Every week, Raid Rx will help you quarterback your healers to victory! Your host is Matt Low, the grand pooh-bah of World of Matticus and a founder of No Stock UI, a WoW blog for all things UI-, macro- and addon-related. If you're looking for more healing advice, check out the Plus Heal community.
I can just feel my mana regeneration draining away. Have you seen some of the healing notes on the recent beta patch? Discipline priests and restoration druids had some adjustments made to their mana talents. As holy priest, my mana feels fairly tight as it is.
But not everything is as it seems. I stressed it before, but mana regeneration is one side of the equation. Unavoidable damage and avoidable damage are aspects that need to be taken into account. The feeling that I get when I look around the community is that each respective class got nerfed. But here's a thought: If every class gets nerfed, is it really a nerf? I mean, we're still relatively equal to each other.
The main source of mana is going to come from the spirit stat for all healing classes. But there are additional talents and methods for mana gains. We'll take a quick look at them here to see how to maximize the return from them.
- Holy Concentration Fully talented, we get an additional 20 percent regeneration from spirit while in combat. There is no argument here. Spirit will play a big role for us holy priest players.
- Rapture What about discipline? Don't mind the tooltip. Even though the effect can now occur every 12 seconds instead of 6, Rapture is the next method. Getting 2.5 percent of your total mana back whenever your shields bust (and a limit of 12 seconds) means additional intellect is going to be needed to boost your mana gains from this talent.
- Divine Plea No talents for paladins that will help in this department. Since they're reliant on holy power as an alternative power source, Divine Plea appears to be the only option. Make sure you grab the glyph, as it increases the potency of the spell.
- Mana Tide totem Other than Water Shield, Mana Tide totem is going to be a best friend for a shaman. Note that the return isn't based on mana pool. It actually increases the spirit regeneration rate by 350 percent for 12 seconds. Shaman didn't get any changes to the restoration tree in the recent beta build.
- Revitalize The druids mana gains from Revitalize are similar to Rapture. Cast a Rejuvenation or a Lifebloom and there is a chance the druid scores 2 percent of his mana back. Of course, that can only happen every 12 seconds.
Do you notice the similarities? I don't know if I can call it a straight nerf to any one class. It looks to me that these changes are all in the same ballpark. Personally, I'm still trying to learn how to heal and manage my mana. If players take unnecessary damage, we'll continue to get taxed. As long as bosses aren't doing an overpowered amount of damage, then we should be able to throttle and handle our healing output accordingly. It would suck if we have trouble healing on certain fights, only for our regeneration to go south while the bosses are still waling away with the same amount.
I'm wistfully toying with the idea of stacking a healing team filled with nothing but priests and shamans -- but no, I know better than that. I'd rather keep a diverse group. I already have one of each spec penciled into my healing roster. I'm still looking for the elusive sixth healer. I just haven't decided what yet. I figure since we're covered on abilities and buffs, any healing class would work.
Even on live, my holy priest feels like a Hummer. I just seem to chug mana, even after reforging and switching to additional spirit gems. Only several more weeks to go.
What does beta regeneration look like?
I've got a few screenshots of character sheets if you're still curious about mana levels at 85. Obviously, your mileage is going to vary, but I figured you might be interested in seeing a snapshot of a healer ready for normal dungeons, heroic dungeons and geared to the teeth after raids.
Look at that: a measly 1,127 mana per 5. The additional 20 percent from Holy Concentration, makes it manageable. My item level here is extremely low. This character was a direct copy from live and I leveled him to 85. Gear was naturally acquired from quests and normal instances. I hadn't been able to replace everything yet. My gloves are still tier 10. This character is qualified for high-level dungeons, but that's about it. I can't even think about heroics right now. I run out of mana like crazy in some of the boss battles. Note the intellect amount.
Meet my beta shaman. Her setup consists of blue gear, except they're all the heroic iterations. She has the best possible gear she can get before stepping into raids. This is where you want your character to be before taking the plunge. Now, I think there's a bit of wiggle room here. The character sheet shows an item level of 350. You might be able to get away with 340 or so, but your raid group will need to do everything possible to stay alive and support each other. As for intellect, Mattyjandro has a full 1,000 more than Matticus.
This one is a shot of a paladin in full epic and tier gear. I named him Pallycus. My plate-wearing virtual ego is decked out and is ready for some heroic raiding.
Do you see how spirit jumps? About 1,200 to do normal; 1,800 to start getting into raids; 2,600 after all is said and done and you have all your gear. One can deduce that a figure between 1,200 to 1,800 spirit is needed to withstand healing heroic instances.
Check out the intellect jumps. We have 3,000 intellect and 66,000 mana for a priest ready for normal dungeons; over 4,000 intellect and 85,000 mana for a shaman. Pallycus has almost 4,500 intellect and a whopping 90,000 mana.
Granted, these are all different classes, and it would've been more precise had I shown three of the same class. I figure that they're close enough for all healers to get a ball park idea. A fully decked-out priest might not have 90,000 mana, but it would be around the area, anyway.
Five weeks. I don't know about you, but the last month is always the hardest.
Need advice on working with the healers in your guild? Raid Rx has you covered. Send your questions about raid healing to firstname.lastname@example.org. For less healer-centric raiding advice, visit Ready Check, and don't miss our strategy guides to Icecrown Citadel and Halion/the Ruby Sanctum.