Wednesday, 22 April 2009

A reader asks about 3.1 specs and improved ghost wolf

Wow, my first email question! This one comes from Charles. Charles says that my enhancement build is very close to Stoneybaby's from Big Hit Box except that I have 1 point in Shamanistic Focus and 1 less in Improved Shields. Is there a reason for this?

We also have 2 points in Improved Ghost Wolf and although Charles loves the ability to instant into a Ghost Wolf, he was wondering how valuable that is from level 70 onward.

Basically I've taken Shamanistic Focus for mana regeneration, because in our 10 mans we have a set of people who sign up for runs, and they are never the same each week. Thus we don't always have replenishment, paladin buffs, etc so I am erring on the side of caution. I am tempted to try Stoney's build instead because in Ulduar last night we did have replenishment and I did fine on mana. However we only did the Razorscale encounter. If I can get Kam into Naxxramas again I can try my build a little better and see if I am being overly cautious. There is an excellent article on BigHitBox called Enhance Mana Regen Abilities which spells out the choices for mana regeneration.

One thing to bear in mind is that replenishment "replenishes 0.25% of maximum mana every sec". This means that if your mana pool is large, you will get more mana back than if it was small. As better gear comes with more Intellect, a well geared Enhancement Shaman should have more mana than a less-well geared one. My enhsim simulation claims that I will go OOM more if I don't take Shamanistic Focus and thus do less DPS, but there's no substitute for real world testing, thus my temptation to try without SF and see what happens.

Improved Ghost Wolf is very useful in PvE to move around quickly, rather than mounting, and to run away! For raiding Naxxramas it's not useful, but I'm not a really serious raider so I'm willing to use those two points in Improved Ghost Wolf that I could have put elsewhere for more DPS. If at level 80 you are fine with using a mount all the time, then I would consider not taking Improved Ghost Wolf and getting more DPS instead. Stoneybaby also says IGW in Ulduar is very useful for Ignis, a boss we've not tried yet, so in that respect it may be worth considering.

Update: I've taken this 16/55/0 build, with 3 in Call of Flame and 2 in Improved Shields, mainly because I see Kam running Naxxramas a fair amount and AOE on trash is pretty much king in that place.


Rich said...

Yeah man I actually switched up my spec on Stoney after the free respec and went 16/55/0. I think we'll eek out a bit more from 5% addtional totem damage than 5% addtional shield damage.

Imp GW is definitely a preference thing.

Keep us posted if you drop Sham Focus and how that pans out for you without replenishment.

May all your hits be crits!

Tenadres said...

Hell there,

I have a level 70 shaman, which I'll level as Restoration with a friend, which is a tank.

Together we'll be picking up 3 random dps's and are ready to blow through instances... Question is, I have enough gold for Dual Spec's, and was wondering if I should buy it and use for either Elemental or Enhancement.

What's your view on this? Seeing this blog I know you like Enhancement, but I was still wondering about your opinion.

Thanks for reading, and I should've send this as an email. Ah well.


skraps said...

I play resto, bought dual specs and speced resto/elemental.

All I have to do when going from resto to elemental is swap trinkets and weapon enchants and I can push almost the same dps as a full elemental shaman. My lower dps is from lack of skill not gear.

I have run more raids and heroics as dps since 3.1 than i ever thought i would. Healer shortage is gone on Farstriders, BUT THERE IS STILL A TANK SHORTAGE.

Rakhman said...

To Tenadres:

Comments are fine!

Firstly I would spend the gold for dual spec, so you can take a DPS spec for soloing. I did do some quests as Resto at level 70 and when I respecced to Elemental I could kill mobs 2x-3x as fast.

I would recommending deciding whether you want to pick up Elemental because it will be much easier to gear for, or try both Elemental and Enhancement to see which you personally prefer.

Certainly going Resto/Elemental has massive gear synergy and reuse, whereas if you go Enh/Resto (like me) you need a complete set of second gear. Our raid Resto Shaman has gone Elem on his 2nd spec and goes very good damage purely in healing gear. So this path is far less complex and lets you concentrate on one set of gear with maybe some tweaks if you care (I don't think Elem Shaman need MP5 a great deal and want loads of crit instead).

I would also say that Elemental (ie ranged DPS) is much less of a pain in instances and raids :)

However I found, personally, that I prefer Enhancement a lot more for PvE soloing & questing, which is the main reason I am Enhancement. But you do have the massive drawback of having to get 2 sets of gear for Resto/Enh. And melee involves a lot of running around in instances. If you like gearing up and that sort of thing, go for it.

At the end of the day, if you want a simple life, chose Elemental and use your healing gear. If you want to try out a different aspect of your Shaman, grab some hunter gear from the guild bank, spec Enhancement and go try it out. You might like it, I did.

Lamentation said...

So ah... what do you do for Glyphs?

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