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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.
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