Okay, So I WILL Let You Die

This healing thing is turning out to be so enjoyable for me that I thought I’d try it with another class.  I’ve got a dwarf shaman I rolled up right after Cataclysm came out because… do I really have to explain “because”? Dwarf Shaman. That’s why!

I’ve never played a shaman before. It may not be happening now, either. I wasn’t really feeling the love for Elemental. It’s like Retribution for a Paladin. I can do it, but that doesn’t mean I’m enjoying it. Enhancement just isn’t for me. So I figured I’d respec for Restoration and try again.

(There’s a theme here. I’ve played balance druids, but feral doesn’t work for me. I didn’t enjoy a warrior. I can’t make myself stick with a death knight for long. I’ve played warlocks, a mage, and I’m enjoying leveling a shadow priest. I really like hunters. I tried to pick Silverleaf as a rogue, broke stealth, aggro’d half of Elwynn Forest, and won’t do it again. I don’t want mobs up my nose!)

That was the longest, most painful trip I’ve ever halfway made from Thelsamar to Farstrider Lodge. And the mobs kept killing my totems. How can I live with myself if I’m contributing to slaughter of innocent totems? I finally turned around to go back, but I just hated that stupid little dwarf the more I looked at her. I finally stopped about 20 feet outside of Thelsamar and used my hearthstone to go back to Ironforge.

Sadly, my hearthstone was set for Thelsamar.

I didn’t delete the shaman. Maybe someday I’ll be in a better frame of mind to give it a go again. She looks nice sitting in the corner and collecting dust for now.  Holy Paladin it is!

Late last night, I decided I was getting itchy to heal something again. I’ve been questing through the Plaguelands, getting tired of healing and buffing NPCs. The dungeon finder gave me Scholomance. The tank was a bear druid, and said it was his first time tanking, and I got the chance to loot between pulls! After the first room, though, it all kind of fell apart. It wasn’t so much him taking too much damage or not holding aggro. It was him running around, swiping at This, growling at That, pulling That back over to where This was attacking the dps, dashing over to pick up Something Else from the far corner and meeting up with This and That in the middle of the room. It was aggravating, but not a big issue. In the next room, it was a big issue. This, That, Something Else, and All Their Friends were close enough together that we got overwhelmed when he did that. It was the whole room at once, and my mana gave out after a couple of minutes.

The tank and two dps dropped group when we died.  I saw this a lot when I was leveling my hunter through the dungeon finder before Cataclysm. It just seemed like no one took the lower level dungeons seriously. Tanks pulled way too much, then everybody dropped group after a wipe. The problem is, this is not your level 80 or 85 uber-1337, all epics character you’re taking into these dungeons. A lot of people I see (including myself) aren’t even wearing heirlooms. At that level, this shouldn’t really be a problem if you know the dungeons but it doesn’t mean your character is invulnerable just because the player sees it as “low level”. It’s not “low level” to your character.

The next tank and two new dps came in. The group was now a warrior tank, pally healer, two hunters, and a shadow priest. I love warrior tanks. I probably love them for completely outdated reasons now, but my experience with Wrath heroics was that I had to really work to manage my threat with a paladin tank, I rarely saw bear druids, and death knights… were death knights. I got a really awesome death knight tank once and it made me angry every time I saw a piss poor one after that because I knew they could have learned to do it better. Warriors, though, were awesome! They held aggro just fine, controlled mobs, and kept them out of my face.

This was not one of those warriors. This warrior did something I have never seen a tank do before. Ever. And he did it in every room.

It wasn’t the way he ran around the mobs. Okay, I haven’t seen that before, either. He didn’t stand still or purposefully move them… he just ran in tight circles around them. But that’s not the thing that really bothered me. The thing I had never seen before (and made me say aloud in my house, several times, “WHAT is he DOING???”) was that he would run forward, pull some trash… and then bring it back right on top of myself and the dps.

I thought it was a bad pull of some sort the first time. He did this every time. I’m not staying in back with the ranged dps , anyway. But this made it difficult for me to know when to move forward. I never knew where, exactly, he was going or when he was going there. He was rarely ever actually targeting the mobs while he ran around them, and frequently went to grab them and bring them back to the dps. I was rarely able to use my Judgement, and I’m sure the two hunters with their mandatory minimum range really loved the tank for this.

But I healed him. I healed him and the dps. I Cleansed things off of them, kept everyone alive, and topped off anybody who needed it between fights. I learned to use my Beacon. And I reminded myself why I was doing this. Why I was learning to heal through dungeons. Because if you prepare for the Horde, the Burning Legion, and Deathwing to all come knocking at the gates of Ironforge together, you’ll be more than ready for it when all that happens is the Dark Irons show up. Or something like that.

It was when the tank just jumped over the stairs and into a huge group of zombies that he finally died. I simply couldn’t heal through it. That room is FULL of them, and quite a few of them are the kind that “come back” after you kill them. (I always knew which ones would do that when I solo’d Stratholme and Scholomance with my hunter because the bear wouldn’t let up even though it looked like the mob was dead.) He ended up with about half the room on him, me, and the dps. He died just as things were finally settling down. I rezzed him, topped off his health, and said, “I need mana”. And he pulled the other half of the room as I sat down to drink.

At this point, I had a couple of options. I could stand right back up again and try to heal with nearly no mana. This would likely lead to everyone dying. Or I could sit right there and finish drinking, which might lead to everyone dying. I did say I needed mana. I sat and drank.

The tank died right about the time I was at 90% or 95% mana. I stood up and started healing the dps. They finished with the mobs. That took more out of me than it does when there’s a tank in the fight, so I sat to drink again. The dead tank said, and this is a direct quote:

“………………………………………………………………………..”

I said, “I’ll rez you after I drink again.” And I did. When my mana was full, I rezzed him, topped off his health, and buffed him again. And the rest of the dungeon went on as most of the dungeon had, including him pulling bosses when he felt like it, whether anyone else was ready or not. Or even in the room or not.

I thought I wouldn’t be able to decide to let someone die. I knew I’d have to accept that it happens sometimes, but I figured I’d always be able to say I did everything in my power and then some to prevent it. I really never thought I’d make a decision to let the tank die. But I didn’t feel bad about it, either. If anything, the stupid tanks I’ve been getting seem to be fairly expendable. I know that won’t hold true forever. There will come a point where a tank is absolutely necessary. For now, it’s sometimes a blessing when the tank dies. I don’t have trouble keeping a tank who knows what their doing alive. I may still be adjusting to the new role, so keeping up may be a problem, but I can keep them alive. The ones I can’t keep alive don’t seem to be all that necessary. Once they die, it’s easier to heal the three dps while they deal with things. I don’t think that’s about me. I’m pretty sure it’s something about them.

I’d really like more good tanks soon. I know they exist. I’m afraid they may all be running Cataclysm heroics and doing raids. Or they’re all doing things within their own guilds. I may not be the best healer, but I’m learning. And I really am enjoying it. Even with everything that goes wrong, I enjoy it. It feels good to know I healed through THAT… whatever THAT is at the time.

new healz LFM decent tanks. click LFD tool. kthxbai!

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2 Responses to Okay, So I WILL Let You Die

  1. Apple says:

    It took you much longer to find that place than I did. Then again, Lis always WAS kind of impatient when it came to idiots, so I shouldn’t be surprised it took me all of 25 levels to settle into that mindset of “sometimes, I will let you die if you’re an idiot.”

    I feel you on the shammy, though. I love the idea! Not really feeling the day to day. BRB, rolling a hunter.

  2. Leveling is so much faster now that I bet I got Glorwynn to 45 faster than you got Lis to 25. Oh, sweet pancakes of death… leveling is SO much faster! It took me a month to get to 20 on my first character. Glorwynn hit 20 the second night after I rolled her up. So Scholomance was only *counts on fingers* my third dungeon to heal. It seems like so much more when groups won’t stay together. I feel like Wailing Caverns was really four dungeons.

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