Saturday, October 31, 2009

I Was Tagged

Well, I do believe this is the first time I have been tagged for one of these but I shall do my duty and drop some light on this meme. ;) Did you see what I did there?

So let me thank Saunder from over at Non-Squishy Heals for tagging me in.

I am going to call on my buddy Fish to give us his perspective on lowbie healing and I am gonna see if I can get some Shamanistic rage on healing from the Doctor over at WTF Spaghetti. I also am going to shout out to my wife Eus to perhaps consider responding to this as well. She is not as vocal about her healing, but she is a damn fine healer.

So here we go :

1. What is the name, class, and spec of your primary healer?

Alright, this one was easy. My main healer is Ruhtra. He is a light spitting, holy shocking Paladin who can not be contained to one holy spec and therefor had to duel spec holy.

2. What is your primary group healing environment? (ie raids, 5 man, PVP)

That is a tougher question and the honest answer is all of the above. I am rocking to healing specs. One is built for raid healing and the other is built for PVP. So call me the master of heals.

3. What is your favorite healing spell for your class and why?

I would say ask Edyion, Nymeros, Eus, Fish, Abbadonn or any other member of my guild cause they all know it is the epicness of the Flash of Light. It is blindingly delicious. I was spamming that when most of your characters were wearing diapers. (Cheap plugs are always nice aren't they?)

4. What healing spell do you use least for your class and why?

Alright, so I am going to clarify this one. I consider my healing spells to be Flash of Light, Holy Light, and Holy Shock. The other spells I consider utility, such as Beacon of Light. So, the one I use least is Holy Light. Kind of weird that when you can crit that one for 17 - 20k that I would not use it right? Well, the simple truth is that the epicness of my heals lags our servers and blows guildies right off the web. True story. ;) Okay, the real reason is that I have built Ruhtra for healing Flash of Light since the beginning of my healing run. I get a nice HoT off of it when coupled with Sacred Shield. I then use Holy Shock in my rotation, sort of like how a gunslinger would blast the a sneaky baddie trying to get on their side. Yes, I think of myself as a one man sherrif of healing. Then Holy Light comes out with my auto crit ability and I save the day. Oh and Lay on Hands is for sissies.

5. What do you feel is the biggest strength of your healing class and why?

The biggest strength of a Paladin, in my opinion is that I wear plated gear. Those sissies who cannot carry the weight of true armor tend to drop from one or two hits while I stand there getting slapped in the face by a runaway mob laughing the entire time while I wait for a tank to pick up their lost child.

6. In a 25 man raiding environment, what do you feel is the best healing assignment (in general) for you?

For some classes this may be a serious question, but for a Paladin we are tank healers. There is no question. Can we raid heal? Hell yes, I can solo heal Razorscale. True Story again. However, in a properly organized group they will recognize the fact that we were made to heal tanks. Our spells are single target oriented and as such we are best utilized for that and with 20k+ on-demand-crits and that sissy Lay-On-Hands spell, there should never be any debate on it. (If there is, get the hell out of that PuG!)

7. What healing class do you enjoy healing with the most and why?

Alright, that is a tough question. If we are talking me and just one other healer then I am going with a Druid. They are the Bonny to my Clyde. (Hee hee) In all seriousness, with the combined power of my solid one hit heals (although I am rocking three HoTs now) and the ability to spam Hots, Battle Rez, and Innervate, we make a potent team. Truth be told though, if I have a good healer as a partner I do not care what class they are as they will know the tricks of their trade. I have healed with every class, including one damn bandage spec Rogue.

8. What healing class do you least enjoy (hate) healing with and why?

The bandage spec Rogue? No, we are not going to accept that answer? Well, I do not want to alienate anyone who may take it wrong. I honestly do not care who I am healing with, but for the sake of this, I would have to say that I least enjoy healing with a Priest. Now please do not get mad at me you squishy people. My reason is that most Priest I have ran with absolutely try to be tank healers, even when they are sportin that flashy holy spec that gives them some nice group heals. That and they scare me.

9. What is your worst habit as a healer?

Looking at the television while healing. Seriously, at this point most content is boring to me so I am busy reading news stories online while healing. Sometimes I will catch a good show while we are raiding. I have some good conversations with my wife (so long as we are both not healing in the same group/raid). Okay, sorry I am in a good mood today. My worst in-game habit would be toying with my tanks. I love letting their health drop dangerously low and then drop a big heal on them just to let them know I can. Sorry guys. Really. I mean it.

10. What is your biggest peeve in a group environment when healing?

You have come to the right person for this question. I hate DPS (Dumb People Suck) who stand in the bright glowing stuff that is hurting them. Honestly, how stupid are you?

11. Do you feel that your class/spec is well balanced with other healers for PVE healing?

Absolutely. I know some folks tend to view Paladins as a one trick pony, but let me be the first to introduce you to the Paly school of raid healing. Beacon the tank and then drop Flashes all over your raid. They will be amazed and you will top charts (if you are into chart topping). I honestly am a firm believer in going against the traditional school of thought (ask my guild). I do not like boxes and aim to break through (good thing I carry a freaking huge mace).

12. What tools do you use to evaluate your own performance as a healer?

This is a good question. The number one tool any healer will tell you is how many deaths compared to those left living. However, I completely disagree. It is a good judge for a guild, but if you are not running with your guild or spend time in PuGs, then you could be being carried or could be carrying a bad healer. I tend to look at the healing done and focus on heals per second. This let's me know who was casting during the fight. Then I view the overhealed information. If someone had a high heal per second but shows a ton of overhealing, then they get the worst healer award as they were covering someone else's target more than likely (now this is assuming that there is healing assignments). The biggest problem I had from jumping from five man to raid healing was not trusting the other members of the healing team. I would constantly spam heals all over. This often resulted in deaths as this meant I was not covering my own assignment.

13. What do you think is the biggest misconception people have about your healing class?

That we are only tank healers. We excel at tank healing no doubt. We are probably the best single target healer in this game, but it does not mean that we are incapable of raid healing. Now granted there are other classes who excel at raid healing and they could be awarded the title of greatest raid healer, but you still see raids where those classes will be the tank healers. It all comes down to skill and knowing where abilities and limitations are. I am just as comfortable healing a raid as I am leaning against the wall spamming heals to a tank.

14. What do you think is the most difficult thing for new healers of your class to learn?

It is really hard to say. When I started healing, there was not any sort of blog telling me what stat to get or the best way to heal. I never used an add-on till the very end of the Burning Crusade. (Yes, I love pain and I hate change.) So, I said all that because I had to figure it all out and how it worked best for me. If I had to give one piece of advice for a new Paladin healer, it would be to not listen to everyone else. Find the style that you like to heal and heal that way. Some Paladins want to spam Holy Light with high haste. Some Paladins want a high crit rating and enjoy spamming Flash of Light. My single biggest piece of advice is simply find the style that suits you and then stick with it. My second piece of advice is heal for PuGs non-stop. PuGs are brutal in two ways. The first way is that a bad PuG will make you a better healer because they force you to push yourself. The second way a Pug is good is that if you are a bad healer they will tell you.

15. If someone were to evaluate your performance as a healer (via recount), what sort of pattern would they see (ie lots of overhealing, low healing output, ect)?

This is a great question, probably the best of this whole thing. If you look at my recount you will see a couple things. The first thing you will see is a traditional mark for all Paladins, high overhealing. We will always have that, no matter what we do. The second thing you should see is that I have a solid HPS number. This means that I am healing constant. I am not running out of mana. The third thing you will notice is that I am going to be either number one or two. No questions asked. I accomplish this by placing the beacon on my main tank and then spamming heals to everyone else. More often than not I will heal the off-tank, but if the other healer is struggling, then I will heal their assignments as well. The fourth thing you will notice is that I have a high amount of HoTs that will show. There should be a minimum of four: Sacred Shield + Flash of Light, Holy Shock crit from tiered bonus, Forethought Talisman, and Judgement of Light. (Word of advice to all Paladin healers, if you do not have at least the three class abilities, then you need to work on getting these into rotation.) The fifth thing you will notice is that my number one heal is going to be Flash of Light, my second heal will be Holy Shock, and my third heal is Holy Light. I have worked long and hard to develop my healing style and how I build my character. I never was one to buy into the idea of spamming Holy Light as it eats too much mana. I prefer to run a marathon and not 100 meter dash.

16. Haste or Crit and why?

This is another good question for Paladins. (We are going to assume that we all know that we need Intellect and Spell Power as our base stats.) I do not like to have a ton of Haste on my gear. I take just enough to get a moderate speed increase, but I prefer Crit above Haste. I also prefer MP5 above Haste. I pretty much only like to have Haste on two or three pieces of gear. Anything else, I feel is a waste of space (for me at least).

17. What add-ons or macros (if any) do you use to aid you in healing?

I use healbot.

18. Do you strive primarily for balance between your healing stats or do you stack some much higher than others? Why?

I hinted at this in previous answers but pretty much we are going to get enough intellect and spell power from our gear that we will not need to worry about that. So for the little green stats on gear I look for crit and MP5. I prefer crit because I spam so many heals in a fight that I naturally will have more opportunities to crit compared to classes who may cast few spells or spells that do not benefit from crit. Now as a Paladin, we should be able to reach into our retribution tree and grab a free 5% crit increase, so that is important to remember. There is wiggle room to add some other stats in. This is where I get my MP5 from. It is important to remember that if you find yourself alone in a raid setting through bad luck or bad players, then you need to be able to go the distance. MP5 is the amount of mana you regenerate while casting. So, if you have a higher MP5, then you are going to be regenerating enough mana to hang in there for those last few crucial seconds. MP5 is what made the difference in many raids I have been in. (See jokes about single healing Razorscale.) A lot of Paladins will feel that Arcane Torrent and Devine Plea will give them all the regeneration they need (which it does provide a decent amount of mana), but the problem is that both of these are on cool downs and Devine Plea (which I was never a big fan of pre nerf) cost you a high percentage of your healing.

Well, I hope I dropped some useful information. I know a lot of this is pretty basic, but maybe it will do some good out there.


Fish said...

I will respond to this, except #6. However, my priest healing is incomplete as I don't have an instance holy spec, so I can't really evaluate them completely. I agree with you on crit vs haste, Haste seems to have such a minor impact, at least crit has a CHANCE to have a major impact.

Ungulant said...

You are mildly confused, fish. Haste has a bigger impact on throughput than crit (almost twice as large) and has the added benefit of allowing for more responsiveness on healing damage (due to the heal landing faster).
Crit is, by far, the worst stat of the ones that have any effect for paladins (that means except spirit) and you should try to stay as far away from it as possible.

Anonymous said...


I would have to disagree with your thoughts on crit Ungulant. I have been healing with a Pali and prefer the crit as I do not wish to blow all of my mana out before a boss. When I cast my Flash of Light I am healing for around 7k per Flash. It crits at 10k. The higher I raise my crit rating the more crits I will get. I built my Paladin much like Ruhtra did for casting Flash of Light, not spamming Holy Light. They really are two different builds.

If you are of the school that loves the Holy Light then you are correct. You want to have a ton of haste and int. Everything else is going to be unimportant since you need a large mana pool and the ability to cast that spell much faster than it's base. Whereas if you build for Flash of Light you are casting a much shorter spell and so a moderate amount of haste is acceptable, but you will want to stack crit in order to raise the chance per cast of hitting with a crit.

moarhps said...

Hrm, well, I'm going to disagree with the usefulness of haste to a FoL build, as getting a one second cast on FoL is very yummy, but I disagree with Ungulant about it. I armoried you (I'm so nosy) and you seem to have an extremely high amount of MP5. I can't imagine ever needing that much MP5 with a FoL build on any current content... Perhaps dropping a piece or two of MP5/crit gear for haste/crit gear might do you better. :)

ungulant said...

@Anonymous: Two things before I reply to the main part of your comment. First of all, if you are using predominantly FoL, that's a very specialised kind of healing, I would say. It requires some very interesting situations in order to perform to its full potential (which, admitedly, I consider lower than that of a HL 'build'). For one, you'd need two tanks that take similar amounts of damage and two paladins. Secondly, you cannot raid heal anymore since the only benefit of it is the crit bonus from the absorb part of SS and the HoT, which can only work on 1/2 targets in the raid.
That being said, people that prefer raw HPS to steady flow of heals (which is the advantage of using FoL) want more haste not because the cast time of HL is so high (at 1.4s, it's not particularly bad, considering my HLs heal for ~13k on normal hits, and that's while stacking intellect), but because haste provides a better boost to Holy Light's HPS due to its very high base healing. Ironically, for FoL builds FoL scales better with spell power not haste even before the GCD cap not because FoL's spell power coefficient better than HL's (in fact, it's almost half), but because of the very low base healing. So, while FoL scales better with spell power than with haste, HL scales even better with spell power, and even better again with haste.

Now, if as you are saying, you predominantly use FoL, there is no way you can run out of mana, even without DPing, so that argument is moot. If you're looking at crit as a regen stat for FoL, it is by far (by a huge margin, 4-5 times worse) worse than mp5. If you're looking at it as a throughput stat, yes, for FoL, after the haste GCD cap, it's better than haste. But until then, crit is clearly inferior.

Furthermore, when spamming FoL, the crit bonus of SS will be up quite a bit, which increases the relative value of stats other than crit.

I also was mostly commenting on the misconception that haste has "a minor impact", when in fact crit has a lesser impact, even if your cast time gets smaller by a smaller percent the more haste you have, the increase in HPS is the same at all haste levels, not to mention the fact that you need less hate rating for 1% hate than you do for 1.33% crit (which will give you a 1% increase in throughput, since the coefficient crit heals is 150%).

To finish, crit has another disadvantage, namely that it's not a guaranteed increase. Your main job is to keep the tank alive, and it's not really useful to know that on average you can get X HPS, if you don't crit during an avoidance bad streak and your tank dies.

@moarhps: Sorry, talking about me? I'd hope not, it's probably obvious that I'm not gearing up for FoL spam. :-) Also, what do you disagree with from what I said?

Evan said...

Thankyou all for a lot of good insight. I'm a budding pally heals and really need a bit of help. Look me up on armory: Evanessence on Gundrak. A bit of mismatched gear but it should be enough to get me going: I have never raided but am about to very soon.
I'm noticing that there is a debate between spamming HL or FoL and as Ungulant notes, you have to spec/gem/enchant according to either healing styles.
So before I blow all my cash on gemming and enchanting, which healing style is preferable? HL or FoL? Is it fight-specific? As our guild's soon-to-be MT healer, am I better off spamming FoL or going for the big HLs? Atm i'm spamming FoL probably out of habit because when I was still wearing blues I found HL was draining my mana and I would be holding my heroics team back.
I'm hoping someone can help me out here, otherwise I'll just go blindly into entry-level raiding and learn the hard way... which is all part of the fun I guess :D

Ruhtra said...

@ Everyone

Did not expect such a great conversation around haste/crit. I am actually going to post the reasons for why I built to Flash of Light verses Holy Light. You will have to forgive me as I have been sick for two weeks and then returning to work for 10 hour days tends to drain me some.

@ Ungulant

You make some good points, but there is not really a spamming Flash of Light build any longer and I will try to explain that in my response and what I mean by building for Flash of Light verses Holy Light.

@ Evan

Hopefully you are getting something out of this. I do not know if we can say do this or do that because a lot of it fits your personal style. The conventional method for most newer healers and former ret Palis is to build for a Holy Light build, which is not a bad build. I will check out your info and get back with you sometime later tonight or tomorrow hopefully, work and health considered.

Later all!

Ruhtra said...

@ Evan

I do have a question for you after looking over your gear and your talents. What type of healing build are you aiming for? Also, do you do your healing more for PVP, 5 man, or raid? The reason I ask is that this can have a lot to do with your talents.

A couple things I would say in regards to your gear is to run some stuff other than ToC. I noticed a lot of the gear you have appears to be coming from there, which is not a bad thing, but you are picking up some gear that does not offer the most in benefits to you as a Paladin.

At any rate, let me know what you are thinking of gearing towards and we can talk a little more in depth in regards to your actual talent build.