Latest Brewmaster 5.4 News – Minor Talent Changes, Number Adjustments, and Potential Glyphs

We’ve got some changes to Invoke Xuen and Chi Brew. A nerf to our Tier 16 bonus and Keg Smash, but an upgrade to our legendary tanking cloak. Some exciting glyphs have been datamined. And some Sunnier things!

Minor Talent Changes


Invoke Xuen, the White Tiger’s summoned version of Xuen will no longer taunt off players that are tank-specialized.
For Brewmaster Monks, they now gain Vengeance when Xuen takes damage.

I would much prefer some control over the taunt or a way to turn it off, but this is a little bit better. I’ve been working on Heroic Animus lately, and Xuen’s taunt makes him pull the little mobs off me, which 1) reduces my vengeance, the big reason to have them attacking me, 2) kills Xuen quickly, and 3) risks messing up positioning. Poor dumb tiger just wants to help but ends up hurting instead. :(

EDIT: Blizzard just updated patch notes to say that Xuen will have a pet bar. Hopefully this means we will have control over the taunt! (It’s not on the PTR as of this update, so I can’t check.)

Invoke Xuen, the White Tiger now has a pet control bar for Xuen, and the talent is no longer on global cooldown for all Monk specializations.

Chi Brew

Chi Brew will now also generate stacks of Brew/Teas based on the Monk’s specialization.
Brewmaster: 10 stacks of Elusive Brew

This is a pretty big buff, but the big issues to the talent remain:

  1. The nature of requiring starting at 0 chi to be most effective, Chi Brew is still counter to chi-pooling. As I’ve said before, it’s a skill that novice Brewmasters could use the most, but since it’s a skill they’ll naturally not be attracted to it. Experienced brewmasters will be better at pooling Chi and thus not need it.
  2. Crit builds, which are the most common right now, are already nearing an effective Elusive Brew cap. That is, they often reach 15 stacks before they need to use them. This is especially prevalent during tank swap fights. It would be more useful for a mastery build, since they have slower EB generation.
  3. The one advantage Chi Brew has is at the beginning of a fight, where it enables you to start with full chi and near-full EB. However, Power Strikes does a pretty good job of that while also being good for the rest of the fight.
  4. For optimal use, requires 1) using on cooldown, 2) using at 0 chi, 3) using at <5 EB stacks, and 4) Fitting it between KS/Jab uses and avoiding energy bleed. That’s a lot of micromanagement for a talent that still provides less Chi than its competitors.

Chi Brew might be more attractive if it did chi spheres like power strikes for overflow. I really like the roving all around mechanic for brewmasters, which comes into play with gift of the ox. I think you could set up some cool “I feel smart” mechanics by letting monks use chi-brew, leave 2 or 3 excess chi in the area, and then run over them in time when they feel they need the chi.

Number Adjustments

Keg Smash Nerfed

Keg Smash now deals 18% less damage.

At first, datamining made it appear that Keg Smash was getting a buff, and everyone was confused because it definitely didn’t need more damage. Rest assured, our biggest contributor to our damage is getting a nerf instead. ;)

As someone who’s already bad at dps, I’m a little bummed by a nerf. But I acknowledge that most brewmasters were out-dpsing most other tanks, so we needed a little adjustment to our numbers. This should amount to a dps reduction of 3 to 4.5% (more for AoE dps).

Tier 16 Four Piece Nerfed

Item – Monk T16 Brewmaster 4P Bonus: Purifying Brew also heals you for 15% of the amount of staggered damage cleared. (Down from 30%.)

We always knew the original numbers were very likely to change, so now Blizzard is adjusting them to be more realistic. Don’t fret, the bonus is still good, just less required. The real tragedy here is that we still don’t know what the monk tier is going to look like.

Legendary Tanking Cloak

Qian-Le, Courage of Niuzao traded Dodge for Expertise.

I think both agility tanks were bummed to see our legendary with dodge. Even if dodge isn’t bad, it’s incredibly boring for tanks that are designed to utilize offensive stats. In contrast, expertise is a great stat that we often lack on our native gear. They listened!

The epic item level 600 cloaks were changed to be Unique equipped, rather than Unique.

This change is only for the pre-legendary cloaks, but maybe it could open up the door to having both the tanking cloak and the dps cloak available for us to swap.

New Glyphs

None of these glyphs have been implemented, which means they’re not testable and that they might just be there for internal testing. But we can always get excited.

Glyph of Detox (NYI) – Detox heals your target for x% when it successfully removes a harmful effect.

We’ve had one fight so far where the raid benefits from non-healer dispels. Depending on how good you are at dispelling and how much it heals for, it could be a good situational choice.

Glyph of Expel Harm (NYI) – Expel Harm can now be used on other players, but heals for 0% less.

I’m pretty sure this glyph existed in the beta. It could be good in cases where you’re often at full health but Expel Harm is available. Then you could use it on someone else and it will still deal damage.

Glyph of Fortuitous Spheres (NYI) – Falling below 0% health will automatically summon a healing sphere near you at no cost. This effect cannot occur more often than once every 0 seconds.

This is a really cool glyph that will be incredibly popular for tanks. We already have a lot of good things happen at low health, like Desperate Measures and Zen Sphere, if you choose, so another just makes us even better at recovering from near-death experiences. I worry that it will be approaching required glyph territory, though realistically not every fight risks low health.

Glyph of Nimble Brew (NYI) – Clearing an effect with Nimble Brew heals you for x% of your maximum health.

Similar to Glyph of Detox, it’s another glyph that would be more useful in PvP than PvE. There are two fights in tier 15 where I use Nimble Brew, so a heal could be nice.

Glyph of Rapid Rolling – For 5 sec seconds after using Roll or Chi Torpedo, your next Roll or Chi Torpedo will go 30% farther.

I’m a little concerned for anything that increases the distance of Roll because I get really used to the distance it does now, and increasing the distance would just as likely result in my rolling back into danger of some sort. However, that’s probably why it’s a completely optional glyph!

Sunnier Things

I updated my Brewmaster Guide to have cool menus. Which was actually pretty simple but it involved a small amount of custom CSS and positioning is scary. I’ve wanted to make it more usable for a long time, and this is the first step in that process. I tried to make it work well for most resolutions, but if something looks funny please let me know.

As for more exciting news, I’m starting a podcast with a few people from Convert to Raid. It will be called “Monk Meditation” and recorded via Google Hangouts (which means I’ll have to be presentable). I think it will turn into something like Team Waffle Podcast, where we’ll talk about recent events in WoW and how they relate to Monks of all flavors, as well as raid strategies. I’m the brewmaster representative, and they’ll have other people for Mistweavers and Windwalkers (I’m really looking forward to hearing about those!). We actually have some podcast veterans as hosts, so we aren’t starting out completely in the dark.

Episode 0, which will be recorded next Tuesday July 16 at 5pm PT, will be a dry run and not a real show. I have a feeling that most of it will feature us figuring out how to use Google Hangouts. I haven’t made a big deal of the podcast yet because I want to wait until we actually have something to show for our efforts. A lot of community efforts (blogs, podcasts, etc) fail early so I don’t want to get people’s hopes up. Once we do have something up, I’ll post about it here on my blog and twitter.