Windwalker PvP Guide (8.0.1)

Welcome to PeakofSerenity's Windwalker Monk PvP Guide. This guide is designed to be a basic, quick guide for Windwalker PvP with just the information you need. For more in-depth, advanced, information follow the links to those pages in the "Further Reading" sections or in the "Advanced" section in the menu above. Navigate quickly to the section you need using the sidebar on the right.

This guide has been updated for Patch 8.0.1 and is regularly updated when discussion, theorycrafting, or testing yields new information.

If you want to view all the changes to Windwalker in 8.0.1 check out our pre patch guide here here

Talents

War Mode Talents – the ones in bold are the most important

Further Reading

  • Tier 1 (lv15) – Most games you’ll be playing with either Chi Wave or Eye of the TigerChi Burst can be useful for stacked group healing, taking kicks for your healer, generating Chi (up to 2) with the change, and while it has a short cast time reduced by haste it deals damage instantly unlike Chi Wave which will deal it’s full damage over 4 seconds. Despite this, Chi Wave is almost always the better pick over Chi Burst. To use Chi Wave for Self Healing cast it on yourself rather than an enemy target to change the number of bounces made to either favor healing or damage. Eye of the Tiger remains a situational pick for when you want to avoid potentially breaking CC. Leaving a DoT on targets that can stealth is useful but the self healing is lower than both Chi Burst and Chi Wave. When you are kiting you can Tiger Palm an enemy pet, or an off target, to ensure that your HoT is not removed on the paralysis cast.

 

  • Tier 2 (lv30) – Tiger’s Lust is a staple ability for Windwalker PvP allowing you to break roots or clear slows for either yourself or teammates. To be more effective and maximize the potential for team utility consider making a macro similar to /use [@focus,nodead] Tiger’s Lust if you prefer a focus macro or /cast [target=mouseover,help,nodead][] Tiger’s Lust if you want a one button solution to cast it both on a friendly target or yourself with a mouseover macro. The only time where you will probably not need Tiger’s Lust would be against enemy teams that are running a Mistweaver and playing Chi Torpedo will make it possible for you to chase and kill them with nearly identical cooldowns on each others mobility spells. This will not always be possible depending on the enemy team composition and remember that Way of the Crane is extremely dangerous. Two potential ways to win are to get them in a stun as Mistweavers are very vulnerable or to get them to start using Way of the Crane defensively without any mobility tools to escape from you, or to chase, but in these moments cross cc on the enemy teams DPS as well as coordination with your own teammates is going to be what decides if the trade is win or not.

 

  • Tier 3 (lv45) – The biggest mistake I see is when windwalker players underestimate the value of the level 45 row. Fist of The White Tiger is a 30 second cooldown that replaces a Tiger Palm in your setup with an ability that deals a moderate amount of damage to gain more Chi in return. Without Hit Combo to restrict the rotation and a lower amount of Mastery rating it is no longer a DPS loss to Blackout Kick twice in succession when going for kills. A third Blackout Kick however would result in a lower amount of damage than having used Rising Sun Kick as well as being a waste of Chi and only ever hurts you. Fist of the White Tiger , like Chi Wave, allows you to fill the mastery gap between abilities when going for kills while generating Chi allowing you continue dealing damage without needing to slow down to Tiger Palm. Energizing Elixir is very close to benefits of Fist of the White Tiger even if some of the resources it provides are wasted. A longer cooldown can make this talent feel awkward to use but it is very useful as an energy bar reset with the current energy costs. Rushing Jade Wind can also be safety toggled on while spending for additional pressure whenever either of these talents are available. Ascension is not typically a talent I would always recommend running but Disable / Vivify spam can get very expensive if you frequently switch between offensive and defensive play as well as associated costs with needing to para on the fly (to stop DH mana break) or double disabling to root enemy healers so that Priests can not reliably setup chains with Psychic Scream or that Mistweavers can not follow up on Rogue openers with Paralysis.

 

  • Tier 4 (lv60) – Ring of Peace, Good Karma, and Tiger Tail Sweep are all beneficial talents and you’ll change to each of them based on what your playing against and with. Good Karma increases Touch of Karma’s power defensively by increasing the absorb limit before breaking which is currently very useful against Rogues & Warriors. The cooldown reduction on Tiger Tail Sweep can help Leg Sweep line up for every other Death Grip (whenever DK’s get buffed) or increase the range of the stun radius to more reliably setup before Ursol’s Vortex & Capacitor Totem. The range increase on Tiger Tail Sweep is very useful to land double / triple stuns (in 3s vs melee teams) or  when you are doing damage while kiting the DPS to there own healer (2s), sweeps around pillars, etc. Ring of Peace makes it possible to block off entry ways, tunnels, or bridges and is a great tool for peeling melee off of your teammates but remember the knockback effect is on the incapacitate DR and is not very reliable against Demon Hunters. You can sometimes ring on the edge of a pillar to increase the distance that the enemy healer will have to walk which can help add pressure when you are going for a kill on an enemy that has over extended. All three talents have there uses and you just have to decide which will better suit your team for that game.

 

  • Tier 5 (lv75) – Inner Strength is a great way to passively reduce some of the incoming damage taken. Unlike Diffuse Magic this talent retains it’s value against a larger variety of comps and in battlegrounds working against both magic and physical damage. Diffuse should still be taken if you are playing against a caster cleave where a dispel + shield wall can save your life when used. Dampen Harm while less useful overall has a strength in the versatility of the cooldown since it can be used while kiting and not actively spending Chi.

 

  • Tier 6 (lv90) – Rushing Jade Wind is a very basic ability that doesn’t need much explanation and can be taken for it’s strength to cleave passively and provide a small increase to the sustained damage output. Invoke Xuen, the White Tiger is one of our strongest options for burst and the damage he can provide can be devastating with uptime but remains susceptible to both crowd control resulting in larger amount of reduced damage given his shorter duration as well as being kited. Xuen will only benefit from Agility, Critical Strike, and Haste so you should actively try to use him with your trinkets such as Dread Gladiators Badge for a huge bonus but he does not benefit from flat damage increases like Serenity. Currently Windwalker has a high energy requirement when providing support for your teammates through heals and crowd control causing the uptime on Rushing Jade Wind to suffer so it is a little weaker now that the playstyle has been adjusted too. RJW is still very good with SEF clones but most beneficial when paired with Serenity as it can be used without a resource cost but outside of cooldowns. Either way be prepared to actively track when you need to turn the toggle off and be aware of all CC around you as well as the abilities you’ve chosen on the level 45 talent row as well as the GCD so you don’t waste globals toggling RJW during your setup. Hit Combo still lives and for games where you can not foreseeable plan a good use of Xuen, which normally would not favor RJW either, Hit Combo should be taken instead of trying to make use on a wasted Xuen cast.

 

  • Tier 7 (Serenity) – Serenity paired with Rushing Jade Wind & Swift Roundhouse azerite traits can be an incredible amount of pressure on both the kill target and nearby enemies. With the cooldown reduction mechanic on Blackout Kick both baseline and during Serenity you can either rotate Rising Sun Kick to have Mortal Strike up on 2 or 3 enemies as long as they’re within range or commit fully to a single target. In 2s with the limited cc available you’ll try to gain the advantage through cc chains, pairing damage with your healer, and taking advantage of that additional pressure from Mortal Strike on 2 targets, Cleave, and Dampening.

 

  • Tier 7 (Whirling Dragon Punch) – Whirling Dragon Punch is a very strong talent that should always be considered even with the sometimes buggy and unreliable SEF A.I. There is nothing special about this cooldown other than that it’s a damage increase. Fixate your clones on the target your attacking otherwise they’ll jump and break CC.

Ability Priority

  1. Rushing Jade Wind if you can sustain the toggle
  2. Rising Sun Kick *Keep Mortal Strike on your target*
  3. Fists of Fury
  4. Blackout Kick
  5. Fist of the White Tiger
  6. Chi Burst
  7. Tiger Palm

Ability Priority

With Swift Roundhouse

  1. You should not be breaking Mastery
  2. Rushing Jade Wind if you can sustain the toggle
  3. Rising Sun Kick *Keep Mortal Strike on your target*
  4. Fists of Fury
  5. Blackout Kick
  6. Fist of the White Tiger*
  7. Chi Burst*
  8. Tiger Palm*

*When resources allow – See further reading*

During a kill attempt with Leg Sweep or some other CC ready be aware of the cooldowns on;

  1. Invoke, Xuen the White Tiger if talented
  2. Fist of the White Tiger
  3. Touch of Death
  4. Serenity or Storm, Earth, and Fire
  5. Rising Sun Kick
  6. See sequences below

Serenity Sequence

  • Repeat: Rising Sun Kick > Blackout Kick > Blackout Kick > Rising Sun Kick and aim to have Fists of Fury at the end of Serenity

Further Reading

Gearing

Stats

Agility>Versatility>Mastery=Crit>Haste

Stat priority can change for your character depending on your current gear and stats. To find the best stat weights for your character, check out Raidbots

Further Reading

Gems

Kraken’s Eye of Agility in the first gem slot available. Kraken’s Eye gems are unique equipped.

Versatile Royal Quartz in remaining gem slots.

Enchants

Follow your stat priority and remember it’s less beneficial to run two of the same type.

Versatile NavigationDeadly Navigation = Masterful Navigation / Gale-Force Striking

Gale-Force is not a haste proc and will not lower the cooldown of your abilities while they’re active. The primary benefit is the increased swing speed on your white attacks which happen in between all abilities with the exception of Fist of Fury during the channel time.

Trinkets

All trinkets have the potential to be worthwhile with some being more or less useful than others at different quality levels. If you have a trinket not in this list and it’s the highest item level available to you it’s still more than likely worth using. Either test it out for yourself or sim it on a site like raidbots against other potential upgrades.

“Best-in-Slot”

The concept of “Best-in-slot” lists is mostly obsolete with the advent of War/Titanforging and sockets. Gear should be assessed on a case-by-case basis rather than as a whole, using tools like SimCraft or Raidbots.

To assess what gear to aim for, you want to follow this priority:

  1. Item level trumps just about everything in just about every situation
  2. Aim for items with as high Versatility on them whenever you can
  3. Aim for items with Crit or Mastery as the other stat
  4. If you have more Mastery % than Crit %, then aim for a piece with the opposite

Azerite

If it’s not listed here then it’s not worth mentioning over anything else or I forgot to add it. This is just a list of what is noteworthy and not all gear will have these choices available so you may have to sacrifice one trait for a better one.

Tier 1 (outer rings)

Tier 2 (inner rings)

Tier 3 (inner rings)

 

 

 

WeakAuras / Addons

WeakAuras can be a blessing or a curse. While they can aid in tracking certain buffs or debuffs they can also clutter your screen and visual impair or distract you.What I link here is popular, simple, effective, and updated regularly. While you don’t have to use them I would still recommend finding something or creating your own to use following the same mindset.

Macros

A really handy tool to automatically switch buttons on your action bar with talent changes is the add on Talentmacros

#showtooltip as the first line will display an icon of your choosing if specified or will default to the icon of the first line in the macro.

/cast [target=focus] Spear Hand Strike
/cast [target=focus] Paralysis
/cast [target=Player] Tiger’s Lust

The “exists” parameter will enable the Macro to function as a normal key outside of Arenas

/Cast [@arena1, exists] Paralysis; Paralysis
/Cast [@arena2, exists] Paralysis; Paralysis
/Cast [@arena3, exists] Paralysis; Paralysis
/target arena1 or /focus arena1
/target arena2 or /focus arena2
/target arena3 or /focus arena3

/cast [target=mouseover,help,nodead][] AbilityNameHere

#showtooltip Touch of Karma
/target arenapet1
/cast Touch of Karma
/targetlasttarget

Patch Notes

Player versus Player

  • The absorb granted by Mchimba’s Ritual Bandages is reduced by 55% while engaged in combat with enemy players.
  • The absorb granted by Xalzaix’s Veiled Eye is reduced by 70% while engaged in combat with enemy players.

Monk

  • Windwalker
    • Meridian Strikes (Azerite Trait) effectiveness reduced by 60% when when engaged in combat with enemy players.
    • Swift Roundhouse (Windwalker) damage bonus reduced by 55%.
    • Iron Fists (Windwalker) required targets reduced to 3 (was 4).
    • Fists of Fury now deals full damage when engaged in combat with enemy players (was a 20% reduction).

Bugs

  • Windwalker
    • /Cancelaura Storm, Earth, and Fire (Fixed)

Changelog

  • Windwalker PvP Guide updated for 9/17/2018 hotfixes to Azerite traits and now includes patch notes for posterity.
  • Windwalker PvP Guide updated for Battle for Azeroth preseason by Talby 8/25/2018
  • Windwalker PvP Guide updated for prepatch by Talby 7/22/2018