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2-10-2011 @ 7:59PM
First, I want to just say I love what you are doing with this column Miss Pewter.With that out of the way, I want to comment on a few things. Let's start with this one:"In the end, the changes have been a little more substantial and subtle, but the overall fragility of our DPS in heavy movement fights will remain an issue for those of us that raid. What has this patch wrought for us? Stronger AoE, a more powerful flame nuke, increased efficiency and a change that will have us shocking our socks off."Maybe this is me, but I like that the challenge for elementals is in the "shoot 'n scoot" mentality that formerly dominated hunter dps. Since hunters can now auto shoot while moving, that removes part of their skill set that they need, and I think that's fine, since their rotations are a bit more complicated than they once were. Shaman dps is also more complicated than it was in wrath, but is still one of the most simple dps rotations in the game.To that end, making dps on the move difficult is a-okay with me, with one caveat. On a straight "stand and nuke" fight, elemental shaman should be either at the top or within 5% of the top dps spec. Now there really isn't any more Patchwerk type fights, but this should be the standard. Once you start moving, your dps goes down more than other classes. The reason I'm okay with this, is that the "shoot 'n scoot" type of dps is something that I consider to be a more pure style of dps. When doing dps like this, your goal is to move as little as possible, and therefore you push the margins of movement in fights. Meaning that if a patch of "fire" appears under your feet, you attempt to strafe just to the very edge of that fire, and no more. Or, even better, let's say you recognize that fire with .5 seconds left on your lava burst spell channel. Do you wait that extra .5 to move, or do you cancel and move now? Or, how well do you utilize spiritwalkers grace and elemental mastery?This tests your mastery of the fight mechanics more than other classes that can almost run ad-nauseum without hardly ever having to stop.The caveat to this is that stand and nuke DPS MUST be higher than every other class, because ele's are poor on the run, no matter how masterful you are of the encounter and your class skills. This is where I fear shaman will be lacking, because blizzard pretty much has never let shaman top the meters in such a way." The improvement to our mana regeneration also makes Reverberation even more attractive and devalues Convection"Convection, IMO is and always was a waste of talent points. I don't remember if that was the name of the mana reducing talent in wrath, but I remember even then, there was a talent in the enhance tree that reduced the mana cost of shock spells by 45% that was considered a "standard" talent back then. I never used it, opting instead for a point in the talent that increased damage of Fire Nova. The only time I ever had any kind of mana issue was when I first hit level 80 on my shaman and I was in all quest blues and greens. The only thing I had to do then was use Thunderstorm between mob pulls. I think I still have about 10 stacks of kungaloosh on him from training cooking and never needing to drink for mana."and a change that will have us shocking our socks off."I agree, especially if you are high on mastery. There is a good chance in the near future that most shaman will be using earth shock every time it comes off of cooldown with that change (not a bad thing IMO). This will also improve DPS on-the-move, so I agree where you said, "The speed of LS charge stacking will mean that any movement is likely to coincide with a fair chunk of Fulmination damage to unload on a single target. "" I treat this spell like a trinket -- there is little point trying to save it for some special occasion, so I use it as often and as soon as I can unless I have a definite plan. "I also believe this is the best way to utilize it, unless you know some boss ability is coming that is going to require you to move."I haven't entirely had the chance to get a real comparison going, but my early tests lead me to believe that the elemental spell priority is even more active and dynamic than when the 31-point talent trees were launched."I think the main thing is you are going to be casting earth shock more than before, and your shared shock cooldown is going to almost always be on cooldown. Not a huge change, but one that makes ele shaman better on the run, and with the other changes, ele shaman should definitely be seeing a boost in DPS. Not too happy about the nerf to tremor totem, but it's understandable, and the dps buffs more than make up for it IMO.One final note regarding meta gems:The old Chaotic Skyflare Diamond from WotLK will be a LOT cheaper than the shadowspirit diamonds. If you have a blue helm, like, say http://www.wowhead.com/item=62407 , you can pop one of those cheapo meta gems in there for a nice boost without breaking your bank, and having that +3% crit damage in your helm will help a lot with that lower gear level. Go for the more expensive meta gems once you have an epic helm or a heroic blue helm.tl;dr - Pewter is awesome, I like the shaman changes, shaman are now better on the run, still require skill on the run, dps should improve significantly, mana never was and still is not an issue for ele shaman, more earth shocking fulmination for the win, and use CSkyflareD instead of BSD for your meta in lower ilevel helms.
2-11-2011 @ 1:01AM
Ouch, the was a helluva wall of text. Almost a whole shaman article I wrote there myself. Worth a read if you're a shaman lover like I am though :)
2-11-2011 @ 4:38AM
I love comments like this, I should nab you to guest post at my blog sometime ;) I've never been a fan of speccing for mana efficiency, although I did have an offspec with it for use on Magma to help a little bit with managing Earthquake mana drain, but one or two gear upgrades and proper thunderstorm use/glyph of thunder and use of magma totem made that unneeded. And then we changed to the kiting tactic so I got to single target nuke. Ahem.I also like our turrent style, to a certain extent. I'd prefer them to review totems (and totem AI) than give us more to do on the move, and I feel these changes are 'enough' to make DPS more interesting. Also gief a decent Fulmination spell effect. It's a big pay off, it deserves pretty!On ChaoticSky, ChaoticShadow is getting pretty damn cheap now as well (I've seen it anywhere from 100g to 300g) as all JCers will have access to that pattern. BSD seems to sell for around 900g+ so really only worth it for epic hats.
2-11-2011 @ 4:41AM
Wall of text crits you for OVER 9000!!! ;)Lol nice post Pyromelter
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