Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Starved for a Healing Outlet

There's a certain level where I'm pleased with my new 10-man guild's progress. We raid twice a week. Mondays we farm ToC. Saturdays we do Ulduar hard modes. We've taken out FL+4, XT-002, and Iron Council hard modes in our two nights in Ulduar, and got achievements for Ignis, Razorscale, Kologarn, and Auriaya that count towards our Rusted Proto Drakes. Sounds good, right?

But we're a wee bit short on healers. We've been pulling from our ex-Oporotheca friends ever since we formed up, and while we've been gradually reducing our dependence on them, we're still not self-sufficient and this is the last gap in the tank-dps-healer trinity we need to fill.

My moonkin main is a dps powerhouse that makes our rogue grit his teeth and continue to push himself in a quest to overtake me (and I'm happy to push myself to stay ahead), so no matter how much I entertain the thought of helping out the raid by hopping on my holy paladin… I can't. Not for any fight that matters. My co-raid leader tells me that while I'm a good healer, we can't afford to lose my dps, and while I love being a moonkin, I'm starting to miss healing.

This wasn't really a problem back when I raided more and we did 25-mans, because what happened a lot of times was I would do 25-mans with my druid, and the 10-man hard modes of course, but in between the first stabs at learning the 10-man fights and starting the hard modes, I'd be playing my paladin. And on rare occasions my paladin would get to come along for 25-mans because of a healing deficit. I joined a friend's 25-man Naxx pug before and it wasn't so bad.

My server is not well progressed though, so people don't pug anything beyond Naxx, VoA, and Ony (barring the occasional Flame Leviathan-only Ulduar pug), and I'm starting to get that healing bug. Healing 5-mans just doesn't cut it. They're either too easy or harder than they have to be due to braindead puggers. I don't feel like I'm getting a chance to shine.

Granted I could fix this by respeccing my druid's off-spec from bear tank to tree druid for raid healing, but I'm quite frankly ignorant of how to play a good resto druid now that we don't roll Lifebloom all over the place. (I mean, I read resto druid blogs, 4 Haelz, Tree Bark Jacket, and choice articles at Restokin, but every time I think about how I would gear myself or how to heal in a raid my brain just flies out the window.) I know how to play a holy paladin though, and I'm comfortable with it.

So now I'm trying to figure out how best to get my healing jollies on my paladin.

Try to get into VoA and Onyxia pugs. I guess that's one way. It's not a crazy difficult raid, and might get some more loot, but it'd be a case of being all dressed up and no place to go. I love getting gear upgrades as much as the next person, but it would be nice to go somewhere other than a 5-man heroic with all that gear.

Get into a 3s and 5s arena team. It's not raid healing, but damn it's healing. I'm rather irritated this season because my 25-man guild meltdown has also meant the loss of the resources needed to build a good (maybe not great, but at least good) arena team. My former guild leaders were on my 3s and 5s team and while I wish them the best in their post-WoW life, it does mean that my arena antics of last season are not so easily repeated. The survival hunter who was on those teams with me is now my 2s partner and we're doing so-so.

I don't really blame him because I'm not specced right for 2s (prot/holy is still powerful despite Blizzards nerfs) and a holy pally and a hunter aren't a duo with any kind of synergy. The two of us had hit 1600 in Season 4 back in TBC, but I'm skeptical of that happening this season. We're in a weird spot right now where the fights are either retardedly easy or retardedly hard. Nobody facerolls us, which I suppose is a good thing, but if we don't faceroll ourselves man those fights are grueling.

I think the problem is we're relatively well geared having come out of 3s and 5s with our Challenger titles and 1750+ rated gear, so as a 2s team with a crappy MMR (we didn't really play 2s last season) we're facing people who don't have the same amount of resilience as us. It makes us a pain in the ass for them to whittle down. But for our part our offense is not really good. Holy paladin dps is pretty non-existent, so it's up to me to interrupt the other team's healer (preferably at a crucial moment) so that the hunter can solo dps him down. If the hunter can't solo kill the healer (or the dps) then we're screwed unless they screw up.

The other night the two of us were in a match against a rogue and a resto druid that lasted for 24 minutes. I bubbled maybe 4-5 times that match and it got to the point where I knew the rogue's damage wasn't going to kill me so I would let him poke away while my Divine Plea ticked and I got mana back. Then I would bubble at around 15-20% health and leisurely heal myself up with FoLs while the rogue sat there and waited for my bubble to wear off.

The rogue was seriously not a very good or very geared player. I was telling my partner over vent that I didn't want us to lose to such a crappy rogue. The problem was his druid buddy was master of pillar dancing and we couldn't put out the dps to kill either one of them before he would heal (and LoS). We finally won when we managed to trap the druid, burn the rogue, and the rogue made a terrible decision of running behind a pillar to not only LoS us, but LoS his healer, where he died to the hunter pet that was still pounding on him.

It was a victory, but reinforces my incredible dislike for fighting resto druids in arena, and despite being a victory I felt more worn out than excited about it. I need more excitement.


Jong said...

good to see you back in the raiding scene and making progress. hope you guys find a good, dedicated healer soon.

Hana said...

Thanks a lot. :) We have an ele shaman transferring over who's willing to go resto for the immediate future with the understanding that when a dps spot opens he can move into it. So that leaves us with just one more.