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I recently started playing WoW again after a few years, I'm not a big player (usually get over it after a couple of weeks, highest character is lvl60) but I noticed that all the skills and such have changed around (for the better I've found so far - kinda like it now).

I noticed at level 80 or so you can get a skill called Mastery with a extremely vague companion description saying something along the lines of "Allows you to benefit from the mastery rating".

Does anyone have a more clear explanation of what this does? Is it secretly awesome?

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2 Answers 2

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Mastery is a skill that was introduced in Cataclysm to provide some class specialization uniqueness: the reason it's so vague is because what it enhances is entirely dependent on what your spec is.

However, you can find out what mastery is currently doing for you in your current spec by hovering over the mastery rating in your character information panel, which you can access by pressing the C key (by default). That should tell you in broad terms how it's helping you.

You can also check out Wowpedia's Mastery chart for more detail.

But for convenience's sake here's what each of the tooltips say:

Death Knight

  • Blood (Blood Shield): Each time you heal yourself with Death Strike while in Blood Presence, you gain 50% of the amount healed as a damage absorption shield. Each point of Mastery increases the shield by an additional 6.25%.

  • Frost (Frozen Heart): Increases all Frost damage done by 16%. Each point of Mastery increases Frost damage by an additional 2.0%.

  • Unholy (Dreadblade): Increases all Shadow damage done by 20%. Each point of Mastery increases Shadow damage by an additional 2.5%.

Druid

  • Balance (Total Eclipse): Increases the bonus damage from Eclipse by 16%. Each point of Mastery increases the bonus by an additional 2.0%.

  • Feral, bear form (Savage Defender): Increases the damage absorbed by your Savage Defense ability by 32%. Each point of Mastery increases the absorb by an additional 4%.

  • Feral, cat form (Razor Claws): Increases the damage done by your bleed abilities by 25.04%. Each point of Mastery increases bleed damage by an additional 3.1%.

  • Restoration (Harmony): Your direct healing is increased by an additional 10% and casting your direct healing spells grants you an additional 10% bonus to periodic healing for 10 sec. Each point of Mastery increases each bonus by an additional 1.25%.

Hunter

  • Beast Mastery (Master of Beasts): Increases the damage done by your pets by 13.36%. Each point of Mastery increases pet damage by an additional 1.67%.

  • Marksmanship (Wild Quiver): Grants a 16.8% chance for your ranged attacks to also instantly fire an additional ranged shot. Each point of Mastery increases the chance by an additional 2.1%.

  • Survival (Essence of the Viper): Increases all magical damage you deal by 8%. Each point of Mastery increases magical damage by an additional 1.0%.

Mage

  • Arcane (Mana Adept): Increases all spell damage done by up to 12%, based on the amount of mana the Mage has unspent. Each point of Mastery increases damage done by up to an additional 1.5%.

  • Fire (Flashburn): Increases the damage done by all your periodic fire damage effects by 22.4%. Each point of Mastery increases periodic damage done by an additional 2.8%.

  • Frost (Frostburn): All your spells deal 5% increased damage against Frozen targets. Each point of Mastery increases damage by an additional 2.5%.

Paladin

  • Holy (Illuminated Healing): Your direct healing spells also place an absorb shield on your target for 12% of the amount healed lasting 15 sec. Each point of Mastery increases the absorb amount by an additional 1.50%.

  • Protection (Divine Bulwark): Increases your chance to block melee attacks by 18%. Each point of Mastery increases block chance by an additional 2.25%.

  • Retribution (Hand of Light): Your Templar's Verdict, Crusader Strike, and Divine Storm deal 16.8% additional damage as Holy damage. Each point of Mastery increases the damage by an additional 2.1%.

Priest

  • Discipline (Shield Discipline): Increases the potency of all your damage absorption spells by 20%. Each point of Mastery increases the potency of absorbs by an additional 2.5%.

  • Holy (Echo of Light): Your direct healing spells heal for an additional 10% over 6 sec. Each point of Mastery provides an additional 1.25% healing over 6 sec.

  • Shadow (Shadow Orb Power): Increases the damage done by your Shadow Orbs by 11.6%. Each point of Mastery increases damage by an additional 1.45%.

Rogue

  • Assassination (Potent Poisons): Increases the damage done by your poisons by 28%. Each point of Mastery increases damage by an additional 3.5%.

  • Combat (Main Gauche): Your main-hand attacks have a 16% chance to grant you an attack that deals damage equal to 100% of a main-hand attack. Each point of Mastery increases the chance by an additional 2.00%.

  • Subtlety (Executioner): Increases the damage done by your finishing moves, and the effectiveness of your Slice and Dice, by 20%. Each point of Mastery increases damage by an additional 2.5%.

Shaman

  • Elemental (Elemental Overload): Grants a 16% chance for Elemental Overload to occur. Elemental Overload causes a Lightning Bolt, Chain Lightning, or Lava Burst spell you cast to trigger a second, similar spell on the same target at no additional cost that causes 75% of normal damage and no threat. Each point of Mastery increases the chance of Elemental Overload by an additional 2%.

  • Enhancement (Enhanced Elements): Increases all Fire, Frost, and Nature damage done by 20%. Each point of Mastery increases damage by an additional 2.5%.

  • Restoration (Deep Healing): Increases the potency of your healing spells by up to 24%, based on the current health level of your target (lower health targets are healed for more). Each point of Mastery increases healing by up to an additional 3.0%.

Warlock

  • Affliction (Potent Afflictions): Increases all periodic shadow damage you deal by 13.04%. Each point of Mastery increases periodic shadow damage by an additional 1.63%.

  • Demonology (Master Demonologist): Increases the damage done by your demon servants and damage you deal while transformed into a demon by 16%. Each point of Mastery increases damage by an additional 2.0%.

  • Destruction (Fiery Apocalypse): Increases all fire damage you deal by 10.8%. Each point of Mastery increases fire damage by an additional 1.35%.

Warrior

  • Arms (Strikes of Opportunity): Grants a 17.6% chance for your melee attacks to instantly trigger an additional melee attack for 100% normal damage. Each point of Mastery increases this chance by 2.2%.

  • Fury (Unshackled Fury): Increases the benefit of abilities that cause or require you to be enraged by 11.2%. Each point of Mastery increases enrage effects by an additional 5.60%.

  • Protection (Critical Block): Increases your chance to block by 12% and your chance to critically block by 12%. Each point of Mastery increases your block chance by an additional 1.5% and your critical block chance by an additional 1.5%.

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So based on your answer I'm guessing you can put multiple points into mastery? Or? –  Marty Sep 28 '11 at 8:14
    
@MartyWallace Mastery is an attribute like Intellect, Haste, or Expertise: you can't put points into it, it just shows up on items and some talents, depending on spec, might improve it. A "point of mastery" refers to the rating-to-points conversion system that a lot of the secondary skills (crit, hit, haste, mastery) have: items will have mastery rating on them which is converted to mastery points based on your level. –  user3389 Sep 28 '11 at 8:18
    
Ah, and they're only in effect if you have the mastery skill learned (at level 80)? Makes sense. –  Marty Sep 28 '11 at 8:19
    
@MartyWallace That's right. I'm not 100% sure, but I believe only items usable by level 80+ will have the stat. Otherwise, the only way to get mastery rating on lower-level items is to reforge them. –  user3389 Sep 28 '11 at 8:22
    
Fair enough, thanks! –  Marty Sep 28 '11 at 8:23

Mastery is a secondary (like haste, crit, dodge etc.) stat that can be found only on gear (you can't put any points in it anywhere).

Even if there are items with mastery, that are usable below lvl 80, you can learn mastery skill from your class trainer at lvl 80. This skill actually allows you to benefit from mastery stat on gear (you can probably find some Cataclysm greens usable from lvl 78 that have mastery, but untill you get mastery skill they are as good as if they were not there).

You can see detailed mastery description by pressing 'N' and clicking 'View summary' button. Each class has 3 specs, and each spec has different mastery. Your mastery will be the one from your main spec tree you've chosen (for example: you play retribution paladin that has some points also in holy tree, but your mastery will be Hand of Light - retribution tree mastery)

Generally mastery is not some secretly awesome god-mode. It's just yet another stat, the difference being it can only be used from lvl 80. It's importance is different for different classes, so you should check http://www.mmo-champion.com or http://elitistjerks.com for advice on if it's good for certain class/spec.

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