Brewmaster Monk Guide – 5.4
The Brewmaster Monk is now firmly seated as a viable tank in the World of Warcraft. Although they just happen to tank mobs a bit differently than the other tanking classes.
Because of gear limitations the Brewmaster does not mitigate damage as effectively as other classes. Due to this they are dependent on stance (Stance of the Sturdy Ox) as well as Stagger.
Shuffle is a direct result of the Brewmaster ability Blackout Kick. Each use of the Blackout Kick ability triggers Shuffle which in turn grants an additional 20% to the Parry ability. Shuffle also allows Stagger to turn an additional 20% of the incoming damage to be damage over time. Up until this point the Brewmaster now has +20% to Parry and suffers 60% of the incoming damage, and turns the remaining 40% of the damage into a 10 second DOT. And that my friends bring us to the beauty of Purifying Brew.
Purifying Brew is an active ability which has a Chi cost of 1 and no cooldown. So what is the payoff of using Purifying Brew? It clears all damage currently being affected by Stagger. That’s right; it wipes away any of the damage that has been turned into the 10 second DOT! The Brewmaster might not mitigate damage but it can damn well sure erase some!
One of the cool things about Stagger is it actually a debuff on the tank. Remember that damage is still tick, tick, ticking away. We have to use Purifying Brew to get rid of it. Blizzard was nice enough to color code the Stagger debuff based on the amount of damage it has converted. They have used the simple green, yellow and red system to alert you when to use Purifying Brew.
Stagger: All is good and you are taking 0% damage over time from the Stagger debuff
Stagger:You are taking about 3% of your health per second from the Stagger debuff. Moderate damage here, keep an eye on things. Remember Purifying Brew only cost 1 Chi and has no cooldown. Use it!
Stagger: Thing are getting serious now. You are taking 6% damage per second. Over the life of the 10 second DOT that is basically 60% of your health! It is time to use Purifying Brew. Do it! Do it NOW!
Brewmaster Gear: With the leather specialization afforded to Brewmaster Monks, the 5% endurance is a welcomed stat. Wear leather and leather only.
Brewmaster Stat Priority: Agility is king then – Hit > Expertise > Haste > Crti> Parry > Dodge > Mastery , * Remember Hit to 7.5% and Expertise to 7.5%
Brewmaster Monk Abilities:
The Brewmaster Monk has abilities that are reliant on two different resources. Those being Energy and Chi. With this said, management of both resources is a priority.
Energy based abilities:
Jab: This is your default attack when higher priority attacks are on cooldown. Consider it an energy dump (40) that will generate 1 Chi. No Cooldown
Keg Smash: This is a powerful AoE attack that has the same energy cost as Jab (40). It can hit up to 3 nearby targets. The primary target is also affected with a debuff of Dizzying Haze and Weakened Blow. It generates 2 Chi and should be used every time it is up. 8 second cooldown.
Expel Harm: This ability heals you and deals damage to the enemy. The damage is based on the amount healed. It also has the same energy cost Jab and generates 1 Chi. This ability has a 15 second cooldown. NOTE* It only deals damage if it can heal you as well, at full health it will only grant Chi. Below 35% health, no cooldown.
Dizzying Haze: This is a targeted AoE ability that has long range, high threat and does no damage. It does snare all affected targets and will not break crowd control. It applies a 50% movement speed reduction and a 3% miss.
NOTE* The spell animation moves slowly toward the mobs, to hit a moving target, aim ahead of where they are.
Spinning Crane Kick: This ability does AoE damage in a small 360 degree area around the tank. SCK does damage and generates 1 Chi. No cooldown.
Chi based abilities:
Tiger Palm: It has no cost to use. Do not choose this over higher priority abilities if you have the choice. This is your basic tiller ability.
Blackout Kick: It costs 2 Chi and grants Shuffle. BK and Purifying Brew will be your primary Chi costing abilities. Use often but not at the expense of Purifying Brew.
Purifying Brew: I will go out on a limb and proclaim this your most important tanking ability! It has a cost of 1 Chi and has no cooldown. Because PB will clear all of your Stagger damage it’s important that you use this frequently. Try not to purify too soon, because it will waste that precious Chi. Mastery of PB will be the difference between poor Brewmaster tanks and awesome Brewmaster tanks. Timing is everything.
Breath of Fire: Costs 2 Chi and does AoE damage. This ability is perfect for getting the attention of a group of targets. It is a cone based effect so targets need to be in front of you. Watch your Chi and have Dizzying Haze on your targets prior to using BoF. You probably won’t use this too often.
Other Brewmaster Monk Abilities:
Fortifying Brew: This is the Brewmaster Monk version of Shield Wall/Icebound Fortitude, it has a 3 minute cooldown. It increases health, and Stagger by 20% as well as reducing damage by 20%. This is your “OH Sh*t” button and it lasts a whopping 20 seconds. With Stagger up you will need to use Purifying Brew right after FB.
Guard: This ability costs 2 Chi and allows you to absorb damage (magic damage too!). It scales directly with your attack power and has a 30 second cooldown. It boosts self healing by 30%. Due to the self healing boost this ability should be followed by Expel Harm.
Elusive Brew: Consumes Elusive Brew stacks that are awarded from auto attack critical strikes. Once used, your dodge is increased by 30% for a duration that equals the number of stacks in seconds. You can gain up to 15 EB stacks and it is important to avoid clipping a previous use. With a 9 second cooldown you should be wise in its use.
Avert Harm: It is a simple damage redirect from the raid too the tank. It has a small radius, a 3 minute cooldown and lasts for 6 seconds. You can Stagger AH damage so Purifying Brew will be the natural follow up. Use AV responsibly it can be a raid wiper if used wrong.
Zen Meditation: A channeled spell that has a 90% damage reduction. It has a 3 minute cooldown and lasts 8 seconds. Being a channeled spell this might be best used by offtanks during dragon breath style attacks or those causing heavy AoE damage.
Nimble Brew: The new 5.2 ability – It removes Stun, Fear and Root effects. Very useful in a raiding enviornment.
The down and dirty on the rest of the Brewmaster Monk abilities/spells:
Roll: Burst movement (think Sprint) that has two charges that build up over time.
Provoke: Taunt! It is your taunt that has a special twist. Your targets run faster toward you. Remember they get to you sooner and they will hit you sooner.
Summon Black Ox Statue: It will occasionally put a shield on group members when you deal 50% of your health in damage. These shields are equal in power to your Guard ability, and last 30 seconds. Use it and use it often! Careful of its aggro!
Clash: Charge with a twist! You move to the target and the target moves to you meeting in the middle. It has a 35 second cooldown and has an AoE stun for everything around you and the targeted mob! Instant cast with no minimum range and does not cost Chi or energy. Almost useless on a boss.
Spear Hand Strike: Interrupt on a 15 sec cooldown. Targets facing you are silenced for 4 seconds. No cost. Use it often.
Legacy of the Emperor: Monk Buff! Wewt! +5% to the primary stat of you and your party members.
Brewmaster Monk Build
Brewmaster Monk Rotation / Spell Priority:
Range pull with Dizzying Haze (AoE) or Provoke (single target)
1. Black Ox Statue (Can be used as AoE taunt by using Provoke)
2. Keg Smash on cooldown.
3. Blackout Kick (sets and refreshes Shuffle)
4. Purifying Brew to clear Stagger stacks @ yellow or red.
5. Elusive Brew if it is above 10 stacks and you are low on health.
6. Guard on cooldown or saved for big incoming damage.
7. Jab to build Chi or Expel Harm to manage Energy.
8. Tiger Palm as filler
Multiple Targets (AoE)
1. Dizzying Haze on all targets.
2. Keg Smash on cooldown.
3. Blackout Kick with Purifying Brew to manage incoming damage.
4. Spinning Crane Kick to manage Energy.
5. Breath of Fire for damage boost or Expel Harm for more healing/damage.
Reforge for Hit and Expertise to cap. Then follow priority.
Brewmaster Glyphs - Glyph of Leer of the Ox , Glyph of Touch of Death and Glyph of Fortifying Brew. Everything else depends on the situation, be flexible with Glyphs as a Brewmaster tank.
Brewmaster Gems - Hit and Expertise till cap then Quick (Haste) in all slots – Meta Gems: Agile
Chest – Glorious Stats or Superior
Cloak – Accuracy or Greater ProtectionStamina
Shoulder – Greater Tiger Claw Inscription
Bracers – Greater Agility
Gloves – Superior Expertise or Greater Haste
Belt – Living Steel Belt Buckle
Legs – Shadowleather Leg Armor
Boots – Blurred Speed
Weapon – some are suggesting Dancing Steel
Flasks – Flask of the Earth or Flask of Spring Blossoms most will opt for the Agility.
Elixirs – Monk’s Elixir followed by either Mantid Elixir or Elixir of Mirrors. Know the fight and choose accordingly for physical or magic heavy fights.
Potion – Know the fight and choose what is best for the situation. Virmen’s Bite for avoidance or Potion of the Mountains for armor.
Food – Chun Tian Spring Rolls and Sea Mist Rice Noodles
In a hurry to get that newborn Pandaren Monk to max level? Take a look at the highly recommended leveling guide from X-elerated Guides.
This Brewmaster Monk Guide 5.4 will be changing/updated as needed. For additional information you might be interested in this Brewmaster Monk Guide.
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