Yesterday was my first real raid. I did not mean to heal, but the situation was either I heal or the raid is short a healer. Even the shadow priest was holy for the night. So much for my decisive intentions to focus on DPS. There's a pattern here I'm seeing. Given the choice between sticking to my guns and doing my preferred role, even if it means the raid does not go, or doing a role that I do not prefer and the raid does go, I choose the raid, even against my better judgement. Interesting. I'm a fucking pushover every time.
I begin to suspect that the only way for me to really go DPS would be to re-roll a pure class on another server where no one knows me. Too bad that I really enjoy the healing game as I'm leveling and tend to level hybrids.
The healing team was holy paladin, holy priest, and resto druid. The paladin and I focused on the tanks and the priest did exclusively raid healing. I kept my lifeblooms on one tank and the paladin kept his beacon on the other one. We tried a couple of different combination of drakes and whelps. In the end we just released it all (whatever that really means I don't know) which increased the tank damage a lot while reducing raid damage.
By using Tree of Life at the first tank switch, I found I was able to keep my lifebloomed tank up and cross heal the other tank without any difficulty. I find I do not have the skill to keep lifebloom going on two targets past ToL with clever refreshing. That may come with time and familiarity with the fights, but it feels like a gimmick and possibly exploit, and I hope that it will get fixed and druids get balanced around not doing that, because it is silly. During the early phase I ignored the raid healing except for casting Wild Growth when available and the occasional Effloresence when the priest put down his puddle of good. I fed my Innervate to the Holy priest about one minute into the fight and every time it was up thereafter.
By the time we entered the knockdown phase, Tree of Life was up again. I don't remember how many knockdowns we went through, but I used ToL on one, Tranquility on another, and there was at least one where I had nothing. During knockdown I was able to use Barkskin to mitigate my own damage.
Even giving away every single Innervate to the holy priest and holding back nothing on the tank healing, I had no mana issues. I didn't even use a mana potion (not out of cheapness--it was not needed). I have reforged a lot of spirit so I could reach hit cap on my moonkin set, which largely shares gear, but I was shocked what a non-issue mana was on this fight.
I was playing with a very skilled paladin (he posses the kind of amazing situational awareness and great reaction times I find common in current or former serious pvp-ers, but somehow managed not to get the attitude problem that many of them pick up--great guy to heal with all around) which may have contributed to the tank healing feeling relatively easy. I'll have to look at the logs later. The paladin reported that at least as far as how tank healing felt to him, druid-paladin was a lot more secure than paladin-paladin. That was shocking to hear but a pleasant surprise.
My burst is non-existent and I lack a useful tank healing cooldown. My group healing is quite weak. Despite these drawbacks, I found that I have the tools to provide strong, steady and extremely mana-efficient tank healing.
We'll see how I feel in 25s, and eventually, heroic modes. The resto druid is not ready to be put in the trash yet. It is an effective tank healer.
And most importantly from my point of view, it is a very fun tank healer.
Da Voodoo Doctor is In (Advice 5c)
- Tank Healing Surprisingly Fun - Halfus Report