Posted by: Kro | April 7, 2010

Cataclysm Class Preview: Shaman

So our first class preview for Cataclysm has been released.

Some of the interesting notes are a targeted aoe for elemental (earthquake) and a targeted 2 second cast 10 second duration/cooldown healing aoe.. “Healing Rain”. (Incoming chocolate rain macros.) Another interesting ability is Spiritwalkers grace. This is a 10 second duration, 2 minute cooldown, ability for all shaman specs to cast while moving. I can think of a few situations I’d like this ability on any of my healers even the druid now and then.

The most interesting “new” spell to me is the spirit link. You may remember this idea as the precursor to riptide. It acted like the spell in Zangarmarsh that the broken use where you must do damage enough to kill them both before you could kill one. This would be a fantastic ability for resto shaman as an external cooldown that would save a tank from being one shot in a huge attack. I can also imagine the fun of linking some poor soul to our resident moonkin, Talisman the Voidstander.

I imagine this spell either giving a passive small effect or an activated large effect on cooldown.

This is just me speculating now, but imagine something along the lines of beacon of light. You have your Spirit Link spell cast on the tank for 1 minute, only instead of transferring all heals to the target it transfers 10 or 20% of damage taken from another character you cast a different spell on. Maybe even have earth shield act as the main target and your spirit link target gets linked to your earth shield target. 

Another option could be a 10 second duration on a 2 minute cooldown spell. You can have Spirit Link on two targets at a given time and they each transfer 50% of all damage they recieve to the other. Imagine the final steelbreaker last tanks damage taken split to two tanks.

As far as Spirit Link goes, I won’t get my hopes up just yet. It was dangled above us shaman in BC and swiftly scrapped due to being “hard to balance and a little confusing”. Confusing to who? Likely, confusing to code, I believe was the excuse given to us at the time.. but then again I point to the broken in Zangarmarsh.

Blizzard is carefully dancing around spirit link. They use “likely, in some form, the idea is, we are trying to bring this back” all in the same paragraph description.

I’ll give spirit link 2.0 a  30% chance of survival.

Though the shaman class preview makes me skeptical, it was still very interesting and I’m eagerly awaiting the preview for the 5 classes I actively play.



  1. […] What could shamans use spirit link for? Kro has some neat ideas, but only gives it a 30% chance to actually make it live on release day. [Known As Kro] […]

  2. I dont know how they could implement Spirit Link to work the way it does for the Broken without it being clunky.

    If they made it a link between the shaman and the target then it’s just a clone of Hand of Sacrifice. If they allow you to Link 2 raid members then you have to do multiple clicks, which would pretty much require macros in order to make it a quicker process.

    I picture it more as being a reverse beacon. Put it on the tank and, say, 50% of the damage he would have taken is spread evenly to his 5 nearest party/raid members.

    eg: 1000 damage hit -> the Spirit Link target takes 500 damage and the 5 nearest raid members take 100 damage each.

    This also plays along well with Chain heal/Healing rain, especially in a small group situation.

  3. Right, I keep falling back on the beacon/vigilance relation because I think the need to target multiple people to set up the link is what makes it clunky.

    I don’t belive for a second theyd make it link with the shaman like sacrifice because then no one would ever use it.

    I’m hoping first it makes it live, and secondly that it fills in the external tank cooldown shamans and druids are lacking.

  4. Same here…I’m thinking that it could be setup to be used in a similar fashion to Pain Suppression.

    It would be really cool if they made 100% of the damage taken by the target for the next however many seconds is spread through all raid members within 40yds.

    Then just toss a healing rain over a spot and have as much of the raid jump under it. Combined with priest and druid AoE heals, you could mitigate LOTS of damage.

  5. […] another shaman blogger that I’ve somehow missed, Known as Kro gives some special attention to Spirit Link. Still not a certain thing for Resto, I think this spell deserves a lot more attention and Kro runs […]

  6. […] out other exciting links from WordPress Illumination, Known as Kro and Azure […]

  7. Spirit Link would be an amazing move for PvP situations, especially Arena 2s and 3s. Imaging in 2s, if the shaman is getting jumped by double dps. Spirit Link on Partner. That relieves so much pressure off the shaman. and in 3s, but link the two partners together to weaken the chance of the other team burning one down fast.
    Spirit Link = GG

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