Targets of melee attacks can have a chance to parry each incoming frontal attack. A successful parry nullifies the attack (for the attacker it is like a miss) and reduces the swing timer of the defender. It is a passive ability which does not require any action to be used. Most melee classes get this ability — warriors at level 6, hunters and paladins at level 8,rogues at level 12, and Death Knights start with parry. Shamans have a 20 point Enhancement talent called Spirit Weapons which grants them the parry ability in addition to threat reduction on their attacks and spells.
- If a character or mob has a parry chance, it's always active and can take effect on every incoming frontal melee attack.
- If applicable, the parry chance is added to the attackers attack table.
- Originally, the only stat which increased the chance to parry was defense (0.04% per point). However, with the addition of Death Knights, 25% of their strength is added as parry rating (it is important to note that a Death Knight's high parry rating is one of their mitigation mechanics.)
- Some classes can increase their chance to parry with talents (either direct or via defense).
- Similarly items can directly increase the chance to parry or indirectly via defense.
- Attacks from the rear cannot be parried. Mobs sometimes do so anyways - this can be due to a bug or because they turn very quickly in place.
- After a successful parry, the defender's swing timer is reduced (or even reset), resulting in an increased damage output (for details see Formulas:Parry). While tanks like to profit from this effect, melee damage dealers should attack from behind whenever possible, both to increase their own damage and to avoid causing unneeded damage to the tank through the enemy's parries.
Greg "Ghostcrawler" Street, the Lead System Designer, posted about the upcoming changes in Patch 3.2.0 on the official forums. It was in response to some carefully researched numbers showing how overall avoidance was being lowered, and disproportionately to various tank classes:
Patch changes Edit
- Patch 3.2.0 (2009-08-04): Parry Rating: The amount of parry rating required per percentage of parry has been reduced by 8%. This is before diminishing returns. Combined with other changes, this makes dodge rating and parry rating equally potent before diminishing returns apply. Parry still diminishes more quickly than dodge.