Tag Archives: healing

Heal Me! Quickly!

By now, I have become dependent on the Vuhdo healing addon to a degree where I am almost paralyzed without it.  This has posed a challenge on a couple of occasions when LFR let me zone in while the group was in combat, because Vuhdo won’t load if you’re in combat.  It also won’t update the groups display properly if people leave or join during fighting.  It’ll wait, nice and polite, until you’re done with all that.  BUT PEOPLE ARE STANDING IN BAD, VUHDO!  I NEED YOU NOW!

Now With Extra Derp Sometimes, perceptions differ from reality.

Now With Extra Derp
Sometimes, perceptions differ from reality.

I still haven’t purchased a new mouse with Moar Buttonz.  I might, or I might not.  I generally try to pick out the eight or so most important spells and bind those to clicks, which keeps life simple and so far has worked out more or less OK.  I may not have finesse, but I generally get crap done.  Then again, who am I kidding here?  I’m not buying a new mouse when the old one clicks just fine.

This is my take on the different healing classes, based on the classes I remember healing on.  This is basically anything that’s not a Holy Priest or a Mistweaver monk.  While I technically ran Cata dungeons as Mistweaver, it was mostly to make the queue quicker and I can’t remember diddly squat about it now (other than camera angle problems).

Sometimes, You Just Die Cannonballs and people who want to live do not share the same goals.

Sometimes, You Just Die
Cannonballs and people who want to live do not share the same goals.

Bombelina Says:
As a Resto shaman, you get to wear mail, which means absolutely nothing because mobs will still mess you up.  You do have a chance to survive if you outheal the damage, of course, but that doesn’t mean you should give up on praying for the tank to pull it off you!  Oh, the tank is dead?  Never mind then.  Actually, you should just stop healing now.  Gawd, wipe it up already!

Shamans have lots of advantages, especially if you’re passive aggressive.  Our water-themed spells make it easy to pretend that you’re throwing buckets of water on idiots, or making a sad cloud rain on their heads.  If it’s Earth Shield, you can say you’re throwing dirt on ’em for good luck!  Oh, you wanted like, actual advantages?  Well, goblin totems are seriously the coolest thing since I invented the mechanized sandwich maker on wheels – what, you wanted non-goblin, general type of advantages?  You gotta be SPECIFIC about these things.

Okay, fine.  The BEST thing is being able to Reincarnate after you stand in something, and Mana Tide totem gives you precious, precious mana.  You can summon these elementals to help you out, which is neat.  And you can turn into … a man-thing?  What is that thing, anyway?  Well, you can turn into a Ghost Wolf too, and run fast indoors.  That’s some hot stuff right there.  And you can’t forget Bloodlust, or “Hero,” as the Alliance call it.  You can always tell what faction somebody plays on a regular basis by which one they ask for.

The disadvantage would be the fact that people keep on thinking you got a battle res for some reason, which is cracked.

Legalese Before we zone into the raid, please sign on the dotted line.

Legalese
Before we zone into the raid, please sign on the dotted line.

Prinnie Says: BEST.  CAN BE GOBLIN.  A+.  Shamans are nice in general because Elemental is a DPS spec I don’t suck 100% at.  More importantly, resto shaman doesn’t have like, sixty million healing spells with extremely similar names that I must both distinguish between and use every last one of in order to be effective, which is a HUGE PLUS.  Sadly, I often feel like Riptide is kinda laughable and mostly pointless as a HoT, and unlike a disco priest, attempting to do a wee bit of DPS while resto takes forever and is not happening.  ALAS.  I guess you can’t have it all.

Old Ladies Raiding Guild Don't be fooled by the name, gentlemen, we're open to all!

Old Ladies Raiding Guild
Don’t be fooled by the name, gentlemen, we’re open to all!

Niremere Says:
Should you choose to follow the way of the Light, you will be practically invincible – or so they say.  Do keep in mind that Fate likes to mess with you too, just as much as anybody else.

As we gain Holy Power in our work, so too do our special healing abilities increase in strength.  You must know when to save these holy energies, and yet, you must also be aware that to keep them to yourself accomplishes nothing.  Sadly, mana is a finite resource … but fortunately, we are able to plead with the Divine Light to restore our weary souls.

Done correctly, the Holy Paladin is a healer to be reckoned with.  Done incorrectly, you will regret the plate repair bills.

Prinnie Says: This one is good for shiny buttons.  Even better, you make this big light healy-thing that’s kinda hard to ignore AND you don’t have to get people to stand still in it, which is nice.  This is true even though I’m total crap at screenshotting it, which is why there’s a nice group shot instead!  The biggest problem I got is remembering to use Bacon Beacon of Light, which resets every freaking time you/somebody zones/dies/coughs/whatever.  And the other problem I have is that Horde paladerps can only be blood elves (annoying) or Tauren (have like, three hairdos max).

Let's Be Honest Here Tell me, how do you REALLY feel about your healer?

Let’s Be Honest Here
Tell me, how do you REALLY feel about your healer?

Betheki Says:
Yeah mon!  Follow tha way of the wild, be a Resto druid!  So dere’s dis mushroom ya glyph, and it is da best ting evah, which means it’s gonna get nerfed soon.  So enjoy da magic while it lasts!  Othah than that, mon, just cast Rejuvenate and then sit back.  Relax, ‘cept if there’s trouble.  In dat case, ya gotta make your mushroom bloom!  Don’t ask me if fungus should be bloomin’, mon.  I don’t be knowin’ dat.

When ya be a druid, ya know the skin you in is just one of many.  Fly free, mon, don’t be needin’ those fancy mounts to see tha sky.  Be wise, like a tree of long life, knowin’ dat dese roots, dey grow deep.  Stand strong in da storm!  And when ya be a druid, ya be in tune with tha natural way.  Ya get a fancy battle res.  Sadly, mon, dis one battle res ain’t never enough.  Just like in nature, where da need for tings is greater than tha supply, ya will find people keep on dyin’ all ovah da place, and they be beggin’ you for that res – but ya used it up already!

Prinnie Says:  Are you KIDDING me??  Placing a mushroom has no mana cost!?  BUT THAT’S LIKE … THAT’S … THAT’S LIKE ACTUAL FREE HEALS!!1!  Also related: multiple treants thanks to Force of Nature means I can make lots of pretty Venn diagrams.  (p.s., typing in troll is hard.)

The Harsh Truth Ain't gonna sugarcoat it.

The Harsh Truth
Ain’t gonna sugarcoat it.

Ailabeth Says:
Don’t look at me, breather.  I haven’t seriously healed as a Disc priest in well over a year.

Prinnie Says: I’m not surprised.  I’ll ask Splattini.

Prone to GREATNESS Splattini doesn't have a lot of flattering screenshots.  She doesn't let that stop her.

Prone to GREATNESS
Splattini doesn’t have a lot of flattering screenshots. She doesn’t let that stop her.

Splattini Says:
“The Great” Splattini, if you please.

Prinnie Says: For the love of … you’re only level 60!  You can’t have an attitude.

Splattini Says:
Then I’m not saying a word about how to disco.

Prinnie Says: …

The Great Splattini Says:
Sparkles, check.  Wings, check.  Bubbles everywhere, check.  Out DPSing the DPS, check.  I may be level 60, but I am a level 60 badass.

She Ain't Gonna Take It Oh no, she ain't gonna take it.  /rolls up sleeves

She Ain’t Gonna Take It
Oh no, she ain’t gonna take it. /rolls up sleeves

Prinnie Says: Just wait until you hit 90, kid.  I’m sure it’ll all go to hell.  Usually does.

The Great Splattini Says:
Look, your post-leveling issues mean nothing to me.  Did I mention Mass Dispel?  ’cause I got it, and you know you want it.  Oh, p.s., with Levitate, we’re gettin’ this party started.

Prinnie Says: Okay, so I haven’t hit the late 80s/level 90 “OMFG MANA” crunch yet, and really, until you start LFRing/raiding/encountering crazies, most LFD groups couldn’t care less WHAT class you are as long as they never die.  So although I’m told that Disco is better as a tank healer (which makes the notion of trying to heal 25-man LFR kinda … ominous), Disco seems pretty awesome right now.  Holy seemed like it had too many freaking things going on.  Either way, it’s important to know that as a priest, you can do this:

Step one: Rime of the A.M.  Step two: become lizard.  Step three: use Archangel.  GLOWING PINK PIRATE LIZARD ANGEL THING.

Step one: Rime of the A.M. Step two: become lizard. Step three: use Archangel. GLOWING PINK PIRATE LIZARD ANGEL THING.

Prinnie Says: Regardless of class, some things are just beyond your capability to remedy.

Wat Is he speaking in tank code or something?

I Just Wat
On second thought, don’t wanna know.

The 9th 90 and Thoughts on Druid Healing

cropped-wowscrnshot_101013_195029.jpg

Almost a year ago to the day, a friend of mine actually listened to me talking up WRA and made a tank alt.  He asked me to make a healer to level with him, so I did, just like a good responsible “you should switch servers”-talking friend should.  There was, however, a small problem: he rolled a DK, so I was fifty-sixish freaking levels behind from the get-go!  As a result, my poor druid never did catch up to him, and that, I thought, was that.

But then Goa got another case of alt-itis.  I’m sympathetic to this problem because I know alt-itis well.  I’ve had it on many an occasion, and some might even say that I show the symptoms of a chronic case.  Around level 70, Goa mentioned wanting a leveling buddy … and wouldn’t ya know it, I just so happened to have a stalled druid sitting at that exact point!  Thus began the odd leveling partnership between one evil soul-stealing goblin warlock and one shoeless treehugging troll hippie.  (It was weird.  No, not the whole warlock and druid combo – the whole me not being the goblin thing.)

Once we got past Utgarde Keep and I re-familiarized myself with something that wasn’t a shaman, things went pretty well.  In fact, they went freaking great except for those couple of times when I got smacked by things and fell daeeeed to the ground.  Overall, I was shocked.  I had no idea this druid thing was so EASY.  I didn’t have to do much more than Rejuvenate until I got into the 60s, and even after that point, most situations felt laid back.  Rejuvenate and chill, yo.  Whooshy sounds!  Maybe put that green circle thingie down.  Nice lookin’, isn’t it?  I like the little leaf thingies that float up, those are neat.  Oh, I guess I should cast a heal or something, earn my keep.  Nah, we’re lookin’ good, I’ll just Rejuv + that other HoT thingie that stacks.  What was that one called, anyway?  Lifebloom, that’s it!

And on it went.  Wrath dungeons?  Druid healing was totally easy.  Cata dungeons?  Druid healing was very easy.  Stormstout Brewery?  Druid healing was STILL easy.  Temple of the Jade Serpent?  Druid healing was mostly easy, unless the tank decided to pull the whole Courtyard full of Sha when I wasn’t even in LoS yet.  Siege of Niuzao?  OH MY GOD WHAT HAVE I DONE THIS IS CATASTROPHIC I REGRET EVERYTHING HOLY CRACKBASKETS

Always Shoot for the Stars Blah Blah Blah And if you miss, land face first.

Always Shoot for the Stars Blah Blah Blah
And if you miss, land face first.

My druid’s first Siege of Niuzao run turned out to be The Moment in which I realized I’m Doing It Wrong.  To be sure, it wasn’t the first time I’ve observed some randomass things in LFD and have subsequently wondered what I’m doing with my whole existence, like that one time a feral druid showed up and tanked the whole Siege of Niuzao in cat form.  I told him he was the skinniest bear I’d ever seen!  Still, underweight grizzly or no, he overgeared the whole thing and that was that.

But when I was an at-level druid faced with healing an at-level paladin tank clad from head to toe in PvP healing gear, my lack of true druid comprehension bloomed into a freaking nightmare.  No longer could I rely on a simple, trustworthy combo of Rejuvenation when needed, Wild Mushroom + Efflorescence (OMFG HOW IS THIS FREE), Wild Growth and a bit of Lifebloom to touch up on things, only tossing in one big heal here and there when necessary.  Rejuvenation had been my primary healing spell ever since I got it at level 4!  DPS got smacked by shit before the tank got aggro back?  Rejuv.  Tank taking more damage than Lifebloom can handle?  Rejuv. All the adds on me?  Rejuv.  And prior to that awful Siege of Niuzao, it WORKED.  It healed what I needed by the time I needed it (a.k.a. before the target died), and I always had more than enough mana to spare.

But during that Siege of Niuzao and after, I hit a skill wall where not only did Rejuvenation NOT compensate for the damage a target just took, enough people were taking MORE damage for LONGER, causing me to use Rejuvenation even more frequently, which of course ended in me being OOM or nearly so long before the fights were actually over.  And just think, that was five people.  Now that I’m trying to heal 25-man LFRs on a druid, I’ve had to abandon Rejuvenation as a staple almost completely.  If that trucker’s up on more than like, three people, I got a problem.

I Was Doing So Well And then End Game hit me in the face.

I Was Doing So Well
And then End Game hit me in the face.

I also realized that (at least right now) as a druid, I overheal ALL THE TIME because I feel like I can’t efficiently respond to sudden or drastic downturns (which, of course, contributes to my persistent mana issues).  I don’t know if fate has it in for me or what, but if I don’t keep people topped off, SUDDENLY SHEEYIT HAPPENS AND IF SHEEYIT HAPPENS WE ARE DOOMED HOLY CRAP.  Somewhere around 50% HP, tanks will inexplicably start taking a ton of damage that I just can’t overcome by spamming what I think is my Big Guns single target heal intended for said situation, Healing Touch – that is, if I haven’t already gone OOM.

People make druid healing seem so effortless.  It seemed so effortless, once.  Now it seems like I just can’t do it Right, or like the Right way made an abrupt turn at level 87 or so and forgot to tell me.  We’re gonna have to work on this.

Welp That's Not What I Intended It started off so well and somehow ended up like this.

Welp That’s Not What I Intended
It started off so well and somehow ended up like this.

Holy Kleenex, Batman! It Was Right Under Our Nose, and We Blew It!

Niremere has long been Retribution/Protection.  Of those two, Protection was my favorite – prance in, throw shield, smash things, dance out!  For the Light yay!  I did, however, chicken out big time when it came to tanking LFR, and I went back to Retribution.  I didn’t exactly LIKE Retribution, but I didn’t really HATE it either, and maybe gear would make it better?

We're More Laid Back Here Downright relaxed, even.

We’re More Laid Back Here
Downright relaxed, even.

I decided to keep on Retting it up after the patch to see if the 5.4 changes made any positive difference for me.  Alas, patch changes or no, I still don’t get Retribution and I just can’t seem to have fun with it.  Sure, Inquisition lasts for a whole freaking minute now (OH BOY DON’T I FEEL SPECIAL), but I still don’t like having to expend Holy Power to keep it up.  Nope.  Nobody need expect the Spanish Inquisition here, because it ain’t happening.

Sure, I Can See My Hands Owait, no, because they're in front of me and my camera angle's from behind.

Sure, I Can See My Hands
Owait, no, because they’re in front of me and my camera angle’s from behind.

Inquisition doesn’t even LOOK cool.  Sure, it gives me glowy hands, but I can’t even see my freaking self in combat half the time, let alone my dainty little hands!  I hit like a tired poodle and I am not feeling the two-handed weapon love, because I still love shields and that’s not changing dammit.  I can only cast like two Flash of Lights before running out of mana (I can’t use Word of Glory for healing somebody, silly, I gotta use that Holy Power for Templar’s Verdict Inquisition I don’t even know anymore) and I can’t offtank worth crap, so there’s no running in and saving the day all dramatic-like in emergencies.*  There’s only repairs.  And being boring.  And feeling like I’m fighting in neck-deep mud.

WELP THAT WENT WELL Tank died.  Tried to pull the Celestial Protector off a healer.  Got eaten.  Celestial Protector then had a nice, priestly dessert.

WELP THAT WENT WELL
Tank died. Tried to pull the Celestial Protector off a healer. Got eaten. Celestial Protector then had a nice, priestly dessert.

Despite that, I kept dragging Niremere through Throne of Thunder LFR, and she wound up with some shiny tier tokens!  I was then regretting exchanging them for Retribution gear (even though I hadn’t actually done that yet), when this conversation more or less occurred:

Me: I know I should use them for Ret … theoretically, a set bonus would help …
Friend: Wait, use them for the spec you hate?
Me: Yesssssssssssssssssssssssss.  Because I shouuuullddddd.
Friend: That’s stupid.  I don’t even know why you play a spec you hate.

Suddenly, I didn’t know why either.  I gave the spec a chance, really!  It just never took.  Niremere has been in Ret spec for the better part of 80 out of 90 levels, aside from tanking sprees here and there.  To continue this way was like bashing my head into a brick wall in the hopes of developing some sort of brain injury that might possibly change my personality, which in turn could possibly make me like Retribution.  It clearly wasn’t working out, if only because I have a really thick skull.

So I decided to commence PROJECT “I DON’T KNOW IF I LIKE HOLY, BUT IT ISN’T RET SO THERE.”

First step was to get gear, because nobody wants to run into an instance naked.  Accordingly, I ran all the LFRs ever, then died my way around the Timeless Isle looking for chests, and finally I bought PvP crap off the AH to fill in the holes.  (I have a new protip for the loading screens: “Warning! The Timeless Isle hurts like mother trucking HELL if you are undergeared!”)

Unfortunately, I am forced to neglect the “finishing touches,” as it were.  Since Nir’s gear rocketed up so quickly (we’re talking like twenty item levels), I can’t afford to fully reforge/enchant/gem it.  She’s reforged and mostly gemmed at this point, though there is no way in hell I’m enchanting that wep from a heroic dungeon whether I can afford to or not.

Once she had something to wear, Nir ran to the nearest Paladin trainer and gave him gold.  It was then time to HEAL ALL THE THINGS.  Kinda.

The worst thing about starting healing with a new class at level 90 is that you are stricken with a general feeling of “oh my GAWD, all the things wat the hell is going on,” which can’t be helped except through exposure to the spec and the diligent application of effort.  (True understanding comes even later.)  And aside from reading a guide to get an idea of what you should be doing, your only real option is to literally click the buttons to see for yourself what they do.

Turns out that not only is it really hard to figure crap out when you have all the things to learn all at once, it’s ESPECIALLY hard to do when they’re almost all named “Holy” Somethingorother.  I CAN’T REMEMBER WHICH HOLY DOES WHAT HEALING THING.  I actually had to write notes down.  NOTES.  TO PLAY A GAME.  (L-shift click, Light of Dawn, HP click, multi target!)

The only other classes I’ve healed extensively on in recent memory, shaman and druid, don’t really have an equivalent to Holy Power that they have to build up in order to spend. As a result, I spent a fair amount of time freaking out about dropping HP clicking on buttons furiously while wondering why nothing was happening.  I would subsequently (and usually abruptly) realize that I had no Holy Power and this particular Holy thing needed it, therefore, fail.  I actually do have the bright red status text on my screen for things like “Not enough Holy Power.”  I just never read it.

Feeling somewhat overwhelmed, I made a little dwarf paladin with the idea of “learning from the ground up.”  But somewhere around level 3, I decided that the effort required to learn crap from scratch at level 90 was probably going to be less than the effort required to level from 1 to 90, so she got left somewhere in the snowy wilds outside Ironforge.  I haven’t deleted the character, though, because people on my friends list had a fit were extremely confused when they saw me playing a female dwarf.  Maybe I’ll surprise them again later!

So I grabbed a beartank friend with good gear (he assured me that with his self heal, he could solo heroics) and off we went into LFD land.  I warned him to be prepared.  I warned him I had no clue what all the buttons did, and also that my keybinds were all freaked up, and finally that I still had to set up Vuhdo properly and whatnot, so be careful!  Did I get said beartank killed?  YEP.  YOU BETCHA.

The next morning I queued randomly by myself, which ended up being embarrassing as well.  I got caught red-handed with Righteous Fury still on from a failed-ret-tanking episode the night before (see * at end, again).  Ugh!  It’s like the hunter who leaves Aspect of the Pack on for the whole fight (which I have NEVER done, nope, believe you me, 100% truth telling here).  Fortunately the party was quite helpful and gave me a number of tips, and there was a shaman who covered for my general ineptitude (in addition to pointing out that whole Righteous Fury thing).

Now THAT'S the Skill for Me Proposed Paladin revamp makes Beacon of Light into something even BETTER.

Now THAT’S the Skill for Me
Proposed Paladin revamp makes Beacon of Light into something even BETTER.

Later that day, I felt I at least had the basics down because people weren’t dying anymore in heroics.  When looking at the Raid Finder to see if there were any LFRs I missed, I realized that Nir had the gearscore to queue for SoO … hmmm.

Crazy?  Hell yes.  Still, it seemed like a slightly less crazypants idea than learning how to paladerp heal via PvP, which was Goa’s suggestion, so I queued up for it.  It was definitely an enlightening experience.  It turns out that not only do I need to know buttons, but I also have to relearn mana management, blah.  Electrika has almost zero mana issues at present because of gear, Water Shield, Mana Tide totem and the Telluric Currents glyph (which returns a bit of mana if you use Lightning Bolt).  Betheki (the druid) is at level 80, which is too high to have the noob type of mana issues, but too low to have LFR “holy crap, please kill it before it ‘zerks” kind of mana issues.

So yeah, who spent practically all of the Fallen Protectors fight using only Holy Shock and Light of Dawn?  That would be meeeeee. While I am more than perfectly happy to coast when it comes to DPS (heeeey we got like, six people doing 200k?  SWEET), I feel immense guilt when it comes to coasting on heals.  I almost left the group three or four times because I felt my heals were too low to justify my presence.  I wound up staying anyway because there was an amazing shaman who covered for me and at least one other healer as well.  Overgeared?  Overachiever?  Don’t know, but he was the key to Nir getting the first gear token from this tier.  (I am overjoyed that the paladin LFR color scheme does NOT involve nuclear snot green.)

* So let me tell you about the last time Nir was fighting Will of the Emperor, a.k.a. Jan-xi and Qin-xi. As you no doubt know by now if you are a regular LFRer, adds and bosses spawn on the far side of the room, opposite where the entrance is.  The idea is to drag the bosses from that end back over to the other, positioning them near the two separate staircases that the raid entered the fight area with.  One boss per set of stairs, easy!

In this particular LFR, we had a tank who wasn’t quite clear on what to do other than “get aggro.”  He grabbed his boss, yes, but then he stood with it at the back of the room, which is bad.  It exposes the DPS to unnecessary heavy damage (which in turn stresses healers), and it’s not like the DPS can go somewhere else to avoid it – adds continually spawn back there for the duration of the fight.  Everybody yelled at him but he went nowhere with the boss, so I whispered him and told him to go up front by the stairs, which he did – sorta.  He pulled it to the same staircase that the other tank/boss was at, which elicited further shouts of dismay from the LFR.  I kept on whispering him, telling him where the second staircase was, and he WAS trying to listen.  It’s just that he dragged his boss over about halfway, which is ALSO bad, because that puts the boss right on top of the healers.

So finally I put on Righteous Fury, used Reckoning twice, and ran like a bat outta hell for the right set of stairs.  Defensive bubbles?  If only I had realized just how squishy I am despite the freaking plate, I would’ve used one.  I took 1.5 hits and was DOWN.  But hey, since my corpse was apparently much easier to see than my living self, the tank finally got the boss to the right spot and we didn’t wipe.  Hooray!

Siege of the Stairboss

Ever since I rolled my first character, I have been constantly trolled by stairs without rails, elevators that insist on going up or down at the exact wrong time, visual illusions that make me think there’s a floor where none exists, ledges that pop right beneath my feet, and the continued existence of the numlock key.  The latter is troublesome because I will sometimes hit said key without realizing it, which subsequently causes me to freak the hell out about how I can’t stop my character from running forward what’s going on, and CRAP, there’s a cliff, SOMEBODY HELP MEEEE!

In fact, I’ve only beaten the gravity god once in all this time – there was that day when Mech lagged out of reality and started trippin’ in the Valley of Four Winds …

Lighter-Than-Air Goblin Either lagging hard or on something.  Or both.

Lighter-Than-Air Goblin
Either lagging hard or on something. Or both.

So it figures that the Siege of Orgrimmar would feature towers.  Orcish towers, of course, much like the ones in use for the zeppelins.  Clearly, orcs do not give a flip about architectural improvements or lawsuits over broken necks, because they didn’t add any rails to the stairs in these towers, either.  SIGH.

Stairs ... This Can't Possibly End Well Somebody's going to fall down 'em, and it's probably gonna be me.

Stairs … This Can’t Possibly End Well
Somebody’s going to fall down ’em, and it’s probably gonna be me.

The guild started methodically smashing through the raid already, so I was not present when they cleared everything up to Galakras.  A couple of the regulars had to call off on this fateful, towerful* night, however, so I was summoned to heal.  It’s funny – once upon a time, I would have considered my healing spec’s 510 gearscore to be amazingly hot sheeyit!   But after listening to the raid discuss gearscores (520s was a definite must), I felt kinda like I was running into this battle wearing a pretty dress and not much else, just like Aethas Sunreaver.  (Spoiler: HOLY CRAP, AETHAS SUNREAVER HAS A FACE.)

OMG HUGE DISCOVERY HERE PEOPLE I dunno, for some reason ... I never thought he had a face.  Or hair.  Or a head for that matter.

OMG HUGE DISCOVERY HERE PEOPLE
I dunno, for some reason … I never thought he had a face. Or hair. Or a head for that matter.

At first, I was on the “tower team.”  This meant that whenever the raid leader said, “my team, let’s go,” I’d run like hell up the hill to the tower (hopefully AFTER somebody else).  We’d then smack some orcs around and run up the stairs in order to take on the dude at the very top of the tower.  Defeating him would let us wrest control of this tactically important feature for ourselves!  That was the idea, at least.

Stupid Stairs I DEMAND AN ELEVATOR ... on second thought, maybe stairs are for the best.

Stupid Stairs
I DEMAND AN ELEVATOR … on second thought, maybe stairs are for the best.

In reality, where was the tower team’s healer?  Ummmmm, well …

A.) Your healer fell down the rail-less stairs and had to run up a second time.
B.) Your healer got knocked the hell off the tower and plummeted to her doom.  (What, you didn’t hear her screaming on Vent?  The healer had the mic on mute, you say?  Oh.  Good.)
C.) That one time your healer got bounced off the tower but DIDN’T die on impact, she tempted fate by expressing her surprise.  So she got shot up and THEN died.
D.) Your healer was really concerned about NOT getting knocked off the tower.  Therefore, she was trying really hard to see the “don’t stand here” stuff on the ground that wasn’t there yet, so YOU died.  Sorry.
E.) Obviously, gravity slows the casting of healing spells by a factor of four.  That’s your healer’s story and she’s sticking to it.
F.) All of the above.

Correct answer: F.

So then they put me on the “ground team.”  Basically, the ground team stays on the ground, which I bet you didn’t expect!  They take on every opponent that comes down the path while preventing the Important NPCs from getting themselves killed, because if one of them goes down, everybody else spontaneously gives up and goes home.

Dangit People He's Just One Blood Elf They're everywhere!  We can get another!

Dangit People He’s Just One Blood Elf
They’re everywhere! We can get another!

Since gravity is SUCH a downer, you’d think that being on the ground team would be a great improvement for me.  It was, sorta, since I no longer had to explain my inability to ascend a spiral staircase at a run.  But it kinda sorta wasn’t, because then I had to explain my inability to stop standing in sheeyit.  (“But it’s everywhere” isn’t considered an acceptable excuse.)  Poison clouds got me sometimes, but my #1 biggest, most overwhelming issue was fire arrows.

I swear, it was like I was being constantly bombarded with the things.  You’ll always take some damage from them, but you can avoid the rest of the damage by moving a bit.  Seems like the obvious solution is to never stop moving!  So, um, why’s the healer dead?

A.) I DON’T KNOW BUT IT HURT
B.) Spiritwalker’s Grace was on cooldown, so when they shot me in the face practically constantly and I had to keep moving, I couldn’t get any freaking heals cast on myself or on anybody else, and I got overwhelmed by the initial damage.  Again.
C.) I tried to run away from some fire arrows, but then I ran into some poison instead.  Again.
D.) Actually, I didn’t see what killed me that time either, but I’m pretty sure some fire arrows had something to do with it.
E.) All of the above.

Correct answer: E.

I felt bad for the other ground team healer, who was pretty much carrying the whole thing despite saying that he couldn’t solo heal it.  I don’t know if it’s a lack of practice or what, but it’s like I just can’t make the right decision at the right time – hold still and finish casting this heal at the cost of eating some fire arrows?  Avoid eating more fire arrows at the cost of not finishing the cast?  Either way, this is going to hurt.  Enough consecutive bad decisions and down you go.  I WANT to live, it’s just that I don’t know HOOOOW.

Honestly, I don’t mind being backup.  It means that I don’t always have to be there, which is good, since the guild raids on Pacific time.  (I like shinies, but I also like sleep.)  Being backup does have its challenges, though, because I will always have a lower gearscore and less experience.  The lower gear means I have less oomph to my heals relative to the damage we’re taking, and the lesser amount of experience means that I move a fraction slower than would be ideal.  These things aren’t always fatal, but in current raid content, that sliver of time can mean a lot – especially when it’s a lot of little unconscious hesitations that end up adding into a ton of damage.

Towerful Lots of towery towering towers.

Towerful
Lots of towery towering towers.

* This is a totally legit way of describing things.  Got a lot of towers?  This place is towerful.  Are the towers very important to the whole encounter?  Those towers are towerful.

Part Two: The Forgotten Derps (and more!)

Sounds Lovely I'll bring some chips.

Sounds Lovely
I’ll bring some chips.

Megaera apparently has a reputation for being a pain in the whozawhatzits for healers.  Still, I wasn’t too worried.  There’s only so much freaking out you can do before you simply canNOT freak out anymore because there’s just no more freaking out to be had.  I had expended all my available freaking out-type feelings on everything that had come earlier, so when it came to time to contemplate Meggies, I practically shrugged.  Eh!  Multiheaded hydrasnake thinger?  No biggie.

Bucket  List See, a total absence of caps or jibberish.  Means I'm perfectly calm.

Bucket List
See, a total absence of caps or jibberish. Means I’m perfectly calm.

Other than emotional burnout, I had one other, semi-logical reason for not being too worried.  You KNOW when Megaera’s going to Rampage.  Because it’s so regular and therefore predictable (unlike, say, a DPS getting a crit to the head while trying to kick a turtle during the Tortos fight), it’s easy to plan for.  Healer A does something this time, Healer B does something this time, Healer C does something this time, etc. etc. etc.  If we’ve run out of things to do or mana to do it with, then obviously we 1.) have a problem, 2.) are taking too long, or 3.) guys, just stop healing already so we can wipe it.*

The biggest “tough thing” was the distance factor.  You gotta run more and farther away from the party in normal than in LFR, but that in turn means you just maaaaaaaaaay be going out of my range.  This COULD (and did) turn into an issue, because if I’ve gotta dash to get in range, I face the second tough thing of normal version of the fight: I can’t always see the bad ice stuff on the ground.  I don’t know if it’s too light, too puffy or too transparent, but usually that means GTFO sounds the klaxons of imminent doom and I perish.

Murdersnail Why send the Alliance in after Garrosh?  We should just get some snails.

Murdersnail
Why send the Alliance in after Garrosh? We should just get some snails.

The snails are still vicious, by the way.  I remain (and will forever be) disappointed that a snail was not any of the bosses and/or the end boss for the final raid of Mists.  I bet if you introduced a murdersnail to a Sha, real bad sheeyit would happen.  REAL BAD.  It wouldn’t just be the Vale.  IT’D BE THE WORLD.  I can hold out hope that crazy killer mutant sha-snails is the threat Wrathion is worried about.  Let me have my dreams, okay?

Anyway, I got assigned to nest team for Ji-kun.  It was deemed safer to keep the big-number, well-geared healers on the main platform, due to the mass amount of damage expected.  (And I’m totally behind that decision, man.  If it means more survival for all with less weighty responsibility for me, wonderful!)

I admit that I began to feel a teeeeeensy bit of terror here, though.  Even though I instinctively attempt to avoid stuff on the ground by jumping over it (which never seems to work), I have a tendency to get disoriented when I suddenly have to move in vertical space in addition to the usual horizontal.  I solved this by requesting they put a raid marker on the hunter I was to follow, and also by never, ever deselecting him, ever.  (That way, if I lost sight of him, I could always see my target on my minimap, to give me an idea of where to go.)  More DPS would’ve been good, of course … but I was too scared of falling to my doom.

Also, when those baby birds are small, they’re all adorable and biting at my ankles and crap and awwwwwwww, I can’t kill them!  Fortunately, the warlock and hunter can – and did.

All Dogs Go to Heaven Ok, so I'm a Ghost Wolf.  Does that count?

All Dogs Go to Heaven
Ok, so I’m a Ghost Wolf. Does that count?

I spontaneously expired at the end of the Ji-kun fight for reasons that were not immediately apparent.  To be perfectly honest, I think it had to do with not actually plummeting face-first into a raid wipe while healing the nest team.  Because I lived, and was so shocked that I did, I could not continue upon the mortal coil.

Consistency I should work on my negative feelings.  Durumu's not a bad eyeball, he's just been in there for so lo... no, I hate him.

Consistency
I should work on my negative feelings. Durumu’s not a bad eyeball, he’s just been in there for so lo… no, I hate him.

Durumu just wasn’t going well since we had a number of nooblets (me, for example), so we decided to call it quits and come back next week.  Alas, I was not on the roster that week, so I was not able to get revenge on Durumu then.  They also killed Primordius at this point in time, so when I was back in, we started with Dark Animus.  Because our normal shaman healer was back in the game, I got to nuke things!  Or try to the best of my ability while running around like a chicken with my head cut off, anyway.

There's No Going Back Now

There’s No Going Back Now

I don’t really have a large number of screenshots for any of these fights, because print screen only takes a screenshot and doesn’t heal/throw lava (sadly).  Also, I only got two hands.  If I gotta be moving with one hand and casting a spell with the other (SPIRITWALKER’S GRACE, I LOVE YOU), that leaves very little left for getting a good screenie.  (You’ll see this even more in the next post, with Iron Qon.  Screenshot of fire phase: check.  Screenshot of tornado phase: missing.  Screenshot of icy/barrier phase:  check.)

Back to Dark Animus.  My role in this was simple.  Goal #1: Beth, get aggro on THAT add.  Goal #2: stand HERE.  Goal #3: Don’t die.  Goal #4: When we say to, drag the add to the middle (p.s., don’t stand in front of anything while there plzkthx).  Try not to die.

Goal #1?  Yep, got aggro, kept aggro.  Goal #2?  Yeah, stood there like a pro, man.  I’m real good at standing.  Goal #3?  AHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.  Goal #4?  I’m also real good at training sheeyit to faraway places, so dragging the add to the middle was no problem!

Stay tuned for “Part Three: The Real Lei Sheeyit!”

*Speaking of wiping it, I always have conflicting feelings about doing so.  I’ve suicided by jumping off Wyrmrest when the Ultralixion fight seemed to be going badly, and I’m certainly known for doing things like running away too soon, Feigning Death the instant I get a faint whiff of an incoming wipe, etc.  So really, I ought to have no problem with wiping it up already to save time so we can try again.

But when I’m healing, there’s a part of my head that’s like, BUT BUT, I CAN’T STOP HEALING, I’VE COME TOO FAR TO QUIT NOW!  I STILL HAVE MANA!  I’VE GOT MORE HEALS IN ME!  OKAY SO WE DON’T HAVE A TANK/DPS/HEALER/WHATEVER, BUT I’M SURE WE CAN SURVI…

… and then reality intrudes.  It’s got a knack for that.

Part One: Last Stand of the Zandaas;ldfjas;lfkjasf OGOD

Part One: Last Stand of the Zandas;ldfjas;lfkjasf OGOD

It's a Love/Hate Relationship As a goblin, my love is directly inverse to the amount of near death involved.

It’s a Love/Hate Relationship
As a goblin, my love is directly inverse to the amount of near death involved.

Okay, so, I’m not going to lie.  While Feign Death was incredibly useful for me as a huntard, you know what’s even MORE useful for me, as a player in general?  Reincarnation!  This does not always mean that I succeed on my next attempt at living (nor will I necessarily help anybody at all by getting myself off the ground), but hey, at least I get another shot at sacrificing my dignity on the altar of derp.

Reintarnation! It's a state of being.

Reintarnation!
It’s a state of being.

We had a grand total of nine people for the night, as the tenth didn’t show and the guild team Does Not Pug.  Still, we decided to keep on trucking.  On the Jin “the Zap” Rokh fight, I managed to get myself nuked super-dead by first getting smacked with a ball of lightning, and then Reincarnating too close too an electrified puddle.  I didn’t think I was in the puddle, but apparently I was!  SITUATIONAL AWARENESS, I HAZ IT.  There are a couple things to take away from this.  Number one, wow, holy crap, the lightning is like super bad here.  Number two, I have just scientifically proven that lightning does strike twice – with my face.

Kinda Sorta Still Kinda Sorta Counts It didn't look puddly to me.

Kinda Sorta Still Kinda Sorta Counts
It didn’t look puddly to me.

Any dreams I had of not coming across as a hopeful prospect and not “derpity derp derp derp” were pretty much gone at this point.  Fortunately, the other members of the raid team are both geared and good.  That meant that when the other healer got taken out too, they still beat him.  Hooray for my deaths not causing everybody to die!

Or Not BAD, Persay Just not terribly effective either.

Or Not BAD, Persay
Just not terribly effective either.

If you think the next boss I derped on was Horridon, you’re wrong.  It was actually the bridge.  (I DID derp on Horridon, but I’ll get to that in a minute.)

We have two warlocks,  both of whom positioned their demonic gateways in such a way as to lead to almost certain death.  They also coordinated via whisper and switched up the gate destination (so that one’s starter gate was not directly in front of his end gate), and then they presented it as a “hey, trust MY gateway, not his!” sort of situation.  (As a side note, one of the locks actually died to his own trick while laughing his ass off – not saying who.)  Since I’m me, and I have some issues with edges that are too close making me fall off them by accident, I elected to go Ghost Wolf form and run the distance rather than take a gate so close to the consequences of gravity.

First thought: Wow, the wind’s a whole lot stronger!  Jeebus, I’m so so close to the edge, lemme Rocket Jump to get some breathing ro …

Second thought: HOLY SHEEYIT I’M FLYING WOW

See, in LFR, the floaty blue spirit trolls do two things.  They freak you out by dangling their enormous weird toes right above your head, and they do a bit of damage so that you are inspired to get away from their beam of light.  So I was ready to get pushed into a beam by the wind.  I had my finger on the healthstone button and all.  It’s just … well, nobody told me that in normal, the floaty spirit trolls also launch you off the bridge.

Horri-“hell-this isn’t so bad, or wait, maybe it is”-don was truly an eye-opener.  In LFR, I am accustomed to trying to live through a variety of bad ouchy things like the whole raid getting double swiped, or shamantanking the adds because the offtank is off somewhere.  In a normal run with a guild group that’s gone through the place before, it’s actually rather nice and comparatively calm.  You never wind up staring Horridon in the face (or tail)!  In short, it was going GREAT until I stood in poison.  I was too busy marveling at my survival to actually survive.

Fortunately, with two warlocks and a druid, we got an excess of battle resses for people like me.  I am pretty sure that whenever I show up, someone will have an additional role: “Beth’s battle resser.”

Look At How Healthy We Are! You can credit that 75% to the other healer.  Yep.

Look At How Healthy We Are!
You can credit that 75% to the other healer. Yep.

The methodology I adopted on the fly (after I got picked up again) worked well for healing and for surviving the rest of the fight.  In short, closely follow the people who know where they’re going!  “Stay away from the frost things, ’cause they’ll mess your sheeyit up.”  Ok, as long as you do, I do too!  “Stay away from totems, because ditto.”  No problem as long as I’m your shadow!  It sounds totally dependent and it probably is, but if it works, it works.  Right?

Now, the Council fight was the one that terrified me (in concept) the most.  SO MUCH potential crap could happen, but there’s only so much of me!  Of course, I actually lived on this one.  (Say whaaaaaaaaaat?)  I was healing the tanks for this one, which was both a relief and a source of great terror.  On the one hand, there are only two of them!  Sweet!  On the other, DAMAGE THERE IS DAMAGE AND OGOD DEAR SWEET JEEBUS if they die and we don’t/can’t get them up, we die.  So suffice it to say I got a little tunnel-visioned, as best evidenced by this paraphrased Vent exchange:

Raid Leader: Beth, get away from the panther.
Me: What?  Get away from the panzer? (while thinking, “wait just a second, the trolls get tanks in normal!?”)
Pretty Much Everybody: PanTHer.  PanTHER.  The cat!  The shadow thing!
Me: Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhh!
Tank: Uh, I think she’s focused on healing.

I must also report that frantically double-clicking does not make your spells cast any faster.

After that, we decided to start the Forgotten Depths.

When Happiness Conflicts Trauma ensues.

When Happiness Conflicts
Trauma ensues.

I mentioned before that we were at nine people.  It just so happened to be one of the tanks, which in turn caused the group’s rogue to switch to his blood DK to cover for him.  The fact he was able to switch was great, of course.  The fact that he is is like the DREAM rogue (everything that my poor Bombelina is never going to ever be able to be) meant that we were without one of the highest DPSers!  As a result, we didn’t really have much intention of trying Meggies.  Tortos, however, we thought we could take.

Summary:  A;SLFKJAS;LFKJAS;LKFJA;SLFJ TURTLES AND CIRCLES AND BATS GAWD

Having now completed the fight in both LFR and normal, I think I can safely say that I hate it in all the freaking modes ever.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s “fun” in that it’s chaotic and geeze all the things, but as a caster who has to hold still to cast sheeyit most of the time, the inability to stay put for very long makes the fight kiiiiinda sucky.  Spiritwalker’s Grace (enabling me to cast while moving, a.k.a., when turtles have tossed me up into the air) only lasts for so long.  I tried to wedge myself into the far corner by Tortos’ one leg where I could see the tanks (was on tank duty), but that wasn’t any good either, because it meant I had a harder time seeing the circles/falling rocks that were aiming directly for my skull.

Dear ceiling stalactites: WHAT HAS MY SKULL DONE TO YOU!?  FALL ON TORTOS FOR ONCE, WILL YOU!?

Dear bats: GTFO, I’m serious.  Nobody likes you.

Dear turtles: For eff’s sake, will you die in a more convenient spot?  Urgh!

After a few circle/turtle/Stone Breath related wipes, we finally managed to kill him.  Of course, he didn’t drop a thing that anybody could actually use (Lord forbid he do that), so we disenchanted all the loot and … hearthed out.

If I can still see him ... Then I haven't beaten him to a fine enough pulp yet.

If I can still see him …
Then I haven’t beaten him to a fine enough pulp yet.

Stay tuned for Part Two: Forgotten DepTHE HELL DID I STAND IN NOW!?

Pretty Fly for a Super Low Leveled Draenai?

Poor, poor Daschela.  At first the name was given to a night elf druid, who has since been faction-changed and renamed Betheki.  (It was the perfect pun on “Beth” and it sounded too troll-y to pass up.)  Then Violaryn, my blood elf paladin, was namechanged to Daschela, as I liked the name too much to lose.  (This, by the way, confused the bejeesus outta everyone, including me.)

And then I said, man, blood elves.  It’s just not … it’s not me.

For the record, I don’t mind that blood elves are Very Pretty People.  In fact, I make a point of flirting with all long-haired male blood elves I find in LFD/LFR, just to see what the Very Pretty People will do.  I don’t mind that blood elves are practically 3/4ths of the Horde when lorewise, they really ought to be but a fraction.  No, it’s the emotes.

Every time I laugh, I want to stab things.  Every time I /silly as a blood elf, I feel like I’ve poured acid onto my soul.  The female blood elf emotes make me think, “Sheesh, I really ought to go back and play more as a Forsaken.”  I just can’t stand the female blood elf emotes.  Their existence prevents me from ever really liking being a blood elf.  Even though Violaryn-turned-Daschela made it to level 87, I could NOT get past the meh.

See, normally, alts that have the “meh problem” die somewhere before I hit Burning Crusade.  Violaryn-turned-Daschela existed for one purpose only, and that was skimpy transmog – one set in particular.  Because Transmog Trumps All and the ONLY boots that would do required her to be level 85, she survived long past her expiration date.  Once the desired set was done, I still didn’t like her.  Hell, it was worse – I just didn’t CARE anymore.

She has been deleted so that I might try Holy paladerping from the ground up, as Daschela the Draenai Derpadin.

Hmmmm She's so full of the Light, she sees shadows everywhere.  Mysterious shadows ...

Hmmmm
She’s so full of the Light, she sees shadows everywhere. Mysterious shadows …