Items and Equipment, Macros, Obsolete, Spells and Talents
This article became obsolete as of Patch 2.4. For Innervate optimization techniques relevant as of 2.4, please see 2.4 Mana Regen: Getting the Most out of Innervate.
Most long time players of the druid class can remember a time when raiding druids were required to spec 31-points into Restoration, if only to pick up that most priest-coveted of talents, Innervate:
This requirement was much to the chagrin of our feral brethren and was one of the factors that contributed to the feral spec’s lack of endgame viability or acceptance. It was therefore a much-celebrated blessing when Blizzard made the decision to make this formerly talented-skill trainable by all druids.
Today, most Balance and Feral druids freely bestow their Innervate on the most needful members of their raid, healers whose mana level often determines the success of an encounter. But for a Restoration druid, Innervate is generally reserved for oneself. And with much of the endgame itemization lacking in spirit (upon which Innervate’s mana return is based), many Restoration druids are finding that their ability doesn’t stretch as far as it used to. There are, however, some nice tricks that can help.
There are very few druid usable weapons having 15 or more Spirit, and these weapons aren’t always ideal to be used at all times. Luckily, weapons and offhands are the two slots that can be changed even while in combat, and adding a weapon-swap to your Innervate macro can be one of the easiest ways to increase its efficiency. Here are a few weapons that I recommend for this purpose:
- [Serpentcrest Life-Staff]: 27 STA, 27 INT, 46 SPI, 227 +Healing; drops from Mekgineer Steamrigger of Steamvault.
- [Staff of Divine Infusion]: 23 INT, 50 SPI, 194 +Healing; world drop, easily purchaseable for around 50g on the Auction House
- [Nightstaff of the Everliving]: 33 STA, 34 INT, 55 SPI, 348 +Healing; drops from Nightbane in Karazhan. This staff is probably good enough to be used full time, but it’s relatively easy to acquire for any Kara-capable guild and could serve as a weapon swap item far beyond Karazhan.
- [Dathrohand's Ceremonial Hammer]:13 STA, 14 INT, 18 SPI, 227 +Healing, one-handed mace; Drops from Captain Skarloc in Heroic Old Hillsbrad. While the spirit on this item is lower than on the staves listed above, it frees your offhand for a [Draenei Crystal Rod of Spirit], a level 70 green item that has 32 Spirit additional spirit.
Whether you choose a 1-hander or 2-hander, have it enchanted with Mighty Spirit, a +20 Spirit bonus acquired from Honored with Thorium Brotherhood. You can then use an addon such as Evocation2 to automatically change to your highest Spirit weapon or weapon + offhand for the duration of your Innervate.
Alternatively — if you prefer to run with as few UI addons as possible — you could set up a macro to perform your weapon swap:
/cast [target=player] Innervate /equip Nightstaff of the Everliving
Note that the above macro will prevent you from accidentally innervating someone else. To make this macro allow you to Innervate your target when you hold down CTRL, simply change the macro as follows:
/cast [modifier:ctrl] Innervate; [target=player] Innervate /equip [nomodifier] Nightstaff of the Everliving
If you opt for the macro’d weapon swap, you should also create a second button that swaps you back to your original weapon(s).
To determine how much additional mana you will gain from the addition of a weapon or a weapon and offhand item, use the following formula (which assumes you have the 3-point Living Spirit talent):
((SPI * 1.15) / 4.5) * 50
Applying this formula to the weapons listed above:
- [Serpentcrest Life-Staff]: 46 SPI + 20 SPI = 66 SPI = 843 mana
- [Staff of Divine Infusion]: 50 SPI + 20 SPI = 70 SPI = 894 mana
- [Nightstaff of the Everliving]: 55 SPI + 20 SPI = 75 SPI = 958 mana
- [Dathrohand's Ceremonial Hammer] and [Draenei Crystal Rod of Spirit]: 18 SPI + 32 SPI + 20 SPI = 70 SPI = 894 mana
Bangle of Endless Blessings
The [Bangle of Endless Blessings] drops from Warp Splinter, the final boss in Botanica. It can drop in both normal and Heroic modes, but obviously is easier to farm in normal. Botanica is unique in that you can skip any bosses that you aren’t interested in drops from, making this item particularly easy to farm.
In addition to the amazing proc on this item (approximately once per minute), applying the formula outlined above works out to approximately 1660 additional mana, assuming the druid has all three ranks of the Living Spirit talent. Because trinkets cannot be swapped in during combat, you must plan ahead to have this item equipped if you don’t intend to use it at all times. Then add its use to your Innervate macro as shown below:
/script UIErrorsFrame:Hide() /use Bangle of Endless Blessings /script UIErrorsFrame:Clear(); UIErrorsFrame:Show() /cast [target=player] Innervate
The “/script UIErrorsFrame:Hide()” and “/script UIErrorsFrame:Clear(); UIErrorsFrame:Show()” lines above are optional but are useful for hiding the “item cannot be used” errors that automatically occur when you don’t have your Bangle equipped.With only the Bangle and the [Staff of Divine Infusion], you can get an additional 3555 mana back from your Innervate. That’s 500 more mana than a maximized [Super Mana Potion] on every boss encounter (2 if the fight goes much longer than 6 minutes). And all it takes is a few runs through Botanica and a 50 gold Auction House expenditure … plus however much it costs you to get your new weapon enchanted with 20 Spirit.
As a reader-suggested addendum, I’m also including discussion of the Masquerade Gown:
Although the proc rate is unconfirmed, the 145 Spirit works out to about 1297 mana (the 15 second effect would only be effective for at most 7 of 10 Innervate ticks). At first glance, this seems like a substantial bonus. However, while this robe can proc an additional 150 spirit, it has no inherent Spirit of its own. Compare this to the the [Primal Mooncloth Robe] which has 20 Spirit of its own (256 mana returned during Innervate) in addition to the +5% mana regeneration while casting set bonus. (Admittedly, this item is only available to druids who have maxxed tailoring and chosen the Mooncloth specialty.)
Another downside to the Masquerade Gown is that you have to wait for a proc to use Innervate. When you most need it to proc, you’ll be nearly out of mana, and the robe only procs from spellcasting. Finally, unlike a weapon which can be swapped in after Innervate has elapsed or a trinket that can contribute as much over time as the Bangle can, the Masquerade Gown must be worn the entire duration of the fight and the +150 Spirit would really only be useful if it procs around the time you need to Innervate (at other times, it grants 15 seconds of +43 healing assuming Tree of Life + Living Spirit). Still, for all its limitations, this is a great Healing chest if you don’t happen to be a Mooncloth-specialized tailor (it certainly doesn’t hurt that it looks amazing).