4.1 hit two weeks ago and changed enhancement AOE forever. It is no longer tied to a stationary totem like Magma Totem, but instead emanates out from any of our active Flame Shocks
. We can have three Flame Shocks active at a time. It does not deal damage to the original Flame Shocked target but does hit anyone around them. This is to prevent it from being utilized as a single-target DPS ability again. It also allows us to AOE small packs of mobs without removing Searing Totem
, allowing us to continue our regular single target DPS rotation while throwing Fire Novas in global cooldown gaps for some AOE damage.Managing your Flame Shocks
The hardest part of learning to use the new Fire Nova is learning how to multi-DOT as a melee class. Death knights have Pestilence
, and warriors have Rend
if specced into Blood and Thunder
(which 95% of don't), but no melee class has ever been in the position of needing to cast and monitor separate damage over time effects. As a result, we're going to take some tips from our warlock, balance druid, and fire mage friends, since they've been multi-DOTing since the time of the dinosaurs.
First off, you should get into the habit of using nameplates. The default keybind for bringing up nameplates is Shift-V. Nameplates show health and cast bars for enemies around you, allowing you to monitor your surroundings easily. They're something that any DPSer should be using 100% of the time.
Nameplates also come into great use when it comes to utilizing Fire Nova effectively. Using a nameplate addon -- my personal suggestion is Tidy Plates/Threat Plates
-- you can set up nameplates to monitor your debuffs on an enemy. Through this, you can easily monitor all of your separate Flame Shocks as you roll them on multiple targets, ensuring you don't overwrite any.
To make spreading your Flame Shock even easier, I suggest using a mouseover macro. Mouseovers are macros that allow you to press a button to use an ability that you are currently hovering your cursor over, rather than clicking on every target individually. If you're using nameplates as suggested above, you can easily mouse over mob nameplates to cast a Flame Shock while continuing your single-target DPS rotation on the mob you're attacking. This keeps you from losing auto-attack damage by needing to physically switch targets when you change to cast Flame Shock. This becomes especially potent if you're AOEing small groups of mobs that you don't want to drop Magma Totem on, allowing you to continue DPSing the target your Searing Flames
is stacking on.
The macro I use is:
#showtooltip Flame Shock
/cast [target=mouseover,harm][target=target,harm]Flame Shock
If you're mousing over an enemy nameplate, this will cast Flame Shock on the moused-over target. If you're not mousing over anyone, this will cast Flame Shock on your target, provided it is an enemy mob.Wrath of the spellpower weapon
The other important thing to know about Fire Nova is that current theorycrafting suggests that spellpower weapons are seeing a return. On AOE-centric fights such as heroic Maloriak during the dark and green phases, it is highly suggested that you keep a spellpower weapon pre-imbued with Flametongue Weapon
ready in your bags. The ideal enchant for this spellpower weapon would be Power Torrent
, though Avalanche
is also passable. Hurricane
makes sense because it is also good if you use the spellpower weapon for elemental/restoration, but Power Torrent would be the best for all three specs.
You can then use an equip macro to swap between weapons. On AOE phases, you'd keep out your Flametongue-imbued spellpower weapon, allowing you to do maximum damage with your three Flame Shocks and your Fire Nova casts. You would then swap back to your regular 2.6 speed agility main hand with Windfury Weapon
during boss DPS phases.
Our AOE system isn't elegant, and it is still a work in progress for Blizzard. It requires way more work to master than a simple Rain of Fire
or a Mind Sear
, and we're not rewarded for our effort by higher AOE DPS than other classes. However, learning to use and master all of your abilities, even when they're slightly annoying, is the mark of a good player and something we should all strive to be doing.
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