Yes, I have a paladin. Some of you know that, I suspect some of you don’t. I know for a fact that very, very few of you know that I actually heal on said Paladin.
Heal instances, even.
All if you who just shivered or otherwise suddenly felt a great deal of fear are forgiven. It’s ok. I’m not exactly a very… responsible person when it comes to my actions.
Cue Scholomance flashback:
Tank: “Do we need to kill all the trash first? What happens if we just pull the bosses?”
Me: “Let’s find out!” /cast Frostbolt
(Those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about, there’s a room in Scholo with dozens of neutral, non-elite trash mobs. However, they all turn into hostile elites and immediately engage the party if the boss is pulled first. Good times.)
Cue Wailing Caverns flashback:
Healer: “lol ur easy to heal. much harder at 70″
Me (as warrior tank): “Really? Ok” *swaps to 2H weapon and battle stance*
I believe it was Flirt who said “Yeah… I don’t trust you to tank anything.”
You are hereby forgiven for your lack of faith.
Being a healer has some… rather harsh lessons accompanied with it. So far I’ve done tons of random battlegrounds, and dabbled in a couple instances.
It’s… an adjustment from being a purist DPS class, to say the least.
The first thing I learned in an instance was priorities. My top priority was to keep myself alive. I’m no good to the tank dead. Second priority is the tank. Rarely was there ever a conflict between these two priorities, and when there was, Lay on Hands or bubble easily removed one or the other.
DPS, obviously, are below the tank and I in importance. And even then, I quickly arrange them into which DPS are more important to heal, and which ones I can deem acceptable to allow to die.
As an example, say the DPS make-up was as follows: fury warrior, frost mage, elemental shaman.
Of those three, the warrior takes top priority. Being melee, he can get wtf gibbed far faster than the casters, who at least have time to react to sudden aggro pulls. The warrior is also putting out the most DPS, and therefore is more valuable.
The frost mage has many survivability options, and I know for a fact this mage has glyph of evocate. He can survive many things, and even heal himself. The elemental shaman has less options, but unlike the mage, actually can heal himself of random damage. Both can be safely neglected if need be.
This, I think, was the strangest thing I had to learn. To weigh my options, come to the realization that someone was going to die, and then deciding who that was.
It’d be great to lie and say it was a difficult decision… but in truth, it wasn’t. It was surprisingly easy to say “you die, you don’t” and move on. No guilt. No second thoughts. A snap decision, and now the hunter is face down on the floor.
I’m not sure what this says about me.
Second thing I learned was that HOLY LIGHT IS A MANA HOG HOLY CRAP. There’s a possibility I sort of panicked on the first boss and leaned a little too heavily on my 3 key and was basically sucking fumes with the boss at 40% health.
Must remind myself to continue leveling. I have a need. A need for Divine Plead.
Third thing I learned is that healing PvE content without Beacon of Light is completely, totally, and utterly impossible. How the HELL did paladins heal anything pre-patch 3.0?
Getting away from PvE stuff, I’ve learned quite a bit in battlegrounds.
For instance, I think the hugest challenge to healing is the ridiculously overpowered line of sight.
Seriously, line of sight is brutal. Spec into x-ray vision all you want, line of sight will chew you up and use you like the whore in bubblegum wrap you are.
I think I might have messed up my metaphor there. Oh well.
Nothing, and I mean nothing, is more frustrating than trying to heal someone and seeing that stupid red text.
HURR HURR U CAN’T CAST
I bear nothing but the raging hatred of a thousand Sunwell wipes towards those that make my life far more difficult than it needs to be.
Dear all past healers I may have broken LoS with:
I am sorry. Just… for everything. Really. I’m sorry.
Another thing that is, apparently, extremely important, is Stamina.
That buggered stat that I never bothered using years ago in PvP, firmly believing more spellpower was the way to go…
Dear all past healers that attempted to keep a sub-2k HP fire mage alive in PvP:
I am so sorry. My sorrow is deep enough for Fatigue to afflict those attempting to delve it’s depths. Please come back. I made you delicious pastries.
It’s almost surreal trying to heal someone when my Holy Light heals for more than their entire hit point pool. Crit heals are hilariously superfluous in such a situation.
I’ve caught myself screaming “Get some damn stamina!” at my screen far more than once. I always feel a little stab of… something, I’m not sure what. But it fades quickly, and I go back to raging at all these idiots around me who refuse to get more stamina.
The final thing I’ve learned… I’m actually quite fond of being a utility class.
Spotting a warrior rooted by a frost mage, and tagging him with Hand of Freedom… dispelling Polymorph… rescuing a mage from an evil DK with Hammer of Justice, then promptly getting the DPS ball rolling with Judgement of Justice and Holy Shock before going back to Flash spam…
It’s weird to feel so… useful.
Yeah, I’m a numbers whore, I still crack into a huge grin or even laugh when I crit heal people, but the ability to sit back, survey the battle field, and apply my skills exactly where needed, when needed, is rapidly becoming an addiction.
It’s something I practically never get to experience as a mage.
Maybe it’s just a fad I’m going through, thanks to playing a Warlord in D&D 4e.