We all know that Blizzard’s mantra for this expansion is “Bring the player, not the class.” So last Sunday I logged on Maedchen and did what I promised I was going to do. I healed.
OK. In reality I chickened out. What I really did was join a OS25 pug group. I figured I could hide my fail behind a bunch of other people. I figure I’m a good player. I know how to heal with a pally. I understand the concept of when to use big heals vs. little heals. I can figure out the cast times and adjust.
I reviewed the meters after my OS25 and wish I had taken a screen shot to brag about how bad it was. First, I was last on the heal meters. OK, not unexpected as I’m new to priest healing. There was only one other priest and from what I recall he was using primarily Circle of Healing (or maybe it was Prayer of Healing, I forget). He was tops on the meters and I feel pretty stupid not checking at the time, but I bet his overheals were HUGE!!! At least I have to tell myself that to make me feel better.
The raid in and of itself was taking little damage. We were going for no drakes. Only the tanks were taking steady damage. There was also a couple of melee that would spike from time to time, but generally took little to no damage. Nothing seemed to scream at me that AoE heals were needed (perhaps because of the druids and other priest keeping them up constantly). So as a raid healer I cast Renew and Flash Heals. I’m not used to the other heals enough to have used them much.
Bottom line is I feel like I failed. Yes, heal meters mean little without reviewing everything. One billion heals is nothing if 900 million of it is overheal. I’ve got a lot to learn and I’m not QQ’ing about learning that, but I NEED to get over this small fear of healing on a priest (and now shammy) and get in there and heal 5-mans. I’ve always been a real firm believer that 5-mans teach you how to raid (granted that was pre-Wrath as we could go on about how I’m not sure anything teaches you how to raid right now). This is because if you fail, the group fails. 10-mans give you a little more leeway to have someone pick up your slack and 25-mans give you soooo much more leeway that some of the worst players I’ve ever encountered have succeeded in 25-mans, but can’t finish a simple 5-man without difficulty.
So why do I feel like I failed? Because I don’t know my class. I don’t understand what heals are best in what situations. I don’t fully understand what stats are best. I’m ashamed to admit this, but I became even more aware of it yesterday as I dinged 80 on my shammy and started doing research to respec Enhancement and dual-spec Restoration. I’d leveled with Enhancement and had a rotation down. Apparently with some preliminary research it wasn’t a great rotation. It worked for leveling, but now that I’m at the endgame I have to break a habit I shouldn’t have gotten into anyway.
I knew a guy in BC that had five level 70s. He played each of them equally well, but in my opinion was never a master at any of them. I used to believe that it was because he had so many that he couldn’t dedicate himself to really learning the ins and outs of them. I swore not to ever fall into that trap should I ever be lucky enough to have multiple 80s. Now I have 3 and am already planning leveling my fourth (partially out of boredom, partially because it’s fun, and partially because I really need to get to a point where I can safely make Ebonweave).
Bottom line. If you’re going to help make Blizzard’s mantra work, you better f’ing know your class!