Holy Paladin Mana Regen – Mp5 vs crit vs INT


This post has been bouncing around in my head and recently comments on my dislike of MP5 have made me think that I need to show -why- I don’t really like it.  There shall be math involved!

– Some basics to know beforehand –

First of all, there is an element of play style involved in these calculations.  Things like group composition, frequency of heals cast and skillful use of all paladin abilities really determine things.  I’ll be as specific as I can.  Let me lay some ground work.

Item budget:  INT = 1, Crit = 1, MP5 = 2

Item budget determines how costly it is to put a specific stat on an item per point.  For example, to put 1 point of INT on an ilevel 200 epic costs 1 ilevel, leaving 199 ilevels left.  To put 1 point of Crit on an ilevel 200 epic costs 1 ilevel, leaving 199 ilevels left.  To put 1 point of MP5 on an ilevel 200 epic costs 2 ilevels, leaving 198 ilevels left.  In short, it’s twice as costly to put MP5 on an item as INT or crit.  This is important when we’re comparing usefulness for mana regen.

Synergy:  MP5 gives nothing but mana regen.  Crit gives some mana regen and a random chance of increasing throughput.  INT gives mana regen, a random chance of increasing throughput  and a constant throughput increase through spellpower.

– Critical Strike Rating –

Healadins have a great talent (although highly nerfed now) to get mana back when our heals crit, Illumination.  The way it works is that the more you cast, the better it is.  Fights were you are constantly casting get more mana regen from crit than fights where you have long pauses or cast slowly.  This means that crit is very fight dependent.  Generally, once all the math is done, crit gives 30-50% of the mana regen MP5 does when you’re comparing two items.  (This is taking into account item budget.)

To find out for yourself how much regen each point of crit is giving you, you need to know how many times you cast each of your heals per minute.  That is calculated by knowing your total casts and the fight length.  HLPM is Holy Light casts per minute, HSPM is Holy Shock casts per minute and FoLPM is Flash of Light casts per minute.  The formula is thus:

(HLPM * 382.2 * 0.0002178 * .o83333) + (HSPM * 237.3 * 0.0002178 * .o83333) + (FoLPM * 92.1 * 0.0002178 * .o83333) = the MP5 1 crit is worth to you for this fight

The second number in each parenthesis is the amount of mana gained per spell crit, after that is the crit added per point of crit in decimal form, and after that is the amount of MP5 ticks in a minute in decimal form.  Not as complicated as you’d think right?  Remember at the end to double the number you get before you compare it to 1 MP5, due to 2 crit = 1 MP5 in item budget.  (Or you can compare the number you arrive at above to .5 MP5, both work out in the end.)

As you can see, the mana regen we get from crit is no where near as good as what we get from MP5.  However, crit is -not- purely a mana regen stat.  It also increases HPS, which is something to consider.

– Intellect –

This one is far more complicated than then crit and doesn’t really depend nearly as much on play style.  Mana regen from INT is actually much more dependent on group composition than anything else.  For sake of ease, we’ll start by exploring what 100 INT gets you and then break it down to show what 1 INT is.

100 INT =
1800 mana, mana that you start a fight with
18 MP5 from 100% uptime Replenishment
37.5 MP5 from using Divine Plea every cooldown
16 MP5 from Judging using Seal of Wisdom twice a minute
10 MP5 from crit gained
7.2 MP5 from Mana Tide Totem on cooldown (requires a Resto shaman in your party)
(4.5 MP5 from Arcane Torrent if you’re a Blood Elf)
= 88.7 MP5 (93.2 MP5 for Blood Elves)

Not all of these numbers would be considered “real world.” You’ll probably only have a 80-90% uptime on Replenishment, might not be running with a Resto shaman and might not be able to use Divine Plea exactly on cooldown. (The number from crit is an estimate from above, as well.) However, Judging on cooldown more than makes up for it. Thus, this is a relatively close estimate.

So, we can give an average of .887 MP5 for 1 INT. Taking into account that 2 INT = 1 MP5 (1.774 MP5 vs. 1 MP5) for item budget, you can see that the regen power of INT far outweighs MP5. This doesn’t take into account the added mana you begin the fight with.

As an added bonus, you also get crit rating and spellpower from INT. (100 INT = .726% crit, 20 spellpower) It isn’t much of a throughput bonus, but considering that MP5 gives no bonus at all…

– In the end… –

Blizzard tried to strong-arm Healadins into taking MP5 gear by severely reducing the mana we regen from crit and also reducing what we gain from INT, but even with all the changes they’ve made, Intellect is -still- our prime mana regen stat. You’ll often read in guides that healadins recommend gemming/enchanting towards INT, but that is simply because it is that good. There are very nice INT trinkets out there as well that I highly recommend picking up. Going towards INT gives you double the goodness; you’re picking up small amounts of throughput from the INT itself and you’re freeing up yourself to wear more straight throughput items.

Crit isn’t a very good mana regen stat anymore, as I’ve shown. However, it does give you throughput, whereas MP5 gives no throughput at all. Picking up an item with both haste and crit on it gives you double throughput with some mana regen on it. With a proper eye turned towards enough INT being on the item, you may be able to get the exact same regen in that slot as you would with an MP5 piece, without sacrificing any throughput!

Generally, it isn’t gearing that causes many healadins to run short on mana, but rather improper use of regen mechanics. If you forget to Judge, forget to use Divine Plea and never remember to use a mana potion, those are things you need to remedy -first.- Trying to compensate for those things by stacking more and more regen isn’t helping your raid any. As healers, we need to gear just enough mana regen that we can end the fight with just a little sliver of mana left (that we keep for emergancies) with all cool-downs blown. Any more than that is just a waste!



  1. Another excellent post! Intellect is a good mana regen stat for all healers, but especially pallies.

    Normally I have a very critical view of crit (see what i did there?), because I don’t like the fact that you can’t rely on it when you need the extra throughput. However, for MT healers like pallies, I think crit for throughput works fine, because in general you are spamming your target. I have a hard time explaining what I mean… but it’s different than when you are on raid heals and just trying to keep people topped off. You are expected to overheal a lot more on the MT.

    I look forward to Mp5 being on the chopping block. It’s just a wasted stat that adds more complication to something that doesn’t need to be complicated. I like trying to run numbers, but Mp5 feels like it’s there as a decoy sometimes.

    As to your last paragraph, I completely agree. As someone who has a Holy Paladin, and sucks at healing on her, I can confirm that this is mostly due to me forgetting to judge and use my cooldowns >.<

  2. Good morning Codi!

    I just wanted to take the time to read your blog that you linked on my thread and I wanted to compliment you on how well written and informative it was.

    I learned a lot more about holy paladins than I did before and I thank you for offering this up for me to look into.

    I also wanted to thank you for being very diplomatic and cool about your reply to my most recent post. I honestly didn’t expect negative feedback, from what should have been a really innocent survey question.

    It was a pleasure to see you post on my blog and I will make sure to follow yours and to leave you some feedback on here, too.

    Have a good weekend. 🙂

  3. I have written a post about my dislike for mp5 from a resto shaman perspective some time ago.

    Honestly, I think it would be best to just wipe mp5 from the game and give baseline mana regen talents like Intensity (druid) or Meditation (priest) to every healing class.

    The main problem I have with mp5 is, that it is no fun. INT is fun, it makes my mana pool bigger, helps my mana regen and pushes my SP. Spirit is fun for priests, helping with regen and pushing their SP. Crit is fun for paladins and shamans, it is throughput as well as mana regen.

    Just mp5 is sitting there, annoying everyone, without ANY synergy with any talent tree, dribbling reluctantly some mana into the world.

  4. […] talk about this before, so I’m not going to rehash all the numbers again.  (Read here for my comparison of crit vs INT vs MP5.)  You can see from the numbers posted, that the mana regen from INT blows away the competition, […]

  5. Great post!

    I was just recently informed that I should stop stacking CRIT and start stacking INT.

    I have increased my mana pool by nearly 4.5k and oddly enough, the increase in INt has meant that I have only taken a small hit in CRIT.

    I wish someone would have told me sooner.

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