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Posts with tag Belt

Spiritual Guidance: Playing catch up with shadow priests

Fox Van Allen steps out of the shadows every Wednesday to take control of Spiritual Guidance, telling you all you need to know to melt faces with expert precision.

The era of patch 3.2 held some dark days for a shadow priest. The fights in Trial of the Crusader were definitely not built for shadow priests, especially in heroic mode. We scaled terribly with new gear. Our tier 9 gear was questionably designed. Every class has their own problems, but the problems that besieged shadow priests were bad enough to negatively effect raid performance. It wasn't hard for shadow priests to get left behind.

Patch 3.3, though -- this is our time. The changes to the spec have already been detailed: buffs to our glyphs, talents, and haste-affected DoTs gave us a ten-to-twenty percent boost to our damage right off the bat. Our tier 10 gear gives powerful two- and four-piece bonuses. And best yet, the fights in the new Icecrown Citadel five-man dungeons and raids seem as if they were built for us. We add tremendous value to an ICC raid in almost every fight.

Actually seeing those fights, though -- that can be a challenge. Patch 3.2 did a lot of damage to the shadow priest class's reputation. An increased emphasis on "gear score" in the game can (unfairly) get an average-geared shadow priest written off. We can't just take playing for granted -- past problems with the spec means there's a higher bar for us.

If you got left behind in the last patch or even if you're a newly minted level 80, don't worry -- you can catch up quick. Here's how.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Totem Talk: Pre-raid gear - belts, bracers and boots

Totem Talk is the column for shamans. Matthew Rossi found himself sucked into a frenzy of Kara key runs this week, healing and DPSing, and as a result finds himself thinking about pre-Kara loot for shammies, who are after all the class this column is about.

So I and my guildmates in the Consummate Vees, Horde-side Malfurion, did some key runs this week. (No, I'm not going to tell you my toon's name, it's a super-duper secret, but I will give you a hint: it starts with the letter V.) It's our hope to get back into semi-serious raiding shape by the time Zul'Aman comes out, and since I'm still working on my elemental set for when I switch specs (I like Resto, don't get me wrong, but I'm antsy to try something new) I started looking at gear options. I'm lucky enough to have a couple of nice epic Kara pieces for an elemental shammy (the Ring of Unrelenting Storms and the Big Bad Wolf's Head) but in general, most of my gear is gemmed out for healing.

Since gearing up is part of the game, especially as you prepare for raiding, I thought it wouldn't hurt to talk over some options. The only limitations I'm imposing on myself are that I will only talk about mail pieces, and I can't cover gear for three separate specs in any comprehensive way so I'm just doing a few for each slot for each spec. (Also a note for lower level shamans - I'm testing stuff out on the PTR and will have a post about gearing up your lower level shaman with the 2.3 changes soon.) This time we'll cover belts, bracers and boots for the three specs, as well as some generic pieces that can fill a need for more variety. Belts, bracers and boots are often the hardest things to find since they're not often covered in the new dungeon sets, so it seemed to make sense to start with them first.

Okay. As yet another aside, in light of last week's post about dual wielding and enhancement shamans, I present unto you Rage and Fury. I expect a lot of arguments to erupt between Fury Warriors, Rogues and Shamans over these, but whatever else can be said it cannot be denied that these are two sweet 2.6 speed fists. If I were a deluded egomaniac I'd be tempted to believe that someone at Blizzard reads my posts. But I know they don't.

I made myself sad. Anyway, onto gear options.

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Filed under: Shaman, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Guides, (Shaman) Totem Talk

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