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 Leveling 11-20

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Udonn Thanii
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PostSubject: Leveling 11-20   Sat Jan 03, 2009 4:42 pm

I. Levels 11 & 12
You get upgrades to Strike of Skamadiz and Spirit Strike at level 12. These are great but hardly what should excite you. The damage increase on Strike of Skamadiz won?t win many fights for you with its refresh time. Just drop it on your tool bar in place of the previous one (you cannot chain the new and older versions, so there is zero reason to have the old one on your tool bar). While Spirit Strike III upgrades your damage, it costs more energy. Trying to chain it in a fight could prevent you from healing yourself or your group until you have a few more levels on your belt. You get one other spell that is very useful and a new spirit bond that will be of frequent use.

Hero?s Call - This spell allows you to summon your group members into a dungeon from within the chunk. This saves an immense amount of waiting or backtracking for group members who logged on after the group entered the dungeon and is a defining trait of all healer classes. Just be aware that it does not always make sense when it does and does not work. For instance, you CAN summon into the Angoer Bunker in Qalia (a place where you wouldn?t fight), but you CANNOT summon into Gataro Hold in Kojan (when you really need to).

Weak Spirit Bond: Krigus - This bond lasts one hour and reduces the cost of all spells and skills by 5%. Over the long haul of healing in a group, this can mean a lot. For solo, you might be better served with Skamadiz. Remember that you can only use one bond at time.

II. Levels 13 & 14
Level 14 provides much-needed upgrades to Infusion and Oracle?s Sight. You also get upgrades to Restoration and Flesh Rot. The former is a bigger slow heal. I don?t think I have ever used it. The latter adds damage to your disease DoT, but the cost is somewhat prohibitive to use on every mob at this point. I stuck with the older version for a while after level 14. The remainder of the spells and skills are very exciting:

Hammer of Krigus I - This skill uses endurance to deliver a blow to your opponent that does physical damage and debuffs strength and constitution. This skill can be chained with Strike of Skamadiz and will become your opening move when you move into melee range. Using it turns on auto-attack.

Boon of Boqobol - This is a spell that grants 30 minutes of underwater breathing. We can only hope it gets extended to a full hour like other Shaman buffs.

Ancestor?s Gift I - This is the Shaman?s group heal. It heals a single shot of roughly 500 HP (factor in VIT and healing focus) to all group members within 10m.

Panacea I - Use this spell for squishies in the group. It first heals roughly 340 HP. It also places a rune on the target for 4 seconds to prevent damage and let the tank regain aggro. It can be used once per target every 30 seconds.

Weak Spirit Bond: Nag-Suul - This bond increases spell damage by 15%, a nice trick for Shamans who like to chain cast.

III. Level 15
This may well be the most significant level for any Shaman. It is at level 15 when you perform your Spirit Walk to choose among the three patrons:

Hayatet, the spirit of fire and rebirth
Rakurr, the spirit of speed and agility
Tuurgin, the spirit of strength and rage
Completing the patron quests is not overly hard, and the rewards are incredible. You gain a pet, new spells, and new skills. Keep in mind that the selection is permanent. Hayatet favors players who like to nuke a lot or who want to add damage through a pet. Rakurr is a solid choice for mobility and melee haste. Tuurgin grants melee buffs and provides a pet thank can tank in a pinch.

Your Spirit Walk culminates with you learning a skill specific to your patron. Every level thereafter, you can Spirit Walk with your patron by using this skill to see if you learn new spells and abilities. This allows the Shaman to learn some things without have to stop the grind to visit a trainer! To see what spells you get with the different patrons, see our Shaman spells list.

IV. Levels 16-20
Most of the spells and abilities from trainers at these levels are upgrades to older ones. Most damage spells are not very cost effective when you first learn them. Yes, they help you kill faster, but you finish the fight with less energy than if you kept the older nukes on your tool bar. The melee skills are of the replace the old one with the new one variety and only make good sense. You will gain a new quick heal, too.

Other spells of note include the following::

Ritual of Sacrifice I - Convert 80 HP into 40 energy. I might be effective at generating enough energy to cast one more heal in a desperate fight.

Life Ward I - This is a key aspect of the Shaman class when it comes to healing. The spell heals for a medium amount when first cast on a target. It also places a healing ward that lasts for for up to one hour or until it heals 500 points of damage at 50 points per attack. This means the spell can be used reactively in the heat of battle when a squishy gets aggro or pro-actively as a drive-by buff or on your own group to save from having to heal the melee who gets temporary aggro.

V. Soloing
Levels 11-15
The Shaman is decent at soloing up to level 15. The ability to heal yourself will mean that you can find any old place with 2dot dark blue to yellow mobs. My Shaman grew up on Kojan and spent a lot of the low teens in Blighted Lands and the Tomb of Lord Tsang.

Melee: Form a bond with Skamadiz and buff up. Set yourself as your defensive target and pull with Flesh Rot at maximum range and get off Hoarfrost as the mob approaches. Use Winter?s Roar if you need to to freeze the mob in place while you backpedal. When the mob reaches you, open your melee with Hammer of Krigus to debuff it. Then follow with Strike of Skamadiz. By the time Krigus is ready again, You should need to restart the DoTs if the mob has a lot of health left.

Nuking: Form a bond with Krigus or Nag-Suul and buff up. Set yourself as your defensive target and pull with Flesh Rot at maximum range and get off Hoarfrost as the mob approaches. Use Winter?s Roar when possible to allow you a chance to get off at least one Spirit Strike before the mob reaches you. Try to keep your skill with your weapon trained up enough so that you can land Hammer of Krigus and Strike of Skamadiz for extra damage. Keep an eye on your energy reserves for heals.

Levels 16-20
Once you have your patron, things change quite a bit. Now it is not uncommon for you to solo 3dot mobs around your level. My specific advice about the pet is to set it to Always Assist you. As a Tuurgin Shaman, I usually cast one of my DoTs first, which sends in the bear. Then I use the bear?s specific ability to capture aggro. Please note that your slow spell does not count as attacking the mob where your pet is concerned.

Even Hayatet and Rakurr Shaman report good results with the pet tanking so long as they manage their damage output. The Hayatet Shaman will need to kill quicker because the pet is somewhat frail. Rakurr Shamans can always run away at tip-top speeds.

VI. Grouping
Everyone loves buffs and heals. You have both, You can find groups. Keep in mind that your first goal is likely to keep the group healed. Let damage output slide down on your list of priorities. The solo strategies outlined above mostly apply in groups, too. Just be sure to have a setup that lets you heal quickly. Some custom UIs have quick heal tool bars. I have macros to help me quickly target a few key people (my pet, the tank, and me).

In groups without a tank, Tuurgin Shamans can tank if the damage in the group can stay their blades/spells until the pet has a firm grip on aggro. Even Rakurr Shamans might be able to tank 3dots for the group with the wolf pet. Most Hayatet Shamans tell me that they generally let a melee tank if the real deal is not available and focus on healing and damage.

As for locations to level, that depends on the makeup of the group. My Kojan groups spent a ton of time in the Jin?Ka Forest. Lord Tsang?s Tomb (the dungeon) is also very popular on that continent. Adventurers in Qalia frequent Ksaravi Gulch and Tauthien Delta on their way to 20. Thestran-bound adventurers talk a lot about Vault of Heroes, Veskal?s Exchange, and Three Rivers (missives).
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