Skill vs Gear

I'm not generally a penny-arcade fan, but this one was pretty great.   And it turned into some really interesting conversations on twitter.

Ghostcrawler (sorry GC, you'll never get past your WoW name) had this to say:

This is something that I notice over on the hunter forums a lot.   Someone will come looking for help with their DPS, and the responses will primarily be things like you should use this trinket instead of that trinket or use this build instead of that build.

To put this as plainly as possible: the total DPS gained by switching from orange Agi+Crit gems to Agi+Haste gems is nothing in comparison to doing your rotation well.  I'm not saying we shouldn't optimize our gems and our reforging, that sort of advice is fine, but the difference it will make is incredibly minuscule.  Playing well should be about playing well, though.

With whatever gear you have, there's a max DPS you can do, and every hunter (except this tier SV hunters) will do X% of that total possible DPS.   That's the number we should be focusing on improving. A lot of the hunters who come looking for help will say things like "I matched my gems and reforged to Ask Mr. Robot, so why am I not doing more DPS?"  If your response to them is "well actually you need to put in custom stat weights to use Ask Mr. Robot", then they will go away playing absolutely no better than they were before.

Stat Priorities Change
Remember just a few months ago when BM hunters were still going Crit>Haste>Mastery?   They nerfed haste's effect on RPPM trinkets so we all went back to the old Crit>Haste>Mastery build.  And then some great hunters were willing to play around with the stat priorities, and found you can actually do a little more with a Haste>Mastery>Crit build.  What we thought was the most valuable stat was actually the least!

And that is going to continue to happen unless Blizzard completely changes their design philosophy.  We'll need to keep changing what we use as BiS gear, and what our stat priorities are.  To me, that makes focusing on playing well instead of gearing well even more important.

You can't always control what gear you have, or what stats you have the most of. You can always control how well you play, though.   

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