Monthly Archives: August 2012

On Mana and the Glyph of Illumination at Level 85

My original post on mana regeneration for Mists of Pandaria was focused on level 90. I try to post content that is useful beyond today, but the apparent interest in the new mechanics told me many people want something useful for the time remaining before they run off to punch monkeys and bunnies. So let’s look at mana regeneration again and play with the math for the Glyph of Illumination as it applies to level 85.

Level 85 casters and healers have 100,000 mana with very few exceptions. If you find yourself running out of mana then you’re either spending too much or you lack sufficient regeneration, which now means you lack sufficient Spirit.

Spirit Economics

Just like your finances, always look at your spending first. Are your teammates taking unnecessary damage? Are you casting efficient spells or setting new records for overhealing? Are you using your cooldowns, which let you save mana when you do not need them for output? Are you using your regeneration spells frequently and appropriately? Are you selecting appropriate talents and glyphs to fit your play style and the expected encounter? Have you reevaluated your stat priorities? Haste break pionts have changed and more Crit or Mastery could increase the efficiency of your healing.

For Paladins, spells are now more expensive when compared to other healers. Paying this cost ahead of time means Holy Power spells are not really free. Paladins must choose to pay more or less for each point, magnifying the effects of good and bad decisions throughout a fight. The way you spend your mana will be greatly affected by your familiarity with the changes to your class. Simple things, like broken addons not alerting you to Divine Plea coming off cooldown, can also have a big effect.

When considering your income, reevaluate the following aspects of your character.

  • Reforging: Make sure you’re not sacrificing any Spirit. Discipline Priests were noted for their low Spirit requirements.
  • Enchants: Heartsong provides a great deal of Spirit while Power Torrent is purely a buff to output.
  • Gear: Change to regen trinkets and consider replacing other pieces which did not come with Spirit already. The two-piece bonus from Tier 12 is a strong option for healers, though Blizzard may ‘fix’ this later.
  • Buffs: It’s easy to forget, but there is food and a flask which increases your Spirit.

The Glyph of Illumination

The math for level 90 directly applies to level 85. The major differences are the details of maximum mana and available gear. In my last post I described a situation where lower gear levels (with lower Spirit) could make the glyph a good choice but eventually it would be outgrown. For the next few weeks we get to experience how the glyph could perform at Tier 16 gear levels.

Let’s start with the spreadsheet and tweak it. Please make yourself a copy or download it to enter your own values. The first change is “Total mana” now reads 100,000. The second change is the addition of a “Shocks per Minute Calculator”. Choose a fight you’ve completed (longer is better) and enter the following numbers:

  • Crit rate of your Holy Shock, as a percentage (40% enters 40)
  • Number of Holy Shocks cast during the fight
  • The length, in seconds, of that fight.

Recount or World of Logs provide easy ways to find this information. The table and graph will update and give you a verdict. For example, here is what the graph looks like based on a fight lasting 3:36 where I cast 25 Shocks at 44% crit rate.

Level 85 Example of Glyph of Illumination

Not looking so hot.

Based on this fight performance the crossover point is at 2,200. The glyph is a good choice if I have don’t have that much Spirit. Remember to include procs and raid buffs! The conclusions I can reach for myself are:

  • I need to cast Holy Shock more frequently.
  • Glyph of Illumination is a horrible, horrible, horrible choice for me because I have nearly 5,000 Spirit during a raid.
  • You might say I have too much Spirit but I’d call you a big meanie who hates Spirit. And freedom.

After you do the same analysis for your own character, the simple thing to do is to wash our hands and be done with it. If you’re within a few hundred Spirit of where the crossover occurs then his would be wrong. Though Spirit is the strongest regen stat, it is worth your time to fully investigate the potential for Crit as well. That’s why you’re here, right?

Head over to chardev, load up your Paladin and maximize your Spirit followed by Crit. Find the difference in Crit percentage from the WoW Armory and your changes at chardev. Increase the crit rate found from your combat logs by this difference. The first graphing process told you if the glyph was a good choice right now. This second graphing process tells you if increasing your Crit will make the glyph a good choice. Based on my first example, if the crit rate were 10% higher it would push the crossover point to 2,700 Spirit.

Conclusion

I don’t want to sound enthusiastic about a glyph which looks downright horrible, but I am intrigued by the potential of Crit doing double duty as a regen and throughput stat. Hopefully this will prove useful if only to warn people away from a bad choice. Or maybe this will help convince Blizzard of the need to change or remove this glyph.

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I Talk About Holy Paladins (1a)

Last month I mentioned I’d be sitting in on a Holy Paladin roundtable. We had a great time recording. You can listen to the show here, or find it on iTunes.

With Megacode hosting, we had a very symmetrical arrangement. Two Americans and two Canadians. Two humans and two elves. Two males and two females. It was eerie. So eerie, one of our friends created artwork to accompany the show. Thanks, Walks!

Closer inspection reveals two females and a Nelf Paladin. Your eyes do not deceive you!

Holy Paladin Roundtable – Post Cataclysm

Random, possibly helpful, raid tip #4 – Achievement Edition

The Holding Hands achievement during Hagara in Dragon Soul can be one of the most frustrating things for a 25-man raid to complete. Originally, we tried several times with a long snake-like path. We found the lightning would occasionally refuse to jump between some players, which seemed to fail the achievement when we maneuvered players closer to force a jump. Even if it works, the setup is time consuming and the raid has to survive extremely high damage.

Then we found videos of the achievement with a simple line of elbow-to-elbow players. Ridiculously simple, stupidly easy, and still not 100% reliable. It took 3 tries for us to complete the achievement twice.

It’s issues like this that remind me why I’ve never been much for the Meta mounts and achievements.