There are a few comments on my blog about the “best rotation” for a spec, and a few times I’ve asked this question, often receiving a complex answer. So here and now I say there is no such thing as a fixed best rotation.
Critics: Huh, TyphoonAndrew you idiot, I always use [a][b][b][c][a], and it rocks, you’re wrong!
Me: No pal. That is just what works now when you’re doing a tank and spank. Read below for why you need to think deeper.
Most wow classes have a few abilities that are straight out fire and forget. Other abilities are better when used in a particular order, or used after a number of other affect have been applied. And a few quirky ones have internal cool-downs, shared cool-downs, and best used with powers from other classes. eg. Using Hysteria with Heroism is godlike, and Inner Focus with Devouring Plague is nice too.
This creates the expectation (and a good one) that you should use some abilities together in the “right” order and/or right time for maximum affect. This also means that as a player if you’re aiming for best performance, then you’re going to have to understand the abilities and how they mix, so you can best decide what to do. And that is the key difference between sayings a rotation is best, or knowing that a series of affects is optimal, but then being able to adapt to other situations when they occur. Those who just learn the a+b+c formula will always be limited by a lack of true understanding when compared to somebody who learns the detail of their powers.
For the sake of giving it a name, lets call this adaptive style of play Opportunistic Rotation; which is really saying the opportunity to use power with a set of rules that establish priority. Continue reading