December 26, 2010

How to Heal: Heroic Vortex Pinnacle

At the time of writing this guide, my stats are (without totems, self buffed)

Health: 99361
Mana: 72275
Spirit: 2191
Intellect: 3275
Haste: 860 (+6.72%)
Crit: 693 (10.71)
Mastery: 595 11.32 %

Average ilvl: 340
Mostly 333 gear with a sprinkling of 346.

Who wouldn't mind wiping in a place as beautiful and stunning as this?
Vortex Pinnacle is an easy heroic in the sense that no mechanics in this dungeon will kill you or your party members instantly.  Isn't that nice!  This dungeon can be thought of as a training ground or learning area for your party to master mechanics that will be thrown at you in future dungeons. On top of that, it's absolutely GORGEOUS and you won't mind making this your favorite heroic.

The first time I did this dungeon was Friday afternoon with some guildies. We managed to two-hour our way through the place and I won't mention how many times I swore on vent at the second boss.  Let's just say there are probably some sailors blushing.  The second time we went through, it ended up being our heroic random (oh, we were so happy!) and we breezed through it and only wiped twice on the second boss.  We had some polite DPS who stuck with us and were rewarded with an easy clear through the rest of the dungeon.

The first trash pull needs to be CC'd as much as possible. Having a shaman here helps a lot. Having a hunter helps also.

Some elementals will explode and knock you off the edge! You won't die -- you will be teleported back to the front of the entrance, BUT, you need to avoid this as your party may die while you're gone.  Luckily we had a pretty tough boomkin who was able to take a few hits on trash until Convel got back to us.
  Thank you, Papertiger!
After the second punt off the edge.
For the little arcane wormies, have everyone run to the middle, drop your AOE heal ASAP, and tell your dps to unleash hell as fast as possible.  Even with a surprise pull of the arcane stars/worms, nobody went past half health. I am not sure why so many people are troubled by this pull.  I did not think the incoming damage was enough to send me into panic mode at all.  With a single AOE floor heal, I has some control of the damage and could proceed to heal my party up.  The faster the worms die, the less damage you deal with.

Cloud Princes cannot be CC'd.  There is one pull where you will encounter two of them. You will need to HoT up your tank and heal him/her pretty hard until at least one prince is down, then you can relax a bit.  Use all the tools in your arsenal to avoid any big smack surprises (they can hit for 48-50K on your tank).

On kitty 5 mob pulls, you will need to use all the CC you can.  Adepts can heal, so they need to be CC'd the longest or killed first.  Be sure to interrupt their healing!

There are some kitty pulls where they will be inside of a lightning pyramid.  LoS pull these down the ramp and have your party CC as soon as the mobs exit the triangle.

The Tempest Lurkers will feign death and not bother you as soon as you look at them.

When running across the bridge with the Howling Gale orbs, be sure to damage them with ranged attacks so you can get by without them tossing you off the edge.

Young storm drakes need to be LoS pulled so they will not be in their green healing rune.  You and your party are able to stand in this rune and be healed so show your healer some love and go stand in it!

Boss 1: Grand Vizier Ertan
Healing Loot:
Biting Wind -- DPS but Healing if you have nothing better.
Fallen Snow Shoulderguards -- DPS but Healing if you have nothing better.

This boss is a wind elemental who has an addiction to cyclones.  When you engage her, a set of cyclones will spawn on the outside of the ring.  Be VERY careful when you run in to meet her because if you touch a cyclone, you will get slowed terribly bad (I would say around 80%).  Stay on the inside until you see the raid warning that she is retracting her cyclone shield.  At this moment, you can do one of two things (right now).

1) Stay inside.  This is the easiest option.  You want to zoom your camera out ALL the way so that you are able to see the circle in the middle. You want to stand in the VERY middle of this circle.  This ensures that when the cyclones move in, they will not touch you (barely).  You will not get the haste debuff.  Your ranged DPS should stand on top of you.  DROP AN AOE HEAL when the cyclones come in, and then proceed to heal through the lightning damage.  Sounds easy, right? It is.  It's so easy, the developers might find some way to nerf it.

2)  Run out.  Use your skills and don't get hit by a tornado while you are running out.  You will be able to then heal your party up and prepare to run back in without getting hit by a tornado.  It appears that the damage from staying in and running out is the same.  The only difference is that if you are hit by a tornado, your healing spells are slowed SO much that you will barely be able to heal.  DON'T get hit by tornadoes!  If you are lucky, you will be able to recover if your group has brought healing pots, bandages, etc.  One smack from a tornado kills you indirectly by killing your healing.

This fight teaches you how to avoid tornadoes. They are only moving in one direction so it is an easy learning session.

Boss 2:  Altairus
Healing Loot:
Amulet of Tender Breath -- Neck
Mantle of Bestilled Winds -- Leather

This boss is a storm dragon who also has an addiction to cyclones. Imagine that.  He is similar to normal mode, except that as soon as you engage the boss, mini whirlwinds will spawn all over the area.  Your first priority? AVOID THE TORNADOES!

Altairus will then change the direction of the wind. You will get a raid warning for this.  The easiest way to deal with this mechanic is to first avoid the tornadoes.

Identify which way the wind is blowing.  Move yourself very carefully so that you can 1) FACE the dragon.  You want your face to be looking at the dragon, with the wind blowing at your back.  You may get caught in a terrible position -- don't panic.  Avoid the tornadoes, throw your instant HoTs, use your racials, and move yourself into the correct position.  In the 5-6 seconds it takes to do this, nobody should die, unless they get hit by more than 1 tornado.

You can think about this similar to if the dragon were VERY STINKY.  You wouldn't want the wind blowing the smell from the dragon into your face, would you?  Nope. You also wouldn't want the wind blowing the smell from the dragon onto the back of your head where it can still hit your face.  You want to always have your face looking at the dragon with the wind on your back. Imagine yourself rotating around the dragon, keeping him in front of you (even if your face is buried in his wings).  The wind will always be hitting your back, and your face will always be "facing" the dragon.

It only takes a few tries to get used to this mechanic, as you will quickly begin to process "Okay, I'm standing here, I need to move to THERE to be able to face the dragon with the wind at my back."

The third thing that you should be conscious of but not spend too much time worrying about is the breath.  Altairus will do a RANDOM breath on a party member that you cannot really avoid due to the tornadoes and the wind.  However, if you keep a decent distance from other party members, you will only have 1-2 people hit at a time instead of 2-3.  This will greatly help with healing.

Also, with the haste buff, you can spam your cheap, small heal over and over to heal up your party members without spending your mana.  For shaman, this is Healing Wave.  Keep in mind I said cheap heal, not fast heal.  Do. not. spam. Healing Surge.  Only use HS if you have a party member about to die and you need a heal NOW, as soon as you get the haste buff.  Use it 1-2 times, then go back to your Greater Healing Waves to get people out of the danger zone. Then, go to Healing Wave to top people back up.

The only damage in this fight is from:
1) Tornadoes (avoidable)
2) Breath (may be avoidable but master the tornadoes/wind first)

DPS, it is your responsibility on this fight to not get hit by tornadoes. This will eat your healer's mana.  You will get bounced in the air, possibly land in another tornado, and die.  Your life will suck.  Don't get hit.

Tanks, you just need to move according to the guide above since the breath is random.

Boss 3: Asaad < Caliph of Zephyrs >
Healing Loot:
Captured Lightning -- Relic
Leggings of Iridescent Clouds  -- Cloth
Lunar Halo -- Plate
Ring of Frozen Rain -- Ring

This boss is your reward for beating the dragon, because it possibly has taken you a few tries to get him down.  If you have, congratulations!  You are prepared for the rest of the 5 man heroics.  On this fight, as a healer, you only have to worry about 2 things:

1)  Dispell the root debuff off the rest of the party.  The party can also avoid this debuff by /focus on the boss, and jump when he starts to cast static cling. The server should still register you as "off the ground" when he finishes.  There's an acheivement for this.  If someone fails to jump, dispell them.  Nobody should be taking very much damage.

2) When he draws the lightning triangle on the ground, GET IN IT!  If you don't, you will die.

There is no way to avoid the chain lightning right after exiting your safe triangle. Don't worry about it, just heal it.  Nobody should be taking damage from anything else.  Dispell static cling, and you're golden.

Collect your loots, and CONGRATULATIONS, you have beaten Vortex Pinnacle and learned a few of the mechanics used in the other heroic dungeons.

However, this place is so pretty, I am sure you will be back for more great loot.

Ultra graphical settings never looked so good.

Who wants to live here with me?

December 21, 2010

7 Things to do for Yourself and Your Guild Before The First Raid

Exactly what the title says!  Let's discuss a few things that you can do to help yourself and your guild out before that first raid. You may be 85, sick of regular or heroic dungeons, and wondering "what could I do to take a break, but still help out my guild?" Several things.  If you want to keep doing dungeons, then 1 and 2 should help you out. But, this guide will be a general guide for all roles and the fishing and cooking professions.

HEALING related items will have two asterisks ** next to their name.

1)  Get your shoulder enchants. 
Your first reputation should be Therazane.  The easiest way to do this is do all the Deepholme quests, complete the EPIC finale, and then start your dailies with Therazane.  When you finish Deepholme you should be at least Honored.  Do yourself a favor and don't skip Deepholme -- not only is the zone very well designed and beautiful but the epic finish to the zone has made it on par or better than Wrathgate (since you actually get to participate in the finale.)

The Therazane rep vendor is D'lom @  Therazane's Throne in Deepholme.

The four shoulder enchants for HONORED reputation are:
Lesser Inscription of Charged Lodestone ** (Intellect)
Lesser Inscription of Jagged Stone (Strength)
Lesser Inscription of Shattered Crystal (Agility)
Lesser Inscription of Unbreakable Quartz (Tank)

The four shoulder enchants for EXALTED reputation are:
Greater Inscription of Charged Lodestone ** (Intellect)
Greater Inscription of Jagged Stone (Strength)
Greater Inscription of Shattered Crystal (Agility)
Greater Inscription of Unbreakable Quartz (Tank)

Side Perk -- 346 REVERED rings @ level 85:
Diamant's Ring of Temperance  ** (Intellect)
Felsen's Ring of Resolve  (Strength / Dodge)
Gorsik's Band of Shattering (Strength / Crit)
Terrath's Signet of Balance (Agility)

2) Get your helm enchants.
 You should be getting nice rewards from questing/instances.  After you finish with Therazane reputation, move to your respective faction that gives a helm enchant that you need.  These are available at REVERED.  See the next paragraph for locations for the vendors.

Arcanum of Hyjal (Intellect) **
Arcanum of the Earthen Ring (Stamina/Dodge)
Arcanum of the Ramkahen (Agility/Haste)
Arcanum of the Wildhammer / Dragonmaw  (Strength/Mastery)

The 5 reputation vendors and a link to their rewards are below:

Therazane  D'lom @  Therazane's Throne in Deepholme.
Guardians of HyjalProvisioner Whitecloud - Nordrassil Inn in Hyjal
Wildhammer Clan (A) / Dragonmaw Clan (H) - Craw MacGraw @ Thundermar or Grot Deathblow  @ Bloodgulch in the Twilight Highlands
Earthen Ring Provisioner Arok @ Silver Tide Hollow in Shimmering Deeps, Vashj'ir
Ramkahen - Blacksmith Abasi @ Ramkahen in Uldum

3)  Find the appropriate buff food for your class and farm it.  Either identify your guild chef or level your cooking to 525.  
Recipes for the Alliance are sold by Bario Matalli in Stormwind.
Recipes for the Horde are sold by Shazdar  in Orgrimmar.

The NPCs standing next to these two vendors also give daily quests (they are VERY easy) to not only gain Chef's Tokens but also level your cooking.  Picking 6 pumpkins out of a pumpkin patch with no mobs in sight is probably the easiest thing you'll do throughout the expansion.  Do these daily quests!  At the very least, you can buy crates of meat and mail them to your guildies.  The quests only require level 1 cooking.

+60 Buff Food (The OK Stuff) (450-500 skill)

+60 Spirit - Whitecrest Gumbo
+60 Haste - Broiled Mountain Trout
+60 Critical Strike - Lightly Fried Lurker
+60 Hit - Seasoned Crab
+60 Mastery - Salted Eye
+60 Expertise - Lavascale Filet
+60 Dodge - Lurker Lunch

+60 Intellect - Pickled Guppy
+60 Agility - Tender Baked Turtle
+60 Strength - Hearty Seafood Soup

+90 Buff Food (The Best Stuff) (500-525 skill)

 500+ SKILL
+90 Agility - Skewered Eel
+90 Spirit - Delicious Sagefish Tail
+90 Intellect - Severed Sagefish Head
+90 Dodge - Mushroom Sauce Mudfish
+90 Mastery - Lavascale Minestrone
+90 Hit - Grilled Dragon
+90 Expertise - Crocolisk Au Gratin
+90 Parry - Blackbelly Sushi
+90 Strength - Beer-Basted Crocolisk
+90 Haste - Basilisk Liverdog
+90 Crit - Baked Rockfish


Conjured Mana Cake Equivalents:
If you are fishing for Deepsea Sagefish, you will end up with a lot of 
Food - Fish Fry
Water - Starfire Espresso , South Island Iced Tea

4)  Help your guild out by farming the materials for the Broiled Dragon Feast
If your guild does not yet have the achievement for Set the Oven to "Cataclysmic" then you may help out by farming any meat listed above.  Imagine the faces of your guildies when you tell them there are Broiled Dragon Feasts in the bank for heroics or the first raid!

One Feast Takes:
Dragon Flank x 6 (kill Cataclysm dragons, loot meat)
Delicate Wing x 4 (kill Cataclysm birds, loot meat)

***Sneaky Workaround (as of 12/21/10):  Buy Tropical Sunfruit and Fresh Water from Innkeeper Francis in Highbank or Lizzy "Lemons" in Dragonmaw Port. Brew 5000 iced teas.  If you feel rich, brew another 5,000 to get the second achievement.  There's no telling when this will get hotfixed like the Starfire Espresso so do it quickly.

5)  Fish in fishing pools to help catch 10,000 fish for your guild to get the Seafood Magnifique Feast.
 By fishing 10,000 fish from pools to get That's a Lot of Bait, you open up access to the +90 stat fish feast.  It's going to take a lot of fishing so everyone will appreciate you for fishing!  Also, these fish will be worth $$ on the AH, along with the fish used in the cooking recipes mentioned above for buff food.  Pick your favorite fish and farm away.  However, your guild will benefit greatly if you drop a stack or two in the bank.

Seafood Feast Takes:
Highland Guppy x 4 (found in pools, so you can get materials while working on the achievement)
Fathom Eel x 4 (found in pools, so you can get materials while working on the achievement)
Lavascale Catfish x 4 (fished in lava)

6) Farm herbs for any of the following elixirs, potions, and flasks for you or your guild.
  All of the herbs listed below are priceless.  With the holidays, there is plenty of time to get some farming in and stock up for January when people return to school and jobs.  If you can spare the time, consider farming herbs for your guild and having a guild alchemist brew up some pots for the raiders.  This will help you out when everyone goes back to a normal schedule.

Herbs used in Cataclysm brewing (links are to node locations):
Twilight Jasmine
Azshara's Veil

Prismatic Elixir
Elixir of Deep Earth

Ghost Elixir  ** (Spirit)
Elixir of Impossible Accuracy  (Hit)
Elixir of Mighty Speed  (Haste)
Elixir of the Cobra  (Critical Strike)
Elixir of the Master  (Mastery)
Elixir of the Naga  (Expertise)

Stat Increases
Volcanic Potion (Increased Spellpower)  **
Earthen Potion (Increased Armor)
Golemblood Potion (Increased Strength)
Potion of the Tol'vir (Increased Agility)

Potion of Illusion
Potion of Treasure Finding
These potions are EXCELLENT! You are able to loot Tiny Treasure Chests occasionally which contain gold, cloth, and volatiles in any combination.

Mana / Health
Mythical Healing Potion
Mythical Mana Potion  **
Mighty Rejuvenation Potion **
Mysterious Potion
Potion of Concentration  **

Potion of Deepholm

Flasks no longer require a special herb such as Frost Lotus to use, BUT, they require double the herbs of the BC and Wrath flasks.  

Flask of Flowing Water (Spirit) **
Flask of the Draconic Mind (Intellect) **
Flask of the Winds (Agility)
Flask of Titanic Strength (Strength)
Flask of Steelskin (Stamina)
Flask of Enhancement (Alchemists only)

7)  Read boss strategies! has some great guides on the first few bosses. Watch movies, read strategies, and see if any friends in other guilds will let you listen to their raids.  Learn the fights and be prepared for the curve (it's going to be tough).  The best thing you can do for your guild and friends is bring your A-game! There are plenty of videos on Youtube for the heroic dungeons if you are having a bit of trouble.

The above link will take you straight to the raid videos on

There you have it!  Some suggestions of things to do; a general pre-raid farming list; a quick "what do I farm and where because my raid is in two days" list.  Whatever you want to call it, I hope it helps you all!

December 01, 2010

Guide to the PvE Restoration Shaman in Cataclysm

Last Update: 1/13/2011 -- Changed a few Talents Around.  The major changes in the upcoming patch are for Mana Tide Totem (now a set percentage of the shaman's mana) and Tremor Totem (now a 6 second duration with a 1 minute timer.

The goal of this guide is to break down the basics of the restoration shaman for casual raiders to understand. My goal is to explain as clearly as possible what each spell does and why we use it, what talents we take (and what they do), what totems to drop (and when), which glyphs I recommend, and which gems will be viable options throughout Cataclysm. This guide made be altered as times goes on, but it should only change to reflect when we move from gemming spirit into extra intellect (power) and haste (speed).

Here is my resto shaman's profile : Llani

Table of Contents:
  • Stats
  • Healing Spells 
  • Talents
  • Totems
  • Glyphs
  • Gems 
  • Healing Process in 5 Mans / Heroics 

The primary stats for a restoration shaman include intellect, spirit, haste, and crit. The two most important of these are intellect and spirit.

Intellect (INT) is what boosts our mana pool, gives us spellpower, and boosts our crit rating. It will be found on every piece of gear we equip.  This is our bread and butter.

Spirit (SPI) is what boosts the regeneration rate of our mana pool. This allows us to heal longer, especially with early tier levels. When you are first starting to convert from blue gear to epic gear, you may need to socket +40 Spirit to your gear even through the first tier. When we get to tier 12, I will revisit this and see how our regeneration is.

Mastery (M) - is a new stat with Cataclysm. At level 80, each talent tree for each class gets a 'Mastery' buff, and ours is Deep Healing. I do not know how Mastery will balance out in our stats, but I would believe that it will be similar to haste and crit -- you want to make sure you have a good amount, but don't overdo it. I would think we would want to max this 'stat' out to 2.5%, but we will see.

Haste (H) increases our casting speed and allows us to fire off more heals in a shorter period of time.

Crit (C) increases the chance that we land a critical strike (or in our case, a critical heal) which allows the spell to heal for extra healing.

We do not use Strength or Agility as Restoration Shaman.


The shaman learns one specialized spell (Earth Shield) and two passive effects (Purification and Meditation) when specializing into the Restoration tree. At level 80, the Mastery for this tree is Deep Healing.


Riptide - Heals a friendly target for 2363 and another 3725 over 15 sec. Your next Chain Heal cast on that primary target within 15 sec will consume the healing over time effect and increase the amount of the Chain Heal by 25%.

This spell should be used decently often, but don't cast it if nobody is taking damage.  Do not use this as a pre-HoT, or you will run out of mana! Riptide is an instant cast heal that leaves a ticking heal over time (HoT) on the target. If you cast Chain Heal on this target, it will consume the riptide and boost the power of the Chain Heal. Also, due to our Tidal Waves talent, we gain a haste boost for our next 2 spells whenever we use Riptide (or Chain Heal). This talent also boosts the critical strike chance of Healing Surge.

Chain Heal - Heals the friendly target for 2967 to 3389, then jumps to heal the most injured nearby targets. If cast on a party or raid member, the heal will only jump to other members. Each jump reduces the effectiveness of the heal by 30%. Heals 4 total targets.

This spell is our multi-target heal. It jumps from the target to up to 4 other targets (without the Glyph of Chain Heal) or up to 5 (with the glyph). It you are healing a melee group, this is the heal to use, along with Healing Rain.  But, only use Healing Rain IF you know you will hit at least 3-4 group members.  Preferably 4 (assuming you are standing in it. you had BETTER stand in your own AOE heal)

Healing Surge - Heals a friendly target for 5605 to 6403.
Our fast heal. This is the equivalent to Flash of Light or Flash Heal. It will drain your mana quickly, though, so be careful. After you cast Riptide, this spell will have a boosted critical strike chance.

Healing Wave - Heals a friendly target for 2803 to 3201.
Our normal, mid-range heal. You will likely find yourself casting Healing Wave because it is a low cost heal. It does not heal as much as Healing Surge or Greater Healing Wave, but, when you cast Riptide or Chain Heal, it will be very fast.

Greater Healing Wave - Heals a friendly target for 7473 to 8537.
If you have the time to cast a longer heal and know when your target is going to take damage, then GHW is what you need. Be careful using this spell, though, because it has a 30% base mana cost.  You need to cast Unleash Elements as much as possible before casting GHW, to offset the cost. This means that without any gear on, the base mana for a shaman at level 80 is 4396. At level 85, it is 23430. If you are like me and prefer someone else to do the number crunching and theorycrafting, then just nod your head and keep reading.

Cleanse Spirit - Removes one Curse effect from a friendly target.
This is our curse-removing and magic-removing (talented) spell. Bind this to an easily accessible key and/or use Clique + Grid or Healbot to use it.


Unleash Elements - Focuses the elemental force imbued in the Shaman's weaponry, with the concentrated effects depending on the enchantment unleashed.
Level 81. This spell has a 15 second cooldown and triggers Unleash Life.

Unleash Life - Unleashes the Earthliving enchantment upon the Shaman's weapon, healing a friendly target for 1916 to 2074 and increasing the effect of the Shaman's next direct heal by 20%.

Healing Rain - Calls forth healing rains to blanket the area targeted by the Shaman, restoring 690 to 820 health to allies in the area every 2 sec for 10 sec. Healing effectiveness diminishes for each player beyond 6 within the area.
Level 83. This spell is our AOE Heal, much like the Druid's Tranquility.

Spiritwalker's Grace - Calls upon spiritual guidance, permitting movement while casting non-instant Shaman spells. This spell may be cast while casting other spells. Lasts 10 sec.
Level 85. This allows us to cast spells while moving.


Earth Shield (ES) - This shield is to be put on your main tank or the target you think you will be healing the most. The reason for this is that nature's Blessing, one of our talents, will increase the effectiveness of your direct heals on Earth Shielded targets by 15% (when you have 3/3 talent points, which you should).

Water Shield (WS) - This should be cast on YOU. Not only does it return a set amount of mana every 5 seconds, it also pops one of the globes every few seconds, restoring mana to you. Only one globe can pop every few seconds. This is good when you are occasionally taking damage in fights (aoe effects, auras, melee, ranged, or spell attacks).

If you are not taking damage, then the globes can be triggered a different way. Our talent Improved Water Shield will pop one of our globes 100% of the time if we crit with Healing Wave or Riptide, 60% of the time if we crit with Healing Surge, and 30% of the time if we crit with Chain Heal. Haste plays a big role in this at higher levels of gear, where you will have enough regen to sustain yourself without having to gem extra spirit. You will be able to gem intellect (spellpower) and haste (speed) and by critting often, you will be able to sustain sufficient regeneration levels.  In summary, when gearing for heroics, try to grab as much spirit and intellect as possible.  After we begin raiding, and have been practicing our healing rotations enough to be comfortable with our mana regeneration, then we can continue building up our haste and intellect.


Earthliving Weapon - This is one of our five weapon buffs, and boosts our healing by quite a bit. It also includes a proc that adds extra healing (Earthliving). The talent Elemental Weapons in the Enhancement tree is recommended as it boosts this weapon buff. At the end of the Restoration tree, the talent Blessing of the Eternals will help our Earthliving proc guaranteed (80% +20% from weapon buff) if the target is below 35% health (when they'd really need that extra HoT).


Here is a picture of my recommended talent tree for starting Cataclysm:

All the talents in the Restoration tree that I took are listed below. I did not take 3 talents and they are listed at the end. The talents in the Enhancement and Elemental tree that I took are included at the end of the Restoration talents, because you have to get to the end of your primary tree before you can move over to a secondary tree. There is a line break in between each tier of spells (or rows, if you are looking at your talent trees).  Talents in BOLD are very important talents that affect which spells you cast.


Spark of Life - 3/3 - Increases your healing done by 6% and your healing received by 15%.
Tidal Focus - 3/3 - Reduces the mana cost of your healing spells by 6%.

Improved Water Shield - 2/2 - You have a 100% chance to instantly gain mana as if you consumed a Water Shield Orb when you gain a critical effect from your Healing Wave, Greater Healing Wave, or Riptide spells, a 60% chance when you gain a critical effect from your Healing Surge spell, and a 30% chance when you gain a critical effect from your Chain Heal spell.
Focused Insight - 3/3 - After casting any Shock spell, your next heal's mana cost is reduced by 75% of the cost of the Shock spell, and its healing effectiveness is increased by 30%.
Totemic Focus - Reduces the mana cost of your totems by 15% and increases their duration by 20%. This could be swapped out with Tidal Focus, but, you cast far more spells than you drop your totems (in raids). At the beginning of Cataclysm, this talent could be very useful when chaining 5 man dungeons with your guildmates.  For the beginning of Cataclysm, you can take this talent for help in 5 mans and entry raids.

Ancestral Healing - 2/2 - Reduces your target's physical damage taken by 10% for 15 sec after receiving a critical effect from one of your healing spells.
Nature's Swiftness - 1/1 - When activated, your next Nature spell with a base casting time less than 10 sec. becomes an instant cast spell.
Nature's Blessing - 3/3 - Increases the effectiveness of your direct heals on Earth Shielded targets by 15%.

Soothing Rains - 2/2 - Increases the amount healed by your Healing Stream Totem by 50%, and your Healing Rain spell by 30%.
Improved Cleanse Spirit - 1/1 - Empowers your Cleanse Spirit spell to also remove a magic effect from a friendly target.
Cleansing Waters - 2/2 - Reduces the cost of Cleanse Spirit by 40%, and when your Cleanse Spirit successfully removes a harmful effect, you also heal the target for 2634 to 2970.

Ancestral Awakening - 3/3 - When you critically heal with a single-target direct heal, you summon an Ancestral spirit to aid you, instantly healing the lowest percentage health friendly party or raid target within 40 yards for 30% of the amount healed.
Mana Tide Totem - 1/1 - Summons a Mana Tide Totem with 10% of the caster's health at the feet of the caster for 12 sec. Party members within 40 yards of the totem have their Spirit increased by 350%.

Tidal Waves - 3/3 - When you cast Chain Heal or Riptide, you gain the Tidal Waves effect, which reduces the cast time of your Healing Wave and Greater Healing Wave spells by 30% and increases the critical effect chance of your Healing Surge spell by 30%. 2 charges.
Blessing of the Eternals - 2/2 - Grants an additional 80% chance to trigger your Earthliving heal over time effect when you heal an ally who is below 35% of total health.

Riptide - 1/1 - Heals a friendly target for 2363 and another 3725 over 15 sec. Your next Chain Heal cast on that primary target within 15 sec will consume the healing over time effect and increase the amount of the Chain Heal by 25%.


Improved Shields - 3/3 - Increases the damage done by your Lightning Shield orbs by 15%, increases the amount of mana gained from your Water Shield orbs by 15%, and increases the amount of healing done by your Earth Shield orbs by 15%.
Elemental Weapons - 2/2 - Increases the passive bonuses granted by your Flametongue Weapon and Earthliving Weapon abilities by 40%, the damage of your extra attacks from Windfury Weapon by 40%, and the effectiveness of the ongoing benefits of your Unleash Elements ability by 50%.


Acuity - 2/3 - Increases your critical strike chance with all spells and attacks by 3%.  


Ancestral Resolve - Reduces damage taken while casting spells by 5%. PvP talent.

Telluric Currents - Your attunement to natural energies causes your Lightning Bolt spell to restore mana equal to 40% of damage dealt.

Nature's Guardian - Whenever a damaging attack brings you below 30% health, your maximum health is increased by 5% for 10 sec and your threat level towards the attacker is reduced. 30 second cooldown. You should not be taking damage--your tank should.


Shaman have three separate 'totem bars' that we can load up and use to drop 4 totems at once. Now, we can't have ALL our totems loaded up in these bars so you need to keep certain ones such as Tremor Totem near your totem bars but not in them. It's a situational totem.

Normally, in a 10 man raid, these are the totems I recommend:

Water - Healing Stream Totem - This totem is a pulsing HoT every two seconds and scales with your spellpower.

Air - Wrath of Air Totem - The totem provides 5% spell haste to all party and raid members within 40 yards.

Earth - Strength of Earth Totem - The totem increases the Strength and Agility of all party and raid members within 40 yards by 549.

Fire - Flametongue Totem - The totem increases the spell power of all party and raid members within 40 yards by 6%.

You will use these 4 totems the most. If you have a paladin in your party, he/she will provide you with your mana regeneration that you would normally get from Mana Spring Totem. If you do not have a paladin present, then you should drop Mana Spring Totem.

The only time you should be replacing Healing Stream is when you want to drop your Mana Tide Totem -- this is like an innervate on a stick.

If you have two shaman in your group, chances are they are either elemental or enhancement. An Enhancement shaman will drop Windfury Totem in place of Wrath of Air, and will cover the Strength of Earth for you. That leaves you free to drop Stoneskin Totem, which allows your paladin to use a different aura such as (Concentration).

An elemental shaman will cover Totemic Wrath by dropping their Searing Totem. You do NOT need to drop your Flametongue Totem when an elemental shaman is present. You can also drop a Searing Totem.

If you have a warrior in your group, then Battle Shout can cover your Strength of Earth Totem. Drop Stoneskin instead and have your paladin use a different aura.

You can use 4.0.1 Buff Map at the end of the comments to see what buffs other classes share.


I will only be listing the relevant glyphs for a Restoration shaman. Elemental and Enhancement glyphs will not be discussed. The glyphs with a * beside them are the ones I recommend.


*Glyph of Earth Shield - Increases the amount healed by your Earth Shield by 20%.

*Glyph of Riptide - Increases the duration of Riptide by 40%.

*Glyph of Earthliving Weapon - Increase the effectiveness of your Earthliving weapon's periodic healing by 20%.

Glyph of Water Shield - Increases the passive mana regeneration of your Water Shield spell by 50%.

After experiencing both water shield and earthliving weapon glyphs, I must say that my mana regeneration has stabilized after my guild members learned most of the heroic 5 man fights.  I no longer feel the need for Glyph of Water Shield, and instead recommend the Earthliving Weapon Glyph for a boost in your OOMPH power. 


*Glyph of Chain Heal - Increases healing done by your Chain Heal spell to targets beyond the first by 15%, but decreases the amount received by the initial target by 10%.

*Glyph of Healing Stream Totem - Your Healing Stream Totem also increases the Fire, Frost, and Nature resistance of party and raid members within 30 yards by 150. (SITUATIONAL)

*Glyph of Healing Wave - Your Healing Wave also heals you for 20% of the healing effect when you heal someone else.

Glyph of Totemic Recall - Causes your Totemic Recall ability to return an additional 50% of the mana cost of any recalled totems.

I selected these glyphs because normally you will be casting Chain Heal for the multi-target heal, not the initial heal. Riptide also boosts your Chain Heal to make up for this. The HST glyph is important for two reasons. First, if you do not have enough players in your 10 man raid to cover a resistance buff you may need, then this totem comes in handy along with providing the healing boost (you don't have to sacrifice your healing totem for elemental resistance). Second, if you have a paladin in your raid, you will not be using your mana totem. You will be using your healing totem. If you have no paladin, use your mana spring totem.  The Healing Wave Glyph is a MUST have because we use healing wave quite a bit now.


*Glyph of Renewed Life - Your reincarnation spell no longer requires a reagent.

*Glyph of Water Breathing - Your Water Breathing spell no longer requires a reagent.

*Glyph of Water Walking - Your Water Walking spell no longer requires a reagent.

Glyph of the Arctic Wolf - Alters the appearance of your Ghost Wolf transformation, causing it to resemble an arctic wolf.

As far as minor glyphs go, it all depends on if you want to carry a stack of ankhs and have a plain wolf form or look like a pretty white wolf and have to give up a bag space.  I won't judge.


Beginning of Cataclysm / 5 man heroics -- I am going with +20 INT / +20 SPI for a majority of my sockets until I feel safe healing in heroics.  Who knows how long that will take! The following gems are a selection of what you can choose from. 


Blue/Red sockets: Purified Demonseye +20 INT / +20 SPI  

Red/Yellow sockets: Reckless Ember Topaz +20 INT / +20 H or Artful Ember Topaz +20 INT / +20 M

Other Red/Yellow socket option (but not really recommended at this point): Potent Ember Topaz +20 INT / +20 Crit

You want to treat mastery much like hit, as in, get enough but don't get excessive for Deep Healing. We should get enough crit from gear to not have to gem it, as usual. Most of our gear will automatically include intellect and stamina and then either haste, crit or mastery.  You will want to get your haste to at least 916, which will allow all three of our HoTs (Earthliving Weapon, Riptide, and Healing Rain) to gain one extra tick.  For more elaboration on this topic, see Vixsin's post @ Life in Group 5.

Think of mastery as free spellpower.  It doesn't really show itself until your targets are lower, but then again, there will be plenty of times in heroics when your targets ARE low, at least for now. Collect and save as much gear as possible!  There is nothing wrong with being a packrat.

Some gear will be intellect, stamina, and then haste and crit. For now, do haste > crit.   I have a feeling that Mastery will be just as yummy as haste, especially when people will be getting hit hard. Remember, our mastery is based on our target's health, so it works better when people are actually taking some damage.


  • Before the pull
 1)  Eat your buff food and drink elixirs/flasks.  You can choose spirit, intellect, or if you are unusually rich, drop a dragon feast for your group.  I recommend making friends with an alchemist and drinking a flask, just in case your party wipes.
2)  Examine your group make up. 
Do you have a paladin?  Ask him to use might and ret aura, and drop your stoneskin totem and healing totem. Do you have an elemental shaman?  Both of you need to drop searing totem.  
Do you have a warrior?  Ask him to battle shout (he should be) and swap out your strength of earth totem for a stoneskin totem.  
If you have both a warrior and a paladin, then use earthbind totem and healing stream totem!

2)   Put Earth Shield on the tank.  Target him and type /focus.  You can also bind this into a macro so that you only have to target the tank and push your macro.  This will always keep your tank's portrait on your screen so that you do not have to retarget him, regardless if you use mouseover macros or not.

3)  Put Water Shield on yourself.  Download an addon, either classtimers or power auras, and set yourself up an aura that tells you when your water shield has fallen off.  You can also do this for Earth Shield on your focused target.

4)  Are you in an instance where you can bind elementals?  If so, then go ahead and ask the tank to wait for you to cast your bind before he makes the pull.  This should be treated like any other trap, sheep, or shackle.

  • Pulling Trash and Bosses
1)  Drop your totems so that everyone in your group will benefit.  If this means running in with the tank, then so be it.  Just watch out and don't get cleaved.  Dropping your totems in the doorway of the boss will not help if your party will be fighting very far away.

2)  If your tank is taking a little bit of damage, put Riptide on him/her.  This should sustain him for a few seconds.  If the pull was botched and he has more mobs than is pleasant, then hit your Unleash Elements and hit him with a Greater Healing Wave.  If that doesn't get him out of the danger zone, then slap a Healing Surge on him.  After that, you should be able to either Healing Wave him back up until your Unleash Elements is off cooldown.

If the pull went great, then just use a Riptide to get your haste boost, and wait until he takes enough damage to merit using Unleash Elements + Greater Healing Wave.  As far as I know, you can also spam Healing Wave until the cows come home because the mana cost is not enough to drain us of mana.  However, it is not very powerful, which is why you should mostly use it to top people off.

You can also use Flame Shock (or any other shock) on the boss, if you have it talented, to reduce the mana cost of your next healing spell.  On some bosses, I have plenty of time to use the Telluric Currents talent, but on others, I must be watching to interrupt/be preoccupied.  I believe learning heroics will take time.  Do NOT get frustrated if you end up wiping once or twice.  Look at what happened and decide what you can do to avoid repeating the wipe.

3)  Use Nature's Swiftness if anyone is in danger of dying, but, give priority to the tank if two people are near death.  Nature's Swiftness is very precious now.  Use it carefully!

4)  Drop a Healing Rain if you know the pull has a lot of AoE damage.  Specifically, I can think of the mobs in Throne of the Tides that levitate your party; the magic caster pulls in Grim Batol, and any other pulls where you might be hexed/sheeped/incapacitated and cannot heal your party for a few seconds.  You can also use chain heal if your group is able to safely group together without chaining any diseases/magic debuffs.

5)  ON BOSSES, be sure to drop your Mana Tide Totem when you are around 65% mana.  This will help it possibly be off cooldown before the fight is over if you need another boost.  Use your mana potion when you reach 65% again.  Take advantage of any priest Hymn of Hopes or Druid Innervates.  ASK NICELY.  Do not expect or demand it -- yes, it is nice when the other members of your group watch your mana, but still, be polite. They may need a gentle reminder to pop their mana return for you when you are low.  In raids, you should work out a CD rotation with your other healers/dpsers.

6)  Don't forget to use your Heroism/Bloodlust!  Mages also get Time Warp now.

DO NOT WAIT UNTIL YOU ARE EMPTY!  If you reach zero mana and then frantically try to recover, you may wipe.  Be proactive; watch your mana pool.  It is very important!