I've been closely following the different variations of power mes ever since the phantasm rework, initially playing an izerker army chrono build (now formally known as domi dps chrono). Whilst core mes and mirage variants have been left relatively the same since that update, chrono on the other hand has seen a range of different changes, some notable ones being the inclusion of illusions in Danger Time, the Csplit - SoE 'fix' and now, the chrono 'trade off' update. As the devs continue to change and mold the game in whatever way they see fit, I thought it would be appropriate to review and actually show some form of performance #s of power mes variants which are not benched, seeing that I can't find them anywhere.
Disclaimer: I am unable to do proper benchmarks myself, meaning that many of these numbers are made from a series of tests, calculations and projections (indicated by ~). My own benches were 25k for post-patch IA/IR illu dps chrono, 23k for core and 19-20k for mirage (although did it w/o food, meaning it could have reached 21k) - the actual benchmarks would be at least be higher these numbers.
Unfortunately for players who enjoyed playing power chrono in high-end PvE outside of raids under situations with no slow, chrono has dipped under 30k after a rather bizarre 36% nerf to F1, and is slowly falling down into the dark depths of unviability. The only thing that no-slow power chrono still has over core and other professions is its chronoburst - outside of that, its weaker in practically every other way.
Because Rewinder now exists, no-slow chronos can take Illusionary Reversion for what I think is the same dps as IA. It's an interesting build, and is able to maintain higher self alacrity uptime (rendering IA obsolete if no one's giving it to you).
Anet seems to want to give this core spec some sort of unique niche. Honestly, I already thought it already had one before the rework. It mainly relies on this one trait, Mental Anguish, which can turn your Mind Wrack into a crazy (unreliable) dmg skill - from a 1 clone shatter, you could already deal up to 20k dmg (compare that to chrono's measly 6-7k). While chrono had super phantasms, core had super shatters!
Ironically, because it dealt so much dmg through shatters, the undocumented nerf to 2/3 clone F1 hit core mes harder than it did to chrono, thus the random projected ~1k drop.
Don't let the 26k fool you though - core mes has stronger AA chains than chrono, has stronger Blurred Frenzy's than chrono and still has access to its fairly lethal Mind Wrack, meaning its sustained dps would beat no-slow chrono's any day. Having more upfront dmg also means that its trash burst is simply better, and only sees real loss on golem-like bosses who seem to enjoy being wailed on by whatever no-slow chrono has left to muster.
IMO, nothing gets as complicated as this hot mess. After trying to squeeze out the highest numbers out of this spec by finding some sort of logical rotation and trait synergies, I learnt why GS power mirages were mainly reserved for tagging mobs in open world.
Keeping watch of the clone counter, the dodge bar, Mantra of Pain and Jaunt all at the same time whilst also trying to pull off a rotation with really random parts such as the 'mirage mirror pickup time!' was really fun. Do not recommend.
P. S. I would appreciate it if someone could actually do proper benchmarks and confirm or debunk (hopefully positively!) these numbers.
pChrono (main), cWeaver and pReaper. An asura who likes snowflakes.