Posts tagged ‘healing’

So This Just Happened

Elfindale, the Night Elf Druid, now has an evil twin. With the exact same name. Which makes her more of an evil clone than a twin. Because most people don’t name their twins the exact same name. But I digress. Meet Elfindale, the Blood Elf Mage.

Let me try to explain a few things. My break from WoW would have happened regardless of SWTOR, and SWTOR did not cause me to need a break. There was something just not sitting right with me. Elfindale is my one true love, my only level 85. I have a handful of alts, but never stuck with them long because I just always wanted to be logged into Elfi. But she became useless. She was/is a casual healer in a raiding guild with more than enough healers to go around. I have spent so much of my time in Cata simply farming herbs and playing the Auction House. I rarely even did any 5 mans because somewhere along the way (before moving to the raiding guild) I lost confidence in my healing. It’s all I ever wanted to do but I became too afraid to do it. So I decided to just switch to laser chicken and no big deal. Except then I really lost interest in everything. SWTOR is amazing and I’m loving it and trust me, it’s filling up my time and then some. But I do still WANT to play WoW.

So over the past week, I’ve started dipping my toes back into the pool. And I’ve dipped some new toes into new pools. I’ve created and deleted a couple of toons this week as I’ve tried new races and new classes and spent 7 or 8 levels deciding how they felt. An Orc hunter, a Troll rogue, a Gnome warrior. Nothing really felt right. I missed Elfi and yet cannot bear to play her. I thought briefly of deleting her and starting over, but she’s the first ever character I ever rolled and I just could never do that. Too many memories tied up with her. I thought briefly about unexpectedly gquiting and server transferring her, but it’s not about my guild or my server at all. I like people there and they have nothing to do with Elfi feeling useless to me. No matter what server she was on she would still feel the same to me.

That’s when it finally hit me that maybe I should just recreate her differently. I’m playing caster dps in SWTOR and really enjoying it, so let’s try that out in WoW with a race I’ve never played before. I’m still in the starting area, and it’s not like it’s going to be a fast process because I am concentrating on getting two characters raid ready in SWTOR, but so far this alternative Elfi feels good. And there’s the added bonus that I don’t have to change the name of my blog if I want to talk about her. WIN!

The One Where I Tell You Things. Important Things.

Do you know what I remember most about RIFT launching earlier this year? I remember how pissed off some people were that the WoW blogs they were following suddenly became inundated with posts about RIFT. While I’m not one who gets angry very often, I did understand (and mostly agree with) how annoying it was. Which is why I will be doing my Star Wars: The Old Republic blogging on a completely separate site. A site that will not be mentioned here, or linked to in any way. If you want to find me, you’re just going to have to stumble across me and hope you recognize my writing style. Hint: I will NOT be using “The One Where…” to start the majority of my posts, so don’t look for that. If you do find me, I may or may not confirm that you found me. Ha, this is fun already.

So why did I bring it up at all? Because I am not playing SWTOR in secret. I’m also not abandoning World of Warcraft or Elfi’s World because of it. But it is highly likely that between checking out a new game and the holiday season being upon us, things will slow down around here. I am not planning on cancelling my subscription to WoW (obviously i can’t promise that won’t change, but it will be a ways off if it does) and I know I’ll log in for some Winter Veil fun, so there will still be a few screenshots and observations going on here. I just wanted to give you a preemptive explanation about the cobwebs which you may soon notice gathering in the corners. Maybe I’ll play Star Wars for several weeks and decide it’s just not for me. Or maybe I’ll decide it’s all I ever wanted and I have lost interest in WoW. Hopefully, everything will go as I want it to and I will just be happy as hell with both games and split my time between the two. Whichever way it goes, I promise to make a statement about it here so that you all know what’s up. It always bothers me when a blog just stops abruptly and the loose ends aren’t tied up, makes me imagine bad things have happened.

Okay, we got that out of the way. Now onto other things. This just in – Elfindale, who has spent her entire life believing she was born to heal, is now officially a full-time laser chicken. It’s slightly disappointing, but necessary. There were a lot of factors involved. For one thing, I have been very unfocused while in-game for quite some time now (insert SWTOR here) and as a result I’m doing even more standing around Stormwind and simply chatting in guild chat than ever before. I have not been running dungeons so my gear is rapidly becoming outdated. My ability to heal is getting really rusty (insert recent story about wiping repeatedly and failing hard). And the most recent thing, the thing that actually caused me to have a meltdown Saturday morning and go off into a very rare rage (which lasted all of about 30 seconds)… I finally got all of the Darkmoon cards I needed to make a deck and get my Darkmoon Tsunami Card. Wait, why is that a bad thing? Maybe because when I combined them into a deck I got a Hurricane deck and not a Tsunami deck. INORITE? I COULDN’T BELIEVE IT EITHER. That’s probably the closest I’ve ever came to crying as a direct result of the game. Not counting that one time when my GM abandoned me like last week’s garbage.

So what do you do when after weeks of stress and frustration you end up with the wrong damn item? You take it as a sign. I suck at healing, my guild doesn’t need a healer, I don’t have a fucking Darkmoon Tsunami card trinket and at this point I hope to never lay eyes on one EVER. Ding! Switch to dps and enjoy a new laid back lifestyle. Luckily, our resident serious raider Boomkin was online at the time, so I asked her if the Darkmoon Hurricane trinket would be good for me to use for dps. She actually suggested the Volcano card instead. I immediately went to the AH, threw that damn Hurricane deck up for sale and purchased the Volcano trinket for about 7k. Done and done. I’m swearing off Darkmoon cards for good after this mess. But again, thanks to my guildie who put so much time and energy into crafting for me.

Let’s see, what else? I’ve gone another year without completing the Terokkar Turkey Time achievement during Pilgrim’s Bounty. How disappointing. I’m normally pretty OCD about completing holiday achievements, but just can’t seem to make myself complete this one. Maybe because a couple of years ago, when it was still a decent fight, I killed they guy but had forgotten to wear my stupid pilgrim hat and now I’m subconsciously avoiding the whole situation? Who knows. That’s just the way things seem to be going with me lately. If it ain’t one thing, it’s another. Good news is, as long as I have plenty of stupid stories about myself to tell you, I’ll just keep posting them here. Until then, may the force be with me.

The One Where Being Nervous Makes Me Stupid

This weekend, I moved Elfindale over to a little-known guild named Eff The Ineffable. Maybe you’ve heard of it here, or here, or here, or …. you get the idea. Because of all the wonderful bloggers involved with Eff and because I’ve had an alt already in the guild for a little while, I pretty much knew everybody and had chatted with almost all of them by this point. But somehow, logging in and talking to them as Elfi instead of as some insignificant little alt made a huge difference. I have been nervous as hell about it for days. Elfi is my main, the one toon I should have perfected and know inside-out. I’m suddenly very worried that these awesomely cool people will notice I’m actually a huge dork who really just mashes buttons and gets lucky.

I’m a very shy person so I remain a very shy WoW player. I can get comfortable with people pretty quickly, and once I do, they’re screwed; but until I reach that point, I pretty much spend every moment being so worried about doing or saying something stupid, that I end up doing and saying a lot of things that are stupid. Last night is a prime example. Elfi was going to run randoms with some guildies and I was very nervous about making a good impression on them and proving I could be a valuable part of the guild. You know, useful and stuff. Now, Elfi is a resto druid as her main spec and has been since the very first day she stepped foot into the world (yes, that’s a stupid way to level – but I did it). But over the past few months I have been doing Boomkin dps about 99.9% of the time due to internet lag. If I lag out and stop dps’ing it’s not usually a big deal; but if I lag out and stop healing, things tend to go to shit.

So last night, I decide I gotta put my brave face on and queue as a healer to show my new fellow guildies that I am perfectly capable of having their backs. I activated my resto spec and queued us up as a party. There were only 3 of us from the guild running this time, so obviously once we entered the dungeon we picked up two strangers. I knew I had already put the correct gear on, so as soon as we phased into the dungeon I threw Mark of the Wild on everyone and started fiddling with my VuhDo and making sure I remembered which healing spells were set to which buttons on my mouse, etc. One of my guildies was tanking and after making sure we were all ready, he started off towards the first set of mobs. I waited until everyone filed off in front of me and then I proudly followed the group towards the danger, determined to heal my ass off. I don’t really see him suffering much damage – must be a great tank, yay! No one else is taking much damage either, although to be fair we are at the first group of trash. I throw a wild growth or two and a couple of rejuvs that no one needed and pretty quickly the fight was over. We move on and again, not a whole lot of damage is showing up for any of the group on my VuhDo bars. I throw a few more unnecessary light heals and we’re moving on to the next group. Now into the third fight, we’ve pulled a bigger crowd of mobs and I’m really impressed with how easy of a time I’m having as the healer. I’m seriously just kind of standing around and feeling very good about the fact that even though I haven’t healed regularly in quite a while, I obviously still have very good gear and I’m so good at healing I can do it without even lifting a finger.

It was after all of the mobs from the third fight were down that my other guildie, the one not tanking, whispered me and said “You do know you queued as dps, right?”

And then I died of embarrassment. I can’t believe they didn’t gkick me right then. HOLY SHIT!

The One With The Circle Of Healing Meme

Let me start by apologizing to Zelmaru for my delay in posting this after she tagged me last week. Zel, your email actually went into my Spam folder. Oops. And then this morning Zinn tagged me too. So of course I’m going to oblige.

Now let me say that I appreciate being tagged, but I must admit I never expected to be filling one of these questionnaires out. I certainly don’t consider myself an expert. I’m not someone who has years of raiding experience. I have never been a permanent member of a raiding team. I’m more of the “once you guys have that on farm, take me through there so I can get achievements” kind of player. And that’s not because I’m lazy or believe I deserve to be carried. It’s because my schedule didn’t comply with the raiding schedule my guild was on and because I tend to doubt myself and my abilities so I didn’t want to go in and mess things up on a progression run. So keep these things in mind as you read the answers below.

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

Elfindale, Druid, Resto

2. What is your primary group healing environment? (i.e. raids, pvp, 5 mans)

5 mans – though I must be honest and admit I seem to run most of them as a dps laser chicken these days. Partly because of lag and partly because pugging as a healer is brutal.

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

It used to be wild growth, but since Cata I’ve gotta say it’s swiftmend. And the reason is simply because with swiftmend I can proc efflorescence. I know most aren’t of this opinion, but I love efflorescence. I’ll tell you why… it’s the easiest way for me to watch my own ass. I am one of those healers that never remembers to look at my own health so when I finally notice I’m getting low I just setup swiftmend to proc efflorescence on the tank and then I run up and bear hug him so I can soak up all the healing.

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

For me it’s healing touch. The high mana cost and the slightly long cast time just make it unappealing to me. I know a lot of people still like to use it because it’s a big heal in a desperate situation, but it’s just never on my radar.

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

Mobility. Lifebloom, Rejuvenation, Swiftmend, and Wildgrowth are all instant cast spells and with 2 of those being AOE spells, I can HoT up everyone while running blindly in hectic, confused circles … like I do.

6. What do you feel is the biggest weakness of your healing class and why?

This may just be something I’m doing wrong, but I’m gonna have to say it seems like we draw a huge amount of healing aggro and we don’t have any way of reducing it other than shadowmeld. And if any poison or fire or whatever hits you, it breaks shadowmeld and you have a 2 minute cooldown. I actually used to have a macro I could key that would yell something along the lines of “the tree is being attacked – help!” because it seems like no one really ever notices when the healer’s getting beat on. But I had to do away with that macro because I seemed to accidentally hit it a lot (me smash buttons to heal all the things) and not only was it distracting the dps, it was causing everyone to think of me as the druid who cried wolf.

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

I’ve only done one or two 25’s and they’ve been fun runs where we weren’t in too much danger. Each time I was assigned to raid heals but I actually prefer tank healing. And that’s mainly because I get so tunnel-visioned while healing that if I’m assigned to watching 5 or 6 of the general masses, I can’t keep up with where they’ve moved to. I can easily track their health by watching Vuh Do where I’ve grouped them all together. But that doesn’t help me know where they are on screen. Following the tank and only watching him is much easier.

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

Well I’m obviously going to say resto druid here since I haven’t really experienced any others. But I honestly feel like my answer will never change. I just love the versatility and the shape shift of the druid. And not too long ago I would have said one of the main reasons is that I love being a tree while healing. I’m sad that I can no longer spend the entire time in tree form, but such is life.

9. What healing class do you enjoy healing with least and why?

I’ve never healed with any other class (other than healing myself while questing on a low level Paladin I created this year). Elfi is my one and only high level character.

10. What is your worst habit as a healer?

Overhealing. I just roll lifebloom and wildgrowth and rejuv constantly. I can’t stop myself from clicking.

11. What is your biggest pet peeve in a group environment while healing?

Keep in mind I mostly do 5 mans so I am the only one doing the tank healing and the group healing, which is totally doable… unless the tank charges a pack of mobs and runs full speed to the other side of the area while the ranged dps never move from their original pre-attack spot. In other words, I hate it when I have people out of range of my heals. Obviously the tank is the priority; but that ranged dps is gonna yell at me if he dies even though he could have saved himself by moving towards me a bit.

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

I think so, but as I admitted earlier I’m not a huge expert on this … or anything really. 🙂 But yes, I feel like resto druids are well balanced with other healers I’ve watched. The positives make up for the negatives. In my opinion the mobility increases the value of the spells we have.

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

I don’t actually use any tools for evaluation. I keep track of how many deaths there may have been, how many mana potions I may have sipped on and how many times I had to use innervate and those things give me a general feel for how I’m doing compared to the last time I did the same instance. I know I should crunch numbers and use some colored pencils to make designs across some graph paper… but I just don’t like math. Never have, never will.

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

I honestly don’t know. I guess I would say that people tend to believe because druids are a hybrid class they aren’t really great at any one thing and that is just not true.

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

I’m gonna say it would be how to tweak your talent tree to make it work for you. I think our spells are fairly basic and there aren’t a huge number of them. But knowing how to work the talent tree is extremely important. Are you going to be raid healing and need maximum mana regen? Or are you going to be tank healing and need huge heals? Or are you doing mostly 5 mans and need to balance both of those things?

16. 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 overhealing. On both the tank and the rest of the group. I am pretty good at staying caught up on removing poisons, so you’ll see that also.
Now I don’t use recount (yep, numbers are gross) so I don’t really know what type of stats can be seen there but I will say if someone was evaluating my healing they would notice there are 3 things I do not use often enough – barkskin, innervate and tree form. And fyi, although it has nothing to do with stats, I completely suck at using a soulstone also.

17. Haste or Crit and why?

Haste. Having a couple of instant cast spells that can tick away for several seconds each, I don’t need something with a big crit in order to save someone. I just need to toss a regrowth or nourish as quickly as possible just to get someone out of the red and then I can start spamming the instant casts.

18. What healing class do you feel you understand least?

Priest. Obviously since I’ve never healed with another class I don’t understand much about any of them, but I’d definitely say Priest is the one that’s the most vague for me.

19. What add-ons or macros do you use, if any, to aid you in healing?

I use Vuh Do for most of my spells. I also have a 5 button mouse to give me some additional flexibility. But I am one of those idiots who moves with my mouse and not the keyboard, so I actually have my left hand on the keyboard in a specific pattern and in between clicking and running with my mouse, I use the keyboard to cast also.

20. Do you strive primarily for balance between your healing stats, or do you stack some much higher than others, and why?

I would say my stats are basically balanced. What I would not say is that I strive for balance. It’s more like I just don’t really spend enough time crunching numbers and studying stats to change it up. Remember – math is the suck. Instead I use Google Reader to follow some of the major Resto Druid bloggers out there and when 2 or 3 of them agree on a talent tree or specific gear or reforging, etc., I just copy them.

And in closing, I will not be tagging anyone else to complete this mainly because I don’t know of anyone who hasn’t already been tagged. True story.

Screenshot Saturday

That’s right, my healing is LEET.

The One Where I Offer Proof Of Fail

I am not tired of playing WoW. In fact, I am more addicted than ever. I am also not tired of blogging. I actually have rough drafts of posts and some cool things planned out. However, this past 7 or 8 days has kicked my ass and I don’t even know why. It’s caused me to spend minimal time in game and pay very little attention to Elfi’s World. I fail.

Luckily, I am familiar with failing.

The One Where New Things Have Arrived

You guys, my new pc freaking rocks! Everything shipped right on time and my friend/guildie Azzah graciously came over on Friday night and built the shit out of this thing. It was a beautiful process all the way through. I ordered pizza for us and then set about annoying the crap out of him by touching everything and snapping pictures in his face. After it was fired up and the Windows 7 install was completed, we copied over my WoW folder and prepared to behold the magic. I logged into the game, cranked the video settings up and hovered over SW laughing maniacally at my new and improved frame rate. It’s so unbelievable. And I am now using a 23″ widescreen monitor so there’s a whole lot more of the unbelievable to see.

New Computer

But that’s not the only thing that had Elfi grinning from ear to ear this weekend. When I logged in and checked my mailbox on Friday, I found an Elementium Hammer waiting for me. A wonderful gentleman, from the growing-in-popularity guild Eff The Ineffible, very kindly volunteered to craft me this weapon and I am so appreciative of him doing so. I am leaving his name out simply because I didn’t ask him if I could publicize it and he may not want the attention. It looks pretty bad ass and though I know it’s not best in slot, I am so slowly gaining Valor Points, it will be the best I have for a very long time. I ran Heroic Vortex Pinnacle with it this weekend and I was very happy with the increase in my healing. I still daydream about how far along I might be if my guild hadn’t broken, but at least I am slowly making progress. Here’s what I currently look like with the new mace.

And speaking of looks, this weekend Morena picked up a new helm while questing. She is now a Worgen who wears a wolf head on her wolf head. Lol.

Screenshot Saturday

Well here is a great example of what your screen SHOULD NOT look like during a raid. Look at this mess. This screenshot is from June, 2010 and was taken in Ulduar. I cannot believe I didn’t realize how badly my screen looked. I remember it looking this way for a long time before this shot was taken, and for quite a while afterwards. When I became a more serious player towards the end of last year, one of the first things I did was clean this mess up. And I am so glad I did. I don’t happen to have any action shots of my new setup to post right now, but I’ll work on getting one so I can show you guys the difference.