[Restoration] Spiritual Guidance through the Cataclysm
Whatever Deathwing will destroy, the Spirits will mend.
Welcome to the 4.3.0 Shaman Restoration Guide.
This guide will cover the basics of gearing and playing a Restoration Shaman, with the perspective of both the player, as well as the guild/raid leader in mind. Because of the similarity in gear options, this guide will occasionally touch on Elemental as off-spec to help you gear two specs with minimum added effort. If you prefer an Enhancement or PvP off-spec, feel free to ignore those points
Please know that, especially in Cataclysm, choice is what separates the good from the bad healers. This guide is not made to tell you which choices to make, but rather to inform you of the results and consequences of each choice, so that you can base your decisions on this information.
2. Healing Spells
3. Talents & Glyphs
4. Healing Styles
5. Detailled Math
7. Thank You
In order to understand the value of your stats, you first need to know what to do.
Here is a short recap on what they mean for you exactly and how important they are together.
* Intellect: This is your primary Stat. It provides Spell Power, making the base effect of your spells more powerful, as well as a small portion of spell crit (see critical strike rating). It also provides a larger mana pool, which affects the mana regeneration you gain from the Replenishment effect as well as slightly increasing the Spirit regeneration.
* Spirit: Spirit provides direct mana regeneration. The mana regeneration you gain is a base coefficient, multiplied by your Spirit, multiplied by the square root of your Intellect. This means that Intellect has Diminishing Returns on your Spirit-based mana regeneration, while Spirit will always provide the same regeneration per point (at equal Intellect levels and more as Int goes up)
* Haste Rating: Haste allows you to cast spells faster. While Haste is usually considered the best stat to increase output, it comes at the cost of having to spend more mana over a period of time.
* Critical Strike Rating: Critical Strikes allow your heals to heal for 100% more. On top of this, you also get 30% of any direct healing crit (or 60% of the base heal) as smart heal on one of your group/raid members through Ancestral Awakening and your main abilities also return extra mana when they crit thanks to Resurgence.
* Mastery Rating: "Makes you better at what you do" according to Blizzard posters. Mastery increases the healing your heals do, depending on how much HP the target is missing. The simple formula is heal = base * (1 + Mastery% * %HP deficit).
Here is how it works exactly: If your Mastery provides "up to 30% healing", you will heal a target at 1 HP for 130% of what they would receive at full HP. This scaling is linear, so at 60% HP, this is a 12% increase (30% Mastery * 40% HP missing). Take note that Blizzard has a weird/different definition of "your healing spell", so the spell summaries below will tell you how they scale with Mastery.
SP, Mastery, Crit, Haste, it's all multiplicative, but which one is better?
First, here are the stat values after rating conversion: 1 Mastery = 1% Crit = 1,4% Haste
On top of that, most spells gain extra healing at ~1% per 100 SP (Earth Shield only gets 0.825% for the same amount of SP)
For specific weights of stats, see the Math topic at the end.
When you consider mana regeneration, you will easily notice that:
1) Haste costs mana. You will cast more, so you will spend more. Especially using GHW & HS, you can burn through your mana pool in no time.
2) Mastery has no effect on your mana pool; it merely increases the amount of healing done based on how much your raid members are dying.
3) Crit rating has a slight gain to mana regeneration. Critical strike chance will slightly increase the mana return on your main spells through Resurgence, but not in a way that it is considered a major regeneration stat.
4) Spirit grants guaranteed mana regeneration at a decent rate. It is, after all, it's one and only goal as stat!
5) Intellect grants mana regeneration through crit chance, spirit regen, as well as the Replenishment effect. Although it is inferior to crit rating and spirit in their respective parts, the combination of both, fortified by any decent (>30%) uptime of Replenishment, will actually make Intellect a decent player in mana regeneration, especially at lower gear levels.
If you add throughput and mana regeneration together, you will most likely find that;
* Intellect is probably the best stat you can get. It provides guaranteed healing bonuses as well as substantial quantities of mana regeneration. But there are very little choices where you can pick Intellect (see below)
* Spirit is a main player for regeneration and most starting Shamans would do well aiming for atleast 1742 Spirit on gear (or 1900 total), which is the Elemental raiding cap. This would allow you to go DPS with the same gear, as well as provide you with plenty of mana to use in longer fights. If you are dual specced Restoration & Elemental, remember looking into Spirit trinkets/jewelry/helm on top of the Elemental Spirit cap if your playstyle requires more mana regen than you have with this.
* When you look at combat/rating stats, you probably don't know which one is good and which ones are just wasting valuable stat points on your gear. The short version is, they're all good. Spirit should be a first priority for the mana, but after that you have crit (AH for tank dmg reduction, AA procs, Resurgence regen), Mastery (flat out healing increase and works well in tight situations where people are dying) and Haste (faster casts = more HPS but you OOM faster) all giving you decent benefits to your spells. If you are only starting out in heroics, you will most likely want to aim for Mastery & Crit first to get the most out of your mana pool. When you get better gear and start to think about moving over to raids, Haste will look more attractive due to the extra output you get, but remember that if you use expensive spells, Haste 'costs' more as well! For more details on Haste breakpoints, see the Math section.
* Keep in mind that all combat stats are multiplicative. This means that Crit, Haste & Mastery all increase in value when you have more of the other two. Balance is key here. This is especially important at entry raiding level, because you will have a decent baseline in Crit & Mastery, while Haste will be the lowest (only 5% from totem/raidbuff).
If you would want a crude priority, the easiest one (valid up to atleast T11) would be:
Intellect > Spirit(untill 'enough') > Crit/Mastery/Haste > Dance Rating
(Oops, guess you'll have to use that good ol' brain of yours!)
Generally, you will want to get to get about an equal amount of those rating stats, with a slight bonus to Haste for pure tank or 25man raid healing, a bonus to Crit for 10man raid healing or a "filler" role and Mastery becomes slightly better in a Hardmode/progress focused setup.
Keep in mind that with the exception of trinkets, all your gear pieces will have Intellect on them. Usually, the amount of Intellect on an item in a certain slot is mostly dependant on the item level and will not differ much between items. This means that any choice for Intellect is limited to gems and enchants. Blizzard is actually aware of the issue where primary stats (excluding spirit) are more valuable than 'other' stats and have hinted that this will remain to be so throughout Cataclysm. As a result, trinkets without Intellect and/or Spirit are less valuable to most Restoration Shamans.
Note that Intellect procs are generally not that good for Restoration as for DPS classes, while Spirit procs are far more valuable.
If you happen to have a good On Use Intellect trinket, try to macro it together with Earth Shield and/or Mana Tide Totem for the biggest gains.
Again, for dual-specced Resto/mental Shamans, aim to get a different headpiece/jewelry/trinkets first, followed by the Tier set. This would allow plenty of stat options, with the minimal extra gear required.
[Restoration 4.0.3] Spiritual Guidance through the Cataclysm
Personally I've dropped points in totemic focus. Ancestral resolve and natures guardian(well that's the talents I have not taken at this point)
I do raid 25 mans with more than 1 shaman and most buffs covered by others anyway.
[Restoration 4.0.3] Spiritual Guidance through the Cataclysm
About most buffs bring coverd in 25? Hehe i Think everyone knows that and if they don't they're input is useless IMO :p
I do believe in separating 10 and 25 thought cause I believe u can newer make it the same some fights will be easier or harder on 10 and 25 alternating.
Back on topic yeah if I'm taking anny other talent totemic is probably the only. I'm left with a feeling that when we are in t11+ gear mana won't be a factor as long as healing is done "correct". (that goes for 25m tale might be different on 10m... Or I might have to go back on it when we are there)