Archive for the ‘Talents’ category

A Little Clarity

January 21, 2009

I see comments about how DS doesn’t stack with any other raid buff thrown around a lot, here most recently.  I want to clarify a small point.

Improved Divine Spirit doesn’t stack with any other spellpower increasing buff.

Non-Improved Divine Spirit is the best Spirit buff in game.

The moral of the story?  Blizz basically made Imp DS a talent that is only reasonable to take for soloing or 5-mans without certian classes.  It is no longer a raid talent unless you run regularly with a very strange raid make up.  However, take the 2 points out of Imp DS and put them somewhere else, all of your Priests, Druids, and Warlocks have the best Spirit buff in game. 

If I understand the mechanics correctly, even if you have the Imp DS buff the Spirit part of it remains active even if the spellpower part is overwritten… but why waste the 2 points? 

In conclusion:  Please don’t take away my Disc Priest justs because you don’t think I need a Spirit buff.

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Leveling in Wrath

November 11, 2008

Since all of us are going to be leveling again with the expansion coming out, we’re all going to need to respec for leveling.  In almost all cases raid specs are not optimal for leveling.  Most of the time raid specs are cookie-cutter with very little variation because everyone needs to optimize their raid viability.   There are so many different styles of play when soloing you should choose your talents to augment what you really like.

There are a few things you will want to consider when choosing your leveling spec. What is your desired role? Are you going to be soloing/questing only?  Soloing a lot but still want to be able to heal instances?  Mostly instances with a little soloing?  You should design your spec with your play style in mind.  Don’t worry about taking that red-headed-stepchild talent if you really like it.  If you are going to be doing a lot of soloing (which is where I think most of us will fall in the spectrum) you should consider augmenting your damage output (to kill mobs faster), mana regen/efficiency (for less downtime), reduction of incoming damage (also for less down time).  If you are on a PvP server you might want to consider PvP talents to help deal with the asshats who like to go on ganking sprees.  You can usually pass on talents that increase your chance to hit as you won’t be fighting over level mobs as often as you are while raiding (though the mana reduction component of Shadow Focus will probably make me add it to my leveling spec anyway).

Here are some specific specs you can consider.  Each can be adjusted to fit your play style.

Shadow (17/0/44)This is a basic Shadow build.  It’s got 17 in Discipline for some help with mana and focuses on increasing damage output and decreasing mana cost.  [Edit: See comments, some are saying that you don’t need both Meditation and Spirit Tap]

  • Discipline
    • 5/5 Twin Disciplines
    • 2/2 Imp PW:F
    • 2/2 Martyrdom
    • 1/3 Imp Inner Fire (just need one more point to get to the next tier, put it wherever you like)
    • 1/1 Inner Focus
    • 3/3 Imp PW:S
    • 3/3 Meditation
  • Shadow
    • 3/3 Spirit Tap
    • 2/2 Imp Spirit Tap
    • 5/5 Blackout (I really like Blackout, but you can move these points elsewhere, Shadow Power is a good option if you have plenty of Crit)
    • 2/2 Imp SW:P
    • 3/3 Shadow Focus
    • 5/5 Imp Mind Blast
    • 1/1 Mind Flay
    • 2/2 Shadow Reach
    • 3/3 Shadow Weaving
    • 1/1 Vampiric Embrace
    • 2/2 Imp Vampiric Embrace
    • 3/3 Focused Mind
    • 2/2 Mind Melt
    • 5/5 Darkness
    • 1/1 Shadowform
    • 3/3 Misery
    • 1/1 Vampiric Touch

The Next 10 Points – I would probably continue into the Shadow Tree at this point.  You could also go get Divine Spirit.  If you do get DS, put your last few points into Twisted Faith so you can double dip on your Spirit

Shadow (9/0/52)This build gets you Dispersion.  I happen to like the Disc talents too much to get this one at 70, but I can’t fault you if you want to go this deep into Shadow.  I will caution that you’ll probably have mana issues with out Inner Focus and Meditation.

  • Discipline
    • 5/5 Twin Disciplines
    • 2/2 Imp PW:F
    • 2/2 Martyrdom
  • Shadow
    • 3/3 Spirit Tap
    • 2/2 Imp Spirit Tap
    • 5/5 Blackout (same as above, you can put these points elsewhere if you prefer)
    • 2/2 Imp SW:P
    • 3/3 Shadow Focus
    • 5/5 Imp Mind Blast
    • 1/1 Mind Flay
    • 2/2 Shadow Reach
    • 3/3 Shadow Weaving
    • 1/1 Eampiric Embrace
    • 2/2 Imp Vampiric Embrace
    • 3/3 Focused Mind
    • 2/2 Mind Melt
    • 5/5 Darkness
    • 1/1 Shadowform
    • 2/5 Shadow Power
    • 3/3 Misery
    • 1/1 Vampiric Touch
    • 5/5 Twisted Faith
    • 1/1 Dispersion

The Next 10 Points – I would go fill out the Disc tree at this point, Inner Focus and Meditation will help a lot with mana regen.

Shadow with PvP (9/0/52) – This looks similar to the previous one but with a few changes to get PvP oriented talents.

  • Disc
    • 5/5 Unbreakable Will
    • 2/2 Imp PW:F
    • 2/2 Martyrdom
  • Shadow
    • 3/3 Spirit Tap
    • 2/2 Imp Spirit Tap
    • 5/5 Blackout
    • 2/2 Imp SW:P
    • 2/2 Imp Psychic Scream
    • 4/5 Imp Mind Blast
    • 1/1 Mind Flay
    • 2/2 Shadow Reach
    • 3/3 Shadow Weaving
    • 1/1 Silence
    • 1/1 Vampiric Embrace
    • 2/2 Imp Vampiric Embrace
    • 2/2 Mind Melt
    • 5/5 Darkness
    • 1/1 Shadowform
    • 2/5 Shadow Power
    • 2/2 Imp Shadowform
    • 3/3 Misery
    • 2/2 Psychic Horror
    • 1/1 Vampiric Touch
    • 5/5 Twisted Faith
    • 1/1 Dispersion

The Next 10 Points – Just as before I would put the rest of your points into Disc.

Holy (17/33/11) – This build is for the Priest that heals a lot of instances (or heals a group a lot) but doesn’t want to be gimped while soloing.  It goes far enough into Shadow to get Mind Flay and takes some of the damage reduction talents in Holy.  The rest is dumped into healing talents.  (I know it looks wierd… this is a “jack of all trades – master of none” type build)

  • Discipline
    • 5/5 Twin Disciplines
    • 2/2 Imp PW:F
    • 2/2 Martyrdom
    • 1/3 Imp Inner Fire (just need one more point to get to the next tier, put it wherever you like)
    • 3/3 Imp PW:S
    • 1/1 Inner Focus
    • 3/3 Meditation
  • Holy
    • 3/3 Imp Renew
    • 3/5 Holy Specialization
    • 5/5 Divine Fury
    • 1/1 Desperate Prayer
    • 3/3 Blessed Recovery
    • 2/2 Holy Reach
    • 3/3 Imp Healing
    • 2/2 Searing Light
    • 1/1 Spirit of Redemption
    • 5/5 Spiritual Guidance
    • 2/2 Surge of Light
    • 2/3 Holy Concentration
    • 1/1 Lightwell
  • Shadow
    • 3/3 Spirit Tap
    • 2/2 Imp Spirit Tap
    • 2/2 Imp SW:P
    • 3/3 Shadow Focus
    • 1/1 Mind Flay

The Next 10 Points: If you’ve taken this spec, you probably do a little bit of everything.  Use your next points to augment whatever you have the most fun with or what you have the most difficulty with.

Holy (23/38/0) – I’m going a little deeper into Disc with this build to get Divine Spirit and Mental Strength for some stat boosts.  The rest are in Holy taking the damage reduction talents and healing talents.  This will benefit someone who plans on running instances all the way to 80 only doing enough soloing to get Dungeon quests (and before you ask, yes this is a viable option).  Will also work well for someone who just doesn’t care that they’re going to have a tough time soloing… everyone loves a healer, right?

  • Discipline
    • 5/5 Twin Disciplines (you could take Unbreakable Will if you like it better)
    • 3/3 Silent Resolve (I’m not sure how necessary this talent will be in Wrath, but it can’t hurt espcially since you’ll probably be running with a lot of off-spec tanks)
    • 2/2 Imp PW:F
    • 1/3 Imp PW:S
    • 1/1 Inner Focus
    • 3/3 Meditation
    • 5/5 Mental Agility
    • 1/1 Divine Spirit
    • 2/2 Imp Divine Spirit
  • Holy
    • 3/3 Imp Renew
    • 5/5 Holy Specialization
    • 5/5 Divine Fury
    • 1/1 Desperate Prayer
    • 3/3 Blessed Recovery
    • 3/3 Improved Healing
    • 1/1 Spirit of Redemption
    • 5/5 Spiritual Guidance
    • 5/5 Spiritual Healing
    • 3/3 Holy Concentration
    • 1/1 Lightwell
    • 3/3 Serendipity

The Next 10 Points: I would recommend continuing in the Holy tree.

I highly recomend you spend some time playing around with a talent calculator.  All of these specs could be changed in several ways.  By no means do I think these are the “best” specs, just what I would do if my goals were those I’ve listed for each spec.  Think about what you want to get out of your talent choices and focus on talents that will help you acheive your goals.  This is also a good time to take talents that you really like but aren’t normally raid viable.  When leveling you are normally playing for your self and don’t need to worry about supporting a raid.  Remember, this is a game, have fun

Warlock Demonology Leveling Spec

October 30, 2008

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m leveling a Warlock with my hubby (who is playing a Druid).  We dinged 40 last night and he respecced from Feral to Boomkin.  We’ve been using the Voidwalker for a tank and it’s not working so well any more.  Since neither of us currently has a threat dump we need a better tank.  I’m looking at respeccing from Affliction to Demonology to make the Blueberry a better tank for us.  Since we are working as a pair we are often fighting +4 or +5 mobs where spell hit can be a problem and it takes quite a while to kill them.

Below is the spec I’m looking at taking.  For those of you who might be new readers here’s how I’m going to explain this.  I want to get to my 31 point talent so I need 5 points in every tier to get to the next.  I’m looking at each Tier placing 5 points and moving on to the next.  Sometimes those 5 points will be backfilled into a previous Tier.  Doing it this way also shows what order I would take the points in if I were leveling from level 10 while using this spec.  Surf on over to a Talent Calculator and follow along with me!  If any warlocks happen to be reading I’d love some feedback!

Goals:  Want a better Void tank.  At current level (40) want to get to Demonic Empowerment.  Also going to take talents to improve Sta, threat, and damage of my minion.

  • Tier 1 – Levels 10-14
    • 2/2 Imp Healthstone – We use the HS a LOT so the points are worth it to me.
    • 3/5 Demonic Embrace – Sta increase is always nice for a ‘Lock
    • Notes: Passing on Imp Imp since I don’t currently use him.
  • Tier 2 – Levels 15-19
    • 3/3 Demonic Brutality – Increases effectivness of all Void spells
    • 2/2 Imp Health Funnel – This will allow me to heal the Void without loosing too much my self
    • Notes: Fel Vitality is a good place for talent points and I’m going to come and backfill here later
  • Tier 3 – Levels 20-24
    • 1/1 Soul Link – Requirement for Demonic Empowerment and will share the damage I take when I pull aggro or get an add.
    • 3/3 Fel Vitality – Told you I was going to come back and take this one!
    • 4/5 Demonic Embrace – Backfilling here to get the next point to move on to the next tier
    • Notes: Fel Domination seems like a PvP talent.  I’m mostlikley going to be summoning my minion OOC.  Will backfill later.  Don’t use Succy so passing on  Imp Succubus.  Demonic Ageis seems good but passing for now, may come back later.
  • Tier 4 – Levels 25-29
    • 5/5 Unholy Power – Increase to Minion damage… all good
    • Notes: This is the only option in this tier since I didn’t take Fel Domination
  • Tier 5 – Levels 30-34
    • 2/2 Master Conjuror – I find these very usefull and an increase in stats is all good
    • 3/3 Demonic Ageis – Back filling to get this talent
    • Notes:  This is an interesting Tier.  I don’t think Priests have any place where there aren’t 5 points available in that tier.  You have to go back and put at least 3 points on an earlier tier.  Seems to work… just haven’t seen it before.  Also, I’m passing on Demonic Sacrifice since I’m not doing anything with a tank I’ll never be able to sacrifice my minion.  Seems like a raiding talent anyway.
  • Tier 6 – Levels 35-39
    • 5/5 Master Demonologist – Required for Demonic Empowerment
    • Notes: Have yet to use Enslave Demon so there’s no point in improving it, Mana Feed looks nice, but don’t have points for it yet… may come back later
  • Tier 7 – Level 40
    • Demonic Empowerment

That gets me to level 40!  Here’s a link to the finished spec.  I’m not really sure where I’m going to put talents from here on, need a little more time to think on that one.  As I said before I’d appreciate feedback from anyone more knowledgeable about Warlocks!

Hope everyone has a great weeknd!  I’m off to Kansas to see my nephew get baptised.  I’ve got my iPhone to respond to comments but I won’t be posting until next week.  Plus I’m working on a guest post for Matt since he’s swamped 🙂

Vladvin: Dr. Boom

February 19, 2008

So I was flying around Netherstorm doing some herbing and I decided to go do some experiments with Dr. Boom. I’ve never done anything with this guy… let me say, he is really cool! Perfect for testing shot rotations and specs! Here’s what I did:

  • I used my normal shot rotation (SW:P Rank 1 until 5 stacks of Shadow Weaving, VT-SW:P-DP-MB-SW:D after that recast MB and SW:D when CD’s are up and reapply SW:P when it runs out.
  • I continued until I ran out of mana
  • I was competly unbuffed 

Here’s some #’s:

  • Current Spec 20/0/41 without cutting MF when cooldowns come up – 790 DPS, 807 DPS
  • Current Spec 20/41 with cutting MF when cooldowns com up – 780 DPS
  • Old Spec 14/0/47 with out cutting MF when cooldowns come up – 870 DPS, 860 DPS

Dr.Boom isn’t a raid boss and isn’t raiding conditions, but it seems fairly cut and dried… my previous spec gives more DPS, despite what I observed previously.  Why did I think my DPS had improved?  I wasn’t using any hard data.  I was simply comparing myself to another player.  I’m guessing he had an off night and I had a good one so that despite the difference in specs we evened out.  Now that I’ve done some expirementation I think I can safely say that my old spec was better for DPS for me.  I will say that with the 20/0/41 spec I seemed to have more longevity with the reduced mana cost, but I think I’ll take the 60-80 DPS instead!

As you may have noticed, I also did some testing with MF and clipping the end off.  I wasn’t able to complete that part of the test, but it seems to be that despite what Elitest Jerks and Shadowpriest.com say, it is not better to cut MF when your MB and SW:D cooldowns come up.  I plan on doing some testing on that one before I put it to rest though.

Before I close this post, a small disclaimer.  What works for me may not work for you.  I highly encourage this kind of testing to see what spec/gear/rotation will work best for the way YOU play.  The eternal caveat, be sure you’re having fun! 

Vladvin: Shadow Specs

February 12, 2008

Since there were many of you curious about the change in my spec, here they are.  I’d love to tell you why my DPS has gone up but I haven’t got a clue.  I’m just going to be happy that it worked 🙂

Current Spec

Old spec

Vladvin: New Spec

February 7, 2008

It amazes me what 5 talent points can do…

The other SPriest that usually raids with us has been grinding me into the dust on the damage meters.  At first I thought it was gear, but we were talking #’s the other day and we’re comparable now.  I’ve got all the Tailoring epics and he’s got a mix of T4 and T5.  Both of us have the usual smattering of Badge, Kara, and other raid gear.  So I took a look at his talents… he’s got 5 more points in Disc than I do and about 4 of the remaining points in Shadow are different.  I got tired of having 1/2 the damage with similar gear so I matched his spec.  I really don’t get it but it works.  I was within about 5% of him instead of the usual 50% below.  I’ll post both specs when I get home tonight since I can’t do it from work.

I’m totally baffled but I’m not going to argue with a 45% increase in damage.  I think it’ll be even more when I get used to the differences in spell rotation.

Leveling Your Priest: Sidone at 25

November 20, 2007

Sidone is FINALLY at 25, so here goes!

Talents – (0/0/16)

The first 11 are the same as last time, but for a recap:

  • 5/5 Spirit Tap
  • 5/5 Shadow Focus
  • 1/1 Mind Flay
  • 2/2 Imp SW:P
  • 2/5 Imp Mind Blast
  • 1/2 Shadow Reach

I am now seeing mobs die before SW:P times out, I think this is largely because I’m fighting 1 and 2 over level mobs, but whatever the cause, I filled in Imp SW:P. Next I took 2/5 in Imp Mind Blast, and 1/2 in Shadow Reach for the increased range.

Spell Rotation

I have 3 spell rotations that I’m currently using. The first is for killing mobs that I don’t have the room to fear, the second is for killing 2 mobs at the same time while fearing them, and the third is for killing overlevel mobs espcially ones that hit hard.

Normal Spell Rotation (fear is not available/possible):

  1. Pull with Mind Blast
  2. SW:P
  3. Shield
  4. Mind Flay x2 (x1 if substantially under level)
  5. Wand until death

With this rotation I get enough mana regen that I don’t have to stop and drink very often.

Fear Juggling (if you are a regular reader, you’ll have seen this allready but I’m posting this here again anyway and I now know for sure that this will need to change at later levels, but that’s another post!):

  1. Pull mob A with MB and SW:P
  2. Shield
  3. Pul Mob B with SW:P
  4. When it’s in range, fear both
  5. MF Mob A until dead (I can usually get 2 MF’s off before the fear wears off and if it’s not dead a 3rd will kill it before it gets back)
  6. Kill Mob B however you like, it should be at about 1/2 health (if I’m trying to conserve mana, I’ll do SW:P and wand, if not MB then Smite will do the job)

Overlevel mobs, the most recent ones that I had a hard time with were the raptors in the archaelogical dig site in the Wetlands. They were 2-3 levels over me and hit hard for that level.

  1. For this I pull out Holy Fire, it does a good amount of damage and adds another DOT that helps taking down the tough mobs
  2. Shield SW:P
  3. Mind Blast
  4. Fear if possible
  5. Mind Flay x 2 (and a 3rd if the shield is still up)
  6. Mind Blast

The last Mind Blast usually kills off the mob, if not I’ll throw a Smite. For this rotation I like to kill with a spell instead of wanding. I’m not really concerned with mana efficency, this is for guys that hit hard, have a relativley large amount of health and therefore need to die quickly.

Where I Played

I started out by trying the Absent Minded Prospector quest in Darkshore… I was not able to solo it and after SEVERAL tries gave up. Then I tried the escort quest from Grove of the Ancients to Myathstra’s Post in Ashenvale and a stupid Tauren kept killing my NPC…. gave up again. I think you can understand I was a bit discouraged at this point. I moved on and did some more questing in Ashenvale, moved on to Stonetalon Point for Pridewing venom sacs and killed some Venture Co. peons. Then back to Ashenvale to work on getting Dartol’s Rod of Transformation (haven’t finished that one yet) and on to the Wetlands. Killed some murlocs, young crocolisks, raptors, and currently collecting war banners.

Professions

I’ve picked up Fishing and Cooking, I’m going to pass on First Aid for now. I’m probably going to want it later on since I’ll be Shadow but it’ll be really easy to power level later and I want the cloth for leveling Tailoring. A great way to level fishing is to do the fishing quests in Darkshore. On a side note, I got Galadria’s fishing up to 298 last night before I had to go do Arena (that’s another story for another post).

Gear

I’m slowly replacing the greens that I picked up from Azuremist and Bloodmist with Tailoring greens. I’m still not finding much in the way of quest rewards that is better, but the tailoring peices are nice. Although I picked up my first pair of shoulders last night!

SuperCoolPoints

This one is easy… but it’s one of my favorite movies (my husband proposed while we were watching this one!)

“Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.”

Happy Thanksgiving!