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Posts with tag solo-play

Totem Talk: Elemental mana management for Cataclysm

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Totem Talk for elemental, enhancement and restoration shaman. Get some Fulmination with your Lightning Bolts! Sort the shocks from the flames with Totem Talk: Elemental, brought to you by Sarah Nichol, otherwise known as Pewter from The 'mental Shaman and the Obscurecast, and founding member of TotemSpot.
Before I get stuck in this week, I'd like to take a moment to share some sad news -- Zamir has taken the decision to discontinue his elemental DPS spreadsheed, ZAP!, which has been invaluable for many of us for the past year. Zamir has been something of a catalyst for the elemental theorycrafting and blogging community, so please send him some good vibes. You can still find Zamir at his Planet of the Hats blog, and he is also involved in running TotemSpot. We salute you, Zamir! (No need to panic, though, there are several projects in the works to fill the void.)

Last time, I discussed what the impending patch 4.0.1 meant for my beloved class. The original plan for this week involved heroics, sims and walls of numbers, but the issues with EU premades have rendered that hope a distant dream. Eleven-day queue, I bite my thumb at thee.

As for changes to the class, well, every time I see a changelog, I scan for shaman blue and feel a faint twinge of disappointment. Our totems have had some minor edits, such as a reduced cooldown from 30 seconds to 20 seconds for Stoneclaw Totem and a needed mana cost change from 7 percent base mana to 5 percent base mana for Searing Totem. Does this mean elemental is largely finished, or are we in store for some focused attention in future builds? A lot can change in two months, but with patch 4.0.1 on the horizon, I think our spec is likely to remain static for now. So this week, I'm taking a quick look at mana management, something that many of us have not worried about since Naxxramas.

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Filed under: Shaman, (Shaman) Totem Talk, Cataclysm

Group buffs as solo buffs and when to use them

Rufus over on WoW LJ brings up Commanding Shout, the Warrior group buff that increases maximum health of party members for two minutes within 20 yards, and comments that it doesn't work so well in solo play. Which isn't necessarily true-- there are cases when you need as much health as you can get. And he got me thinking about other buffs like that -- buffs that are really meant for group play, but that can sometimes help in solo play.

The first one that jumped to my Shaman mind is the Mana Spring Totem -- it's really meant for group play, but every once in a while I'll pull too many, need some extra mana, and drop that to pick up a little blue. Also in the Shaman's Resto tree is Earth Shield, which can be helpful in solo play, too. And while Power Word: Shield is really too mana intensive to regularly be used in solo play (it's really meant to be used in groups), there are lots of times when it's helpful with solo priests.

Usually, you should only use these things when absolutely necessary (and when you've got the resources to use them -- Commanding Shout, for example, doesn't actually give you any health, so using it in the middle of a fight doesn't help). But Blizzard has made sure we don't just have group buffs and solo buffs -- some group buffs are occasionally really useful in solo play. Can you think of any others?

Filed under: Priest, Shaman, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Blizzard, Buffs

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