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  1. #1

    Fistweaving: When, Why, and How You Should

    January 5, 2013

    Fistweaving is the most unique style of healing available to Mistweavers and is quite different from any other method of healing in the game. It is similar to Attonement in the aspect of doing damage to heal, but the playstyle is a lot different and much more viable in varying degrees depending on the fight. The purpose of this guide is to flesh out some of the more confusing aspects of Fistweaving so that Mistweavers can understand when, why, and how it works. This guide will assume a working knowledge of Mistweaver abilities and names.

    Acronyms:

    MW = Mistweaver
    FW or FWing = Fistweaving
    TP = Tiger Palm
    BoK = Blackout Kick
    SZ = Serpant's Zeal
    AA = Auto-Attack (white hits)
    SCK = Spinning Crane Kick

    When you should Fistweave:

    To being, let me make something clear.There is no such thing as a "Fistweaver." What I mean by that is that Fistweaving is a Mistweaver tool. Anyone that attempts to Fistweave in place of normal healing all the time is going to be in for a rude awakening when they get to any kind of difficult content. There are times and places to use it, and there are times and places to not use it. You can't be a Monk that only Fistweaves any more than a Paladin that only uses Divine Light. That is why a portion of the is focused on why and when you should Fistweave; it is not always appropriate.

    On that note, gearing specifically around Fistweaving would not make sense because the differences between 1h and 2h weapons as well as stats aren't big enough to alter how you would gear for normal healing. Focus your gear on traditional healing because that is where Mistweavers need the most help from their gear.

    To figure out when best to Fistweave, we must first clarify that "Fistweaving" is not limited to a single rotation. I hold the notion that there are three different paradigms of "punching the boss" as my guildies like to call it that may or may not involve full Fistweaving.

    1) Using Jab to generate Chi. (Not Fistweaving)
    For the purposes of this guide, using Jab alone for Chi does not constitute Fistweaving. It is a core part of MW healing and really doesn't share the "heal via damage" paradigm of actual FWing and is effective regardless of damage done. I will let other guides go over healing normally with Jabs thrown in.

    2) Maintaining 2 stacks of Serpant's Zeal, Tiger Power, and spending all extra Chi on Tiger Palm or Blackout Kick (DPSweaving)
    As stated, this type of FWing which I like to call "DPSweaving" involves taking on a full DPS rotation (with other things mixed in, more on that later) with the object of translating as much damage as possible into healing while attempting to be mana efficient.

    3) Maintaining SZ and TP, relying on auto-attacks for healing and spending all extra Chi on healing abilities (Zealweaving)
    While using DPS abilities to keep up buffs to maximize auto-attack Eminence, this style revolves around the mana-efficiency of AA healing and keeping up the buffs to do so, while also using other heals while smacking away at the boss. I call it Zealweaving for the object of keeping up Serpent's Zeal.

    When to use Jab for Chi:
    All the time. If Soothing Mist isn't appropriate and neither is SCK for building Chi, you Jab. No special circumstances are required for Jab to be a useful skill, not a single boss should pass by where you don't end up using Jab at all. It is a core part of Mistweaver healing. This will be the last mention of it as it does not particularly pertain to this subject.

    When to "DPSweave":
    This one is pretty simple as we have Priests and their Attonement to look back on over the years. You DPSweave when there is a damage buff. It does require a sizable DPS buff to fully DPSweave, but generally anything in the magnitude of 50% increased damage or more will make DPSweaving the most efficient option.

    When to Zealweave:
    Generally, any time you have Chi to burn that you do not need at that moment is a good time to throw up some DPS buffs and right click on the boss for a bit. Most healing can be done while still attacking the boss (Renewing Mist w/ mouseover macro, Healing Sphere, Uplift) which ensures maximum healing from the Chi spent on SZ, with the only actual heals that stop it being Soothing Mist channels, SCK, casting Chi Burst, and targeting something other than the boss for whatever reason.

    Why you should:

    DPSweave:
    Simply put, it is blatantly overpowered in some circumstances. Elegon, Wind Lord (especially Heroic), some parts of Amber-Shaper, and Heroic Stone Guards all provide massive damage buffs that shoot DPSweaving far ahead of not only conventional MW healing but ahead of all other healers depending on the magnitude of the damage increase (150k auto-attack crits on Heroic Wind Lord, practically solo heal during Recklessness Rain of Blades). It's an easy way to heal that gives ridiculous returns in some situations, a very good reason to use it.

    Zealweave:
    If you can ensure full AA uptime on a boss after using BoK and TP and will use the Eminence healing over the next 20 seconds, it's actually surprisingly mana efficient. 3 Chi buys you 20 seconds of Zealweaving time (if SZ is already up, 5 Chi if not, prolonged usage runs 7 Chi per minute), and its total healing can be double that of a 12-target Uplift if you do it at the right time. It's arguably the trickiest technique for a healer to pull off, but it is oh so rewarding when you do.

    How to:

    Zealweave:
    Covering this first because it is very simplistic. Provided you have the Mana Tea Glyph (as channeling stops AAs), you can Zealweave to your heart's content whenever you like. It requires no setup and no special circumstances, but it very tricky to use at the right time.

    To Zealweave:
    1) BoK twice for 2 stacks of SZ
    2) TP for Tiger Power buff
    3) Refresh those buffs (refreshing SZ is more important as it has more impact and cost to get back up)
    4) Heal normally while AAing boss without de-targeting or moving out of range
    5) Try to keep Statue within 20 yards of groups of players. Not always possible, but it is half of the healing.

    DPSweave:
    This is something you should decide you need to do on a fight before it starts as it is dictated by fight-specific mechanics. The setup is as follows:

    Glyphs:
    Mana Tea
    Surging Mist
    Anything else, I prefer Renewing Mist myself

    Talents:
    Not really relevant except Chi Torpedo unless damage buff is over 100% in which case take Xuen

    To DPSweave:
    1) Heal normally until such time comes when there is a damage increase (don't DPSweave until the time is right).
    Upon damage increase:
    2) Get SZ and TP up immediately
    3) Keep Statue within 20 yards of groups of players if possible.
    4) Assume a rotation as divided into Building Chi and Spending Chi:

    Building Chi
    A) Expel Harm (lower mana cost than Jab, healing from Jab is negligible, may heal self if damaged, SKIP THIS if damage buff is 100% or more)
    B) Renewing Mist on target without HoT (SKIP THIS if damage buff is at 100% or higher, Jab is better then)
    C) Jab
    D) Surging Mist with 5-stack buff

    Spending Chi
    I) TP/BoK for appropriate buffs
    II) Spam TP for more buffs and extra hits to spread out Eminence healing and reduce overhealing
    III) Use extra BoKs if and only if damage buff is BELOW 100% (otherwise TP would cover it anyways) and you have a lot of extra mana to burn

    It is my hope that people will learn more about Fistweaving and its intricacies, specifically its strengths and weaknesses and how valuable it can be when done right. If there are any questions, concerns, or disagreements please voice them in the replies and have fun punching things.
    Last edited by Totaltotemic; 2013-01-08 at 06:14 PM.

  2. #2
    Something that should be added for a Fistweaver: make damn sure you start the fight at full Chi, and get Renewing Mists rolling before the pull (to help build that Chi). This does 2 things, helps with early damage because of Renewing rolling early, and since you are at full Chi, you can get SZ and TP up within the first 5 seconds of getting in range of the boss. The reason I say 5 seconds is to allow for globals/ putting Renewing back on cool down.

  3. #3
    I thought about things like that, but decided against it. I wanted to make a guide that was Fistweaving-specific assuming that all of the no-brainers (enchants, talents, pre-fight preparation, when to use CDs) were already covered by most other guides. When including things, I asked myself: "Is this something that even people that never Fistweave should already know?", and something like starting the fight with full Chi and RMs falls under that. It's niche, yes, but I feel that it's a good step for intermediate Mistweavers without delving into the min-maxing realm.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Totaltotemic View Post
    II) Spam TP for more buffs and extra hits to spread out Eminence healing and reduce overhealing.
    Learn something new everyday. Never thought of spamming TP before even with damage modifier. Will try that on my next heroic wind lord
    hello :3

  5. #5
    Dreadlord
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    3 Chi buys you 20 seconds of Zealweaving time
    Dont you mean 5 Chi? 3 Chi gives only 50% of AA dmg to healing

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Tatuin View Post
    Dont you mean 5 Chi? 3 Chi gives only 50% of AA dmg to healing
    I'm assuming that was meant for maintenance. 5 chi to start, 3 chi every 20 seconds to maintain.

  7. #7
    The Lightbringer Nikkaszal's Avatar
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    Though technically, because SZ lasts 30 seconds rather than 20, it'd be more correct to say 7 Chi per minute =)
    (This signature was removed for violation of the Avatar & Signature Guidelines)

  8. #8
    Good thread. also the TP hint is usefull, never stood still by that.

  9. #9
    Great post covering the essentials of Fistweaving, and excellent definitions of the different types of fistweaving you can perform.

    +1

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Veyne View Post
    I'm assuming that was meant for maintenance. 5 chi to start, 3 chi every 20 seconds to maintain.
    Yes, I clarified that, thanks for pointing it out.

    Also adjusting to 7 Chi per minute as that makes a lot more sense.

    About Tiger Palm: its damage is around 40% of a Blackout Kick, but it does contribute to the Surging Mist buff, which overall makes it cost far less mana not only because of the Surging Mist usage but also because it will take more GCDs, forcing less frequent Jab usage than if you were to spam BoK. It doesn't end up making a big difference in healing as the big heals provided by BoK tend to be overhealing if you have a sizable damage buff on your side.

    As reference just for credentials, this parse was my number 4 ranking on 25 man Heroic Wind Lord, with this one a couple of weeks earlier in which I ranked 12th. At the time of this posting, the three people above me on my number 4 ranking all healed with 3 healers whereas I healed with 5.

  11. #11
    Moderator Callimonk's Avatar
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    Great post! I've considered fiddling with a MW set, once I no longer need to use VP to upgrade gear.

    Do gearing priorities shift at all for FW?

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by alysmera View Post
    Great post! I've considered fiddling with a MW set, once I no longer need to use VP to upgrade gear.

    Do gearing priorities shift at all for FW?
    Good question, complicated answer. In short, yes, but unless you want to gear for specific fights you should stick with gearing for normal healing.

    Long answer: To start, Crit > Mastery is still pretty obvious. Acceptable levels of Spirit are still needed to maintain mana. The only stat that really changes is haste.
    Why is haste bad for healing normally? Well, it give HPS without HPM and only even affects 4 of our actual heals. However, for Fistweaving, it actually increases HPM because what it affects is auto-attacks, and you do not spend mana to auto-attack. This skyrockets it above Mastery (which is pretty bad until 5.2 anyways) putting it on par with Crit but without the extra mana regeneration that Crit provides. This is obviously very good for Zealweaving which relies mostly on auto-attacks, but the closer you get to DPSweaving the less it matters because Haste does not increase HPS for Jab/TP spam or the free Surging Mist spells.

    However, if Zealweaving, that haste will be awful for any other healing provided as it will not affect Uplift or RMs outside the plateaus. On top of that, you'd be losing effectiveness for any time where Fistweaving it not involved, even within the same fight. Personally, I would never gear specifically for Fistweaving because the gain in effectiveness from prioritizing Haste over Mastery while Fistweaving is no where near the effectiveness that you lose outside of Fistweaving from having too much haste (specifically, screwing up RM or EM timing).

  13. #13
    Moderator Callimonk's Avatar
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    Crit > Mastery makes sense to me - it sounds like MW mastery is too similar to Priests' Lightwell.

    Honestly, as someone who hasn't healed mainspec since end of T12, it seems to me that DPSweaving actually sounds... fun. I think maybe this week, if I have time between raids, I may start running stuff to get a set together. You've piqued my interest. However, the raid I run with already has two full-time MW, so the chances of me switching to mainspec healer are slim to none - I'm more likely to go BrM again, if the need were to arise. I'm just a completionist who likes to try to understand all aspects of my class.

    Edit - btw, have you ever thought to maybe write this into a guide? I know that EJ and other sites are hurting for up-to-date guides. It really wouldn't hurt.

  14. #14
    It's probably worth telling people that no mistweaver spells reset our swing timer. It's always effective to have SZ up in melee, think of it as spending 4 chi for 350k smart healing distributed across your raid not including crits or tiger strikes.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Dumbfoundead View Post
    It's probably worth telling people that no mistweaver spells reset our swing timer. It's always effective to have SZ up in melee, think of it as spending 4 chi for 350k smart healing distributed across your raid not including crits or tiger strikes.
    While spells don't reset the swing timer exactly, there are a lot of things that don't allow you to melee. SCK, Soothing Mist, Chi Burst, all of those stop your melee, and at some level of usage will cause your Chi spent on Serpent's Zeal and Tiger Palm to become wasted. Hence why I said that it's very tricky to know the right time to Zealweave, it needs to be a time when you wouldn't really be using those other spells and when the raid actually needs the smart healing.

  16. #16
    No instant* mistweaver spells. Also I'm fairly certain Chi Burst is intended to allow auto attacks during the cast? It has the same "false cast" workaround that SCK uses I think to make sure you can still dodge/parry as well.

  17. #17
    Zealweaving is, esp. after the nerfs, generally higher throughput than JUST jabbing for chi. As well, smart heals keep people alive, blanket heals do not. As such, the utility of a smart heal gains worth regardless of whether it's "slightly lower throughput" (it's not, unless youre spamming the aforementioned spells...which, at least for myself, is rare. Even so, healers role is to keep people alive, not meter pad.) At least in my experience on heroic fights, if you're already jabbing for chi, there is little to no reason not to keep up SZ. If you aren't jabbing for chi, you're likely using SCK, in which case SZ is indeed a very bad use of chi.

  18. #18
    What impact does 2h vs 1h have on the various styles of fistweaving?

    Oh, and read the tooltips folks!

    Chi Burst
    2 Chi 40 yd range
    1 sec cast
    Requires Monk
    Requires level 30
    You summon a torrent of Chi energy and hurl it at the target, dealing 138 to 413 Nature damage to all enemies, and 325 to 972 healing to all allies in its path. Chi Burst will always heal the Monk.

    While casting Chi Burst, you continue to dodge, parry, and auto-attack.
    Last edited by Dreyo; 2013-01-08 at 02:44 PM.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Dreyo View Post
    What impact does 2h vs 1h have on the various styles of fistweaving?

    Oh, and read the tooltips folks!

    Chi Burst
    2 Chi 40 yd range
    1 sec cast
    Requires Monk
    Requires level 30
    You summon a torrent of Chi energy and hurl it at the target, dealing 138 to 413 Nature damage to all enemies, and 325 to 972 healing to all allies in its path. Chi Burst will always heal the Monk.

    While casting Chi Burst, you continue to dodge, parry, and auto-attack.
    Refer to my comment number 12, it actually originated from your thread :-P

    http://www.mmo-champion.com/threads/...1#post19701317

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by gnorrior View Post
    Zealweaving is, esp. after the nerfs, generally higher throughput than JUST jabbing for chi. As well, smart heals keep people alive, blanket heals do not. As such, the utility of a smart heal gains worth regardless of whether it's "slightly lower throughput" (it's not, unless youre spamming the aforementioned spells...which, at least for myself, is rare. Even so, healers role is to keep people alive, not meter pad.) At least in my experience on heroic fights, if you're already jabbing for chi, there is little to no reason not to keep up SZ. If you aren't jabbing for chi, you're likely using SCK, in which case SZ is indeed a very bad use of chi.
    Generally, yes, you should be using SZ if you're using Jab for Chi, but not always. The "but not always" is what makes SZ tricky to use. For example, I may Jab for Chi in the 10 seconds leading up to an Unseen Strike, but that would be a very, very bad time to Zealweave. Hence Why I pointed out that you can Zealweave any time you like, but it might not always be the best time for it.

    Also, my bad on the Chi Burst thing, never read it that far t-t

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