With Prepatch around the corner, it’s time to look at potential talent and play-style changes. Lately my main concern has been Serenity, it’s viability, how to use it and how it fits in Antorus.
With the loss of artifacts, tier 21 bonus becomes a lot less potent and with addition of the Blackout Kick cooldown reduction, passive resources become a lot more valuable. And that’s where Serenity excels at – giving you tons of free resources that, with the changes, will no longer go to waste. This is enough of a reason to consider running Serenity. Another plus for Serenity is that Storm, Earth, and Fire is losing 15% of it’s damage multiplier.
Serenity in Antorus
Serenity excels at Single Target – the only thing that actually matters this late into the tier. If you’re interested in “padding” or doing massive AoE on fights like High Command or Portal Keeper then Whirling Dragon Punch would be the default pick. But for Single Target and most other Antorus fights Serenity looks like the best option. However an example where you would never run Serenity would be Kin’garoth. Since Serenity does not line up with add spawns, Storm, Earth, and Fire has a huge advantage over it (especially with Spiritual Focus).
The changes to the level 90 talent tier make Xuen and Rushing Jade Wind compete with Hit Combo. This lets us do something fancy during Serenity – cast Blackout Kick twice in a row to reduce the cooldown of Rising Sun Kick and Fists of Fury. The main reason to break mastery with Blackout Kick is to ensure an extra Rising Sun Kick inside the 12 second Serenity window or simply because it does more damage than a Spinning Crane Kick. Other than that, you want to avoid casting the same ability twice when possible, especially at higher Mastery levels.
Disclaimer: The sequences with a full Fists of Fury channel require 3%+ haste (which is the minimum amount of haste you can get using t21 or Heart of Azeroth). If no tuning is done between pre-patch and the launch of Battle for Azeroth these sequences can be applied going into the new expansion. It’s also important to note that below ~38% mastery a non-mastery Blackout Kick deals more damage than a Spinning Crane Kick.
During Lust Fists of Fury is a lot more efficient than alternating Blackout Kick or Spinning Crane Kick and you can’t get 5 casts of Rising sun Kick in a Serenity even without a Fists of Fury channel (without being really inefficient). So ideally you would want 2 full Fists of Fury channels inside Serenity.
The double Blackout Kick is important to be able to cast Fists of Fury in time and still squeeze in the last Rising Sun Kick. Since this sequence has no room for Fist of the White Tiger in the opener it should be used before entering Serenity.
Outside of lust ideally you have Fists of Fury up at the start of Serenity, full channel it and clip another Fists of Fury at the end, which means that it has to happen almost right after the first Rising Sun Kick. A perfect sequence would look like this:
Fist of the White Tiger can be replaced with a Spinning Crane Kick. If Fists of Fury is not up at the very start of Serenity or you cannot delay it for Fists of Fury when you’re unsure about fight length then your sequence would look like this:
If Fist of the White Tiger comes off cool-down during Serenity and Fists of Fury isn’t up at the start then your sequence would look like this:
Rising Sun Kick > Blackout Kick > Fist of the White Tiger/Spinning Crane Kick > Blackout Kick > Rising Sun Kick > Blackout Kick > Fist of the White Tiger/Spinning Crane Kick > Rising Sun Kick > Blackout Kick > Fists of Fury
When using Drinking Horn Cover there’s 1 sequence that is shared for both lust and non-lust. Ideally it’d look like this:
Rising Sun Kick > Blackout Kick > Fists of Fury 2 ticks > Blackout Kick > Rising Sun Kick > Blackout Kick > Blackout Kick > Rising Sun Kick > Blackout Kick > Blackout Kick > Rising Sun Kick > Blackout Kick > Blackout Kick > Rising Sun Kick > Blackout Kick > Fists of Fury
During lust instead of a non-mastery Blackout Kick you can Spinning Crane Kick instead if it deals more damage and even outside of lust a Fist of the White Tiger can be cast in place of any of the Blackout Kicks. Fists of Fury is also not worth full channeling even during lust cause you’d rather be casting spenders to increase the Serenity length.
You want to dump as much chi as possible before entering Serenity. During AoE your main goal would be to weave in as many Spinning Crane Kicks as possible. It’s important to note that Fist of the White Tiger is not worth holding since losing a cast is a bigger loss than the additional damage you’d get from it by casting it inside Serenity. Ideally you would hold Serenity for Fists of Fury but that way you risk losing a cast of it so it should only be done when you are 100% sure that you won’t. In a perfect scenario you would enter Serenity when Fists of Fury is on a 4 second cool-down. The rotation outside of Serenity follows the same priority as the list in the BFA mini-guide. The sequences with a full Fists of Fury channel are extremely tight with sometimes only a split second of leeway and are impossible to pull off with high latency. Although the more haste the easier it gets. I would advise using an extra macro for Rising Sun Kick that prevents you from interrupting Fists of Fury so you can spam it and let spell queue do the work. The macro looks like this:
#showtooltip Rising Sun Kick
/stopmacro [channeling:Fists of Fury]
/stopcasting [channeling:Crackling Jade Lightning]
/cast Rising Sun Kick