Yesterday afternoon, I read a great article by Ambrosine on I Like Bubbles. Her post focused on why some Paladin tanks ask a Discipline priest to not bubble them O_0
Yup, I do understand that there is an issue of the bubble actually being “too” powerful, scaling too well, and preventing any damage from actually getting to the tank, and in turn not requiring any heals. This effect, causes the paladin to not regain mana from Spiritual Attunement. This, apparently, is what these tanks are complaining about. Now, to be fair, most, if not all of these Paladin tanks that complain are found using the LFD system, they may just be starting out, and are running 5 mans. However, if you actually plan to tank, and fulfill that role, then it would be best for you to learn your class.
I myself, when I began tanking did notice when I had a Disc Priest healer in tow. I would most likely be running pretty low on mana before the next pull, and have hardly taken much damage at all. This, of course, is where you take the initiative to learn more about your class.
There are several things that need to be picked up by a noobidin tank. I was once one myself, so I can vouch for how important it really is to learn these little tips. These will still be useful for now, at least until Cataclysm comes out and we all have to learn our roles again.
- Blessing of Sanctuary: On top of the 3% damage reduction, and increasing strength and stamina by 10%, BoSanc also provides us with one of our primary mana regen tools. Upon blocking, parrying, or dodging an attack, we will gain 2% of our maximum displayed mana. With an average mana pool for a Protection Paladin of around 6-6.5k, we can assume that every avoided/mitigated attack will be giving us about 120 mana.
- Divine Plea: Use it… don’t forget it. When paired with the Glyph of Divine Plea, not only will it provide you with mana regen, it will also provide you with a 3% damage reduction on top of it. In combination with Guided by the Light, we can acquire a 100% uptime of Divine Plea, meaning 100% uptime of mana regen, and 100% uptime of the 3% damage reduction.
- Spiritual Attunement: This will end up going away in Cataclysm, but for now, it is still useful. It is also the subject of this post. It provides a percentage of mana back based on the heals that you receive (excluding overheals). I believe that I currently have 1/2 Spiritual Attunement, and have yet to really have mana troubles, as long as I use the other tools at my disposal.
- Seal of Wisdom: It is not often that I have to swap to this, however it is an option. If you can justify the loss in DPS/TPS, then feel free to do a bit of Seal hopping and toss this one on for a bit. In no time, you will have regained nearly your entire mana bar; likely within a single trash pull.
- Judgement of Wisdom: This is actually my primary judgement. Especially in Heroics, and also in cases when I have a Discipline Priest. It takes care of providing a constant stream of mana, though in small doses. If you feel that your mana and mana regen is just fine, swap over to JoLight, and get a little bit extra healing (though of your own), providing just a touch of survivability.
- Consecration and other DPS/TPS: There are some spells, Consecration being the biggest, that are very optional when it comes to taking care of trash or bosses. Consecration uses a decent chunk of your mana to cast, and with our limited mana pools, it can be unsafe to use it too often. Therefore, it is best to simply drop it from your rotation every once and a while, it will save you greatly on mana.
- Big Pulls: The more thins that we have hitting us, the more chance we can take damage, and in turn attain mana from heals. It also increases the chances that we block/dodge/parry attacks, again providing mana via Blessing of Sanctuary. Basically, at least in heroics and some raids, we can continue to use the mentality of not using CC, and pulling as much as possible. As long as your healer can keep up with the DPS that the targets can dish out, then we as tanks will not run out of mana.
So, in conclusion… don’t ask your Discipline Priest to not bubble you. It very well may be muscle memory that prevents them from stopping, instead take full advantage of the other tools at your disposal. If things get hairy, pop a Mana potion and keep pulling.
Side Note: There is always the “No Pants” option. Basically removing gear between pulls to drop your health low enough that the healer can top your health and a solid chunk of your mana. I actually carry 2-3 gear sets around with me all the time, so I’ll often swap to my Holy set with its high mana regen, and lower stamina, then swap back before the next pull. This allows me to fill that little blue rage bar back up pretty quickly. But remember, keep an eye on your healer’s mana too, you can’t just make the decision that he/she’s ready and require them to refill your mana bar.