Since Panda’s finished his first series on his thoughts for Legion, I figured I’d add my own. Since I tend to air on the simpler side of things, I’m going to simply look at the spells, talents, legendaries, and artifact traits individually. I’ll include some personal thoughts on the changes and how they effect Windwalkers.
First up is the abilities found in the spellbook. Some have been changed, others removed completely.
Spinning Crane Kick – Formerly Spinning Crane Kick. This is one of the biggest changes going into Legion. Rather than costing energy and generating Chi, now it costs 3 Chi. It gains 50% damage for each unique target you hit with Tiger Palm, Blackout Kick, or during the previous 15s. Its currently unclear how this will exactly be used, we’ll definitely cover it more specifically closer to Legion’s release when things become more clear.
Storm, Earth, and Fire – Formerly Storm, Earth, and Fire and Tigereye Brew, with some additional modification. This is the other large change going into Legion. They’ve removed the individual control and summoning of the spirits. You will always be the Storm (blue) spirit. It now has two charges and a 1.5min cooldown, functioning as our large DPS increasing cooldown. Casting it once will summon the Fire and Earth spirits, if there are multiple targets they will jump to the targets and begin attacking them. Their first priority is tagging multiple targets for Spinning Crane Kick stacks, prioritizing the target you’re attacking last. However, if there are only 2 or 3 targets, they will attack and stick to their target. Pressing the button a second time will cause them to converge on your current target and remain there until that target dies or the buff runs out.
Touch of Death – Formerly Touch of Death. It has moved from a finisher to an opener of sorts, we’ll definitely want to be using this basically on cooldown. It is modified by the artifact trait, Gale Burst which will make its use much more intricate, lining it up with other major CDs for maximum effect. Despite what the tooltip says, it currently does 50% of your health, increased by mastery.
Mastery: Combo Strikes – Formerly Mastery: Bottled Fury. This will be active for all our hardest hitting abilities since they have cooldowns. Its something to be conscious of, but generally a small step away from a passive.
Battle Trance – With Multistrike gone, no need to modify how much we get from gear.
Empowered Chi – Now baseline.
Empowered Spinning Crane Kick – Now baseline.
Enhanced Roll – Now baseline.
Enhanced Transcendence – Now baseline.
Expel Harm – Beyond an instant heal, this was used to generate Chi before a fight. We’re not doing that anymore, which is somewhat a relief, although it certainly hurts our survivability some, as well as the ability to generate Chi when not in melee range.
Legacy of the White Tiger – No need to buff people anymore. *GONG*
Nimble Brew – Use infrequently during PvE encounters, but was very useful when it could be used. This loss hurts our survivability and DPS since we will stay controlled longer.
Stance of the Fierce Tiger – Its currently still in the game, but reduced to 0% from 10%. This is used for Blizzard to quickly and easily modify our DPS, however that’s not as necessary at the start of the expansion when they can tune all other numbers separately. It also had the movement speed bonus, Windwalking, separated from it.
Tiger Strikes – With no more Multistrike, this does nothing.
Tigereye Brew – This was removed in name, but realistically merged with Storm, Earth, and Fire. I personally believe this is a good change overall, as the ability was more nuanced than most people thought so many players were frequently misusing it.
Way of the Monk – Fist of Fury requires a 1H weapon now, so no need to balance 2H vs 1H.
Windflurry – Again, no Multistrike means no need for this buff.
Zen Meditation – Another hit to our survivability. It could be an incredibly OP cooldown, but its one that I will miss.
Afterlife – This will be our main source of self-healing while questing, leveling, etc.
Crackling Jade Lightning– It was testing to be a single target increase when worked into the rotation, but was promptly nerfed. Still functions as a ranged attack if you can’t get into melee range. No longer costs energy, but otherwise unchanged.
Detox – For most of your dispelling needs, occasional use in PvE, often just nice to help out the healers.
Disable – I’m sure this has some use in PvE, but I haven’t found it.
Flying Serpent Kick – An iconic Windwalker ability to me. Great for a filler, awesome to get from Point A to Point B quickly.
Paralysis – Occasionally useful in PvE, mostly used for dungeons; specially when undergearing them where CC is paramount.
Provoke – Used to pull bosses to places quickly or to try and game Touch of Karma if you’re extra brave (or insane), or for when all else fails and you need to kill the target really bad.
Resuscitate – Don’t forget to use this. Energy classes never have to wait for regen to res people, help out. It no longer costs energy, so even less excuse not to help res.
Rising Sun Kick – Mostly the same as Warlords, cooldown reduced by Haste.
Roll – Best as a nice round Panda, the only true Monk race.
Spear Hand Strike – Interrupting is a necessity, learn it well.
Touch of Karma – Great as a offensive or defensive cooldown, use offensively at your own risk. Now has a 20 yard range, otherwise unchanged.
Zen Pilgrimage – After the Legion invades, this transports you to the Class Hall. Don’t forget to use it a second time to go back or it will get all screwy.