Friday, September 4, 2009

Oh look, a tooltip

So, while I was running heroics last night, we didn't have a replenishment class at all in the group.  I actually started to have some mana problems, and wondered if that is what it was like to be an oomkin back in the day.

I ask a friend who I know plays a druid, and wondered at what point I can stop having to worry so much about mana issues, as I am currently spec 3/3 Dreamstate and 1/3 Intensity.

She laughed at me, saying that dreamstate was useless.  So, I decided to do some quick math.

At my current (read: really bad) gear level, I get ~28MP5 per point in Dreamstate, and ~32MP5 per point in intensity.  So, before I even start to get more gear with more spirit and int (for even higher spirit based regen), Intensity is already a bit ahead.  Granted, the total difference is only about 6MP5 at 3 points for each, but I can at least drop Dreamstate, fill out Intensity, and get a couple points into Imp Insect Swarm for a touch more DPS.

The moral of the story?  I need to stop being so damn lazy and start doing some napkin math on which talents are better.  Yes, I know EJ has done most (all?) of this work for me already, and I do read it frequently.  But there is still something to say about doing the math yourself, and coming up with the same conclusion.

Now, I just need to figure out what I need to get my MP5 up to, to be able to drop Intensity and get more DPS goodies.

More PuGs

Last nights Ulduar raid was called due to lack of attendance.  A select few (read, not me) went to ToC10 and downed Anub, so grats to them!

I spent the time on my druid running a couple heroics, mostly as moonkin, and healed a regular ToC.  I figured it shouldn't be much of a problem, since on one run, our healer had died, and I forgot where my battle res button was (still new to the druid thing, lesson was learned), and I healed through the remainder of the second boss with her add, shortly after the add spawned.

So, I figure as a tree, I should have no problems, right?

Enter the PuG group.  It seemed to be a group that was chain running it, so I had hoped it would be ok. Tank had ~30k health, so has at least been around a little bit.  Rest of group was a hunter (more on them later), a shaman and a warrior.

We get started, and the the first bit goes ok.  We all get the champions dismounted and run out to reset, with no deaths.  So far so good.  We get into the fight and people are just standing around in the green goo that is thrown out (mind you, this is after they all said 'don't stand in the poison!').

So, we have one death, as I'm still pretty undergeared for healing through stupid.

Second boss comes up, we get the chick with the add.  It takes _forever_ to get the add down, I go OOM, and people start dying (after I potted and innervated myself, even).

We get back in there, and kill the boss.  We then get to the Black Knight.  Again, it takes forever to get anything done, and I figure it's just because I'm healing, so things seem to take longer, since they are more hectic.  Phase 1 went ok.  Phase 2 hits, and they have the awesome idea of grouping up.  Like, everyone stand next to the exploding ghouls.  I disagreed with this strat, so stayed back.

Well while everyone was grouped up getting exploded, they also got hit by the Desecration, so tons of damage was going out to the party, and again, he was taking for ever to go down.  Once he did, the ghouls blew up and killed everyone but the tank and myself.  Me being out of mana, died.  So, we start over again.  People are doing a little better this time.  The hunter still stood in the Desecration for quite a while, but disengaged out of it at least after a good 5 seconds.

We finally get through the boss after I died and ran back.

No decent loot to be had, so I excuse myself from the group, feeling pretty bad about my healing abilities. 

Now, I keep recount on the healing meters generally, just to get an idea of how I'm doing while healing.  The hunter took nearly as much damage as the tank did for standing in stupid shit.  I then switched to moonkin, joined LFG for some heroics as DPS, figuring I'm not quite ready for healing yet, and appropriately set Recount to DPS.  Thus the story of the last instance was told.  The hunter managed to squeeze out 800 dps.  The warrior was at 1k, and the shaman was at 1.2k.  The DK tank had the most at 1.7k.

I not only had to heal through stupid, but I had to do it for a LONG TIME because their DPS was so low.

After that, I joined a group of socials, and we ran H-UP, H-UK and H-ToC without a hitch.  I really want to get hit capped so I can start pugging some Naxx10/25 runs here.  I should probably start hitting up VoA10 as well, just so I can get some easy badges.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Faction Champions

Last night, we went into ToC25.  After a couple retarded mistakes on Beasts, we moved on to Jaraxxus.  We one shot him, and started Faction Champions.

This fight is one of the more fun encounters that I've done in quite some time.  It's dynamic, chaotic, and requires actual proper communication by all members of a raid.  This of course, is also what makes it difficult for most.  People love to call out on vent when someone else messes up, but don't want to mention that they got sheeped for some reason, figuring the healers can just go ahead and figure it out and dispell it from them. 

While in a perfect world that is true, when you see everyone in the raid with a dispellable debuff on them (thanks DK), it's rough to determine who should be prioritized.

There were mistakes made by all.  Since this is a fight where all sorts of CC is allowed / required, we had warlocks that needed to put fear on their bar, rogues without blind available.  People were not ready for the fight, both in reading up on the NPCs and what they do (read: everything they can), or in their knowledge / reflex of all abilities of their class.

Needless to say, we did not beat the encounter, and we will spend the remainder of our raid time this week in Ulduar.

On the druid side of things, after we tried ToC25, I hopped into a Heroic ToC.  Got the caster robe and +hit boots from there, and was a very quick and smooth run.  Averaged ~2300DPS, so getting slightly better at moonkin, and am about ready to start healing some heroics, as my mana pool is finally getting up there as well.  I will likely still be wearing a lot of moonkin gear while healing, but am not too concerned by that.

The only concern I have about sharing gear between the specs, is gear with gem slots.  Specifically for yellow slots.  Since I'm still under hit cap, I would gem +hit for the moonkin.  Since hit does shit for resto, I'd likely socket either a Brilliant gem, or Runed if the socket bonus wasn't worth it. 

Tonight we hit Ulduar, and hopefully can get through Hodir, leaving the rest of the week for our ritual fail on Thorim, and maybe even get to General (Mim and Freya were two shot both times we attempted them).

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Too busy, hit 80

So, with the summer lull in raiding, we had a few raid nights off, which I used to full advantage to get the druid up to level 80.

I leveled from 68-80 as boomkin in preparation for being 80.  As it turns out, it didn't help much, since leveling boomkin and grouping / raiding as boomkin are wildly different.  For instance, while leveling there is no reason to DoT things, no reason to use Faerie Fire anything, and there is no such thing as a rotation.  It's pretty much open with Starfire, unless you happened to be under a wrath eclipse.

That said, it was still quite fun, and it let me keep my bags at least somewhat clear with only needing a 'caster' gear set, with a couple items to switch out for healing an instance.

So, I started out doing a couple instances as DPS at 80, so I can get some starter healing gear, and had a friend craft me the Earthgiving legs and boots.  I started out at ~1100DPS, because I had absolutely no idea what I was doing.

After a respec (basically moved 3 points from Owlkin Frenzy to IFF, took 1 out of intensity and moved it to Typhoon just to have an extra button to push, and since I was able to spam buttons and never run out of mana), a couple upgrades from heroics / regular ToC, and getting some practice at a rotation, I was able to hit 2300 DPS.

I also boosted my spell power to ~1350 unbuffed, and am half way to hit capped, which has likely helped as well.  I will probably run one more day as DPS just to get a few fast runs in, and then go into the dreaded LFG as heals or dps, with the assumption that I'll be the former more often than not.

Tonight and tomorrow are raid nights, so will likely not have a chance to play on the druid until Friday.

If I have a chance, I may put together a new pre-raiding gear guide, and include some items from the new patches (ie, ToC, Argent Tournament,  and new Badge Gear)