Wind Shear, or Why Do I Have To Interrupt Everything?


Interrupts. You know, those things that stop bad spellcasts. Apparently they’re important on a number of fights (Omnitron, Heroic Atramedes, Maloriak, Halfus, Council, Cho’gall from what I can remember) and on all bar Council I’ve been assigned the job of interrupting those spells. Previously you’d have interrupt rotations with the Rogues or Mages to make sure that every cast was interrupted, but now you get any Elemental or Enhancement assigned to the job.

The reasons that Shaman get the short stick on interrupts is because of the short cooldown and the fact that there will be no resource issues. These two reason make Wind Shear “superior” to Counterspell and Kick/Pummel respectively. However, on any fight with critical interrupts not having enough resources available to use your interrupt is Very Bad, even if your DPS suffers from doing so (hint: ranged interrupts require cancelling your existing cast to use your interrupt, which is also a DPS loss). Likewise, having a long cooldown (ie: 24 seconds) does not make it impossible for you to interrupt either. It just means that you either need to have a rotation team set up to handle it, or it’s a long enough gap between casts that one mage can handle things on their own.

The downside of Wind Shear is that it has a 25 yard range. This means that if you’re an Elemental, like me, you’ll be running more or taking special steps to make sure that you’re in range for your interrupt to work (why we can’t have an extra 15 yards on this spell too I have no idea), which is an issue on anything with much movement. This is the reason why Elementals shouldn’t be the sole interrupter on some fights.

So, a quick run down of the fights I’ve seen so far (3/13 HM).

Omnitrom: Frequent interrupts are needed, which makes Shaman ideal for this.
Atramedes (Heroic): The Obnoxious Fiends can be locked out, which means that you want your long lockout interrupts used. In other words: Wind Shear = Bad.
Maloriak: Both Release Abberations and Arcane Storm are on long cooldowns, which mean that anyone can and should be part of the interrupt team, especially the latter. Just make sure of your range Elementals, especially on the Green Phase. Watch positioning on Blue so you don’t crowd the Melee.
Nefarian: The shorter cooldown on Blast Nova from the Chromatic Prototypes means that Shaman should be able to interrupt all of them.

Halfus: Shadow Nova has a medium cooldown, but there’s no reason why any interrupt setup couldn’t manage it.
Ascendant Council: There’s not really any restriction on interrupts here either.
Cho’gall: The big adds can and should be interrupted by everyone, although the high frequency and no lockout means that Shaman are usually better.

So that’s 2 fights where Shaman should be your interrupters, 1 where they shouldn’t, and 4 where it makes no difference. Once you’ve convinced your raid team that there isn’t any special reason why you’re assigned the interrupt job all the time, the biggest task is making them all re-learn how to interrupt.