As healers we are given, in my completely biased opinion, the hardest job in game. We’re in charge of anywhere from 4-24 other peoples health, if we’re lucky we have a couple of other great healers to help us with it, but it is still a rather daunting job on paper. One that, mind you, I would never give up.
I’ve noticed over the years that there are aspects that separate good healers from those that are great, and certainly from those that are bad. When it comes down to basic healing, all we have to do to be called a healer is press a button.
Anyone can push a button, hell I’m fairly certain they taught a goldfish how to push a button and they only have a 30 second memory.
Whenever anyone has ever asked me if they should play a healer, my fist question is, can you mulit-task? If you can’t multi-task you will never be a great healer. As a raid healer you are going to need to think of a minimum of 5 things:
- Actually healing people
- Boss Mechanics (Which should really count as 2 or more.)
- Personal Cooldowns
- Raid Cooldowns
- Positioning (Look at your damn feet!)
Standing in Fire Gives You a Buff
I’m hoping that everyone knows what raid awareness is, but encase someone doesn’t I will give you a quick quote from a former Raid Leader.
Raid Awareness, is the act of being aware of your surroundings, your own buffs/debuffs, and any boss mechanics.
Raid awareness is a very big part of being a healer, it’s something that we should strive to naturally work into our healing rotation. It’s not another button to push or a Global Cooldown(GCD) to watch, but it is just as important. Going hand in hand is being knowledgeable about the fight, 15 minutes of research before a raid, can mean the difference between a wipe and a kill. When you use both of these resources I promise that you will find healing to be much easier.
As an example I will use Heroic Blackhorn, since that’s currently what my guild is working on, and it’s the inspiration for this post.
For healers this fight has many added “benefits”:
- We are partnered up with another DPS and you have to be able to run at a moments notice to stand in a Twilight Barrage.
- There is fire that spawns on the floor.
- There are things Mobs charging random players, including you, that you have to move out of.
- Ever 30 seconds there is a Twilight Onslaught that everyone needs to stack up on and you have to be able top everyone off right after.
That’s just Phase 1.
This fight is chalk full of raid awareness opportunities. It requires you to time not only your own personal cooldowns so that you are taking as little damage as possible, but you also need to time your raid cooldowns so that you can use them in Phase 1 and Phase 2. You can’t cast Tranquility, as an example, near the Deck Fires, they will spread and burn you alive. Which is, I’m told, the opposite of what we want.
Which is where a little research comes in, and there are so many resources online that you can use to “Learn Yo’self”.
Healing is not for everyone and it takes a special person to really excel at it, but if you can do it, it will be one of the most rewarding game play experiences of your life.