Oh Kittydoom, where have you been?

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Where have I been these many months. Embarrasingly enough I’ve been hiding  in the relative comfort of my own guild’s forums, that and fine tuning my own personal character in the  the attempt to fight the good fight against Deathwing.

In all honesty, I’ve really had nothing to say for the last little while. I suppose I took that time away from blogging to improve my own character, finish up some long and much needed achievements (Insane in the Membrane being the big one), and taking the time out to enjoy the company of my guildmates. I’ve also taken the time to gear up and learn to play some of my many alts. (With the advent of LFR tool, this has made it easier, though much to my frustration they have better luck with loot than my main…)

I’ve also taken the time, and a page out of my hunter loving guild leader’s book, and started a second priest. I’m learning a lesson in patience, and well holy priesting. For those that know me on a personal level I play two specs. Disc and well….disc. The second spec mainly for goofing around in regular heroics with whatever guildmate needs gearing help (or to irk my guildleader as I out DPS his ret paladin), alot of folks are going, why would you do something like that?!?! You’re crazy.

The same guild leader simplified it. You can’t have all three specs on your toon, many players in top end guilds also have doubles of their mains so they learn all aspects of their class, plus, you can raid more on the toon that drives you to keep coming back to Warcraft.

So, for me, this is going to be a lesson in patience. I’m levelling as *gasp* HOLY. I am healing dungeons at a low level (I miss fade, already).

This doesn’t mean that I’m going to switch my main’s mainspec or offspec to holy. (NOT GOING TO HAPPEN, TOO EXPENSIVE). Especially after realising that I have her gemming and reforging down to an art that costs me 157g in 7 weeks of reforging (at the beginning of a new content patch). It just means that I’ll be a better discipline priest, and with that I’m happy.

Well, I’m currently typing this in between turning in quests. I’m level 24, just earned fade, and I’ll keep y’all updated!

[Humor] Raid Rules

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I read this once from some other site and thought is was great. Thought I would share with you

 

 

I find it terribly hard to remember all the nuances of each boss fight. Sorry, but I’m just not hard-core enough to memorize who casts what, and I really don’t care if Pixie McNixie in the bottom of some hole is planning to fear me, sheep me, or chop me in half with a big heavy axe.

 

Why? Because overall things are pretty much the same from one boss to the next, so I figured I could come up with a single set of rules on how to raid ANYTHING. I’ve appropriately named these rules “A Single Set Of Rules On How To Raid ANYTHING.”

 

Getting Ready:

Many people go to YouTube and watch Tankspot videos to familiarize themselves with the fights. This is a waste of time, because all you really need are my simple rules. Not 100% sure? Here are some additional reasons for skipping the videos:

 

1. Those people in the videos are ELITE WIZARDS and your raid team is not going to do anywhere near as well as them. It’s like watching an Olympic gold medalist do the ski jump and then trying it yourself. Forget about it.

 

2. There are less steps to preparing your taxes than there are to fights like Freya. Watching Tankspot explain it on YouTube will only give you a headache. Your guild is going to wipe on it anyway, so no need to give yourself a migraine. Skip the video and use my rules below!

 

Let’s Raid!

Ok, so here is my Single Set Of Rules On How To Raid ANYTHING:

 

1. DO NOT stand in anything that wasn’t there before the fight started, if it visually looks dangerous. This includes fire, black steaming circles of nastiness, green slimy stuff, purple ooze, etc. If you are not sure, stand in it for a second and see if your health goes down. If it does, MOVE.

 

2. DEFINITELY DO stand in anything that wasn’t there before the fight started, if it visually looks beneficial. This includes pleasant rays of fairy moonlight, air with lightning bug / glittery things in it, shiny sparkly spots on the floor, or anything else that a 3 year old girl might want to color. If you are not sure, stand in it for a second. If nothing bad happens, definitely keep standing it it because it MUST be doing something good.

 

3. Do the following based on your function:

 

Tank: Attack the boss with everything you got. Keep doing this and don’t stop until your healer drags you away screaming at you, “STOP! STOP! HE’S DEAD ALREADY!”

 

Heal: Keep healing until everyone is either dead and blaming you, or the boss is dead. In the latter case, it is your job to drag the tank away from the bloody corpse.

 

DPS: Do the same as the tank, but wait a fraction of a second before doing so. This way, if you get aggro, you can blame the Tank. Otherwise, he will blame you. That fraction of a second makes all the difference on who gets blamed for the wipe. Use it wisely. Now this next part is important: If adds arrive, you need to make a visual check of how dangerous they look. If they look like they can be ignored, stay on the boss. If they look really nasty, switch to the add. Simple! Or you can always fall back on the “watch what everyone else is doing and copy them” strategy, but I’m training you to be a trailblazer, so get in there and blaze that trail!

 

Off Tank: You’re on the adds. Someday, if you ever become cool enough or geared enough, the guild might let you be a REAL tank. But probably not anytime soon. So stick to adds. And if you run like a madman all over the map with a trail of adds behind you, creating a hellish conga-line of death, all the DPSers are going to HATE YOU. So keep your butt in one spot, take your beating, and suck it up.

 

4. DO NOT stand in a Boss’ AOE. The crap raining down on your head should be an obvious sign that it’s time to pack up and move.

 

5. Should a boss fight require you to operate some sort of vehicle, land mount, or drake, randomly mash buttons as fast as the cool-downs allow. Generally, Button 1 is the biggie one to mash, so mash it more than the others. No one’s really going to notice if you did well or not, so just mash, mash, mash! You’re a pro!

 

6. If you get aggro, run TOWARD your teammates, not away from them. It’s the surest way to get rid of that unwanted boss who’s taken serious notice of you. Ideally, run toward (and right through) a mage. Mages are a big, big help with getting rid of aggro. If you’re a warlock, you can even strategically position yourself right next to a mage throughout the fight, and Soulshatter as needed. Be sure to turn toward the mage when Soulshattering, so that you can watch the look on his face when the boss 1-shots him. If you’re a mage, disregard everything I’ve just said, and take one for the team.

 

7. The laws of the universe that govern comic books, video games, and science fiction in general require that twins ALWAYS have some sort of symbiotic relationship, and a special power will CERTAINLY exist between them. Therefore, any time there are twin bosses (or even twin adds if they’re extremely dangerous looking), they MUST be killed simultaneously. Very bad things happen when one twin witnesses the death of the other. Heed my warning, and kill any and all twins at the same time. Further, they cannot be allowed to touch each other or send each other any kind of glowing orb, ray beam, soothing rainbow, etc. You don’t want the wonder-twins activating ANYTHING. So keep them apart, kill them apart, and do it at the same time.

 

If you follow these simple rules, you’re sure to be a success at your next raid. I advise you to print this out and keep it handy. Review it during the boring buff periods before raiding, or when the tank is off begging for another healer. And be sure to stop back by and let me know how it went! Happy raiding!

Alysrazor: How I hate thee, yet how I love thee at the same time!

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I finally stepped back into the 10 man raiding arena this week while my guild was attempting Alysrazor. (After a much needed break).

I will admit, that Blizzard was rather creative with the encounter in and of itself, and I found the fight to be rather refreshing. The fight is complex, and busy, but not obnoxiously so.

We brought in three healers (Discipline Priest, Restoration Druid, and Restoration Shaman), our DPS (Frost Mage, Feral Druid, Fury Warrior, Survival Hunter and one other), and our two favorite tanks (Protection Paladin and Warrior).

As a Discipline Priest I was assigned to keep our Protection Warrior alive, occasionally assisting on raid as needed. (Transitions, and dropping barrier). I’m finding that the glyphed barrier is amazing on this fight. Phase 1 where people take a touch of damage, the additional 10% healing provided to all under the barrier doubled with a round of Prayer of Healing did wonders for getting the extra boost on raid heals where we needed it, at least during transitions (and when people stayed under the barrier, had a few issues with people dashing out too quickly, but I suppose that’s the nature of the barrier, some folks are afraid to stand in stuff, even when it’s good for them.)

I, unfortunately, struggled with the fire vortex portion of the fight. It took me a little longer than most to master the art of dodging firenados. Which resulted in some embarrassing moments for me, but once I figured it out, it was exceptionally easy. Our Restoration Shaman shared a link from Icy Veins which helped with dodging the vortexes. Once I mastered that strategy, the entire fight went much smoother for me. I strongly recommend that you take a look at the strategy that is provided.

The phase where Alysrazor is actually tanked was a little challenging. We did have an initial situation with stacking up, mainly a logistics issue, no point of reference on where to stack up resulting in some of us eating a well placed cleave. Our raid leader kindly put marks down for us (One for where the boss’ head was to go, and one for where we were going to stack up). Moving into that position part way through the ignition portion of the fight, made that transition go smoothly. Ensuring I had adequate time to be in position, prime an aegis on the tank, and then place barrier down for some additional healing for the raid.

In all, I feel the fight is definitely one that we will succeed in completing when our 10-man raid reconvenes next week.

 

4.2 – A Disciplined Outlook

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4.2 is almost on us, and there is quite a bit of hype involving some of the major changes that the patch is bringing us, and there is the requisite doom saying as well, I don’t project nerfs, but I do see a sizable number of discipline priests needing to revamp their healing style.

It seems that in the current patch we’re in bubble spamming is rather in vogue at the moment, and priests are utilizing their external regen cooldowns (innervate and Mana Tide Totem). Sadly, these things are getting hit rather hard with the good old Blizzard brand Nerfbat.

Innervate now grants an ally target 5% of his or her maximum mana over 10 seconds, but still grants 20% of the druid’s maximum mana over 10 seconds when self-cast.

for Druids, and for Shamans:

Mana Tide now grants 200% of the caster’s Spirit, down from 400%.

Potentially that could mean the loss of bubble spammers. They’ll either change their playstyle, or roll a different toon. I was a bubble spammer when it was viable to do so, it was effective and it did what I wanted it to do, when they changed Discipline, I adjusted my gear slightly and use it when the situation arises, but I find it more viable to use Prayer of Mending, Penance, and Inner Focus/Greater Heal combination, I’ve also been known to use renew when there is small amounts of damage that need to be topped up.

The really big thing that has me excited is the following:

All healing critical strikes now heal for 2 times a normal heal (+100%), up from 1.5 times a normal heal (+50%).

The potential of this amuses me to no end. This should potentially make us stronger main tank healers (I’ve been tank healing since I started raiding again on my priest). During my zip through the internet, someone mentioned that this buff would bring back more tank healing/jack of all trades type disc priests. With the bigger crit numbers we should be seeing larger Aegis, which means more absorb, especially off tanks. Though, I’ve been hearing through a few sources that this change is not really going to affect holy priests as much as the holy priests would like.

Well. We’ll see what 4.2 brings us. Until then, Happy Raiding!

[Guilty Pleasures] WoW Heroes

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One thing I’ve noticed about end game raiders is we’ve always had a scale with with to measure one another up against. It’s been titles, gear score,  mounts, achievements, and gear ranking via WoW-Heroes. I hadn’t thought of WoW-Heroes until a friend of mine brought up how well geared my priest is.

That sort of got the wheels turning as to where I stood with my gear compared to others of my class,  faction, and even realm. I suppose it has something to do with e-peen, the need to be better than someone in some strange capacity. As I type this I’m currently sitting in Stormwind next to someone with the Dragonslayer title. I would absolutely kill to have that title, no pun intended. I do have my Defender of a Shattered World title, which I worked long and hard to earn. I was pretty excited that I was one of the first group of people to have the title. I was proud that I was there to help create and learn the strategies that ultimately got us the kills we needed.

Though, taking a look at WoW-Heroes I was pleasantly surprised to see that they were back up and running. Curiosity got the better of me and I had to look my character up. Looking at her, I noticed one glaring error which I promptly fixed. I then wondered where I stacked up against other Discipline Priests on both Horde and Alliance. To say I faired well would be an understatement, in both I’m in the top 10.

But then, a humbling thought is that you can have all the gear in the world, but that doesn’t mean that you’re going to be the best player in the game, no where near. In fact it takes a combination of skill, knowledge of your class and gear to be the ultimate priest healer, but sometimes looking at a site like WoW-Heroes is a bit of a self-esteem booster.

 

And Now for Something Completely Different…

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Good evening, as you may notice I’m not your usual blogger, I am, as you may notice, the Laughing Warlock. And, pray tell, am I doing on a healer blog? Providing commentary from the peanut gallery as it were. I suggested that perhaps a dps viewpoint my be sometimes beneficial in such a blog, and the beneficent owner of this snappy little place said okey dokey, but try not to make a fool of yourself. I make no promises.

Healing is a constant worry for a warlock, and it isn’t. It’s sorta odd for me. Half the time I’m fine, drain life, affliction talents, and the like give me a pretty weighty ability to top myself off, and I get pats on the head for doing so. However, there’s an elephant in the room in respect to my class….I treat my health bar as a mana bar. And healers just looooove that.

Dps is, in general, pretty squishy. Not our fault, it’s just fun watching the boss die, zomg look at my numbers! Then…then I lifetap right as Chimaeron takes a bite out of everyone….ouch. A good dps is cognizant of his health and his damage. A GREAT dps is cognizant of the drain he’s putting on his healer. I’m…okay. I’m usualy pretty connected to the strain I put on the healer, but especially when a boss is getting low, I can get pretty severe tunnel vision.And after that…well…smooshed warlock. Not laughing at that point.

So, next time a dps gives you guff because they died, ask them if they were watching their health bar, if there is indignant silence, feel free to label them an idiot. If they say yes, and they blew all their cooldowns….then maybe you should listen to what they have to say.

This has been your friendly neighborhood guest blogger and lunatic, The Laughing Warlock, bringing you the musings of a longtime imp enthusiast and lover of festive green fire.

Inner Focus: Macros, Mods and Codes

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 Inner Focus: An extremely valuable spell in a discipline priest’s arsenal. A short cooldown providing a reduction in the mana cost of a priest’s next Flash Heal, Binding Heal, Greater Heal or Prayer of Healing by 100% and increasing its critical effect chance by 25%.

Matticus over at World of Matticus posed a rather interesting statement on Twitter. He said,  “How to get Matt to use Inner Focus on Progression Cause he Worries too Much About Other Stuff Like Dying.”

While out and about today doing some non-wow related stuff, I mulled it over, and tried to figure out how I use Inner Focus without thinking about it, and to be honest I’m not sure how I do it, I believe that it’s something instinctual, or at least trained.  I catch myself all the time hitting my keybind for Inner Focus on my other healers, and then going to myself. Why did I do that?

I surprised myself earlier this week while using Raid Bots that in one evening I used Inner Focus a total of 99 times.  When Matticus posted his statement, I thought about the different options that are out there.

Mods

 

I was wondering what options were out there for tracking when Inner Focus was up and what would be more convenient for someone that gets so busy worrying about dying that they would forget to use Inner Focus.

Power Auras Classic

For a while I used Power Auras to track things like Inner Focus, Penance, and Rapture procs. I found that Derevka at Tales of A Priest and Plus Heal had an excellent list of necessary Power Auras imports for both Holy and Discipline Priests, as well as for general raiding. I especially like the tone that would play when Rapture was ready to go.

Tell Me When

I don’t have much experience with this particular mod, but I have heard many awesome things about it. Unfortunately due to my unfamiliarity with the mod I’m going to believe that it would work rather well.

Macros

Within the architecture of World of Warcraft we are allowed to easily program macros. I have Inner Focus bound to the same macro as my Synapse Springs with the following macro.

 /use Mercurial Handwraps

/cast Inner Focus

Because I’ve grown to a point within the game where I’m not relying on a mod to tell me when my Inner Focus is off cooldown, I just hit the button that this macro is bound to, and then start my heal.

Searching through the internet, I am seeing that you can set up both Healbot and Vuhdo to handle Inner Focus, though I’m not sure of the mechanics behind it as I’ve not used either mod in quite some time.

When it comes down to increasing your usage of Inner Focus, the only thing I can recommend is that you do what fits your play style.

 

 

 

 

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