1. #1

    [Brewmaster] [discussion] Chi Brew

    This thread is to continue the discussion which was derailing the "Tips for new 90 Brewmasters" thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by djones0823 View Post
    The bit you're missing in your argument there is that the free haste Ascension gives for free can go into other stats. Chi brew JUST gives you chi and EB stacks. That's it. Just that. With PROPER play you NEVER, EVER, EVER need to pop a couple extra chi. There's just not a situation where that's needed if you play right. As a BrM once you've purified, guarded and BoK'd, there is nothing else you could effectively spend your chi on to increase your survivability. At this point more chi is just...nothing useful.

    Ascension gives you that 3k haste-ish. That 3k haste can be tuned off your gear into mastery/crit. That's a LOT of extra stats you're throwing away just because you can do the same thing with Chi Brew.

    Consider the choices.
    3k haste with Ascension+3kmastery and maintaining a pool of 3 chi/60 energy as standard able to hit all your chi spenders at once
    6k haste with chi brew, no extra stats and maintaining a pool of 2 chi/60 energy as standard able to hit all your chi spenders at once.

    The amount of haste you have is completely irrelevant. In every situation playing properly with a 3chi/60 energy bank at all times except after recovery gives you the resources you need to keep yourself healthy as possible, which enables you to have less haste -rating- than you need with Chi Brew to reach the amount of energy regen that is comfortable for you. That extra rating gets turned into the Mastery/Crit and bam, same effect, lots of extra stats.

    Comparing Ascension with Chi brew in terms of haste is stupid. Ascension gives you mastery/crit and that is why it's just immensely better.

    (As I mentioned, the only time I would ever recommend Chi Brew is if you're in a situation where you need to spend 6+chi in a couple GCD's. Malk hc bloodrage is the ONLY example of this I can think of in current tier)
    The bolded part is what I think is inaccurate. I said already that I started running Chi Brew with 3k haste, with the exact same haste level that I ran Ascension with ... and it wasn't significantly different in how much resources I had available. I played differently and managed my resources slightly differently but I didn't need more haste because of Chi Brew. Once I adjusted to it, the extra Chi I got FOR FREE (since you keep repeating that phrase) was a very good substitute for the energy that I lost out on.

    It's not accurate to say that Ascension gives you extra haste, or other stats. It gives you extra energy. That is a relevant difference. (Because actual haste increases your rate of EB generation, and it speeds up SCK and RJW, among other things.) Chi Brew gives you extra Chi.

    BTW haste level is not irrelevant. The amount of extra Chi you can get out of Ascension depends on how much haste you have. That's the other reason "Ascension gives you 3k haste" is not accurate -- it actually gives you different AMOUNTS of energy based on how much energy per second you have pre-Ascension.
    0 haste: 11.00 -> 12.65 (+1.65)
    1200 haste: 11.31 -> 13.00 (+1.69)
    2800 haste: 11.74 -> 13.50 (+1.75)
    4600 haste: 12.20 -> 14.03 (+1.83)
    5400 haste: 12.41 -> 14.27 (+1.86)

    Which, side note, it takes ~6000 haste to get 1.65 eps without Ascension, not 3000.

    Since you have me doing math anyway (blurgh) let's see what 4 chi every 90 seconds is worth. Getting that Chi from Jab would take 160 energy. 160 energy / 90 seconds == 1.77 energy per second. Just like Ascension doesn't actually give you haste, Chi Brew doesn't actually give you energy, it gives you Chi.

    I don't pop Chi Brew because I "need" it to make up for poor planning. I use it early and often to supplement the Chi I get normally.

    So if you (or anyone else) would like to continue the discussion, I'm glad to. I've actually been rethinking my use of Chi Brew lately.

  2. #2
    Chi Brew, Power Strikes and Ascension (granted you use the extra energy to generate chi) should be tuned to give the same amount of chi per minute, give or take. Just thinking aloud here, so my reasoning may be a bit flawed - especially as it's 3 AM atm. This would mean that we'd lose no chi spenders during the course of the fight, so we'll take that out of the equation for now. We would see more Jabs with Ascension, and more TPs with Chi Brew (because we're losing Jab GCDs). If it were this black and white, Chi Brew would at least slightly win in the damage department, since TP > Jab.

    Because of the crit levels we're at nowadays, the extra EB stacks are fairly insubstantial, but what Chi Brew does give, is guaranteed on-demand off-target Chi, which makes it useful on encounters with downtime.

    Having a bank of 5 chi is pretty convenient, though, so Ascension still has my vote.

  3. #3
    Herald of the Titans Lovestar's Avatar
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    Nov 2010
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    My aversion to Chi Brew comes from its difficult-to-juggle dual resources (which is also what makes it useful). Ascension just works in the background. But Chi Brew adds all these extra considerations:
    • Will this cap EB? Do I want extra EB right now? If so — will I waste Chi by using it right now?
    • Waiting for a good window to burst 2 Chi without capping Energy, the considering the EB issue above before final decision.
    • Tracking another CD, and a multi-charge CD on top of that.
    • Being able to pool one less Chi (this one really bugs me)

    None of these are "omg WOTLK Feral" level of complexity, but it does add some extra overhead and decision-clutter. That's fine too, if you get something good out of it.

    But that's where my issue with Chi Brew stalls — what do I get out of this extra overhead vs. Ascension's click-and-forget bonuses? I haven't really found a good answer yet, so I just stick with Ascension most of the time.

    When I first started I was convinced Chi Brew was amazing because it gave me EB stacks when I needed burst defenses, and Chi stacks when I needed to emergency-Purify or Guard or get Shuffle back up.

    I figured if I swapped to Ascension I'd lose that 'control' and perform much worse. Instead, I was surprised to learn I loved the extra Chi slot, and didn't really notice the loss of the 'on-demand' tools. I think what happened is that as I geared up, EB took care of itself, and as I learned to manage resources better I rarely found myself ever needing "emergency" Chi because that usually meant I unnecessarily spent more than I should have.

    I don't feel qualified or good enough with Brew to declare whether Chi Brew is 'good' or 'bad', but that's my personal issues I've encountered with it.
    Last edited by Lovestar; 2014-03-24 at 02:14 AM.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Rainbowdash View Post
    Since you have me doing math anyway (blurgh) let's see what 4 chi every 90 seconds is worth. Getting that Chi from Jab would take 160 energy. 160 energy / 90 seconds == 1.77 energy per second. Just like Ascension doesn't actually give you haste, Chi Brew doesn't actually give you energy, it gives you Chi.
    Which Ascension gives as long as your energy regeneration is 11.85/sec pre-Ascension, which BrM reaches at 3285 haste rating (and Ascension gets better from there).
    Disregarding the 10% extra energy generation of Stance of the Sturdy Ox is a rookie mistake.

    Chi Brew resource generation is inferior to Ascension, there is no reason to use it at all. Even disregarding the total resource difference, smoothness is much more important for tanking than having something "on demand." Chi Brew is inferior to Ascension in every way imaginable except in some backwards case where you need maximum Elusive Brew generation for some reason. If you'd like to provide some kind of reason for why you think Chi Brew isn't terrible supported by math, that'd be great, otherwise your opinion that it's a viable talent choice is just plain wrong.

    Incidentally, if you wanted to make the per resource argument, Power Strikes is better than Chi Brew is. Quite literally the only reason Chi Brew might be useful is if you're planning poorly and need chi for some kind of emergency, but the real question at that point is why wasn't it banked in the first place?
    Last edited by Totaltotemic; 2014-03-24 at 02:17 AM.

  5. #5
    I didn't disregard the 10% energy from Stance of the Sturdy Ox. I took those numbers straight from my character sheet in-game, in BM spec in the right stance. (Hence the strange haste values, that's the points I could get to with the gear I had XD) I'm not about to do math if I don't have to. Thank you for telling me how much haste it takes to make Ascension equal to Chi Brew!

    My assertion is that they're different, equivalent ways of getting to the same results.

    What pushed me into taking Chi Brew was all the downtime in SOO fights, and by downtime I mean times that I can't hit anything at all.
    -Split phases on Immerseus
    -times when He Softfoot randomly jumps around, jumps behind me, or I have to turn my back to him and can't generate EB
    -getting stunned by Rook
    -H Sha of Pride, picking up Rifts, standing on the far Prison key (although this fight is pretty trivial)
    -downtime between waves on Galakras (every wave is like a naked trash pull and it was freaking painful with 510 gear; getting EB up sooner is really really useful)
    -stomping mines on Juggernaut, getting knocked out of range of the boss during Siege phase (I can BOK the mines for Shuffle but I can't get any Chi or EB off of them)
    -Dark Shamans has me running around a lot, occasionally out of range of the boss, although it's not an issue on heroic since I don't need Shuffle up for Kardris
    -Spoils ... although it's also kinda trivial
    -Thok's kite phase
    -Blackfuse (on normal, heroic hasn't challenged my uptime so far) running around with the Shredder; Chi Brew also useful to fit in one more BOK during DFA; getting EB up for Frenzy is REALLY IMPORTANT and a dry streak at that moment can be very bad

    That's pretty much a complete list of moments when I can't generate EB and I can't stack up Shuffle and I usually get energy capped as well. EVEN WITH good play -- I just can't avoid getting energy capped. If I never had any time off-target then I'd never have switched. (Although I'll note that even with a simple always-on fight like Malkorok I still have dry streaks of EB generation, even more so when I had 20% crit) I'm not sure how to apply math or sims, when most theorycrafting doesn't take downtime into account at all.

    I'm not sure why smoothness of resource generation is so important. Some moments are more important than others. Every time a new wave spawns on Galakras, with Ascension, I couldn't Purify for the first ~8 seconds of it because I needed to build up Shuffle, and those same 8 seconds I had no EB up. And I was also trying to get aggro before my warlock did and get the proper positioning at the same time. You can get through it just fine with Ascension ... when that moment only happens once or twice (like on Thok) it's not that big a deal ... but when it happens so often (on Juggernaut or Galakras) it's worth it to me to make it less painful. Switching to Chi Brew made those fights EASIER.

    and I didn't increase my haste when I made the switch easier. I literally swapped between pulls and carried on.

    So I think I can also say that the benefits of Chi Brew are more powerful at lower gear levels. The extra EB stacks are much more significant, and with only 3000-4000 haste Ascension isn't head-and-shoulders better.
    Last edited by Rainbowdash; 2014-03-24 at 05:45 AM.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Rainbowdash View Post
    Every time a new wave spawns on Galakras, with Ascension, I couldn't Purify for the first ~8 seconds of it because I needed to build up Shuffle, and those same 8 seconds I had no EB up.
    This is exactly what I mean when I say Chi Brew is only useful if you have poor planning. Why are you ending a pack with zero chi, zero EB, and no Shuffle? Even on Immerseus (which has the most downtime of any fight in the expansion) you are never prevented from sitting at 5 chi going into a split; there's no reason to waste it all on BoK when you could just TP the last few bits of health and pool chi.

    You seem to place this huge importance on the opening scenario in which a boss is acting like a fresh pull and Chi Brew is needed to get you going. In reality, boss fights are designed in such a way that the opening damage done to the tank is incredibly small and ramps up over time. What fight in this expansion would you seriously need to use PB on in the first 10 seconds of a pull? Chi is simply not very valuable to BrM, but at least with energy Ascension gives the ability to Expel in rapid succession slightly faster.

    The reason why you can get away with using Chi Brew is that all of the talents in the tier are quite terrible compared to base resource generation. What does chi do for BrM anyways? You have enough baseline to maintain Shuffle, so only a little bit extra is needed for Guard and PB. These talents are so worthless that Ascension at 4k haste is still only worth around 6500 haste rating of energy, only 500 more than what Chi Brew is worth anyways. The difference in resource generation is completely negligible, but when push comes to shove and you need something to save your life, you want energy instead of chi. If Chi Brew gave 80 energy on demand, it'd be a far, far better choice than Ascension, but it doesn't. Extra chi is practically worthless, extra energy is not. What's more likely to save your life, two PBs or an Expel Harm that comes 0.2 seconds faster than it would have otherwise, which lets your purify anyways?

    Of course you could play with Power Strikes or even no talent in that tier and you'd hardly notice a difference. If you followed progression the way it was supposed to be this expansion (Normal ToT to heroic ToT to normal SoO to heroic SoO instead of normal ToT to normal/heroic SoO), tanking anything prior to Thok is an absolute joke in terms of damage intake, you could survive on practically anything. Heroic Dark Shamans is one of the hardest hitting bosses in the first 8 and that was a joke with 550 ilvl. With how strong BrM is with its infinite self-healing, huge dodge scaling with gear via Agility (both crit and normal Dodge), and exponentially scaling Shuffle, the little points like which talent to use are irrelevant when it comes to not dying at this point in the expansion. In a theoretical sense Ascension may be marginally more useful than Chi Brew, but in reality you can do whatever you want and it won't change anything. The days of BrMs in 560 ilvl taking on heroic Paragons and Garrosh are long past, and with it went the importance of things like this.

  7. #7
    I didn't start this discussion. Someone else kinda jumped down my throat about CB. I'm only continuing it because I'm worried I might actually be wrong. XD If my experience is at odds with theory, I need to take a second look at what I'm doing.

    You're right that most bosses don't open on you with all their damage. Galakras waves do it backwards -- they start out with a lot of damage and get less intense as the mobs die. It was very common for me to get red stagger within the first 10 seconds of each wave. If I seem "focused" on that fresh pull scenario, it's because it made Galakras progression incredibly stressful for me, feeling resource-starved all the time. (EB and Shuffle EXPIRED between waves.) For Galakras, Juggernaut, and Shamans in particular, Chi Brew made those fights so much easier.

    I'm never waiting for energy for an Expel Harm because I pool energy for them. I might be waiting for the third Expel Harm inside of Desperate Measures.

  8. #8
    Stood in the Fire Shedi's Avatar
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    Apr 2011
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    Chi Brew just doesn't give anything but Chi, and extra Chi isn't particularly amazing at high gear levels. You will also have a close to 100% uptime on Elusive Brew (when it's relevant), so there's no reason to take it for that. Ascension gives you roughly the same amount of Chi, but it also gives you the opportunity to have 5 Chi, and you have more energy to spend on Expel Harm in dire situations.

  9. #9
    The only place Chi Brew could be useful would be for Siegecrafter to help your DfoA DPS on the shredder.

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