Alpha Selfless Healer – Heal Less for More!

Head Shot on Selfless Healer

Blizz recently posted this:

Reasoning is they thought increasing its increase in mobile healing plus reduction in mana cost to Holy Radiance made it too powerful.

There is truth in that, the biggest being that reducing the mana of Holy Radiance makes it more spamable and with judge giving HP too it tripled our HP production.  This doubled our HPS over using other talents.

This change however kills it as a spec.  I have never felt that SH is a mobile healing spec even with LoD being instant.  So i am surprised mobility is even part of the equation.

As it stands now you are better off picking no talent over SH.  Because when you combine Judge and Flash of Light with the buff you do the same HPS as a Holy Light but nearly twice the mana.  So unsure why you would take this talent at all.

Something I have always thought is Selfless Healer should make Judge an atonement like heal and do decent damage.  If we aren’t going to get HP from it and if the buff it gives to FL be equal to a Holy Light to make up for taking the talent over SS or EF it needs to do something else.  To me that value should be a heal and/or meaningful damage (for a healer).

It is Alpha, so lets see what happens.

-Fun first – balance second.  This doesn’t pass either of those tests.


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Updated for build 4/16/17 – Early Alpha Numbers – A fuzzy look at what to expect in Warlords of Draenor

Open Art Alpha

To start I want to say:

  1. I am not in Alpha.
  2. I took my images from WoW Head, MMO, and Blizz Sites
  3. There are many unknown variables with the stat changes in WoD, artistic license was taken.
  4. They made a few changes since i did my math and I updated them.  Charts are updated and red writing is the new stuff.  4/16/17 Alpha Build 18156.

Now that I have said that, lets talk about Holy Paladin numbers in WoD.  Once we get numbers we can start talking about spell choices, rotations, and talent choices.  To get that party started, I needed the list of the new spell stats so I looked up the data-mined info from the Alpha version of WoD (here) to get an idea of what our healing spells are going to look like.  I was able to find the spell power coefficients for each of our spells (no more base healing value) but without knowing how much spell power we were going to have, it was useless info.

So I looked up a 64o-ish iLvL set in the game files and added up all the stats.  From there I had to guess the scaling of SP and Int in WoD and throw some buffs on top.  I have an educated guess on what our SP will be (1 int = 1 SP with 5% int buff from plate and Stat buff plus a 10% SP buff) but it ain’t exact.  In terms of haste, crit, mastery, and the new secondaries I have total values, but no % totals.  I have no idea how much 60 mastery will be in WoD.  Could be 1%, could be 0.5%.  Thus I just gave us low values of haste/mastery/crit that are largely from raid/self buffs (10% crit, 15% mastery, 15% haste) and have a spell power value of 3584.

Lastly I wanted to get an idea of how big our health pools were going to be, because healing values have little context without an idea of how much of a players life they heal.  I was able to get a Stamina total, but I don’t know the scaling.  On live we have base health then our health increases by 14 points per stamina (minus the first bit of stamina).  In the WoD blog they said they are roughly doubling it.  So I double the scaling of the Stamina value we will have at 640 ilvl.   I have us (non-tank) at about 85k health.

With that, I could build up a table to see what our heals will look like in WoD:

For comparison I added a chart for our current heals at 574 ilvl:

MoP Health Percent per heal

Current Healing Numbers – 574ilvl with 750k buffed health.

Few things stand out to me.  The first is I would expect our raw heals to actually be much less than they are projecting in WoD.  Could be that my health values are off but with the healing shift of 2x the health 1.5x the heals I would expect a bigger gap.  But we also don’t know how health pools will change as we go up in gear, certainly the 2x the stamina scaling may achieve what they are looking to do as we gear up.  The other things that stand out are:

  • Eternal Flame heals for crap now.  They nerfed this to the ground.  More about the suck that is EF later.
  • EF is better than it was.  More of a choice between LoD and EF, but other talents are stronger.  Move in the right direction.  Still think EF should be standard with Holy, makes LoD and EF a per cast decision rather than always LoD unless you spec EF.
  • Holy Radiance is nearly as strong as our HP finishers.
  • The new holy light is pretty strong, cheap weak heal truly is gone.

So the next step is to take a look at the possible rotations:

My biggest take away here is our Holy Power generation looks to be highly reliant on holy shock and tower of radiance.  When we use Holy Radiance our output can double, but they have said they want to make it mana impossible to sustain.  Certainly something that is going to have to be balanced, in current state the output change by adding HR is ridiculous.  Other things that stand out:

  • Using Tower of Radiance for more HP generation (at expense of less beacon heals) is a small HPS gain.  18+sec per 3HP without Beacon.  7-9sec using beacon.  HR use can be 5-6sec per 3 HP.
  • The fact that our Holy Power Finishers are so similar to our other heals means the above only has small effects on our HPS.  Not a good thing IMO.  I don’t want WoG/EF/LoD to feel like a free, CASTED, same strength version of holy light/holy radiance.  Want it to be powerful and instant!
  • Eternal flame is terrible mediocre, WoG even more so, LoD is king since EF is not the winning spec and WoG is so far below LoD.  However our lvl 100 talents will change this.
  • Sacred shield is better than EF, on par with Selfless healer without HR in the rotation.
  • Selfless healer is more mana per second used in order to use the 30% more healing to Flash of Light buff.  Using HR in the rotation increases mana expense by 20% but about 50% more healing.

Lastly lets look at the level 100 talents:

So we have a double beacon, a 30% buff to healing a moving beacon target beacon, and a shielding the beacon target beacon.

To calculate the double beacon I just doubled the beacon healing to the rotations.  This is probably the most accurate estimation because I have rotation where you heal the beacon target listed.  Not likely to see large variations in healing output with this talent.  The table:

Beacon of Faith

To calculate the beacon that buffs single target heal by 30% but moves around when they are healed or topped off I buffed all the single target heals by 30%.  This assumes you are going to chase the buff (picks the lowest health player) and can hit the player with a heal before they are topped off and the beacon changes targets.  This is basically a chart of the maximum amount of gain you can expect to get from the talent.  Highly unlikely we will get anywhere close to this much of a buff from it.  The table:

Beacon of Insight

Shielding Beacon is sad.  Can proc once a minute (twice if it procs on you and on tank) and shields 30% health.  So at 1 proc per minute with no over heal on the shield you are going to gain 425 HPS….  Going to take a very unique encounter to make this talent worth it, I see this as a PvP only talent as it stands now.  The “table” (white box is healing, red box HPS):

The Beacon of PvP

The Beacon of PvP

My thoughts on the lvl 100 talents thus far:

  • Beacon of Insight and Faith are pretty close in HPS, small boost to the double beacon.  Unfortunately the mending beacon will likely be much worse.
  • PvP beacon is PvP beacon.
  • lvl 100 talents are a fair buff to our heals, 20-30% buff and changes our game play a bit but as is, double beacon is the clear winner.  More balance work needed to make it an interesting choice.
  • Beacon of Faith with EF is pretty strong.  EF has always been great at streaming heals to the beacon target and if tank healing becomes a thing it makes EF/SS/SH a more interesting choice with Beacon of Faith, but EF is fairly dead with the other lvl 100 talents.

I want to say my charts and numbers are a good starting place, but since I am piecing this together it is entirely possible that my numbers are way off, and when put into play I am picturing it all wrong (healing in WoD with a MoP Mindset).  But now is the time the game gets balanced and arguably the best time to provide feedback, feedback based more on numbers than on feelings (but fun is a feeling worth feedbacking!).

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Alpha Bravo WoD’s info INC!

wod cover

This is the end, my only friend the end… of SoO!

We gots some infos!

I wanted to highlight the Holy Pally changes listed in the Alpha Patch overview. Lots of info so below are the points that effect us Holy Paladins the most.  Gray taken directly from Here and the orange italics are my comments.

The Great Purge, I mean Retuning:

  • The pace of healing have been adjusted to allow for more tactical decision making regarding efficiency and throughput, on both single-target and multi-target heals. Passive and auto-targeted healing have been reduced in effectiveness in order to emphasize the actions and choices of healers.  (Pick the wrong heal and you will OOM.  Plus WoW’s smart heals have been eating paint chips.)
  • “All of this discussion of efficiency may cause most healers to start worrying about mana regeneration and their mana pool. To allay those concerns, we’ve increased base mana regeneration a great deal at early gear levels, while having it scale up less at later gear levels. This will make all of these changes play well even in early content such as Heroic Dungeons and the first tier of Raid content, and also play well in the final Raid tier without mana and efficiency becoming irrelevant due to extremely high regeneration values.”  (Wait you want us to pick the most efficient heal but not have  mana problems if you pick the inefficient heal?)
  • The amount of health per Stamina has approximately doubled. The curve on this calculation has been smoothed out as well, so the exact amount varies slightly by level.
  • All player-cast healing and absorption effects have been increased by approximately 50% in effectiveness. If they heal or absorb a percentage of maximum health, they are instead reduced by 25%.  (Health Pools x 2.  Healing x 1.5.  I see what you did there…)

Healing Tool Kit Changes – Changing how we think of the heals we already have: 

  • Paladin Higher Efficiency: Holy Light, Holy Shock, Word of Glory, Light of Dawn
  • Paladin Higher Throughput: Flash of Light, Holy Radiance
  • Long-cast-time single-target heals, such as Greater Heal and Healing Touch, now cost roughly half as much as fast-cast-time single-target heals, such as Flash of Light or Healing Surge, and heal for roughly the same amount.  (Divine Light, now Holy Light is a big, but relative to health pools, smaller, heal we spam.  Get that?)
  • Spells with cooldowns or limitations may have higher efficiency than the no-cooldown equivalents.  (Holy Power finishers?  So Word of Glory wont be a free over-heal anymore?)

The Death of instants:  The amount of instant healing in the game has been toned down by giving cast times to several instant cast heals:

  • Eternal Flame now has a 1.5-second cast time (up from instant cast) for Holy Paladins.  (Say good-bye to mobile healing)
  • Light of Dawn now has a 1.5-second cast time (up from instant cast).  (Buh-
  • Word of Glory now has a 1.5-second cast time (up from instant cast).  Bye)

Ability Pruning (holy changes):

  • Avenging Wrath is now only available to Retribution Paladins.
  • Divine Light has been renamed Holy Light.  (See below)
  • Divine Plea has been removed. Mana costs for Paladins have been adjusted accordingly.
  • Guardian of Ancient Kings is now only available to Protection Paladins.
  • Hand of Salvation has been removed.
  • Holy Light has been removed.  (Hopefully not in that order!)

Cooldown/Talent Tree Changes:

  • Divine Favor now also increases all of the Paladin’s healing by 100% for its duration.  (To compensate for loss of GoAK and Avenging Wrath, loss of so many CD’s going to make throttling our healing much harder and Holy Avenger that much more powerful, expect tier 75 talents to get more tuning)
  • Stay of Execution (the Holy version of Execution Sentence) now deals its healing in a large burst at first, and then decreasing over time (reversed from before).  (Going to make tier 90 talents much more interesting, but based on the upcoming changes in healing this might be the go to heal)
  • Eternal Flame now deals 100% of the direct healing of Word of Glory (up from 70%), but only 50% as much periodic healing as before.  (The death of EF.  Really wish EF was baseline for holy…)

Leveling Talents:

  • Empowered Beacon of Light – Your single-target heals heal your Beacon of Light target for 10% more.  (Just a buff to feel more powerful as you level)
  • Improved Daybreak – Increases the healing from Daybreak by 100%.  (Now with more overheal – seriously this talent is at like 90% over heal already…)
  • Improved Holy Light – Increases the healing from Holy Light by 20%.  (Just a buff to feel more powerful as you level)
  • Improved Denounce – Increases the damage done by Denounce by 20%.  (WTB lower mana cost.  Add a healing buff or have a finisher mechanic like 100% more Holy Shock damage after 3 Denounces)
  • Empowered Holy Shock – Increases the damage done by Holy Shock by 20%.  (See above!)
  • Enhanced Holy Shock – Your Holy Light and Flash of Light have a 10% chance to cause your next Holy Shock to not trigger a cooldown.  (Interesting!  Great way to get some more Holy Power.  Would love to see this ability scale with crit/haste/mastery)
  • Improved Flash of Light – Increases the healing Flash of Light by 20%.  (Need to see how hard this hits and how expensive it is.  Would like to see it generate Holy Power on non-beacon targets to compete with Holy Radiance)

Level 100 Talents:

  • Beacon of Faith  - Mark a second target as a Beacon, mimicking the effects of Beacon of Light. 60 yd range, Instant, 3 sec cooldown.  (Sounds neat.  How sloppy will be Beacon swapping be?  Have 2 out, move one, which moves?  Could lead to improved ToR HP generation)
  • Beacon of Insight – Places a beacon of insight on an ally, increasing their healing received from your next direct single-target heal within 1 min by 30%. When consumed, or when the target reaches full health, it moves to the most injured ally within 40 yards. Limit 1. 320 Mana, 40 yd range, Instant, 15 sec cooldown.  (Could be powerful, depending on fight could lead to wack-a-mole buff healing.  Be like chasing a prayer of mending, and hard to utilize)
  • Saved by the Light – When you or your Beacon of Light target drop below 30% health, you instantly grant the injured target a protective shield, absorbing up to 30% of their maximum health for 10 sec. You cannot shield the same person this way twice within 1 min.  (Its power will depend greatly on how much you can get it to proc on people while swapping targets and how much 30% health is compared to say Holy Light)

Other Random Changes:

  • Intellect no longer provides an increased chance to critically strike with spells.
  • Maximum mana has been approximately doubled at all levels to keep pace with the expected health from new Stamina values.
  • Denounce’s range has increased to 40 yards (up from 30 yards).

I might sound cyincal (i.e. “The Purge”) but I am excited for the changes.  There is a lot of time for Blizz to get the changes balanced in a way that makes healing fun, interesting, challenging, but not impossible to get into.  Once we start seeing numbers and certainly when Beta Hits I will be hard at work crunching the numbers so we can all be better healers in the newly balanced healing world of Warlords of Draneor!

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Healing Blog Comments and Thoughts for WoD

Some interesting info in the newest Healing Blog from Blizz as a intro to what to expect in WoD.  Some of it expected (nerf shields), some of it not (add cast times to things like Light of Dawn/Eternal Flame), and some of it we have heard before (make triage important, have players less than 100% most of the time).  It is very early to speculate what actually hits WoD Beta and then what will go live.  There will be changes but the general ideology seems to be balance PvP, PvE, and gear progression healing.  I think this is a good thing.  The change in power from PvP to PvE is stark, the change in healing from opening expansion tier to end tier is silly.  Our general healing mechanics shouldn’t change so much between all of them.  Coupled with 6 healing specs to balance these changes lead to constant balance tweaks and invariably wildly overpowered classes.  Helping smooth out how scaling effects our healing will be good for everyone.  At least that is my take on what they want to do, but it is also what I am hoping they mean…

Rather than speculate on “this is a huge nerf to pallies” I want to share my thoughts on what I would like to see happen to the pally class.  The goal is to make it the spec fun, the power of our spells would have to be balanced with everyone else, but these are my thoughts on what would make the class more fun to play:

10% of the time I am right 100% of the time.

10% of the time I am right 100% of the time.

1.  WoG turns into Eternal Flame for Holy:

Casting WoG is a giant let down.  It is just another version of Divine Light (to be Holy Light now).  It is free, yes, but it will now have a cast time in WoD and takes considerable time to generate.  The choice between LoD and WoG is not a fun one.  Since we can’t sit on our Holy Power we are forced to cast a large heal when it may not be needed with the consolation our mastery shield might get used.  So right now if you aren’t EF you just cast LoD to spam raid heals and put up shields.  I would like us to have to choose between a HoT and a strong AoE heal.  If both put out similar output when over-heal is minimized then it becomes an interesting choice between the heals.  Makes for a better tool kit and more interesting play.  I think this is particularly important if they truly make healing a game where we have a single target heal we spam as filler, it will make for a clear differentiation between Holy Light and our HP finisher.  This would mean a new talent to compete with Selfless Healer and Sacred Shield and highlights the problems with the talent system that tries to balance 3 specs with 3 talents.  They are likely going to do so much differentiation from spec to spec for each talent it is going to be almost like our old talents where each spec had its own tree!  But it is still consolidated over the old model!

2.  Tune our finishers properly:

This has everything to do with holy power generation and tier scaling.  The Healing Blog post makes several mentions about making entry tier healing less of a mana slug fest with poor healing spell choices and more like a healing rotation where you have stuff to do.  What I would like to see is our holy power generation be more standardized and not tied to mana expense.  Right now we have lots of regen and can use Holy Radiance to generate HP outside of the Holy Shock CD.  So we are always working toward our next 3HP finisher.  But those with poor gear/regen are stuck using mostly Holy Shock and casting far fewer 3HP finishers.  There is nothing fun about that.  There is no reason the whole play style should change so much based on gear where more gear makes it more fun.  The contrast would have been more stark from T14 to T16 if it wasn’t for t14 4pc lowering Holy Shock to 4sec.  Blizzard has been pretty clear they want fun game play from entry max level play all the way to BiS and a holy paladin in 463 plays like crap compared to 574.  You should be more powerful at 574 yes, use more expensive heals, but it shouldn’t change the foundation of our healing set which is generating and using Holy Power.  Unless they want our HP finishers to be our “increase in power” but that makes for boring play at lower levels.  Not a good way of throttling power imo.

Thus there are 2 possible paths.  One is to make lots of HP generating options.  Make holy light generate holy power.  We will have quick HP generation and lots of EF/LOD’s to go around.  Blizz can just balance us based around more frequent use of these spells.  To me this is the most fun option.  Generating HP and using it is fun, lets have more of that.  What makes or breaks this is use of Beacon.  If you have to cast Holy Light on Beacon to generate HP it would be nice if tanks needed healing again.  This is a whole different topic but important for balance.  Would be nice if keeping the tank up was something healers still did.

The other path is to plan on only getting HP from HS and slow our generation down.  To balance this we would need super powerful finishers.  Powerful finishers are nice, but having them less often is a bummer.  Personally I would rather have them more often then use my CD’s to up my output.  But what would be important here is when you are BiS in WoD at the end of the tier, your Holy Power generation should only scale up with a stat like Haste and not because you can start using a whole new spell frequent and often to get more HP.  Because then you have boring play to start and fun to finish.  Lets keep it fun start to finish.  Since I like to have math in my blog here is my example:

T14 w/o 4pc tier or pvp which messed up balance (but bridged boring game play):

1 HP every 6 sec.  Unable to use Holy Radiance regularly due to mana issues.  3HP finisher every 18 seconds.

T16:  HS-HR-HR rotation becomes viable (with legendary meta).  3 HP Finisher every 5.54 seconds.

Change from T14 to T16 ->  325% more HP finishers at the end of the expansion!

3.  A viable way to DPS:

The last thing (for now) I want to see is a way to DPS.  With Challenge Modes, Proving Grounds, and in any progression fight with a hard dps check DPS from healers is here to stay AND POWERFUL (unless they end atonement).  To balance all this content all healers need a decent way to dps.  The rotations can be simple and scale off just spell power.  This will keep the classes in line with each other.  For them to work they have to be mana neutral, or even mana positive.  Give us, and everyone else a way to do damage with a 1-1-1-2 like rotation.  Each class can have a different bonus to dpsing.  Shaman can lower a CD, Druid can increase a HoT duration, Pallies can get a healing/damage boost to Holy Shock.   Something mildly interesting, easy to balance, useful and provide a way for very skilled players to add more to the raid, but not penalize new players for not yet mastering the balance between DPS and HPS.  Adds complexity without adding difficulty.  And doing damage during a burn is fun!!  I really hope early progression fights and Challenge Mode group leaders will no longer shay away from non dps healing classes because they all can do it at least a little.

 Those are my thoughts for now and I look forward to Beta to start theory crafting our new spells, talents, and itemizations!

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Quick Re-Visit of Haste and Mastery for EF

Quick Re-Visit of Haste and Mastery for EF

Old Topic, Quick Take. Haste Has Value! These gains are small but they are gains. They come at the risk of spending more mana, but you also gain more burst. Both are viable but don’t let anyone tell you “Haste is shit”.

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New FAQ Section

I have put together a FAQ section, which is more of a synopsis of topics I have already covered.  I will add to it as things come up.  The goal will always be to slay FAQ’s with math rather than opinion or feelings.

Hopefully more answers than questions!

Hopefully more answers than questions!

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I’ve Been Busy!

Pictures explain it all but I have had a busy week:

And just before he was born our guild got our Heroic Garrosh Kill!

Spent 1/2 the time SH and finished as EF as it was about 15% higher healing during Empowered Whirls due to spread range on LoD and ability to pre-hot part of the raid.

Pally posts will resume soon!

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Selfless Healer and Holy Avenger and You!

A while back i did a spreadsheet I never fully shared about Thok healing output.  I looked at EF vs SH for a fight with incessant interrupts.  I was looking at healing output with Holy Avenger and I looked at a rotation that included Judge and one that skipped it.  The thought was to use Holy Radiance instead of Judge during your CD’s to get more burst healing during your cooldown since judge does 0 healing.  I found it was close enough to not worry about the difference.  Figured it was finally worth sharing since I have a better CD model.

To Judge or not to Judge...  Who cares!

To Judge or not to Judge… Who cares!

The gist of it is:  Nearly no difference.  The reason being LoD is such a large percent of our total healing done during Holy Avenger that the difference in output between HR and Judge is negated by the increase in LoD generation.

Kitchen sink pulls ahead with Judge use because LoD is amazing with all our buffs.  With Holy Avenger and Divine Favor LoD is still king, but not nearly as much, so we see a swing toward using HR instead.  As a bonus (not shown) I looked at different haste levels and they made no impact on our output because the CD’s add so much haste we GCD cap on most things.

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Heart Break Raiding



Explicit language might be heard behind the static…

As heart breaking of a wipe that it was, it is this passion that makes me love the game.  This ain’t over Garrosh!

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Dude my regen is huge. I can’t OOM.

Something I hear frequently on forums is:

“I can’t OOM with my spirit, you must be doing it wrong”.

To that I say:

  1. You are doing it wrong.  Try casting spells.
  2. You are lying.

So as a quick little post let me show you what type of spirit will let you cast without fear of hearing the “Not Enough Mana” emote:

With T20 Gear you too can be OOM-less during T16

With T20 Gear you too can be OOM-less during T16

Basically you can see how much mana our rotation costs.  Look at your character sheet and compare your combat regen with the mana cost.  There is quite a deficit there.  In the spirit figures above I have included the use of divine plea on CD and its scaling with spirit.  For the meta calculations I have figured 15% up time and a savings of 21600 mana per proc.  This comes out to be about 4,050 Mp5.  I have not figured in regen trinkets but they average about 2k worth of spirit.  So even with meta and 25% haste you are talking 30k+ spirit to have the regen to to cast without ever slowing down.

So Spirit does = Throughput.

As a bonus number to visualize what gemming does for us:

  • 3 Intellect gems (160 each) will boost your HPS by 1%.  18 Gems will boost you 6.6%.
  • 2 Mastery gems (320 each) will boost your HPS by 1%.  18 Gems will boost you 10%.
  • 2 Spirit gems (320 each) will boost you 469 Mp5 or 1 extra holy radiance every 230 seconds.  18 Gems will boost 4223 Mp5 or 1 extra holy radiance every 26 seconds.
Guy on forums

Guy on forums

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