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Patch 3.1 PTR build 9658 Shaman changes

Matthew Rossi

Sorry for my absence from the website yesterday: I'd like to thank Zach for covering for me as he did. Since hopefully the issues that were preventing my posting have been worked out for the most part I'm here to take a look at the most recent changes to shamans for patch 3.1. So far they're all PvP oriented changes in the enhancement tree, based in part around the upcoming Frozen Power spell.

  • Enhancement
  • Frostbrand Weapon damage has been increased. (From 442 to 530 damage for Rank 9, from 386 to 463 for Rank 8, etc ...)
  • Frozen Power now Increases the damage done by your Lightning Bolt, Chain Lightning, Lava Lash and Shock spells by 5/10% on targets afflicted by your Frostbrand Attack effect
  • Flurry now Increases your attack speed by 5/10/15/20/25% for your next 3 swings after dealing a critical strike. (Down from 10/15/20/25/30%)
These aren't terribly complicated changes. The change to Frostbrand Weapon is purely aimed at making it more desirable in PvP (since some would forgo the snare if they felt the DPS increase from WF on the main hand makes it more worth their while) - by having Frostbrand do more damage and Frozen Power make your Maelstrom procs and Lava Lash offhand strikes hit harder, the Frostbrand/Frozen Power combination becomes more likely to be used in PvP, which is pretty clearly what is intended.

The flurry change is a nerf. I don't know why it was needed. Are enh shamans really doing too much damage due to flurry? It's a small nerf, true enough, but it's a nerf nonetheless.

Combined with earlier shaman changes, what we're seeing here is an extended effort across several PTR builds to move PvP enhancement into a Frostbrand MH style, with frostbrand made more attractive due to Frozen Power and its various buffs. I don't think the DPS will be equal to Windfury (even with the glyph changes, you'll probably see more DPS with WF than Frostbrand on your MH unless the Frozen Power increase is more significant than it currently appears) but in PvP, the Frostbrand snare combined with more DPS for shocks, Maelstrom procs and Lava Lash might well prove compelling.

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