Preservation Evoker – 10.2 FAQ
Patch 10.2 is a major content patch, featuring new embellishments, a raid, an M+ season, and way more. It also features a heavy overhaul of how all healers function. We’ll discuss this further down the page but a concerted effort was made to reduce the power of healing cooldowns and increase the power of single target healing. In Preservations case, we were lightly touched on all fronts but given how powerful we already were this is fine.
So, what changed?
In 10.2 we received the following changes, listed in rough order of importance:
- Resonating Sphere now applies Echo to the first 3 allies hit (was 5).
- Rewind recovers 33% of the damage taken in the last 5 seconds (was 40%).
- Cycle of Life now accumulates 10% of your healing over 8 seconds (was 15% over 10 seconds).
- Fluttering Seedlings no longer occur from Emerald Blossoms triggered by Echo. Seedlings healing increased by 20%.
- Verdant Embrace healing increased by 35%.
- Living Flame healing increased by 20%.
These tend to be net nerfs overall, but must be viewed in the context of a patch that nerfed almost every healer. We are in a better place than we were in season 2 despite being nerfed. We’ll discuss what this means for our playstyle further below, but the answer is “not much”. Blossom will play much as it did in season 2, and while the Echo build will change quite a bit, that’s mostly driven by our new tier set rather than the above package of changes.
Season 3 Builds
Your builds will look quite similar to season 2 in a lot of cases. While we received some tuning, very little of it hit our talents with Resonating Sphere the only real target. We do get some more Lifeforce Mender value from the Living Flames generated by our Season 3 two-piece bonus so we’ll be locking that into all blossom builds from now on. It was already a very good choice if DPS was of any value to you, and now it’s a passable HPS talent too. These are designed around having your Season 3 tier set however it’s acceptable to run them before then too.
You have some minor choices you can make when it comes to talents – particularly in Blossom builds. While I recommend keeping the LFM talent column, you can ditch Temporal Anomaly for mana conservation reasons if necessary. You lose a 400k+ absorb GCD and the ability to refill Essence Burst charges via Resonating Spheres but mana management becomes much easier. We’ll see how this plays during the tier but I’m expecting TA to remain the typical choice since being able to reload during dangerous portions of the fight is usually more important than overall HPS.
You can opt into any missing class tree utility points on a fight-by-fight basis but the tree is quite tight.
But which build do I play?
Blossom build contributes a ton of damage and sustained healing through a fight and you can play it as your default build if you enjoy both equally. It’s not too difficult to play and just has a ton of throughput. Its weaknesses are in how limited Blossom can be in terms of healing patterns. You want a semi-stacked raid that’s taking damage fairly consistently. You’re not very useful against dangerous debuffs or ultra-spread raids. There’s also a lot of inherent RNG in the build via Essence Burst procs, Field of Dream procs, and 4pc procs. You’re extremely useful when either of those things aren’t present. Being able to provide 30-40k DPS passively is also very high for a healer spec.
Echo build is less HPS, and does almost no damage, but has a ton more flexibility in how it heals. You have a choice over who you are healing and when. You also have incredible flexibility over the size and frequency of your healing. Massive hit about to hit the entire raid? You can Echo 75% of the raid and then heal them all with Spiritbloom or via Lifebind. Dangerous debuffs? Double up Dream Breath HoTs on them or hit them with a double Spiritbloom for their entire health bar. With the new 4pc you’re also able to heal small numbers of allies regularly by consuming your randomly generated echoes with Living Flames.
You can find a full discussion on the new Embellishments here: <https://questionablyepic.com/season-3-embellishment-preview/>. Note that Undulating Sporecloak was egregiously overpowered through most of the PTR before receiving a late but severe nerf. Compared to season 2 they added a paltry amount of Versatility in exchange for nerfing the shield and heal by around 80%.
You thus end up with a bit of choice over your Embellishments. Adaptive Dracothyst Armguards are a clear first choice. For your second:
- Allied Legguards of Sansok Khan offer the most total stats to your raid. They’re also itemized quite well for us.
- Venom-Steeped Stompers offer about half as much but it’s all personal benefit and you get a more consistent uptime.
- Undulating Sporecloak is quite far behind both, but if you’re happy trading 1% throughput for an 80k shield then it serves its purpose as a rather weak defensive option.
Embellishments are an extremely low portion of your power overall.
Season 3 trinkets are a bit of a step down from the huge highs of season 2 like Rashok’s Molten Heart. You’ll mostly be seeking out stat proc trinket and you have quite a selection that are of similar power. We’re expecting some last-minute buffs to some of these so it might be worth checking back just before Season 3 goes live. As always, use QE Live as your primary gearing resource, but here’s a quick top 4:
- Pip’s Emerald Friendship Badge (Raid drop)
- Echoing Tyrstone (Dawn of the Infinites Pt2 Mythic+ drop)
- Coagulated Genesaur Blood (Everbloom Mythic+ drop)
- Sea Star (Throne of the Tides Mythic+ drop)
These are all very close in value so you’ll get a bit of choice here about how valuable you find Echoing Tyrstone to be in your individual group. It tends to have the most controllable value, but can also miss sometimes – particularly if you have tanks with swingy health pools like Blood Death Knights. This is another area where last-minute hotfixes are likely so check back (or bookmark QE Live) so that you can make sure you’re up to date in a week.
The Legendary Question
If you were lucky enough to loot the legendary weapon, Naszuro, then you’ll get a slight edge during the first week of the patch. It’s worth somewhere around the same as a 478 main-hand weapon if you value the portion of the buffs you give to your friends. Once you’re comfortable with Mythic+ and can hit higher keys then you can replace it with a 478+ two-hander since these are very efficient to upgrade and quite a few of them this season have free DPS effects on them as an added perk.
Our Season 3 tier set bonuses are as follows:
- 2pc bonus: Empower Spells cast Living Flame at 50% effectiveness on allies or enemies struck. Capped at 3 per cast.
- 4pc bonus: Living Flame has a 33% chance to apply a standard strength Echo on allies healed, or a nearby ally who doesn’t have Echo.
Our new 2pc is extremely strong and you’ll want to seek it out immediately. You can wait a bit longer to equip your 4pc since it’s of similar strength to our season two 2pc bonus – just at a higher level. In some cases, it might even be worth passing on tier pieces in order to let others complete their sets first.
Tier playstyle changes
Bigger Blossom Build
The tier set has a smaller influence on how you play as Blossom builds:
- Make sure you have no Essence Bursts before you cast an empowered spell since the free Living Flame procs can give you Essence Burst and you’d like to avoid overcapping.
- After an empowered spell, cast Living Flame on an ally to consume any 4pc Echo procs. You don’t always have to do this, but it’s prudent during heavy damage since if you don’t consume them with Living Flames they’ll echo your next Blossom instead which is a lower value.
- Resume casting Blossoms.
- You’ll also get some free Echo buffs from offensive Living Flames you cast. You don’t have to worry about these too much. Some you’ll be able to consume with empowered spells but a lot will unavoidably go to waste.
The tier set has a larger impact on how you play Echo-centric builds. The 4pc in particular opens up defensive Living Flames as a viable echo target. It’s still weaker than Spiritbloom and Dream Breath but those spells are on long cooldowns and you have the opportunity to do smaller but more frequent ramps than in 10.2.
- Like with Blossom, make sure you clear any Essence Bursts before you cast an empowered spell. You’ll want Echo buffs out before you hit Dream Breath / Spiritbloom anyway so this should be quite natural.
- 4pc opens up choices over how to spend Echoes. Spiritbloom and Dream Breath are very good for healing but they also have long cooldowns. You can either save generated echoes for your next empowered spell or you can consume them with Living Flames. Your choice here will depend on the fight and in fact you might do all three through a given encounter.
- This makes our spot healing capabilities really quite good. You can drop a Living Flame on 3-5 targets at a time very efficiently and they’ll drive further Echo casts via Essence burst and more still via our 4pc. Note that going very wide on Living Flame Echoes isn’t quite as good. If you ever have 8-9 out at once you’ll want to consume that with Dream Breath or Spiritbloom since the number of Essence Bursts you can generate is capped.
Quick Fire Questions
- Do our stat priorities change from season 2? No, you’ll continue to play very high mastery and then a mix of crit and versatility during prog. QE Live will be updated with the patch.
- Which trinkets should I wear on week 1, before season 3 opens? You can continue to wear Rashoks Molten Heart and Ominous Chromatic Essence during week 1 – even post-nerf.
- Which item should I craft first? Legguards of Sansok Khan, but I’d avoid crafting anything until the day before season 3 starts because more changes are likely.
- Should we wait until we have new 4pc until we swap off our season 2 4pc? No. You will want your new 2pc ASAP and can wait for your season 3 4pc.