In the new raid Blackrock Foundry we will finally be able to get our spanking new tier gear; Battlegear of the Somber Gaze. Here I’ll discuss some aspects of the tier to give you an all-round look on the new gear.
Normal-tuned ilvl 665
Head: Helm of the Somber Gaze
Stats: 154 Multistrike, 154 Haste
Token Drop: Kromog (The Black Forge, Blackrock Foundry)
Shoulders: Mantle of the Somber Gaze
Stats: 116 Multistrike, 116 Mastery
Token Drop: Operator Thogar (Iron Assembly, Blackrock Foundry)
Chest: Vest of the Somber Gaze
Stats: 135 Critical Strike, 165 Haste
Token Drop: Flamebender Ka’graz (The Black Forge, Blackrock Foundry)
Legs: Legwraps of the Somber Gaze
Stats: 165 Critical Strike, 135 Multistrike
Token Drop: The Blast Furnace (Slagworks, Blackrock Foundry)
Gloves: Handwraps of the Somber Gaze
Stats: 116 Critical Strike, 116 Mastery
Token Drop: Iron Maidens (Iron Assembly, Blackrock Foundry)
2 Set Bonus Discussion
2-set bonus (Mistweaver): Every time your Soothing Mist heals a target your multistrike chance is increased by 5%. Consuming a 5 stack of Vital Mists generates 1 Chi.
Let’s deal with the Serpent stance part of the bonus first. This one I have tested on the Beta. The gist is that every time your Soothing Mist does a healing tick, you get a buff called “Mistweaving” that gives you 5% more multistrike, which stacks. At the eighth tick, you are up at 40% more multistrike, but the buff disappears as soon as you stop channeling Soothing Mist. You’ll only have the 40% for a fraction of a second (if you can even see it, most likely you’ll only notice the 30-35% stack).
The 2-set bonus is strong for multiple reasons. The first is of course a very strong boost in tank-healing, since you’ll often channel the full cast of Soothing Mist when healing a tank. But since the departure from snapshotting, the 2-set bonus will also affect AoE healing. Let me explain.
Pre-WoD, once you cast a spell that had a periodic time effect (a HoT or a DoT), that spell will be based on the current primary and secondary stats when the spell was cast (which remains the full length of the periodic effect). Very skilled players used this to cast out especially strong DoTs and HoTs once their trinkets or others buffs procced. Blizzard removed this because the skill ceiling was too high and the mechanic wasn’t very intuitive.
In WoD, periodic effects are now dynamic. Each tick will check your current stats and base themselves on that. If a trinket suddenly procs, any active periodic effect will base their ticks on the new higher stats. There’s no need for highly skilled snapshotting, the periodic effects will automatically change to your new stats for you.
For the Mistweaver 2-set bonus, it means that while we cast Soothing Mist and get high stacks of “Mistweaving”, our currently active Renewing Mists, Enveloping Mists, and Xuen’s damage and healing will also gain the high multistrike chance. This is how the set bonus can also affect our AoE healing.
Haste will also affect our 2-set bonus, since it changes how Soothing Mist works. You will not gain extra ticks from haste on SoM, it’ll only be a faster cast. That means you’ll have less active time of each stack, but on the other hand you’ll build up to the higher stacks of Mistweaving faster. Since you’re probably not stacking haste, it doesn’t really make it better or worse.
It also has a Crane stance part, which gives us one Chi each time we consume 5 stacks of Vital Mists. This means that it shortens the time we have to be in Crane stance to get X stacks of Mana Tea, which is a great boost!
4 Set Bonus Discussion
4-set bonus (Mistweaver): Surging Mist multistrikes cause your next Thunder Focus Tea to generate 1 Chi. Stacks up to 2 times.
This set bonus is a little more intuitive. When Surging Mist multistrikes (which it does quite often) you’ll get a buff called “Chi-Ji’s Guidance”, which stacks up to two times. Each stack will cause your next Thunder Focus Tea cast to also generate one Chi, meaning you’ll get two Chi if you have two stacks.
The bonus will basically give you an extra charge of Chi Brew (but TFT instead), with a 45 sec cooldown instead of 1 minute cooldown. Thunder Focus Tea is like Chi Brew usable while channeling Soothing Mist without breaking the cast. Having two extra Chi on demand with less cooldown than Chi Brew is a very powerful and welcome boost.
Once you’ll start raiding in Blackrock Foundry, your first priority is to get the 2-set bonus. Which parts of the gear doesn’t matter until you’re in a position where you can be picky. When you can be picky, you should go for the legs with Crit+Multistrike from the Blast Furnace in Slagworks. Second best is the head with Multistrike+Haste, which drops from Kromog in the Black Forge.
The 4-set is up for debate. While the bonus is good, is it good enough to justify the less than optimal stats on the tier gear pieces? I think that’s a question for every Mistweaver to answer themselves. But I’ll probably start with the 4-set if I’m lucky enough on the rolls (I only have about eight million shamans in my raid to roll against on the token). The fifth piece I’d rule out from the list would be the gloves with Crit+Mastery. Then if I’d get a hold of gear pieces with optimal stats I would test which setup I like best. But I’ll probably go for the 4-set bonus!
EDIT; I have continued the discussion about the 2-set bonus here. You’ll find more in-depth use of the bonus set and a lot of tips and tricks.