This will just be a quick post to share some information about the three “Gold Medal” skills on the Resto Shaman artifact tree. Now that the 110 premade realm is available, I was able to play around with a fully empowered artifact weapon, and I thought I’d make my findings available here to assist other theorycrafters in evaluating these traits.
Sharas’dal, Scepter of Totally Not Anything to Do with Azshara Anymore I Swear
Please remember that artifact weapon traits and tuning are very tentative at this early stage in the Alpha. Many of these numbers will change, and it’s possible we might see some of the effects removed or reworked entirely.
Decree of the Queen
The Decree of the Queen artifact trait creates a HoT effect named Queen’s Decree on players healed by your Healing Stream Totem.
The HoT ticks three times for 50% Spell Power per tick, for a total of 150% additional Spell Power. Since a single tick of Healing Stream Totem is 70% Spell Power, this makes each tick of Healing Stream Totem over twice as strong, resulting in a theoretical 215% buff to Healing Stream Totem.
However, a couple of things hold this back:
- Unlike Healing Stream Totem itself, Queen’s Decree does not currently benefit from Mastery.
- Queen’s Decree is also unaffected by Critical Strike.
- If Healing Stream Totem heals the same target twice before that player’s first Queen’s Decree is expired, the HoT is overwritten, which can result in some loss of healing.
It is unclear which of these are bugs and which are intended behaviour.
Queen’s Decree is not affected by Haste (e.g. it maintains its 2-second tick timer and never delivers more than 3 ticks of the HoT). This creates some minor Haste breakpoints, since once you get enough Haste to create an additional tick of Healing Stream Totem, you’ll get another full Queen’s Decree buff along with it, no matter the size of that partial HST tick. But if Queen’s Decree itself benefited from Haste the way normal HoTs do, then it would definitely be double-dipping on Haste. So I think for right now, this is not a bug – but it’s an open question as to how exactly Haste and Queen’s Decree should interact.
I’ll note that currently, the spell data on Wowhead claims Queen’s Decree should be healing for 25% of Spell Power per tick, which would be a little more reasonable (and only a 107.5% buff to Healing Stream Totem). I’m definitely getting 50% Spell Power per tick, though, so I’m not sure if this is bugged, or if there is another effect that doubles its throughput that I’ve somehow missed.
The Cumulative Upkeep artifact trait is very straightforward. Each tick of Healing Tide Totem increases the subsequent tick by 10%. The only important thing to note here is that the buff is additive, not multiplicative; the first tick does X, the second tick does 1.1X, the third tick does 1.2X, etc. With no Haste, then, our total HTT healing increases from 6X per player to 7.5X per player, for a 25% increase to our CD’s throughput.
With Haste, we get a little more out of this; on the 110 PvP realm, where I have 6.63% Haste, for example, this ends up as a 27% increase to HTT healing.
Do note, however, that as a general rule players’ health will increase over the duration of our HTT, reducing the effectiveness of our Mastery. The Cumulative Upkeep buff helps to balance this effect out, and I’ll do some math later on exactly how that changes the power of this trait.
The Tidal Pools trait will sometimes create a Tidal Totem when you cast Riptide. Contrary to what the tooltip states, this Tidal Totem currently spawns at the casting Shaman’s feet, not at the feet of the Riptide target. This is likely a bug.
The Totem can only spawn from the initial cast of Riptide, from my testing experience, and has around a 15% chance to spawn. (15 Tidal Totems were summoned from 93 Riptide casts in my dungeon tests.)
The Tidal Totem heals players within a small radius for 20% of your Spell Power every second, and it lasts for 6 seconds. I have no information yet on whether there is a cap on the number of players healed with each Tidal Totem pulse. If we manage to get, say, 3 total players standing in our Tidal Totem (it’s quite a small radius, but I haven’t worked out exactly how small yet), this results in 360% of our Spell Power in healing.
That’s 65% additional healing from our Riptide cast, but remember, there’s only a 15% chance of that happening, so our real benefit (assuming 3 players are being healed every time we spawn a Tidal Totem) is about 9.75% throughput on Riptide. If we’re so lucky as to have a whole Mythic Raid sans tanks in our Tidal Totem every time, like on some extreme Norushen-style stack fight, we’re looking at more like a 60% throughput increase to Riptide.
The strength of this trait really depends upon the radius of the Tidal Totems and where we can spawn them.
Tidal Totem’s healing can Crit, and its tick rate is affected by Haste. The healing of each tick is not currently increased by our Mastery. Whether that is intended or a bug is difficult to say.
I give the Gold Medal Gold Medal to Queen’s Decree at the moment. With Rushing Streams, the Wavecrash trait, Echo of the Elements, and the currently-proposed tier 19 set bonus all increasing the power or flexibility of our Healing Stream Totem, it just seems as though Queen’s Decree is going to work the hardest for us.
Silver Medal Gold Medal goes to Cumulative Upkeep, because increasing the throughput of our raid CD is always going to be desirable. For now, the Tidal Pools Gold Medal takes home the Bronze.😉