Friday, April 29, 2011

still in the dark: mastery buffs not enough

I promised myself I'm not going to let this go too long, so not much theorycrafting. Also, there may be QQ ahead.

Magmaw WoL for 4-27. Magmaw WoL for 4-19.

I went from 36% "overheal" on mastery to 38. Old mastery was 3-4% of my healing, now it's 6%.

I mean, it's a buff so I shouldn't complain. But here's what I think happened:

Tank healing for paladins hasn't changed. Most of our shields get overwritten before the absorb can happen. My tank absorbs for 4-19 and 4-27 are a bit different from playstyle change (more raw heals done spamming the tank on 4-27 because our other tank healer fell into the lava).

However, the mastery buffs did affect LoD absorbs. My absorbs on the raid on 4-19 were all overheal in the 50-75% range. Those numbers last night went down, or rather, the amount absorbed went up (overheal in the 30-70% range, with more bubbles being entirely absorbed).

So we're a little bit better at raid healing. A little. I don't know about you, but my raid assignments are still like they were in Wrath: pallies on tanks, the rest on raids. Sure, I pop Holy Radiance (which doesn't proc mastery) every minute when the boss does his raidwide-pulse-damage like a good healadin, but let's be honest here:

Why in the hell would I assign myself to the raid when we have shamans, druids, and priests? So I can use half-powered Light of Dawns once every 14 seconds?

QQ. I know my raw healing is often comparable to what other healers do, but I still think healadins are broken.

One spell on a 40 second cooldown does not fix "it".

The way the encounters are designed, we're tank healers who pop a raid-cooldown, then continue spamming tanks. There's really no spell selection, and if we're not clumped up...

And with the damage model in Cataclysm, we can't even tank heal by ourselves. I mean, I know that no 1 healer can, but still. I can, in theory, stop raid healing, and the raid healers would just have less overheal.

I main-changed in the second tier of Wrath, and later called it a mistake because of all the time it wastes. Switching to priest isn't an option (though a girl can dream) because we have so many priests in our raid. Right now, we could use a shaman, but our alt run already has so many shamans that gearing her up would be difficult. Oh, yeah, and she's 72. So when I talk about thinking about not being a paladin anymore, I do mean to say I've been giving this a lot of thought over a long time. Can you believe that 4.0 was six months ago? Holy paladins are still the punchline.

We already have one holy paladin in the raid. I feel at this point having 1 less paladin and 1 more anything would be better than having 2 healadins. Especially since our shaman hangs around the 50% attendance mark.

How is 4.1 treating you? How do you feel about your healadin and her contributions to the raid?


  1. I've not been #1 on the healing charts since Cataclysm, as a Healadin. Sure, I tank heal most every fight, but I am okay with that. I am a slightly better tank healer than raid healer, but I raid heal just fine too.

  2. For farm content, we run with six healers and for progression content, anywhere from 7-8.

    I've found that I'm most comfortable as a tank healer, but my other holy paladin really enjoys beaconing the tank I ask him to and healing the raid with Light of Dawn or direct casts and I don't rely on his beacon to save the tank. I just account for him occasionally healing the tank indirectly.

    Hell, on Chimaeron (and heroic Chimaeron), I assign him and I to groups. With Word of Glory and Holy Shock and Holy Light, we almost never have to use Flash of Light or Divine Light until we get to a Feud, then we haul out the DLs and the cooldowns.

    I guess it really depends on your comfort level with watching the raid vs. watching the tank. I was always a terrible raid healer, even on other toons. I'd walk into VOA on my resto druid alt and start lifeblooming both tanks and if I was particularly on the ball that day, I'd remember to drop Wild Growth on people. Raid healing isn't my style. But my other holy paladin enjoys it and does a good job, while helping out on tanks, which allows one of my disc priests to do what she enjoys -- tank healing.

    That's not to say I never assign my other holy pally to tanks, but I try not to. :)

    I think our mastery blows and I think that, at times, our healing can feel clunky and not terribly intuitive. I don't concern myself with topping the charts (ah, the benefits of being the raid leader and healing lead!) and don't put a lot of emphasis on it for my raid group, preferring people to just "do their jobs" as assigned. It would seem that we don't scale very well. The more gear I've gotten, the less healing I've done in comparison to the other healers in the raid group. In 346-level gear, it was easy to do a lot compared to others, but in 359-level gear, I don't think I COULD top meters even if I wanted to.

    My nickel's worth!

  3. The difference between healing Chimaeron with a Resto Shaman in our 10 man, and without one, shows to me how much Holy Paladins absolutely suck at raid healing. A fight that I always was a bit nervous about suddenly became very very easy.
    It's been some time since I topped the meters in our 10 mans, I'm just blown away by our Druid and Priest in that respect.
    I'm still the tank healer, and everyone else sees me as the tank healer, which I am ok with, because I do not feel able to raid heal to the standard of the other class. At all.

  4. UFTimmy, thanks for stopping by. I'm glad you're enjoying raid and tank healing. Do you, by chance, do 10s or 25s?

    Kurn, I really do feel we're going to have scaling issues. The disparities between classes with good masteries and those that want to avoid it. We're fast approaching the point where a couple hundred haste doesn't change my cast bar. I'm not complaining about that, I understand Blizzard's design intent to keep haste under control this expac, but it does make it difficult when it's the "only" stat I care about. (I love infusion procs, but I can't say that crits for my cast-time heals make a difference).

    Alipally, I have only done 2 10 mans on my paladin, the most recent we had 2 paladins and a holy priest. I felt for the priest, I mean, we all worked hard, we all did raid healing, we all did tank healing, but I spent most of the night thinking we would have been better of with 2 of ANY other class than 2 paladins.

  5. Oh, blogger ate my comment and I forgot to throw in my thoughts on the meters.

    I'm with you, Kurn, that the meters don't mean a whole lot. What I should have said was this: I do alright on the meters because of Holy Radiance, but I don't feel like I've "earned" anything by pushing it. Radiance is set-and-forget, I have no choice on where to put it, and it's on such a long cooldown that I end up saving it for the OMG-BURST phase.

    The other healers have shorter cooldowns on their ground healing things, and they get to choose where they go. And most importantly, they have options to use while it's either on the ground or on cooldown. Specifically, what priests can do after they've laid Sanctuary... there's no comparison. Paladins don't have options or choices. Radiance isn't a choice, it's a twitch reflex to a DBM warning.

  6. I have to admit, that I do like healing on my holy pally again. After 4.0 came out, it was pretty obvious how I felt. However, they made some adjustments, and overall, I enjoy playing on Janyaa.

    I do agree that our mastery sucks, even with the little boost they gave us. It just seems so lackluster and most of the time, it's still dropping off and being wasted. What's worse is that our tier is SO chock full of mastery and doesn't have the haste that would be way more helpful. I still don't have my 4 piece set, and I really don't think it's anything to cry about.

    I, too, have noticed a scaling issue with our gear. It used to be pretty easy for me to be at the top of the meters (not that meters are the only way to measure, but it can be a pretty good indicator of how things stand overall.) The past two weeks, now that I'm running in 25mans, it's guaranteed that the 2 shamans will be on top. It's not even a question, they just always are. Priests are usually pretty close behind them. I'm usually sitting 4th or 5th. It can be frustrating, but I try not to let it get to me. As long as my assignment stays up, I'll consider it a good job.

    "Radiance isn't a choice, it's a twitch reflex to a DBM warning." I think what you're saying about Holy Radiance is true. I think one way they could give it some more flexibility is if we could place Holy Radiance ON someone in order to choose the point that the heals are radiating. That would keep the general concept of HR, but give it a bit more flexibility.