WoW Patch 3.1 PTR: Shaman glyph and undocumented changes

Matthew Rossi
M. Rossi|02.24.09

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WoW Patch 3.1 PTR: Shaman glyph and undocumented changes

So in the cold light of day we have yet more changes than the PTR notes indicated for our beloved shamans. Both glyphs and general changes need to be discussed, and so I drag my exhausted hinder forth to dig through the vast and sprawling PTR hoopla to determine what is up for the totem dropping set. What's good, what's bad, what's head scratchingly confusing? We talked about shaman class changes in the PTR notes early this morning, so we'll start there, because it's short.
Everything else was covered in the original patch notes, so... yeah. Fire Noval Totem costs less. It's still a fire totem, so elemental shamans will have to decide between it and Totem of Wrath. But at least the decision to drop one and lose the benefits of Totem of Wrath will cost you less mana.

Luckily, we have quite a few glyphs to discuss as well. Let's talk about those.

  • Glyph of Thunderstorm (new) - Reduces the cooldown on Thunderstorm by 7 sec.
  • Glyph of Feral Spirit (new) - Your spirit wolves gain an additional 30% of your attack power.
  • Glyph of Riptide (new) - Increases the duration of Riptide by 3 sec.
  • Glyph of Earth Shield (new) - Increases the amount healed by your Earth Shield by 20%.
  • Glyph of Totem of Wrath (new) - When you cast Totem of Wrath, you gain 30% of the totem's bonus spell power for .
  • Glyph of Hex (new) - Increases the damage your Hex target can take before the Hex effect is removed by 20%.
  • Glyph of Stoneclaw Totem (new) - Your Stoneclaw Totem also places a damage absorb shield on you, equal to 4 times the strength of the shield it places on your totems.
These are some interesting glyphs. The Feral Spirit change buffs an already good talent that you should be popping every time it's cooldown is up. I'm mildly excited by the Riptide change... it's not world shaking, but having a glyph for that spell makes me happy. I'd like to know if these were major or minor glyphs, I expect major.

The Thunderstorm cooldown reduction glyph will see applications for both Pvp and PvE, especially when mana is an issue. 20% more healing from ES is a purely good thing, I can't see a down side there. Glyph of Hex is nice, but really not all that necessary, and Glyph of Stoneclaw Totem could be excellent, as four time the general base absorption of around 1600 health could be pretty impressive. (I've also heard that the base on Stoneclaw's absorb is 1088, but either way, over 4k damage absorbed when Stoneclaw is down? That's not shabby.) Frankly, the one change I'm underwhelmed by is Hex. Making it take longer to break on damage isn't an issue for PvP, the fact that it's so easily escaped and doesn't even prevent player control of their character the way sheep does is. It'll be nice for PvE but with all these other glyphs would you take this one?

It would really help to know if it was major or minor, honestly.

In general, without knowing if these are major or minor glyphs (I'm assuming major for now) I'm relatively pleased with the changes all told. Nothing earth-shattering but some nice buffs to damage and healing, and the Stoneclaw Totem glyph has the potential to be really useful in situations where you're going to take a lot of burst damage.

Patch 3.1 brings us Ulduar, dual specs, significant changes to all the classes, and more! We've got you covered from top to bottom with our Guide to Patch 3.1.
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