Archive for March, 2010

We interrupt your regularly scheduled program…for a Yay!

Our 10-man downed Professor Putricide last night after a few group changes and minor perfections. We have tried him for a few nights now, but got him on this 1st attempt on this reset with this group! On to the Blood Princes. 🙂

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Mouseover Macros – Easy Healing for All!

There are many different ways a person can heal. Healbot, Clique, Vuhdo (which I am still in the process of checking out), and just basic clicking. My favorite method that I have been using is called mouseover macros. Mouseover Macros are a simple way to heal that can shave seconds off your healing.

Let’s start with the basics. A mouseover macro is one that can be used with any general party frame system, ie Grid, Pitbull, general WoW UI, ect. When you put your mouse over the player, you can hit your keybound spell and it will cast it on them without you having to click on the player.

Now many may ask how this can make your healing more effective. While you may not notice, most systems have a lag time from when you click on a target to when you are actually able to cast the spell. Whether it is .2 seconds or  a full second, it is always there. It could be system lag, UI lag, server lag, or internet lag.  Wherever the lag stems from, it can be a matter of life and death to a character! Well…maybe not that bad, but it can get pretty annoying. Plus clicking on a player and then moving and clicking on a spell and give your wrist a heck of a time in raids!

How to create a macro:

  1. Hit “ESC” and then click on Macros. The macro menu will appear.
  2. Click on “New.” This will open a menu to the right.
  3. Choose a name and icon for your macro.
  4. Go to the dialog box and enter the macro:

#showtooltip Spell Name
/stopcasting
/cast [target=mouseover,nomodifier,exists] Spell Name

Then all you need to do is drag the icon to your bars! Pretty easy huh? Well….lets just look at an example.

Rejuvenation:

#showtooltip Rejuvenation
/stopcasting
/cast [target=mouseover,nomodifier,exists] Rejuvenation;

This will make the icon on your bar the actual Rejuvenation icon! Pretty nifty. Now, when you put your mouse over a target and press the key, you will cast Rejuvenation.

I use this with grid and I can just move through each target and hit the button and everyone will get Rejuv!

This can be used for each druid spell, making your targeting quick and easy.

There are some variations to this macro, most of which will work just fine. But, this one is very universal and works wonders. There are other great macros for druids as well, like a Rebirth and a Nature Swiftness/Healing Touch Macro. I will get to these next time!

Happy Healing.

Curse.com UI Pack

My UI has been approved on a pack on curse.com!It is called Sarindre’s Raid Healing UI!

Link: http://wow.curse.com/downloads/packs/5760/default.aspx

I will be happy to answer any questions about the addons and how to set them up!

Enjoy!

My Raid UI, showing addons.

As promised, here is what my UI with addons looks like while I raid.

Here you can see that I have Grid arranged horizontally and Smart Debuff arranged Vertically. This helps me fit both addons in the little corner of my screen:

In the next two pictures, you can see Quartz, Tiptac (which should be hidden during combat! Opps!), Deadly Boss Mods, and Mik’s Scrolling Combat Text.

  • Quartz is a customizable casting bar. It will report any lag that you are having (boo I have .9 seconds there!) and shows you casting time clearly.
  • TipTac will show you everything about a target when you put the mouse over it. You can choose from many different things the addon can show you. Ranging from Gearscore to spec!
  • Deadly Boss Mods is a must for any raider (unless you are running Big Wigs which is also a good one). This mod tells you bosses abilities on timers. You can choose where the bars are and how you want information to be displayed.
  • Mik’s Scrolling Combat Text is a completely cosmetic mod for me. Not really a necessity but something I like. It shows me how much I am healing (on the right side) and how much damage I am taking or what I am being healed for (on the right side). The top tells me abilities I have gained (ie auras, buffs) and mana gained during combat. The bottom reports when my abilities are off cooldown.

In this last picture you will see a bit more of Pitbull, Omen, and Mik’s Scrolling Combat Text.

  • Pitbull here is when I have a target and it also shows the target’s target. Now I rarely have anyone targeted since I use mouseover macros to heal, but I wanted to show what my targeting looked like. I also placed it on the left side right above grid because during most of the time I am healing, I am just focused on grid and putting my target there is pretty logical for me.
  • Omen for me is not really useful. I am RARELY at a fear of pulling aggro. However, since I am a raid assistant to my group, it is nice to watch who has aggro so that I can warn them to slow down (or preemptively heal them =D )

I also am up for trying new addons and macros especially helpful healing ones. I am sure I will have more to report after I try a few new ones that I have heard about here.

Up next….Mouseover Macros! A Healers Best Friend.

Useful Healing Addons

Throughout my healing career, I have used many methods to help me heal more effectively. When I began the game I used the dreaded WoW UI and just clicked on a target and then casted the heal by pressing the number key I had it associated with.

When I became a little more WoW savvy, I would then use my F keys to choose the target and then hit the number button for the heal. This made my healing way faster than before, but was only useful for 5 mans. I never played with my mouse, only using it to loot. This method worked for a long while with me, what was until I wanted to raid.

Obviously you do not have 40 F keys available to use and I did not even like using all 10 F keys for 10 Mans. I had to find a new method. I did my research and found out all about WoW addons. I was enchanted! I loved the idea of changing my screen to fit my needs.

I started by using the WoW raid frames to change my healing. I would pull them out onto my screen, click on the names and then heal. This worked, depending on fight I would have some lag with clicking but I was getting really fast at this.

Then about 2 years ago I found Grid, and even since then we have been having a sultry love affair. I love this raid UI, which I also use during 5 mans as well. This let me keep my raid frames small and still be able to click on them and then hit my heal number. I would still use my F keys to heal the party I was in (usually the tank group because of old Tree of Life Buff). I was just as fast as when I used WoW frames, but my screen was much less cluttered. Plus Grid would show my who had aggro, health, mana, and any debuffs the party had. It was like everything all in one!

Today I use Grid with mouseover Macros to make my healing even more effective but that is a different discussion.

Another useful addon to heal heal is SmartDeBuff. Debuffing can be a major part of healing, especially in certain fights. This addon has all party/raid members grouped by class (or by group number) and when they get any debuff that you can remove, it will mark the box with a “L” or “R.”  This means you must left or right click on the persons box. This will remove the debuff from the target without making you choose them and lose your target! This makes debuffing insanely easy.

SmartBuff is another big helper. Most healing classes have a few buffs to give out and how annoying is it for people to ask for buffs all the time? Very! With this addon, all it takes is a middle mouse wheel roll and you will buff everyone who needs it! Takes the guesswork out of buffing.

These are just a few addons that I feel help me heal. But of course I run with many more!

Pitbull – I love this addon. It makes your player interface very customizable. I can change my health and mana bars, my character portrait, and target information. You can also do party windows ad raid windows here too.

Bartender4 – This addon makes your bars look neat and clean! Completely customizable. Don’t like squared buttons? Have circle ones! Want to hide some bars so that they only appear when you put your mouse over it? You can do it too! I actually love this feature, it makes my bars less cluttered.

Sexy Map – This lets you move your mini map and make it look however you want it. Pretty neat!

Recount – Tells you what you healed during a fight and raid. Also reports DPS, Damage taken, total damage done and many other things! Will compile reports till reset.

Prat – Colors your chat frames by Guild, Party, Raid, ect. Also colors names of players by class. A fun addon!

BTex – Lets you create a background for your screen. You can download or create your own!

Monkey Clock – Customizable clock that you can move.

Monkey Quest – Clean quest log you can move and keep track of quests with. Color codes by level difficulty.

Buffalo3 – Move your buffs and debuffs to maximize room.

Fubar Addons (the addons will NOT pop up during combat, you can turn that feature on and off):

  • FriendFu – Lists all your friends. Can see them without opening the menu!
  • GuildFu – Easy way to see guild members. Same as FriendFu but for guildies!
  • HeyFu – Tells you when you have a whisper. Great if you missed it!
  • XPFu – Gives you a summary of days played, level, xp amount and xp needed. Great for leveling.
  • DurabilityFu – Lets you know what your armor is at. Also tells you how must it will cost to repair for all rep levels.
  • CurrencyFu – How much money you have. The menu that pops up when you hover over it will tell you how much you have throughout all your characters and how much you spent and lost.
  • BagFu – How much free bag space you have.

I also run WIM which is a WoW instant message screen. It helps me keep track of everyone I am talking to on there own condensed screen.

After raid tonight, I will be posting a raid picture and highlighting Grid, SmartBuff, and SmartDebuff in their full effect! Stay Tuned.

Mana…oh Mana!

Raiding as any class that uses mana can be rough, but healers can have a really tough time. Yes, when DPS run out of mana they just stand around and do not damage the boss but when healers run out of mana….people die.

So how do we keep our mana at a high level the entire boss fight? Well there are mana tips and tricks available to us, especially as a Druid.

First and foremost, make sure you are at full mana before the fight. I know this is a “no duh” kinda idea, but I have seen healers and DPS alike go into battle with half mana and then wonder why they are out after 30 seconds. This is especially common after a wipe and healers have rezzed and healed the entire party up.

During the fight, there is one major thing a Druid needs to look out for…over HoTting. We have HoTs (Regrowth and Rejuvenation) and we like to keep them on targets (especially tanks) at all times. But there is such a thing as too many HoTs. For example, do not through a Rejuvenation on a target if they have 8 seconds left in the HoT. What is the point? It is just a waste of mana. Same with Regrowth. If there is 12 seconds left in the Regrowth HoT, do not cast it on the target again. You will find that by doing this, you will have a more continuously full mana pool. If a target needs heals and has both HoTs on them, just cast Nourish. It will heal them and will not be a wasted cast.

Innervate is one of the best spells created for getting mana back. Now, if there is no Shaman in the party with Mana Tide Totem (ie Resto Shammy), then I will cast Innervate at 40% mana. This will almost bring me up to about a 75% mana bar. Doing it too early can fill you up too much waste the mana gained back. Since this is only a 3 minute cooldown, doing this spell too late will only let you hit it once per fight, instead of the usual two times. For fights that have a enrage timer, I will use Innervate sooner so that I can get it twice per fight (usually around 75%).

Another way to get mana back is mana potions. I will not use mine right away. Instead I will wait till I am back at 30% mana after the mana from the Innervate is gone. This will give me enough mana till either the boss is dead or my Innervate is off cooldown again.

This is just for a Druid that is healing without a Shadow Priest or Resto Shammy. These will increase your mana gain tenfold. If you are with a Resto Shammy, ask them when they usually drop mana totem so that you are not Innervating at the same time.

Just remember always take the HoTting slow. Do not over HoT a person for no reason. Let the timers tick till 1 second before you cast another Rejuvenation and 2 seconds before you recast a Regrowth.

Next…helpful Addons!

Rotation, Rotation, Rotation

Is there really a resto druid healing rotation? Yes and No I would say.

Tank healing is a bit different than raid healing. Usually you will find Resto Druids on raid, however they can still be effective tank healers if they need to be.

Tank Healing Focus –

Right before or right as a tank is running into battle I will HoT them with a Regrowth and Rejuvenation and I will continue to roll these two HoTs on the tank during the fight. Then I will use Nourish to supplement healing until I cast Regrowth again. For intense damage fights, I can spam Nourish (almost like a Flash of Light spam) very effectively. I will also throw Wild Growths on the tank, which will in turn hit everyone around them (especially useful in raid damage fights or fights when both tanks take damage). If I run into any danger situations, I will Natures Swiftness/Healing Touch the tank. As most of you know, Nourish is a smaller heal than most other healers quick heals. If I run into trouble (ie fear or cleaves)and cannot keep the tank consistently up, I will use NS/HT to stabilize them. Then continue to HoT and Nourish to keep the tank at full.

Raid Healing Focus –

Even when I am raid healing, I will still keep the tanks running HoTs. No matter what because when tanks die, its over! So tanks are priority one. For the raid, I will throw a Rejuvenation on each person when I know raid damage is occurring. (Think Devastate on Precious). I will also cast Wild Growth when party members are standing close enough together to receive the healing. This is great for melee targets. If I find that only one or two members are taking mass amounts of raid damage, I will cast Regrowth on them along with Rejuvenation. This will heal them to full and will keep them with HoTs on for further damage. I find that I can usually just throw a Rejuvenation on a target and they will be healed to full very quickly.

There are a few heals the Resto Druid has that I do not use except in specific situations. These would be Lifebloom, Tranquility, and Healing Touch.

Lifebloom – Costs way too much mana for what it provides. This is 28% of your base mana, for me this is around 842 mana. This is just for one stack and it is most effective at rolling 3! Yes this spell has an great amount of healing, but you will be out of mana before 1/4th of the fight is over.

Tranquility – I like this spell but I find very few instances to use it (except in a few ICC fights: Devastate FTL)  This spell heals everyone from the party standing in it for a massive amount every 2 seconds but cost 70% of base mana. Plus the 8 minute cool down does not allow you to use this heal all the time.

Healing Touch – Unless glyphed and specced correctly, this spell is a 3 second cast and cost around 1200 mana. Now again, there are many variables available if you have certain talents and glyphs but with the spec that is most effective, this is not viable. It is worth the NS/HT to bring a person up in an emergency though.

That s my normal spell “rotation” when I am raiding.

Up next…Mana oh mana!

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