Monthly Archives: August 2009

Freedom from the Lich King… or bad fashion?

The problem with being a fallen hero’s spirit is that, as a spirit, you don’t have access to the latest fashion styles and armor. When I was doing my daily quests for the Argent Tournament, I started thinking. Why do I always try to seek out the druids to free them instead of the other trapped spirits? Surely, all of them would equally want to be freed. All of them are suffering, and all would suffer more as slaves of the Lich King.


However, I pick out the druids, and go to great lengths to make sure I free as many of them as I can. Why? Well, the reason is because I am freeing them from the awful tier 1 shoulders & pants that they are wearing. What kind of horror trapped them in such a bad tier set? It also means they must have been out here for years, since those fell out of style a number of years ago.

Could they have been trapped here under service of the Lich King since before I was raiding Molten Core? I just can’t imagine the horrors. So, I free them not only from the Lich King, but from the horrible tier set that they died wearing. I can only hope that their souls can finally rest in piece and maybe get a change of clothes.

Good Bye my fallen druid brethren!


Posted in Druid - General

Mailbag: What is the difference between moonkin & healing gear?

So, I got an e-mail from Berinna, a level 75 druid, who asked:

I will hit 80 pretty soon and i will be aiming for a restokin balance/druid. Im not sure if u wanna answer this question but any referred links will do fine. Resto and balance gear looks the same to me. As far as stats what do resto gear need and what does balance gear need. more int, more spirit. ect…..

So, there are some subtle differences between healing gear and moonkin gear when you hit 80. There isn’t much of a difference for leveling, since there isn’t much leather caster gear to go around. However, when you are 80, the first major difference is that moonkin need to reach a +hit cap for PvE raiding. Since heals don’t miss, healers will have zero hit rating. For moonkin, there are a couple different hit cap options, depending on what group makeup you have. From the moonkin sticky on the WOW forums come the hit caps:

  • Untalented: 445.91
  • BoP specd: 340.99
  • BoP w/ Misery(IFF): 262.3
  • BoP w/ Misery(IFF) and Draenei: 236.07

These numbers are what moonkin need for raid bosses. Most people will either want the 262 cap (since you will have the BoP talent, and the Imp Faerie Fire talent). Alliance may be able to get down to needing 236 hit rating if they are grouped with a Draenei.

Other stat differences (and similarities)

  • Set pieces. Moonkin and resto have different tier sets, which give different set bonuses. Most moonkin and resto set bonuses are worth having, so try and get the best set pieces you can for either set.
  • Idols are another obvious difference. You want a different idol for moonkin & resto, to buff their different spells respectively.
  • Moonkin values int a little more than resto most of the time (from having lunar guidance). However, this stat isn’t really a focus for either spec. You kinda just take what you get for this stat.
  • Resto values spirit more than moonkin. While moonkin has talents that can use the spirit on that gear, it matters more for resto. Any time you can reduce the amount of spirit on your moonkin gear, the more your DPS will go up, since those stat points can be better spent on other things. However, most of the pieces your two sets will share have spirit on them, and that’s okay for now.
  • Both moonkin & resto want about 400 haste rating. For both sets, my goal is to be around this number. Sometimes it’s higher, sometimes it’s lower.
  • Spell power increases damage or healing, so this is a stat that the two specs share. More is good.
  • Moonkin values crit more than resto. For one of my moonkin trinket slots, I have a +crit trinket, which I don’t wear in my resto set. Since moonkin relies on Eclipse for damage at level 80, the crit you get makes Eclipse proc sooner. So, once you have your +hit cap for moonkin, and around 400 haste, you want to stack as much crit on your gear as you can. For resto, you just kinda take whatever crit you get, since your HOTs don’t crit. Resto may focus their trinket slots more on spell damage and mana regen stuff.

There are some areas where they overlap. So, I do share some pieces of gear between the two sets, especially when I was first trying to put together a moonkin set. I might have 5 or 6 slots at any one time that overlap between my two sets. Plus, it gives me a lot of flexibility for tweaking my moonkin set when I get a new upgrade (ie. my +hit too high? It’s okay, I’ll swap out one moonkin piece for a resto piece so my hit rating will go back down).

Posted in Leveling, Moonkin Balance DPS, Restoration Healing Trees

More on typhoon…

New PTR update which should be increasing typhoon’s daze to 6 seconds, in addition to the knockback of 20 yards, according to MMO champion.

So, when you hit people, it will be really awesome. I guess you’ll have to spend more time practicing how to hit them in pvp! Good luck with that. ;)

I’m having a hard time with the patch updater, so I’ll work on trying to play with stuff more over the weekend.

UPDATE: I’m hearing reports from the PTR that the range may be changed back to 36 with a 10 yard knockback. Now with a 6 second daze…

Some people are still asking for it to get tweaked to be a about a 20 yard range with a 15 yard knockback, maybe as something that is more of a compromise. I guess we’ll see how it goes. Since there was such a backlash against decreasing the range to 10 yards, I think that we may have a more final version now (36 range, 10 knockback, 6 sec daze).

Posted in Uncategorized

If you do two things, what is your main spec?

Okay, so before the dual spec system, it was pretty easy to know what your main spec was. In most cases, your main spec was the one that you played all the time in raids. If you did change specs occasionally, you still spent 90% of your time as one spec in a dedicated raiding guild. You had one main spec and you stuck with it.

Now, we have dual specs. This means people can have 2 specs and 2 sets of gear that go along with it – and they can change both their gear and their spec any time they want. When the system first came out, most people still stuck with one primary spec.

As we progressed through Ulduar, we were also introduced us to something else – a bunch of hard mode bosses where most of the hard modes are pure DPS races with low healing requirements. This means that the number of healers needed for hard mode bosses is actually less than the number of healers people brought in to learn the normal mode bosses. This is opposite everything we’d ever known about harder content. Hard almost always meant needing more healers – not less.

So, if the number of needed healers go down and at least some of the healers have a second spec for DPS, what happens to those “flip flop” spots in the raid? It seems like the most willing & best DPS geared healer gets to switch to being more primary DPS. However, if you are switching to primary DPS because your healer spot isn’t needed in that tier of content, are you also switching “main” specs?

The difference between main & off-spec determines what kind of gear you have access to. If your main spec is healing, then you primarily have access to healing gear, and anything with +hit on it is obviously an off-spec item, right? Well, what if you really need to boost up your DPS? Are there select pieces of your off-spec that you should gear up as your main spec? If you are an off-set DPS, then your DPS is pretty much guaranteed to be lower than everyone else, because you are almost always stuck half a tier behind main-spec DPS (since you are taking what they don’t want).

What happens when you basically have two main specs? Do you switch what kind of gear you “need” at some point? Or, do you stick with the “main” set of gear being the healing role you entered with months ago that you hardly do anymore? What if you switched to gearing up a DPS set above your healing set, and then they need you to switch back to primary healing when Icecrown Citadel comes out in the not so distant future? Does it matter, so long as you do well enough in both roles that you still make a good contribution to the raid?

It’s even more tricky with the triumph badges. Trying to gear two sets from triumph badges is really tricky. It takes double the amount of time to get set pieces, and you can’t “greed” the set piece tokens ever at the normal 25-man level because they aren’t class restricted. Do I have to “need” 6 set piece tokens (4 for resto and then 2 for moonkin?) or, do I fill in some pieces with the 10-man version that doesn’t take raid tokens?

Sometimes, these decisions are all more complicated, and they’re things you can’t just plug into a spreadsheet and have it pop out the right answer for you. So, I haven’t been rolling either need or greed on pieces coming out of the 25-man Trial of Champions raid dungeon. I picked up a cloak that was better than my Naxx-level cloak, and it was something that I’ll use in both sets of gear because of how big of an upgrade it was for either set.

Beyond that, I think my next step is really to sit down and create a “wish list” for the current content I have access to. This is different than a “best in slot” list, because a wish list is basically a list of things I have access to for either spec (so things like – no cloth pieces for now if DPS is my off-spec). That means I can sit down with a spreadsheet (mostly Rawr), and weigh the value of different gear options.

Even in the Trial of Champions, we haven’t needed more than 6 healers for any of the fights. And, as Bellweather points out, we don’t really even need more than 3 or 4 healers for the Val’kyr fight on 25-man normal, with how little damage should be done to the raid. If you are taking a healing group of 8 or so people, and having to tell 2 or 3 of them that they can’t heal on a regular basis, you end up with a lot of people switching around to DPS specs some of the time (depending on attendance).

It’s actually a lot harder to be a “restokin” even with dual specs, since it makes gearing up mean making really hard decisions when you start getting into newer content. It’s easy for farmed content, since you can pick up pretty much anything you want since you are basically saving it from being DE’d and using it for the betterment of the guild.

However, even if it’s twice as hard to be a role switcher, having that sort of flexibility can make someone a really great asset to the raid (as long as it isn’t everyone in the raid trying to role switch all the time), and it means your guild isn’t having to put their regulars on standby just because there are too many healers online that night.

Posted in Uncategorized

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