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[Des] Why do many rotations say to cast chaos bolt after building up 3.5 embers?

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As long as you don't go below one burning ember what is wrong with repeatedly casting chaos bolt after building up your second ember, apart from of course when DS is up?

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Just think about it for 2 seconds.

 

If you're at 3.5 Embers and you have no procs, you use one to remain at 2.5 Burning Embers.  In the case that a proc happens soon, you'll still have 3 Chaos Bolts you can fling out.

 

If you spend all your Embers and get no procs, you don't get to maximize your DPS.  Dark Soul is not the only buff Destruction pays attention to.  It's logical to remain at a high amount of resources until an opportunity arises to do as much damage as possible using those resources.

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You cast at 3.5 embers to avoid ember capping.  You want to be sitting at 3.5 so that you can react to procs, or to be ready for your burn cycle.

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Because that assures you are casting as few unbuffed chaos bolts as possible, while casting the most buffed chaos bolts that you can. By preventing yourself from capping, you can theoretically use every single burning ember you generate over the course of the fight.

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I think 3.5 embers is a bit out of date. We don't generate embers as dynamically as we used to. I've been pushing to just a few bits before capping (3.7-3.8) and it's been working well.

The problem with the 3.5 ember number is if you are using a proc trinket like sandmans. If you cast a CB then get a proc, you are at 2.5 ember bits and it will be tough getting 4 CBs out during the proc.

Things will change with tier set bonuses obv

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3.5 is a general guideline. Yes, ember generation is down, but it's also to help make sure people don't screw themselves by, say, going from 3.6 to 3.8 by hitting conflag and then having the conundrum of risking capping using an Incinerate to avoid consuming Backdraft with Chaos Bolt or just biting the bullet.  If you intend to stop at 3.5 and put yourself in the same situtation, you're safe to use that first Incinerate before Chaos Bolt.

 

Your goal isn't to get four CBs during every proc - hell, that's borderline unrealistic.  If you have a trinket proc you care about that isn't an ICD (which you will generally line up with DS anyway), it's probably 10 seconds.  You're looking at a max of three Chaos Bolts.  If you're at 2.5 when it procs, you're hoping to get lucky to get that third, sure.  But, as slow as ember generation is, the risk of having to burn an extra later on nothing just because you couldn't push that last one in that proc is pretty darn small.

 

TL;DR - Yes, there's leeway.  No, 3.5 is not out of date.

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