Thursday, December 9, 2010

Field Report - Undead No More

Some more random thoughts, but this time a little more priest oriented. How is my disc priest faring in the new world?

So... Did you change race yet?
Yes I have! I decided to go with goblin. It was a tough choice between troll and goblin, but in the end the goblin won out because I think 1% haste at all times will be slightly better than a use. Well maybe not. Actually it's about even, so I chose goblin because I haven't played one yet. Simple as that. You get access to your bank every 30 minutes, but I was a little sad that that didn't include the guild bank, that would've been truly awesome. So far I love my little goblin though, she suits me perfectly. Do I miss the undead? Hmm... I liked her, but one needs a little change now and then. I had played undead for several years now and I was ready for something else. I did miss WotF when people started ganking me though. I would've died anyway so that doesn't matter.

Ganked you say?
Yeah, the first thing that happens when I log onto my goblin, happy to try out her new emotes and all, I get ganked by some pvp-happy alliance priest. A couple of times actually. He was pvp specced so he was clearly eager to kill off easy targets like me. I don't even have dps skills on my bars, not counting smite. Suppose I get to suit myself. Actually I want to congratulate myself for not going into a rampaging nerdrage as I usually do when someone is grief-ganking me. Or ganking me at all. I don't mind world pvp at all, but I always hate it when people kill me while questing. I do not want to combine those two worlds! "But Zinn, why are you playing on a pvp server in that case? Doesn't that seem rather stupid?" you might ask. Well don't. It wasn't my choice. And I never redid that mistake again. But this time I wasn't angry actually. I knew I didn't stand a chance and I didn't bother much about being killed. Sure I would've liked to be able to just continue my questing, but I wasn't infuriated. Maybe tanking all those pugs really did do something.

So how is instance healing working for ya?
Well, I've healed a couple of instances so far, Blackrock Caverns, Stonecore and Throne of the Tides. And they're not easy. I oom every other pull, eventhough I'm not doing this with mindless random puggers but with careful guildies. Actually I noticed something really interesting - the higher my level gets, the more trouble I have with healing the instances. My stats drop significantly with each ding. I had 30% haste at level 80. Now at 83 I have 13%, with basically the same gear. Same goes with crit. I had 45% at 80, now I have 25%. This does make a difference to my healing, especially the haste. You know when you laugh at lowbie disc priests because their penance ticks so slow you could take a shower while waiting? Well, that's where I am right now. Evenso it seems like Heal and Greater Heal is the way to go when instance healing. People take big blows, but are starting to get enough hp for me to be able to throw big heals like Greater Heal. Wait did I say big heal? On some people my GH is like a piss in the ocean. I don't even want to mention Heal. You'd have to spam that like crazy to even notice you're healing the tank. My Heal heals for about 6k and my tank has about 80k.

So I have learned something very valuable. Don't throw your heals until you really have to. Except with Heal, you can throw that at any time. But with shields, pom, flash heals and all those expensive spells, you better wait. I can't put up renew/shields/pom prematurely anylonger. I'll only oom when I do! I can't put shields/renews on the entire party just for fun anymore, now I really have to decide whether my target needs the heal or if I should do something else. If someone hasn't taken much damage, maybe I should use a Heal instead of topping off with shield/renew? I've seriously had to change alot in my heal style, but - I don't mind! Actually I love the new healing, it's extremely challenging without being too difficult. I get that lovely kick when I pull of a nice stunt like saving the entire party from certain demise by using the correct set of skills during a fight. This is what I love about healing. Not to say we didn't have our fair share of wipes. The main reason not being lack of healing, but lack of mana.

I am very eager to see what raidhealing will be like. There is a big difference in instance healing and raid healing in that you either have all the responsibility, or you don't. I tried both disc healing and holy healing and was happy to note they both seem to do about equally good (bad? ^^). Ooming was just as much a problem as disc as with holy, and the encounters were about equally challenging in either spec. I also played around a little with chakra and was also happy to note that picking the right chakra stance for a fight actually was a tough choice. There is no best choice, the question comes down to whether you want strong hots or the awesome instant heal given by Holy Word: Heal. I more often chose the latter - you really want that instant heal as a holy. As disc I've got penance and shields, but as Holy you're in trouble when someone goes down really low. Everything screams in your head if you start casting something like Heal or Greater Heal, but if you're in the "wrong" stance there isn't much choice. I think the aoe-chakra will suit better in a raid, and the heal-chakra seemed to work better in instances.

The same gear you say? You haven't got to replace anything?
I said basically the same. I have been able to replace a couple of things. A ring and both of my trinkets actually. It is funny because I had fought so hard for my Althor's Abacus and I even wrote a post about it when I got it. And then I go and replace it with a quest green. But that's the way the world works, and I'd be rather sad if I had to use the exact same gear all 5 levels. Getting new cool gear is half the fun in WoW! Or maybe at least like one third of the fun...

And you're leveling as disc?
Yes, and it is working just fine thank you very much for asking. I don't die, thanks to the constant selfheal from Atonement, and I don't oom. Eventhough Archangel has been considerably nerfed (7,5k mana return to 2,5k mana return) it's still a nice boost to my mana every now and then. Like a little pot all the time. Sure, it's not the fastest way to kill stuff. But I am happy with four shotting stuff instead of two shotting them too.

Yes, it's true! I don't mind going about things slowly at all. It has given an interesting side effect however. Last expansion I was among the first to ding max level in my guild (which is now my ex guild). Like I've mentioned before, I was one of the people with the most spare time so eventhough I didn't power level or anything, that's just how it turned out. And since I was among the first at max level I was also among the first to do heroics and hang with the cool kids at endgame and all that, you know. Well not anymore. My guild has about 10+ people at max level already and they're happily doing heroic after another while I am still at 83. Am I bummed about this? Well a little perhaps. But I don't want to speed up my leveling process either. Right now I am writing this post instead of leveling, for example. And that is how I like it. I'd hate the day I do something in WoW that bores me just because. Or skip something outside of WoW that I like just because. So I will level slowly. And it's not like all those things won't be there for me when I turn 85 either.

Good for you, miss Optimism.
Yeah, but everything isn't all peachy though. I haven't got a clue about anything at endgame. Rep, gear, raids... all the things I probably should've started checking out already, and I don't have the faintest. Who to get rep with or even how. Yeah yeah, I know I can get some tabard, but I haven't bothered checking out which or where. I'm just not that hardcore! I will do my best and always come fully prepared to a raid, but in some cases I am really lazy. This is one of those cases. I can always rep later...

Ok, so what now?
Well, I'll just keep on leveling won't I? And then we'll see. I have no idea what my guild plans, when we're going to start raiding and all that. I know plenty of people are very eager to get realm firsts, and it would of course be loads of fun to try that out. I don't think it'll take me more than a couple more days to get to endgame, even with my slow style of leveling.

1 comment:

  1. God, yes, it's really depressing that you seem to get *worse* at healing the higher you level. So at level 80 I was healing dungeons fine, at 100% mana basically. Then I hit 81 and, bang, suddenly I'm OOM all the fecking time. I'm finding it really difficult to stop reaching for flash heal. I've moved it onto a less accessible mouse button but I still want to twitch-flash which is bad, I know. I have to say, I really hate heal. Piss in the ocean is right. Currenly I'm using it with Strength of Soul basically to reduce the cd on weakened soul, and to top of party members who took small amounts of splash damage. I think the important thing is timing it - I mean you have to cast you epicly slow heal on a random party member at *exactly the right moment* otherwise you're stuck casting heal on a rogue while the tank is going down. Grr.

    But yeah ... it will be ... interesting....

    Also I seriously heart goblins. They look adorable.