This subject has been on my mind since I spent a few days messing around with my choosen off spec for my resto shaman, elemental. All of this information that I am writing down is my take on the spec and what I think I should be doing.
I was pretty amazed that there isn't that much elemental information out there. There might be some on the offical wow forums, but my work blocks that site and I usually try to avoid that place whenever it is possible. Mostly due to shear dumbass-ery of the majority of people that post there. In either event, the only soild / updated information I found on elemental shamans in the blogmosphere is our good friend Ribeye. So check him out for some Shaman pew pew talk.
The heart and soul of any class in our world.....of warcraft. Personally, I usually do not like going with "cookie cutter" specs. However, in the world of elemental shaman there are very few points to play around with, especially if you are planning to raid.
This "cookie cutter" pve spec is 57/14/0. I have a unblocked talent calulator for all of you working in corporate america located here.
If your job does have this talent calulator blocked, they are probably on to you and your wow addiction. I wouldn't recommend reading anything gaming related, your job might depend on it lol.
In the elemental tree, the only talents you are passing up are pvp oriented. Take Eye of the Storm talent for example. You spend 3 talent points and you do not suffer push back from damaging attacks 69% of the time. Alot of elemental shamans would take this talent because on paper it sounds good. That would be a mistake for a couple of reasons.
First, fully talented and in correct gear, your two main damage spells take less then 1.5 seconds to cast.
Secondly, you should not be taking damage. If you do take damage, its not going to be long before you get your cast off....its less then 1.5 seconds! What is a whooping 69% going to do? Enless you are going for pvp spec, don't take this talent. Instead use it for something that would be more helpful to your role as dps, such as Lighting Overload.
One last note on the spec section is to make sure you are putting those 14 points into the Enhancment tree. 10% more intellect, 5% more crit, 30% more spell power with flametongue weapon, and 45% less mana with our shock spells IS ESSENTIAL to the build.
Say it with me, the fastest way to increase my dps is to reach the hit cap. One more time so I know it sticks with you.
The fastest way to increase my dps is to reach the hit cap.
I just can not stress how important it is to reach the hit cap as an elemental shaman. You will see your dps soar by atleast 500 DPS. That is the minumum it will increase too...I know when I reached the hit cap, my dps went from 1700-1800 to 2600-2700. It is that important and should be your number 1 goal when gearing.
I meantion this in an article I wrote last week, but I will say it again. There are only 8 pieces of mail gear that has spell hit on it. Go over to toomanyalts and check out his list. He wrote it better than I can...that is for sure!
Depending on what you plan on doing, the hit cap ranges. Let me explain...
5 man heroic bosses - 79 spell hit to be capped (with talents)
10 man raid bosses - 368 spell hit to be capped (with talents)
25 man raid bosses - 368 spell hit to be capped (with talents)
Like I said at the begining of the article, there isn't too much information I found on pve elemental shamans. So I am going off what I think would be best for the class.
Elemental Shamans have always been a high crit, low spell damage class. With all of the changes to the elemental tree in 3.0.9, that has changed in my opinion. I look at my elemental shaman like I would look at any dps caster class. It is all about the spell power. With our spec, it is important to remember that we want our crit to be as high as possible in order to take full advantage of our talents and abilities.
With that being said, I would rank your stats as follows...
Spell Hit>Spell Power>Crit>Haste>Intellect
Could people argue my list? Of course and I want them too. However, you can not deny that if you gear your shaman with those weighted stats in mind....you will be fine. Personally, I don't think you should ever go under 25% crit rating. I like to have my crit in the 30% range if it is at all possible, but 25% isn't terrible.
In my current elemental set, I have 1900 spell power, 26% crit, and 280ish haste. When you take into consideration our talents and that we can not avoid mp5 on most of our gear. You should never have to worry about mana regeneration.
Here is the good stuff. Now you are hit capped and ready to melt faces. However, what rotation will maximize your dps? That is a great question and here is what I have found through my experiments.
Start with flame shock and immediately start pushing out those lighting bolts. Wait until your flame shock is almost off cool down and cast lava burst. Right after that hits, flame shock again. Now you want to push out those lighting bolts until the lava burst is off cool down. Then you just repeat.
Of course you are going to use trinkets and other cool downs in the process, but that is the basic rotation I have had the most success with.
- You want your flame shock to run its course and have lava burst hit it at the last possible second. This is extremely important if you care about getting every ounce of dps output you can. Through testing, when I did not let flame shock run its course or just didn't pay too much attention to it. I did about 200-250 less dps then when I kept an eye out for it. , Nothing game changing or major but if you are a good player, you want that extra dps.
- When a group of bad guys gets pulled by your tank(s), you want to pick 1 mob that you are going to focus on. You then want to use chain lighting every time its off of cool down. The extra aoe will help your group take down the mobs and make your dps numbers look alot nicer.
WhenIf you pull aggro, use thunderstorm to kick them back to the tank. Sometimes I would purposely try to pull aggro just to use that ability lol...its fun
I have not played around with the elemental gyphs, but I will get into that another time.
EDIT: For more information and corrections to my article. Please check out the comment section. It has ALOT of great information in regard to Elemental Shamans (gyphs, rotation correction, gear, helpful links, talents corrections, ect...)