Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Regemming Haste? Don't Do It!

As an important note, please be aware that this is probably the worst thing I've ever written. I'm not removing it because people have discussed some important things in the comments. I am, however, working on a rewrite that is being slowed down by the holidays. You can keep reading this and writing comments, but please be aware that much of it needs revision, clarification, deletion and editing.

Being unable to access the PTR, I never really got to experiment with haste differences before the patch went live. Aware that I'm sitting pretty compared to a lot of other Restoration Druids at 610 haste, I knew I was still under the cap. I would have been a little better off if I could have gotten the chest from Heroic Faction Champions, but it only dropped once and I didn't win it.

So, Saturday, my little-PUG-who-can hopped into Icecrown Citadel 25 man. We one-shot Marrowgar, five-shot (I think) Lady Deathwhisper, one-shot the Gunship Battle, and then had to call it on Saurfang on account of having waaaaay too many ranged (we only had about five melee; made spreading out impossible). During this time I got to play around with both raid healing and tank healing, i.e. doing both in a fight, and I found, insanely enough...

My timing is off.

I'm down to just fractions of a second more than the one second cooldown, with 610 haste and Celestial Focus, and my rhythm was still disrupted. Not terribly, not so that I couldn't heal, not so that my healing suffered. It was just an annoyance, a tic; when I was hitting my buttons now was my internalized one second GCD, and I just wasn't there anymore.

Delleyentar asked me just yesterday if I was going to regem haste or go Celestial Focus. I'm convinced, however, that regemming haste is not the way to go. Besides being expensive, it's a serious blight upon your Spellpower numbers, which are the biggest boost to a Restoration Druid's healing.

To take Bellwether for example, she has 15 sockets. Out of those 15 sockets, 13 are straight 23 Spellpower gems, and two are 12 Spellpower, 12 Spirit (gaining three socket bonuses along the way; +9, +7 and +5 Spellpower) . That's 347 Spellpower, including the amount gained from the Spirit. At 610 haste, I would need to regem 246 Haste to reach the fully-raid-buffed cap without Celestial Focus, which is 12 sockets of pure Haste and one socket of Haste/Spellpower. Fully regemming would get me to 910 Haste, but I would lose all that Spellpower and Spirit for a few seconds shaved off my GCD.

It's not worth it.

It's not worth it at any level; when you're low haste or high. Unless you're just a few points shy of the 1 second GCD, you're losing more by going for Haste gems. Spellpower is still priority. I'm going to be re-tweaking my Gemming Guide to explain this in detail, but I thought this deserved its own section, as well.

The one second GCD is not the be-all-end-all of Druid healing. Is it handy? Yes. Is it necessary? No. Can you raid heal without it? Yes. Is respec'ing into Celestial Focus helpful? Most definitely.

Don't gimp yourself trying to reach the one second GCD. You won't perish without it, and neither will your raid.


Forreststump said...

I came to the same conclusion myself. Nice write-up. Same rule applies to Holy paladins, in considering INT vs. haste gemming.

Ho Ho said...

Stupid question:

"we only had about five melee; made spreading out impossible"

Why not have a few ranged stand behind boss together with melee? It's not like casters have minimum range on their abilities :)

Bell said...

@Ho Ho - much of our ranged was too high threat to stand there, and the rest were hunters or on mob control duty. Another option thought about was everyone stacking and the people who got debuffed running out, but by then it was late and people had to go. Now that we've got Deathwhisper about down, we'll have more time for tweaking.

Kae said...


I don't understand this push to gimp everything in favor of a 1-second gcd, especially when it quite often comes down to hundredths of a second.

Anonymous said...

Random speculation with no supporting math or empirical data is not analysis. Just because you "can" heal with sub-optimal gems or specs or anything does not justify the poor choice. It is simply a result of the watered down difficulty of the game in general and regular mode raiding specifically. If your GCD is > 1 second, haste is far and away your number one throughput stat.

Bell said...

@Anonymous - The math becomes extremely complicated very quickly because it's based not only on how many times you cast Rejuv, but your Spellpower and Haste. But, the basics come down to: By boosting your Haste through gemming, you are able to cast a few more Rejuvenations/other spells than normal. Losing out on Spellpower for that Haste, however, gimps every single tick of every single HoT as well as the output of any other spell. And many times it's even not possible to reach the haste cap through gemming, at which point a Druid is decreasing their Spellpower pool with little real gain.

xor said...

Is there a Celestial Focus build that makes sense? I'm having trouble finding it. I end up with at least 1 wasted point in Balance that is better spent in the Resto tree. Assuming I am raid healing I can probably get by without Living Seed. What else? I'd like to get the GCD down with CF, but I'd really like to pinch heal the tank if necessary as well. Is that possible or should I be looking at 2 different Resto builds?

Lath said...

I thought the way you did, then was driven crazy in ICC (lag also probably didn't help!) and decided to muck around and put in haste gems to hit the haste cap (I only had 527 before the patch).

While it wasn't a necessity my personal experience has shown my overall HPS has increased and I just feel more comfortable :)

I didn't enjoy losing approximately 200 spell power but I figure I can slowly resocket for spell power as I replace my current gear with some haste pieces.

Anonymous said...

They need to just get rid of haste altogether. I don't know, maybe I'm just a grumpy old man, but it seems like the game has a slight case of ADD and needs to slow down a bit. Just my personal preference I guess, but it'd be nice if they'd stop the whole "flavor of the month" with stats. I quit playing my holy pally because they wanted them to "value" mp5 more, thus nerfing mana regen via illumination.

lissanna said...

Celestial focus basically costs resto druids 4 points. I have, however worked out a "tank" healing build with CF, and a "raid" healing build with CF, but it's hard to get a well-rounded build with CF.

IT seems much better to just select new gear options based on haste, rather than trying to force your current gear set to have more haste.

As you progress your character from this point, pick gear (like weapons) that are heavy-haste, and pass on items that are crit-heavy and don't have haste (Especially if they aren't set piece items).

I usually put orange gems in yellow slots, so SP/Haste gems make sense in those sockets, but I wouldn't gem a red socket with SP/Haste.

Delleyntar said...

SO After respeccing into CF, and i changed 5 gems ( I replaced some 12 SP + 10 Intel gems with 12 SP & 10 Haste gems) and my +34 Intel gem with 34 Haste gem, Im at 647 Haste. And now i feel like Im having a mana problem! i lost only about 200 Intel from my pool, and granted my Haste catches up somewhat with the GCD, but i think im healing faster than what my mana can regen.....I dont know if it was the raid make up last night, but after the 2nd trash pull with a Bone guy in 25 ICC, i felt like i needed to stop to drink, when in the past during like Uld Trash pulls i could keep on going to the boss w.o drinking.....could losing the extra Intel be the problem? Im at a loss and its frustrating!!!!

Forreststump said...

Yes, Bell you replied to the Anonymous already. But I couldn't help but notice:

"Random speculation with no supporting math or empirical data is not analysis."

Yet, Anonymous had no supporting math or empirical data either. Pot, meet kettle?

Kin said...

I was going to make the point of having a few ranged stack up on the Saurfang but I see someone already stated that.

On the Haste. With hand wavey arguments it's easily possible to argue the other way. The last 20 points of spell power are much more likely to be overheal than the first 20 points you spent.

Haste vrs Sp arguments are very player and fight specific. It's about whether you want a large spread who you heal or you want fewer people healed with more healing on them. I don't think there is a one size fits all answer here except that we value haste much more than we did previously. I think haste becomes better for us at higher gear levels.

For me personally I think I've got about 5 haste gems losing about 95 sp for it (Making more socket bonuses than I used to). I've swapped the 258 crit leather boots for 239 haste boots from FL+4 and that about it. I'm hitting 800 haste and have decided against CF prefering 4 more points in resto.

I'm valuing haste on a 1:1 basis with SP. Raid buffed I think I've gone from 3650 sp to 3550 sp.

Personally I'm really glad for the 3.3 changes. It makes the gear choices a bit more interesting, although the lack of spirt/haste items in ICC is worrying.

BTW love the blog.

Anonymous said...


According to Hamlet's spreadsheet haste will give slightly better throughput in a 5*RJ,WG rotation than SP in terms of iLvl. When it comes to direct heals, Regrowth and Nourish, haste vastly outscales SP.


Bell said...

@Anonymous - I'd be very interested in seeing a link to this spreadsheet; I've just started playing around with them on my hunter.

I've never been a fan of them for healing, but I'd like to see what it has to say.

Anonymous said...


Its somewhat clunky to plug in your own stats, so make sure to save after using.

When comparing SP to haste in terms of HPS on the spreadsheet, remember 1 SP != 1 Haste. To find an approximate iLvl value simply multiply by epic gem values, so SP*23 and haste*20.

Bell said...

@Anonymous - Thanks very much! Like I said, I'm not big on spreadsheets for healers, but I've been wrong before.

I'll have to take a look at it after I'm done packing/going home/embarrassing myself during TF2 free weekend.

Orbitz said...

Hmm... I stand by regemming some of gear for haste, I believe in balance as well! Haste = Strong, if your not gemming for haste you are seriously hurting your heals. Druids never needed huge amounts of sp to be affective, but if our speed is cut and we aren't able to blanket effectively then honestly the druid should be replaced in the raid.

Short = Druids never needed HUGE spellpower to be good healers but our fast ability to blanket HoT's give us a spot in raids.

Orbitz said...

An important thing to remember for a resto or moonkin and having so much haste is that you CANNOT spam till your fingers fall off, there is a balance that needs to be maintained, if you are finding yourself OOM in ICC; your group is not pushing enough DPS and/or you are spamming too much.

Beartoucher said...

Ok, So your reasoning for not regeming haste is that rejuv's throughput is increased by spell power more than anything else. Gemming haste would only get you a little more benefit on getting to that GCD minimum.

Unless you glyphed rapid rejuv...
Then your rejuv's throughput would be directly related to your haste, and you would be able to lay more of them out (on less people before the first one ticks out).

A 5xRejuv+WG rotation gives you 15 people getting your love in 18 sec. Unless you're not haste capped, then you're either doing 4x+WG, or 5x, and messing up your 18sec rotation.

If your raid is taking damage though, and your rejuvs aren't topping them off, then you are blowing a GCD on giving them something else to top off with, or expecting to have someone else pick up the slack.

And all of that is fine... unless your hot rotation isn't topping them off. Then you're just slowly killing them.

So if the damage throughput is exceeding your heal throughput, increasing single target heals would be more beneficial to you, considering they stay alive and kill the boss so you get loot.

Which is where Rapid Rejuv would come in. And haste. Lots of haste. And maybe even holding onto that 4piece bonus from t9.
(I have no numbers, just thoughts running through my head.)

I think heroic ICC is going to have a lot of raid damage for us. And as always, a lot of movement. However, the encounters haven't been run enough for us to know exactly what we're putting up with, so we don't know if having more rejuv throughput on less people, or less rejuv throughput on more people will be better.

I'd like to see someone run the gemming numbers on glyph of rapid rejuv. I'd imagine that if encounters need us to glyph it, they probably need us to gem to haste cap too (or maybe even beyond).

Nefaruis said...

Hey Bell,

Hope everything is going well for you and Merry Christmas!

This is probably going to be lengthy so bare with me.

You are correct and the math is correct that haste to cap will always be more beneficial than SP. But, it only by a small margin. The idea is not to overload your gear going in one direction while completely ignoring the true power in a resto druid grabbing more SP. You do have to remember that Bell is writing this for all levels of druids both ICC 25 hard modes and the level 79 getting ready for the leap to the world at 80.

I haste capped using CF and thats how I'm running today. My gear will eventually catch up to the elvels required to spec out but until then I use this method. Once I do hit haste cap I am debating on whether I will respec still.

All math aside your highest HPS is only determined by 2 things for druids. 1) how many hots can you have rolling simultaneously and 2) how much damage is the raid actually taking. No matter how many sims you run on optimal spell rotations and stat allocations healing is not and never will be a role that relies as heavily on the math as dps or tanking. It simply has too many human factors in it for the math to be reliable anyways.

With that said


Haste to GCD cap is just as important as it was before teh gotem change. We geared for it then and we should gear for it now. As long as the game mechanics are your limiting factor you are golden.

I was able to put together a rather nice haste set where I actually gained SP and only had to use 1 haste/SP gem more than I already had. Unfortunately I did this at the loss of some regen but since I was swimming in mana before it's nothing I can't cover with a mana pot and innervates.

Haste to gcd cap is still the way to go if you are in a raiding roll that requires it.

SP is just as beneficial if you are not in a min/max or die situation.

Ben said...

Your post is really frustrating, because while you're clearly a capable healer, your explaination is basically just "it doesn't seem worth it to me".

Math? Theorycraft? Regemming haste does alot more than change the GCD. Your rejuvs tick faster, and every non-instant you have casts faster. So... any reason other than your instincts?

Bell said...

As an important note, please be aware that this is probably the worst thing I've ever written. I'm not removing it because people have discussed some important things in the comments. I am, however, working on a rewrite that is being slowed down by the holidays. You can keep reading this and writing comments, but please be aware that much of it needs revision, clarification, deletion and editing.

Forreststump said...

Gear may well get to the soft cap, WITHOUT gemming for haste, and without speccing into Celestial Focus. I'm now in the ~720 haste ballpark with ZERO haste gems. With Wrath of Air and Imp Moonkin up, plus GotEM but no CF, what does that translate to?

1.023 GCD. 23ms short of 1 second.

Once even minimal lag is considered - is gemming the rest of the way to 814 haste rating really going to make a difference, trading away 115 SP in the process? T10 and similar ilvl gear will cover the rest of the gap.

My first piece of advice to resto druids running ICC: Get the staff that drops from Deathbringer Saurfang on 10-man. INT/STAM/SPI, plus equip bonuses of SP and HASTE. How much haste? ~130. Nearly one-sixth of the total haste required to reach 1-second GCD - in ONE SLOT.

My personal experience thus far says that wasting the gold and SP to get to 814 will grant ZERO benefit.

Anonymous said...


This isn't the worst post in the world and don't beat yourself up for it. You placed yourself in a visual position and that's a lot more than what most (including myself) do. No one will ever be absolutely correct and to spend excessive work on your own trying to come up with the end all solution is a waste of time. Its much better to have discussion among your peers to come about with the best solution. What you said about not gemming for haste does have some merit and should not be entirely disregarded and this is why I believe that is so.

I'm not sure how into DPS you all are, so if you already know this sorry for the explanation. As DPS your goal is to get hit capped through gear, not gems or items that only have hit on them. The same should go for resto druids attempting to reach haste cap. You do this for two reasons...

First off, items have diminishing stat returns...check out low level items, there's a lvl 25req 2h mace that can either have 25str or 13str and 13agi (1 extra stat zomg). The more of one stat you have on an item, the more iLvl of the item that stat eats up. So what you want to do is find items that have a combination of useful stats to abuse this as much as possible. With the position resto druids are in right now with SP and haste being nearly equal, we are in a prime position to abuse the hell out of this.

Second, gems are immune to what I just stated. They aren't restricted by diminishing returns, so you want to push your primary stat as much as possible unless you can pickup a good socket bonus that usually has enough primary stat to compensate.

If you are under 735 haste, then you are in a temporary position in gear where haste comes out slightly ahead of SP. Does that mean switch out all your gems to haste? No. In fact, if you go with 12SP/10H orange gems you gain 1 SP out of the deal.

Finally, remember hitting haste cap will only give you full benefit in 25 raids. Also, its not worth breaking T9 4p for the extra potential haste in 2 pieces of gear to reach haste cap.


Anonymous said...

Well yes this posts philoshopy was quite wrong and I thought “ bah another ignorant player who thinks writing a blog and having instintcs makes him special” when I first saw this.Yet you have a gift most of people don’t: the ability to criticise yourself and back off when you are wrong instead of going all “THAT WORKS TOO!”. As you said in another post : “you shouldn’t setle with good enough “

Which brigs me to CF specs…I am a tree in a top World 40 guild, so I usually have access to best gear available. I worked on the incoming hardmode loot and even before HMs become available it’s quite possible to hit 856 + haste without gemming haste. (922 is possible if I remember correctly) So the question is not about haste cap is needed or not it is to go for 850 ish+ and respec out of CF or just hitting 756 and stay with CF? Personally I am really annoyed with wasting all those points in balance tree to be able to get CF and skipping stuff here and there in resto tre efor that. Be it Living Seed , more regen, Empoewered Touch or Revitalize, that’s where I feel I’m being gimped, not lacking some SP or crit. So what I aim is to get enough haste and spec out of CF, never looking back.

Erdluf said...

For math on the relative value of Haste (from a PlusHeal post). This is for Rejuv spam, and assumes zero lag.

Relative value of HR is (1690 + 1.88*1.2*SP)/3279 / (1.88*1.2*(1+HR/3279)).

That formula is close to 1.0 when your buffed SP is about 2500 more than your haste rating, meaning at that point HR and SP are worth about the same, point for point. That formula reaches 1.2 if your buffed SP is roughly 3200 to 3400 more than your haste rating. At that point you'd prefer to gem for Haste.

Although top-end raiders may be reaching the 4k+ SP needed to make gemming haste worthwhile, most of us aren't there yet.

Anonymous said...

HI there.
So, it seems then that haste is good.
The question now is, what gear is required to get 735 haste (the soft cap apparently, I have no idea how people worked that out).
My toon is as linked:

Its fairly well equipped. I dont have mana issues, and innervate hasnt been touched for over a week now. Having said that, my haste is sitting at 471, and thats WITH the Mag'hari Cheiftain's Staff.

As for my glyphs"
I've decided to try combining the glyph of rapid rejuv with the glyph of rejuv, reasoning that when (not if) people drop to low health, my rejuv that I've got ticking on them will be better than anything else out there to bring them back up quickly when we're running at high damage across the board.
Normally I'm overhealing a lot, but I tend to ignore that..who cars about overheals so long as people stay alive, right? SOme people would complain that its wasted mana-
well, true, but I dont even use innervate now, so I dont worry. Spam rejuv, regrowth, wild growth, and nourish.

But..haste. How to get it, what items?

Anonymous said...


tenzin said...

i am not super gear or anything..just doing 25man icc.. and from what i have seen... haste cap is only needed if you are only resto druid/raid healer in raid(which will never happen). even then i think its just overheal... when in raid you have to hot up 15 people at once... i cant think of that many fight that u need to hot up the whole raid..and when you do.. you gonna have shammy/another tree. unless u do 25man with 1 raid healer... in which case.. its fail raid anyway...

also think about the point behind soft haste cap... A 5xRejuv+WG rotation gives you 15 people... and with that rotation u will go omm before boss is 25%...

anyway maybe its the way i heal.... 25man=3tank+6healer+16dps
since i am raid healer... i am healing 16people... with WG cover 6/7 mellee... i only hot up 6/7 with rejuv... so being haste cap is just over kill.. i think

Anonymous said...


I mainly heal 10 man raids and finding that at 681 haste im in the zone where im unsure whether to gem for haste replacing my much loved 12sp 10 int gems (i know not the most common choice but i have trouble with mana and find the value of 10 int greater then spirit but i digress) to 12sp and 10 haste gems in order to get closer to the haste cap after reading this blog i can see the value in reaching haste cap but im still not convinced if anyone can provide me a link to some hard math on the value of haste.. considering i only have a holy pally healing with me and rearly have a shaman totem or boomkin/ret pally.. also i find that the lose of the 5 points in the resto tree (I dont have natures grace in my spec finding the vlaue low) i run the Rapid rejuv WG and nourish as my glyph choice though going to be dropping WG in favor of SW...

Sorry for the incoherants rambling if it makes sence any help would be muchly appriciated

Tim said...

I'm a relatively new WoW player (~4 months in), and am really enjoying a) this blog b) this post in particular. I've spent a fair amount of time reading the various other usual suspects (elitistjerks, wowforums, random blogs, etC), and it has def helped my game. My toon is http://www.wowarmory.com/character-sheet.xml?r=Rexxar&cn=Normdeplume

I'm currently the main healer in an ICC 10 core group, and since I seem to be the "go to" guy for the group I'm always trying to up my game. That being said, here's my question for those who are in the "don't gem haste" camp: What is the haste floor? Is there a value that, if you were below it, you would gem for haste? I understand that as haste approaches cap, you're talking about extremely finite differences is timing, but at the earlier stages, it makes a huge difference.

So where would you say the cut off is?