Monk difficulty compared to other healers?

85 Human Priest
2755
I really only enjoy healers and only played healers during Cata. During Wrath it was tanks only but I just find healing more fun. Currently have 3 healers with gear from 385-400 ( resto druid, resto shaman and a disc priest). Just wondering if a monk healer is easier, harder, or about the same compared to current healing classes. I didnt play any Beta because I had quit over the past 6 months so have no idea how the class is. If you had to rank them from easiest to hardest how would it go?
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90 Tauren Druid
8710
Monk is complex. Takes time to learn.

Every healer is easy mode once you've learned and mastered your class.
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90 Human Priest
11640
I only know Priest and Monk, but I'd put Monk above Priest for difficulty/potential for complexity.

You have melee-healing abilities, and you have abilities which can be cast from range.

You *must* know when to use each

You *must* develop melee instincts (positioning issues, & when to bail from melee range due to danger)

You *must* keep a certain "rotation" of maintaining melee buffs as much as possible, and casting one HoT pretty much always on cooldown

You have 3 group heals; one is 100% dependent on your management of that single-target 8sec cooldown HoT, the second is proximity-based (ie may not be fully effective depending on positioning), and the third has a 3min cooldown

Your mana management is based around a buff which is produced by using a limited number of abilities which generate your secondary resource (Chi), and then using other abilities which consume Chi... and then consuming the stacks of that buff

Above and beyond those first 6 points, you have to deal with hostile and friendly targets, your mana-efficient healing is done in melee (all of which is *smart healing* and a certain percentage of your ranged healing is also smart heals... which I'm personally worried will cause issues for certain types of fight mechanics), and - lest we forget - applying the right heal for the job at the right time, lol... plus, all your buttons are green, and three of their names involve "Mist" ;)

... personally, I love it... but it won't be every healer's cup of tea.
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90 Human Hunter
5610
Monk is both extremely easy and extremely hard at the same time.

Healing with Monk is methodical. It's like playing Tetris or a sliding-block puzzle. When all the pieces line up in your favor, you can almost autopilot through the fight using your big, obvious buttons.

When you get the wrong pieces or nothing is lining up, you will really have to pull up your garters and knuckle down to soldier through it.

It's very rotational (as has been observed many times around the community) and favors precision. You will cry molten tears if you fall behind on your Renewing Mist cycling, for example, and then get caught off-guard by a burst of group damage. Or if you spend your capped Chi right before the tank takes a sudden burst, leaving you no recourse but to Soothe > Surge NOW, when you really want to Envelop.

Disc is anticipatory, learning fights and then canvassing and planning as needed from segment to segment. Shaman is reactive, using its burst tools to pounce on spikes rather than prevent them. Paladin relies on gizmos and gadgets, solving disadvantaged situations using an armada of cooldown, splitting, and reactive tools.

Even if Monk knows what's coming, it can't prepare on the level Disc can. And while Monk can antispike like a champ, basically calling out Lay Hands on demand if Surging crits, it doesn't have the mana supply to do this to the extent Shaman can. And when all hell breaks loose, Monk has a tiny, frankly paltry set of cooldowns to rely on compared to Paladin's mass cabinet.

So Monk is a chess game. You can only really prepare so many steps ahead, but you have to keep all your pieces lined up and ready, moving everything around according to an overall plan but accepting that it will have to change frequently depending on what your opponent does.

It's partially reactive like Shaman (it has the power, but definitely not the mana), partially anticipatory like Disc/Resto Druid (it has the pieces, but not the power or freedom to apply them), and partially rotational like a DPS (it has a lot of maintenance that makes or breaks its ability to perform when the moment comes).

Big pieces of the chess game include:
  • Shifting between Fisting and Misting using Roll/Transcend
  • Swapping your statue's position as needed
  • Understanding when/where/how/how much your Statue will apply (both from Fisting and from Soothing)
  • Holding your Chi cards in anticipation of what's coming while still using it enough to not cap, waste, and lose precious Mana Tea
  • Using your ~okay cooldowns as best as possible
  • Making sure you're in the right group's vicinity for Spinning Crane ahead of time
  • Keeping Renewing aggressively canvassed (but not unnecessarily, and wasting it) plus stretching it out with Thunder Focus Tea


It really depends on the fight. Like I said, when all the pieces fall in your favor, Monk feels really fun and fluid. Except Renewing Mists, which is always an annoying chore. But oh well. Part of that Zen pebble-stacking vibe, I guess.

When all the pieces get disrupted and scattered, though, Monk is... an adventure. It's still fun, but your pulse will definitely get going as you scramble to try to salvage whatever solutions you can scrounge up from your disrupted house-of-cards.
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90 Human Priest
11640
Cole, your post should be quoted in the eventual Mistweaver sticky on the Monk Class Forum, as an introduction to what it's like to heal as a Mistweaver.

I can't imagine that there could be a better way to explain the spec than what you've written.
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90 Blood Elf Paladin
12465
It's really called Fisting?

Riôt
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90 Human Hunter
5610
lol, no. There's 2 schools of slang for doing melee healing on Monk — generally everyone calls ranged healing, "Mistweaving". Then it's either Meleeweaving (MOST AWKWARD WORD EVER, baby dislikes) or Fistweaving (much better). I shorten it to Misting/Fisting because I'm lazy.

In official game terms, Monks produce "Eminence" as their analogue to Atonement, with "Serpent's Zeal" as their Evangelism 'I am in XPS mode now' maintenance buff (plus Tiger Power for the ArPen if you're really being boffo about maxing your melee heal output).

You also have "Vital Mists" as your like... Surge of Light / Selfless Healer burst proc analogue while meleeing. The icon appears to be a spinning carrot. This is not important to the discussion, but I feel the need to bring up the Spinning Carrot proc any opportunity I get, because it is... a spinning carrot.
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90 Human Priest
11640
It's really called Fisting?

Riôt


I don't know what got into the Mistweaver community over on the beta board to think that it was a good idea, but unfortunately, the name seems to be sticking...

Yes, people... I *get* that Fistweaver rhymes with Mistweaver. This is *no* reason to call Mistweaver melee-healing Fistweaving... or... oh my god, Fisting... I mean, do you not *know*?

...

yeaaahhhhhhhh.
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90 Human Hunter
5610
It really is silly, to be honest, because trying to be "just a Melee Mistweaver" or "just a Ranged Mistweaver" is, imo, a recipe for disaster. The spec is designed to switch between the two modes with absolute fluidity and has plenty of tools to do it quickly. So it's more of a colorful buzzword because it's 2012 in the era of online communities and we all like creating colorful buzzwords. #buzzwords

Rather than an actual useful term. Although, there is a distinct style difference between the two modes, so it's valid enough to say "switch to melee" or "switch to ranged" since you will shift a lot of activities and priorities around.

But I still like it because it's a catchy buzzword pair and yes, it amuses my LEGO blox intellect that Fist and Mist rhyme. Plus it's always good fun to reassure your team, "Don't worry, heals are covered, I'm fisting the melee group".
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90 Troll Druid
9130
^ I forsee lots of giggling at that statement "don't worry, heals are covered, I'm fisting the melee group" xD

I've been reading up on monks a lot the last week and finally really playing around with healing and both versions of it, even found a nice handy guide that includes some tips for various raid bosses in terms of fisting and misting.

I'll never be able to say that without loling.

I'm beyond mature.
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90 Human Priest
11640
My guild is going to probably fail any attempts at early progression (who am I kidding, mid and late progression, too... and into T15 even) because they will be too overwhelmed by finding every opportunity possible to drag Fistweaving into raid vent conversation and then losing all semblence of focus in laughing fits.

I /facepalm every time I see the term used in conjunction with the monk class.

edited to add I don't mean to imply I won't be laughing my cute panda butt off right along with them!
Edited by Iritha on 9/16/2012 12:15 PM PDT
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90 Human Priest
13025
Disc is anticipatory, learning fights and then canvassing and planning as needed from segment to segment. Shaman is reactive, using its burst tools to pounce on spikes rather than prevent them. Paladin relies on gizmos and gadgets, solving disadvantaged situations using an armada of cooldown, splitting, and reactive tools.

Even if Monk knows what's coming, it can't prepare on the level Disc can. And while Monk can antispike like a champ, basically calling out Lay Hands on demand if Surging crits, it doesn't have the mana supply to do this to the extent Shaman can. And when all hell breaks loose, Monk has a tiny, frankly paltry set of cooldowns to rely on compared to Paladin's mass cabinet.


No mention of Holy priests :(
I... I'm just so sad now.
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90 Tauren Warrior
9160
If I didn't have such a dislike of low-level toons (and re-doing quest content that I've already done over and over again), I'd be spending the 25th leveling the hell out of a fistweaver.
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90 Blood Elf Priest
11355
I leveled a premade mistweaver monk from 85 to 90 on beta. I did all the normal dungeons many times, 4 heroics and 2 scenarios, and tested 2 raid bosses (I didn't see a kill of either one, but it was still good practice). I have all 4 healers at 85, and these are my observations:

  • It's an extremely mobile playstyle.
  • Monks can both tank heal and raid heal, quite well.
  • Skill ceiling is high for both healing roles (more on that later), but especially for meleeweaving. It's been IMO the hardest healer to learn so far, but very fun and highly rewarding.
  • You have to manage three resources (in addition to your HP bar, naturally): mana, chi, and stacks of mana tea.
  • Paralysis is a very good CC with a very short range (talented to a 20-yard maximum). I and my pocket tank experimented, and eventually he just told me to pull with it. I would run in, paralyze, Roll back out, and he'd charge in (throwing barrels of ale or something) and grab the rest of the pack. Then I would move to behind the paralyzed target within 30 seconds and apply it from behind, then once a minute after that (if the pull even lasts that long). I'm SO thrilled about Paralysis, because this will provide a lot of group utility in challenge modes. The closest analog for any other healer would be the pally's Repentance, which has a cast-time and can't be used on every single creature type. Although the longer range is enviable.
  • There are two functionally different healing playstyles, meleeweaving vs rangeweaving. They have very little in common with each other. You have to know both playstyles and when to use which* if you plan to raid on your toon. It's more challenging than swapping from disc to holy on a priest. Mostly because priests can always stand at range, and still share quite a few abilities.
  • Meleeweaving requires standing in melee range of the boss (duh!) in order to jab, blackout kick, tiger palm, spinning crane kick, and weave your pure-healing spells as needed. It relies on managing a separate set of buffs including Eminence, Serpent's Zeal, Vital Mists, and Tiger Power. From range, the only way to proc Eminence is through crackling jade lightning (I think). And you really won't be using CJL much when you're healing from range... you should probably be channeling soothing mist during phases of light damage, instead.


*The hardest part, which I've yet to master. I don't really like meleeweaving very much, but that's because I'm not used to melee DPS positioning. Ideally you would be able to switch back and forth between range and meleeweaving (using roll or transcendence) as an encounter's phases dictate.

I am making a mistweaver monk my new main, and gobbling up all the information I can find about both playstyles. I would say I've attained an average competency at rangeweaving, but I'm not there yet with meleeweaving. I'll be boosting my monk to 80 on release day, with the RAF levels I have stored up. It's going to be a hell of a ride.

loool fistweaving <3
Edited by Rachey on 9/17/2012 7:50 PM PDT
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11 Human Warlock
50
09/16/2012 06:16 AMPosted by Cole
Monk is both extremely easy and extremely hard at the same time.


Your post is epic!

I want to play one naaaooo! I have been following this thread and the one on the beta thread avidly. I, too, want to soak in everything about the mistweaver spec but mostly because I sooooo cannot wait! I just hope I won't be disappointed.

Do any of you know how good/bad they are at healing in PvP? I realize melee is not truly viable in PvP but am a bit afraid they will suck either style. I suspect 1vs1, melee would be the best but not sure. I thoroughly enjoy trying to kill people in kitty form on my resto druid (1vs1) if they annoy me and won't leave me alone.

And seriously... fisting... /facepalm /giggle
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90 Human Priest
11640
09/17/2012 07:38 PMPosted by Rachey
Paralysis is a very good CC with a very short range (talented to a 20-yard maximum).


Agreed! God, I love Paralysis. It's the reason solo'ing level-appropriate BC & Wrath instances was ridiculously easy for me as a Mistweaver.

09/17/2012 07:38 PMPosted by Rachey
Meleeweaving requires standing in melee range of the boss (duh!) in order to jab, blackout kick, tiger palm, spinning crane kick, and weave your pure-healing spells as needed.


I'm very prepared to be wrong because I haven't spent much time on Beta in the past... 2 months? and this may very well have been changed, but I never had to be in melee-range to heal using Spinning Crane Kick. You position yourself with whichever group of people you want to receive your SKC heals, and then you SKC, and it heals those within range whether there's a hostile target within melee range or not. It doesn't make much *sense* but that's how it was working for me back when I was playing my Mistweaver.

If you want the melee group to be healed and there's no reason you *have* to be standing at range, if you use SKC within melee range of the boss yes, you'll also do some dps on him, but the healing the melee group receives is independent of the damage you do.

Someone *please* correct me if I'm wrong about that! I don't want to be seeding bad information pre-launch ;)
Edited by Iritha on 9/18/2012 10:08 AM PDT
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90 Troll Druid
9130
Paralysis is a very fun CC to use :3 Played my Monk over the weekend since it's possible I'll be raiding as one. I loved using the statue and the spheres too.

I found a guide online that I was using and found the information helpful in it, even has a section on melee and ranged healing and which boss fights you'll be doing what in. Guide is at http://wowraids.org/mistweaver if anyone is curious.

Standing in or near melee range I didn't find to be awkward, but I've played melee classes in the past and when I did alt runs on my paladin I tried to stick close to the boss to melee him/her/it anyways :P I'm excited to start playing one in a week (YAY MOP SOON) and excited to level one up :) I'll probably mess more on the beta until it's taken down :3
Edited by Veroicone on 9/18/2012 10:17 AM PDT
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90 Blood Elf Paladin
13575
For me, I got it pretty quickly. Obviously there's plenty of tips and tricks we may not know, but dang, monks are fun healers. It's not much of a challenge for me to pick up the play style, having a pally and smite priest as mains. I'm rather used to mdps positioning and dps healing.

It might be a pretty big challenge for people that haven't experienced both of those though!
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90 Blood Elf Priest
11355
Paralysis is a very good CC with a very short range (talented to a 20-yard maximum).


Agreed! God, I love Paralysis. It's the reason solo'ing level-appropriate BC & Wrath instances was ridiculously easy for me as a Mistweaver.

Meleeweaving requires standing in melee range of the boss (duh!) in order to jab, blackout kick, tiger palm, spinning crane kick, and weave your pure-healing spells as needed.


I'm very prepared to be wrong because I haven't spent much time on Beta in the past... 2 months? and this may very well have been changed, but I never had to be in melee-range to heal using Spinning Crane Kick. You position yourself with whichever group of people you want to receive your SKC heals, and then you SKC, and it heals those within range whether there's a hostile target within melee range or not. It doesn't make much *sense* but that's how it was working for me back when I was playing my Mistweaver.

If you want the melee group to be healed and there's no reason you *have* to be standing at range, if you use SKC within melee range of the boss yes, you'll also do some dps on him, but the healing the melee group receives is independent of the damage you do.

Someone *please* correct me if I'm wrong about that! I don't want to be seeding bad information pre-launch ;)
No, you're right. I was just listing SCK because you'll be using it in the melee group. I don't think of using it so much in the ranged group because my guild is strictly 10-man and we're melee-heavy. But in a balanced raid, I think the best way to AOE raid heal is to SCK the group you're standing with (whether melee or ranged) and keep renewing mist/uplifts on the other group.
Edited by Rachey on 9/18/2012 7:32 PM PDT
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90 Draenei Priest
14800
These are really great helpful posts! Thanks. I can;'t wait to make a monk ;)

Forever I had a priest, druid and shaman healers and then finally broke down and made a pally. At first I hated it, was so weird and different from my healing style and what i was used to. Now I have 2 85 pallies (both heals lol).

I think it will just take time to get used to it.

09/16/2012 05:18 AMPosted by Iritha
applying the right heal for the job at the right time, lol... plus, all your buttons are green, and three of their names involve "Mist" ;)


ugh That I will hate that so much. One of my biggest issues with the paladin was that so many of their abilities were golden colored with similar names. I just now got the hang of it all lol and still if I go a bit without playing her I have to retrigger my memory again!

I am used to getting in and out of melee as a pally so I can punch the boss so I think that will come in handy.
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