Monks are - along with Paladins and Druids - a true hybrid class of WOW, one that's capable of performing any one of the trifecta of roles that make up the core of World of Warcraft’s group play mechanics. In this Mistweaver Monk guide, we’re going to take a look at the basics of the healing specialisation for this hero.
A Mistweaver Monk is a supremely versatile healer, with the potential to excel as a focused tank healer or as a raid healer, and without requiring a big change in talents - merely a different approach to playstyle. The most adventurous Mistweaver Monk can even contribute a small about of damage, fitting special attacks in between healing duties.
In this guide, you’ll find our recommended talents for healing as a Mistweaver Monk, an explanation of your spell-casting priority, and a primer on which spell fits specific situations best. We’ll also go through the healing and defensive cooldowns that are available for you to use whenever the going gets just a little too tough.
While we believe that the best way to level a Monk is by choosing the Windwalker specialisation - and you can check out our Windwalker Monk guide if you decide to go down that route - you can effectively level up a Mistweaver Monk using the talents and playstyle described in this guide, so long as you do so by running dungeons with friends or through the Dungeon Finder in-game tool. Questing as a Mistweaver is too slow and really not recommended.
You’ll find this guide will be constantly updated over time, and this is just the first version of it. In the next update, we'll advise an efficient levelling path for your artifact Weapon, and show you which stats make the most sense to look out for when hunting down gear for your Mistweaver Monk.
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Mistweaver Monk talent build
There are two widely accepted paths to take as a Mistweaver Monk: the traditional “ranged healer” route, and the “Fistweaving” subspec, which places you in melee range, periodically striking an enemy target as a way to both replenish your mana and heal more effectively.
In this first iteration of the guide, we’ll focus on the simpler, traditional healer role, and at a later date we’ll explore the Fistweaver style.
|Level||Talent Option||Reason for Choice|
|15||Chi Burst - Hurls a torrent of Chi energy up to 40 yards forward, dealing moderate Nature damage to all enemies, and high healing to the Monk and all allies in its path.||With a 30-second cooldown, this will periodically give you a good amount of party healing on demand, and in this tier it’s the talent that is the most useful for the majority of situations.|
|30||Celerity - Reduces the cooldown of Roll by 5 seconds and increases its maximum number of charges by 1.||While this tier is a matter of preference / individual fight mechanic relevance, we feel that Celerity provides a good baseline choice, empowering a movement skill that you should already be very familiar with.|
|45||Mist Wrap - Increases Enveloping Mist's duration by 1 sec and its healing bonus by 10%. You may now channel Soothing Mist while moving.||One of your regular healing spells gets even better, and being able to channel Soothing Mist while moving is huge, as current endgame content usually requires frequent movement.|
|60||Leg Sweep - Knocks down all enemies within 5 yards, stunning them for 5 seconds.||All talents in this tier are unrelated to healing, and all are good as defensive / crowd control utilities. Still, we feel this one is the easiest to use and the most reliable too.|
|75||Healing Elixir - Drink a healing elixir, healing you for 15% of your maximum health. Healing Elixir will automatically trigger if you drop below 35% health, and a charge is available.||Both a safety net and a personal healing cooldown, this will save your life more often than not, and stands head and shoulders above the other choices. The alternatives should only be taken if individual fight mechanics warrant doing so.|
|90||Invoke Chi-Ji, the Red Crane - Summons an effigy of Chi-Ji, the Red Crane for 45 sec. Chi-Ji heals nearby allies with Crane Heal for a moderate amount.||This is a bit of a weird one. It’s clearly the best choice for the vast majority of circumstances, and the “pet” it summons (you get a pet bar and everything) will do its own thing if you let it, although you should try to direct him to whoever needs him the most.|
|100||Mana Tea - Reduces the mana cost of your spells by 50% for 10 seconds||Mana management is an important consideration for healers in the Legion expansion, and this will help you immensely with that, especially on prolonged boss fights. As you develop your gear and start running Mythic+ dungeons, you should switch this for Focused Thunder.|
Mistweaver Monk rotation and cooldowns
An often overlooked but crucial part of healing is managing the User Interface (UI). The time you take to evaluate a party-member's health and then choose which spell to cast on him or her will often be the determining factor in a group’s success.
Sadly, Blizzard’s default UI is not up to snuff, so while we usually avoid recommending addons for aiding core gameplay, in this case we feel we need to advise you to use the Grid addon. This is a clean, grid-shaped list of everyone in your party, and one you can move anywhere in your screen (we recommend below or right next to your character). It won’t needlessly clutter your UI, and it will help you with both triage and target selection.
We also find it very important to use keybindings for healing spells. Healing usually requires split-second reactions, and endgame scenarios are not tolerant of extra clicks and mouse pointer navigation.
Gameplay and Abilities
As a healer, your job is to make effective triage of party members, choosing who needs the most healing on a moment-to-moment basis, and casting the most mana-efficient spell to recover the target's health pool.
To help you with this, we will outline the most suitable spell for several kinds of situations, and explain how to loosely prioritize their casting. Keep in mind though that this doesn’t replace using your best judgement as you gain familiarity with the fights and specific enemy abilities.
We feel we should stress this point: this is a very loose priority and the most important thing to do is choose the right spell for the right situation, as specified on the right column of the table below.
You should also take into account Soothing Mist, an unique Monk ability. This is not a spell, rather it is a constant stream of healing towards the target of your last main healing spell.
While it is usually interrupted by movement, our talent choice prevents that from happening, so during periods of low damage you can rely on it and focus on staying away from harm's way while you replenish your resources. You should always have it applied on someone (usually the tank).
|Priority||When and Whom to Target|
|1||Renewing Mist||Cast this on cooldown onto the player with the lowest health.|
|2||Enveloping Mist||Maintain this on the tank (or the player taking the most damage from the mechanics). You will need to recast it frequently.|
|3||Effuse||Use this if the previous two abilities can’t sustain the target’s health pool.|
|4||Vivify||Use this when Effuse is not enough to supplement the two main spells, or if 2-3 players are taking heavy damage, or if you gained the Uplifting Trance buff (randomly gained from casting Renewing Mist).|
|5||Chi Burst||If 3 or more players need healing, or if there is no healing required and you just want to contribute with a bit of damage on the enemy targets.|
Note that this advice is extensively applied to 5-man content (or when healing the tank during raids). We will include a section on raid-wide healing in a future update.
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Mistweaver Monks have an interesting set of additional healing abilities which can be used for dealing with specific situations, or weaved into your regular healing pattern for extra benefit.
Here’s how to make the most out of them.
|Sheilun’s Gift (Artifact Ability earned at level 100)||Ok, so this is not technically a cooldown, and you can cast it at any time. In order for it to be effective though, you should allow your staff to gather at least five “Mist Clouds” (up to a maximum of 12) which takes roughly 50 seconds. Once it reaches this point, you should fire it away at the person most in need of a heal, and in the place of a regular spell as this will help you save mana.|
|Revival||This is an immensely powerful spell that will heal everyone up for a large amount and dispel most detrimental effects from the whole party or raid. You should save it for boss abilities that deal heavy party-wide damage, or - if you're in a raid - when requested by your healing officer.|
|Life Cocoon||Not only does this deflect a considerable amount of damage away from your target, it will also increase the effect of healing spells on him or her. Save it for dealing with hard-hitting boss abilities or periods of heavy damage.|
|Thunder Focus Tea||Another unique ability for the Mistweaver Monk, this cooldown does nothing by itself, but instead empowers the spell you cast next - either Renewing Mist, Effuse, Enveloping Mist, Essence Font or Vivify - in a unique way. Generally speaking, you should spend this on cooldown to be able to cast Renewing Mist repeatedly. That said, if you know a heavy blow is about to land on your target, you can delay its use a bit so you can cast an instant Enveloping Mist. Finally, if your Vivify can benefit from the randomly-occurring Uplifting Trance buff, you should use Thunder Focus Tea to remove its cost and cast it.|
This concludes the first version of our Mistweaver Monk guide! In the next update, we’ll add some pointers about the fine art of raid-wide healing, and in further updates you can look forward to an extensive guide on the most effective path to take when upgrading your Artifact Weapon. We'll also have advice on stat and gear selection.
Any comments or suggestions? Please let us know below!