Dear Mr and Miss Foruma-Activa (can I call you that?). I address you after hearing the alarming news that the Sha of Negativity has gate-crashed the forums after the launch of 6.0. While he’s always been a bit of clingy bugger, he is now blooming like a teenager on her sweet sixteen (it’s an American custom, I’ve heard). According to the forums there is not a class that isn’t broken, boring or bonkers. The developers haven’t kept their promises and they surely doesn’t want their players to have fun! …Or so we are told to believe. It’s a bit of an orgy in cynicism and negativity.
This is of course a bothersome occurrence that result in people, including you Mr and Miss Foruma, disgorging bull’s feces in every direction without a single notion of soundness of argument or information scrutinization. But don’t worry, it happens all of us from time to time and thankfully it’s curable.
In fact, the best cure for Sha of Negativity is to look at the problem from all angles. Maybe you have missed something? Maybe your class isn’t broken, just different from what you have expected? Maybe you just have to re-familiarize yourself with it and see how it blooms at the endgame of Wod? Truly, do not judge a class in an environment that suits it ill, which almost all classes do in SoO at the moment. Especially Mistweavers.
I can hear you. Oh woe, the “forgotten” healing spec! The healer without healing cooldowns, utility nor strengths. No one will pick us to a raid team! Those tree-huggers will get the first spot and them totem-dropping water throwers might get second. Surely we either have to contend ourselves with the LFR idiocy party or rerolling to something that actually isn’t botched.
You can hear my sarcasm, I hope? Oh… you agree with some of the sentiments? Mr and Miss Foruma-Activa, let me clarify something about Mistweavers. We are not a botched class, in fact, we’re flourishing. I’m not saying we’re the strongest class, but I am saying that we’re a decent class that requires skill and dedication. When healing, we do not simply “drop a totem on it” nor do we spam single-mindedly one button to get those shiny bubbles plastered on the raid. No, we are require some more finesse and a sense of fun, I think is the core of Mistweaving. Along with a radicalness that borders on the hysterical.
The heart of the Mistweaver spec has not been ruined in WoD, it has simply taken a slightly different shape. Do not cast it aside because you expected the same old-same old. Change is good, even when it sometimes take a slightly wrong turn. How else can we progress as a spec?
But I have seen the walls of text that lament the fate of our spec. I’m not going to sugar-coat and say all is well, but the sheer amount of thoughtless bashing is mounting up to quite an appalling degree. In my opinion, most of this is rooted in prejudging a class that has not been tested in a fair environment yet. To combat some of this, I thought I might give an answer to the most frequent complaints. Remember that I look at this from a PvE point of view.
Mr and Miss Foruma-Activa; Mistweaver is a broken spec, we can’t do any healing now!
Do you base those facts on the beta or live version of Mistweavers? If you mean live, consider the fact that we are without our attunement stat and we rely heavily on our 100-talents. Without them we are at a disadvantage. But it will only be for a month in lalala-land so why worry?
If you mean beta, tuning is not done yet. And I don’t just mean MW tuning, the other healing specs will also have their turn. The developers are working hard to balance the specs across the board and we haven’t seen the result of their hard labour yet. Right now though, Mistweavers are somewhere in the middle after the nerf to Druids, but it all is subject to change.
Mr and Miss Foruma-Activa; Raid leaders will never pick a spec with no healing cooldowns!
I’m sorry, have you taken a look in your spellbook? You have a tank cooldown and at least one strong raid cooldown (two, if you have chosen Xuen as a talent). Sure, Tranq does more net healing, but only because it is not instant and immediate cast like Revival. Both function slightly different and therefore are used to combat different types of damage patterns.
Mr and Miss Foruma-Activa; Raid leaders will never pick a spec with no utility!
Firstly, a raid healer is not primarily chosen for their utility (leave that to the dps), but for their skill. Do you really think a raid leader will chose a mediocre person over a skilled person just because they can put up a fear ward or cyclone? No, the most useful healers are those that knows their class and are skilful raiders.
Secondly, no utility? You’re speaking about a spec that can fly across a football field in no time at all, while kiting and AoE stunning adds till no tomorrow. A spec that can nullify practically any magical or physical dangers and can survive almost anything. Don’t come to me talking about no utility, because that is simply silly.
Mr and Miss Foruma-Activa; Okay, now they’ve nerfed Uplift. Mistweaver AoE heals suck.
Uplift has gotten an AoE cap at 6 targets, yes. But if you look closely, this has hit practically every healer’s AoE spells. AoE is supposed to be nerfed in WoD, in favour of single-target spells. And besides, Mistweaver’s are still strong AoE healers, we have even better spread healing now! Our attunement gives us the same chance as our multistrike chance to not put ReM on cooldown. Multistrike is the easiest stat to stack so we’ll have quite high numbers on this, which in turn means we’ll dish out a lot of ReMs. Put a Pool of Mists on that and ReM does 15% additional healing and has three charges.
According to WoD healing philosophy, the raid won’t take a lot of burst damage but will stay below full health the majority of the time. This means our ReMs will be in full effect while they multistrike away at the raid. You can even focus single-target healing while ReM spread on its own. I think that sounds like a very exciting healing model.
Mr and Miss Foruma-Activa; Serpent Stance have crap chi gen now that SoM doesn’t give chi anymore.
Yes, the randomness of SoM chi gen is gone. But it is replaced with a little more controllable chi gen with Surging Mist! Surging Mist, ReM and Expel Harm are our primary chi generators and so far this has worked out very beautifully. In fact, I prefer this model since I now have better control over my chi and can therefore make better tactical decisions.
Mr and Miss Foruma-Activa; Crane Stance does crap healing, what gives?
Crane Stance is built to trade away about half of your healing in exchange of DPS. Imagine how overpowered it would be if we could fully compete with both healers and DPS at the same time? No, that’s not the function of Crane Stance.
Crane Stance is supposed to be used during downtimes of an encounter, adding some DPS while doing splash healing. This is great because it means we will never be bored. Additionally, Crane Stance is mana positive because of 1) the spells are less expensive 2) Crane’s Zeal gives us 20% more crit which means we can stack Mana Tea till our heart’s content. This implies that Mistweavers rely heavily on strategic choices to fully utilize their spec. We have to know the encounters to know when and where it is viable to be in Crane Stance and generate mana (because trust me, in WoD all healers will struggle with mana). This in turn will able us to heal more in Serpent Stance.
Mr and Miss Foruma-Activa; Okay, even given all this, what if Mistweavers just plainly suck compared to the other healers in WoD?
If Mistweavers are somehow inherently impaired compared to the other classes? You know what you must do?
Enter the Proving Grounds and learn all the tricks and secrets of your spec. Build up your experience so you always know what to do when the damage pattern changes. Take advantage of every spell and asset you have available. Because trust me, this will make you a better healer. And a skilful healer can always overcome the disadvantages of its class. Just take the pains and your labour will reward you. That has always been my experience.
This has become a very long post and I applaud you if you made it all the way through! Hopefully you might have taken some of what I’ve said to heart and disregard those naysayers on the forums. Remember that there are a lot people that are happy with the direction Mistweavers are going, they might just not be as vocal as others who can only see the negative. It’s more important to have fun with a class than to be OP, it’s better to learn and adjust to changes rather than focusing on the negative. Remember that as we slowly approach WoD!