Okay, not really furious, but the title was too fun not to use. :) I finally broke down and respec'd Fury yesterday. I haven't done that since, like, Level 45, so it was time to play with it and see what's up. I used the 17/44 DW Fury build. How'd it work? Meh.
Two things, about these "you-must-use-this-for-best-performance" builds that most players need to know. You get a lot "noob lol yur use wrong spec rofl noob." But you don't get a lot of answers as to Why.
First, these types of talent specs assume that you've maxed whatever stats they're trying to build to. MS Warriors are very concerned with Crit and Resil. Fury Warriors must have the proper Hit and AP. Tanks need to hit the magic number with DEF. And so on. So, if you're not maxed in these stats, these "top" builds are certainly going to help, but you're not really utilizing them to their full potential. Your mileage may vary. A lot.
For example, I'm in S1 gear with and S2 Helm at the moment. I don't have any other gear other than my Crap Tank Set that I've pieced together from instances, quests and rep. My gear is oriented very specifically to Resilience, which is necessary for Warriors in PvP. It adds a little Hit, but focuses mainly on STR, STA and Crit for it's other stats. I gem and enchant accordinly. All great, but doesn't really work well for a DW Fury build. I need badge/kara gear to get started with true Warrior DPSing. So I'm kinda hamstringing myself (unless I re-gem my gear, which isn't happening) by using this spec.
Second, most players (millions of them) are never going to get full use from a "top spec." The play is to varied, their activities change moment to moment, and what the player is doing is often situational. Last night while I was testing out my shiny new Fury spec, for example, I grouped with some guildies, two fire mages. Later we added a Shadow Priest. We:
* Did Sunwell dailies. Pretty much kill quick and lots. My first try with the new spec, though, so I spent most of my time getting the rotation down. DW Fury is, without a doubt, the easiest Warrior rotation. If you like to KISS, this is the spec to go with.
* Killed Fel Orcs on top of BT. Mob killing, but with wandering Elites and those stupid green-glowing-alarm balls. I think they make shots for that now. We also did the "free the Pit Lord" quest on the Belf side, but that was easy. Spec worked great until I aggro'd the Elite. Quickly ran out of options when the mages hauled ass. Died.
* Nuked pit lord bosses in Legion Hold. Tried tanking them. Effective, but not nearly as good as Arms (and obviously not even close to Prot). Easy to lose aggro. Managed, but more work.
* Cleared out the Death Forge quests for the SP. Pretty much a run through as fast as you can and slaughter anything that moves or even twitches. Fury shined in this one, particularly with some light HoTs on me.
With the firepower we were running around with, I could literally just stand there and loot occasionally. Each of those activities, though, is not really ideal for a DW Fury build. DW Fury requires time to get that DPS up to speed. In the situations I was in last night, I didn't have any time. If I wanted to participate, I had to spam Bloodrage every time it popped just to get a Blood Thirst and a Whirlwind off if I wanted to join the fight.
The build I'm using now is a very specific build. It's designed for high sustained DPS against raid targets. It's perfectly usable for quests and occasional PvP in Battlegrounds. But it only shines in it's specfic role, which is melee raid DPS. MS Arms spec is vital for arenas. It rocks in PvP where the warrior is focused pretty much constantly. But if you don't do Arenas, or only dabble (which is MOST players in WoW) do you have to have it? No. 31/30, or anything else you like, will serve you just as well.
Given these two caveats, taking a top spec for your talent tree of choice isn't a Bad Thing. But it's not a Necessary thing either, particularly if you're not doing whatever the spec is designed to do. You could, literally, do just as well making up your own spec and having fun with the abilities you like to use. Assuming you're not doing one of those very specific things all the time. Put the elitist tools on ignore and have a good time.
So, how'd it go? Like I said, meh. DPS wasn't particularly better than my customized 31/30 DW build. Burst damage wasn't even close. When I had the opportunity to get well into the rotation the DPS was high and consistent. But the trade offs weren't great. Fury is not for Threat generation, so mobs were constantly coming off me as double Pyroblasts came sailing over my head. This build, for example, has no Piercing Howl. Hamstring is the obvious choice, so it's workable in mob fights, but a handicap in PvP. Make sure you've got your boots enchanted with Boar's Speed because you're going to be running, a lot.
I didn't find BT any better than Mortal Strike. And no Sword Specialization made everything feel a LOT slower, even when Flurry proc'd. Rage generation was great, but only if I could stay in combat. I learned quickly to rush from target to target to sustain DPS and keep rage going. Basically the pace of actually fighting felt slower, but the in-between targets time was a lot faster. Rampage is nice. As if Bloodthirst, but ya gotta be hitting stuffs for it to work. Nothing to hit = no health.
I also found myself spending a lot of my time looking at my hot bar trying to find something to do while waiting for BT and Whirlwind to cool down. That, of course, is a largely an experience thing, but I still feel like I'm just standing there with a full rage bar swinging and waiting. There's several things you can do for Rage Dumps, but I mostly just smacked Heroic Strike.
Overall, it's a fine spec for someone who likes top damage and a simple rotation. Solo'ing it's quite acceptable. I particularly like the benefit from Rampage, and definitely like Bloodthirst without having to take Second Wind. Toe-to-toe with mobs was quite easy and I bandaged and ate a lot less than with an MS spec. This may be a spec you have to take for raiding DPS, but other players will like it as well, depending on their style. If you like to rush in, hit stuffs, and then rush off and hit more stuffs, DW Fury is for you.
It's not entirely my style... the pacing seem off because I've been Arms for so long. And it gives up, IMO, too much functionality for a small DPS gain. I really like that added bit Arms can add to a fight and the variety and adaptability that Arms can manage. But I can also recommend the spec to certain players. Definitely worth giving a try.
I'm gonna stick with it for awhile until I can fight my way to enough honor for my 2-hander. Hopefully, as I gain more experience with it, I'll have a few more thoughts. Wouldn't that be nice? :)