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Posts with tag throughput

The Light and How to Swing It: How to compare intellect and spirit in Mists of Pandaria

Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Every Sunday, Chase Christian invites you to discuss the finer side of the paladin class: the holy specialization. Feel free to email me with any questions you want answered, like why paladins are so awesome.

With Mists of Pandaria coming up on the horizon, many holy paladins are looking ahead to the changes that the expansion will bring. Most of the talent and ability info is still very malleable at this point, and as such, I haven't begun to worry or get excited just yet. One thing that we do know is that in Mists, intellect will finish the transformation that it started in Cataclysm. Intellect is going to become a throughput-only stat, as it will stop increasing our maximum mana.

Today, intellect and longevity are nearly synonymous. Replenishment and Divine Plea are two of our largest mana sources, and they both scale off of our intellect. Most paladins are sporting intellect gems and trinkets, and intellect flasks and food fill up our bags. Holy paladins have been leaning on intellect for a long time due to its versatility, and it seemed like the decision to roll spell power into intellect would permanently ensure intellect's role as our best stat. By decoupling intellect and mana, the developers are changing everything we know about gearing a healer.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Raid Rx: Throughput, regeneration and secondary stats

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.

This ends up being the same question that new players keep asking that has spanned multiple expansions. The war between throughput and regeneration continues to be debated. Really, though, there isn't much to discuss because you can't really compare the two on the same scale.

Throughput refers to the strength and impact your spells make. Intellect, critical strike rating, mastery and haste affect that to some degree, depending on your class. Regeneration is largely about your mana pool and the rate at which you gain mana back. Without mana, no spells can be cast. Intellect and spirit are the main stats here. They both affect different parts of your game, and I hesitate whenever I'm asked to pit the two against each other.

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Filed under: Raiding, Raid Rx (Raid Healing)

The Light and How to Swing It: Straight talk about holy paladin healing

Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Every Sunday, Chase Christian invites you to discuss the finer side of the paladin class: the holy specialization. Feel free to email me with any questions you want answered, like how come I had to use Lay on Hands to save that tank.

You've heard me talk about Cataclysm's revolutionary triage paradigm of healing, and you've read all about the new Three Heal style for heal design. Every healing class starts with three nearly-identical healing spells as a baseline. The devs then sprinkle in a few extra heals to make each class somewhat unique. Add in a variety of AoE and specialty heals, and you've got a recipe for any one of the healing classes in Cataclysm. We were subject to a lot of retooling to get our holy tree to fit into this model, but it was definitely a success.

While it's fun to discuss the paradigm from a bird's-eye view, it's also not representative of actually healing encounters. WoW isn't played with a pen and paper, but with a keyboard and mouse. Every boss encounter requires different techniques, and their varying mechanics are key in determining the best course of action. How can we take what we know about the new healing paradigm and actually apply it to real encounters? What heals are holy paladins really using today?

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

The Light and How to Swing It: Holy paladins are all about throughput

Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Every Sunday, Chase Christian invites you to discuss the finer side of the paladin class: the holy specialization. Feel free to email me with any questions you want answered, like how to pull off an awesome dive heal, as pictured above.

Blizzard has tried to give holy paladins so many interesting tools. We saw our first absorption effect in our level 80 ability, Sacred Shield. Its potency was limited due to the proc mechanics involved, and once it was limited to a single target, it became just another buff we kept active. The dev team tried giving us not one but two different HoTs. The first was via the old Glyph of Flash of Light, which took our weakest heal and cut its up-front healing in half in exchange for a weak HoT. It simply didn't make sense.

The second HoT we received came from the interaction between Infusion of Light and Sacred Shield, which would put a HoT on our SS target when we used FoL on him. While more powerful than the last iteration, it was still far too weak to make any difference, and its limitation of a single target really made it untenable. Our ability to prevent damage via absorption effects or proactively heal damage via HoTs was basically nil, and holy paladins relied on massive throughput to solve every healing dilemma. It looks like that model hasn't changed today.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Spiritual Guidance: Shield spam and Divine Aegis, a theorycrafting story

In the beginning there were priests. Then Blizzard said "Let there be other classes!" Things have been a lot more complicated ever since. Fortunately, there is Spiritual Guidance, WoW.com's bi-weekly guide for priests. On Sundays you can enjoy discussion on discipline, holy, and healing in the company of Dawn Moore. We don't have cookies here, but only because we call them biscuits, and serve them with tea, sandwiches, and scones. Did you want one lump, or two?

A couple of months ago I found myself talking to a non-priest about the gems I had slotted on my character. He was of the understanding that disc priests wanted nothing but crit, and thought it was strange that I had gemmed straight spellpower on all my gear. Figuring he was behind on the times, I happily explained to him that I was using the standard gem set up for shield spamming disc priests, which works around the premise that if the majority of what we do is cast shields, then we should stack as much spellpower as possible in order to make our most used spell (Power Word: Shield) absorb more. This is the standard practice advised to shield spammers throughout the priest community, and I've advised it here on Spiritual Guidance before as well.

The non-priest still didn't understand though. He kept insisting "but crit ..." which inclined me to gently stroke back his hair and say "there there, poor little confused non-priest, it's all right." I allowed him his dignity though, and instead went on with my explanation. I told him that alternative stats like crit and haste didn't do much for shield spamming since Power Word: Shield can't crit, and Borrowed Time removes the necessity for haste since the talent carries us down to the 1 second GCD soft cap whenever we cast Power Word: Shield. The non-priest still didn't understand, so I explained to him that a disc priest's primary interest in crit was Divine Aegis, a talent which applies a second shield whenever one of your spells crits. "But shields don't crit," I reiterated. "The heal from the Glyph of Power Word: Shield can, but that would only add say ... 500 extra absorption from Divine Aegis. The spellpower is still better."

As I typed out those last words, they boomeranged back and hit me square in the face. Startled, I peeled the sans serif off my nose and and reexamined the limp letters in my hands. Suddenly I wondered, "is that really true?"

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

The Light and How to Swing It: It's all intellect's fault


Every Sunday, Chase Christian of The Light and How to Swing It invites you to discuss the finer side of the paladin class: the holy specialization. This week, we examine the difference between throughput and longevity, and how intellect skews the scale.

Paladins have an incredible amount of what I call 'support' spells: things that aren't part of your rotation but provide us with quite a bit of flexibility. All of our 'Hand of X' spells would fall into this category, along with several other unique abilities that set us apart from other healers. Our healing toolbox has also expanded significantly, with Sacred Shield and Beacon of Light completely redefining how a holy paladin heals in WotLK. My actions bars are filled with macros and various support spells that I may need on a moment's notice.

Even with the sheer number of abilities that paladins have to deal with different situations, we are left with only two true healing spells to rely on. Holy Light and Flash of Light are our workhorses, with nearly all of our actual healing coming from one or the other. Holy Light provides us with an essentially infinite source of throughput (see the above graph from Valithria Dreamwalker), while Flash of Light's efficiency gives us a longevity that has other healers green with envy. Trying to reconcile the difference between these two paradigms, massive throughput vs persistent longevity, is one of the most intensely discussed topics in the holy paladin community. Read on for my thoughts on the topic.

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Filed under: Paladin, Raiding, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

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