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  1. #1

    Elemental Shaman: What are your main grievances?

    Having been gone from the elemental spec for a while, I'd like to know what the main grievances are about Elemental.

    Please do not just say "Our damage is low". I am looking for things in terms of class mechanics that you enjoy, don't enjoy, and what you perceive are the spec's strengths, and weaknesses.

    Example: I miss multi-dotting Flame Shock in PvP when it had no cooldown, which allowed for more lava surge procs. (this is a mechanical thing you enjoy, that is no longer viable).
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  2. #2
    -RNG = more RNG = more RNG = more RNG in about every talent and passive. We just need more 'straight to the point' damage skills
    -Multi-targeting/dotting is a problem. Why is our one dot even dispellable(thats a word right) for pvp?

    just a few

  3. #3
    Warchief Gungnir's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Mechanically, like ALL classes, it's a tremendous step down from pre-WoD expansions.
    That's just how it is, every class has been reduced to a dull mess where even classes that are putting out high numbers are still incredibly dull to play.

    The only exception is probably DH, since they have a much better talent support than most it seems.

  4. #4
    The Unstoppable Force Puupi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Flame Shock cooldown.


    Lightning Bolt and Chain Lightning casting speed. (should be 1.5sec baseline, not 2 sec)
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  5. #5
    Everything the above have mentioned, but also i don't like having to cast earthquake at an area rather than casting it at a current target and it dropping on the area around them. I find it clunky and awkward. Does anyone else think this or am i alone?

  6. #6
    Being able to cast Lightning Bolt while moving

  7. #7
    Loss of water breathing. Sad times.

  8. #8
    I mean all the above are true, but that pales in comparison to the underlying issue many point out but gets lost in the iterative process of mechanics; the class is not fun or intuitive to play.

    It's a result of two things. Blizzard generally ignoring [Elemental] Shaman, like always. And, the pruning and otherwise streamlining of class mechanics. You don't really feel like a master of the elements, or even a novice of them. You literally just press a few buttons for single target, or a few buttons for AoE. There's very little interaction or intelligent gameplay, also meaning there's a lower skill ceiling. The talents, while adding some spice, aren't competitive for damage, so your 'best' pick is pretty apparent. While that's also true for other classes, it shines in Elemental because of its other glaring issues.

    I mean, I'd look past it's sub-par damage (like always) if it was fun. But as Elemental, you kind of sit there waiting for damage to come and it pretty much never does, because of ramp-up time for Maelstrom or having to move. At least as Enhancement, you're not waiting around and hoping you don't have to move since it will cancel a bunch of damage, probably right after you just popped all of your offensive cooldowns. As Enhancement, there's a couple more choices for impact, and make you choose (in the moment) whether to Stormstrike or Lava Lash when they proc (the better player can react faster to 2 procs close to each other), whether it makes sense to reapply Flametongue, whether it's worth it to Crash Lightning depending on mob hp, etc.


  9. #9
    We're a spec that has zero practical use.

    We're suboptimal in M+, we're suboptimal in PVP, we're suboptimal in raids, we're suboptimal for world content. We have virtually non existent mobility and almost no defensives worth speaking of (and worse defensives than classes that also have incredible mobility), and possess little ability to kite (shaman were pretty good at this in vanilla, but our mobility has stayed the same while almost everyone else has improved or supercharged in that department) for a spec that has to stand still to do anything. We're billed as a "turret" but are dumpster tier for throughput even when not having to move, and almost useless when needing to move frequently.

    Meanwhile, we compete for group spots against specs that DO have practical use. Demon hunters are better than us in every single way, have better survivability AND better mobility. And the problem is it is the same story every expansion: the same winners keep winning and the same losers keep losing. None of the problems get addressed.

    So what are my grievances, summed up? Shaman is a living fossil. We're a relic of a game that doesn't exist anymore, because our spec is still essentially vanilla WoW while others are utilizing a far more modern design. I remember back when Ghost Wolf was a useful escape tool in PVP; now everyone sticks to you like glue. The rules of engagement have changed but our tools were never updated to reflect that.

  10. #10
    Stealthed Defender unbound's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    All that moves is easily heard in the void.
    Mostly the spec is too inflexible. One of those problems is the cooldown on flame shock...if something dies unexpectedly just after you use flameshock, then you are screwed going to the next mob as your lava burst is a wet noodle for 5 seconds or so.

    Additionally, the spec suffers from the same problem as all the turret specs do right now...the mechanics of the game are continuing to focus on movement mechanics. This is fine for gameplay, but the specs need to be modified to account for that movement.

    Not only do the turret specs feel especially useless because we can't sit still long enough to go through our rotation effectively on far too many fights right now, but it becomes impossible for Blizz to balance it because we'd become too powerful for static fights or too weak on movement fights.

    This is why we have this result -

    Destro Lock is the only turret spec that barely gets into the top 1/2. Every other turret spec, overall in Uldir, is on the bottom 1/2...with all Mage specs at the very bottom.

  11. #11
    Fluffy Kitten Ragnarocket's Avatar
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    May 2010
    Survival and mobility is my big one.

    If they want us to be a "turret" spec we need to have the survival CDs to deal with staying in one place for a decent amount of time. Astral Shift? That doesn't cut it.

  12. #12
    Non functional mobility. That was already my opinion in Legion, and it got worse for BFA! In BFA we lost that jump ability, whatever it was called (Gust of Wind?), for no reason at all. Eles weren't infamous for being expert kiters anyway...

  13. #13
    Spreading Flame Shock with Lava Burst, not having the flexibility to use Flame Shock more openly. Granted I think FS has a higher alpha now, but spamming FS isn't going to suddenly make us 20k ST DPS death dealers.
    Lightning bolt is the most boring filler spell, basically since Vanilla when all you did was spam different levels of filler spells endlessly. Look at other casters and there main filler has other effects or a chance to proc some sort of instacast higher hitting ability. Lightning bolt simply does nothing other than giving us a tiny tiny bit more Maelstrom.
    And honestly, Lava Burst is similar. It only doesn't significant damage when its cast in bunches or on mastery procs. And then there is Earth Shock, which in general feels like shit when it hits for 20k. Lava Burst can hit for that much continuously in some builds, but all we get is a crappy little ES 20k-30k non crit hit.

    I know a lot of this goes to "damage" but they also address the issue that once I can't be a turret anymore, I go from competitive DPS that I have no issue with, to absolute shit. And overall Elemental ramps up damage, moving breaks that ramp, which means it needs to be started again which doesn't feel good. For other classes movement usually means switching to a moving cast spell or some other kind of stutter step casting. For ele I need to plan ahead, which means holding back procs which is a loss and then using them when I go to move. But it still doesn't change that I had to stop rolling my casts to move to cast 2 or 3 GCD insta casts. Which really don't feel good to cast.

    I think the big problem comes down to outside of not moving and casting for 2-3 seconds before everything starts to feel good in the world, the rest of the spec feels clunky. Ele is the only spec I play that has a massively clunky opening rotation, and that permeates into every movement that I have to go through the clunky opening rotation again.

  14. #14
    These questions are meaningless. There is a lot of saying that my spec is not so good, even the warlock which is the best spec in raid right now. Most are words that are meaningless and are not perfect in certain situations.

    Most of player 's complaints are meaningless in terms of game mechanics. The spec does not make much difference that it changes. As a great example, there was an opinion in the legion asking for additional ms during FE uptime. This is now applied. Anyone who thinks that this has improved?
    All performance is divided into bad points and good points. ele is bad and dps is not good. Turret dps? No problem. If dps is good.
    Why is ele bad? It's turret dps, mobility is bad, the utility is useless in the raid, and crucially, despite all of this, only the useless AoE dps are strong, and the important ST dps is bottom.
    All of this was intended by dev, which was revealed in a dev interview. dps is an important key performance factor. In return of all complaints from here.
    Last edited by Ele man; 2018-10-26 at 09:44 AM.

  15. #15
    the lack of ancestral guidance in any form. thought for sure we would see a similar trait at release.

  16. #16
    I feel like the whole of the Elemental community including ele's that have competed in the world first race have noted the spec is not fun to play or interesting.

    The Downside here is that the Damage of the spec is sub-par to all specs in terms of DPS except for ret paladins and arcane mages. I do believe it's a design flaw because when playing my other specs all spells feel significant and the main abilities feel very powerful. For Ele, LB hits on average of 3.5k at 366 ilvl. and it's a filler spell. the spell is way under tuned. Lava Burst used to do about half the damage of a full blown earth shock crit now it does half the damage of a non-crit earth shock.

    back in the day when Fulmination aka Overcharged earth shock using lightening shield charges was introduced, Lava burst was still a strong spell and felt good to press. not exaggerating on the damage of the spell either.

    Today's World for Ele, LvB feels like a filler spell on a CD that you pray for LS procs and LB feels like a useless spell you spam during downtime just because that's all you have, and Earthshock feels like the biggest gamble of all finisher spells in the game because if it doesn't crit its does about a 3rd to a 4th of its damage of what it does when it crits.

    I love the class identity behind elemental, but it doesn't feel honed in at all. Blizz should probably consider redesigning the spec for the next xpac.

    Unfortunately this spec will only get band-aid fixes for BFA.
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  17. #17
    In addition to what many have already mentioned, I think it's extremely weird that we don't bring any buffs to the group. We have a few utility totems in our arsenal, especially the earth ones, that have their moments in 5-man content. We also have interrupts, purge, off-heals and a fairly long AoE stun - though a lot is to be desired in the personal CD and mobility area. But most classes have some kind of one-off utility spells like that, which helps the group in a pinch. What I miss is some kind of tangible, raid-wide buff to the team. Mage/priest/warrior bring a stat buff, DH/monk brings 5% phys/magic damage, but the original utility class aka. shaman doesn't have anything like that at all. We used to have nearly *ALL* the buffs, and people would fight to get access to the totems they wanted. We also used to be the only class that could bloodlust.

    It really hurts to see other ranged specs get more mobility than they can use, while they also possess the bloodlust/heroism ability, greater damage, and a raid buff to boot.

    I feel that every class should have a moment where they shine, even if the area is "the spec is fluid and fun" and damage is trash. Right now, our main niche is basically being able to hold poorly organized M+ groups together. We can quickly save an impending wipe if we utilize our arsenal correctly: Thunderstorm away mobs on the healer, infested worms, mobs stuck in sanguine, or use as an interrupt. Earth ele on packs with nasty dots, or the big back right before a boss so that the tank can keep CDs ready. Earthbind escaping mobs/infested worms, or to help drop necrotic. AoE stun for many of the same reasons as earthbind, but also interrupts mobs. Off-heals help a lot against grievous. Ankh allows a death run. With a competent group and a great tank, these are not needed, but if shit hits the fan you'll be there to help until a tank is CRed and back to business. And you're much less likely to fail in such a way by simply not bringing a shaman to begin with.

  18. #18
    Fluffy Kitten Ragnarocket's Avatar
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    May 2010
    I agree with the fact we don't seem to have utility. That used to be our entire shtick and yet nowadays after they decided that "oh I guess classes should have some buffs again" we somehow got left out of that equation.

    It'd be nice if we had something that tied back to our old totem buffing ways. Strength of Earth? Flametongue for Elemental and Stormlash for Enhancement? Just something that makes you go "yeah let's try and bring that shaman for X buff"

  19. #19
    My biggest grievance is that Elemental feels... so... bloody... slow...

    Almost everything is hard cast, with long-feeling casting times, damage is weak too (Which while you said shouldn't be mentioned is part of the problem) so the long cast times feel unrewarding, too much RNG, when the stars align i can wipe a mob off the face of the planet before it reaches me, if they don't, i'm face-tanking it while tossing sponges at it, and our supposed finisher (Earth shock) has a near-unnoticeable spell effect, which adds to the unrewarding feeling to casting it.

  20. #20
    As I’m reading through some of these replies it really feels like a lot of them are coming from players that either A.) Don’t play elemental shaman. Or B.) Never took the time to learn the spec and vet out some the surface weak points. One reply said “Not to mention our nonexistent mobility” they must have forgotten ghost wolf which offers a permanent 40% run speed and a slow resist making it so you can never run below 100% run speed. Additionally, it has HUGE utility in raid encounters because it uses a half gcd, allowing you to pop in and out to dodge threatening mechanics. Giving you much more uptime on movement heavy encounter than other casters. Another, complaint focused around the spec being RNG dependent. To that I say, HOW? The most effective build right now doesn’t even require mastery after that the only RNG aspect of you character is critical strike, and if you’re complaining about critical strike RNG then what are we even talking about: every class and spec has this and its very easy to have 35%+critical strike rating while in Uldir. I would argue that the absence of reorigionation array while outside of Uldir is irrelevant since you have access to you pvp talents in the open world while Warmode is active.
    This Bring me to my critique. As some people have mentioned, the class is a bit underwhelming. I think that a lot of the talents we had in legion really expressed how an elemental shaman should be played. I don’t necessarily think that stormkeepers should be buffed in 8.1, but instead bring back lightning rod as an Azerite trait for elemental, additional the way flameshock worked in legion allowed for a high quality of life. Especially for the ascendance build die-hards. The talent that allowed flameshock to spread was a very appealing game-play because you could run your single target build and have relevant dmg on AOE packs. As for Icefury, I think that there’s just no space for the build in the game. The build is much much more difficult to play well and there just isn’t any reward for it. I could understand if the dps output had a much higher threshold but there just isn’t, which makes this disappointing. As “Masters of the elements” I do feel that we need ice/frost as part of our rotation and aside from running the Icefury build (which we just talked about), frosthock and elemental blast its almost completely absent from the spec. I don’t have any suggestions for this at the moment.
    Overall, I think that elemental offers much more than what most people are giving it credit for. However, it does FEEL poor to play. This comes from a lot of things; primarily the talent changes. I think that elemental shaman is a class that should be played very similarly to the way it played in Legion during Antorus. For as long as I can remember, elemental shaman made up single target dmg with their sheer AOE domitability and have been the AOE king, with changes made coming into BFA, we’ve been dethroned. This makes other classes more desirable going into mythic+ especially since the ramp up time hold us back a bit. There are ways around that but choosing those build really makes it so that AOE is amazing and single target falls way behind. There's no middle of the road for both situations.

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