A bunch of my must-read healing bloggers have been doing the “Circle of Healing” healer survey again, and Rhii tagged me for my turn. I have to say, I’ve learned a lot reading other peoples’ answers. I’ve gotten some great tips for my own healing and picked up a few hints about how other classes do it (especially those mysterious shaman, but I still don’t get Holy Priests)
So without further ado:
What is the name, class, and spec of your primary healer?
Analogue, Night Elf Druid – resto, of course!
What is your primary group healing environment? (i.e. raids, pvp, 5 mans)
10 man raids, hands down. I like 5 mans too but the edge goes to 10 mans because I love having 8 friends on an adventure with me and my husband. In a five man the most we can fit is three friends and worse – none of them can be healers, so I don’t get to take Kerick or Jhudora along unless I make them dps.
What is your favorite healing spell for your class and why?
Can I claim Tree of Life is a healing spell? Because I miss my tree and every time I hit that button it makes me happy. If not, then Tranquility, now that it’s a 3 minute cooldown. I love the graphic and I love the way it feels like I trigger it and boom, everyone lives. I think I should macro that: /use Tranquility, /yell “EVERYBODY LIVES!!!!”
What healing spell do you use least for your class and why?
Healing Touch. Hate. Slow, expensive, slow, not nearly as big a hit as it should be for being so slow, some other healer’s sniped my heal or the tank’s dead anyway, slow. I use Nourish instead. That may change as we start doing Firelands but bleah. Even the name is uninspiring, it’s very Generic Healer, not Druid.
I just realized that I thought this question said “what spell do you LIKE least”, but the answer above is true for either “like” or “use”.
What do you feel is the biggest strength of your healing class and why?
I’m a leaf on the wind. I’m a ninja healer, dashing in and tossing a quick dart heal on someone then dashing off again and letting one of my partners finish the job. I can be everywhere at once. In intense fights, that’s literally true – between Rejuv and Wild Growth, there’s many a time I have a hot on every member of the raid. Including Gurgie, Ado’s pet.
At the same time, almost for free, I’m keeping a stack of Lifebloom on the tank. It helps out – we have fights where I’ve switched LB around depending on who is getting hit, and that’s all I do for the tanks, and it helps out a lot. I feel like it’s similar to a Disc priest bubble, it’s never going to keep the tank alive but it helps keep death away.
What do you feel is the biggest weakness of your healing class and why?
The easy answer is “no raid damage reduction cooldown”. That’s the big obvious answer. You know what? Between Tree of Life and Tranquility, I don’t feel like I NEED a damage reduction cooldown. The druid’s motif has never been to prevent damage, but to reverse it.
This is a personal feeling but I feel like our real issue is that there’s not enough difference between Nourish and Healing Touch. Either I have enough mana and need big heals, so I use HT, or I don’t have mana so I pray Nourish does the job. I almost never have balance between the two. That’s going to get worse in Firelands. I’ll probably just swap my Nourish mousebind for HT and forget about it.
In a 25 man raiding environment, what do you feel, in general, is the best healing assignment for you?
Oh, tell me to take my armor off and tank, because this is clearly a nightmare and not reality. I don’t do 25 mans. If someone was holding a gun to my head and I had to buy Reversion enough time to get the drop on him, I’d say raid heals. Let me LB the tank but I’m a raid healer, by class and nature. I get too distracted with a small assignment like “heal the tanks”. But that mage over there needs to be healed NOW or she’ll die! The druid has the perfect toolkit for that sort of ADD.
What healing class do you enjoy healing with most and why?
Holy Paladin. It could be that I just enjoy healing with Kerick because she’s so good at it, but it really feels like paladin/druid is a great combo. She’s got the big heals to keep the tanks (well not Log) alive, I dart around and worry about everyone else. Plus she has Beacon of Light and heals herself automatically so there’s three people I hardly have to pay attention to!
What healing class do you enjoy healing with least and why?
Holy priest. I don’t understand them, I feel like they are in my same ecological niche, and they’re too pretty. Also we never have one run with us so it’s an easy answer!
What is your worst habit as a healer?
That’s changed a lot. It used to be standing in the fire, but I’ve improved that. Now it’s “letting myself die”. Don’t ask me why my own health bar apparently has lowest priority, but the number of kills we’ve made where one dps and I are dead on the floor…
What is your biggest pet peeve in a group environment while healing?
In pugs and stuff, people standing in bad. In raid, we don’t do that, so it’s probably… er… sheesh. I don’t know. I guess my raid is perfect! Oh, it’s people who click “no” on the ready check and THEN announce that they need one more buff. Say you need the buff, then click “yes”, don’t screw with my ready checks! Does that even count as an answer?
Do you feel that your class/spec is well-balanced with other healers for PvE healing?
Definitely. I can top meters any time I want to, not that it matters. I can keep groups alive. If I run five mans I feel like I’ve got the tools I need. I do feel like my spec is out of balance with other druid specs in that I can’t be transformed all the time any more curse you Blizzard did you have to kill my tree?
The one issue I have is, if it’s a ten man, there’s really no reason to have more than one resto druid. You can, but you miss out on a lot by not having the range of options that other healers bring. No Spirit Link or Mana Tide totem; no Hands of Anything; no Power Word:Awesome.
What tools do you use to evaluate your own performance as a healer?
Recount during raids, mostly the death log, sometimes the decurse log to see if I’m ahead of Repgrind tonight. World of Logs, sometimes, but I’m not religious about it.
Mostly I use the “how many bosses did we down” meter!
What do you think is the biggest misconception people have about your healing class?
That we’re poor tank healers. Mind, raid healing is my preferred task, but I CAN tank heal, and I’m good at it. Blizz did a good job this expansion making sure we’re viable as tank heals should we need to be and their recent changes show they’re not done tweaking us.
What do you feel is the most difficult thing for new healers of your class to learn?
HOT management. I was a halfway decent healer before I got Vuhdo but I wasn’t a great healer. Once I learned how to track my hots, to know what each did, and to choose the right heal at the right time, I got a lot better.
If you can’t tell how many stacks of Lifebloom you have, how long until it blooms, and who has a Swiftmendable effect (and if SW is off cooldown) you’re not playing at full potential.
If someone were to try to evaluate your performance as a healer via recount, what sort of patterns would they see (i.e. lots of overhealing, low healing output, etc)?
Definitely overheals. Druids still top there. Also high output. They should see 100% uptime on Lifebloom if I’m doing it right. Lots of Wild Growth but it should never be my top spell. I want to see that I was the first person to land a heal on someone who just got hit with a big spell – but not the last person.
Haste or Crit and why?
Haste. I’m a resto druid. Haste to certain breakpoints is a huge, huge HPS boost. Crit’s nice and all but… Haste.
What healing class do you feel you understand least?
Holy priest. I don’t have one in my raid. I don’t play one as an alt. I don’t know anyone who does it for reals. It’s all weird and glowy and full of Chakras.
What add-ons or macros do you use, if any, to aid you in healing?
VuhDo, and I recommend it highly. Any druid needs a healing addon to help track HOTs and VuhDo does it so well! I also use Power Auras to help me time Innervate with Power Torrent, and to track Harmony.
Do you strive primarily for balance between your healing stats, or do you stack some much higher than others, and why?
Once I got comfortable with my mana regen, I stopped stacking spirit so exclusively and went into haste. I like some crit and mastery, should my haste not be quite there, and recently I’ve been Asking Mr. Robot what to reforge and gem.
I’m supposed to tag someone else to do this survey. If she’s inclined I’d love to hear Repgrind‘s take. Her human Holydin Kerick is my primary raid healing partner, and she raids with a Horde crew on Vanicus the BE paladin, so I’ve wondered if she sees any differences between them based on her raid makeup.