Caster Weapon Swapper: An Essential Addon for Spellsurge Users

Spellsurge or 81 Healing? It’s a common question that many healers have asked themselves.

Why not use both?

Here’s a description about CasterWeaponSwapper from Curse:

This AddOn swaps weapons based on your current amount of mana, to maximize mana efficiency. With this mod, you can start fights with a high intellect staff equipped, then switch to a +damage/healing weapon for most of the fight, and then switch to a spirit-heavy staff when your mana is low.

This AddOn is unique because is does all this automatically, and without interrupting you with a weapon-swap cooldown. Normally when you equip weapons in combat, you get a 1.5-second global cooldown. CasterWeaponSwapper gets around this by swapping weapons only when you start to cast a spell. This means the cooldowns overlap and you don’t experience any interruption. When out of combat, there is an option to swap weapons whenever necessary, since there is no swap cooldown.

The AddOn supports 1- and 2-handed weapons, off hand items, and wands/librams/idols/totems. You can set up weapon sets for high mana, casting, low mana, and sets for Druid forms. The casting set will only be used when in combat. The Druid sets will be used while you are shapeshifted into a bear or cat. There is also an option to use the low-mana set while you have spirit boosting buffs (Spirit Tap, Evocation, Innervate, and Aura of the Blue Dragon), and an option to swap between a secondary casting set to proc the Spellsurge enchant each time it is available.

Using CWS

Once you’ve downloaded and unzipped CWS to your Addons folder, you can start using it right away. Make sure you’ve enabled it.

To bring up the main CWS window, type in /cws

CasterWeaponSwapper window in action

Weapon Categories

You’ll notice each set has 3 slots. From left to right, it’s your main hand, off hand, and ranged slot (Wand, Libram, Totem, Relic).

High Mana Set

Weapon you have equipped coming into an encounter of some sort. If you want to seriously push yourself and excel, this is a kind of weapon which has a ton of intellect on it. Higher intellect means larger initial mana pool.

Casting Set

This is reserved for a weapon that you will use most of the time while casting in combat. Most of the time, it will have high MP5.

Low Mana Set

When you get low on mana, CWS will automatically equip this. Now, there’s 2 ways you go about it here. You can equip a high Spirit weapon and sit still for a few seconds while your slowly regen your mana or equip another high MP5 weapon so you can continue to cast while having low mana. I’d say 9 times out of 10, if you’re running low on mana during a raid, it’s at a critical point where you have to keep pumping out heals and you can’t remain idle for too long.

Spellsurge Set

This is reserved for your weapon that has Spellsurge on it. The addon keeps track of Spellsurge’s internal cooldown and swaps accordingly when it’s up.


You can use the sliders below to change the threshold to swap weapons. These are the default settings. For example, when my mana reaches 80%, it will switch from my High Mana set to my Casting set. When I get to 25% mana, it will switch from my Casting set to my Low Mana set. Use the sliders to control when you want that to happen.


Enable swaps: Self explanatory. Either turns on or disables the entire swap mechanic.

Print swaps: It notifies you in your chatbox whether or not it’s switching weapons.

Post-fight reports: Here’s an example:

CasterWeaponSwapper stats

It tells me a few important things like how many times Spellsurge procced and the amount of time I was in the 5SR.

Swap Whenever Needed…: Also self explanatory. It can handle swapping operations outside of combat. My guess is that it defaults to high mana or low mana depending on your current mana pool.

Conclusions and Observations

It’s a top notch addon and one that I’d heartily recommend to any healer who wants to excel at their game and ensure they have the mana they need to heal their tanks. It allows me to focus on healing instead of manually switching to my Spellsurge staff to activate it and back again.

Don’t think so?

I can tell you I’m not the only blogger who feels this way (Speaking of which, it’s been a week and a half, where have you been?).

How should I enchant my new staff?

My Ethereum Life-Staff which I got from Solarian in Tempest Keep in World of WarcraftI am now packing some serious heat. Well, no not really. But my healing has gone up slightly. Before, my main weapon was the [item]Crystalheart Pulse-Staff[/item] which dropped from Mag. Now I have the [item]Ethereum Life-Staff[/item] which drops from Solarian in Tempest Keep. Actually, they both look the same. The Crystalheart is the same model except the crystals on either end are red.

Anyway, let’s compare the stats. For raid simulation (and the fact that I still had the buffs going from Tempest Keep), I consumed the three main Priest consumables:

  • Flask of Mighty Restoration
  • Superior Mana Oil
  • Blackened Sporefish

I applied the mana oil to both of my staves just so I could save myself the trouble of having to do math. I can keep Mallet suspended until I raid with him again on Thursday anyway. Remember, I do not have any raid buffs on other than consumables. Take a look at the following shot:

Stat comparison between Ethereum Life-Staff and Crystalheart Pulse-Staff

First, let’s keep in mind that my Crystalheart Pulse-Staff has a +81 Healing enchant on it whereas my Ethereum Life-Staff has no enchants on it. I lost a small piece of healing crit chance, but I’m not worried about that too much. I also see a decrease in my healing by 30 points.

The above shot is the Crystalheart and the below shot is that of the Ethereum.


The stat points were fairly marginal at best. I gained 1 stamina and lost 6 intellect (10 health, 60 mana). But look at the amount of Spirit that I gained. I picked up a whopping 62 spirit. A quick glance on the tooltip on the side shows that I lose 4 mp5 while casting, but I gain 23 mp5 while not casting.

So herein lies the dilemma. My original intent was to use one staff as my main healing staff and the other one to regenerate mana. Now I’m wondering which one to use for which.

I’m seriously considering putting Spellsurge on the Ethereum because I want to help my party out a bit more. I’m almost positive I can guarantee the effect to proc when the hidden cooldown is up.

Most raiding encounters are endurance based. They depend on how long you can keep your assigned tanks alive instead of how much you can keep them alive for. Since I already have 81 Healing on my Crystalheart, it seems kind of weird (AND STUPIDLY EXPENSIVE) to re-enchant it again with Spellsurge and put 81 Healing on my new Ethereum.

I lose the nice 4 MP5 while casting with the new staff. As a raiding Priest, I’m not going to be idling. I’m going to be using my global cooldown fairly often by tossing renews and PoMs everywhere. I will rarely, if ever, get chances to sit and just regen my mana. No one in my Guild uses Spellsurge at the moment. But maybe I can influence them to create a Spellsurge mana endurance group.

It looks so easy when you’re comparing enchants on 1 weapon. When you’re working with 2, it makes it a little more difficult because now you have to start planning for different scenarios.

How much mana do I gain as I’m casting spells?
How much mana do I gain when I’m not?
How much healing do I lose?
Is the decrease in healing worth the extra longevity?
How much mana do I gain back if I were to be innervated?
What will benefit my healing the most?
What will benefit my raid the most?
Even now it’s not an easy question for me to answer. Everything looked so simple the first time when I compared 81 Healing with Spellsurge. But there’s a lot more to take into account when you are a raiding Priest.

Any healers out there? Discussion of any kind would help. Maybe there’s a point that I’ve forgotten.

+81 Healing vs Spellsurge

A special big shoutout to Netherlord who was kind enough to give me the recipe for Spellsurge at no cost at all. Thank you VERY much sir and welcome to Carnage!

Here is an important question that needs to be answered. You’ve hit 70 and you just got that ultimate 1H mace or that ultimate healing staff. What enchant do I put on it? Do I want an additional +81 Healing or Spellsurge? Neither of them are cheap to begin with but both will really benefit healers. But, let the analysis begin.

81 Healing

This enchant increases the amount of healing you can potentially do by 81. It’s sold by a vendor (Almaador, at the center of town) and requires you to be revered to learn how to perform the enchant.


This enchant offers a unique mechanic in that it does not offer a constant benefit like 81 Healing does. It’s a random world drop so you might have a better chance of winning the lottery instead of getting it. The tooltip suggests that it has a 3% chance of proccing the effect which provides 100 mana over a period of 10 seconds to your entire party. But for the effect to occur, your party members need to be within 30 yards of each other.


So which is the better one to get? 81 Healing will increase your healing by that amount. Assuming you heal for 1000 points without any modifiers, then 1000 casts of that same flash heal will net about 1,081,000 healed. But Spellsurge restores mana over time. Furthermore the effect stacks from multiple players who have that enchant on their weapon. So, if 5 players had it and all 5 procced, you’re looking at 500 mana over 10 seconds to everybody in the party. I’ve seen on the WoW Forums as well as WoWWiki that the actual proc percentage is approximately 15%. If you’re in the raid environment, it wouldn’t work if all 25 players had it. It applies strictly to your party within the raid. It’s important to keep in mind that Spellsurge has a hidden cooldown of approximately 50 seconds. That means that if you kept spamming any kind of spell, the Spellsurge effect can only happen once every 50 seconds assuming it does proc.

Ideally, I’d be able to test this in a lab setting with three groups: An experimental group with all 81 healing, an experimental group with all Spellsurge, and control group. But alas, I don’t have access to such resources.

The Argument for 81 Healing

If you don’t see yourself raiding very often or if you are placed in a group that does not have a whole lot of other casters in it, then you will want to augment your own heals and add that extra power. Who needs Spellsurge if you’re going to be the poor guy who has to sacrifice 81 healing so that everyone else in your party can get that extra mana back?

The Argument for Spellsurge

On the other hand, as you progress through the game you will begin to encounter bosses that will test your endurance. If you can work with four other spellcasters and agree to get this enchant, your longevity will increase by a lot. You will see a lot of mana returned. More mana means you last longer, right? Utilitarianism is the the concept of the day.

The Middle Ground

Get both. All you really need is two weapons. Don’t forget that you can switch weapons while in combat. So slap Spellsurge on a mace that as mp5 or Spirit or something that helps you regenerate mana. Keep your 81 Healing on the weapon that you use most of the time. If you start running out of gas, switch from your Healing mace to your Spellsurge mace and let the rest of the group know. Now if you really want to be fancy, pick up another mace or staff which has high intellect and put 30 Int on it. Equip it before the encounter so you have a high starting mana pool. Once you get a spell or two off, switch back to your healing mace. You will essentially be getting an extra flash heal or two. That’s my personal opinion. Be flexible, adapt your enchants to your needs.

Anyways, back to Fathomlord now. We were able to take down the Shaman and the Priest. Pretty good progress… 3 more hours left. I love my macbook. It lets me blog and raid at the same time. Doing it in windowed mode will lag. I’m tempted to install WoW on it and see how it performs, but I purchased my Macbook purely for academic reasons.