May 19th 2010 8:46AM AVR/AVRE is indeed a huge resource hog, but if your system can swing it the results are amazing.
Joe, this is a great column, thanks.
May 12th 2010 3:52PM And Ginny, you blindly cheerlead for Joe no matter how questionable or simply misleading the advice is. (Earth Shield on Rotface slime tanks, bouncing Chain Heal off a tank with a stacking MS debuff, I could go on).
For the record, this article was nothing to complain about.
May 5th 2010 11:06AM Joe, thanks for replying. I do understand that not everybody stacks haste.
Yes, one Chain Heal isn't better than one un-hasted Healing Wave. But the two additional hasted Healing Waves are a net increase, even if it pushes out the next Riptide. Apparently every holy paladin I've ever run with stinks horribly, because I've not been beat using this rotation. And I'm well under the soft cap.
May 4th 2010 4:43PM Way to miss the boat, Joe! Shaman are arguably the best portal healer for the Dreamwalker encounter. You'd think this would be emphasized, rather than more column space spent on add abilities of only marginal interest to healers.
What this fight requires is liberal abuse of the Tidal Waves buff, specifically for its haste to Healing Wave. To get the most out of the buff, think of it as a DPS rotation.
There's a lot going on in this rotation, and these spells all work together to beat Holy Paladins at their own game. This only works, of course, because the portals give you infinite mana.
Riptide is the anchor of your rotation, and you should already be used to using this on cooldown. Each cast instantly splashes the dragon with a heal, leaves a HoT, and most important of all gives you 30% lower casting time on your next two Healing Wave casts. With the first half of your T10 bonus, the first Healing Wave is hasted an additional 20%. The big picture is, with ICC haste levels, both of these Healing Wave nukes will be in the neighborhood of one second in casting time.
Many shaman seem content to just keep casting Healing Wave until Riptide comes off cooldown, but this really leaves a lot of healing synergy on the table. What do I mean? With straight RT-HW spam, you're casting at least one, and more likely two un-hasted Healing Waves before Riptide is again available. If you do cast Riptide as soon as it's available, you'll override the last few ticks of the HoT, putting 20% of the Riptide's potential heal to waste.
This is where the Chain Heal works its magic. It may bounce to another raid member, but you don't care. This Chain Heal will consume the Riptide HoT, so none of it goes to waste. In addition, the Chain Heal hits the dragon 25% harder, again thanks to Riptide. But most importantly, Chain Heal triggers Tidal Waves, which gives you two more nearly-one second Healing Wave nukes. All this from one cast of Chain Heal, which isn't much longer than the un-hasted Healing Wave you would've had to cast anyways.
By abusing Tidal Waves in this manner, you should have no problem keeping up with those pesky Paladins, likely surpassing them unless they're at the absolute top of their game. Paladins may have their Bacon, but we have plenty of automated healing of our own. Eathliving is going to tack on an occasional HoT, as will Chain Heal crits if you have a full T10 set. Ancestral Awakening is going to be huge, accounting for upwards of 20% of your total healing on the dragon. I believe this is due to the dragon not being in your raid / party, meaning that the dragon will always get the AA heal even if people in your raid have a lower percentage of health.
As for portals, my only advice is to practice. Different camera angles will work for different people, so find what suits you best. Don't be afraid to bend the rotation as the situation demands -- if the raid healers are in a jam, a supercharged Chain Heal on the raid instead of the dragon will be a big help, and will still refresh your Tidal Waves buff. If you're about to hop in to a portal and Riptide is off cooldown, hit the dragon again even if it clips. Regen trinkets (Solace, Purified Lunar Dust, etc) aren't useful beyond their Spell Power, so don't be afraid to swap these for throughput trinkets instead. Above all, use common sense.
Apr 28th 2010 4:25PM That would be a 'move'. This is a 'copy'. Your real characters are safe.
Apr 22nd 2010 9:13AM There's a big difference between giving sub-optimal advice, and giving out bad advice (ES on the Rotface slime kite tank, bouncing Chain Heal off a debuffed tank on Stainky / Precious from a few weeks back, and so on)
Apr 20th 2010 5:39PM I disagree with some of the advice -- on Festergut, assuming Totem of Wrath or Demonic Pact is up, the extent of your 'helping' on DPS should be Searing or Fire Elemental totems. If you find you have enough GCDs free to spend on DPS like this, chances are you have too many healers in the raid and could be melting the boss faster.
For Rotface, the add tank is a terrible choice for Earth Shield. Aside from a whack or two when it first forms, the slimes should not be reaching them at all. If they do, ES won't do much to keep them from getting gibbed. Furthermore, I could be wrong but I don't think ES will be consumed by environmental AE damage like the slime pool. In summary, leave ES on the main tank.
The importance of cleansing, or more appropriately when not to cleanse, should also be mentioned.
Apr 15th 2010 5:36PM I want to enter, but then I'd need to make a macro saying I didn't pay for it. That makes me better, right?
Apr 7th 2010 12:48PM You'll still want Nature's Swiftness so you can punch out a GHW right away. It would still have a 2+ second casting time even if you can move while doing it.
These are objectively awesome changes, I can't wait.
Apr 6th 2010 4:33PM Hey Joe, nice to see that you read the comments.
One thing to remember, "#showtooltip" on its own will show the tooltip for the first spell cast in the macro, so you don't need to specify if there's only one. Also, you don't need to include the rank, as the highest available rank of a spell in the macro will always be selected. Macros can get big, so every character helps.
If you're an engineer, "/use 10" in your nuke macro will turn your gloves on as well. Speaking of nuke macros, keep in mind the on-use effects of the trinkets you have _equipped_. Many times have I hit my nuke macro only to put my PvP trinket on cooldown.