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Upcoming Major Shaman Changes on the War Within Beta: New Raid Buff and More!

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Blizzard have detailed the upcoming Shaman changes coming to the War Within Beta! After some partial information surfaced, they are now showing us the entire plan, starting with a new raid buff, Skyfury, as Windfury gets buffed and goes raid-wide! Then there are many, many changes to all three specs' talent trees, as well as the patch notes with all the tuning, so let's dive in.

Blizzard LogoShaman (Source)

Greetings Shamans!

Earlier today, we unfortunately deployed a small part of our Shaman update to the Beta. This may have put the class into a bad state for testing, but that will only be the case for the next day or so. We have significant updates to the Shaman talent trees coming in tomorrow’s new Beta build.

First, we’d like to outline our philosophy and goals for these changes. We’ll start by addressing the new Shaman raid buff: Skyfury, and then go over each of the tree updates individually.

Skyfury

Throughout Dragonflight and The War Within’s development, the topic of raid buffs has been actively discussed and we’ve come to the decision to add a new raid buff to the Shaman class. Our goal with this buff is for it to fully replace the Windfury Totem buff previously brought by Enhancement Shamans and grant Elemental and Restoration access to a raid buff to encourage their value in raids.

Skyfury incorporates the previous effect Windfury Totem had of activating additional auto-attack swings with a small Mastery buff. Players may also note that this is lifting the party-wide restriction previously in place on Windfury Totem’s effect and turning it into a guaranteed raid-wide effect.

Class Tree

For the Shaman class tree, we’ve reduced the node count of defense and throughput nodes to allow most of the decision making in this tree to focus on picking up different pieces of utility. There will also be some new toys to help with group utility and personal survivability.

Pathing has been improved in a variety of ways and the previously potentially restrictive locations of Gust of Wind / Spirit Walk and Earth Shield have been changed to be easier to pick up. We feel this frees up points for more compelling decisions elsewhere without having to compromise movement or defensiveness to such a large degree.

Elemental

Elemental’s updates focused on scaling their proc rates to be more consistent between AoE and single target situations, allowing for things such as Lava Burst to have more of an impact on their rotation and improving their talent tree layout to allow for more diverse builds and variety.

We want to empower Elemental Shamans to be able to specialize as lightning focused, lava focused, or weaving between all the elements and have distinct builds within each of these options to allow for impactful choices to determine damage profiles.

Restoration

Our Restoration Shaman updates condensed the availability of damage focused nodes in the specialization tree to free up more points to decide on healing profiles and moving core nodes such as Ascendance and Tidebringer into more available locations. We want Restoration Shamans to feel they have multiple compelling options to reach the heavily desirable nodes on their tree.

We’ve also focused on increasing the effectiveness of a few core Restoration Shaman spells we feel have fallen behind. The two most notable spells here are Healing Surge and Spirit Link Totem. In Healing Surge’s case players will notice more bonuses to this spell to allow players who are looking to utilize this spell more effectively and for Spirit Link, we are returning the Spouting Spirits azerite trait with a twist of splash healing to make it strong in any group content. Healing Rain is also seeing new bonuses focused on increasing its effectiveness.

Enhancement

For Enhancement, we’ve generally been pleased with the state and talent diversity of their specialization tree, so we’re approaching it with a lighter touch. We focused on baselining a few of their core spells and utility within their specialization tree to allow for more optionality in both the Core and Spec trees.

Patch Notes

Class Tree

  • Many talents have moved locations or have had their pathing updated in all trees.
  • New Ability: Skyfury – Harness the fury of the Windlord to grant a target ally 2% Mastery and empower their auto attacks to have a 20% chance to instantly strike again for 1 hour. If the target is in your party or raid, all affected party and raid members will be affected. Learned at level 17.
  • New Talent: Elemental Resistance – Healing from Healing Stream Totem reduces Fire, Frost, and Nature damage received by 6% for 3 seconds. Healing from Cloudburst Totem reduces Fire, Frost, and Nature damage taken by 3% for 3 seconds.
  • New Talent: Refreshing Waters – Your Healing Surge is 25% more effective on yourself.
  • New Talent: Traveling Storms – Thunderstorm now can be cast on allies within 40 yards, reduces enemies movement speed by 60%, and knocks enemies 25% further.
  • New Talent: Seasoned Winds – Interrupting a spell with Wind Shear decreases your damage taken from that spell school by 15% for 18 seconds. Stacks up to 2 times.
  • New Talent: Encasing Cold – Frost Shock snares its targets by an additional 10% and its duration is increased by 2 seconds.
  • New Talent: Arctic Snowstorm – Enemies within 10 yards of your Frost Shock are snared by 30%.
  • New Talent: Ascending Air – The cooldown of Wind Rush Totem is reduced by 30 seconds and its movement speed effect lasts an additional 2 seconds.
  • New Talent: Enhanced Imbues – The effects of your weapon imbues are increased by 20%.
  • New Talent: Stone Bulwark Totem – Summons an Earth Totem at the feet of the caster for 30 seconds, granting the caster a shield absorbing damage for 10 seconds, and an additional absorb every 5 seconds. 2 minute cooldown.
  • New Talent: Jet Stream – Wind Rush Totem’s movement speed bonus is increased by 10% and now removes snares.
  • New Talent: Primordial Bond – While you have an elemental active, your damage taken is reduced by 5%.
  • Voodoo Mastery has been redesigned – Your Hex target is slowed by 70% during Hex and for 6 seconds after it ends. Reduces the cooldown of Hex by 15 seconds.
  • Flurry moved from Class tree to the Enhancement tree.
  • The cooldown of Gust of Wind has been reduced to 20 seconds (was 30 seconds).
  • Earthgrab Totem and Windrush Totem no longer share a choice node.
  • Lightning Lasso and Thundershock no longer share a choice node.
  • The following talents are now 1 point:
    • Totemic Focus
    • Elemental Warding
    • Nature’s Guardian
    • Winds of Al’Akir
    • Nature’s Fury
    • Totemic Surge
  • The following talents have been removed:
    • Go With The Flow
    • Flurry
    • Maelstrom Weapon
    • Enfeeblement
    • Stoneskin Totem
    • Tranquil Air Totem
    • Ancestral Defense
    • Surging Shields
    • Swirling Currents

Hero Talents

  • Farseer (Restoration/Elemental)
    • Restoration
      • Undulation can now trigger Call of the Ancestors.
  • Totemic (Enhancement/Restoration)
    • Restoration
      • Healing from Chain Heal from Totemic Rebound increased by 400%.

Elemental

  • New Talent: Fusion of Elements – After casting Icefury, the next time you cast a Nature and a Fire spell, you additionally cast an Elemental Blast at your target at 60% effectiveness.
  • New Talent: Storm Frenzy – Your next Chain Lightning or Lightning Bolt has 40% reduced cast time after casting Earth Shock, Elemental Blast, or Earthquake. Can accumulate up to 2 charges.
  • New Talent: Elemental Unity – While a Storm Elemental is active, your Nature damage dealt is increased by 10%. While a Fire Elemental is active, your Fire damage dealt is increased by 10%.
  • New Talent: Lightning Conduit – While Lightning Shield is active, your Nature damage dealt is increased by 8%.
  • New Talent: Everlasting Elements – Increases the duration of your Elementals by 20%.
  • New Talen: Thunderstrike Ward – Imbue your shield with the element of Lightning for 1 hour, giving Lightning Bolt and Chain Lightning a chance to call down 2 Thunderstrikes on your target for Nature damage.
  • New Talent: Earthen Rage – Your damage spells incite the earth around you to come to your aid for 6 seconds, repeatedly dealing Nature damage to your most recently attacked target.
  • New Talent: Echo of the Elementals – When your Storm Elemental or Fire Elemental expires, it leaves behind a lesser Elemental to continue attacking your enemies for 15 seconds.
  • New Talent: First Ascendant – The cooldown of Ascendance is reduced by 60 seconds.
  • New Talent: Preeminence – Your Haste is increased by 25% while Ascendance is active and its duration is increased by 3 seconds.
  • New Talent: Fury of the Storms – Activating Stormkeeper summons a powerful Lightning Elemental to fight by your side for 8 seconds.
  • Primordial Fury has been redesigned – Now increases the critical damage bonus of Elemental Fury by 25%.
  • Icefury has been redesigned – Casting Lava Burst has a chance to replace your next Frost Shock with Icefury, stacking up to 2 times.
  • Icefury now empowers the next 2 Frost Shocks (was 4).
  • Mastery: Elemental Overload has been redesigned – Now increases all Physical and Elemental damage dealt. The damage of Elemental Overloads is now 25% of normal damage (was 85%).
  • Lava Surge is now learned at level 12 and has been removed from the Class tree.
  • Inundate is now learned at level 14 and has been removed from the Elemental tree.
  • The trigger rate of Lava Surge and Searing Flames now scale based on the number of targets Flame Shock is on. In single target, it should trigger slightly more often, and in AoE, it should trigger less often.
  • Flash of Lightning now also increases the critical strike chance of Lightning Bolt and Chain Lightning by 10%.
  • Swelling Maelstrom now also increases the damage of Earth Shock, Elemental Blast, and Earthquake by 5%.
  • Master of the Elements now increases the damage of the next spell by 15% (was 10%/20%).
  • Echo Chamber now increases the damage of Elemental Overloads by 10% (was 8%/15%).
  • Power of the Maelstrom now causes the next Lightning Bolt or Chain Lightning to trigger an additional Elemental Overload (was 2). Can now stack up to 2 times.
  • Magma Chamber now stacks up to 10 times (was 20).
  • Elemental Equilibrium is now a 10% damage bonus (was 8%/15%).
  • Elemental Equilibrium no longer has a tracking debuff.
  • Eye of the Storm now reduces the Maelstrom cost of Earth Shock and Earthquake by 5, and Elemental Blast by 10.
  • Maelstrom generation has been updated for the following abilities:
    • Lightning Bolt is now 6 (was 8).
    • Lightning Bolt Overload is now 2 (was 3).
    • Chain Lightning is now 2 per target hit (was 4).
    • Chain Lightning Overload is now 1 per target hit (was 3).
    • Lava Burst is now 8 (was 10).
    • Lava Burst Overload is now 3 (was 4).
    • Icefury is now 12 (was 25).
    • Icefury Overload is now 4 (was 12).
    • Frost Shocks empowered by Icefury is now 10 (was 14).
  • Flow of Power no longer increases Maelstrom generation from overloads.
  • Stormkeeper has been removed from its choice node with Lightning Rod.
  • Earth Shock is now a choice against Elemental Blast.
  • Earthquake is now a choice node with an option to have it be cast on your target.
  • All nodes are now 1 point.
  • The following talents have been removed:
    • Tumultuous Fissures
    • Focused Insight
    • Refreshing Waters
    • Primordial Bond
    • Call of Thunder
    • Call of Fire
    • Electrified Shocks
    • Windspeaker’s Lava Resurgence
    • Oath of the Farseer
    • Further Beyond
    • Rolling Magma
    • Primordial Surge
    • Maelstrom Weapon

Enhancement

  • Maelstrom Weapon is now learned at level 10 and has been removed from the Class tree.
  • Feral Lunge is now learned at level 14 and has been removed from the Enhancement tree.
  • Flurry moved from Class tree to the Enhancement tree.
  • Elemental Blast damage reduced by 25%.
  • The following talents have been removed:
    • Windfury Totem
    • Focused Insight
    • Refreshing Waters

Restoration

  • New Talent: Tidewaters – When you cast Healing Rain, each ally with your Riptide on them is healed.
  • New Talent: First Ascendant – The cooldown of Ascendance is reduced by 60 seconds.
  • New Talent: Preeminence – Your Haste is increased by 25% while Ascendance is active and its duration is increased by 3 seconds.
  • New Talent: Reactive Warding – When refreshing Earth Shield, your target is healed for each stack of Earth Shield they are missing. When refreshing Water Shield, you are refunded mana for each stack of Water Shield missing.
  • New Talent: White Water – Your critical heals have 215% effectiveness instead of the usual 200%.
  • New Talent: Spouting Spirits – Spirit Link reduces damage taken by an additional 5%, and it restores health to all nearby allies 1 second after it is dropped. Spouting Spirit’s healing is decreased beyond 5 targets.
  • Spiritwalker’s Tidal Totem has been redesigned – After using Mana Tide Totem, the cast time of your next 3 Healing Surges is reduced by 100% and their mana cost is reduced by 50%.
  • Master of the Elements has been redesigned – Casting Lava Burst increases the healing of your next Healing Surge by 30%, stacking up to 2 times. Healing Surge applies Flame Shock to a nearby enemy when empowered by Master of the Elements.
  • Improved Earthliving Weapon has been redesigned – Earthliving receives 150% additional benefit from Mastery: Deep Healing. Healing Surge always triggers Earthliving on its target.
  • Earthen Harmony has been redesigned – Earth Shield reduces damage taken by 5% and its healing is increased by up to 150% as its target’s health decreases. Maximum benefit is reached below 50% health.
  • Downpour has been redesigned – Casting Healing Rain activates Downpour, allowing you to cast Downpour within 6 seconds. Downpour: A burst of water at the target location heals up to 5 injured allies with 12 yards and increases their maximum health by 10% for 6 seconds.
    • Downpour is twice as effective for Totemic Restoration Shamans.
  • Living Stream has been redesigned – Now increases Healing Stream Totem’s healing by 100%, decaying over its duration.
  • Lava Surge is now learned at level 12 and has been removed from the class tree.
  • Current Control now reduces the cooldown of Healing Tide Totem by 45 seconds (was 30 seconds).
  • Mana Tide Totem’s radius is now 40 yards.
  • Ancestral Awakening now triggers at a 20% base chance and increases to a 40% chance when activated by a Critical Strike.
  • Torrent now additionally increases the chance for Riptide’s initial heal to critically strike by 8/15%.
  • Water Totem Mastery now activates on a chance, but its effect has been increased to 3 seconds of reduction.
  • Water Shield now has 9 charges.
  • Primordial Wave’s cooldown has been reduce to 30 seconds (was 45 seconds).
  • Healing Rain now heals 5 targets (was 6) and healing increased by 17%.
  • Acid Rain now damages 5 enemies (was 6) and damage increased by 16%.
  • Overflowing Shores now heals 5 targets (was 6) and healing increased by 14%.
  • Wavespeaker’s Blessing is now a 2-point talent.
  • The following talents are now 1 point:
    • Tidebringer
    • Deluge
    • Improved Earthliving Weapon
  • The following talents have been removed:
    • Improved Primordial Wave
    • Tumbling Waves
    • Continuous Waves
    • Resonant Waters
    • Flash Flood
    • Stormkeeper
    • Refreshing Waters

Please note that we intend to continue tuning and iterating on the changes above throughout the Beta, and we also have plans for further updates that will come with a future patch in The War Within.

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A shame they don't seem to be doing much with enhancement, I get they're happy with it but, honestly, I would've liked more

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I loved legion Enhancement, maybe  its an unpopular opinion? I don't know. I just feel it weird to randomly cast a spell when you swing your weapons at the speed of wind. I wish it would go back to something like that but again if i'm the only one who liked it that way its fair they don't change it x)

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