Thread: DW Frost FAQ

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  1. #1

    DW Frost FAQ

    Ever since Frost became 'cool' again there has been a slew of questions and misinformation cluttering up many DK forum boards. I'm hoping this thread will alleviate that load by consolidating the answers to some of the more frequent questions in one thread.


    Q. What should I be gemming as DW Frost?

    A.
    (If you are only interested in the age old question of 'should I be gemming ArP?' please read this thread: http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/th...62867056&sid=1)

    There isn't any real cut and dry answer for this. I can only give you a guideline, but you will ultimately need to use a simulator to calculate your stat weights and figure out what gemming best suits you in your gear. These are best on single target results and assume appropriate hit without gems. Recommended Ametrines can be exchanged with Etched Ametrine to get to appropriate level of hit.

    Your meta will always be Relentless Earthsiege Diamond.
    You will always use a Nightmare's Tear in a blue socket that give you a 6+ Strength bonus in order to activate your meta gem.

    Low gear levels (mostly badge and low end raid gear from ToC10/25, ICC10 normal, Ulduar, etc):
    Bold Cardinal Ruby in all red sockets.
    Bold Cardinal Ruby in all blue sockets except for the one with the Nightmare's Tear.
    Inscribed Ametrine in all yellow sockets that yield a 4+ Strength bonus.

    Medium gear levels (mostly ilvl 251 and 264 gear):
    Bold Cardinal Ruby in all red sockets.
    Bold Cardinal Ruby in all blue sockets except for the one with the Nightmare's Tear.
    Fierce Ametrine in all yellow sockets that yield a 4+ Strength bonus.

    High gear levels (mostly ilvl 277 with some 264 - at least close to BiS):
    Fractured Cardinal Ruby in all red sockets.
    Fractured Cardinal Ruby in all blue sockets except for the one with the Nightmare's Tear.
    Fierce Ametrine/Fractured Ruby in all yellow sockets that yield a 4+ Strength bonus (see below the Str vs ArP breakdown below).


    Q. I heard DW Frost uses a priority and not a rotation - what is it?

    A.
    This is lingering information from the state of Frost in older patches. Although Frost doesn't have as static of a rotation as Unholy, it still does indeed have a rotation. I am going to break down the skeleton of this rotation and the priority elements involved.

    The intro:

    IT > PS > OB > BS > (BT/UA) > Pest > OB > OB > OB > OB > OB

    Then it will move to something like this:

    Pest/BS* (BT/UA**) > Pest/BS* > OB > OB > OB > OB > OB > repeat

    * If diseases have >= 2 seconds left, use BS. If not, use Pest. If you used BS first, use Pest second and vice versa.
    ** Use if it is up.

    You'll have time in between rune refreshes where you will prioritize your FS and HB in your normal rotation. Basically you want to always make sure that you are using your OB for your DD runes at around ~10 left on diseases, any later and you will almost definitely not make your refresh in time. You also want to make sure you set up your DD runes properly. If you used pest for the first blood rune make sure you use BS immediately.

    With those rules in mind you will go FS(KM proc) > FS > HB as your priority for those spaces in your rotation. You'll also weave a ghoul in there when it's up.

    I'd recommend practicing the skeleton of the rotation and gradually weaving in more and more FSs etc.

    NOTE: the rotation listed is based on using Glyph of Disease. People opting to use Glyph of Icy Touch instead (due to latency, bad reaction time, being facerollers) should basically repeat the intro rotation minus the final OB and replace Pestilence with Blood Strike.


    Q. How much hit do you need as DW Frost?

    A.
    The special hit cap for Frost is 5% (as displayed on your character sheet). This is due to Nerves of Cold Steel giving us a free 3% hit.

    There are arguments out there for capping spell hit as well (9% as displayed on your character sheet, assuming full raid buffs). In most situations however, gearing/gemming towards spell hit is a slight DPS loss. If you suffer from bad latency or have not-so-amazing reaction time, getting spell hit will guarantee you never miss pestilence and thus never accidentally continue your rotation with diseases down.


    Q. What Runeforges should I be using?

    A.
    Razorice = main hand.
    Fallen Crusader = offhand.
    This setup yields a slightly greater up-time on FC due to ToT strikes be unable to miss. This increase becomes greater if you are under expertise capped.


    Q. Which sigil should I use?

    A.
    To be entirely certain, you will as always need to sim it. But as a general guideline:

    Low ArP (<700) - use Sigil of Virulence on fights with movement/adds that might cause loss of Hanged Man stacks. On static fights, use Sigil of the Hanged Man.

    Medium ArP (700-1000) - use Sigil of Awareness on fights with movement/adds that might cause loss of Hanged Man stacks. On static fights, use Sigil of the Hanged Man.

    High ArP (1200-1400) - use Sigil of Awareness. This sigil has beautiful synergy with your Obliterates and far outweighs the Strength bonus of even SotHM.



    DISCLAIMER:
    This post is a work in progress. I expect it to grow over time and with the help of the Death Knight community. If you have a question you think would be appropriate to have answered here, please post it. Or if there is information in this post you feel is not entirely factual, feel free to correct me.
    Last edited by Scudamore; 2010-08-27 at 09:31 PM.

  2. #2
    Section A – medium gear levels
    I disagree with gemming str in all red and blue sockets and I have found that stacking Fierce Ametrine to be the better way to go, as long as you still keep str over 2100 that is.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Seffercrump View Post
    Section A – medium gear levels
    I disagree with gemming str in all red and blue sockets and I have found that stacking Fierce Ametrine to be the better way to go, as long as you still keep str over 2100 that is.
    if youre saying to gem fierces in red slots, sim it. youre wrong. strength will always be better in red sockets til arp gemming.

  4. #4
    Much needed especially due to the new consensus on Frost DW being a rotation based system. Almost everyone I know (including some pretty darn good players) still believe it is priority.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Seffercrump View Post
    Section A – medium gear levels
    I disagree with gemming str in all red and blue sockets and I have found that stacking Fierce Ametrine to be the better way to go, as long as you still keep str over 2100 that is.
    This is what he recommends...

    Scuda, great guide. Thanks for it One question, when you have enough RP for Frost Strike, but a Blood Rune up with the others cooling down (no KM) do you burn the Blood Rune into a Death Rune or use the Frost Strike first? Assuming you either screw up the rotation or have time off the boss causing this.

    [11:50:45] Earthmender Duarn says: Shamanistic healing is a complex art. You can't just chain heal all day.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Seffercrump View Post
    Section A – medium gear levels
    I disagree with gemming str in all red and blue sockets and I have found that stacking Fierce Ametrine to be the better way to go, as long as you still keep str over 2100 that is.
    In order for this to be true, haste would have to have a higher value than strength. This is of course never the case.

    Quote Originally Posted by Foibles View Post
    This is what he recommends...

    Scuda, great guide. Thanks for it One question, when you have enough RP for Frost Strike, but a Blood Rune up with the others cooling down (no KM) do you burn the Blood Rune into a Death Rune or use the Frost Strike first? Assuming you either screw up the rotation or have time off the boss causing this.
    BS should always be a priority over FS. The only time I might weave a FS in between pest and BS is if I had KM up.

  7. #7
    I would make the argument for Spell hit because refreshing diseases at the preferred ~.5second time means a missed Pest forces you to refresh diseases, delaying the worthwhile attacks.

    Now if I could just get hc PBCB.

    [11:50:45] Earthmender Duarn says: Shamanistic healing is a complex art. You can't just chain heal all day.

  8. #8
    isn't chaotic skyflare a good meta if have 2 blue sockets with strength bonuses?

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by hellboyy View Post
    isn't chaotic skyflare a good meta if have 2 blue sockets with strength bonuses?
    BiS Frost gear doesn't have a second blue socket that yields enough strength to justify it.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by hellboyy View Post
    isn't chaotic skyflare a good meta if have 2 blue sockets with strength bonuses?
    It largely depends on the quality of the socket bonuses. If you have 2 pieces of +8 str bonus, then by all means.

    Otherwise, I wouldn't.

  11. #11
    I'd argue the hit is under-valued here, having more hit is never a bad thing, more KM procs, perhaps not as useful as other procs for other DW classes but in general, more hit as a DW spec is never a bad thing

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Voltair View Post
    I'd argue the hit is under-valued here, having more hit is never a bad thing, more KM procs, perhaps not as useful as other procs for other DW classes but in general, more hit as a DW spec is never a bad thing
    We aren't Rogues/Shaman. Having more hit doesn't push our white crit cap, nor do we have much in the way of passive auto attack damage (poisons, Flamtoungue).

    To be fair, you're right that being at 1-2% over because you have double BVB and the hit Gunship bracers is fine, but anywhere over maybe a single % over spell hit is very much wasted. I'm swimming in KM procs as it is, and I have about 5.2% hit from gear.

    [11:50:45] Earthmender Duarn says: Shamanistic healing is a complex art. You can't just chain heal all day.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Voltair View Post
    I'd argue the hit is under-valued here, having more hit is never a bad thing, more KM procs, perhaps not as useful as other procs for other DW classes but in general, more hit as a DW spec is never a bad thing
    The math says haste > hit over 5% in medium-high gear levels. As I said in the OP though, you won't lose a huge amount of DPS by aiming for spell hit if you would prefer having that peace of mind.
    Last edited by Scudamore; 2010-08-23 at 06:58 PM.

  14. #14
    So with your rotation IT > PS > OB > BS/Pest* > (BT/UA**) > BS/Pest* > OB > OB > OB > OB > OB, why are you using BS/Pest after using BT/UA? At that point you should have no frost and no unholy runes ready with 1 death rune and 1 blood rune. Using BT/UA converts the remaining blood rune into a death rune giving you 2 death runes to use. Is it not better to use OB at that point, use the cancel blood tap aura macro leaving you with 2 blood runes on CD and all of your frost and unholy runes coming off of CD. This would be a great time to bleed off some RP. Below is the rotation i am using. It may be wrong, if so please explain.

    IT>PS>OB>BS>(BT/UA)>OB>CANCEL AURA>RP DUMP>OB>OB>PEST>BS>OB>OB>OB>PEST>BS etc etc

    Back to your rotation. The second BS/Pest will take the already ready DR go on CD giving you 2 DR on CD while your frost and UH have like 4 seconds left before being ready. I assume this is the time you would RP dump after which OB>OB>OB to put all your runes back on CD. Rune dump again then OB>OB>PEST>BS.

    Since i am not familiar with this rotation, how does the blood tap aura affect it? Before i used the cancel BT aura macro i found that my rune sync would get screwed up further down the road.

    Also, in terms of runeforging, i have always used razorice on my OH and Fallen Crusader on MH. What is your logic of doing it the other way around?

  15. #15
    Valiath,

    As is widely known the rune system isn't perfectly bug free. With the rotation I posted one of the blood runes that was on CD bugs into a death rune. Try it on a dummy if you want to see for yourself. I actually use two macros though for flexibility. My other macro is used after the DD OB (3rd in cycle) and does BT>UA>cancelaura.

    It is a minor DPS increase (~20 DPS) to have Razorice on your MH. FC is on PPM so it doesn't matter what hand it's on. IIRC RI shows better results on your MH because of the lowered time on stacking its debuff. If this were not the case it wouldn't matter which Runeforge was on what hand. Some people do run slightly under Exp cap however, so FC on the offhand in that case can yield a higher up-time on it and thus more DPS.

  16. #16
    I am constructing an excel sheet as we speak with your rotation in order to try to wrap my head around your rotation. I will come back with questions in a bit.

    But what you are saying is that after the second BS/Pest you have 2 DR on CD correct? Please see my time line below. Following this time line and the disease timer to the left, After using the DD OB there is 9.5 seconds left on your diseases while your BR are on 10Sec CDs. If my time line is incorrect please let me know so i can adjust.

    Last edited by Valiath; 2010-08-23 at 10:37 PM.

  17. #17
    There aren't 2 GCDs between BS and Pest. You use BT/UA during the GCD after BS.

  18. #18
    Is haste really that important for Frost DW dps? If you replace Bold Rubies with Fierce on those +4 Str. socket bonus, you are essentially trading 6 strength for 10 haste.

  19. #19
    My weights are approx as follows:

    Haste ~2.1 APE
    Strength ~2.85 APE

    10 x 2.1 = 21.0
    6 x 2.85 = 17.1

    It's not a massive difference, but it is an increase nevertheless.

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Scudamore View Post
    My weights are approx as follows:

    Haste ~2.1 APE
    Strength ~2.85 APE

    10 x 2.1 = 21.0
    6 x 2.85 = 17.1

    It's not a massive difference, but it is an increase nevertheless.
    Ah, thank you for the clarification.


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