How to Moonkin or Which Laser Should I Press Now??
Moonkin is one of the coolest specs in the game. With the ability to nuke an opponent, heal your teammates, or just apply aoe pressure, the class with the best crowd control in the game offers us the chance to bring a lot of utility, while still bringing the damage. Let’s start with the basics:
As a new moonkin, you’ll want to know what some of the basics to the spec are. Here are some of the most important spells and abilities:
Starsurge: This is our bread and butter nuke spell. Hardcasting this anytime it’s off cool down is pretty much always a good idea and we have a chance at getting instant, no mana cost procs from dot damage to cast it again. Lining up a nice SS hard cast into a SS proc can be some really nice burst.
Moonkin Form: Shifting into form reduces your damage taken by 15%, increase your damage by 10%, and give 5% haste to you and everyone around you – pretty awesome. Try and stay in moonkin as much as possible, especially with the new glyph that allows you to heal in form. Leaving form to heal is only a good idea if you’re going to die otherwise or you can line of sight incoming damage (losing the 15% damage reduction is huge)
Eclipse: This is the most important mechanic for being a lazer chicken and ensuring max damage. When you first enter arena, your eclipse bar is in “neutral”, or right in the center. If you cast a wrath, it will move towards lunar first. If you cast a starfire it will move towards solar first. Generally speaking, wrath and starfire work opposite of each other. SS will always move you towards whichever direction you’re currently going EXCEPT when you first start an arena in neutral – in this instance, if you cast it BEFORE you cast a wrath or starfire it will always move towards solar.
What if I can’t cast you ask??? How will I ever see this amazing eclipse you speak of?? Never fear, I have alternatives for you. First off, our PvP 2 piece set bonus (bonus for having at least 4 of the 5 main set pieces) is setup so that when you get hit with a critical strike, you have a chance to gain 20 energy heading towards the direction you are currently going – it has an internal cool down, but you can get to eclipse pretty fast if you’re being trained. We also have a great new ability called Astral Communion that allows you to gain energy towards you eclipse while channeling. But how can I channel while running around for my life you ask? Fear not, because our new 4 piece allows us to channel it while moving! Lots of great tools for getting that big damage.
So why does someone want to get into eclipse? Solar and lunar eclipse each add damage to some of your spells. Take a look below for specifics:
Solar Eclipse: Increases damage to SS, Wrath, Sunfire, Wild Mushrooms, Hurricane
Lunar Eclipse: Increases damage to SS, Starfire, Moonfire, Starfall, Astral Storm (same function as Hurricane)
So anytime you hit an eclipse, you want to ensure that you have your dot ticking (Moonfire or Sunfire), cast SS on cd, pop Starfall if you’re in Lunar, and ideally cast Starfires (lunar) or Wraths (solar) into your target (assuming you aren’t tanking two melee’s with a lot of interrupts available. There is much more to the nuances, but we’ll get to that shortly – this is just the basics of your “rotation”
Solarbeam: This spell is what makes us super annoying to the other team. By casting roots and immediately following it up with a Solarbeam on a healer, they are effectively stuck in the beam silenced for 8 seconds till the root ends. Having the ability to follow it up with a second roots is key – and if you are playing with a mage, being able to drop this on top of frozen targets is amazing for catching multiple casters at once. Sometimes, even without roots it’s really great to drop on a healer behind boxes, forcing him to step into the open to heal and opening him up to giant CC chains. Being on just a one minute cd makes this a really sick spell.
What makes this spell really special, is the ability to use it defensively that many people don’t fully appreciate. A frost DK standing in it does almost no damage, a Ret can’t CC you or do many of his damaging abilities and well placed beam around boxes (like Dalaran Arena) can allow you to really mess up burst from casters as well. Don’t be afraid to drop it on a melee thats on you and stand in it if you need to relieve some pressure.
Owlkin Frenzy: This talent is really nice for when you’re getting focused to allow you to do more damage. A straight 10% damage increase is nothing to laugh at, and the immunity to pushback is huge if the other team doesn’t have an interrupt available – you can nuke away!
Lunar Shower: This talent really gives us the ability to keep doing damage while moving and not go OOM. By spamming moonfire or sunfire on a target, you build up three stacks to do more damage and the spell costs very little. It’s not the best damage you can do, but helps a lot when you are forced to kite.
Wild Mushroom: Detonate: This allows you to blow up the mushrooms you place doing AOE damage. But what is more important is the 50% slow that is put on the ground for 20 secs. for 8 yards around each mushroom. Great for kiting, slowing an escaping enemy or peeling for your team.