Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Warrior’s Journal: Bladestorm

It is probably time I continue this journal, especially since the other day when I thought it was smart to link the earlier entries on mmo-c for new warrior levelers. Great for new readers but also means I cannot continue to slack. So, it has been quite a few levels since my last report and I gotta say, the fun never stopped. In fact, it only increased once I was able to hit Outland and consequently entering Northrend. There are some issues with speccing that I want to address in today’s post, as well talk about AoE’ing as arms warrior.

First things first, speccing issues. Anyone who has leveled an arms warrior in solely pve environment, since Cataclysm, will notice that there are a few hiccups in our talent trees. I’ll demonstrate it with a little bit of show & tell. If you look at the following spec, you’ll notice that we are an impasse, where we only have 27 points spent, we need 30 for [Bladestorm] but we have no more pve talents to pick.


Personally, I found this a bit frustrating when I realized it, soon after entering Outland. The best choice I found was to take [Throwdown] and [Tactical Mastery], since, although limited, they have at least some benefits in pve. The first allows you to stun a target for a few seconds, which is sometimes useful when dealing with really large packs or in dungeons when the tank has problems controlling all the mobs, and Tactical Mastery lets us retain more rage when stance dancing. [Sudden Death] looks very nice but unfortunately warriors will not gain Colossus Smash until level 81. Alternatively you can spend those two points in [Field Dressing] but since levelers run solo I did not see it to be very significant. You can make use of it in dungeons but if you’re like me, a responsible player, then you should not be taking unnecessary damage and what little damage you will take is easily healable without it.

After that ofc, speccing becomes a no-brainer. After bladestorm, you will want to take two points in [Blood and Thunder], which lets you spread rend to nearby targets. In simple terms, bladestorm itself will make AoE’ing mobs really powerful and with B&T, it will be positively overpowered. Outland especially is an area that is designed with a lot of mobs in close proximity to each other, and you can take them by storm (no pun intended).

Something About Rotations

After linking my earlier posts and reading through them, I realized I had almost completely neglected to talk about rotations. I did mention something about it in my first post but in all honesty, the warrior rotation develops quite a lot as you level. At the very start it was simple, charge + rend + heroic strike. Simple enough and mobs literally died by the time of that first heroic strike.

As glyphs, mortal strike and overpower became available, my rotations changed toward more what they are at max level, which is charge + rend + mortal strike + overpower. You can still use heroic strike but I don’t recommend spamming it. If you are high on rage, by all means mix it in, especially after mid levels when mobs no longer die from two hits, and make use of it along side another ability (e.g. mortal strike) since it is off the GCD. Overpower becomes a good addition to the rotation, once you get full points in [Taste For Blood] but does not really have a big impact until level 60 or higher. Up until then, I would get the occasional OP off, especially if mortal strike was on cooldown but only after I entered Outland and Northrend did it really start to shine.

At early levels, your rotation will not be significantly different from your single target rotation, except you will substitute heroic strike with cleave. However, as you progress the same opener morphs into a powerful AoE rotation: charge + rend + thunder clap. After this use both bladestorm and sweeping strikes when cooldowns permit. Just be careful of pulling aggro from the tank and be mindful when you use these abilities. Otherwise follow your normal rotation and just make sure your rend never falls off.

It might seem strange to talk about specific rotations during a leveling process but the player really benefits from paying attention to such details early on. Think about it, once you hit max level, you will that much more ahead when you have done much of the ground work before hand. At that point you can start to fine tune your rotations and adding to it with more advanced techniques like stance dancing, proximity charge, and so forth. The effort will show immediate, particularly when you start doing heroic 5-mans and you will immediately begin to top the meters, while the others are still getting used to their classes.

So where does this leave us? The following is a good level 77 spec that I would strongly recommend. It heavily on AoE damage, since that is really what you should strongly emphasize during level up and will also yield more performance during early dungeon runs.


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