I got a couple of questions on why I didn’t recommend Whirlwind of blades instead of Lurker’s Assault on groups of less than 3 enemies. After all, if you get two hits with Whirlwind and your power is 50,000, then it adds 20,000 power to you which is more than the 30% LA gives you. Right?

Well, it’s not so simple, as I discovered. First of all, boosting your (already) boosted power by 40% does not equate to a 40% boost in damage.

Normally, you can use this equation to figure out the effectiveness of WoB:

((1+(x*1.4))/40000) / (1+(x/40000)) *100 = effectiveness

Where x= your buffed power, and 1.4 is the buff from WoB for hitting two targets

So, if you had a base power of 50000, the effectiveness would be 122.22%. So, in that case, with a 22.22% boost in DPS, it is not as effective as Lurker’s Assault, which gives a 30% boost.

However, after doing some testing, I found that Whirlwind of Blades was actually less effective than that. When I looked at the hard numbers from my testing, I found that Whirlwind was just barely more effective than Lurker’s when hitting 4 targets. In my test, it amounted to a 2% difference. So, what’s going on here?

The fly in the ointment is the Shadowborn feat. It adds your base power to the next attack from stealth, except in the case of whirlwind, it adds that power for the length of the buff from whirlwind. But, since it is still buffing your power in both attacks, we have to account for it.

So here is how it breaks down for three targets. It’s gonna be a little math, so bear with me.

So, is this meme wrong because we aren’t using those equations or because it isn’t real life? I need a drink…

Here is our equation from before, but for three targets this time:

(1+(( x*1.6)/40000)) / (1+(x/40000))*100= Effectiveness

Because Shadowborn procs independently of whirlwind, and because, combined with whirlwind, it lasts the full ~~10~~ 12 seconds with the whirlwind buff, we have to add to the equation another variable:

(1+(z+(x*1.6))/40000) / (1+((x+z)/40000)) *100 = Effectiveness

z = your base power added because of Shadowborn.

x = your buffed power (not including Shadowborn)

If we further refine our equation, and separate our power into power from buffs and from base power, we can compare effectiveness between the two like this:

{1+([(z + x) * ((0.2*n)+1)]+ z) / 40000)} / {1+[(z*2 + x)/40000]}= effectiveness

n=number of WW hits

z= base power

q= all other power buffs

Any effectiveness over 1.3 (30%) means WW is better than LA.

Assuming we hit 3 things, 20k base, and 30k power from buffs, we get 1.27 or 27%

For 4 things, we get 1.36 or 36%

However, when we compare the other 12 seconds, after the initial attack, with 3 hits and the same power we get:

{1+([(z+ q) * ((0.2*n)+1)]+ z) / 40000)} / {1+[(z+q)/40000]}

Which equals 1.55 or 55%

For 4 hits it would be 66%

The Lurker’s Assault buff lasts 10 seconds and the Shadowborn power buff will only proc for one or maybe two attacks in that period. Whereas the WoB attack procs Shadowborn for the entire 12 seconds. That makes WoB definately better at 4 or more hits, and marginally better at 3 hits.

Hope this helps, and much thanks to Janne (again) for helping to work through this!