Wait! Don’t run away yet! Mana is the resource that healers use to keep people they like alive. The trick is being able to manage it efficiently so the remaining amount your character has by the end of a fight is as close to OoM (Out of Mana) as possible. This might sound obvious, and I hope it does, as managing resources in WoW is incredibly important. Warriors have rage, Rogues have energy along with Feral druids, the list goes on. Healers have the unique situation of keeping people alive with the synergy of having a resource that prevents what I am going to call “Free Casting”. Which essentially means “being able to cast spells without taking into account the impact it will have on your pool of resources”.
An example of Free Casting would be Wrath of the Lich King, where MP5 in combat was skewed in favor of the player and spamming heals nonstop forever was entirely normal.
Understanding Elemental Blast
I have a breakdown of how exactly MP5 in combat is calculated in the sidebar of this blog, there is a link to a google doc shaman guide that breaks everything down mathematically; however this article is simply geared at making sure the player is thinking about Elemental Blast. As well as remembering to cast it as often as possible. It is always better to end a fight with some mana than being oom at 30% boss health.
First off, what does EB do? Well it is a two second cast target-able spell that hits for a negligible amount of damage and provides the caster with a buff of 1000 spirit for eight seconds. Without going into the math of how much mana gain is provided by 1000 spirit in combat I will simply say it is noticeable. Having reasonable up-time on EB throughout a fight increases your passive regen by a significant margin. I am by no means saying that I have perfect up-time, far from it in fact. As there is a log that will show my up-time on a mythic Fel Lord kill was around 13%. Optimal up-time, realistically, is 30ish% and near perfect is 40%. This is taking into account movement, having to react to mechanics, and time required for casting healing spells.
Try not to think of EB by itself. Shaman have a multitude of mana regen passives and buffs that all work together. We have Resurgence that returns a percentage of a healing spells mana cost on crits. We have Water Shield which passively increases our mana per 5, and we have EB; which is our mental check for mana gain. Do your best to hit Elemental Blast when it comes off CD and you will be “drowning” in mana.
Digging Into Logs
Here is where someone will either love or hate mana regen. Some people really like looking at in-depth charts and number and fine tuning percentage up-times. While others just want to hear “keep EB on CD” and move on. That’s great! If you are not a log person I completely understand; I would love if you did check this one out at least as it is a line graph showing mana consumption throughout a fight. This is my log so be warned its not perfect. But it shows some regen points as well as some intensive resource spending.
Learning From Logs
A very brief look at the above log. Without leaving that page at all you will see a graph showing mana consumption during the encounter. By my own analysis I can see that I had decent regen throughout but I ended above 50% mana when Fel Lord “fell” over. I can interpret from this information that I can be more intensive (maybe just this fight or perhaps over all) in my casting later on in encounters to make up for my strong passive regen.
Another thing I can check is by clicking “Buffs” going to the “All Abilities” section just below it, hovering over E, then selecting “Elemental Blast: Spirit” I can see a chart for my EB Spirit buff up-time. It is abysmal on this fight. I only cast it 4 times during the 4ish minute encounter. I need to be more consistent with my EB and hit it more frequently.
Don’t Be Afraid of Logs
Feel free to dig around in mine and have a peek at my short comings. As this sort of analysis is what makes you a better player. Being able to look at a combat log and see your mana regen up-times or resource management will allow you to improve from your own issues that crop up. It also helps with identifying problems.
This post was to assist players with mana management; or maybe you already knew about all this and I shed some light on logs.
Hope it was helpful and will see you in the next post. – Nop ❤