If you’ve follow me on twitter, or have been paying any attention to my youtube channel, then you probably know that I have been enjoying the ever living shit out of a monk on the beta. Of course, numbers need to be tweaked, abilities need to be tinkered, and the hamsters running the wheels on the beta servers may have hit the pipe a few too many times, but it’s a beta… that’s part of the whole experience.
I’ve switched back and forth between the brewmaster (tank spec) and windwalker (DPS spec) several times since I hit level 30, but I always find myself back in the tank spec, just because it seems… much more me. It’s like i’m just meant to be a tank, for better or worse (probably worse) so… we’ll see. Anyway, here are some of my thoughts on the Brewmaster spec as I powerlevel the fuck out of it.
- At first, I tried a pre-made 85 monk. I promptly looked at the spellbook to start placing my abilities, stared blankly at it for about 10 minutes, and then logged out to roll a brand new one.
- The first 5 levels or so are a bit slow. Jab, Tiger Palm and Blackout Kick are good abilities, but only having Jab for the first 3 levels feels *really* weird. Doesn’t take long to get over, however (especially if you use heirlooms).
- 1 second baseline GCDs are effing AMAZING.
- Dizzying Haze is a fun mechanic, that’s implemented weirdly. However, the fact that the missfire chance doesn’t apply to raid bosses (and possibly may not apply to 5-mans bosses) makes this less of an issue, for me personally. I still think DH should be a targeted ability instead of using the AOE reticle.
- Breath of Fire is *fun as shit*, if a bit on the overpowered side right now. I have been regularly 1-shotting mobs with Breath crits (on a 3-stack of Dizzying Haze) all the way up to level 73 (where my monk is currently).
- Brewmaster has a metric shit ton of health. 73 and i’m sitting at 16-17k. When I was level 60 I had over 10k health. I’ve levelled all 4 other tank classes and never had that dramatic of a health pool… it’s a bit of an odd feeling.
- Because of the high health pools we have, Touch of Death is way stronger than it probably should be. Of course, it probably won’t work at all on raid bosses, regardless of respective health pools.
- Spinning Crane Kick is a much cooler than it should be. I mean seriously. Just awesomesauce.
- Crackling Jade Lightning doesn’t fit very well into a tank or melee DPS’ toolkit. I’m not sure what the plan is for it… I haven’t tried Mistweaver, so it could be much more prevalent with them.
- Some of the talents related to monks are pretty amazing. Every tier thus far has had a choice that I could legitimately see individuals having a need for. VERY well done thus far. (And there’s still two “Mystery Talents” left in the trees)
- Blackout kick feels weird to me, as a tank. I’m sure it will find a much better place once I get into content that isn’t being blistered through by heirloomed monks all over the place, but it just feels… awkward right now. I think it’s far more useful for DPS monks as a whole, whereas tanks may only use it when it’s chi-free.
- Chi and Energy as a dual resource system isn’t nearly as confusing as I initially thought it was going to be. Once you get in and play with it for 5-10 minutes, it makes sense.
- Conversely, I *AM* confused about the concept of Chi spheres, especially from the perspective of a tank (I touched on this in my level 70 video, about the 5:45 mark, if you’re interested)
Now, I say this a lot (and it STILL bears repeating), but realize this is still pretty damn early in the beta, so a lot of these things may be changed completely. Numbers (such as how much damage an ability is doing, or how much health I have) could change almost every day if Blizz were so inclined. BUT, i think they have the general feel of how the class will play, and I enjoy it a lot. Hell, in about a week’s time i’ve made it up to level 73… on the beta… yea, i’m a bit crazy.
Initially, I didn’t plan on doing the post-85 content, but with my monk levelling as fast as he is, I may try out some of the first zone anyway. I honestly haven’t decided at this point. My main reason for staying out of the new content has been “OMG MILLIONS OF EVERYONE EVERYWHERE AUGH”… but as the beta wears on, people are going to out-level that area, and some will just lose interest in the beta altogether for not wanting to spoil content before launch. Both of those factored into my decision to play a dwarf monk instead of a panda. I’ve seen little bits and pieces of the new areas, and good lord are they crowded. Crowded areas in the beta are not very conducive to actually TESTING OUT a class (which was my intention from the moment I received my beta invite), so I went with somewhere I knew would not be crowded… Besides, the idea of a dwarf monk is just damn cool. If you can’t be a panda brewmaster, why not be a dwarven brewmaster right?