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Posts with tag spellpower

Spiritual Guidance: Secondary stats and what to stack

Every Sunday (usually), Spiritual Guidance will offer practical insight for priests of the holy profession. Your host is Matt Low, the grand poobah of World of Matticus and a founder of PlusHeal, a new healing community for all restorative classes. Some requests were made recently to help newer Priests figure out what secondary stats are important and what to aim for. Matticus shall help!

I know when I started playing World of Warcraft, I didn't pay a whole lot of attention to secondary stats. To be fair, stats like Hit didn't exist back in the day. This post is meant for newer Priests who aren't quite sure what these secondary stats do or what they mean. Just to be clear, primary stats are base attributes like stamina and intellect. Secondary stats are things like haste and critical strike rating.

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Filed under: Priest, Tips, Raiding, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance, Wrath of the Lich King

Spiritual Guidance: 4 different ways to diagnose your healer


Every Sunday (usually), Spiritual Guidance will offer practical insight for priests of the holy profession. Your host is Matt Low, the grand poobah of World of Matticus and a founder of PlusHeal, a new healing community for all restorative classes. Today Matticus checks out common problems healers run into that stall them from being effective.

Every healer in their life time will experience a situation gone bad where they try to figure out what went wrong. It usually goes something like this:

"What's the problem?"

"Lack of heals."

"Okay, more heals please!"

If I had a copper every time I heard that phrase, I would have enough for a mammoth by now. After every wipe or death, the first person that gets blamed is the healer. Big props to all of you right now no matter what class you are for sticking through it and helping your friends, guilds and raids out. I know I put up with a lot of stuff when crap hits the fan.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Priest, Shaman, Tips, Instances, Raiding, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Lichborne: A Death Knight statistics primer

Death Knight Itemization: This guy is doing it wrong.
Welcome to Lichborne, the weekly Death Knight column by professor Daniel Whitcomb, who totally has a PhD in Death-Knightology from Ebon Hold University. It's the truth, I swear.

I've seen a lot of people asking these questions as we've been getting into the expansion: Now that I am trying to gear by Death Knights, what stats should I get? What's good for a Death Knight? Which armor should I take. We've started getting in that somewhat in the last few columns, with advice on reputation gear and starting zone gear, but I figured today we should delve a little bit more into the why of Death Knight stats.

Today's column will double as a little bit of primer on how Death Knights get their power, and what stats you should be looking for on armor in general to make your Death Knight the best it can be. It's not completely in depth, but it should get you well on the road to understanding just how Death Knights get all that awesome power and sexiness.

We'll have 3 sections today. The Good are stats that are excellent choices for DPS, Tanks, or both. The So-So are stats which still do us some good, but are pretty situational or conditional in their usefulness. The Outcasts are those stats that you should avoid -- Well, I'd say avoid like the plague, but we're Death Knights. We like the plague around here. So I'll just say you should avoid them.

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Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Raiding, Leveling, Guides, Talents, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Ask A Beta Tester: AABT's greatest hits, part 1


Yep, we've shocked the ol' column back to gasping life. The good kind of reanimation, though, not the kind you're probably killing in Northrend.

Wow, this took ages. We got a lot of standout questions while doing Ask A Beta Tester, and I went through all of them trying to pick out the best, funniest, most helpful, or most unintentionally prescient among them. To be perfectly frank, we had so many that I started splitting them into separate articles. I've eliminated the questions that I expect readers will probably have answered for themselves at this point (e.g. Death Knight starting faction reputation) but kept all of the questions that I'm pretty sure are still relevant to the first week of gameplay in Wrath. I've also made a few additions and updates based on what we saw both in the beta and now on the live realms. I hope you guys enjoy reading these as much as we did answering them.

I'm going to start off with the earliest series of questions that Elizabeth Harper and Alex Ziebart took in July and August. To round out the rest of AABT's best in the next few days, we'll keep moving through August, September, October, and up to the very end of AABT.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Leveling, Factions, Classes, Making money, Wrath of the Lich King

Patch 3.02 for Restoration Druids, part 1

The single biggest change for most restoration Druids with patch 3.02 will be the disappearance of at least four commonly-used PvE and PvP specs:
  • 8/11/42 (the traditional resto PvP spec)
  • 11/11/39 (Resto PvP with Insect Swarm)
  • 13/11/37 (Resto PvP with Insect Swarm and Nature's Reach)
  • 11/0/50 (PvE Tree of Life with Insect Swarm).
The first three are kaputski because Feral Charge is now a 21-point talent in the feral tree, and the last three are bye-bye because Insect Swarm is now a 21-point talent in the balance tree. If you still want talents from the balance tree especially, you'll have a ton of stuff to play with (frankly I ran out of space here to discuss the new restokin specs but we'll cover it as soon as we can), but for the moment we're only going to concern ourselves with stuff squarely in the Restoration tree. Shifting Perspectives later today will have a full run-down on moonkin in patch 3.02 and Wrath. Otherwise, there's still a ton of new stuff for tree Druids in this patch, including a resurrected Tier 3 set bonus, a vastly-improved Tree of Life form, an out-of-combat rez, and an insane +haste buff to two of your most-used spells. If you also want a look at what early 5-man healing in the beta is like as a resto Druid, head here.

Read on for a comprehensive look at the new healing and mana regeneration mechanics, Restoration abilities, talents, and glyphs!

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Filed under: Druid, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Expansions, Raiding, Guides, Classes, Buffs, Wrath of the Lich King

Spellpower 101, or how I learned to love unified attributes

The big patch today is changing the way stats work in WoW. In its own way, it's as much of a change as combat ratings were in the pre-BC patch. Specifically, there are two major stat changes coming:

  • Hit and crit rating will be will no longer have separate stats for melee and for spells. Both spell hit/crit rating and melee hit/crit rating will now simply be hit (or crit) rating. This will mostly benefit hybrid classes; for instance, +hit for a Paladin will make both their spells and their melee strikes more likely to land.
  • +Damage and +healing are getting unified into one stat: spellpower.

This latter change could use a bit more explaining, and that's the main subject of this post.

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Filed under: Patches, Items

Arcane Brilliance: Preparing your Mage for patch 3.0.2, part 1



Each week Arcane Brilliance patches itself with new Mage content. These weekly patches are always full of buffs, and never any nerfs. They never contain any changes made for the sake of class balance. There are no bug fixes; because Arcane Brilliance has no bugs (or at least no bugs that can't be retroactively called "features"). This week, the patch notes read as follows:

Mage:
  • New spell: Polymorph: Corpse - 1% of base mana, instant cast, 50 yard range, transforms the target into a corpse, making it dead. While dead, the corpse cannot attack or cast spells. Lasts however long it takes for the target's ghost to run back to their corpse.
  • Mages can now equip plate armor.
  • Mana no longer goes down when casting, it instead goes up.
Next week, I'll complain about this patch. It's totally not powerful enough. Also, Warlocks are OP.

All signs point to this coming Tuesday being the day patch 3.0.2 arrives and turns the game on its head. Up will be down, left will be right, dogs and cats will live together, mass hysteria will ensue. We need to prepare for this coming insanity, if only so that we're able to give snarky answers to the many questions that will pop up in trade chat after we all log back in. I expect lots of "LOL WUT HAPPEN TO MY TALENTS?" and the occasional "I used my mount and it disappeared! Bug?"

This week will be the first of two columns in which we'll go over the changes most important to Mages that we can expect come Tuesday. We'll begin with general changes, and move on to the altered trainable spells. The second part will appear Monday, and will cover the three talent trees and review the many changes we'll find there. Jump on past the break and we'll get started.

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Filed under: Mage, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Features, Guides, Classes, Talents, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance, Wrath of the Lich King

Spiritual Guidance: Everything you ever wanted to know about raid healing at level 80


Every Sunday (usually), Spiritual Guidance will offer practical insight for priests of the holy profession. Your host is Matt Low, the grand poobah of World of Matticus and a founder of PlusHeal, a new healing community for all restorative classes. This week Matticus offers his opinion and experience on raid healing at level 80. Find out about how Matt manages his mana, his take on whether Priests really are "useless", skills needed to thrive, and just how hard it is to heal tanks.

When I write blog posts about Priests, I don't like to rely on speculation. I am certain there are many Priests (other healers even) who want to know what the next age of Wrath healing will look like. I am not a Shaman, a Paladin, or a Druid; therefore, I cannot speak from their perspectives but I have seen them in action. I am not a theorycrafter. I can't break everything down into numbers for you. There have been a few blue posts asking for healer feedback and maybe this post can offer some insight.

That being said, this post is drawn from my experiences as a healer in both normal (10 man) and heroic (25 man) versions of Naxxramas and Obsidian Sanctum. I won't tell you what I think should get nerfed or buffed; I will, however, tell you how I coped with the challenges that the expansion brought forth.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Priest, Shaman, Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Guides, Classes, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance, Wrath of the Lich King

Breakfast Topic: The simplification of the game

One of the key reasons behind WoW's runaway success when it launched was it made MMORPG's accessible. Quests were tracked, instances were on rails and progression was clear. Other games on the market at the time were deeply complex affairs that required players to spend more time outside the game researching it than actually in it playing.

As time went on WoW became more complex in an effort to continually challenge its players. New game mechanics were introduced and corresponding stats showed up on items to deal with them. Classes took on new roles and new game mechanics were introduced to cater to it. Multiple sets of gear became necessary to deal with the many different encounters available in Azeroth and the Outlands.

But now, with Wrath, Blizzard is simplifying the game to a great extent. Item stats are being merged or removed (hello, +Spellpower.) Different classes are approaching encounters the same way (all tanks are getting better at AE abilities). Raid boss mechanics, which only a small percentage of the player population has seen, are being reused in more accessible encouters.

So the questions is: Do we want a more simplified WoW so we can spend more time playing and less time analyzing dps charts or is the complexity of the current game part of the appeal?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, Wrath of the Lich King

Ask a Beta Tester: Spell power, phasing, and more


The image above has almost nothing to do with the content of today's Ask a Beta Tester, but I found it funny so you get to deal with it. We'll jump right into things with Turfing's question...

I have a priest alt getting close to 70. Planning on doing healing come Wrath. With the conversion to spell power should I be picking up healing gear or damage gear right now? How is, for instance, Spell fire stacking up against Primal Mooncloth? Is spellfire actually able to heal better right now in the beta? How about damage?

I strongly recommend hopping over to Wowhead's Wrath site and doing some research on how the numbers turn out. In most cases, DPS gear has better DPS stats (hit, crit) and Healing gear has better Healing stats. The spell power numbers are just much, much closer. In your particular example, the Primal Mooncloth Robe has more spell power than the Spellfire Robe, but it has mp5 and the Spellfire has crit. A DPS spec/class would rather have the crit.

A few weeks ago I covered the effects of the spell power change in Hybrid Theory, with some raw numbers to look at. You can read that over if you'd like, but I mostly just suggest hitting up wotlk.wowhead.com for specific items.

For more answers to your questions, read on!

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Filed under: Fishing, Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Wrath of the Lich King

Insider Trader: Faction recipes for enchanters

Insider Trader is your inside line on making, selling, buying and using player-made products.

Last week we took a look at some of the more popular and requested enchants and how to get them for yourself. I also promised that I'd continue the faction recipe series by taking a look at enchanting for this week.

So far, I've talked about the following professions and which factions hold appropriate recipes:
Here is a complete list of the factions to which any enchanter should "suck up" and how far you'll need to take it:
  • Shattered Sun Offensive, honored.
  • Consortium, revered.
  • Cenarion Expedition, exalted.
  • Thrallmar/Honor Hold, exalted.
  • Keepers of Time, exalted.
  • Lower City, exalted.
  • Sha'tar, exalted.
  • Violet Eye, exalted.

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Filed under: Enchanting, Features, Factions, Guides, Making money, Enchants, Insider Trader (Professions)

Latest Beta build kills spell downranking [UPDATED]

Note the mana drained versus the mana costA new build has hit the Wrath Beta server tonight, and while it's minor enough that it doesn't even fix quite a few bugs from last build, it does have a doozy of a change: Blizzard appears to have killed downranking, the practice of using a lower rank spell (usually, but not always, a healing spell) to save mana, prevent overhealing, or apply an attached buff or effect.

They've done this by making all lower levels of a spell cost one high mana cost, sometimes more than 100 mana higher than the highest rank. Right now, it's looking like all these spells are now a percentage of base mana.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Expansions, Wrath of the Lich King

Git along, li'l dogies

Time for a little WoW blog roundup, cowpokes! Whoopie-ti-yi-yo!

Making gold with second account | Full Time WoW Addict
With Blizzard's new refer-a-friend incentive, you might be thinking about opening a second account to get those XP benefits. Even better, Examino at Full Time WoW Addict shows you how to earn your raiding gold with some light multiboxing. No Wrath spoilers!

Spellpower and You: Gearing in WotLK | Banana Shoulders
Siha at Banana Shoulders (best blog name ever!) compares theories to practice in Wrath's current Paladin spellpower changes.

Achievements and why they suck | Yet Another Warlock Nerf
Some people think the achievements system coming in Wrath is awesome sauce. Horns at Yet Another Warlock Nerf vigorously disagrees.

Three more blog dogies after the break...

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Filed under: Paladin, Rogue, Tips, Guilds, PvP, Humor, Making money, Alts, Achievements

Wrath Beta patch notes: Priest

My main is a Priest. A Shadow Priest, to be precise. While I started out Holy, my Priest has always been my main and probably always will be. The only thing that could possibly draw me away is my Protection Paladin, should my raid ever need another. Obviously, the very first thing I looked at in the Wrath Beta patch notes were the Priest notes. I've talked about what we saw in Alpha, and I was cautiously optimistic at the time. After seeing these notes... well... yeah, I'm still optimistic. I am (dare I say it?)... excited, even!

I'll tuck my analysis behind the cut, but here are my three favorite notes out of the Priest notes:
  • New Talent: Improved Spirit Tap (Shadow) - Gives you a 50/100% chance to gain a 50% bonus to your Spirit after gaining a critical effect chance from your Mind Blast or Shadow Word: Death spells. For the duration, your mana will regenreate at a 25% rate while casting. Lasts 8 sec.
  • Lightwell (Holy): Cast time reduced to .5 sec, down from 1.5 sec. Charges increased to 10, up from 5. Now breaks from any attack that hits you for 30% or more of your total health. Cooldown reduced to 3 minutes, down from 5.
  • Shadowform (Shadow): Now has an innate 30% threat reduction. Now has a shapeshift UI.

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Filed under: Priest, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Expansions, Wrath of the Lich King

WWI '08 Death Knight Demo: General Impressions


We learned at the Q&A panel on Saturday that Death Knights will be starting at a new area just off Eastern Plaguelands called Ebon Hold, but for now, it remains unimplemented. Thus, these demo Death Knights start at Tirion Fordring's house in the west of Eastern Plaguelands.

On Death Knight Gear and Gear Mechanics:

They start with a complete outlay of green gear with DPS Warrior type stats: strength, agility, critical strike rating, and stamina. Their sword itself is blue quality 2 hander named the Massacre Sword. It does 127-191 damage at at a speed of 3.1 seconds, giving it 51.3 DPS. It also provides 22 strength and 23 hit rating.

It should be noted that the gear did not have spellpower, and it doesn't look like Death Knights will need it at all. Almost every spell that did magic damage specifically stated that the damage was modified by attack power. This is perfectly in line with Blizzard's recent trend to simplify and consolidate gear, which they discussed in relation to Retribution Paladins at Saturday's class panel. Perhaps we'll even see this mechanic show up on other magical melee hybrids in the future.

The Death Knight came loaded with 6 runes on their rune weapon bar: 2 Blood Runes, 2 Unholy Runes, and 2 Frost Runes. Talents points were unavailable with this demo, although we could see the talent descriptions themselves.

Death Knight Starting Spells and Playstyle:

The Death Knights started with a few basic skills:

Blood presence:
Requires level 55
Costs 1 Blood Rune
Instant cast, 1 second cooldown
Description: Strengthens the Death Knight with the presence of blood, increasing damage done by 15% and healing the Death Knight by 4% of damage dealt. Only one presence may be active at a time.

Blood Strike:
Requires level 55
Costs 1 Blood Rune
Instant cast, 1 second cooldown
Melee range
Description: Instantly strike the enemy, causing 60% weapon damage plus 55 for each disease effect on the target.

Icy Touch:
Requires level 55
Costs 1 Frost Rune
Instant cast, 6 second cooldown
20 yard range
Description: Deals 217 to 235 Frost damage modified by attack power and reduces the target's ranged, melee attack, and casting speed by 15% for 20 seconds.

Death Coil
Requires Level 55
Requires Runic Power
Instant cast
30 yard range
Description:Unleashes all available runic power, causing up to 460 shadow damage modified by attack power to an enemy target or healing up to 460 damage from a friendly undead target.

Death Gate
Requires Level 55
Costs 1 Unholy Rune
10 second cast, 15 minute cooldown
Description: Returns you to Ebon Hold (Note: Since Ebon Hold is not yet implemented, in the demo it returned you to Tirion Fordring).

Death Grip
Requires level 55
Costs 1 Unholy Rune
Instant cast, 35 second cooldown.
30 yard range
Description: Harness the unholy energy that surrounds and binds all matter, drawing the target toward the Death Knight and forcing the enemy to attack the Death Knight for 3 seconds.

Plague Strike
Requires level 55
Costs 1 Blood Rune and 1 Unholy Rune
Instant cast
Melee range
Description: A vicious strike that deals weapon damage plus 37 and plagues the target, dealing 350 shadow damage over 12 seconds.

Casting these spells uses up the listed runes, which have a cooldown of 10 seconds. Our (lucky) play tester reported that the system felt a bit like having 3 seperate mana pools with their own spells, but that the pacing seemed to work well, and that she was now interested in actually trying one out in when beta rolls around where she hadn't been before.

Introducing the Knights of the Ebon Hand

After roaming about a bit and killing stuff, Elizabeth stumbled upon Light's Hope Chapel. This venerated base of the Argent Dawn had some new guests known as the Knights of the Ebon Hand, lead by a night elf named Siouxsie the Banshee, a Death Knight trainer. It's likely, of course, that these NPCs will be gone and moved to Ebon Hold once it's implemented, but for now, they gave us a sneak peek at the new Death Knight faction and some of the spells Death Knights will get post-55.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Events, Expansions, Leveling, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King, Worldwide Invitational

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