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More Cataclysm change details for Shaman and Warlocks

After dropping the Shaman and Warlock Cataclysm class changes earlier today, Blizzard followed up with some shorter posts clarifying many details about the systems. For Shaman, the Q&A covers a lot of ground with some follow up for Meditation and the Nature damage boost for Enhancement. Warlocks can rest easy as blues explain the change to the Succubus' Soothing Kiss ability and the future of new demons.

Check out the exact wording after the jump!

Shaman Cataclysm Class Changes -- Meditation clarification
Just to clarify a few things:

Meditation – the amount of mana you regenerate in combat as a function of your Spirit.

Also of note, you only get one set of passive talent tree bonuses: the tree in which you've spent the most points. Sub-speccing in another tree will not net you those bonuses in addition.

Last but not least, it's the intention of Primal Strike to let shaman play as an Enhancement at low levels. Currently when leveling in this spec, you end up just using Lightning Bolt a lot so you feel like an Elemental shaman instead. At a higher level, Primal Strike gets replaced by Storm Strike. They share a cooldown so Enhancement just won't ever use Primal Strike after that, in the same way that Prot warriors don't use Sunder Armor once they have Devastate or Feral druids don't use Claw once they get Mangle.

Shaman Cataclysm Class Changes -- Q&A
We know there are a lot of additional questions and we'll do our best to answer what we can. Keep in mind, this is merely a preview of things to come.

Q: Will Maelstrom Weapon include Lava Burst?
A: That's the plan currently.

Q: How can Elemental Overload proc Lava Burst when Lava Burst already hits so hard in PvP?
A: We're going to change almost every number in Cataclysm to adjust for everything from single ranks of spells to larger health pools to new combat ratings. With much higher health pools, hopefully burst damage will go back to being a tool and not the only way to win matches.

Q: What happens to the Lightning Overload talent?
A: It provides a bonus to Elemental Overload.

Q: Elemental doesn't want to drop Searing Totem at range. We want to drop Magma Totem.
A: Searing Totem needs to do more single-target damage than Magma. That said, if we're happy with the ability to occasionally place totems at range there is no reason it couldn't apply to any totem. Imagine, "After using this spell, the next totem you drop will appear at the feet of your target."

Q: Will Elemental have to spend talent points just to get the Spirit to hit conversion?
A: It will be bundled with another attractive talent, such as Elemental Precision.

Q: Will Unleash Weapon work with Frostbrand?
A: Yes. We just provided some examples.

Q: Is Healing Rain channeled?
A: No, it's not a channeled spell.

Q: Is Earthquake channeled?
A: Probably, but we'll see.

Q: Will Unleashed Weapon consume your enchants?
A: No.

Q: Does the 10% spell power buff from Elemental scale with the shaman or the target's spell power?
A: It will scale with the target the same as Demonic Pact and other buffs that bring the same benefit.

Q: Are you supporting two-handed weapons for Enhancement?
A: Once you start to get into the dual-wield talents, then Enhancement is a dual-wield tree.

Q: You didn't address Enhancement survivability or mobility or X and Y!
A: This was just a preview and is not a comprehensive list of every change. Much more will be revealed in beta and much will change during beta.

Q: You didn't answer the most important shaman question! What about Sentry Totem?
A: The Cataclysm is a time of great upheaval. Deathwing's return to Azeroth tore a hole in the fabric of the universe that tragically resulted in the ultimate and irrevocable destruction of all Sentry Totems. Level designers are contemplating a shrine for the Sentry Totem near that of Uther the Lightbringer. We know shaman players will greet this news with grief, but as with all class changes we'll have to get into beta before anything is final.

Shaman Cataclysm Class Changes -- Nature damage
Here's another question (statement) that we can address for you:

Q: Please make the "nature damage" for the enhance tree "elemental damage" so our bonus for putting points in isn't only affecting our nature damage.

A: We actually went with Nature damage for that reason. We thought all Elemental damage might end up just feeling like "damage."; Since Nature damage is only a portion of your damage, choosing between an item with say haste versus mastery (i.e. Nature damage) might be more interesting. With a lot of mastery, you might actually favor other talents or different spell rotations. All of this just theoretical at this point and the passive talent tree bonuses are likely to see much iteration in beta.


BTW: I can't take credit for the monument to the Sentry totem idea. That's all the development team. ;)

Warlock Cataclysm Class Changes -- Clarifications
Here are a few points of clarification on some of the popular questions or concerns we're seeing.

  • On regenerating shards in combat, we will add a mechanic to regen shards if we find that we need to in order to handle variable combat length. We haven't added one yet because we really want to emphasize locks using shards at the right time and not as fast as they can with then an Evocation-like spell to bring them back again. These are supposed to be special moments in a fight -- think Bloodlust perhaps -- and not used every 20 seconds on cooldown (or whatever the cooldown ends up being).
  • Demon lovers, we haven't ruled out adding a new demon, but we want to be very careful here. We've had a hard enough time finding niches for some of the current ones. So we first want to make sure existing demons are cool before we're faced with Q&A several months from now asking why the new demon either isn't cool enough, or why warlocks no longer use, say, their felhunter because of the new demon.
  • The intent for Hellfire is for it to be a specialty of Demonology warlocks. Affliction would use Seed of Corruption and Destruction would use Rain of Fire.

Shaman Cataclysm Class Changes -- Meditation clarification
Succubus details:

Whiplash works similar to Freeze on the mage's Water Elemental. It requires a targeting reticule. It isn't just a melee ability that the succubus uses at-will.

As a clarification, we are removing Soothing Kiss, not Seduction. Soothing Kiss increased the chance the target would attack something else. Seduction is the crowd control more commonly associated with the Succubus, and it's not going anywhere. ;)

In addition to commenting, don't forget that we're also looking for guest posts on the above changes.


World of Warcraft: Cataclysm will destroy Azeroth as we know it. Nothing will be the same. In WoW.com's Guide to Cataclysm you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion. From Goblins and Worgens to Mastery and Guild changes, it's all there for your cataclysmic enjoyment.

Filed under: Shaman, Warlock, Cataclysm

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