And on the note I have a dilemma with shield block versus barrier. Besides the obvious answer of using shield block against a mainly melee mob and shield barrier against a mainly spell caster, is there some type of optimal rotation of squeezing in block/barrier.
Barrier will only absorb the portion of an attack that isn’t mitigated, so yes, chaining a Barrier on top of a Block can help with high-damage phases, but it isn’t sustainable.
The vast majority of your AP comes from Vengeance, not from str. The reason str is valued at all is it actually converts very well to parry (at a slightly less than 1:1 rate, with a different diminishing return from parry).
However, that is just the STAT. You will never gem for str, because you get twice the parry from well, gemming parry.
Aside from that, if you want to spam barrier, you will need high hit/exp. Our only rage generators are shield slam and revenge, and the reason parry/dodge goes well with that is revenge refreshes from parry/dodge.
Now, as for barrier/block. After a certain point of being pummeled (high ap from vengeance), barrier becomes better than block in almost any circumstance.
Furthermore, barrier scales linearly with rage spent (correct me if i’m wrong, but I assumed this was the case), thus, spamming it whenever you have rage >20 actually results in fairly smooth damage taken and fewer spikes.
Obviously this is not always optimal, as you will want to pool rage for either known high damage periods or for bursty periods to use with HS. This is another reason high hit/exp is preferred, as we are almost certain then that we can gain rage at a known rate, thus we can better anticipate our rage situation when something happens.
Another time when block is more useful is add tanking. All those blocks make for smooth, consistently low damage that can be healed efficiently.
I could add a lot more on this subject but to the macro part would it be more effective to make 2 macros - one for block and one for barrier or try to make a macro to incorporate block and barrier together? I tend to think 2 macros because for one against casters you will be wanting to use barrier and two for melee you will want to be using block and 3 at certain stages of vengeance stacks/procs and CD resets, number of mobs you will want to use one then the other exclusively.
Any input would be appreciated.