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BLM Post Firestarter Rotation?Follow

#1 Sep 02 2013 at 10:49 PM Rating: Excellent
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Astral Fire reduces the casting time and mp cost of blizzard 3 in half. Blizzard 3 automatically gives you 3 umbral ice charges upon cast.

This is based on data from 9/13/13, but I believe the 'optimal' rotation might be something like:

Trash mobs

Note: for higher HP trash, it may be better to use T2.

1) Thunder 1 or 2
2) Fire 3
3) Fire1 spam
3a) IF firestarter procs, use fire 3 on your next cast (fire 1 cast > spam fire 3 button > fire 3 and fire 1 go off at the same time)

Condition 1: OOM but able to cast blizzard 3

3) Cast blizzard 3
4) Recast thunder 1/2
5) As soon thunder 1/2 is finished, cast fire3 even if not at full MP (the time it takes to cast fire 3 will give you another tick of mana, thereby giving you full mana)
6) Mash fire 1 button to get -50% cast time on fire 1
7) Repeat rotation

Condition 2: OOM and unable to cast blizzard 3

3) Convert
4) Fire 1
5) Wait to see if firestarter procced
5a) Use firestarter proc
6) Cast blizzard 3
7) Recast thunder 1/2

Condition 3: OOM, unable to cast blizzard 3, convert is down, ether on CD, no mage's ballad

3) Transpose
4) Filler spell (blizz 1, scathe) while waiting for first mana tick
5) Blizzard 3 (might not be necessary! check below for some interesting results)
6) Thunder 1/2
7) Fire 3
7a) Mash fire 1 button while fire 3 is casting



Boss

Assuming boss is immune to lethargy and virus is covered by someone else or not needed

1) Thunder 2
2) Fire 3
3) Quelling strikes > INT pot > raging strikes
4) Fire 1 spam
5a) IF firestarter procs, use fire 3 on your next cast (fire 1 cast > spam fire 3 button > fire 3 and fire 1 go off at the same time)
6) When OOM, use convert *This assumes you're opening: convert will be ready*
7) Cast fire 1
7a) IF firetarter procs, use fire 3
8) Cast blizzard 3
9) Recast thunder 2
10) Repeat from #3 until your CDs are back up. Quelling may not need to be used again depending on your tank.

Condition 1: OOM but able to cast blizzard 3

3) Cast blizzard 3
4) Recast thunder 2
5) As soon thunder 2 is finished, cast fire3 even if not at full MP (the time it takes to cast fire 3 will give you another tick of mana, thereby giving you full mana)
6) Mash fire 1 button to get -50% cast time on fire 1
7) Repeat rotation

Condition 2: OOM and unable to cast blizzard 3 but convert is up

3) Convert
4) Cast fire 1
4a) IF firetarter procs, use fire 3
5) Cast blizzard 3
6) Recast thunder 2

Condition 3: OOM, unable to cast blizzard 3, convert is down, ether on CD, no mage's ballad

3) Transpose
4) Filler spell (blizz 1, scathe) while waiting for first mana tick
5) Blizzard 3 (might not be necessary! check below for some interesting results)
6) Thunder 2
7) Fire 3
7a) Mash fire 1 button while fire 3 is casting



AoE rotation - long range

This assumes you cannot be in close-range (due to AoE or cleave) and/or that you have quelling up and will not pull aggro using this rotation.

1) Quelling strikes (can use raging strikes if you don't need it for burn phase later on)
2) Fire 3 (stacks of astral)
3) Fire 2
4) Fire 2
5) Fire 2
6) Swiftcast > Flare
7) Convert
7a) Ether/Hi-Ether if needed
8) Fire 2
9) Flare
10) Transpose
11) Blizzard 3
12) Fire 3

Repeat from #3 sans swiftcast and convert.




AoE rotation - close range

This assumes that you are in a scenario where you can sit in a group of mobs without taking massive damage from cleaves/AoE or quelling strikes is not up and will pull aggro as a result.

1) Quelling strikes (can use raging strikes if you don't need it for burn phase later on)
2) Fire 3 (stacks of astral)
3) Fire 2
4) Fire 2
5) Fire 2
6) Swiftcast > Flare
7) Convert
7a) Ether/Hi-Ether if needed
8) Fire 2
9) Flare
10) Transpose
11) Blizzard 2
12) Blizzard 2
12) Fire 3

Repeat from #3 sans swiftcast and convert.




Read below for more information! This post will be updated as a result of our findings.






Original post


So, here's my question.

When you obtain Firestarter at level 44, it allows you to change your rotation so that you spam fire 1 until Firestarter procs, and get a free fire 3 that's instant cast as a result.

However, due to casting lag, you will not actually know if you get Firestarter until your spell hits the mob. So, it seems to me like a waste of time waiting around to see if Firestarter procced or not after casting fire 1.

In WoW, this was always the case where it would be more efficient to not wait for procs and continue casting fire 1s despite whether Firestarter procced or not. Do you think that is the case here?

Also, you can take advantage of this casting lag in several ways. One of the ways I've found is the following:

Assume convert is down.


Cast fire 3 to obtain 3 charges of astral fire.
Spam fire 1 till out of mana.
Cast blizz 3 to obtain 3 charges of umbral ice.
Cast thunder 2 as mana regens.
Cast fire 3 to switch back to astral fire but immediately after fire 3 is finished, spam fire 1.

Using this method, your fire 1 cast right after your fire 3 also has the 'casting speed reduction' due to umbral ice III. Pretty damn cool.

Bunch of other tricks you can do with the casting lag but I haven't been able to quite pin down my rotation yet.

So what do you think?

Edited, Oct 27th 2013 6:30am by HitomeOfBismarck
#2 Sep 03 2013 at 10:14 AM Rating: Excellent
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Let's say you spend T total seconds of a fight in Fire phase; we'll simply neglect Ice phase since it doesn't contribute to Firestarter. It takes you R seconds to respond to a Firestarter proc, including spell projectile travel time, delay putting up the Firestarter buff, and your reaction time. The 40% proc chance of Firestarter means that it will on average proc every 2.5 Fire casts. We know that Fire has 150 potency and Fire III has 220 potency. I will ignore the effects of Astral Fire, since it effects all Fire spells equally.

I'll look at four casting strategies: (1) Spam Fire I and ignore Firestarter (the pre-Firestarter rotation) (2) Spam Fire I, Fire III when you notice a proc (3) Fire I with casting gaps waiting to see the proc, (4) Fire I spam, interrupting the current Fire cast when Firestarter procs to cast Fire III. For the time being, I only consider the average DPS output of each casting strategy during a typical Fire phase, in PPG (Potency Per GCD), so I can ignore spell speed.

(1) is easy: you do 150 potency every GCD with Fire I spam: 150 PPG (potency per GCD).

(2) is more complicated. The proc will occur on average after 2.5 casts of Fire, but delay and reaction time will force an additional Fire cast out before we can respond. If we consume the Firestarter immediately upon completing that Fire cast - before its projectile impacts the target - then the final cast effectively is the first in the *next* sequence of casts trying to trigger a proc. So despite the delayed proc response, there will still be 2.5 Fire casts on average per Firestarter proc; on average 2.5 of every 3.5 GCDs is spent casting Fire and 1 GCD Fire III for an average of

(2.5 * 150 + 220) / 3.5 = 595 / 3.5 = 170 PPG.

Clearly (2) does more PPG than (1), so it's a good idea in general to use Firestarter.

(3) Again, the proc occurs on average every 2.5 casts of Fire. In this case, however, a "cast of Fire" happens every GCD + R seconds to allow time to react to the proc. We spend one GCD casting Fire III for every 2.5 * (GCD + R) seconds of Fire cast-and-wait for an average of

(2.5 * 150 + 220) / (1 + 2.5 * (1 + R/GCD)) = 595 / (3.5 + 2.5 * R/GCD)

PPG, which simplifies to 1190 / (7 + 5 * R/GCD) PPG.

Note that (3) has the same DPS as (2) if and only if R is zero; non-zero response time will always make (3) inferior.

(4) Cast-canceling is especially horrid in this game: I estimate it takes at least half a second to interrupt a cast and get a new cast started. I'll call that interrupt and recast delay I. This strategy will cast one GCD of Fire III after 2.5 GCDs of Fire to trigger the proc, R seconds spent casting Fire before noticing the proc, and I seconds of recast delay. That comes out to

(2.5 * 150 + 220) / (3.5 + (I + R)/GCD) = (5 * 150 + 440) / (7 + 2 * (I + R)/GCD) = 1190 / (7 + 2 * (I + R)/GCD) PPG.

Again, note that (4) can only match the DPS of (2) if I+R is zero; a non-zero time will always make (4) inferior.

We can conclusively state that (2) is better than (3) or (4) for burst DPS over a single Fire phase.

2013-09-04 EDIT: Correct an error in the analysis of (3). Add comparison of (3) and (4).
2013-09-05 EDIT: Correct an error in the analysis of (2), carry through ramifications into the comparisons with (3) and (4).


Edited, Sep 5th 2013 11:37am by cartec
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#3 Sep 03 2013 at 11:27 AM Rating: Good
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Superb info!! This is what this forum needs. :)

So I guess it's a lot like WoW mage: you lose DPS if you stop to cast based on a proc. Makes sense given the potency of fire 1 and 3.

#4 Sep 04 2013 at 4:11 PM Rating: Excellent
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What about mana costs? If a casting strategy with lower average DPS also has a lower average mana burn rate, it may allow the Fire phase to last longer relative to Ice phase. It's therefore possible for a strategy with sub-optimal burst DPS to have optimal sustained DPS.

If we determine the mana burn rate of each casting strategy, we can develop a formula for the sustained DPS in terms of the strategy parameters and total mana. I'll neglect the DPS contribution from both Thunder and Ice phase casts, since it shouldn't vary between these Firestarter strategies. We thus develop the Sustained Fire DPS of each strategy.

Let M be the mana available for Fire phase in units of AF3 Fire casts (e.g, 2400 mana with a Fire cost of 400 while Astral Fire is at three stacks corresponds to M=6). Note that M will typically be less than total mana so that enough mana is conserved to fuel the Fire->Ice phase transition.

I will characterize time in units of GCD, since Fire and Fire III w/Firestarter both take that amount of time to cast. I think Ice phase typically takes around 5-7 seconds (2-3 GCDs) for Blizzard III -> Thunder II/III -> Fire III but I don't have an exact number (AF3/UF3 buffs cast speed of the opposite school), so I'll represent the number of GCDs spent in Ice phase with the variable N.

I'll characterize damage in units of Fire casts as well. Fire III does 1.4 units of damage: 220/150 potency = 1.4 Fires of damage.

(1) The Baseline strategy of pure Fire spam burns one Fire's cost in mana each cast time. Thanks to the expedient choice of units for mana/time/damage, this strategy's mana burn rate and burst DPS are both 1. A burst phase lasts M units of time and does M total damage, Sustained Fire DPS is therefore M / (M + N) = 1 / (1 + N/M).

(2) The Always-Be-Casting (ABC) strategy averages one free Fire III for every 2.5 casts of Fire, so its mana burn rate is 2.5 / (1 + 2.5) = 5/7. Burst DPS is (2.5 + 1.4) / 3.5 = 39/35. A burst phase lasts for M / (5/7) = 1.4M units of time. Total damage is a bit tricky: There's a 40% chance that the final Fire cast in a burst phase results in a Firestarter proc during the Blizzard III cast to transition into recovery phase. That proc is effectively wasted on the unbuffed Fire III cast used to transition back into burst phase. So we need to calculate total damage as the product of burst DPS and burst phase length minus the expected damage of that final possible Firestarter. In other words, there's a 40% chance per burst phase that a proc will be wasted instead of used to convert a Fire I into a Fire III:

39/35 * 1.4M - 40% * (1.4 - 1) = 1.56M - .16 total damage.

Sustained Fire DPS is thus (1.56M - .16) / (1.4M + N).

(3) The Wait strategy averages one free Fire III for every 2.5 casts of Fire, and spaces out the Fire casts an extra R seconds. Burst DPS is

(2.5 + 1.4) / (1 + 2.5 * (1 + R/GCD)) = 3.9 / (3.5 + 2.5 * R/GCD) = 1.56 / (1.4 + R/GCD).

With a mana burn rate of

2.5 / (1 + 2.5 * (1 + R/GCD)) = 2.5 / (3.5 + 2.5 * R/GCD) = 1 / (1.4 + R/GCD).

A burst phase lasts M * (1.4 + R/GCD) with total damage:

1.56 / (1.4 + R/GCD) * M * (1.4 + R/GCD) = 1.56 * M.

and Sustained Fire DPS:

1.56 * M / (N + M * (1.4 + R/GCD)) = 1.56 / (1.4 + R/GCD + N/M).

(4) The Interrupt strategy also averages one free Fire III for every 2.5 casts of Fire, while incurring a single delay of I+R seconds per cycle. Burst DPS:

(2.5 + 1.4) / (1 + 2.5 + (I+R)/GCD) = 39 / (5 * (7 + 2 * (I+R)/GCD))

With burn rate:

2.5 / (1 + 2.5 + (I+R)/GCD) = 5 / (7 + 2 * (I+R)/GCD)

resulting in a phase length of M * (7 + 2 * (I+R)/GCD) / 5 and Sustained Fire DPS:

39 / (5 * (7 + 2 * (I+R)/GCD)) * M * (7 + 2 * (I+R)/GCD) / 5 / (N + M * (7 + 2 * (I+R)/GCD) / 5)
= 39 / 5 * M / 5 / (N + M * (7 + 2 * (I+R)/GCD) / 5)
= 1.56 / (1.4 + 0.4 * (I+R)/GCD + N/M)

Plugging in some reasonable parameters:
IIRC my level 42 BLM has M ~= 6, and I'll ballpark R=750ms, I=500ms, and N=2.5 GCDs. My SFDPS with each strategy would be (well, if I actually had Firestarter at 42):
(1) Baseline: 1 / (1 + 2.5 / 6) = 0.706,
(2) ABC: (1.56 * 6 - .16) / (1.4 * 6 + 2.5) = 0.844
(3) Wait: 1.56 / (1.4 + .75/2.5 + 2.5/6) = 0.737,
(4) Interrupt: 1.56 / (1.4 + 0.4 * 1.25/2.5 + 2.5/6) = .774.
So (2) is optimal for my parameters, with (4) losing 8% and (3) losing 13% relative DPS.

When estimating your own parameters, recall that:
  • R is the sum of travel time from your hands to the target plus time for Firestarter to trigger plus time for you to react. If anything, my 750ms is optimistic.
  • I is the time between when you start to jiggle/jump to interrupt your cast and start casting something else.
  • M is the mana you can burn on Fire phase divided by the cost of Fire I.

TLDR: Always be casting Fire I, replace a cast with Fire III as soon as you can after noticing the Firestarter proc. Also, we need a simulator.

2013-09-05 EDIT: Update the burst analysis in (2).


Edited, Sep 5th 2013 11:45am by cartec
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#5 Sep 05 2013 at 4:14 AM Rating: Good
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Another awesome post!

There is currently a parser available through FFXIV App (Zam produced, apparently). I'll try to test several of these methods out in dungeons this week but we will most likely need more data.

Something else to consider: when you get down to 400-500 or so MP, your next fire 1 has a chance to proc firestarter however you would immediately proceed into the umbral ice stage by casting blizzard 3. So do you wait to see the results of your last fire 1 before the umbral ice phase or do you save a possible proc from that fire 1 through the mana recovery phase and use it to initiate the new mana burn phase?

Some decision making may need to be done because your damage output during the recovery phase consists on a blizzard 3 followed by a thunder 3.

Then there's the situation where both thundercloud and firestarter have procced. Not as complex as the above issues but still an interesting scenario!
#6 Sep 05 2013 at 7:19 AM Rating: Good
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Awesome post!

Couple of thoughts regarding your questions Hitome. If Firestarter procs and you are in the middle of casting a Blizzard III I think it would be optimal to wait to use it until the end of the Umbral cycle. The added benefit is you can get full mana, instant cast Fire III, and not actually spend the mana of the Fire III getting into Astral.

My feeling on Thundercloud proc vs Firestarter proc is to choose Thundercloud, because every tick could proc it again, while you have to actually choose to cast Fire I to get a new Firestarter.

What I would like to test is whether or not it is better to cast a Thunder in Umbral and clip the end of the dot if that dot won't last until the end of the next Astral cycle. My guess is that it is worth it, but clipping dots always feels dirty to me.
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#7 Sep 05 2013 at 10:53 AM Rating: Excellent
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After finally hitting 44 and playing with Firestarter for about an hour last night, it occurred to me that my analysis of the Always Be Casting strategy had a logical error: I was ignoring the fact that the final Fire cast that we're in the midst of when we notice a Firestarter proc still has a chance to proc Firestarter. This sequence of events results:
  1. Start casting Fire (cast A)
  2. Finish cast A, start casting Fire (cast B)
  3. A hits target, procs Firestarter
  4. Finish cast B, cast Fire III to consume Firestarter
  5. cast B hits target, procs Firestarter

So it takes 2.5 casts on average to proc Firestarter, there is no "wasted extra cast" as I said in my earlier analysis. This results in a slight increase in both the burst and sustained DPS estimates for the Always Be Casting strategy.


Edited, Sep 5th 2013 11:54am by cartec
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#8 Sep 05 2013 at 11:35 AM Rating: Excellent
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Anakte wrote:
If Firestarter procs and you are in the middle of casting a Blizzard III I think it would be optimal to wait to use it until the end of the Umbral cycle. The added benefit is you can get full mana, instant cast Fire III, and not actually spend the mana of the Fire III getting into Astral.

Using Firestarter on the transition Fire III cast is unsatisfying: instead of converting a fully-damage-buffed full-mana-cost Fire I into a no-mana Fire III, you are converting a very-low-damage nearly-free-mana very-fast Fire III cast into a free instant. Saving the tiny mana cost - Fire III costs me IIRC 80-something mana with UI3 up - is only going to give you a fifth of a Fire cast in the burst phase. I think that inserting a single wait-and-see after the last Fire cast before starting Blizzard III may result in an overall DPS increase. We'll call this Firestarter strategy (5).

(5) Burst DPS and mana burn rate are identical to (2). Total damage per cycle is the same, but without the penalty for possibly "wasting" a Firestarter proc:

39/35 * 1.4M = 1.56M total damage.

The cycle length will be a bit different, since we're adding in a single response time R. The resulting Sustained Fire DPS is thus

1.56M / (1.4M + R/GCD + N) = 1.56 / (1.4 + (R/GCD+N)/M).

Plugging in the parameters I used in the sustained DPS treatment above:
(5) Modified ABC: 1.56 / (1.4 + (.75/2.5+2.5)/6) = 0.836

Slightly less than the numbers for (2), but obviously very sensitive to the choice of R. (5) > (2) if and only if

1.56M / (1.4M + R/GCD + N) > (1.56M - .16) / (1.4M + N)

or equivalently (big breath):

R < (1.4M + N)(1.56M/(1.56M-.16) - 1) * GCD

so I would need a response time below

(1.4 * 6 + 2.5)(1.56*6/(1.56*6-.16) - 1) * 2.5 = 474 ms

for (5) to outperform (2), which is unrealistic. Apparently it's not worth the effort to try to preserve the last possible Firestarter proc.

One important factor that I've ignored here is that using Firestarter on the transition Fire III cast to make it instant shortens the effective recovery phase. Saving 80-ish mana is a drop in the bucket if you miss the last tick of regen to fill up in a recovery phase. I'll leave it as future work for someone to investigate.

Edited, Sep 5th 2013 12:39pm by cartec
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#9 Sep 05 2013 at 2:36 PM Rating: Good
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Interesting, what if we tried:

Firestarter procs while casting Blizzard III> XXX within Umbral > Fire I > Fire III (From previous Firestarter)

Then, the Umbral effect will have been pulled off because of the Fire I, the extra time in Umbral will regen the mana, and if the Fire I procs another Firestarter it will be no different than if two Fire I were to proc back to back in a normal rotation. I don't remember how long the proc sticks around for to know if this is even viable.
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#10 Sep 05 2013 at 3:49 PM Rating: Good
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cartec wrote:
After finally hitting 44 and playing with Firestarter for about an hour last night, it occurred to me that my analysis of the Always Be Casting strategy had a logical error: I was ignoring the fact that the final Fire cast that we're in the midst of when we notice a Firestarter proc still has a chance to proc Firestarter. This sequence of events results:
  1. Start casting Fire (cast A)
  2. Finish cast A, start casting Fire (cast B)
  3. A hits target, procs Firestarter
  4. Finish cast B, cast Fire III to consume Firestarter
  5. cast B hits target, procs Firestarter

So it takes 2.5 casts on average to proc Firestarter, there is no "wasted extra cast" as I said in my earlier analysis. This results in a slight increase in both the burst and sustained DPS estimates for the Always Be Casting strategy.


Edited, Sep 5th 2013 11:54am by cartec


This is great! I was hoping we wouldn't run into a situation like this where it would have been more beneficial for them to add firestarter 'chargers' to account for wasted firestarter procs. Thank you for catching that!
#11 Sep 09 2013 at 5:11 AM Rating: Decent
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I feel this game still has some patches and fixes ahead of it. So these complex maneuvers will hopefully soon be obsolete. :)
It's a real bother with the GCD in my opinion. Everything seem to share the same GCD! Even if you cast a procced spell, you still have to wait for the full time of the GCD to cast next one. It's quite annoying and it obstructs you from being fast as well as you always have to look at your hotbar to see if you've actually manged to cast the skill or not. It's really annoying. -__-

Anyhow, I've started to get comfortable with a rotation which seem to be quite feasable for the time being:

Thunder III, Lethargy & Virus (on targets the debuffs work on, that is)

Fire I spam, if I notice the Firestarter proc I don't interrupt the current Fire I but rather let it cast and afterwards cast the insta Fire III.

When OOM I transpose, (if timed right I can squeeze out that last Fire I and really go 0% mana left before the Transpose and use Transpose exactly on the mana tick, thusly have no downtime whatsoever. It's tricky but it works most of the time) cast Thunder III again, since the duration often has ran out by this time, then a Fire III which if timed perfectly will be cast so you enter Astral Fire the exact same moment as you have 100% mana again, so I never Transpose to Astral Fire...ever.

Redo from the top.



This rotation means that I never use any Blizzard at all. As the casting time of Thunder III and Fire III lets Umbral Ice replenish my mana perfectly there's no need for Blizzard.
There is one exclusion though, if I've already Transposed before the Fire I has landed and I get a proc, then I Thunder III and Blizzard III in the Umbral phase, instead of using the procc, having to waste Convert and Blizzard into Umbral and then begin conservation phase. I deem that a waste of dps and a CD.

Though I'd love a mana tick addon to really be able to perfect the conservation phase!

Edited, Sep 9th 2013 7:14am by Rimfrostr

Edited, Sep 9th 2013 7:16am by Rimfrostr
#12 Sep 11 2013 at 3:49 AM Rating: Good
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Don't think you should be using transpose regularly in your rotation at 50 unless you're OOM and convert is down.

Astral Fire reduces the casting time and mp cost of blizzard 3 in half. Blizzard 3 automatically gives you 3 umbral ice charges upon cast.

This is based on data from 9/13/13, but I believe the 'optimal' rotation might be something like:

Trash mobs

Note: for higher HP trash, it may be better to use T2.

1) Thunder 1 or 2
2) Fire 3
3) Fire1 spam
3a) IF firestarter procs, use fire 3 on your next cast (fire 1 cast > spam fire 3 button > fire 3 and fire 1 go off at the same time)

Condition 1: OOM but able to cast blizzard 3

3) Cast blizzard 3
4) Recast thunder 1/2
5) As soon thunder 1/2 is finished, cast fire3 even if not at full MP (the time it takes to cast fire 3 will give you another tick of mana, thereby giving you full mana)
6) Mash fire 1 button to get -50% cast time on fire 1
7) Repeat rotation

Condition 2: OOM and unable to cast blizzard 3

3) Convert
4) Fire 1
5) Wait to see if firestarter procced
5a) Use firestarter proc
6) Cast blizzard 3
7) Recast thunder 1/2

Condition 3: OOM, unable to cast blizzard 3, convert is down, ether on CD, no mage's ballad

3) Transpose
4) Filler spell (blizz 1, scathe) while waiting for first mana tick
5) Blizzard 3 (might not be necessary! check below for some interesting results)
6) Thunder 1/2
7) Fire 3
7a) Mash fire 1 button while fire 3 is casting



Boss

Assuming boss is immune to lethargy and virus is covered by someone else or not needed

1) Thunder 2
2) Quelling strikes > INT pot > raging strikes
3) Fire 3
4) Fire1 spam
5a) IF firestarter procs, use fire 3 on your next cast (fire 1 cast > spam fire 3 button > fire 3 and fire 1 go off at the same time)
6) When OOM, use convert *This assumes you're opening: otherwise, convert will be ready*
7) Cast fire 1
7a) IF firetarter procs, use fire 3
8) Cast blizzard 3
9) Recast thunder 2
10) Repeat from #3 until your CDs are back up. Quelling may not need to be used again depending on your tank.

Condition 1: OOM but able to cast blizzard 3

3) Cast blizzard 3
4) Recast thunder 2
5) As soon thunder 2 is finished, cast fire3 even if not at full MP (the time it takes to cast fire 3 will give you another tick of mana, thereby giving you full mana)
6) Mash fire 1 button to get -50% cast time on fire 1
7) Repeat rotation

Condition 2: OOM and unable to cast blizzard 3 but convert is up

3) Convert
4) Cast fire 1
4a) IF firetarter procs, use fire 3
5) Cast blizzard 3
6) Recast thunder 2



Condition 3: OOM, unable to cast blizzard 3, convert is down, ether on CD, no mage's ballad

3) Transpose
4) Filler spell (blizz 1, scathe) while waiting for first mana tick
5) Blizzard 3 (might not be necessary! check below for some interesting results)
6) Thunder 2
7) Fire 3
7a) Mash fire 1 button while fire 3 is casting



Read below for more information! This post will be updated as a result of our findings.

Edited, Oct 7th 2013 2:12am by HitomeOfBismarck
#13 Sep 11 2013 at 7:11 AM Rating: Good
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At first glance I'm questioning condition 3. I'm not sure how long it takes to get to full mana from an Umbral 1 state, but I can't see using Scathe in that unless you're also moving at the same time. Scathe costs almost as much as Blizzard III so I would think if you had the mana you would go to Blizzard III immediately, and if not then cast a Blizzard I first. It costs less, does more on average, and I would think at some point you might have to check if you get a tick of regen after that cast in Umbral II vs using Scathe and getting a tick at Umbral I.

What I'd like to see, is the differences in:
Transpose > Blizzard I > Blizzard I > Thunder III > Fire III
Transpose > Blizzard I > Blizzard III > Thunder III > Fire III

Is the extra 1 second spent on casting the Blizzard III worth the damage increase from the Blizzard I?
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BLM 50 SMN/SCH 50 WHM 40
MRD 26 DRG 30 MNK 30 GLA 25

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#14 Sep 11 2013 at 10:25 AM Rating: Decent
3 posts
HitomeOfBismarck wrote:
Don't think you should be using transpose regularly in your rotation at 50 unless you're OOM and convert is down.

Astral Fire reduces the casting time and mp cost of blizzard 3 in half. Blizzard 3 automatically gives you 3 umbral ice charges upon cast. So:

1) Thunder 3
1a) Thundercloud proc use
2) Fire 3
2a) Fire1 spam
2b) Firestarter proc use

Condition 1: OOM and unable to cast blizzard 3

3) Convert
4) Fire 1
5) Wait to see if firestarter procced
5a) Use firestarter proc
6) Cast blizzard 3
7) Recast thunder 3

Condition 2: OOM but able to cast blizzard 3

3) Cast blizzard 3
4) Recast thunder 3
5) As soon thunder 3 is finished, cast fire3 even if not at full MP (the time it takes to cast fire 3 will give you another tick of mana, thereby giving you full mana)
6) Mash fire 1 button to get -50% cast time on fire 1
7) Repeat rotation

Condition 3: OOM, unable to cast blizzard 3, convert is down, ether on CD, no mage's ballad

3) Transpose
4) Scathe while waiting for first mana tick
5) Blizzard 3
6) Thunder 3
7) Fire 3
7a) Mash fire 1 button while fire 3 is casting


HitomeOfBismarck wrote:
Don't think you should be using transpose regularly in your rotation at 50 unless you're OOM and convert is down.

Astral Fire reduces the casting time and mp cost of blizzard 3 in half. Blizzard 3 automatically gives you 3 umbral ice charges upon cast. So:

1) Thunder 3
1a) Thundercloud proc use
2) Fire 3
2a) Fire1 spam
2b) Firestarter proc use

Condition 1: OOM and unable to cast blizzard 3

3) Convert
4) Fire 1
5) Wait to see if firestarter procced
5a) Use firestarter proc
6) Cast blizzard 3
7) Recast thunder 3

Condition 2: OOM but able to cast blizzard 3

3) Cast blizzard 3
4) Recast thunder 3
5) As soon thunder 3 is finished, cast fire3 even if not at full MP (the time it takes to cast fire 3 will give you another tick of mana, thereby giving you full mana)
6) Mash fire 1 button to get -50% cast time on fire 1
7) Repeat rotation

Condition 3: OOM, unable to cast blizzard 3, convert is down, ether on CD, no mage's ballad

3) Transpose
4) Scathe while waiting for first mana tick
5) Blizzard 3
6) Thunder 3
7) Fire 3
7a) Mash fire 1 button while fire 3 is casting



Tried that. Worked better.
#15 Sep 11 2013 at 10:20 PM Rating: Good
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Rimfrostr wrote:
Tried that. Worked better.


Excellent!

Anakte wrote:
At first glance I'm questioning condition 3. I'm not sure how long it takes to get to full mana from an Umbral 1 state, but I can't see using Scathe in that unless you're also moving at the same time. Scathe costs almost as much as Blizzard III so I would think if you had the mana you would go to Blizzard III immediately, and if not then cast a Blizzard I first. It costs less, does more on average, and I would think at some point you might have to check if you get a tick of regen after that cast in Umbral II vs using Scathe and getting a tick at Umbral I.

What I'd like to see, is the differences in:
Transpose > Blizzard I > Blizzard I > Thunder III > Fire III
Transpose > Blizzard I > Blizzard III > Thunder III > Fire III

Is the extra 1 second spent on casting the Blizzard III worth the damage increase from the Blizzard I?


It's very hard to tell, honestly, since the amount of times I run "OOM", while on paper, should be predictable but I don't seem to run into that situation much in game. I think the use of physick causes my calculations to go askew based on when I should be going OOM and also the fact that I now know, the cast before, whether to finish another fire 1 or go into a mana regen phase.

I've played around with generating the umbral ice 2 charge with a blizzard 1 while waiting for MP to regen. Improved scathe hits like a truck when it does crit but a floppy noodle otherwise. Given the situation doesn't pop up often where I'm OOM and unable to cast blizzard 3, I cannot honestly tell you which is better!

I would like to do more research! I honestly think it will be very hard to detect, DPS-wise, over the short term fights where the OOM phase doesn't occur as often.

Also, there is a possibility that you could pop an ether in this situation to be able to get out of either scenario! I wonder which of the three is more effective? I think I know the disadvantages to all three:

1) Scathe triggers GCD causing you to waste time that could be used on a cast
2) Blizzard 1 hits harder on average than scathe but has very little variability
3) Popping an ether wastes the GCD as well as a little money

We will have to keep communicating and figuring out what works out best. For right now, I'll stick a 'filler spell' in that slot where scathe was until we have proof otherwise! Till then, it would be player preference.



NOW! Here's another question:

If you know that the next fire 1 will reduce your mana below the required amount to cast blizzard 3, do you cast that fire 1 and use one of the 3 (possibly more) scenarios listed above OR do you proceed into a regen phase where you may cast thunder 3 automatically since you had the MP reserved from the fire 1 that you didn't cast?

This is ideally what I would save convert for. Convert > cast another fire 1 > go into mana regen mode.

So much theorycrafting to be done!

Edited, Sep 13th 2013 4:31am by HitomeOfBismarck
#16 Sep 12 2013 at 6:40 AM Rating: Good
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Well, now that my SMN hit 50 and I'm back to my BLM I'm starting to get into it more and I LOVE it. Glad I decided to go that way.

It's an interesting question about casting that last Fire I if you know it will cause you to go oom. I need to get the parser working so I can start really testing different things. I started making a spreadsheet of mp costs/cast times but when I started filling in damage it got a bit tedious and I ran out of time. Later I'll post the list of mp/cast times that I made for reference.
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BLM 50 SMN/SCH 50 WHM 40
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#17 Sep 13 2013 at 1:43 AM Rating: Good
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Afraid I have some...interesting news!

I FINALLY got to party with another BLM around the same gear level and skill level. His gear was slightly worse but this served as an excellent test for some of our theories.

First, we'll talk about gear.

Gear

His gear at the time:

Weapon: Ifrit's
Shield: Flame Sergeant's Targe
Head: AF
Body: AF
Hands: Demagogue
Waist: Demagogue
Legs: AF
Feet: Demagogue
Neck: Aetherial Wolf (+4int, +4mnd, +5crit, +3det, +5skill speed)
Earring: Demagogue
Wrist: Darklight
Ring1: Zircon
Ring2: Zircon

**At the time, he was wearing AF body but won the Demagogue body at the end**


My gear:

Weapon: Ifrit's
Shield: Warlock's Buckler
Head: Demagogue
Body: Demagogue
Hands: AF
Waist: Demagogue
Legs: Demagogue
Feet: Demagogue
Neck: Darklight
Earring: Darklight
Wrist: Darklight
Ring1: Darklight
Ring2: Aetherial Zircon Ring (+6int, +10acc, +9crit, +6det)

Stat comparison:

http://i.imgur.com/odQJDg8.png

I have the upper hand. So, if our rotation is as optimal as we think, I should be ahead on the parse (assuming I have the appropriate reaction speed).

In case you're curious, here is the armory information on both of us. My gear most likely hasn't changed but his most likely has:

http://na.finalfantasyxiv.com/lodestone/character/2788602/
http://na.finalfantasyxiv.com/lodestone/character/2358160/


Rotation

These rotations are going to be generalized since we still haven't come to conclusions about the topic of OOM on last fire cast and other issues! I didn't use scathe and, instead, played it safe and never went OOM. If I knew my next cast would drop me below required mana for blizzard 3, I would go into the mana gain stage by casting blizzard 3

His rotation was the following (assumption = we both used raging strikes when available):

Trash and Boss

1) Thunder 1
1a) IF thundercloud procs, use thunder 3 on next cast
2) Fire 3
3) Fire 1 till OOM
3a) IF firestarter procs, use fire 3 on next cast
4) Repeat

My rotation (as denoted above) is the following:

Trash and Boss

1) Thunder 3
1a) IF thundercloud procs, use thunder 3 on next cast
2) Fire 3
3) Fire 1 till OOM
3a) IF firestarter procs, use fire 3 on next cast
4) Repeat


Note that he uses thunder 1 exclusively while I use thunder 3 exclusively outside of thundercloud.

Results

This was the trash parse from boss 2 (demon wall) to the final boss room:

Trash

http://i.imgur.com/iF7oO8g.png

Considerations:

Admittedly, I erased the parse up until the first boss. I thought I had forgotten to clear the parser before entering the instance. However, when I cleared it he was easily 4~6% ahead of me on trash pulls using his rotation.

This parse displayed is from the demon wall to the final boss (all the trash in between).

Demon Wall

http://i.imgur.com/mJtEr0o.png

Considerations

We attempted this boss twice. I erased the first parse, unfortunately. I'm not very good at collecting multiple samples! :( I was ahead of him by 10~15% on the first wipe. I died 2nd but he died shortly after.

In the parse displayed, he died first (at around 10%) so the data is also skewed. While this is the case, I am more interested in the pattern: my rotation seems to be optimal on bosses while his seems to be optimal on trash.

Final Boss

http://i.imgur.com/EM9CGoF.png

Considerations

We also 'attempted' this one twice (in reality: three times...notes below). I parsed above him by about 15% on the first attempt. This parse above is one where he and the scholar had all the ball spawns (meaning he had to move the most). Take that into consideration.

Analysis

Preface

I would like to start with the speculation/rumor I've been hearing that FFXIV App's parser treats DoTs a little oddly. Some say it continues collecting data even after the monster's death. I am unsure but I will say if this is the case, these results would not hold much weight given DoTs range from 5~15% of our DPS in a given scenario.

Body

Now there are some things to consider besides the above considerations! My BLM PT mate was very aggressive on trash. He would often not wait for the tank to gain aggro before he cast his first fire 3. In fact, one of our final boss attempts was a wipe due to mismanagement of his aggro. Due to this, he may have had an upper hand on me on trash due to this playstyle. However, I think there is some merit in using thunder 1 on trash due to how long the things live and how little potency thunder 3 adds without thundercloud. Also, quelling strikes would be a great ability to obtain. :)

For now, I will attempt thunder 1 rotations to see what kind of results I get.

He used sleep infrequently due to this aggressive playstyle as well. I usually ended up CCing things (including wasting my astral fires on a quick cast freeze). Admittedly, it was PROBABLY not needed but due to the tank's first time being there, it is better to play it safe.

Since it's hard to tell on bosses due to the huge amount of movement, low number of parses, and a number of other factors, I would say there is not enough data to conclude which is better for a boss fight. However, I think I am leaning towards the thunder 1 approach due to thunder 3's low potency, long cast time, and the quick rate at which trash dies. Namely, thunder 3 never takes the full ~24 seconds to tick because mobs die faster than that on average.

Now, I am going to stick to thunder 1 rotation on trash (t2 on bosses) for the next week or so to see if things change. Hopefully, I'll end up in a group with another BLM of similar gear level and skill level so I can gather more data.

Edited, Oct 7th 2013 2:17am by HitomeOfBismarck
#18 Sep 13 2013 at 1:43 AM Rating: Good
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I apologize for the double post but there are two separate subjects I'm addressing and a lot of information for just one post!

Scathe, blizzard 1, or something else?

I am unsure if there is some damage cap or magic resistances innate to the level 1 target dummy. My guess would be no. I sat outside of Ul'dah today and spammed scathe and blizzard 1 (while under the effects of umbral ice 3) to get some data for our current topic.

Scathe

http://i.imgur.com/SMlRTF0.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/zmshF7x.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/j2U2wHy.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/QeDzY67.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/qtK8U0I.jpg

Blizzard 1 w/ umbral ice 3

http://i.imgur.com/jO1yOhT.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/1KfyeIq.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/J51jeRt.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/7pSX421.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/GPPScCl.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/VHwAgw0.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/Un1SDVd.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/hwlZSSF.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/UukSe6a.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/7PEkrdV.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/LYX4tSF.jpg



As you can see, blizzard 1 does, on average, more damage than scathe but scathe is much more variable! Improved scathe does kick in a bit and a scathe crit is nothing to scoff at.

Now, it may appear that one or the other is better just from the data collected. However, blizzard 1's argument is not so simple!

What we are debating is:

Scathe
1) Higher spike/variable damage
2) Instant cast but invokes GCD

Blizzard 1
1) Higher damage over time
2) Gives the effect of heavy on mobs that can take it but uses cast time
****3) Grants umbral ice 2****

Now, it's much more easy to gather information about the mana regenerated per tick of umbral ice!

For me (before/after screenshots):

Umbral Ice 3 before
Umbral Ice 3 before

Umbral Ice 2 before
Umbral Ice 2 after

Umbral Ice1 before
Umbral Ice1 after

From this, we have some numbers based on my mana pool. Bolded and underlined for emphasis. It could be based on percentage or level! That is a test for another day. I doubt it would matter if the MP pool only varied by plus or minus 100.

Umbral Ice 3: 2275 MP per tick
Umbral Ice 2: 1724 MP per tick
Umbral Ice 1: 1174 MP per tick

Now, is casting a blizzard 1 to up your stacks to umbral ice 3 after a transpose better versus a scathe?

I don't know to be honest! I'd need someone who is better at crunching numbers. I'll be happy to collect data. :)

At a glance, the difference between 1 and 2 is 550 MP out of a pool of 3670 MP. To regen my pool from 0, it takes:

3 ticks for umbral ice 1
3 ticks for umbral ice 2
2 ticks for umbral ice 3

But keep in mind: the situation we are talking about is not when you're at 0 MP but at around or greater than 79 MP (the cost of blizzard 3 under astral fire 3).

Edited, Sep 13th 2013 4:07am by HitomeOfBismarck
#19 Sep 13 2013 at 7:00 AM Rating: Good
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Unfortunately I don't have a lot of time today to pour over the results, I will say they are interesting against the other BLM but like you said, it sounds like that might have been a play style issue more than a rotation issue. If he has Quelling, wasn't sleeping, and wasn't watching aggro, that would definitely combine for a significant percentage increase.

About Scathe vs Blizzard, we'll actually need to compare average Scathe ticks vs the average for a Blizzard I (under Umbral 1) + Blizzard I (Under Umbral 2) vs the average (with the extra 1 second cast time of Blizzard III) for Blizzard I (under Umbral 1) + Blizzard III (under Umbral 2) for the situation we're talking about. That's if Blizzard receives a damage benefit from Umbral, which I cannot remember right now.

This weekend I don't have a lot going on, so I'll probably be able to look at things more. I haven't really been able to run much this week so I'm looking forward to playing this weekend.
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BLM 50 SMN/SCH 50 WHM 40
MRD 26 DRG 30 MNK 30 GLA 25

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#20 Sep 13 2013 at 8:19 PM Rating: Good
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He didn't have quelling. >_> I think you're right but I still see the logic in using thunder 1 on trash. You only really want it for the TC proc.

Blizzard doesn't receive a damage benefit from umbral ice. So it's pretty steady damage after you transpose.

I will say: quelling strikes is something all of us should probably work on obtaining if we wish to go all out at the beginning.
#21 Sep 14 2013 at 8:28 AM Rating: Good
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He should have it from his Archer level, whether he chose to use it on his bar or in combat I couldn't tell you, I haven't played with the parser to know how/if it would show up.

On trash I definitely see Thunder I being viable, still not sure about boss rotations though. Thunder II makes a convincing argument because of the time it's up, but I'm still trying to nail down how the proc works exactly.
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BLM 50 SMN/SCH 50 WHM 40
MRD 26 DRG 30 MNK 30 GLA 25

http://art.penny-arcade.com/photos/416469141_Vt5aq-XL-2.jpg
#22 Sep 15 2013 at 12:18 AM Rating: Good
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It's up there, though. Level 33 or 34 for archer. :(

Anyways, I tested this with a FC BLM and we came to the conclusion that T3 is probably best for trash and boss. I'd show you the parse but the results are the same! It didn't really matter which one we used. The BLM in the above post beat me most likely due to aggressive play.
#23 Sep 24 2013 at 8:45 AM Rating: Good
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HitomeOfBismarck wrote:
So, here's my question.

When you obtain Firestarter at level 44, it allows you to change your rotation so that you spam fire 1 until Firestarter procs, and get a free fire 3 that's instant cast as a result.

However, due to casting lag, you will not actually know if you get Firestarter until your spell hits the mob. So, it seems to me like a waste of time waiting around to see if Firestarter procced or not after casting fire 1.

In WoW, this was always the case where it would be more efficient to not wait for procs and continue casting fire 1s despite whether Firestarter procced or not. Do you think that is the case here?

Also, you can take advantage of this casting lag in several ways. One of the ways I've found is the following:

Assume convert is down.


Cast fire 3 to obtain 3 charges of astral fire.
Spam fire 1 till out of mana.
Cast blizz 3 to obtain 3 charges of umbral ice.
Cast thunder 3 as mana regens.
Cast fire 3 to switch back to astral fire but immediately after fire 3 is finished, spam fire 1.

Using this method, your fire 1 cast right after your fire 3 also has the 'casting speed reduction' due to umbral ice III. Pretty damn cool.

Bunch of other tricks you can do with the casting lag but I haven't been able to quite pin down my rotation yet.

So what do you think?

Edited, Sep 4th 2013 7:36am by HitomeOfBismarck


I love this rotation, but I drop the thunder 3 because literally right after you cast blizzard 3 and it hits you can activate fire 3 in almost all cases, even if the mp isnt in your pool yet. I'm on ps3 so maybe it is a load time issue but i literally go

Fire III
Fire I until 600 mp or so, throwing firestarters in between
then blizzard 3 (with astral 3 the load time is fast but only deals 200-400)
then fire 3 (with umbral 3 the load time is fast but only deals 200-400)
Fire I until 600 mp or so, throwing firestarters in between
then blizzard 3 (with astral 3 the load time is fast but only deals 200-400)
then fire 3 (with umbral 3 the load time is fast but only deals 200-400)
rinse and repeat.

Sometimes (I use the convert reload time as a trigger, I can deal 1300 aoe to a group of enemies in cm or praetorium by using this handly little macro. I always do this right after my fire 3. and before a fire 1 (that way I have a full mp pool and astral fire 3).

And remember, Flare can trigger Firestarter...

/action "Fastcast" <me>
/wait 2
/action "Flare" <t>
/wait 2
/action "Convert" <me>

This leaves me with nearly 1300 mana after flare. I cast a single fire I and then spin back into the blizzard 3, fire 3, fire I rotation.

Other folks have asked me to stop using the LB on regular mobs, when they just simply havent seen a flare work like that.
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#24 Sep 24 2013 at 8:54 AM Rating: Good
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Are their any essential abilities (other than Raging Strikes) you are using from Archer?

After Fire III, I use a macro that looks like this:

/macroicon "Fire"
/ac "Raging Strikes" <me>
/ac "Fire" <t>

This way I always pop Raging Strikes at the start of my Fire 1 spam if it's up. It may be better to use this situationally, but I'd rather not forget to use it.

I'm still up ion the air regarding the best way the get 3 stacks of Umbral. Seems like Blizzard 3 is the most direct. I use this:

/macroicon "Blizzard"
/ac "Quickcast" <me>
/ac "Blizzard III" <t>
/ac "Convert" <me>
/ac "Transpose" <me>

I cast Blizzard III if I can, then Convert if I can't cast Blizzard III, and finally Transpose if Convert is down. The problem is you have to hit this macro slowly or you will cast Transpose out of order while the GCD is active.

Then I cast this macro while Umbral III is up (granted I'm only 44 BLM right now):

/macroicon "Thunder II"
/ac "Lethargy" <t>
/ac "Virus" <t>
/ac "Thunder II" <t>

This way I get those two instant Lethargy and Virus on the mob while Umbral is ticking and I'm not wasting time re-applying later while I could be casting Fire. I generally open with this macro actually, then Fire III > Fire I Macro (with Raging Strikes).

This is working great so far, with Scathe mixed in while moving around. I also have:

/macroicon "Sleep"
/ac "Quickcast" <me>
/ac "Sleep"

That is useful even if I have used Quickcast on Blizzard III (which starts the ticking sooner) and if I haven't it goes of instant which is nice for the party.

Still looking to improve this of course. I'd like to hear more about just casting Thunder I.

Also I'm looking for essential Cross-class abilities from Archer and Arcanist that I need to level up for. (I really thought I would get resurrect, so I leveled to Archanist to 22 but not so much a cross class ability, sadface.)

Would really appreciate any feedback on the rotation/macros above. Thanks!








#25 Sep 24 2013 at 11:51 PM Rating: Good
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Valkayree wrote:
I love this rotation, but I drop the thunder 3 because literally right after you cast blizzard 3 and it hits you can activate fire 3 in almost all cases, even if the mp isnt in your pool yet. I'm on ps3 so maybe it is a load time issue but i literally go

Fire III
Fire I until 600 mp or so, throwing firestarters in between
then blizzard 3 (with astral 3 the load time is fast but only deals 200-400)
then fire 3 (with umbral 3 the load time is fast but only deals 200-400)
Fire I until 600 mp or so, throwing firestarters in between
then blizzard 3 (with astral 3 the load time is fast but only deals 200-400)
then fire 3 (with umbral 3 the load time is fast but only deals 200-400)
rinse and repeat.

Sometimes (I use the convert reload time as a trigger, I can deal 1300 aoe to a group of enemies in cm or praetorium by using this handly little macro. I always do this right after my fire 3. and before a fire 1 (that way I have a full mp pool and astral fire 3).

And remember, Flare can trigger Firestarter...

/action "Fastcast" <me>
/wait 2
/action "Flare" <t>
/wait 2
/action "Convert" <me>

This leaves me with nearly 1300 mana after flare. I cast a single fire I and then spin back into the blizzard 3, fire 3, fire I rotation.

Other folks have asked me to stop using the LB on regular mobs, when they just simply havent seen a flare work like that.


A question for you: do you only regen1 tick from umbral ice before starting into fire 3 again? If so, this is a very interesting concept that I have not played around with.

Ideally, though, at the beginning you want to use the rotation I mentinoed. Raging strikes needs to be active as long as possible on your damage cycle (fire).

Raging strikes lasts 20 seconds. Most of us will deplete our mana pool well before that. However, if you save convert for raging strikes, you can squeeze even more damage out of this phase. It has such a lengthy cooldown, too.

After the raging strikes phase is done, your rotation might yield some interesting results. You need to keep us posted! :D

It's hilarious that they think our flare is the LB. Most tanks simply cannot hold threat off of our flare, unfortunately. It's best used if you know your healers are on the ball or your tank is ready to use cover on you.

Valkayree wrote:
[quote=Gnu]Are their any essential abilities (other than Raging Strikes) you are using from Archer?

After Fire III, I use a macro that looks like this:

/macroicon "Fire"
/ac "Raging Strikes" <me>
/ac "Fire" <t>

This way I always pop Raging Strikes at the start of my Fire 1 spam if it's up. It may be better to use this situationally, but I'd rather not forget to use it.

I'm still up ion the air regarding the best way the get 3 stacks of Umbral. Seems like Blizzard 3 is the most direct. I use this:

/macroicon "Blizzard"
/ac "Quickcast" <me>
/ac "Blizzard III" <t>
/ac "Convert" <me>
/ac "Transpose" <me>

I cast Blizzard III if I can, then Convert if I can't cast Blizzard III, and finally Transpose if Convert is down. The problem is you have to hit this macro slowly or you will cast Transpose out of order while the GCD is active.

Then I cast this macro while Umbral III is up (granted I'm only 44 BLM right now):

/macroicon "Thunder II"
/ac "Lethargy" <t>
/ac "Virus" <t>
/ac "Thunder II" <t>

This way I get those two instant Lethargy and Virus on the mob while Umbral is ticking and I'm not wasting time re-applying later while I could be casting Fire. I generally open with this macro actually, then Fire III > Fire I Macro (with Raging Strikes).

This is working great so far, with Scathe mixed in while moving around. I also have:

/macroicon "Sleep"
/ac "Quickcast" <me>
/ac "Sleep"

That is useful even if I have used Quickcast on Blizzard III (which starts the ticking sooner) and if I haven't it goes of instant which is nice for the party.

Still looking to improve this of course. I'd like to hear more about just casting Thunder I.

Also I'm looking for essential Cross-class abilities from Archer and Arcanist that I need to level up for. (I really thought I would get resurrect, so I leveled to Archanist to 22 but not so much a cross class ability, sadface.)

Would really appreciate any feedback on the rotation/macros above. Thanks!


Your macros are helpful as always! I highly encourage you to make a thread specifically for useful BLM macros. :)

The essential ability that we all need to start working towards is quelling strikes: a level 34 ARC ability. This allows us to open with our strongest DPS rotation while generating less enmity as a result. It is ideally a huge indirect damage increase as a result where most classes have to either ramp up their DPS through rotations or wait for the tank to obtain substantial enmity before attacking.

Virus and lethargy go quite well together!

I use raging strikes at the exact same time you do.

Here's something more to add in:

Before we engage, we need to consider popping intelligence potions. Or, if there are burn phases of a fight, we need to stick those in our rotation as well. Since I don't know if there is a macro to use a potion, you may have to just click it or hotkey it. It's similar to flasks in WoW.

I keep swapping back and forth between t1 and t3. T1 is definitely the way to go on trash if your group kills things quickly. If they live out the entire duration of thunder 3, then something else is the problem. On bosses, I will tend to thunder 2. Really what I'm looking for is the thundercloud proc so I can get a decent damage instant cast off with an added DoT component. From my understanding, thunder DoT is very little of our DPS.

Unfortunately, only THM gets raise. You didn't level your ACN in vain, though.

Here are the cross class abilities I'd seek (in order):

Raging Strikes (ARC LV4)
Physick (ACN LV4)
Virus (ACN 12)
Quelling Strikes (ARC LV34)
Eye for an Eye (ACN LV34)

Only reason I recommend quelling last is because it is so far up there. As your gear improves, the more important quelling becomes. Nothing else appears to be useful to us.

Edited, Oct 7th 2013 2:22am by HitomeOfBismarck
#26 Sep 27 2013 at 11:32 AM Rating: Good
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One of the assumptions I made in my Firestarter analysis in this thread is that Firestarter procs on impact, so it is possible for a Fire projectile to proc Firestarter if you have the buff when it leaves your hands and consume the buff before it impacts the target (as I describe in this post). Now that I've been using Firestarter for a while, it occurs to me that I have never witnessed that particular sequence of events in practice. It occurs to me that maybe Firestarter doesn't proc on impact, it could be proccing from cast completion and the delay in the proc notification is *not* travel time to the target as I assumed earlier but just plain old delay between when the server calculates the proc and the client UI actually displays it.

Has anyone ever observed Firestarter proccing from the impact of a spell that was cast with the buff up? Has anyone done any dummy testing to prove/disprove?
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#27 Sep 27 2013 at 2:20 PM Rating: Good
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I want to say that I have, but thinking about it now, it seems that it should actually happen pretty frequently if it's true and I'm starting to doubt that. I'm thinking you're right and it's more likely that it's just taking time to process the proc.
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#28 Sep 27 2013 at 6:17 PM Rating: Good
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Yes, firestarter does indeed proc if the buff is up, effectively causing you to waste one firestarter proc. Hence, why I WISH they had gone with firestarter charges at least. T_T
#29 Sep 30 2013 at 1:50 PM Rating: Excellent
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Results of formal testing: I stood at maximum range from a target dummy and spammed the typical rotation until I reached 20 occurrences of "proc during Fire cast, finish cast, consume Firestarter" and not one of them reprocced. The likelihood of this happening if it was possible to proc is (100%-40%)^20 = 0.0037%. I conclude that Firestarter cannot proc from a cast that completes with the Firestarter buff currently active and that proc opportunities are effectively being "lost."

If I remember the earlier analysis I did of Firestarter rotations, this fact should somewhat narrow the gap between the "always be casting" strategy and the "interrupt on proc" strategy although ABC is still preferable.
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#30 Oct 01 2013 at 12:15 AM Rating: Good
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Hm interesting findings. I think I got confused. I thought you meant that a fire 1 could not proc firestarter while the firestarter buff was active. In other words, it's possible to waste a firestarter proc if you continue to cast fire 1 after obtaining the firestarter buff from a previous fire 1 as displayed here:

http://i.imgur.com/pa0qpIt.png

For instance, when thundercloud has procced, I have seen it proc again over the next 6 seconds twice in a row without me using it. This happens to me as well with firestarter.

You are saying, though, that firestarter will not proc on the next fire 1 that you cast after consuming firestarter, yes? This is very interesting and backs up what you had stated: firestarter has its own internal GCD.

This takes some guess work out of at least one of your fire 1 casts, though, so it is interesting! Actually, I wonder if this will prove beneficial on the last cast of fire 1 before you go into the regen phase.

Currently, I attempt what is above:

1) Spam fire 1 until low on MP
2) On last fire 1 before MP depleted, wait to see if firestarter procs before casting blizzard 3
3a) If it procs, cast fire 3
3b) If it doesn't, cast blizzard 3

This may be altered given the following scenario occurs:

1) Use firestarter on every fire 1 except the two before OOM
2) If firestarter procs on the 2nd to last fire 1 before OOM, use it immediately
3) Cast the next fire 1 and go OOM
4) Cast blizzard 3 without having to worry about firestarter proccing or not

So there is still some time spent waiting but if the above situation occurs, you can minimize the delay by swiftly proceeding into the mana regen phase.

Edited, Oct 1st 2013 2:23am by HitomeOfBismarck
#31 Oct 01 2013 at 9:15 AM Rating: Good
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Ok I made some tweaks and found some Macros that absolutely DO work.

The main being:

/macroicon "Fire"
/ac "Raging Strike" <me>
/ac "Fire" <t>
/ac "Virus" <t>
/ca "Blizzard III" <t>

So here's teh new info that saves this Macro and makes it work 100%. Remeber I had said that instant abilities go off out of order in a spam Macro?

So my test was:

/ac "Scathe" <t>
/ac "Virus" <t>

And for whatever reason, Virus goes off, sometimes but not others. Well that's just fine actually. You don't NEED virus to go off. But it will, and it will not take any time at all - it will share the animation time with Scathe.

This is very similar to how you get the bonus Fire off while casting a Fire III Firestarter proc. The Instant is sliding in under the radar of the game's animation queue. Therefore my new Scathe Maacro goes like this:

/macroicon "Scathe"
/ac "Scathe" <t>
/ac "Virus" <t>
/ac "Lethargy" <t>

This macro is 100%. It always works, while running, no problem. It will basically occasionally cast Virus and/or Lethargy on something you are Scathe-ing. You can use it while kiting without any trouble. IMO, this is better than just Scathe, because otherwise those two abilities are pretty weak. They take animation time normally, which is just a waste of time best spent elsewhere. You will never press this button and not have Scathe go off, that's the main point.

Now back to the main macro:

/macroicon "Fire"
/ac "Raging Strike" <me>
/ac "Fire" <t>
/ac "Virus" <t>
/ca "Blizzard III" <t>

That Virus in there prevents Blizzard III from going off out of order. Also, it nearly always goes off during the Fire 1 spam, not when you are ready to cast Blizzard III. It uses the same method of being an Instant that shares the Animation of Fire III. This also gets Virus onto your mobs early in the fight without spending even a split second casting it. This macro will 100% prevent you from standing there pressing Fire 1 with nothing happening. There is no drawback. It is worth mentioning that you still need a separate Blizzard III in order to preemptively regen mana, or to just end a fight early in Umbral.

I'm going to get these into a single post soon, but I want to hit 50 and see what the final macros will really be.
#32 Oct 02 2013 at 8:12 AM Rating: Decent
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I noticed CM Flare usage mentioned earlier in the thread. I have been hard casting Flare at the end of my AoE rotation and then doing Convert and Swiftcasting another Flare. Those adds will absolutely die if around half health.

Anyone done any math to see if hardcasting a Flare is worth it? If only situationally? I seem to pull good numbers on my log parser, but I am no math whiz.
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#33 Oct 03 2013 at 12:42 AM Rating: Good
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I like that method.

There is a way to make hardcasting flare worth it.

First, make sure you have umbral ice 3 up.

Next, cast fire 3 which will be cast at a faster rate due to umbral ice's 'buff' to the fire school's casting time.

IMMEDIATELY after you start casting fire 3, spam your flare button. Now, your flare casting time is also reduced in half on top of having astral fire 3 to buff it.

There are some very nice situations where casting lag is advantageous to us.

I think flare follows a few set of rules. One, it's a very finicky spell since its radius is so incredibly small for an AoE. If the mobs aren't grouped (and they should be if your tank knows what is going on), it won't be worth casting flare. Also, I think you would be better casting flare on 3 targets or more: two targets seems to favor single target rotation.

I have been experimenting with fire 2 in my AoE rotation. Before, it looked something like:

Blizzard 3 > Fire 3 + Flare (both casts cut in half but flare receives damage bonus from astral fire 3)
Convert
Swiftcast flare

At this point, I'm the tank and at this point, if I am not sitting on the tank, the mobs will become scattered making flare spam not viable afterwards.

What I've been doing now is:

1) Quelling strikes (can use raging strikes if you don't need it for burn phase later on)
2) Fire 3 (stacks of astral)
3) Fire 2
4) Fire 2
5) Fire 2
6) Swiftcast > Flare
7) Convert
8) Fire 2
9) Flare
10) Transpose
11) Blizzard 3
12) Fire 3

Repeat from #3 sans swiftcast and convert.

Edited, Oct 20th 2013 10:24am by HitomeOfBismarck
#34 Oct 03 2013 at 9:12 AM Rating: Good
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I just hit 50 a couple days ago and now I'm starting to do the endgame dungeons to see where the macros work and where they don't.

I've discovered that you can insta-cast ANY instant (or instant proc) by linking onto the end of a spell/macro. Exactly how it works with Fire III, you are casting Fire I and your start spamming Fire III's Firestarter proc and it goes off and shares the casting animation with Fire I.

We need a whole discussion pertaining to how normally casting animation for Instants takes time, but how you remove the casting animation time from your rotation by spamming instants into the end of another spell. That way all your Instants will cast for free (in terms of time).

So things like:

Manaward
Convert
Lethargy
Virus
Thundercloud/Firestarter procs
Transpose
Scathe (Scathe is tricky)

You can skip the casting animation of these Instants of if your are spamming them quickly enough after regular casting time spells. Some of these do have GCD, while other do not. The non-GCD ones are more reliable. I'm fairly sure you can actually use this method to skip GCD of the ones that do. Needs more testing.

Keep in mind, sometime they will actually go of before the spell you are casting. Example:

Flare > Convert

If you are spamming this combo Convert may go off while Flare is casting (or a split second before hand) and then you won't get the mana after the spell like you want.

Finally, I have noticed something very significant regarding the maybes and the sometimes. During some entire play sessions (log-on to log-off) the Macros will function one way, then in another session they will function another way, and other sessions it changes depending on what activity your are doing. This must have something to do with Latency. Therefore shoving of instant spells onto other spells may not be a 100% strategy.

Still working on it.
#35 Oct 04 2013 at 3:59 AM Rating: Excellent
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Glad you've noticed the delay too. Many times I have used flare and immediately spammed transpose only to have nothing happen at all. This is because I gained the astral fire after the flare went off but transpose also went off before the flare landed. The result: no charges to transpose.

Quite annoying!
#36 Oct 04 2013 at 7:50 AM Rating: Excellent
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HitomeOfBismarck wrote:

What I've been doing now is:

Fire 3 > Fire 2 > Fire 2 > swiftcast + Flare
Transpose
Blizz 3 > Fire 3 + Flare
Convert
Swiftcast
Flare

That's 3 flares in a relatively short amount of time coupled with the ~600 damage you do per mob with fire 2. I think it still needs some tweaking.


Brutal!! Thanks for sharing, I'm definitely going to try this weekend.
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#37 Oct 04 2013 at 11:35 AM Rating: Excellent
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HitomeOfBismarck wrote:
Glad you've noticed the delay too. Many times I have used flare and immediately spammed transpose only to have nothing happen at all. This is because I gained the astral fire after the flare went off but transpose also went off before the flare landed. The result: no charges to transpose.

Quite annoying!



I used to do that all the time, it is VERY annoying!
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#38 Oct 11 2013 at 3:19 AM Rating: Good
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So after doing some really AoE intensive fights today (turn 4), I can confirm to you something that may seem obvious: spamming fire 2 before you use flare is a good idea. Also, since tanks may not have the gear yet to hold threat off this AoE rotation, popping quelling strikes during this AoE rotation is a huge bonus.

I'd throw in convert if you know you have to use your AoE rotation in a fight. Something like:

Fire 3 (stacks of astral)
Fire 2
Fire 2
Fire 2
Flare
Convert
Ether if necessary so you have enough for fire 2 + flare
Fire 2
Swiftcast
Flare
Transpose
Blizzard 3
Fire 3

mash fire 2 button so you get the -50% cast speed on the fire 2 and repeat without convert. You will have to hard cast some flares but the damage is worth the delay.

Just be very careful of your threat! Remember flare's radius is tiny so if the mobs don't have cleave, sit right on them or near your tank. If you pull aggro, immediately pop manawall. If you have a paladin, hopefully they use cover on you.

Edited, Oct 27th 2013 3:11am by HitomeOfBismarck
#39 Oct 17 2013 at 5:15 PM Rating: Good
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This is some good information, thank you for sharing it!
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#40 Oct 20 2013 at 4:05 AM Rating: Default
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HitomeOfBismarck wrote:

What I've been doing now is:

Fire 3 > Fire 2 > Fire 2 > swiftcast + Flare
Transpose
Blizz 3 > Fire 3 + Flare
Convert
Swiftcast
Flare

That's 3 flares in a relatively short amount of time coupled with the ~600 damage you do per mob with fire 2. I think it still needs some tweaking.


Can you help me understand how to do two Swiftcast in this short amount of time I dont really understand >.<


Edited, Oct 20th 2013 6:05am by Edenfantasys
#41 Oct 20 2013 at 8:24 AM Rating: Good
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It's not possible. Refer to the original post for the correct rotation.
#42 Oct 20 2013 at 4:55 PM Rating: Decent
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oh ok =)
#43 Oct 21 2013 at 8:52 AM Rating: Good
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I've been pretty much playing FFXIV with all my free time lately. Haven't been spending any work time on Zam as I had been.

The only updates I have is I've pretty much nailed down the macros I'll be using. I really don't think anyone will really be doing things the same way I do, so I doubt they will be too useful for anyone else. I know the strengths and weaknesses of when to use my macros, but other people will already have strategies of their own for accomplishing similar results. One benefit is that I rewrote them for my PS3 version and now I can play BLM on controller with just one hotbar. It's pretty nice.

Glad to see that you decided on eggs Hitome. I agree that the Crit+ is the most beneficial stat!
#44 Oct 23 2013 at 10:28 AM Rating: Good
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HitomeOfBismarck wrote:
So after doing some really AoE intensive fights today (turn 4), I can confirm to you something that may seem obvious: spamming fire 2 before you use flare is a good idea. Also, since tanks may not have the gear yet to hold threat off this AoE rotation, popping quelling strikes during this AoE rotation is a huge bonus.

I'd throw in convert if you know you have to use your AoE rotation in a fight. Something like:

Fire 3 (stacks of astral)
Fire 2
Fire 2
Fire 2
Flare
Convert
Fire 2
Swiftcast
Flare
Transpose
Blizzard 3
Fire 3

mash fire 2 button so you get the -50% cast speed on the fire 2 and repeat without convert. You will have to hard cast some flares but the damage is worth the delay.

Just be very careful of your threat! Remember flare's radius is tiny so if the mobs don't have cleave, sit right on them or near your tank. If you pull aggro, immediately pop manawall. If you have a paladin, hopefully they use cover on you.

Edited, Oct 11th 2013 5:20am by HitomeOfBismarck



I'm curious if you've tested replacing that Blizz3 with a Blizz2. Yes, you'd have to be grouped up near the mobs, but you're probably already doing this since you dont want to pull them away from the group when you pull hate.
#45 Oct 24 2013 at 2:57 AM Rating: Good
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It's an interesting idea and would work if I could get two of them off. The question then becomes: how long are you sitting at max MP in both scenarios?

I don't know if some of you have noticed...but when you try to use this rotation or any rotation where you go from transpose > blizzard 3 for umbral ice 3, you have to actually wait a second after casting the blizzard 3 for your client to register that you have received umbral ice 3.

This means if you spam your fire 3 key right off the bat, you will not receive any of the bonuses of umbral ice 3. Interesting enough, your fire 2 that follows the fire 3 will gain the halved casting time from umbral ice 3.

So the time you sit at max MP using blizzard 3 after transpose is quite lengthy. I have not tested double blizzard 2 but will give it a shot next Monday. I actually have some finishing tests I need to run on Titan so I might as well throw this test into a random DF AK or WP.

Actually, WP is the perfect scenario since most groups are now AoEing their way through it.

Perhaps some of you can help me with this? The more data, the better!

I also need some help fine-tuning the entire post. For instance, I noticed that I had quelling/raging/INT pop used before the initial fire 3 was cast. To me, this is a slight DPS loss since you lose some time on your raging/INT pot if you are wasting time popping cooldowns. Your first fire 3 doesn't necessarily do a ton of damage, either.

If you see any other flaws (or think this change was a flaw), let's discuss it. This post started as a question and still remains one! I've just moved some general information to the top.

Edited, Oct 24th 2013 5:05am by HitomeOfBismarck
#46 Oct 25 2013 at 8:52 AM Rating: Good
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Some insight after trying this only briefly:

It works surprisingly well. My blizzard 2's seemed to hit upward of 250-300 if I recall correctly and I was able to go right into my fire 3 > fire 2 setup without any of the delay mentioned in the above post. The only problem is we have to consider the circumstances: is there cleave or nasty conal AoE? Basically: is it safe to be in melee range?

If so, this rotation seems optimal.

Edited, Oct 25th 2013 11:21pm by HitomeOfBismarck
#47 Oct 26 2013 at 4:38 PM Rating: Good
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After doing a lot of WP aoe pulls I have been fiddling with getting as many Flares in as possible and maybe stumbled on a viable AoE rotation with bard in group. Assuming aggro isn't an issue (thus, bard):

Bliz 2 x3 -> hasted F3 -> hasted Flare -> Transpose -> Bliz 2 x2 -> Hasted F3 -> hasted Flare

I have no idea other than parsing with ffxiv-app but it seems to be comparable to casting the Fire 2/Flare rotation. Just thought I'd share!

Edited, Oct 26th 2013 6:42pm by tputs
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#48 Oct 27 2013 at 1:03 AM Rating: Good
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That sounds pretty interesting. I'll need to experiment some more. I actually really like this blizzard 2 two times method. There is seemingly no umbral ice lag because your spell hits instantaneously (you're right on top of the monster..no travel time) and this means you can go directly into fire 3 without any delay.

I want to test your rotation now. I wonder what the differences are? It's rather hard for me to parse AoE and compare. :\

Also, I've added some notes about convert. Currently, I have to actually pop an ether a majority of the time on my BLM after I've used convert to get off a fire 2 > flare because it's HP dependent and more often than not, if you're sitting in the middle of a bunch of mobs, you're probably not at max HP. It may be worth it (to play it safe) to use hi-ethers.
#49 Oct 29 2013 at 11:46 AM Rating: Good
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Thanks guys!

I haven't got the rotation smoothed out, but just by adding Flare and Blizz 2 into the mix my AoE damage is clearly much, much higher.

Kinda depends on the situation for when and what to cast. Generally AoE rotations aren't needed for long enough to get to the "rinse/repeat" part.

Are you guys using these AoE rotations in Coil?
#50 Oct 30 2013 at 12:56 AM Rating: Good
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I was using the long-ranged AoE rotation in turn 4 but switched to the close-ranged one this week. We downed it about the same time but I did pull some threat this time around on the AoE packs. Usually you can save quelling strikes for them and be just fine but that wasn't the case this time around!

I actually flubbed up some because I missed 4 spells which caused me to sit with zero stacks of umbral ice and ~100 MP before I could recover with a blizzard 1.

Perhaps I'll write up a guide on coil with BLM in mind. Right now I highly recommend looking at ACC gear if you are heading into turn 5. I believe the # we needed was either 463 or 460. I would like to get some information from other raiding BLMs but no one seems to visit anymore. :P I'm pretty far below the cap but outside the incident listed above, I haven't seen much of a difference. Good pieces of AF2 to fix that are the body, hands, and boots. But if you can, the allagan boot and legs are very nice too.
#51 Oct 30 2013 at 7:11 AM Rating: Good
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HitomeOfBismarck wrote:

Perhaps I'll write up a guide on coil with BLM in mind.


That would be awesome. Could have a thread dedicated to that.

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