Advanced Mistweaving Strategy

Patch 7.3.5

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.

Raid stats:
Crit  > Versatility > Haste > Mastery

Mythic+ Stats:
Mastery > Haste > Versatility > Crit

Due to high level gear dropping from caches and Mythic+, not to mentioned thunderforged items, you might want to diverge from the BiS list if you’ve had a lucky stroke with other items. Keep that in mind as you choose your gear set. Side note: Mistweavers generally want two sets of gear, one for raiding and one for Mythic+. This is due to the widely different stat priorities, so remember to save all high-level items and check if they can work for either of the sets!

Antorus BiS List

Head: Douli of Chi’Ji
Neck: Vulcanarcore Pendant
Shoulders: Meditation Spheres of Chi’Ji
Back: Cloak of Chi’Ji
Chest: Vest of Waning Life
Wrist: Fiendish Logistician’s Wristwraps
Hands: Grips of Chi’Ji
Waist: Belt of Fractured Sanity
Legs: Breach-Blocker Legguards
Feet: Depraved Machinist’s Footpads
Ring 1: Seal of the Portalmaster
Ring 2: Zealous Tormentor’s Ring
Trinket 1: Eonar’s Compassion
Trinket 2: Highfather’s Machination
Frost Relic: Frigid Gloomstone
Life Relic: Root of the Lifebinder
Storm Relic: Conch of the Thunderer

Legendaries for Raiding

  1. Velen’s Future Sight 
  2. Prydaz, Xavaric’s Magnum Opus
  3. Ei’thas, Lunar Glides of Eramas
  4. Leggings of The Black Flame
  5. Doorway to Nowhere

Legendaries for Mythic+

  1. Prydaz, Xavaric’s Magnum Opus
  2. Velen’s Future Sight 
  3. Ovyd’s Winter Wrap
  4. Ei’thas, Lunar Glides of Eramas

For more information on Mistweaver gearing, check out my other pages:


Raid Healing as Mistweaver

Spread Encounter

It’s important for the Mistweaver to recognise a spread encounter, because it has a significant impact on talent and spell choice. Whenever an encounter forces the raid to split up or spread out for the majority of the time, it would be characterised as a spread encounter.

Talents for Spread:

We will always go with Chi Burst no matter spread or stack. Just try to aim it as best as you can. The second healing talent we go for is Chi-Ji, who naturally can run around at his own behest. His healing is a great help in spread situations, especially when the Mistweaver is on the move. The last important talent is between Mana Tea and Focused Thunder. I would say Mana Tea is slightly stronger, especially if you squeeze in a lot of Vivifys in its duration. Though, Focused Thunder can be really useful to spread out extra Renewing Mists, which works too.

Special Note: As for the third tier of talents, all three works depending on your playstyle. Lifecycles is great if you use Enveloping Mist between Vivifys; Spirit of the Crane is very powerful if you have the opportunity to fistweave throughout the fight; Mist Wrap is a good default choice since we can always use a more powerful Enveloping Mist. Being able to channel Soothing Mist while running is a great bonus!

The main thing for spread vs stack healing is that we rely a lot more on Renewing Mist and Vivify, which have the best reach of all of our spells. Renewing Mist jumps between injured players, even if the secondary target is out of our reach. It also has a 10% chance to send out a copy when you first apply it or whenever it jump to a new target.

Vivify has 40yds range to initial target, and the cleave heal has a 20yds range from the primary target. That gives us a potential of 60yds range on the cleave heal, which is great. In pure spread fights, you will often see Vivify and Renewing Mist in the top of our healing logs.

Now, of course you should always use Essence Font when the opportunity arise. As long as you have a) 6 or more, b) injured allies, c) within 25 yards.

Stack Healing

A stack healing encounter is when you have the majority of the raid roughly within 25 yards for the majority of the time. These are not as usual as spread healing encounters, but we’ve had quite a few lately.

Talents for Stack:

As always in raids, Chi Burst is a given. It’s especially powerful in stack situation. Coupled with Refreshing Jade Wind and Essence Font, you have quite the toolbox for stack healing. You will definitely run into mana problems though, which makes the Mana Tea talent a must. If you still have mana problems despite Mana Tea, you should also choose Spirit of the Crane in row 3. It will definitely be a more difficult rotation to uphold, but it’ll worth it in the long haul.

If you use Velen’s Future Sight or any other use-trinket that buffs you healing, you can combo it for quite a powerful burst. For example, Trinket > Chi Burst > RJW > Essence Font and finish of with a couple of Vivifys if it’s still needed. Mistweaver’s only flaw is that we have to be in the raid clump to make it work. Therefore, positioning is key.

Hybrid Healing

There are also fights that fluctuate between spread and stack situations. It could either be that the phases in the fight differs greatly, or mechanics that force the raid or the Mistweaver apart and then join them again. For these situations, the Mistweaver has to adapt to the situation regarding spell selection. This roughly translates to: Renewing Mist on cooldown at all times; Vivify when spread apart; Essence Font when stacked together. As for talents, I usually go for better spread healing. Other healers have great stack healing too, but not all have great spread healing. In a progresson scenario, Mistweavers are great for filling in that gap.

The Nitty Gritty of Essence Font

One of our key spells is Essence Font. This spell is actually quite poorly explained in the tooltip, which can cause some confusion of when to use it or not. Allow me to explain how it works in detail.

The tooltip:
Unleashes a rapid twirl of healing bolts at up to 6 allies within 25 yds, every 1 sec for 3 sec. Each bolt heals the target for [135% of spell power], plus an additional [48% of spell power] over 8 seconds.
Gust of Mist will heal affected targets twice.
Castable while moving.

For every second you channel Essence Font, bolts of healing will burst out and heal 6 nearby allies. Since there are 3 “pulses” of healing bolts (over 3 seconds, sans haste) that means 18 bolts of healing, which is the maximum amount of bolts. But there’s a caveat! Each bolt will try to heal a target that has not been healed by the past 5 bolts of healing. A.k.a. if a bolt can’t find a target that has not been healed recently, it will be missed out.

What this means practically is that if you have less than 6 healable targets in the vicinity (the caster counts as one), you’ll be getting less bolts. If you cast Essence Font on yourself, it would mean only 3 bolts get through. If you cast it at only 5 players (say a dungeon team), there would only be 15 bolts. Here is how the breakdown would look like, where “1 target” means caster only:

1 target: Heal skip skip skip skip skip – Heal skip skip skip skip skip – Heal skip skip skip skip skip
2 targets: Heal heal skip skip skip skip – Heal heal skip skip skip skip – Heal heal skip skip skip skip
3 targets: Heal  heal  heal skip skip skip – Heal  heal  heal skip skip skip – Heal  heal  heal skip skip skip
4 targets: Heal   heal  heal heal skip skip – Heal   heal  heal heal skip skip – Heal   heal  heal heal skip skip
5 targets: Heal  heal heal heal heal skip – Heal  heal heal heal heal skip – Heal  heal heal heal heal skip
6 targets; Heal heal heal heal heal heal Heal heal heal heal heal healHeal heal heal heal heal heal

This is the main reason why you want at least 6 targets, or the caster plus another 5 injured targets, close by when you cast it. Otherwise you’ll miss out on bolts of healing.

A second major aspect of Essence Font is the HoT. Each bolt leaves a HoT that has a 8 second duration, which both heals and grants the target a second mastery heal if you do a direct cast on the affected target. In other words, great stuff to have. The problem is that Essence Font has a tendency to overwrite the HoT even if there more than available targets nearby. If you track the amount of HoTs you have active at any given point, you will notice that after a cast of Essence Font, you next to never have 18 HoTs active. Even if you have a whole injured raid group on +20 people surrounding you. Why is that?

The reason is because of our 18 bolts of healing does not care about the HoT at all. The bolts only care if the targets has been healed by any of the 5 recent bolts. C’est tout. Bolt no 12 will not make a difference between an injured target that has been healed by bolt no 3 and has the HoT, or an injured target that hasn’t received a single bolt. This means that the bolts often override the HoT, and you’ll likelier get a spread of 12-15 HoTs rather than 18. In a scenario where the whole raid group is injured, a higher spread is preferable, because you never know which targets might need that extra mastery heal!

Is there a cure to this malady? Why, yes. You can force Essence Font to spread its HoTs in a wider pool of injured players by moving around. EF can’t heal the player that caught bolt no 3 if the player is not in range. This does not mean that you should run out of a perfectly stacked group that needs healing; it does mean that if people are loosely spread, you should channel while moving between them, around them and through them.

So the rules of thumb to cast Essence Font or not to cast Essence Font are: 1) six targets in the vicinity, at the very least and 2) you better move around while you channel. Follow these rules and you’ve optimised your Essence Font casts.

Tier 21: Chi’Ji’s Battlegear

The latest 4-piece in town is a hot cloud of mist that works as a delicious topping on your already smoking misty servings. …okay, that might have been a step too far in that analogy, but you get my point.

2 set: When Gust of Mist heals a target, they have a 100% chance to gain Tranquil Mist which heals them for [228% of spell power] every 12 sec.

4 set: When you cast Renewing Mist, you have a 100% chance to send out a bolt of healing Chi at all targets affected by Tranquil Mist, healing them for 300% of spell power].

In other words, whenever you activate your mastery heal, the lucky recipient also gets Tranquil Mist. When you activate Renewing Mist, all the lucky Tranquil Mist recipients will also get Chi Bolt lobbed their way. It’s the very epitomization of ‘I heard you like mist, so I put some more mist on your mist’!

What spells activate Gust of Mist, and therefore Tranquil Mist:

Track the spell on your raid frames and try to spread it out as much as possible. To activate Chi Bolt, you only need to cast Renewing Mist. Cast that on cooldown, with Thunder Focus Tea, every time! What? You’re already doing that? Carry on then, Grandmaster.

Tranquil Mist (Spell ID: 253448)
Chi Bolt (Spell ID: 253581)


Mythic+ Healing as Mistweaver

The Legion-premiered dungeon mode Mythic+ is a whole new way of testing your healer’s capabilities and making them cry in novel and creative ways. Test your 5-man healing to the max while reaching new heights of volume while screaming at your damage dealers to, for the love of Yu’lon, not stand in the goo!

Adapting to Single-target vs Party-wide Healing

You can adapt you mistweaver to some different modes of healing in Mythic+. I’m mostly referring to how affixes affect the damage pattern and therefore forces you to adapt to the different situations. Generally speaking, there are weeks where you need heavy single-target healing either on the tank or the unlucky DPS that out-aggroed the tank on Skittish. Or stood in Vulcanic. Or kept running away from you with Grievous stacks. Then there are weeks where the whole party take high damage, such as Explosives that are allowed to detonate; Bursting that just keeps stacking; and Bolstered, Raging or Teeming adds that AoE the whole party down, etc. The fun never ends!

Let’s first talk about Mistweaving in Mythic+ in general, before we get to the individual affixes though. I will explain how you can prep you Mistweaver for the different situations and how you should think on talent and spell selection accordingly.

Legendaries, Trinkets and Talents

Unlike raiding, where the holy duo of Prydaz and Velen shall never be broken, in Mythic+ you can switch around legendaries a bit more. Although Prydaz might be your primary choice in any case, your second legendary could be Velen, Ovyd, Sephuz, Ei’thas or Collidus for example. Prydaz and Ovyd might be the most popular choice, but there’s no stopping you from experimenting.

As for trinkets, they should preferably be mastery-heavy or tank-saving. Popular choices are the raiding trinkets Ishkar’s Felshield Emitter and Highfather’s Machinations, if you don’t go with Velen that is. Both trinkets can really be useful to save individual players’ lives.

A quick note on gear in general; stack mastery as high as possible. Those Gust of Mist heals should drop on players like a ton bricks.

Now, as for talents. What mostly differs between the builds are:

Chi Burst(AoE) vs Zen Pulse (Single);
Invoke Chi-Ji, the Red Crane (AoE) vs Summon Jade Serpent Statue  (Single);
Mana Tea (Burst) vs Focused Thunder (Sustained).

Adapt the choices after the damage pattern: more party-wide healing requires AoE. More tank or individual player healing, go for single-target. If you find that the damage pattern fluctuate widely between high and low, go for Mana Tea and use it when you need to burst. If the damage pattern is constant, use Focused Thunder and spread more Renewing Mists around for sustained healing. If need be, use it for free Vivifys if you go low on mana or instant Enveloping Mists for emergencies.

Party-wide Healing

For party-wide healing, your core healing spell is Vivify. It heals a primary target and two nearby allies for 300% of spell power each. The primary target also receives a mastery heal. Vivify is insanely good in Mythic+, not only because it’s a smart heal, but also because you can choose which target you want to heal a bit more (a.k.a. primary target also gets a mastery heal).

Renewing Mist should always be cast on cooldown and preferably be blanketed over the whole party (either through Dancing Mist clones or with the help of Thunder Focus Tea). It’s great healing and the HoT also has a 4% chance to proc Uplifting Trance which buffs your next Vivify.

Now, if you remember that I said in the raid-section that Essence Font should never be cast on less than 6 targets? Yes, well, we’re breaking that rule in Mythic+. Essence Font might only send out 15 bolts of healing on a party of five, and only have 5 HoTs active at any given time, but even despite that you should cast it when there’s heavy party damage. Why? Well, that has to do with the extra mastery heal we get for free while the HoT is active. In 5-man, one Essence Font equates roughly to 2 Vivifys, and even more so if you throw in all the extra Mastery heals one can accumulate in those 8 seconds. It will cost a lot of mana, but it might save the team from a wipe! So don’t be afraid to use it if there’s heavy party damage incoming.

Single-target Healing

When there’s only one target taking damage, you should use Effuse instead of Vivify. It’s a good single-target heal that activates our mastery, but do not forget that it also gives us stacks of Sheilun’s Gift as well. If a target is taking serious damage and you need to top it up immediately, you want to have a 12-stack Sheilun’s Gift ready to drop on them.

Enveloping Mist is a costly but effective in healing allies that take heavy damage. Like all of our direct healing spells, it activates our mastery heal. If you ever encounter a player that is hell-bent on dying, start by casting Enveloping Mist on the target (Renewing Mist should already be active and ticking, given your normal rotation). If that doesn’t work, cast a high-stacked Sheilun’s Gift on them. If the player is still riding the highroad to Helya, cast Life Cocoon and/or a trinket shield (such as Felshield Emitter). In a real desperate situation, you might even want to use your precious Thunder Focus Tea empowerment on Effuse to double it (if EvM is already active). Let’s hope we never meet that player that requires us to go to such extremes.

Mistweaving the Mythic+ Affixes

Tyrannical – Increased health and damage of bosses.
Fortified – Increased health and damage of mobs.

Bolstering – Enemies who die bolster nearby adds
MW: This is more of a tank affix (kite packs around to minimize stacks of Bolstering), until that fails and healers have to pick up the slack. Damage pattern depends on the type of add, but rest assured that a bolstered add hits much harder.

Necrotic – Melee attacks give stacking debuff that reduces healing taken.
MW: The tank will take the majority of the Necrotic Rot stacks (unless the Skittish affix is also active). It’s 30% reduced at healing at 10 stacks; 60% at 20 stacks, 80% at 30 stacks and so on. Help the tank to reset the stacks by giving him/her Tiger’s Lust and slow enemies down with Spirit Tether or Leg Sweep.

Quaking – Occasionally there’s a quake that interrupt spell casting and deals aoe damage.
MW: One of the most annoying affixes for casters, ever. Here’s a weakaura to help you track the cooldown and cast of Quake:

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Raging – Mobs enrages at 30% health.
MW: Unless you also have affixes like Sanguine, simply stun and burst down enemies when they go below 30% health and get the Enrage buff. At high keystone levels, you might want to enrage one mob at a time.

Sanguine – Killed mobs drop goo that deals damage and heals enemies.
MW: Don’t let mobs stand in the Sanguine Ichor. Knock them out with Ring of Peace or kite them away.

Skittish – Mobs take less threat.
MW: The holy affix for random damage. Suddenly a mob turns around and slaps your DPS in the face. Be ready for random high spikes of damage on anyone in your party, but mostly on the one that deals most damage. Or the one who can’t wait for the tank to pick up aggro.

Teeming – There is a lot more trash going around.
MW: Just a very tedious affix that can potentially become very dangerous when the super hard adds suddenly come in packs of two instead of one.

Explosive – Fire orbs spawn that explodes after a short while unless killed.
MW: Rising Sun Kick those buggers to the ground. If they finish the Fel Explosion cast, be ready for party-wide damage on top of what you’r dealing with at that moment.

Grievous – A ticking debuff that is applied when allies go below 90% health. Stacks to 5.
MW: One of the harder affixes for healers, at least at high keystone levels. Tanks and healers should carefully track the Grievous Wound debuff in case it becomes unmanageable.

Bursting – Every mob that dies gives the party a ticking debuff. The debuff stacks!
MW: Scream at the DPS if the Burst debuff stacks too high.

Volcanic – Occasionally there will spawn a small vulcano beneath ranged. Move out before eruption!
MW: Move out of these quickly before you get toasted by Vulcanic Plume. Be vigilant of several spawns when you engage larger packs of mobs.

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 in with Different Gear

To more effectively control your mana, you need to know about the value HPM (Healing per Mana). It basically gives you an easy indicator on how much healing you get from each spell per percent mana. If you want to be efficient with your mana, use spells that have high HPM over those with low. The HPM value also changes with your stats (mastery that adds the Gust of Mist heal can change the HPM value of a spell quite dramatically). Here are charts over the HPM of the Mistweaver spells with my own two different gear sets: the raiding gear set with 316% mastery vs my mythic+ gear set with 597% mastery.

Now this is a rough calculation of HPM (and not total healing, do mind) that is based on the assumption that there is no overhealing. Since we don’t live in a perfect world, one can assume there will be some overhealing anyway. What you should take away from these graphs:

  • Renewing Mist should always (ALWAYS) be used on cooldown since it’s so mana effective.
  • In raids, always use Essence Font over Vivify if there are 6 or more injured targets within range.
  • In mythic+, alternate between Effuse and Vivify depending on how many are injured.
  • Essence Font can be used in mythic+ when you can apply it to the whole party. Remember to take advantage of the mastery buff on affected targets!

Mana Values (Most expensive to Cheapest)

  1. Essence Font, 7.2%
  2. Enveloping Mist, 5.2%
  3. Revival, 4.3%
  4. Vivify, 4%
  5. Refreshing Jade Wind, 3.5%
  6. Renewing Mist, 3%
  7. Life Cocoon, 2.4%
  8. Effuse, 2%

FREE: Soothing Mist, Sheilun’s Gift, Chi Burst / Zen Pulse / Chi Wave, Invoke Chi-Ji, the Red Crane

Manaliscious Talents & Boosts

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.

Mana Regeneration

  • 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.

Mana Cost Reduction

  • Talent: Mana Tea
    • Your spells cost 50% less mana for 10 sec. 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.

There are several ways to create a mana-efficient build. Spirit of the Crane and Mana Tea is currently the most popular way to go (in raids, where the mana problems usually pops up). It requires that the Mistweaver is in melee though and casts Tiger Palm + Blackout Kick whenever feasible. Some fights allow DPSing quite extensively, and you should always be aware of that and use the opportunity. Then use Mana Tea when you cast Essence Font, Refreshing Jade Wind or cast several Vivifys.

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
  • Cooperation

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.

Final Notes

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!


Mistweaver Guide

Introduction
Spellbook
Talents
Addons
Basic Mistweaving Guide
Advanced Mistweaving Guide


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