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[Enhancement] Unleashing Elements, a Cataclysmic discussion (Now with more Fire Nova)

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#1 Cochice



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Posted 06 December 2010 - 09:31 AM

Please Note: If you notice any grammatical mistakes please PM Cochice rather than posting in the thread and cluttering it up. I welcome any comments/criticisms/bounties for my head/etc. I'll also be the first to admit that I can, and probably will, make mistakes here and there, please try to remain civil if there are any glaring mistakes that need arguing.

Reason for this thread:
This initial post is intended as a comprehensive overview for the Enhancement community. It is not a BiS list. It is not a run-down of all the entry level instances and what they drop. It is not going to reflect the newest, most experimental rotation that still needs further testing. It is meant to serve as both a jumping-off point for new enhancers and a place where players can come for information without having to read through a lengthy discussion. However, for those of us that live and die by these "lengthy discussions," the thread itself will also serve as an in-depth discussion whose information will be adapted into the OP. The information here is intended for level 85 content.

Readers should understand a few things. First of all, readers and posters are expected to read everything relevant to their question at least once before posting. EJ has a fantastic search function that will assist you in this. The mods on these boards are not fucking around, and you will be warned or infracted if the answer to your question is staring you in the face. Second, if you're new to the Shaman boards, don't be surprised if you see the phrase "Sim it first," more often than you expect. A link to the EnhSim site and thread is located at the bottom of this post. If you haven't already, I suggest you download it now.

Giving Credit where Credit is due:
Much of the information contained in this thread has come from countless hours testing from players more patient and dedicated than myself. Some of this information (and lots of other awesome information) can be found here:
Enhancement Shaman TTT
Combat Ratings at level 85
Crit Cap Analysis
Enhancement Guide by Elam
Gearing for Raids by Ashunera
Cataclysm Shaman FAQ by Slant
And pretty much every Enhancement thread on this forum.
Also thanks to: Ashunera, bestpike, dedmonwakeen, Disquette, Elam, Jessamy, Levva, Malan, Rouncer, Slant, Yo!, ziff

[TABLE="head"]Abbreviation | Meaning
Agi | Agility
AE | Area Effect
AP | Attack Power
1H | 1-Hander/Handed
BiS | Best in slot
CL | Chain Lightning
DoT | Damage over Time
DPS | Damage Per Second
DW | Dual-Wield
ED | Elemental Devastation
ES | Earth Shock
FE | Fire Elemental
FN | Fire Nova
FrS | Frost Shock
FS_UEF | Flame Shock when Unleash Flame buff is active
FS | Flame Shock
FT | Flametongue
GCD | Global Cooldown
GW | Ghost Wolf
ICD | Internal Cooldown
Int | Intellect
LB | Lightning Bolt
LL | Lava Lash
LS | Lightning Shield
LvB | Lava Burst
MH | Main Hand
MQ | Mental Quickness
MSW | Maelstrom Weapon
MT | Magma Totem
MW5_CL | Maelstrom Weapon x 5 stacks - Chain Lightning
MW5_LB | Maelstrom Weapon x 5 stacks - Lightning Bolt
OH | Off Hand
SP | Spell Power
SR | Shamanistic Rage
SS | Stormstrike
Str | Strength
SW | Spirit Wolves
TC | Theorycraft
UE | Unleash Elements
UF | Unleash Flame
UW | Unleash Wind
WF | Windfury

=Enhancement Basics=

==Primary Skills==
At level 10, when a shaman chooses to specialize in the Enhancement tree, these skills become available.
[TABLE="head"] Skill | Notes
Dual Wield | Allows you to equip 1H and OH weapons in your OH, also gives you 6% melee hit and the ability to parry. Awesome, huh!?
Mental Quickness | Allows Enhancement to scale properly with AP and Agi while still dealing a significant amount of damage through spells.
Lava Lash | In Cataclysm, Enhancement's hardest hitting attack. Melee strike dealing fire damage. Does more damage when FT is on the OH.
Primal Wisdom | Allows Enhancement to not worry about mana from gear because it provides steady, passive, regen. [/TABLE]

Enhanced Elements -- Mastery is learned by all classes at level 80. Each spec has a unique mastery which is supposed to bring something "fun" to each class. While our mastery is simply a passive damage modifier, it remains a very powerful stat for Enhancement Shamans.

==Unleash Elements==
Unleash Elements -- new to Cataclysm. It will do something different depending on the weapon imbue(s) on the shaman's weapon(s). See imbues for their respective unleash.

==Windfury Weapon==
The Windfury Weapon imbue is the Enhancement Shaman's primary MH weapon imbue. The design of the class intends for it to be used on the MH in all cases, however testing often creeps up showing FT performing close to (or sometimes higher than) WF on the MH. For the time being, always use WF on your MH. As of Patch 4.0.6, WF now procs 3 hits instead of two, this secures it's place as the imbue of choice for Enhancement Shamans.

The instant cast nature of the Windfury proc greatly benefits from slower weapons and their higher damage range. Since there is no way to speed up the cooldown of the Windfury proc, or to proc more often by using a fast weapon, the only way to increase damage done by Windfury Weapon is to use a slow, high DPS weapon.

===Unleash Wind===
Unleash Wind -- Pretty straightforward. Great buff, and usable at range while running to a mob.

===Windfury Proc Rate===
Analysis of the combat log shows that if you sum all hits, the proc rate while DWing is 20%, but that includes hits you make while inside the 3 second cooldown, which cannot actually proc WF. When you remove the ineligible hits the observed proc rate from the eligible hits becomes 36%.

==Flametongue Weapon==
The Flametongue Weapon imbue is the Enhancement Shaman's primary OH weapon imbue. It increases the damage of LL, and causes us to proc fire damage on every OH hit. As mentioned above, sometimes FT will creep up in testing as a MH imbue, but for the time being, use it on your OH only (unless you can provide evidence showing it out performing WF). Flametongue performs better than Windfury on the OH in all cases. Flametongue scales appropriately with weapon speed. Slower weapons cause more FT damage and fast weapons cause less damage. As of Patch 4.0.6, FT now scales from AP instead of SP.

==On Caster Weapons==
First off, this post has little mention of a Caster weapon setup because making it the "primary" setup recommended by EJ could be confusing to new enhancers. That said, testing has shown that using a caster MH can produce competitive numbers (competitive meaning "more than terrible," but assuredly not "better" than comparable Agi weapons within the same iLvl range) both EnhSim and in game. So for those wondering how to go about running a Caster weapon setup, here are a few guidelines:
  • Slower is still better. It's unlikely that you'll want anything that's lower than 2.0 speed. And even that will likely yield poor results. So far, I've see good sim numbers with a 2.3 speed weapon. Sim your various options to see which is best.
  • Since 2.3 speed caster weapons are usually maces, you might be more likely to use this setup as a dwarf than as other races.
  • All other gearing is the same as normal. Expertise and Spell hit caps are still important. As usual sim to see your EP values.
===Unleash Flame===
Unleash Flame -- Only LvB, FS and FN will benefit from the UF buff, and as Enhancement doesn't use LvB in a normal rotation, you will want to make sure that you are consuming this buff with FS every time it is up (if possible). If you find yourself in an AoE situation, UF's use with FN will be a significant boost.

==Frostbrand Weapon==
Frostbrand Weapon -- Generally speaking, this is one of the imbues you'll use in PvP. Can proc a 50% snare on hits.

PvE boss mobs are immune to the Frostbrand Weapon debuff; Windfury is a superior PvE main hand weapon imbue.

===Unleash Frost===
Unleash Frost -- Potentially amazing in PvP when playing with someone also using frost based snare effects.

==Rockbiter Weapon==
Rockbiter Weapon -- No you're not seeing things, this imbue provides the shaman with both damage reduction and increased threat generation. This is not to imply that shamans are to tank in Cataclysm, however it is nice in a pinch. If you're in a 5 man and you have an extra weapon in your bag, it doesn't hurt to have it pre-imbued and have a macro to swap it into your OH if you need to save a healer.

===Unleash Earth===
Unleash Earth -- Yes, that's a taunt. As stated above, when prepared, can be utilized successfully in a pinch. Also possible implications for gimmick fights. Very likely these gimmicks will involve a ranged Elemental Shaman, instead of an Enhancement shaman, but we can dream.

A talent calculator can be found here.
==Talent Overview==
All talents available to an Enhancement Shaman are covered here.

- | Enhancement | -
1 | Elemental Weapons | Increases damage from both imbues and from corresponding UE buffs.
1 | Focused Strikes | Boosts SS damage.
1 | Improved Shields | Increases the damage and regen on your shields. Unfortunately isn't a huge DPS boost. Generally a filler talent.
2 | Elemental Devastation | Caster/Melee hybrid synergy talent. Increases the value of crit and int. Me likey.
2 | Flurry | Straightforward - faster swings after crits. Again, increasing value of crit.
2 | Ancestral Swiftness | While not a DPS boost technically, since Ghost Wolf is usable indoors now, this talent is one of the strongest in the tree. A must have. Also allows us to enchant something other than run speed on boots.
2 | Totemic Reach | Increases the range on totems, including the bolt range on Searing Totem. Can be used as filler.
3 | Toughness | PvP talent, but lackluster even as that. With Earthen Power, SR, SW and GW to get out of snares, the utility on this talent is often useless.
3 | Stormstrike | One of the main strikes in the Enhancement rotation. Also applies a debuff which further helps with Caster/Melee hybrid synergy.
3 | Static Shock | Causes passive damage procs on LL and SS, and makes use of LS.
4 | Frozen Power | PvP Talent. Gives a ranged root which is super awesome. Skip this for a PvE talent build, the damage buff portion of the talent doesn't apply as PvE bosses are immune to the Frostbrand Weapon debuff.
4 | Seasoned Winds | Intended as a PvP talent, but lackluster for both PvP and PvE.
4 | Searing Flames | Applies a stacking DoT.
5 | Earthen Power | PvP talent. Gets rid of any snares on allies in range when it pulses. Totally awesome.
5 | Shamanistic Rage | Thanks to Primal Wisdom, we can now use this a bit more freely. No actual DPS increase, but situationally incredible.
5 | Unleashed Rage | Supplies the raid with 10% AP, but also gives a huge boost in expertise. Must have.
6 | Maelstrom Weapon | Allows the use of spells that normally have a cast time. Thumbs up.
6 | Improved Lava Lash | Thanks to Searing Flames, this helps LL to hit like a freight train.
7 | Feral Spirit | Our main DPS cooldown. Wolves also have great utility, they can stun, taunt, clear snares and give the shaman a sprint.
-| Elemental | -
1 | Acuity | Straight up crit.
1 | Convection | Available, but worthless to your everyday enhancer.
1 | Concussion | Increased damage on some spells. Solid.
2 | Call of Flame | Will increase Searing Flames tick damage and Fire Nova damage.
2 | Elemental Warding | No DPS increase at all, but depending on the fight, gives decent damage reduction.
2 | Reverberation | 1 sec reduction on shocks, worth a bit more with Unleash Elements in the mix.
2 | Elemental Precision | Provides you with a little bit of mastery without calling it mastery.

=Priority Queue=
Like many classes, Enhancement Shamans don't have a set rotation, and instead use a priority queue. This concept is fairly straightforward - the higher a ability is in the queue, the higher priority it has. Meaning if it's off cooldown and available, use it, if not, go to the next ability, if it's unavailable, go to the next, etc.
Here is what a level 85 priority queue might look like. Sim your setup to find an optimal list. Don't be afraid to mess with MW5_4/3!

[table="head"]Priority | Abbreviation | Meaning
1 | ST_0 | Searing Totem with 0 ticks remaining
2 | LL | Lava Lash
3 | FS_UEF | Flame Shock if the Unleash Flame buff is present
4 | MW5_LB | Maelstrom Weapon x5 stacks + Lightning Bolt
5 | UE | Unleash Elements
6 | SS | Stormstrike
7 | ES | Earth Shock
8 | SW | Spirit Wolves
9 | ST | Searing Totem (with x ticks remaining, set in sim)


Honestly, if you're in a situation where there is AoE to be done, you should probably just let someone else do it, and stick to your single target. However I will do my best to go over how to optimally AoE as an Enhancement shaman since 4.1.

Now that Fire Nova has been decoupled from Magma Totem and tied to Flame Shock, Shaman AoE is a bit more mobile. In order to AoE optimally, the player must keep FS on as many mobs as possible. Without using Glyph of Flame Shock, this magic number is 3. When using the glyph, that number will go up to 5. In order to effectively do this, while still maintaining a single target, I suggest the use of a mouse-over macro for applying Flame Shock. Here are two options for you:

This will simply apply Flame Shock to your mouseover, provided it is alive, and an enemy.
#showtooltip Flame Shock
/cast [@mouseover,harm,nodead] Flame Shock

In addition to the functionality of the previous macro, this will start your swing timer, and Flame Shock your primary target if you do not have a valid mouseover target.
#showtooltip Flame Shock
/cast [@mouseover,harm,nodead][] Flame Shock

So, that's the first step in the AoE. After that, it's just a matter of using UE with FN instead of FS, and using CL whenever possible. The player has the option of running either MT or ST. MT will obviously increase your AoE damage, and ST will help your Single Target a bit. However since ST's AI is based partly on FS debuffs, it's unlikely that your ST will stay on your primary target.

=Stats and Gearing=
==Hit and Expertise Caps==
Before focusing on anything else, an Enhancement Shaman should work on being spell-hit capped at expertise capped.
===Hit Cap===
All raid bosses are treated as +3 mobs (or 88, in the case of Cataclysm). While dual-wielding against a mob that is +3 levels, players have a 27% chance to miss with white attacks. In addition, players have a 17% chance to miss with spells against +3 mobs. Finally, special attacks (Stormtrike, Lava Lash, etc) have a 8% chance to miss against +3 mobs. Generally speaking, Enhancement Shamans only need to worry about the spell-hit cap. The exception to this is when approaching the crit cap, which, discussed later.

[table="head"] Cap type | rating needed (Draenei)
Spells (17%) | 1742 (1639)
White hits (27%) | 2523 (2404)
===Expertise Cap===
Expertise mitigates both Dodges and Parries, however since parries can only happen when attacking from the front, and melee should always be behind their target, mitigating Dodge is our only concern. +3 mobs have a 6.5% chance to dodge, which translates into 26 expertise. However, Unleashed Rage grants the shaman 8 expertise, meaning that in order to cap, we only need 18. Dwarves wielding Maces and Orcs wielding Axes or Fist weapons only need 15. It is also important to note that, for Orcs and Dwarves, sometimes it might be only worth it to Expertise cap one of your weapons (if, for example, you're a Axe/Mace combo). As always, sim it!

[table="head"] Cap Type | rating needed (Orc/Dwarf)
Dodge (26 expertise/6.5% to cap) | 541 (451)
Parry (56 expertise/14% to cap) | 1442 (1352)
[/table]Just in case you wanted to know parry values.

===Crit Cap===
For all melee classes, being over the Critical Cap is the situation where a portion of the player’s critical strike chance does not benefit a part or the whole of their DPS.

Melee attack types
There are 2 kinds of melee DPS: white auto-attacks and yellow special attacks. When talking about the Crit Cap only white auto-attacks are relevant.

White auto-attacks are affected by the following factors:
  • Glancing blows: This happens due to the level difference between the player with the Boss. As a Boss is always considered a minimum of 3 levels above the player, all of the player’s white melee attacks will have a 24% chance of being a Glancing Blow. Which is a reduced damage white attack that is unable to crit.
  • Dodge: When a melee attack happens on a Boss, there is a default 6.5% chance it will get dodged, and obviously a dodge cannot be a critical strike. This can be lowered and be completely negated with the use of Expertise rating and talents.
  • Parry: Attacking from the front of the Boss causes this and results in parries, failed attacks that cannot crit. Eliminated by attacking from behind.
  • Chance to miss: The white attack’s chance to miss for a dual-wielding Enhancement shaman is 27%, which goes to 21% when choosing Enhancement spec, thanks to Dual-wield Specialization. The remaining 21% can be reduced and totally nullified by the use of Hit Rating. Misses can’t crit either. Really!
  • Crit Depression: On a Boss-type mob, the ratio of white critical strikes will always be 4.8% lower than what is presented on the Character Sheet . What does this mean for the player? Just that they need 4.8% more crit in their char sheet in order to be doing the desired Critical strikes on the Boss. Earlier tests have claimed there is also a limit to the white-attacks that can be converted to Crits. This is not the case, there is no such limit, all normal white-attacks (not glancing blows) can be converted into critical strikes.
These factors can be unified into a single formula, like this:

Maximum Critical Chance (MCC) = 100% - (Glancing blows chance) – (Chance to be Dodged) - (Chance to be Parried) – (Chance to Miss)

This MCC number is the point where all white melee hits have been been removed from the table. Meaning that all melee attacks will be either glancing blows, dodges, parries, misses or critical strikes. At that point one can only increase their ratio of critical strikes by either adding more Expertise or more Hit rating and only if those are not capped already.

However there is still Crit Depression to take into account when attacking a Boss. So in order to reach the true MCC level on a Boss, one would need 4.8% more crit then is shown on their character sheet. For example, if your current MCC value is 70%, you could only remove all white hits from the table by having 74.8% on your character sheet. That point is also referred to as being Crit Capped as any additional Crit Rating past that point will have no effect on the ratio of critical strikes.

Crit Cap= MCC + 4.8%

==Stat Weights==
While introductory stat weights can be dangerous, it does help to have general guidelines when it comes to prioritizing one stat over another. If you're looking for a quick rule of thumb for Cataclysm, it's safe to go with:

Agility > Hit (under spell cap) > Expertise (under cap) > Mastery >> Crit >= Haste > Hit > Intellect = Strength > Spell Power

As always, this comes with the disclaimer that you should Sim your current gear setup to get actual numbers. The graphing function in Rawr is really awesome for seeing trends.

Hit, as usual, is the most important stat for Enhancement until the spell hit cap (17%, 1742 rating, 1639 for Draenei). Even after cap, though, hit still has some value. While it is true that Agility will out-perform hit on straight damage, the value of hit is (at least until 4.1) partly based in utility. To have an interrupt not miss is far more important that a slight increase in DPS. That said, since you should be getting hit caps from reforging and not gemming, and you can only stack Agi with gems, there's no reason that you shouldn't be hit capped.

Expertise, like hit, is extremely valuable until cap (541 rating). Unlike hit, though, it has zero value after the cap, which means any point over is completely wasted, so try to hit it right on the money.

Agility is the new primary stat for Enhancement. It provides 2 AP and .00307805% crit per point of agility. Also thanks to Mental Quickness, it provides a whole lot of spell power. Gem for it as much as possible.

Mastery great for Enhancement. After Hit/Expertise caps, mastery is THE stat to reforge to.

Crit edges out haste in value, but not by much. Still important though.

Haste is no longer amazing for Enhancement. Long gone are the days of sub 1.0 speed 2.6 weapons. Since the 30% haste buff to DK/Pal/Druid/Shamans was reverted with 4.0, it lost a lot of it's luster. Also, other classes have a much more exciting interaction with haste (increased energy regen, etc). Since there's nothing like that in Enhancement, haste remains pretty "meh."

Intellect will provide you with some spell power and spell crit. Do not gear for Int.

Strength gives Enhancement 1 AP per point. Not worth gearing for.

Spell Power, even though we cast a lot of spells, is not worth gearing for. We get enough SP from our AP thanks to MQ.

==Enhancement Points - EP==
Extensive modeling, simulation, and empirical testing (Original testing and theories done by Disquette, Pater, Tornhoof, and Yo!) have led to the development of a system for determining the items which produce the highest DPS in a raid environment. The Enhancement Points (EP) system assigns weights, or scores, to each stat point. These EP weights can then be plugged into mods like Pawn or web tools like LootRank to score items.

So, how do you go about getting ahold of these EP values? If you go to the bottom of this post, or just click here, you will see a link to the download site for EnhSim. Go click on that and get it downloaded. You can manually plug in all your character stats in the GUI, or if you use ShockAndAwe, it has a great function that will export all that stuff for you. You'll just need to double check/enter in the set bonuses, weapon imbues, and priorities. After everything is setup correctly, you can click the "Calculate EP Values" button, and go from there. This is also the same as going through the normal Sim process, except you hit the "Simulate" button instead.

If you need some more explanation on how to go through this process, Elam has a fantastic write up on on his blog, which you can find here.

===EP Ranges And Why They Matter===
Before using EP values successfully, you must first understand how they are calculated. First, the sim calculates your dps based on the numbers used. The sim then increases the value of a stat by a certain amount, and then calculates your dps again. The amount added is called the EP range. The dps difference is then divided by the amount that the stat was increased by. This gives us our eventual EP values. The sim does this individually for every stat.

This is very important: EP values only represent a snapshot of the player's stat values at that specific gear level. They do not, in any way, indicate how those stats will be valued with different gear.

Changing your EP Ranges can greatly affect your results. A good rule of thumb is to set your ranges equal to the value of about two gems. Your EP Range values of Hit and Expertise can tell you more than just your current values of those stat. If the EP range on either stat is set to a negative value, the sim will tell you how much the stats are worth on your current gear, even if you are capped. Just because you're spell-hit capped, does not mean that hit is now worthless. Maximizing the use of hit on your gear through reforging is key, and negative EP ranges will help you do this.

===How To Use EP Values===
The dynamics of Shaman DPS are dynamic enough that we will not offer sample EP values. All Shamans are encouraged to use a simulator to determine their own EP values. At the most basic level, EP values are simply a way for you to weigh your stats against each-other. Since all stats have a specific value in game that accounts for a percentage of the item budget, knowing which stats to value over others is important. For example, Agi/Int/Str/Crit/Haste/Mast/Spi/Hit/Exp are all worth the same amount on the item budget. This can easily be seen by looking at gems. All solid gems with these stats contain the same amount of said stat. However, other stats, like AP, SP, Spell Pen, Stam, etc have different budget values, so EP values are a way for us to normalize everything based on a single stat. For Enhancement Shamans, that stat is (usually) Attack Power.

After calculating your EP values in the sim, you'll get a bunch of values based on your current gear set, all normalized to 1 AP. So, to use an outlandish example (so as not to falsely give sample EP values that could lead someone in the wrong direction), if the sim told you that Spirit = 4.5 and Agi = 1.5, you would know that the Spirit on your gear is worth three times as much as the agi, and you should gem for it primarily (or your would look at your config, because you clearly did something wrong). This is obviously not going to be the case for any Enhancement Shaman, but it gives you an idea of how they work.

===How To NOT Use EP Values===
Do not use EP values to value a trinket, unless it's a static stat on said trinket. Most trinkets have varying uptime, or weird mechanics. Valid Enhancement trinkets are coded into the sim, and you can check how your DPS changes by swapping them out.

Do not use EP values to see what gear you'll want in the next tier. It might be good as a vague guideline, but you can only know how that gear will perform by simming the whole setup, not just checking the EP values. Our ability interactions will change greatly with different stats. Like I said earlier, EP values are only a snapshot of your current gear, and nothing more.

Do not use your personal EP values as an End All for the spec. They will fluctuate a lot.

==Set Bonuses==
===Teir 11===
These are the Enhancement Tier 11 pieces:

For most, it's a close margin between running 2 piece and 4 piece. The only way to tell for yourself is to sim it. The 2 piece bonus is fantastic, and the 4 piece is mediocre at best. Shoulders and Helm are the best itemized pieces, so that would be a good place to start.

Enhancement Shamans are lucky enough to have a large number of Prime and Major glyphs that are useful. Figuring out which is best for you will require some individual simulation.

Prime - You're going to want LL, and 2 of the 3 others listed. Sim to know which ones.

Major -- The most interesting glyphs we have. CL, LS (and FN, a bit) potentially provide the only actual DPS increase, however, the utility brought by the other Majors is hard to beat.
-- DPS boost, but only in AE situations.
-- Currently doesn't scale, probably won't be worth much after the first tier.
-- Will save you a global now and then.
-- Provides that much more mobility!
-- Provides the same buff as Elemental Resistance Totem
-- Very situational in PvE. Awesome in PvP
-- Very situational.

Choose your own adventure!

=Gemming, Enchanting and Reforging=
==Gemming Guidelines==
(Agile Shadowspirit Diamond - Item - World of Warcraft) is the best meta to use, by a long shot.

===Matching Socket Color===
Socket bonuses in Cataclysm are huge compared to those in WotLK. As such, you will want to match more socket bonuses than before. Since mastery is very good for Enhancement, matching a yellow socket with an orange gem (or even yellow) is almost always a good idea. For bonuses that are 20+ Agi or Mastery, match blue sockets (match them regardless if under hit cap). Other than that, go straight Agi. So far, there isn't a new version of , but if one crops up, we'll probably want to use it.
[table="head"] Color | Gem
Red |
Yellow |
Blue |

==Enchanting Guidelines==
[table="head"] Slot | Enchant
Head |
Shoulders |
Cloak | Enchant Cloak - Greater Critical Strike, Enchant Cloak - Major Agility
Chest | Enchant Chest - Peerless Stats
Bracer | Enchant Bracer - Greater Critical Strike, Enchant Bracer - Precision or Enchant Bracer - Greater Expertise if under cap.
Gloves | Enchant Gloves - Greater Mastery
Belt |
Legs | Dragonscale Leg Armor
Boots | Enchant Boots - Mastery or Enchant Boots - Major Agility
MH | Enchant Weapon - Landslide
OH | Enchant Weapon - Landslide
Note: The sim is now modeling all weapon enchants correctly. Generally speaking:
landslide > avalanche > berserker > mongoose > hurricane
==Reforging Guidelines==
Since Agility is not a stat that can be reforged to, you want to free up as many sockets for Agi gems as possible. As such, reforging for Expertise and Hit caps is ideal, rather than gemming for them.

After achieving caps, reforge to as much mastery as you can. Depending on the values of Agi and Mastery, this is very much subject to change.

Consumables are pretty similar to WotLK, in Cata; you'll need a Potion, Flask/elixirs and food for every fight.


Also found in: and



or / if you're being cheap.


For those players interested in the stat increases (and other bonuses) that the various professions provide, here is a quick run-down.

[table="head"] Profession | Source of Bonus | Stat Bonus | Additional Bonus
Alchemy | or Mixology | +80 Agility | Extra Benefit from .
Blacksmithing | 2 Extra Prismatic Gem Sockets | +80 Stat Points |
Enchanting | 2 Ring Enchants | +80 Agility. |
Herbalism | Lifeblood | 480 Haste Rating for 20 sec. Usable every 2 minutes. Stat equivalent to +80 Haste. Also heals the caster. |
Inscription | Swiftsteel Inscription. | +80 Agility |
Jewelcrafting | 3 Jewelcrafting gems | +81 Stat Points |
Leatherworking | Draconic Embossment - Agility. | +80 Agility. | Cheap Leg Enchants: Dragonbone Leg Reinforcements
Mining | Toughness. | +120 Stamina |
Skinning | Master of Anatomy. | +80 Crit Rating.
Tailoring | Swordguard Embroidery. | A proc granting +1000 attack power for 15 seconds. |
Engineering | Glove Tinkers:| -- | . Provides a customizable iLvl 359 piece of gear. Customizable with Cogwheel sockets (, , ).
-- | Synapse Springs | 480 Agility for 10 seconds every 1 minute, or 80 Agility equivalent | Belt Tinkers: Cardboard Assassin, Grounded Plasma Shield, Invisibility Field - Spell - World of Warcraft, Mind Amplification Dish, Nitro Boosts, Personal Electromagnetic Pulse Generator, Frag Belt.
-- | Tazik Shocker | deals 4320 to 5280 Nature damage every 2 minutes, scales with mastery | Bombs/Consumables: (On GCD), , (Goblin Only). Note: All three bomb types can be used.
-- | -- | -- | Cloak Tinker: Flexweave Underlay.

http://elitistjerks....updated_thread/ -- EnhSim is the preferred tool when it comes to detailed simulations. Any new testing is usually accompanied by a config file for EnhSim in addition to in-game parses/logs.
EnhSim Download
Rawr Download
SimCraft Download

=Useful Addons=
ShockAndAwe - Download
This incredibly useful mod helps Shamans track pretty much everything they need, and displays it in one handy little mess of moving bars. Will also track uptimes of important buffs, and export things to EnhSim.

Totem Timers - Download
Solid mod for tracking totems and imbues. Has "Enhance" functionality, but SAA will cover that stuff better.

Utopia - Download
Not shaman specific, but very useful for keeping track of buffs/debuffs in a raid setting. "Hey put CoE back up." etc

=To Do=
--Multi-target rotation

=Change Log=
--12/06/10 -- Initial Post
--12/16/10 -- Clarified some Mastery vs Agi statements.
--12/31/10 -- Added FT/FT section. Clarified a bunch of stuff.
--01/01/11 -- Added profession section
--01/02/11 -- Spelling is hard.
--01/12/11 -- Add FT glyph for FT/FT setup. Fixed link error for gems.
--01/26/11 -- Added weapon enchants and some formatting stuff.
--02/12/11 -- JC trinket drops correctly now.
--02/18/11 -- Added EP sections
--03/10/11 -- Updated professions, updated stat weights and t11 stuff
--03/17/11 -- No really, spelling is hard.
--05/03/11 -- Updated for 4.1. Clarified Caster Weapon Section. Added Seasoned Winds. Added AoE section. Spoilers: still sucks.
--05/06/11 -- (Jessamy edit) Added notes explaining why Frostbrand and Frozen Power are not used in PvE.
--05/09/11 -- Made FS mouseover macro prettier

#2 darkInertia


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Posted 06 December 2010 - 07:51 PM

Profession-specific bonuses. I didn't include other perks of the profession such as mixology's improved duration, leatherworking's cheap leg enchants or the like. Most of the professions give a straight +80 agi gain for that particular slot. Leatherworking is unique because there is no agility enchant for bracers, so you're giving up other stats. I'm not sure how useful the engineering or tailoring perks are, compared to the alternatives, but I figured this would be a start.

Mixology - +80 agi (flask of the winds)

Socket Bracer and Socket Gloves: +80 agi

2xEnchant Ring: +80 agi

No longer takes up enchanting slot. No sure how useful the glove and belt schematics are. Also, engineers get a epic helm.

Swiftsteel Inscription (130 Agi and 25 mastery rating): +80 agi over [Greater Inscription of Shattered Crystal]

3xDelicate Chimera's Eye (67 Agi each): +81 agi

Draconic Embossment - Agility (130 Agi):
instead of:
Enchant Bracer - Greater Critical Strike (65 CR)
Enchant Bracer - Precision (50 HR)
Enchant Bracer - Greater Expertise (50 Exp)

Swordglow - Embroiders a magical pattern into your cloak, causing your damaging melee and ranged attacks to sometimes increase your attack power by 1000 for 15 sec.
instead of: Enchant Cloak - Greater Critical Strike (65 CR)

#3 Rouncer


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Posted 06 December 2010 - 08:28 PM

From comments over at MMO and elsewhere it seems there is still some confusion about what the current situation is with FT/FT and caster mainhands. I wrote up a post in a D/D thread this morning and it seems fitting to repost it here if just to get the information more distribution.

R.I.P. Windfury (broken?) - Forums - World of Warcraft

Broken is best ignored in most situations but especially when making flippant comments about something he probably doesn't understand. You are indeed correct. FT is currently a better mainhand option then WF especially with a caster mainhand. Always stick to the best slow melee weapon you can find for your offhand.

The reason FT is better is because it is currently "bugged" and double-dipping. By that I mean it is scaling separately with both spellpower and attack power. Since we get spellpower from our attack power that means it is double-dipping.

This is the current formula for FT at level 80

((274 + (spellpower * 0.1539) + (attackpower * 0.04611)) * (base weapon speed / 4)) * (1 + (mastery * 0.025))

The same formula applies at level 85 with the 274 increasing to 305.

Ziff, the current EnhSim main coder, believes it is due to a bug that has the old Mental Quickness spellpower showing up again just for that one ability. He thinks that because of how the formula can be re-ordered to the following.

((274 + ((base spellpower + (attack power * 0.50) + (attack power * 0.30)) * 0.1539) * (base weapon speed / 4.0) * (1 + (mastery * 0.025))

I'm not sure if he is right about the nature of the bug or not, I just know that it exists. The optimist in me hopes that they are playing with the idea of having Flametongue only scale from AP but the realist knows it is most likely just a random thing.

Anyway, FT/FT is better then WF/FT at level 80. This being a new thing since the bug only translated from the Beta to Live with 4.0.3a. Which is why not many people are running FT/FT at the moment.

At level 81 WF/FT will again become the better option because of Unleashed Elements. Then at 85 in raiding level gear FT/FT with a caster mainhand will again become better once a certain level of mastery is reached which will most likely be obtainable towards the end of Tier 11 but certainly in Tier 12.

GC is on record as saying that FT/FT with a caster mainhand is not likely to be something they would allow. So those of us who play our shaman as enhancement will need to keep that in mind before rolling on a caster mainhand against one of the people who will be keeping us alive while raiding.

Take FT/FT with a grain of salt since all the testing was with the level 80 version of the sim. When Hothgor and I were testing things on the level 85 raid dummies on the Beta we showed basically the same results between all three conditions (WF/FT with agility weapons, WF/FT with caster mainhand and FT/FT with caster mainhand) although the testing conditions were much too short to properly account for RNG. When using the level 80 sim with current gear values and adding in UE and a level 85 priority list FT/FT with a caster mainhand beats the others by a significant margin.

How things will stack up at 85 with optimized raid gear is still up in the air but I wouldn't be surprised in the slightest if a caster mainhand ended up being our BiS if they leave Flametongue the way it is right now.

#4 Ryethe


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Posted 07 December 2010 - 02:38 AM

Elemental Precision Really only an option if you are desperate for hit. And even then, probably not a good choice.

This is actually elemental damage not hit like it used to be.

Will need investigate at 85 how good it is compared to other choices but since it's basically 3% mastery (537 mastery rating) without calling itself mastery.

#5 Rouncer


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Posted 07 December 2010 - 03:25 AM

This is actually elemental damage not hit like it used to be.

Will need investigate at 85 how good it is compared to other choices but since it's basically 3% mastery (537 mastery rating) without calling itself mastery.

It's 3% elemental damage with is 1.2 mastery or 215 mastery rating.

#6 Cochice



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Posted 07 December 2010 - 04:58 AM

This is actually elemental damage not hit like it used to be.

This was probably a badly worded "note" on my part. I know it was changed and for some reason (in my half-waking state) I thought the spi>hit was worth mentioning.

#7 isendims


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Posted 12 December 2010 - 08:09 PM

A note on hit cap, enhancement shamans get 6% hit passive from speccing enchancement. So the ratings required should be less then are listed. Also on my shaman currently 822 (draenei) hit rating is showing up as 13.84% hit chance, this is higher then mentioned needing 840 for 8% melee.

A note on Flametongue doing more damage then windfury, I've auto attacked dummies, dps'd on bosses, and flametongue keeps coming up on top. Only 15 min of auto attacks resulted in a 40k gap in damage. But before swaping to FT / FT you must remember you will get less maelstrom weapon stacks without windfury.

#8 Cochice



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Posted 12 December 2010 - 09:28 PM

A note on hit cap, enhancement shamans get 6% hit passive from speccing enchancement. So the ratings required should be less then are listed. Also on my shaman currently 822 (draenei) hit rating is showing up as 13.84% hit chance, this is higher then mentioned needing 840 for 8% melee.

The Spell-hit cap is what you need to worry about, not the specials cap, which is 1742 rating for non-draenei.

#9 TallanX


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Posted 13 December 2010 - 04:40 AM

It seems to me that the +6% From DW applies to spells btw. Right now trying to get that 1700 Spell Hit seems near impossible. I am in almost full heroic gear with everything put towards hit and there is no way I am going to get that cap. Hit is Hit now so just because the Character Panel doesn't show it does not mean that your not getting the 6%. Talents with Haste don't show in the panel either.

Hit numbers might want to be rechecked IMO

#10 Repcak


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Posted 13 December 2010 - 04:47 AM

I've got item lvl 347 (heroic and justice points) and i have the hit and expertise cap already. Reforeged moste haste into Hit and some into expetise. So i think its not that hard. Its sure that the Hit from talents is in the charater sheet. Just changed to my resto offspec having my enh gear on and i lost 6%.

I have just one question about shaman Weapons. is there any + For getting a fast offhand for the increased dmg from flametongue weapon or are 2 slow weapons better?

#11 Brynmor


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Posted 13 December 2010 - 05:20 AM

I've got item lvl 347 (heroic and justice points) and i have the hit and expertise cap already. Reforeged moste haste into Hit and some into expetise. So i think its not that hard. Its sure that the Hit from talents is in the charater sheet. Just changed to my resto offspec having my enh gear on and i lost 6%.

I have just one question about shaman Weapons. is there any + For getting a fast offhand for the increased dmg from flametongue weapon or are 2 slow weapons better?

Lava Lash does weapon damage and is an offhand attack. Fast weapons in the OH will severely nerf your LL damage.

#12 Cochice



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Posted 13 December 2010 - 06:14 AM

It seems to me that the +6% From DW applies to spells btw. Right now trying to get that 1700 Spell Hit seems near impossible. I am in almost full heroic gear with everything put towards hit and there is no way I am going to get that cap. Hit is Hit now so just because the Character Panel doesn't show it does not mean that your not getting the 6%. Talents with Haste don't show in the panel either.

Hit numbers might want to be rechecked IMO

Nothing currently indicates that the DW specialization has been changed to apply to spells. 1742 hit rating is pretty easily attainable in heroic gear.

Just to make sure, I got naked and hit a level 85 dummy with flametongue. I had zero hit rating from gear. If the DW specialization had been changed to also apply to spells, I would receive zero misses on a equal level mob (4% chance to miss against the same level). I had a flametongue proc miss within a matter of seconds. So no, it doesn't apply to spells.

#13 Palioh


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Posted 13 December 2010 - 07:30 PM

Weapon enchants are still up in the air it seems, so I'll put up my short experiences so far.

World of Logs - Real Time Raid Analysis

I raided last night with double Avalanche (Enchant Weapon - Avalanche - Spell - World of Warcraft) and it ended up being about 2.7% of my overall damage on fights. It was hitting for around 1000-1100, with crits around 1400-1500. 2.7% is a fair amount, about equal to what trinkets were in the past, but the other options seem tempting since this lacks a lot of scaling.

I was told that the Hurricane (Enchant Weapon - Hurricane - Spell - World of Warcraft) enchant can not only refresh itself, but also proc 3 individual buffs. The buffs can proc from the main-hand proc, off-hand proc, and spells. If you look at the logs above, one of our Rogues, Coresel, was using double Hurricane and getting the third spell proc from his poisons as well as the other two from both of his weapons. I'm not very good with all the math you fellows do here, so I'll leave the rest of this to you.

Unfortunately, Landslide (Enchant Weapon - Landslide - Spell - World of Warcraft) is not available to me just yet, so I can't comment on it. :(

#14 Rouncer


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Posted 13 December 2010 - 07:48 PM

From the rogue threads,

37. On physical attacks, Hurricane acts like a regular 1 PPM enchant. On spells, it is a 45 second ICD and a 15% proc rate. If a spell proc occurs while a melee proc is active, it will refresh the melee proc. If a spell proc occurs with no melee proc, it will create a separate stack of the buff, potentially resulting in 3 stacks being up at the same time.

My EP values have haste at a bit less then half of an AP so even with the potential double up procs/refreshes from spell casts every 45 seconds or so it's still not likely to compare to Landslide.

Avalanche scales with mastery and spell crit so it does scale just that it's starting at a very low place compared to Landslide. You're showing 2xAvalanche doing roughly 340 dps which is equal to roughly 360 AP or 180 AP per enchant. If Landslide works like berserking (1ppm, can stack and no ICD) then it should be roughly 35% uptime per enchant or 350 AP per enchant.

#15 Xaoxinn


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Posted 15 December 2010 - 02:44 PM

This may very well be a stupid question but so far I've found nothing in regards to which weapon slot has priority for your highest dps weapon. Considering most of our damage is spell based I'd imagine the better weapon going in OH to boost LL dmg but theres something about putting the better weapon in OH that just feels wrong :/

Sorry if this isn't the sort of thing usually posted, just thought it odd no1 has mentioned it thus far

#16 Rouncer


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Posted 15 December 2010 - 03:14 PM

Better weapon still goes in the mainhand, white damage is still a large portion of our damage as is windfury and flametongue damage is effectively offhand weapon neutral.

We are still looking very likely to be using caster mainhands and running FT/FT unless something changes which makes which weapon to put where pretty simple.

#17 Gondlem


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Posted 16 December 2010 - 12:40 PM

Caster mainhand with FT/FT looks to be simming much higher for me right now, about 800 DPS without much mastery stacking or priority adjustments or anything. Obviously Enhsim is still in Alpha so it's not clear cut, but it feels like it's worth trying in a raid environment, at least.

#18 Cochice



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Posted 16 December 2010 - 01:19 PM

Caster mainhand with FT/FT looks to be simming much higher for me right now, about 800 DPS without much mastery stacking or priority adjustments or anything. Obviously Enhsim is still in Alpha so it's not clear cut, but it feels like it's worth trying in a raid environment, at least.

Keep in mind that is no longer 2.3 speed, and is now 1.7. I don't know why it was changed, it would be purely speculation to say it had anything to do with Enhance, but it was changed. As far as I can tell, off of Nef is still 2.3, but I wouldn't count on that. The next best option from raiding content is one of the 1.8 speed daggers.

[EDIT] Wowhead mouseovers show the Nef mace at 1.8, and Twilight's Hammer at 2.3. However The hammer shows in-game at 1.7.

There's obviously plenty of blue options from heroics for the time being.

#19 Gondlem


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Posted 16 December 2010 - 01:56 PM

Yeah, the DPS on the epic caster weapons is much lower than the blue ones, which seems like it could be related to Enhancement. The 316 ilvl blacksmithing dagger has 309.6 DPS compared to 50 DPS on the epic raiding caster daggers for example. The sim still seems to rank the caster weapons pretty high for me though, even with 50 main hand DPS.

#20 Mengus


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Posted 20 December 2010 - 12:11 AM

Something to be aware of, is simming for me at better than some epic weapons, due to the speed as an OH producing massive lava lash hits. There aren't many 2.8 speed weapons for us, but if you pick this one up it may be something to hold onto for a while.

I'm getting more or similar dps from an 462.4 mh / vs double 462.4, depending on the stats.

This is with a WF/FT setup obviously, and not double FT.

NOTE: The epic weapons in question are the T1 Viscious PVP axes, which have pretty terrible stats but 462.4 dps. In this case, the epic offhand at 2.6 speed/462.4 dps is not worth using over Cookie's Tenderizer, YMMV. Avalanche/Hurricane was also simming better than Double Avalanche. Landslide is far superior, but nearly unattainable at the moment.

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