Blizzard released a bunch of new hero talents today, so I’ll go through them and give some thoughts and concerns for the first public iteration.



At a first glance, this seems to be the “single target” or raid focused hero talent tree for Windwalkers. We share it with Brewmaster and it adds a new stacking mechanic called “Flurry Charges” which then get used for “Flurry Strikes“.



  • Overwhelming Flurry: Dealing damage equal to your maximum health generates a Flurry Charge. For each 400 Energy you spend, unleash all Flurry Charges as Flurry Strikes, dealing physical damage per charge.

This is the new mechanic and it seems pretty alright with some clear questions. Before factoring in additional haste generation and using current damage/health numbers, you’ll generate 1 Flurry Charge every 3-3.5 seconds. You’ll generate 400 energy every 40 seconds before you consider having Haste. This means that you should generate about 11 stacks of Flurry Charge for every time it triggers. The more Haste you have, the more energy you’ll generate and theoretically spend, and the higher your health is compared to your damage, the fewer stacks you’ll generate.

While this is pretty straightforward, and I won’t get too upset and more stat scaling through Haste, there are some questions and confusions about this worth saying. If it functions like it reads, “maximum health”, would mean that if you have Fort from a Priest, or something else that increases your health, you’ll generate fewer stacks, which is bad. This can be fixed by the “maximum” health being calculated before buffs, so that it doesn’t get harder as an expansion go on or you get more buffs.

We don’t know if the stacks have a duration, a cap, whether it will count external damage sources like trinkets, or if the damage it does is single target, but we won’t know until we get our hands on it. More Stamina scaling makes me want to puke after so many years, but some of the problem can be mitigated.


Row 1

  • Choice Node: Pride of Pandaria and High Impact
    • Pride of Pandaria: Flurry Strikes have 15% additional chance to Critically Strike.
    • High Impact: Enemies who die within 5 seconds of being damaged by a Flurry Strike explode, dealing damage to uncontrolled enemies within 8 yards.
  • Veteran’s Eye: Striking the same target 5 times within 2 seconds grants 2% haste. Multiple instances of this effect may overlap, stacking up to 10 times.
  • Martial Precision: Attacks penetrate 10% of the target’s armor.

Since High Impact deals AOE damage, Flurry Strikes is probably single target, which may answer one question above. More Critical Strike scaling is exactly what I think the spec needs and I’ve been saying it for a long long time now. Having these on a choice node means that you’d just talent into more AOE if you need it, but probably stick with more Critical Strike chance as a baseline.

Veteran’s Eye is the most interesting and most confusing without being able to play it and see how it works. More Haste is generally not great for Windwalkers, but 20% Haste is a LOT. One thing we need to know is how long the stacks last, because hitting 5 times within 2 seconds is not something that Windwalker can do very easily, and really only with a combination of Spinning Crane Kick, Rushing Jade Wind, Fists of Fury, Whirling Dragon Punch, and Teachings of the Monastery. Combining those abilities back to back isn’t going to happen often enough to easily reach high stacks of this unless it has a long duration or “striking” means more than just hitting with our abilities.

Armor Penetration has been gone a long time, and its never a bad thing for Physical damage dealers to have. Quick maths from Hina said that it should be a 2-3% increase in damage for our Physical abilities, which isn’t HUGE, but isn’t 0.


Row 2

  • Choice Node: Protect and Serve and Lead from the Front
    • Protect and Serve: Your Vivify always heals you for an additional 30% of its total value.
    • Lead from the Front: Chi Burst, Chi Wave, and Expel Harm now leech 20% of damage dealt.
  • One versus Many: Damage dealt by Fists of Fury counts as double towards Flurry Charge generation. Fists of Fury damage increased by 10%.
  • Choice Node: Whirling Steel and Predictive Training
    • Whirling Steel: When you become injured, summon Whirling Steel, increasing your Parry chance and Avoidance by 15% for 6 seconds.
    • Predictive Training: When you dodge or parry an attack, reduce damage taken by 10% for the next 6 seconds.

These are mainly defensive, which won’t hurt to have (get it), with only One versus Many providing damage increases. However, depending on how Fists of Fury‘s damage compares to other abilities and how often we are casting it, this could be a sizable increase to the frequency that we get Flurry Charges.


Row 3

  • Against All Odds: Flurry Strikes increase your Agility by 1% for 6 seconds, stacking up to 20 times.
  • Efficient Training: Abilities that spend Energy deal an additional 15% damage. Every 50 Energy spent reduces the cooldown of Storm, Earth, and Fire and Serenity by 1 second.
  • Vigilant Watch: Blackout Kick deals an additional 20% critical damage and increases the damage of your next set of Flurry Strikes by 10%.

The prospect of 20% Agility, even for 6 seconds, is HUGE. But given the rate that we’ll be generating and using Flurry Charges, it’s unlikely to be gamechanging.

As I said above, you’ll generate and spend 10 energy per second, and since 50 Energy means 1 second off Storm, Earth, Fire and Serenity, that means that they’ll have their CDs reduced by 12-ish seconds per minute. Combined with the other things that reduce their cooldowns, this could be great, but it depends on how badly we want to alight these cooldowns to things like Xuen, which has varied over the years.

More Crit damage is good, more Flurry Strikes damage is good.



Wisdom of the Wall: Every 10 Flurry Strikes, become infused with a Wisdom of the Wall for 20 seconds. Wisdom of the Wall grants the following effects:
  • Your critical strikes deal an additional 30% damage.
  • Your Mastery’s effect is increased by 25%.
  • Versatility now also increases your Dodge and critical strike chance by 25% of its effect.
  • Flurry Strikes now deal additional Shadow damage to all uncontrolled enemies within 6 yards.

Assuming you are proccing Flurry Strikes roughly every 30 seconds, this means you’ll have about 2/3 uptime on one of these buffs. These buffs are all pretty good, even if the Versatility one is pretty laughable, making Versatility scale even better than it currently does. What really grinds my gears, rubs me the wrong way, ruffles my feathers, and drives me up a wall… is that this this may be random. If these procs go in sequential order then that’s better, but if they’re randomly selected then I’ll want to put my head through the wall it drove me up.



I don’t mind this talent tree too much, but mostly because its theoretically focused on single target damage and generally unobtrusive to the rotation. There are some key questions that must be answered to know how to feel about this tree, but I’m not totally against it.


Conduit of the Celestials

We share this tree with Mistweaver, and although I don’t like this one as much as the other, its pretty clear the direction they were going for us. This is obviously meant to be the “AOE” or Mythic Plus talent tree, with nearly everything doing some kind of AOE damage.



  • Celestial Conduit: The August Celestials empower you, causing you to radiate Nature damage onto enemies and healing onto up to 5 injured allies within 20 yards over 4 seconds, split evenly among them. Healing and damage increased by 6% per enemy struck, up to 30%. You may move while channeling, but casting other healing or damaging spells cancels this effect. Active ability. 1.5-minute cooldown.
  • Developer’s Note: Celestial Conduit’s channel will not break when using defensive, utility, or movement spells.

This is basically the Monk version of Mage’s Shifting Power with the ability to move. A 4 second channel every 90 seconds sounds like it’s going to be very unfun to squeeze in outside of blasting AOE. Given that it is clearly meant for AOE damage and party healing, its hard to be upset at what was clearly the plan. The fact that it won’t break when you use a defensive, utility (interrupt), or movement spell gives me enormous hope that this will be added to Fists of Fury, but I doubt it.


Row 1

  • Choice Node: Temple Training and Xuen’s Guidance
  • Courage of the White Tiger: Tiger Palm has a 15% chance to cause Xuen to claw your target for physical damage, healing a nearby ally for 100% of the damage done. This chance is increased while Invoke Xuen, the White Tiger is active.
  • Choice Node: Restore Balance & Yu’lon’s Knowledge
    • Restore Balance: Gain Rushing Jade Wind while Xuen, the White Tiger is active.
    • Yu’lon’s Knowledge: Rushing Jade Wind‘s duration is increased by 4 seconds and multiple uses may overlap.

This is where we can clearly see what Blizzard is want to do with this talent tree, as many things lean heavily into Rushing Jade Wind. I am very happy to see Courage of the White Tiger, as I think we should dive further into being the “avatar” of Xuen rather than summoning a mini version.

Gaining Rushing Jade Wind during Xuen is a pretty funny thing to happen, but since its mostly passive and will naturally occur when you use your cooldowns, I don’t hate it. Having a longer duration and overlapping uses of Rushing Jade Wind is hilarious since its, not too arguably, the worst feeling ability that Windwalker has, so without some changes to it, this path will feel majorly doodoo.


Row 2

More cooldown reduction is exactly what the doctor ordered for my enjoyment, although this should only occur every 60-75 seconds. It is worded like a mini-Serenity without the Chi cost reduction.

I really love the idea of the Celestials helping us one after the other, so having Niuzao show up after Xuen is just really cool, thematically at least.

More Rushing Jade Wind stuff just really hammers home how badly they want us to use that ability in this tree.


Row 3

  • Choice Node: Niuzao’s Protection and Jade Sanctuary
    • Niuzao’s Protection: Fortifying Brew grants you an absorb shield for 25% of your maximum health.
    • Jade Sanctuary: You heal for 10% of your maximum health instantly when you activate Celestial Conduit and receive 15% less damage for its duration.
  • Chi-Ji’s Swiftness: Your movement speed is increased by 25% during Celestial Conduit and for 3 seconds after being assisted by any Celestial.
  • Choice Node: Inner Compass and August Dynasty
    • Inner Compass: You switch between alignments after an August Celestial assists you, increasing a corresponding secondary stat by 3%.
      • Crane Stance: haste
      • Tiger Stance: critical strike
      • Ox Stance: Versatility
      • Serpent Stance: Mastery
    • August Dynasty: Casting Jadefire Stomp increases the damage of your next Rising Sun Kick by 30%.

This row provides more survivability/self-healing, more movement speed, and more stats or damage so that isn’t bad. However, Jadefire Stomp being included is exactly what I was concerned about unless they change it to be less disruptive. The choice node on the right is going to just be awful since we can’t control the stats we get or when we get them or we have to use Jadefire Stomp which is almost unilaterally hated right now. Please dear Blizzard take away the movement restriction on Jadefire Stomp.



  • Unity Within: Celestial Conduit can be recast once during its duration to call upon all of the August Celestials to assist you at 200% effectiveness. Unity Within is automatically cast when Celestial Conduit ends if not used before its expiration

As much as I am not a big fan of this talent tree, this is a really cool capstone. Functionally, you’ll probably just double tap Celestial Conduit and get double the power during the channel, making the channel more worthwhile. Its very unlikely that you’ll look to double the duration since 8 seconds of channeling just seems like it will be terrible for nearly all situations. Some people are interpreting the writing as a second press of Celestial Conduit will summon the Celestials, not do a second channel. This would work like Storm, Earth, and Fire with the second press during its duration casting Fixate.

Its unclear which interpretation is correct, so we’ll have to wait and see.



From a thematic standpoint, I think this Hero Talent Tree knocks it out of the park. Seeing the Celestials come to help us will be so cool, and its something I’ve been advocating for for awhile. The biggest problems with this tree is that it’s pretty much entirely AOE focused and leans really heavily on Rushing Jade Wind, a talent that Windwalkers haven’t taken or enjoyed in actual content for many many many years. If they can change Rushing Jade Wind to not feel awful to press, then this talent tree could be really really fun, but as it stands its really really not.



I am nowhere near as disappointed in these talent trees as I expected to be, but I’m also not as excited about them as I was hoping to be. A lot will hinge on how they feel and function when we can play with them and what changes are made between now and release, which hasn’t always worked in Windwalker’s favor.

I don’t expect these Hero Talents to result in a massive influx of Windwalkers, but it also shouldn’t doom the spec to some mass exodus either. As always, that will come down to tuning and the still uncorrected abomination that is scaling.

Hopefully you enjoyed this article as its been a LONG time since there’s been something to write about. I’ll be continuing to write about new information we get as we travel down the long road of development.