If so, at what point should I spec shadow?
If so, at what point should I spec shadow?
Given that there isn't an Improved Wands talent anymore, I doubt it. I'd spec Shadow right away, Spirit Tap is pretty incredible for leveling, even when you have almost no Spirit. Overall the fastest way is blowing all your spells and drinking, that was the fastest according to my Titan Panel's XP/hr at least, and Spirit Tap helps you drink less often for less amount of time. Also once you get Vampiric Embrace I wouldn't use bubble, throw your DoT's up then put VE up, it's much much more mana efficient, if you go below 80% health then you can bubble and VE should heal you to full.
I respectfully disagree. While there's something to be said for the new mana regen model, I don't think it works out so well for leveling.
I've done some research on this myself (thinking on leveling my 70 priest) and came to the conclusion that with the addition of a second dot (Devouring Plague I believe) bubble-wanding is dead, long live VE-Wanding. Even without +25% wand damage, the second dot makes up for it and adds sufficient healing to keep you alive.
DoT DoT VE Flay Wand
Repeat, bubble or renew when you need to heal to full.
Keeping Inner Fire up at all times is key.
If you don't have VE yet, then expect to drink or stack spirit gear for the Spirit Tap buff. As soon as you get it, stack Spell Power and Crit, in that order. Rush the tree to dispersion such that you end up with a 16/0/55 build. Dispersion > Meditation since spirit gear won't be mainstream until 70+.
Before VE I simply hotted myself. I never used bubble. I never had to sit and drink as shadow and I'm level 50 now. Keep as much int/spirit on your gear as possible and you will not have that many problems grinding constantly.
I never worry about inner fire unless I'm about to burn through an elite. My casting rotation is ve vt pain dp mb mf. If the mob is still above 50% health by time this rotation goes through (not all that often even on same level or a little higher level mobs) I just wand the mob. I only do one rotation per mob and my mana never really drops below 50% and if it does I simply wand the next mob. The biggest issue I have is that normally I kill mobs so fast that dp isn't off cool down for the next mob.
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In the early lvls, like 1-40 roughly, I personnally didn't find shadow to be any more effective then holy to be honest. Things have changed though so perhaps shadow is alot better at those lvls then it was when I lvled. Mindflay in paticular I found to be very disappointing for the first few ranks of it. But then at that time mindflay couldn't crit and now it can.
On the mana regen side I did find that I had to use my wand to finnish mobs off if I wanted to maintain my mana without needing to drink. However once you get to 70 and beyond I find mana regen isn't an issue at all and I never use my wand anymore. In fact I would never go below 95% mana on a single mob and then with the spirit tap you are easily topped off before you even have a chance to target your next mob. Because of this I prefer to bubble and then proceed to dot up as many mobs at once as I can, which is usually around 3-5 depending on how densely populated the area is with mobs. Once you get Mind Sear this becomes even easier cause then you don't need to fully dot each mob, just throw a single shadow word pain on as many mobs as you can then when they all cluster on you use mindsear. Mind you this dosn't work so well with ranged mobs. So for ranged mobs I put the 3 dots on first one, which is enough to kill them without me doing anything further to them, then because DP is on cooldown after that I just put VT and SW:P on any other mobs in the area and use a single mind blast or mindflay on each which is enough to kill them.
But I imagine you were thinking more about the early lvls in which case I don't think it makes much difference what spec you are, but then again the talents have changed and so has the gear available at early lvls so it might be different now.
In soviet warcraft, wand magics you.
Yes, spec shadow allready you gimp.
Lol! I just hit lvl 10...my 1st point went to Spirit Tap.