Windwalker Monk DPS Rotation, Cooldowns, and Abilities in Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.0.1

Last updated on Oct 03, 2018 at 11:34 by pandanaconda 35 comments

Table of Contents

General Information

On this page, we list your Windwalker Monk core abilities and how they should be used together (rotation) in World of Warcraft Battle for Azeroth 8.0.1. We also explain when to use your various cooldowns. Then, we go deeper and present all the subtleties that you will need to know if you want to excel at playing a Windwalker Monk.

The other pages of our Windwalker Monk guide can be accessed from the table of contents on the right.

About Our Author

This guide has been written by Pandanaconda, one of the main theorycrafters of the spec. He is a co-founder of the Monk resource site Peak of Serenity, in charge of the Windwalker pages.

1. Single Target Rotation for Windwalker Monks

The Windwalker Monk rotation is based on a priority system.

  1. Use Fist of the White Tiger Icon Fist of the White Tiger if under 3 Chi and about to cap Energy.
  2. Use Tiger Palm Icon Tiger Palm if under 4 Chi and about to cap Energy.
  3. Use Whirling Dragon Punch Icon Whirling Dragon Punch.
  4. Use Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick.
  5. Use Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury.
  6. Use Chi Burst Icon Chi Burst if talented and under maximum Chi.
  7. Use Fist of the White Tiger Icon Fist of the White Tiger if talented and under 3 Chi.
  8. Use Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick.
    • Keep in mind that Tiger Palm Icon Tiger Palm has a chance to cause the next Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick not to cost any Chi.
    • It is important to use Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick before you use Tiger Palm Icon Tiger Palm again, to ensure that the proc is not overwritten; that said, any abilities with a cooldown should be used before Blackout Kick.
  9. Use Chi Wave Icon Chi Wave if talented.
  10. Use Tiger Palm Icon Tiger Palm.

2. Multiple Target Rotation for Windwalker Monks

Against multiple enemies, the rotation is also based on a priority system, and it depends slightly based on how many enemies you are facing.

Keep in mind that Tiger Palm Icon Tiger Palm and Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick (as well as Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick) apply a 15-second debuff on their target, called Mark of the Crane Icon Mark of the Crane. Each instance of this debuff increases the damage of your Spinning Crane Kick Icon Spinning Crane Kick (against any target) by 10%, up to 50%. Therefore, your Tiger Palms and Blackout Kicks should be distributed among your enemies in such a way as to keep the Mark of the Crane debuff up on as many targets as possible.

Moreover, you should make use of Storm, Earth, and Fire Icon Storm, Earth, and Fire by using it once at the start of the fight, and then using its next charge when Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury becomes available again. From then on, simply reuse it with Fists of Fury, making sure that you never let both of Earth, Storm, and Fire's charges remain available.

  1. Keep Rushing Jade Wind Icon Rushing Jade Wind up (if talented).
  2. Use Whirling Dragon Punch Icon Whirling Dragon Punch.
  3. Use Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury.
  4. Use Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick if Whirling Dragon Punch Icon Whirling Dragon Punch is coming off cooldown.
  5. Use Chi Burst Icon Chi Burst if talented and under max Chi.
  6. Use Spinning Crane Kick Icon Spinning Crane Kick on 3 or more targets.
  7. Use Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick.
  8. Use Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick.
  9. Use Fist of the White Tiger Icon Fist of the White Tiger.
  10. Use Chi Wave Icon Chi Wave if talented.
  11. Use Tiger Palm Icon Tiger Palm.

3. Cooldowns for Windwalker Monks

As a Windwalker Monk, you have 2 DPS cooldowns by default, Touch of Death Icon Touch of Death and Storm, Earth, and Fire Icon Storm, Earth, and Fire.

  • Touch of Death Icon Touch of Death should be used as often as possible throughout the fight, essentially on cooldown. Keep in mind that it deals its damage 8 seconds after you cast it, so do not place it on targets that will die before that time.
  • Keep in mind Touch of Death deals 10% of the damage dealt to its target during the 8 seconds duration. Therefore, as long as it does not cost you an extra cast throughout the fight, delay it slightly to line it up with your highest damaging spells.
  • Storm, Earth, and Fire Icon Storm, Earth, and Fire should be used as often as possible, while attempting to stack it with other periods of increased damage done. Make sure you always have at least one of its charges on cooldown. This gives you up to 3 minutes without using it as long as it is kept on cooldown, allowing you to easily use it in combination with all of your damaging abilities.
  • Serenity Icon Serenity replaces Storm, Earth, and Fire Icon Storm, Earth, and Fire and is an extremely potent cooldown. It does not have two stacks, meaning its usage is much more rigid. Considering how strong this talent is, we have a section dedicated to it in a subsequent section.
  • Invoke Xuen, the White Tiger Icon Invoke Xuen, the White Tiger is a very straightforward talent. It summons a strong guardian on a two minutes cooldown. For the most part, you may pair this with Touch of Death Icon Touch of Death to get the most out of both, as Xuen will benefit from the 10% damage increase.

4. Optional Read: Mastering Your Windwalker Monk

The above information tells you everything you need to know in order to have highly competitive DPS as a Windwalker Monk. However, in order for you to truly master the spec, there are more things that you need to understand in detail.

4.1. Energy and Chi

4.1.1. Energy

Energy is a resource that Monks share with Rogues and Feral Druids. There are several things you need to know about Energy:

  • Energy is generated passively. The regeneration speed is affected by your haste.
  • You have a maximum capacity of 100 Energy.
  • Energy never decays. A natural consequence of this is that your normal state is to have a full Energy bar (such as before starting combat).
  • Being at maximum capacity causes any additional Energy you would generate to be wasted.

4.1.2. Chi

Chi is a Monk-only resource. There are several things you need to know about Chi:

  • Chi is generated by using Tiger Palm Icon Tiger Palm, Energizing Elixir Icon Energizing Elixir, Chi Burst Icon Chi Burst and Fist of the White Tiger Icon Fist of the White Tiger.
  • Chi is spent on many crucial abilities that are part of your rotation.
  • You have a maximum capacity of 5 Chi (6, if you have the Ascension Icon Ascension talent).
  • Chi decays quickly when outside of combat, but it does not decay while in combat. A natural consequence of this is that, when starting a fight, you will have no Chi.
  • Your Chi is reset to a maximum of 1 when entering a raid encounter.
  • Generating Chi while you are at maximum capacity will cause the new Chi to be wasted.

4.2. Mastery: Combo Strikes

Your Mastery (Mastery: Combo Strikes Icon Mastery: Combo Strikes) causes your abilities to deal increased damage (the amount depends on your amount of Mastery) when they are not used two or more times in a row. For example, using Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick and Tiger Palm Icon Tiger Palm gives both of them the damage bonus, but if you use Tiger Palm twice in a row, the second Tiger Palm will no longer benefit from the increase.

4.3. Afterlife Procs

Afterlife Icon Afterlife is a passive ability that causes you to summon a Healing Sphere Icon Healing Sphere next to you each time you kill an enemy. The Healing Sphere lasts for 30 seconds and heals you for a moderate amount when you walk over it.

Furthermore, Afterlife also grants you a 50% chance to summon a Chi sphere each time you kill an enemy using Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick. The Chi sphere lasts for 2 minutes, and grants you 1 Chi when you walk over it.

4.4. Detailed Cooldown Usage for Windwalker Monks

4.4.1. Storm, Earth, and Fire

Storm, Earth, and Fire Icon Storm, Earth, and Fire is the main offensive Cooldown for Windwalker Monks. Making the most out of this is paramount when trying to maximize your damage. Furthermore, this buff often behaves in unexpected ways. It is very important to be aware of all intricacies.

First and foremost, Storm, Earth, and Fire Icon Storm, Earth, and Fire has two charges. This allows you to easily always have one charge on cooldown and makes Windwalker Monks one of the most flexible classes in the game, damage wise. It also means that it is very easy to line up Storm, Earth, and Fire with other damage increases such as temporary buffs, AoE spawns or Touch of Death Icon Touch of Death.

During Storm, Earth, and Fire Icon Storm, Earth, and Fire, specific spells which are not replicated by your clones will get 200% benefit from the Touch of Death Icon Touch of Death 10% damage amplification. Because of this, you will gain 20% instead of 10% of Touch of Karma Icon Touch of Karma damage on your Touch of Death.

Additionally, clones are entities and they are not tied to your Storm, Earth, and Fire Icon Storm, Earth, and Fire debuff. When this debuff expires, you and your clones instantly go back to dealing full damage, but the clones do not vanish until they reach you. Because of that, using spells during this very short window will see your clones still copying the spell but the damage will not get reduced. You can force this timing by using this macro:

Because of this interaction, you cannot use a cancelaura macro to willingly stop your buff. However, there is a small time window (last 0.3 seconds before the buff expires) where you can benefit from this.

Using a well timed Whirling Dragon Punch Icon Whirling Dragon Punch during this small window of opportunity can make a large difference on AoE situations, for example.

4.4.2. Touch of Karma

Touch of Karma Icon Touch of Karma causes all damage you take for 10 seconds (up to a maximum of 50% of your maximum health) to be redirected to the enemy target as a 6-second Nature damage DoT.

4.4.3. Tier 1 Talents

Chi Burst Icon Chi Burst should be used in the way indicated in the single and multiple target rotation at the start of the guide.

4.4.4. Whirling Dragon Punch

Whirling Dragon Punch Icon Whirling Dragon Punch should be used as part of your single target rotations. It is placed in the correct position in the priority at the start of this guide. Keep in mind that both Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury and Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick must be on cooldown for this ability to be usable. It is a very potent AoE tool.

4.4.5. Serenity

Serenity Icon Serenity is a complicated talent which changes a lot of your gameplay and should be used wisely. This talent changes the way the Windwalker Monk specialisation plays even outside of the Serenity buff, as you will have more resources to spend outside of Serenity.

Serenity Icon Serenity should be used as close to on cooldown as possible, while fitting three Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kicks and using Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury when it comes up during its 12-second duration. It is worth noting that you can cast two Fists of Fury for free with a single serenity if it is cast early on. Therefore, slight delays of either spell will be beneficial if they allow this, even if the full channel will not fit within serenity.

Here is an example of a Serenity sequence outside of Bloodlust Icon Bloodlust:

  1. Serenity Icon Serenity
  2. Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick
  3. Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury for the full channel duration
  4. Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick
  5. Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick
  6. Spinning Crane Kick Icon Spinning Crane Kick or Fist of the White Tiger Icon Fist of the White Tiger if talented.
  7. Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick
  8. Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick
  9. Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick
  10. Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury

Keep in mind this last Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury will not benefit from Serenity Icon Serenity for the most part, but being able to cast it without a Chi cost is a significant gain.

If Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury is not available in the first 2-3 seconds of Serenity Icon Serenity, you will delay it until Serenity ends:

  1. Serenity Icon Serenity
  2. Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick
  3. Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick
  4. Spinning Crane Kick Icon Spinning Crane Kick
  5. Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick
  6. Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick
  7. Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick
  8. Tiger Palm Icon Tiger Palm
  9. Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick
  10. Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick
  11. Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick
  12. Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury

During Bloodlust Icon Bloodlust, your Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury are shorter to channel, which allows you to get an extra Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick inside serenity at a low cost, as well as two Fists of Fury channels inside the buff. Here is a sample sequence:

  1. Serenity Icon Serenity
  2. Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick
  3. Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury for the full channel duration
  4. Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick
  5. Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick
  6. Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick
  7. Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick
  8. Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury
  9. Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick

4.5. Azerite Traits and Rotation

Several Azerite Traits will slightly have an impact on your rotation. For more informations, refer to the Azerite page for Windwalker Monks. Below, we list Windwalker-specific Traits that have an impact on how you play.

4.5.1. Swift Roundhouse

This trait is a decent choice on Single Target encounters, but not one that warrants changing your gear and talent set up. When using it, avoid using Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick before you reach two stacks of Swift Roundhouse Icon Swift Roundhouse. Keep using Fists of Fury Icon Fists of Fury on cooldown.

4.5.2. Meridian Strikes

Meridian Strikes Icon Meridian Strikes will reduce your Touch of Death Icon Touch of Death cooldown by about 15 seconds. This makes it easier to get more Touch of Karma Icon Touch of Karma damage inside the 10% damage increase window. The fact that the cooldown does not stack makes this very weak in multiple copies.

4.6. Roll and Transcendence for Windwalker Monks

4.6.1. Roll

Roll Icon Roll is an ability that allows you to quickly move 15 yards in front of you. It is a useful mobility ability, which you should use extensively for quickly traversing short distances. Here are a few facts about Roll:

  • Roll has no resource cost and no cooldown. It is based on a charge system.
    • It has a maximum of 2 charges, and each charge has a 20-second recharge time.
    • The Celerity Icon Celerity talent increases the number of charges to 3, and reduces recharge time to 15 seconds.
  • Roll is off the global cooldown, but while you are rolling, you are unable to use any other ability.
  • Roll will always send you in the direction that your character is currently moving (including backwards). If your character is stationary, Roll will send you in the direction your character is facing.
  • You cannot roll through objects or obstacles. If you encounter an obstacle, your Roll is ended prematurely.
  • Your movement speed while rolling is greater than while running, so rolling off a cliff will push you further than if you were just running and jumping.

4.6.2. Transcendence

Transcendence Icon Transcendence allows you to place a copy of yourself behind for up to 15 minutes. If you then use Transcendence: Transfer Icon Transcendence: Transfer, you will be instantly moved back to the location of your copy. This can be useful in a wide range of situations, typically those where you know you will have to return to a certain location after moving away from it.

4.6.3. Open Palm Strikes

Open Palm Strikes Icon Open Palm Strikes is one of the strongest single-target Azerite traits available, but is also extremely potent on two or more targets. It does not alter your rotation significantly. However, when facing two targets, as long as you keep Whirling Dragon Punch Icon Whirling Dragon Punch on cooldown, you should favor Blackout Kick Icon Blackout Kick over Rising Sun Kick Icon Rising Sun Kick for the cooldown reduction.

5. Changelog

  • 03 Oct. 2018: Removed paragraphs about the Storm, Earth, and Fire macro. Changed the Azerite rotation tips to reflect recent changes.
  • 24 Aug. 2018: Added more information about Swift Roundhouse.
  • 15 Aug. 2018: Added more information about Serenity and Storm, Earth, and Fire. Added a section about Azerite in the rotation page.
  • 19 Jul. 2018: Clarified the Invoke Xuen, the White Tiger description. Clarified Chi Burst, Energizing Elixir and Serenity.
  • 16 Jul. 2018: Updated for the Battle of Azeroth pre-patch.
+ show all entries - show only 10 entries
Force desktop version
Force mobile version