SotR: Garrosh is Dead!

Final and I on our new mounts!

Final and I on our new mounts!

So I realize I have been severely lax in posting State of the Raider posts lately.  I realized this beyond a shadow of a doubt when we killed Garrosh this evening, and I came to notice that I have not posted a raider update since my first SoO post, where we killed up to General Nazgrim in our first week.

So now, time for the big long picture-post update!

Waiting for pull - still working on Malkorok

Waiting for pull – still working on Malkorok

Malkorok down in 25man!

Malkorok down in 25man!

Spoils of Pandaria down in 25man!

Spoils of Pandaria down in 25man!

Thok the Bloodthirsty down in 25man!

Thok the Bloodthirsty down in 25man!

Siegemaster Blackfuse down in 25man!

Siegemaster Blackfuse down in 25man!

Paragons of the Klaxxi down in 25man!

Paragons of the Klaxxi down in 25man!

We flew through the raid dungeon faster than I expected.  Then, we spent about two raid weeks working on Garrosh.  Finally, tonight, before our break even, we killed Garrosh!

Heart of Y'shaarj

Heart of Y’shaarj

Garrosh Hellscream

Garrosh Hellscream

Garrosh Hellscream down in 25man!

Garrosh Hellscream down in 25man!

Time for heroics!  Hopefully I will not miss too many of them.  🙂

~ Effy

Advertisements

Mistweaver Monk BiS 5.4

T16 - MonkIt is that time again – time for another Tier, another raid dungeon, and another BiS list.  Okie, okie, so it is past due time, but I have been BUSY!

Mistweaver Monk BiS – Siege of Orgrimmar

It is my second tier as a Mistweaver, and so I am once more putting together the list to plan my set.  This is to help me figure out where to spend extra rolls and EP in raids.

Bosses in Siege of Orgrimmar

First, a quick rundown of the bosses, and a glance at where the tier pieces drop.

Wing 1 – Vale of Eternal Sorrows

  • Immersius
  • The Fallen Protectors
  • Norushen
  • Sha of Pride – Tier (Chest)

Wing 2 – Gates of Retribution

  • Galakras
  • Iron Juggernaut
  • Kor’kron Dark Shaman
  • General Nazgrim – Tier (Hands)

Wing 3 – The Underhold

  • Malkorok
  • Spoils of Pandaria
  • Thok the Bloodthirsty – Tier (Head)

Wing 4 – Downfall

  • Siegecrafter Blackfuse – Tier (Shoulders)
  • Paragons of the Klaxxi – Tier (Legs)
  • Garrosh Hellscream

Tier 16 Set Bonuses – Mistweaver Monk

2-Piece: When Gift of the Serpent spheres heal a player, they gain an absorb for 45% of the amount healed.

4-Piece: When your Renewing Mist heals a target, you have a 4% chance to cast a Mist Wave healing bolt at a nearby low health friendly target.

Siege of Orgrimmar Drops

Next, here are all of the BiS items for the Mistweaver Monk this tier.  They are in order of best to worst.  This time around, I mostly just used Guild Ox.

Note: For some reason, even though I set the option, Guild Ox did not want to list the crafted items.  So I added those at the end of their respectful slot.

* – Denotes an item without Haste

# – Denotes an item without Spirit

We will start with the tier piece slots…

Head

Shoulders

Chest

Hands

Legs

Then, the rest of the armor…

Wrists

Waist

Feet

Jewelry and stuff…

Back

Neck

Rings

Trinkets

And lastly, weapons…

Main Hand

Off Hand

My BiS List

  • Head – TIER (Thok the Bloodthirsty)
  • √ Shoulders – TIER (Siegecrafter Blackfuse)
  • √ Chest – TIER (Sha of Pride)
  • √ Wrists – Bracers of Averted Fatality (Malkorok)
  • √ Hands – TIER (General Nazgrim)
  • Waist – Pennyroyal Belt (Leatherworking)
  • Legs – Pennyroyal Leggings (Leatherworking)
  • √ Feet – Saltwater Sandals (Immersius)
  • √ Back – Jina-Kang, Kindness of Chi-Ji (Legendary)
  • Neck – Rising New Moon Talisman (Ordos)
  • √ Ring 1 – Laser-Slice Signet (Iron Juggernaut)
  • Ring 2 – Seal of Sullen Fury (Malkorok)
  • √ Trinket 1 – Dysmorphic Samophlange of Discontinuity (Siegemaster Blackfuse)
  • Trinket 2 – Prismatic Prison of Pride (Sha of Pride)
  • Weapon – Horned Mace of the Old Ones (Garrosh Hellscream)
  • √ Off Hand – Purehearted Cricket Cage (The Fallen Protectors)

The trinket slot decision is tough without testing them all… and there are so many…  I might just stick with the two I have (Nazgrim’s Burnished Insignia and Dysmorphic Samophalnge of Discontinuity) for now.  I suppose it depends on how kind drops and bonus rolls are.  We shall see.

Consider this list a work in progress.

Using My Warforged Seals

My biggest question now is where to use my Warforged Seals.  I think my current priority bosses are:

  1. Ordos
  2. The Fallen Protectors
  3. Sha of Pride
  4. Malkorok
  5. Siegecrafter Blackfuse
  6. Thok the Bloodthirsty
  7. Garrosh Hellscream

This is also a work in progress, and subject to change.

~ Effy

SotR: Entering SoO

Siege of OrgrimmarPatch 5.4 is live, and we are now a week in.

Siege of Orgrimmar is proving very interesting so far.  I like the layout, with several very different “wings” that in reality take you through the destroyed Vale, underneath it, through Orgrimmar, underneath it (yay! Ragefire Chasm!), to who knows where, because I have not seen the entirety of the raid dungeon yet.  From what I have seen, it is visually captivating and tugs at my lore-strings.

From a healing point of view, it is a bit of a change from last tier.  We seem to be swinging in the direction of “overgeared” and therefore we are dealing with more spike damage then before.  There is no real use for fights where we can steadily manage our mana, since Spirit is steadily climbing.  We are moving more in the direction of the faster, more expensive heals.  Otherwise, one big spike hits and half the raid dies.

So goes the aging expansion for the raid healer.

I am enjoying the mixture of many mechanics with bosses that fall to good raid coordination.  So far, they require interesting dancing and dynamic mechanics, some of which grate against the good sense of every raider…  “What?  I have to stand IN the purple stuff on the ground??”  Or like on some fights, with more ingrained mechanics, like our part time real leader, Gv, is fond of saying, “There’s too much to explain.  Just avoid stuff.”  I like commonsense mechanics, but I do not mind the occasional curveball, as long as my guildies do not mind it meaning we wipe a few times while everyone mentally adjusts.  🙂

It has only been a week so far, but UR has made some awesome progression.  We are 8/14 already.  I have confidence we will get further this week.

Missing Wednesday night raids is proving very difficult for me.  (Poor Final, he is constantly dealing with “How goes raid?” and “What boss y’all on?” all Wednesday night while I am at school and after I get home.)  I know school is important, and I am doing well and enjoying myself and learning a lot.  But…  RAIDING!!  I miss my guildies on Wednesdays.  I miss being there, especially this early in the tier, for new kills, progression kills.  Heck, missing the first raid night of the week is meaning I am never going to see the first three bosses of SoO on Normal.  :/  And that number of bosses will grow as gear improves and the bosses become more farmable.

But I love my guildies.  I cannot fault them for being so awesome.  In fact, I commend them for the great job we are already doing this tier!

~ Effy

For the killshots I am missing, check out our guild’s front page!

Immerseus via Flex

Immerseus via Flex

The Fallen Protectors via Flex

The Fallen Protectors via Flex

Norushen viz Flex

Norushen via Flex

Sha of Pride

Sha of Pride

Sha of Pride DOWN in 25man!

Sha of Pride DOWN in 25man!

Galakras DOWN in 25man!

Galakras DOWN in 25man!

Iron Juggernaut

Iron Juggernaut

Iron Juggernaut DOWN in 25man!

Iron Juggernaut DOWN in 25man!

Kor'kron Dark Shaman

Kor’kron Dark Shaman

Kor'kron Dark Shaman DOWN in 25man!

Kor’kron Dark Shaman DOWN in 25man!

General Nazgrim

General Nazgrim

General Nazgrim DOWN in 25man!

General Nazgrim DOWN in 25man!

Malkorok

Malkorok

SotR: The State of Healing

SotR - The State of Healing

Last weekend, I was leveling my Druid (AKA pretending at being a boomkin BADLY) with my friend Finalflame’s Priest.  We managed to get both to Level 90, and then we began piecing together the best iLevel gear we could find for his Priest.  We fairly easily got her to LFR, and I accompanied him with my Paladin, Lazheward.  (Yes, yes, the gender-reversal did not escape either of us.  lol)

I quickly remembered how much I enjoy healing on my Pally!

Granted, his gear is a tad high for Mogu’Shan Vaults LFR (about 501), but there were fights where he pushed nearly 40% of the overall heals, similar to my Monk’s recent LFR adventures.  Even with his gear, this surprised me.

Final was doing incredible as Holy for his entry-level gear, but OOM’ing himself regularly.

As the day and the LFR’s progressed, we chatted about what I was doing, what he was doing, what could be improved.

Healing with Laz

Healing with Laz

Many a time, Final bemoaned the fact that there was nothing to heal.  (Sorry!)  This, while I continually cast spells, and rarely stopped even when I had to move out of bad on the floor.

That was when it hit me…

On my Monk, I never stop casting unless I have to.  I am maintaining Renewing Mist.  I am Uplifting.  I am filling in with Soothing Mist to keep my Chi flowing.  I am using Thunder Focus Tea on cooldown to lengthen my Renewing Mist ticks.  I am using Mana Tea on cooldown, along with my Soothing Talisman of the Shado-Pan Assault, to manage my mana.

But my Monk is a constant flow of casting/spending: mana -> Chi -> Mana Tea -> mana -> etc.

Healing with Iree (Fist-weaving)

Healing with Iree (Fist-weaving)

I then thought back onto some of the frustrations of doing LFR with my Shaman recently.  During T14, when I was still raiding on my Shaman, I excelled with single-target healing.  I rarely touched my Healing Rain or my Chain Heal.  This had carried over with me from all of Cataclysm – I enjoy the triage healing that was introduced there.  But I realized in recent LFRs, that that is not performing as well as we move further through T15.  I bemoaned this fact to our guild’s now-sole Resto Shaman, Walterpayton, and he agreed with me, but admitted that Unleash Elements -> Healing Rain -> Chain Heal -> Chain Heal -> Chain Heal was his new mantra for Shaman healing.  I tried this, and quickly realized that the 8k Spirit I was carrying over from T14 was NOT cutting it in the transition from single-target to AoE.

It was a harsh reality, but one I am trying to adjust to.  Because, honestly, the game is not going to change around me – I need to evolve with the game.  I realize and accept this.

Healing with Effy

Healing with Effy

For my Monk, there was no adjustment, she is a completely new character to me.  I have no habits to carry over from Cataclysm.

But I healed in Wrath, and I remember the style of healing from then.  So let me try and impart some of that mentality onto those who may have also happily pushed it aside for triage, or did not raid before Cataclysm:

  • Blanket your heals (AoE, AoE, AoE and manage those HoTs)
  • ABC – Always Be Casting
  • Anticipate hits/Pre-heal
  • Snipe those heals!

Admittedly, I didn’t miss heal-sniping, but it has become clear to me over the course of T15 and playing my Monk, that it is once more the way of things.  Uplift and Revival are my lifeblood.  A well-timed cast of either is the only thing currently keeping me competitive as a 25man raid healer.

SotR - The State of Healing - Sif

Maybe 10man healing is different, but I can only speak to 25man.  I do not heal in 10mans near enough to comment there.

In our 25man, it is a regular occurrence for the Druid/Monk/Shaman healers to be topping the meters, and our Priest/Paladin healers to be further down.  I have finally started to figure out why – HoTs and AoEs.  Priests and Paladins tend to thrive in the triage situations with more powerful single-target healing and bubbles.

So let me try and give some more specific pointers for the tactics mentioned above:

  • Druids: Keep HoTs rolling – use these to your fullest advantage with other spells
  • Monks: Keep Renewing Mist rolling on as many targets as possible – Uplift often and fill-in with Soothing Mist to keep your Chi up
  • Paladins: Holy Radiance and Light of Dawn as often as possible – weave in single-target heals as needed
  • Disc Priests: Always be casting Smite/Penance – Spirit Shell/Prayer of healing on all parties as you can and Cascade/Halo on cooldown
  • Holy Priests: Prayer of Mending, Circle of Healing, Holy Word: Sanctuary and Cascade/Halo on cooldown – weave single-target heals as needed
  • Shaman: Healing Rain on cooldown – Chain Heal and Healing Stream Totem while HR is down

Note: Smart Heals are your friend.  They will target and respond quicker than you can.  (Except in the annoying instance they instead heal a pet.  heh)

Now, don’t get me wrong.  I am a firm believer that keeping the raid (especially the tanks) alive is the primary goal of the healers in any raid encounter.  But as we progress through T15, especially through Heroics, I am seeing more and more need for large amounts of raid-wide healing.  This lends credence to the idea of focusing on AoE heals, constant casting, and smart heals.

I also realize that this means we probably all need more Spirit than we originally think we do.  But with gear increasing dramatically, especially with another tier coming soon, this is less of an issue than I originally thought with my Monk.  She hit 10k fairly easily, and has been increasing in small increments beyond that since.  I consider myself to be good at managing my mana and continual casting is no issue, but I find that Spirit buffer to be good for clutch/oh-shit healing AKA Surging Mist.  (It is also really nice for fistweaving, but that is beside the point.  heh)

Just remember, and I personally find this the bitterest pill to swallow: blanketing heals and constantly casting will equal a large amount of overheals.  There is really no way around this, and it is just the name of the healing game as it currently sits.

These are my thoughts, discovered through trial and error and play on my various healers, and I hope they prove to be some useful pointers to others.

~ Effy

AND I have happy news to add to this State of the Raider post: a new Heroic kill!

Heroic Iron Qon down in 25man!

Heroic Iron Qon down in 25man!

SotR: A Call to Arms!

SotR - Call to Arms

Undying Resolution, an Alliance guild on Elune, is looking for more raiders!  We raid 25man on Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday nights from 8pm-11pm EST, and are currently 4/13 in Heroic Throne of Thunder!

We are looking for ranged DPS – specifically Shadow Priests, Balance Druids, and Warlocks of all flavors.

Those interested can fill our an application on the Undying Resolution forums, message me here (or on Twitter: @Effraeti), or contact a member in game.

~ Effy

Here are some of our most recent Heroic kills!

Horridon

Horridon

Ji-Kun

Ji-Kun

Tortos

Tortos

SotR: The UR Summer Party

SotR - UR Summer Party - IreeniaThe irony is profound, and most certainly has not escaped me…

So yesterday morning, I posted about how I finally feel like a Monk healer.  I finally feel I am growing comfortable with Ireenia and am starting to consider her my main.  I finally feel I am succeeding.

Last night was Undying Resolution’s summer party.  Amongst promotions and awards for attendance and a grand ol’ game of lawn darts (which OMG, I won!), I was surprised with the most wonderful gift possible from all of my guildies – an award for Most Improved Raider.  (Which I tied for and shared with Otoka!  Grats, O!)

That's me, under the pile of chopped meat (which happens to be Ranico), to the left of Mindy.

That’s me, under the pile of chopped meat (which happens to be Ranico), to the left of Mindy.  You can just barely see my hooves!

I am not sure if anyone else realizes how much this – something that might seem small – means to me.

I came back to WoW in October, after a hiatus of about six months.  At the time, there was no question in my mind that I would come back on Effy, even if that meant I would likely be DPS’ing instead of healing.  Effy has always been my main and my raiding toon.  The Shaman was the one and only class I really wanted to raid on.  Heck, Effy has been my persona since I started playing WoW, and especially since I started blogging.

DPS’ing did not last (thankfully) – I am horrible at managing myself in a raid as a DPS – and I started healing on Effy again soon after returning.

I was ridiculously happy to be raiding again, and more importantly, to back with my guild, all of whom I adore to no end.  ❤

I raided on Effy through the first tier of MoP, and then made the very difficult decision to switch to a Mistweaver Monk, because we were growing heavy on Shaman and completely lacking in a reliable Monk healer.

It was a trying switch for me, having only raided on my Shaman up to that point.  It was awkward.  I missed my totems.  I missed my Shaman utilities.  I missed the buttons I knew where and how and when to press at precise times in nearly any situation.  I looked to the internet, and came back with little to help me, the Monk class being very new still.  Unlike my Shaman, there were not heaps of reliable sources from gamers who had been through trial and error and multiple tiers and expansions and changes with the class.

I felt very much on my own when I started out.

But I looked at other Monks I ran across in dungeons and LFR.  I obsessively monitored Skada.  I used the Armory.  I searched out every shred of information there was to be found, even if most of it just seemed to be more wordy tooltips of my skills and glyphs and talents.  I am even trying to get more comfortable with World of Logs and Raidbot/Epeenbot, and compare myself more there to other Mistweavers.  I wrote my best in slot lists and guides (of which I plan to write more, as well).

Through all of it, I have come to understand my Monk better.  I have learned to perform with my Monk better.  I have even started to field questions from guildies and friends about how to play a Mistweaver.  And believe me, as someone who has only played one for about five months now, and has had to kind of rebuild myself around the class, that too is awkward for me.  Who am I to tell someone else how to play this class?  Even if it is just simple guidance.  Usually a skill A or skill B and why sort of thing.

Momma Effy making an appearance and showing Iree her support.

Momma Effy making an appearance and showing Iree her support.

Last night felt like a justification of my progress.  I felt like my improvement was noticed.

Now, I know I should not need justification.  I know I should not need people’s approval or commendations.  But I do.

I talked about Shaman, because I could rehash the findings of others, and add my own small two cents about what worked best for me within those general parameters.  I did not rock the boat on anything anyone else had already tried and tested.

Everything about my Monk has felt like me giving my own two cents.

My Monk has felt like a project.  A project that many times over the last several months I felt I was failing at. I cannot begin to explain how many times I wanted to run back to my Shaman.

But I kept pushing.  I kept tweaking.  I kept adjusting what did and did not work for me.  What managed my mana best?  How much Spirit?  What put out the most heals in crunch times of heavy damage?  When were the best times to use my cooldowns?  What rotation would keep me healing from start to finish, instead of scraping the bottom of my mana pool halfway through a boss fight?  What stats were most important for my Monk healing style?  What talents did or did not work for me?

And I have noticed a remarkable improvement in my performance.  I have noticed I can manage my mana through most situations, and even when I do hit bottom, I have the means to keep going.  Because if I don’t run myself out of mana sometimes, how else am I going to learn?  I have become comfortable enough to vary my rotation depending on the situation, even to the point of Fistweaving my way through most normal mode fights.

I still have much more to do, but last night, I came to the realization that I am not the only one who has seen an improvement.

Thank you, Undying Resolution.  🙂

~ Iree?

SotR: Where Do Baby Dinos Come From?

SotR - Where Do Baby Dinos Come From - Dire Call

I promise there is nothing R rated in this post!

Funny story: While working on Heroic Horridon, one of the issues to come up was from where the pink dinosaurs from Dire Call spawn.  Well, they spawn right from Horridon of course.  (So apparently Horridon is a she?  Sweet.  Add her to the list of leet female raid bosses, right up there with Blood Queen and Lady Vashj.)  This trail of thought could lead to nothing but trouble, and something along the lines of the title of this post.  ❤ my guild.

I had another major epiphany during last night’s raid.  I am finally feeling like a Monk healer.  As opposed to a Shaman healer playing a Monk.

Ireenia is finally starting to feel like my main.

SotR - Where Do Baby Dinos Come From - Walking Eugene

This is a pretty big deal for me.  Cuz honestly, I have been fighting it for – what? – 5 months now?  Ever since patch 5.2 went live, anyway.  I kept telling myself Ireenia was a temporary raid toon, bore of a need in my guild’s healing roster.  And eventually I would go back to Effy, who would always be my main.

Maybe it’s better gear.  Maybe it’s the guides I have been working on.  Maybe it’s finally creating a BiS gear list of my own.  Maybe it’s just purely a matter of time.

My Monk is feeling comfortable.  I am getting more confident.  I finally feel like I know what I am doing.  And admittedly, I am having fun.

Certainly, I miss my Shaman terribly.  I miss her utility.  I miss her totems and managing them.  I miss her healing style.  I miss my Effy.

But Ireenia is finally coming into her own.  She and I are making good progress with Heroics, and I imagine there is still plenty of room for me to improve.  So it is all upwards from here.  🙂

I will aim to post another State of the Raider, with some more actual content to it, soon.

~ Effy (Ireenia)

I also realize I have been horribly slacking on kill updates!  I never even posted our Lei Shen kill!

25man Lei Shen Down!

25man Lei Shen Down!

On to Heroics!

On to Heroics!

25man Heroic Jin'Rokh down!

25man Heroic Jin’Rokh down!

We have been alternately working on Horridon and Ji-Kun in Heroic, while killing Heroic Jin’Rokh weekly.  Summer always complicates the roster, and so we have been slowly making progress in both, but without a kill yet.  But I have high hopes we will finish off Horridon tonight!

The 25man Mistweaver or How I Monk: Stats

How to MW - Stats

Part of what helps me as a healer is to analyze myself and my performance.  I am still technically in the adolescent stages of learning to Mistweave, and therefore trial and error and some research have been necessary over the past few months.  Another thing that helped me with my Shaman was to post a guide.  Sitting down, putting some thought into how I play enough to explain it, this helped me analyze myself and what I could do better.

I finally feel that I am to a point with Ireenia where I can make some statements about how I Mistweave, and not sound completely ignorant.  🙂  Hopefully this exercise will also help me to improve even more.

Unlike my Shaman’s guide, though, I have decided to break this guide up into more bite-sized pieces.  This portion will focus on Stats, and the next two will be Talents and Glyphs, then my Rotation.  Maybe I will even attempt something about World of Logs and parses… maybe.  😛

Stat Priority and Reforging

One of the biggest issues I have had since beginning to raid on my Monk is stats and what I feel the most important focus should be.

The Mistweaver Mastery is okie, but lackluster, so I have never put much focus into it.  I don’t mind the random Monk-balls, they are a nice bonus, but they are not something I can control.  So I would rather focus my stats elsewhere.  At least with my Shaman, my Mastery affected how much I healed if I healed lower targets.  That is something I can focus on.

Crit is okie, but not as impressive as it was on my Shaman, it has no mana regen capabilities like it did there.

But Haste, Haste seems to be the shining star of channeled spells and HoT ticks.  Not to mention, more Haste means faster casting, and faster generation and usage of Chi.  Monk healing is a loop of using mana, using Chi, and using Mana Tea.  As long as I can maintain the mana-Chi balance, the more and faster I can cast, the better.

Priority

There is an updated Mistweaver guide on MMO Champion, and from it, I pulled this nifty little guideline for prioritizing.  As you might notice, they seem to feel similar about Mastery.  Personally, I think Intellect factors more strongly, though, since I cannot reforge into Intellect.

If below ilvl 489:

  • Spirit until satisfactory mana regen. > Intellect > Crit > Haste > Mastery

If above ilvl 489:

  • Spirit until satisfactory mana regen. > 3,145 Haste > Intellect > Crit > Haste > Mastery

If above ilvl 510:

  • Spirit until satisfactory mana regen. > 6,141 Haste > Intellect > Crit > Haste > Mastery

Haste

I am leaning most heavily toward Haste.  Having more gear is definitely helping in this regard.  For quite some time, I was focused on the 3145 Haste break, and everything else into Crit.  Mistweavers seem to be somewhat dependent on gear, and as mine has improved and I have been able to push my Haste more, the boost has made for a noticeable difference.  This seems to coincide with the priorities I listed above from MMO Champion.

After some searching, I have finally stumbled across some updated information about Mistweaver Haste break points.  In the same MMO Champion guide I mentioned above, there is also a more extensive chart for Haste break points.

As you can see from the chart, the two major (and attainable) Haste break points are at 3145 and 6141.  These are the same break points referred to above in the stat priorities above.  (These are also assuming you are running with someone with the 5% Spell Haste buff.)

How to MW - MOAR Haste Break Points

I am currently at 6409 without Stance of the Wise Serpent on, and 9614 with it.  Honestly, I have been somewhat confused about whether I am suppose to figure my Haste with or without it.  So I decided to do some math.  (Disclaimer: I hate math!)

My conclusion?  It seems to be before figuring in Wise Serpent, because according to the tooltip my Renewing Mist lasts 17.94 seconds and ticks every 1.63 seconds, which equals 11 ticks if my math is correct.  So that seems on par with my 6409 without a 5% spell haste buff.  (Because I was just standing around, solo, in the Shrine.)

So remember to turn off Stance of the Wise Serpent before reforging or examining your Haste.

Spirit

As for Spirit, I am sitting at about 10.7k with a 529 iLevel.  10k-11k seems to be a happy area.

More Haste might lead me to more Spirit, but for now I seem to be in a good, balanced place.  I can use mana and Chi and my Mana Tea and manage my mana pretty well, if I am straight healing.

Honestly, I might look into boosting my Spirit some more, simply because I like fiddling with Fistweaving.  The healing is so-so, but the damage is pretty nice.  It is just too mana intensive for me to be able to maintain it throughout an entire raid encounter just yet, especially using healing spells and damaging skills together.  But I think even in that regard, I am getting close.  I am regularly doing heroics and scenarios with almost pure Fistweaving, and in an LFR earlier this week, the bosses were dying fast enough that I kept up my mana throughout.

But as far as straight healing goes, 10k-11k and my Shado-Pan Assault trinket are working out well.

Crit

Crit is an okie stat for throughput, but a bit too unpredictable for me.  Without the added bonus of mana regen, like on my Shaman, this makes me more interested in Haste.  Only once I figure out exactly where I want to cut off my Haste, might I reforge the extra points back into Crit.  But I have not made a solid decision in that regard yet.

Gems and Enchantments

Even though I am listing gems and enchantments last, these are best done before reforging.

Gems

I still stand by matching gem sockets and getting socket bonuses.  I see no reason for losing out on free stats.

Red

  • Brilliant (straight Intellect)

Blue

  • Purified (Purple – Intellect and Spirit)

Yellow

  • Reckless (Orange – Intellect and Haste)

Meta

  • Legendary (Intellect and Chance to not use mana) — if you have it
  • Burning (Intellect and Increased Crit Effect) — the primary choice for a non-Legendary meta
  • Revitalizing (Spirit and Increased Crit Effect) — a good alternative if you need more Spirit

Enchantments

Most of the enchantments have little room for choice, but there are a few that have some wiggle room.

For hands, you have a choice between Mastery and Haste – I say Haste, because I value that over Mastery.  For chest, you have a choice between all stats and straight Spirit – I say stats, because that means more Intellect, but if you are really hurting for Spirit, that is an option.  For feet, you have a choice between speed and Mastery or straight Haste – I say movement speed over Haste, even though it means choosing Mastery.  For the weapon, there is Jade Spirit and Windsong – I say Jade Spirit, unless you have a low iLevel weapon you want to enchant cheaply, because the Intellect will help more than a random secondary stat.

  • Shoulder – Greater Crane Wing Inscription (+200 Intellect and +100 Crit)
  • Chest – Glorious Stats (All Stats +80)
  • Wrist – Super Intellect (+180 Intellect) — w/Leatherworking: Fur Lining – Intellect (+500 Intellect)
  • Hands – Greater Haste (+170 Haste)
  • Legs – Greater Pearlescent Spellthread (+285 Intellect and +165 Spirit)
  • Feet – Pandaren’s Step (Increased Movement and Mastery +140)
  • Weapon – Jade Spirit (Intellect and Spirit proc)
  • Offhand (if applicable) – Major Intellect (+165 Intellect)
  • Cloak – Superior Intellect (+180 Intellect)
  • Rings – w/Enchanting: Greater Intellect (+160 Intellect)

Keep a look out for the followups to this post real soon.  🙂

~ Effy

The Better Mistweaver BiS List 5.3

Better BiS

Eugene approves of this message.

I have been playing with some different combinations of stats on my Monk throughout the tier.  Mistweaver Mastery is sill meh and although I was letting my Crit climb in lieu of Mastery and to keep my Haste at 3145 for the longest time, I saw no real benefit to Crit.  I have come to realize I am most impressed with just beefing up my Haste.

So I have been reforging every piece to Haste, and looking at pieces carrying a large amount of Haste natively.  This is somewhat contrary to my original BiS List, which focused on pure amount of stats, simply because I really had no idea what was best for my Monk.  (Even now I am still kind of guessing, since there is so little on Mistweavers still.  If only I could Theorycraft!)

If reforging everything to Haste is good, then dumping all my other stats for pure Haste is better, right?  😀  Well, that is the plan, anyway!

My logic?  More ticks for Renewing Mist.  Also, faster casting of Soothing Mist, which I use quite often to “fill in” while waiting for Renewing Mist to come off cooldown and to build Chi for Uplift.  Quicker casting of Crackling Jade Lightning is another nice bonus, as I have noticed it to be good damage and healing.  A kind commenter on my original BiS list mentioned a higher Renewing Mist tick at 6145, making it 12 ticks, which I am currently past and loving.

The biggest hurdle will be keeping my Spirit up to speed with my Haste.  I have several pieces without Haste currently.  Replacing those pieces with Haste/Spirit pieces this should logically continue to balance out my casting speed and mana regen.  So far, my mana regen is very manageable, but I fear tipping the scale too much in either direction will cause me some problems as we push further through Heroics.

At this point, though, my gear is good enough that I am only focusing on pieces with more Haste and Spirit if they are either Thunderforged or Heroic (or both!).

So here is my “better” BiS list, now with more Haste!  (Except in slots I could not find a piece with Haste, which made me sad.)

BiS Normal

My list includes only 3 Tier pieces, because I cannot bring myself to get excited about the 4-piece bonus.  The 2-piece seems to work nicely, though.

BiS Heroic

After a good hard look at Heroic and Ra-den drops, I really see very little changes in my gear list, except Ra-den’s ring and a possible swap of trinkets, since I cannot get the Shado-Pan trinket in Heroic.  😛  Honestly, I am quite fond of my Shado-Pan trinket, and might not even upgrade that!  I am not yet sold on the proc from the Chalice.  I suppose I would have to see it in action.

Ra-den’s drops appear to be guaranteed Heroic Thunderforged items, which is interesting, but it also means with some luck from other bosses, unnecessary.  I am okie with this since I was not thrilled with the stat distribution of most of Ra-den’s drops upon a second glance.

Definitely

Maybe

With Ra-den’s ring, that would put me with Haste and Spirit in every slot except my helm.  I can deal with that!

I did see a Heroic Thunderforged version of the Deeproot Treads on WoWHead, but I am unsure of where/how they drop, since the normal version drops from trash. Random boss drop maybe?

Closing Thoughts

Next on my list is improving my playstyle more.  I always have more room for improvement.

The Haste has made a notable difference in my performance so far, but I am sure my technique could use some tweaking.  It is really hard to gauge most of the time, since we tend to run heavy on healers and my Monk’s particular healing cooldown, Revival, is more of an “Oh shit!” button for when things get messy.  This means I usually go several attempts, or even several bosses, without using Revival, which is certainly affecting my overall performance.

But I would rather save lives and brez’s than blow Revival just to make my numbers pretty.

~ Effy

Better BiS - Eugene

SotR: In the Defense of Raiding

Sometimes there are more dangerous things to tank then raid bosses.

Sometimes there are more dangerous things to tank then raid bosses – like ignorance.

I have long been a raider, and even longer been a gamer.  Defending my gaming life is something I have grown accustomed to.  I suppose you could say it comes with the territory.  Non-gamers just seem to not understand us.  I am sure there are many people (most of my blog audience, actually) who can empathize with me there.

When I took up raiding, I never thought defending myself would become more difficult and more prevalent, but it has over the past several years, by non-gamer friends and family who do not understand or respect the commitment that I have made to raiding.

I look at raiding as I would any extracurricular activity, or even a class – something that I commitment myself to, because I enjoy it enough to make such a commitment.  I would not ditch a class last minute just to go to dinner with a friend, a friend who could easily try and make plans with me later in the week.  I would not shirk my responsibilities with a real life weekly appointment just because a friend of mine is not considerate enough to plan ahead.  Similarly, I do not ditch friends in real life to whom I have made a time commitment if another friend asks me last minute.

I realize I am using the word “commitment” a lot, and probably will many more times before this post is done.  Honestly, I think that word and its meaning are the most important part of the point I am trying to express.  I think the other side of my point is the lack of respect shown by those who expect I will just cancel things at the drop of a hat to make other plans.

You would think the fact that I keep my commitments in a game would inspire hope in those around me that I would do so in real life.  Right?

Instead, I get the lecture.  Instead, I get the four ignorant arguments below without fail – ignorant arguments I am sure many of my fellow gamers can relate to hearing at some point.

1) “It’s just a game.”

Indeed, it is just a game.  I am not going to go all psycho sports fan nut on the subject.

That is why if I were just planning to run dungeons by myself all night I would probably go do whatever inane thing was just asked of me.  But the thing about online games is they also have this wonderful thing called “socializing”.  So more often than not, when I am playing WoW, I am playing WoW with other people.  When I play WoW with other people it is often through plans that were made prior to this very moment, unlike the last minute real life things that are usually toted as so much more important to my social life.

So needless to say, this usually leads to the next ignorant comment…

2) “They’re not real people.”

Really?  Is this really even a logical argument?  Apparently, all these years I have been surfing the internet and playing MMO’s with robots!  This is quite a revelation to me.  Especially considering all the people I have met face to face after meeting them online.

Yes, people on the other side of computers on the internet ARE real people.

Honestly, I think I have already devoted too much brain power and blog post to this idiotic comment.

3) “They won’t miss you for one night.”

First of all, see above and “commitment”.  Then, see “respect”.

Sure, my guild could probably get by without me for a night or ten even, that is why we run a roster of more than 25 people.  That is why we have a post out policy.  That is why raiders come and go eventually.  The point is, I have made a commitment, I have stated to 24 other people whose company I greatly enjoy that I will be there at X time on X day.  I would like to continue those people also liking me and enjoying my company.

4) “You can do that any night.”

Play video games?  Yes.

Raid?  No.

Just like in real life, it takes planning and commitment to organize 25 people in one place at one time.  Raiding is not something where I can just jump on at 8pm and say, “Hey, guys!  Let’s go raid right now!”  Even if 25 people are on at that exact moment, they may already have plans, either in game or in real life.  This is similar to how you don’t out of the blue call up 25 friends on the phone and say, “Hey, guys!  Let’s go club hopping right now!”  (And this is a really bad example, because to go clubbing does not require a specific number of people.  Maybe a spontaneous wedding or something might be more appropriate?  I dunno… moving on.)

There are only a few things I would actually post out or cancel for – holidays, scheduled events, and being sick.  By scheduled events, I mean a kid’s school concert or someone’s graduation or a theatre ticket.  These are once in a while things that I cannot really reschedule, and therefore, I make the occasional concession to not raid.  Notice these are also items that planned in advance.

I can be spontaneous at times, but there is nothing that irks me more than people who do not respect my time.  Popping something on me last minute, and then getting annoyed that I am either not in the mood or have other plans, is something I find hugely disrespectful of me.

I do not question someone else’s knitting or skydiving or nude finger-painting.  Please do not question why I raid.  Just respect that it is something I enjoy and something that I commit to doing certain nights of the week.

/soapbox

~ Effy