Guide to 4.2

Just in case you missed it, the Matticast crew talked about the imminent patch 4.2 drop. Things like the valor cap, the new Encounter Journal, class changes and the Legendary quest.

Healing changes

You can find more detailed information in the latest patch notes. But here’s what they are at a glance.

All healing critical strikes now heal for 2 times a normal heal (+100%), up from 1.5 times a normal heal (+50%).

Priests

As a result of the critical strike change, Crit appears to have become attractive. It’s possible to see some 50k absorbs. Otherwise, no additional changes have been made to Priest healing at this time.

That’s not a bad thing.

Druids

Symbiosis (Mastery) has been removed and replaced with Harmony. Harmony increases direct healing by an additional 10%, and casting direct healing spells grants an additional 10% bonus to periodic healing for 10 seconds. Each point of mastery increases each bonus by an additional 1.25%. Healing Touch, Nourish, Swiftmend, and the initial heal from Regrowth are considered direct healing spells for the purposes of this Mastery. All other healing from druid spells is considered periodic.

Paladins

Many healing spells have had their mana costs adjusted.

Illuminated Healing (Mastery) has been adjusted slightly so that if a paladin refreshes an existing copy of his or her own Illuminated Healing on a target, the new absorption amount will be added into the old absorption amount and the duration will be reset. The total absorption created can never exceed 1/3 of the casting paladin’s health. Paladins are now Val’anyr!

Shamans

Improved Water Shield has been redesigned and renamed Resurgence. When Water Shield is active, Resurgence causes critical direct heals to restore mana (Resurgence rank 2 is roughly equal to 150% of the old Improved Water Shield value when a Healing Wave or Greater Healing Wave critically hits, and scaled down accordingly for faster or multi-target spells).

Mana Tide now grants 200% of the caster’s Spirit, down from 400%.

Glyph of Unleashed Lightning (new Prime glyph) allows Lightning Bolt to be cast while moving. Handy in tandem with Telluric Currents.

Legendary Thoughts

Start the quest if you like to check it out and such. But don’t force your guild to give it to you. It’s for the casters this time around.

Lack of Spirit Cloth Gear

Yeah, I’ve seen a whole ton of discussion about this around. There aren’t a whole lot of drops and it seems that most of the stuff is going to either come from faction vendors or Valor vendors.

Look, they didn’t forget anything. This was done for a reason. We can still rely on reforging to get the additional spirit if necessary. Prioritize Spirit trinkets to help offset the loss. The Jar of Ancient Remedies is something you’ll want to keep handy (as in, don’t sell it or get rid of it otherwise).

It was my fault.

I used and abused spirit mechanics too much and they the nerfed drops because of me :(.


Firelands raid bosses

It seems that reputation for Avengers of Hyjal are only obtainable from the Firelands raid instance. You can get up to Honored with taking down trash (I just got up to Friendly after about 2 hours and chain dropping battle standards).

You can find the Firelands raid instance out in Mount Hyjal. Just head to the big, flaming castle in the southern part of the zone. No attunements are needed. Feel free to zone right in. Recommended boss order is to start with Shannox, Beth’tilac, Lord Rhyolith and Alysrazor before finishing out the last three.

Need to know where to get started for healing?

  • Beth’tilac
  • Lord Rhyolith
  • Alysrazor
  • Shannox
  • Baleroc
  • Majordomo Staghelm
  • Ragnaros

Priests: Moonshroud or Merlin?

Patch 3.2 whipped out two sets of craftable gear: Bracers and chest pieces. Got a few inquiries about it on Twitter about it. Figured I’d do everyone a favor and outline my thoughts on it here:

Moonshroud

Here’s the Moonshroud set:

Royal Moonshroud Robe

Royal Moonshroud Bracers

Merlin

Merlin’s set:

Merlin’s Robe

Bejeweled Wizard’s Bracers

As you can clearly see, the Moonshroud set offers Spirit whereas Merlin’s contains haste. The spellpower and crit ratings remain identical.

Now if you were a healing Priest wondering which of these to create for your sets, there’s some things I’d like to remind you of before you go off dropping your hard earned gold.

Spirit’s been nerfed. Holy Priest mana regeneration’s been nerfed. Spirit is not as strong as it used to be. Do keep that in mind.

Speed is life. The faster your spells go off, the higher the odds that your heals will catch a player before they die.

Socket bonuses aren’t always the greatest. You do not have to socket your gems according to the bonus. There is no law saying that you have to do that. Sometimes socketing against the bonus yields a higher benefit.

So what’s best for me?

As Discipline: I lean towards Merlin’s set. I won’t need the Spirit as it doesn’t provide me any additional bonuses anyway. For gem choices, I prefer having a large pool of mana to work with. I would socket straight 4 x 20 King’s Amber on the chest and the bracers.

As Holy: Not much difference here. I’d approach it the same way as Discipline. I’m all about the mana pool and stacking loads of intellect. Others prefer Spellpower, Spirit, MP5 or Haste gems. Perhaps even a combination of all of them. I wouldn’t say that’s wrong.

It’s just a matter of preference. I top out at around 2700 spellpower during raids. Most of it’s going to over healing anyway. I may as well reallocate some of those points towards a larger supply of mana or increased speed. It’s not like players suddenly gained 7000 health and that bosses are magically knocking out 80% of a raider’s health to warrant that increase in spellpower.

Ensidia’s Holy Priest Guide and Monday Links

Ensidia’s Holy Priest Guide and Monday Links

For Holy Priests interested in capturing a glimpse of how and what top end players do push themselves to the limit, one of Ensidia’s Holy Priests has written a guide to specs, gems, gear, and spell casts.

book

Quick Notes

One of the suggested specs is a 13/58/0 build which does not have Mental Agility nor Inspiration. This is a more specialized build which relies on Test of Faith and Healing Prayers for short, high healing demand type of encounters where Priests can afford to blow through mana.

In regards to gems, Poptisse advocates any gems with Intellect in the various sockets but notes that other gems will work just as well based on your personal preference. While I knew Intellect gems were the go-to gems for Discipline, I didn’t know it would be prioritized as high for Holy Priests. It must be due to the result of the Spirit nerf. Intellect didn’t really get better. Spirit just got slightly hit.

Caution: The guide you’re reading is written by one of the top Priests in the world. She’s in Ensidia after all. That’s a guild that probably has a plethora of raiders and players to choose from based on varying roles that are needed by different encounters. Most of us do not have that luxury. We have to make do with what we have which means we have to be more “all around”. There is a ton of valuable information but that doesn’t mean you should go out of your way to copy everything exactly. This is just an insight as to what a top tier Priest does. Read it, learn from it, and find out what works best for you.

Monday links

  • Brigwyn is hosting a Child’s Play Charity Auction – All donations going to a good cause. Do check it out.
  • Kestrel wants to know if WoW is Losing Its Hold on you – I know Megan has called a retirement from blogging (not sure if that includes the game). A lot of bloggers have called it quits recently. Rest assured, retirement is far away for me right now (Hopefully for Syd and Lodur too).
  • Wrote to Done: Three Tips to Avoid Being a Boring Writer – Read it.
  • Leadership now: 5 Leadership Lessons: Ultimate Leadership – Leading in Context – Great and short read. I liked this line the best:
    • General P.X. Kelly: "Listen carefully to the principles of leadership we will teach you here at Quantico, but always apply them within the framework of your own personality. A successful leader never languishes in the comfort of a swivel chair. The most important of all troop-leading steps, yet the one most often neglected, is the last – to supervise. And you supervise by being out with and devoting the bulk of your time to our most important product – people. You can always catch up on what you thought was essential paperwork during the evenings or on weekends, but once neglected, you will find it extremely difficult, if not impossible, to catch up on people."
  • Zen Habits: 5 Tiny Steps to Quit Being Such a Jerk

Other notes

  • Noblegarden sucks. Haven’t seen this level of spawn camping since the days of Halo and Day of Defeat.
  • Had a few questions about this. Yes I’m always interested in guest posts and promoting blogs of others. Just be sure to follow these guidelines.

Draft

Ulduar Caster Weapons and Tier Gear: A Primer

Here’s a list of all spellcaster related weapons that drop from Ulduar. Items are sorted in the rough order of progression that raiding groups will be going in. I linked all currently known spellpower weapons and off hands so that your raid group can get a general idea of what item to go for and what items are better off in the hands of other players along with the rough order they will appear in. It seems heroic mode drops slightly more weapons. Loot tables for some of the bosses are still unknown at this time (like Yogg-Saron and Algalon). Read the bottom of the post for a theory of tier gear drops.

Heroic Mode weapons

Weapon Weapon Type Source
Overcharged Fuel Rod OH (Spell hit) Flame Leviathan
Intensity 2H Staff (Spell hit) Ignis the Furnace Master
Scepter of Creation Wand (Spirit) Ignis the Furnace Master
Guiding Star 1H Mace (MP5/Haste) Razorscale
Quartz Crystal Wand Wand (Spell hit) XT-002 Deconstructor (Hard mode)
     
Rapture 2H Staff (Spirit) Iron Council
Ironmender OH (Spirit) Kologarn
Runescribed Blade 1H Sword Auriaya
The Lifebinder 2H Staff (Spirit) Freya
Staff of Endless Winter 2H Staff (Spirit) Hodir (Hard mode)
Scepter of Lost Souls Wand (Haste/Crit) General Vezax

 

Normal Mode Weapons

Weapon Weapon Type Source
Firesoul MH Sword (Spell hit) Flame Leviathan
Plasma Foil 1H Dagger (Spirit) XT-002 Deconstructor
Pulsing Spellshield OH (Shield) XT-002 Deconstructor
Stormtip 1H Dagger (Spirit) The Iron Council
Nurturing Touch Wand (Spirit) Auriaya
Pulse Baton 1H Mace (MP5) Mimiron
Unraveling Reach 2H Staff (Hit) Freya
Icecore Staff 2H Staff (Spirit) Hodir
Ice Layered Barrier OH Shield (MP5/Haste) Hodir (Hard mode)
Pillar of Fortitude 2H Staff General Vezax

Tier gear

All we know right now is that Mimiron drops tier 8 gloves. I’m assuming Yogg-Saron either drops the chest or the helm. I have a sneaking suspicion the other 3 Titans (Freya, Hodir, Thorim) drop the other 3 tier 8 pieces. My theory is unconfirmed, however. But I think it’s a decent assumption that the 4 titans along with the “end” boss of the instance are the ones that drop the tier pieces.

A Druid’s Response to the Upcoming Change in Mana Regeneration

A Druid’s Response to the Upcoming Change in Mana Regeneration

tree

It has been a hard week to be a druid, dear friends. Not only did restoration druids miss out on any significant buffs in the most recently announced draft of class changes, but we’ve also been faced with an upcoming nerf to mana regeneration that stands to affect us more than any other class. As such, druid bloggers have taken notice; both Phaelia and Keeva have their own takes on the 3.1 changes. In this article I am going to take a look at the specifics of the changes to mana regeneration and speculate on possible ways to play around them. In case you missed the big blue letters, I’ll quote the substance of the change to mana regeneration below:

Regeneration while not casting (outside of the “five second rule”) will be decreased. We think that (1) the ability to cast heal over time spells and then sit back and (2) benefitting from a clearcasting proc that also gets you out of the five second rule both provide too much mana regeneration, even over short time periods.
To make this change, we are reducing mana regeneration granted by Spirit across the board. However we are also boosting the effects of talents such as Meditation that increase regeneration while casting. The net result should be that your regeneration while casting will stay about the same, but your not-casting regeneration will be reduced. This change will have little impact on dps casters, since they are basically always casting.
The specific talents and abilities being boosted are: Arcane Meditation, Improved Spirit Tap, Intensity, Mage Armor, Meditation, Pyromaniac and Spirit Tap. Yes this makes these “mandatory” talents even more mandatory, if such a thing is possible.

Since paladins rely less on Spirit as a mana-regeneration stat, we have to address them in other ways. We don’t want to change Illumination or Replenishment. However, we are going to increase the healing penalty on Divine Plea from 20% to 50%. Divine Plea was originally intended to help Protection and Retribution paladins stay full on mana. It should be a decision for Holy paladins, not something that is automatically used every cooldown.
In addition, we are also changing the way Spiritual Attunement works. In situations with a large amount of outgoing raid damage, as well as in PvP, this passive ability was responsible for more mana regeneration than we would like. We want to keep the necessary benefit it grants to tanking Protection paladins, while making it less powerful for Holy paladins in PvP or raid encounters with a lot of group damage.

We are also taking a close look at clearcasting procs themselves. One likely outcome is to change them to an Innervate-like surge of mana so that the net benefit is the same, but healers won’t shift to out-of-casting regeneration so often.

We balance around the assumption that even 10-player groups have someone offering Replenishment. To make this even easier on players we are likely to offer this ability to additional classes, as well as make sure that existing sources of Replenishment are more equitable.

These changes are ultimately being done to bring the different healing classes more in line with each other as well as to give the encounter team more leeway when designing encounters, who can balance with these new mana regeneration numbers in mind. In a world with infinite healer mana, the only way to challenge healers is with increasingly insane amount of raid damage, so that global cooldowns become the limiting factor since mana fails to be. An example is the Eredar Twins in late Sunwell. We weren’t necessarily happy with that model, and this change hopefully allows us to move towards giving healing a more deliberate and thoughtful pace rather than frenetic spam.

So, What Does All This Mean?

For those of you who may be puzzled by Blizzard’s language, I will sum up by saying that our mana regeration, which is admittedly too high at the moment, is going to be reduced by a number of combinatory factors, including both an across-the-board nerf to Spirit and tweaks to individual spells and abilities. This is the worst kind of nerf to receive, because it will be pretty difficult to tell how each of these points affects the others without extensive testing. Here’s hoping that enough people get on the PTR to avoid major bug fixes or crippled classes. I know that I’m planning to do some PTR raiding myself to test this out. Some posters on the WoW forums and on PlusHeal are predicting that nothing will change for them, or that they won’t “feel” the changes–that’s wishful thinking, or keeping one’s head in the sand. We’re going to notice. In terms of magnitude, my guess is that this one outpaces even the great nerf to Lifebloom in patch 3.0. And we’re going to notice out of combat. Questing as a healer is about to become very, very expensive as we’ll have to sit to drink much more than formerly. As many forum posters suggested, they’re going to need to put in some bigger, faster waters.

Why So Severe?

Bornakk’s post offers some justification for the changes. He says, “When mana regeneration is trivial then certain parts of the game break down – classes that offer Replenishment are devalued, stats that offer mana regeneration are devalued, and spells that are efficient are neglected in preference to spells with high throughput.” I am sympathetic to this point. I see druids stacking Spirit over Mp5, because it’s been widely believed throughout Wrath that Mp5 is too expensive a stat in terms of item budget. I’ll also note that there’s comparatively little of it available, at least compared to the ubiquitous Spirit. More and more healers are stacking Intellect as well. There’s every reason to believe that this practice will continue, and in fact become more common. I’ve also seen many raiders glyphing Healing Touch, preferring a very fast, but not very efficient spell over the slower Nourish, which when supported by 4pc T7 becomes our most efficient tank heal. And guess what? They’ve been beating me on the meters. Evaluating spells by HPM has become a practice for theorycrafters and not players. So yes, I agree that some changes are in order. I just don’t like the direction they’ve taken.

Why Should Druids Worry?

More so even than priests, the healing druid’s fate is tied to that of Spirit. I remember when the initial changes to Spirit were put in place for 2.3. Before that time, one resto druid in each raiding guild would stack Spirit in order to sit in the tank group and give a passive buff to tanks. Like all other buff-givers in BC (ahem, shadow priests), a Spirit-stacking druid traded some of her individual power for the buff. A Spirit-stacker had to sacrifice healing throughput (+heal) and efficiency (Mp5) as a tradeoff for a high amount of Spirit. It’s hard to tell without testing it out myself on the PTR, which I certainly intend to do, but my guess is that we’re about to return to pre-2.3 regen values for Spirit–or else come very close to that number. Druids have a number of abilities and talents that depend on Spirit, most notably Innervate, Living Spirit, and Improved Tree of Life. I would also argue that Intensity is greatly dependent on Spirit. As a consequence, druid gear weights Spirit very heavily. Up until now, it has been projected that at high levels of gear, a player should strive to keep their Spirit to Intellect ratio at 1.1 to 1. This has been very easy for resto druids–in fact, we’ve risked having too much Spirit–just through picking up our tier pieces and emblem items. It is not going to be easy for us to de-emphasize Spirit. We’re going to get stuck with a certain amount of it.

If Spirit is Junk, What Can We Do?

At a certain point, we are limited by the gear available to us. Because one of our cherished techniques–rolling HoTs and then pausing to regen–is about to go the way of the dodo, we’re not going to have a lot that we can actively do during a fight to counter the nerf. The overall advice is going to be “heal less.” There’s no two ways around it–we’re not going to be able to maintain current levels of throughput or coverage in the raid. I can already run myself out of mana, and I’m usually doing so to try to be competitive on the meters. I have a good sense of how long inside the FSR spam casting can last, and even with my current mana regen, it’s only a very few minutes, possibly 6-8, but not 10. In terms of technique, we are going to be swapping glyphed Healing Touch for Nourish. We are also going to be keeping to tighter healing assignments. As S13 put it last night, “Tank healers will stay on tanks and just that.” Sniping heals will no longer be common practice, as we won’t be able to afford it. As for Innervate, which isn’t on the list for a buff and stands to be very greatly affected by the change, I’m expecting that it will still do at least a little something for us–half a mana bar maybe, as it might if you were now in greens with little to no spirit. We’ll probably be glyphing it and using it on ourselves only.

Gear and Gems

In terms of gearing and gemming, we can actually mitigate how much this nerf will hurt us. Despite the laments of many healers, Replenishment seems to be here to stay. The most persuasive argument I’ve seen for preferring this new regen mechanic to the traditional Spirit-based regen is its predictability. It’s admittedly much tidier than giving all dps casters their own native regen mechanics like healers have. To take advantage of Replenishment, we need Intellect and Intellect alone. I don’t expect healers to suddenly be able to roll on gear earmarked for DPS casters, so we will have to be creative to get around our gearing. I expect that, like Innervate, the Spirit World Glass and the Majestic Dragon Figurine will continue to have some use for regen, but the best trinkets in the new order will become, respectively, Je’Tze’s Bell and the Darkmoon Card: Greatness, Intellect version. Malygos’s heretofore lackluster Living Ice Crystals will also be worth equipping. We’ll also be putting yellow intellect gems in our gear where possible. The smartest thing to do would be to buy them now, when they might be selling low, and replace our Spirit and Spellpower gems later. As for a meta gem, we have two choices: Insightful Earthsiege Diamond and Ember Skyflare Diamond. I think the former will be more useful, but it really depends on the levels of Intellect a player is able to attain. As far as enchants go, in some cases we’re stuck with Spirit. There’s not an Intellect or Spellpower option for everything. However, I fully expect to use the Spellpower weapon enchant and Tuskarr’s Vitality for extra speed on my boots. If Spirit is giving a poor return, let’s make the tree go faster. That’s always good for hard content anyway.

Are There Good Effects to the Nerf?

I can think of one consequence of the nerf that will, in the end, favor healers. I know it seems that healing–and healing difficulty–is being made the balance point of encounters in 3.1. However, I am going to forward the radical idea that the difficulty that raiding healers currently experience will not change at all. Over time, guilds tend to take less and less healers to the same encounters. Our sphere of responsibility gets larger as the guild gets “better.” Encounters go faster with more dps, and guilds typically sit out more dps than healers on progression content. These dps want in for the farm content, and the overall load on the healers in the raid becomes greater. In fact, even in an era of enrage timers, one of the best ways to guarantee an easier time at a new encounter is to take one healer more than the most hardcore strategies suggest. I can feel the difference between 5 healer Naxx and 7 healer Naxx, both of which Conquest has done based on the players who happened to show up. I’m predicting that Ulduar is going to feel like the 5-healer Naxx–except that there will be 7-8 healers sharing this load. This change will allow a few new healers to get raid spots. Of course, the shaman (predictably) comes out looking the rosiest after the nerfs–and yes, I’m a little jealous. I’m sure that resto shamans will have many opportunities to join top-notch raiding outfits. Many guilds of all types will be looking to add a new healer to their rosters, and guilds like ours, who are actually carrying extra healers, will be able to dip into their bench. Each one of us can only do so much. We will continue, as now, to do our utmost, and no more can be asked at that point. I expect the standard number of healers for Ulduar encounters to vary between 7 and 9, as it did for most guilds in Black Temple. If Dual Specs come in, there may even be some 10 healer encounters in the future.

A Word of Encouragement

Dear friends, we have all faced the nerf bat before this moment. This current danger to our mana regeneration is in truth no greater evil than the changes to Lifebloom, which we all suffered and survived, though our tanks have taken more spike damage ever since. Some day, we will look back and remember this mana regeneration nerf, as even now we look back on the nerf to Lifebloom. Let us continue on, then, healing faithfully in raids as we always have before.

Gearing Your Fresh Level 80 Holy Priest: Matt’s Recommendations

Here it is, Priests. This is the list you’ve been waiting for. Remember, this isn’t the absolutely best gear you can get at level 80 for pre-raiding. This is the fastest way to get gear you can get at level 80. I’ll provide you with quest options and purchase options. Cheap enchants and select gems will be at the bottom.

The goal here is to get your Priest geared as quick as possible without relying on the RNGness of instance grinding (or at least, running them as little as possible). Means it’s going to rely on BoEs and Quest rewards although I will provide a few choice recommendations for some instances.

Head

Cowl of the Vindictive Captain (81 Spellpower): It’s the quest reward from doing the Utgarde Pinnacle quest: Vengeance Be Mine! Lack of Spirit on this one, but doubles as a potential DPS helm. No Crit either.

Frostsavage Cowl (81 Spellpower): Same amount of Spellpower as above. Contains PvP stats like resilience. Not completely optimized for PvE. Does have Crit. Opt for the cowl if possible.

Neck

Titanium Spellshock Necklace (49 Spellpower): First piece of gear with a socket! Epic quality. Downside is that it could cause a dent in the wallet. No Spirit on this one either. Decent amount of Spellpower and crit.

Amulet of the Crusade (40 Spellpower, 10 MP5): Remember those Scarlet Crusade you banged up back in Dragonblight? Here’s the Admiral. Comes from the Icecrown chain quest: The Admiral Revealed.

Shoulders

Mantle of Electrical Charges (60 Spellpower, 51 Spirit): Comes from doing the instance quest in Halls of Lightning: General Bjarngrim.

Back

Wispcloak (59 Spellpower, 20 MP5): Craftable by tailors. The tailor must have run all the normal dungeons and defeated all the end bosses in order to unlock this recipe. Doesn’t have Spirit but has a decent amount of MP5.

Shroud of Dedicated Research (46 Spellpower): Purchasable from Archmage Alvareaux. He’s the Kirin Tor quarter master. Must be Honored with them in order to purchase.

Chest

Moonshroud Robe (105 Spellpower, 89 Spirit): Ouch. Just wait until you see the mats required for this bad boy.

  • 8 Moonshroud
  • 6 Bolt of Imbued Frostweave
  • 1 Eternium Thread
  • 1 Frozen Orb

Moonshroud’s going to be the tough one. It’s going to take Tailors around 16 days from start to finish assuming they blow their own cool downs. You can cut it down to 8 if you do some tactical trading here and there by exchanging cooldowns with other players.

Bauble-Woven Gown (81 Spellpower, 68 Spirit): Comes from the other Utgarde Pinnacle quest Junk in My Trunk. Great alternative to the Moonshroud Robe if you don’t feel like breaking out the coin bag.

Wrists

Ancestral Sinew Wristguards (50 Spellpower, 27 Spirit): Slap on the Wyrmrest Accord tabard and start grinding your rep with them as much as possible. Contains a nifty Blue socket for more delicious Spirit gems.

Gloves

Moonshroud Gloves (76 Spellpower, 67 Spirit): This is the second and final piece of the Moonshroud “set”. Not as expensive as the Robe, but can be pricey:

  • 4 Moonshroud
  • 4 Bolt of Imbued Frostweave
  • 1 Eternium Thread
  • 1 Frozen Orb

Gloves of the Time Guardian (60 Spellpower, 51 Spirit): Comes from the Caverns of Time quest: A Royal Escort. Are you prepared for the “Arthas yapping” boss? Again, another cheapsauce alternative.

Belt

Fishy Cinch (60 Spellpower, 51 Spirit): Make friends with your fish pals, the Oracles. There’s a few dailies you can do start with there. I don’t have the time to work on doing dailies with them yet.

Deep Frozen Cord (61 Spellpower): Plan B is to just hook yourself up with a tailor and make this BoE purchase. No Spirit. Has some crit, however.

Legs

Frostmoon Pants (61 Spellpower, 68 Spirit): Finally, daddy’s got a new pair of pants! This one’s from our tailoring friends. Unfortunately, it does eat some expensive materials.

  • 1 Moonshroud
  • 6 Bolt of Imbued Frostweave
  • 4 Iceweb Spider Silk
  • 1 Eternium Thread

Feet

Aurora Slippers (60 Spellpower, 51 Spirit): Like the Frostmoon Pants above, this will eat up one of your precious Moonshrouds. Again, see your local tailor and skinners.

  • 1 Moonshroud
  • 4 Bolt of Imbued Frostweave
  • 2 Heavy Borean Leather
  • 4 Iceweb Spider Silk
  • 1 Eternium Thread

Rings

Ring of Temerity (54 Spellpower): A blue zero mana regen ring coming from doing the Oculus quest: The Struggle Persists.

Lion’s Head Ring (55 Spellpower, 20 Spirit): Decent spellpower and spirit from running the Gundrak quest: For Posterity.

Weapons (Staff)

Malygos’ Favor (314 Spellpower, 95 Spirit): This is the normal mode staff drop from the Oculus off the last boss.

Sempiternal Staff (314 Spellpower, 53 Spirit): Drops off that Infinite Dragonflight bad boy Chrono-Lord Epoch in Caverns of Time: Stratholme.

Staff of Draconic Combat (408 Spellpower, 69 Spirit): See if you can get your hands on that beauty. It’s a Heroic drop from the Cache of Eregos in the Oculus (last boss). It’s the bigger brother to Malygos’ Favor.

Weapons (1 Hand)

Flameheart Spell Scalpel (355 Spellpower): It feels really weird to use a weapon with hit rating on it due to the waste stats. But there aren’t any alternative daggers from quests or vendors. Purchaseable at Kirin Tor – Revered from Archmage Alvareaux

Netherbreath Spellblade (355 Spellpower, 26 Spirit): However, if you run Heroic Utgarde Pinnacle and get lucky with Skadi the Ruthless, he just might drop this sword-like dagger for you. It makes me look dashing on my Dwarf.

Gavel of the Brewing Storm (355 Spellpower): More reason to make friends with or scaly friends. The Wyrmrest mace is purchasable after hitting Revered. Fail with lack of mana regeneration, however.

Weapons (Off hand)

Handbook of Obscure Remedies (59 Spellpower, 38 Spirit): For the low cost of 25 Emblems of Heroism, you can pick up this sweet offhand from the Emblem vendor.

Wands

Purifying Torch (26 Spellpower): Argent Crusade, at Revered, will give you access to their torch.

Wand of Ahnkahet (33 Spellpower): If you feel comfortable, run Heroic Ahn’Kahet and try your luck at getting this wand.

Rings

Ringlet of Repose (43 Spellpower): All you gotta do is run Halls of Stone. It’ll drop off of Maiden’s little sister who happens to also be a Maiden.

Titanium Spellshock Ring (49 Spellpower): This epic level ring has zero mana regen but it does have a gem slot. You can opt to stuff in a regen gem of some sort or resort to it a spellpower red gem to ramp up your amperage. Up to you.

Spectral Seal of the Prophet (51 Spellpower): Head over to Drak’Tharon Keep and toggle it onto Heroic for a challenge. With luck, this will drop off Tharon’ja (Prophet).

Enchanted Wire Stitching (46 Spellpower): Say hello to Meathook! This ring drops in CoT: Stratholme off of Meathook. Don’t worry, you don’t have to set it to Heroic.

Trinkets

Soul Preserver (75 Spellpower): You’re undoubtedly going to run Stratholme a few times. If you’re lucky, you might be able to get this trinket off the end boss. It will certainly help with the mana problems that most Priests have at this stage of the game.

Mercurial Alchemist Stone (59 Spellpower): Alchemists may wish to consider using this stone. It should last them for a while. In theory.

Talisman of Troll Divinity (73 Spirit): A whopping 73 Spirit on one trinket? Hell yes. I was lucky enough to get this on my first run through Drak’Tharon Keep. The use effect will be a big bonus on fights with enrages or massive damage spikes. The net effect is that your target (or targets) should see a bonus to their healing received by ~290. Usable every 2 minutes.

Enchants and Augments

Helm enchant – Arcanum of Blissful Mending: Another reason to knock out the Wyrmrest Temple rep first. Obtainable at Revered.

Shoulder enchant – Lesser Inscription of the Crag: Sons of Hodir provide this one. Scribes need not worry about grinding their rep here. This area is only unlockable after doing a massive (and epic length) chain quest. With enough dailies, Greater Inscription of the Crag becomes an option.

Chest enchants – Greater Mana Restoration would be the call I’d make here. Mats are a bit on the expensive side so make sure you get yourself a decent chest. Enchant Chest – Major Spirit is a decent and cheap enchant to toss onto a blue for the time being until you replace it.

Cloak enchants – If you can afford it, go for the Wisdom cloak enchant. Make sure you have a damn good cloak to go with it. Otherwise, for the low low price of 6 Infinite Dust, you can get a little extra Speed. Tailors get the option of further enchanting their own cloak with Darkglow Embroidery.

Bracer enchants – Superior Spellpower is what I would consider for a top end Wrath level item. I wouldn’t use it on anything less than an epic quality due to the cost of the mats involved. Go ahead and stick on BC level enchants on your blues for the time being.

Glove enchants – Exceptional Spellpower is a (relatively) cheap glove enchant you can toss onto your mitts. Spellpower gets increased by 28.

Belt – Eternal Belt Buckle: Yes, there is an augment for belts. It is not an enchant but it’s not any less important. Hit up your local auction house or blacksmith and make sure you get one of these belt buckles! It adds an extra gem slot to your belt! This could make or break your meta bonus! Get one!

Leg patches – Opt for the Shining Spellthread first. Once you get a real set of pants, upgrade it to a Brilliant Spellthread.

Boot enchants – Greater Spirit is the main boot enchant of choice. For any sort of resist boots, you may wish to opt for Greater Fortitude.

Weapon enchants – Several interesting choices here at your disposal:

  • Exceptional Spellpower: A good starter choice for Priests in terms of economic impact. Should be affordable for most players.
  • Exceptional Spirit: Slap this on a mana regen weapon of your choice. Or even keep it on your main weapon of choice. You can’t go wrong really.
  • Mighty Spellpower: Exceptional’s big brother Mighty increases your spellpower by 63 (compared to the 50 that the big E provides). 13 Spellpower. Can you justify the mats? If you can, go for it. It’s a tough pill to swallow though, early on in Wrath.
  • Major Intellect: Although it’s an old school BC enchant, I’m wondering if it’s worth putting on a high intellect staff for the purposes of mana regen. Perhaps you could macro a weapon switch with Hymn of Hope so that it could provide a little bit more extra juice.

Gems

There’s a lot more options for gem configurations. I’ll list all of the useful ones first.

Red

Runed Scarlet Ruby (19 Spellpower)
Purified Twilight Opal (9 Spirit, 9 Spellpower) Purple gem
Luminous Monarch Topaz (9 Spellpower, 8 Int) Orange gem
Potent Monarch Topaz (9 Spellpower, 8 Crit rating) Orange gem

Blue

Sparkling Sky Sapphire (16 Spirit)
Purified Twilight Opal (9 Spirit, 9 Spellpower) Purple gem
Misty Forest Emerald (8 Spirit, 8 Crit) Green gem
Seer’s Forest Emerald (8 Int, 8 Spirit) Green gem

Yellow

Brilliant Autumn’s Glow (16 Intellect)
Luminous Monarch Topaz (9 Spellpower, 8 Int) Orange gem
Potent Monarch Topaz (9 Spellpower, 8 Crit rating) Orange gem
Misty Forest Emerald (8 Spirit, 8 Crit) Green gem
Seer’s Forest Emerald (8 Int, 8 Spirit) Green gem

Your gem configuration is going to largely depend on the meta you want to go for. You may have to switch to hybrid color gems instead of pure color gems in order to activate it. The general rule of thumb for entry level Priests is to go for mana regeneration and spellpower. This early in the game, you’re going to want to take a hard look at your Spirit and mana regen so that you have the capability to sustain yourself in raids.

Meta

Bracing Earthsiege Diamond (25 Spellpower, 2% Reduced threat)
Ember Skyflare Diamond (25 Spellpower, 2% Intellect)
Insightful Earthsiege Diamond (21 Int, chance to restore mana)
Revitalizing Skyflare Diamond (8 MP5, 3% increased crit healing)

I’ll pick Insightful Earthsiege. Reports say that the proc gives 600 mana. No doubt it has an internal cooldown.

Sources: WoWHead and WoWWiki

Last updated

November 27

Deciding Who Gets to Pick IDS

Deciding Who Gets to Pick IDS

Candle

Image courtesy of alexkalina

When Priests get to the upper echelon of raiding, they’re going to eventually run into one extremely important question. It’s pointless to have more than one Priest pick up Improved Divine Spirit. Joveta did an excellent feature showcasing the differences between the two specs. I’m not here to regurgitate what she illustrated. I’m here to help you decide which lucky monkey gets to go IDS.

The Supremes is a raiding Guild with 3 Priests, 4 Mages, and a handful of Resto Druids. It also has miscellaneous DPS.

Raid times:

  • Tuesday, 4 hours, farm content
  • Thursday, 4 hours, farm content
  • Sunday, 7 hours, progression content

Let’s assume you’ve got 3 Priests:

  • Steve McQueen: Always shows up, never missed a raid, sports 2350 healing
  • Stevie Wonder: Can only commit to 2 of the 3 raiding days, sports 2100+ healing
  • Steve Harvey: Able to only come on the last raiding day that Wonder isn’t able to attend, sports 2100 healing

Optimizing for Time

When you’re deep into raiding, it’s either CoH or IDS. You don’t need more than one IDS. From this perspective, you want to pick the most stable Priest who is able to come every day. This will ensure that every raid you go into has the IDS buff. This is the best bet since raids will go that much quicker. Just look at Joveta’s post for all the numbers. Go with Steve McQueen for guaranteed IDS.

Optimizing for Performance

On the other hand, one would argue that farm content doesn’t necessarily need IDS at all. By making Steve McQueen pickup IDS, his healing output does get slightly diminished. Another solution is to make Steve Harvey go IDS. This ensures that progression night raids will have the buff. If you really want to pick things up, you can ask Stevie Wonder and Steve Harvey to grab IDS. This way, you don’t handcuff Steve McQueen’s all star performance.

Picking out volunteers for IDS is never easy. I’ve rarely ever encountered an individual who wanted to do IDS. I myself had to respec IDS because our Priest corps is no longer as stable as it once was. One of them took off for college, the other’s having computer issues. I’m the current lynchpin Priest and I swallowed an extremely bitter pill in order to pick up IDS knowing that our floater Priests can stay IDS.

Anyway, there’s many ways to pick out who should get IDS. If you happen to have a Priest who wants the job, by all means let ‘em have at it! If not, I highly suggest coin tossing as an alternative. I hear dice rolling is an excellent choice as well. Now dart throwing is a revolutionary way to make decisions as is bottle spinning…