Posts Tagged ‘Maelstrom Weapon’

In this week’s Totem Talk, Rich Malloy points out using Shock and Awe’s priority system as a guide for our DPS rotation “is a net DPS loss for experienced Enhancement players.”

I’ll take it one step further and point out it’s a net loss for everybody.

Shaman priority system

Windfury: The ultimate priority.

We’ve had quite a few posts on this subject, and I’ve repeated it like a mantra — there is no DPS rotation. While the guys over at Elitist Jerks take math to the extremes (bless their hearts) and tweak on down to the fraction level, it’s been established since early in the expansion that the beautiful new synergy between melee and casting gave us a unique system that couldn’t be simplified in terms of macros or “rotations.”

Simply put, you can’t be lazy when playing this spec, and macros are only going to hurt your DPS contribution to your raid. While that’s fine for heroics and older tiers, DPS spots for current tiers are almost always competitive, especially at the 10-man level. In a 25-man there are always a few spots for people to get “carried” through content…but do you really want to be that guy?

For my own set-up, I use Shock-and-Awe for one thing: to flash a small bar bright red and give me an audio cue when Maelstrom Weapon reaches five stacks.

That’s really all the help I need for rotation-specific, real time information. I stick to the standard priority system otherwise, and DBM takes care of my other split-second information needs. Everything else is purely cosmetic, and my personal preference has always been a clean UI — I find clutter only increases my chances of missing something critical and letting the raid down.

If Enhancement players were the type of people who are bothered by having to do extra work, we wouldn’t have rolled Shamans. After all, easy as it is to forget, it wasn’t until a few months ago that we had to set up each individual totem on every pull. Hunters, Warlocks and Mages don’t have to do that, and they can open up as soon as the threat numbers look favorable.

Maybe we’re spoiled by the revamped totem system. Or maybe — and this is my suspicion — the awesomeness of the Enhancement spec in Wrath has lured in players who might otherwise have specced Elemental or Resto, or rolled a different class altogether.

But I try to look at it this way — the more control over DPS abilities we have, the bigger the upside if we work hard. And that’s a wonderful problem to have.

Related posts from Stormstrike:

Patch 3.3: Enhancement Shaman Talent Specs, Now With More Fire Nova

Patch 3.3: Enhancement Shaman rotations


Thanks to MMO-Champion for giving us the first look at the entire Tier 8 Enhancement set.


It’s not better — or worse — than the current Valorous set. It’s more fair to say it’s different. Our Tier 7.5 set makes pieces like the shoulders and chest virtually impossible to replace, because they’re significant sources of expertise. Since Hunters get no benefit from Expertise, it isn’t a stat found on non-set pieces, with the odd exception.

What this set will allow Shamans to do — particularly those who have full Tier 7.5 sets — is swap out certain sub-optimal pieces for the 10-man Tier 8 equivalent, without having to give up so much of a crucial stat like Expertise. If the stat allocations between 10- and 25-man versions of tier sets continue, Tier 8.5 will have the same stat combinations as Tier 8, only in greater quantities.

A number-crunching Theorycrafter I am not, but the set bonuses look like a drastic improvement over Tier 7/7.5:

  • (2) Set: Increases the damage done by Stormstrike and Lava Lash by 20%.
  • (4) Set: Increases the frequency of Maelstrom Weapon being triggered by your melee attacks by 20%.

The four-set is the big one, equating to two more Maelstrom procs per minute before Haste, Windfury Totem, Flurry and Bloodlust are taken into consideration. My guess is 5-stacks will be near-instant while Bloodlust is ticking.