Why am I talking about spirit again, you ask?
First, Blizzard’s almost asinine propensity to putting spirit on nearly all cloth gear. Sure, this makes sense, if every cloth wearing class could make good use of it. Priests and warlocks of all specs, for instance, can make ample use of spirit.
At the very least, a percentage of spirit is turned into spell damage, and then worked into core mechanics from there. Life Tap, anyone?
Mages, then, are the unique one. The only benefit spirit provides is to mana regeneration, and then only when the mage is using glyphed mage armor or has invested at least 18 points into the arcane tree. Preferably all at once.
And… well, actually, that’s it. Just mana regeneration. Albeit a higher percent than other classes get (holy freaking crap 80%?!) it still only caters to a group of mages, rather than all.
That’s the second reason.
ALL priests, regardless of spec, benefit from spirit. ALL warlocks, regardless of spec, benefit from spirit. Unless they’re stupid or ignorant, I guess. Whatever, let’s assume these priests and warlocks have the ability to read WoWWiki at the very least.
Touching on moonkins for a bit, even they get a little spirit to spellpower conversion thingy. There’s only one moonkin tree, however bloated it may be, so it can also be said “all” moonkin benefit from spirit.
What’s the common theme here? ALL members of these classes benefit from spirit. All of them get spellpower, in addition to whatever else is there. Moonkin have to go into the resto tree, I think, to get any spirit based mana regeneration. Again, moot point, they’ll be in there anyway for Master Shapeshifter.
Let’s assume they do.
So what does spirit provide, then?
For priests, it provides additional spellpower and is the foundation of their mana regeneration.
For warlocks, it provides additional spellpower and is the foundation of their mana regeneration.
For mages, it provides some mana regeneration that some mages can take advantage of.
Anyone else see a problem here?
Spirit needs to be useful to the entire class. Not all mages are going to use glyphed Mage Armor, not all mages are going to invest 18 points into the arcane tree.
In fact, I am willing to bet gold that the majority of mages will use Molten Armor and spend no points at all in the arcane tree. At least, in the foreseeable future.
Why? Well, mostly it’s because heavy fire builds are the best for DPS. Not by a little, I’m talking at least 15% better, usually in the 20% or more area. Frostfire Bolt is KING, even beating out standard fireballin’ specs.
If you still like arcane and frost, fear not! You’ll give those dirty elemental shamans a run for their money.
(Note: the author would like to offer his most sincere apologies for the preceding sentence. Please don’t take away my Totem of Wrath.)
Let’s ignore priests for now. Let’s pay attention to warlocks.
Blizzard, it seems, handled the spirit issue very nicely with warlocks.
The first notable difference is that warlocks have very clearly defined armors.
Warlocks, like mages, have two types of armor. (Shut up, you, Ice Armor doesn’t exist. I CAN’T HEAR YOU LA LA LA LA.) However, unlike mages, one can clearly be considered for PvP, and the other one is for raiding.
Demon Armor provides extra armor, and increases the effects of health regeneration stuff (Drain Life, Siphon Life, Haunt, potions, etc). Obviously for PvP, as it would serve no purpose in a raiding environment.
Enter Fel Armor, which provides a flat boost to spellpower, allows 30% of spirit to count as spellpower, and regenerates 2% of that warlocks maximum health every 5 seconds.
Can it be used for PvP? Sure. But it is, by far, the superior of the two when it comes to raiding.
It isn’t nearly so cut and dried when it comes to mages.
Mage Armor provides 30(50)% of mana regeneration to continue while casting, and halves the effect of any harmful magic effect.
Molten Armor provides a 3(5)% boost to critical strike chance, reduces the chance to be critically hit by 5%, and deals fire damage to attackers.
Both armors are equally good in PvP and PvE content. Which one the mage ends up using depends on personal taste, spec, gear and content.
If a warlock uses Demon Armor, spirit is useless to them. That’s fine, there isn’t any spirit on PvP gear anyway, and that armor would only be used in a PvP scenario.
If a mage uses Molten Armor, spirit is useless to them. That would be fine, if it was a PvP specific armor.
I hope you see the point here.
Spirit on mage gear is a very serious problem, and has been for a very long time. It’s spending item budget on something that will provide zero benefit.
There was an exchange on the forums that went something like this:
- If anything about mages is going to be nerfed, it’s their mana regeneration.
- How can you nerf 0 mp5?
There have been plenty of suggestions on what to do about spirit.
Basically, they all boil down to a very simple suggestion: either make spirit universally beneficial, or get rid of it.