(Imp) Divine Spirit vs Empowered Healing

In my build post, I was forced to cap Empowered Healing at 3/5 because I took Improved Divine Spirit (2/2). I got to wondering about how these two stack up in regard to those two points – what if I instead capped EH? The answer was, to me, surprising. Well, beyond the “depends on your playstyle” caveat that I always insist upon, of course. Read on to get to the nitty gritty.

2 points in IDS gives a bonus of 10% of spirit to healing and damage. 2 points of EH increases ONLY healing bonuses for GH (by 8%), FH and BH (by 4%).

For a change, I’m going to stick the last paragraph here, and let you read the details if you wish.

If your healing bonus is less than 825, IDS is the better choice. After that the question is whether you can (and want to) get more spirit or more +healing, with each spirit being nominally equal to 3.8 +healing (excluding mana regen). I have seen +1500 healing reached easily. Excluding the mana regen issue, this requires an additional 200 spirit (nominal) to balance — or a spirit of approximately 390-400.  [editing to correct math: 1500 is only 675 more than the 825 breeakeven point.  675 / 3.8 = ~177, which means you only need 366 spirit to balance the gain you get at +1500 healing bonus.] To help muddle the issue, that much spirit would also be generating 100 mana every 2 seconds out of the 5SR, and (assuming meditation but no other talents) 15 mana/tick regardless — 47.5 MP5.

The first obvious playstyle elements come into play here. IDS will help shadow. IDS will also help renew and the prayers (PoH, PoM). EH is only three spells, though two are of fairly frequent use.

We can start with some floors to start our comparison of benefit. (Note I’m using level 70. It’s possible to start working on the whole decision as low as level 65 for the first EH vs DS point.) At level 70, a priest will have a base (no bonus of any sort) spirit of about 150 (give or take depending on racials). Since IDS requires DS, the minimum working spirit becomes 190. Which means our IDS gives us +19 spellpower at the bottom.

Now, the general guide for heal vs all spell bonus tends to be 2:1 – that is, generally you need two heal for every general bonus for the trade to be (more or less) equal. I’m going to drop that, however, since EH is not going be a choice of most Holy Damage specs. Instead, we need look solely at healing vs healing. However, since GH and FH are only part of our heal, I do still have some modification — again, 2:1. (In passing I’ll note that if I were considering damage the resulting ratio would be 4:1.) Obviously this is a matter of playstyle (how much Renew and PoM and all that do you use), but for a working value I’m going to say the EH bonus will apply to half our heal spells cast.

What this means is that for EH to be “better” than IDS, strictly on a self-benefit level, I need to get twice the bonus, or +38. For GH, +38 is 8% of 475. For FH (and BH), it’s 4% of 950. Splitting the difference (a fast compromise – balance on actual proportion to be accurate) I figure I need approximately 712 bonus healing to match the benefit that comes from 190 spirit — ignoring for the moment, again, both the mana regen issue AND the fact that other casters in your party will get a spellpower bonus.

BUT… once that point’s reached, things get interesting. To get +1 spellpower from spirit I need ten more spirit. To get the nominally matching +2 limited bonus from EH (remember, we’re only looking at the extra two points, not the entire thing) I need to get +2 I need ~+38 bonus gear. Which means +1 spirit is nominally equal to +3.8 healing bonus.

BUT (again), we need to consider the bonus to the party, and the regen bonus. And here is where I am going to throw up my hands and retreat to the “it depends on your playstyle” caveat. Well, sort of.

The heavier your party’s proportion of caster, the more benefit from the spellpower of IDS. On the other hand, extra spirit on YOU will do absolutely zero for THEM. Which means it only applies to the initial balance point. My swag is that while there are likely to be at least two additional players who can benefit, the actual benefit is less significant. I decided it moved the breakeven point to halfway between the 950 and 712 point, which with simplification and swag I’m marking at 825 ( a touch on the low side).

For mana regeneration… really and truly that’s a matter of preference. What’s your balance of Spirit to +healing?

OK, we’re (finally) ready to summarize this.

If your healing bonus is less than 825, IDS is the better choice. After that the question is whether you can (and want to) get more spirit or more +healing. I have seen +1500 healing reached easily. Excluding the mana regen issue, this requires an additional 200 spirit (nominal) to balance — or a spirit of approximately 390-400.  [editing to correct math: 1500 is only 675 more than the 825 breeakeven point.  675 / 3.8 = ~177, which means you only need 366 spirit to balance the gain you get at +1500 healing bonus.]  To help muddle the issue, that much spirit would also be generating 100 mana every 2 seconds out of the 5SR, and (assuming meditation but no other talents) 15 mana/tick regardless — 47.5 MP5.

And with proper gear, that much spirit (and more) is in reach.

Decisions, decisions, decisions. Have fun.

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~ by Kirk on August 23, 2007.

5 Responses to “(Imp) Divine Spirit vs Empowered Healing”

  1. Thank you for your insight. Early for me these seemed like easier questions but as my guild is entering SSC and I am our lead priest. The question about my talents has become muddy. I easily have +1800 (unbuffed with my +heal epic set, +1900 when buffed with no priest having the spirit buff). I have started taking a +heal hit to stack stats for SSC. I am starting to wonder if there is a point where, when it is easy to hit +1800 plus heal if EH could be switched out more mana in the Disc tree. Especially since your blog has made me see the benefits of talents based not on procs or Crits.

  2. @kat,

    I’m dreading/anticipating that level. Of course, I have no qualms of respeccing either when things need serious change.

    Oh, and I’ve got a math error above which I’ll fix in edit but will also note here. 1500 is only 675 more than the 825 breeakeven point. 675 / 3.8 = ~177, which means you only need 366 spirit to balance the gain you get at +1500 healing bonus. 400 balances +1800 (your level, as it happens.)

  3. In general, the benefit of Imp DS on the entire raid far far out performs the benefit of an extra +8% of your +heal on Flash/Greater. It roughly corresponds to an extra epic upgrade on every caster in your raid (+20-30 damage, +40-50 healing for every caster adds up). Thus, for almost all raids, the first holy priest needs to have Imp DS. The SECOND priest can (and optimally, ought) have 5/5 Empowered Healing and Circle of Healing.

    Anyway, that’s my reasoned take as one of the imp DS priests in my guild. :)

  4. Tanitin,

    As Ego noted in the original talents post (1 of 2), that assumption may not be valid. I agree it adds up, but I’m not sure it’s epic quality equivalent.

    About circle of healing… I’m going to have to analyze its usefulness for raids. For anything less than raid, though, I can state it’s a pretty poor choice.

  5. @Kirk Thanks for the math change I will run some numbers. I feel that the IDS is a considerable element in our caster heavy group. And buffed minus the spirit buff i am at 540ish spirit. We have had another priest who was heavy disc have it but he is not a regular to most our raids to date and can’t be counted on. With that I have had the luxury of having COH and EH. COH although hated by some has become invaluable with the trash healing of TK and Mag with only one or two priests for a whole raid. The way I explain my specing in it is that it is situational side ways instant renew. It is not a prime heal. I will miss it greatly.

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