Hindrigan

ele: why no cast earth shock during ascendance???

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I just can't find the answer.  Why are elemental shamans who  take ascendance as their final talent not supposed to use earth shock during ascendance?  earth shock does 920% spell power.  lava burst does 275%.  If you overload with lava burst you do an additional 206% totaling 481% spell power.  if you have 25% crit during ascendance lava burst is now 343% spell power and the overload is 257% equaling a total of 600% spell power.  you are missing out on a instant cast spell for 320%  additional spell power worth of damage; and quite often times twice during ascendance.  that's 640% spell power which is more than a lava burst cast during ascendance with 25% crit.

I currently have 18% crit chance and during ascendance I'm critting lava burst at 434k (not extremely well geared I know, but the ratio is still present).  earth shock at 100 maelstrom non crit is 400k.  If you don't crit with earth shock you lose very little damage.  However, if you crit  with earth shock you do easily over 1million damage (several lava burst crits worth)  I really don't see a down side to using earth shock during ascendance other than 2-4 seconds off of fire elemental due to elementalist in your artifact tree.

By all means show me that I'm being silly. Please.  Thanks all

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You're forgetting about the extra damage from Path of Flame in the first tier of traits. Also, most guides will tell you to heavily prioritize relics with the Lava Imbued trait for your artifact weapon. Your artifact weapon also has the Molten Blast trait, which increases Lava Burst critical strike damage. On top of that, Lava Burst also procs Volcanic Inferno and Power of the Maelstrom.

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it still comes no where close to the same damage. all of the buffs you've stated are incorporated into the numbers in my second paragraph except for power of the maelstrom since that works with lightning bolt and you don't cast that anyway during ascendance.  lava burst is critting during ascendance for basically the same as a non crit  full maelstrom earth shock.

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Don't think of it in terms of the damage done by the ability. Think of the opportunity cost of each ability. They are both powerful, but what do you stand to lose with each choice?

1) When you get near the end of Ascendance, you use Earth Shock to dump Maelstrom. By doing this, you lose out on a cast of Lava Burst, and you can't get it back, because during Ascendance the cooldown on Lava Burst is removed. This means when you exit Ascendance, even though you have been spamming Lava Burst, you still have 2 charges. So any missed casts are effectively lost forever.

2) You instead use Lava Burst. In so doing, you waste 12 maelstrom. This causes you to lose out on 12% of a full power Fulmination. Not really a big deal compared to losing an entire cast of Lava Burst. Even if you use it 8 times in succession before finally dumping with Earth Shock, you're still going to have to lose a Lava Burst in order to use Earth Shock anywhere in that sequence, so the math still has you ahead. Also, consider that during Ascendance, your Lava Burst damage is increased by an amount equal to your crit chance (dynamically scaling with any temporary effects like trinkets). So the more gear you get with Critical Strike on it, the more you're going to benefit from playing this way.

It might seem at first like there is some flaw with the logic, since we have it drilled into us not to waste resources. But in this case, it is actually very clear cut that it is more efficient to keep spamming Lava Burst, except to use Elemental Blast when it comes off cooldown.

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