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Click the Lightwell -- no, really ...

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I like to think I'm a decent rogue. My DPS is pretty good, I know my rotation like the back of my hand, and I've got orange weapons with which to stab things. More important than that (to me, anyway) is the fact that I use self-heals almost religiously, without thinking about it. I think a good portion of that comes from having been a healer originally and having an understanding about healing and just how difficult it is. I don't want to make it more difficult; I just want to happily stab things. In order to do that effectively, I need to not die.

That said, I love Lightwell. It's a nice little spell that priests toss on the ground, and you click it to use it. Earlier versions of Lightwell were a little clunky and difficult to use, but today's version is pretty streamlined. I don't lose my target if I click the Lightwell, and I don't have to be on top of the thing to click it. It's a handy little heal to have, much like a Healthstone or even Recuperate. Since I'd rather be using DPS-boosting potions than healing potions, I'll take any little heals I can get.

Oddly enough, not everyone does. And I can't quite figure out why.

Pugnacious Priest wrote a post about the woes of Lightwell and using it in raids -- particularly because to her, it seems like nobody uses the thing. And she's got the logs to back that up. But more importantly, she pointed out that people seem to have a problem taking responsibility for their own health, whether it be via using the Lightwell or a Healthstone or whatever class-based self-heal you happen to have as a player.

Speaking as a DPSer, it's odd to me that anyone wouldn't use whatever healing they happen to have handy, particularly in endgame raids. Yes, you may lose a second or two of DPS, but you'll still be alive -- and as the old adage goes, a dead DPSer does no DPS at all. Speaking as someone who used to be a full-time raid healer, I have an idea of just how difficult healing is. In vanilla WoW, you had 40 health bars to watch like a hawk, and you were usually assigned a particular group or two to handle or main tank healing.

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But you couldn't sit there and spam heals all day; you usually swapped out in healing rotations. And it probably looked really easy from the standpoint of the DPSers stabbing merrily away at the dragon, but it wasn't. You had to simultaneously watch where you were moving and dodge the same things as the rest of the DPSers and keep your eyes on everyone's health bars at the same time. Sometimes it seemed like trying to watch two televisions simultaneously and trying to follow the plots of both.

To the average player, it might seem like the smaller raid sizes that were introduced in later expansions would fix that problem, but it really didn't. Healers these days have a host of spells in their arsenal that didn't exist in vanilla WoW, a ton of different cooldowns that they have to time carefully. And if it my missing a second or two of DPS to heal myself makes their job a little easier, then so be it. I don't want to wipe, and I don't want to pay repair bills.

That said, I'm kind of wondering why people wouldn't click the Lightwell or use the Healthstone. To me, it's common sense and almost second nature to do so by now -- you'd think that everyone would have clued in that the little shiny pool of light is a pretty good thing to have around. About the only time I don't click the Lightwell is if our healer has placed it square in the middle of the pack of melee. Not because I don't want to, but because I can't find the silly thing to click on it.

I'm curious, though -- with all the self-heals and damage-reducing abilities the various DPS classes have, how many actually use them? Do people just not realize they can reduce the damage they take? Do people just have a generally lack of understanding about the amount of stress a healer goes through to play their class effectively? Or is the sole concern of DPSers simply pumping out damage, without care of whether or not they're going to take a dirt nap?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

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