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Posts with tag monks

Warlords of Draenor: Big changes to Monks

Mistweaver Monk
The latest Warlords of Draenor alpha patch notes have been released, and they come with some pretty hefty changes to monks--Mistweavers in particular. Blizzard has been experimenting with the monk class, and that comes as no real surprise. They were the new kids of Mists of Pandaria, so it's expected that they'll be getting relatively large changes in the expansion immediately following their introduction. Death Knights went through the same thing in Cataclysm, so this seems to be just part of the new class cycle. Keep that in mind as we go over the changes; this is still alpha, after all, and if there were any time for Blizzard to play around and see what happens, it's now.

The biggest changes in the current build involve haste, the global cooldown, and the separation of the traditional healing style of Mistweavers versus the Eminence dps-while-healing style. Like Warriors, a number of the monk changes show a great emphasis on the importance of stances, and how different stances affect gameplay. The monk change notes are after the break, with the strikeouts left intact so as to illustrate the dynamic changes from the last alpha build. Red text in the original that is not struck out has been bolded below.

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Filed under: News items, Warlords of Draenor

Warlords of Draenor Alpha Patch Notes for June 18th

The updated patch notes for the Warlords of Draenor alpha have some significant changes in store for monks and warriors. Abilities have been removed, returned, folded into one another - it's a lot of change for those two classes. Just to give you an idea here's some highlights:
  • Several abilities have been folded together. As an example, Stance of the Sturdy Ox and Stance of the Fierce Tiger both provide the benefits of other abilities that have now been removed. For example, Stance of the Fierce Tiger now provides the benefit of Combo Breaker and Combat Conditioning, while Stance of the Sturdy Ox now provides Brewmaster Training and Desperate Measures. Likewise, Crazed Berserker for fury warriors provides both Titan's Grip and Single-Minded Fury, both of which are removed.
  • Several monk and warrior abilities have been removed. Monks lose Dematerialize, Sparring and Swift Reflexes while Touch of Death, Transcendence and Zen Meditation are no longer available to Mistweaver monks (and Zen Meditation no longer redirects harmful spells cast against party/raid members).
  • Warriors not only lose Flurry and Meat Cleaver, but a whole host of abilities have been made stance specific - Taunt, Shield Slam, Revenge, Mass Spell Reflection, Mocking Banner, Rallying Cry and many others are either Defensive Stance only, or Defensive Stance/Gladiator Stance only. Whirlwind is back for arms warriors, but is Battle Stance only, and Deep Wounds is only for protection warriors now. Slam has been removed.
Here are the patch notes themselves, and we'll be paying close attention as this definitely seems like more changes are coming.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Warlords of Draenor

5 abilities your monk is not using enough

Every class has its core abilities -- skills you rely on to get you through every fight or to save you in an emergency. These are all bound to hotkeys within easy reach, on a primary button bar, and you're so used to them being there that your fingers move towards the right keys without any thought. But you also have abilities you reach for less often... or that might not be on your button bars at all.

But not all of these abilities are as useless as you might think they are. Almost every ability in a monk's toolbox is useful in some situation, even though some abilities may not seem useful at first glance. To help you unlock the power of these lesser-used skills, we'll take a look at five abilities you might not be using and discuss how -- and when -- they can come in handy.

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Filed under: Monk

How to gear your new windwalker monk for raiding

So you've finally hit level 90 on your windwalker monk and you're trying to decide where to go from here. There are lots of things you can do at level 90, but if you want to keep advancing through PvE content, the first thing you'll need to do is grab better gear that will let you hop into heroics and raids.

While the one of the best ways to gear up is by jumping into heroics and, especially, raids to grab item drops, each raid has an item level requirement -- and you definitely won't meet it after initially hitting 90. But that's not to say it's out of reach -- just that you'll need to put a bit of effort in before you're ready to head into heroics (which require an ilvl of 435) or raids (which start with the ilvl 460 Mogu'shan Vaults).

For new monks who aren't sure where to start -- or old hat players who just aren't confident of their windwalking skills -- we'll help you through the stats that are important for your gear and point you in the right direction to get ready for raiding.

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Filed under: Monk

The quick guide to mistweaving

I didn't start my monk journey as many others did at MoP's release, but switched mains during tier 15 due to raid needs. My confidence was at an all-time low because monk healing felt so foreign, compared to other healing classes. After some time, I completely fell for my monk and want to share what I've learned along the way.

I'd like to get it out of the way now - this guide isn't meant for the advanced mistweaver. It's a quick guide to get you healing, stat. I'd like to cover in-depth mistweaver topics in the future, so don't worry! This is a resource meant for monks hitting level 90 and are interested in trying their hand at healing. It's meant for brewmasters or windwalkers curious about healing or even for those being thrown into a new off-spec.

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

Patch 5.4 build 17227 highlights and more

Frost Mage
The latest goodies and PTR build changes are up on Wowhead, and there are some very fine things there indeed. My personal favorite? The new achievement from the Proving Grounds: You're Doing It Wrong. You earn this achievement for successfully completing a Silver level proving grounds trial while in a spec not meant for it. I'm already planning my Balance druid spec for the healing challenge, just you all wait.

Other important items of note include the ongoing discussion surrounding the nerfs to Mana Tea for Mistweaver monks, as well as the Frost mage mechanic Mastery: Icicles. These threads are very much of interest to those who play the classes involved, and if you have missed some of the news on these topics it is certainly worth getting up to speed. There are also further notes on class changes and tweaks, the most extensive of which are occurring to monks, as well as a whole host of new vanity items, trinkets, consumables, and pets presumably related to the Timeless Isle.

Filed under: News items, Mists of Pandaria

What's on the horizon for monks in patch 5.3

What's on the horizon for monks in patch 53
There's a lot of cool stuff coming our way in patch 5.3, including a new battleground, new scenarios, new quests, and a host of PvP changes. But while these splashy changes have been getting all the attention, monks haven't been left out of the action. Be aware that patch 5.3 is still on the PTR which means we may still see changes before anything his the live servers, but working from Blizzard's official patch notes, we can get a pretty good idea of what's coming. Let's take a look!

Help for healers
First up, there's a change to all healing spells that pick their own targets -- which includes things like Renewing Mist and Chi Wave. These abilities will now pick their targets a bit more intelligently. Says Blizzard, "Targets with lower % health will be preferred, and players are weighted more heavily than pets." It's hard to say how much this will impact gameplay in practice, but it's a definitely a buff.

Mistweavers are also getting a buff to Revival, whose healing cap is now 15 raid members (instead of 6) when used in a 25-player raid.

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Filed under: Monk, Mists of Pandaria

Should you be playing a monk?

Should you be playing a monk
World of Warcraft has a character class for every type of player... though you may have to hunt around to find the class that's a perfect fit for you. These days, I've found my perfect fit to be the monk. (Though who's to say that I won't change my mind again in the future.) So if you're in the market for a new character -- whether you're a new player or an old hand -- let's talk about why a monk should be at the top of your to-play list.

Just what is a monk?
Monks are masters of weaponless combat who have learned to harness their chi hurt their enemies or heal their friends. While they fight bare-handed, they can (and should!) equip weapons: they can use fist weapons, one-handed axes, one-handed maces, one-handed swords, polearms, and staves and can dual-wield one-handed weaponry. They use cloth and leather armor and, though monks originated in Pandaria (and you'll need the Mists of Pandaria expansion to play one), the class is open to pandaren, dwarf, human, blood elf, tauren, undead, draenei, gnome, night elf, orc, and troll.

They're a true hybrid class who can tank (brewmaster monks), heal (mistweaver monks), and DPS (windwalker monks). For resources, monks have health, energy (for brewmasters and windwalkers), mana (for mistwalkers), and chi. Chi is unique resource to monks: you have four possible points of it and start combat with zero. Some of your attacks will generate chi while others will use it, meaning monks take careful resource balancing.

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Filed under: WoW Rookie, Monk

Breakfast Topic: Why can't we all find Enlightenment?

Breakfast Topic Why can't we all find Enlightenment
As a (fairly) new monk, I have to say I love the fact that monks have their very own daily quest. Every day -- and an extra time every ten levels -- we can head out to the Peak of Serenity in Pandaria, where we train with our fellow monks.

If you aren't aware that this quest was daily, and only visited the Peak of Serenity for class quests every ten levels, you should get on board! It's easy to do -- just cast Zen Pilgrimage every day and spend a couple of minutes sparring with one of the monk trainers -- and the reward is very much worth it, not only giving you great XP, but also the Enlightenment buff that provides +50% experience from questing and killing. If you're leveling, I don't have to tell you how invaluable that kind of XP buff is. In fact, it's so invaluable, that whenever I've switched to another alt I really miss it. Leveling any other class, no matter how efficient you are with heirlooms and rested bonuses, is slower than leveling a monk.

And all I have to say is... where are the other class quests? Why don't hunters have daily target practice quests? Why don't mages have daily drills in fire, frost, and arcane magics? Why don't warlocks have daily demon duels? And what do you think, dear readers? Do other classes need their own daily quests, or would it just add to the frankly overwhelming pile of dailies we already have?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, Monk

Should Moonglade return to being the druid's Peak of Serenity?

Should Moonglade return to being the druid's Peak of Serenity
Leveling up a monk is good fun and rather speedy. Starting from level 20, monks can complete daily quests that allow them to practice key skills and also reward an experience buff that stacks up to 48 hours. All they have to do is use their Zen Pilgrimage skill to send their spirits to the Peak of Serenity and interact with their Monk trainers. No other class has this kind of training, but the druids used to have something similar in Moonglade.

Once upon a time, leveling up a druid was much more difficult than it is now, and arguably more fun. Each form had a class quest to go with it and the Moonglade teleport spell was used to get these quests, as druids needed to speak to the druid trainers in the Cenarion Circle in order to advance as a shape-changer. Granted, the Aquatic Form quest was a royal pain, but it was a rite of passage that I thought made sense. There were no daily quests, nor was there repeated training as to how to use the forms, but the class quests did make advancing as a druid more rewarding.

I think they should revamp Moonglade to return it to its former glory and use the Peak of Serenity as a model for training druids how to use their forms and other key skills.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, 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

The New Class: Monks and class balance

I've wanted to talk about this for a while. The game's hybrid vs. pure debate is about to swing into high gear. With the monk, not only will there be a third class that can tank, heal or DPS, but it will be doing these things with entirely new mechanics. What does the monk mean for everyone, both those who will adopt and love it and those who will have to compete against it?

The first change the monk brings along with it is simple: the class numbers game. Not only will we have 11 classes now, but all sorts of other numbers change as well. For instance, there will now be five classes capable of tanking and five capable of healing. We'll have four pure DPS classes and seven hybrids that can DPS. There will be a total of 33 specializations (although it may be easier to balance with talents shifting to the new system) to design around.

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

5 reasons you should love Mists of Pandaria

BlizzCon's over, so let's recap. We get playable Pandaren, neutral characters that can choose either Alliance or Horde at the end of the starting experience. On top of that, we get the monk class that plenty of people have been excited about seeing implemented in game. And then we get entirely revamped talent trees that aren't trees at all -- they are a completely gutted and entirely new system for people to play with. Plus, we get something to do with all those pets we've collected over the last several years.

Yet a lot of what I've been reading here and there has been a general reaction of "That's it?" rather than excitement, and it seems a little odd to me. After trying to puzzle out why exactly it was odd to me that people would feel this way, I decided it really didn't have anything to do with them; it had plenty to do with me. Out of all the posts I write, you guys seem to love the tinfoil hat theories the best -- and the way I create those posts is due to the way that I look at stories and situations.

That said, there is a reason you guys should be excited about this expansion. Actually, there are several of them, but I'm only going to hit five of them. And I'm going to blow your mind with what is the biggest reason you should absolutely love what's coming up in World of Warcraft.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Mists of Pandaria

Guilds may come and go, but friendships are forever.

Recently, I wrote a piece called "All guilds are is dust in the wind," and our reader Rihlsul has written a "rebuttal" to it, entitled "5 tips for a long lived guild," for which I am surprisingly quite thankful. Personally I don't see it as a rebuttal at all; rather it complements my overall point, which perhaps I did not express as clearly as possible before. Some people heard me flippantly dismissing guilds as pointless and suggesting that we should hop from one to the other selfishly any time we felt the inclination. To the contrary, my post (as well as my reference to mandala art) has to do with unrealistic expectations, and dealing with the sadness that comes along when your guild hopes don't work out.

The majority of my time in World of Warcraft so far has been in two guilds. Both meant a lot to me, and both broke up because we didn't follow Rihlsul's 4th tip, that as a guild you really need to be doing things together, and that means having common goals in the game. In both cases, different members of the guild changed their minds as to what they wanted to do -- which is perfectly natural, since they gained levels, the expansion came out, and new activities opened up. These were small guilds anyway, and they no longer felt like thriving communities. At first, it seemed as if each guild was a failure.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Guilds

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