Archive for Shaman

Slimes for days.

Posted in Raid Night, WoW with tags , , , , on December 7, 2011 by Sindanda

Our introductory sojourn into heroic Dragon Soul proved to be…. not as heroic as I would have liked. 

Morchok felt good.  My healing was solid, compared to the other healers.  And there was a progression.  The first few pulls were outright awful.  We did better though.  We were able to identify why we were failing, and improve on those points, until a kill came. 

Yor’shaj was not a similar situation.  It really felt like no matter what we did, what ooze combinations we tried, damage became unhealable.  Even with 3 A+ healers, it just wasn’t happening.  There was no learning, there was no progress, there was only pointless wiping.  I can only hope there’s some detail we’re missing, or the fight is ridiculously overtuned. 

We did a few pulls on Zon’0zz.  Not really enough to gauge what was happening very well, but it seems like it’s going to be a very fine line between how many times we bounce the ball and then let him into P2.  There’s adds, many adds, in that phase, and they don’t despawn.  The must be killed.  So you can’t transition him too often, or you get swamped.  But if you don’t transition him enough, tank damage gets unhealable.

Overall, it’s hard, which is what we want.  I’m not upset.  I’m frustrated.  But we will overcome, or we’ll break.  As always with progression.

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A buff is a buff. Or is it?

Posted in Healing, WoW with tags , , , , on December 6, 2011 by Sindanda

I’ve been a shaman for a long time.  I’m so used to bringing some sort of unique buff to the raid.  I was very disheartened when the “Bring the player, not the class” philosophy was implemented, and essentially decimated our versatility and unique buffs.  I feel it’s a lot of the reason that shamans are low man on the totem pole in pretty much all specs right now. 

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A few heart attacks later…

Posted in Healing, Raid Night, WoW with tags , , , , , , on August 11, 2011 by Sindanda

Yet again, and quite happily, I have been proven wrong.

We attempted Baleroc again, against my better judgement, and the attempts all around were inconsistent at best.  We had done pulls previously, as I had mentioned in posts past, but somehow, miraculously, on attempt # 30 even, we killed him.  I was absolutely stunned, and am in awe again about the caliber of players that’s coexist with me within the raid frames.  They’re an amazing bunch, and I really appreciate their support.

I felt like much of the burden for this fight lay on the healers, me and my holy pally.  I haven’t healed anything else in this expansion that put so much stress on me to pick exactly the right spell at exactly the right time.  Throughout our attempts I struggled with the decision of HW vs. GHW?  Riptide or UE?  Natures Swiftness now or save it for the Decimation Blade?  Ultimately, I attribute a lot of my personal success in this fight to my mastery.  Plain and simple, without that extra modifier there for my clutch Riptides and UE’d GHW’s, there definately wouldn’t have been enough meat in my heals to feed the hungry health pools that chirp chirped through just over 6 minutes of pure, unleashed hell.

So how did we do it?  It was intense for me to say the least.  The first portion of the fight was a Shadow Priest taking one whole Torment phase for both of us to build stacks on.  Rae built about 40 or so before swapping over to heal the tank, while I continued to pump Bloodlust/berserking hasted Healing Surges into the shadow priest, and then the next round of shard soakers.  So I healed through two total shards, and got about 120 or so stacks.  I poped Tide as soon as I started this, because we NEEDED two tides, and there was no point in saving it.  I can’t think of a fight where I’ve popped tide within the first 15 seconds, but I’m sure it may have happened before.  Still, I hovered around 30% mana for the rest of the fight, which was nerve-wracking, to say the least.

At that point I went, pretty much full time, onto the tank.  I didn’t ever concentrate on attempting to build stacks after that, it was just a matter of me keeping my heals up on the tank, tossing Riptides to the low torment soakers (Thank goodness for my mastery!).  I would UE whenever for a Decimation phase, but for the most part it was GHW into Riptide to keep him up.  It did the job, but I pre-cast a lot before the hit was to go off.  Again, right here, I cannot stress the importance of my mastery in this.  I could have done it without it, most likely, but not without a lot more difficulty.

In the end, our tank somehow took a torment stack, which we thought was a wipe.  Apparently not, however, the Decimation either ignores the debuff, or it fell off before the last, and only one to hit him (out of three) landed.  He did end up dying, and an iceblocked mage was the only man left standing/freezing, to let the dots roll and kill him.  I’m okay with that (for now).

Now on to the really exciting stuff.  I rank 8th on this fight, with just under 41k HPS.  Compare this to my Holy Pally peer, ranking 129 with jsut shy of 45k.  That means, to me, two possibilities,  people are bringing less resto shamans, which pits me against a smaller pool of people, and/or resto shamans are just, as a baseline, incapable of pushing the pure throughput that a holy pally is.  I think both of these are at work here, but regardless, I did the 8th highest healing per second on this fight.  And I’m extremely happy with that.

What I learned on this fight is 1) I am in love with my mastery.  2) Latency was huge here.  There were so many times both of us saw our heals land on our client, but the server never got it.  It was just…intense.  As much as I’m happy that it was difficult, and that we overcame it, I never ever want to heal it again.

And tomorrow, Beth for sure.

Not a real post.

Posted in Healing, Raid Night, WoW with tags , , , , , on August 11, 2011 by Sindanda

The raid week begins again, and as we elegantly tripped our way through the 3 encounters we had previously killed, I thought about what was ahead.  Baleroc stands as a terrifying banner-bearer (to me) advertising proudly the horrors to come beyond his gate.  Staghelm and Ragnaros are between 2-4 weeks away, and my mind is already slipping to those world firsts, where there were no shaman to speak of.  And so much to-do about it.  I won’t get benched, simply because at the moment we have noone else.  But that’s not very reassuring.

What is reassuring is that I ranked again, on Alysrazor.  I’m very exctied about this, but I want to reinforce the fact that I do not now believe that meters and mundane numbers are enough to quantify a healers effectiveness.  My ranking, to me, only means that I’m capable of pushing throughput at a similar level as my peers.  If I never ranked, I’d still think I was a good healer, if I were saving lives, and making it through encounters.

Beth is on our plate for next raid night.  I hope to report a kill.  We were struggling last night, but we swapped the pally and I, and I’m now on the top tank/dps, and I’m using glyphed stoneclaw on cooldown, and things are going swimmingly.  My spell repertoire consists of GHW, Riptide, and UE up top, and Riptide when we decend.  I’m concerned about mana, as we’ve made it to about the halfway mark in the fight, and after trinket/tide we wipe and I’m at about 50% mana.  I think ultimately this is going to end up like Nefarian, where we’re all healing on fumes, essentially, saving the raid by the skin of our teeth.

Echoes of tier 3

Posted in Raid Night, WoW with tags , , , , on August 8, 2011 by Sindanda

Heroic Baleroc was a very sobering experience.  There was a stark, bold contrast between this fight and every thing else we’ve done in Cataclysm to date.  The reason is because it’s the only fight that feels like we can’t do it yet.  Like we’re somehow not supposed to be here.  It’s as if, by the numbers and the analysis, Baleroc has said “No, turn around and get more gear, then you may proceed”.

Let me explain.  We three healed the encounter, which was unstable at first, but we got it done.  We we going along, making great headway, and then there was one of those attempts that just ‘clicked’.  I just got to a point, watching the raid, hearing the calls, that everything was working, we were doing it right!  It didn’t last long.  Baleroc finally decided to stop kidding around, and enraged.  We stayed alive for a solid 7 seconds before all of us lay dead at his feet/hoove things.

We did it right, the execution was spot on, for the most part.  So just do more DPS next time, right?  Sort of.  When we wiped, Baleroc had ~12 million HP left.  There weren’t any unnecessary deaths, there wasn’t any “OOPS WE FORGOT TO FLASK”.  We were all at about 100%, and we failed.  This is the part that gets me.  Never before in this tier nor the previous have we come up against this particular block.  Even if we brought in another DPS and two healed it, at a generous 30k DPS estimate, that’s only an extra 10.8 mill.  It doesn’t seem like we can close that gap right now.

It’s pretty clear what this means to us as a guild.  That we need to invest more into our DPS.  We shard at least 50% of our heroic loot from this tier already, and have been since week 1.  I understand being gated by a dps check, but I don’t like it.

It wasn’t a rock, it was a ROCK MONSTER!

Posted in Raid Night, WoW with tags , , , , , on August 3, 2011 by Sindanda

First night in Firelands for the week.  Our Resto druid was without power, so we had to make due with a holy pally and me.  For Heroic Shannox we had our shadow priest spec disc, which left us without replenishment.  It didn’t seem to affect me as much as it did our Pally, but I’m fairly sure he’s running much different trinkets than me.  Currently I’m sporting Darkmoon card and Jar of Anicent Remedies, both of which provide huge regen.  Which makes me really shaky about replacing either of them with throughput trinkets. 
More about raid night>>

Totems on the ceiling!

Posted in Healing, WoW with tags , , , on July 30, 2011 by Sindanda

I recently became the proud owner of a brand new Sho’Ravon, and as I was looking at it, I started thinking about stats. There’s no definitive best stat for us.  Some people find this exceedingly frustrating,  find it refreshing and liberating. Continue reading