Tag Archives: shaman

Evaluating Resto Shaman with World of Logs

The second part of my updated Guide to Evaluating Healers with World of Logs focuses on Resto Shaman. Thank you to the amazing Vixsin of Life in Group 5, who reviewed the post and shared her wealth of Shaman knowledge with me.

(This post may be easier to read, with less squishy pictures, over on the guide page).


Here are specific things to look for when analyzing resto shaman logs. It’s best to look at specific kills or attempts in order to get meaningful numbers.

Shaman are versatile healers who can do well at either tank or raid healing. They really excel on fights where people are grouped up and they can make the most of spells like Healing Rain and Chain Heal. Though Shaman do not have a huge assortment of healing spells to choose from, they a lot of buffs and cooldowns they need to manage throughout fights.

Healing by Spell

World of Logs - Shaman healing doneSpell selection – Is the shaman using the appropriate spells?

Resto shaman heals include: Healing Rain, Chain Heal, Greater Healing Wave, Healing Wave, Healing Surge, Riptide, Unleash Life, Earth Shield, Healing Stream Totem, Healing Tide Totem, Restorative Mists (from the cooldown Ascendance) and passive healing from Earthliving and Ancestral Awakening.

Top Spells

A shaman’s top spells will vary by fight, assignment and raid size.

In a 25-man raid, a Shaman’s top heals will generally be Healing Rain, Healing Stream Totem and Healing Tide Totem. On fights where the raid is tightly grouped Chain Heal will be up there, while Riptide will be higher on fights where people are more spread out. Earthliving and Restorative Mists can also provide a sizable amount of healing.

If the Shaman is assigned to tank heal, you should see more direct heals, like Greater Healing Wave, used.

In 10s, where tank vs. raid healing assignments are less stringent, Shaman will likely cast a variety of both single-target and group healing spells. Because there are fewer people to stack up in 10s, Healing Rain and Chain Heal will not account for as much healing as they do on 25, and you will likely see Riptide and Greater Healing Wave accounting for a lot of healing.

For any assignment you should also see healing from Earth Shield and Unleash Life, though they are unlikely to provide more than a few percent of overall healing.

Overhealing

Spells like Healing Rain and Earthliving will cause Shaman to be fairly high on overhealing, this isn’t something to be concerned about.

Notes on specific spells:

Unfortunately, the Healing Done and Buffs Cast tabs don’t give much useful information on many important Shaman spells and cooldowns, so use of the Log Browser is often needed. I’ve provided query strings that you can paste into the Log Browser to find the spells you’re looking for. Just remember in each one you need to replace the name “ShamanX” with the name of the Shaman you’re evaluating.

Earth Shield
Earth Shield should be up on a target all the time (more information in Buffs Cast section). The shaman’s direct heals are more effective on their Earth Shield target.

Healing Surge
Due to the high mana cost, Healing Surge should not be used as a staple heal. When it is used, it should have low overhealing compared to HW or GHW, otherwise the Shaman is wasting mana.

Unleash Life

WoL - Shaman-Unleash-Life
Unleash Life provides a small, mana-free heal and buffs the Shaman’s next direct heal by 30%. Healing Rain is included in this, so you should see Shaman casting Unleash Life before each Healing Rain. If Unleash Life use is low (or absent) there is a problem. Check the number of direct heals for Unleash Life – though use will vary per fight, you should be seeing at least 2 direct heals per minute of fight.

If you want to dive a little deeper, you can also check to see if the shaman is casting Unleash Life before Healing Rain in the Log Browser. Paste the following query (be sure to replace the Shaman’s name):

[{"spellNames": ["Healing Rain"], "eventTypes": [6], "sourceNames": ["ShamanX"]}, {"spellNames": ["Unleash Elements"], "eventTypes": [6], "sourceNames": ["ShamanX"]}]

Then you can check the timestamps to see if Healing Rains immediately follow Unleash Elements casts.

Healing Tide Totem

WoL - Shaman Healing Tide Totem
Healing Tide Totem is an optional talent but because it is a very powerful cooldown, it’s what most Shaman will use on most fights. You should see a significant amount of healing from it on each fight. The number of heals the totem will do is dependant on haste levels when it is dropped (and is a little buggy, I believe), so there’s not an exact number of ticks you can look for. It will generally heal between 25-35 times per use.

HTT has a 3-minute cooldown and Shaman should be trying to get maximum use out of it.

Healing Stream Totem

WoL - Shaman Healing Stream Totem
WoL displays the healing from this very strangely. The Crits and Direct Heals columns are showing the same heals. The Ticks column is showing the number of non-crit heals. To get the total number of ticks from this, you need to add the numbers from the Ticks and Direct Heals columns. Like Healing Tide Totem, the number of times Healing Stream ticks is dependant on haste. You should generally see about 9 ticks per cast.

This is a powerful smart heal with only a 30 second cooldown, so you should see it cast often. If a Shaman’s healing is low, not using this spell enough is often the problem.

To see how many times the spell was cast, use the Log Browser, paste the following query:

[{"spellNames": ["Healing Stream Totem"], "eventTypes": [6], "sourceNames": ["ShamanX"]}]

Spirit Link Totem

World of Logs - Shaman Spirit Link and Steon Bulwark

This is another powerful cooldown that should be used on any fight. It has a 3-minute cooldown. To tell at a glance if it was used, check the general Healing Done tab. It will appear as a pet under the Shaman’s name. To see how many times it was used, you’re going to have to use the log browser:

[{"spellNames": ["Spirit Link Totem"], "eventTypes": [6], "sourceNames": ["ShamanX"]}]

Stone Bulwark Totem
Stone Bulwark is an optional talent. It has a 1-minute cooldown and should be used often if the Shaman is taking damage. To tell at a glance if it was used, check the general Healing Done tab. It will appear as a pet under the Shaman’s name. To see how many times it was used, you’re going to have to use the log browser:

[{"spellNames": ["Stone Bulwark Totem"], "eventTypes": [6], "sourceNames": ["ShamanX"]}]

Mana Tide Totem
Mana Tide is another important cooldown, not just for the Shaman, but for the rest of the healers in the raid. The only way to see how many times it was dropped is with the Log Browser. Mana Tide has a 3 minute cooldown and should be used as much as possible.

[{"spellNames": ["Mana Tide Totem"], "eventTypes": [6], "sourceNames": ["ShamanX"]}]

Call of the Elements
Call of the Elements is a talented 3-minute cooldown that resets the cooldowns on all totems will a cooldown of 3-minutes or less. It should be used as much as possible so the Shaman can get in extra uses of Healing Stream and Stone Bulwark, as well as utility totems like Grounding or Tremor on certain fights.

The only way to see how many times it was used is with the Log Browser:

[{"spellNames": ["Call of the Elements"], "eventTypes": [6], "sourceNames": ["ShamanX"]}]

Buffs Cast

This screen will tell you how often a shaman is using their cooldowns, along with the uptime on key abilities.

World of Logs - Shaman Buffs Cast

Earth Shield – Earth Shield should be re-cast whenever it runs out. However, on fights with heavier raid damage, the Shaman may prioritize other spells over refreshing this. Look for uptime of around 80% or higher for raid healers. For tank healers, uptime should be close to 100%.

Ancestral Vigor – Whenever a Shaman heals a target, the target’s maximum health is increased. Since the Shaman should always be healing, uptime should be close to 100%.

Riptide – If the shaman is tank healing, Riptide should have an uptime close to 100% overall. You can look at the tank’s Buffs Gained screen to see the uptime of Riptide on them specifically. When raid healing, uptime will be lower but should still be around 70% or higher.

Tidal Waves – Tidal Waves triggers when Riptide or Chain Heal is cast. Since Riptide and Chain Heal are two of a Shaman’s main spells, you want to see high Tidal Waves uptime. If focused on the tank, uptime should be over 90%. If focused on the raid it will be a bit lower, but should still be over 70-80%.

Earthliving – Every heal has a chance to trigger Earthliving. The only thing to look out for is that there is healing from Earthliving present. If it is absent, or extremely low, the shaman has likely forgotten their weapon enchant or it has run out in the middle of the fight.

Ascendance – This is a major cooldown that copies and distributes all healing done by the Shaman for 15 seconds. It has a 3 minute cooldown, and should be used often.

Spiritwalker’s Grace – This spell allows the shaman to cast while moving for 15 seconds. It has a 2 minute cooldown, it should be used on movement-heavy fights.

Astral Shift – If the Shaman didn’t spec into Stone Bulwark Totem, they will probably have this. It has a 2-minute cooldown and reduces damage taken by 40% for 6 seconds. It should be used when they’re taking a lot of damage.

Ancestral Swiftness – This spell makes your next healing spell an instant cast and has a 1-minute cooldown. If the shaman has this in their spec it should be used frequently.

Elemental Mastery – Another talent on the same tier as Ancestral Swiftness, this increases haste by 30% for 20 seconds and has a 2 minute cooldown. It should be used often.

Ghostwolf – This allows Shaman to move faster and how often/if it’s used will depend on the fight. You should see it used on a fight like Blade Lord, but not so much on more stationary fights like Wind Lord. If a Shaman is not using this, they are missing some opportunities to get around/out of bad faster. However, they also shouldn’t be using it too often as you can’t heal while in Ghostwolf.
Fire/Earth Elemental – If the Shaman is using the talent Prime Elementalist, an Elemental should be dropped once per 5 minutes of fighting (Fire Elemental can be dropped once every 3 minutes if glyphed). *See end of section for for more on this*

WoL - Water ShieldWater Shield – Water Shield provides passive mana regen along with mana return when the shaman is hit by an attack or critically hits with a healing spell. If it’s up all fight, you won’t see it in the Buffs Cast table, but the active mana returns will show up under Power Gains.

Telluric Currents – This is an optional glyph which causes Lightning Bolt casts to restore mana. If the shaman has this glyph you should see mana gained from Telluric Currents under power gains.

Other things to look for:

World of Logs - ReinforceWorld of Logs - Reinforce
If the Shaman has specced into Primal Elementalist their Elemental can channel a healing buff onto them. If you check the Buffs Gained tab, you should see the buff Reinforce (if an Earth Elemental is dropped) or Empower (if a Fire Elemental is dropped). This has a maximum uptime of 60 seconds per Elemental cast, the aim is to have it up as long as possible.

Comparison of Healing Spells by Class

A while back I wrote a post and made a whole lot of charts that compared each healing class in terms of what type of heals and abilities were available to them. People seemed to find it handy, so I’ve made a new charts for Mists.

I hope they will be helpful if you’re thinking of starting a new healer or just want to better understand the capabilities of the rest of your healing team.

Unfotunately, the charts are far too wide to fit into a post, so you’ll have to go to the new page I created here:

Comparison of Healing Spells by Class – Mists of Pandaria

5.0.4 and You – All Classes Edition

Last week I was talking to the guys on the Leetsauced Podcast and Logan expressed the opinion that there was a lack of good, informative WoW content on blogs lately. I disagreed and thought that while we were in a bit of a dry spell, as soon as 5.0.4 hit, we’d have all kinds of bloggers making posts about how to best play your class/spec. Here’s what I’ve found.

If you’ve written a guide and I have not included it here, please let me know and I will add it. Thanks to Ceraphus from Variant Avatar, who has also been on the lookout for class guides this week.

First, some really helpful 5.0.4 information for everyone:
Blizzard’s Patch 5.0.4 Survival Guide
Addons for 5.0.4 and where to get them – WoW Insider

If my list of blog posts link doesn’t include your class, take a look at one of these sites, as they have covered (or will soon have covered) all classes and specs:
MMO Melting Pot Patch 5.0 Class Guides
Icy Veins Class Guides
WoW Insider 5.0.4 Guides

Death Knight

Unholy Death Knights in 5.0.4 – Variant Avatar
Blood Death Knights for Patch 5.0.4 – Variant Avatar
DK talents, Just in time for 5.0 – Warcraft of the Worlds

Druid

Balance
Moonkin 5.0 Survival Guide for Mists – Restokin
Balance Druid Changes in Patch 5.0 – The Fluid Druid
Level 85 Patch 5.0.4 Survival Guide – Gray Matter

Feral
Feral Druid Changes in Patch 5.0 – The Fluid Druid

Guardian
Guardian – Patch 5.0.4 Survival Guide – The Inconspicuous Bear
Guardian Druid Changes in Patch 5.0 – The Fluid Druid

Resto
What Resto Druids Need to Know for 5.0.4 – Cannot be Tamed
5.0.4 Resto Druid FAQ – Falling Leaves and Wings
Resto 85 Healing in 5.0 – Restokin
Druid Changes – Healiocentric
Restoration Druid Changes in Patch 5.0 – The Fluid Druid

Hunter

The Hunter’s Guide to 5.04 – Marks 365
A mapping of glyphs from Cataclysm to Mists of Pandaria – Esoth
A mapping of talents from Cataclysm to Mists of Pandaria – Esoth

Mage

5.0.4 Mage – Manaflask

Paladin

Holy
5.0 & You, Talents, Glyphs and Playstyle Changes at 85 – Kurn’s Corner
How to Holy Paladin in Patch 5.0 – Healbot
Holy Paladin Talents in 5.0 Part 1 & Part 2 – Blessing of Kings

Protection
Patch 5.0.4 Round-Up – Sacred Duty

Priest

Discipline
5.0.4 Disc Healing for Dummies – Heal Meh
5.0.x and Mists of Pandaria – World of Matticus

Holy
5.0.x and Mists of Pandaria – World of Matticus

Shadow
My Shadow Priests’ Patch 5.0 Talents and Changes in Playstyle – Bible of Dreams
5.0.4 is here, for Shadow Priests, is the sky falling? – Shard’s Thoughts

Rogue

Playing a Rogue in Mists of Pandaria – Forever a Noob
Rogue Glyphs in Mists 5.0.4 – PVE Rogues
An Assassin’s Guide to 5.0.4 – Tikari’s Tricks of the Trade
Combat Rogue Guide – Sinnaabun, Accession Guild
Mists of Pandaria Rogue Guide – PVE Rogues

Shaman

Enhancement
Enhancement Primer – Totemspot

Elemental
5.0.4 Elemental Shaman Changes – Elemental Entropy
Elemental Primer – Totemspot

Resto
The Resto Shaman Pocket Guide to 5.0.4 – Life in Group 5
Patch 5.0.4 Shaman Talents Review – Spiritwalker’s Grace
How to Resto Shaman in Patch 5.0 – Healbot
Shaman Changes – Healiocentric

Warlock

Warlock Changes in 5.0.4 – Spellbound

Warrior

Protection
Prot Warrior Changes for 5.0.4 – Elemental Entropy

Where are all the Mages, Ret Pallies, and dps Warriors at?

Looking for a Protector (or 2 or 3)

Apotheosis is recruiting!

In the past few weeks we’ve lost a few people. Some to real life, some to burn out, and some are just scared at the prospect of seeing Rag’s legs.

In a strange twist of fate,* almost* all the classes we are in need of are on the protector token. (What’s wrong, Protectors? Don’t like fire?)

We are specifically seeking:

  • 1-2 hunters
  • 1 elemental shaman
  • 1 enhancement shaman
  • 1 warrior (Tank or DPS)
  • 1 retribution paladin (Not a Protector, but I’m convinced these don’t exist anyway)

Apotheosis is a 25-man Alliance raiding guild on Eldre’thalas. We raid 9 hours a week – Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday, from 9pm ET until midnight. We are currently 6/7 heroic in Firelands and are about to start working on Glory of the Firelands Raider and take a crack at heroic Ragnaros. If you are awesome and want to work on these things with us (or even want to join us for 4.3) come put in an app. We’re a friendly bunch, we don’t bite. Well… I do sometimes.

http://www.apotheosis-now.com/main/

Evaluting Restoration Shaman with World of Logs

This is part of a series about using World of Logs to evaluate raiders.

First, thank you to my guildmate Entropia, and RandyLite who reviewed this guide and taught me a couple new things about shaman.

Here are specific things to look for when analyzing resto shaman logs. It’s best to look at specific kills or attempts in order to get meaningful numbers.

Healing Done

Shaman are versatile healers who can do well at either tank or raid healing. They really excel on fights were people are grouped up and they can make the most of spells like Healing Rain and Chain Heal. Though Shaman do not have a huge assortment of spells to choose from, they have a number of buffs and cooldowns they need to manage throughout fights.

Player Details

Healing by Spell

Is the shaman using the appropriate spells?

World of Logs - Shaman healing doneResto shaman heals include: Healing Rain, Chain Heal, Greater Healing Wave, Healing Wave, Healing Surge, Riptide, Unleash Life, Earth Shield, Healing Stream Totem and passive healing from Earthliving and Ancestral Awakening (if specced into it).

Top Spells

A shaman’s top spells will vary by fight, assignment and raid size.

The main single-target healing spells are Greater Healing Wave, Healing Wave, Riptide and occasionally Healing Surge.

The main raid heals are Healing Rain, Chain Heal and Earthliving. The more grouped up the raid is, the stronger Healing Rain and Chain Heal will become. In 25-man raids on fights that require stacking up, these 3 spells can make up 60, 70, even 80% of the shaman’s total healing. Riptide will usually be next for healing done. If the raid is spread out, you will see more single target heals and Riptide will be higher.

In 10s, where tank vs. raid healing assignments are less stringent, shaman will likely cast a variety of both single-target and group healing spells. Because there are fewer people to stack up in 10s, Healing Rain and Chain Heal will not account for as much healing as they do on 25.

For any assignment you should also see healing from Earth Shield, though it’s unlikely to provide more than 10% of total healing.

Spells that may not account for much healing include:

  • Unleash Life: This is a small, instant heal which provides a buff for your next direct heal. How often it’s used is a matter of personal preference, but even if it’s cast often, it’s unlikely to make up more than a couple percent of overall healing. UL will likely be used more in 10s than 25s.
  • Healing Surge: With a high mana cost and output that was recently reduced Healing Surge is very inefficient. It can be used when a fast heal is really needed, but is unlikely to be a staple healing spell.

Notes on specific spells:

Earth Shield

Earth Shield should be up on a target all the time (more information in Buffs Cast section). The shaman’s direct heals are more effective on their Earth Shield target (due to Nature’s Blessing). When you click on Earth Shield, you should see the healing done to the Shaman’s main target.

Riptide

World of Logs - RiptideRiptide has a 6 second cooldown and should be cast as often as possible. Look at the number of direct heals from Riptide. You should see 9 or 10 direct heals from Riptide per minute of fighting. For example, on a 5-minute fight, you want to see close to 50 direct heals from Riptide. Uptime of the HoT is also important (more information in the Buffs Cast section).

Healing Stream Totem

World of Logs - Healing Steam Totem

Healing from this totem shows up on the Healing Done screen as a ‘pet’. Providing your raid has a non-resto shaman or a paladin for the mp5 buff, resto shaman should always be dropping Healing Stream Totem. The Active Time of the totem should be close to 100%.

Ancestral Awakening

This is an optional talent. Those shaman who do a lot of single target healing should have this in their spec. This only procs from direct heals, so raid healing shaman will get little extra healing from AA.

Buffs Cast

This screen will tell you how often a shaman is using their cooldowns, along with the uptime on key abilities.

World of Logs - Shaman buffs castEarth Shield - Earth Shield should be re-cast whenever it runs out and should have an uptime close to 100%.

Water Shield - Water Shield provides passive mana regen along with mana return when the shaman is hit by an attack or critically hits with a healing spell. This should be kept up as much as possible with an uptime above 90%.

Ancestral Fortitude - This talent reduces physical damage taken after being critically healed by the shaman. Since any heal will proc this effect (Healing Rain, Earthliving ticks) this should have a high uptime, around 90%. If the shaman is assigned to a specific target, you can look at that person’s Buffs Gained screen to see the uptime of Ancestral Fortitude on them specifically. Uptime on a single target will likely be less, around 50-60%.

Riptide – If the shaman is tank healing, Riptide should have an uptime close to 100% overall. You can look at the tank’s Buffs Gained screen to see the uptime of Riptide on them specifically. When raid healing, uptime will be slightly lower (Chain Heal will consume any existing Riptide HoT from its primary target) but should still be around 70% or higher.

Tidal Waves – Tidal Waves triggers when Riptide or Chain Heal is cast. Since Riptide should be cast on cooldown, you want to see Tidal Waves uptime be at least 65%.

Earthliving - Every heal has a chance to trigger Earthliving. The more multi-target spells used (Healing Rain, Chain Heal) the higher the uptime on Earthliving will be. This is not really something that can be controlled by the shaman. The only thing to look out for is that there is healing from Earthliving present. If it is absent, or extremely low, the shaman has likely forgotten their weapon enchant or it has run out in the middle of the fight.

Spiritwalker’s Grace – This spell allows the shaman to cast while moving for 15 seconds. It has a 2 minute cooldown, it should be used on every fight, and should be used often on movement-heavy fights. There are some exceptions, such as Alysrazor, where this is redundant.

Nature’s Swiftness - This spell makes your next healing spell an instant cast and has a 2-minute cooldown. If the shaman has this in their spec it should be used on every fight.

Focused Insight – This is an optional talent, which reduces the mana cost and increases the effectiveness of your next heal after casting any shock spell. Though there’s no target uptime or amount of times this should be used, if the shaman has specced into it, they should be using it at least a few times on every fight (the most optimal time to use it is before every Healing Rain cast).

World of Logs - Shaman power gainsTelluric Currents – This is an optional talent in the resto tree which causes Lightning Bolt casts to restore mana. If the shaman has this in their spec you should see mana gained from Telluric Currents under power gains.

Trinkets – If the shaman has any on-use trinkets, or useful racials they should be used as much as possible. Compare the cooldown to the amount of times used.

Other things to look for

A couple important abilities will not show up in Healing Done or Buffs Cast, so the Expression Editor comes in handy.

Mana Tide Totem  – Mana Tide increases the spirit, and therefore mana regen, of anyone within range. It has a 3-minute cooldown. Shaman should be maximizing its use to provide as much regen to the raid as possible.

To see how often Mana Tide was dropped use the following query:

sourceName = “nameofshaman”
and (Spell = “Mana Tide Totem”)

Spirit Link Totem – SLT is the shaman’s 3-minute raid cooldown, it equalizes the health of anyone in range and reduces damage taken for the duration. Though its use will often be prescribed by the raid/healing lead, you can check to see how often it was used.

To see how often Spirit Link Totem was dropped, use the following query:

sourceName = “nameofshaman”
and (Spell = “Spirit Link Totem”)

Stoneclaw Totem – If the shaman has glyphed Stoneclaw Totem (which gives them a damage absorb shield), they should be using it when they are taking damage.

To see how often Stoneclaw Totem was dropped, use the following query:

sourceName = “nameofshaman”
and (Spell = “Stoneclaw Totem”)

Recommended Reading

I’ve been having a case of writer’s block (blogger’s block?) lately. I’m working on a few posts but they’re taking quite a while and I’ve been busy with other things. So here are some interesting posts from other healers of every flavor that I think are worth a read. (Also, if you have any blog topic ideas for me, I’d love to hear them!)

Zinn at Jinxed Thoughts shares some information on secondary stat choices for disc priests.

Oestrus at The Stories of O tells everything you ever wanted to know about Chakra but were afraid to ask.

Jadiera at Totem Forest gives an overview of the cooldowns currently available to healing classes and considers what kind of cooldown would benefit Shaman most.

Keeva at Tree Bark Jacket tells druids how to make the most of Innervate, including tips on Innervate-swapping and ideas for Power Auras to help keep track.

Adgamorix at Divine Plea doesn’t believe in RNG and encourages people to take responsibility when things go wrong in raids.

Last, but not least, Windsoar at Jaded Alt has written raid guides for every 10-man tier 11 encounter. The guides are clear, concise and outline both the boss abilities and tips for the raid. Check them out!

 

Charlie says "click the links"

Charlie says "Click the links!"

Or else.

 

Recommended Reading

It’s time for some link love! There have been a lot of great posts written over the last couple weeks, here are some of my favorites:

Enjoy!