SimulationCraft is a useful tool that allows players to check the differences between a variety of things: gear, racials, enchants, stats, gems, really anything. However, it can be a little daunting for players who are new to using the tools. I’ll try to make things simple for those who want to use it.

Getting Started the obvious first step is to download SimulationCraft. I always recommend regularly updating using the “nightly builds” which are released very frequently and include any small tweak or improvement anyone has made for any spec or class.

Once you have downloaded and installed SimulationCraft, you just have to decide how you want to use it.

simc-options-global

SimCraft has several options that allow you to customize the type of fight you want to test. You can mouseover each option for a small tooltip that gives a description of the options.simc-options

Iterations – These are the number of tests you want SimC to perform. The higher the number, the smaller the margin of error, but the longer it will take. Generally 1000 is the minimum for comparing gear whereas 10,000 is the minimum for getting stat weights. The more iterations you can use, the less RNG will effect the results.

Length (sec) – The length of time you want the fight to last.

Vary Length % – The variation of the above fight length. Some fights have very little variance due to tight enrage or kill timers whereas others can vary wildly depending on group skill. Higher variance *should* help to smooth out Haste’s value that can jump around quite a lot with small changes in fight length.

Fight Style – This allows you to customize what kind of fight you’d like to test. Historically the “Patchwerk” it the traditional fight style for Single Target encounters as it includes no movement, no mechanics, just stand and fight. “HecticAddCleave” has been the traditional fight style for AOE or Multitarget encounters. The other fight styles can all be used to approximate a fight you’re trying to check out. Fight styles will have an effect on stat weights.

Player Skill – This lets you set realistic situations based on your skill. The higher the skill level, the less the delay between abilities will be, normally a matter of tenths of seconds.

Num Enemies – This (obviously) lets you set how many enemies there are, some fights have more than one boss that is stacked up.

Target Level – This lets you test based on different targets you would be attacking.

Target Race – Sometimes this can be important when a race or trinket increases damage to a certain target type.

In order to sim your character to check for your damage, its pretty straightforward. You have to options; importing your character from the Armory, or using the addon to import your character for you. Here’s what you do:

  1. Import your character, either using the addon or the “Import” tab in the top left corner.simc-import-picture
  2. Decide what fight parameters you want to test.simc-options
  3. Press Simulate in the bottom right.

You will be given a “print out” of information for you that tells you everything, from damage per execute time (DPET), damage breakdown by ability, buff uptime, and much more.

Before looking at stat weights, its important to understand exactly what stat weights are and how to use them. Stat weights given by SimCraft represent the increase in damage that you will gain from adding additional points in a stat. These weights are based on your current gear, stats, and procs, and for WW can change even the stat priority based on those factors. The rankings DO NOT reflect the overall weight of stats or some grand design, big picture, stat priority. They are merely analyzing the gain for further stats on top of what you already have. Using stat weights to compare gear will be covered in the “Item Comparison” tab.

  1. Import your character, either using the addon or the “Import” tab in the top left corner.simc-import-picture
  2. Go to “Globals” tab of “Options”.simc-options-global
  3. Select what parameters you want to test your characters under.simc-options
  4. Go to the “Scaling” under “Options”simc-scaling
  5. Check “Enable Scaling” and select what stats you want to get stat weights from. simc-scaling-options
  6. Press Simulate in the bottom right.

This generates a “print out” with all the information of a normal simulation just for personal DPS, with the addition of a box that tells you your stat weights. It also includes a string that you can copy and paste into the Pawn addon to better compare stats in-gameThese weights are the benefit you’d gain by adding additional point(s) into the stats. SimulationCraft stat weights are not always indicative of a greater stat priority, but are more focused on immediate gain.

simc-scaling-results

Scale factors are what most people call “stat weights”. “Normalized” is all the stats based on their relation to the primary stat, which is in this case, Agility. Scale factors better tell you how much you’d gain per additional stat, whereas Normalized helps show the relationship between stats and is generally easier to understand how much X stat is better than Y.

You can also enable “Plotting” to generate a stat plot for how further increases in each stat will effect your DPS, this is useful to show breakpoints or caps.simc-plotting

SimCraft is a powerful tool that allows you to compare a variety of things.We’ll try to list some of the more common things to compare.

Starting Steps
  1. Import your character – This can be done the traditional way, or you can simply include a line at the top of a blank Simulate page that says “armory=REGION,SERVERNAME,CHARACTERNAME” Ex. “armory=us,turalyon,babylonius”
  2. Set a baseline. This can be done using the character as is, or by zeroing out what you want to compare. This could mean removing any gear for a slot you want to compare items in, setting talents or stats to 0, or whatever else you want to compare.
  3. Set up the copies of things you want to test. This is done using “copy=”NAME” “, this will set up an identical profile from what is above, with whatever change you want to make. *Note* The copies are made using the profile directly above it, so if you make a change it will exist for all copies afterward. This can be problematic if you don’t account for it. Ex. If checking for Chrono Shard with set, you need to change the neck to trigger the set bonus, but you need to change it back in the next copy or it will stay that way until you change it.
  4. Make the changes you want to test, examples will be given below.
  5. Hit Simulate
  6. Get a stacked ranking of the DPS performance of each copy, similar to what is found in the Gear/Trinket Compendium.

Make sure you include any gems in items by adding “,gem=GEMID” at the end of that items line. The same goes with enchants; “,enchant=ENCHANT_NAME”.

Comparing Stats

Stats are given in the format like “# gear_agility=___”. To test stats you first need to remove the # which tells SimC to ignore that line. After removing the #  you can put whatever stats you want in there.

simc-stats

Comparing Talents

After setting your copies, you want the following line to be “talents=xxxxxxx” Where each number is the number of the talent you want to use. The leftmost talent in that row is 1, middle talent is 2, and rightmost talent is 3. Each “x” is the talent row, so the leftmost “x” is the first row of talents, and the rightmost “x” is the last row.

simc-talents

Comparing Items

Comparing items works as you’d expect. The full line should be “SLOT=ITEM_NAME,id=ITEMID,ilevel=ILVL”. When using items, you need to include the item ID that can be gathered from the WoWHead URL. For example, an 880 Cursed Beartooth Necklace, is “neck=cursed_beartooth_necklace,id=139239,ilevel=880”. Its always recommended to set the Baseline to an empty slot to better illustrate the power of each item.simc-neck

Comparing Trinkets

If you’d like to compare how a trinket fits into your current gear compared against your current trinkets, then you should be sure to test it in both slots; “trinket1” and “trinket2”. simc-trinkets-2

If you’d like to compare multiple trinkets individually then you can set the baseline to use no trinkets.simc-trinkets-1

Comparing Enchants

To compare different enchants, just change the name of the enchant that is used.simc-enchant