Saturday, August 20, 2016

Legion Brewmaster FAQ: All (some) of Your Questions Answered!

Hello friends! In light of Legion coming just around the corner, and with the ever increasing number of people asking questions, I thought it'd be cool to make a FAQ list for anyone interested in playing a Brewmaster once August 30th hits! Without further ado, let's get into it!

1) I've seen a bunch of tanking tier lists that say Brewmasters are near / at the bottom. Are they still going to be viable in Legion?

So first off, the big thing you need to know about those lists is that they are pretty much only really relevant to top 100 world players, where they are tackling content when severely under-geared for it. This is the point where baseline power of the spec is going to really matter. Even then, there's times where the unexpected spec is actually dominant, like when the world first Heroic Garrosh kill was solo-healed by a Holy Priest.

For the vast majority of players, even those who are progressing in Mythic content, comfort with the spec is going to matter more. The biggest thing with Brewmasters is that you need to understand the spec in order to really be decent with it, arguably more so than other tanks. So if you're interested in playing Brewmaster in progression and you aren't in a top 100 world guild, get to practicing! You've got just about a month before raids open up, starting this week. If you don't know where to start, you can always check out my guide: Wowhead*cough* shameless self-promotion *cough*

2) How should I spend my Artifact Points?

There isn't really one unviersal route (as it's very personal) and to an extent a specific build isn't even really necessary as you will eventually get all the traits, but this is the one that I am going to be using, come Legion:

This build is one I made to try and balance spending points to get what I feel are the more important, reliable defensive and utility-oriented perks with as few points as possible. If you're interested in figuring out your own path, I'd highly recommend checking out Wowhead's Artifact Calculator!

I mainly intended this route to be for raiding. If you want to do high end Mythic+ content instead, I'd actually recommend taking Sixth pass after your Second pass, as Fortification enables some pretty strong potential for handling a lot of enemies at once if you use it intelligently in combination with Elusive Dance. Again, your build order is ultimately up to you and you should realistically be able to get  a very solid chunk of these before raiding and Mythic+ proper begins anyway.

3) How does Gift of the Ox Work? I heard that the lower health you are the more effective it is.

So Gift of the Ox USED to work that way. However, that hasn't been the case since May, about three months ago as of the time of writing. As said here:

"It's (Gift of the Ox) no longer a random chance, under the hood. When you are hit, it increments a counter by (DamageTakenBeforeAbsorbsOrStagger / MaxHealth). It now drops an orb whenever that reaches 1.0, and decrements it by 1.0. The tooltip still says ‘chance’, to keep it understandable. Gift of the Mists multiplies that counter increment by (2 - (HealthBeforeDamage - DamageTakenBeforeAbsorbsOrStagger) / MaxHealth); ie, a simple linear 0-100% increase based on missing health, counting the hit as a full hit."
Or in other words, when you take 100% of your health in damage, before absorbs or stagger, you will spawn an orb. The "lower health, more effective" gameplay has been made into an optional talent, Gift of the Mists. And really, even then, I think it's probably better to look at it more like you don't NEED to be at low health for it to be useful, it's just that the lower your health is on average and the more damage you take, the more effective your means of reversing that will be. But I suppose that's just a perspective thing. Either way, it's not something to worry about unless you opt into it... and you really don't need to opt into it if you don't want to. For most content you're probably going to want to use the brew-related talents on that tier anyway.

4) Are Brewmasters going to be viable for PvP?

Oh, yeah! While I personally don't partake too much myself, I've heard quite a few stories about Brewmasters being able to do very well in battlegrounds. Plus, if you check our PvP Talents, you'll find a lot of really cool goodies in there (say hello again to Guard!). This is probably one of the best times to play Brewmasters in PvP. Heck, even I'll probably get into it a bit, and I haven't really PvPed in earnest since TBC!

5) I've played Brewmasters for a long time, but I just don't think I like the new playstyle. What tank should I play?


In seriousness, I completely understand this question because the spec has definitely undergone some pretty big changes this iteration. I'm still in love, but I get why others might be turned off. Vengeance Demon Hunters are actually relatively similar to the old Warlords era Brewmaster, so I'd give them a shot. Go check out Sunnier's Blog for more details on them.

6) Are we going to be good at soloing content?

Brewmasters have very little in the way of self-healing. We've got Gift of the Ox, but that spawns roughly once every full healthbar. We've got a couple self-healing talents, but even then, we're not as well-off as other tanks. Once we get Obstinate Determination things will be better, though I don't think it will change extremely drastically. If you want to get leather gear for your Monk from Warlords content, get a Vengeance Demon Hunter. Anything below Warlords content though should be fine to solo on your Brewmaster.

That about wraps it up. As always if you have questions don't hesitate to ask! Thanks for reading, and I'll see you guys and gals on the Wandering Isle come the 30th!


  1. Thank you =)! I was looking for some more information about the way to skill my future weapon and finally was able to find it on your site ^^

  2. There is so much trash on the internet about what you should and should not do... I found your artifact points chart to be very clear and easy to follow. I do not have time to be a high end raider anymore, so I appreciate the easy to follow suggestions. I am currently gearing up via world quests as I do not feel as powerful as I did tanking in WoD. I am still pissed that blizz took Gaurd away from us. GG

  3. What is the best alliance race for brewmasters?

    1. It really doesn't matter. Something like this is only truly relevant to top 100 world guilds and even they don't min-max it. But night elf.