Saturday, August 9, 2014

PGs are always on my mind

In the lull between wrapping up our adventures in SoO and our new adventures on Draenor I am back in the Proving Grounds working towards my proven healer title. This time around I'm going in on my new main toon Alaphnull, a spunky little goblin priest trained in the ways of Holy profiteering.

I'm using a google doc to track the gear I pick up that is above 463 ilvl and has spirit as a native stat. I've found it is rather difficult to browse through gear as we do for non-scaled items and this has been the best way to track all the items I acquire.

PG Sheet

I'm also very much set to thinking about exactly which stats are most favorable in the Proving Grounds in order to come up with a gearing plan.

The first two stats I spent some time pondering were crit and mastery. Both stats have a similar effect though through different avenues.
Crit doubles the healing of a cast when it occurs. There of course is the rub. Statistically speaking over several hundred casts it should add to our total output by about its percentage. Thus 35% crit should over time average out to 35% more total healing. It is the random nature of how this occurs that is the biggest turn off. The random nature of the effect means that a crit could fall as complete overheal or could occur at just the right time.
Mastery on the other hand applies itself to our total output as a percentage of our direct healing done doled out equally 3 and 6 seconds after the initial heal. This predictable behavior gives the same effect as crit but without any randomness. 35% mastery will add 35% more healing to every cast, excluding some HoTs.

Another point in mastery's favor is more economical investiture of the stat points we put into it. Crit gives us 1% per 600 stat points while mastery grants us 1.25% per 600. Even accounting for our meta gem and natural crit mastery is the clear winner here.

As such I will be looking for gear with natural mastery and reforging crit into mastery when I can't find it.

Haste is a trickier beast altogether. CMs and PGs reduce gear to levels that restrain our stat budgets enough to force us to be much more careful in our allowances. I like the way a spell feels when around 1.2s cast time, this is a very non-scientific way to view stats but it works for me. As holy I have three spells in the 2.5 sec cast range but two receive a reduction in cast time via serendipity so really its just the one, Heal. Going from 2.5 to 1.2 is not very feasible however so instead I'll be basing my haste off of binding heal.
Binding Heal begins as a 1.5s cast so our total haste after all buffs and what not needs to be around:

1.2 = (1.5)/(1+x) or 1.2 + 1.2x = 1.5   1.2x=0.3  and finally x = 0.25 or 25% Haste.

Not all of that has to come from gear but we would need around 10k and that is simply too much for the kinds of budgets we get in this environment.
As such we will simply live off the ambient haste our gear supplies us with and only reforge crit or budget half a blue gem when close enough to cross a breakpoint.

This brings us to spirit and int. Both of these stats are hotly debated and each carries some very knowledgeable force behind them. Making things even more complicated is the fact that I understand both sides of the argument and see both points. It also seems that throughput proponents typically are make a more generalized argument while regen proponents are arguing from a priest specific viewpoint. I wonder if perhaps our lack of utility to prevent damage is causing priests to need more casts and thus need more regen? Perhaps we are simply less efficient in general?
From what I can tell it seems that the more controlled you are with using high efficiency spells the more valuable throughput is for those spells and the less regen is a worry. This is something I've noticed in my own game play as I have become more disciplined and thus more efficient.
At any rate I have decided to lean more towards throughput but also bank on a bit of regen just in case.
My plan is to go in with spirit gear to begin with. The rest of the equation being handled with gemming.

Red - Int
Blue - Spirit/Int
Yellow - Spirit/Mast or Spirit/Haste if near a breakpoint

This should insure a healthy dose of regen while also giving us the socket bonus which is typically Int and usually a gems worth or just under. We also gain a bit of extra mastery which we have shown is the preferred secondary due to its additional healing.

Base regen is enough to keep HW:Seren free inbetween casts while we would need around 9.6k to make heal roughly mana neutral.
For reference anything under 6k mana per 5 seconds is mana neutral or posotive with 0 spirit while each half gem (160 spirit) adds in 90.3 MP5

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