Welcome to the advanced section of my Mistweaving Guide, aimed for those who want to improve themselves for progression raiding and Mythic+ dungeons. To fully take advantage of the knowledge on this page, you should already be familiar with the Mistweaver toolkit and basic rotations. If you aren’t, check out my Basic Mistweaving Guide first.
Gear to Win
Before you head out to face your challenges; make sure that you are properly geared. Note that Mistweavers that aim for high Mythic+ dungeons and Mistweavers that want to challenge difficult Mythic progression raids gear quite differently. Choose which type of encounter you want to gear for.
Intellect > Spellpower > Versatility > Crit > Mastery > Haste
Mastery > Intellect > Spellpower > Versatility > Crit > Haste
There are the stat priorities for Mistweavers, but you truly want more detailed stat weights. These are individual, depending on your current gear, so let’s go through how you get them.
- Download Geodew’s stat weights document (all cudos to him, our theorycrafter in saving): https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/14GxZppZ_5v6dMjYh6TUnXlcXypFtmtUp-TtZ2A0obOU/edit?pref=2&pli=1#gid=0
- Make sure that you can edit it in a program of your choice (typically Excel, but whatever works).
- Plug in your unbuffed These can be easily retained in Wowhead profiler (attach your battle.net account to Wowhead and upload your character. You can then see your stats in Profiles in the column called ‘Total’).
- This will give you exact stat weights, which can then be used in AskMrRobot’s gear calculator. Load your character and then click on “View/Edit Strategy” to plug in your specific stat weights. You can then see what is Best in Slot.
- Prioritize gear, enchants and gems after stat priority.
Mind you, while AskMrRobot can dig out gear pieces with the preferred stat combo that you like, it usually isn’t up to par when it comes to trinkets and legendaries. So, we need to evaluate them separately. Here’s a list of good trinkets and legendaries:
- Brinewater Slime in a Bottle (vers/crit) – Helya, Trial of Valor.
- Etraeus’ Celesital Map – Star Augur Etraeus, Nighthold.
- Perfectly Preserved Cake – Trilliax, Nighthold
- Fluctuating Energy (for mana-intense fights) – Mana Devourer, Return to Karazhan.
- Velen’s Future Sight – Legendary Trinket
Healing in Mythic+ can be very intense and hectic, particularly at higher level keystones. You need to be fast, mobile and equipped to deal with frequent emergency situations. While different affixes can greatly impact the healing rotation, there are some general rules of thumb that I’d like to go through.
Typical talent build:
- Zen Pulse
- Tiger’s Lust
- Mist Wrap
- Leg Sweep
- Any, depends on damage pattern
- Chi-Ji / Statue
- Focused Thunder
- Effuse to heal up a damaged player. Replace Effuse with Vivify if several in your group are damaged.
- Enveloping Mist on players that take heavy and consistent damage.
- Renewing Mist should be used on cooldown.
- Dish out damage with whenever you don’t need to heal.
Thunder Focus Tea should be used on:
- Renewing Mist most of the time for more Uplifting Trance procs (disregard if the whole group is blanketed, though).
- Enveloping Mist or Effuse when emergency single-target healing is needed.
Drink up Your Mana
First of all, mana doesn’t have quite the impact as it has in raiding. You will go in and out of combat frequently, giving you ample chance to drink. For the sake of speed and efficiency, you should hotkey your drink-button so that you can very quickly start drinking between pulls.
Crowd Control & Utility
One of the most important aspects of Mythic+ is crowd control. The difficulty in high level dungeons are the trash packs, since often you want to pull as many as you can handle for the sake of speed. This means that the whole group has to coordinate their CCs to mitigate the most dangerous adds and abilities. Mistweavers can help in both the CC department and the utility department in several ways:
- Leg Sweep (Talent): a powerful AoE stun. It is very useful against dangerous trash packs!
- Paralysis: incapacitates a target (broken if the target takes damage). This is useful in controlled situations. Either use if before a pull to break down the pack into more manageable parts, or use it if you encounter a patrol you don’t want to handle right then and there.
- Spirit Tether: an artifact trait that allows your Transcendence spirit slow nearby enemies for 40%. This is very useful for situations when a player needs to kite mobs.
- Provoke: taunts the target and causes it to run to you at 50% speed. This ability has very limited use, but on occasions you might want to taunt a target and then run like hell towards the tank to pick it up. In tandem with a well-placed Transcendence, this is actually a good way to reset bosses, too. But more often than not, you can disregard this ability.
- Tiger’s Lust: Removes roots and snares. Very helpful when you meet mobs that can root and snare party members, particularly during the Vulcanic and Sanguine affix.
Keep up with Your Party
If you’re too slow and is left behind, there’s little healing you can do. Always know where your group is going and keep up! This is quite easy for Mistweaver who has Chi Torpedo / Roll / Tiger’s Lust / Mistwalk. Give the others a run for their money!
Bolstering – When any non-boss enemy dies, its death cry empowers nearby allies, increasing their maximum health and damage by 20%.
Healing: This is a very tedious affix. The group has to take out the mobs either one by one at a distance or make the whole pack explode at roughly the same time. You will definitely see some empowered mobs here and there that can do quite heavy tank damage. Make sure that no mob become empowered at high health!
Necrotic – Enemy melee attacks apply a stacking debuff that deals damage and reduces healing/absorbs received.
Healing: This affix does not allow for chain-pulling, unless the tank is a very good kiter. Keep an eye on how many stacks of the debuff has and notify the tank (by screaming loudly) when the stacks get too high and you need to either wait for the next pull or kite the current pull. You can help the tank kite mobs with Spirit Tether.
Overflowing – Causes all overhealing done (by healer-spec players) to trigger a heal absorb on the target, proportional to the amount of overhealing done.
Healing: This is one of the easy affixes. Simply refrain from healing unless the group actually has taken damage. If it’s light damage, work a lot with Effuse, Renewing Mist and Soothing Mist. Normal rotation on heavier group/tank damage.
Raging – Non-boss enemies enrage at 30% health remaining, dealing 100% increased damage until defeated.
Healing: Save burst damage and CCs like Leg Sweep when the mobs are under 30%. Quite manageable if the group has several stuns.
Sanguine – Shortly after death, non-boss enemies will leave a pool of blood on the ground, which heals enemies and damages players for a % of their max health.
Healing: This is also a very easy affix; simply don’t step in the red goo. If you have melees in your group, the tank can do a slow kiting dance to get away from the build-up.
Skittish -Enemies pay far less attention to threat generated by tanks.
Healing: Be prepared for emergency healing on non-tanks. Enemies will be everywhere, but more likely on the highest DPSer. Use an instant Enveloping Mist with Thunder Focus Tea on the player if the situation gets out of control.
Teeming – Additional non-boss enemies are present throughout the dungeon; kill count requirement is increased.
Healing: There will be many trash packs that needs to be dealt with in a short time during this affix. Be ready for chain-pulling and Leg Sweep the adds when the tank damage becomes unbearable. Save Life Cocoon for the hardest pulls.
Volcanic – While in combat, enemies periodically cause gouts of flame to erupt beneath the feet of distant players.
Healing: This is a personal hate-affix of mine. Basically, lava spawns beneath your feet and unless you step out of it immediately, you take high damage. It’s easy if you’re good at keeping an eye on your environment. But if you’re like me and do even short stretches of tunneling when the healing is intensive, this can be a bit of a bother. I usually assign a player in the party to scream at me periodically over Teamspeak to remind me of the lava. And then I scream at oblivious melee players to step out of the lava (Volcanic doesn’t target players in melee range, but it doesn’t mean that you can get a spawn in melee if a ranged runs by). This affix usually spawn its own share of chaos in the group.
Healing in progressive raids is a beast of its own. Usually, the challenge is to pump out as much healing at the right time while balancing that with a very restrictive mana availability. It requires efficiency and timing, so that you don’t do unnecessary over-healing and so that you have the mana for times when you need to hit it with your strongest healing spells.
Typical talent build:
- Vivify when a few players in your group are injured.
- Essence Font when six or more players in your group are damaged and are in 25yds range.
- Enveloping Mist on players that take heavy and consistent damage.
- Renewing Mist should be used on cooldown.
- When you don’t need to heal, either dish out damage or recuperate mana through pots or trinkets.
Thunder Focus Tea should be used on:
- Renewing Mist on shorter fights for more healing and Uplifting Trance procs.
- Vivify on long fights to save mana.
Plan Your Healing
One of the most important aspects in any encounter is to know when and where to use your cooldowns and your expensive healing. You don’t want it to go to waste by over-healing, but neither do you want to waste it by not using it at all. Here are a few pointers:
- Revival: typically pre-planned in a set rotation of big healing cooldowns to avoid overlap. If you don’t have anything planned, use it whenever the raid takes heavy damage and/or are in a sticky situation when you need to run a lot.
- Chi-Ji: this pretty bird runs around for 45 sec and heals three players each second. This is great healing that doesn’t even require you to cast, which is very useful in encounters that require a lot of movement. It’s just a great cooldown overall. Use it as often as you can, unless the raid isn’t taking damage of course.
- Life Cocoon: This ability is not often used as a proper tank cooldown (like Ironbark or Pain Suppression) but more like a holy-shit-the-tank-is-dying kind of cooldown. If there are no obvious situation when the tanks need extra healing/absorbs, use this on cooldown anyway to save mana. It’s a great instant heal too since it applies Renewing Mist and Enveloping Mist, which is good for times when your hands are full.
- Essence Font: your expensive AoE heal. The long and short of it is that you want to use this as soon as you have 6+ injured players within 25 yards. In a long fight, this means that you will struggle with mana, so you will need to compensate by using Thunder Focus Tea on free Vivifys to save as much as possible.
Planning your healing for maximum efficiency comes with experience: both general know-how of your class but also after having done the same encounter several times. Try to always figure out when to use your spells and where to stand at what exact time, since range has no small part in it too. Never be out of range when the damage hits!
Mana and You
If you are struggling with mana, whether that be in raids or mythic+, there are several ways to handle it. First, you need to know read up on the HPM of each of your spells to know which are most efficient. That way, you won’t spend mana unnecessarily. Secondly, there are several ways to regain mana that you should be aware of. Here I go through it all!
HPM ‘r Us
HPM means Healing per Mana and is a measurement of efficiency of a spell. You basically take the total amount of healing the spell does and divide it by its mana cost. That way you can figure out how much healing you can dish out for the least amount of mana. This is of course a little tricky to calculate if you include Mastery and other factors into play. Mastery greatly changes the HPM value on the spells depending on how much you have! To illustrate this point; below are two charts of my different gear sets. One with mastery for Mythic+ and one with vers/crit for raiding. See how the HPM value changes with mastery (386% mastery vs 249%).
This is a rough illustration of the difference in HPM value. Arguably, you could add 1-2 mastery heals to Essence Font even since the buff doubles the mastery heal. Also, a mythic+ gear should have even more mastery than the 386% I have. But this gives you an indication of which spells are efficient.
This is of course based on the assumption that you do not over-heal. You wouldn’t use Essence Font in Mythic+ because it will likely over-heal and over-write existing buffs since you’re only 5 players. Then it’s HPM value becomes completely redundant. At the same time, you might figure Mastery is a good even in raids, but then you don’t factor in that the majority of our healing comes from Essence Font, Revival and Renewing Mist (if you count that it applies Gust of Mist only once, and not on the duplicates) which all gain more healing from Versatility and Crit rather than Mastery.
What you should take with you is that Renewing Mist is great HPM-wise and Enveloping Mist is costly (but strong), in both raids and Mythic+. Essence Font gives great value for the mana you spend, as long as it doesn’t over-heal or doesn’t hit its targets (25 yards can feel like a very short distance sometimes). For light damage, use Effuse instead of Vivify if there’s only one target that needs healing, which can happen often in Mythic+ but seldom in raids (in raids, you basically never use Effuse).
And let’s not forget the spells that are free: Soothing Mist, Chi Burst/Zen Pulse and Sheilun’s Gift! Take advantage of these spells whenever the opportunity arises.
If you’re in the middle of a fight and notice that your mana is running dry long before the fight is over, there are a few things you could do to regain it.
- Talent: Spirit of the Crane
- A talent that allows your Blackout Kicks to refund 0,65% mana. Exclusive with Lifecycles and Mist Wrap.
- Pot: Ancient Mana Potion
- 160K mana = 14,% mana, instant. Once per battle.
- Pot: Leytorrent Potion
- 240K mana =21,8% mana, 10 sec channel. Once per battle.
- Buff: Greater Blessing of Wisdom
- A buff cast by Retribution Paladins. Regenerates 1% mana and health every 10 sec.
- Trinket: Fluctuating Energy
- 19,3K mana =1,8% per orb. Orbs proc frequently from healing events.
- Trinket: Cocoon of Enforced Silence
- 78,8K mana = 7,2%, 10 sec channel. 2 min cooldown.
- Trinket: Ephemeral Paradox
- Has a chance to refund 3869 mana = 0,4% on your next Effuse cast instead of spending mana.
Mana Cost Reduction
- Talent: Mana Tea
- Your spells cost 50% less mana. 1.5 min cooldown.
- Talent: Lifecycles
- A talent that reduces the mana cost of your Enveloping Mist and Vivify by 20% if they are cast in sequence. Exlusive with Spirit of the Crane and Mist Wrap.
- Ability: Thunder Focus Tea
- You can choose to use this empowerment for free Vivifys.
- Buff: Innervate
- Cast by Balance or Restoration Druids. Your spells has no mana cost for 10 seconds.
- Buff: Symbol of Hope
- A Holy Priest talent that allows healers’ spells cost no mana for 12 sec.
- Trinket: Darkmoon Deck: Promises
- Reduces the mana cost of your spells by 735-2938 mana (0,1%-0,3%) depending on the shuffling of the deck (Ace to Nine).
The Traits of a Good Healer
Here’s a list of what traits a good healer has in my experience. If you want to advance and become a better healer, try to improve yourself on all these points.
- Class Competence
- Encounter Knowledge
- Environment Awareness
A good healer has class competence, encounter knowledge, environment awareness and can cooperate with other players. Class competence means that the healer has studied up on her own class and know the ins and outs of her spells and resource management. The healer knows what spells to use when and where depending on their healing output versus resource cost. She also knows which stats to go for, what gems and enchants work best.
Encounter knowledge means that the healer is aware of all the mechanics in the upcoming fight and how the damage pattern looks like. When does high damage occur, when are the downtimes? This way the healer can prepare and adapt spell selection accordingly. Many healers know little of the encounter they’re healing, especially mechanics that doesn’t directly affect them. But knowing all the different tank and DPS mechanics means that you can tell on beforehand if they’re executed properly. If you see a player fail on a certain mechanic, you’ll have much better reaction time and a higher chance of saving the situation.
Environment Awareness means that you can dodge fire and execute different mechanics while you heal at the same time. This is incredibly important and a trademark for a good player. Environment awareness also go hand in hand with encounter knowledge since it is endlessly easier to dodge mechanics you know are coming.
Cooperation is a trait that is often overlooked in the WoW community in general. I believe it to be one of the most important traits there is. You are a healer, not a one-man show; you are part of a team and you progress as a team. It doesn’t matter if you can top the healing meters if you can’t cooperate with the other healers and players in your raid. A good healer cooperate and communicate with her team members and try to be as useful for the group as possible. This can sometimes mean that the healer have to sacrifice some HPS to execute a certain mechanic that is very vital for the raid. For example; you interrupt adds instead of just healing through it to get a higher HPS value. Whatever you can do to be of maximum use.
Becoming a great Mistweaver requires you to have knowledge of your spells, stat weights and gearing. Every encounter you should practice your timing and planning of spells and movement. Keep an open mind and always try to improve yourself. This his how you become a great Mistweaver and you can always become better!