View Full Forums : Overcap shield AC?

03-29-2007, 07:37 PM
Does anyone have any hard facts on how much benefit an additional say 20ac in your shield slot might offer?

I did some "naked eye" testing a while ago comparing 70ac and 90ac, and didn't see any notable difference.

I am not sure if shield AC is negated when sitting, however if it isn't my tests showed no max-hit difference (on mobs in Stoneroot Falls) between 70 and 90 shield ac.

03-30-2007, 04:10 AM
AC, including shield AC, doesn't do anything to make a max hit smaller. Shielding is the only thing that will do that for you. But AC on a shield is important if you ever get hit.

Since shield AC is not softcapped/reduced, and druids have a worse overcap return than anyone but silk classes, 20 more Shield AC is good. At best, druids overcap return is probably 10 percent, so 20ac in a shield will be as good as 200 AC on other items.

04-02-2007, 12:35 AM
/bonk self, rookie question. That's what i get for not thinking about it properly.

Let me rephrase the question - I have a 20ac 10all saves aug that will fit in my shield. Is it worth dropping a 50/50 hp/mana aug for it, given that I seem to get hit plenty :P

04-02-2007, 06:53 AM
I am 99 percent certain that the answer is YES, especially since you have the Shield Block AA, but I don't have data on hand to support it. I'm pretty sure that I've seen on TSW that an increase in shield AC is worth more than just increase in AC. I'll check when I get a chance.

04-02-2007, 10:36 AM
Absolutely.....shield AC is hands down the best place to have it.

We have 10 characters (2 twinks) and 8 mains in our hang out crew and all of them will now be getting braaiinnsss monster mission aug 20ac 30hps or 20ac 30m aug from EJ MM.


04-02-2007, 04:00 PM
Get Crest of the Scarlet Legions

04-02-2007, 04:35 PM
Very nice aug, thanks for the link! I'd have a hard time rolling against a plate class for that, though, it's a beauty.

Will get off my chuff and do some actual parsing (which will require me to obtain a parser) of the impact of increasing shield ac from 80 to 100, and post the result.

04-02-2007, 08:59 PM
Very nice aug, thanks for the link! I'd have a hard time rolling against a plate class for that, though, it's a beauty.

Will get off my chuff and do some actual parsing (which will require me to obtain a parser) of the impact of increasing shield ac from 80 to 100, and post the result.

On any mob you can test this on, the average Di /rand will be low with or without a shield. Meaning, there will be little room to work with to show the effectivness of the AC.

Will shield ac make a largely noticable difference? Nope. But reducing di /rand by a few intervals here and there adds up to make it more effective than hp augs.

04-03-2007, 09:50 AM
Can track me down sometime for aug work, Alaene. Argil isn't too bad to do with 2-3 people, can just pull to zone.


04-03-2007, 01:40 PM
I figured that SK's and Paladins know a lot more about AC than me, so I asked my guild leader, Sabor. He told me that when you talk about AC you have to think AC over or under softcap. He gave me an equation to calculate out real and mitigation AC, which I think is beyond scope of this thread.

Everyone has an AC softcap, (and from what I read elsewhere, it's a relatively low number) and it's different for each class. I do not have a softcap value for Druids, but I believe that the average high end Druid wearing level appropriate gear can assume that they are their softcap.

Once your worn AC reaches that softcap, there is a diminshing return of additional AC, where any additional AC is only worth 1/3 of what it's value is.

Shield AC doesn't act this way. Shield AC actually raises your softcap by whatever the AC value is.

So if you are at your softcap and you have an augment worth 30 AC, and you wear it in your boots, you'll get 10 additional AC. If you put it your shield, then you'll get an additional 30 AC for it.

How much this is going to change anything? Well, we are Druids... if we were supposed to get beat on, we'd wear plate. I just know that my melee survivability drastically increased as my armor got better and my avoidance and mitigation AA's maxed.

For defense, it's pretty clear to me: wear the biggest shield you can, put the biggest AC aug you can find in that shield and get the Shield Block AA if you don't have it.

04-05-2007, 08:51 PM
The 1:3 ratio for overcap AC is the ratio for Paladins/SK/Monks. Warriors are a little better, and ever other class is worse. \

The fact that druids get a worse overcap return ratio, just makes shield AC relatively better for a druid than a tank though. For a class with bad overcap return, AC on items doesn't do much, but shield AC is actually useful.

I remember seeing a magician parse where I think it was 80 shield AC made about a 10 percent difference, but 80 normal AC wasn't distinguishable from random variation.

04-11-2007, 10:46 AM
The 1:3 ratio for overcap AC is the ratio for Paladins/SK/Monks. Warriors are a little better, and ever other class is worse. \

If that ratio is true and with Maddoc saying of :

The data that I'm looking at right now says that monks and beastlords have the exact same softcap, which is slightly (roughly 7%) higher than druids. The data also shows druids as having the lowest soft-cap modifier, followed by beastlords (roughly triple the druids return), and then by monks (roughly double that of beastlords).

1/3 paladin , sk , monk
1/6 bst
1/18 druids....

so 80 undercap AC shield + lets say a 30AC aug = 110x18 ie 1980 overcap AC...:band:

edited spelling :p

09-05-2008, 04:01 PM
here is a repost form an old guild website about ac, and shield ac, and other defensive stats. Very useful.

Short summary; get the highest ac shield you can, and put the highest ac aug in it, if you expect you might get hit at all. imho. small sacrifices in ac for huge gains in mana or mana regen make sense, but shield ac makes a bigger impact on your defensive ability than anything else, period.

---------------- begin post by Vizier.

Over the years, Ive found many people in EQ are in the dark about what all of the numbers on their character sheet actually mean.

What exactly is Armor Class? What do the Combat Agility and Combat Stability AAs actually do? How do avoidance and shielding fit in? If you ever wondered about any of those things then keep reading. All of that will be explained and more.

The first thing you need to know about AC is that for most toons the vast majority of the number you see displayed on your character sheet in your inventory is ineffective AC.

Each archetype, (Plate, Chain, Leather,Cloth) has a limit to the amount of AC that actually "works". That limit is called your "soft cap", and it varies between classes.

What follows is a list of the AC soft cap approximations for each archetype. In the following chart, worn AC means look at your gear and add up the AC it shows when you inspect the individual item.

Soft Caps
Cloth..........= ~75 worn AC (yes its really that low)
Leather......= ~100 worn AC
Monk..........= ~120 worn AC (if they are under 15 stone wieght)
Chain.........= ~200 worn AC
Plate .........= ~300 worn AC

You may be shocked at how low those number are, I certainly was. My robe alone has 75 AC on it, so I hit my soft cap with 1 piece of gear! Everyone reading this can go check their character right now and Im sure you will see that you are all way above the softcap. Hitting the AC soft cap for your character is trivial in EQ today. So what we really want to know about is how effective is worn AC AFTER the softcap. The answer varies by class:

AC returns after the soft cap has been reached
45%: Warrior (from Devs)
33%: Knight (from Devs), Monk (reportedly equal to Knight? via Zajeer?)
23%: Cleric, Bard (via L2), BZR (rough estimate based off of parsing)
17%: BST, Ranger (BST is ~1/2 of the monk, ranger hearsay)
6%: Druid, Enc, Mag, Nec, Wiz (~1/3 of BST -- Druid was quoted as "lowest")
Rogue, Shaman? Probably they are close to cleric returns.

What does that mean? Well lets use a warrior for example, and lets say that when he looks in his inventory he sees his AC displayed as 1000, this is called displayed AC for future reference. Displayed AC adds up your worn AC and mulitiples it by 1.65.

1000ac / 1.65 = 600 worn AC.

So if this particular warrior added up all the AC listed on his gear it would be about 600, I rounded these values to make it a bit easier to work with. Now remember Warrior are a plate class with a soft cap of about 300.

600 worn AC = 300 under the cap AC + 300 over the cap AC.
300 over the cap AC = 300 * 45% = 135 effective AC.
300 under the cap AC + 135 effective over the cap AC = 435 REAL AC

So in review a warrior that looks in his inventory and sees 1000ac displayed up at the top, really only has 435 REAL AC!Using the same formula for a Ranger that has 1000 displayed AC you get this:

1000 displayed AC= 600 worn AC = 200 under the cap + 68 effective AC = 268 REAL AC!

So two completely different classes that have the same number displayed in the AC catagory of their inventory have VASTLY different real AC!

Ok now I hope you can understand everything up until this point because there one more piece of the AC puzzle I need to explain now and that is Shields.

The truth about Shields

If you have a shield in your secondary slot, ALL of the AC on that shield counts as "under the cap AC". That means if you have a shield with 100AC you get ALL 100 AC from it, regardless of what class you are, or what return over the cap your class gets!!!

Weapons with AC on them in the secondary slot dont count, neither do orbs, lanterns, totems etc. It must be an actual shield to get the raw AC bonus.

Take me for example, im a cloth wearer with an AC softcap of 75 BUT I use a shield+aug that gives me 110ac. That means I get more AC from my shield alone than all of my other gear combined!!!

Even if you dont understand any of that it simplifies down to this: If you use a shield, ignore every stat on that shield except AC. A shield with 100ac and no HPs is far better than a shield with 500hps and no AC, yes its that dramatic.

Here is some raw parsed data that illustrates the effectiveness of shield AC.

2504ac no shield
308.6 dps
average hit 618.1

2513ac 100ac shield
287.9 dps
average hit 567.90

2512ac 175ac shield
270.5 dps
average hit 537.4

3659ac 175ac shield
262.8 dps
average hit 519.9

The test subject was an INT caster, tank returns on AC are much better of course. Still that parse clearly shows just how effective a shield can be.


Another VERY important piece of the puzzle is Combat Stability and Combat Agility. Formerly both of these AAs were thought to increase your AC softcap, but in a recent post a Dev revealed that CA increases your avoidance, and CS increases your softcap.

Here is the table that was released by the devs shortly after the Secrets of Faydwer expansion was released:

Combat Agility Values -

Evasion 2
Evasion 5
Evasion 10
Evasion 13
Evasion 16
Evasion 19
Evasion 22
Evasion 25
Evasion 26
Evasion 27
Evasion 28
Evasion 30
Evasion 32
Evasion 33
Evasion 34
Evasion 35
Evasion 37
Evasion 39
Evasion 40
Evasion 41
Evasion 42
Evasion 43
Evasion 44

Combat Stability Values -

ACLimitMod 2
ACLimitMod 5
ACLimitMod 10
ACLimitMod 13
ACLimitMod 16
ACLimitMod 19
ACLimitMod 22
ACLimitMod 25
ACLimitMod 27
ACLimitMod 29
ACLimitMod 31
ACLimitMod 33
ACLimitMod 35
ACLimitMod 37
ACLimitMod 39
ACLimitMod 41
ACLimitMod 43
ACLimitMod 45
ACLimitMod 46
ACLimitMod 47
ACLimitMod 48
ACLimitMod 49
ACLimitMod 50

So if you max

Defensive combat skills

The rest of your defensive skills are failrly easy to assess by looking at the following chart. Basically if you are evaluating gear and you want to know how valuable +10 avoidance is for example, this chart gives you approximately how many HPs those skills are worth in terms of defensive survivability.

Defensive value of combat skill displayed in equivalent HPs
Improved Dodge V.......660 HPe
Improved Dodge IV......530 HPe
Improved Dodge III......400 HPe
+5 Avoidance.............300 HPe
Improved Dodge II......260 HPe
10 shield AC...............250 HPe
Improved Dodge I .......130 HPe
8% dodge skill ...........100 HPe
1% shielding.................80 HPe
10 STA ......................16 HPe
10 normal AC*..............13 HPe
10 AGI..........................8 HPe
10 HP..........................10 HPe
*Varies by class, 13 hps is the value for cloth wearers.

Take a look at how important Shield AC is. If you have 100 shield AC that is the defensive equivalent of ~2500 hps! You may also notice that both Shielding and Avoidance have excellent defensive effectiveness, and should be highly valued when evaluating gear.

It should be noted that Avoidance is hard capped at 100 and Shielding is hard capped at 35%. You wont get any defensive value out of those stats at all if you go over the hard caps.

Well that about covers it. I realize that this all may seem very complicated, but its still very important to understand exactly how EQ works so that you can acurately calculate your characters defensive abilities.

posted by vizier on the Reborn in Fire guild website, link below:

Madie of Wind Riders
09-16-2008, 12:47 AM
Wow! That was a lot of information Fuinn... but it does reiterate that sheild AC is very important and I am glad I listened the first time!! Thank you for explaining it a bit more for me :)

09-17-2008, 03:39 AM
There Is a really Nice Secondary type 7 aug from vald. well infact to of them you have the 70 hp/mana on and the 15 AC 50 Hp/Mana aug both are quested with Marks (Fergarins Marks)from FC reg/raid instance zones. Both cost 12 Marks if you have not finished the Heigrin Bypass Quest you will need three marks for him as well. Also there is the next up on the list Shield of the Otherworld Verg/AG Quest. and then the FC drop Frostflake the all Enduring. Just a note Secondary type 7 Augs are the hardest ones to come by. Hope this helps. Also Unless you are somewere in the 20k buffed range I really would not me looking for AC over Mana as a druid. I have found substandard tanks or Cryst mobs still can run me OOM quite fast.