Topic Monk 5.2 - Initial Thoughts
Below are some general thoughts that I have after running a few normal and LFR raids as a MW Monk.
First off, I'm not a fan of the idea of a support 50/50 class in general, so my goal out of this was to focus on being an actual healer while still trying to benefit out of the fistweaving changes. Essentially switching between mistweaving and fistweaving throughout the fight to maximize the efficiencies of each.
With that said, here's the big things that were really noticeable:
1) Mana Management in general is about 10x harder than it was previously. It's just so easy to press the wrong button and end up wondering where your mana went. On my first few bosses, I had run through my mana pool entirely within 2 minutes just doing fistweaving. It actually shocked me to look up and see messages about not having enough mana that early in the fight.
2) Mana Tea really just feels out of place now more than ever. Doing a full stop of everything you are doing to stand there channeling for a ridiculous amount of time just doesn't fit in with the very actual nature of monks. Especially when doing straight fistweaving, you can rack up 20 stacks pretty easily and then you're literally standing there for 20 seconds just watching your mana pool go up. I think I was averaging over 30 seconds of a 6 minute fight channeling this spell alone on just regular fights. I'm also really not a fan of crits effect on mana tea stacks where your mana pool becomes even more random.
3) Fistweaving feels like a lot of buttons to press, but it really boils down to tiger palm OR heal. Just weaving together Jab, TP and Renewing mists ends up with you gaining chi pretty regularly. Add in an expel harm and you have enough to toss in an uplift or two without losing the chi for MM. This resulted in my #1/#2 heals going from either uplift OR renewings mists to ALWAYS renewing mists. The weak part of it was just the low damage times ended up with me just spamming Jab>TP over and over and over again.
4) DPS Numbers and Healing numbers are definitely not 50/50. I'm typically doing a little over the tanks in DPS but I'm still right up there at the top with my actual healing numbers. It really doesn't feel like my numbers really went down at all while I'm still doing exactly the same thing I was beforehand just getting an extra 30k DPS tacked on to it.
5) I just really feel that the monk class would benefit heavily from a throughput cooldown. Something with a 2-3 minute cooldown that does something like increases your eminence healing or something. Just something to really mix up your playstyle and put in some actual choices. Every time we'd take heavy raid damage, I had no way to really adjust my eminence healing to compensate which is kind of a staple of healing. The only choice is to switch to mistweaving which just turned back into the 5.1 uplift spam that just isn't as spammy.
6) Soothing Mists is still just not the right answer for our on demand chi generation. I tried, I really tried to make it work instead of jab during high damage times where I really need to uplift more often and it just frustrated me to no end. Here I have my renewing mists all lined up, I've spent the chi and TFT so I now have 7-8 people with ReM on them, only to have no chi to continue to uplift with. I'll sit there channeling soothing mists trying to get 2 chi to cast an uplift only to watch my ReM's fall off half the raid as the TFT wears off. You just have such a small window of time to take advantage of the only purpose of TFT that get little to nothing out of it is just frustrating.
7) Chi generation in general just feels out of whack. I mentioned this a bit earlier but I was always finding myself with extra chi while fistweaving, however the exact opposite was happening while mistweaving. It was like I was constantly praying for a chi proc anytime I was trying to actual heal even if it was for something like EM. I was trying all sorts of different strategies while fistweaving so I wouldn't waste chi. Since you always use Jab before using TP, it ends up being a chi neutral spell and you really aren't casting anything besides that. It means that your usage of EH and ReM start gaining you Chi very quickly and Surging Mists helps you out along the way. It becomes a question of how you dump that Chi and there really isn't any good dumps other than Uplift.
If you've done a couple raids or a few LFR's, what are your thoughts on how the new 5.2 monk is playing out?
I'm curious on the thought process behind not glyphing mana tea, especially when you were mainly fistweaving at that point. I'd think sticking with everything instant would be the best way to go.
I haven't had a chance to do anything challenging yet. However, in LFR, my numbers were crazy up and down. I was trying different things though just getting a feel for how things are working together now. Some fights it seemed healing was very easy, others not that much. I was looking forward to testing the fistweaving damage + extra chi fishing for uplift on garalon, but then I got stuck with pheramones when someone derped and brought it into the raid. So I took it to the outside, but then no one ever came and took it off of me :( I did, however, discover it doesn't stack to more than 20 in lfr. I lol'd at that and just painted the outside a pretty shade of yellow while still managing to keep healing quite a bit even on the raid.
I only came across chi shortage twice, and I think they both were on amber shaper. DPS and tanks were exceptionally bad at mechanics last night. Each person that got converted ran away from the scant few trying to bring them down and the interrupting? hahahaaa. So, several times the raid was brought super low in quick succession and I ended up being chi starved and sad as I ended up jabbing 2x in a row since EH and ReM were on CD. Overall though, mana didn't seem to be that big of an issue. If it ever was, switching to soothing and hoping for no major damage spikes was the solution. Chi wave was alright too. I'm starting to get the new timing of it down. I figure a controlled 10m like my guild's runs are won't be too bad. I'm just not sure what we'll do on the 2-heal fights. The paladin had been dpsing those, but it probably would be smarter if I was, except my dps ilvl is 15 lower than his.
Edited by Swaggle on 3/7/13 1:04 PM (PST)
How come you weren't using Glyphed Uplift if you were Fistweaving? Channeling would drive me nuts.
I'm guessing you mean Glyphed Mana Tea?
edit: Last night I used the Soothing-as-chi-generator approach on Horridon and Council and it worked really well, I'd find myself with 10 stacks of mana tea and nearly full mana.
...But I don't really like that playstyle. It's good that it exists, because currently I can't imagine fistweaving a fight like Council of Elders, but if it's stupid easy/efficient compared to fistweaving, that seems like an issue. And atm, that's how it appears to me.
I'll hopefully get a better sense of where things are tonight with some fights that will be potentially kinder for fistweaving.
edit2: Perhaps one of the reasons your chi generation was inconsistant with Soothing was you picked Ascension over Power Strikes.
Yep. My bad. Edited for clarity. Gracias.
.But I don't really like that playstyle. It's good that it exists, because currently I can't imagine fistweaving a fight like Council of Elders, but if it's stupid easy/efficient compared to fistweaving, that seems like an issue. And atm, that's how it appears to me.
sadly i think fist weaving is only viable now with Dmg Increasing fights and even then ive found that spamming Chi Torp and Uplift and SCK might be better "example First and Second boss in ToT" it seems to me that on all the fights wher Fist weaving would excel theres to much aoe dmg not to use those Spells
Here's the problem with Mana Tea and it was something created when it was linked to crit, it doesn't scale. As crit values get higher, you'll run into more situations where you just can't use glyphed mana tea fast enough to either keep your mana tea stacks down or to get mana back quickly. Additionally, as we rely more on Surging Mists due to higher damage and spirit values, we'll gain stacks of mana tea more quickly from that as well.
Now, coming from playing a paladin, I know that in just about every encounter you can find some down time to cast divine plea but divine plea doesn't really need to scale. Even the new glyph for plea, it's 5 seconds every 2 minutes. This is half the investment that I'm averaging from mana tea stacks for a fight. This will only get worse as we start burning through more mana and generating Chi faster both through higher crit values and more liberal use of surging mist.
Secondly, there is no way to "catch up" if you fall behind in your mana tea usage. I've had fights where I'm low on mana and have tons of mana tea stacks but I'm just sitting there waiting on the cooldown for mana tea. During heavy damage times, it's not something that I want to have to stop healing even for a GCD to cast. It's more of a liability during those times than stopping healing during low/no damage phases despite only being one gcd. It's not just "well, don't fall behind in using mana tea" which is about as useful as saying something like "you should have healed that guy before he died."
Ascension vs. Power Strikes has very little to do on demand chi generation. Additionally, each choice would provide the same consistency in chi generation between the different healing styles in either case. In all reality, the difference between these two is situational at best because at the same time you run into the issue of using all 5 Chi, you also run into the issue of power strikes being on cooldown, both cases providing you with no Chi benefit.
So, what's next? In both situations, you are trying to channel soothing mists for Chi with hopes and prayers that it will proc during that small window when it's extra effective. (And yes, Expel Harm and ReM will both be on cooldown.)
Edited by Riôt on 3/7/13 3:24 PM (PST)
48,000 Mana. 48,000. I sat there, and looked at it for a bit.
It was painful, but I could work with it. My numbers are largely unchanged so far, but I have to really, really pay attention to my mana usage now. If I were pushing Heroic progression, I just don't know if I could last the fight using this glyph. I'm thinking probably not.
So far, I feel like I can rely on 2-3 Chi per Soothing Mist channel, though it's much more often that it's 2. Overall, it does appear to be better, but I was ok with the previous incarnation, so I guess I don't have much more to say on that.
I need to spend more time with it, especially in the new content, before I'll really have any more to say.
63 Dwarf Priest
Edited by Urteil on 3/7/13 3:34 PM (PST)
LFR is not a good indicator of healing performance. In general, the damage is so low that even the mediocre healing from Fistweaving, since it is all smart healing, will "snipe" other healers and leave you at or above their level.
I'd still recommend glyphing Mana Tea, especially if you are Fistweaving. Once we're able to, we'll want to skew our stats towards the next haste breakpoint (6141, I believe, and even the one after that is attainable this tier in heroic gear I think), so our crit won't be super high as to be wasting mana tea stacks. If you really focus on using Tea on CD, even at higher gear levels it will be difficult to have excess stacks. If you are sure not to "cap out" on Chi, and to continue spending it even though Fistweaving low-damage encounters will leave you with an excess of it, you shouldn't be going out of mana while Fistweaving. Accidentally jabbing twice starts to add up quick, though.
I know people are disappointed by this, but Fistweaving is now relegated to "damage buff" periods, or "low raid damage" periods. If there's no raid damage going out, and you have 3 chi, you use the next 2 GCDs on Jab -> Tiger Palm to contribute a bit to the raid damage.
Chi generation with Soothing Mists can definitely still be dicey. Since monks as healers require tons of foresight to get the most out of our class, we're now looking to have 10-15 seconds of prep time for TFT, and then to have full Chi in order to deal with raid damage. After those two Uplifts, if people are still in the danger zone, you either go Chi Brew for those times, or rely on SM, which is no fun.
I also feel weird constantly breaking SM channel. It just feels like strange gameplay to have one of our core mechanics as "break this channeling spell as needed". I guess it's because all the classes I used to play with channeled spells always placed the emphasis on NOT breaking them.
That said, overall, I am still unsure about my MW. I feel like the amount of things we have to manage can now quickly become overwhelming:
1. Use Glyphed Mana Tea every 10s, or possibly begin falling behind on mana.
2. Use Renewing Mists every 8s on an unmisted target, or be unprepared for raid damage/gimp your chi.
3. Expel Harm every 15s, for the cheapest mana -> Chi possible.
4. Use your free T30 heal for mana-conservation every 10/15/30s.
5. Be mentally prepared to utilize TFT (or Chi Brew) 10-15 seconds in advance of raid damage.
6. Make sure you do not cap on Chi to conserve mana by constantly spending with its best use when full, and that you have Chi for upcoming big damage.
7. Be at least moderately aware of raid members' locations if you want to utilize Healing Sphere.
8. Whackamole raid health bars.
9. Watch your feet for raid hazards.
10. Jab -> TP when you don't need to heal for 2 GCDs.
11. Remember to have your Statue near raid members on high movement fights.
12. Emergency CDs.
It becomes pretty easy to see how one, or multiple things, can fall through leaving you severely behind in mana, chi, or worse, dead. Yes, I know some of this list is obviously not exclusive to Monks, but when you take everything we have to manage together, and factor in that we have to do it perfectly to compete with other healers, all while having less raid utility, it can begin to feel a bit unrewarding.
That makes sense. But if I'm not running low on mana in fights I don't really worry about wasted stacks. We'll see what happens though when I actually attempt ToT this weekend.
@MystberryI think that was Swaggle who asked, but good to know anyway. I played around with both last night and as I get to know the fights in ToT I'll know which talent serves me best. Chi brew is possible too thanks to the possibility of extended spikes of major aoe damage where you don't have time for Soothing Mists' RNG and people aren't stacked for SCK or any set of points to Chi Torpedo to.
So I did some trash rep runs last night. Friendly! :D got a key from dailies earlier.
We're still good heals, but it's a hell of a lot more boring. Here's how it plays out. (pretty sure healing priorities on the boss fights are not much different than trash):
Oh hi there raid frames. ReM, soothe soothe soothe, uplift/env, soothe soothe soothe, TFT uplift, soothe soothe soothe... sighing yawn. I know there's more to do in there, but my point is the soothing garbage. I'm really just playing continuous whack-a-mole and watching for my chi to appear rather than hopping around the boss/adds and punching them whenever I feel like it (or need it) while just glancing at raid frames to apply a new ReM and knowing exactly what chi I have without looking.
The things I'm happy with in 5.2 are the free statue placement (next up no cd? pretty please?) and reduced cost of ReM. Chi-less wave is fine too, but it's more of a meh feeling I get than, oh this is awesome.
Chi-less wave is fine too, but it's more of a meh feeling I get than, oh this is awesome.
This is the change I hated most. Still do. I wish they had done one of their spec tricks, and left these as Chi dumps for MW. I'm not saying it would be better for everyone, but it would have been better for me, personally.
I can still Fistweave just fine, I just don't like how Mistweaving feels right now, compared to how it felt before. I'll come up with something, though.
I thought at first losing the chi dump of chi wave plus the extended cd was going to suck, but now I just use other things to dump that chi, lol more overhealing. Since it's free to use though, I can understand the longer cd on it. It is a bit troubling as WW though when out there doing dailies and trying to survive Ruinous ganking. But as MW, I just think of it as free smart heals to supplement while I'm using or trying to gain chi.
I don't know why they felt the need to change it though but I guess I can chalk it up to being a brand new class and there's always going to be changes.
The tier 30 talents just don't seem to really matter. I switched to using Chi Wave and I was pressing it pretty regularly throughout the fight only to see after the fact accounting for only 3.9% of my total healing. The only reason that it's worth pressing is because it's free right now.
It feels more like just another button to press. I have more of the same opinion of Expel Harm as well. It's basically just a button you press to get 1 chi for cheap mana. If it heals you then great, but make no mistake, you are pressing it just for the cheap and guaranteed chi. Chi Wave is just a button you press to get a minor amount of healing/dps for free.
Jab costing almost as much as Surging Mist is Stupid.
My Holy Priest can easily solo mobs and have 100% mana left over. Can still heal pretty damn good but one quick switch and I can heal even better
My Shockadin is about the same. Can lay down Decent DPS, pull off amazing heals AND still has lots of mana.
My Fistweaving on the other hand. I like the heavy DPS but christ, even JUST jabbing and Tiger Palm with mana tea I still end up with 85-90% mana. If I Blackout Kick I just lost 8% of my mana.
I understand they need to balance end game but it shouldn't be at the expense of gearing up either. I just back burned my 2 monks for now.