Roaring into WotLK: Min/Maxing Demo Shouts

Posted by in Feral, WotLK

In the past, there’ve been few compelling reasons for a Raider Bear to pick up the talent Feral Aggression. For one, Feral Aggression offered precious little raiding utility for Cat DPS (as Ferocious Bite never ended up being viable in Burning Crusade). But Feral Aggression also boosts the melee AP reduction of Demoralizing Roar, the dr00d answer to a Warrior’s Demoralizing Shout—which sounds good. Why isn’t it?  The base and improved version of Demoralizing Shout always outclassed Demoralizing Roar. Thus, as long as your raid group was running with a Warrior (and really, who wasn’t?), you could effectively mete out your points elsewhere.

For the full rundown, you can read my previous explanation, but here are the base numbers:

Untalented
Rank 6 Demoralizing Roar: -240 AP
Rank 7 Demoralizing Shout: -300 AP

Talented
Rank 6 Demoralizing Roar: -336 AP
Rank 7 Demoralizing Shout: -420 AP

Wrath provides more incentives to drop 5 points into Feral Aggression. Take a look:

Untalented
Level 77 Rank 8 Demoralizing Roar: -408 AP
Level 79 Rank 8 Demoralizing Shout: -410 AP

Talented
Level 77 Rank 8 Demoralizing Roar: -571.2 AP
Level 79 Rank 8 Demoralizing Shout: -574 AP

As you’d expect from Blizzard’s effort to streamline tanking, each class needs to be interchangeable, and I’d argue that the differences between Demoralizing Shout and Demoralizing Roar will be negligible. So do you need to place points in Feral Aggression for Wrath of the Lich King? If you do have a Warrior, whether DPS or Protection, it’s best to coordinate with him or her and ascertain who would be best served by picking up the Improved version of either ability—because it’s probably worth min/maxing.  

Who’s hurt more by dropping talent points into the improved versions? A Protection Warrior potentially loses out on 5% Parry or sacrifices situationally useful Protection talents. 

0/10/61 With Improved Demo Shout; missing Parry.

5/10/56 With Improved Demo Shout; with Parry. but missing useful Protection talents.

7/3/61 Ideal.

One might argue that Druids at least get the additional buff to Ferocious Bite. Although overall Cat DPS will be punished by spending points on what are generally considered “Bear Only” talents, there may still be circumstances under which you’ll have to do some abysmal damage—and Ferocious Bite is now a viable portion of our ever-complicated Cat DPS rotation. Personally, I don’t think it’s worth taking at the risk of sacrificing TPS improvements, but here goes:

0/60/11 With Feral Aggression. Missing Shredding Attacks, Improved Leader of the Pack, and Brutal Impact. 

0/61/10 With Feral Aggression. Missing Omen of Clarity, Brutal Impact, and King of the Jungle. 

0/60/11 Ideal. No Feral Aggression.

Although some of the above talents are arguably unnecessary or situational, they still compose a laundry list of tanking tools (however minor) that get left by the wayside just because we need to sink five points into FA. If I end up having to talent my shout, I anticipate mirroring the 0/61/10 build.