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I have never understood how to work out which is better, x and y one-handed weapons (1Hs) dual-wielded (DW) or z two-handed weapon (2H). I have read innumerable websites in my years of playing WoW since first getting my hunter to the level when she could dual-wield having always used a 2H before that.

Long rambling and not totally relevant back-story/info…

I am asking again now because my monk has a dilemma. I have been using two 1H fist-weapons, DW because, even when I was wielding a 2H (staff) it never animates that she uses it. It just seems to be a buff-stick and she looks weird carrying it sticking up miles from her head, threaded through her hair, from just below her shoulder line.

This staff is one of those that you would grip near one end if you were t animate the toon wielding it. She does not look as silly carrying a staff that is wielded in the centre of its length. Anyway, I am using the staff and have transmogrified it to look like a less unusual-looking and more standard monk staff - one with the snowman-like thing hanging off the end that is wielded in the centre. Problem avoided, I guess.

I am still loth to carry/wield a weapon that is never actually wielded in combat. I may as well have some cool looking fist weapons that actually look like they are being used in combat. Munkie's1 spec is Windwalker and so most of her combat is hand-to-hand melee and so does not actually animate using the staff.

That is all a long rambling preamble to the real question of my post.


The example in this case:

2H weapon  Staff[Chillwind Staff]
TooltipDamage94 - 141
Char tab2Damage238 - 296
2 x 1HsFist weapons  2 x [Grappling Handwraps]
TooltipDamage48 - 90
Char tabDamage217 - 287
 DPS98.62 / 49.37

Now, I get that it is not (for some reason3 it is not as easy as adding the dps of the two fist weapons together and comparing that with the dps of the staff. Here come the questions:

  1. What is the formula that I need to compare the two weapon setups' DPS values? <rhetorical>Why can I not just add the two numbers in the char pane for DPS together and compare that with the DPS value in the char pane for the staff?</rhetorical>

  2. Is a 2H always better than 2 x 1H dual wielded?

  3. There must be an easier way to compare the two weapon setups to decide which to use - or some formula or something - other than equipping each in turn and hitting a training dummy to see which does he most dps. Mustn't there? If so, what is it?

  4. Someone told me it is dependent on spec whether the 2H is better than the 2 x 1H. WTF? So it is even more complex than some easy formula?!

  5. Is item level relevant?

  6. Item colo(u)r (e.g. blue vs green)?

  7. HELP?!

1 My pandamonk.
2 When wielding the weapon(s).
3 Rant about how Blizzard cold have made this UI easier to understand is redacted. Rhetorical questions are rhetorical.



( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 23rd, 2012 07:01 pm (UTC)
I haven't played for ages and so am way out of the loop on specs and classes today, but yes, it's always depended on spec whether 2H is better or not. Apart from the obvious (choose 2H or 1H specialisation) it has to do with the cooldowns on skills and when things proc - one-handers will get you more smaller hits and thus more chances for a proc, so the internal cooldown of how often something *can* proc is important. Hence all the theorycrafting that has to be redone whenever they rebalance or update something... Speed of 1Hs was also relevant for rogue and shaman specs. (They also had to work out how much of a raw DPS difference meant you should ignore all of that entirely and just go for the beefier weapon).

^ This was true at the time - I don't imagine they'll have been able to remove that sort of consideration entirely, but I haven't been following.

Item level's not really relevant: you can use it as a brute force guide, but if the stats are suboptimal it won't necessarily be better than something with a lower ilevel. Same for colour.

I don't have a clue what monk specs are like, so can't help you there!
Oct. 24th, 2012 05:03 am (UTC)
Thanks for your reply!
Oct. 25th, 2012 01:29 am (UTC)
Personally, I'd go to wow_ladies and ask there.

1: I think the off-hand strikes less-often than the mainhand, and that weirds the equations. (Though... is there a DPS stat in the character data? I'm not able to log on right now, so I can't remember. If there is, then you can futz with equipping stuff and seeing how the stat changes.)

2: I dunno.

3: The WoW_Ladies might know. Or Elitist Jerks...

4: Yes; some specs get a bonus to 1-handers vs 2-handers, or vice versa. At least, this is the case with DeathKnights. Wouldn't be surprised if there were something of the sort with monks.

5: Only insofar as iLevel tracks all the bennies on the device.

6: Yes, insofar as blue items are generally better than greens of the same iLevel.
Oct. 25th, 2012 05:26 am (UTC)

This dilemma has been circumvented for now because I levelled. A lot. And got new and better fist weapons which are MUCH better than the staff. If it comes up again I will try asking in those places that you suggest.

I just don't think that it should be this hard to compare equipment setups. I see this as a failure in the UI design/coding to be honest. All of those values, by the way, were plucked straight from the weapon tooltips or the character pane.
Oct. 25th, 2012 08:30 pm (UTC)
The tooltips are buggy right now, too -- intermittently, they will display that something is a bazillion times better, when the stats are... well, obviously not.
Oct. 25th, 2012 11:26 pm (UTC)
True - I have seen a + int value of 8376234 or some such random string of digits… ;-p
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )


Nat S Ford
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