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View Full Version : Druid Balance Druid lvl 80 in need of help.



Oakgrove
07-14-2010, 06:48 PM
Ok so I don't really know that much about boomkin stats and such so I need all the help I can get. What I'm wondering is
1. when looking at gear what is important for a boomkin.
2. What enchants and gems should I get for each item.
3.What stats are key for boomkins?
and any other helpful (<-- key word) thoughts will be greatly appreciated.

Here is my Character.

[http://www.wowarmory.com/character-sheet.xml?r=Blackwing+Lair&cn=Oakgrove]

Oakgrove
07-14-2010, 06:49 PM
http://www.wowarmory.com/character-sheet.xml?r=Blackwing+Lair&cn=Oakgrove ? don't know why that link doesn't work...

Kazeyonoma
07-15-2010, 10:51 AM
the link doesn't work because you put a ] after your armory link, so the hyper link actually goes to wowarmory......=Oakgrove] which doesn't exist because you can't have a char named Oakgrove]

Also, read stickies, read rules, read FAQ. Armory links belong in HALP! forum.

Moved.

Terra
07-15-2010, 11:09 AM
Your first priority when selecting gear is to reach hit cap. You will need 263 hit to reach cap, unless you are Alliance and have a Draenei in the group, in which case it is 237. With current gear, this is extremely easy to reach.

Your second priority is to hit the haste soft cap. The haste soft cap is reached when your wrath spell takes a global cooldown or less to cast. This is obtained at a haste rating of 585 without additional outside help. However, especially in 25 man raids, you should expect to have a resto or elemental shaman that is putting down a Wrath of Air Totem, reducing the haste soft cap to 401. Any haste above this soft cap is still useful in reducing the cast time on your starfire cast time, but you have reached a diminishing return on additional usefullness. In current gear with T9/T10 micture of gear content, it's not unheard of to have haste above 700.

Once these two mandatory targets are met, spellpower and critical strike will become a priority with an emphasis on critical strike until you have reached at least 25% critical strike chance in caster form (30% in moonkin form). You should not use any gems or enchants specifically to reach this target, but from personal observation, this is the point at which you can effectively maintain near complete uptime on your eclipse procs. You may favor crit for a while if you're close to lunar crit cap and you want to get over the threshold, but after that it's mostly about spellpower spellpower spellpower.

Read about Lunar Crit cap here: http://graymatterwow.blogspot.com/2009/12/lunar-crit-cap.html

Intellect is more valuable than spirit due to the talent that converts intellect to additional spellpower. Most gear I see that I feel are specifical designed for balance druids have stamina, intellect, haste, crit and spellpower.

Terra
07-15-2010, 11:13 AM
Ignoring modifications available based upon professions:

Head: Arcanum of Burning Mysteries for 30 Spellpower/20 Critical Strike Rating.

Shoulder: Greater Inscription of the Storm for 24 Spellpower and 15 Critical Strike rating.

Back: 23 Haste

Chest: 10 Stats

Wrists: 30 Spellpower

Weapon: 63 Spellpower for a One Hander, 81 for 2-hander

Hands: 28 Spellpower

Legs: Brilliant Spellthread for 50 Spellpower and 20 Spirit

Feet: If you are not at hit cap, I would recommend Icewalker. However, Tuskarr's Vitality adds 15 stamina and a slight run speed increase, which is especially useful in moving. This doesn't add to your DPS contribution as the crit buff from Icewalker would, but the extra run speed and health add to your survivability and can make it easier to respond to special circumstances requiring movement.

The Meta gem you will want to get is the Chaotic Skyflare Diamond. In order to activate this gem, you will need to use 2 blue gems. Seek out pieces whose gemming bonus can be activated by blue gems with a preference on spellpower and use Purified Dreadstone in these sockets.

Generally speaking, all remaining sockets should be socketed with a Runed Cardinal Ruby unless the socket bonus is good enough to justify using a different gem. Generally speaking, I will only vary from this choice if the socket bonus is 7 spellpower or more, and then I will use a gem that has +12 spellpower plus another stat as follows:

Yellow socket: Veiled Ametrine if I need hit, Reckless Ametrine if I need to reach haste soft cap, otherwise I use Potent Ametrine for the crit.
Blue socket: Purified Dreadstone.

Quinafoi
07-15-2010, 12:56 PM
First off, you logged of in Restoration spec, so chances are you may also be in restoration gear so it is hard to evaluate you on what you have on your armory but here goes.

First off, both your primary and secondary specs have a lot of flaws in them. 0/0/71 is not a good restoration spec. 71/0/0 is not a good balance spec. Both of these specs will actually overlap on in benefit. For example a restoration spec would more likely be 18/0/53 if you need the haste of Celestial Focus or 11/0/60 if you are haste capped. Balance specs would typically be 55/0/16 or 58/0/13. Your glyph selection isn't great either.

I won't focus on the restoration piece of it. So for balance...

Spec

Here is the spec I would recommend for you.
http://www.wowarmory.com/talent-calc.xml?cid=11&tal=5022203125331303213305311031000000000000000000 000000000000205003012000000000000000000

Genesis is a very weak single target DPS talent, rather than investing in that I will put two points in Moonglow since your you're not to the point of having infinite mana quite yet. Overtime you can move those points into either Genesis for single target DPS. If you want to get gale winds, you have to be over hit capped such that you can drop one point in Balance of Power. Then you could support an AoE spec like this:
http://www.wowarmory.com/talent-calc.xml?cid=11&tal=5012203125331303113305311231000000000000000000 000000000000205003012000000000000000000

Glyphs

Now for your glyphs. The three major glyphs you should use are:
Glyph of Starfall
Glyph of Starfire
Glyph of Moonfire

Those three glyphs are the highest DPS combination for almost all gear levels. At extremely high spellpower, Glyph of Focus may eventually overtake Glyph of Moonfire, however even then you would be unlikely to make that replacement. For minor glyphs the only one that is always required is:
Glyph of Unburdened Rebirth

If you were specing for optimal AoE DPS you may choose to use Glyph of Typhoon in order to proc Nature's Grace between Hurricane casts, however doing so removes the knockback that is useful in certain situations. Glyph of the Wild is also often recommended because you can use Gift of the Wild to try and proc an Omen of Clarity at low mana times during AoE (Gift of the Wild will cost less than Hurricane and in a 25 man raid Gift of the Wild has about a 95% chance to proc Omen of Clarity). However in high enough gear eventually you generate mana faster than any other class and reducing the spell cost is meaningless. I personally use Glyph of Aquatic Form and Glyph of Dash (two movement buffing glyphs) as my optionals.

You are currently using Glyph of Wrath. Pushback has little impact on DPS and is not worth specing into to avoid. This glyph has no measurable value for DPS. Glyph of Innervate comes out to 8.74 MP5 if you use innervate on every cooldown, which likely you don't (that is the absolute highest possible benefit of it). This isn't worth a major glyph in any spec.

Stat Priority

Hit (Until Capped) > Haste (Until Soft Cap) > Spellpower > Crit (Until Soft Cap) > Haste (Over Soft Cap) = Crit (Over Soft Cap) > Intellect > Spirit

Hit
You require at least 237 hit rating to be hit capped. This is 9% chance to hit. You gain 7% from talents. As an alliance you can gain an additional 1% from a draenei in your party. This puts you at the spell hit cap of 17% against a level 83 (raid boss). If you don't have a draenei, your hit cap is 264. In order to drop one point in balance of power to pick up an AoE spec, you need to be 2% higher than hit capped to make up for the 2% you would lose from talents. It is ok to remove points in Balance of Power and re-allocate them if you exceed the hit cap. You should never remove points from Improved Faerie Fire because that does not only provide hit, but also provides crit as well.

Haste
Assuming all possible haste buffs, the haste soft cap for a balance druid is 401 haste rating. This is very easily reached with gear alone so you should typically avoid gemming for haste. If you don't have the benefit of Wrath of Air totem (5% casting haste from a shaman), then the haste soft cap is 585. The soft cap is the point where when Nature's Grace is active, your Wrath and any instant cast ability is at the Global Cooldown (GCD) minimum of 1 second. Haste higher than that will no longer benefit those spells as much. It still benefits Starfire however.

Spellpower
This is your bread and butter stat. Once the haste soft cap is reached, which is easily reached, this is your primary DPS stat. Most of your gemming and enchanting will focus on this.

Crit
The soft cap for crit is significantly higher than that of haste, however it is variable depending on other factors like intellect. The crit soft cap is when Starfire will exceed 100% chance to crit during a Lunar Eclipse. After that point, Starfire doesn't benefit from crit as much, thus the value of the stat is reduced.

Haste and Crit
When both haste and crit are above their soft caps, their value is very close to one another. Because of this, many balance druids will favor crit over haste yet because the cap itself was much higher, allowing for more variance when you upgrade your gear.

Intellect
Provides a very minor DPS increase, as well as increase mana pool and efficiency. You do not gem or enchant for intellect because other alternatives are better.

Spirit
Provides the least value to DPS of any stat that affects DPS. You will get minor amounts of spirit from gear and because you will need at least two blue gems in order to activate your meta gem and spirit is the only blue stat of any value, even a little value is better than none. You do not go out of your way to gem or enchant for spirit.

The IDEAL Balance Gear
Ideal balance gear meets the following criteria...
1. Spellpower > 0, every piece of gear should have spellpower on it in some form. Trinkets it may only be on a procing effect but still has spellpower.
2. Mana per 5 = 0, you should avoid mana per 5 on items. This stat is purely efficiency. If you have to choose between MP5 or Spirit, take the item with spirit.
3. Spirit = 0, ideally your item would have no spirit on it.

When those three conditions are met you get items that are like...

Spellpower
Hit
Haste
Crit

Those are your highest priority stats.

Set pieces because of the set bonuses will always be better in the majority of the slots.

Gemming

Your meta socket should always be a Chaotic Skyflare Diamond and never anything else. The 3% bonus damage to crits actually stacks in an odd way with Vengeance talent to come out to having 209% damage on spell criticals. This bonus damage on your crits will make this gem always higher DPS value than any other possible meta gem. To put in perspective, if a gem with 25 spellpower on it gives you 50 dps, the 3% bonus crit damage gives you about 150-200 DPS. Because the Chaotic Skyflare Diamond requires two blue gems to activate it you will have at least two Purified Dreadstones (Spirit/Spellpower) in your sockets to meet this requirement. The requirement to activate the meta is higher priority than any of the other priorities to follow.

In a red or prismatic (i.e. the extra socket from a belt buckle) socket, you should always use a Runed Cardinal Ruby (Spellpower).

In a yellow socket...
If you are below the hit cap you should use Rigid King's Amber (Hit) or Veiled Ametrine (Hit/Spellpower) until the hit cap is reached.
If there is one socket and the bonus is 5 spellpower or more use Potent Ametrine (Crit/Spellpower).
If there are two sockets with a bonus of 7 spellpower and the socket is red use Potent Ametrine (Crit/Spellpower), otherwise Runed Cardinal Ruby (Spellpower).
If there are three sockets with a bonus of 9 spellpower and there is at least one red socket and no blue sockets use Potent Ametrine (Crit/Spellpower), otherwise Runed Cardinal Ruby (Spellpower).

In a Blue socket...
If there is one socket, use Runed Cardinal Ruby (Spellpower) unless required for meta activation. If required for meta used Purified Dreadstone (Spirit/Spellpower).
If there are two sockets with a bonus of 7 spellpower and the other socket is red (or required for meta activation) use Purified Dreadstone (Spirit/Spellpower), otherwise Runed Cardinal Ruby (Spellpower).
If there are three sockets with a bonus of 9 spellpower and both of the other sockets are red (or required for meta activation) use Purified Dreadstone (Spirit/Spellpower), otherwise Runed Cardinal Ruby (Spellpower).

Enchants
All of Terra's recommendations are correct.
Head - Kirin Tor, 30 Spellpower 20 Crit
Shoulder - Sons of Hodir, 24 Spellpower 15 Crit
Back - Enchanting, 23 Haste
Chest - Enchanting, 10 All Stats
Wrist - Enchanting, 30 Spellpower
Weapon - Enchanting, 81 Spellpower to Staff or 63 Spellpower to 1-handed weapon
Feet - Enchanting, Tuskar's Vitality (15 Stamina and Minor Speed)
Belt - Blacksmithing, Belt Buckle


Reference
Hamlet's EJ Guide (with WrathCalcs)
http://elitistjerks.com/f47/t66856-druid_balance_pve_updated_3_3_5_a/

That blog Terra posted is alright, but I prefer to get it direct from the source. The source of the information in that Blog Post is the EJ guides by Hamlet and the WrathCalcs spreadsheet which is the basis of the calculations and the basis for recommendations of Rawr as well. They do make reference to the fact that WrathCalcs will actually tell you what your Lunar Crit Cap is, but the blog makes no direct reference to his sources. give credit where credit is due. Hamlet maintains the guide and calculations originally done by Andoriel.

Wilhem
07-15-2010, 04:05 PM
If you want to be a good Boomkin, pay attention to the above post! Very well thought out and a better response than one could hope for.

I know you didn't ask for rotation advice or anything but, judging by your spec you may need some. Some Boomkins like AoE and are Hurricane happy on every pull, personally I hate it (but I hate volleying on my hunter too)... So if you want, it is generally acceptable to hurricane trash pulls.

On bosses, I like to throw out my treants, IS, MF, click my trinket, Starfall then begin the normal rotation of:
Wrath until Lunar Eclipse > Starfire until Solar eclipse (refresh IS/MF when there is less than 1.5 left on Lunar Eclipse) > Repeat.

Use Starfall every cooldown on boss fights. If you have Starfall Glyph and a trinket with a 2 minute cooldown yo can line them up and use the trinket every other Starfall. From what I have read you should not refresh your IS/MF during a Solar Eclipse but, refreshing IS during Lunar Eclipse is slightly beneficial to DPS.

Also, an adding like Squawk and Awe can be helpful for monitoring ICD's of your eclipses.

Quinafoi
07-16-2010, 08:43 AM
For a beginning balance druid Squawk and Awe is an ideal addon because it will provide much of the information you need to pay attention to while executing your rotation. The format of Squawk and Awe leaves a bit to be desired but it has everything you need and as you become more advanced you may modify your means of monitoring buffs, debuffs, procs, and internal cooldowns.

As for rotation there are several different ways of explaining it. This is the way I traditionally explain it which is a little different than how you may see it explained in guides. The reason why I explian it this way has to deal with where some druids differ, where the common mistakes are being made.

There are four basic phases to the eclipse cycle. These phases determine your priority system in casting spells, there isn't a true rotation just changing in your buff situation that causes priorities to shift.

No-Eclipse Phase
This is anytime when you do not have the Eclipse buff such as the pull. During this your priorities are as follows. First and foremost is applying the raid debuff Improved Faerie Fire if it is not being covered by others. Only another Moonkin or a combination of a Feral Druid and Shadow Priest would be responsible for applying this otherwise. If it isn't another Moonkin you may want to apply it anyway since it lasts longer than the Shadow Priest's Misery and is less likely to fall off at any point. After Faerie Fire is applied, Starfall is the next priority. Even against a single target, Starfall is more damage per execution time (DPET) than Force of Nature. Against more than one target, Starfall is the single highest DPET ability in the game. Force of Nature would be your third priority since it has higher DPET than your standard abilities but significantly less than Starfall. After Force of Nature you would then do any raid cooldowns necessary, this is the time you would choose to use them provided an opportunity to choose. A critical player dying may require a Rebirth at anytime, a less critical player you would try to res at this time in your rotation. Innervate you would also try to use at this point in your cycle. Then you have whichever damage over time abilities WrathCalcs determines should be renewed based on the Eclipse you will be entering next (you can toggle when you do your renewals and determine which yields the highest damage). At the start of an encounter you will likely want to apply both as you are moving into position, but also to charge any stacking idol or trinket faster. Never clip your the only time you would ever clip your DoTs is if you are entering a point in the encounter where you are unable to continue DPSing, such as the stun during Professor Putricide phase transitions on normal difficulty. All other times you should avoid cliping DoTs. If your debuffs are active, then you begin spamming either Wrath or Starfire depending on which eclipse you are entering next. Lunar Eclipse (Starfire) results in higher DPS when you are above the haste soft cap which is very easy to reach at only 401, the standard practice is to favor this whenever either option is available (i.e. at the start of the fight spam Wrath to enter Lunar Eclipse). During Heroism you would favor Lunar Eclipse. If you are pre-potioning (taking a potion before the pull) you would change that priority however. When pre-potioning you should use Potion of Wild Magic and immediately use Starfall and spam Starfire to enter a Solar Eclipse so that the crit and spellpower have optimal benefit. Pre-potioning with potion of speed is not as benefitial because of how Potion of Wild Magic greatly impacts Starfall.

Pre-Eclipse Phase
This is the point where Eclipse buff has just proced, and is basically your decision as to what to cast first when you enter an Eclipse. Some druids will renew Moonfire or Insect Swarm to gain the benefit of the Improved Insect Swarm talent for the duration of the Eclipse as soon as they see they entered an Eclipse, however, this is not worth while and always results in a DPS loss because by casting one instant cast you effectively push one of your buffed cast spells off the end of your buffs duration. For example, the 3% more crit for 5 Starfires isn't as good as 40% crit for 1 for the 6th Starfire. An experienced balance druid will simply treat their first cast in Eclipse the same as the Eclipse phase itself.

Eclipse Phase
This is simply the span of time while you are under the effect of the buff and spamming just the buffed spell. You shouldn't cast any other spells intentionally during an eclipse (movement or necessity asside).

Post-Eclipse Phase
This is the key difference between an experienced balance druid an an inexperienced one. The bonus damage or crit of the eclipse buff only applies, while that buff is active. If Starfire takes two seconds to cast and there is only one second left on the buff, then casting it again will not receive the benefit of the buff. Understanding this means you can treat the last moment of your eclipse buff the same as the No-Eclipse Phase, because effectively you no longer have the benefit of the buff. This means you can use your cooldowns or renew your debuffs during this time instead of casting another spell and immediately critting and entering the next Eclipse without a moment to use those cooldowns. This Post-Eclipse phase is only about the length of one global cooldown, but correctly using it results in a significant improvement in DPS.

Quinafoi
07-16-2010, 08:53 AM
Other little notes...

While Starfall is higher in priority than Force of Nature, most people will use Force of Nature first on the pull (if not pre-potioning) because of the annoyance of needing to actually target the ability (you can have it ready to cast before the pull).

If you know when heroism or bloodlust will be, Force of Nature just prior to that is significantly better than normal.

If you know there will be multiple targets soon, saving Starfall for that time may be worth while. You may have to actually wait 15-30 seconds longer, however the ability will do twice the damage so if you're only waiting half the duration longer it is worth while to wait. For instance on Professor Putricide you can use it on every other slime of for Deathbringer Saurfang you can use it on every other set of Blood Beasts.

Quinafoi
07-16-2010, 09:14 AM
Trinkets...

Never have a trinket which has an automatic proc for haste or crit. Half the time you will be in a situation where one doesn't benefit you at all such as haste procing during a Solar (Wrath) Eclipse. If your trinket has crit or haste on it, it should actually be the passive equip bonus and then the procing or use effect being spellpower. Trinkets which stack spellpower are very good for balance such as Illustration of the Dragon Soul, Eye of the Broodmother, and Muradin's Spyglass. The spellpower with damage proc of Reign of the Unliving/Undying is one of the best trinkets available, however becomes slightly devalued when your haste drops Starfire cast time below two seconds (because then it delays the stacking, thus delaying the proced damage). Trinkets for balance should never have anything other than Spellpower, Crit, Haste, Hit, or some kind of damage effect like the instant damage proc. Trinkets with anything else are terrible for balance (such as the 128 intellect trinket, this trinket which requires Emblems of Triumph is significantly weaker than the Sundial of the Exhalted which requires Emblems of Heroism). Generally speaking, trinkets with use effects aren't as benefitial as ones that automatically proc. For some breakdown on the value of trinkets you can see some information over in Hamlet's EJ guide I linked above (such as the average spellpower of a procing effect). Battlemaster's Ruination (purchasable with honor) trinket is a decent trinket as well for balance if you lack better PvE alternatives.