Update (Apr 15): Corrected all boss categorizations. There has been a long-running error in boss categorization (low/mid/high) that is irrelevant at low I/E percentages but compounds quickly with higher I/E. The Average profile is unaffected.

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Update (Apr 2): Updated for the 3.0 HMs! Damage ratios courtesy of dipstik, Methoxa. Special thanks to Milas for giving me access to his HM logs (Revan numbers!) and for his patience with my incredibly long delay on using them. PvP numbers have been removed since they were bunk anyway (if you want to mitigation tank in PvP, use the “Low” profile).

Update (Dec 6): Updated for 3.0! At present, this post still uses NiM Dread Fortress (pre-nerf) damage distributions and values. The numbers will be updated for HM Ravagers/ToS as soon as possible, but in the meantime, the split into high/mid/low MR/FT profiles makes the numbers relatively accurate despite the old data.

For a quick overview of the methodology used in this post, hit the spoiler.

Spoiler
Does anyone read this? I can bring it back, but seriously…lots of typing.

Special 3.0 HM Notes

This post is based on the best validated DtPS values that I could find, tempered by the fact that I have very limited personal time these days and was not able to finish my log processing script. Specifically, I’m using Dipstik and Methoxa’s numbers for 9/10 bosses. HM Revan is pulled from a log given to me by Milas (of <Zorz>). The calculations for Revan are rough and based on some general assumptions about Milas’s gear at the time of the kill. I’m confident that the ratios are accurate to within a few percentage points, but they are not perfect.

DtPS values are even sketchier. These I pulled straight from a set of tanking logs as post-mitigation values. I then made very sweeping assumptions about net mitigation across the board and scaled the numbers back up. The values are pretty well correlated with what I would expect, so again, probably accurate to within a few percentage points, but I wouldn’t call these values “definitive” in any sense of the word. Caveat emptor.

Using The Tables

To determine your target itemization, add up the defense, shield and absorb ratings from your character sheet including stim. This is your current stat budget. Using this, find the nearest entry in the appropriate table below for your class and stat budget. Your goal is to get your defense, shield and absorb rating as close to these recommended values as possible by swapping mods, enhancements and augments. This will maximize your achievable mitigation from defensive stats.

Note that these tables were all generated assuming use of the best in slot relic types: Reactive Warding and Fortunate Redoubt. These tables are not fully accurate with other relic combinations! They will be close, but not quite correct. Because these relics are included in the optimization process, there is no need to consider the relic proc value in your stat budget (as was previously required). Simply use your character sheet values; no need to calculate!

As an example, imagine that my shadow’s character sheet shows a defense rating of 520, a shield rating of 1100, and an absorb rating of 900 (with stim activated). Thus, my total stat budget is 520 + 1100 + 900 = 2520. Rounding to the nearest value in the “Average” table below for shadows, we find the following entry:

{2500,{defense->476,shield->891,absorb->1133}}

My current defense rating is 520, which is high by 44 (almost exactly 1 enhancement). My shield rating is 1100, which is too high by 209. Since the only way to increase shield rating over the minimum is to stack shield augments (assuming you’re already using Sturdiness/Immunity enhancements), this should be a very easy problem to fix. Finally, my absorb rating is 900, which is too low by a whopping 233 points. If I swap one enhancement from sturdiness to immunity (i.e. from absorb to defense), and then swap all five of my shield augments to absorb, I should be just about perfect. I’ll end up a little low on defense, a little low on shield and a little high on absorb, but it should be good enough. In most cases, it is impossible to achieve precisely the optimal stat ratings. Just get as close as you can.

Average

M/R+K/E: 55.7809%
F/T+K/E: 23.0481%
F/T+I/E: 21.1710%
DtPS: 4247.69

For those who don’t want to carry around three gear sets…

Shadow

Graph

Spoiler
{1500,{defense->636,shield->284,absorb->580}}
{1600,{defense->616,shield->343,absorb->641}}
{1700,{defense->586,shield->411,absorb->703}}
{1800,{defense->563,shield->475,absorb->761}}
{1900,{defense->543,shield->538,absorb->818}}
{2000,{defense->526,shield->600,absorb->874}}
{2100,{defense->511,shield->660,absorb->928}}
{2200,{defense->500,shield->720,absorb->981}}
{2300,{defense->490,shield->778,absorb->1033}}
{2400,{defense->482,shield->835,absorb->1083}}
{2500,{defense->476,shield->891,absorb->1133}}
{2600,{defense->472,shield->946,absorb->1182}}
{2700,{defense->469,shield->1001,absorb->1231}}
{2800,{defense->467,shield->1055,absorb->1278}}
{2900,{defense->467,shield->1108,absorb->1325}}
{3000,{defense->468,shield->1160,absorb->1371}}
{3100,{defense->470,shield->1212,absorb->1417}}
{3200,{defense->473,shield->1264,absorb->1462}}
{3300,{defense->478,shield->1315,absorb->1507}}
{3400,{defense->483,shield->1366,absorb->1552}}
{3500,{defense->488,shield->1416,absorb->1596}}
{3600,{defense->495,shield->1466,absorb->1639}}
{3700,{defense->503,shield->1515,absorb->1682}}
{3800,{defense->511,shield->1564,absorb->1725}}
{3900,{defense->520,shield->1613,absorb->1767}}
{4000,{defense->529,shield->1662,absorb->1809}}
{4100,{defense->539,shield->1710,absorb->1851}}
{4200,{defense->550,shield->1757,absorb->1893}}
{4300,{defense->561,shield->1805,absorb->1934}}
{4400,{defense->573,shield->1852,absorb->1975}}
{4500,{defense->585,shield->1899,absorb->2016}}
{4600,{defense->598,shield->1946,absorb->2056}}
{4700,{defense->611,shield->1993,absorb->2096}}
{4800,{defense->625,shield->2039,absorb->2136}}
{4900,{defense->640,shield->2085,absorb->2176}}
{5000,{defense->654,shield->2130,absorb->2215}}
{5100,{defense->670,shield->2176,absorb->2255}}
{5200,{defense->685,shield->2221,absorb->2294}}
{5300,{defense->702,shield->2266,absorb->2333}}
{5400,{defense->717,shield->2312,absorb->2371}}
{5500,{defense->734,shield->2357,absorb->2410}}
{5600,{defense->751,shield->2401,absorb->2448}}
{5700,{defense->769,shield->2444,absorb->2487}}
{5800,{defense->789,shield->2485,absorb->2526}}
{5900,{defense->812,shield->2523,absorb->2565}}
{6000,{defense->837,shield->2558,absorb->2605}}

Guardian

Graph

Spoiler
{1500,{defense->1128,shield->280,absorb->92}}
{1600,{defense->1127,shield->319,absorb->154}}
{1700,{defense->1126,shield->359,absorb->215}}
{1800,{defense->1127,shield->398,absorb->275}}
{1900,{defense->1130,shield->436,absorb->334}}
{2000,{defense->1133,shield->475,absorb->392}}
{2100,{defense->1138,shield->513,absorb->449}}
{2200,{defense->1143,shield->551,absorb->506}}
{2300,{defense->1150,shield->589,absorb->562}}
{2400,{defense->1157,shield->627,absorb->616}}
{2500,{defense->1166,shield->663,absorb->671}}
{2600,{defense->1175,shield->701,absorb->724}}
{2700,{defense->1185,shield->738,absorb->777}}
{2800,{defense->1196,shield->774,absorb->829}}
{2900,{defense->1206,shield->813,absorb->882}}
{3000,{defense->1208,shield->858,absorb->933}}
{3100,{defense->1203,shield->912,absorb->985}}
{3200,{defense->1195,shield->969,absorb->1036}}
{3300,{defense->1191,shield->1023,absorb->1085}}
{3400,{defense->1189,shield->1077,absorb->1134}}
{3500,{defense->1187,shield->1131,absorb->1182}}
{3600,{defense->1187,shield->1184,absorb->1229}}
{3700,{defense->1189,shield->1236,absorb->1276}}
{3800,{defense->1191,shield->1287,absorb->1322}}
{3900,{defense->1195,shield->1338,absorb->1367}}
{4000,{defense->1200,shield->1388,absorb->1412}}
{4100,{defense->1206,shield->1438,absorb->1456}}
{4200,{defense->1213,shield->1487,absorb->1500}}
{4300,{defense->1221,shield->1536,absorb->1543}}
{4400,{defense->1230,shield->1584,absorb->1586}}
{4500,{defense->1239,shield->1633,absorb->1628}}
{4600,{defense->1250,shield->1680,absorb->1670}}
{4700,{defense->1261,shield->1728,absorb->1712}}
{4800,{defense->1272,shield->1775,absorb->1753}}
{4900,{defense->1284,shield->1821,absorb->1794}}
{5000,{defense->1297,shield->1868,absorb->1835}}
{5100,{defense->1311,shield->1914,absorb->1875}}
{5200,{defense->1325,shield->1960,absorb->1916}}
{5300,{defense->1339,shield->2005,absorb->1956}}
{5400,{defense->1354,shield->2051,absorb->1995}}
{5500,{defense->1369,shield->2096,absorb->2035}}
{5600,{defense->1385,shield->2141,absorb->2074}}
{5700,{defense->1402,shield->2185,absorb->2113}}
{5800,{defense->1418,shield->2230,absorb->2152}}
{5900,{defense->1435,shield->2274,absorb->2190}}
{6000,{defense->1453,shield->2318,absorb->2229}}

Vanguard

Graph

Spoiler
{1500,{defense->301,shield->729,absorb->470}}
{1600,{defense->278,shield->793,absorb->529}}
{1700,{defense->260,shield->855,absorb->585}}
{1800,{defense->244,shield->916,absorb->640}}
{1900,{defense->231,shield->976,absorb->693}}
{2000,{defense->220,shield->1034,absorb->746}}
{2100,{defense->211,shield->1092,absorb->797}}
{2200,{defense->205,shield->1148,absorb->847}}
{2300,{defense->200,shield->1203,absorb->897}}
{2400,{defense->196,shield->1258,absorb->946}}
{2500,{defense->195,shield->1312,absorb->994}}
{2600,{defense->194,shield->1365,absorb->1041}}
{2700,{defense->196,shield->1417,absorb->1088}}
{2800,{defense->196,shield->1470,absorb->1134}}
{2900,{defense->200,shield->1521,absorb->1180}}
{3000,{defense->207,shield->1568,absorb->1225}}
{3100,{defense->220,shield->1609,absorb->1270}}
{3200,{defense->240,shield->1645,absorb->1316}}
{3300,{defense->258,shield->1681,absorb->1361}}
{3400,{defense->277,shield->1717,absorb->1406}}
{3500,{defense->297,shield->1752,absorb->1451}}
{3600,{defense->318,shield->1786,absorb->1496}}
{3700,{defense->339,shield->1821,absorb->1540}}
{3800,{defense->360,shield->1855,absorb->1585}}
{3900,{defense->382,shield->1890,absorb->1629}}
{4000,{defense->404,shield->1924,absorb->1673}}
{4100,{defense->426,shield->1957,absorb->1717}}
{4200,{defense->449,shield->1991,absorb->1760}}
{4300,{defense->472,shield->2024,absorb->1803}}
{4400,{defense->495,shield->2058,absorb->1847}}
{4500,{defense->519,shield->2091,absorb->1890}}
{4600,{defense->543,shield->2123,absorb->1933}}
{4700,{defense->568,shield->2156,absorb->1976}}
{4800,{defense->592,shield->2188,absorb->2019}}
{4900,{defense->617,shield->2221,absorb->2062}}
{5000,{defense->642,shield->2253,absorb->2105}}
{5100,{defense->668,shield->2284,absorb->2148}}
{5200,{defense->694,shield->2316,absorb->2190}}
{5300,{defense->720,shield->2348,absorb->2233}}
{5400,{defense->746,shield->2379,absorb->2275}}
{5500,{defense->773,shield->2410,absorb->2317}}
{5600,{defense->800,shield->2441,absorb->2359}}
{5700,{defense->827,shield->2472,absorb->2401}}
{5800,{defense->854,shield->2502,absorb->2443}}
{5900,{defense->882,shield->2533,absorb->2485}}
{6000,{defense->910,shield->2563,absorb->2527}}

Low M/R (Sword Squadron, Master/Blaster, Coratani)

M/R+K/E: 40.7200%
F/T+K/E: 38.9364%
F/T+I/E: 20.3465%
DtPS: 5020.88

Shadow

Graph

Spoiler
{1500,{defense->93,shield->566,absorb->841}}
{1600,{defense->95,shield->617,absorb->888}}
{1700,{defense->97,shield->669,absorb->934}}
{1800,{defense->98,shield->721,absorb->980}}
{1900,{defense->100,shield->773,absorb->1026}}
{2000,{defense->102,shield->825,absorb->1073}}
{2100,{defense->104,shield->878,absorb->1119}}
{2200,{defense->105,shield->930,absorb->1165}}
{2300,{defense->107,shield->982,absorb->1211}}
{2400,{defense->109,shield->1034,absorb->1257}}
{2500,{defense->111,shield->1087,absorb->1303}}
{2600,{defense->112,shield->1139,absorb->1349}}
{2700,{defense->114,shield->1191,absorb->1394}}
{2800,{defense->116,shield->1244,absorb->1440}}
{2900,{defense->118,shield->1296,absorb->1486}}
{3000,{defense->120,shield->1349,absorb->1532}}
{3100,{defense->121,shield->1401,absorb->1577}}
{3200,{defense->123,shield->1454,absorb->1623}}
{3300,{defense->125,shield->1506,absorb->1669}}
{3400,{defense->127,shield->1559,absorb->1714}}
{3500,{defense->128,shield->1612,absorb->1760}}
{3600,{defense->130,shield->1665,absorb->1805}}
{3700,{defense->132,shield->1718,absorb->1851}}
{3800,{defense->134,shield->1770,absorb->1896}}
{3900,{defense->135,shield->1823,absorb->1942}}
{4000,{defense->137,shield->1876,absorb->1986}}
{4100,{defense->139,shield->1929,absorb->2032}}
{4200,{defense->141,shield->1979,absorb->2080}}
{4300,{defense->142,shield->2022,absorb->2136}}
{4400,{defense->144,shield->2057,absorb->2199}}
{4500,{defense->146,shield->2090,absorb->2264}}
{4600,{defense->148,shield->2123,absorb->2329}}
{4700,{defense->149,shield->2156,absorb->2395}}
{4800,{defense->152,shield->2188,absorb->2460}}
{4900,{defense->153,shield->2221,absorb->2527}}
{5000,{defense->155,shield->2253,absorb->2593}}
{5100,{defense->157,shield->2284,absorb->2659}}
{5200,{defense->160,shield->2316,absorb->2724}}
{5300,{defense->161,shield->2348,absorb->2792}}
{5400,{defense->165,shield->2379,absorb->2856}}
{5500,{defense->178,shield->2410,absorb->2912}}
{5600,{defense->200,shield->2441,absorb->2960}}
{5700,{defense->226,shield->2472,absorb->3002}}
{5800,{defense->254,shield->2502,absorb->3044}}
{5900,{defense->283,shield->2533,absorb->3084}}
{6000,{defense->311,shield->2563,absorb->3126}}

Guardian

Graph

Spoiler
{1500,{defense->349,shield->521,absorb->630}}
{1600,{defense->319,shield->589,absorb->693}}
{1700,{defense->294,shield->654,absorb->752}}
{1800,{defense->275,shield->717,absorb->809}}
{1900,{defense->259,shield->777,absorb->864}}
{2000,{defense->246,shield->836,absorb->917}}
{2100,{defense->235,shield->895,absorb->970}}
{2200,{defense->228,shield->951,absorb->1021}}
{2300,{defense->224,shield->1006,absorb->1070}}
{2400,{defense->220,shield->1061,absorb->1120}}
{2500,{defense->219,shield->1114,absorb->1167}}
{2600,{defense->221,shield->1166,absorb->1214}}
{2700,{defense->224,shield->1217,absorb->1259}}
{2800,{defense->228,shield->1268,absorb->1305}}
{2900,{defense->228,shield->1320,absorb->1351}}
{3000,{defense->235,shield->1370,absorb->1395}}
{3100,{defense->242,shield->1419,absorb->1439}}
{3200,{defense->249,shield->1468,absorb->1483}}
{3300,{defense->256,shield->1518,absorb->1527}}
{3400,{defense->264,shield->1566,absorb->1570}}
{3500,{defense->272,shield->1615,absorb->1613}}
{3600,{defense->281,shield->1664,absorb->1656}}
{3700,{defense->290,shield->1712,absorb->1698}}
{3800,{defense->300,shield->1760,absorb->1740}}
{3900,{defense->311,shield->1807,absorb->1782}}
{4000,{defense->323,shield->1854,absorb->1823}}
{4100,{defense->336,shield->1900,absorb->1864}}
{4200,{defense->349,shield->1946,absorb->1905}}
{4300,{defense->363,shield->1992,absorb->1945}}
{4400,{defense->379,shield->2036,absorb->1985}}
{4500,{defense->396,shield->2079,absorb->2025}}
{4600,{defense->416,shield->2118,absorb->2066}}
{4700,{defense->439,shield->2154,absorb->2107}}
{4800,{defense->464,shield->2188,absorb->2148}}
{4900,{defense->490,shield->2220,absorb->2190}}
{5000,{defense->517,shield->2252,absorb->2231}}
{5100,{defense->544,shield->2284,absorb->2272}}
{5200,{defense->570,shield->2316,absorb->2314}}
{5300,{defense->598,shield->2348,absorb->2355}}
{5400,{defense->625,shield->2379,absorb->2396}}
{5500,{defense->653,shield->2410,absorb->2437}}
{5600,{defense->681,shield->2441,absorb->2478}}
{5700,{defense->710,shield->2472,absorb->2519}}
{5800,{defense->739,shield->2502,absorb->2559}}
{5900,{defense->767,shield->2532,absorb->2600}}
{6000,{defense->796,shield->2563,absorb->2641}}

Vanguard

Graph

Spoiler
{1500,{defense->93,shield->838,absorb->569}}
{1600,{defense->95,shield->889,absorb->616}}
{1700,{defense->97,shield->941,absorb->662}}
{1800,{defense->98,shield->993,absorb->709}}
{1900,{defense->100,shield->1045,absorb->755}}
{2000,{defense->102,shield->1096,absorb->802}}
{2100,{defense->104,shield->1148,absorb->848}}
{2200,{defense->105,shield->1200,absorb->894}}
{2300,{defense->107,shield->1252,absorb->941}}
{2400,{defense->109,shield->1304,absorb->987}}
{2500,{defense->111,shield->1356,absorb->1034}}
{2600,{defense->112,shield->1406,absorb->1081}}
{2700,{defense->114,shield->1458,absorb->1128}}
{2800,{defense->116,shield->1501,absorb->1183}}
{2900,{defense->118,shield->1538,absorb->1244}}
{3000,{defense->120,shield->1574,absorb->1306}}
{3100,{defense->121,shield->1610,absorb->1369}}
{3200,{defense->123,shield->1645,absorb->1432}}
{3300,{defense->125,shield->1681,absorb->1494}}
{3400,{defense->127,shield->1717,absorb->1557}}
{3500,{defense->128,shield->1752,absorb->1620}}
{3600,{defense->130,shield->1786,absorb->1683}}
{3700,{defense->132,shield->1821,absorb->1747}}
{3800,{defense->134,shield->1855,absorb->1811}}
{3900,{defense->135,shield->1890,absorb->1875}}
{4000,{defense->137,shield->1924,absorb->1939}}
{4100,{defense->139,shield->1957,absorb->2004}}
{4200,{defense->141,shield->1991,absorb->2068}}
{4300,{defense->142,shield->2024,absorb->2133}}
{4400,{defense->144,shield->2058,absorb->2198}}
{4500,{defense->146,shield->2091,absorb->2263}}
{4600,{defense->148,shield->2123,absorb->2329}}
{4700,{defense->150,shield->2156,absorb->2394}}
{4800,{defense->154,shield->2188,absorb->2458}}
{4900,{defense->166,shield->2221,absorb->2513}}
{5000,{defense->191,shield->2253,absorb->2556}}
{5100,{defense->215,shield->2284,absorb->2601}}
{5200,{defense->240,shield->2316,absorb->2644}}
{5300,{defense->266,shield->2348,absorb->2686}}
{5400,{defense->292,shield->2379,absorb->2729}}
{5500,{defense->319,shield->2410,absorb->2771}}
{5600,{defense->346,shield->2441,absorb->2813}}
{5700,{defense->373,shield->2472,absorb->2856}}
{5800,{defense->400,shield->2502,absorb->2898}}
{5900,{defense->428,shield->2533,absorb->2940}}
{6000,{defense->456,shield->2563,absorb->2981}}

Mid M/R (Commanders, Returned, Sparky)

M/R+K/E: 53.8243%
F/T+K/E: 21.7581%
F/T+I/E: 24.4176%
DtPS: 3021.38

Shadow

Graph

Spoiler
{1500,{defense->650,shield->281,absorb->569}}
{1600,{defense->642,shield->330,absorb->628}}
{1700,{defense->617,shield->394,absorb->689}}
{1800,{defense->591,shield->461,absorb->748}}
{1900,{defense->570,shield->524,absorb->806}}
{2000,{defense->553,shield->586,absorb->861}}
{2100,{defense->537,shield->647,absorb->916}}
{2200,{defense->525,shield->706,absorb->969}}
{2300,{defense->515,shield->764,absorb->1021}}
{2400,{defense->506,shield->822,absorb->1072}}
{2500,{defense->500,shield->878,absorb->1122}}
{2600,{defense->495,shield->933,absorb->1171}}
{2700,{defense->492,shield->988,absorb->1220}}
{2800,{defense->491,shield->1042,absorb->1267}}
{2900,{defense->490,shield->1096,absorb->1314}}
{3000,{defense->491,shield->1148,absorb->1361}}
{3100,{defense->493,shield->1200,absorb->1407}}
{3200,{defense->496,shield->1252,absorb->1452}}
{3300,{defense->500,shield->1303,absorb->1497}}
{3400,{defense->504,shield->1354,absorb->1542}}
{3500,{defense->510,shield->1404,absorb->1586}}
{3600,{defense->517,shield->1454,absorb->1629}}
{3700,{defense->524,shield->1504,absorb->1672}}
{3800,{defense->532,shield->1553,absorb->1715}}
{3900,{defense->541,shield->1602,absorb->1758}}
{4000,{defense->550,shield->1650,absorb->1800}}
{4100,{defense->560,shield->1698,absorb->1842}}
{4200,{defense->571,shield->1746,absorb->1883}}
{4300,{defense->582,shield->1794,absorb->1924}}
{4400,{defense->594,shield->1841,absorb->1965}}
{4500,{defense->606,shield->1888,absorb->2006}}
{4600,{defense->619,shield->1935,absorb->2047}}
{4700,{defense->632,shield->1982,absorb->2087}}
{4800,{defense->645,shield->2028,absorb->2127}}
{4900,{defense->660,shield->2074,absorb->2167}}
{5000,{defense->674,shield->2120,absorb->2206}}
{5100,{defense->689,shield->2165,absorb->2246}}
{5200,{defense->705,shield->2210,absorb->2285}}
{5300,{defense->721,shield->2255,absorb->2324}}
{5400,{defense->738,shield->2300,absorb->2363}}
{5500,{defense->753,shield->2346,absorb->2401}}
{5600,{defense->770,shield->2391,absorb->2439}}
{5700,{defense->788,shield->2434,absorb->2478}}
{5800,{defense->807,shield->2477,absorb->2516}}
{5900,{defense->828,shield->2517,absorb->2555}}
{6000,{defense->851,shield->2555,absorb->2594}}

Guardian

Graph

Spoiler
{1500,{defense->1139,shield->280,absorb->81}}
{1600,{defense->1137,shield->319,absorb->144}}
{1700,{defense->1136,shield->359,absorb->205}}
{1800,{defense->1137,shield->398,absorb->265}}
{1900,{defense->1140,shield->436,absorb->324}}
{2000,{defense->1143,shield->475,absorb->382}}
{2100,{defense->1147,shield->513,absorb->440}}
{2200,{defense->1153,shield->551,absorb->496}}
{2300,{defense->1160,shield->589,absorb->552}}
{2400,{defense->1167,shield->626,absorb->606}}
{2500,{defense->1175,shield->664,absorb->661}}
{2600,{defense->1185,shield->701,absorb->714}}
{2700,{defense->1195,shield->738,absorb->767}}
{2800,{defense->1205,shield->776,absorb->820}}
{2900,{defense->1217,shield->811,absorb->871}}
{3000,{defense->1225,shield->852,absorb->923}}
{3100,{defense->1224,shield->902,absorb->975}}
{3200,{defense->1216,shield->959,absorb->1026}}
{3300,{defense->1212,shield->1012,absorb->1075}}
{3400,{defense->1209,shield->1066,absorb->1124}}
{3500,{defense->1208,shield->1120,absorb->1172}}
{3600,{defense->1207,shield->1174,absorb->1220}}
{3700,{defense->1209,shield->1225,absorb->1266}}
{3800,{defense->1211,shield->1276,absorb->1312}}
{3900,{defense->1215,shield->1327,absorb->1358}}
{4000,{defense->1220,shield->1378,absorb->1403}}
{4100,{defense->1226,shield->1428,absorb->1447}}
{4200,{defense->1232,shield->1477,absorb->1491}}
{4300,{defense->1240,shield->1526,absorb->1534}}
{4400,{defense->1248,shield->1575,absorb->1577}}
{4500,{defense->1258,shield->1623,absorb->1619}}
{4600,{defense->1268,shield->1670,absorb->1662}}
{4700,{defense->1279,shield->1718,absorb->1703}}
{4800,{defense->1290,shield->1765,absorb->1745}}
{4900,{defense->1302,shield->1812,absorb->1786}}
{5000,{defense->1315,shield->1858,absorb->1827}}
{5100,{defense->1328,shield->1904,absorb->1867}}
{5200,{defense->1342,shield->1950,absorb->1907}}
{5300,{defense->1357,shield->1996,absorb->1947}}
{5400,{defense->1371,shield->2041,absorb->1987}}
{5500,{defense->1387,shield->2087,absorb->2027}}
{5600,{defense->1403,shield->2132,absorb->2066}}
{5700,{defense->1419,shield->2176,absorb->2105}}
{5800,{defense->1435,shield->2221,absorb->2144}}
{5900,{defense->1452,shield->2265,absorb->2182}}
{6000,{defense->1470,shield->2309,absorb->2221}}

Vanguard

Graph

Spoiler
{1500,{defense->325,shield->716,absorb->459}}
{1600,{defense->302,shield->781,absorb->517}}
{1700,{defense->282,shield->843,absorb->574}}
{1800,{defense->266,shield->905,absorb->629}}
{1900,{defense->253,shield->964,absorb->683}}
{2000,{defense->241,shield->1023,absorb->736}}
{2100,{defense->232,shield->1080,absorb->787}}
{2200,{defense->226,shield->1137,absorb->838}}
{2300,{defense->220,shield->1193,absorb->888}}
{2400,{defense->216,shield->1247,absorb->936}}
{2500,{defense->214,shield->1301,absorb->984}}
{2600,{defense->214,shield->1355,absorb->1032}}
{2700,{defense->214,shield->1407,absorb->1079}}
{2800,{defense->217,shield->1459,absorb->1125}}
{2900,{defense->218,shield->1511,absorb->1171}}
{3000,{defense->223,shield->1561,absorb->1216}}
{3100,{defense->232,shield->1607,absorb->1261}}
{3200,{defense->250,shield->1643,absorb->1307}}
{3300,{defense->268,shield->1681,absorb->1352}}
{3400,{defense->287,shield->1716,absorb->1397}}
{3500,{defense->307,shield->1752,absorb->1442}}
{3600,{defense->327,shield->1786,absorb->1486}}
{3700,{defense->348,shield->1821,absorb->1531}}
{3800,{defense->369,shield->1855,absorb->1575}}
{3900,{defense->391,shield->1890,absorb->1619}}
{4000,{defense->413,shield->1924,absorb->1663}}
{4100,{defense->436,shield->1957,absorb->1707}}
{4200,{defense->458,shield->1991,absorb->1751}}
{4300,{defense->481,shield->2024,absorb->1794}}
{4400,{defense->505,shield->2058,absorb->1837}}
{4500,{defense->529,shield->2091,absorb->1881}}
{4600,{defense->553,shield->2123,absorb->1924}}
{4700,{defense->577,shield->2156,absorb->1967}}
{4800,{defense->602,shield->2188,absorb->2010}}
{4900,{defense->627,shield->2221,absorb->2053}}
{5000,{defense->652,shield->2253,absorb->2096}}
{5100,{defense->677,shield->2284,absorb->2138}}
{5200,{defense->703,shield->2316,absorb->2181}}
{5300,{defense->729,shield->2348,absorb->2223}}
{5400,{defense->756,shield->2379,absorb->2265}}
{5500,{defense->782,shield->2410,absorb->2308}}
{5600,{defense->809,shield->2441,absorb->2350}}
{5700,{defense->836,shield->2472,absorb->2392}}
{5800,{defense->864,shield->2502,absorb->2434}}
{5900,{defense->891,shield->2533,absorb->2476}}
{6000,{defense->919,shield->2563,absorb->2518}}

High M/R (Malaphar, Underlurker, Bulo, Torque)

M/R+K/E: 69.1125%
F/T+K/E: 10.6434%
F/T+I/E: 20.2441%
DtPS: 4587.54

Shadow

Graph

Spoiler
{1500,{defense->1023,shield->280,absorb->197}}
{1600,{defense->1026,shield->319,absorb->254}}
{1700,{defense->1031,shield->359,absorb->311}}
{1800,{defense->1036,shield->398,absorb->366}}
{1900,{defense->1042,shield->436,absorb->421}}
{2000,{defense->1049,shield->475,absorb->476}}
{2100,{defense->1058,shield->513,absorb->530}}
{2200,{defense->1066,shield->551,absorb->583}}
{2300,{defense->1076,shield->589,absorb->635}}
{2400,{defense->1086,shield->626,absorb->687}}
{2500,{defense->1097,shield->664,absorb->739}}
{2600,{defense->1109,shield->701,absorb->790}}
{2700,{defense->1121,shield->738,absorb->841}}
{2800,{defense->1134,shield->774,absorb->891}}
{2900,{defense->1149,shield->810,absorb->941}}
{3000,{defense->1163,shield->846,absorb->991}}
{3100,{defense->1178,shield->882,absorb->1040}}
{3200,{defense->1193,shield->918,absorb->1089}}
{3300,{defense->1209,shield->954,absorb->1137}}
{3400,{defense->1226,shield->989,absorb->1185}}
{3500,{defense->1242,shield->1025,absorb->1233}}
{3600,{defense->1255,shield->1064,absorb->1281}}
{3700,{defense->1263,shield->1109,absorb->1328}}
{3800,{defense->1266,shield->1160,absorb->1374}}
{3900,{defense->1269,shield->1211,absorb->1420}}
{4000,{defense->1272,shield->1263,absorb->1465}}
{4100,{defense->1277,shield->1313,absorb->1509}}
{4200,{defense->1283,shield->1364,absorb->1554}}
{4300,{defense->1289,shield->1414,absorb->1598}}
{4400,{defense->1295,shield->1464,absorb->1641}}
{4500,{defense->1303,shield->1513,absorb->1684}}
{4600,{defense->1312,shield->1561,absorb->1727}}
{4700,{defense->1322,shield->1610,absorb->1769}}
{4800,{defense->1331,shield->1658,absorb->1811}}
{4900,{defense->1342,shield->1705,absorb->1853}}
{5000,{defense->1353,shield->1753,absorb->1894}}
{5100,{defense->1365,shield->1800,absorb->1935}}
{5200,{defense->1377,shield->1847,absorb->1976}}
{5300,{defense->1390,shield->1894,absorb->2016}}
{5400,{defense->1403,shield->1940,absorb->2057}}
{5500,{defense->1417,shield->1986,absorb->2097}}
{5600,{defense->1431,shield->2032,absorb->2137}}
{5700,{defense->1446,shield->2078,absorb->2176}}
{5800,{defense->1461,shield->2124,absorb->2216}}
{5900,{defense->1476,shield->2169,absorb->2255}}
{6000,{defense->1492,shield->2214,absorb->2294}}

Guardian

Graph

Spoiler
{1500,{defense->1220,shield->280,absorb->0}}
{1600,{defense->1280,shield->319,absorb->0}}
{1700,{defense->1341,shield->359,absorb->0}}
{1800,{defense->1401,shield->398,absorb->1}}
{1900,{defense->1457,shield->436,absorb->6}}
{2000,{defense->1469,shield->475,absorb->57}}
{2100,{defense->1475,shield->513,absorb->112}}
{2200,{defense->1480,shield->551,absorb->169}}
{2300,{defense->1487,shield->589,absorb->224}}
{2400,{defense->1495,shield->626,absorb->279}}
{2500,{defense->1503,shield->663,absorb->333}}
{2600,{defense->1513,shield->700,absorb->387}}
{2700,{defense->1523,shield->737,absorb->440}}
{2800,{defense->1534,shield->774,absorb->492}}
{2900,{defense->1546,shield->810,absorb->544}}
{3000,{defense->1558,shield->846,absorb->595}}
{3100,{defense->1572,shield->882,absorb->646}}
{3200,{defense->1586,shield->918,absorb->696}}
{3300,{defense->1600,shield->953,absorb->746}}
{3400,{defense->1616,shield->989,absorb->796}}
{3500,{defense->1632,shield->1024,absorb->845}}
{3600,{defense->1648,shield->1058,absorb->894}}
{3700,{defense->1665,shield->1093,absorb->942}}
{3800,{defense->1682,shield->1128,absorb->990}}
{3900,{defense->1700,shield->1162,absorb->1038}}
{4000,{defense->1719,shield->1196,absorb->1085}}
{4100,{defense->1738,shield->1229,absorb->1132}}
{4200,{defense->1758,shield->1263,absorb->1179}}
{4300,{defense->1778,shield->1297,absorb->1225}}
{4400,{defense->1799,shield->1330,absorb->1272}}
{4500,{defense->1819,shield->1363,absorb->1318}}
{4600,{defense->1840,shield->1397,absorb->1363}}
{4700,{defense->1862,shield->1428,absorb->1409}}
{4800,{defense->1883,shield->1462,absorb->1454}}
{4900,{defense->1902,shield->1499,absorb->1499}}
{5000,{defense->1916,shield->1541,absorb->1543}}
{5100,{defense->1928,shield->1586,absorb->1586}}
{5200,{defense->1938,shield->1633,absorb->1629}}
{5300,{defense->1948,shield->1681,absorb->1671}}
{5400,{defense->1959,shield->1729,absorb->1712}}
{5500,{defense->1971,shield->1776,absorb->1754}}
{5600,{defense->1983,shield->1822,absorb->1795}}
{5700,{defense->1996,shield->1868,absorb->1835}}
{5800,{defense->2010,shield->1914,absorb->1876}}
{5900,{defense->2024,shield->1960,absorb->1916}}
{6000,{defense->2038,shield->2006,absorb->1956}}

Vanguard

Graph

Spoiler
{1500,{defense->1189,shield->280,absorb->31}}
{1600,{defense->1181,shield->324,absorb->95}}
{1700,{defense->1133,shield->398,absorb->169}}
{1800,{defense->1082,shield->477,absorb->241}}
{1900,{defense->1039,shield->552,absorb->309}}
{2000,{defense->1005,shield->622,absorb->373}}
{2100,{defense->976,shield->690,absorb->435}}
{2200,{defense->951,shield->755,absorb->494}}
{2300,{defense->930,shield->819,absorb->552}}
{2400,{defense->913,shield->880,absorb->607}}
{2500,{defense->898,shield->941,absorb->662}}
{2600,{defense->886,shield->999,absorb->715}}
{2700,{defense->876,shield->1057,absorb->766}}
{2800,{defense->869,shield->1114,absorb->817}}
{2900,{defense->863,shield->1170,absorb->867}}
{3000,{defense->858,shield->1225,absorb->917}}
{3100,{defense->856,shield->1279,absorb->965}}
{3200,{defense->854,shield->1333,absorb->1013}}
{3300,{defense->854,shield->1386,absorb->1060}}
{3400,{defense->856,shield->1438,absorb->1106}}
{3500,{defense->858,shield->1490,absorb->1152}}
{3600,{defense->861,shield->1541,absorb->1197}}
{3700,{defense->866,shield->1592,absorb->1242}}
{3800,{defense->871,shield->1643,absorb->1287}}
{3900,{defense->877,shield->1692,absorb->1331}}
{4000,{defense->884,shield->1742,absorb->1374}}
{4100,{defense->892,shield->1791,absorb->1417}}
{4200,{defense->900,shield->1840,absorb->1460}}
{4300,{defense->909,shield->1888,absorb->1503}}
{4400,{defense->919,shield->1936,absorb->1545}}
{4500,{defense->929,shield->1984,absorb->1587}}
{4600,{defense->940,shield->2032,absorb->1628}}
{4700,{defense->952,shield->2078,absorb->1669}}
{4800,{defense->965,shield->2125,absorb->1710}}
{4900,{defense->977,shield->2172,absorb->1751}}
{5000,{defense->990,shield->2218,absorb->1792}}
{5100,{defense->1005,shield->2263,absorb->1832}}
{5200,{defense->1022,shield->2305,absorb->1873}}
{5300,{defense->1043,shield->2343,absorb->1914}}
{5400,{defense->1067,shield->2377,absorb->1956}}
{5500,{defense->1093,shield->2409,absorb->1998}}
{5600,{defense->1120,shield->2441,absorb->2040}}
{5700,{defense->1147,shield->2472,absorb->2082}}
{5800,{defense->1175,shield->2501,absorb->2124}}
{5900,{defense->1202,shield->2532,absorb->2166}}
{6000,{defense->1230,shield->2563,absorb->2207}}

For reference, this is the Mathematica notebook used to generate this post.

Overall Survivability

What follows is the comparative tank survivability including all buffs, damage and self-heals in each operation (higher is better). In other words, you should be able to predict your net external healing required by multiplying an operation’s DtPS by 1 – # where “#” is the survivability value from below. For PvE survivability, I’m assuming full 198 armorings and a stat budget of 3997 for each tank (in other words, full min-maxed Revanite).

Defensive cooldowns are not included in the calculation!

Low M/R (Sword Squadron, Master/Blaster, Coratani)

  • Shadow: 66.1643% ± 26.2699%
  • Guardian: 66.2052% ± 28.4723%
  • Vanguard: 65.3382% ± 34.0212%

Mid M/R (Commanders, Returned, Sparky)

  • Shadow: 66.7891% ± 27.6129%
  • Guardian: 67.8768% ± 29.8567%
  • Vanguard: 64.7002% ± 34.3932%

High M/R (Malaphar, Underlurker, Bulo, Torque)

  • Shadow: 69.9422% ± 29.3345%
  • Guardian: 69.6596% ± 31.3782%
  • Vanguard: 67.3705% ± 35.0635%

Or, if you prefer the graphical approach, here is what the absolute balance looks like (for the Average profile).

This graph takes into consideration both the mean survivability for a tank and the variance in their mitigation. Thus, because Vanguards have a higher standard deviation in their mitigation, their graph is somewhat flatter. However, despite this desirable flatness, the Vanguard graph has a peak more toward the left than Shadows or Guardians. Both Shadows and Guardians have narrower, more extreme graphs, but the advantage they gain is that their peak is more toward the right, indicating better mean mitigation.

Each of the tank-specific damage debuffs was counted for only the tank in question. Thus, the Shadow survivability numbers are calculated with respect to the accuracy debuff and the melee/ranged damage debuff, but not respecting the existence of a force/tech debuff that may or may not be provided by a cotank. I considered allowing all tanks access to all debuffs for the purpose of the survivability calculation, but seeing as some groups do run doubles of a particular class, this seemed somewhat inaccurate. The moral of the story here is simply this: don’t double up! Double Vanguard is probably the best balanced of the three doubles, but it’s still noticeably inferior to Shadow/Vanguard or Guardian/Vanguard.

So based on these relative survivability numbers, we can see that Vanguard tanks are basically the worst at everything and no one should use them. LOL…

Clearly this is not the case, as Vanguard tanks are well favored by progression guilds. And deservedly so! Shadow and Guardian tanks do take less damage when put on even footing (i.e. no one tank advantaged due to cooldowns or mechanics). This is largely due to the proportion of damage that is internal/elemental, which Shadows and Guardians are mostly balanced on and Vanguards are well behind. However, Vanguards remain very steady, dependable tanks with respectable cooldowns and really fantastic tools. Hold the Line is one heck of a playing field leveler, and level it does. I do think that, when new content arrives and Hold the Line isn’t god-mode for every boss, Vanguards may be a bit too far behind. Consider for example that most guilds prefer to run at least one Shadow/Assassin tank on Revan, provided that the player in question is capable of managing the aberrations reliably. However, hopefully any new content will also be somewhat lighter on the internal/elemental side, which will act to naturally buff Vanguard mitigation.

Methodological Limitations

In any case, Vanguards in particular represent the weakness in this sort of analysis. There is no “magic number” that quantifies tanking performance across the board. You’ll notice that I don’t really talk about endurance at all in the above. This is an omission! Endurance is absolutely part of your survivability profile, especially now where so much of the damage is high spike and/or cannot be mitigated. Do my numbers reflect endurance? No. Is this because I think endurance is valueless? Absolutely not. Just like I don’t think that Vanguards are the worst tank.

This post analyzes mean mitigation. That’s it. If you have a particular stat budget and you want to get the best possible distribution of shield, absorb and defense in that stat budget, this post will answer that question and should answer it with 100% accuracy. If you want to be the best tank EVAR and optimize all possible gear choices so that you’re the easiest to heal, most resilient, most awesomest… I can’t help you with that. Talk to your healers. Look at your logs. Think about what actually kills you in a fight and what your group is struggling with. Fix that problem, and then if you feel like you can benefit from mean mitigation analysis, look at my tables.

In short, these numbers are not the be-all, end-all of tanking, if there even is such a thing. I sometimes ignore them on a case-by-case basis (when I have strong evidence suggesting that I should). You should too, given strong enough evidence.

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Additional Guide Tips Welcomed!