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Raid Rx: Healing loot from Zul'Aman and Zul'Gurub in patch 4.1

Every week, Raid Rx will help you quarterback your healers to victory! Your host is Matt Low, the grand poobah of World of Matticus and a founder of No Stock UI, a WoW blog for all things UI-, macro- and addon-related. Catch his weekly podcast on healing, raiding and leading on the Matticast.

Looking to bridge the gap between heroic dungeons and raids? The new item drops from the updated Zul'Aman and Zul'Gurub ought to help with that! Obviously, these items aren't meant to be the best items in this tier, but if you want to reach for the gear ceiling in preparation for patch 4.2, you'd best have an idea of what the trolls are keeping away from you. For me, the big ticket items are things like rings, wands, off hands, bracers and select weapons.

I know the places look the same, but other than looks, the encounters have been updated. I'm psyched to tackle trolls again. It has been a while since we had trolls to sink our weapons in.

After the jump, we'll examine all the items available.

Weapons

Out of all the different item slots, weapons are my favorite. Trinkets would come in as a close second. Healers have several options when it comes to weapons. If you're looking for a staff, the Legacy of Arlokk is a good fix until you get your hands on a Chelley's Staff of Dark Mending. When it comes to 1-handers, the Amani Scepter of Rites is the mace to shoot for, as it is usable by all the different healing classes.

For off-hands, I know priests and druids have struggled slightly, but the Lost Bag which should do the trick if you're lucky enough to see it. For paladins and shaman, a shield isn't as high of a priority, since a blacksmith can create the Elementium Stormshield.

Don't get me started on wands. Up until now, PvPing would have been the main route to go before hitting raids. Now at least there are two wands to choose from. Just remember that one has hit and the other doesn't.


In addition to weapons, there are numerous armor pieces that will be available as drops. Shoulders and helms of epic quality aren't so readily available unless you tackle raids or craft your own. You can always buy tier legs, tier gloves, and the tier chest with valor points. Some epic helms can be crafted. Hunt for these, as they'll help tide you over until you score the really good items from raids.

Healing plate

Need a healing plate set for your holy paladin? The hardest ones for me to get on my paladin are the helm and the shoulders. I tend to gravitate towards the tier items anyway. Again, plate healing bracers appear to be one of the hardest pieces to acquire. With any amount of luck, you can score yourself Bracers of Hidden Purpose. It might be enough to tide you over until you get the bracers from Cho'gall instead. Shackles of the End of Days are the ones you'll want to aim for eventually.


Healing mail pieces

Lucky for our shaman friends -- access to resto gear means access to elemental gear! They're quite useful in the event you ever decide to take a break from healing and switch over to lightning bolt-throwing.

Here's the funny thing: Bracers are traditionally the hardest pieces to replace. The bracers that come out of the new instances aren't packing any spirit stats at all. Chaos Beast Bracers from Chimaeron are the ones you're looking to add to your wish list at the top, but the Shadowmender Wristguards will do the job for now.


Healing leather

Like our shaman friends, druids have an enormous amount of flexibility with the gear and can switch with ease between healing and blowing stuff up in space turkey mode. Note that the
Vestments of the Soulflayer and Two-Toed Boots don't have any spirit at all on them. You may wish to find a way to reforge spirit into them so that your mana regeneration doesn't suffer too much.


Priest healing

Priest gear from the new instances is okay. The only pieces that were really lacking were bracers and wands. I already mentioned wands earlier in the post, but thank goodness for bracers. There are the Wristwraps of Departed Spirits for additional spirit and mastery. You can't go wrong with either of those at all. The Wristwraps of Madness, which have haste and crit but zero mastery and spirit, aren't optimal for players who are struggling for mana, but if the other pieces you're wearing are flooded with spirit, you can get away with sporting a piece that doesn't have any.

Don't forget about reforging. I have to say, reforging is one of my favorite features that came out in this expansion. The items linked here are geared towards the healing priests, since these have spirit on them. There are many more cloth spellpower items.


Rings and cloaks

Two intriguing ring choices here. The Signet of Venoxis has haste and mastery. That's a ring that could appeal to both caster DPS players and healers. The Soul Drain Signet would get the nod from me due to the spirit. You're at the point between heroics and raiding, right? It's a decent ring to pair with the Twined Band of Flowers from the valor vendor if you can afford it.


The cloak drop here is a BoE, which means healers can pick it up off the auction house. This allows you to forgo buying a Heavenly Breeze for the time being and invest your hard-earned valor points elsewhere. There isn't a ton of spirit or any mastery and haste on the Spiritcaller Cloak itself.

Where are all the trinkets?

It doesn't look like there are going to be any trinkets being offered from these two dungeons. The Minature Voodoo Mask does make a return for enjoyment. But for now, you'll need to rely on dungeon drops, reputation items or BoEs to fill out the trinket slots.

Need advice on working with the healers in your guild? Raid Rx has you covered. Send your questions about raid healing to mattl@wowinsider.com. For less healer-centric raiding advice, visit Ready Check for advanced tactics and advice for the endgame raider.

Filed under: Raid Rx (Raid Healing)

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