The Switch

Join the Army, they said. See the world, they said! I’d rather be sailing!

So my faithful guildies convinced me to learn a second specialization this week. Up until now I have been Marks for 95% of my Wow experience. I tinkered with BM during the BRK era for a while, but then they made Chimera/Serpent Sting the god mode, and I went back to Marksmanship. That was until 2 days ago when we were discussing the Ko’ragh fight in Highmaul. As a guild we don’t have a lot of magic DPS who like to join us in raids, which leads us to a few alternatives. We can PUG in folks which is always a crapshoot. We can level alts, which personally isn’t too fun for me, although my DK is getting there:). Lastly, we can actually look at our other specs and see what benefits they have…

Lo and behold, Survival is pretty much exclusively magic damage. It does all elements to boot. Additionally, the Mastery increases all magic damage you deal. So I did what any good member of the guild does for other members of his guild. I switched, and by switch, I mean learned a second spec.

Up until now I only ever had one spec. Even when they first introduced dual specialization, I didn’t even bother. Marks has always been really appealing to me, and I’ve never been super min/max. I make sure to learn and research gear, rotations, talents, glyphs, etc… but switch just for a bit of extra DPS? Pfft. That’s all well and good until we can’t progress as a guild because we don’t have the necessary tools. So I don’t mind stepping out of my comfort zone in this case.

So I decided to spend the whole raid as survival last night to get used to it, work out my rotations, and get used to pressing a few more hot keys throughout the fight. Survival does have a few extra abilities it uses over Marks. The first fight I didn’t really feel like I was doing a whole lot more since I pulled less DPS than I was used to. We had a clean easy fight though and moved on to fight 2: The Butcher. I was admittedly a bit more comfortable during this fight and there was less movement, but I ended up pulling almost 19K DPS, which was 3K over the first fight.

For the rest of the night there was a significant spike in my overall DPS (21.5K on Ko’ragh), and needless to say, we downed Ko’ragh for the first time (with a little help from some PUGs). He also dropped me some new pants as well.

Ko'ragh Down

I’ll likely still use Marks for a lot of my personal PvE content since it has more healing and has higher damage output on trash, but for raiding I may stick to Survival for awhile. Until Marksmanship gets some love, at which time I’m switching back!

6 thoughts on “The Switch”

  1. Ancksanura,
    I still primarily use MM for raiding except on a few fights, since it’s too much fun for me. With the right UI you shouldn’t need to do much to get everything set up for multiple specs.

  2. Hi Ancksanura, Drack doesn’t do PvP, so I’ll jump in here. I have been rolling as BM and do quite well with it. I’ve not tried arena as SV, but I have done BGs as SV and it is very strong as well. I choose BM since it’s been my main spec since vanilla and I’m just so comfortable with it, plus I only ever do 2v2 double-dps, so the huge burst + execute works out great.

    I think SV is probably the most powerful PvP spec overall right now, but with how close the hunter specs are atm, in terms of PvP viability, I say go with whichever allows you to perform most effectively and have the most fun. 🙂

    This is the build I currently use:!0220102!gnbjNS.

    I think TotH is stronger than Steady Shot for PvP, but I also use this as my PvE spec.

    For SV, I would go with something like this:!0012002!gnbjNS

    • Thanks for the advice Gar! I loved to PVP as BM, and was forced to play MM for the burst at the start – but I ended up really enjoying it. Problem is I’ve played all specs and love them all. And I’d have to get all the gear to see which I perform the best in this season with, as that matters – but I guess I guess I’ll give Survival a shot again and see how it plays. We have a potentially weird 3v3 comp of Frost DK, Holy Pally and X Hunter.

    • Actually after thinking I’ve decided to go BM, you said you were doing well in it – so you vouching for BM is good enough for me 🙂 Would be good not having to change glyphs/talents all the time as well since I’ll be using two specs. Not to mention easy equipment management.

      Drack’s comments on Survival on PVE are very good too – though since my guild has stopped raiding I think I’ll be fine with pugging the odd raid with MM since I’ve already set things up for it. But perhaps next expansion – I’ll need to find a good transmog set with a gun (I feel Survivial needs to be played with a gun).

  3. I’ve been tossing up whether I should to, but since our guild’s weekly raids fell apart not sure if I should bother. Marks still does fairly good DPS. Just wondering though – what do you use for PVP? Many players are using survival for constant DPS however I love the crits and burst damage of marks. BM wasn’t doing too well at the start so I kept that as my leveling / world PVE spec. Wish you could have 3 specs!


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