Thursday, March 08, 2007

Shaman builds

So, I've been theory crafting several different shaman builds for my wife. At level 39 she's exclusively been an Elemental Shaman, to the point of wearing cloth with +spelldamage. However, I was getting the impression that she'd rather be in melee combat. So, after some discussion it's clear that she'd like to 1) remain an effective ranged DPS class (AKA caster) and 2) be able to melee effectively. This has led me to look at a variety of hybrid builds for level 40 (no sense buying new gear at 39 that'll be replaced in a level).

The current build I'm leaning toward is 20/11/0. Deep enough in Enhancement to grab Two-Handed weapons and enough in Elemental to cover those initial bases (Convection, Concussion, Call of Thunder, Elemental Focus, 4/5 Reverberation). I'm thinking I'll fill Elemental till 51 where she'll be 31/11/0, then go back to Enhancement for a while. The problem I'll run into is at level 61 where she'll be 31/21/0. I really don't know what to do with those last 9 points. I could have her end up 40/21/0 or 31/30/0 or something in between. Heck, if melee is enjoyable for her might as well repsec towards 20/41/0. I just don't know how it'll end up.

With the change of focus I'm stumped on how to gear her up. A melee/caster hybrid seems to benefit from about all the attributes, but I think I'll lean towards STR/INT. Something along the lines of 1 INT=1 STR= 2 STA=2 SPR=2 AGI. I know that she's going to end not excelling in either regard, but hopefully she'll get a taste of both sides and be able to decide how she wants to play her class.

Any experienced shamans out there, please help me out. Me and my alliance chums just don't know enough about the class.

6 comments:

Tomas said...

cloth with +spell damage - neat. I know a balance druid that does the dame thing - he routinely smokes just about everyone in our dps meters during boss fights.

s4dfish said...

Yeah, it made for a mean elemental build. There just isn't itemization pre-40 that supports hardcore casters in leather. There's some decent Int/Spirit gear, but now +spelldamage gear that I could find.

Of course she ended up speccing Enhancement :P

Tomas said...

heh - of course. I think you may have given me an idea for a new topic in the future. The fact that itemization and well - the whole 30-50 zone is kinda stagnant in WOW. Could seriously use some mid-game content updates.

Kinless said...

Enhancement.

Have I mentioned Enhancement?

That's what I am. 44 points in Enhancement, down to the last talent, some extra love thrown in, and now I'm putting the rest of my points into Restoration, 12 points there so far, the latest 2 points into the talent to avoid casting (i.e. healing) interruption.

I have two sets of gear: One for as much +AP and +Sta I could find, dual wielding of course, and the other with as much +Healing and +Mana regen as I could find. I think I'm about +750 AP in one set, and nearly +400 Healing and +200 Mana Regen in the other set. (I've got 4500 mana with my fighting set, 6000 with my healing set.)

You will very rarely find +Spell Damage Shaman mail. The PvP gear has some. But mostly the Shaman "set" pieces usually focus on +Healing. And I'm sure I'd compete with Hunters for the +AP gear drops, if I ever partied with one.

Our Molten Core geared Shamans were wearing cloth for exactly that reason, +Spell Damage. Of course they were roundly mocked and shamed into respeccing to Restoration for raiding purposes. HOWEVER one of our Shamans that came on a raid was Elemental specced, he topped the damage chart. He out DPS'd the mages. He worked at it, but he did it. And he had cloth pieces. (And they wanted to shard a cloth belt, non-set, that the mages refused to touch, but they didn't think a Shaman should be needing it.)

I played an Enhancement Shaman to level up, a Restoration Shaman to raid (full Earthfury, so months of raiding), class leader in the guild, and am now Enhancement again to level up. I went Elemental once, pre-patch, for PvP in Battlegrounds. World PvP I'd probably favor Enhancement.

Anyway, it is my impression that the game caters to Healing Shamans, accepts Enhancement Shamans, and really doesn't know what to do with Elemental ones.

David said...

In the lower levels, getting good enhancement gear is easy, especially around the low-to-mid 40s. There's lots of stuff from SM to get that would be useful (Herod's Shoulders, Scarlet pieces, etc.) and enhancement is generally more efficient for grinding/soloing. Of course with the changes to clearcasting for shamans, if you're 70 and have good elemental gear, elemental becomes ridiculously efficient, popping out lightning bolts that hit for 1000+ and crit for 2000+ for 330 mana a pop, and getting freebie casts frequently. But you need good gear to pull it off, and good elemental gear is something I lack right now (70 enhance/resto 0/40/21 shaman)

Twan said...

I'd say drop 3 talents and go for Nature's Guidance in the Restoration tree. Hit rating is always welcome, or actually, you're just going to need it very much.