Innervate and Weapons

“If you are in a raid and are fortunate enough to be tossed an innervate, should you switch to a high spirit weapon, or a high int weapon, to get the best mana gain from the innervate?”

I have been asked that question a lot lately. The short answer: As a holy priest, it doesn’t matter! Do not switch weapons at all. You will get no benefit from switching, so don’t waste the money, the mats, or the bag space on keeping another enchanted weapon with you just for innervates.

And now the long answer/explanation:

Innervate is a druid spell, castable on any friendly target. Here is what it does:

Increases the target’s Spirit based mana regeneration by 400% and allows full mana regeneration while casting. Lasts 20 sec.

Now, in plain English, an innervate will return five times your out-of-five-second-rule regen from intellect/spirit for 20 seconds, and you get this whether you are chain casting spells or not. (Note: mp5 does NOT count towards this, just your regen from spirit/intellect).

If you mouse over the mana regen stat on your character sheet (or armory page), the “while not casting” number is what you would use, minus the straight mp5 from gear. Innervate gives you five times your out-of-combat mana regen every 5 seconds, for 20 seconds (so, four times). So ultimately, you will be taking that number and multiplying it by 20. That should be a pretty big number.

A holy priest on the low end of the gear-spectrum at level 70 would expect that out-of-combat mana regen number (not counting straight mp5 from gear) to be about 400 mp5. A single innervate would return 8k mana to that priest, likely the whole mana pool at that gear level.

I made a test case of a priest in dungeons blues (no epics or gear from professions!), only green gems, no enchants, self-buffed only, no potions/food/elixirs/flasks. This priest, in very mediocre gear, has 407 intellect and 493 spirit. A single innervate returns about 9.3k mana to the priest, and this priest only has 8.4k mana! If this priest were to get buffed with an arcane int buff, then the mana returned from innervate would increase to 9.7k!

… and none of this even figures in your straight mp5 on your gear, which continues to tick upward at its usual rate.

The point is that after you get past a certain minimum level of gear, your mana return from innervate will exceed your mana pool. Therefore, it doesn’t matter what kind of weapon you have. Provided your gear doesn’t suck, an innervate will completely fill your mana pool.

Don’t believe me? Try it yourself! Do the math!

InnervateMana = [OOCmanaRegen – gearMP5] x 20

Or, an alternate equation:

InnervateMana = 100 * (0.001 + sqrt(Int) * Spirit * 0.009327)

Compare that number to your mana pool. Which is bigger? :)

A rough minimum at which an innervate will not completely fill your mana pool is around 400 intellect and 445 spirit (fully buffed). With buffs, these are easily obtainable amounts, even at low gear levels.

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12 Responses

  1. Just one comment, you are comparing the InnervateMana with the complete mana pool, but I don’t see you take into account that the priest might still be spamming Greater Heals as well during those 20 seconds of Innervate. With the right talents, that approx. 700 mana with a 2.5 second cast time (let’s not worry about spell haste), giving a total cost of approx. 5600 mana.

  2. Right, as I really didn’t go into too much detail about how much extra mana you could gain over your mana pool (more than the 5.6k you mentioned) provided your gear doesn’t suck, or the fact that most innervates do not occur at zero mana. Plus, as I said, there is also your straight mp5 that continues to tick.

    I tried to keep the explanation simple and not too bogged down with math. But a priest in about T4 gear will be getting more than 4-5k over their mana pool. A T5 priest would be able to spam greater heal without problem. A T6 priest could probably afford to spam Holy Nova if innervated and still get their mana pool filled (though, why they would do that is beyond me).

  3. I must agree with you, it restors very high amount of mana after 2.4 patch. Just watch picture nr 5 on this link, I love that regen! :)

  4. If Innervate is completely refilling your mana pool, you should use an addon like CasterWeaponSwapper to automatically switch you to a high Intellect weapon when your mana is approaching full. You can eke out an extra 800+ mana this way and CWS will automatically switch back to your standard +Healing weapon once you’ve used up that mana. This technique is described here: http://www.resto4life.com/2008/05/15/24-mana-regen-getting-the-most-out-of-innervate/

  5. Actually, if you are returning 12k mana, it doesn’t matter how much you increase your mana pool with weapons, it would likely still exceed. Like I said….

  6. By switching to a High Intellect weapon, you’ll temporarily increase the size of your mana pool. Assuming that you switch to a weapon that’s enchanted with 30 Intellect, has 3 x 8 Intellect gems, and it has 10 more Intellect than your ordinary staff, you’d be getting back 1056 mana that you wouldn’t have gotten otherwise (this also includes Blessing of Kings). Once you’ve spent that mana, you can switch back to your standard weapon (an addon like CWS makes this process so much less of a headache).

    The point isn’t to get every last drop of mana from an Innervate but instead to get as much mana as possible. Not performing a weapon swap — be it for Spirit if you’re just starting out and an Innervate doesn’t top you off — or for Intellect to increase the amount of mana you can “hold” is like throwing away mana. Assuming a 10k mana pool, it’s more than a 10% loss in efficiency.

  7. 1056 isn’t realistic. Most weapons do not have sockets, etc. Let’s say you had the int enchant and the weapons were an overall upgrade of 20 int (for 50 int total). With Blessing of Kings, that is 825 (50 * 16.5) mana.

    If you really want to think about this further, do two cost-benefit analyses: 1) Cost of loss of +heal during the time having the int weapon. 825 mana is nothing in the bigger picture when effective mana pools are measured in the tens of thousands (and beyond). 2) Actual money loss from potions vs. enchants/gems/additional weapons. A holy priest played/geared right will never have to chain pot. The cost of using mana potions sooner or more frequently in the rare scenario where that extra innervate mana could have been available AND would have made a difference is likely much less than the cost of the weapon enchants and gems.

    Now, most holy priests will not see an innervate in a raid. There are many classes/specs less mana efficient that need them first. A holy priest should never depend on an innervate. So, if you are a priest that needs to spend your whole mana pool, your mana pool from an innervate, and then STILL need more mana, well, you are doing it wrong! Even on constant-casting encounters like M’uru/Ereder Twins, you should never been in that dire a need. Either, you need to rethink your gearing, rethink how you play, or rethink your raid composition.

  8. (Consider this your first warning, your comment bordered on rude and was removed. Please, keep it civil.).

    I’ll repeat: if you find that are in that much need of mana after blowing your mana pool and blowing all the mana from an innervate, you fail as a holy priest (or your raid fails at raiding). Seriously. Even in Sunwell, you should never be in that dire a need. And if you are depending on an innervate to do your job, then you may be in for a rude awakening in higher level raiding. Just sayin’. (Don’t believe me? Try perusing some of the holy priest threads on Elitist Jerks some time… Any talk of optimal gain methods from an innervate is considered a joke! Really!)

  9. Having had read Phaelia’s reply before it was deleted, she merely backed up her early statements with facts.

    You stated at the beginning of your post, “You will get no benefit from switching,” which is incorrect. If you meant “I don’t believe the benefit gained from switching is worth the expense or trouble,” that is an entirely different matter.

    If you believe that Priests don’t need and shouldn’t be receiving Innervates in the first place then you are correct: it certainly shouldn’t matter if they try to optimize it, they probably shouldn’t have gotten it in the first place.

  10. In my opinion, she wasn’t giving facts as much as just repeating herself and sounding increasingly more hostile (intentionally or not). I also find it odd that you were able to read it, as I pulled it less than a minute after I got notification that it was posted.

    I am talking about the bigger picture. Yes, I do not believe it worth worrying about. Sure, you could carry an extra weapon which on an off-chance that you got innervated and the off-chance that mana would have made a difference in the final picture would provide you a small benefit. It would be a rare occurrence happening after an uncommon occurrence. Would you carry an item that you would get a benefit out of less than 1% of the time?

    Do you know what would make more of a difference? Carrying gear with different levels of regen so that you could optimize for each encounter. That could easily give you a better return than the 800-1k extra temporary mana from an innervate. A good priest would do that, not worry about the issue Phaelia brought up which would be a truly rare case that any benefit was gained.

    So, in the bigger picture? No, it does not matter. I would not recommend holy priests worry about getting a weapon and switching. A shadow priest, yes, as weapon-swapping could potentially almost double their return and they easily could need that mana. But a holy priest in that dire need of it really needs to learn2priest, imo.

    I perhaps could have been a bit more clear in my initial post, as “doesn’t matter” and “really shouldn’t matter” are two different things, but I was just trying to give a short, simple answer to what could potentially be a large question. I could have put up a lot of math, made more test cases, but to what end? I try to give straight-forward, easy to understand explanations that people in my casual guilds could understand.

    I have stated in the past that I believe just doing math for the sake of math is not productive. I love math as much as the next person (well, probably more), but calculating on paper the best way to do things doesn’t always translate best into the real world. True theorycraft is understanding how thinks work in real settings. If I put everything in my bags that I might get a benefit out of a small percent of the time, I would need twice as much bag space. You have to use discretion.

  11. I agree that using a switch-in weapon for an innervate that probably won’t even arrive at your adress is pretty much overkill, probably even just a waste. I do carry a Rod of the Blazing Light stacked with spiritgems and the spiritenchant from BRD on it though. I got it the other day and was curious to see if it would make any big difference while regenerating out of the FSR (while hitting Earring of Soulful Meditation, prolonging with Inner Focus and so on) without innervating (or Curator’s evocation or anything overly overpowered like that). If I could tweek the time it takes to regenerate to full or almost full that could come in pretty handy. Actually managing to squeeze in a regensession on a shorter timespan seem far more important to me than getting those extra few hundreds of mana. If I’m full one second or two earlier that means I can start healing sooner/squeeze regen in a spot where I would have been interrupted by the need to go back to healing again. And yes I know and understand that this may be overkill too. I do it for the fun of trying it and nothing else. I wouldn’t ever demand someone else to go to the extremes. I still havent used it enough in raid or done the maths so I cannot tell you how much gain there is but it is a decent extra amount of spirit so it should help out a bit. Maybe I’ll get back with a report when I’ve tested it a bit more.

  12. Tested a few times in ZA and it works out fine. Gives me around 90 extra spirit. But there is one big drawback and this is the major reason I think I’m gonna leave this idea on the shelf for a while. When I’m attending a raid I rarely go without manaoil on my weapon. If I switch to the spiritstaff I recieve a big chunk of spirit but I also lose the not so small amount of mp5 from the oil. Unless I apply manaoil to the spiritweapon too of course. But that would be both more expensive and more hassle to deal with. To me that means skipping the idea. I guess for total min/maxing it would still be a win.

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