The Tier 10 bonuses, and how it’s been handled

October 10, 2009 at 10:21 am (Circle of Healing, Flash Heal, Patch 3.3, Penance, Surge of Light)

Tier 5

So the Tier 10 set bonuses have been top of the news list recently because of a new style of approach. Rather than have them simply data mined out, Blizzard have posted them, asked for feedback, and changed the bonuses accordingly.

Whilst subject to change, the current plans are for the bonuses to look like this.

Priest

  • 2 Piece Bonus – Your Flash Heal critical strikes cause the target to heal for 25% of the healed amount over 9 sec.
  • 4 piece bonus – Your Circle of Healing and Penance spells have a 20% chance to cause your next Flash Heal cast within 6 sec to reset the cooldown on your Circle of Healing and Penance spells.

Let’s be honest, Tier set bonuses are a rather minor part of the game. However having a good tier bonus encourages people to get excited about their tier gear, the next patch, the next raid, and gives a bigger feeling of reward for killing new bosses. I’m always a little disappointed when I find that the next Tier of gear doesn’t look as good, or is strictly inferior because of a worse tier bonus. In the case of the last tier of gear Blizzard can afford to make things a little overpowered because they know everybody will ditch it for new gear as they level to 85. So the bonuses now can be really nice ones.  Personally I think asking for feedback on them was a masterful move for getting people excited about it, and I think the fact that the feedback has provided positive results is fantastic.

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Few quick Macros

October 9, 2009 at 3:59 pm (Grouping, Healing Mechanics, Macros)

Sorry for the lack of posts recently, I’ve not been very well. I’ll try and get something up over the weekend if I improve.

On the topic of being a little ill, a few Macro’s I use to manage healing:

Cure Disease and Abolish Disease

#showtooltip
/castsequence reset=4/target Abolish Disease, Cure Disease, Cure Disease, Cure Disease

Which will initially cast Abolish Disease. If you don’t press it again for four seconds, or you change target to another player it will reset to casting Abolish Disease again. However, if you have reason to cast additional Cure Diseases on the target (perhaps because the Disease is very powerful) then you can do so by pressing the button additional times within four seconds of the first press.

Disease Cures

Power Infusion and Prayer of Healing

#showtooltip Prayer of Healing
/cast [target=player] Power Infusion
/cast Prayer of Healing

Will cast Power Infusion on yourself  when you cast Prayer of Healing. I find this is a good use of Power Infusion because Prayer of Healing is expensive, slow, and usually if I’m casting it then there is a reasonable amount of damage to heal.

Shackle Macro using Focus

#showtooltip
/clearfocus [modifier:alt]
/stopmacro [modifier:alt]
/focus [target=focus,dead]
/focus [target=focus,noexists]
/cast [button:2] Shackle Undead; [target=ebon gargoyle, exists,harm] Shackle Undead; [target=focus] Shackle Undead

Will cast Shackle on your target and set it as your focus. Any further attempts to shackle will always be case on your focus target so long as it exists and is alive. To clear your focus target you hold down the alt button.

Additionally, I’ve added a conditional to prefer Ebon Gargoyles so that if I’m in PvP I have a quick way of shackling a Death Knight Gargoyle.

Pain Suppression plus announcement

#showtooltip Pain Suppression
/run if GetSpellCooldown(“Pain Suppression”)==0 then SendChatMessage(“Pain Suppress on %t”,”Say”,nil,5) SlashCmdList[“IN”](“8 /say Pain Suppress gone!”)end
/cast Pain Suppression

I’ve since written a small addon I use to handle Pain Suppression, however without doing that this is a good little macro. When you press the button it will check if your Pain Suppression is on cooldown. If it isn’t then it will announce who you are casting Pain Suppression on and attempt to do so. 8 seconds later, as Pain Suppression wears off it will announce that Pain Suppression is fading. Good for keeping other Healers and Tanks appraised of what you’re doing.

While on the subject of keeping others appraised of what you’re doing, I’ve got an announcement to make in the near future. Watch this space.

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Discipline FAQ

October 2, 2009 at 4:44 pm (5 mans, Binding Heal, Borrowed Time, Discipline FAQ, Discipline Spec 57/14/0, Divine Hymn, Flash Heal, Gearing, Greater Heal, Grouping, Healing Mechanics, Mana, Naxxramas, Pain Suppression, Pain Suppression, Penance, Power Infusion, Power Infusion, Power Word: Shield, Prayer of Healing, Prayer of Mending, Raiding, Renew, Spells, Stats, Talents, Trial of the Champion, Ulduar)

Starting a Discipline Priest and confused about something? Lets try and help out with some useful information.

What’s my spec?

See the article on Discipline spec here.

The standard spec is something like: 57/14/0 getting all the good heal talents in the Discipline tree, then going up the Holy Tree to pick up Inspiration.

Attribution: GENZOMAN

Attribution: GENZOMAN

What do I shine at?

As a Disc Priest your specialism is Tank Healing and Damage prevention. Because you are a priest however you have a great deal of flexibility because of your huge range of spells. This means you can ably heal 5 mans, 10 mans as a Tank or a Raid healer, in 25 mans you are a great Tank Healer, and you make a good PvP healer.

Because of your shields you really shine in fights where there are periodic spikes of damage which you can prepare for by casting shields on people before they take damage.

PvE Stat values –

Not perfect, but a rough guide is something like:

  • Intellect – 0.6

  • Spirit – 0.22

  • MP5 – 0.67

  • Haste Rating – 0.59

  • Crit Rating – 0.48

  • Spell Power – 1.0

So you should favour Spell Power, Intellect, Haste, Crit, MP5 and Spirit in pretty much that order. However, obviously if you need more mana stack Intellect, if you need to do more healing stack Spell Power. If you have enough mana there is NO benefit to getting more Intellect, Spirit or MP5. Mana is only useful if you are spending it. If you finish fights with lots of mana, you should stop getting more.

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Shadow Priest FAQ

September 25, 2009 at 4:23 pm (5 mans, Devouring Plague, FAQ, Gearing, Glyphs, Grouping, Mind Flay, Naxxramas, Raiding, Shadow FAQ, Shadow Word: Death, Shadow Word: Pain, Shadowform, Stats, Talents, Trial of the Champion, Ulduar, Vampiric Touch)

A list of common questions people look for when they first start. This isn’t really high end discussion and some things are glossed over. Furthermore, I rarely raid as shadow anymore so much of this comes from (I hope) thorough research. Big thank you to the sites out there like Shadowpriest.com and the various shadow blogs (Shadowaffinity) for their great information.

All rights belong to *Genzoman

All rights belong to *Genzoman Deviant Art.

What’s the spec to use?

The standard PvE spec is this:

http://www.wowhead.com/?talent#bVcbhZZGxfVRfzcfqfzAo:ahqzcV

The two points in Veiled Shadows are optional and could be moved to Improved Vampiric Embrace. However the reduced cooldown on Shadow Fiend is a nice mana boost and adds a small DPS burst in certain situations.

For PvP your spec would look something like:

http://www.wowhead.com/?talent#bxIbzoMZZ0efrRfkbfqfkqo:oMIMVz

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Brewfest: Don’t drink and Deliver!

September 19, 2009 at 2:05 pm (Achievements, World Events)

Well, it certainly has been a very long strange trip and we’re on the home straight. I’m taking away memories of desperately trying to get the “You’re Great!” candy on my last attempt on the last day of Love is in the Air. Or staying up until three in the morning getting the Easter Achievement before the eggs got camped. Well it’s coming to an end and, in my opinion, it’s finishing up with the very best of the Holidays.When Dwarves Attack!

Long Strange Trip aside, Brewfest for me is a real highlight of the WoW calender. It’s my absolute favourite holiday, and I can’t get enough of it. In particular the daily quests for There and Back Again, and This One Time, When I Was Drunk are a (drunken) riot. Most of the achievements are very straight forward. The ones that I think will require a little effort are Disturbing the Peace and Brew of the Month which just require the player to purchase a few items with tickets. Getting those tickets is straight forward, but you are limited in how many you can get, so it’s important to do your dailies and not waste the tickets.

To buy the three clothing items you need 350 tickets (if it’s the same as last year) and another load for Brew of the Month. My very first tip would be: Do Disturbing the Peace first. If it’s anything like the previous holidays you can buy the three pieces of clothing, do the Disturbing the Peace achievement, then return the clothing to get a ticket refund. This means you can re-spend those tickets on Brew of the Month and save yourself a load of tickets. If this is possible, then 350 tickets is the target.

I’m going to try and give some tips on my favourite dailies to try and help people get their tickets quicker. This is not the only source of tickets, but these are the repeatable ones.

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Soloing Onyxia before she’s gone

September 18, 2009 at 5:51 pm (Achievements)

Okay not gone, but this is your last chance to solo her for a long time. In 3.2.2 Onyxia is being revamped for level 80 players, with relevant loot, new mounts and pets and achievements. The Old level 60 Onyxia we know will be gone for good.

I had bemoaned the fact that as a Priest I really wasn’t able to solo a lot of content. I could run LBRS, or even UBRS, but when it got to raid content, or level 80 elites like Chillmaw, it seemed Paladins and Death Knights left me in the dust. So Onyxia was something I never really thought to try, I just assumed I couldn’t.

Looming Onyxia

When I did try, I was blown away by how easy she is. She can be solo’d as all three specs, but in particular as Shadow she’s very simple. I’ll be assuming a Shadow Spec, but if you want to do it as Disc or Holy you can, just be prepared to take much longer because you’ll take more damage and have to watch your mana more carefully.

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Hymns

September 15, 2009 at 6:04 pm (5 mans, Grouping, Healing Mechanics, Mana, Raiding, Shadow Fiend, Shadowform)

Hymns are recent style of Priest spell which originally came out with Wrath of the Lich King but, after being rather lacklustre, were reworked to their current form in 3.1.

I say they are a new style of spell because whilst they have different effects, they do have similar mechanics.

The core mechanics of a Hymn are that they are: a) Channelled, b) Smart, c) Give a short buff, d) Have a long cooldown.

WoWScrnShot_091509_175025

In the case of Divine Hymn it’s an 8 second channel which smart heals players in your raid, and in the process gives them a buff increasing healing received by 15%, 10 minute cooldown.

With Hymn of Hope it’s an 8 second cast which returns 3-12% mana to those in your raid with the lowest mana, and gives a buff increasing maximum mana by 20%, 6 minute cooldown.

Because they are channelled and smart, it is easy to tap a button and sit back for 8 seconds while they go to work. Divine Hymn in particular is fantastic for getting you through tricky abilities like Hodir’s Frozen Blows, XT’s Tantrum, Jaraxxus’ Incinerate Flesh eruption and so forth. It seems like the only decision you really have to make is when to press that button and use that cooldown.

That’s all there is to say isn’t it? Well I’m not so sure, because for me the most interesting part of these Hymns is the buff they add. If you really want to squeeze every advantage you can out of your spells, there are some very interesting things you can do with Hymns.

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What Stats Do

September 11, 2009 at 10:41 am (5 mans, Gearing, Grouping, Mana, Raiding, Stats)

Another back to basics post because everybody can always ue the recap. I’ll get into some proper deep healing super advanced theory next week if I have some inspiration.

If you’re new to WoW, new to playing a caster, or just new to playing a Priest it helps a lot to know about what the different stats do.

Formula

Unfortunately for my blog work-flow the whole system is already destined to be utterly overhauled when World of Warcraft: Cataclysm comes out. So much of this will one day be very outdated. However, until that time, lets nail down exactly what each of the different stats do, why you want them, and how much you need.

Common wisdom is to put all healer stats into one of two groups: Mana stats, or Throughput stats.

Mana Stats

Mana stats are stats which improve how long you are able to cast for. If you run out of mana you can’t heal. If you can’t heal you might as well not be there because, apart from your witty banter and knowledge of internet memes, that’s your sole reason for being in the group. No matter how much your spells heal for, it won’t help if you don’t have enough mana to cast them when you need to.

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Healing Trial of the Champions: Anub’arak

September 8, 2009 at 7:16 pm (Grouping, Guardian Spirit, Healing Mechanics, Power Word: Shield, Prayer of Healing, Prayer of Mending, Raiding, Trial of the Champion)

Anub’arak is the last boss in Trial of the Champion. He’s quite straight forward.

When you engage the encounter there is some fun Malygos-esque floor explosion and some non-hostile trash to clear out of the way.

Anubarak

From Wowwiki

The fight comes in three phases:

Phase 1

Anub’arak will be picked up by the main tank and tanked just a little behind the centre of the room.

In 10 man he hits the tank with frost and physical damage for around 15k on a Tier 8 tank so that’s reasonably high, twice that in 25 man. It also freezes the tank briefly in place, but that’s no big deal because Anub’arak doesn’t need to move.

DPS begins on Anub’arak. Save Heroism/Bloodlust for Phase 3, but DPS as hard as you can.

Nerubian Burrowers

Anub’arak will periodically summon Nerubian Burrower adds. Only one at a time on 10 man, two on 25 man.

The Burrowers will be off tanked, (one tank per Burrower because they stack nature debuffs,) and DPSed. They will periodically burrow and heal to full if possible. To stop this happening you have to Tank them on top of patches of Permafrost.

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“It’s not my fault!”

September 4, 2009 at 3:55 pm (5 mans, Being a Hero, Divine Hymn, Fade, Grouping, Guardian Spirit, Guardian Spirit, Healing Mechanics, Pain Suppression, Pain Suppression, Raiding)

With the new five man Trial of the Champion I have seen a lot of anxious Priests looking for reassurance recently. Often many of them are new to healing and, after a lot of wiping, they were blamed, or blame themselves, for being unable to heal the first encounter. I think this speaks to a more general problem.

There are a lot of things that can affect you as a Healer, but which you have no direct control over. Acheron {link to Acheron Death Report add-on} will tell you how a player died – they were killed by shadow damage the healer couldn’t cope with – but it won’t tell you why. It won’t show that the Tank charged out of range, that the healer miss-clicked, or that the DPS is too low for the encounter. These are complex group dynamics that nobody thinks about when they go right, but when they go wrong a judgemental group can be quick to place blame, and an inexperienced Healer can easily feel responsible. So when things are going wrong, what is the best approach?

Blamed

Don’t cry, just bring out the bag of tricks! There are many things that can go wrong, but even when it’s not your fault, that doesn’t mean there is nothing you can do about it. As a Priest you have a really versatile set of spells, and making the best use of them is something you can and will learn from practice. It is not immediately obvious all the situations where Pain Suppression is useful, but over time you do pick up some tricks.

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