Statlords of Shamanor

Many of my fellow theorycrafters (the healers, at least) opine that stat weights are one of the lowest priority bits of theorycraft to do because they aren’t really that useful. While I see their point of view, I think it somewhat misses the point. I spend a lot of time on the Icy Veins forums (where I’m a mod, I also review the Resto Shaman guides) and a significant fraction of the posts we get talk in some way about stat weights. To put it in perspective; patch 6.0 had been out for a meagre day before we already had a post about Ask Mr Robot’s stat weights!

Even Dumbledore is impatient for stat weights to be done…

Clearly, stat weights might not be strictly useful to us, but for the general playerbase they sure are important, which is why I think we should pay more attention to it. In addition, we can do a lot better in our recommendations for stat weights than we’ve done historically! In this post, I explain why and how we should take different approaches to stat weights, and then present the results of my own research.

If you don’t feel like reading my words on what I did to come up with my recommendations and just want to be told what to do, I spell out my recommendations right at the bottom of the page.

Why & How

We have previously recommended stat weights based almost entirely around the most basic levels of theorycraft and some handwavy arguments about what makes a “good stat”. In particular, such arguments for Resto Shaman have focused on the Haste/Mastery/Crit discussion. We’ve undoubtedly had some elegant discussion on the subject, but we’ve never managed to convert that into a solid recommendation. Frankly, we can do better than this. But how?

Generally, there  are four valid approaches to determining stat weights.

  • Firstly, there is theorycraft – the analysis of the equations which govern healing – which has historically only got us so far.
  • Secondly, there is simulationcraft – the project or the general approach of simulating – which historically performs very well for DPS characters and recently much better for Tanks, but has not yet had much success for Healers.
  • Thirdly, there are the spreadsheets – Excel constructions designed as a halfway house between sims and theorycraft – which are successful for healers, but are unwieldly and prone to serious flaws which are hard to find. Building and reading spreadsheets is difficult.
  • Finally, there is what I think of as touchyfeelycraft – whatever the better players “feel” does best. This is actually one of the most common ways of determining stat weights, and I don’t think I should have to point out that it’s prone to swing wildly with fashion and role.

So, which is best? Each of the above have some benefits, and I don’t think that we should constrain ourselves to one specific method – there is robustness and further insight to be gained from several different approaches. For WoD, we already have a popular spreadsheet by Hamlet (healercalcs) which gives us some interesting results. I’ve already mentioned that there’s no real “healer sim” at the moment, so what is left is theorycraft.

What’s already known from theorycraft is how each stat works – all credit to Hamlet and Dayani for leading the charge in this regard – i.e. how the spell coefficients work and what has changed in WoD. That’s a fantastic start, but I feel that this is insufficient to tell us exactly how this influences our stat choices. The theorycraft community has gone as far as to estimate the % gain in a heal as a function of each stat rating point, but there is so much more to cover!

I propose to make a complete model of stat weights by starting with the fundamental equation for an average heal and deriving every stat weight from that starting point.

AMBITION

Background

A basic analysis of stat weights, as I stated above, evaluates the ratio between the percentage gain in heal from 1% of a stat, and the rating increase required to gain that 1% stat increase. I did this myself and plotted a table for Crit, Multistrike, Haste (for HoTs) and Mastery.

Stat Gain from 1% Rating for 1% Ratio
Mastery D (approx. 0.5) 37 0.0135
Haste (HoT) 1 100 0.0100
Multistrike 0.6 66 0.0091
Crit 1 110 0.0091

D is “health deficit”, which is (100%-HP%)/100 . As you can see, Mastery is quite variable (worth 0 when the player is on 100% and worth more than double Haste when the player is at almost 0%! Worth the same as Haste when the target is at about 55% health). So, a cursory glance tells us that Haste is worth a lot for HoTs, that Crit and Multistrike are the joint bottom stats.

What information don’t we get from this? Firstly, it’s not clear that this situation is still true once we consider an entire rotation. Secondly, it’s also not clear that this is persistent over a range of gear levels or stat distributions. This leads into a third important point – this method doesn’t really address Spellpower/Intellect as a factor. Finally, and from an entirely aesthetic perspective, I think that the analysis is too crude to be really very interesting to me.

My proposal is to write down the equation for HPS as a function of all different stat values, and use this equation to directly calculate the differential healing increase for each stat. By this, I mean I want to calculate a function for the gradient of HPS which depends on all the healing values. By doing this, we take directly into account any interactions between the different stats and we can place all the different stats (including Spellpower) on the same scale. This calculation is exactly the same idea which Simcraft uses to generate stat weights, though I propose to arrive at the result without actually simulating anything.

I did the maths behind this, which I won’t detail right now but you can find in a pdf document here.

The maths is so easy, this seven year old can do it!

The maths is so easy, this seven year old can do it!

Stat Weights Calculations

Before I present any results, I want to talk about how I went about making the calculations which I will present. To start with, it’s important to discuss what I am actually calculating; the rotational HPS of a spell which is cast on cooldown. This means that the calculation for (say) Healing Rain will take into account its cooldown and cast time.

When I calculate the scaling factors for an entire rotation, I calculate the mean of the values for each spell weighted by its heal contribution to the entire healing rotation. That means that for each spell in the rotation, I have a weight w which is the sum of the healing from that spell divided by the healing of the whole rotation. The mean is calculated by multiplying the weight for each spell by the spell’s stat weight, then taking the average over the different spells in the rotation. This gives an accurate impression of the “overall” stat weights for a specific rotation.

My calculations are all made using standard assumptions of raid buffs, with things like spellpower coefficients taken directly from WoWhead. The health deficit D was set to 50% for all calculations where I don’t specify.

Finally, I’m presenting a lot of graphs with the x-axes labelled “MEAN ilvl”. This is designed to take the stat budget function for WoD’s gear and calculate an approximation for the amount of stats you will have with that ilvl equipped. I assume that the stat points are distributed evenly, which is analogous to considering the mean case over all players who aren’t equipped with Best In Slot gear.

So, with all that preamble out of the way let’s just show off a couple of plots of stat weights vs. ilvl for three different spells; Healing Rain, Riptide (HoT and initial heal components), and Healing Surge.

HR_nonNormRT_nonNorm HS_nonNorm

I noticed some interesting things from these plots. Each heal seems to behave the same way, with the only major difference being the y-scale of the graph. This is interesting for a particular reason – because the equations which govern the different types of heal (HoT vs. non-HoT) are significantly different, yet still give the same behavior. The implication of this is that regardless of rotation, the relative stat weights should stay the same. A significant result, and not one which is entirely obvious to begin with.

A second interesting result is the decrease in relative stat weights as ilvl increases. What does this mean? This, I think, is the classic “diminishing returns” result – stacking stats higher and higher tends to give us less and less benefit per stat point, and this is the effect which I think is causing the gradual decay over time. Also notice that the stat weight for Spell Power drops off much faster than the secondary stats – this is the same effect which we saw in MoP where gemming for secondary stats has become better than for primaries as gear improves.

There is an easier way to view these results, however, which demonstrates perfectly what I mean when I say that the stat weights don’t vary for different rotations. At each ilvl on my graph, I will divide each stat weight by the stat weight for Spellpower. This sets the stat weight for SP at exactly 1 for every ilvl, and tells us the relative power of each stat. I’ll show it for two different rotations;

  1. Healing Rain > Riptide > Healing Wave x2 > Riptide > Healing Wave x2
  2. Healing Rain > Riptide > Chain Heal x4

Rot1_Norm Rot2_Norm

So, here we can see quite clearly that for two entirely different rotations the actual stat weights don’t change at all. Notice how the increase of the weights of secondary stats is quite rapid over these 100 ilvls, but also notice that at no point do the stat weights pass the crucial level of 0.5 – the point at which it is more efficient gemming for secondary stats over primaries! The level is slightly lower in the case where the socket bonus is for a secondary stat., but still won’t be worth it in most cases.

Next question; what happens when the stats aren’t evenly balanced like I have assumed above? I re-ran the calculations for the case where Mastery, Multistrike, Crit, and Spellpower are kept constant at 90% of their value expected at ilvl 650. The rest of the stat budget was put into Haste, and finally I generated the data for values of Haste between 90% of the starting point and 110% of the starting point. Over this range, one would expect to see some significant change in stat weights if they are co-dependent.

Unbal_Haste

The result is no change in stats which are kept stationary. Stat weights are only dependent upon the stat value which you actually have equipped – this is a good thing! Eagle-eyed readers will see that Haste’s value is decreasing over the range plotted above; this demonstrates the relative loss of value of a stat value as one increases its proportion. However, what it also naturally shows is that the value doesn’t change a lot! Over this range, the total Haste value increases by about 22% and the value of Haste changes by less than 3%. As a result, it’s quite obvious that the common practice of “balancing” stats to prevent diminishing returns is ill-advised in most cases.

Being Picky

This is the point where it’s appropriate to think for a little bit about reasons why one might take these calculations with a pinch of salt. Where do we start?

Well, this is a model which represents the way healing works in Warlords of Draenor. As such, I wouldn’t expect it to precisely mimic the intended system. Does this make any potential conclusions collapse? Well, I was careful while compiling the model to make it as close to the real mechanics as possible; to my knowledge, the equation which I based my calculations on is correct. This leaves open a question of implementation; did I competently execute a program which translates the equations into numbers? I think I did, but I will make the Matlab code available on request if anyone wants to check.

Finally, did I use the correct multiplier values in my calculations? Here, I don’t entirely know. I did ask Dayani (who writes Healiocentric) to have a look at my values for conversions and so on, and the spreadsheet I compiled them in can be found here. An acid test is to use my formula implementation to predict average heal value on the WoD Beta and test against that. I found that the predicted average heal value was about 17k, where the real average heal was ~22k – to me, this is reasonable enough considering that a “wrong” answer could be a factor of 10 out or more. What this actually implies is that I have a wrong spellpower coefficient in my implementation, but I have no way of checking that outside of an online database like WoWhead.

So to summarize: the calculations can’t be exactly relied upon, but equally they are calculating plausible values in approximation of the real thing. I guess that the ultimate question is; am I confident enough in these calculations that I am comfortable to actually use them to base gearing decisions on? I would say that I am, with the proviso that I will change my mind if and when I or someone else shows that my work has a fault.

Discussion, and Recommendations

Having established that I am comfortable with these results and that until I can find an error, I will be basing gearing decisions off of them… what decisions are there to make? How do they agree or disagree with those of other Theorycrafters?

Firstly, let’s just assume that I want to go for maximum throughput without any consideration for mechanics. In this case, the decision is pretty clear; stat weights can be taken as in the table below with no further worries;

If you’re somewhere between iLvl points listed here, take a point halfway between the data given.

Okay, so purely in mathematical terms Mastery is superior to all other stats except Intellect. This makes a degree of sense, considering that this is Resto Shaman’s special stat. Haste is close behind and in most cases will be the go-to backup stat. Finally, Multistrike and Crit bring up the rear. I’m now going to take a quick look at each of the different stats in context of actual mechanics and see if there’s anything which needs to be revised.

Haste

Let’s pause for a second here – my assessment of Haste differs strikingly from that of Dayani and Hamlet and I therefore have to comment on it. Why, mathematically, is it second best when others have rated it lowly? Primarily, because I am calculating rotational HPS in this assessment where Healercalcs looks at just healing in mos cases. This causes the discussion for Haste to shift to the benefit from HoTs, which for Resto Shaman is not considerable enough to make Haste worth taking.

My reason for making the calculation with rotational HPS instead of Healing is because I believe that it is a fairer comparison of Haste to the other stats mathematically. A valid criticism would be that looking at rotational HPS in this way implicitly assumes that the healer is constantly casting throughout the entire encounter, but I assume this intentionally since it makes more sense to me to do so. In Warlords, I expect to always be wanting to heal something, even if the spells I choose to do so change from moment to moment. [1]

Update – In light of discussion generated by this post, I should tackle The Mana Issue here as well. Haste is generally thought to be mana negative rotationally; you spend your mana faster, and therefore should consider it to be decreasing your rotational longevity. Why have I not accounted for this? This is where the line between theorycraft and touchyfeelycraft is most blurry, because it’s “somewhat nontrivial” [2] to come up with a consistent method of accounting for this idea. That hasn’t stopped me trying, but the basic result is this; there is no method of modifying these stat weights consistently to take account of Haste’s mana considerations. We are left to either ignore the issue and adjust our playstyles appropriately, or artificially lower a stat weight arbitrarily, which is against the spirit of this analysis. For this reason, I’m purposefully not changing Haste’s rating at this time.

[1] – Note that this avoids all discussion of what Hamlet described as the “dream scenario” for Haste, which is catching someone just before they die due to a slightly faster heal. I don’t think that this is an important factor to consider simply because it is a mode of thought which hangs over from Mists of Pandaria; I expect WoD raids to have a comparatively much less spiky healing pattern, and therefore this discussion to be less relevant.
[2] – Scientists say this when they don’t want to admit that they don’t think it’s possible – you will probably never get a truly satisfying answer to this problem. The basic issue here is that to find a good solution which works alongside this post is that one has to assume that the mana concerns are in the same steady-state approximation which the rest of the analysis uses implicitly. While this isn’t a good assumption for mana discussions, dropping it requires the introduction of some other assumption in order to make a meaningful calculation. This leads to calculation methods that are insufficiently general to be comparable to the results in this post! Fundamentally, I think that this is a dichotomy which we are unlikely to ever solve. If you are really interested in this discussion, I did make an attempt at solving this problem in the weeks before Mists of Pandaria – although I failed miserably and then revived the idea. I’m not entirely happy with it as a methodology, though.

Mastery

A common and interesting criticism of Mastery is that one can never gain the “full value” of the healing benefit from it, and relatedly that one does not gain as much benefit in Seige of Orgrimmar as one would expect. While these are valid points in the current environment, such issues cease to be true in Warlords. The patterns of health are going to change as we move into the first tier of Warlords, and with them Mastery will become much more consistent as a stat – you can expect to be healing people on 25%-55% much more often than before, which is the region where Mastery is coming into its own.

Additionally, Mastery’s main competitor for the last year or two has been Crit, which has been nerfed into the ground with the removal of Ancestral Awakening. In the post-smartheal world, Crit has been defanged. Speaking of which…

Critical- and Multi- Strike Chance

These two stats are very similar in terms of function and throughput, with Multistrike taking an edge in my calculations. Here is another interesting disagreement with other Theorycraft, and one which I cannot entirely trace to a specific thing. Multistrike, mathematically, seems to be slightly better than Crit even though a cursory analysis says that they are identical. I was quite worried about this, until Vixsin pointed out to me that the Crit-Multistrike interaction is a little more complicated than it looks – she also stated that Multistrike comes out on top in pure throughput considerations.

Can we choose one over the other? Here’s the thing; Multistrike and Crit both have different benefits which are worth considering in addition to their throughput. Crit is a mana-positive stat thanks to Resurgence, although the actual mana gain from Crit is very small compared to Spirit. On the other side, Multistrike is going to be a stat which you see a lot more of in comparison. I like to think of Multistrike as being a reliable boost to healing in comparison to Crit’s spiky characteristic.

Which is better? Personally, I don’t entirely prefer either. I would suggest that when choosing stat weights for Multistrike and Crit to use your own discretion, but I will probably just set them as equal.

Recommendations

I would advise the use of the following stat weights for a general Resto Shaman PvE build, especially appropriate for progression raiding;

Spirit would probably be weighted 0.75 when optimizing, and Versatility much much lower than Crit.

Spirit would probably be weighted 0.75 when optimizing, and Versatility much much lower than Crit.

You could quite happily pick a specific build to maximize a different stat if you had a special play style or role in mind for your raid, but this will serve as a very good build in general play and I expect it will be attractive to most Resto Shaman.

My Thoughts

I am rather impressed at how close the stats really are looking for Warlords of Draenor. Ignoring Versatility, the gap between the highest and lowest secondary stats in terms of pure throughput seems to be only about 25%. While this is considerable, it’s not game breaking for anyone who happens to have a whole bunch of Crit they can’t get rid of.

I think that the removal of Reforging in Warlords of Draenor is driving a real focus on making stats different but close, so that there is a real choice to be made but comparatively little soul-crushing RNG when Belt of the Iron Prison drops for the fifteenth damn time in a row and your buddies all have their best in slot. It’s an interesting and dangerous game which the devs are playing, in particular because adding a new mechanic to a class could suddenly upset the balance of power between the stats unless considered carefully.

Perhaps that will be something to watch out for in Warlords of Draenor – how closely balanced do these stats stay over the expansion?

==============================================================

And now for the tl:dr for those people who skipped 3000 words

==============================================================

  1. Spellpower
  2. Spirit
  3. Mastery
  4. Haste
  5. Crit = Multistrike
  6. Versatility
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About stoove

A physicist, researcher, and gamesman. Likes to think about the mathematics and mechanics behind all sorts of different things, and writing up the thoughts for you to read. A competent programmer, enjoys public speaking and mechanical keyboards. Has opinions which might even change from time to time.
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24 Responses to Statlords of Shamanor

  1. Espiee says:

    Very nice post steve, greatly appreciated, one thing that I think you’re missing though with regard to haste is the inverse relationship it has with mana(I don’t see it mentioned in your haste-section either).

    I don’t think people downplay the throughput potential of haste in general, in fact using healercalcs, it’s generally one of the better stats for all healers if only considering throughput.

    The primary reason haste is traditionally downplayed as a throughput stat is that all the other stat increases the healing of spells *without* increasing the mana cost of healing. Haste on the other hand, except for hots, only increases healing done by allowing you to cast more spells which naturally costs more mana.

    In shorter fights that’s not going to be an issue, but with eg 10% haste it means you’ll spend 10% more mana in the same window as someone who opted for crit or multistrike instead of haste, which is problematic in longer fights.

    • stoove says:

      Hi Espiee, thanks for your interesting point. I was aware of this when I wrote the post, but I took the decision not to account for it because I would want to have a consistent way of dealing with the considerations you have expressed. That kind of method currently doesn’t exist to my knowledge, and all attempts at doing so (my own included) are met with deep conceptual barriers which prevent making a direct comparison to the results of this post.

      I chose not to mention it originally, because I think it is slightly too nuanced a discussion to happen in a matter of one paragraph or so. However, after your comment (and Vixsin’s, and some discussion on the Icy Veins forums) I decided I had to at least acknowledge the problem in the post and so I’ve updated the Haste section with a discussion of this.

      • Espiee says:

        It’s definitely a point that should be worked out on its own. But it’s interactions like this that are hard, if not impossible, to simulate, which is why simcrafting is very difficult for healers.

        Mathematical modelling is interesting and I think your approach is very fruitful, but it simply means you can’t stop there and say that’s it. You need to intervene with common sense and qualify the stat weights.

        Stats that increase your healing without increasing the cost per cast can probably very well be modeled like you do above. They both increase your healing in one way or another in a similar fashion, but haste is different.

        With regard to haste, healers are not necessarily concerned only about raw output like damage dealers can be. We have a spending limit through our mana pool which throughput needs to be weighed against. That is why Hamlet and Dayani, I think rightfully, include HPM as well as HPS as a metric at least for haste.

        I realise that brings us back to “touchyfeelycraft” or using spreadsheets, but I don’t see a very good alternative.

      • stoove says:

        So, I agree on the point that you can’t have everything. The theorycrafting dream is to account for all of these mechanics in a consistent language while making minimal assumptions – either passive or active – about the conditions of a fight. In this analysis I choose to make passive assumptions about the fight rather than an active assumption such as a specific damage level or a specific fight length. I think that if there is any chance of getting a satisfactory description of every stat then it is going to come through an analytical method first and then be modified and applied numerically – in spreadsheets and touchyfeelycraft.

        Partly, this is because I am a scientist and I view theorycraft as very much an extension of science into the realm of videogames. Partly, it’s because that is more aesthetically pleasing to me anyway. Partly, it’s because that’s where my skills really lie and it’s the unique addition I can bring to the field.

        There ARE approaches which can build a bridge between analytical and numerical techniques, but for them to be any use we really do need a strong set of analytical techniques already used.

        So basically, I’m not in any sense against thinking carefully about the results I’ve presented or to using spreadsheets to come to conclusions. I am, however, a big proponent for trying to incorporate mana considerations into analytical techniques – that way, we can start to advance the field in an even more meaningful way. 🙂

  2. vixsin says:

    Very, VERY interesting analysis, though I’m still going to disagree with you slightly about the position of haste in the rating scale, because, from what I’ve seen in beta testing, sustainability just isn’t there yet, even if you lean heavily on EB for the boost in spirit.

    You’ve got a very lengthy email headed your way, sir, with a whole bunch of thoughts and musings about this subject. ^_^

    (Also: “touchyfeelycraft” is pure gold).

    • stoove says:

      Thanks for your comment (and lengthy email, and subsequent discussions on the subject)! It’s turned into quite the academic discussion, and maybe I’ll be able to get a post up about it soon.

  3. Rick says:

    I was reading you stat weights how does versatility weight since it does increase our healing?

    • stoove says:

      Versatility is generally accepted to be not optimal for any spec, and the main motivation for taking it would not be for throughput. Instead, the damage reduction would be the reason to take it. For this reason, I just didn’t bother to analyse it. 🙂

      • Rick says:

        what should I set my int at as far as weighting on ask mr robot

      • stoove says:

        In this analysis, I didn’t assume that Int was any different from Spell Power. In fact, since you get 5% extra from your Armour Mastery, you’d want to put it at 1.05 weight.

  4. Thuran says:

    Very very interesting analysis, although I do believe that you may be missing an important factor, which was key to theorycrafting for healers during vanilla and tbc: How do the stats look in an actual fight?

    What i mean is, as you briefly touched upon, that one must not consider only the value of a single cast as it gives flawed results. Back then, a common method to use was to look at how the stat affected the throughoutput over a 5 minute fight, which is what resulted in spirit coming out on top and defining shamans ever since as it’s value laid in being able to cast more heals over the same duration.

    Now, spirit is less important when considering stats in WoD, due to it’s absence from most of the gear. However we must remember that crit also results in an amount of mana gained back from casting spells, and so we must not only consider the amount of healing gained from a single spell, but the amount of healing gained from the extra spells that crit allows you to cast over a 5 minute fight. This was largely irrelevant in TBC -> MoP as it was not possible to go out of mana, but going oom is a very real situation in WoD and the amount of spells you can cast per fight remains constant due to mana regeneration and maximum mana not truly scaling as we progress in ilvl.

    Also, it seems odd that you did not actually calculate versatility, as i am quite curious how the stat compares when put into the actual math. A flat +10% on all heals might be competitive, but it depends on how much of a benefit you gain from other stats of equal value.

    And finally, as healers we cannot ignore the fight. If you play a dpser, you can always achieve maximum damage possible, which simplifies your stat choises, however healers are limited to only being able to heal for an amount equal to the amount of damage dealt to the raid. What this means is that we should value controlled healing over uncontrolled. Talents and abilities that give you random extra heals become worthless if that extra heal results in pure overhealing, or isn’t present when you need it. This is why i rate multistrike as the lowest of ALL the stats, by far; You do not know when you are going to benefit from multistrike, and the multistrike may not even be relevant when it actually happens. Yes, in a model where everyone is always missing hp it becomes useful in terms of raw hps, but in the real world you will often have it not procc when you need it and procc when you don’t, leading to wasted healing. Whilst it would be insane to demand a model that accounts for this, it does mean that we should consider any stat benefit calculated from multistrike to actually be lower than it is. Now, one might argue that the same applies to critical strike, however crit still gives mana and we chose which target we use out potentially critting heal upon, meaning that it is MUCH less of a factor than multistrike. And haste and mastery bypass this problem almost entirely as both give further control and are not dependent upon whether you are healing a single target or multiple targets, although mastery does give an extra benefit to chain heal when healing multiples.

    TL; DR:

    1) our model for calculating stat value should be closer to the vanilla-tbc models due to how mana works in WoD: amount of healing over a 5 minute fight.

    2) Mana needs to be part of the stat consideration for crit.

    3) The randomness factor on multistrikes makes it a LOT less valuable than the other stats.

    4) Need a calculation for versatility.

    • stoove says:

      I don’t have time to give you a full response right this second, but thanks and it WAS too long and I DID read it and it was awesome, so thanks 🙂 Response in short:

      1) I try to minimize specific assumptions used here; fight length (for e.g.) is something that I don’t really *want* to make with this kind of analysis, but yes it is a relevant factor. It depends on your level of generality, there is a good reason to do more specified analyses like you mentioned. They are complementary, not competitive.

      2) AND for Haste. I agree. I’m working on a way to integrate that with the current analysis in a consistent way, but it also won’t be perfect. It WILL be interesting, though.

      3) I dislike the “randomness” argument, and I discussed a little of it in terms of “reliability” in my latest post. Check that out too. I think the most appropriate way to analyse this is to use something like the TMI on a real healer sim, but those don’t exist yet afaik.

      4) I wasn’t interested in Vers when I did the calculations. Right now, I don’t care all that much either but it IS on my “to do eventually” list. My priorities are set a lot more by whatever takes my fancy, so sorry if it comes a bit later than you’d like. Perhaps I will calculate it for you when I get to the mana considerations post.

      Thanks for your comment, and I’ll try to debate the finer points more carefully at a later time. 🙂

    • stoove says:

      One more thing!

      Now I’ve had some time to think about it, you touched on an idea which I’ve been thinking about for quite a long time; the way health is distributed in a raid. It has a big impact on how good our Mastery is, and in addition (as you pointed out) on whether Crit or Multistrike is better. I have some ideas on how health is distributed within a raid and how that impacts things like Multistrike and Mastery, but the maths is quite complicated and I need a LOT of raid data in order to make it work. Once raiding starts up in earnest, I think I’ll get out a call for logs to go towards this so I can start a real analysis.

      Two. Two more things. On Versatility, you could make a rough calculation based on the kind of logic I showed at the start of the post, and you’d come up with a ratio between Mastery (55% hp) and Versatility of around 160 – though I’d warn you about reading too much into that particular figure for the reasons presented in the rest of the post.

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  6. Arc says:

    “And now for the tl:dr for those people who skipped 3000 words …”
    Marry me?

  7. Shamanguy says:

    Hello. I have been checking back to this page periodically throughout WoD as a reference and thought I would add a little field testing element here. I won’t claim to be from Paragon or anything like that but my guild is currently sitting at a respectable 3/7m(hopefully 4 tomorrow) and I’d like to think your analysis has helped me be a big part of that. Also if any other shamans read this keep in mind it is purely “touchyfeelycraft” and there is no math to back it up.

    Pre Raid: So, you just hit level 100 on your brand new resto shaman, you have a pretty good idea of when to use all your spells and are learning how to maximize your magic hat full of totems, but what stats do you want on your gear? If you have been running some heroic dungeons you have probably noticed that mana is a huge issue, this isn’t siege anymore and I see a lot of healers(not just shamans) struggle with this fact. You can mitigate this to a degree by stacking crit early. It isn’t sexy, it doesn’t give you the biggest numbers but I promise this will make your life easier. Early on in WoD healing wave is your best friend. Use it on your tanks and to spot heal damage(DO NOT be lazy and just chain heal off the tank, this is a big no no until you start to over gear everything). It gives you an amazing 40% mana return on crits and is fairly cheap to begin with. As for your other secondary, haste, haste, haste. Steve has it rated as his 2nd highest stat so why not choose mastery instead? Haste makes it easier to heal. It’s that simple. If you can get into full 630 gear with crit/haste(excluding your spirit pieces) you will be in great shape going into raid.

    Highmaul: This is where you need to start feeling things out for yourself. At this point you are probably on a raid team or at least have a group of friends you pug with. Learn your role(Ex. I am the big throughput healer for our raid and for that reason do not run spirit trinkets. I do spot healing for most of fights and spam during things such as Infested Spores, Quake, and Tectonic Upheaval). However, in general and especially once you start getting some heroic pieces mana will become less of an issue. This is when I would recommend switching from a Crit/haste preference to a Mastery/haste preference. Don’t try to do it overnight as suddenly dropping a couple hundred crit will make a fairly noticeable change in the mana you gain in a fight. I would also highly recommend becoming a proficient elemental blaster. Many of these fights have periods where MASSIVE healing is required followed by down periods. According to life in group 5 you receive approximately 3300 mana per cast. I have fallen in love with this spell and I think that if you haven’t yet after a few runs you will too. Aside from the spirit, wouldn’t you love to be able to time it up right before healing tide and get a huge boost to one of your secondary stats?

    So, TLDR
    ALWAYS get haste
    At lower ilvls get CRIT with haste
    At higher ilvls get MASTERY with haste

    • Dude says:

      ” (…) and there is no math to back it up.” thats true.
      you stacked up crit/haste and it worked – good for you. i stacked up mastery/haste and it worked too.
      using elemental blast and getting weapon enchant with spirit proc as well as spirit proc on trinket asap is solving mana problems as well as minimizing overheal, cycling your big raid CDs, minimizing damage input on the raid by better knowlege of the encounters and so on and so on .. and the influence of crit in all of that is very little i would guess.
      My conclusion for all fresh 630 Boys: Stick with the math.

  8. Shamama says:

    maybe I’m just math dumb and this is a lil beyond my means, but .37 mastery? im sitting at 56.89% and mastery is my top stacking stat after intellect and spirt… so some help? Im not finding what I need on icyveins.com or anywhere about the numbers needed and I don’t understand lengthy posts with charts and stuff.. I get the stat priority and would love to see some avg numbers or what not added to your skip 3000 words list or what not.. help an avg IQ player out please?

    • stoove says:

      Hi Shamama, I’m sorry but I’m not entirely sure what you’re asking *for* here so I don’t know how to help very well. I don’t really know what you mean by “average numbers”, in particular.

      Anyway, the stat weights represent roughly what HPS increase you get in comparison to Spell Power. I hope that helps you out a bit 🙂

  9. ThibsGC says:

    Hey, thanks a lot for putting this together, great read and really helpful.
    I was wondering what you think the value of multistrike will change to with t17 2pc?

    • stoove says:

      Hi there! I don’t know how Multistrike interacts with the 2pc yet, but it might. I would say that outside the edge case where you have 100% Ms, a small increase in Ms isn’t going to be much better than it is already.

  10. Handsofevil says:

    Hey there Stoove. I was doing my own work looking at Paladin Healing based on your work, and had a couple of questions. Is there an email or message box I can reach you at?

    • stoove says:

      Hey there Handsofevil!

      The easiest ways for me are if you happen to have an account on either Icy Veins or Twitter, and contact me there. Reason being that I’m not entirely comfortable just leaving my email address on a blog post! 🙂

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