Welcome to the Mistweaver Ability Spotlight, a series where we go in-depth and talk about using specific abilities that are very unique to Mistweavers. Today we will be looking at Thunder Focus Tea, how its four different effects work, and how to best use these effects in Mythic raids and M+ dungeons.
Thunder Focus Tea Mechanics
Thunder Focus Tea (TFT) shares its mechanics with a type of spell that almost every class used to have, but almost none exist in the game anymore. As a spell that buffs specifically the next spell only, its rules work a little differently than normal spells. A short list of differences:
- Thunder Focus Tea remains off the Global Cooldown (GCD), or the small cooldown after every spell.
- TFT can even be activated during channels of Soothing Mist or Essence Font.
- However, the cooldown of TFT will not begin until its effect has been used. With the Focused Thunder talent, both effects must be used before TFT will begin its cooldown.
Put simply, you can activate Thunder Focus Tea pretty much whenever you want as long as you are not in the middle of casting a spell like Vivify or Enveloping Mist. Keep in mind to use the effect quickly though so it can begin recharging and be available again sooner.
Enveloping Mist (EnM)
Thunder Focus Tea into Enveloping Mist instantly delivers a [200% Spellpower] to the target when it lands. This happens at the same time as Mastery: Gust of Mists lands, but keep in mind that happens anyway whether you use TFT or not; don’t overestimate how much TFT adds. Note that EnM’s healing bonus says that it applies to “other spells” and while that does apply to Gust of Mists, it will not apply to the TFT-EnM heal. The TFT-EnM heal will always only be 200% Spellpower whether the target has Enveloping Mists or not.
Renewing Mist (ReM)
Using Thunder Focus Tea on ReM makes it last 30 seconds instead of 20. That’s 10 more seconds of ReM’s healing (70% Spellpower total) and 10 more seconds of an additional target being hit by Vivify (another 70% Spellpower per Vivify). See the Renewing Mist spotlight for an in-depth look at how to time these longer ReMs for Vivify burst windows.
If you have TFT active and cast Vivify, it won’t cost any mana. That’s 95% Spellpower plus 70% per ReM plus a Gust of Mists heal for free. Unlike the first two options, this does not add any healing in the moment and only presents as a long-term gain. The only notable mechanic involved with TFT here is that, despite costing no mana, the Lifecycles talent will count this as a cast and trigger the Vivify side of the talent, so keep that in mind.
Rising Sun Kick (RSK)
The tooltip doesn’t match what you think you see in-game with any kind of haste. Thunder Focus Tea actually only reduces the base cooldown of RSK, bringing it from 12 to 3, with haste taking effect afterwards as if it was a 3 second cooldown spell. Because 3 seconds lasts exactly twice as long as the GCD, there will always be time for another spell between the first RSK and the next. Keep in mind that this can get a little awkward with Focused Thunder if you want to use both effects on RSK as you’ll have to avoid casting another TFT-affected spell between your two RSKs, and resets from Teachings of the Monastery don’t really do anything either, leaving your selection of spells between RSKs to be very limited with Focused Thunder.
Thunder Focus Tea Uses
Enveloping Mist – Single Target Burst Healing
TFT-EnM gives a massive single target healing boost immediately when you just don’t have time to do a Soothing Mist -> Enveloping Mist –> Vivify combo on someone or if they would die before that full amount of healing can ramp up. However, you do want to try to avoid being in this situation at all so optimally you wouldn’t end up doing this often, but things happen and sometimes you need to save someone.
Renewing Mist – Planned Group Healing
TFT-ReM presents the best and most skill-intensive way to improve group healing when you need it most, but only if you plan very well ahead of time. Again, see the Renewing Mist spotlight for more information on this. To briefly summarize it, TFT-ReM gives you 10 more seconds of ReM, but that doesn’t actually do anything until 20 seconds after your cast so you have to plot out casts to meet timers of certain abilities. If you do it right though, the group healing increase is massive at only needing 2 Vivify casts in those 10 seconds to surpass the total healing contribution of TFT-EnM.
Vivify – Long Term Mana Value
Thunder Focus Tea-Vivify usually presents the best gain long-term in any situation where mana management comes up. Long Tyrannical M+ bosses that don’t need the help of TFT-ReM or most raid bosses longer than about 4 minutes will see the best value out of TFT-Vivify. A free Vivify at even just 2 ReMs will do more healing than the extra ReM time or the boost from EnM with the only cost being a GCD of time. In these mana-intensive situations, dead time where you have to stop casting to save mana happens often enough that the time cost of casting this free Vivify becomes negligible. When trying to cram as much healing into as little time as possible though, consider one of the first two options.
Rising Sun Kick – Damage and/or Rising Mist Healing
Obviously, Rising Sun Kick normally does not heal anyone. Without the Rising Mists talent, using Thunder Focus Tea on RSK can only be done for damage purposes, which can be a perfectly acceptable trade-off if you judge that extra healing is less valuable than extra DPS. The DPS angle has legitimate use on some M+ bosses and very tight DPS checks in raids when there isn’t much healing to do at the moment.
For an in-depth look at how to play with Rising Mists in raids see this post.