Suppose that in the next expansion, Blizzard removes secondary stats from all gear. Instead, the bonuses traditionally associated with secondary stats are now found on rings. You can equip the same ring twice, or wear two different rings.
You can choose between rings with the following text:
- Add 10% to your haste
- Add 9.5% to your critical strike chance
Lets assume critical heals are double normal ones – so 9.5% critical strike chance results in 9.5% more healing.
Question: Which rings should you equip?
At first glance, haste is the better of the two rings! If you can cast spells 10% faster, then you are doing 10% more healing! So a website might say your “ring priorities” are like this:
HASTE > CRIT
Well lets do the math for all three combinations:
Two haste rings: 1000 base * (1 + 20% casting speed) = 1200 hps
Two crit rings: 1000 base * (1 + 19% critical chance) = 1190 hps
One of each ring: 1000 base * (1 + 10% casting speed) * (1 + 9.5% critical chance) = 1204 hps
What happened? Wasn’t haste the top priority? Why isn’t it best to go all haste?
Individually the haste ring was better than the critical strike ring. However, multiplying the different effects together is more powerful than simply adding either type alone.
Now lets return to the current expansion. We don’t wear fancy rings, we use secondary stats. But the same principle applies! Sometimes its a combination of secondary stats that is the best, which you cannot portray by a single priority.
Now lets add in tier set bonuses, legendary bonuses, trinket bonuses, and fancy necklace enchant bonuses. All of these might behave totally different than secondary stats – so how do you account for them too?
Also, different boss fights are, well, different! Sometimes you need to move around a lot and must use instant-casts to keep people alive. Sometimes you get the luxury of stacking on the boss and using powerful AoE heals during the worst moments of the fight. Should you have the same gear for every scenario?
Now read Swol’s post above, and it will come much more clear. Ask Mr Robot doesn’t even try to make a universal “priority” list. Instead, they simulate lots of different combinations for players using different types of gear, different talent choices, and, indeed, different boss fight scripts. The result is a far more tailored approach to gear suggestions.