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9-02-2011 @ 1:20PM
Heal sniping is inexcusable? Beacon of Light is pretty much *designed* for it. 25 man raiding I could see some argument, but 10 man you can't *not* snipe heals, you're just making the other healer(s) work harder by not doing free healing.
9-02-2011 @ 1:29PM
Beacon of Light isn't designed to snipe heals, it's designed to let paladins actually be able to heal people other than the tank and not have to worry about a tank's imminent death. But you're right, the way it works is very conducive to sniping.
9-02-2011 @ 1:30PM
But, as the article states, it causes drama. No one wants to be the low guy. When your healing targets are being sniped, it looks as though you aren't pulling your weight. This could cause other raiders calling you out about it, and could lower the healers self-esteem.
Then it' about smart placement of your Beacon. If a pally is overhealing because of beacon, you're right, not much to do. But if someone else could have benefitted from the beacon and they've placed it on a target who won't be taking damage, shame on them.
9-02-2011 @ 1:31PM
That's not heal sniping. Heal sniping is going beyond your assigned target, and diverting your attention away from your job. Beacon healing is mostly automatic, and is part of our toolset as paladins.
9-02-2011 @ 1:51PM
Your beacon target is part of your assignment, whether it's spoken or not.Similarly, helping your fellow healer, especially if you can see they need it, isn't sniping. If the Resto Druid is supposed to handle "Blank Debuff'" and they're doing fine at it, but suddenly you get two or three "Blank Debuff"s instead of the normal one because DPS was dumb or you were just extraordinarily unlucky (it is possible in some situations, although rare), helping them because you easily can thanks to Beacon isn't sniping. It's being nice and contributing to doing the encounter.Doing "Blank Debuff" for them every time, regardless of Beacon, would be sniping. Beacon just makes it easier for you to do it without being caught/without slacking on your own jobs/with "an excuse".Sniping is a grey area in general though... sometimes it does happen, absolutely. But sometimes you can argue you shouldn't have been able to beat the person to it, or it's better to not let the guy die than to assume they'll do it (maybe they sneezed/didn't notice/were being bad/etc) and waiting just increases risk, or that you were just trying to help on a difficult fight... but regardless of that, it's certainly something to keep in mind as a possible explanation, especially when the person's attitude supports it (I've played with a horrendous (to the point of nearly letting his own assignments die constantly) sniper, and his out of raid attitude (somewhat supported or at least not tampered by some literal relations within the guild) made it inherently obvious that it was on purpose and it was to be a smug douche).
9-02-2011 @ 1:52PM
Should probably say"Doing "Blank Debuff" for them every time, regardless of Beacon or their ability to handle it themselves, would be sniping." ***
9-02-2011 @ 2:12PM
It is pretty funny to me that advice in this column almost completely contradicts another column ("The Light and How to Swing It: Healing is a zero-sum game" http://wow.joystiq.com/2011/08/28/the-light-and-how-to-swing-it-healing-is-a-zero-sum-game/) published within a week of it, where the columnist said that the only way to improve your healing performance is to push yourself by looking for ways to snipe heal. Perhaps the two authors should throw down in a WoW Insider deathmatch, heal for heal?To me, the only time you really need to worry about healers off assignments is when your raid is mired in a wipe loop. The harder the fight is for your raid group, the closer healing assignments need to be followed. Tyler's advice is aimed towards raids that are stuck and are looking for some answers. Chase's column is more for raids on farm where the healers need a way to stay engaged. But I think this is exactly the problem with blanket statements like "Heal sniping is a big issue that cannot be tolerated in Cataclysm-style raids ..." In some cases, yes, but in others, no.It also totally depends on your raid configuration. 25-person with 8 healers on heroic Ragg, you should pretty much always heal the person(s) assigned. 10-person normal Shannox with only 2 heals, both healers have to help each other, and watch their assignment, and move, and keep an eye on mana. But in that case, the definition of what snipe healing is completely different, and what might be inexcusable in a different setting is unavoidable. Hey, if the Ret paladin wants to throw out a couple heals to help someone, I am all for that.The bottom line is that DPS can usually stop doing damage for a period if the encounter requires movement or some other action outside spamming damage, but a healer cannot just neglect their healing. If they are go OOM, find themselves out of position, or just not pushing the right heal button, that is going to wipe the attempt. Assessing bad healing has to take the circumstances for a healer's choices in consideration, as well as examine the spells they cast (and where, and on whom). It is a problem which unfortunately defies easy analysis and generic advice.
9-02-2011 @ 3:12PM
Heal sniping is largely about intent. Healing outside your assignment is reasonable if your assignment is completely stable and projects to be for as long as you are otherwise occupied and/or healers are falling behind on other assignments. Everything needs to be healed up, someone's mana and GCDs need to be used. In 10-man raids, cross-healing is necessary and unavoidable...a healer who strictly adheres to one assignment and never deviates is almost never going to be pulling his/her weight.If you're attempting to beat other healers to healing up damage that isn't your assignment and that they have under control, that's explicit heal sniping and there isn't any excuse for it unless it's farm content and your culture is such that good-natured, silly competitions are embraced.However, you can end up doing accidental heal sniping if you make bad decisions and heal damage that is already being topped up by a cast in progress or existing HoTs. The second is much more forgivable, but it does mean you need to have better healing awareness.
9-02-2011 @ 4:36PM
I couldn't disagree more with the section on heal sniping. Burning through your mana to fill up every health bar should absolutely be avoided except in the event of an imminent death. Outside of that, however, what else should I be doing if my assigned targets are topped off? I can PoM and if I'm disc I can bubble my target and Smite until my finger breaks, but I'm never going to ignore dropping health pools outside of my assignment. One of the 3 healers in our 10-man raids has almost caught up in gear, but the other priest and I have continued to outgear her by a decent margin since the firelands opened up, not to mention the fact that she didn't have Tier 11 set bonuses to get her started. Asking her to handle any assignment solo would be throwing her into a situation where she simply doesn't have the tools to succeed. You have to help in that environment.My philosophy is always that healing assignments are open-ended. If you're on a tank and you don't have anything to do, you should be healing any other damaged player within your range. If you're on raid and everybody is healthy, drop extra heals on the tanks. I'm all about efficiency. I never cast flash heal (unless it's a free one), and I don't anticipate damage on targets outside of my own. That goes far beyond the scope of my assignments. But casting heal is cheap and shouldn't be deterred simply because it could possibly lead to overhealing done by another healer. Unless everybody within my range is at full health, if I'm not casting, I'm not doing everything I can to contribute to the success of my raid.(Granted, this philosophy made Baleroc exceptionally difficult for me to wrap my head around. One of our healers calls out swaps so I can make sure I'm on the right target. Outside of this fight, there should be no exclusive targets so long as you haven't neglected your own.)
9-03-2011 @ 6:28AM
@ BB Crispwhat you're describing, helping a lesre geared healer with their assignment, isn't what I would call heal sniping. I would call that team work. No healer should ignore someone on low health where they have the capcity to heal them and it won't mean their assignment is compromised. The weaker healer, or the harder task, needs the support of the rest of the team. Otherwise you'll wipe all night because of inflexibility.I have a healer who is very poorly focused, His assignments die because he cannot manage to just do what he is told. That to me is a problem - healing outside your assignment should never put your assignment at risk. Only caveat I have there is if you are about to lose a tank and you can hold the rest of the fight together if a dps dies, but you have to save the tank. The guy has serious focus issues, but goes on about his healing figures. Makes me want to slap him
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