DPS Comes Full Circle in ToC

It is always odd to me when a company professes there is nothing wrong with something in the face of hordes of people crying foul. (I’m talking to you Blizzard the Beast Master in Illisan still screams in horror at what you did to her spec.) But I find it a ploy to buy them time and to pat themselves on the back and then point saying, “See we DO listen.” Yeah you listen…you listen when it is advantageous to do so.

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Published in: on October 14, 2009 at 7:54 pm  Comments (4)  
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Anub’arak Down!

Wednesday Madness Post. (I know its like March Madness but seriously if you live in the Seattle area you will understand. Our weather went from Sunny and summery to frigid and cold overnight and I am pretty sure the weather has gone mad.) Right, so where was I? I really should keep my tangents to a minimum. OH! Right, so we finally got Anub down! The hub came in while I was doing my WOOT! dance in the chair. (Don’t ask I won’t tell you) A few key points about this fight and problems I see overall with it from a priestly perspective.

First, as previously posted healer dps is a HUGE help on this fight. (Being assigned to an off tank actually allowed me to throw even more time on the boss and adds adding what meager dps I can toss their ways) Nothing highlights this more when you are at 1% boss life; he enrages and slaughters your entire raid. I managed to keep most of the cursing on the inside. (Delicate ears come by my raid room)

Second, Prayer of Mending in Phase 3 is a pain in the tuckus. Let me explain, your friends, your comrades, your fellow raiders are taking loads of damage. But healing them all up is a tricky prospect; anything over 50% will also heal the boss. Thus increasing the amount of dps needed to kill said boss and also extending the time your team is getting pummeled with damage. Last night PoM’s were called for to bounce around. I saw a single flaw with this: uncontrolled healing. You can’t guarantee who is going to get that tick of living giving goodness. On more than one occasion I saw my life pop up to over 100% (thank you Vuhdo for showing me overheal %). The entire heal core knew not to be healing people over 50% the answer? Uncontrolled healing; prayer of mending and shammy’s chain heal both will both result in this.

Obviously, we were able to dps past the health gains the boss received to finish the fight and loot his body for all it was worth. But the extra health just goes back to highlight the need to squeeze out every bit of dps you can muster. Dots! More DOTS! (raiding Ony always makes me think on the screaming guy)

Published in: on September 30, 2009 at 7:05 pm  Comments (2)  
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Healing DPS

I’m a healer feel me plink at you. *sits down and gets comfy*

Many fights these days are dps races. It is easy to know if you are in an encounter that is a dps race because 9 times out of 10 there will be an enrage timer. (I’m waiting for Blizz to mind f**k us all and put an enrage timer on a boss you need to dps slowing and if by the time the timer is up he isn’t past a certain % he becomes easy sauce thus throwing the whole thing out of whack and causing mass hysteria. But I won’t hold my breath)

So what can you as a healer do to help with these burning escapades of pewpew madness? Well, you can throw some dots if you are a priest (and honestly that is where I’m gonna focus since you know…I raid as a healy priest.) But there are some key factors that need to be taken into account before you start tossing in some dps with your healing.

1.Your other healers. You have to trust the heals are going to land on your target. (I find throwing in dps while MT healing easiest as I’m not panicing about who is taking damage next just one target, one single target…and me of course!)

Let’s take last night’s raid on Anub’arak in the Crusader’s Coliseum as a perfect example. Along with Faunia, I am MT healing on  Soulecho (fuzzy tank extraordinaire). Faunia is a healy pally and probably one of my favorite to be paired with ( I still love you Frendan). I can count on all of her heals to land. She isn’t going to use a stop casting marco so I can trust it is going to land. I cannot stress the importance of this kind of trust. If you are ever going to break from your main duty you HAVE HAVE HAVE to trust your other team healer is going to be there to pick it up.Now, how do I know to trust her heals are going to land? Easypeasy!

2. A great raid frames mod. Such as Grid or Vuhdo. (I know people that use Xperl and Pitbull but I didn’t like either of them so I won’t be commenting on them sorry.) Originally, I picked up Grid so I could watch debuffs on my targets easier and in a format I preferred over the basic raid frames. But Grid takes a lot to config and have switched to the much more easily configured (the interface is super easy) Vuhdo. (which does have its own downsides but that isn’t this topic) But, what you are looking for here is the overheal information. I can see as another healer is casting spell and also how much % it is going to land for. PRICESS!

So, going back to last night. On the first attempt I notice that Faunia is letting all of her heals land. I am watching both what she is doing via my Vuhdo and also how Soul’s health is behaving. (This was my first time on 25 and I never gamble with a tank’s life sight unseen on a boss) This gives me time to get a feel both for the rhythm of the fight, my partner’s healing style, and how the tank’s health is holding up. All great info a healer needs even if they aren’t going to throw around some dps.

3. A sense of timing. Watching your partner’s heals getting a sense of their rhythm and the rhythm of your tank’s damage (usually in spikes) is key to the whole shebang. To go off target you are going to need to time your dps in those moments when you know the other healer is casting or landing a spell. (landing is best btw)

With Faunia I would watch her queue up her heals while he was still full, note it is going to land for massive overheals incase of a spike and time my dps from there. Vuhdo’s internal keybinding allowed me to keep Anub as my main target while watching Soulecho and landing heals on him without changing targets. Clique or mouse over macros will allow you to do the same thing. (btw Zhavi has no dps spells keybound this way)

4. Fast spells! Priests we really have it made in this department. 3 spells are going to be your go to. Shadow Word: Pain, Devouring Plague, and finally Shadow Word: Death all three of these spells are instant casts and only SW:D has a cooldown to be concerned about.

Personally, I like to toss SW:P and DP to start with. Especially with the damage you are taking with Anub, Devouring Plague doesn’t heal a lot but every heal is still less damage I was down before 😉 With SW:D I cast it when I have a shield up or POM on myself. (Sometimes I keep POM on the tank instead to give me more of a cushion, say the close Anub gets to 30%) The shield is going to absorb the kick back damage SW:D does to the caster when it isn’t the killing blow to a mob.

Your DPS isn’t ever going to be up in the top and it isn’t meant to be. Our main focus is going to be healing, dispelling, (or if you are like a disc) shielding your targets. But trust in the healing of your partner, situational awareness, and quick spells will help your team in any dps race. (Hell the first two help on any raid! 🙂 ) There are raids where what little dps you throw out there can make a world of difference. Just remember you still fail if your tank dies. Bring the most you can to your raids. Other than consumables and winning personalities of course! 😉

Published in: on September 16, 2009 at 7:47 pm  Comments (7)  
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