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Leveling a monk in Mists of Pandaria, part 1

Leveling a monk in Mists of Pandaria, part 1 ANY
Interested in trying out the new monk class, but can't tell your Tiger Strikes from your Tiger Palms? Written by Chase Hasbrouck of World of Monkcraft, WoW Insider's new monk coverage will get you kicking in no time!

In less than two months, Mists of Pandaria comes out. If you followed my guide from last week, you'll have all the stuff you need to level -- but that still leaves you with a brand new class with a bunch of buttons that you don't recognize. Yay.

Don't worry, I'm here to help. This week and next, I'll give you the leveling lowdown so you know exactly what abilities you'll need and what you won't. After that, I'll bring you a series of 101 articles on how to play your chosen specialization of monk at level 90. Excited? Good. Bow, and let's begin.

First Steps: Levels 1 to 10

Like all classes, you don't start out with much. Your only usable ability will be Jab, which is your basic attack that generates chi. Your basic auto-attacks will likely do a lot more damage than Jab at first; don't fret. You'll also have Stance of the Fierce Tiger, which will cause your Jab to generate extra chi, which you won't have any use for at first. Finally, you'll have several passive abilities, the most noticeable being Tiger Strikes. This proc gives you (essentially) +50% melee attack speed and +100% melee damage for your next four swings, which means whatever you're fighting will die very quickly.

So jab, jab, and jab some more until you hit level 3, when you will learn Tiger Palm. (You don't have to visit trainers to learn abilities anymore; they just pop right into your spellbook. Hooray for progress!) This is your first chi-consuming ability, hitting about twice as hard as Jab for 1 chi. This sets up your first rotation: Jab, Tiger Palm, Tiger Palm, repeat. The armor penetration buff you gain from Tiger Palm is helpful but not overly significant, so don't worry about it too much. Keep punching away, until you get to level 5 and learn Roll. (Whee!)

You'll likely be using Roll a lot, so stick it somewhere easy to hit. This tosses you forward about 20 yards in the direction you're moving (or facing, if standing still) and has two charges, so it can be used twice in succession. It's good for travel from point A to point B or as a quick escape from a bad situation.

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Filed under: Monk

Scroll of Resurrection rewards not allowed for monks, new pandaren

Scroll of Resurrection rewards not allowed for monks, new pandaren
Last week, I wrote an article discussing some way you could prepare now for your new monk. One of the open questions at the end of that article was whether the Scroll of Resurrection's free 80 bonus would be applicable to new monks, as that could significantly impact the race for realm firsts.

Today, a Blizzard blog post clarified the situation, and the results are in: No free level 80 monk for you.

Blizzard Entertainment
With the upcoming release of Mists of Pandaria, the Scroll of Resurrection system will be updated to accommodate the new talent specialization system, monk class, and pandaren race. The following changes will be made in an upcoming patch prior to the expansion's release:

  • The Scroll of Resurrection leveling system will be updated to work with Mists of Pandaria's new specialization and talent system.
  • Resurrected characters will no longer have their talents preselected for them; however, a specialization will still available to be selected prior to entering the game.
  • Players who receive a Scroll of Resurrection will not be able to apply rewards (e.g. boost to level 80) to monk characters.
  • Players who send or receive a Scroll of Resurrection will not be able to apply rewards (e.g. in-game mount, boost to level 80) to pandaren characters that have not yet chosen a faction.
To learn more about the Scroll of Resurrection, read the FAQ.


While this still leaves open the question of whether Recruit-A-Friend's level-granting bonuses will work for new monks, at least now the playing field is balanced for all who will be competing. While my intuition tells me that Recruit-A-Friend bonuses will probably be allowed for monks, you may want to start acquiring some heirlooms, just in case. (EDIT: Yes, RaF is allowed for monks.)

It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: News items, Monk

Preparing for your new monk

Preparing for your new Monk ANY
Interested in trying out the new monk class, but can't tell your Tiger Strikes from your Tiger Palms? Written by Chase Hasbrouck of World of Monkcraft, WoW Insider's new monk coverage will get you kicking in no time!

So the release date's been officially announced, and you've decided you want to roll a monk. Good for you! Now, though, you've got more than 100 million experience points to get through between 1 and 90. Ouch. Here are some ideas for things you'll want to have saved for your new character, whether you're gunning for the realm-first level 90 monk or just want a stress-free experience.

Gear mastery

First up, getting some heirloom items is the obvious starting point. Each heirloom armor piece will give you an XP bonus, and heirloom weapons contribute significantly to your damage output, which gets you through things faster. You've got two choices, agility leather for aspiring brewmasters and windwalkers or intellect leather for potential mistweavers. As it stands now, though, I'd highly recommend sticking with agility leather, at least for leveling purposes, because the offensive spell selection for mistweavers is limited and isn't available until late.

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Filed under: Monk

So you want to play a brewmaster monk?

So you want to play a brewmaster monk ANY
Interested in trying out the new monk class, but can't tell your Tiger Strikes from your Tiger Palms? Written by Chase Hasbrouck of World of Monkcraft, WoW Insider's new monk coverage will get you kicking in no time!

Last week, I covered windwalker monks and how to fly around kicking butt like a kung fu master. This week, I'm delving into the "spirited" version, the brewmaster. One caveat, though: Because this is still beta, things will likely change somewhat between now and live. We'll have a full 101 guide that covers things like enchants, gems, and stats when Mists is released, but this will cover you until then.

What is a brewmaster monk?

Monks have three role options: damage, tanking, and healing, of which brewmaster is the tanking role.

How do brewmaster monks work?

Brewmaster monks have two primary resources, energy and chi. Energy replenishes at a constant rate and is used to power your basic moves and abilities. These attacks generate chi, which is then used to buff your survivability.

What is this "stagger" thing?

Stagger is a new mitigation mechanic that is exclusive to brewmaster tanks. For every physical attack taken, a percentage of the damage is not taken immediately but instead is turned into a damage over time effect that stacks. In and of itself, this does nothing except spread out the damage taken a bit. However, brewmasters also have Purifying Brew, which completely eliminates the Stagger DoT effect. Depending on the fight, you may have enough chi to use PB often, or you may need to let Stagger stack a bit. Many abilities buff Stagger, such as the Shuffle effect from Blackout Kick.

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Filed under: Monk

So you want to play a windwalker monk?

So you want to play a windwalker monk
Interested in trying out the new monk class, but can't tell your Tiger Strikes from your Tiger Palms? Written by Chase Hasbrouck of World of Monkcraft, WoW Insider's new monk coverage will get you kicking in no time!

If you're anything like me, as soon as premade monks became available, you dived in. Pick the right name, get the right look, log in for the first time, admire your look, open the spellbook ...

Whoa. Wha?

Stop! Don't feel like you need to run back to that character creation screen to start from the beginning. Over the next few weeks, I'll give you all the info you need to start playing with power; you won't even need to spend $3.99 per minute. One caveat, though: Because this is still beta, things will likely change somewhat between now and live. We'll have a full 101 guide that covers things like enchants, gems, and stats when Mists is released, but this will cover you until then.

What is a windwalker monk? Monks have three role options: damage, tanking, and healing, of which windwalker is the melee damage role. I'm covering this first because I expect windwalker to be the most commonly used specialization, especially for leveling.

How do windwalker monks work? Windwalker monks have two primary resources, energy and chi. Energy replenishes at a constant rate and is used to power your basic attacks and abilities. These attacks generate chi, which is then used to power your stronger attacks. Since the chi pool is small, though, you'll typically be rotating the use of chi generators and chi spenders in order to maximize efficiency.

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Filed under: Monk

Mists of Pandaria Beta: Pandaren starting zone walk-through, part 1

Pandaren starting zone walkthrough, part 1
In our narrative walkthrough of the pandaren starting zone, we chose to play a pandaren monk because that's kind of a huge point of the expansion. You will see mild differences if you play a not-monk. Other classes begin in Shang Xi's Training Ground, so it's not entirely a separate experience.

Like any good character, you don't begin life as a pandaren as a blank slate. No, your very first login greets you with a quest warning you of an unassailable truth: You have Much to Learn. Thankfully, it doesn't take a great deal of heroic effort to complete the quest. Just trot down the hill and speak to Master Shang Xi.

Master Shang Xi, a monk, wastes no time in warning you that your life won't be filled with bare-fisted shenanigans, despite what movies may have said about martial artists. You must learn The Lesson of the Iron Bough. Run down the hill and grab a training staff from the (many) weapon racks. Equip it, and return to Master Shang Xi.

Master Shang Xi congratulates you for your mastery of the "hold a stick" technique and sends you off to beat up some training dummies. Despite the presence of a big, honking stick, this training time is called The Lesson of the Sandy Fist. Don't worry about the Training Targets attacking back; despite many hours drunkenly threatening them with my stick, they never killed me. It was close a couple of times, but since the targets never actually attack, I was safe.

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Filed under: WoW Rookie, Mists of Pandaria

Diablo 3 Transmog Outfits for WoW: Monk, demon hunter, wizard

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It's been two weeks since Diablo III was released, and if you've got some time to spare, I've got three new transmogrification outfits that might interest you. If you'll recall, two weeks ago we learned how to recreate the witch doctor, barbarian, Leah, and Deckard Cain in WoW. As promised, this week we'll be taking a stab at the monk, demon hunter, and wizard, starting with the wizard.

Making a convincing wizard outfit in WoW is surprisingly easy, provided you keep a few things in mind. First off, you need to be very aware of your character's silhouette. Bulky gloves, spiky helms, and big shoulder armor are essential, and fortunately, they're all in ample supply on Azeroth. Knowing that, you just need to keep an eye on colors. If you look at the sample outfit, you should notice right off the colors don't quite match; the golds are different hues. Let that serve as a lesson on why it's important to leave yourself a lot of options when selecting the right piece for an outfit. Mismatched hues can sometimes break an outfit if it's not balanced right.

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Filed under: Transmogrification, Diablo 3

Raid Rx: Recap of recent healing changes

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Every week, Raid Rx will help you quarterback your healers to victory! Your host is Matt Low, the grand poohbah of World of Matticus and a founder of Plus Heal, a discussion community for healers of all experience levels and interests Catch his weekly podcast on healing, raiding and leading, the Matticast.

There's been some large changes to healing for some of the classes in recent builds. This week, we'll recap and go through the classes to see what's new. You might be interested to know that at level 89, my priest has 250k mana. Who wants to wager that 300k mana is the maximum cap at level 90? Remember with the new intellect and mana system coming in with the expansion, intellect stats no longer raise the mana pool anymore. Your mana regeneration is governed strictly by your spirit levels.

Priest

Lightwell receives a few tweaks to the healing numbers. More importantly, it now has a glyph that completely changes the functionality of the spell. Glyph of Lightspring turns Lightwell into an automatic healing ability with a catch. Lightwell will only heal players with health lower than 50%. It will only perform the check once every 5 seconds. That is a fair compromise to me. I've never been truly satisfied with Lightwell since my experience has shown me that most players never click on it when it really matters. At least this glyph helps remove control from them and I gain the knowledge of my Lightwell kicking in when it'll be needed.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raid Rx (Raid Healing), Mists of Pandaria

Encrypted Text: 3 Diablo monk moves that WoW rogues should steal

monk
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any questions or article suggestions you'd like to see covered here.

Like many of you, I've been playing a monk all week. Every minute of my free time has been spent using my fists to dole out some serious justice. I've been alternating between twirling a staff and a pair of bladed fist weapons. Monks are a lot of fun to play.

I'm not talking about our furry panda friends from Pandaria, but rather the master martial artists from Sanctuary. While there are plenty of pandaren monk abilities that I wouldn't mind borrowing, the Diablo III monk's arsenal is quite appealing. Due to our mutual focus on martial arts, several of their techniques would fit right into our toolbox. There might not be any poisonous strikes or sneaky stabbing going on, but we're adept at kicking and punching as well.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Learn the basics of Diablo 3 gameplay

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Since Diablo II was released 12 years ago, it's safe to say that Diablo III will be the first Diablo title many people will have ever played. When we first mentioned that we would be providing some coverage of Blizzard's point-and-click dungeoneering action title, one of the first requests we received was a guide to Diablo basics. How do you play the game? What does it have in common with WoW?

We have you covered.

The core of Diablo gameplay is the mouse click. You do everything from combat to looting to movement with your mouse, and your interactions with your keyboard are extremely minimal overall. On Twitter recently, I noticed many people mentioning they were buying a new mouse specifically to use with Diablo III -- and that's not a bad idea. No, we're not talking a brand new $80 Razer Naga; we're talking some $10 to $15 thing you can pick up off of a department store shelf. You want a mouse that you're not going to mourn when your buttons inevitably give out from the mountain of abuse you're about to unleash upon them. Grab something cheap and disposable so that when it dies, you will consider it a victory -- just another technological corpse for the bone pile.

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Filed under: Diablo 3

Chi: World of Warcraft's new resource for monks

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Secondary resource systems are all the rage in World of Warcraft these days. Gone are the days of simply energy, rage, or mana. Now, the majority of classes in the game have an additional resource that must be managed in order to do their role well. From the traditional (combo points for feral druids and rogues, or runes for death knights) to the new (Burning Embers for warlocks, or Shadow Orbs for shadow priests), it's clear secondary resources are here to stay.

Chi is the secondary resource common to all three monk specializations in Mists of Pandaria. It is conceptually most similar to paladins' holy power, as a stored 4-point pool. Through his level 30 talents, a monk can choose to buff chi generation in one of three ways, either increasing the maximum pool size via Ascendance, increasing the rate of generation via Power Strikes, or enabling an ability that can periodically completely refill chi (Chi Brew). For all monk specializations, chi is required in order to use the majority of abilities.

Before I move on, let's make one thing clear: Chi and combo points (CPs) are very different systems. CPs are stored on a single target; if a rogue or feral switches targets and uses a CP-generating ability, any CPs stored on the previous target are lost. Chi, in comparison, is stored on the monk, making target switches much simpler.

Second, most abilities that consume CP scale with the number of CPs used; for example, a 5-CP Ferocious Bite hits much harder than a 1-CP Ferocious Bite. All of the monk's chi-consuming abilities have a fixed cost, though this may change later in the beta.

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Filed under: Monk, Mists of Pandaria

3 windwalker monk abilities that channel classic fighting games

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One of the key themes being presented with the new monk class is arcade brawlers, and the new windwalker specialization delivers this in spades. I spent my youth getting rocked by Sagat in Street Fighter II on the SNES, and I've enjoyed the genre ever since. From my time on the beta with windwalkers, here are three abilities that immediately evoke my childhood. Sorry, brewmasters and mistweavers; these abilities are only for those of us who can kick back and knuckle up.

Flying Serpent Kick Josh Myers touched on this in his earlier article on monk abilities, but remember Liu Kang's signature flying kick from Mortal Kombat? It's here, and it's every bit as awesome now as it was then. Hit Flying Serpent Kick, and your windwalker takes off at what appears to be epic mount speed, which lasts for several seconds (about 100 yards of travel). Click again and he lands, damaging and slowing anything in the area. This doesn't hit overly hard, but combined with Roll, it's amazing maneuverability around the battlefield. I used to call feral druids the fastest spec on the battlefield, but not anymore. Forget Heroic Leap; this is now my favorite ability in the game.

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Filed under: Monk

5 monk abilities that should have you excited for Mists of Pandaria

A human monk using Flying Serpent Kick
When I was younger, Easter was a time of good food and great gaming. While my parents and relatives discussed boring adult stuff in my aunt's living room, my brothers and I would flee with our cousin to their basement, where we'd play Mortal Kombat II on SNES all night. I was always Liu Kang, my younger brother was normally Reptile, and I'd always win the first few matches by backing him into a corner and repeatedly bicycle kicking him until he died. Or blocked. Once he became a preteen, it was usually the latter, and I haven't beaten him in a fighting game since.

The long-distance flying Martial Arts kick has been a staple in video games ever since video games became a Thing, and I'm particularly pleased to announce that Blizzard has done it due justice in Mists of Pandaria with Flying Serpent Kick. It won't allow you to abuse dated wall mechanics or give you a false sense of pride, but it's one of a number of awesome monk abilities that fit in well with the monk archetype in gaming in general while staying true to WoW's form. Hopefully, these five monk abilities will have you excited for WoW's next expansion.

1. Expel Harm Normally, heals aren't something that I typically call exciting or cool, unless they're the total awesomeness that is Healing Rain. This is especially true given the relative homogenization of healer classes in Cataclysm and the existence of the healing holy trinity. Expel Harm isn't your normal heal. Instead, what Expel Harm does is heal you (or, if glyphed, your target) for a small amount, and then it does 100% of the healing done to the closest enemy target as damage.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Humor, Monk, Mists of Pandaria

Raid Rx: Mistweaver Monk 101

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Every week, Raid Rx will help you quarterback your healers to victory! Your host is Matt Low, the grand poohbah of World of Matticus and a founder of Plus Heal, a discussion community for healers of all experience levels and interests Catch his weekly podcast on healing, raiding and leading, the Matticast.

Ghostcrawler introduced the monk in detail to us back during BlizzCon 2011. We didn't have as many details available to us until we entered the beta stage of the game. This week, I want to introduce you to the different aspects of healing monks.

The mistweaver monk is a stance-based class that has two forms of energy at their disposal: mana and chi.
  • Stance of the Wise Serpent Healing stance that replaces your energy resource bar and turns it into mana and converts your spirit rating into spell and melee hit rating. Abilities that would have cost energy now cost mana.
  • Stance of the Fierce Tiger Increases your damage done by 20% and allows access to a different set of offensive abilities.
When healing, you'll mostly be in the Stance of the Wise Serpent.

In terms of equipment, monks can use axes, staves, maces, fists, swords, and polearms. Your preferred weapons will mostly be staves or maces (although that may change as more items are revealed). For armor, you'll have access to leather and you'll get the 5% intellect from Leather Specialization. Like the other healing classes, your mana regeneration is going to rely on spirit.

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Filed under: Raid Rx (Raid Healing), Monk

Mists of Pandaria Beta: First impressions of monk leveling

Pandaren monk in a tornado for a starting zone quest
The first monk I leveled to 15 in the Mists of Pandaria beta was a tauren, and I'm still having nightmares about it. I thought it would be a grand idea, allowing me to focus entirely on the monk experience and not allowing myself to get distracted by the shininess of the new pandaren starting zone. Going with something I've already done tons of times in the past seemed to make sense, and the fact that tauren are still my favorite race in WoW was just icing on the cake. For this same reason, I eschewed heirlooms; I wanted to give myself a holistic monk leveling experience.

I had the best intentions, but the actual experience was pretty bad. Most of this can be chalked up to the beta test being a beta test; I'm fairly certain the monk isn't a fully developed class yet. One of the biggest issues was ability progression. You start off with your basic chi-building attack, Jab, at level 1. After that, you get the awesome and always-useful Roll ability at level 2. I have no complaints about Roll, even though the animation hadn't been implemented on tauren models yet.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Mists of Pandaria

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