Healing Paragons of the Klaxxi
We have just restarted our progress again, having killed Siegecrafter Blackfuse for the second time. For ninety minutes of Wednesday and three hours on Thursday we have progressed now to getting the first and second Klaxxi down on a regular basis.
As with all progression it is learning single parts of the fight at a time and making small adjustments. For example, when letting the parasites through, we shifted from allows the seventh injection through to the eighth. This had a massive impact, for the healers that we no longer had 10 parasites running around damaging people. This is how progress is, small changes to a tactic to allow us to progress slightly further into the fight.
So, healing setup. Thursday night we started with 2 Resto Druids, 1 Resto Shaman, 2 Discipline Priests. Half way though the night we swapped one Resto Shaman for another, and one Discipline Priest for a Holy Priest. This setup with one Discipline Priest and 1 Holy Priest seemed to work better, so it is looking like the same kind of setup that we had for Siegecrafter Blackfuse, which in itself makes sense!
So, things to look out for whilst healing Paragons of the Klaxxi. Starting, the tanks take an awful lot of damage at the first pull, in fact, if you watch the first pull our Paladin tank took an first hit of 1.2 million damage (thats after mitigation), we’re not sure why, but he died, this was a single hit from Skeer. After that it never happened again, so maybe it was just a “welcome back to the fight” from Blizzard! Other high damage is the parasites, they do less damage when they are in melee range of their target, so do not root them! But that can become challenging when the parasites are there for a while, it is important that your DPS that are turned into scorpions eat them as fast as possible! Rapid Fire is another ability that has the potential to do an awful lot of damage, you MUST avoid the bolts or (as you might see sometimes on my videos) you die almost straight away and with the other AOE damage it’ll only take another small hit to kill you. The other ability to worry about is Aim, depending on who it targets, you may need a soaking team, they may need healing. If the person targeted does not have a damage reduction cool down, you will need to put one on them, Druid Ironbark is perfect as it should be up for every Aim. Once Skeer is dead you get the guy charging around and throwing Amber and charging around the room.
Amber on the floor is a pain to deal with, and you cannot stand in it as the damage is so high that it will kill you very quickly. So, as a healer be to the side, and look out for the graphic on the floor that says it is incoming, and get the hell away from it! Avoiding the charge is reasonably easy, just get out the green line. However, as for one of our pulls you can get a parasite on you, Rapid Fire heading towards you, Aim on you and then charged through. Needless to say I died on that attempt!
So for the first three bosses for healing Paragons of the Klaxxi the summary is this:
Large tank hits at the start.
Large tank hits unpredictable throughout the fight.
Ground heals on the parasite group up point for ranged and melee.
Lots of heals on the players with Hunger.
Avoid the Rapid Fire.
Cooldown on the Aim target if necessary.
Avoid the green charging lines.
Get out of the Amber.
Will continue this blog once we have got further into the fight!
Healing team that started:
Healing team that finished:
Healing Paragons of the Klaxxi Videos
Warcraft Healing Changes
Having digested the changes that Blizzard have announced before the weekend, I guess that it is time to comment on the Warcraft Healing Changes.
OK, so, major changes a foot. I think the new sets of healing spells can be categorised as the following:
Single Target – Mana efficient
Single Target – Mana inefficient but fast
Area of Effect – Mana efficient
Area of Effect – Mana inefficient by fast
Every healer have these 4 types of spells. The single target spells will heal for the same amount, but the cast times will define whether it will be mana efficient or not. All low value, high efficiency spells have been removed. So the choice the healers have is fast, but mana-inefficient, or slow and mana-efficient for single target. Druids and shaman still have Efflorescence and Healing Rain, but i guess the heals off these will be low as they are an efficient spell. Insta-Casts are still there too, Riptide, Rejuvenation and Holy Shock, will, on first appearances be low values as well. But that is what Blizzard wanted to do was to have us casting rather than blanketing a raid with AOE ‘smart heals’.
I have always disliked ‘smart heals’ anyway! I’d prefer if they just disappeared! I do not mind so much the Healing Rain type spells, as that actually requires us to position them smartly, but Wild Growth, Totems, Atonement, can all be taken away!
So along with this, I am guessing that the aim of this is to have healers more stationary, casting single target efficient heals. Only when big damage is coming in will the low-efficiency heals be needed and maybe Hots rolling on targets as well. So does this mean with Mythic Raiding, as the healer number will be approx 5, that one from each class is going to be the best setup? Are healers getting their little niches back? Druids for Hots on spread out ranged, Priests shields across the raid, Shaman chain healing the melee, Paladins for tanks, Monks for DPS-Healing. Interesting.
Other changes include the removal of mana-regen tools, Innervate, Divine Plea, Hymn of Hope. But I did not read that Mana-tide Totem is being removed? Shamans becoming mana batteries again! But again it is removal of an ability that we all used to just press on reflex, rather than make any real decision about when we were using it. Probably most healers had a mana-threshold where the ability became better to use, and had a warning that told us we had reached that threshold, again taking away from that decision making, so I am no sad to see it go.
Monks, you get a new Fistweaving Stance! So there are now clear differences between a Mistweaver and Fistweaver. So in Crane Stance, your Jab and Blackout Kick become available, but not in Serpent Stance.
Retuning Healing Spells
One of our goals for healing is to tone down the raw throughput of healers relative to the size of player health pools. Currently, as healers and their allies acquire better and better gear, the percentage of a player’s health that any given heal restores increases significantly. As a result, healers are able to refill health bars so fast that we have to make damage more and more “bursty” in order to challenge them. Ideally, we want players to spend some time below full health without having healers feel like their groupmates are in danger of dying at any moment. We also think that healer gameplay would be more varied, interesting, and skillful if your allies spent more time between 0% and 100%, rather than just getting damaged quickly to low health, forcing the healer to then scramble to get them back to 100% as quickly as possible.
To that end, we’re buffing heals less than we’re increasing player health. Heals will be deliberately less potent compared to health pools than before the item squish. Additionally, as gear improves, the scaling rates of health and healing will now be very similar, so the relative power of any given healing spell shouldn’t climb so much over the course of this expansion. For those concerned about what this means for raiding, don’t worry—we’re taking all of these changes into account when designing Raid content for Warlords of Draenor.
It’s also important to note that spells that heal based on a percentage of maximum health are being effectively buffed by the massive increase to player health pools, so we’re lowering those percentages to offset the effect. That may make them appear to have been nerfed—however, the net result is that those percentage-based heals stay about the same as before relative to other heals.
All of these changes apply to damage-absorption shields as well. Additionally, we’re toning down the power of damage absorption in general. When they get too strong, absorption effects are often used in place of direct healing, instead of as a way to supplement it. We will, of course, take these changes into account when tuning specializations that rely heavily on absorbs, such as Discipline Priests.
We also took a look at healing spells that were passive or auto-targeted (so-called “smart” heals). We want healers to care about who they’re targeting and which heals they’re using,so that their decisions matter more. To that end, we’re reducing the healing of many passive and auto-targeted heals, and making smart heals a little less smart. Smart heals will now randomly pick any injured target within range instead of always picking the most injured target. Priority will still be given to players over pets, of course.
Another of our goals for healing in this expansion is to strike a better balance between single-target and multi-target healing spells. We’ve taken a close look at the mana efficiency of our multi-target heals, and in many cases, we’re reducing their efficiency, usually by reducing the amount they heal. Sometimes, but more rarely, raising their mana cost was a better decision. We want players to use multi-target heals, but they should only be better than their single-target equivalents when they heal more than two players without any overhealing. This way, players will face a meaningful choice between whether to use a single-target heal or a multi-target heal based on the situation.
Finally, we’re removing the low-throughput, low-mana-cost heals like Nourish, Holy Light, Heal, and Healing Wave, because we think that while they do add complexity, they don’t truly add depth to healing gameplay. (We’re also renaming some spells to re-use those names. For example, Greater Healing Wave is being redubbed Healing Wave.) However, we still want healers to think about their mana when deciding which heal to cast, and so the mana costs and throughputs of many spells are being altered to give players a choice between spells with lower throughput and lower cost versus spells with higher throughput and higher costs. Here are some examples from each healer class.
Druid Higher Efficiency: Healing Touch, Rejuvenation, Efflorescence
Druid Higher Throughput: Regrowth, Wild Growth
Monk Higher Efficiency: Soothing Mist, Renewing Mist
Monk Higher Throughput: Surging Mist, Spinning Crane Kick
Paladin Higher Efficiency: Holy Light, Holy Shock, Word of Glory, Light of Dawn
Paladin Higher Throughput: Flash of Light, Holy Radiance
Priest Higher Efficiency: Greater Heal, Circle of Healing, Prayer of Mending, Holy Nova (new Discipline-only version), Penance
Priest Higher Throughput: Flash Heal, Prayer of Healing
Shaman Higher Efficiency: Healing Wave, Riptide, Healing Rain
Shaman Higher Throughput: Healing Surge, Chain Heal
All of this discussion of efficiency may cause most healers to start worrying about mana regeneration and their mana pool. To allay those concerns, we’ve increased base mana regeneration a great deal at early gear levels, while having it scale up less at later gear levels. This will make all of these changes play well even in early content such as Heroic Dungeons and the first tier of Raid content, and also play well in the final Raid tier without mana and efficiency becoming irrelevant due to extremely high regeneration values.
That’s a lot of big changes for healers: reduced throughput, a more deliberate pace, less powerful “smart” heals, weaker absorbs, fewer spells, and a new focus on efficiency decisions. We’re confident that we can apply lessons learned from previous expansions to make this the best healer experience yet: more dynamic, less punishing, and frankly a lot more fun.
Smart heals will now randomly pick any injured target within range, instead of always picking the most injured target. Priority will still be given to players over pets.
Long-cast-time single-target heals, such as Greater Heal and Healing Touch, now cost roughly half as much as fast-cast-time single-target heals, such as Flash of Light or Healing Surge, and heal for roughly the same amount.
Every class has multiple area healing spells available, some low throughput and efficient, others high throughput and inefficient.
Area healing spells are tuned to be less efficient than single-target healing spells when they heal 2 or fewer targets, and more efficient when they heal 3 or more targets,
Spells with cooldowns or limitations may have higher efficiency than the no-cooldown equivalents.
Heroic Immerseus Healing Guide
I thought that I would start a guide for healers on my experiences with Heroic level raiding. Admittedly this is late in the tier, but as I intend to carry this on throughout Warlords of Draenor, then it is good practise! Having completed the Heroic Siegecrafter Blackfuse as this is our current progress.
Heroic Immerseus Healing Guide
First Phase. Our overall tactic, which all members follow, is to stand in a line. The melee are placed at the front and the ranged towards the back. When the Sha Puddles come down, everyone move a few steps to the right and we work our way around the room. Healers are distributed in 2 places, firstly in the line with the rest and the two tank healers are placed ahead of the main group to ensure that the tanks are in range. There are large spikes in damage, both on the tanks and the rest of the raid. But overall healing in this phase is reasonably simple, use tank cooldowns on the tank tanking the adds to keep them up. But as long as people move from the Sha Puddles reasonably quickly this is fine. Some of the tank damage is quite high on the boss tank, when he gets hit by the debuff it does hurt! So be quick with your heals here or have insta-casts ready.
Split Phase. All healers are designated their individual sectors to heal the blobs. Get to your sector as soon as you can using speed boosts if necessary, then heal the blobs in your area. Ensure that you are near them when they explode to get the buff. Now, when the healing blobs hit the centre there is an AOE explosion, as more and more healing blobs appear as the split phases happen, this means that the damage goes up and up as well. It is better to slow them all down, by having hots or some heals on them, and them hitting at different times, if you allow them to all hit (or a number of them hit) at once there will be masses of damage to heal and then you have to heal your raid members rather than the blobs! Once you are on the 5th split, everyone with healing spells (Paladin, Druid and Shaman) should heal any blob they can as there are very few DPS blobs to kill, even bandaging works! During the first 2 AOE explosions, we use 2 healing cooldowns. Then we use 3 after that as well as requiring people to use individual defensive cooldowns.
Here is the video our one of our Immerseus kills, from the viewpoint of a Priest Healer:
Firelands Legendary Fun Runs
The same as Ulduar we run Firelands every week for the Firelands Legendary staff, myself Thorf and Swiftwing are all on the same part of the questline, we are after the essences. Think Swift will get it first out of the three of us. But the mount dropped from Alasrazor last week, and I got that so I take that as a moral victory!
Video of our Firelands Legendary run here:
Dragonsoul Legendary Daggers
Like Ulduar we sometimes do this run as well, Thorf is trying to get the dagger for his Rogue. Here is a video of our run this week.
Ulduar Legendary Mace
Every week, myself and a few guildees run ulduar for the legendary shards for the Ulduar healing mace. There are 3 of us currently doing it I am currently on 17 shards so I am hoping that the drop rate will massively increase so I can get it soon! I am amazed that the drop rate is so bad! Got 2 this week, and i think Swiftwing got 1. Thorf got zero!
Video here for a look at the bosses that we just whizz though!
Have started recording with some screen recording software, getting used to the setup, but here is the first video.
Working on the quality and stream at the moment! videos should get better! I hope!
Siegecrafter Blackfuse Healing – 25 Man Heroic
Finally, after approx 180 wipes, our hardwork paid off and we became the 725th guild in the west, 470th in the EU and 1st on our Server to kill Siegecrafter Blackfuse on Heroic difficulty. A not altogether shabby achievement!
We achieved this with a healing team of 5. The kill team comprised of a Resto Druid, 2x Resto Shaman, a Holy Priest and a Disc Priest. But we have to acknowledge that the entire healing team of Exile was involved throughout this boss. We operated a system of swapping the people on reserve in at the half way point of the evening so everybody got at least half a nights practice on the boss, every raid night. Any of the other healers, which were another Resto Druid and 2 Disc Priests, could have been in for the kill, it just so happened on the team that was currently there.
But this brings into the room a question about the makeup of the healing team for Siegecrafter Blackfuse. The fight is not overly healing intensive, except for some hairy moments on the tanks, so you require 2 tank healers. One for the boss tank, which was me, the Resto Druid, and a Disc Priest was on the shredder tank, but we also used a Shaman for this role too. It is important that the shredder tank healer is given the ability to roam, as they will need to stay inrange of the tank, which is not always where the group is! With the ranged and healers all grouped up, it was a good fight for Shaman as their chain heal was not wasted, also Healing Rain worked well on the Ranged. For the melee the Druids mushroom, with efflorescence, was placed for them. Raw healing of Holy Priest and Shaman, held the raid together, where the excellent single target abilities of the Druid kept the boss tank alive.
Tank Cooldowns. We used every tank cooldown we had! This includes Iron Bark, Pain Suppression, Vigilance, Hand of Sacrifice and Symbiosis for an additional cooldown. They will need ALL of them throughout the fight. Our tanks did an excellent job of knowing when they needed them and called for them in a predictable order in plenty of time for the other person to react.
Raid Cooldowns. These were not so essential, but obviously they were used. Most of them were used for Death from Above or Overload, Magnetic Pull was another time that Totems and Barriers were used as we were taking damage and struggling to cast on players, insta heals were used to good effect here. Otherwise we chained them in the last 15% of the boss to ensure that we weren’t struggling with damage from fire or sawblades.
What do Healers get targeted by? Healers are legitimate targets for Saw Blades and Laser and you need to make sure that you survive them. We used the tactic of Saw Blades always to the left and Laser always straight to the back. You will have to learn where to put them in the Empowered Laser phase, as this, along with Magnetic Pull can make kiting and positioning blades and lasers where you want them problematic. Kiting the laser during this Magnetic Pulls phase, with the Empowered Laser having already been applied, means there is only small channels of free space, AND you have the Laser Chasing you AND you have to avoid the Saw Blades going back and forth. This is OK, as long as you are aware of where everything is, watch the path of the Saw Blades and how far the Laser is behind you. Be careful as you may leave yourself with nowhere to run if you go the wrong way! Also you are taking ticking damage from the Magnetic Pull, ensure that you heal yourself! And if you do have run through fire, use a personal CD on yourself.
It takes practise, but if you have a willing team, an excellent belt team, as seen by the video by Wolfsteak Here, then he will go down.
Warcraft Healing Blog – How to Reduce Overhealing?
As a druid – overhealing has been a bug bear of mine for a number for years! Made worse now by the power of absorbs from Discipline Priests and Holy Paladins. Although i do think that absorbs do have a place in the game and that Priests and Paladins should have them.
But how to reduce overall overhealing, my suggestion is somewhat simplistic but not, in my opinion, without merit.
Half the mana-cost of spells and half the effectiveness of ALL heals(at least!)
What will this do? Well for a start it would mean that not one single heal would be enough to “top-off” any player, it would take a number of ticks of a hot (over ten seconds or so), or 2 or 3 casted spells to bring someone up to full HP. Which means that it could take 2 or 3 healers to top someone off. This would mean that healers heals would all count, and the topping off process would be slower and allow healers to move around their raid frames without tripping over each others heals. Halving the mana-cost would mean that we could still do the same overall amount of healing – but it would be in twice the amount of time.
Obviously fights like Thok the Bloodthirsty would not be able to happen! Because there is no way that amount of AOE damage and the frequency could be dealt with. But I seem to remember the Maiden of Virtue fight, where she had a ticking “concecration” type attack which affected melee. This was able to be dealt with, it was hard work (notwithstanding the repentance aoe!) but it was challenging and fun. Maybe it was fun because it was really my first attempts at healing! But as I have stayed a healer I guess I find some enjoyment still!
The other thing is smart heals, to be honest i am not a fan of these at all! There is no interaction between me and the game bar me pressing the heal! Thats it, so, whats the point? I should be doing the healing, not the ingame mechanics. Remove them and remove the damage that they are supposed to heal.
So what kinds of boss mechanics would be good? Well, I’m not an encounter designer, but it seems they have got to a point that the only way to challenge healers is MORE DAMAGE! And i think that constant ticking damage is ok as a mechanic, but the more interesting fights are where healers are split up, or like Nourshen where you have a “test” to pass, or Valithria where you have to heal the NPC up or targeted damage to a player, I like the Sniper in the General Nazgrim Heroic, who ALWAYS targets a healer. Maze phase in Durumu was interesting, but the cutter beam was a bit harsh, maybe be more interesting if you got transported to a different realm where you had a chance to survive, rather than insta death. Immerseus is a pain, i really do hate that fight!
So, overhealing, just reduce EVERYTHING, mana costs, heal intensity, healing spells, smart heals, healing by DPS, (come on this is a little silly!) Except for Monks where I think if you want to DPS as a healer, then go fistweaver! Dream of Cenarius, though fun, isn’t really great, and atonement is just way overpowered, I do not really understand why a Priest has this ability at all really, or have it heal (like Dream of Cenarius), rather than leave a shield.