Friday, February 12, 2010

DPS-ing as a healer

These days I'm spending a lot of time leveling my Priest through dungeons. This is my first time as a healer in all my 4 years of WoW so it's understandable that I had some trepidations during my first couple of times healing.

I'm sure this has been discussed to death before but I've re-discovered it, if I can put it like that. Basically, when I'm the healer in an instance, I also DPS when I can. I do this in two ways, with almost zero impact to my efficiency as a healer but with a few added benefits. To be honest, I don't know if the same tactic will continue to function in later dungeons where the action is more frantic, but for now I can handle both duties easily.

My addon of choice for healing is Healbot. It works just fine for me and it allows me to use a combination of mouse clicks directly on the healthbars of my group mates. Healing is usually a simple matter of just left-clicking on the tank's bar.

1) Usually I don't heal the tank until he's at half health. My Flash Heal is powerful enough to heal him to 100% so I have a lot of "spare" time while I'm waiting for the tank to take sufficient damage so that I don't overheal and thus waste mana. During these dead periods I will wand the tank's target. Not only is this a very low threat attack, but in the long run it adds an extra bit of DPS which is never a bad thing.

2) Since I currently heal as a Shadow Priest, whenever the target is about to die, I will channel a Mind Flay. This is a very low cost spell so it doesn't affect my mana. More importantly, if it becomes the killing blow (fairly high chance for a quick ticking DoT), Spirit Tap will proc, which allows me to regenerate a lot of my mana. This means less downtime after fights since I don't need to stop and drink. As an added bonus, if we are fighting humanoids who have a tendency to run when they are about to die, this slows them down, preventing them to run and bring back all their friends.

So that's how a healer can do a great job healing but also add some DPS and utility to a fight. I will continue to use my wand during fights but my second tactic will pass the way of the dodo when I hit 40 and I can Dual Spec for a proper Discipline healing spec.


Anonymous said...

before dual spec i leveled all the way heavy disc, with a couple builds, a lot of soloing and instancing on the way up made it great, with meditation for mana regen there was little down time, spirit tap for solo regen and then living in a Disc bubble, i took little dambage and was able to grind efficiently. i dps/healed a 4 man ST run and was number 3 on dps with mostly holy nova.. was fun when the shamman wanted to heal cause i was "busy" dpsing, but everyone was alive... and stayed that way. good times

Darth Solo said...

My problem is that I never use hybrid builds for leveling. I always go all-out down a specific tree. Leveling as Shadow though is fun.

Anonymous said...

so you are saying that at level 79 you will be a 0/70/0 or 70/0/0 or 0/0/70 build? afterall anything else would be a hybrid right? when i leveled i wanted mana regen.. less down time... i got that from spirit tap and meditation.. the OP bubbles gave me uninterupted casting and prevented damage. the builds i played with worked cause i almost never had down time to eat drink heal or whatever... i was not talenting to maximze DPS, i was talenting to minimize down time. Like my feral druid has point in resto, my ele shamman leveled mostly with enhancement points to start with, even to play ele... just another perspective and a little play ast the devils advocate

Darth Solo said...

No no, I never said I would go 71/0/0. That's stupid. I meant that I usually go for the 51st talent in a particular tree, but I don't use hybrid builds like half/half/0 or some such.