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Posts with tag totemtalk

Totem Talk: A Cataclysm 101 guide for enhancement shaman

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Totem Talk for elemental, enhancement, and restoration shaman. This week, Josh Myers joins us to review the lowdown on playing an enhancement shaman in the Cataclysm era.

As an enhancement shaman, the last time I was afraid of taking on a mob solo was the third grade. With Bloodlusted wolves at my back, Windfury in my hand, and the massive power of instant Greater Healing Waves every 10 or so seconds, soloing was a breeze. Chillmaw? Soloed him daily. Attumen the Huntsman? Weekly. Gamom, level 5 elite neutral tauren? Every chance I got (until Blizzard force fed him "performance" pills).

Going into the Cataclysm beta, if Blizzard wrote a post on its forums warning that solo mobs will actually start threatening my life, I would have written it off as a Public Service Announcement for those pesky mages and rogues who had to worry about things like dying in leveling content. Actually, when Blizzard did write that post on its forums, I wrote it off as a pesky PSA for pures with no self-heals. And then I died. I died quite a bit ... until I stopped trying to AoE grind.

Mobs in a Deathwing-infused world hurt. Moreover, they have a lot of hit points. They're no longer just problems for squishy mages and hardy but heal-less warriors. If you pull too many mobs, don't kill fleeing mobs before they warn their friends, or attempt to play chicken with the Whale Shark, you will die. This post will attempt to help you with surviving the first two. For the third, you're on your own.

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Filed under: Shaman, (Shaman) Totem Talk

Totem Talk: Restoration 4.0.1 survival guide

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Totem Talk for elemental, enhancement and restoration shaman. Want to be a sultan of swing healing? A champion of Chain Heal? Totem Talk: Restoration will show you how, brought to you by Joe Perez, otherwise known as Lodur from World of Matticus and host of the BDTU: Lore edition podcast.

It has been a full week since patch 4.0.1 has gone live, and in that week there has been a lot of adjustment on everyone's part. Restoration shaman were quite lucky in that for the most part, the way we do things for now has been left unchanged. That is not to say we don't have things that require adjustment or adapting to.

A couple of weeks ago, I answered a series of questions pertaining both to patch 4.0.1 and the upcoming expansion Cataclysm, and back in September, we talked about what to expect when patch 4.0.1 went live. This week, I would like to go over all the changes and compile a list of everything you need to know for survival until the next expansion. I have received a number of reader emails, and I hope this will answer many of the questions I've been receiving. So let's get started!

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Filed under: Shaman, (Shaman) Totem Talk

Totem Talk: Enhancement 101

Axes, maces, lightning, fire, frost, and wolves, and best of all, Windfury. It can mean only one thing: enhancement. Rich Maloy (aka Stoneybaby) loves it and lives it. His main spec is enhance. His off-spec is enhance. And he will be penning the enhance side of Totem Talk.

It seems 101 guides are all the rage these days, which makes enhancement shaman 101 a convenient place to start with my inaugural post. Playing an enhancement shaman, and playing it well, means dealing with the most extensive spell rotation in the game, having two caps to hit in gearing, and a dozen cooldowns to track. Not to mention the need to run out of fires, avoid whirlwinds, and generally dodge all that hate on melee. It's safe to say enhance is one of the most complex specs to play. It's also one of the most fun.

My favorite part is that we're right up front making a mess of things with both physical and magical damage–to deadly effect. You want to play enhancement? Let's dive right in to get you started!

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Filed under: (Shaman) Totem Talk

Totem Talk: Enhancement in the Wrath Beta

I'm resisting the urge to post more about downranking and shamans because I want to let it shake out a little bit more. However, since the change to downranking and the XP change happened at the same time in the beta, it's made my attempt to explore various specs a little harder to do: in order to see what all the new abilities can really do, I need to burn my way to 77 as fast as I can. Having done that on my warrior, I now move to leveling my horde shaman as fast as I can, and for that, there's still one spec that's the best in my opinion. So I took my resto/elemental geared orc shaman and started gearing him up in quest drops as an enhancement shaman.

I've deliberately been avoiding the Alliance side as my mains nowadays are in that faction, so I'm in part using the beta to catch up with old friends (and it helps that my Horde toons have worse gear, as it allows me to evaluate if you can get good enough gear questing to get through the zones) and I have to say I'm liking the Horde's quests and settlements, it's all tied together very nicely. Borean Tundra has lots of flavor quests that work well with a shaman, there's plenty of decent gear to help give you a leg up (in the picture above the only piece of gear that shaman is wearing that didn't come from Northrend quests are his shoulders) and the mobs, while not totally weak pushovers, aren't especially daunting for you if you're not geared to the teeth.

The spell power changes (I've been admonished not to detail how spell damage or damage/healing converts as it has been covered too many times already by commenter Mizatt) has had some interesting consequences: I've taken a trinket that has crit strike and spell damage on it as the crit works for both my melee and magical attacks, and as I've commented before you get a lot more out of your shocks and spells now with the addition of Malestrom Weapon.

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Filed under: Shaman, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Instances, Quests, Leveling, (Shaman) Totem Talk, Wrath of the Lich King

Totem Talk: Shamans in development

As we've discussed before, Shamans need a lot of development love in order to no longer be the least played class. We did receive some good news at BlizzCon, but what is the first tangible thing that happens? A "hotfix". Nerfing Windfury to no longer work on "yellow" attacks except next swing attacks was so pressing, it couldn't wait for a patch. It seems this change had been in the works for a while, but a hotfixed buff would have been nice to balance it out.

But let's dwell on the positive. There are some changes for Shamans coming up in patches and the expansion: Wrath of the Lich King. Here is a compilation of what development is in the works or at least being discussed for Shamans.

Crowd Control?: I was disappointed that no one asked about the ability to clear aggro, but at both of the BlizzCon class panels, someone asked about Crowd Control. It seems that while this is definitely not something that will show up before WotLK, it is being looked at for levels 71 to 80. They have yet to decide if crowd control is something that they want to add to the Shaman class, but at least it is in discussion.

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Filed under: Shaman, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, (Shaman) Totem Talk, Wrath of the Lich King

Totem Talk: Tales of a Blueberry Shaman

Every other week, Robin Torres investigates Shaman issues, interviews experienced Shamans and reports her findings in Totem Talk.

This week I interviewed Xarkness, Level 70 Draenei Shaman on Gul'dan. Before BC, he used to raid with his Paladin but rolled up a blueberry shaman when the expansion came out.

Robin: I love your Elemental Noob video. Is that your current spec?

Xarkness: I have spent a lot of time with each talent spec, but sadly, I always find myself dragging my feet back to the resto tree. When I first dinged 70 I was enhancement, and had leveled exclusively through enhancement from 1 to 70. Upon reaching 70 I respeced Elemental in hopes for a change in pace, also I found my DPS to be too uncontrollable as an enhancement shaman. (Windfury crits = you are dead) After being elemental for some time I became quite fond of the spec. Time continued on and one day the guild needed me to respec resto for Karazhan. Upon respeccing the difference in my survivability and viability in PvP was like night and day. I not only felt incredibly useful, but anytime I was stun locked or assaulted by a melee class I actually could survive. Also my teams' ratings in the arenas began rising across the boards. As elemental or enhancement, I was usually always the first to be killed -- stunlocked, counterspelled, CC'd, or focus fired. The only real thing I was good for was getting Heroism/Bloodlust off before I died.

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Filed under: Shaman, Features, Interviews, (Shaman) Totem Talk

Totem Talk: What's right with Shamans

Every other week, Robin Torres investigates Shaman issues, interviews experienced Shamans and reports her findings in Totem Talk.

This week on Totem Talk, I ask Onnix the Shaman what's RIGHT with the Shaman class since that is the question he actually wanted to answer in our first interview. There's a lot of belly-aching going on about the Shaman being the least balanced class in the game and Warcraft Realms is still showing them as the least played class -- though honestly, I don't know how often their census is updated. But Onnix maintains that the Shaman class is a blast to play, even with all the limitations.

So, what is right about about the Shaman class?

Onnix: We are a Jack-Of-All-Trades class -- I think the most fun one. The versatility of our class allows us to be instantly flexible in a variety of situations as opposed to the druid class, who have to shift forms to access limited skill sets.

Why should a shaman be invited to a heroic instance run?

From a resto perspective, contrary to popular belief, the shaman can main heal or even solo heal just fine in Heroics, but they require a competent group -- tanks that can hold aggro, DPS that don't pull aggro. A competent group is always the ideal, but with a priest healing, there is a larger margin of error within the group. I believe priest heals generate less threat (not positive) but if they pull healing aggro, they can fade, they can also Power Word: Shield targets to give them a chance to catch up on heals. Also, their heals are so much more efficient that they don't run out of mana as much.

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

Totem Talk: What's wrong with Shamans?

Every other week, Robin Torres investigates Shaman issues, interviews experienced Shamans and reports her findings in Totem Talk.

First of all, let me get this out of the way. I don't like the sound of Shamans as a plural for Shaman. I much prefer Shaman, but I'm going with WoWWiki, at least for now.

Secondly, I am not a Shaman. I am reporting on Shamans. I am interviewing Shaman veterans. I am provoking Shaman discussions. I am in ur forumz reading ur threadz. You will notice when reading the newspaper or Fark or whatever that these people you are reading are not presidents and soldiers and socialites. They are writing about presidents and soldiers and socialites. And I am writing about Shamans. Regardless, I've been through this before, so my fire resistant gear is equipped.

I am, however, constantly bombarded with all things Shaman because my husband is a rabid, raiding, Level 70 Tauren Shaman. As I write this, he is in Serpentshrine Cavern with his Barbie DreamShield and his cape taken from a little girl and I'm trying to get him to take some screenshots. You may already know him from this story, but right now he is Onnix, the Shammy Healbot from the guild Grim on Daggerspine.

According to Warcraft Realms, the Shaman is the least played class currently among characters played in the last 30 days above level 10. And the Alliance have not raced to make as many Blueberry Shamans as the Horde have made Belfadins. Clearly, the general WoW population considers Shamans the least fun/useful class to play at this time. So I asked Onnix why he thought that was the case. Onnix would rather have answered the question "What is fun about playing an endgame Shaman?", but I was able to put that off to a future column. Instead, he told me the top 5 things that should be changed to make the Shaman a more successful class.

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

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