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Hello, Goodbye…

I think it’s past time to close up shop here at ILB land. I don’t have a lot of WoW talk to share these days, and despite making an attempt or two, can’t bring myself to blog non-WoW stuff here, either.

But fear not!  You can find me over here form now on, instead. I promise I will still toss out the occasional flowchart, the content will just be a lot more…random in topic.

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Healing is an Addiction

I don’t know what it says about me that I’m back to heavily leveling alts, and that they are both my resto druid and my resto shaman in particlar.

Oh, and don’t forget the priest, still gearing up.

HEAL EVERYTHING FOREVER. And bitch about bad tanks. Oh my god, the lowbie tanks, guys.

But it’s okay. For every tank a group kicked (1), there was a tank the group gently mentored. I do hope that the adorable nub-DK tank didn’t listen too much to the warrior who didn’t even know what a rotation was, though.  Spirit mail is not for you, little DK tank…

Of course, do I really love healing this much, or do I just hate long queues that much?  Hmmm.

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GnomeClone Adventures: Things That Piss Me Off

So far, being a Gnome Clone–at least, when among other Gnome Clones–has been delightful. I dinged 24 last night and now begin assembling the gear we’ve decided on. Since we’re going to be dipping our toes in the water of instances a wee bit ouchy to us for some of the gear that we need, I’ve been trying to assemble the best gear that I could along the way, but I’ve…be having trouble with that.

The only way to guarantee that you get a drop from an instance should it appear is to go in a full guild run. That’s just the way of things as far as I’m concerned, if I run it with pugs I always risk the chance that another member of the party will need it and win the roll.

That’s the thing though: I stand a chance of that happening. But I’ve experienced something…annoying.

You see, I’m re-discovering (gasp!) that people are assholes. Over fucking lowbie loot.  More than once now I’ve grouped with people who are all from the same guild/server, and each time they thought it was fine and dandy to all roll on loot I was trying for and give it to the priest/mage/whomever among them that really wanted it.

Seriously, guys? It’s a piece of fucking lowbie gear and all 4 of you are going to roll on those cloth shoulders?

Why don’t you just go fuck yourselves up the ass with a pine cone while you’re at it?

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I bet you thought I didn’t do these anymore.

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Random Observations from Amber Land

  • It is hard to write about WoW while playing Rift.
  • But if I stop playing Rift right now, JOSH WILL GET AHEAD OF ME OMG.
  • “Hunter” with explosives?  LOL.
  • I have a lot of gold!  Wait, gold is like silver in this game?  FUCK.
  • god damned wedding eating into my gaming time
  • Visiting florists on WARMACHINE DAY is terrible.
  • SO MANY GAMES NOT ENOUGH TIME.

I’ve not quit WoW, by the way. Just playing Rift with the boything because…he apparently wants to play Rift. Since I’d been idyly curious I decided to pick it up too.  Goodness knows how long this will last.

Excuse my while I run around chucking explosives at things.

 

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Jen’s Guide to Healing Nef

My brain is pretty fried when it comes to spitting out words, so I continue to abuse my awesome guildies for guest posts.  Here’s the latest from Jen, who also writes over at Pots ‘n Kettles.

Because we had dedicated this week primarily to Nef, I went and head and respecced to this: http://www.wowhead.com/talent#hhZbh0bZfGbMsbcosd:dbMcmr

Nef isn’t that complex for heals (especially compared to Cho’gall or the RNG clusterfuck that is Al’Akir), but there is a ton of damage going around. Also, thanks to massive dragon noms at the tanks and raid wide damage from electrocute, this is one of the two fights (Chim being the other) where shaman resto mastery really shines.

This is a bit of a longer fight (our kill took just over 7 minutes), so you can use longer cooldowns (like spirit link and mana tide totems) in phase one and have them up again for phase three.

Phase One – Ony and Nef and Adds!

We had an Ony tank, a Nef tank, and a BM turtle-noms-adds tank. Your dragon tanks need to be on opposite sides of the pit (if they’re too close to each other, they get a buff that essentially rips your tanks into bits). Ony and Nef need to be parallel to each other sideways to the raid. While they are chewing on your tanks, they’ll also do standard dragon breath and tail swipes.

This means that your healers do want to coordinate who’s going to focus on which tank, because you can’t reach them both without running back and forth. Ranged can help out heals a bunch by staying near each other in the middle.

TURTLE POWER

Ony, while lying dead in a puddle of lava, has grown lightning globes on her sides. When they start glowing, the tank needs to turn her tail into the raid, or she’ll shoot lightning at the raid instead (and your healers will curse you emphatically). More likely than not, the raid will get hit with a tail lash, which knocks us all over for very minor damage and stuns us for two seconds. Once the lightning is done, kindly turn her tail back out of the raid.

Ony is apparently very squishy for a dragon, and when they had her down to about 40ish%, our melee went and chewed on Nef. Every time you get 10% of Nef’s health down, he will do a raid wide electrocute for 100k. It really helps to know when these are coming, because I had a few seconds to drop a rain puddle and start casting chain heals. The first electrocute is also a good opportunity to drop Spirit Link Totem, and it’ll be off cooldown for phase three. After the first electrocute, I tried to drop a glyphed stoneclaw totem each time for a little extra resistance – any damage reducing abilities are good for these.

While the dragons are chewing on their respective tanks, you also get to deal with adds!  \o/

Our BM hunter MD’ed all the adds to Donatello, and rolling riptides, gift of the naaru, and GHWs kept the little turtle up. You can build up heals as more adds spawn, and there were a few scary moments when they were all up, but then once they start dying off, you can help out with the tanks more. Our hunter helped me out a ton by keeping him near the middle, so that the turtle would get the benefit of aoe heals as well. (Once the adds were all dead, the hunter switched to a dps pet for the remainder of the fight.)

We pushed for two electrocutes in phase one (three made us go smush, mainly because each one ups Ony’s enrage mechanic – you have to kill her before her meter reaches 100) and then finished off Ony (and made her go smush instead).

Once Ony dies, the room fills will lava and you transition into:

Phase two – Nef and Adds!

There are three pillars around the room, and our raid was split up to have a healer on each (you can’t reach the other pillars), along with at least one ranged dps and one melee interrupter. You’ll need to run to your pillar as soon as Ony dies, and swim up as the lava fills the room. The pillars have an obnoxious-as-hell overhanging lip, so you need to jump straight up and then over, or you’ll get stuck on the lip.

Each pillar will have one add. They don’t have an aggro table – they just stand there and continuously try to cast a shadow AoE that will pretty much nuke everyone on the pillar. Their casts HAVE to be interrupted. Our ranged dps nuked away at Nef while melee killed and interrupted the adds. We controlled the health of one of the adds so that we could get Nef down through two more electrocutes. Healers need to make sure that their pillar is topped off before the electrocute hits, and be ready to heal people back up after it.

During all of this, Nef hovers in the middle of the room and casts shadow blasts at random raid members, so you’ll have plenty of healing to top off. It really helps for people to use their self heals or damage reduction abilities (if they aren’t major ones that they need for electrocutes).

This phase ends once all three adds die – the lava will drain back out of the room, Nef will descend back onto the ground, and you can jump back off the pillars.

Phase Three – Nef and (you guessed it) MOAR Adds!

One tank will pick up Nef, and the other will get to run around and collect, then kite, adds (someone should probably follow your add tank around to heal, too). The rest of the raid should group up next to Nef’s side. Purple fire will spawn at the most inconvenient places possible, which everyone needs to avoid until it disappears.Wait, Kotakh is still alive for this phase?

We popped heroism as soon as everyone was in place, and nuked the hell out of Nef. You’ll get electrocutes fairly close together, so raiders want to make sure to use damage reduction abilities, and healers need to get people topped off quickly. Both tanks will take lots of big hits, especially if the adds get too close or play in the fire.

Burn everything you have, and profit! ^^

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Cho’gall: DPS Edition

I’m going to break these up into Melee and Ranged, because we do have slightly different jobs for phase one.

Melee Phase One:
Be prepared to rage at tiny hit boxes.

The way we handle this in 10s, both melee peel off the boss to follow the add tank. You’re worried about two things here: 1) interrupting Depravity (OMG IMPORTANT) and 2) not accidentally killing the add before the tank drags him back to the doors.  Once the add is dead, run back to the boss and DPS as normal.

Be sure to keep an eye out for people who are worshipped so that you can give them a good whack as you go by.  With an interrupt, mind you, no matter how tempting it is to do otherwise.  Sometimes your fellow melee will get worshipped on the way back and stand there worshipping away because no one is paying any fucking attention to shit behind them.

While on the boss, there’s really nothing special to consider except interrupting worshippers when you can. Oh and not standing in things. But really, should I have to include things like “don’t stand in fire and dark puddles on the ground” at this stage?

Ranged Phase One:
When the adds die up by the door, the dark puddles they drop on the floor will spawn oozes.  The oozes need to die.  The melee should, ideally, never even know they exist!  Otherwise pay no attention to the ugly adds that SPAWN the oozes–that’s the melee’s job. If there are no oozes up, DPS the boss.

Interrupt any and all people worshipping when you can. 

Don’t stand in things on the floor.

Phase Two, Both:
Kill all the stalks and interrupt their casts.  Once they are dead, flail wildly at the boss until there’s more stalks.

This is a good time to blow Army and other tasty cooldowns.

If you have corruption sickness, do try not to vomit on people, they don’t appreciate that.

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Children’s Week Ficlet

This was a WoW ficlet I did back in ’08 for Children’s Week, and it amused me enough that I thought I’d repost it.  It stars Lyestra, my warrior, and her bastard half sister Jamethera, my hunter.

Fish Out of Water
A Children’s Week 2008 Story

“Don’t look at her like that, Ly.”
Lyestra Shadowbane turned towards her half-sister and gave her a blank look. “It’s a child. A Draenei child, at that.”
“And cute!” Jamethera swept her own little orphan girl into a hug. “I think it’s nice that we get to take them out to see some stuff.”
“Yes. We get to drag children through dangerous places. Totally wonderful and completely logical.” Her tone was as dry as Tanaris.
“Think of it as practice!”
“Practice for what?” Lyestra quirked an eyebrow.
“Well, what if you and Hazard decide to have children?” The huntress grinned wickedly.
Lyestra again gave her a blank stare. “What did Illyana feed you this morning? Whatever it was, you can’t have any more of it. Clearly, it’s a hallucinogen.”
“Don’t act like you don’t like them! You helped raise me!” There was a six hundred year age difference between the two…not that Lyestra always liked to be reminded of that.
“And clearly you don’t remember the time I locked you in the closet because you wouldn’t leave me alone.”
Confusion flickered across Jamthera’s face. “What? You didn’t do that. Did you?”
Lyestra just smirked. “Come along, child.” She held out her hand for the orphan’s pale blue one. “Let’s go to Nagrand.”
“…you know,” Jamethera said with some exasperation as she scrambled to catch up, “You and Hazard deserve each other. I consider him an agent of karma. He fucks with your head, but it’s what you get for fucking with everyone elses!”
“Watch your mouth around the children, ‘Thera.” It was all the warrior could do to keep a straight face.
“Oh please.” Jamethera rolled her eyes.
“You argue like me and my brother,” Ly’s little orphan girl broke in suddenly.
Lyestra flashed the girl–Dolorra? Dorna?–a grin. “Well, she is my sister, so I guess that makes sense.”
“Deep down, she truly loves me and regrets all the horrible, mean, evil things she does to me,” Jamethera said as she helped her little girl aboard her massive netherdrake.
“Like hell I do.” Ly winked at the young draenei.

Lyestra had mostly tuned out the children. Though she still loosely clasped the girl’s fragile hand in her calloused one, both girls seemed content yakking Jamethera’s ears off. Between her netherdrake, the giant blue talbuk, and her deceptively cuddly snow leopard, she was by far the more interesting sibling.
They had already passed through Nagrand and the rather desolate Ring of Observance. Now they wandered down the tunnel towards the Caverns of Time. As they passed one of the side passages leading towards the known rifts, Lyestra stopped, face shuttered.
“What’s ‘smatter, Ly?” Dolorra tugged at her hand. “We’re going to see the dragon over there!”
Jamethera’s gaze caught her sister’s knowingly. “Haven’t been down here yet?”
“No.” Abrubtly, Lyestra gave herself a slight shake and strode past the route to time’s echo of Hyjal. Just when she thought it didn’t haunt her… “Let’s go see the dragon.”
“You okay?” The draenei tilted her head back to peer up at the elf, her pale brow creased.
Ly seemed flustered by her genuine concern. “Just remembering unpleasant things.”
“Oh.” She paused. “Do they give you nightmares, too?”
Ly halted again, but this time she looked at the girl and gave her fingers a light squeeze. “Sometimes. But then I wake up and remember that it was awhile ago now and it’s okay.”
They resumed walking and for a time a silence fell between them. Then abruptly, her breathy young voice surprisingly solemn, “It does stop hurting after awhile, right? They aren’t lying to us about that?”
“They aren’t, not really,” it was Jamethera who responded first, her voice soft. “I lost my mother a few years ago. It hurt a lot then. It still hurts now, but not all the time like it used to. Just sometimes when I’d miss her the most, like her birthday.” She glanced at Lyestra. “And I had other people who cared about me, so it was okay. You’ll be fine.”
Ly gave into a random urge and tousled the girl’s hair. “Don’t let it hold you back, little one. What do you want to be some day?”
“I want to be a paladin!” She skipped along the sand as they resumed their trek. “Then I can be strong and help people.”
“I know a paladin,” Jamethera replied, her tone once more cheery. “Maybe we can take you to see her when we’re done. Her name is Ambrosine, and she is an orphan too, actually.”
“I want to be a shaman!” The other girl trilled. “Do you know any shamans?”
“We’ll see who I can find later,” the huntress promised.
“I thought we were just going to take them to these three places and then give them back,” Lyestra said quietly as the girls ran up to the pedestal with the great bronze dragon on it.
“I don’t see the harm in taking them to Stormwind as well. It’s not as if they get out much, Ly!”
She sighed. “I know, but what will Ambrosine think of us just dropping in on her?”
“Pfft, ‘Sine loves kids!” Jamethera dismissed her concern with a flick of her long fingers. “Don’t be so eager to get rid of them.”
“Jamethera, I don’t know what to do with kids! Never mind apparently disturbed orphan draenei.” The warrior eyed the pair warily.
“Again–good practice!”
“…what would I need practice with disturbed children for? Unless you’re saying something about my supposed parenting skills, which considering the lack thereof, would probably be pretty accurate. I would indeed produce warped, disturbed children. Which is exactly why I shouldn’t.”
“You and Hazard would have cute children! Adorable little half-elf babies!”
“I swear by all that’s holy, Jam, if you continue bringing that up, I really will shove you in a closet.” She scowled.
“Gotta catch me first, LyLy!” The lithe night elf took off running.
“Dammit Jamethera!” Though she knew it was fruitless, Lyestra took off after her.
“Watch your language!”
The two draenei girls exchanged glances, eyebrows raised. “They’re supposed to be grown-ups?”

Later that evening, with both young orphans back in Shattrath, the sisters wandered down the street to the home Jamethera shared with Illyana. “Come in, have a drink before you leave. I don’t know why you insist on still living in Ashenvale.”
“I like my little house out in the woods, thank you. It’s quite cozy.”
Jamethera opened the door and gestured her in. “I wasn’t kidding earlier, you know.”
“About what?” Lyestra’s brows drew together in puzzlement.
“You and Hazard making cute babies!” Jamethera grinned, easily dodging the blow intended for her shoulder.
Ly scowled again. “Stop it. I prefer being the aunt, or the older sister. Then I get to do the fun things with the kids, give them the obnoxious toys, and give them back to their parents for the unfun stuff. Suits me just fine. I’ll tell you what. If you have kids, I’ll play with ‘em. How about that?”
“Oh yes, Illyana and I will get right on that.” Forget dripping with sarcasm, the sentiment was well-nigh saturated with it.  She cut Ly off before she could make any obvious lesbian elf jokes.  “Come on! You two are getting married, it’s naturally the next step. I want to be the aunt.”
“…is Illyana home?” Lyestra glanced down the hall.
“No, why?”
“Good.” The closet had already been opened so they could hang up their cloaks. Ly shoved Jamethera into it and slammed the door shut before the huntress could do more than squeak. A handy chair wedged under the door handle completed the job. She glanced at Schneeflocke but the cat just blinked at her lazily. Apparently it amused the great snow leopard to let her two legged companion be confined.
“Remember,” came the muffled threat, “She’s bigger than you! And coming home soon!”
“Exactly why I’ll begin running in a moment here.” Lyestra hastily scribbled a note. It read: Please don’t kill me Illy. I had to do it. She was being obnoxious. …I love you, almost-sister dear?
Leaving the note on the table next to the closet, Lyestra turned and ran.

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In ur bubblez, reducin ur dmgz by 100%

Hi guys! I’m hijacking this blog! So we’ll start by BoP’ing the hunter Amber so she’ll not be able to shoot me before the 10 seconds are up.

Alright, ten seconds, go.

Today I’d like to talk about healer utility! I’ll break it down by class, and in the case of priest, spec.

Paladin

Fantastic cooldowns here. Hand of Protection, colloquially known as BoP (for its old name, Blessing of Protection), is 10 seconds of hax on any raid member. They’re completely immune to physical attacks, so if the target is limited to physical attacks, they pick a new target. In some cases, they’ll pick a new target anyway. Current Cata encounters where this is extremely powerful are Chimaeron’s phase 2 and Atramedes’s air phase, where it will force a target change. Because of the hefty 5 minute cooldown, you can only use it once or twice per fight, but man will it break certain mechanics. The biggest drawback of BoP is that it prevents the target from using physical attacks as well, but if you have an overeager mage or warlock you can BoP them with impunity as it won’t hurt their dps. For our trolladins, BoP the rogue or fury warrior as soon as they use their cooldowns and you’re sure to make friends with them– You were just trying to keep them from pulling aggro!

Which brings us to Hand of Salvation, or HoSalv. For many of you right now tank threat isn’t an issue, but in those cases where it could, this 2 minute cooldown comes in handy. It’s approximately a 20% threat drop, but it’s slow-going over 10 seconds– You’ll want to use it preemptively. HoSalv is best used on classes that lack a natural threat drop, such as warriors, DKs, and boomkins, with the “second tier” being classes that lack a large threat wipe, like feral druids, shamans, priests, and perhaps even a retadin that got carried away with wings. It’s also probably best used at least a minute into the fight, since very early on it will clear maybe one attack’s worth of threat– Unless you know ahead of time that a dps likes to blow all his cooldowns off the bat, and you think you can save him from his own stupidity.

Another way to save a dps from their own stupidity is Hand of Sacrifice, or HoSac. Don’t let the nickname scare you. HoSac will redirect 30% of the damage that target takes to you, up to a maximum of your full health bar, for 12 seconds. This not only helps in briefly “tankifying” a dps when things go horribly, horribly wrong, but more importantly it’s a bizarre mitigation cooldown to use on a tank! With Paragon of Virtue, it’s down to a 90 second cooldown, and with Protector of the Innocent all of your heals will be healing you too. In many cases this is actually one of the best ways to keep PotI from going to waste. HoSac is an almost deceptively strong cooldown and will save your group member’s lives more times than I care to keep track of.

Also on the list of things I can’t keep track of, auras! Pony aura is not for raid. Unless you have someone else bringing the right elemental resistances, you’ll probably want to run with resistance aura, which will be about a 24.92% reduction in damage of that type (10.75% over the buff-caused resistance of MotW/BoK). Using Aura Mastery in anticipation of damage will further boost that to 39.90%– Wow! Devotion Aura is a good second choice, providing 4,076 armor (Roughly a 10% boost for a tank). Concentration aura is the archtypical holy aura, but in many fights it doesn’t get put to good use, and in those that it does, resistance plays a bigger role. It plays a bigger role in PvP, though. And ret aura… Well, you’re nice against rogues? It’s not you, it’s me. I have too high standards for my auras.

Oh, let’s not forget that utility is sometimes focused on yourself. Divine Protection has been revamped to reduce damage taken by 20%, and can be reduced down to a 40 second cooldown. It’s a fantastic ability on heavy AoE fights, and you can glyph it to be 40% magic. Really, seriously, oh my god this is something you want to use. It’s win. I can’t express enough how amazing it is for seeming so weak.

And finally, Rebuke. Thank you, Blizzard, for Rebuke. Ever been on a priest or druid and begged the dps to interrupt something? Maybe those nerubians back in heroic old kingdom, that could one-shot an undergeared tank with their shadow blast? Now you can stop yelling at them and go face-punching yourself! Paladins still lack an offensive dispel, so in many cases this is our best bet. And from a PvP perspective, my god, it’s like a game of chicken amongst healers. In the average BG, one rebuke and they’re terrified of you.

Shaman– Wait, what’s a shaman?

Totems, totems, totems! Unfortunately, outside of totems you don’t have much utility at all, and you’re limited to four totems at a time, and a 30 yard range for most of them. At 18 totems available to a resto shaman (and soon to be 19), I won’t talk about them all, just the ones I really think fit the “utility” definition.

Contrary to what I just said, the first example is a non-totem example: Purge. Offensive dispels are fantastic and can effectively neuter some enemies. Always be on the look out for dispellable magic effects, and once you get to know them you can decide if they’re worth dispelling or not. Probably the best trash example are the Twilight Shifters before Cho’gall, who will tear people a new one unless your purge their shift. Maloriak is probably the best boss example, thanks to his Remedy. You can also frequently prevent the need to purge at all by using Wind Shear, which is arguably the best PvE interrupt available.

Tremor Totem, an earth totem, though a long fall from what it once was, is a fantastic anti-fear. Most importantly, rumor has it that it can break Cho’gall’s worship, though if you’re worshipping you can’t drop it [Citation needed]. It’s six seconds on a one minute cooldown, so it’ll be frequently up when you need it.

Grounding Totem, an air totem, is a pretty amazing thing when it works. I have heard that it will block Blackout in Valiona and Theralion, cutting down dramatically on raid damage. It also works against Arcanotron’s Arcane Annihilator (No word on if it will fail Achieve-o-tron), and presumably any other single target spell cast by raid bosses. Please note that Grounding Totem is specifically party-wide and requires the target to be “nearby” (Personal experiences say <15 yards, but shaman is not my kind of class– No offense to your spiritwalkers out there).

As discussed with paladin, resistance totem is a pretty sweet deal, but you should be glyphed into healing stream totem, which you should be using anyway. Please note that the difference between this is that it does not protect against shadow damage, but it DOES protect against nature (electrical– Hi Neffy). As usual for totems, the range is 30 yards and it does not move with you, so be mindful of positioning.

Earthbind totem is a rare jewel, and really shines on Magmaw and Maloriak. If there’s kiting to be done, you can always help with an earthbind totem. Remember that its range is a meager 10 yards!

I’m hesitant to include regen as utility, but Mana Tide is a special case. It’s a fantastic thing to offer other healers, as well as keep your own mana up. While it doesn’t affect short term spirit boosts like trinkets, there is a rumor that Tsunami’s spirit-boosting stacks are affected. I don’t know if this is a bug or even true, but if intentional it makes the trinket look even more appealing to shamans. Don’t forget to reuse your healing stream totem once mana tide’s done!

Spirit Link Totem, an air totem coming in 4.1, is a rather unique take on mitigation. For 6 seconds it reduces damage taken by everyone within 10 yards by 10%, which, so far, sounds like a gimp discobubble. But here’s where it gets interesting: Each second, everyone’s health is redistributed so that everyone is at the same percentage. Note that the redistribution won’t create or destroy health– It adds up all the current health pools compared to all the max health pools and figures the goal percentage. This is especially potent since very rarely will AoE outright kill someone– Frequently, it’s when one person is low and they get hit by something. I could see it being put to especially good use on Chimaeron’s feuding. It’ll be on a 3 minute cooldown, further mimicking Barrier.

Oh and, I guess you guys have something called Heroism or Bloodlust? I dunno, it’s like that mage ability Time Warp, but you can’t settle on a name for it. The timing for Hero/BL is usually best discussed amongst your group, but a well-timed one can save a wipe. If you think you’ve got a good eye for it, consider using it early– I’d rather use hero at the wrong time than to wipe and not use it at all!

Druid

Can come back when it has utility. I kid! Druid’s utility is a little trickier though. Soothe can be used to dispel enrage effects, and if any druids could use Soothe on the shamans for the way I treated their signature cooldown above? Much appreciate it. Enrage effects aren’t all that common, but when they show up, they can be pretty make or break. Double damage and 50% faster attack? Haha, no can do!

Roots are also in the same category of enemy denial. When it Soultree form, your roots become instant cast, so if you have a spare GCD on a fight that involves kiting, you can throw a root out.

If there’s two druids glyphed for innervate, they can innervate each other and get more back than if they did it to themselves.

Like paladin’s Divine Protection, druids have Barkskin, which has an added benefit of preventing cast bar pushback. Much like DP, use this. The only time you shouldn’t use this is when you literally will take 0 damage, or if you know there will be a time before it’s up again with heavy damage. Don’t go more than a minute without barkskinning.

Editing in battle res here. As it stands now the ability can be used once per encounter (three times in 25 man), regardless of how many druids, warlocks, or soon death knights you have. It’s funny to me that I forgot this ability, because no druid is ever allowed to forget it. If anyone dies for any reason a minimum of 20% of the group is obligated to call for a battle res,  regardless of if it’s been used or if it’s on cooldown. Unfortunately there really isn’t much to say about it– If someone dies, you res them. If you reasonably expect them to quickly die again, as in a bad pug, you can reserve your right to pass over them and save their durability and your cooldown. Do be mindful, though, that if you bres in what’s soon to be bad, you might inadvertently kill them again.

Priests – All

Leap of Fuck Priests is a new ability at 85, and one many priests have had great fun with. But did you know that it can be used for purposes other than annoying raid members and killing them? If you have a head start on movement, it can be used to help a straggler, or someone that was a bit behind through no fault of their own. For example, on Cho’gall, LoF is up for virtually every add’s death, and a timely grip on the tank will get him back to Cho’gall in no time. It’s also useful when you can see horribly bad things on the horizon, but worry that they can’t or won’t get out in time, such as Atramedes’s air phase, phase 2 of Chimaeron (You can add seconds to their life!), and pillars of parasitic flame on Magmaw. Seriously, the number of good uses for this ability are so plentiful that it shouldn’t be off cooldown when you want to fuck around with it. Also, you can have a group of 38 priests and 2 death knights set up a line (The roads in Durotar and Elwynn Forest are fantastic for this), lining up 19 priests in each direction and chain-gripping the death knights together in an attempt at finding Higgs-Boson (Amber edit: Fuck you, James.  Fuck.  You.)

Divine Hymn is another one I’m hesitant to include, because it’s first and foremost a throughput ability. However, it also increases healing taken by 10% for 8 seconds, so you can theoretically use it to buff up someone else’s heals. Of course, that’s a bit of a stretch because most priests I’ve talked to tend to hit it the moment they feel panicky without regard of what else is going on. Similarly, Hymn of Hope boosts max mana by 15%, briefly buffing percentage returns such as innervate, shadowfiend, and divine plea.

In Cata, magic debuffs are the majority by far, and magic is the realm of priests (Bwah?). Dispel removes two afflictions (or buffs from enemies) per use, and mass dispel is a large area dispel. A rule of thumb is that if you’ll get three or more people, go ahead and do mass. It becomes technically more cost efficient at 4 people, but considering you’ll pay for delaying it, three will usually save you mana in the long run.

Mostly on trash, psychic scream provides the closest you’ll get to an interrupt. If you’re running a lot of 5 mans, consider glyphing it, because it makes fantastic panic CC.

Priests – Disc

Congratulations, your bubbles are worth a damn! And there’s one bubble in particular that everyone loves, and that’s barrier. This is a 30% damage reduction (soon to be 25%) for 10 seconds on a 2 (soon 3) minute cooldown. You can also glyph it to increase healing done by 10% for the duration.

Pain Suppression is a single target mitigation, and a fairly strong one at that. Try to use it at least twice per boss, you’ll find plenty of opportunities. Plenty. There is a lot of pain from bosses that can be suppressed. Be mindful that it also reduces their threat by 5%, which can cause wacky hijinx I mean, occasional trouble with threat.

Now, a rare case for you is power infusion. This is a fantastic self-buff for throughput, what with the haste and mana cost reduction and all. However, if you find yourself running oom, it won’t do you much good to spam smite faster. In this case and probably this case alone, consider casting it on another healer or (In phase 2 Chimaeron) a caster dps.

Priest – Holy

Body and Soul, or as I like to call it, speed bubbles. This is basically a half-sprint every time you bubble or life grip, which mostly serves to make bubble into a movement spell. Its uses are countless and in my opinion, is what keeps Holy from being a total waste of a tree (I kid! <3). Be careful when paired with a disc priest, as they might get angry at you for causing the shared weakened soul debuff.

Guardian Angel has two major uses. The first is a healing boost, which is a roundabout imitation of mitigation. Like with most mitigation abilities, it’s a good thing to use on the tank early and often, or when expecting large damage. However, if the target of GA would die, GA ends and heals them up to 50% health. While I wouldn’t normally advise letting a teammate die, I can think of a number of cases where a person was low on health, so I popped GA and stopped trying to heal them for a second to focus elsewhere. Every healer knows the frustration of a target dying with a tenth of a second left on their heal, and GA is a bit of life insurance in that regard. If you know for certain you won’t be able to bring them up to survivable amounts in time, it’s a great way to buy a couple seconds.

Overall, I’m sure many of you have a few questions right now, like “Did he just list off a bunch of cooldowns?” “Why did he miss this?” “Wait, we’re talking about healers on what’s theoretically a healer blog?” “Where’s the flowchart?” “Who the fuck is this person?” “How does a wall of text crit for that much?”

To answer them in order, mostly, yes! However, a lot of people I’ve met will say they always forget about their cooldowns, and a quick look through WoL will seem them using something like HoSac or Barrier once a raid night. It’s nice to be reminded that these things exist, to bring them to the front of your mind when you can potentially use them. If I missed any, especially in druid, I apologize, feel free to comment and I’ll edit in a correction. And yes, yes we are. Check the link for your fucking flowchart. I’m James, or as many of you first saw me, Temnyi. In a horrible lapse of judgement Amber has given me access to this blog. And by my count the wall of text crit for 2,935 damage, mostly by having that many words. I apologize if you were one-shot, but I advise you to level up, as that damage stops being lethal in vanilla content.

Also, I’m pretty sure my ten seconds are up. Thankfully, I can still divine shield, and my tier bonus reduces the casting time of my hearthstone. See you next time!

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No foolin’ here.

Too often, my Apil Fool jokes end up coming true in one way or another–the year I /gquit BoO and joined Viva La Muffin, the year I switched my Twitter over to ILikeRawrRedPet…

I think I shall abstain from a joke this year out of fear.  I mean, I’d hate to really go horde or something later.

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