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! ;)