Spirit, MP5, and Mana Regen

Last updated: 11/13/07 for patch 2.3.

THIS IS OUT OF DATE FOR PATCH 2.4.
Updated info coming soon!

With the patch 2.3 changes to Meditation, spirit becomes a more valuable stat for us priests than it was before. I aim to discuss spirit, MP5, and mana regen for priests in a way that is practical for anyone, hopefully answering some of the more common questions. This post contains math (oh noes!), but feel free to just skip to the tables if you do not want to be bored to tears.

A few definitions:

Mana Regen: Your mana will tick upwards at an amount based on your spirit, talents, and gear. The amount of regeneration (regen) also depends on whether or not you are in the five second rule (below).

The easiest way to know how much mana you regen (every five seconds) is to open up your character sheet. On the “Spell” menu, the bottom item says “Mana Regen” and gives a value. If you mouse over that number, it will display both your mana regen while casting (meaning, in the five second rule (see below)) and your mana regen while not casting (outside the five second rule).

Five Second Rule: Your spirit-based mana regen stops while you are “casting” spells (not counting effects like Meditation, that will allow a certain percentage of it to continue during this time). You are considered to be casting when you spend mana for a spell and for a period of five seconds after doing so. Those five seconds are where the term “Five Second Rule” came from (aka “FSR”).

Most of our spells use mana at the end of their casting, so they will not put you into the five second rule until finished. However, channeled spells (namely, Mind Flay) put you into the five second rule right when they are cast (as that is when your mana is spent). (Note: Though we do not have any channeled spells longer than five seconds, if we did, we would be put into the five second rule at the end of channeling).

If a spell costs zero mana, it will not put you in the five second rule.

If we are casting spells one immediately after another (DPSing, for instance), we are probably spending close to 100% of our time in the five second rule.

There are various add-ons that will measure the amount of time within the five second rule for you. RegenFu is a good one.

Tick: If you are regenerating mana from spirit, talents, gear, or anything else over time, your mana will increment in ticks upward every two seconds.

MP5: Gear with mana gains, and your character sheet, do not list mana gained every tick, but mana gained every five seconds, or mp5 for short. Generally when discussing mana regen, we will talk in terms of mp5, and not mana per tick. They are the same thing, just measured over different time intervals.

Spirit regen: Your spirit-based regen, as a priest, is [Spirit/4] +12.5 mana every tick (every two seconds) when out of the five-second rule. This is equal to [(5/8)* spirit + 31.25] mp5.

Meditation: This talent in the Discipline tree will allow a percentage of your spirit-based mana regen to continue while you are inside the five second rule. It requires 10 points in the Discipline tree and there are three ranks of the talent. You gain 10% spirit-based regen in FSR for each rank.

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How fast do I regen mana?

In the five second rule, a priest will gain:
0 points in Meditation: mp5 from gear only
1 point in Meditation: [(1/16)* spirit + 3.125] mp5 + mp5 from gear
2 points in Meditation: [(1/8)* spirit + 6.25] mp5+ mp5 from gear
3 points in Mediation: [(3/16)* spirit + 9.375] mp5+ mp5 from gear

Out of the five second rule, priests gain:
[(5/8)* spirit + 31.25] mp5 + regen from Meditation + mp5 from gear

A general formula for how much mana a priest will regen in a fight depends on the percentage of the time in the five second rule. All other elements aside (such as shadowpriests, Spellsurge, shadowfiends, nutty trinkets, potions, etc.), we are looking at:

Total mp5
= [Regen from spirit] + [Regen from meditation] + [Regen from gear]
= [(time not in FSR)*((5/8)* spirit + 31.25)] + [(points in meditation)*((1/16)* spirit + 3.125)] + [gear mp5]

Example:
A newly 70 priest healer has 400 spirit and 164 mp5 (80 of which is from gear), 3 points in Meditation, and spends 80% of the time in the five second rule. What is the priest’s total effective mp5?

Total mp5 = [Regen from spirit] + [Regen from meditation] + [Regen from gear]
= [(time not in FSR)*((5/8)* spirit + 31.25)] + [(points in meditation)*((1/16)* spirit + 3.125)] + [gear mp5]
= [(20%)*(281.25)] + [(3)*(28.125)]+ [80]
= 220.625 mp5

It’s important to note that while your mana regen stat reflects mana gained every five seconds, you actually have you mana tick up every two seconds.

Using the above example, how much, on average, would the priests’s mana tick upward for?
To find this out, all we have to do is divide the mp5 by 2.5.
220.625 / 2.5 = 88.25 mana per tick (on avg)

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How much mana do I regen in a fight?

The amount of mana you regenerate in a fight depends on many factors (your gear, potion usage, group composition, buffs). To see what you get from your gear and talents, you have to look at how much time you spend in the five second rule, how long the fight is, how much spirit you have, how much mp5 you have on your gear, and what percent of your mana regen continues “while casting” (from Meditation, or Primal Mooncloth set bonus).

Per tick, we regenerate (on average):
[mp5 from gear] + [spirit regen out of FSR] + [in FSR regen]

Which equals:
[(.4)(gear mp5)]+[(12.5+(spirit/4))(1-FSR)] + [(regen)(12.5+(spirit/4))(FSR)]
FSR = % time in five second rule (expressed as a decimal)
regen = % mana regen while casting (expressed as a decimal)

If we multiply our average regen (per tick) by the number of ticks in combat, then we know how much mana we will regen in the fight:
{[(.4)(gear mp5)]+[(12.5+(spirit/4))(1-FSR)] + [(regen)(12.5+(spirit/4))(FSR)]}* {[(Seconds in combat)/2]}

This is from your gear alone. You can add to this expression your potion usage, buffs, etc.

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How do spirit and MP5 compare?

Or, how much spirit is worth 1mp5?

We want to look at how much spirit it takes to increase mana regen by 1mp5. This obviously depends on how much time is spent in the FSR. Using the information from above, we can figure out an equation to express spirit in terms of mp5.

To increase mana regen per tick by 1, we need:
(% time spent in FSR)*(spirit/4 * % regen during casting) + (1 – % time spent in FSR)(spirit/4)

Solving for spirit, and converting from mana-per-tick to mp5, we can see how much spirit we need to equal 1mp5:

Spirit = 1.6/(1+ FSR*regen – FSR)
FSR = % time in five second rule (expressed as a decimal)
regen = % mana regen while casting (expressed as a decimal)

Not to throw a wrench in the equation, but things that modify the total amount of spirit need to be taken into account as well. Two specific examples are the Human Spirit racial trait (increases total spirit by 10%) and the talent Spirit of Redemption, or SoR for short (increases total spirit by 5%). What does that mean? Well, an item with 20 spirit on it actually gives a human 22 spirit, for instance (23 if she has SoR). So humans and those with the Spirit of Redemption talent actually need less spirit to equal 1mp5.

With Spirit of Redemption (SoR):
Spirit = 1.52/(1+ FSR*regen – FSR)

With Human Spirit:
Spirit = 1.45/(1+ FSR*regen – FSR)

Human and SoR:
Spirit = 1.39/(1+ FSR*regen – FSR)

FSR = % time in five second rule (expressed as a decimal)
regen = % mana regen while casting (expressed as a decimal)

Here are some tables summarizing:

0% Regen While Casting

% in FSR Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (SoR) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (Human) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (Human + SoR) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5
0 1.60 1.52 1.46 1.39
5 1.68 1.60 1.53 1.46
10 1.78 1.69 1.62 1.55
15 1.88 1.79 1.71 1.64
20 2.00 1.90 1.82 1.74
25 2.06 1.97 1.88 1.80
30 2.29 2.18 2.08 1.99
35 2.22 2.12 2.02 1.93
40 2.67 2.54 2.43 2.32
45 2.34 2.22 2.13 2.03
50 3.20 3.05 2.91 2.78
55 3.56 3.39 3.24 3.09
60 4.00 3.81 3.64 3.48
65 4.57 4.35 4.16 3.98
70 5.33 5.08 4.85 4.64
75 6.40 6.10 5.82 5.57
80 8.00 7.62 7.28 6.96
85 10.67 10.16 9.71 9.28
90 16.00 15.24 14.56 13.91
95 32.00 30.48 29.12 27.83
100 ** ** ** **

** 100% in the FSR with 0% mana regen means that no amount of spirit can equal 1 mp5. MP5 is, mathematically speaking, an infinitely better stat in this scenario.

10% Regen While Casting
(1 Point in Meditation)

% in FSR Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (SoR) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (Human) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (Human + SoR) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5
0 1.60 1.52 1.46 1.39
5 1.68 1.60 1.52 1.46
10 1.76 1.67 1.60 1.53
15 1.88 1.79 1.71 1.64
20 1.95 1.86 1.78 1.70
25 2.06 1.97 1.88 1.80
30 2.19 2.09 1.99 1.91
35 2.22 2.12 2.02 1.93
40 2.50 2.38 2.28 2.17
45 2.34 2.22 2.13 2.03
50 2.91 2.77 2.65 2.53
55 3.17 3.02 2.88 2.76
60 3.48 3.31 3.17 3.02
65 3.86 3.67 3.51 3.35
70 4.32 4.12 3.94 3.76
75 4.92 4.69 4.48 4.28
80 5.71 5.44 5.20 4.97
85 6.81 6.48 6.20 5.92
90 8.42 8.02 7.66 7.32
95 11.03 10.51 10.04 9.60
100 16.00 15.24 14.56 13.91

20% Regen While Casting
(2 points in Meditation)

% in FSR Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (SoR) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (Human) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (Human + SoR) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5
0 1.60 1.52 1.46 1.39
5 1.67 1.59 1.52 1.45
10 1.74 1.66 1.58 1.51
15 1.88 1.79 1.71 1.64
20 1.90 1.81 1.73 1.66
25 2.06 1.97 1.88 1.80
30 2.11 2.01 1.92 1.83
35 2.22 2.12 2.02 1.93
40 2.35 2.24 2.14 2.05
45 2.34 2.22 2.13 2.03
50 2.67 2.54 2.43 2.32
55 2.86 2.72 2.60 2.48
60 3.08 2.93 2.80 2.68
65 3.33 3.17 3.03 2.90
70 3.64 3.46 3.31 3.16
75 4.00 3.81 3.64 3.48
80 4.44 4.23 4.04 3.86
85 5.00 4.76 4.55 4.35
90 5.71 5.44 5.20 4.97
95 6.67 6.35 6.07 5.80
100 8.00 7.62 7.28 6.96

30% Regen While Casting
(3 points in Meditation)

% in FSR Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (SoR) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (Human) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (Human + SoR) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5
0 1.60 1.52 1.46 1.39
5 1.66 1.58 1.51 1.44
10 1.72 1.64 1.57 1.50
15 1.88 1.79 1.71 1.64
20 1.86 1.77 1.69 1.62
25 2.06 1.97 1.88 1.80
30 2.03 1.93 1.84 1.76
35 2.22 2.12 2.02 1.93
40 2.22 2.12 2.02 1.93
45 2.34 2.22 2.13 2.03
50 2.46 2.34 2.24 2.14
55 2.60 2.48 2.37 2.26
60 2.76 2.63 2.51 2.40
65 2.94 2.80 2.67 2.55
70 3.14 2.99 2.85 2.73
75 3.37 3.21 3.07 2.93
80 3.64 3.46 3.31 3.16
85 3.95 3.76 3.60 3.44
90 4.32 4.12 3.94 3.76
95 4.78 4.55 4.35 4.15
100 5.33 5.08 4.85 4.64

35% Regen While Casting
(3 points in Meditation and Primal Mooncloth set bonus)

% in FSR Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (SoR) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (Human) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5 (Human + SoR) Spirit to Equal 1 mp5
0 1.60 1.52 1.46 1.39
5 1.65 1.57 1.50 1.44
10 1.71 1.63 1.56 1.49
15 1.88 1.79 1.71 1.64
20 1.84 1.75 1.67 1.60
25 2.06 1.97 1.88 1.80
30 1.99 1.89 1.81 1.73
35 2.22 2.12 2.02 1.93
40 2.16 2.06 1.97 1.88
45 2.34 2.22 2.13 2.03
50 2.37 2.26 2.16 2.06
55 2.49 2.37 2.27 2.17
60 2.62 2.50 2.39 2.28
65 2.77 2.64 2.52 2.41
70 2.94 2.80 2.67 2.55
75 3.12 2.97 2.84 2.71
80 3.33 3.17 3.03 2.90
85 3.58 3.41 3.25 3.11
90 3.86 3.67 3.51 3.35
95 4.18 3.98 3.81 3.64
100 4.57 4.35 4.16 3.98

Examples:

1. I am a level 70 non-human shadowpriest with 3 points in Meditation, which means I have 30% regen while casting. Since I am casting just about all the time (95% in the FSR), I can see that 1mp5 is worth 4.78 spirit to me. If I had to choose between a ring with 12 spirit or 2 mp5, I’d chose the ring with the spirit.

2. I am a level 70 human healing priest (with Spirit of Redemption) with 75% of my time in the five second rule. I have 3 points in Meditation and all three pieces of the Primal Mooncloth Set (which means I have a total of 35% regen while casting). I see that 2.71 spirit is worth 1mp5 to me.

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Intellect vs. Mana Regen:

We have an expression above that will tell us how much mana we regen in a fight depending on the length of the fight, but that expression is a little cumbersome. We can greatly simplify things by looking to equate the intellect to mp5, or, more specifically, our mana from intellect to the mana from mp5.

Generally speaking, 1 point in intellect gives you 15 mana (or 16.5 mana if you have the priest talent Mental Strength). And one point of mp5 gives you 12 mana every minute. No matter which way we look at it, we are going to need to know the length of the fight.

Measuring the fight in minutes, over a whole fight:
mana from intellect = 15 * intellect
mana from mana regen = (12 * mp5) * [fight length, in minutes]

Now, one point of mana is one point of mana. I don’t care if it came from my mana regen or my intellect. As long as it is there for me to use when I am trying to cast something, I am a happy priest.

mana = 15 * intellect
mana = 12 * mp5 * time

Now, we can simply the equations as one system and solve for intellect to get an equation relating mp5 and intellect.

15 * intellect / time = 12 * mp5
Intellect = 12 * time * mp5 /15

If we are just looking to see how much intellect equals 1mp5, then we set mp5 to 1 and get:

Intellect to equal 1mp5:
Intellect = 12 * time/15
Time measured in minutes

With Mental Strength:
Intellect = 12 * time/16.5
Time measured in minutes

Intellect to Equal 1mp5:

Time (in min.) Int Int (with Mental Strength)
0.5 0.4 0.36
1.0 0.8 0.73
1.5 1.2 1.09
2.0 1.6 1.45
2.5 2.0 1.82
3.0 2.4 2.18
3.5 2.8 2.55
4.0 3.2 2.91
4.5 3.6 3.27
5.0 4.0 3.64
5.5 4.4 4.00
6.0 4.8 4.36
6.5 5.2 4.73
7.0 5.6 5.09
7.5 6.0 5.45
8.0 6.4 5.82
8.5 6.8 6.18
9.0 7.2 6.55
9.5 7.6 6.91
10.0 8.0 7.27

Example:
I know the fights where I have to make my mana work the hardest are boss fights (isn’t that almost always the case?) where the fight goes on for 5 minutes usually. How should I balance intellect and mp5? (I do not have any talent points in Mental Strength). Well, according to the table, 5 intellect equals 1mp5 for me. To balance my gear, I should try to keep my stats are close to that ratio as possible (without ignoring spirit, healing, damage, or other important stats).

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Additional Thoughts:

Spirit Tap

Assuming you have all five points in the talent, Spirit Tap gives you a 100% chance to gain a 100% bonus to your Spirit after killing a target that yields experience or honor. For the duration, your mana will regenerate at a 50% rate while casting. Lasts 15 sec.

Let’s break this down.

  • Spirit Tap doubles your spirit for 15 sec.
  • If you are outside the FSR when it procs, the 100% increase to spirit means you will also have a 100% increase to regeneration (for a total 200% regen).
  • It gives you an additional 50% bonus to your in-FSR mana regen. This stacks with things like meditation. 30% + 50% = 80% regen in-FSR, but with twice the spirit! So, your effective spirit-based mana regen would be 160%.

Shadowpriests

Shadowpriests, with their talented spell Vampiric Touch, return mana to all party members equal to 5% of the shadow damage the shadowpriest deals. From this, it is pretty easy to see how their damage done per second (DPS) equates to mp5.

Assuming 100% uptime of Vampiric Touch:
MP5 = (DPS*0.05) *5 = 0.25*DPS

It should be noted that with multiple shadowpriests in the same group, you can simply sum their DPS to find the total mp5 given to the party by the shadowpriests. It is not uncommon in raids to see a shadowpriest “group” with 2-4 shadowpriests in it. Healers or mana users running low on mana are cycled through the group as needed. From the table below you can see how the summed DPS of multiple shadowpriests can return a large amount of mana in a short time.

DPS Mp5 DPS Mp5 DPS Mp5
0 0 1300 325 2600 650
100 25 1400 350 2700 675
200 50 1500 375 2800 700
300 75 1600 400 2900 725
400 100 1700 425 3000 750
500 125 1800 450 3100 775
600 150 1900 475 3200 800
700 175 2000 500 3300 825
800 200 2100 525 3400 850
900 225 2200 550 3500 875
1000 250 2300 575 3600 900
1100 275 2400 600 3700 925
1200 300 2500 625 3800 950

Exmaple:
Shadowpriest A does 800 DPS and shadowpriest B does 700 DPS over a fight. Their total DPS is 1500. Assuming they kept Vampiric Touch up 100% of the time, the total mana returned to the party from the shadowpriests was equal to 375 mp5.

Where this gets complicated is if non-shadow spells are also being used (namely, Starshards). If you can account for it, subtract the non-shadow DPS from the priests’ overall DPS, then check the table. The equation (and table) are linear, so it should be easy to find values that are not listed on the table.

Exmaple:
I do 980 shadow DPS. How much mana do I return?
MP5 = 0.25 * DPS
= 0.25* (980)
= 245 mp5

+Spirit Weapons

Try to keep a spirit-heavy weapon (and wand!) to switch to if you are actively regening mana, being innervated, etc.

For example, say you have a weapon with 20 more spirit that you usual one. Slap a +20 spirit enchant on that. That 40 extra spirit when you are being innervated will give you 400 extra mana from the innervate. If you found a weapon with 50 more spirit and enchanted it, that 70 spirit would give you 700 more mana.

Shadowfiend

Spirit doesn’t help your Shadowfiend give you more mana back, but shadow spell damage does. And the little guy gets a lot out of buffs.

Assuming the Shadowfiend isn’t running around instead of attacking, and not getting a lot of “misses”:

Without any bonuses or shadow spell dmg, it returns 2,500 mana.
With shadow spell damage factored in:
Mana returned= [(2,500)+(1.5)*(SDmg)]

Curse of Shadows, Shadowweaving, and other effects that increase shadow damage to a target will increase the Shadowfiend’s damage (and your mana returned) by the same factor (a 13% Curse of Shadows would give you 13% more mana back from your shadowfiend).

You could also buff the fiend’s attack power to increase your mana gain. For example, if Blessing of Might was cast on your Shadowfiend, the 220 attack power gain would give it 15.7 more dps. That is an additional 589 mana (more so with Shadowweaving, Curse of Shadow, etc.).

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3 Responses

  1. Great guide!!! keep on the good work :)

    /salute

  2. Amazing stuff! This deserves money, too bad I have none.

  3. Awesome :D

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