Tuesday, April 8, 2008
Cast Sequence Corruption
There's a Warlock on the Official 'lock Forums that is a frequent poster of all things Affliction. He is Fallenman of Mal'ganis, and he believes himself to be quite the authority on DoT cast sequences. So much so, infact, that he can often be found arguing with other posters about the most unimaginative of issues. In his most recent squabble, for example, he argues that Corruption should "ALWAYS" be cast after UA in a DoT cast sequence.
Fallenman, I don't mean to sound (or read) like a pompous prick, but that's just plain wrong!
I'll try to explain why, but be warned... it's late, and I tend to banter on and on when I'm tired. Proceed with caution, and caffeine.
Casting UA before Corruption is a bad idea from a logistics standpoint. It totally limits what you can cast AFTER Corruption, because you start dealing with global cooldowns and potential DoT down-time at that point. For example, if Immolate happens to require a refresh right after the UA/Corr cast somewhere down the line, you'll eventually have 3 DoTS to reapply and all at the same time! Since it is our ideal to have DoTS expire one GC away from each other, this is definitely not a good thing.
Fallenman recognizes this, and even states that you should "NEVER" cast Immolate after a UA/Corr sequence. But using his approach, you'll eventually find yourself in just that situation.
So what can you do to help prevent that experience and keep your DPS as high as possible?
Ignore Fallenman's faulty logic and cast Corruption right before Unstable Affliction... always.
Consider these two points.
1) Casting UA and Corruption back-to-back in any order results in the same amount of damage spread out over the same amount of time. Both DoTS are ticking for 18 seconds within a 21-second window. When switched, the two spells will also fall into the same portion of your cast sequence as before. The only difference created by changing their order of application is when they tick in relation to one another -- that's it.
2) Cast sequence theories such as Fallenman's are strictly based on a mathematical approach. More specifically, they hope to solve a temporal problem, looking to minimize DoT down-time based on the synergy of each individual DoT's duration and global cooldowns. The goal is to make sure that DoTS don't all expire at the same time, because if they do, global cooldowns will eventually delay their timely reapplication and ultimately lower DPS.
Casting Corruption and then UA ensures that you can cast ANY spell after that particular sequence and with minimal potential ill-effects. The two DoTS will not expire at the same time, do not introduce any GC conflicts, and this, therefore, is the most logical sequence.
And, incase you need another reason to switch your corrupted cast sequence, here's what the boys over at MaxDPS think is the ideal (sans Immolate):
At this point, it should be an easy switch. Corruption before UA, always.
Sorry, Fallenman. Maybe next time. ;)