Cata Priest Healing
I've been 85 for a few days now, my iLvl is 332 with just a couple pieces of gear (2-3) that aren't really for disc/holy but are reforged with spirit. I am having a hard time with healing right now. Heroics are practically impossible for me, regular dungeons are alright though.
Pretty much having the same issue atm.
Tbh, at the moment I am blaming it on the fact I may be doing it wrong. Im'a run through what i'm doing and if someone could point me in the right direction that'd be lovely :)
As holy, I am spamming heal and pretty much only using chakra heal while helping to keep renew up on the target.
Trying to weave in the odd smite to get the wings mana return and improved healing.
CoH when there are more than 2 people taking dmg and maybe a renew on them.
FoL for those "oh shiiii" moments.
My main issue is just not having enough throughput to keep my tank up. (Partly due to trying to save mana with cheap spells) The tank is a warrior btw and we are comunicating through Skype so getting the CD rotations down isn't the issue. Most of the groups I feel the dps could be higher, but not by the amount where it'd prevent me going oom.
The issues only come from boss fights where I feel some of the mechanics are out to get me. For example the second boss of Grim Batol where he picks me up while i'm at 90% health and drops me to my death. Maybe thats just me not getting the tacs correct?
So yeah, sorry for Wall of Text but i'm loosing faith in priests...
Well, I have found that using heal and renew is the only way to stay mana efficient. Don't be afraid to toss flash heals on the tank or a super low group member. There will never be a time where we can go through a whole instance without drinking. I guess it's time to get used to that.
I'm having a lot more fun.
Do check out the Healing Discussion forum as well, there are tons of threads there right now dealing with healing challanges in Cata and mana problems etc.
I've done fairly well in my Holy spec in doing dungeons and heroics.
Spirit is your friend and if you can, get your hands on some regeneration trinkets (Tears of Blood/Blood of Isiset(SP)). The spirit boost from them are very, very nice. It makes the longer fights a lot more manageable. I will admit, in my experience, priests have some difficulties in some of the heroics. The easiest, I think, for us as a class is Halls of Origination (the first boss is evil though) and Grim Batol (although the trash is evil).
Aside from getting Spirit as a main stat on as much gear as possible, reforge your crit, if not into spirit, into haste or mastery, depending on what you feel helps you most (I personally lean towards mastery for Holy), you need to be extremely proactive in the dungeons. I'd suggest you watch the fights if you can beforehand for smoother runs, but as a priest, I can't stress the importance of taking charge in this dungeons. This means communicating that you've dropped a Lightwell, what mob they need to CC on the first boss in Grim Batol Heroic, telling them when to refresh CC, marking targets, and just generally helping use your leet healer awareness to help the others. This has given me an extremely smooth run in Grim Batol and Halls of Origination.
Right now, unfortunately, priests will have issues with some of the longer fights. While other classes are also having regeneration issues, we don't have a strong, go-to instant cast like Word of Glory or HoT stacking on the fights that require mobility. That has been my biggest problem. I might be able to solve it as Disc, but without a strong, controlled single target mobile healing, fights like the Altarious (SP) in Vortex Pinnacle on heroic have been a lot harder on me. Having low mana regeneration and minimal ability to heal while moving is rather annoying.
Well, I'm still 84 should be 85 soon. I have found Disc healing is a nightmare, I have to drink after every other fight... No mana regen to speak of. I have been trying to do disc heals in all the dungeons in cata at least once.. I can make it through some but it depends as always with the group. I think my plan is hit 85 in shadow and go back to disc heals with better gear. Granted I have not really gemed or enchant buffed.. changing gear so fast.. this may be the problem. I have found that with me being in shadow spec, and another healer on main heals, I sometimes have to help out by coming back to cast PoH on some bosses and running vamperic the rest of the time. I am usually top 2 on the DPS chart.. but the wait is so long for dungeons when your DPS. hopefully at 85 i will come back to being an effective heals.. I know groups hate when you have a fail healer but I hate being fail even more.. hate to be the reason for a wipe.
I understand your frustration, priests in cata seem to of had no change at all when it comes down to healing capability and mana regen.
I have been running heroics for about a week now and have been barely slipping by on the boss fights. Though sometimes the wipes have nothing to do with the heals, many times it had to do with the dps. I have had so many groups where players were barely pushing enough dps to surpass a normal dungeon boss, and its sad.
But I have been disc since Ive been playing a priest, I haven't really had any trouble with mana regen. With reforging my items and nice trinkets that buff spirit often. My mana regen is pushing 2k per 5 combat regen. (this is unbuffed)
The main thing I have trouble with, is ooming way to quickly on boss fights. And I have found certain things that minimize ooming so quickly. If your disc make sure you use Inner Focus AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE, considering it only has a 1m cd 25% increased crit chance and freecast, it makes it very very useful. Though I have found that Inner Focus has a MAJOR bug where it will sometimes NOT proc like it should, causing it to go into cd and not giving you the free cast. Hopefull blizzard will fix it soon. But make sure you use it as much as you can cause it will save you alot of mana. Also make sure to use the more powerful spells with this freecast, take advantage of it and use greater heal or flash. Also if your specced in disc. Make sure you keep a shield up on your tank always! If the weakened soul is on your target you get increased crit chance (dont forget)....also when your shield's absorbs gets used up, you regain a small ammount of mana if your specced correctly, which is very useful and can make a huge difference. Also Power Infusion....Some people think you should cast it on a dps caster, WRONG....WRONG! Cast it on yourself, the 20% cast speed and 20% reduced mana cost on spells makes you save so much more mana. Espically on powerful spells such as flash or greater heal. Hymm of Hope is useful for regaining mana and also getting a large boost of mana for a short amount of time, though it wont last forever. Divine hymm is an amazing add for priests, use it for AoE phases on bosses, also apply a prayer of mending to help out with the aoe'ing. Shadowfiend is by far the greatest ability a priest has, make sure to cast it when you have about 25% mana (that way your not completely relying on the mana regen from the fiend) Some people also like to put a few talent points into Evangilism and Archangel, but I have found that typically unless theres a cooldown period with bosses where nobody is taking damage, Im not able to cast smite and then use archangel to get a boost of mana. But if your capable of weaving a few smites into a fight, then be my guest, the 15% mana you get from 5 stacks and boost of healing is very helpful.
Now remember I save these spells for boss fights only, and typically I will use all of them, or most at the least. Priest's have many ways of mana regen, you just got to know when to use them. Hope this huge block of text helped
I too fall under this problem - i recently changed to holy because i felt the healing was a bit easier for me but i used to be disc and a main raid healer but since cata, i find that im having to slink away in shame when the tank dies or an aggro mad dps.
I have seen dps dont take as much damage (if they are good and know what they are doing) so they do not need as much healing - the occasional renew and a shield if they go too low but i "just" scrape by on normals - my gears 334 average and im reforging in as much haste and spirit.
I have been trying to heal for nearly a week now and only made it through one normal dungeon and only killed them 3 times.....unashamedly, i think i am slowly improving. I'm keeping at it, if i think the group isnt working correctly (for example yesterday we had one tank and one dps who thought he was a tank and thus i had to jump between both chars trying to heal them before either one died) i leave the group.
Until everyone gets an understanding and know the tactics for the bosses it is going to be rough for us healers. I have had to tell my guild that i wont be healing anytime soon until i feel confident enough.
As for boss fights, i keep all my mana spells - shadowfiend, hymn of hope, jugs etc and despite running low by the end of the fight, the longer casts are proving helpful to regain mana again.
Just keep practicing. Tell the dps and tanks if you feel something is wrong. I am not a vocal person but if they want me to do my job then they need to do their's correctly.
Gear wise, you need to re-forge everything you can into spirit. All enchants need to be spirit. All gems need to be spirit, int, crit or haste, in that order. You need to do the dungeons which contain the trinkets that proc spirit. There are a couple which proc over 1300 spirit in reg dungeons.
You need to flask and food spirit. This is important, you HAVE to learn how to use Potions of concentration. They return 22000 mana over 10 seconds and if you are an alchemist with the new alch stone they return more twords 30,000 mana. These are key. Use them.
Before item score 245 you want to be disc, not holy. This is why. Holy is wonderful love it to death, however it lacks a very important mechanic which disc contains... Train of thought. This ability will be the key to being able to heal as a priest without being oom all the time. Train of thought allows you to decrease the cd on inner focus by about 25% per greater heal cast. The next is Borrowed time. Caste a shield or two for haste then greater heal to effect Train of thought. Always try to use your inner focus for Prayer or healing for group heals. Make sure you are glyphed for the extra hots at the end.
Always try to avoid casting renew and flash heal. These are VERY not mana efficient. Use renew on the tank but thats it. Try to manage dps with heal and your Train of thought cycle ie Prayer of healing, or a shield.
Keep in mind flash heal and Binding heal cost the same and have the same cast time however flash heal heals a bit more but only to one target. If you are hurt and need healing ALWAYS try to use heal or Binding heal. BH works with inner focus too :)
Ok, Pain supresion and Power word barrier: these are NOT oh shit buttons for the most part. They can be used that way but its very risky. Use these spells when you know that your tank is about to take ALOT of damage. If you use these spells preemptively they will work for you much better. You can also stack them for extra damage mitigation.
The best oh shit button you have is flash heal. If you can slip a shield or renew or pain suppression in there do so but, spamming flash heal saves tanks lives. Its its not efficient but you will just have to recover. Glyph for power word barrier so you get the extra healing.
NEVER use inner fire for boss fights. Always the other one (cant remember the name) the one that give 15% reduction of instant cast spells.
Pick up surge of light and inspiration. Now you Heal reduces the weakened soul effect and can give you a free flash heal thats instant, increses your grace stacks.
I agree, power infusion for yourself. Remember it doesn't work with other haste spells cast on target. If dps is really key dont be completely afraid to put it on the top dps caster.
Front load you shields. Before the tank goes in shield everyone and POM then tank then sit down and drink. You should be able to have shields up and pom on tank and be at full mana by the time the pull happens.
Dont spec into the evangelism/archangel stuff.
Always say when you are going oom, and dont be afraid to ask druids for innervates.
Most important -----TRAIN OF THOUGHT/INNER FOCUS cycle.
Please give me feedback guys
Archangel is ATM no mana gain. It only works if you smite for the healing. But don't smite for wings. If you are in a situation where you can get Smiteheal to work then make sure you manage to keep the buff stacked at 5 points. The decreased mana cost for it is worth more than the returned mana/increased healing of Archangel.
This could change once we get our huge mana pools back. But ATM gear doesn't support Disc very well. In order to maximize our Mastery we need lots of Crit. But we don't have enough Crit on our starting gear and we have to focus on Spirit first. So I wouldn't care too much about Mastery ATM. A PW:S every 15 seconds and Aegis every blue moon doesn't justify it.
My gearing strategy(well, reforging, really) ATM is haste and spirit first so I get the most out of Heal.
Fun fact: By extensive smiting and no Archangel you can bring your Penance CD and Smite AND(IIRC) Penance manacost substantially down. If you get this to work(with ProM and PW:S, mana return when teh bubble bursts has just been increased) then you should have very little trouble. Trouble is, your group has to play ball. And the tank has to be really, really close to the center of the mob. I'm still experimenting with which target I have to smite to heal the right group member. If I can't then it's Penance time. This can be stressful and I have to be honest, I'm not sure I enjoy it. But we're all relearning so perhaps things will improve. But the range of the Smiteheal has to be increased to Onyxia level otherwise we only have hunter pets and rogues in range.
I've macroed Inner Focus to Greater Heal and Prayer of Healing and it does work. Binding Heal is also good value for mana. Thankfully I never had given up on it.
This is terrible information.
Originally Posted by Eversor1
The FSR is not back. It is based on being in combat or out of combat. It has NOTHING to do with not casting. You can't dance around the FSR as your mana regeneration only boosts when it says 'Leaving Combat' on your screen.
Holy is also perfectly viable for dungeons. I'd actually prefer it to my Disc spec for doing 5 mans. I don't know where you are getting your information about mana being easier to maintain with Disc, but I don't think that is the case. If people are doing their job correctly, you should rarely go below 80% mana on trash. That means CCing properly and mitigating damage. Heal + Renew + Heal Chakra + HW:Serenity is just gorgeous in dungeons.
Ok, an update. I having been trying to heal cata dungeons.... I say trying cause it takes a lot of time and people getting pissed off at me. I have to drink after every other fight to keep my mana. I mean it is a challenge, which I like but like everyone knows the best healer is one that you dont notice, and right now they know me to well. I just wish that you could use dispersion or some like spell for Discipline spec. I do like the fact that we can use a broad array of spells and you really have to be on your toes to determine what needs to be cast, thus no standard rotation like a DPS that is set for numbers 1,2,3,4,1,2,3,4 thats no fun. But as I progress I keep thinking ok I need to go Holy spec, but I refuse, I will figure this stuff out. I am now casting spells and thinking about mana at all times. Tanks need to be aware that, healing is going to a problem for some for a while, and They also need to realize that they have to up their game. I was healing today and the tank is standing right in an damage effect steady dropping health instead of kiting, while qqing me for not being able to keep him up. also ranged DPS need to stay out of the fire/damage area when you can. Nothing a healer hates more than some idiot standing in a pool of whatever taking constant damage, yelling at the healer for not keeping them full on health. My main energy will be the tank if you drop because of stupidity I cant help you. just some of my thoughts on Disc healing, there really isnt alot of info out for 4.0.3 but I'm sure its coming.
I wish every player would read about all player changes in Cata - either through TS or WOW/Blizzard. But wish in one hand and shat in the other I guess. I have always been a holy healer and right now is VERY challenging. Blizzard said it was to make the game more fun for us healers (go to wow/blizzard and read for yourself) - well right now it isn't fun. Hopefully after better gear in the HR that may hold true. I agree with Bloodsolice - his remark above sooooo accurate. Yes we healers need to learn a new version of our rotation - and it VERY challenging mana management ATM - HOWEVER - all players need to know this - thus - as Bloodsolice said above....No more standing in fire or getting damage because "it's ok the healer has plenty of mana to heal* Well we used to - not anymore. So stupidity is the first evil here. The only thing to change this is peoples *awareness* of the battles and awareness in changes in our factions. I start each raid with an explanation of what *I* need as a healer to make the random go smoothly. If the tank or dps doesn't listen or doesn't care- well we pretty much wipe and of course it's all the healers fault. I've just learned and prefer to leave group when such situations happen. Let them find a better healer or go through a few more that leave before they get the hint. ON the other hand I have found some amazing pug groups cross server, ones that understand and want to finish the raid on the smoothest lvl possible. I only wish blizz would change so we could invite back for groups <:^D
Thanks for the info above on reforging - that was my next move.
Good Luck ALL
Any other information Holy Healers want to pass me is very appreciated.....
Well, I changed to Holy and havent been disapointed the basics that work for me are this: Cast shield, then PoM, and Renew, then cast chakra, and wait for your tank or another party member to be in need of healing then cast heal. There is no set rotation just explore your options and find what works for you. When I heal the tank is my priority if you are a DPS that likes to take damage or thinks he is the tank, dont get mad when you dont get the heals like you used to in WotLK. I think overall I will switch back to Disc after my iLevel and experience with the Cata dungeons progress. It is a fact that Mana management is the key to healing at this point as long as you remember to send out your shadowfiend when you are in a boss fight and running low and then cast hymm of hope, to replenish mana for some of the bigger fights you should be fine. Hope this helps.
Well, I am sorry for the misinformation. I was under the impression that they added a third teir regen. Bunk info though. However, i did revise my post. I stand by my other info there though. Holy is not as viable in my opinion, but you have to just try the different specs to see what you like. The versatility with disc i feel is much greater due to being able to front load and actually do massive mitigation initially with barrier and pain suppression. The reason crit is important is bc it means larger heals thus better mana conservation. Additionally it procs free flash heals if done proced while casting heal, also crits proc shields which, falls aback on your mastery for absorption. And Undome, we are here to help people not trash talk, If you cant see where im getting my info when its been laid out then perhaps you need to focus on the letters on the screen a bit more and your attachment to Holy a bit less. Holy is designed more for 10 man+ raid healing imo. You can use it in a 5 man just fine. I m just saying if you are having problems healing then switch to disc until you are geared really well and you will have a much easier time. Thanks for the CONSTRUCTIVE feedback
I'm not trash talking, but it really, REALLY needed to be stressed that is terrible information. I also questioned where you got your information. I'm sorry you feel insulted, but I did not insult you, only pointed out that your first bit of information was wrong and was asking where you got the information for the second. The first is the kind of information that can spread. Then, we have a lot of people running around thinking the FSR is back - when it is not. With the basic Heal spell and people gearing for the appropriate regen to use that as an autoattack, you should be casting it liberally.
Originally Posted by Eversor1
Also, if you are recommending Surge of Light, I also disagree strongly with that. You only get one Flash Heal every 17 casts of Heal. From what I've experienced is that low of a proc chance is outshined by my usage of Desperate Prayer (which I find a bit sad) and Spirit of Redemption for intentional suicides when I run out of mana trying to keep up groups that I probably shouldn't. That's more of personal preference though and there are some merits to Surge of Light - especially with the potential changes to this talent (there was a Blue post on it recently).
And, no, I don't see where you've gotten your information, insult aside. That is why I asked. All of the information I've read so far has contradicted most of what you have posted as advice.
I've address your advice, not you as a person and I ask that you politely do the same. I will question information that I am not sure of and I will point out when I am quite confident something is not true. Don't take offense to this, as this is the point of these kinds of forums and it is not directed at you.
Finally, to address 'my holy attachment' I am a "Disc Child". I was Discipline 1-80 and up until the two months before Cataclysm where I was Disc/Holy. I have since dropped my Disc spec for a Shadow spec, but please don't try to say I am just some obsessed person with Holy when you really know nothing about me.
I highly disagree with that statement. You should not reforge anything into spirit...ever. You should be picking up gear that has spirit on it.
Originally Posted by Eversor1
Enchants need to be of haste or mastery except for chest which should be peerless stats. Gems should be 40 int if a red socket, blue sockets should be a mix gem int and spirit, orange should be int and haste/mastery
Crit vs. Haste Debate
The Debate of Crit Vs. Haste...
I guess i am of the "old school", but i still chose to reforge/gem/chant for Crit over Haste.
Haste is good, because no one wants a heal that takes 3 seconds to cast. But Haste comes with some gear, so a properly geared healer will always have a decent amount of it under most circumstances.
Crit is also good, because a Crit is extra healing done. Free Healing, might I add. Sure it is unpredictable, but with a higher crit % you can actually rely on a crit here or there. Maybe not like: "I NEED this spell to crit NOW!" But overall, if I gotta hit a Tank with 3 Flash Heals and my Crit is Jacked Up, I can assume one will crit. If it doesn't, does it mean life or death? Maybe, but most times, it will not. I still prefer casting 3 Flash Heals with a higher expectation of a Crit happening, than casting 3 Flash Heals a little bit faster, with less of an expected Crit occurring.
In my own sick mind, It's kinda like expecting the worst but hoping for the best. Putting a nerf on you so that if you execute your heals flawlessly and have perfect decision making by prioritizing your heals, you actually get ahead through your critical heals. Sure it leaves less room for error, but as a healer, I like to play like the deck is stacked against me.
Haste is good, like i said before, but it can hurt you. Winding up for a big spell (with more Haste than Crit) because you are EXPECTING the tank to take a ton of damage, but he pops a mitigation Cool Down at the last moment. You have less reaction time to cancel the cast. If he was gonna get hit for 80k damage and he reduced that (through his CD) by 30k, you might not have enough time to react, so your Greater Heal went off. You either topped him off or overhealed. You possibly could have brought him up with a Renew and a few spam Heals. You just wasted a good chunk of Mana by letting the Greater Heal go off. In Cataclysm, we simply can't afford to waste mana.
That's my spiel. And i'm an average player, certainly no Theorycrafter... but i do pay attention to my numbers.
The debate rolls on...
Crit is wasted heals. Haste speeds up the bread and butter heals of "heal" "Greater Heal" and "Prayer of Healing" for a Holy.
Personally all Crit should be reforged into mastery or Haste if you dont have mastery capped. Reforge into Mastery, Haste, Sprit and you cant go wrong.
Haste all the way. After Mastery of course but we all know that ^^
I'm also having so much trouble with my heals, I have became so upset by the fact that my heals are nothing like LK that I gave up on my priest who is my fav toon by far to play my hunter :(. After reading these other post im starting to think im not gearing the right way...im going more with intell which is giving me a great mana pool which is what i thought was a good idea to do which i thought would make it easier to heal threw the boss fights, but im still draining my mana pool so bad. So im guessing i need to re-forge and go with spirit...also my rotation maybe hurting me as well. I'm bubbling the tank (which i know you cant spam anymore since the mana cost is over 3k even with that new buff we have) then hitting them with prayer of mending and letting that bounce around then using my penance, also i use to be able to heal with smite and that doesnt do it anymore either. Sadly tho im having to hit inner focus as soon as i can and hit big heal and thats not doing anything for me so im not sure what the problem is but im bout ready to just re-roll a differnt healing class cause it seems paladins and shammys are having a way easier time. Any advice would be great cause i would love to go back to my priest i miss her so :( lol
**Also i just felt awful the other day when i did try again i did the holiday boss which shouldhave been the easiest thing ever to heal...needless to say b-4 the last guy was dead i was 100% oom..there has got to be a way to make this easier and to where i can heal and not feel so damn bad afterwards lol**