Friday, 5 October 2007

Primal Mooncloth Robe vs Windhawk Set

One of the major decisions a druid naturally comes across in their time, is what profession to take. For feral druids, there are a number of very good items to be made from Leatherworking as Big Bear Butt Blogger mentions.

However in the case of restoration druids for BOP equipment there are two main contenders being namely: Tribal Leatherworkers vs Primal Mooncloth Tailor

Lets look at the advantages of both:

Tribal Leatherworking

Most people associate this profession more closely with the druid because it produces leather items. The Windhawk set is a very good set for druids who also want some spell damage on their items.

Its such a shame that Blizzard developers never developed a new armour skin for this set and instead relying on old tribal leatherworking looks for this set. Yes this is a minor point and quite vain but when you have to look at the back of your character for hours within the game, looks are a valid point for consideration.

The set bonus is quite underwhelming, just 8 mana/5 more for completing the set? No procs, no related stat bonuses, no special abilities? M'eh, however looking on the bright side this is a proc which helps both Moonkins and Restoration druids equally.

I would say the bracers are the best leather +heal bracers until you get to SSC / TK unless you grab a pair of these from the Maiden or grind PVP to get these. I would say that whilst spell crit on this set is obviously for Moonkins it can be advantageous to a dreamstate restoration build in helping Natures Grace proc more. A good solid set especially for restoration druids who dip their toes in the balance tree.

Primal Mooncloth Tailoring

"Cloth? But you're supposed to wear leather." is the most common reaction I have heard to seeing a druid in the Primal Mooncloth Set.

First things first the armour is the first major difference, but when talking about 299 armour, its really not much of an issue because as a healer you aren't technically supposed to be hit within a 5 man/raid. For those who spend merrily spend their time at the battlegrounds however armour can be a key difference for vital fights.

The second major difference is the distinct lack of stamina on the Primal Mooncloth Robe, when starting out in 5 mans/Karazhan/Gruuls Lair/Magtheradon, its not a major issue. However when you get into TK and SSC the magic number for health seems to be 8000 health. The lack of stamina can be accommodated for with Fortitude Buff, Blood Pact or Commanding Shout. As a Tree Druid I often get put into the Main Tank group so I tend to get those buffs during the course of the raid. There are also several trinkets which can help you out such as this or this. Again people who PVP with the Primal Mooncloth Robe are a walking advertisement for having little stamina and a primary target for focus fire.

The next big difference is Intellect, Windhawk wins here with +17 more Intellect. However Int is not a key stat for Tree of Life Restoration Druids, whilst its certainly nice to have a large mana pool Tree of Life druids gain more benefit from spirit. Saying that a Dreamstate Resto druid would get much more benefit out of stacking intellect as their damage/heal is increased by 25% of their intellect, and the dreamstate talent increases mana/5 by 10% of their intellect so an additional 1.7 mana/5 is not to be sneezed at. Again for PVP, intellect has a higher priority, more spells cast from a larger mana pool = teh win.

Spirit next, there is 10 more spirit on the Windhawk set than the Primal Mooncloth set. This will provide more effect when Intensity is changed to 30% mana regeneration in combat.

The most interesting stat is next, +heal, and the Primal Mooncloth Set has over +100 heal more than the Windhawk set. Obviously much more of a benefit for the Primal Mooncloth Set.

Next is spell damage, this isn't of use to either Dreamstate Restoration druids or Tree of Life druids unless grinding. In which case Windhawk clearly wins since there is no spell damage on the Primal Mooncloth set.

See above for Spell crit, another win for Windhawk.

The penultimate stat to be looked at is mana regeneration is mana/5 and since there isn't any on the Windhawk Set (set bonus aside), the Primal Mooncloth Set wins.

Now for sockets, the Windhawk has 3 yellow sockets and 3 blue sockets allowing some customisation. The Primal Mooncloth has 2 yellow sockets and 2 blue sockets. Windhawk wins this round for being more customisable. Its a shame both sockets aren't red for Teardrop gems however.

Finally set bonuses, I've already touched on the Windhawk bonus a rather static 8 mana/5, good for raids and grinding. However the Primal Mooncloth set bonus is that it allows an additional 5% of mana regeneration to occur in combat. A druid who has a mana regeneration rate of 350 mana/5 will get an additional 17.5 mana/5. The great thing about this bonus is that it scales with gear, so that if you socketed for more spirit, it would be more advantegous (ignoring the fact that 9 +heal / 2mp5 gems make better use of their allocated budget than 9 +heal / 4 spirit gems).

The last point which helped me personally decide what profession to take for Aftereight, a druid who I knew would be healing, is that Tailoring only really takes up one profession choice. Whilst you can level leatherworking without skinning, it is much more expensive to do so.

So in summary, the Primal Mooncloth robe seems much better suited to Tree of Life druids who know they will be healing in raids. In the next patch where a third of healing is converted to spell damage, Primal Mooncloth will start to catch up for grinding purposes.

However if you are a dreamstate restoration druid or think you may go more into balance, or if you are simply a druid who values a starting set for PVP the Windhawk set seems definitely geared towards you.

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