My heroic return

I’m back!  Did you miss me? No?  Never mind.

Ahhh, a grand weekend of gaming it t’was.  I did heaps of stuff like finish questing in Nagrand, finally get my Sha’tar rep to 5,999 so I can do their quests in Terrokar (which I did), and start questing in Shadowmoon (Blade’s Edge didn’t do it for me, will go back later with a flying mount).  I also did a couple of instances, including Steam Vaults and Shadow Labs for the first time, but more importantly I did my first heroic!! (today’s topic)

Heroic Blood Furnace was the daily on Saturday and I jumped at the chance to heal it when LookingForGroup chat said, “LFM healer for heroic BF”.  Wow! Call me a noob (again) but it was the most fun i’ve had for ages.  It was actually hard!  The group was a druid tanking, mage, hunter and enhancement shaman (and me).  They were all wearing all purples!  This little healer was wearing all blues….

Anyway, about 4th pull in the tank pulls and runs around the corner away from the group (out of line-of-sight).  I realise quickly (think about 1s), but by the time I charge forward (about 2-3s) the tank is on about 10% health and I have nothing queued to save him 😦 .  We wipe (except the hunter) and it starts…

Mage (who was pretty nice) says, “what happened?” as me in Spirit of Redemption form is dropping my last greater heal.
“I lost los on the tank”, i say before releasing.
Hunter says, “What?”
“I lost line-of-sight on the tank”
[pause while people release and start running back]
Tank goes, “37 Disciple?”
“Yes?”, after a pause
“Seems more of a pvp build. Heals don’t seem big enough”
“3.8-5.9k”, I reply.
“Thought it was 2-3k”
“Would you like me to leave?”, I say after a pause.  After all i’m the newbie here and maybe they aren’t big enough.  I find this the best way to resolve these issues.  If the tank/group leader is unhappy with my performance its better I leave politely as soon as it comes up rather than letting it fester and waste everyones time.
[long pause]
Someone changes the topic and on we go.

I switch to aggressive healing mode (TM) 🙂 .  I’m not sure if its text book healing, but I was dropping Renew on the tank as he makes his first melee attack and following it with PW:S.  Then start spam/queueing Greater Heal.  This seemed to mostly work.  The PW:S/Renew combo blunted the first big hits as the DPS got into the swing of it and I queued the first Greater Heal. I rarely got agro (and then nothing a Fade couldn’t fix) and the tank lived (well until later when he ran over a land mine on the way to a pull, but thats another story – the only other wipe).  A few DPS died when they pulled agro, but I saved them a few times too, so not too bad.

(EDIT: For future reference I had about 545 spell power on this run including buffs)

One interesting thing I want to mention, as I’ve seen some discussion on it, is the use of PW:S.  General consensus seems to be that PW:S figures heavily in Disciple healing builds (and I agree), but I noticed about half way through the heroic, when I stopped using PW:S on the tank as much, that we seemed to have much less issues with the DPS pulling agro.  It could be chance, but I think the few seconds where the druid wasn’t taking damage (and thus generating rage from it), was a slight problem.  I guess this is something that good DPS should be able to deal with, i.e. watching threat.

No purple for me.  The one worthwhile drop I stupidly greeded and lost (caster mace).  I did get some Badge of Justices and completed the daily (my first ever).

Anyway some lessons learned.

  1. I’ve gotten lazy, healing reactively in normal instances.  I need to be aggressively healing the tank, including queueing and cancelling Greater Heals.
  2. My build isn’t ideal for healing heroics.  I’m thinking i might actually go to a more Discipline/Penance based build and give that a try.
  3. Heroics are faster.  Well duh! Stuff hits harder.  Yes, not just the healing, but the well geared DPS and tanks are doing insane damage/threat.  Each pull was only lasting about half the time of most of the normal instance pulls (from memory comparing normal BF with heroic BF, sample of one, etc).
  4. There is a huge skill difference between normal and heroics.  If half the DPSers pulled the stuff they pull in normal instances they’d wipe every time in heroics.

Oh and I started a new Tauren warrior, told ya I was a altaholic… 🙂

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