Life in Group 5 – A Resto Shaman Blog
A resto shaman perspective on raiding

How To

February 24, 2011

Making Telluric Currents Work for You


Although a hot topic of debate around the release of Patch 4.0 and again upon the release of Cataclysm, the fuss regarding Telluric Currents has settled down over the past months as Restos shifted their focus onto new content and onto more pressing issues. But, the still waters of discussion belie the harsh undercurrent of sentiment; players still seem to be rigidly divided on the talent, with some declaring it “mediocre at best” while others (like myself) consider it “essential for the raiding shaman”. The questions that divide the two camps: “Is it really a mana positive spell?” and, more importantly, “Should it be something that raiding restos actually use?”

The recent hotfix applied to Resto Shaman went a long way to normalizing output between healers and addressing some of the concerns that have been raised about shaman healing. But in addition to throughput issues, shaman have also been struggling to keep up in the mana regen department as well. Patch 4.0.6’s nerf to Mana Tide has put some shaman in an even tighter place, mana-wise, with little wiggle room between full mana and OOM. Thankfully, the Purification buff will go some of the ways towards saving shamans’ mana pools by increasing our Healing-per-Mana across the board. But my friends, let’s not forget that there’s another way to ease the mana pinch, and it lies in Tier 4 of your Resto talent tree.

The Specifics

Introduced with the talent tree overhauls prior to 4.0, Telluric Currents is one of those talents that actually is as simple as it sounds:

Your attunement to natural energies causes your Lightning Bolt spell to restore mana equal to 40% of damage dealt.

When it was first released on Restos the world over, it was met with some very harsh criticism, with players declaring that LB regen was not a model that complimented Shamans’ style of play, which centers on long cast times and set-up sequences (like RT + [x] or RT + UE + [x]). More so, the fact that it was an active regen talent (as opposed to a passive one, like Divine Plea or Shadowfiend) led players to worry that shaman would become an even greater hybrid, walking a line between pure dps and pure healing. In response to the fuss, Ghostcrawler stuck his neck out to establish Blizzard’s position on the talent:

We want Telluric Currents to be optional. It won’t be an effective way to restore your mana, but it might make you feel less guilty about throwing out a Lightning Bolt in a world where mana is more precious. (Source)

But, as they say, no good deed goes unpunished, and as much as the community was ready to accept GC at his word, as WotLK came to a close and Cataclysm opened its doors, raiding shaman started to discover that Telluric Currents was far from the “mana-neutral” way of contributing to the DPS of the group or raid team. It actually constituted a viable form of regen, separate and distinct from the gains through Water Shield and Mana Tide, and it was a darn good amount of regen at that.

You Want Numbers? I Got Your Numbers Right Here!

Now I can imagine what you’re thinking after reading that last statement; I can imagine the objections and questions bubbling forth in your mind, because when I first started exploring how best to use TC, those thoughts were in my mind too.

  1. How much regen does it give?
  2. Does the return justify the 2 seconds you spend casting that LB?
  3. How does Resto Shamans’ lack of hit impact that return over the course of a fight?
  4. Can I really spare the time to regen like that?

The answers to these questions: 1) 1500-1600 mana on average in 365 ilvl gear on fights without damage modifiers; 2) yes; 3) it has a minor impact; and 4) yes (again). Now that we’ve cleared that up, let’s move on …

Okay, I jest, I jest. No LiG5 post would be complete if I didn’t throw in some evidence to back up my outrageous and crazy claims, and today is no exception. Now, when looking at these numbers, you will need to bear in mind that I’m sitting at an average equipped ilvl of 367, with 7729 spellpower under my t11 belt. (When I was doing this testing on the beta, prior to release of Cataclysm the results were actually right in line with current performance). The following table details a sampling of parses over the past several weeks of performance and shows the amount of regen gained through TC on each encounter:

Example Telluric Currents Returns in Tier 11 Raid Content (Yes this data is from my OWN logs)

Now, it’s important to note that these gains are not attributable to a special “TC-focused spec” like 7/2/32; they’re all done using my standard 2/7/32 spec with 2/2 TC. In addition, I’m not using blocks of time to regen; most times, my LB casts will be woven in with my other healing duties on the fight. When there are low-damage times on an encounter (like during Maloriak’s blue vial phase), I’ll make sure to let my teammates know that I’m taking a moment to throw out a couple LB’s.

Hopefully, what this demonstrates is that even on fights that *do not* include constant or significant damage modifiers (fights other than Halfus and Magmaw), Resto Shaman still stand to gain a solid amount of mp5 provided that they find the time to work TC into their rotation. And this gain will only improve as gear levels increase and the differential between the cost of LB and its total damage increases.

Making the Most of Who and When

Now that we’ve covered the “why” behind TC application, it’s time to discuss the “who” and “when”, because in any encounter, there are opportune and inopportune times to toss out a couple LB’s. When the tank is about to take massive spike damage = BAD. When there’s a transition and the boss isn’’t hitting anyone = GOOD! The following list details those times that I’ve identified, through the past months of raiding, where an LB cast will likely have the biggest payoff or the least impact.

Bastion of Twilight

  • Halfus – When any of the drake adds dies, they place a damage modifier debuff on Haflus. For this reason, I’ll drop my tide very early and use TC later in the fight so that I have enough mana to keep HR down during roar.
  • Valiona – Transitions are a great time to work in a couple LBs. In addition, because of the damage bonus from Engulfing Magic, it can be beneficial to throw out a couple LB’s while affected (and obviously, standing away from your teammates).
  • Ascendant Council – You’ll have to be careful when to throw out dps, but should you ever get “Burning Blood” in Phase 1, then a couple LBs on Feludius will give you mana bar a nice boost.
  • Cho’gall – I’d highly recommend working in your LB’s when Cho’gall is over 30%, because once he drops into Phase 2 and starts spawning tentacles, you’ll need to devote your full attention to healing.

Blackwing Descent

  • Omnotron Council – In addition to providing an extra boost of regen, Power Generator pools also increase the damage you do, so tossing out a couple LB’s while in one can boost your regen significantly. Otherwise, just have care to dps the correct target, lest you trigger a one of the golems’ shields.
  • Magmaw – Since Magmaw takes more damage when impaled, save your LB casts for that time to maximize your return.
  • Maloriak – Timing your LB on this fight can be tricky, so I stick predominantly to phase transitions. Also, do note that when Maloriak spews Debilitating Slime during green phase, he’s also be affected with the debuff as well, so your LB will do 100% more damage to him (and you’ll reap the TC rewards).
  • Chimaeron – Timing on this encounter is really based on your healing assignment; if you’re assigned to the Double-Attack tank, you can weave in LBs right before the next double-attack, whereas if you’re assigned to a group, you’ll likely want to save your LBs for the times in between slime spits (after everyone is above 10k, of course).
  • Atramedes – Spiritwalker’s Grace can be an amazing tool to use to toss out a few LB’s during Atramedes’ air phase; the ability to cast while moving allows you to dodge Sonar Pulses while getting in some good regen.
  • Nefarian – Because I often drop tide near the end of phase 1, I typically utilize TC regen on the platforms (either to push Nef or the adds, after dropping a Healing Rain and some RTs to keep my group topped) or in between Lighting Machine casts Phase 3.

Conclave of Wind

  • Conclave – Since the Nature platform is where I spend most of my time, I get in my LB regen during Anshal’s ultimate.
  • Al’Akir – Using your LB’s in Phase 2, when Al’Akir is affected by Feedback, to see a boost in your LB’s damage and thus, your return from TC as well.

In the end, the timing of your own TC regen becomes a matter of personal judgment. But it also becomes a function of practice as well; the more you work at finding those 2 sec intervals where you can throw out an LB, the more likely you are to notice them in the future.

But, but … I’m a Healer

Yes, we’re all healers, and so it’s natural (and pretty much expected) that we get huffy at the thought of doing something other than healing. Most of us don’t like doing interrupts, we hate doing the crappy kite job (or being the healer who gets to run after the other guy doing the crappy kite job), and our fingers literally twitch in response to seeing someone’s health decrease by even the slightest of amount. So, how is it that using a talent like Telluric Currents can be viewed as a necessary raiding practice? How is it that I can sit here and ask a healer to cast an LB instead of a heal?

Because the choice isn’t between (a) casting a heal or (b) casting a Lightning Bolt. The choice is between (a) NOT casting a heal or (b) casting a Lightning Bolt. (Oh yes, I have some Blue backup on this one)

Honestly, this is where I think that most Resto Shaman go awry with their understanding and application of Telluric Currents. (And maybe it’s in part due to the fact that we’re all still struggling to reconcile ourselves to the Cataclysm healing environment, after operating in the Wrath world where Always Be Casting was the golden rule). I will go so far as to suggest here that if you are a healer who, during an 8-minute fight, never makes a decision to NOT cast, then you’re doing something wrong. If you’re going into encounters with the recommended number of healers, spamming your heart out, and then claiming “oh there was no downtime, ever”, then something is amiss.

Every fight has downtime, either because your healing team creates it, or because it’s incorporated into the encounter. As shown in the preceding section, there are plenty of opportunities to incorporate an LB cast into your rotation, but only if you look for them. If you’ve ever cast a HW in a raid because “there’s not much damage going out” or because “I have nothing better to do”—NEWS FLASH—that’s your downtime! But you need to think of it in those terms. You need to first realize that there’s always a choice in front of you as a healer, and one of the options is to not heal. This is what triage is all about.

Once you recognize this, once you accept that letting a hot top someone off is a good practice, once you can grasp the idea that a 10k heal does not constitute vital healing, then you open the door to Telluric Currents and to the additional healing it offers. And believe you me, your mana bar will thank you.

Slider Image Credit: SupremeDarkling @ DeviantArt.


  1. Foxy

    Well said…I’ve been meaning to try out TC. Is there a suggested spec to follow?

  2. Vatra

    I raid 10s (bot on farm and currently on nef) and tbh TC is not very valuable. It may be in 25s where there are 4-5 other healers, and you can lay down hr and spam ch but in a 10 man situation, TC is simply a) unnecessary if you can properly manage your mana, and b) can be spent on much more valuable talents. In summation, not for 10s.

    • Kawaiidesu

      AS someone who also plays resto shaman in 10s (just finished progression, 12/12) I can say that TC is pretty viable, if not more so in 10s than 25s. Considering every boss has a few moments where you can cast a few LB’s the bonus in mana you notice will be pretty big.. On magmaw when his head is exposed it can take you from 5% mana to full (not that you should have a problem healing that xD). Any time the group lusts, you can get a pretty amazingly large amount of mana back if there isnt substantial damage recieved at the time..

    • First, the only sacrifice I make to pick up TC is 1 point in Acuity (1% crit). Since 250 – 1800 mp5 > 179 crit rating, the loss is clearly justified. (Hell, the points in Blessing of Eternals are more questionable of an investment–how often do players in your raids drop below 35% HP, hrm?)

      Second, you’ve presented the fundamental philosophy that I’m trying to argue against. I think I’ve clearly illustrated that TC offers a good amount of regen for little investment, at no healing loss, and yet what you’re suggesting is a basic “L2P” argument I see so often when players argue against TC. (It bears mentioning that most of those argument come from players who haven’t stepped into hard modes, nonetheless the latter ones where you will wind up OOM at 30% no matter your level of precise mana management).

      Ultimately, using TC is not a function of what you can or cannot do with the resources at hand; it’s about using downtime efficiently. It’s not a crutch; it’s an opportunity.

  3. My 10 man team is currently running 10s and I have found TC to be an amazing talent. I would never leave home without it. Some fights I never use it but on others it is vital to me keeping up my mana. For example on Magmaw I can keep healing rain down 24/7 and never go below 60%.

    I have been experimenting with several different spec permutations. I really enjoy the hybrid dps playstyle. Hell on most boss fights where there isn’t much raid damage right off the start I do a lava burst, lightning bolt, shock, rotation until the raid needs me to heal. I can get up to 3-4K dps for the first 20-40 seconds of the fight or so which is nice on dps race fights. (for example on Maloriak before he goes into his first phase)

    I really like the play style of taking Elemental Precision, my mana regen is great with it and I can pull decent DPS. It also gives me the utility to do interrupts if the group needs it. On Maloriak the other night, I was healing, dpsing, interrupting, and purging. Had a blast :)

    I also experimented a bit with taking focused insight and doing a chain heal style rotation on the tank that was like this:

    ES -> Riptide -> Unleash Elements -> Flame Shock -> Chain Heal. I was able to get some pretty big chain heal crits with it but felt my rotation required too much lead in so I have since dropped focused insight.

    Tonight I raided with the Elemental Precision talent and tomorrow I am going to test out with Ancestral Swiftness to see how things change tomorrow.

    It is such a hard trade off, I wish I could have both! :)

    Overall I really love the TC aspect of shaman healing right now, it makes it unique and on most fights I am pulling competitive HPS while maintaining 1.5K DPS which obviously is a great boost to the raid. I also have been finding that with it my mana outlasts the other healers considerably.

    • Especially in a 10-man environment, the versatility that Elemental Precision allows you to offer your team is amazing. Having a healer who is not only capable of interrupts but reliable with them as well, is a godsend in an environment with little room for error.

  4. Soulmojo

    Again a well placed writing. The funny thing is that when we started raiding at the beginning of Cata, and we did Magmaw, a dps warrior suggested that there are phases where there is nothing to heal, and I should utilize the TC talent. I’m so glad that I explored the talent, because it is great. But what I do not understand is that why are fellow shamans put their head into the sand, and ignoring the talent, since it vital in some fights, as you explained Vixsin. Oh btw, you forgot to mention, that there is a possibility that you may die, and when you ressed then there might be no innervate or tide available, and you have literally no mana. It happened to me once or twice, and when I ressed, our healer officer told me that I should spend time regen. Then I started spamming LB-s to the boss, and in less than 30 sec I stood at higher mana which the other healers stood AND I helped dps down the boss, so my 30 sec was not totally wasted.
    So like you, I also see that it is an essential tool for raiding.

  5. Siouxsi

    I have been using TC from the beginning on your advice and find it invaluable in fights such as Magmaw, Halfus, V&T and Maloriak. Havent found much downtime in Chimaeron and Omnitron yet, but I am sure when we improve, the gaps in healing will appear!

    For anyone not taken it yet or not found time to use it, respec and give it a go. It really is all it is hyped up to be!

    Btw Vixsin, do you know how much your regen would be bossted by taking points in elemental precision? You have said minimal impact above. Do you think for people suffering from OOM it is a viable option, or just that they should learn to conserve mana better?



  6. Zafira

    I have entertained the idea of trying a TC spec, and while aware of the gear/content difference, I’ll be trying your spec for the rest of this raid week and comparing logs to last weeks to see the difference in WS/TS gains and other figures. While I can see the bonuses to the spec and function, I will have a difficult time adjusting to no insta-wolf, but won’t miss my one point in CW too much.

    The Only question I have for you is the choice of Convection 2 pts vs the Concussion 2 pts that you use. My tooltip reads 1405 cost for LB, and with convection that’d be 140 mana saved per cast, vice ( i’m assuming no tricky math here) 4% additional mana per cast. I know its not the ‘proper math’ rather rough math, but 4% of your 2896 as shown for your partial modifier is about 116 mana with the Concussion points. Yes, the number shoots up well for the high mod fights, but is there a choice as to when/why to take either of these sets of points over the other?

    • Grookshank

      There is no need to use either Convection or Concussion. I think it is a big mistake to give up healing tools for a TC specific spec and I think that is what Vix said here too. I use and you sure can debate about moving a point from Acuity to Blessing of the Eternals (depending on your raid size and role) and dropping the point in cleansing waters for a point in Ancestral Resolve, but that is about it.

      I want to strengthen Vixsin’s point from a 10man perspective (having “only” 7.1k SP): TC is very useful on some fights and if you don’t just throw random HWs around on others, you will in most cases find the time to throw out a few LB. If I encounter a hm where I absolutely can’t make use of it, I’ll move the points to Ancestral Resolve, but in my standard spec, it will stay for the time beeing.

  7. Richard

    I disagree with Vatra. I raid on 10s only and find that TC is tremendously valuable. To say that TC is unnecessary if you manage your mana is, in my opinion, not true at all. TC is being cast in your “free time” right? So you are not “sacrificing a GHW for a LB at any time. The mana you get back becomes raw extra healing output. You get what? 50k mana average net gain; that is 6.5 extra GHW, assuming 9k hp and cast time 1.5 sec, that 6.5k HPS gain. Which 2 talent points you’ll take instead of TC to give you more of a HPS increase? cuzz I’d want them too.

    As for not having time in 10s to cast LB. Transitions is a good time. But not only that, I usually manage to wave a LB in my rotations after a RT, GHW. Definitelly after a RT, instant GHW. If I drop a HR, I usually top a few ppl with one or two HWs and make sure at least im throwing a LB. The only reason I have not gone 7/3/32 or 5/5/32 is that a few times when I have tried, my lack of instant GW have cost me a death. And no amount of mana will ever convince me of risking an avoidable death. Nothing dips your HPS like dying :)

  8. Grook…..bro, there is never a need for taking Ancestral resolve ( that is PVP only tbh)…and you should NEVER drop a point in Acuity +1% crit is epic for a single point.

    Dropping Cleansing Waters and using that point is the way to go.

    Back on Topic, I raid 10m, and I love TC…its an absolute must talent.

    Sure the “math” on EJ says that its not worth it….but like all statistics, while they may not lie, they do not tell the whole truth either. If you cast it outside of one of the points Vix mentions above, then yes you run the risk of a few misses which may offset the costs…..but if you are doing it in those phases, especially +% dmg ones, then its never been a net loss for me. Having 30% Raid Crit also gives more bang for your buck to I very often see +8k Mana returns from this on these phases.

    Whenever I see a shaman not taking this talent I just /facepalm …..the key is to use it wisely, its not there for you to spam, but it is there for you to take advantage of.

    Learn to weave it into your play and you WILL notice a difference, regardless what raid size or content level you play in.


    • Ancestral Resolve’s impact in hard modes (especially if each member of your raid picks up equivalent damage reduction talents) is an excellent justification to invest the 2 points. Take, for example, our HM Ascendant Council kill last night–I took around 1.2M damage. With my 1 point investment in that talent, I took 60k less damage than I should have, or the equivalent of 2-3 Healing Surges. If everyone in raid elected for the 5% reduction, assuming that they took as much damage as I did, that’s ~375k mana saved. Still think it’s a worthless PVE talent?

      • LOL….thats what I get for posting first thing in the morning. I mistook AR for FI….Infact my own spec has a point in AR for that exact reason…..I was going for the PVP side of FI chaining shocks with heals.

        So to Recap, Take TC full 2 points, stick a point in AR (or 2 if you want to take them from elsewhere).


  9. Luuma

    I use TC since approx. 4-5 ID’s, and i think (beside of the damage modifier fights) you have not so much time spending for casting LB, maybe my gear is also not so good for it (357), or maybe oure ‘premium’ damagedealer tend to receive every bit of damage they can (10 man), so i have not realy time for it. Atramedes? there is enough to heal for me, Cho’gal? no realy time (maybe only when the Addtank returnas to chogal and there is a red elemental), and so one.

    But thanks for pointing that with the Buff on Valiona, did not think about it. I have no realy mana issues in most of the fights, maybe beside Chimaron, Chogal and Nef (tried once Halfus HC, that was realy brutal).

    I think that these talent will grow constantly stronger, and will get even bertter with every new tier of gear coming. Maybe we will laugh at 4.3 release about our doubt we have at the beginning, who knows.

  10. Su

    I use a TC build, however only 1/2. This is because of requirements to cleanse and use of 1/2 in the baby heal to cleanse to help also reduce mana cost for me. Our pallies aren’t/won’t spec into cleanse and often I am the only person able to cleanse in 10 and pick up a lot in 25 as backup even if we have priests with us. I don’t use it as often as I should(mainly due to healing so much and composition/strengths of our healing team). This outline helps see some more opportunities to use it without feeling the worry of letting my healing slack. Even with one point I can get some very good mana back if boss has a damage buff. Question arises though if I should bother at other times. Is it mana regen enough with 1/2 points at other times when boss doesn’t have a damage increase modifier/buff? Does anyone know? I works excellent on Magmaw and even on Argaloth with only one. Will look at using it more on Maloriak but was curious for others. Currently I use the engulfing magic to buff heals and bring people back up as that fight is still not quite ‘pure farm’ for us on 25. Thoughts? Am I crazy to only have 1/2 knowing I use it less but still gain when I do use it?

    • At 1/2 TC I would definitely question whether the investment of points was worth it (on fights other than those with damage modifiers). As a rough guesstimate of your return, if you take the averages in the table above and halve them, then you’re looking at a mere 125 mp5. This is less than you’d get from a Single Concentration potion.

  11. Arabiandisco

    So I have been struggling with deciding whether to take TC or not. However I can never get a clear consensus of what TC spec works the best. I refuse to take points out of my improved shields like some of them say to do. My armory is Arabiandisco@Kilrogg. Can someone please tell me what 2 points I should move to TC?

    Thank you for your time.

  12. Jun

    could the guys stating that TC is viable in 10s please add some logs to verify their point?

  13. Nerzhulla

    While I wish, whole heartedly, that your analysis was true in more then a theoretical sense, in practice gamers are extremely irrate when they see their resto shaman, spending their time hitting the boss instead of landing a heal on them…

    Time and mana are both required to heal in a raid, and when one of your healers has to stop and smack the boss around instead of using that time to heal dying dps and tanks, well you can see what the results are. Said shaman is booted from the raid and another healer is quickly inserted, one who doesnt have to rely on casting lightning bolt at the boss instead of using her time to heal the players.

    • My analysis isn’t theoretical at all …

      I regularly use TC in raids, as demonstrated by the charts above. Check any FH parse ( and you’ll see I’m practicing what I preach. I’ve never had an issue with my raid leader or any of my healing teammates questioning when I choose to use my regen. And I’m in a top 25 US guild, where you can bet I’ll be called on it if someone thinks I’m not pulling my weight.

      The key is timing; understanding the boss encounter and damage patterns will help you avoid situations where an LB will conflict with healing. It’s also understanding that I’m not suggesting that you sit there and dps the boss while major healing needs to be done; there is plenty of downtime in every Tier 11 fight to accommodate a handful of LB casts.

      • Greenwillow

        I don’t really see why people are debating the loss of 1% crit and a filler point versus a talent that can provide a massive amount of regeneration. You can lean on your other healers more and bluntly, in normal modes, most currently ingame raid fights are more than doable in a full set of blues, but unless you can tape your GHW button down and AFK until the fight is over, more regen IS more throughput. You might not need to use the mana, but you also might. As you hit harder stuff you definitely will.

        It’s got little to do with the amount of people that you take to your raid too.
        I’m number six on that list for that fight now, but look at what happened to our spec since the day it was posted and the day I fell off the top. TC allowed me to carry two (at the time) really undergeared pally healers through a fight that we would have struggled on immensely without perma-HR. I feel this is a good simulation of most heroic modes of T11 raid fights.

        Halfus is a fight that involves a large damage inflation mechanic but as Vixsin’s detailed list shows, so do most of them. At least they contain phases or phase transitions of thumb-twiddling.

        I am now full-time Enhance and have a heroic 5 man queue reduction spec in my Resto slot. The second I step back into a raid as Resto, I’ll be picking up TC again. Hopefully 4.1 will solve our spirit to hit dilemma by making Wind Shear a guaranteed hit.

        I know that some encounters/difficulties might not *require* that level of diligence and mana regeneration, but I’m stunned that people would come to a blog about min-maxing AND post on it detailing why they feel they needn’t bother with this efficiency gift because a strategy involving less effort is sufficient :)

  14. Shockeye

    I love Telluric Currents and can’t imagine raiding without it. If I’m not casting a heal I’m casting Lightning Bolt and there’s always plenty of time to squeeze some in, even if it’s just one LB between heals, it’s mana back and that’s always welcome.

    On fights where you know there’s a moment where you can just cast LB to regen mana, like Magmaw, you know you can be a bit less conservative with heals and really focus on keeping people in good shape.

    But even on fights where there is no such stage, just being able to get some extra mana makes fights a lot less stressful.

  15. Pokka

    I keep the TC spec as my offspec for Halfus and Magmaw, but the truth of the matter is I haven’t ever needed to use it, I never go oom or have mana issues. Im now often topping the meters in my guild and often finish fights with 50k mana.

    This leads me to value the 1% Crit more and question what is everyone else doing with there mana?

    I dont even have full epic or much spirit compared to other shamans, I think this is one talent where playstyle leads to the the benefit.

    • First and foremost, there is a decided difference between normal-mode encounter damage and hard-mode encounter damage; an almost 1:2 ratio on any given encounter. I ended our HM Ascendant Council kill last night absolutely bone dry, as did every other healer on our team.

      I do understand your point about perceived necessity versus actual necessity. And yes, a wasteful healer might lean more towards TC than someone who is more stingy with their heals. But there are considerations for applicability beyond the relative measurement of “I top meters without TC so why can’t everyone else?”

      • Pokka

        It wasn’t so much the meters, I have only done Halfus heroic so far so I can comment on mana any further but I finished heroic halfus with 25k mana, and im not sure when I would of been using the TC as I was literally constantly spamming my heart out the whole time.

        My point was even thou I have this spec ready I havn’t had the chance to implement it as i would like to, since i dont have the mana issues or the time to use LB right now, so while I have the spec and would like to try it particuarly for Halfus and Magmaw my playstyle and guild playstyle dont allow for it yet.

        I think this is where the negative veiws on TC stem from people cant see ahead to when things are more stable for themselves when using this will allow them to gain more from fights.

  16. Linda

    FYI: The ptr patch notes say wind shear is changing to 100% hit so that will no longer be a small plus for the HC TC builds.

    This is one of the few places I would feel comfortable asking, but what is the formula for theoretical mana return since your 365 gear is about a dozen above mine. I am certainly not a theorycrafter. My guess is:

    “expected” (average) mana per cast would be
    0.4 * expected damage – mana cost

    am I correct that this is

    0.4*(770+(.714*spellpower) )*(1+0.5*crit) *hitchance – 1405

    For a dranaei with 20% crit (at time of cast) this is

    .3696 * spellpower – 1120.4

    So breakeven is about 3,031 spellpower ( for the 20% dranaei)
    This also would mean a Mandela proc would increase expected mana by 1926 *.3696 or an additional 711 mana per LB.

    Am I close?

  17. i know it’s a bit inappropriate posting here, but please have a look at my latest comment:

  18. Cuth

    Here’s a macro I use to help me sneak in an LB without worrying about targeting. You can change it for your play/focus style

    /cast [@target,harm,nodead][@focus, exists,harm][@targettarget,harm,nodead] Lightning Bolt

    If I have an enemy target, it will cast at them, else if I have an enemy focus, at them, otherwise it will cast at my target’s target, if it’s an enemy. The last case is useful when I’m healing a tank/offtank.

    In most fights I can just hit this button and be assured an LB at an appropriate target.

  19. Law

    I’ve been using a TC spec in heroics for about a week, and I’m not honestly sure whether or not it’s made a real impact on most fights, but on the fights where everything goes wrong and the DPS ends up dying, I’m able to last indefinitely, and that’s incredibly valuable.

    One warning regarding the macro, I’ve broken a few CCs early with it when the tank was immobilized but targeting a CC’d mob.

  20. I am in love with TC. I like always having something to cast, and the regen doesn’t hurt while I’m still not in BiS gear. I was curious what the actual number were, so I added it to my resto shaman calculator (

    With 7000 spell power, 4000 intellect, 1500 crit rating, 1000 haste rating and 0 hit rating I’m still getting 348 MPS from TC, even when crits and misses against a boss are taken into account. Just adding Concussion, Elemental Precision, and Glyph of Lightning Bolt I can push it up to 630 MPS. I’m considering doing a second resto spec that’s geared towards Healing Rain + regen for those fights with lots of stationary AE damage.

  21. I enjoy using TC in 10 man normal modes. It’s fun for myself and the disc priest to try to find time to cast hymns or TC.

    You outlined perfectly how to find time to cast it and did well to dissuade me from my internal argument about NOT casting or casting weak spells.

    To note, Many people mistakenly still believe in the 5 second rule.

    Thanks for showing the number behind this suggestion.

    About elemental precision, I agree it’s nice to have a shaman who can’t miss but I think it’s not optimal set up at all since there is already enough a healer has to do. For the advanced shamans, like your readers are, I’m sure they can handle it if the situation calls for it. I know I got a lot of practice with it on Iron Council.

  22. Eso

    Great to see some math to back up what I think most have us have already been feeling. TC is awesome.

    I really enjoy the playstyle of weaving LB into my healing and it makes me feel the “rush” of DPS where instead of having laid back times when I almost fall asleep in my chair (Maloriak blue phase as you said) I can instead focus on LB spam and contribute a little bit of extra dps to the raid!

    I think the TC playstyle might also improve the value of our mastery (slightly!!), as it encourages us to let the players get a little bit lower while you spam that extra LB (instead of mindless HW – which would probably see the raid topped off a little bit more and hence less effectiveness of our mastery)

    One other thing that I have seen a few shamans forget is to LB adds instead of bosses where possible, most are a lower level and as such you have a lower chance to miss!

    Oh and off topic but I cannot praise glyph of stoneclaw totem enough! Why you say?, to give resto shamans a survivability cooldown :), dropping it just before an electrocute / or similar large damage effect can be an absolute lifesaver and a 16k bubble for next to no mana is hard to ignore! And in any case our other earth totems are covered by so many classes.

  23. Hallany

    I agree, you don’t need to be able to cast 10 LB’s in a row to count as “downtime.” I’ve primarily been doing 25’s, but have done 10’s occasionally as well. On Halfus 10N this week, I did 7 LB’s for a total of 151k damage, with 60.6k mana back, compared to 43.4k from WS. On Magmaw 10N this week, I did 197k damage from 10 LBs with 78.9k mana back, vs. 27.9k from WS. I didn’t LB when anyone needed a heal, so those GCD’s would have been wasted otherwise.

    I usually can’t use TC very much on V&T or Atramedes, but my current spec is usually still fine for those. On Cho’Gall I need the points in Cleansing Waters, so I spec out of it entirely. I sometimes go to an ele precision spec for Halfus, Magmaw, Chimaeron, and Conclave of Winds, since the insta-wolf isn’t very useful for them, and there’s more opportunity to LB a lot. It seems like a lot of people are afraid to respec on a fight-by-fight basis, even when doing so will make a significant difference.

  24. Aozora

    Thanks for the great post! I’d been wondering if it would be worth it to get Telluric Currents now.

    Back in WotLK, there were lots of times when I had plenty of time to crack off a lightning bolt or two to help out. (Lady Deathwhisper was one of the primary fights.) With resto shaman feeling weaker in Cata, I didn’t feel I had time to try to crack one off. I resisted at first because it seemed like a “meh” talent.

    I think it’s time for a respec!!


  25. I have been running a TC spec for a bit also, havent taken it into anything other than BH yet, but we’re planning to start BWD next week so i’ll try it in there. However, I noticed no one else mentioned the 7/3/31 spec, with 2/3 in ElemPrecision, dropping elemental weapons and blessing of the eternals for it.

    Wanted to ensure that I could always hit a raid boss, or anything else for that matter, so that the cast was not mana wasted when I employed TC regen bolts.

    Anyone else running the 7/3/31 spec?

  26. Ypp

    Nice article, with a lot of useful data to back it up !
    I fell in love with Telluric Currents the first time I tried it, I didn’t think there were so many breaks during the fights to put it to use. Actually, let me rephrase : I’m sure there AREN’T this many healing breaks on these fights… with my current raiding team :'( Well after all, I’m a healer, DPSing is just icing on the cake !

    Unrelated topic : what is the picture you used for this article on the home page ? I like how it feels.

  27. […] I use LB on nearly every fight. Once you get used to the playstyle, you'll find times where the tanks and raid need relatively little healing. I take those moments to cast a LB or two and then resume healing. It's really very simple, and it allows you to conserve mana for the times when you need to chain cast heals. Most healers think that they have to be casting heals all the time, but I can't think of a single boss so far that is so demanding that we're spamming heals 100% of the time. I don't 'ditch' my other healers. We know that there is a finite amount of damage going out, and there are often times when we don't all have to be healing. Our healers know when to time Concentration potions, and they know that I use TC to regen during times of light tank/raid damage. This allows me to step it up when our tanks and raid are taking massive amounts of damage (think Blackout on Twin Drakes, Feud on Chimaeron, the 'dark' phase on Maloriak, the ultimate phases of Conclave, P3 of Ascendant Council, etc.). If you don't want to take my word for it, check out this very well argued and appropriately 'mathy' post from Vixsin on Dragonflight: […]

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