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Not as clumsy or random as a two-hander. An elegant weapon, from a more civilized age.
Warrior tears are flooding the forums and the outlook of PvP Arms is bleak. Druids are spamming Soothe, Rogues are sitting on you with Shiv screaming "SAPPED GIRLS CAN'T SAY NO, TAKE IT LIKE A B*&%#," and Hunters are spamming Tranq Shot like it's Patch 1.11.1 and your name is Magmadar. BUT THERE IS STILL GOPE.
It's called Single Minded Fury and you should be spec'ing into it. Here's why:
1) Sustained Damage
There's no denying that Titan's Grip has larger burst potential, but the reliance on Enrage to use Raging Blow (the spec's primary means of dealing damage) completely gimps it against any team with a Druid, Hunter, or Rogue who knows what MSBT is. All they have to do is set up a little alert that goes "BEEP" every time you get a buff and *poof*, it's gone. SMF, on the other hand, deals its damage primarily though Bloodthirst and Bloodsurge'd Slams.
Here's some napkin math for you (I'm currently at work and don't have access to my parses from last night's games):
BT Damage: (AP * 80/100)
SMF Damage Bonus on BT: (AP * 80/100)*20/100
I'm rocking close to 12,000 AP arena buffed without any procs. To make this relevant for those who are less geared or gem differently, let's say 11k AP buffed.
BT Damage, No Enrage, Pre-Resil, Non-Crit: (11,000 * 80/100) = 8800 + (8800)*20/100 = 10560
Crit, with 3% Meta: (10560 * 203/100) = 21436.8
Let us also not forget that BT scales directly with AP. Pretend you're rich and are rocking double Landslide Enchants, for a total of 13,000 AP when both are up:
(13,000 * 80/100) = 10400 + (10400)*20/100 = 12480
Crit, with 3% Meta: (12480 * 203/100) = 24334.4
So, assuming a close to worst case scenario against 40% resil:
BT Crit: 12862.08
BT w/procs: 7488
BT Crit w/procs: 15200.63
(Please note that the above damage is also without +% damage increases from stances (Battle/Berserker) and Enrage.)
YOU CAN DO THIS EVERY 3 SECONDS! Basically, inside of Colossus Smash your sustained damage is close to on par with pre-4.0.6 Arms pressure. I don't know about you guys, but when I played Arms I was hitting for around 15k-24k MS and Overpower during my CS.
As SMF in arena, I frequently also see RB and Slam procs hitting for around 20k+ with only ONE of my weapons getting a critical strike.
2) Heroic Strike: Still Usable
4.0.6 reduced Heroic Stirke Damage by roughly 20%. SMF increases all damage you do by 20%. Heroic Strike is a completely AP based attack. I don't need to do the math here for you guys, right?
3) Battle Stance is still viable
Getting trained a lot? Sure, you could dance into Defensive Stance and take 10% less damage, but you can also sit in Battle Stance. BT and Slam are both usable in either stance, allowing you to cycle through defensive cool-downs while still putting out some pressure. Oh, and you can Overpower like a champion 'cause I can pretty much guarantee that at least one of your white swings is going to get dodged.
4) You can break your own roots
5) You have almost as much control as pre-4.0.6 Arms
Throwdown is great, there's no denying that. Glyph'd Intercept into a TD with chain Sudden Death procs was absolutely brutal, but back-to-back Intercept isn't half bad either. Additionally, you can't dodge or parry an Intercept stun (:
6) Your snares suck, but you have some amazing synergy with classes that CAN put up a better snare than Hamstring anyway
-SMF + Hunter: Feel like DK with frost traps ALL AROUND and a (now) dispellable freedom from pet
-SMF + DK: Un-heable Burst! Who needs to spam-string when there's Desecration all around?
-SMF + Rogue: lol Crippling Poison + Smoke Bomb
The list goes on…Enhancement, Frost Mage…you have more options than you think.
Edited by Mourning on 2/22/2011 2:42 AM PST
7) You can still drop someone in 3 seconds during your DW/Reck/IR/Trinket Combo
That's with CS and no-resil - 171,388 damage in 3 seconds and I didn't even heroic strike more than once (I could have). Against 40% resil, that's still 102,832.8 damage. These number are accurate with what I was seeing last night on full resil targets in 3v3. Around 30k+ BT, 25-30k HS, and 30-35k RB/Slam.
So, you ask, what's the optimal burst rotation?
-First, make sure you have this macro:
/cast Death Wish
/cast Inner Rage
-Pool rage to 100. If you want to keep busy, throw up some sunders to confuse your opponents into thinking that you're going to tunnel your current target.
-Bloodthist until you get a Bloodsurge proc for the free +20% Damage, 0 Rage Slam. You now have roughly 6 seconds to start your burst.
-Call the switch
-Intercept your kill target
-Colossus Smash (20 Rage)
-Hit your "IWIN" macro (Off-GCD)
-Slam + HS (30 Rage)
-BT + HS (50 Rage)
-If Bloodsurge procs, do another Slam + HS (You should have the rage), otherwise Raging Blow + HS (you can do these in reverse order if you prefer)
-Heroic Throw (0 Rage) if they're still alive (they shouldn't be)
If your switch target isn't dead, you're doing it wrong or your partner did absolutely 0 damage during the burst (in which case: also doing it wrong since he/she literally has to do like, 1 attack).
Outside of CDs, just do damage as usual with BT, Slam procs, RB when you can and HS when you have extra rage.
So, what's the spec then?
Here it is: http://www.wowhead.com/talent#LGzbbZhbrssdkofbo:kzmfmwm0z
-The points in Rude Interruption can be moved if you want (ex; into Battle Trance), but personally I find them best placed here.
-Points in Drums of War, since the 4.0.6 nerf, can arguably be moved into something else, like Deep Wounds. I don't suggest that since DoW synergizes extremely well with RI. You're also more than likely going to start on a caster and 90% of the time you'll have that extra +5% damage buff when you make the switch burst (unless you're horrible at hitting Pummel). Plus, DW with 1H'ers is kinda meh.
-Tactical Mastery is absolutely necessary IMO as it lets you dance into Battle and Defensive and then back into Berserker as necessary without having to build your rage back up completely when you're ready for the burst attempt. Additionally, it makes pulling off Disarms and Reflects much, much easier.
I'll preemptively state that yes, you could also move one point from the Arms tree and get both Titan's Grip and SMF, allowing you to switch to 2-Handers for bigger burst during your CDs. Ask yourself this though: Do you really want to spend 24,000 Conquest points for two sets of Tier 2 PvP weapons? I didn't think so. I also find such a play style to be completely clunky and annoying, but that's just me.
So then, what about stats?
Fury Specialization gives you 3% Hit, so you really shouldn't need to reforge for any. I'm running around 7% hit and never feel rage starved. After that, Crit is the best stat, followed by Mastery. Haste should be avoided at all costs. If you like having Expertise, you can leave what you have on your gear as is (shoulders/bracers). Personally, I leave Hit and Mastery as is, and reforge Expertise and Haste into Crit.
What gems do you prefer?
-Meta Socket: Reverberating Shadowspirit Diamond
-Red Sockets: Bold Inferno Ruby
-Yellow Sockets: Resplendent Ember Topaz
-Blue Sockets: Steady Dream Emerald
Take from all this what you will. I hope at the very least you've been entertained. In all seriousness, go watch the Vanilla-WoW-Keyboard-turning-Fury-Hero "Hulksmash" (http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4669895340140820194#) and tell me you're not honestly inspired to give SMF a shot. It's fun, I promise (:
PvP Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jNve2BdzOsU
2011-02-15: Updated to include Gem information
2011-02-22: Updated to reflect recent Hunter nerfs ):
2011-03-09: Updated post to include the video in case some people missed it
Edited by Mourning on 3/8/2011 10:22 PM PST
Your point being?
Popping Inner Rage makes the CD on Heroic Strike equal to the GCD, which in turn allows you to combo it with every attack. This maximizes your damage output during the 6 second Colossus Smash debuff. With DW and Recklessness up, it has ~65-70% Crit rate and hits for 25k+ easily. Why *wouldn't* you pop it?
Mine's simpler though:
Angry (at Blizz) Cleave
Take 2 mastery stacking Titan's grip warriors and a non-priest healer.
Instant swap and 180k dmg (vs. 3800 resil) in 3.0 seconds (Intercept => CS => IWIN + RB + HS => BT + HS).
Soothes? Sure. On one of them. After you've taken ~120k in the first global you see the effect.
Healer CCs the paladin, or healer, or enrage dispeller or /dances. Whatever. Just don't swap to hunters, mages, paladins or fellow fury warriors (who can stop your dmg cold).
Yay. Thanks Blizz! This is sure a lot more fun!
Edited by Spindarella on 2/9/2011 1:23 PM PST
85 Worgen Warrior
Great guide, I was rocking this setup for PvE, swap 2 SMF during execute pre-4.0.6... however, I been playing some arenas and stuff and shiv/soothe/tranq shot > fury. I might give this a try :) guess i could buy the mh and oh pvp weapons this week instead of the helm XD
lol, non priest healer... why?
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