So, in my guild’s 25-man raids, I end up being a true Restokin, where I DPS the majority of the time but also have to fill in for when healers are absent or for fights where we need more healing. One day, I may DPS every fight, the next day I may heal every fight. Most raids for both Firelands and Dragonsoul, I’ve ended up healing one or two of the bosses pretty consistently and being DPS the rest of the raid.
I switch between my moonkin spec and my healing spec frequently enough that I end up having to maintain gear for both. This requires me to juggle two things: My moonkin hit rating cap of 17%, and my Restoration haste rating breakpoint (2005). In an ideal world, I would have two completely different sets of gear. In the actual world, I tend to see half of my gear pieces shared between the two specs. I have eight pieces shared between my moonkin and healing sets right now, with the other half being different between the two specs (though I get to spend several hours this weekend re-working my healing set so I can use the new healing mace that dropped from LFR last night). So, how do you survive the frustration of having to deal with shared gear pieces for your caster hybrid? Here are some considerations and hints to keep in mind when trying to fill in for moonkin and healing on the same character.
Pick one main spec and one off-spec for gearing purposes, and stick with it! This main gear set for me ends up being my Moonkin set because I found it very hard to keep up with the required DPS if I was doing DPS in primary resto gear, whereas I could keep up healing even if I favored my DPS gear. This gives me access to DPS trinkets and accessories in raids, and means that I pick up my moonkin set pieces first. I use Graylo’s moonkin loot list as a general guide for thinking about what items I want to use for my moonkin set. If you primarily heal (with occasional DPS), you may want your main spec to still be healing.
You will still need to pick up some off-set pieces (either through points, LFR, or picking up off-set things from your normal raiding) to keep some pieces that are not shared between the two sets. This may mean that you have a couple lower ilevel pieces for one set, but try not to let your off-set fall too far behind your main set. You should read both moonkin & healing guides to know what your gearing priorities are, but you can’t just rely on some reforging addon to make both sets work out. Instead, you have to be very careful about how your gearing for one set impacts your pieces of gear that are shared between the two specs and know how much non-shared loot you need to keep everything in balance.
Resto Gearing Stat Considerations:
- Restoration druids use the same stats as moonkin, so most pieces can be shared between the two specs. Intellect is the gearing priority shared for both specs, where sometimes higher ilevel moonkin set pieces can end up being better than lower ilevel off-set pieces for restoration druids. The one stat that isn’t shared is HIT rating which may be found on weapons and accessories.
- Restoration druids want to be above 2005 haste rating. Most haste above this break-point will be a wasted stat, but you generally never want to fall below 2005 haste rating. This is the first thing I check on my resto set when I’m upgrading gear & reforging.
- After 2005 haste rating, the other stat priorities are to get as much mastery and spirit as possible. You may want to pick up some Spirit/Mastery pieces that are not shared with your moonkin set, as moonkin will have a cap on how much spirit is useful to them, and they still value haste over mastery past the 2005 resto-specific break point. Crit is the least desirable stat for both specs. I will end up with higher spirit and mastery in my resto set compared to my moonkin set.
- If you can’t get access to the Tier 13 set pieces for your resto set right away, then your two piece T12 set bonus is very important for you to keep as you gear up (and is easily attainable from the Justice Point vendors if necessary).
Moonkin Gearing Stat Considerations:
- Like restoration druids, INT, spirit, haste and mastery are important for moonkin.
- Unlike restoration druids, moonkin can benefit from Hit rating on gear (though I prefer picking up spirit instead when possible, since Spirit gives your moonkin hit rating). They don’t make leather with hit rating, as they expect you to use Spirit instead. However, moonkin have a cap of 17% hit (1742 hit rating) where you stop benefiting from spirit/hit. So, you want to be as close to 17% as possible. You never want to fall below 17%, and you don’t ever want to be above ~17.5% hit. This is the most important number I watch when gearing my moonkin set. In my healing set, my spirit ends up giving me way more hit rating than that, even with some of the shared pieces between the two sets having spirit reforged into haste or mastery.
- Moonkin value haste rating past the 2005 breakpoint. I will pick up a few pieces with more haste rating on them for my moonkin set. For moonkin, Haste is more valuable than mastery and mastery is more valuable than crit, so that I can try to sit a couple hundred haste rating higher for my moonkin set and have slightly lower mastery and spirit as a result.
- The moonkin 4-piece Tier 12 set is very powerful. Your moonkin set should hold onto the 4-piece T12 (if possible) until you can get the 2-piece T13 normal-mode or heroic-mode (don’t use the LFR set pieces if you have access to the T12 4-piece bonus for either moonkin or resto). With the 4-piece buff for moonkin T13 on the PTR, you will eventually want to upgrade everything to get the 4-piece normal or heroic T13 by the time the next patch hits if possible (after the patch, it may be possible for the moonkin T13 LFR pieces to be worthwhile, and you’ll want to pick up T13 LFR if you don’t have access to the T12 4-piece).
Additional Points for sharing pieces between moonkin & resto:
- Moonkin and resto druids can share the exact same gems and enchants, keeping the above stat points in mind, though I will sometimes end up with less desirable gemming in some situations. For example, moonkin and resto specs can share a helm if you use the Burning Shadowspirit Diamond (as of the changes in 4.3, the burning shadowspirit diamond impacts both healing & DPS crits). Otherwise, gems tend to be: Int red gems, Int/Haste orange, and Int/Spirit purple.
- The best trinkets available will usually NOT be shared between the two specs. Make sure you read trinket descriptions to make sure that Equip or Use effects are not being wasted by wearing a damage ability trinket in your healing spec (or vice versa). I almost never share trinkets between my two specs.
- With Dragonsoul, weapons with healing or damage-spell based casting procs, you won’t want to share those particular weapons between your gear sets, either. If you get something with pure stats on them, they can be shared between your sets.
- Set pieces will often provide a lot of stat differentiation between your two sets. So, getting set pieces for both sets will help a lot with balancing your slightly different stat priorities between the two sets.
- You will have to reforge gear for both sets every time you get a new upgrade that will be shared between the two sets. This can get pretty expensive, as I usually have to resort to trial-and-error for figuring out how to make the two sets work out right.
- You want a different talent spec for healing and DPS (with different glyphs), since healing in moonkin spec or DPS in a healing spec sucks a lot. There is no such thing as a restokin talent spec, unlike feral right now that share a DPS and tanking spec.
The very most important thing to remember is to save your two gear sets in the equipment manager (either the base Blizzard UI feature or with the help of another addon), and make sure that you swap your gear at the same time as you swap your specs. Healing or DPS’ing in the wrong spec will hurt your output numbers, as I have proven over and over again.After 4.3, I transmog some of the gear pieces into different looking sets as much as I can to hopefully tell them apart visually.