Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Trust Issues

So, what I can decipher according to the replies on my previous post, I am a control freak with trust issues towards other healers, and that's why I can't just DPS. And, yeah, that's pretty much hitting the nail on the head. I don't trust other healers. Not ones I don't know. My friends who are healers I'd trust to heal me through anything, but PUG healers make me nervous, make me crawl out of my skin, make me rant excessively to five different friends in different IM windows.

Terrible healers are why I can't relax as DPS.

Last night, I joined a friend's raid on my Hunter. I knew one of the healers, and trusted her. I didn't know the Resto Druid, but he was in her guild, so he couldn't be terrible, right?

No, wrong. So, so wrong.

His most used healing spell? Nourish. It accounted for 60%+ of his healing. Rejuvenaton almost never broke 20%. There was a fight where he beat Wild Growth healing with a single Healing Touch. Living Seed was his third most effective heal.

This was a conversation we had:

"I use Nourish on Twins because I need fast heals to cover for a lot of raid damage." says BadDruid after a wipe due to raid damage on Twins.

"It'd be better if you blanketed the raid with Rejuvenation, Wild Growth on cooldown and used Swiftmend." replies Bellwether, trying to be helpful.

"HoTs won't tick fast enough. I'll just use Nourish." BadDruid shrugs.

This is why I can't just relax and DPS.

He explained to me that Nourish was faster and stronger than Rejuv, and he was boosting it with HoTs. What HoTs? He barely used Rejuv, and Lifebloom either never registered or was near last. No Regrowths either. Oh, Wild Growth? Yeah, you're not using that either.

You want to know what attempted to heal off my Incinerate?

Gift of the Naaru. Neither of the healers being Draenei, it means one of the DPS or the DK tank tossed me that heal. Not a single HoT, not even a Nourish. Of course, this wasn't entirely his fault and I'm not making it just his fault; my Priest friend didn't heal me either.

So I spent over an hour wiping in ToC 10 before we finally cleared it. The last time I wiped in ToC 10 we were adjusting to using just one tank. Oh,, I went as DPS to kill Anub on a ToC 10 where the healers couldn't keep the tanks alive during Leeching Swarm.

I get so frustrated with bad healing. I try to be helpful in whispers and help them see why what they're doing could be improved, even just a little bit, by adjusting something here or there. I'm not rude or mean. I don't curse at them or bitch them out. And yet, they just keep going, spamming Nourish.

I won't even talk about how those tactics are reinforced through easy, brute-forced content. That is a post for another day and another time.

It's been suggested I shut off Recount, ignore health bars, just do my own thing...but when we're wiping I want to know why. And when I figure out at least some contributions to the wipe and make suggestions to fix it and they are ignored...I can't relax. I can't enjoy it, because I'm constantly worried if I'm going to die because the healers aren't paying attention, aren't on top of their game...I miss my guild healers.

And why, just to hurt me, do they always have to be Resto Druids? /cry


Byaghro said...

I find the big thing that makes people immediately ignore suggestions is, simply, the approach used.

I also find myself watching health bars and recount to see what happens if difficulty is encountered in a raid or group. I have to remind myself, often, that most people prefer to listen to the "raid leader or leaders" and not fellow raiders, regardless of how knowledgeable they may be, unless the raid leader calls out asking for suggestions.

Every so often I find someone who is actually interested in learning and getting better. Those people I add to the friends list and keep up with, and feel quite a sense of pride when they understand and grow better as healers.

I could rant for a while on the subject, so I'll behave and end it here. In summary though, the approach seems to make all the difference IF the person is actually interested in learning and not just filling a role.

Armond said...

Slash fucking agree. I do the same thing to DPS; if you're going to pull terrible DPS or run away from the raid with storm cloud or whatever, I'm going to call you out on it and try to help you get better.

What you're facing is the problem that good heals tend to contribute more to a raid than good DPS, especially as there's less healers than DPS (and because there's almost always someone giving recount a stack overflow error anyway).

And yet, throughout all this, no one wants to learn. I don't understand it.

I'm leveling a disc priest in part to contribute to the not-terrible healers in the guild/server, and I may not be great shakes at it yet, but I think healing regular UK at level 72 with a level 70-ish tank with ~11k buffed hp - twice - has, if not proven that I know what I'm doing, at least given me some experience and chances to learn. (It's pretty cool when the tank has something more like 17k hp so I don't feel so rushed and can stop to mass dispel, but that's something I need to work on.)

Darthregis said...

I'm pretty new to healing as a druid, but isn't Nourish improved by having HoT's on your targets anyway?

And under the assumption that the DPS was only affected by unavoidable AoE damage (and not getting cleaved, etc.), don't most boss mechanics give you a few seconds before hitting people with more AoE damage? Should give ample time for Rejuv to do it's thing... maybe blanket everyone with a lifebloom to compliment it as well?

Sorry for noob questions, but I don't know much about drood healing and my first forray into it was very discouraging. So much that I only heal in PvP (WG's/AV's) and people are usually happy to get anything there. :) Rejuv and wild growth for all, I say! :)

I'll take any hints or tips on heal rotations on that PvP healing nonsense, too.

Bell said...

@Byaghro - I always try to make suggestions helpfully and give reasons. But yeah, they have to be open to them...unfortunately, most of the people who are open to suggestions are the ones who don't need so much help...

@Armond - I'm sure you'll be an excellent disc priest.

@Darthregis - that's why this was such a problem; his Nourishes weren't getting buffed because there were no HoTs. There was plenty of time for Rejuv to tick, and on lots of people. Lifebloom, though weaker, can also be a bit of a buffer (check out my post on Lifebloom a few weeks back). Lifebloom is used much more in Arena, and keeping HoTs stacked (while letting Lifebloom bloom so as not to waste your mana) is important :)

Christina said...

I, on the other hand, despise unsolicited advice. I confess, I might well have spammed Nourish all night to spite you.

If I ask for advice, I listen, learn, compare to my own research and experience, and adapt in what I find works. If I didn't ask, I assume that you are a rude boor and therefore automatically wrong.

I know quite a few druids who spam Nourish on the raid quite successfully. I love my hots, but sometimes a hard hitting top em off spell, supported or not, is the right choice. I can't say that would have been my choice over hots on the Twins, but I might try it some time to see.

Bell said...

@Christina - the thing is, I only offer advice when we're wiping. If we didn't keep dying, I wouldn't make suggestions because it would be "good enough." But when we're dying, it's obvious something needs to change. That's the point where I try to offer advice or suggestions, not other times.

Nourish has its place. But just spamming it is weak, especially when there are no HoT buffers to continue healing or to make your Nourish stronger. You can "top meters" Nourish spamming, but it's not really the most effective use of a Resto's skills or time.

Anonymous said...

Doesn't this kind of contradict what you said in a previous post?

Druid S used Nourish 59% of the time, had more effective healing, less overheal, and almost the same focus as Druid T. This focus was large, indicating a great amount of raid healing. With the majority of raid healing being Wild Growth, and Wild Growth being used only for 24% of the other healing, over half the time Nourish was not being used in conjunction with other HoTs. With Druid S's gear and raid buffs, there were no mana issues and no mana potions taken.

Carrie said...

I'm seeing the beginning of this tendency in myself as well. I don't heal, I have a pally tank, and my hubby has a Tree. So whenever he wants to run something, if there's even the possibility of pugging, I get my tank out. Over the last few months I have gotten a lot more confident in my ability to tank something, and I know hubby can take care of me while I put the hurt on.

I would much rather have an instance run be slow because we've got low dps than because the tank can't hold aggro or the healer can't keep the tank up because they've got a very low hit pool or no avoidance or it's someone who "can tank because they wear plate" and has no idea how to use their abilities TO tank. Especially when it's a paladin. *twitch*

Bell said...

@Anonymous - old, outdated post. It's no longer the case.

Bell said...

@Carrie - yeah, when my friends need something I'm more likely to heal than DPS for them, because it gets them what they need faster with less stumbling blocks.

Anonymous said...

I don't see how it's no longer the case. Have the game mechanics changed since then? I mean obviously the encounter is different, but other than that have they changed something with the spells?

Bell said...

@Anonymous - it's changed both in my understanding of the spell and in my understanding of encounters, as well as new encounters being added and my introduction into Hardmodes. Nourish spam is "okay." But it is not optimal, especially on fights like Twins. It can brute force its way through fights, but when you are wiping a lot, perhaps it is at that point to realize that it's not working and there is a better way. Since writing that post, I have explored Nourish more myself, and found that what the Druid was doing was "heal sniping," i.e. ignoring assignments and simply sniping wherever he could get the highest heal to make himself look good on the meters.

Adaptation, deeper understanding, and continual learning, as well as new encounters and adjustment of strategy are what make that post outdated.

Anonymous said...

I only point that out about your nourish post because I tried that method of spamming nourish and it didn't work at all. I went oom way too fast. I ended up going back to rejuvs/WG/swiftmending in between...and lately I've been trying to "show Lifebloom some love". Working out very nicely, thank you for the great ideas : )

Anyway, my point is that alot of us fledgling resto druids read your blog and maybe BadDruid read that old post and was just taking it as good advice. Of course, he should've just taken your at-the-moment advice and ran with the rejuvs, but you know how that goes when people give you suggestions in game...You have no idea if what they're saying is right because many times it's just some idiot spouting off because they "know" you class since they rolled a premade on the PTR once upon a time.

Bell said...

@Anonymous - this is why I tend not to offer advice unless it's asked for or unless we're wiping. If we're should be obvious something needs to change, and that would be the good time to adjust.

The tough thing about blogging about WoW is not only is the game always changing, but perspectives, experience and knowledge are always expanding and shifting. So many of my old posts just don't matter anymore, I can't get to them and add disclaimers. Everyone reading blogs should be very careful of at what dates the information is posted at (the first thing I look at when looking up information).

Like I said earlier, if we hadn't kept dying I would have left well enough alone. But when we's time for something to change.

Seks said...

It's not just healers, sadly. Let me give you an example from an Ony 25 pug I got to participate in on my feral druid yesterday.

The highlights of this run included:

- as I picked up a few stray whelps in p1, the other offtank(a warrior decides that the best thing to do is AOE taunt them off of me, which of course grabbed Onyxia and faced her towards the raid...

- a deathknight using Army of the Dead at the beginning of phase 2, which proceeded to taunt the whelps and drag them towards the midair Onyxia - the raid(including said DK) is screaming at me by now because I'm "tanking them way out in the middle of nowhere."

- the same warrior offtank single taunting Onyxia during a deep breath cast, wiping the entire raid in P3.

When I asked the warrior as politely as I could why he wiped us twice, his response was, "must be different in 25 man, I tanked this in 10 np."

Also, hi Bell! I have to agree with the people that advised you to not look too closely at healing when you're dpsing. Otherwise, I find I end up stressing over it too much, which defeats the purpose of running on an alt.

Delleyntar said...

I completly totally postitivly agree. I would say this entire year, i've DPSed....oh about 5 times. I never ONCE dpsed a raid. Never. Sadly Being a resto druid, I've been still beating the priests on the Healing meaters. Sometimes i feel like im over working, On Incenrate flesh, If i dont heal throught it seems like no one does. I feel like being a Tree, people feel that my hots can take care of the raid (so many times ive checked the recount and noticed the Holy priest doing DPS) Ive complaied to the RL too many times about i feel that im doing so much more work, and he goes on saying, "Well your just a good healer", or "Your better geard that X person" But I can tell you from Expierence that Gear < Skill. My feral set is at a 2500 GS and i can barly pull more than 1500 dps. I just dont have the Skill to do Kitty DPS, I just dont. And if you dont have any kind of knowlege of your class your not going to do the greatest and you will end up either being looked at by other people and the possible kick out. We all need to learn somewhere and some people are just to hardheaded to listen to suggestions. Bell, I was in that Baddruids posistion once, I had someone tell me what i was doing wrong, But instead of shrugging it off, i kept on asking questions and now im better than i ever was. Dont get down by people not taking your suggestions because there will always be people who will sit and listen and take all the advice they can get!

Thank you Bell!!!!!!

(sorry for the rant i just kept on typing!)

Hana said...

If it's any consolation, I feel the same way about 90% of the paladin healers I've pugged with. It's always "They never use Holy Shock!" or "I don't think they used a Judgement once the entire fight to keep up Judgements of the Pure" or the worst... "How could they die standing in that fire when their bubble is only a click away?!"

When Naxx was still newish I remember leading a raid to Loatheb and blatantly saying that Holy Shock was good to use during that narrow healing window where healing was possible because it's instant, and because I wanted to see this paladin actually use it.

He didn't. /sadface

Forreststump said...

"I use Nourish on Twins..."

I stopped reading right there, and /facepalmed.

Given the wipefest that was in progress, NOT suggesting a change to his approach embodies Einstein's definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

Nourish is #4 priority - only when Swiftmend is on cooldown. *counts spells on twig-like fingers to verify his count* Actually, maybe #5, if you haven't blown your NS/HT combo 'oh shit' button.

Kayeri said...

Dang, I raid-blanket with Rejuv on that fight and we do just fine. Now, for the record, when talking to a young resto, I will tell them freely that I've seen different druids succeed with different methods depending on their talent build and inclinations, but then I go on and give them the low-down on the HoTs and how to use them. I do believe they are the druid's strength and healing niche.

And I feel your pain, Bell. I dont raid beyond VoA and an occasional peek into other raids on my alts much, but bad healing just makes me wince.

ArchDruid Angela said...


Sorry you had to deal with such a bad druid. I'm sure that there are equally bad priest, palis, and shaman healers... we just notice the druids more because we are aware of their full potential!

Anyway, I totally understand why you'd be a control freak! It's hard to stand by and watch people do things so poorly :(

Nef said...

Hey Bell,

I completely understand the sentiment and have been able to, through my start into the game as DPS then tank then to healer, completely ignore that which is not important to me during a fight. Once we start wiping multiple times I do take notice and politely offer what advice I can, if ignored and we continue to wipe I have learned it is best to just leave when dealing with pugs.

Leah said...

my husband the pvp resto druid, who occasionally heals instances. I've given up looking at his screen and I do my best not to look at his spells used. why?

he's just like that druid you've describe, loving his nourish to the point of letting all the hots fall off. regrowth? not fast enough cast for him for the amount of healing it does. he uses swiftmend, sure (very occasionally), but nourish is his staple. he used to use wildgrowth too, but ever since specing pvp resto, he abandoned it for some damage talents in balance tree, but even before? I had to remind him half the time that he has this instant AoE HOT.

and yet.

it takes a minimum of 3 people in battlegrounds to bring him down, more often then not? its more like 5 and up. there were many a time when he and I held off alliance opposition for ridiculous amounts of time, overwhelming opposition. protecting nodes long enough for reinforcements to show up. he heals all 5 mans, even with "less then perfect" pugs with basically no problems and can help heal non heroic raids if necessary. more often then not, VoA and Onyxia that we pug? he heals it.

so I cringe and shudder and then stop myself from saying anything becasue somehow...his system works for him :/

go figure

Itai Greif said...

I would like to provide the other side of this post, and I think it also has something to do with the Healer Guilt you were talking about.

My main is a hunter, I played for 4 years now, and I know deeply how hard it is to find a group to play with as DPS. I spent many hours in Trade and LFG channels, with many other groups, crying “LF2M healer and tank”. This is the reality of a DPS class in WoW.

Then I rolled a druid, and two weeks ago brought her to level 80. It’s pure pleasure I never spend more then 5 minutes in LFG. I whisper one of the many tanks I know that love me, we start a group, and 30 seconds later I have 3 DPS to do whatever heroic I want. Raids are the same thing: once you find the 2 tanks and X healers you need, the rest would take care of itself.

The Resto Druid you mention, and the many bad healers beside him, are like me: they played dps, and got sick of starving in the sidelines. They want to feel the Healer Love. They want to know the raid cares if they show up or not. They want to play the game the pay to play.

Unlike me, they’re bad healers. They don’t spend time listening to advise from other healers (in my case, the 3 other healers in my guild, including another druid), they didn’t heal when they leveled, they don’t read tactics or try to gear up. They spec Holy or Resto when they get to 80, because they want to play, not spend their life begging in Dalaran.

Do I excuse them? No. Once they roll healers, they should work to become good healers. But I’m not surprised. Because there are many many mediocre players and bad players, and when they can’t game as dps, they roll DK and pretend to be tanks, or roll druid and pretend to be healers. It’s the cost of doing business; it’s what we have to live with.

Maximilien said...

Many people are so egotistical that they shun at the idea of taking suggestions. I can back to WoW after about 1.5 year hiatus (after wrath came out) and the only reason I've become the healer that I am is because I've been very open to suggestions.

At this point in time, anytime I run anything with PuGs, I either need to be able to solo heal (or almost solo heal) the encounter, or know the other healer/healers (ToGC 10).

It's funny, because I only worry about healing when on a healing char, and not on a DPS char.

Veiyl said...

THIS THIS THIS! You hit the nail on the head, Bell. I never fail to get nervous about this. All you wanna do is relax, worry about yourself for once and beat the face in of something instead of watching over 9-24 other raiders. But then some incompetent goof has to go ruin your fun. :(

There are some healers I know I could trust completely and totally to watch over us all but PuGing heals just gives me the heebie jeebies. Its a "If you want to see a job done right, do it yourself" kinda thing I guess.

Darraxus said...

I actually like to use Nourish quite a bit, and it will end up as my top heal sometimes. But it is only barely ahead of rejuv and wild growth in most cases. I also get very good use out of Regrowth. I find that I only use Lifebloom when I have a clearcasting proc or if it would be advantageous to put some more hots on a tank (being feared etc.).

I once saw a druid with like 80 percent nourish heals.....its like a Paladin dressed as a tree.

Olga said...

Healing is strange thing. I have two healing chars, off-spec on my shammy and main on my druid. I've healed ToC and some other raids on druid, though she has terrible (crafts, 200lvl epics, good blues, some 219) gear.
I've even healed two bosses in ToC (had terrible mana issues, reglyphed Nourish and Innervate, successed topping healing meters) in full PvP (200-213) gear.
But i still can't figure the way to know which spell to use on druid in different situations. So you're right, normal content is forgiving to healers.
On my shammy i've noticed one more strange thing that i can't figure out. When i'm healing with my pally friend, noone will die. Ok, he's imba, but i've healed with one good pally that was Naxx-geared, and result was just the same. I just can't figure how do they save everyone in every fight, meanwhile being assigned to tanks, and why ppl start to die when there's no pally in raid :)

Geraint said...

Ahahahaha, that reminds me of the tree on my server who "can't raid heal" It drives me insane, especially when I then have to make him switch to boomkin, grab another healer and force a Disc priest or pally to do a bastardised version of raid healing.

Anonymous said...

why druids? because they spent an entire expansion being able to press one button a lot and winning and being told how "pro" they were.

my prescription is apathy and time. as your hunter becomes more seasoned youll be able to develop the hunter carefree mentality. from someone who single-handedly ended a 25-man raiding guild by telling my friends i didnt want to tank anymore, its not easy to drop the priority role like that, but your mindset will recreate itself around it. a full expansion later, it sucks taking the extra 5 minutes to form groups and building a dependence upon other players, but thats what a majority of this game is based on. very few people plays this game to purposely be terrible, and youve spent a lot of time surrounded by people who get worked up by those who dont play up to standards. kick back every now and then. multitask as you auto run your ghost to the instance. pull yourself away from the game for a little bit

Grymdeath said...

Going to miss raiding with you a lot Bell. Was planning to suggest that you become an officer if Vigilant hadn't fallen apart. I always respected your insight and intuition.

Anyways, I joined up with Injustice yesterday since I like to pvp with their players. Going to do some PVE as well and see how it goes. If its any good maybe some of our fellow ex-vigilant members will check it out.


Anonymous said...

How is this going to change with the upcoming patch? I mean, they're nerfing the ability to blanket with rejuv somewhat (shorter duration, larger gcd), and there's that one raid where you have to heal the dragon...a single target, which further pushes nourish/healing touch builds toward the frontline.

Bell said...

@Anonymous - just because you should be using Nourish does not mean you should ignore HoTs; spamming an unbuffed Nourish is pretending you're a Paladin. A weak Paladin.

As well, Rejuv blanketing isn't really going out of style. They decided not to reduce its time, and it'll tick faster with a glyph and a good amount of haste. I don't see it going away anytime soon.

cpc said...

I couldn't aggree with you more! I feel like it's Stockholm Syndrome. I love my poison, but it is a poison regardless.

I think the problem with druids is doubly so... (with no sense of how a pally or priest actually play), it looks like pally and priest healing is so straight forward. On the other hand, druids have an very varied arsenal. A good druid shines because it looks effortless, a bad druid burns and crashes so hard it's not even funny.

I'm lucky to have amazing druids in my guild, but I've also paird with pug druids that do less healing than pallies on an encounter like Twins. So far, I have been lucky to just be a healer and thus, i still feel in control of the encounter's outcome. Like you said, I can pick up their slack. But as i'm leveling my DK, i'm starting to feel the urge to scream at healers on instances (even the low level ones). My only hope is that they're learning the class just like i had to do in vanilla... But i'm afraid of the raiding future of my DK if the trend continues...

Thank you so much for putting words to my feelings :)

Bitwaba said...

Instead of telling them what they are doing wrong and how to change it, try telling them why what they are doing is wrong. Give them some numbers.

You're lucky if you can get 5k hps by constantly spamming Nourish.
Rejuv ticking for 2.5k every 3 sec on 6 targets gives you the same hps, and you're only casting for 6-7 sec out of every 18. pop a WG in there on cooldown and you're easily doing another 1-2k hps. Take the rest of your 18sec rotation to watch yourself ride to the top of the charts.

As for the previous Anonymous post:
"Doesn't this kind of contradict what you said in a previous post?"
When I read that a few months ago, I interpreted that as someone still doing their rejuv and WG pre-hotting before damage spikes, and Nourishing (instead of regrowth) after raid damage spikes, catching the buff from hots on the target, plus it's extra fast.

As for seeing bad druids fail healing out there, I know someone that rolled a resto druid to try a hot healer, but fell back to the nourish spam because they felt uncomfortable seeing people not topped off and hoping their hot ticked.

Some healers just play whack-a-mole. The problem comes when you're on a fight where there's 10 moles and you can only hit 1 with your hammer at a time. That's when you pull out your rejuv blanket and cover the top of the holes they keep popping up in.

Rachel said...

I heal because frankly, I hate dps and I'm not very good at it. I also tend egomaniacal, though I don't make a big thing of it. It's more like, if I can't be the best at dps (and I know I can't, I'm too casual and too far behind the gear curve to top damage meters), I'd rather be complimented for my stellar healing. I frequently am complimented on my heals, because heals are more skill-capped whereas DPS tends to be gear-capped.

The best gear in the world couldn't help your nourish spammer, but a lesser-geared skilled competitor would definitely blow him out of the water.

Sodastereo said...

I think we really do need to make a distinction between a Nourish druid and a Nourish Spammer (aka: bad druid) though.

Nourish is a great spell! it's a flash heal, that with a couple of hots, it can be a full force HT with low cast time. If you talent, gear, glyph and socket for it, it is actually a sick heal. Granted not a popular nor one that I'd advocate, and most def a subpar to any equally talented/geared/glyphed hot druid.

The point is, there are druids that like to experiment and frankly is thanks to them that we have found things like HT-4 back in vanilla. There are others than don't know how to play the class. They're the ones we need to help and teach the "norms", while we certainly need encourage the crazy first ones.

I say this because I think we need to avoid a global generalizations.

Sushicookie said...

I roll hots and use nourish on that fight. We do door strat too.

But yeah, I'm the same way with not trusting other healers. That's why all my DPSers are hybrids?

Then again, some of the other healers prove why I feel like I need to cover their asses, when I'm not there.

Neart said...

I just want to thank you for the blog and the comments. I still feel fairly new to WOW as I've only been on for about 5 months and am still learning. I am an older player so I have been taking my time in leveling and learning. I actually went from 1-58 as a resto speced Druid and now am dual speced feral bear/resto. I am in a good guild that is letting me learn to heal with their alts on level appropriate dungeons but being able to read these blogs and comments help alot. I am working hard now to get to 80 so i can join them in more raids and really learn to heal with some of the good guildies we have. The Pugs are frustrating since I am doing my best to learn and heal well (I tend to take it personally if I let someone die) but there is alot to learn when Pugs don't have vent and the tanks vary so widely in behavior. My worst experience so far is the tank that runs ahead out of my heal range, leaves mobs behind him that come after me as I try to keep him alive and we all die. Anyway thanks for your Blog and to everyone else thanks for the comments it really helps my understanding. I'm currently just two bars from 64 and looking forward to learning to be an exceptional healer.