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Ulduar: Part I

April 21, 2009

This week will be our second round of attempts in Big Bad Ulduar 10.  Last week, we were able to take out the Flame Leviathan, but got stuck on the other bosses.

My biggest critic and harshest competitor is myself and I’m wondering whether or not I’m ready for Ulduar at all.  My main spec is Discipline which I really love, but information on stat balancing and baselines is very hard to find online…and when you do find it, the very next person will completely contradict it – “Stack crit to the heavens!  That’s all you should be concerned with!”  “No, no, stack haste!  The faster you can toss flashes the better!”

wowscrnshot_042009_135703

I’ve gone through my bags of gear to try to rotate some pieces in and out to try to find a happy balance.

Currently, I’m trying to maintain this type of baseline:  (all of these numbers are self-buffed, by the way.)

-20,000 Mana
-28% Crit
-10% Haste

I’d like to stack more MP5, because I think I’m down around 215 – but with Glyph of Shadowfiend, Hymn of Hope, Runic Mana Potions, the general nature of Disc healing, and whatever Replenishment type buff the raid provides…well, mana regen really doesn’t seem to be an evil that is plaguing me.

I was stacking crit and was up to 32% self-buffed at one point, but then I started reading about how Disc priest should be stacking Haste and decided to look into that school of thought.  With 10% Haste and all of my triggered fast-healing abilities on a target active, I can toss out a Flash Heal in .903 seconds.   I’ve recently glyphed for Penance, which reduces its cooldown by 2 seconds.  So, I can basically hit the MT or OT with a Penance every 6 seconds for close to their entire HP and I can toss Flashes out on the raid that take less than a second to cast.

Also, 10 man raid buffed, I’m sitting pretty at 30% crit.  From what I’ve noticed, my tank is almost always going to get the Divine Aegis affect from my third bolt of Penance.  I’ve come to Penancing the tank even if he’s not taking damage because of the changes to Grace and Divine Aegis.  It isn’t a bad thing to have Grace up on the Tank/OT at all times – increased healing and decreased damage makes me happy.  😀

All of this just makes me wonder if there’s anything else I can do (short of pugging Naxx25 for gear – so not happening) to improve my performance in Ulduar.  Even with all of my damage absorption abilities and buffs, the tanks are still getting hit HARD and the DPS – well…they’re not staying alive long enough.

One of my new tactics is to roll Power Word: Shields on all of the tanks.  When we did Naxx25 the other night (mostly a guild run and went ridiculously smoothly) I was rolling the shields on all three Patchwerk tanks.  The timing had to be on point, but I think I did an awesome job.  It wasn’t necessarily difficult and I can’t see in numbers how much damage I was able to absorb that fight, but I have a feeling that it was a helpful tactic.  I am doing that in Ulduar as well – making sure the MT and OT are always shielded.  They have no problems with rage starvation or losing aggro, and it helps give the healers a little bit of a break right at the beginning of the fight to save an unlucky DPS or to concentrate on our placement while the tank gets into position.

I was hoping that in 3.1, Blizzard was going to give Disc Priests some sort of party-wide shield or barrier.  Another time that I use the shielding method mentioned above is when I heal for Timed CoT.  I wind up keeping the entire party shielded throughout the run.  It sounds very mana inefficient, but it actually saves me from having to spam heal – which is one of the biggest mana killers for Disc priests – and going OOM – which is critical to avoid for successful timed runs.  It’s also like a mini-game to me – rolling the shields and making sure that they don’t fall off of party members.

I’m working towards Exalted with Hodir for the better shoulder enchant and once I get it, I will be able to swap in a different piece of gear with either more Haste or more Int.   I’d still like the crit bracers from H VH or from Naxx10, but it doesn’t seem that I will get lucky on those as I have been grinding for them for months.  And in Naxx25 the other night, SEVEN different pieces of gear – including robes, boots, cloak, and bracers dropped and I lost the roll on every single piece.  It would’ve been nice to get at least one of them (the bracers or cloak would’ve been the biggest upgrades) for the tiny boost for the Ulduar attempts.  Oh well.  The RNG definitely wasn’t with me that night.

I’m really hoping that Blizzard didn’t make it so you would need Naxx25 gear in order to complete Ulduar10 – our guild isn’t big enough to fill a 25 man and having to pug makes me crazy – I can’t even believe the maturity level and vulgarity of the players on my server…all they talk about is drugs, doing drugs, being high while running stuff, f this and f that, it’s just not my cup of tea while I’m trying to enjoy the run.  I’m very spoiled with my guild’s maturity level – it’s hard to deal with people who don’t act like us, lol.

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8 comments

  1. My guild did some Ulduar10 in addition to Ulduar25 last week, and the opinion of our main tank (and GM) is that 10-man is difficult enough with Naxx25 gear – the idea of it being tuned for players in Naxx10 gear is hard to believe. I don’t know that I’d go that far (I can see how it *could* be done, but you’re going to have to all be very much on the ball in order to progress wearing ilvl213-or-lower gear.


  2. @AG: Good luck in Ulduar! I mentioned we took down Deconstructor and, to be honest, that boss really isn’t that hard. Getting people to move when they get become a Light Bomb or Gravity Bomb is. We had people that wouldn’t move, not move far enough or move too far away for the healers. Soooooo frustrating…

    That’s too bad about your server, but you could do what I do: leave General and Trade chat. lol! We are fortunate to be a self-sustaining guild for the most part, only using PuGs for heroics at times. The server chat is so mindless and annoying that I just refuse to pay attention to it any more.

    Can’t wait to see how you guys do in Ulduar!


  3. yeah, now you’re doing it right with the PW:S. Keep it up at all times on all tanks. because it provides crit, 3%less dmg and manareg, besides the shield-effect 😉

    i am also looking for a way to improve myself and get my own opionion on the statsweight. so this are my thoughts (i get nearly the some values as you):

    – haste is got, because you can heal faster. you get 25% from borrowed time and are about 10% from items and the talents. thats 35%. i also have atm the 2 trinkets, which provide haste. because the hastecap is at 50% i think 10% are enough. with ulduar items it wil be about 15%. thats okay

    – crit is good because you heal more and stack DA up. but there is no use for your shield. and we are pw:s’ing a lot, arent we? raidbuffed (boomkin) i have about 35%. i dont think, that it would make a big difference if i would go up to 45% or now.

    – spellpower: it affects everything. pw:s, heals, DA. so i think it is the most valueable stat.

    so i guess sp=1, haste=0.5, crit=0.6 should be the right directioin


  4. @alliancegirl: Well, I don’t know for sure if that’s the case with the 10-man difficulty, at least not yet. I’ve volunteered to take my prot warrior alt in for our second ulduar 10-man group (she’s geared in a mix of 10- and 25-man gear), which should give me a better handle on things, if I’m able to go. (I might end up just taking my raiding shadowpriest though, depends on what classes are needed)


  5. @alliancegirl:

    i think, it will work out if you get some good items from ulduar and than you just have to gem for spellpower.

    Have you had a look at Munchland’s Gear Guide?
    http://www.themunchland.com/2009/04/discipline-gear-guide/



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