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I recently helped bring my guild back together and am now the heal lead. I am trying to look at recruits as they come in and judge whether they are going to make it in the guild or not. The main things that I was looking for was if they were avoiding things they should like Malleable Goo and keeping buffs and shields up that they were responsible for. This seemed to work for the first month or so and I also understood the classes really well since I had healed ICC on all of them. I was able to help them fix certain things and it really seemed to make an improvement in some people.
Now, people are getting it that they will get yelled at for standing in the slime or not LoS'ing the ice bombs but it still feels like we are 3 healing most of the encounters in ICC 25. This really isn't working because we are still working on H LK so it just is not cutting it.
I believe since we reformed the guild mid-September we have gone through 7-8 holy pally apps and 5-6 resto shaman apps. We have had to settle on some but I am not sure what to tell them that would help anymore since I have only healed heroics on my priest since the patch.
Here is a link to the logs a couple weeks ago when our three main healers were there.
I know that healing meters don't matter and whatnot but our main problem on Sindy is that when our disc, resto druid, and myself all get unchained at the same time the tank dies along with a good chunk of our dps. Also, we are having issues just keeping everyone alive on LK because the heals are just not going out that need to be.
I am really concerned about healing in Cata if this cannot be fixed now and am really stressing over it. If anyone has any advise on how to help, I would really appreciate it.
The ability to take the blame for things that really are the healers fault. I always had respect for people who say, "I messed up, this is how I messed up, and this is how I will improve next time." People aren't perfect, but its those healers who blame everyone else for issues that you don't want. Unless, of course, the DPS is just really that terrible.
If you have a counter for dispells, that helps too. Seeing a healer who doesn't dispell makes me want to punch babies.
Basically, Vocal healers. Healers who step up and communicate; Simple communication can greatly outweigh gear. So don't weigh gear so high.
These are just my opinions.
If its really your healers that are failing, you might want to tell one of them to not heal during a fight, and tell them to just watch the fight and avoid the AoE. If they can't do this and do not learn from the experience, then there may be no help for them. If they can do it, then it's probably tunnel vision, and they need to learn to trust the other healers in the raid to pick up the slack and get themselves out of danger first (like DPS, your contribution when dead is 0).
We had to do something like this during Battle for Mount Hyjal (Archimonde) because DPS were suffering from fairly severe tunnel vision. A lot of people still died frequently, but some learned what they were doing wrong.
Edited by Amalore on 11/8/2010 8:10 PM PST
I may have to try that. The only problem that I see is that their output is so low that people are dieing even with them healing. The fights that they have this issue on are the same fights that they have problems with the mechanics. The issue may just be that they cannot multi-task and I'm not sure if that is a problem that can be fixed.
I still haven't quite figured out the answer to this one. I wish I could, since at one point our healing team was very good, and recently it's started to drop off a bit much like yours.
For the most part, I watch what spells the healers are using, how aggressively they're casting, and who they're casting on. We don't do assignments anymore so we typically leave it up to the healers to figure out who needs to be healed, and they kinda sink into things nicely if they're a good healer.
One of the biggest no-nos for me is leaving a .5 second gap between each cast. That's something I'll really get on a healer about because that small gap between casts can mean a ton of output.
The only other thing I can say has been said already, healers need to be very vocal. We use a separate healing channel for our guild that we talk in, and sometimes I wish we would get more use out of it. Every healer makes mistakes every fight, especially when they're new in a guild or environment. If every healer recognized their mistakes and commented on them and said how they would do it better next time, then the entire team would get better over time.
I know nothing about shaman healing, but I can give you some useful tips for your paladin.
Looking over the log, your healadin is focusing entirely too much on FOL spam. Granted, given the content, the mana pool and regen should be there for it, but if you want to get some serious numbers out of a paladin, he/she has to use all of the tools in the box.
The reason this is important is because so many of our spells and abilities hit harder or faster because of a proc from another ability. It's ok for FOL to be the "go to" spell of sorts while still in WotLK content, but when FOL procs daybreak, hit one holy shock then get a haste buffed Holy Light or Divine Light depending on how strong you need the heal to be. Because Daybreak is still up, you can Holy Shock again and haste buff another long casting cheap heal again.
Keeping judgements up is a given, and admittedly I didn't check to see if he had done that.
Looking through the first five fights, I failed to find one instance of your healadin ever using Light of Dawn. Many holy pallies don't like this mechanic because of the cone effect and whatnot, but the one thing they forget is that 50% of each heal from LOD copies over to Beacon so it's reasonably possible to hit the beacon with a 25k heal if this ability is managed well. Sadly, if you never use it at all, you get zero benefit from it.
Basically, just make sure your healadin understands that the days of spamming one spell are over, and he should probably break that habit as soon as possible, otherwise, he will be way behind the learning curve come 12/7. Hope this was helpful! best of luck to you.
Yea I completely agree with the other comments, and I’m currently raiding hard modes in 3guilds and we seem to be having the some healer problems. The problems might not be solved until cataclysm comes out but we will have to wait and see for that. ATM healers just have to work together and come up with new strategies to get things done. Every week I find myself trying different things to help the healing, on certain fights 1that was very effective was actually having 2holy paladins. 1disc priest, 2holy priest a druid and a shaman. Everyone but the paladins was on raid heals. Each paladin took his own tank but unlike in the old days-pre patch the paladins beaconed and only healed there beaconed tank. Doing this gave them such stupid instant holy power they were able to keep the tank up and not go OOM since it is a free mana cast. On top of them the normal aoe heals were hitting the tanks. Unlike what you would think the disc priest was not on the Tanks (unless the paladin was unable to heal for some reason-communication). The Disc priest main job was being the life saver to any raid members suddenly taking large amounts of damage and currently about to die- now on many fights this is understandably ALL the time lol but last week it seemed to be a good balance. And everyone knows that most healing classes have spells/talents that are for example- Heal Party/raid member lowest in health which you would call a lifesaver heal but having someone set on the job of doing this seemed to help allot). Any other healers did their normal and were mostly able to ignore the tanks.
My point is to not copy this in any way it is to tell you that if everything fails you have to try something new on top of all 3other comments.
Edited by Cbear on 11/8/2010 9:39 PM PST
The stress of communication is really a big deal now. As for some of your situations Alice, I found that using heals with long cooldowns are essential in fights like hardmode sindy where instant large heals are necessary for the tanks. Many healers fall on their standard heals and forget that their class has a very powerful and potent instant cast healer. Hymn of Prayer and Lay on Hands comes to mind.
If survivability is the issue it often falls under lack of experience or odd priority settings. I agree that you should ask specific healers to simply sit back and watch so that they see and understand. If the problem still persists then perhaps they are just not cut out for it.
A good check to run on your healers is to ask them to set up healing assignments for some of your old farm content. Don't let them get away with pallys spam tanks everyone else spam raid. They should know which healers will be in range of which parts of the raid, what each healer is capable of, what healing/tank cooldowns are available and in which order you want them used, what needs to be dispelled and who is responsible to dispell it, how to adjust your healing plan if a healer dies, ect. If they have a strong grasp on this type of information then you are probably looking at a good healer
Edited by Reactance on 11/9/2010 12:32 PM PST
All of my points really are just sub-points to my larger observation; avoid tunnel vision. Since I don't have a lot of experience with priests or druids I'll largely focus on shaman and paladins for my examples.
Effective use of Non-healing Cooldowns
Could also be called "raid awareness" or presence of mind. Healers have more tools than spells that make health bars move up - those that only cast healing spells are more than likely tunneling on health bars. Tunneling healers are going to miss raid warnings and queues, which relegates healing to a purely reactive role. An effective healer can be proactive through the use of abilities like Hand of Sacrifice, Hand of Salvation, or Totem swaps. For example, I use Aura Mastery during Empowered Fireballs on Blood Princes or Blistering Cold on Sindragosa. On my shaman I throw down a tremor totem before Blood Queen's fear, but it seems to me that a Priest could be nearly as effective through Fear Ward and Mass Dispel.
[...]but it appears from the logs that the Shaman is active 100% of the time - that is, he doesn't really ever stop casting. Yet he is still lagging behind on the meters. This means that he is healing as actively as the top three healers, yet is doing much less - indicating that there may simple not be anything to heal (which would suggest you have too many healers in the encounter and can afford to drop some).
Agree. Probably either too many healers, or he isn't aware of what is going on.
Some people don't like using Vent. This could be because they're self-conscious, it could be because they don't have a microphone. Whatever the reason may be, it needs to be overcome. On fights like Lich King the Necrotic Plague dispeller can help by calling out plague targets, or when they're out of range of a target that may need big heals. Bad things inevitably happen, and when they do it needs to be clearly and succinctly explained.
I am by no means the world's greatest healer, in fact, I may be guilty of focusing too much on the raid's situation than I do actual healing.
Honestly, healing meters are the best way of monitoring your recruits' abilities. With how throughput focused Wrath healing is now, there's very little difference between a healing class and a DPS class; mana doesn't really matter, and if they're not dying left and right or totally failing to keep on top of dispels, it's the only metric you have to look at.
You need healers that can not only navigate the challenges of the encounter, but keep themselves GCD locked as they do so. If you have, say, a druid who always stops healing after Sindragosa's icy grip and tunnel visions until he feels he's safe, your raid has lost a lot of healing throughput; this could mean deaths to backlash, failure to provide a tank buffer for the other non-motile healers, or just more time spent catching up on her frost aura.
Another thing healing meters show is spell breakdown, which is probably the best way to analyze a healer's performance. Just like a DPS class, for each healing class, there will be a very specific optimal breakdown of spells, and any player's spell breakdown can be examined to diagnose potential problems. To use your specific report as an example, if I look at Varmen's stats for your 4th attempt on Sindragosa, it suggests a couple of things to me:
1. Wild Growth is a higher percentage than his Rejuv, which probably means he was being very cautious, reactionary and reluctant to blanket heals in anticipation of damage. For a fight like Sindragosa, I'd probably guess that means something like a bad string of Unchained Magic, or he started to fret and tunnel vision for blistering cold, iceblock drops, resetting his Mystic Buffet stacks, etc.
2. All of his uptimes are pretty low; both his Rejuv and Wild Growth uptimes could be optimally doubled for this fight. His active time is also only 59%; your top healer is pushing 90.3%, and he still got hit by 4 unchained magics and 3 ice blocks. See #1.
3. 72% of his Rejuvs overhealed -- while a huge component of Rejuv is preemptive damage blanketing, this high percentage of overhealing suggests that when he did cast it, it was not always optimally targetted in anticipation of actual damage output. Same for Wild Growth.
4. Lifebloom is a very low percentage of his healing and only has 9.9% uptime. Even on a fight like Sindragosa, which has frequent tank swaps and breaks in tank damage, he should be seeing 60-70% uptime on Lifebloom. Lifebloom is a pretty important buffer on incoming tank damage that you're missing, and it also provides the casting druid a huge return in mana through Revitalize.
5. He only used Swiftmend 4 times. Swiftmend is now tied to Efflorescence, which is a huge raid heal when used intelligently, and especially useful for a fight with constant raid damage. Using Swiftmend on cooldown could have been a considerable load off the damage taken from Frost Aura and Permeating Chill.
6. Because most of his other spell breakdowns for other fights don't have these problems (with the exception of 4, which he does consistently), it can probably be attributed to being nervous or flightly with the fight mechanics rather than being plain bad at pressing buttons fast.
I know less about other classes than druids, but even a quick assessment of the numbers can tell me generally what's going with the healing -- Rydur is the only one who really seems "comfortable" during the Sindragosa attempts, relative to his performance on the farm content; you and Varmen are generally competent but either nervous or have some difficulty responding to encounter mechanics while sustaining throughput; Goretooth has no trouble keeping his casts up but doesn't seem to pick effective targets, even on farm content; Staura has very high overhealing and also seems to struggle with maintaining activity.
If you take some time to familiarize yourself with the basic workings of every class, you can use logs to figure out what your healers should be doing, what they shouldn't be doing, and whether or not you should kick them out. If you're unsure of what spell breakdowns should look like, you can check some of the top ranked logs and compare.
Some general things to look for in logs:
Generally you don't need to look at logs to know who is good at surviving, but it can help. It is imperative that healers take care of themselves. Obviously if they are assigned to the tank, it is most important to keep the tank alive. But many times healers do not properly put themselves first and ensure their own survivability. Dead healers do no healing.
Another thing you can look at is if you have healing assignments you can look to see the survivability of those assignments. Now obviously the logs are not broken down into groups. However, generally you will put different roles (healer, tank, ranged, melee) together in particular groups. While you are evaluating try to place them on a particular group or role to heal. If those people keep dying it is an indication of a failure on the healer. Obviously you have to see why someone died, but if it was to attrition (ie not standing in burst death mechanic) then it is the healer's fault.
I know in terms of our assignments I am generally on the melee because of chain heal, and thus you would be able to tell if I was failing if there was an inordinate amount of attrition related melee deaths. Looking at who is dying and why they are dying is probably the most important thing when analyzing logs for raid performance.
2. Uptime of abilities
For shaman this will be earth shield, as no matter the healing role earth shield should always be up on someone, even if you have multiple shaman ES can be placed on another raid member (especially if that raid member is critical for the fight, or prone to death). Druids you would look to LB especially in Cata, where mana is supposed to matter. Priests you can look out how well they utilized chakra for holy. Disc right now is still primarily shield spam. So if you don't see the raid covered in PW:S or weakened soul debuff (which you should have healers display on their raid frames) then you know the disc priest is either unchained/picked up or bad. Paladin you make sure they have 100% beacon uptime.
3. Spell breakdowns
Depending on the role and the fight these spell breakdowns will change. To help in determining good percentages you can look to the logs of the the top guild that have similar healing make-ups. Obviously this would just be a base, but it can help determine if a particular healer is just not using the right tool for the job in that particular fight. Obviously this is the most subjective analysis and many factors can change the ideal breakdowns. But it can flag glaring errors in spell usage, and can also help explain why someone might have mana problems, or have large output discrepancies.
4. Cooldown usage
This cooldown usage is for both mana return abilities and survival cooldowns. Obviously if you have planned survival CDs you must take that into account. But if a class with a CD is not utilizing that CD then that is something they need to start doing, as they could help save a wipe.
In Wrath it is important always to be casting. I highly doubt that it will change in Cata. Now obviously mindless spamming is not ideal, that is why I have activity low in this list. However, if you have big disparities between classes in terms of activity you can have a problem. For cast based classes you might want to look at and help them on their positioning as well as efficient movement. Obviously the classes with more instant casts should not be hindered as much by movement, and thus should have a higher activity. Obviously you must adjust for certain fight mechanics and roles.
Those are some general things to look for, obviously each fight has its own particular quirks to deal with. Just looking at your sindragosa logs I see a few things:
Why are you using 2 disc priests for that fight? It really hinders your hps when both are free from unchained magic at the same time. You raiders should not be relying on absorbs to protect them from either melee or caster backlash.
I don't see many large heals being used. A large heal should be precast to land after every single breath. Not sure if tank deaths are your issue, but precasting to deal with predictable burst should be done.
Your raid is taking a lot of avoidable damage, whether it be from too much backlash damage, or from the aoe portion of the caster backlash, or from the frost bombs/blistering cold instant deaths. Very few of the sub 80% survivability deaths (or very early obviously before wipe call deaths) are from pure attrition. A lot of them are from avoidable mechanics. You really should take a look at it, because it is the same people over and over again. I know at this point in the expansion it is difficult to replace them, and there are always the social concerns. But, there are a lot of deaths that can't be attributed to healers. Obviously 4 attempts at the end of a raid night might not be indicative of skill.
There's also the possibility it's just expansion fatigue. Many people (consciously or unconsciously) don't put forward their best effort when they know an expansion or content patch is just around the corner that will move them back to square one.
Retà, you look to be a resto shaman, so I assume you know some of this already, but for current 4.0.1 content:
I checked out your logs earlier today (I couldn't log in until just now), and I noticed a couple of really odd things.
Paladins are pretty bad right now on Valithria. They're not terrible, but I'd opt for a good Druid right now over a Paladin. Paladins are still typically best, though, just because they have a year of practice vs Druids that likely don't. Shaman is king right now.
- It appears you are using your Shaman to primarily tank heal on Festergut, given that you also have a Holy Priest and a Resto Druid. This can actually work quite well, but he may need to lay off on Chain Heal in that situation - because it's not really going to heal enough, at this point, to be worth the cast time if he's tank healing.
It's probably worth switching to Healing Surge and whatever else at 3 stacks of Festergut's buff, but for every other point in the fight, Chain Heal is your go-to spell. This is the case for most content right now because a Shaman will literally sit at 95%+ mana spamming this spell to their heart's content. Shaman and mana don't interact right now, so your highest throughput is your best option and with Chain Heal's buff (yes, buff) to even out its healing, Chain Healing off of a tank is almost never a bad idea in this fight.
I am seeing an inordinate amount of overhealing going on from you, the Shaman, and the Paladin. I'm not really sure what your assignments are, as you haven't stated, but it appears from the logs that the Shaman is active 100% of the time - that is, he doesn't really ever stop casting. Yet he is still lagging behind on the meters. This means that he is healing as actively as the top three healers, yet is doing much less - indicating that there may simple not be anything to heal (which would suggest you have too many healers in the encounter and can afford to drop some).
Can agree on the potential for too many healers, but with how damage is still coming in during wrath content, it's definitely not a bad idea to keep the right amount of healers around for those situations. The Shaman is going to have high overhealing because there's no reason NOT to continuously cast. The Paladin is going to have high overhealing because of Protecter of the Innocent and Beacon of Light. Not sure on the OP, but high overhealing is about right for Wrath content.
As far as the Paladin goes, I agree that he is focusing far too much on Flash of Light. It doesn't even appear as a top heal for my guild's Paladins.
A Paladin's focus on Flash of Light in current content is directly related to how your other healers heal. If the paladin is using Divine Light or Holy Light too often, they honestly may as well not be there. Holy Shock and WoG should still be used on CD / at 3 HP though.
If FoL isn't your Paladins' top heal, they're mostly dead weight, as any other healer will be more effective in their shoes right now.
As for meters, they're quite worthless right now in a sense of healing amount = skillful contribution. In an equally skilled raid, you'll see Resto Druids and Disc Priests on top, Holy Priests and Resto Shamans around the next level of healing, and Holy Paladins pretty far below them.
That's actually not true.
The Chain heal buff I'm talking about is the one where if you cast it now with full effectiveness, it does more total healing than pre-patch. The evened out drop off healing strengthened it on multiple targets, not weakened it. If you have 1 target to worry about and only 1, I absolutely agree, it's worse.
However, you simply will NOT run out of mana in current content as a Resto Shaman spamming Chain heal non-stop if it manages to jump the full set of jumps every cast. On Festergut, it does do that. There's no arguing that. Even at 3 stacks of Inhale, your entire set of melee (raid, even) is taking a small amount of damage every 2 seconds. 99% is low enough for Chain Heal to jump, and your other healers are not topping people up to 100% in that two seconds every time. You don't need a run of luck to not run out.
That's not true at all. While the Shaman may be casting near constantly, if the raid isn't overfull on healers, he's generally going to have very low overheal - because Chain Heal is a smart cast. It's automatically going to be jumping to targets that most need it, thus making it a supremely efficient spell. This is my point - if he's far exceeding the median for overhealing, then that's an indication that there are too many healers in the raid. The reason I bring this up is that the OP says she feels like she's "three healing" the encounters, and the meters are showing the Shaman to be low - but that's what's going to happen if there are too many healers in the raid.
Just because Chain Heal jumps to the lowest targets in range, doesn't mean it's doing it effectively. Chain Heal can and will jump out to the close ranged raiders, and then even further out, missing a chance to heal a decent target back in melee. There are also some encounters where you have less than half of the fight that needs the full number of healers, where the rest of it may only need 1 or 2. The start of Deathbringer Saurfang and most of Marrowgar come to mind as dead-times where you can't just drop healers.
I don't think I agree with that. We always bring two paladins with us on our encounters, to tank heal and help with some raid damage (with their new spells). When we lose a paladin, it shows - tank death almost inevitably follows, I know that as the offtank healer, I notice the tanks' health become spikey almost immediately.
With how little Holy Light heals compared to Divine Light and Flash of Light, and how slow it is now, if Holy Light is one of your Paladin's top two heals, he needs to be spending more of his mana. Holy Light is free and slow, and is your go-to spell if you pretty much run out of mana and need to keep healing people. You can weave it in, especially with procs, but for it to be a main-casted spell is extremely flawed.
Also, you may need to take a closer look at your healing team if your tanks are dying as soon as a Paladin or two goes down. Paladins are good at and used to tank healing, but your raid healers also need to keep a strong eye on tanks and whether the tank healers are in a position to do so.
I don't think I fully agree with this. They're a bit more confusing, because there are things that simply cannot be competed with at the moment. However, as a judge of damage being taken, where your healers are in relation to each other healing wise, if people are simply not casting, things like that....meters are perfect. Even now.
I said in a sense of healing amount = skillful contribution. There are many factors involved in reading a healing meter and assuming all of those factors are exactly even, the Druid and Disc Priest are simply healing more effectively. :(
PS: What use are nested quotes if I can't fit all of them into one post? :p
Honestly, nobody is yet really about how healing will be in Cataclysm and who is normally on top or bottom. And its changing every day. Can't respond to your questions yet and probably not before 2011.
I want to plug for the Flash Heal spam business- obivously not entirely spam- holy shock and WoG by opportunity- but tonight, my first big raid on live since the patch as a holy paladin instead of prot or a shaman, I DID feel, often, that I wasn't needed. I was two healing with a shaman part of the night- and I went and respecced for the damage talents and did some off DPS for the evening. Honestly. Then, on Dreamwalker, I pulled 24k hps- pretty low, honestly, for 10-m dreamwalker, if memory serves- but then, the other holy pally was new, and the shaman stayed out tonight. I solo healed it- pretty good speed, too, it made up for my feeling like a fifth wheel much of the night.
OH! Somebody took some damage! I can help, I can help!
Honestly- I started wanting somebody to stand in the green goo just to give me more stuff to do besides exorcism, judge, holy shock, WoG, and FoL now and then.
I didn manage to get close to the shaman in effective healing, not above, but close to it- but ooming myself with FoL anytime I thought it could be useful. :) Still not used to nerfed DP.
I agree with much that's said here- when I eval other healer, I look at their effective healing, and if something is wrong with that, to my eyes, I check overhealing, too. If their overall healing output is low, I ask myself why- nothing to heal? lazy-butt? wrong priorities? I haven't stressed it if there's much of overhealing unless ooming is a problem. If you never need to call for an innervate, neither I nor anyone else cares how much you overheal- it's just something to be aware of with time- I'd take someone with good effective healing and low overhealing over someone with high effective healing and super-high overhealing -probably- -even that I'd look at on a case-by-case basis.
Let me second the xpac fatigue. I know I am struck with it. ICC makes my skin crawl now, and I've been in it less than some.
Vernia's point is salient, too- but many of these things will remain the same.
Watch for effective healing, overhealing, activity- and cooldown usage and timing is a big plus sign- if a person can show that he/she understand the use of healing cooldowns properly, that's a mark of good healing- not a certainty, but a good beginning evidence-
/Fordrus searches his pockets-
I know there was a post from Ghostcrawler talking about paladin trying to heal like they think they'll need to heal in Cataclysm, and using Holy Light too much. I know it was around here somewhere...
/wanders off in search of it. Probably won't be back very soon.
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