Tag Archives: Shaman

BAST: Your favourite race

This weeks Blog Azeroth’s shared topic is one I can relate to and is one of those that sound simple, but when it comes down to it the answer is not.

“What is your favourite race?”

Now, put like this, the question indeed is simple. However once you dig deeper into it, the reasons behind your race selection, the reason behind your alts race choice, it starts complicating. Just thinking about it, even my alts went through this race-changing (or prefference changing) experience from Wrath of the Lich King to Cataclysm. Why? Fairly simple reason really – I am person willing to try about anything and well… Shamans could now be played by Dwarves. So there, I guess my most favourite race in World of Warcraft would be Dwarves.

Continue reading


New Shaman changes…

I know I haven’t been talking much about coming Cataclysm changes and all, mostly because I jumped the bandwagon too late and everything worth of importance was already said in other places, but after two or three Beta builds Shamans finally got some love. And I am saying love as the changes don’t sound all that bad actually – you know I am the type that prefers Shaman to go to Cataclysm untouched rather than damaged by some eager class designer wishing to show us how they understand what this class needs.

Oh and don’t hold your breath – no Spirit Link.

Elemental goodies

Let’s see what is in the pot of Elemental goodies relevant to Restoration Shaman. Oh and no, I am not really going to say how good the changes are for Elemental :) There are people far more competent to do that. Actually I guess pretty much anyone is more competent for that matter than I am…

We have Hex lasting 1 minute (up from 30 seconds) – sweet change – I often felt crippled on fights like Faction Champs or Blood Queen HM when my CC was needed to save the day *cue Superman theme song* and the thirty seconds compared to the cooldown just wasn’t cutting it.

Obviously, Searing Totem  now prefers to target enemies that are afflicted by our Flame Shock or Stormstrike effects. About time I say. It actually makes it a worthy totem for us if we fancy pretending we do some direct damage contribution on those pre-enrage pushes. Guess our dps specced comrades are really happy about this change.

Last change I will mention, probably the most relevant to us is that Ancestral Knowledge (mana up) is now named Acuity and increases our critical strike chance with all spells and attacks by 1/2/3% (I think this is low value). Well, hm. At first I thought – yay, compensation for our low crit rate early on and bonus crit later. Then I started pondering whether the larger mana pool wouldn’t actually be better in the announced Cataclysm healing. I guess we will see. Right now we can only hope that all the crit dependant mana returns and the crit heals will somewhat compensate for replenishment loss.

That’s about it from Elemental, let’s go see what is in Santa’s bag for the freaks like me who throw around green leaves of good and slice through raid with golden lazorz.

Restoration changes

Okay. Here we are getting quite some interesting things that might actually spice up the talent trees a bit (and yes I thought they were boring. Solid, but boring).

Totemic Focus is now a 2-Ranks talent, down from 3-Ranks. Now also increases the duration of your totems by 20/40%. I seriously can’t see the benefits of this. Unless they make totems pop cost like 50% of your maximum mana, what’s the point here? Is there any totem duration decrease coming, or should we spec this just to make Searing, Earthbind totems last longer? On second thought – I guess some 25 Shamans might be forced into this spec for longer Mana Tide. Hm…

We even got new talent – Cleansing Waters. When our Cleanse Spirit successfully removes a harmful effect, we also heal the target for [ 1093 to 1164 ]/[ 2187 to 2330 ]. This talent sounds excellent – basically saving  a global cooldown every time we dispel and don’t have to whack another heal on the person right away. Especially if Cataclysm will be full of debuffs that hurt. Not totally sure it’s worth 2 points, I guess time will tell. It’s interesting mechanic at least.

Enhancement tree

Well this got me worried a bit in addition to other new talents. We were more or less speccing into Enhancement yet again, to pick up Weapons and Shields and try to reach the increased run speed (dropping Tuskarr’s for some sort of directly improving enchant) or investing the points in mana pool enhancement (intended) in elemental tree; now the choice is even harder. You can go pick up crit in elemental tree not leaving you enough points to pick up the new talent in enhancement tier 2 – Totemic Reach that increases the radius of your totems’ effects by 15/30%.

Again, we might not see enough fights where you’d need your Healing Stream to cover area worth of Orgrimmar, but in case this indeed is needed, it might get tricky on the points. Aaaanyways might be useful in five-man instances so you don’t have to re-drop totems all the time.

To conclude

In my opinion, these changes look interesting. They don’t add anything to be considered overpowered so we don’t have to tremble in fear we will get QQ-omg-nerfed to the ground and yet these abilities smooth some of the sharp edges this class still has in preparation for the new era.

Let’s stay positive and actually welcome it with open arms, trusting the developers they might have a clue as to what are they doing. Heh. What is your take on new spells? Especially cleansing water?


CH@ICC10(N)

A 10M restoration BiS popped up on PlusHeal recently and it surprised me it didn’t mention getting 4T10, it has been even implied 4T10 is not worth it for all the crap stats on it (mp5). Let’s see what fights we Chain Heal in 10M.

As you probably don’t remember, I was actually not that big fan of 4T10 for 10M raiding back when the bonuses were announced and I was fairly skeptical as to what use will Chain Heal actually have.

It turned out that I was right and Chain Heal is not really the spam-all spell for 10M healing by default.

However, if you have capable people in raid, Chain Heal gets more and more use over time as people tend to pay attention to maxing out it’s use and well, overgearing and overbuffing content makes you worry less about some mechanics. As well, the more you fall into routine on your kills, the better you can estimate how it will be effective to Chain Heal.

(following also asumes you are stuck on raid heal or heal all duty)

Lord Marrrowgar

At first, I didn’t see any use for Chain Heal on Marrowgar (being often raid healing with paladin on tanks) and I was right. Marrowgar is not really a Chain Heal friendly boss if people are properly spread and all. It’s as well tricky on Bonestorm phase where it’s very tempting to mend the raid with beam, but people are constantly moving so they will most likely be out of range before you finish casting. So there.

Riptide and both healing waves will dominate this fight, even in the high movement phase you can dish out better healing with 2 fast paced LHWs and take few steps between them.

PS: If you happen to be single healing it, Chain heal actually rocks. It saved tanks countless times yesterday.

4T10 feel: worthless

Lady Deatwhisper

Definitely a Chain Heal friendly fight. People may start out spread wide all over the room, but the constant running from left to right through boss will clutter them all in middle over time, spreading only on Death and Decay hits – which for example Grid with debuffs will show before it lands so you have split second to precast and land it on all caught in it while they move away. As for phase two and Frostbolt volleys – it rocks.

Riptide, pre-casted Chain Heals and Cleanse spirit rock this fight.

4T10 feel: relieves a bit of stress after volley, but nothing much

Gunship Battle

Uhm. Well… yeah. Aha. For normal mode? No way you will need that. For hardmode? It might be useful I guess, but I believe the long cast is major drawback to Chain Healing there. Besides, a single paladin can heal this fight alone.

4T10 feel: go dps.

Saurfang

Not a Chain Heal fight. People aren’t standing that far apart, but there is really no need to heal more than one person at a time. So just leave Chain Heal resting there and regaining strength. If you are solo healing it, then the odd Chain Heal through tanks actually does wonders. By default though it’s not really the best Chain Heal fight out there.

Riptides and LHWs all the way here, sorry to burst your bubble. Chain Healing here is waste of resources from mana to casting time.

4T10 feel: worthless, unless you heal solo or tanks.

Stinky and Precious

Pulsing AoE, Decimates. Do I really need to say more? Just make sure you make your raid to clump up for these dogs to make most use of your Chain Heal. Precast. Dominate.

4T10 feel: priceless

Festergut

Chain Heal use yes and no. It’s priceless for melee healing and keeping up with the damage over time, 4T10 rocks in there. Healing ranged people with Chain Heal is quite waste, as they are standing well apart.

As usual for Chain Heal it’s untamed situational beast half time and worhtless piece of crap rest of the time. Use it wisely and judge your spells properly. The mix will be more biased towards single target healing.

4T10 feel: very solid bonus early into the fight, gives you some breathing room

Rotface

Before buff and gear I would not say Chain Heal has a use there. You know, the tactic where people actually had to dodge the spit as quickly as possible. I was proven wrong, Chain Heal landing after people got back into positions was great tool and managed me to smooth out the edges.

4T10 feel: gets only better with gear and buff

Professor Putricide

This is very frustrating fight from CH perspective. The only moment you really NEED the spell is when dps slacks on the slime and you need to heal back the shared explosion damage. Yes. When everyone gets tossed all over the room. D’oh. Phase 3 is more CH friendly, as people will have to stack as the slime poodles will push them to it. But still, vast majority of the fight requires high mobility so you don’t really have time – a comparison to FireFighter comes to mind.

4T10 feel: not really a CH friendly fight, so worthless most of the time

Blood Prince Council

On this fight, I usually end up healing both Fire and Shock tank so I go in full LHW mode (glyph and totum) and therefore can’t really say anything for CH use, however I’d estimate it’s use to very situational and good only if you have great raid awareness, know your co-raiders and can predict their movement or lack thereof so it’s not wasted cast.

4T10 feel: can’t really say, but I guess slim use and benefit.

Blood Queen Lanathel

I have to admit, I ignored CH on this fight most of the time as I thought people are too spread for it. And I couldn’t been more wrong. Even people in range are perfectly positioned for Chaining the golden links of awesome and early in the fight is the HoT component priceless. If you for any reason hesitated about CH on Blood Queen, go ahead and try it.

4T10 feel: godsend bonus on CH tailored fight. Gotta love it.

Valithiria Dreamwalker

Well, of course not if you are healing Vali and taking portals. If you are outside though, you will be CHing quite a lot. Sure, you will need some spot-on single target healing too, but with the amount of raid damage coming in left and right and the raid being clumped up in middle around you, CH has it’s place.

As a sidenote – cleansing totem beats healing stream hands down

4T10 feel: I don’t think it is crucial. Sure it does help, but it’s manageable without just fine

Sindragosa

Let’s get the facts right. Raid bunched up. Periodical damage on 3 targets and then everyone. Do I have to say more? It¨’s almost a prototype of CH fight. Just look around for other healers getting debuff so you know when to cover on tank. Other than that, CH like you mean it!

4T10 feel: solid bonus. You will be casting CH here a lot and the extra healing it can do through the HoT comes in handy when rushing for cleanest kill possible.

The Lich King

Due to our strategy (spread out in semi-circle) I wasn’t really considering Chain Heal as valid spell, but the truth is you can max out it’s use. You just need to know where is who standing so you don’t kill the bounces on second target and you should do your best to precast for Infest. Throughout the fight the usefulness of Chain Heal declines a bit as you need to heal more mobile, still stays the Infest-precast awesomeness though.

4T10 feel: Not bad thing. I will most likely not help you heal up Infest direct damage, should slow down the Infest DoT damage if you fail to top others on first go.


So, how do you (Chain) heal ICC10N?


Shaman Q&A and preview update.

Just reposting Shaman Q&A from yesterday in order to provide all information available, as well as try and finally win the battle with formating quotes. It if ends up in same mess as the two posts before, I won’t ever quote a blue again. Damnit.

There are as well few more posts on the subject by Flow who provides overview for all specs and digs a bit deeper into the Restoration and is very excited about Deep Healing (aren’t we all?). Another post to go to is this one by The ‘mental shaman for general Shaman changes with focus on Elemental as well as another post with Q&A. And of course, the exhausting post by Charles from World of Hats who digs deeply into elemental. There is as well post by our beloved Windsoar who refuses to join the party till the information is in beta at least. And yes kids, go read Windsoar’s post so you don’t come crying when Cataclysm comes live. Windsoar does have valid concerns (as we all do).

There was as well some clarification / update to the Shaman preview, so shortly to that before we move on to Q&A:

Meditation – the amount of mana you regenerate in combat as a function of your Spirit.

I was right! Shalalala! A mastery that will keep Shamans where we should be. A endless mana healer. Nah, it won’t and probably many healing classes will get this. But still, I was right!

Also of note, you only get one set of passive talent tree bonuses: the tree in which you’ve spent the most points. Sub-speccing in another tree will not net you those bonuses in addition.

I will admit I am still unsure how this will work? I get masteries from the tree I spent most points in. So far so clear. But is there any minimal amount of points to reach Tier 3 Mastery? And if so, will spending more talents provide stronger mastery (and I mean directly per talent spent, not by spending them on Mastery enhancing talents)?

Last but not least, it’s the intention of Primal Strike to let shaman play as an Enhancement at low levels. Currently when leveling in this spec, you end up just using Lightning Bolt a lot so you feel like an Elemental shaman instead. At a higher level, Primal Strike gets replaced by Storm Strike. They share a cooldown so Enhancement just won’t ever use Primal Strike after that, in the same way that Prot warriors don’t use Sunder Armor once they have Devastate or Feral druids don’t use Claw once they get Mangle.

I said this too, remember? Bragging aside, really really great change. Nice to see Blizzard listens. A question – what are the odds of getting DW as Enhancement at level 20 in Cataclysm?

Shaman Questions and Answers

We know there are a lot of additional questions and we’ll do our best to answer what we can. Keep in mind, this is merely a preview of things to come.

Q: Will Maelstrom Weapon include Lava Burst?

A: That’s the plan currently.

Aha. Okay. Wait what? Someone please point me to reliable Enhancement bloggers. The only thing I know about Enhancement is that playing it produces about 5K dps my side and spams my screen with crits.

Oh right – you mean that Maelstrom Weapon cast time reduction will apply to LvB. Oh yeah. Nice one. I think.

Q: How can Elemental Overload proc Lava Burst when Lava Burst already hits so hard in PvP?

A: We’re going to change almost every number in Cataclysm to adjust for everything from single ranks of spells to larger health pools to new combat ratings. With much higher health pools, hopefully burst damage will go back to being a tool and not the only way to win matches.

Please see any of the awesome Elemental bloggers, I haven’t played Elemental since I dinged 80. Or few days after that shortly.

Q: What happens to the Lightning Overload talent?

A: It provides a bonus to Elemental Overload.

Elemental overload is gonna be final mastery of Elemental tree, working as Lightning Overload is but including LvB. New Lightning Overload will provide a bonus to it. I think I understand that.

Q: Elemental doesn’t want to drop Searing Totem at range. We want to drop Magma Totem.

A: Searing Totem needs to so more single-target damage than Magma. That said, if we’re happy with the ability to occasionally place totems at range there is no reason it couldn’t apply to any totem. Imagine, “After using this spell, the next totem you drop will appear at the feet of your target.”

Aha. Okay.

Q: Will Elemental have to spend talent points just to get the Spirit to hit conversion?

A: It will be bundled with another attractive talent, such as Elemental Precision.

Yo dawg, I heard you like hit so we added more hit to your hit so you can have hit. Ahem. Yeah.

Q: Will Unleash Weapon work with Frostbrand?

A: Yes. We just provided some examples.

It will spawn a Snowman companion that will throw snowballs on your opponents, lowering their movement and casting speed. Lasts 20 seconds. Or something.

Q: Is Healing Rain channeled?

A: No, it’s not a channeled spell.

Short cooldown, AoE heal and not channeled spell? Okay seriously guys, what’s the catch? That sounds too good to be true!

Q: Is Earthquake channeled?

A: Probably, but we’ll see.

Channeled AoE does make some sense, as would a non-channeled one. But yeah, guess it has closer to Blizzard (the spell) and Hurricane. Thinking of it, popping Hurricane and Earthquake on the same spot, that’s a bit too cruel, isn’t it?

Q: Will Unleashed Weapon consume your enchants?

A: No.

Thank god. I hope Blizzard learned this is wrong concept with TBC retadins.

Q: Does the 10% spell power buff from Elemental scale with the shaman or the target’s spell power?

A: It will scale with the target the same as Demonic Pact and other buffs that bring the same benefit.

Aha. I will belive that this works when I see  it live and survive at least one patch and still be working.

Q: Are you supporting two-handed weapons for Enhancement?

A: Once you start to get into the dual-wield talents, then Enhancement is a dual-wield tree.

Booh!

Q: You didn’t address Enhancement survivability or mobility or X and Y!

A: This was just a preview and is not a comprehensive list of every change. Much more will be revealed in beta and much will change during beta.

You gotta admit there wasn’t much in the preview for Enhancement, Blizzard. So cut them some slack!

Q: You didn’t answer the most important shaman question! What about Sentry Totem?

A: The Cataclysm is a time of great upheaval. Deathwing’s return to Azeroth tore a hole in the fabric of the universe that tragically resulted in the ultimate and irrevocable destruction of all Sentry Totems. Level designers are contemplating a shrine for the Sentry Totem near that of Uther the Lightbringer. We know shaman players will greet this news with grief, but as with all class changes we’ll have to get into beta before anything is final.

This is too much. Stop fucking with us. First you take my Fred from me. Now Sentry totem. How can you remove Sentry totem? What’s the point? We need the totem. It has been here all along! The best possible thing for making kill screenshots, granting raid spots to all Shamans around the world. Please, don’t. Take my Healing Stream Totem, my left eye or Heroism (Bloodlust for Hordies). Take it all! Just don’t take away my Sentry Totem!

Okay, that’s pretty much it for the moment folks, so far so good. For restoration anyways. Let’s hope it will indeed be as awesome as it looks!


Cataclysm and me. And you. Us.

Cataclysm Shaman changes are out, at least the first batch. Enjoy the read, sit back and sip your tea. It’s definitely not final but it’s interesting enough to speculate!

In World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, we’ll be making lots of changes and additions to class talents and abilities across the board. In this preview, you’ll get an early look at some of the changes in store for the shaman class, including a rundown of some of the new spells, abilities, and talents, and an overview of how the new Mastery system will work with the different talent specs.

New Shaman Spells

Primal Strike (available at level 3): Primal Strike is a new weapon-based attack that every shaman will learn very early in the game. Our goal with this ability is to make leveling as Enhancement rather than as Elemental more viable, since many key Enhancement talents become available at fairly high levels.

Healing Wave (level 4): While the shaman already has an ability called Healing Wave, we’re adding another spell to the class’s direct-healing arsenal and giving it a familiar name. The current Healing Wave will be renamed Greater Healing Wave, and the intent is for the ‘new” Healing Wave to be the shaman’s go-to heal. Lesser Healing Wave and Greater Healing Wave will be used on a more situational basis.

Unleash Weapon (level 81): Unleashes the power of your weapon enchants for additional effects (see below). A dual-wielding Enhancement shaman will activate the effects of both of their weapon enchants. Instant cast. 30-yard range. 15-second cooldown. Undispellable.

Here are a few examples of effects we’re considering for this ability:

  • Windfury Weapon – Hurls a spectral version of your weapon at a target, dealing 50% weapon damage and increasing the shaman’s Haste for the next five swings.
  • Flametongue Weapon – Deals instant Fire damage and buffs the shaman’s next Fire attack by 20%.
  • Earthliving Weapon – Heals the target slightly and buffs the shaman’s next healing spell by 20%.


Healing Rain (level 83): An area-effect heal-over-time (HoT) spell that calls down rain in a selected area, healing all players within it. There is no limit to the number of players who can potentially be affected; however, there are diminishing returns when healing a large number of targets, much like the diminishing returns associated with AoE damage spells. This should give Restoration shaman another healing tool that improves their group-healing and heal-over-time capabilities. 2-second cast time. 30-yard range. 10-second duration. 10-second cooldown.

Spiritwalker’s Grace (level 85): When this self-targeted buff is active, your spells are no longer interrupted by movement and possibly even by your own attacks. This will give shaman of all three specs another way to heal or do damage when it’s necessary to move in both PvE and PvP. Instant cast. 10-second duration. 2-minute cooldown.

Changes to Abilities and Mechanics

In addition to adding new spells, we’re planning to make changes to some of the other abilities and mechanics you’re familiar with. This list and the summary of talent changes below it are by no means comprehensive, but they should give you a good sense of what we intend for each spec.

  • Restoration shaman and other healing classes will need to pay attention to mana more than they’ve had to during Wrath of the Lich King. Spirit will be the Restoration shaman’s primary mana-regeneration stat.
  • We’re making changes to which classes and specs are able to dispel magic, diseases, curses, and poison, largely for PvP purposes. Shaman will have Cleanse Spirit as a baseline ability, but it will only remove curses. Restoration shaman will have a talent that will improve Cleanse Spirit so that it also removes magic. Shaman will no longer be able to remove poison.
  • Cleansing Totem will be removed from the game, as we want dispels to be a decision for players, not something done mindlessly. To that end, all dispels will cost slightly more mana, and you will waste the spell if you cast it when there is nothing to remove. (Currently, the dispel is only cast when there is something to remove, which encourages spamming ‘just in case.”) We will balance PvE dispelling with this new model in mind.
  • Totem of Wrath now will replace Flametongue Totem for all shaman, and dropping this totem will buff the group’s spell power by 4%. Elemental shaman will have a talent that lets all Fire totems provide +10% spell power, allowing them to drop Searing, Magma, or Fire Elemental Totems without losing their spell-damage buff. The 4% and 10% buffs will be exclusive with each other and with the warlock’s Demonic Pact, so you can’t benefit from all of them at once. We’re also considering letting Elemental drop Searing Totem at range.
  • We want to free up Enhancement global cooldowns to make the spec more dynamic to play. We’re considering, for example, increasing the cooldown of Lava Lash so shaman have time to work other interesting abilities into their rotation.

New Talents and Talent Changes

  • Elemental Reach will be simplified so shaman have a more consistent spell range.
  • We plan to add Earthquake as a deep Elemental talent for targeted and persistent AoE.
  • Spirit Link will likely be worked back into deep Restoration in some form. The idea is that you will be able to link targets together so they share damage. When we had previously tried to implement Spirit Link, it was hard to balance and a little confusing. However, we really liked the concept — and so did players — so we are trying to bring it back.
  • Elemental will have a deep talent that allows Spirit (which will appear on the gear they share with Restoration shaman) to boost their Hit rating.
  • Ancestral Knowledge will boost mana pool size, not Intellect.
  • Enhancing Totems will be replaced with Focused Strikes, which will improve the damage of the new spell Primal Strike and Stormstrike.
  • With the Mastery system, we’re also considering removing a number of talents that grant passive bonuses, such as Mental Quickness, Improved Windfury Totem, Mental Dexterity, Call of Thunder, Tidal Mastery, Purification, Nature’s Blessing, and others, to allow players more freedom to choose more interesting talents.

Mastery Passive Talent Tree Bonuses

Restoration

  • Healing
  • Meditation
  • Deep Healing


Deep Healing: Your direct heals will do more healing when the target’s health is lower. This will scale to damage (e.g. someone at 29% health would receive more healing than someone at 30%) rather than have arbitrary break points.

We hope you enjoyed this preview, and we’re looking forward to hearing your thoughts and feedback on these additions and changes. Please keep in mind that this information represents a work in progress and is subject to change as development on Cataclysm continues.

General changes

Primal strike is awesome. Seriously, after two expansions someone finally noticed that leveling as “melee” spec of our class is pretty much autoattack, earthshocking and the odd lighting bolt here and there. Great way to finally make enhancement a more fun spec. It’s only one button to push, but it’s great button. Especially if it’s strike as it will give you something to add to ES cooldown on finishing a mob before it runs to the hills and pulls the rest of his very deadly level 20 naga / bristleback / gnoll / skeleton buddies.

Fire totem changes – we are all getting a totem that scales with gear. Yay go us! Let’s hope it will increase it by % of the target’s spellpower, not % of the casters. Then we are pretty much in the same situation as retadins were at the start of Wrath of the Lich King when we retadins in big raids had to compare our attack power values and take major buffs with highest uptime into consideration when deciding who will do Judgement of Light. Great point for Elemental shamans in providing 10% spell power on any fire totem – I know how much our elemental shammy whines not being able to pop any other totem just to secure group buff. In Cataclysm, he will be!

Enhancement shaman global cooldown cleanup. Don’t you say. That is totally welcome change, especially if you won’t be punished by not sticking countless spells in the created gaps and it will give you more time to actually lead the raid.

*random daily full of retards took place here. Swearing and a little note to Crushridge players will be place at the bottom

Healing related changes

Okay, we get once again the meme about dispel mechanics changes and that healing itself will change in Cataclysm. Healing change is definitely something we are all as healers looking for, dispel mechanics change is no world breaker, especially if they will make magic the only (mainly) used spell mechanic of Cataclysm boss fights.

Healing Wave (the new one) – a healing spell we are supposed to go to? So are they removing Chain Heal or something? Okay, seriously though, spell I go to nowadays is overhasted LHW. I guess with the new healing changes and healthpool shifts, this new Healing Wave will supply the % healing of current LHW, whereas LHW will be just short snipe heal to streamline and top raid in leisure time.

Unleash Weapon - another short time boost cooldown. So far it looks to me like what Riptide with 2T10 does now, well sort of. Once in 15 seconds we are able to waster our global cooldown for heal of unknown amount (my guess is that the direct portion will be equivalent to what Riptide can do on direct heal in T10 content). Fancy stuff that will most likely be worked into our rotations in order to make it more interesting!

Healing Rain – Ahem. Short cooldown for rather awesome spell. Wonder where the catch is. Presuming it will cost not load, but truckload of mana. Something like your mana bar plus all your mana you took into the fight on the cart you drag behind you. Or it will heal for some ridiculously amount. Or both. But sure, tranquility looks cool enough to pop such spell just for sheer fun.

Spiritwalker’s Grace – Oh my god yes! Yes yes yes! We got a mobility healing. Cooldown only, a longer cooldown only spell, but definitely a huuuuge improvement. I’d kill for having that on Firefighter progress when last phase just got wildly out of hands. This is something I am looking forward to really really much and I think we will soon get spoiled by this spell to the point when we will demand it to move out of cooldown, out of global cooldown and to cost no mana. You katanow, a reasonable demands.

Spirit Link - the very old timer and classic shaman healing spell is having a come back. Not sure what form and how useful it will be in the end, but it’s definitely something that brings the “shaman” back to shamaning. Or something. I gotta admit I never played with Spirit Link, Rahana is quite fresh and new Shaman when it comes to that, but I’ve heard the tales. I would love to see it and try it out.

Ancestral Knowledge - not increasing Intellect but mana pool size is quite logical and the only possible change that could come with the rework of stats for Cataclysm. So it’s no big surprise. Or is it? Is it? No, it isn’t. Muhai.

Talent masteries

So, the three masteries were revealed and we can look at those:

  • Healing
  • Meditation
  • Deep Healing

Healing: A passive increase of healing. This will pretty much be the base mastery of all healing classes and specs in my opinion, nothing to see here, move along.

Meditation: Hm. Strange name. I guess it will have something to do with mana returns or interrupt prevention, what do you think?

Deep Healing: Our direct healing will do more healing to targets low on health, which is kinda nice. Will make us for great tank healers pulling off saves when targets are on low health. As well, imagine the outburst of Chain Heal on low health targets. For example, you know you’d love this on Stinky. However, it would have to be imba boosting to healing as final tier of masteries.

Well kids, that’s it at first glance. Wonder how many of these things will get a total revamp for Cataclysm, what will get boosted and nerfed and what will end up. So, how do you like these changes? Excited? Bored? Pissed off?

Random dungeon shout outs!

Seriously, I don’t know what is up with EU-Crushridge realm and I am sorry to any people who are actualy normal and play there, but every single moron I met in PUG on my Deathknight came from Crushridge. Tanks dropping group mid  first pull with “lolnoob”, healers absolutely not capable of anything, one or two of the fail hunters, all from there. And well, fuck the fact they were failing their play. But they were acting like absolute and total jackasses. Seriously, I am scared anytime I see a Crushridger in my group now. Once again sorry to those who play there and know what they are doing, or are at least polite and intelligent beings.

Second shout out goes to Löládin from Dunemaul who tanked Old Kingdom for me. It was the very first tank that cleared full instance, not even thinking about skipping anything. So kudos, it’s rare thing to see in PUG!


Cataclysm dispel mechanics, being carried and guest posters?

Hello there. In case you live in a cave or under a rock somewhere, there has been quite some blue activity over the easter weekend. We got announcement about some Cataclysm shaman revelations (tomorrow) – don’t be too excited though, there are three specs to be covered in that release, so I don’t think we will get anything more than “we were thinking” and “we might implement” but whatever! It’s shaman news for god’s sake! Rejoice!

Cataclysm change of dispels

Second news that popped up was about change of dispel mechanics in Cataclysm. And yes, we are getting huge overhaul there and although it brings one good thing, as a whole it’s shit. Yes. My OCD hates it. Hate hate hate. With passion. Anyways, here’s the blue:

We wanted to introduce some of the changes to dispel mechanics coming in Cataclysm. Our goals were to make dispelling a little less trivial to do in PvP, and to make sure there is more equity in dispel capabilities among healers in both PvP and PvE.

Within the system, there are currently five types of dispellable (or curable) buffs and debuffs: curse, disease, poison, defensive magic, and offensive magic. An example of defensive magic dispelling would be using a dispel to free a polymorphed ally, while offensive magic dispelling would be utilizing a dispel ability to strip away an enemy’s buff or heal-over-time (HoT) spell. The main distinction between these two types is in whether or not you can target an enemy with your dispel.

In Cataclysm each healing class will be getting three out of the five types of dispels, with one of these always being a defensive dispel magic. This design makes sure that finding a healer with the ability to remove magic isn’t restrictive in building teams for Arenas or rated Battlegrounds. It also allows the encounter designers to assume, when designing dungeon or raid fights, that every group can dispel magic.

In addition, we’re making the opportunity cost (what the player could have accomplished with different actions) for dispelling a bit steeper. We think the cost is too low for three reasons: 1) The actual mana cost is low. 2) You never waste a dispel. If you try to dispel a debuff that isn’t there then the dispel just won’t go off. 3) We have spells that remove debuffs with minimal input on the part of the player. In Cataclysm we are raising the mana costs, making it possible to waste mana by casting a dispel when there is nothing to dispel, and removing Cleansing Totem, Abolish Disease, and Abolish Poison from the game. With these changes in mind, we are working to plan dungeon and raid encounters where dispels aren’t in constant demand or spammed in order to be successful, though some need for dispels will still be a part of the design.

As previously mentioned, we are providing three dispel capabilities to all healing classes as follows:

  • Druids will be able to dispel defensive magic, curses, and poison.
  • Paladins will be able to dispel defensive magic, diseases, and poison.
  • Priests will be able to dispel defensive magic, offensive magic, and disease.
  • Shaman will be able to dispel defensive magic, offensive magic, and curses.


There is some trade-off that is being made in making these changes and we wanted to expand on this further.

  • Protection and Retribution paladins will lose their current ability to dispel magic.
  • All shaman will lose dispel disease and dispel poison in exchange for Restoration gaining dispel magic.
  • Restoration shaman, Restoration druids, and Holy paladins will need to talent into their defensive magic dispels.
  • Shadow priests won’t be able to remove disease in Shadowform.
  • Mage, hunter, and warlock will retain their current dispel mechanics.
  • Body and Soul remains the same, and basically any dispel mechanic not mentioned above is currently planned to remain as it is.
  • When possible, we’d like to combine dispels into a single action. For example, the druid ability to dispel curses and poisons might be a single spell with a Restoration talent that also allows it to dispel magic. This part of the design isn’t finalized, however.


As with all of our Cataclysm previews, keep in mind that any of these decisions could change when we’re in beta.

Okay, where to start. Right… dispelling magic as a Shaman. Sure, why not. Loosing a poison and disease dispel as a trade off? That’s not a trade off, that’s rip off. Please stay the fuck away from my class. I mean, come on. We can stop playing World of Warcraft and start playing “Be a Triangle in Random Enviroment”. It’s World of Warcraft we are playing in. You know,  lore, history and all that jazz. How the hell can possibly a Shaman, entity close to elements be dispelling magic? Poison and disease as a nature-based class, sure. Remove curse as a healer? Well, fine. But magic? As a trade off for poison and disease? No. Just no. Not to mention most dps offspecs get shafted by all healers getting dispel magic.
Gimme all the “It also allows the encounter designers to assume, when designing dungeon or raid fights, that every group can dispel magic.” crap you want Blizzard, but this change is nothing but yet another PvP “balancing” fucked up nonsense that will, yet again, hurt PvE enjoyment and diversity of the classes. Everyone needs a magic dispel in arena for Cataclysm, every team has to have healer, so everyone is happy, amirite? No. There are still players who don’t step into arena ever and people who do it because they got really bored of sticking their fingers in their nostrils while doing fuck all standing in Dalaran.

And for the record, I am not even that much enraged about loosing the dispel capabilities but the obvious reasons it’s made for and that it really kills some aspect of PvE. So now what? There will be no poison / disease / curse debuffs in boss fights in order to ensure there are no comp restrictions? Bullshit.

But let’s not smacktalk – I like the point they are making about dispel mechanics and mana cost. It’s another small thing to distinguish good and bad healers by giving them one more thing to care about. So sure bring that change in, looking forward to it. It will definitely make it way more interesting. Too bad Cleansing Totem will get the boot for this change. I really love that bugger. I call him Fred and everytime I go to sleep I lock him in a closet in Exodar so no one steals him. R.I.P. Fred. In the light of this blue post, I am getting a bit scared about what will they come up tomorrow. Fred gone, dispel magic, spirit on gear…

*shivers*

Rahana’s PUG karma is BoA!

Before we move on any further I have this shout out to make. My Deathknight hit 80 over the weekend and is running wild through heroics to get her first piece of T9, her RP background and nature is getting a shape too and since there is no raiding planned on her, she is working her way to Explorer while waiting for heroic groups. Sorry, I derailed myself. Back on to the shout out:

People, don’t be bad.

And I bloody mean it. I met four hunters in heroics yesterday. Three of them were somewhere on the scale between bad and pathetic. 600ish, 870ish and 1250ish dps does not cut it in heroic. Especially if the tank is moron that can’t use TC and tanks through taunt and the best dps clocks at 2000-2200ish. Why do you even enter heroics with such play? Gear won’t help you! Go learn your class a bit. I don’t really want you to do more than 2000ish dps overall, but if you can’t, go do normals or quest or whatever.

On opposite note – being carried and knowing it feels lame. Even if the people carrying you are cool about it and cheer you up. I got into DTK heroic with these three folks from the same guild – a bear, a retadin and a fury warrior. I didn’t inspect the bear, in fact I didn’t inspect anyone, but from first glance those people were packed in 251+ items. Despite the Bear’s efforts to pull the instance at once, I got troubles to get anything else out than Icy Touch and Plague Strike. I didn’t even get to Pestilence because the mob was dead by then.  I was feeling this -><- small and halfway through the instance I offered to stop dps, strip down and break out pom-poms. I was feeling terrible. I managed to do 2.4K dps overal  a number I’d be fucking proud of in my average pugs but I got the awful feeling of fail compared to others. Kudos to those cheery folks who carried my ass through there, your not-bitching and sportsmanship should be long time remembered.

And I managed to get a helmet with metagem and activate it. Long live blacksmithing!

Guest posters?

And a little something I was thinking about for some time now – I hear it a lot around and often in SAN chat that people want to start blogging, just not being all sure about it and you name it. We were all there, some of us just jumped the deep waters and started swimming but I am as well sure the blogosphere is missing out on some awesome posts from people who give up at the sight of doing all the prep work before you even know you’ll get any readers or anything.

For that very reason, I am offering a guest post spots to those who would like to try it out. To go public and see what people say about it. I am no Tamarind or Larísa to get you thousands of views, but there is stable base of readers (love you all) and it’s a good place to start.

There are no rules – it does not have to be about Shamans or raiding, the only condition is that it probably should be something I’d post, not interfering with the general feel of the blog. If this blog has anything like that.

Feel free to send me your posts, drafts or just ideas to work out with me either at my profile mail, or for those who have troubles clicking through my username, you can e-mail me directly at probebu [at] gmail.com


Operation: Rahana’s blues

After this terrible Nexus PUG experience I got yesterday, I made up my mind to actually go and do the experiment I had in mind before. Being sick and tired of carrying people’s asses through content without them at least pretending to be trying (I don’t mind carrying undergeared people who perform up to their gear capabilities), people not bother to gem or enchant, I decided to undergo this undercover operation. Let’s call it for the sake of terminology:

Operation Rahana’s Blues

What is it about? Over the upcoming week, I will gather and gear myself in blue quality gear from end-game normal instances and heroics. If I am lucky enough, I will equip said gear by next weekend, and I mean full blue gear and I will PUG. I am thinking about the sample of 10-15 heroic instances as a healer to not only see if I can still make them in lower quality gear than I am used to and especially, how will people react to such “undergeared scrublol” healing their instances. I will do my part, but I will get carried. Okay. Before we break down the rules, let me share the bloody Nexus heroic I did as a daily yesterday.

Nexus heroic is srz bussiness

It is. So here I am, loading screen of Nexus, thinking to myself what a great place to be, getting some heirloom badges and my daily portion of Frosts. The party looked great too – paladin, warrior, death knight and a hunter. Add my shaman totems to the mix and here we go, faceroll party milling enemies into dust. I couldn’t be more wrong. By the looks of it, the random members were sporting T9 and epics all over which made them slightly less awesome than me flashing my T10 all over the place and well being the cool kid and all. And then the fun started. First off, aggro was all over the place. Which was kinda strange given that highest dps was 2.2K overall done by the warrior with the tank sporting 1.7K dps overall as second on meters. Have you now gotten the general idea of the group? Fine, moving on. Somehow we managed to pull additional group to Commander Kolurg group despite Tremor totem. Which actually happens sometimes and well, it startled me a bit. Pause on healing for 5 seconds and then pushing in macroed Chain Heal and healing like madman. The interesting thing was that the tank had obviously no intention to pick the loose mobs – healing that thing with two rangers darting me is quite some fun, but nothing I’d like to do with PUG. Kudos to the hunter who sent his dinosaur to roflstomp and tank the berserk bashing on me.  Moving on. I must admit, I wasn’t doing my best healing on the next mobs as I was engaged in guild and other chats. However, without any prior notice, the tank run past corner, took the group in front of Grand Mage Telestra and took her for good measure too. Yeah, that’s pretty much how you do it all the time, but well, usually with heads up and not so poorly performing party. She died, I popped trinket and MTT to replenish myself, moving on. We killed the first draconian group on platform, second with the rift too. We are ready to jump down to tickle the wraiths when all of a sudden, this pops in party chat:

[P] [Karno-Shattered Hand]: fucking retarded noobs go fuck urself hahahahah!

A player has left your… Wait what? And yes, this was the tank. I seriously have no idea what made him to call us retarded noobs. No one died, stuff although slowly still died and the party chat was silent. Now, I am absolutely against Naming and Shaming, but this guy deserves all of it. Out of curiosity, I armoried him later. This is his protection build. Reckoning maxed out and no JoJ or Touched by the Light. Go figure. Now before you go bash on me – I don’t mind anyone in wrong spec or gear as long as they can somehow fill their role and don’t act like utter douchebags. Which this paladin did. The douchebag part I mean. Well, so there we were, four players without a tank, four minutes on debuff. The arms warrior was a good sport though and after I told him to “just go ahead and pull” he bladestormed our way through trash. As we were killing last trash before Anomalus, a druid joined us. Sprinted in, buffed us with cheap buffs (d’oh) and started tanking the boss. I had to swallow the urge to ask him why he is in kitty gear (he had 30K bear hp) and went on to heal him. Truth be told, he ate quite some ES charges. And now the fun part – NO ONE, and by that I mean no one in caps and bold, bothered to kill the rifts. Or the spawned adds. Without saying anything or moving, they just proceeded bashing on to Anomalus when he was immune, obviously not paying attention to the amount of damage incoming on the whole party. And they died. I say they, because I managed to save the hunter who took advantage of FD and pet tanked the boss and the little myself. After we killed the boss, I was getting a bit pissed off, really. Come on. If you want to do it achievement style, say so we can work it out. The only thing that made me not to drop the group was that fact that no one dared to bitch about dying. That would probably made me shit nuclear mushroom clouds. Anyways, moving on after another set of small buffs. All went rather fine, although by reaching the ramp to Ormorok the Tree-Shaper I got kinda annoyed that I am tanking the small saplings without anyone bothering to kill them off. The greatest shock came on the last pull of the patrol going around Ormorok. I launched a heal five seconds into the fight. When I did, my screen flashed, the omen sound indicating you are failing your aggro management resonated in the room as two centaurslashtree things happily walking to hug me hoping for the some quality time together. Dino to the rescue, again. I am starting to like the hunter. Well, to close the story, I really stopped healing after Keristarza dropped dead and just watched people going low with the stacked debuff. I was just too tired to be nice. And the hunter needed on the mail boots that were, actually, an upgrade. In retrospective I had to admit the hunter rocked. Only T9 he had were shoulders, rest was blue stuff. He was BM with the big Dinosaur pet and that evil thing was constantly saving my ass gnawing on anything that as much as looked at me. So although he pulled “just” 2K dps in the end, he was one of the better players you meet in PUGs. Completely exhausted, I decided to do this social experiement.

Operation: Rahana’s blues

As I said, the aim of this operation is to test how are the PUG waters for newbie healers. In order to somehow compensate for my experience, I decided not to take any epic item for the set, limiting myself to original heroic drops maximum. I will however do my gearing properly, which means rare quality gems and solid enchantst, as would anyone who cares about gear but plans on quick replacement. I will hide all my fancy kill titles and make an opening macro line of being new healer and asking people to have patience.

And I can’t wait to see myself fail. I am horrified how I will do – because seriously, there is definitely a difference between the comfort level of my gear as it is to some bluish starter gear. But I hope it will be fun as well, to actually test how I’d do in the hostile world, beating not only mechanics, but the moronic GearScore as well.

If anyone feels like trying this out with me, you are most welcome. Go for it, try it, send me an email how it was. Let’s see if we can cheat the system with low GS!

The gear so far:

[Frozen Forest Kilt]

[Moragg's Chestguard]

I plan to get the trinket from heroic HoS, crafted Saronite shield and the Grizzly Hills PvP totem. If you can save me time looking through loot tables, do you still recall where the starter/blue gear drops? Quests are unfortunately, not an option.


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