I feel it is an appropriate day for me to talk about the difficulty of the Cataclysm Dungeons. Ghostcrawler has just done a blogpost entitled, “Wow, Dungeons are Hard!”. It’s a good read (especially if you are not liking the new content and wondering why Blizzard ruined everything). You’ll find my comments on it below…
First, let’s review. I am currently playing a Discipline Priest – arguably, the worst spec/class combination for healing Cataclysm content at the moment. Gone are the days of my bubble spam, gone are the days of my unlimited mana. Discipline is extremely gear dependant. Without an appropriate amount of spirit we go OOM. It’s just what is happening right now. Not to say that our spell priority and triage healing is not important. Even with an acceptable level of spirit, you will still go OOM if you aren’t prioritizing heals and anticipating damage. The Discipline Priest’s spell arsenal is just not as strong/mana efficient as some the other healing classes. I’ve also heard/seen that many other healer classes received new talents that allow for them to dispel magic. Did Disc Priests get a talent to help with poisons or curses? Um, no. We still have mass dispel, which helps us to stand out from the pack a bit, but really, without glyphing it appropriately you won’t be getting it off in enough time anyways to make a difference. I could go on with things that piss me off about it, but Disc is broken right now. That’s just the way things are. I have confidence Blizzard will make changes in an attempt to fix it.
MY POINT IS…. I have still been succesful in healing the new heroic dungeons. I would say my strongest ability as a player and as a healer is my ability to predict incoming damage and player/mob activity. This is something that Discipline Priests have always had to do. We are damage mitigators. Dispel quickly, bubble before a big damage spike, pop Pain Suppression, etc etc. Discipline priests are the Prophetic Healers of WoW. The new content is forcing all classes to be predictive. We can’t just run in and FANOFKNIVESFANOFKNIVESFANOFKNIVESFANOFKNIVESFANOFKNIVES. You have to CC. At least when I am healing you do. It’s of high possibility that I will not be able to heal the tank through the full force of 6 mobs. I’ll have no choice but to let a DPS die if they are standing in stuff. My mana just cannot support your stupidity.
“If you feel like you can’t cast anything but your efficient heal or you’ll run out of mana, then something is going wrong with the fight. Likewise, if you feel like you must spam your inefficient heals to the exclusion of all else, then your group is ignoring key mechanics or is just undergeared. ” — Ghostcrawler
Let’s review again. I began my priest 4 months after the release of WOTLK. I have never played BC or Vanilla content when it was new. I don’t know how it used to be. How am I able to heal current content when I’ve not experienced “tough” content before? I would say it’s a mix a few things. One, I’m willing to learn and change my behaviors. Two, I PVP, and I PVP a whole hell of a lot. PVP has made me be more mana efficient, made me better a predicting incoming damages and most importantly made me quick to react to new/changing situations. Also having a support system of a strong guild filled with helpful people, who all try their best is a wonderful thing.
Let’s talk about a player I met in a recent Heroic Vortex Pinnacle run. We’ll call him “Duster Shaman.” DS had ok gear. He wasn’t faking it with PVP stuff or wearing cloth when it should be mail. DS was doing around 4800 DPS. He was standing in the bad on nearly every fight. He was rarely targeting skull. He was standing in the wrong side of the wind on the Dragon fight. Even after being politely coached by the tank, things did not change. I was forced to do something I have never before had to do. I 100% blocked out his health bar from my vision. To me, he did not exist. Yes, he still received the benefits of my AOE heals and random heals. I cannot help that. But seriously, I just stopped healing him all together. I honestly, did not have a choice. My priorities are keeping up the tank/myself and then those DPS that are putting out the most damage/cc/awareness of the fight. I didn’t do it to be a bitch. I seriously had no other choice. Now, DS never got angry about dying the few times he did. I always rezzed him and rebuffed him. But I’m sorry. Again, I can’t heal stupid.
*Are you finding that healing the new content is not challenging your skills enough? Roll a Discipline Priest.
*WOTLK babies are not all bad. The player base that was gathered during that time had their expectations set for how to react to the content and how the loot system works. Now, all that has drastically changed. Ghostcrawler does an excellent job of coaching/explaining why changes were made and why they were necessary. Hopefully the babes will read it, but that may be expecting too much.
*Blizzard has given every class the ability to be succesful in Heroics. Each DPS class has new CC, healers have new tools to use and tanks have new ways to manage aggro. When you are failing at Heroics over and over it is due to someone not making use of what is at their disposal.
*We have been given the opportunity to have FUN playing WoW again. Let’s make a Vegas comparison. WoW is no longer your chain-smoking Granny’s game. If you just want to press one or two buttons mindlessly and have the chance of a big reward go play the slots. I have always preferred a game of No Limit Texas Hold’em, myself.
I like to have control over what is happening to me, use my ability to read people and situations – be predictive and sometimes deceptive. I like to earn my rewards. It makes them that much more special.
So, C’mon WoW playerbase, time to put on your Pokerface.