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Thread: Ahov's Shaman Guide

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    Default Ahov's Shaman Guide

    61 Shaman/10 Druid/5 Inquisitor is the top dps spec for clerics.

    In this thread I may shorten ability names or terms.

    FW = Frozen Wrath
    LH = Lightning Hammer
    MB = Massive Blow
    CE = Combined Effort
    Phys = Physical attack; in the opener example, you will use your top physical priority
    Nonphys = Nonphysical attack; in the opener example, you will use your top nonphysical priority
    RoS = Rush of Strength
    DF = Deep Freeze
    GS = Glacial Strike


    Buffs

    Shaman: Furious Assault, Courage of the Panther, Courage of the Eagle, Vengeance of the Winter Storm, Courage of the Bear, Glory of the Chosen, Heart of the Frozen Sea (non-raid)

    Inquisitor: Armor of Devotion


    Macro

    Physical abilities (can be used a majority of the time when you need to use a physical attack)

    #show Massive Blow
    suppressmacrofailures
    cast massive blow
    cast combined effort
    cast crushing blow
    cast Ekkehard's Grasp

    Individual abilities to have on your bar

    Shaman: Frozen Wrath, Lightning Hammer, Massive Blow, Strike of the Maelstrom, Avalanche Strike, Rage of the North, Rush of Strength, Deep Freeze, Bitter Wind, Ride the Lightning, Jolt, Icy Blow, Windwalk, Glacial Strike, Crushing Blow

    Inquisitor: Vex

    Druid: Combined Effort, Eruption of Life


    Optional keybinds (since we already have a ton)

    Vengeance of the Winter Storm, Vengeance of the Primal North - having these keybound can help you quickly alternate as needed to blow up adds and then go back to burning a boss.

    Glacial Shield, Shield of Oak - these two shields respectively from Shaman and Druid do not share a cooldown, so you can help mitigate damage during intensive phases or with dead healers.


    General Priorities

    Nonphysical

    1. Frozen Wrath
    2. Glacial Strike
    3. Lightning Hammer
    4. Jolt proc
    5. Eruption of Life
    6. Icy Blow

    Physical

    1. Massive Blow
    2. Combined Effort
    3. Crushing Blow


    What the hell are priorities?

    Due to encounter disconnects, lag, a botched rotation, target switches or Jolt RNG, you may find yourself with a drastically different ability order than another Shaman. In my dps guides I prefer not to list rotation blocks unless they are very stable in combat and easily recoverable. Shaman dps is not easily recoverable without understanding the priorities for every damaging ability.

    Top priority begins with 1; when you need a physical attack you will normally use Massive Blow if it's available. If not, you will use Combined Effort. If not, you will use Crushing Blow. This is the order of damage.

    A similar idea applies with the nonphysical attacks: normally when you need a nonphysical attack you will use Frozen Wrath. If unavailable, you'll use Glacial Strike and so forth.

    Opener + Cooldown block (may not be able to practice completely on the dummy due to less ability lag; if you are not able to apply the Frozen Wrath then fill in with an Icy Blow)

    Vex > FW > CE > LH > MB > Nonphys > phys > nonphys > phys > nonphys > phys > nonphys > phys > nonphys (NOT JOLT)> phys > (Cooldown block begins) Vex > {Rotn} FW > {DF} MB > {ROS} Jolt > MB > nonphys (usually Lightning Hammer) > CE



    Shaman DPS Concepts

    With general priorities listed above along with the opener and cooldown block, we can now form a complete rotation for the spec. There are a few rules to follow for Shaman which are very important-

    1. Never use two physical attacks in a row. Your Frostbite talent increases the damage of your next physical attack when you use a nonphysical attack. Thus, it is ideal in most cases to alternate between nonphysical and physical attacks. This is demonstrated in the opening rotation.

    2. Always use Vex before Frozen Wrath. This keeps the rotation clean and predictable. Make sure to delay Vex/FW application by one GCD due to lag caused by Frozen Wrath. Otherwise you may re-apply Vex and find yourself unable to apply Frozen Wrath, skewing your timers.

    3. It is sometimes acceptable to use two nonphysical attacks in a row. With practice you will be able to identify when your Massive Blow is two GCDs away. As to not waste potential Massive Blows, you will simply use your next two nonphysical priorities. Another scenario is when you have a glacial strike or jolt proc and you are two GCDs away from starting over your rotation with vex/FW. Example: Icy Blow for Frostbite and you get a jolt proc, you would do IB > Jolt > Vex > FW. Or, if your Glacial Strike is available directly after: IB> GS > Vex> FW. Jolt procs, Glacial Strike, and Lightning Hammer are all nonphysical abilities which hit harder than a Frostbite-buffed Crushing Blow. Thus, at the end of a Frozen Wrath cycle you may use two nonphysical attacks if they are available and a more powerful physical attack such as Massive Blow is not available.

    4. You may have noticed my final nonphysical attack before the cooldown block excludes Jolt. This is to ensure it is available during Deep Freeze as it is your most powerful nonphysical attack to immediately deal its damage, with the exception being Glacial Strike. Sub-30%, try to have a Glacial Strike available during the cooldown block instead of Jolt.

    5. Never use Jolt without a proc. It's very weak.

    6. When using Lightning Hammer, ensure the previous one has completed its final tick.

    7. Eruption of Life does not consume a Life Surge tick from your previous Eruption of Life. If you still have one stack of Life Surge on the target, do not use Eruption of Life. Replace with an Icy Blow.

    8. Rage of the North and Deep Freeze are delayed in the opening rotation for a couple of reasons. A) If you use it immediately, yes, you are potentially gaining an extra rage of the north. However, it is being wasted because you are missing important buffs and debuffs. Instead, it is combined with all possible buffs/debuffs including Flaring Power. B) Deep Freeze maximizes your dot potential. Any dots on the target prior to Deep Freeze will tick for 50% extra damage.

    9. Rush of Strength should be reserved for a cooldown block to ensure Massive Blow is available. If Massive Blow is already available, you may use Rush of Strength after your CE for another powerful physical attack.

    10. Every two Massive Blows following your cooldown block may not quite line up with Vex and Frozen Wrath, dependent on ability lag. Don't worry about this until the final 15s cycle before your cooldown block. This is where your Crushing Blow on its own key comes into play. You will likely encounter your Massive Blow becoming available with Vex still at 1-2s. In this case, perform another non-physical attack and then Crushing Blow. By now you should be able to continue into your cooldown block and get two Massive Blows inside Deep Freeze.


    AoE

    Two-target: Use Strike of the Maelstrom to spread Frozen Wrath but don't necessarily worry about other multi-dotting. Maintain Vengeance of the Winter Storm and focus primarily on ST abilities. Keep in mind Strike of the Maelstrom is a physical attack, so be sure to follow up with a nonphysical attack.

    Three-targets+: Ensure Frozen Wrath is applied on a target. Activate Vengeance of the Primal North and alternate Strike of the Maelstrom with Avalanche Strike. Avalanche Strike is nonphysical and buffs each Strike of the Maelstrom. However, this is an efficient method of AoE and on many encounters it is unnecessary. For example, on Inyr'kta if you have Bladedancers you probably don't need full-blown aoe on the crystals and instead you should focus on maximizing single-target damage.
    Last edited by Ahov; 03-14-2014 at 02:28 PM.

  2. #2
    RIFT Guide Writer TheGrinnz's Avatar
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    Missing Eruption of Life under Druid in your list of individual abilities to put on your bar

    Missing Frozen Wrath in your 3+ target AoE description

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheGrinnz View Post
    Missing Eruption of Life under Druid in your list of individual abilities to put on your bar

    Missing Frozen Wrath in your 3+ target AoE description
    fixed

    /10

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    Plane Touched Champian's Avatar
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    Thanks for making this for the community.

    I don't see any instance where a DF rotation shouldn't include 2 MB's. I know you clip 1 tick (at least on a dummy) of brutalize on the first MB but you make up for it with the 3 ticks on the 2nd MB. Am I missing something?
    Last edited by Champian; 10-10-2013 at 12:21 PM.


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    Telaran Banksyy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Champian View Post
    Thanks for making this for the community.

    I don't see any instance where a DF rotation shouldn't include 2 MB's. I know you clip 1 tick (at least on a dummy) of brutalize on the first MB but you make up for it with the 3 ticks on the 2nd MB. Am I missing something?
    assuming you are doingDF> MB>nonphys>MB , deep freeze will have worn off and will not affect the brutalize from the 2nd mighty blow, whihc is hwy u would use CE.

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    Plane Touched Champian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Banksyy View Post
    assuming you are doingDF> MB>nonphys>MB , deep freeze will have worn off and will not affect the brutalize from the 2nd mighty blow, whihc is hwy u would use CE.
    While it doesn't affect the brutalize ticks, the ticks still happen. Use ACT, try both rotations with nothing else happening. 2 MB's (2brutal ticks on 1st, 3 on 2nd) 1 jolt > 1 MB (3 brutal ticks) 1 Jolt and 1 CE. All of which assuming you have high stacks of RoTN and those are all crits, like they should be.
    Last edited by Champian; 10-10-2013 at 02:51 PM.


  7. #7
    Plane Touched Champian's Avatar
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    Edit nvm

    Like you said, DF wouldn't affect the last MB's Brutal ticks but since DF affected MB, it still increases the brutalize of the 2nd MB more so than a usual MB crit due to the increased MB dmg on initial hit. If that makes sense.
    Last edited by Champian; 10-10-2013 at 04:05 PM.


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    Prophet of Telara TehFrank's Avatar
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    How does this vary from Redcruxs' guide?
    Last edited by TehFrank; 10-11-2013 at 08:27 AM.

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    RIFT Guide Writer Redcruxs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TehFrank View Post
    How does this vary from Redcruxs' guide?
    The cooldown block is a bit different, a bit more micromanaging of jolt and a few other abilities but overall the basic priority/rotation is the same

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    Quote Originally Posted by Champian View Post
    Edit nvm

    Like you said, DF wouldn't affect the last MB's Brutal ticks but since DF affected MB, it still increases the brutalize of the 2nd MB more so than a usual MB crit due to the increased MB dmg on initial hit. If that makes sense.
    I'm more inclined to agree with this after looking at the numbers. You have to remember that only two ticks of brutalize will be affected by DF, so we're clipping the non-DF tick from the 1st MB. The higher brutalize from the 2nd DF MB almost makes up for clipping and is basically canceled out by the direct damage advantage of MB over CE.

    I don't think there would be an appreciable DPS difference either way unless I'm totally missing something. That said, you do get to start the CD of MB a little sooner by going MB --> non-phys --> MB and it's also easier to line up than with CE for later CD blocks.

    Also, wasn't there a discussion on if vex was actually a DPS increase since the new shaman changes? I feel like using vex regularly in the rotation forces more back to back non-phys and it also delays FW, albeit only momentarily. Vex can't proc jolt, doesn't have the +10% crit chance that IB has, and doesn't reduce the CD of MB.

    Don't forget that IB and CB (the two skills that vex would likely replace) benefit more from being raid buffed than vex does (talent that increases SP by 10% to these skills). For instance, I took off most of my gear and looked at the tool tip for Vex, IB, and CB then compared it to when I had my highest SP gear on. Vex increased by 300% while IB and CB increased by 320%.

    I know that individually, these benefits don't amount to much. But pull altogether and I'm not quite sure it's worth putting vex in the rotation.

  11. #11
    RIFT Guide Writer usman's Avatar
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    There is no real hard or fast rules to when best to use vex, in some situations it is very useful as a pre-FW filler. In others is best used a priority for disconnects when you know there will be alot of them, at other times, like at the end of a fight its obviously a no-no since dots are not worth casting in the closing moments of a kill.

    So Ahov's advice regarding priorities is pretty accurate, the trick is to understand what influences the priority order in a given encounter.

    For example, on the twins in IG, use vex as a disconnect skill as you run to the teleporters to switch platform.

    Whilst on many of the other fights the short bursts of DPS required are fairly prohibitive of DoTs as they will never tick out to thier full potential - proteus burn phases, final 10% warden thrax.
    Ambi - Cleric - Apotheosys.


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    Quote Originally Posted by usman View Post
    There is no real hard or fast rules to when best to use vex, in some situations it is very useful as a pre-FW filler. In others is best used a priority for disconnects when you know there will be alot of them, at other times, like at the end of a fight its obviously a no-no since dots are not worth casting in the closing moments of a kill.

    So Ahov's advice regarding priorities is pretty accurate, the trick is to understand what influences the priority order in a given encounter.

    For example, on the twins in IG, use vex as a disconnect skill as you run to the teleporters to switch platform.

    Whilst on many of the other fights the short bursts of DPS required are fairly prohibitive of DoTs as they will never tick out to thier full potential - proteus burn phases, final 10% warden thrax.
    In a perfect rotation there actually is a very strict time to use vex for max dps, just a lot of people (including ahov) don't know it.

  13. #13
    RIFT Guide Writer usman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by THEFUNKBOT View Post
    In a perfect rotation there actually is a very strict time to use vex for max dps, just a lot of people (including ahov) don't know it.
    Agree 100%, however perfect rotations only happen on the test dumby and 1 or 2 bosses, all the rest of time we have to adjust to encounters.

    If you can just stand still and wail on something then I will use the non-phys attacks in a rigid order like this -

    FW > LH > Jolt > EoL > IB > Jolt > EoL, phys attack after each one and vex to fill in before starting over.

    For CD block i use -

    (RotN)FW>Phys>LH>(DF)MB>(RoS)Jolt/GS>MB
    Ambi - Cleric - Apotheosys.


  14. #14
    Plane Touched Champian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by usman View Post
    (DF)MB>(RoS)Jolt/GS>MB


    Anything else is suboptimal.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Champian View Post


    Anything else is suboptimal.
    You are very wrong.

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