Defense vs. Absorption.

Post Reply
6 posts
By Nateball89 at 2012-02-21 15:53:01
I know what both do, but I was wondering if anyone had any insight into which stat would hold more weight for a true defense tank.
By Kelborn at 2012-02-21 16:17:10

Defense is basically your Avoidance stat: Chance to Parry incoming Melee (lightsaber, boss fist, monster teeth) attacks and Dodge/Deflect incoming Ranged (blasters) attacks. Shield / Absorption are your damage mitigation stats. Mitigation is always more reliable than Avoidance. Tanks who stack Avoidance over Mitigation take more unpredictable spike damage, whereas tanks who stack Mitigation over Avoidance take consistent but predictable damage. You want a mix of both, but definitely more Shield/Absorb than Defense.

Example*: A tank with 50% Avoidance and 20% Mitigation will either take no damage or a very large hit (aka spike damage). Situations like this are very stressful on healers. A tank with 20% Avoidance and 50% Mitigation will take an average of half damage on all attacks, and a small chance to take no damage. This is what healers prefer, as they can easily keep up with the incoming damage since it's more consistent. (as opposed to: fine, fine, fine, wtfpwn tank dead lulwhut?)

All of the defensive stats only work on Melee and Ranged attacks, which is fortunately the majority of PvE boss attacks. None of them work vs Tech (grenades, vibroknives, probes) or Force (self explanatory...) attacks though. So you can think of Shield/Absorb as an extension of Armor since the vast majority of Melee and Ranged attacks are Kinetic/Energy dmg.

Shield and Absorb cap at +50%, for a total of 70% shield chance and 75% shield absorption. Defense caps at +30%, for a total of 40%. IMO, you'd want Shield/Absorb on your Enhancements in your main gear and Defense Rating on your Mods / offpieces (ear, implant, belt, bracers). Once Shield/Absorb are at or near their caps you can put more focus onto Defense. And if you somehow manage to cap off all of those... uhhh, stack Power?

*Note: because Shield Chance only caps at 70%, no matter how you stack stats you're still going to get hit with full damage from time to time. but it's still better than relying solely on Defense.

By tobarstep at 2012-02-26 11:26:05
Kelborn said:All of the defensive stats only work on Melee and Ranged attacks, which is fortunately the majority of PvE boss attacks. None of them work vs Tech (grenades, vibroknives, probes) or Force (self explanatory...) attacks though. So you can think of Shield/Absorb as an extension of Armor since the vast majority of Melee and Ranged attacks are Kinetic/Energy dmg.

According to this post on the SWTOR forums, SWTOR uses a 2-roll system, with shield chance being in the second roll after determining hit or miss. AFAIK, tech and force attacks have 100% accuracy for the first roll, but could still be mitigated by shielding. Is this not correct?

By Kelborn at 2012-02-26 12:46:32

That is not correct. See here and here.

You can only shield Melee and Ranged attacks (which I've defined above). Tech and Force attacks cannot be shielded. IMO, the reason for this is that the vast majority of Boss attacks are Melee and Ranged, and if Tech and Force could be shielded... Tank characters would be virtually indestructible in PvP. So there's no real PvE need for Tech and Force to be shielded, and defensive capabilities are kept balanced for PvP.

Also, be sure not confuse those "Attack Types" with the four "Damage Types": Kinetic, Energy, Internal, and Elemental. While a Tech attack cannot be Shielded, if it's Kinetic damage it can still be mitigated by Armor. Same goes for Force.

By tobarstep at 2012-02-28 07:41:41

@Kelborn

Thank you for the clarification on that. Though it does present some interesting implications for pvp as nearly all of the Vanguard/Powertech attacks are themselves Tech and not Ranged. I guess maybe they do little enough base damage that people aren't complaining about them almost never missing. It also indicates to me that I shouldn't worry very much about the accuracy stat on either of those classes in pve. Hmm... need to rethink some gearing choices.

By carljones at 2012-08-10 14:39:36
Lets say you have 37% defense 45% shield and 40% absorb as a guardian hybrid spec. 37% of incoming damage is mitigated by defense. Shielding has a 45% chance to occur, which absorbs 40% of the damage. That averages to an 18% mitigation to incoming damage. Defense clearly helps reduce the amount of overall healing much better, and yes you will spike a bit more frequently than shield tanks but they still spike too. But shield tanks need CONSTANT healing on top of spike recovering. A defense tank that hits a spike can be easily healed back to full health by evading following attacks, a shield tank is still taking consistent moderate damage. If you want pure mitigation of damage, defense is better. Shielding is for vanguards and shadows. Guardians are better than that

Post Reply

You are not signed in. Please sign in to post a reply.