Good-Bye Socket Bonus, Hello Paolo
The problem with having another blogger inadvertently switch to your server who is far superior to you in terms of theorycrafting know how and pure priestly skill, is that now you really can't even pretend to ignore their advice.

Cue ICC10 raid last night. As we begin clearing the trash, I get a whisper from the master of Discipline himself, Paolo.

"We need to have a chat about your gems."

Oh no... I'm caught. Apparently all the Death Knights I birthed have been whispering into Paolo's ear and telling him about my badness.

"But Paolo, I just can't do it... I can't give up my socket bonuses. I can't handle those pretty little numbers being... GREY."

"You know what you really ought to do? Socket for Agility."

Oh COME ON. That's just low Paolo. Low. /weep

Sigh. He's been wearing me down slowly but surely. For months I have stubbornly held on to my pretty little orange and purple gems. Over the past couple of weeks, he's been tapping my fingers with a hammer, gently but steadily ensuring that I lose grasp on these gems.

But the real kicker tonight was Saurfang. That's right, we have yet to down him (to be fair, we have been resetting our ID, and we only raid one night a week for a couple of hours). And as I watched in horror as Saurfang's blood power slowly increased, knowing that it was my fault, that my bubbles just CAN'T TAKE THE PRESSURE, I lost the battle.

I am tearfully weaning myself off of my multi-colored gems. Every grey colored socket bonus is like a punch to the throat. But I can do this. I will prevail. I will be strong.

Tonight I replaced all my gems that added any intellect or spirit with a runed cardinal ruby. I recently picked up the Sliver of Pure Ice, so I don't feel too worried about the loss in mana regen... yet. I will keep my +Mp5 on my chest for now until I feel a little more confident about my mana regen, and then switch to the +10 Stats enchant. Scouts' honor, Paolo. True story.

It's painful to switch from Holy to Disc. It really is. You'd think it would be easy, but it's not. It's painful to let go of all the things you thought you knew about playing a priest. My type A personality is twitching all over the place about the socket bonus loss. And now as I look over the gems I did manage to replace, I'm slapping myself in the forehead. I prioritized replacing +Intellect and +Spirit gems over maintaining my socket bonuses anyway. Guh. I could have at least kept my +spellpower socket bonuses, but instead, I held on to the Haste and Crit gems. I just can't get rid of them yet. Haste and Crit are so yummy.

So in conclusion: To everyone who looks at my gear thinking that I should be some model of proper gemming and enchanting... just stop. Really. I cannot live up to the expectations. Miss Medicina is here to give advice to NEW priests of any spec. If you want expert advice, go talk to Paolo.

Because one day, Paolo will suddenly appear on your server. And when Paolo tells you to fix something, you'd better listen. Paolo KNOWS THINGS.
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13 Responses
  1. bobturkey Says:

    Paolo's a smart guy and i have a lot of respect for him, but as long as you gem sensible the difference between all +23 SP gems and matching colours is minimal.

    For DBS its about not letting the Bloodbeasts hit anyone and other execution/skill issues. Healing power is unlikely to be the weakness. If anything it would be weak DPS unable to kill the adds fast or poor management of them.

    Anyway thats my opinion ;-)

    Gobble gobble.

  2. Tam Says:

    AAAAAAAAAAARGH!! NO! NOT THE SOCKET BONUS! *clings* I won't give it up, I won't, I won't, I won't.

    Are you sure the, err, power of your bubbles was the issue - I'm not trying to be all "here is a story about me suceeding in order to illuminate your failure" about it - which is probably the most unforgiveable thing one blogger can do to another BUT I managed to heal it using my extremely sub-optimal PVP disc spec. Possibly the other priests in the raid were just uber-awesome or maybe it's a problem if you're primarily on tank versus raid healing but my shields were puny, and I had no divine aegis, and generally I was finding one bubble while boiling blood was active, followed by a penance after was all that was needed, even for the squishies like myself and the mages.

    The biggest accumulation of blood power, as far as I see it, is the uncontrolled bloodbeasts chomping on folks - which is not the healer's problem.

    Also, remember I am frivolous, so these whole two paragraphs are probably WRONG, WRONG and COVERED IN WRONG :)

    (In happier news my word verification is today : thsome. How about it?)

  3. Paolo Says:


    Silly Jess. I was just playing around with you after the comment you made about gems in your last blog post. Looks like you're more fun to play with than I realized!


    Oh and I agree with Bob. My T10 gems will be very hybrid.

  4. crankyhealer Says:

    I'm so OCD that I feel like I'm giving up "FREEBIE POINTS" if I lose the socket bonus. I just can't do it. Even though Rawr tells me to. NOOOOES. (Fortunately, right now, I can justify gemming for haste and spellpower, so as long as the socket isn't blue, I'm set...)

    As for switching to disc from holy, I hear you... I kept tapping Circle of Healing and NOTHING. NOTHING! Ugh, you mean I have to heal all these scrubs INDIVIDUALLY? Sigh.

    I find it harder to switch between holy and disc than to switch between healing characters - because you have the SAME DAMN ABILITIES as holy and disc (mostly), but you use completely different ones in your arsenal, in different ratios.

    Hang in there!

  5. @bobturkey

    I guess I tend to just assume the problem is mine. I don't know, I just keep reading about these priests who can solo-heal DBS, and that Discipline makes this fight trivial. But I am really struggling with it!


    In my nightmares, my socket bonus is crying to me saying "WHY HAST THOU FORSAKEN ME"

    You know what really kills me? I was looking at the combat log and, uhm, I'm the one who got chomped on by blood beasts the most. >.< I have a bad bad tunnel vision issue.

    I like how the word verifications are like little teasers - because they are always very close to a "real word". I've never seen one like that before. I wonder if I can request more word verifications with sexual innuendos?


    I kid, I kid. I'm incredibly capricious when it comes to my gems. I spend a fortune every couple of weeks completely regemming, before I change my mind all over again.

    I am really pumped about you being on my server though! Our pally tank has a Disc Priest alt and she's a big fan of your blog too, so when you first sent me a whisper she and I were both very excited.


    That is exactly the problem I have. I mean, I want all those stats anyway, right? So shouldn't I be optimizing and try to squeeze out every last drop?

    And that is the exact same problem I have in switching between holy and disc - it's so tricky! You use your spells completely differently, even though they are the same ones, and you really have to think about it harder so that you don't do it wrong.

  6. Tiex Says:

    Hey there =D

    I never really posted here, despite the fact that I'm a regular reader (really fun to read you blog during work hours, hehe).

    I know exactly how you feel! I used to have HUGE problems letting go of those delicious socket bonuses! Some time later, I came to realiza that +7 spellpower won't make a HUGE difference compared to those stats you REALLY need. Now don't get me wrong, spellpower is supreme for disc priests, but crit and haste are also magnificent and work really well if you can keep the balance between them.

    If I may be so bold as to give you a piece of advice (and I don't even know if you're already doing this), on Saurfang I found it really useful to pre-shield everyone in the raid. By the time some of them get hit by blood boil, the weakened soul effect is gone, but your shield is not. So, even if it breaks your shield before the effect ends (and it most definitely will), you can place another shield right away, reducing the damage ticks and, therefore, the blood power gained.

    Hope it helps a bit, worked wonders with me (especially when we two healed it with 2 disc priests XD).

    Keep up the nice work, I had a lot of fun with your oculus posts ;)

  7. @Tiex

    You should comment allllll the time! I lurrrve comments even if I don't always respond.

    Also, guh. That's really great advice. Why didn't I think of that? Mostly what I've been doing is spam healing whoever has the blood boil, and praying for a Divine Aegis proc. Maybe instead, I should spend that time pre-shielding the rest of the raid. I guess that would make it a lot easier on my Druid counterpart.

    If all your advice is this clever, you definitely need to comment more <3

  8. Jasyla Says:

    I completely relate with wanting the socket bonuses. Seeing them greyed out makes me sad :(

    On my druid, I still go for the socket bonuses. Spell power is king, but a few SP/spirit or SP/haste never hurt anyone, did they? Especially since I'm still under haste cap.

    My love of socket bonuses on my hunter has thankfully been beaten out of me, but I'm not giving them up on my healer!

  9. oramgeslice Says:

    I also agree with the info Tiex offered for dealing with bloodpoints. Pre-shielding helps out a lot!!!

    Also when the Bloodbeasts come out to play, make sure if you have a hunter make sure they place down those frosttraps. Also having a boomkin with entangle, and/or a shadow priest with mind sear (the one that slows mobs down) helps out a lot. Need to burn those puppies down asap.

    Keep the ranged DPS shielded at all times.

  10. orangeslice Says:

    I forgot to add. awesome blog. always fun to read! And a great source of info.

  11. Awww you caved to the peer pressure! I refuse to lose good socket bonuses (spellpower or int). Refuse totally. And I don't even really invest much in gear.

    Your bubbles shoulda been plenty strong enough, then again I'm not sure if you were 2 healing or 3 healing Saurfang. Managing the blood power growth by maintaining that range requirement and killing those beasts and Saurfang fast enough really is key, more so than your gems!

    Anyways, love this blog. :) And hope to hear more of Paolo clubbing you. >:)

  12. Chirri Says:

    Arrrg, I totally feel for you. In the old days (Holy, anyone?) I gemmed and enchanted in a rather half-assed manner. Well, I guess it's hard to enchant half-assed since caster enchants are pretty narrow in terms of options, but even so.

    For the last couple of months, whenever I got an upgrade, I finally started gemming pure Runed Cardinal Ruby. It was hard. It still is hard. It feels like I'm cheating, because I used to have to make up for any shortcomings my gear's stats may have lacked. But these days it's not hard to find cloth with Spell Power, Haste AND Crit, all on the same piece. They're not precisely plentiful, but they're not like searching for hen's teeth, either.

    But I still feel awkward for missing socket bonuses. The bonuses that are +spell power just make me cringe. At the same time, I shake my fist at the people at Blizz who thought, for even an instant, that I might have some use for a blue or yellow gem just for some piddling +7 Spell Power socket bonus.

    Still, I'm pleased with the way I handled it. Rather than replacing all of my dual color gems on my gear at the time, I just gemmed pure Runed whenever I got an upgrade. It's helped to have my own Transmute spec Alchemist, a guildbank I share with only my honey bun (who ALSO has a Transmute spec Alchemist), so our supply of gems is never super low, nor is replenishing the hoard expensive. Just time consuming.

    omg I can never stick to just a short comment or post.

    Keep up the good work :)

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