor is a weapon I despise (due to the Bleed effect).

    Personally I like the idea of Stoneslayer for the sword-specialization it might be a really good option here over Kang, and you can use Thrash Blade + Shield for added effect.
    Also 3.90 speed is better for a warrior than the 3.60.
    Executioner's Cleaver with that 3.80 +23str and +1% hit on warrior ;)
     
  12. Strokes

    Strokes Member

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    If top end is your end all be all, stoneslayer beats kangs. Slower weapons gain more weapon damage per attack power than faster ones (3.6 vs 3.9).

    Just slapped together two gear sets to show you (haven't researched best gear so I'm prolly missing a few BiS)

    https://classic.wowhead.com/gear-pl...UzCwZO7QcpiQhOn0olqAS7C0UxDEw3TzxDBLEQCPMSMu8
    Kang

    https://classic.wowhead.com/gear-pl...UzCwZO7QcpiQhOn0olqAS7C0UxDEw3TzxDBLEQJMoSMu8
    Stoneslayer

    As you can see, Stoneslayer has higher top end than Kangs. This is without enchants / optimized gear, too. The gap will widen with better gear.

    The best 2h depends on what you want. Sword Spec - Stoneslayer. Axe Spec - Executioner's Cleaver. No Weapon Spec - Soulkeeper.
    This is all just my opinion though.
     
  13. Jh2125

    Jh2125 Member

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    Any way I could entice you into checking over my twink builds?

    Basically any one willing to look them over and help give me some positive criticisms.

    https://discord.gg/spyKgcK

    I have the excels pinned in the discord.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2019
  14. OP
    Persuasive

    Persuasive Member

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    Edit: This is where I realized I used pre-normalized values. Updated values are in the OP.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2019
  15. Warglave

    Warglave Member

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    I would think that the top priority is burst as you will never have 100% uptime to maintain those DPS numbers.

    Am I misunderstanding that youre discarding weapon speed when accounting for burst? I think you want each attack you land to offer the most damage possible, and therefore slower is better.... no? All things considered?

    I seem to recall "jousting" being a thing where you would attack then get out of range while your swing timer reset, then back in to pop and instant and land a white hit... kind of kiting to do the most damage with the least vulnerability between swings.

    edit- saying, swing timer matters. Weapon speed matters. Even after normalization.
     
  16. Jh2125

    Jh2125 Member

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    I thought it was running 1.13?

    Nevermind.

    So old formula to new:
    base weapon damage + weapon speed * Attack Power / 14
    base weapon damage + (X * Attack Power / 14) [X is 3.3 for two handed weapons]

    But instant skills ignore attack speed. The more base damage your weapon does, the more extra damage you get from these abilities.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2019
  17. Strokes

    Strokes Member

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    You're working under an incorrect assumption.

    You're calculating instant attack damage as dps + (3.3 * ap scaling). Instant attack damage is weapon damage + (3.3 * ap scaling). All normalization did was stop slower weapons from double dipping waaaaaay harder than fast ones. They still are generally better due to higher base damage, and the fact that you get more weapon damage per ap with slower weapons.

    Plug everything into wowhead's gear planner / test it in game. It tells a better story than trying to figure out everything with napkin math.
     
  18. Jh2125

    Jh2125 Member

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    Last edited: Sep 30, 2019
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  19. Strokes

    Strokes Member

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    and because I am a complete hypocrite, I will now prove my point with napkin math.

    Say you have 500ap, two weapons, and an instant attack that scales 2:1 with ap

    First example will be as if weapon normalization didn't exist. This is also a moot point because it doesn't work this way. Just doing it for posterity's sake.

    50 dps 4.0 weapon (200 damage per hit) | 200+ (250*4.0) = 1200 per hit
    75 dps 1.0 weapon (75 damage per hit) | 75 + (250*1.0) = 325 per hit

    as you can see, there is no comparison, the 4.0 weapon hits almost 4x harder with this instant attack despite being 2/3 the dps. The next example factors in normalization.

    50 dps 4.0 weapon (200 damage per hit) | 200 + (250*3.3) = 1025 per hit
    75 dps 1.0 weapon (75 damage per hit) | 75 + (250*3.3) = 900 per hit

    The slower weapon still hits harder with instant attacks, but it isn't as night and day as before. I'm also ignoring attack powers effect on base damage with this example, too.

    If you have a

    4.0 weapon with 10 dps (40 per hit)
    2.0 weapon with 10 dps (20 per hit)

    and you increase your attack power enough to gain 1 dps

    4.0 weapon with 11 dps (44 per hit)
    2.0 weapon with 11 dps (22 per hit)

    you gain 4 damage per hit with the 4.0 weapon and only 2 with the 2.0 weapon

    I'm not even going to go into how jousting also makes slow weapons better...

    TL;DR: I cherry pick numbers to prove that faster weapons are at an inherit disadvantage and need to be substantially better than their slower counterparts to even be comparable.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2019
  20. OP
    Persuasive

    Persuasive Member

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    While this is all essentially correct, the relevant information here is that the top-end damage from Glowing Brightwood Staff and Executioner's Cleaver are exactly identical at 191. The fact that they now calculate weapon damage for skills based on the same 3.3 speed is what flips the viability of these two dramatically from actual Vanilla WoW (pre 1.8).
     

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