I was reading something over at Righteous Orbs about the awesomeness of Shamans, and it got me to thinking: I really like Shamans, they're really cool.
Like most people who play Wow, it was not my first RPG. In addition to many table top games, I played a few of the final fantasies (I loved 7, 8 and tactics, hated 10), all of the elder scrolls games, diablo, etc. Normally I like melee fighters who can wear heavy armor and self heal. That made the Paladin a natural choice in Wow. I still like Paladins. My two highest level characters are both paladins. However, I have decided I just like the shaman more, for a variety of reasons.
Reason 1: The best hybrid
There are three hybrid classes in Wow (I don't count shadow priests): Paladin, Shaman, and Druid. When I say best I mean most able to use a variety of abilities. Paladins are incredibly durable, even in DPS spec and powerful in melee. I still prefer a prot paladin for AoE grinding over any other class for their durability. However, this durability comes at the expense of range, a paladin basically has to be on top of a mob to do anything. Druids have to choose between caster DPS or melee DPS by shapeshifting. Shamans can use their caster abilities even in their melee DPS spec, and can melee in their caster spec. While it is true that the Druid and Paladin can fill more group roles than a Shaman, Shamans have the best all around use of abilities regardless of spec.
Reason 2: Cures the caster problem
This could be said about balance druids as well, but lets be honest, moonkin form looks dumb. I love mages, and I like locks and shadow priests. They are fun. However, without some type of mitigation, they get chewed up pretty quickly. Shamans don't have to worry about that. They wear mail, and can pull out instant cast pain. Also, even caster Shamans can use windfury weapon. Shaman are far from soft squishy targets.
Reason 3: They look cool
Let's be honest, a large motivation in the game is looking cool. I love druids, but they miss this completely. Moonkins look ridiculous, Dire bear looks the same at 40 as it does at 80, and cat looks the same at 80 as it does at 20. Shaman gear looks cool, they can dual wield, and their abilities just have a lot of flair. Chain lightning is probably one of my favorite looking abilities in Wow.
Basically, I like casters, I like beating on things, I want to look cool and be able to heal myself a lil bit. I probably should have been playing a Shaman all along. . .
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