Home > Player Blogs, Secondmile's Blog > Sparkly Hands: Healing in PvP

Sparkly Hands: Healing in PvP

I’ve been doing arena moderately for many years, always before on a hunter. In Cata, I switched mains to a Resto Shaman, fell in love with it, and when I inevitably went to PvP with him (in Tol Barad and such) I decided to stay Resto. The thing I love about PvP is that each class gets to experience a much more specific role than in PvE. In PvE you really just have the holy trinity of dungeoneering: Tank, Healer, DPS. When you hop over to the non AI side, you get to become something so much more. My job in PvP as a Resto Shammy can go one of two ways all depending on whether or not I make it obvious that I’m healing. Given that I’m a Tauren, it’s pretty obvious.

My strategy? Heal. Get hit. Cast big heal so they interrupt. Hex. Heal. Heal. Get hit. Stunned. Stunned. Stunned. Get hit. Stoneclaw Totem. Earthbind Totem. Ghost wolf. Run away. Kite. Rinse. Repeat. Win.

Works like a charm in random battlegrounds and arena almost every time. I tried a half guild rated battleground this week. Won my first one. Hate it when that happens. Lost the next two. The reason I write this isn’t just to complain (ROGUES!!!!) but to address a serious issue I see with healing in PvP. Keep in mind that I am writing this from a Shaman’s perspective so I don’t have super insta heals like my friend, Mr. Holy Paladin. In RBG’s (rated battleground) there is a much higher level of competition, skill, and frustration than even arena. As mechanics change and things like turtling become an issue that would never be one in arena we find ourselves often stuck in a big ole pile of melee. As a hunter that never bothered me as I had no cast times, all my shots that I would use, save for steady shot, were instant cast. Now that I’m in cast time land, we deal with many problems. Problems that I would argue are worse for healers than for caster DPS.

Problem #1 – You’re a ghost

Hello Mr. Warrior, you are going to be smacking me around today? Nice to meet you. Ow, you got me down 20%, I think I’ll cast hex on you. What’s that? You can see my cast bar? That’s cool, I think that’s a fine mechanic. Oh? You’re going to wait til there’s .5 sec left and run through me so even tho I’m not a keyboard turner it will interrupt my cast? Awesome.

Problem #2 – Interrupt

Smart interrupters let a 3.2 sec cast get to 2.5 sec of cast time before they interrupt in order to waste as much of their opponents time as possible. Absolutely ok with this mechanic. Spell lock out too? Ridiculous. At least for as long as it locks you out. I already lost precious time casting a spell that didn’t go off. That 13k heal that Rage Mage was counting on never happened and he’s with the Spirit Healer. Why lock us out further which typically just so happens to be roughly half or more of their interrupt’s cool down so they can just do it again? Gets even worse when you factor in…

Problem #3 – Interrupt + Stun = smh

Can’t tell you how many times I’ve drooled on my laptop with my mouth hanging open, utterly shocked at the amount of time a rogue or kitty can keep me stun locked. Here’s some really whiny complaining, but rogues ruin PvP for me. It moves from a challenge to me watching myself get murdered. And again. And again.

Problem #4 – Pushback

My first melee class was a Prot Warrior. I got listening to “The Guardian Tank Podcast” and I was hooked, to the point where I’m starting to lose the definition of what a “main” is. I love being big and beastly and swinging ridiculously large weapons and slamming people in the face with my shield. I love even more that unless I’m stunned, you can’t stop me! In PvP when I’m healing, every time I get hit, I suffer pushback, making my action take even longer. This does not translate at all between caster to melee. When you then factor in all the above problems, a spell that has been pushed back has a greater opportunity to be interrupted, avoided, or stunned. But man, when I hit “4” for shield slam, it happens every time…

When you have a cast time, that you’re not allowed to move during mind you, you become susceptible to way too many things that break the game for you. You deal with enemies running through you to break cast time, push back, stuns, interrupts (that block out whole schools for A LONG TIME), and range issues. Can you imagine the game for melee if every time they got hit, it pushed their swing time back? I have a boomkin friend who hated this so much in PvP that they switched to feral cat. Just could not take it anymore. I understand that each class, like I said in the beginning, becomes much more specialized. Just like a warrior that can go across a map in 4 GCD’s with intervene, heroic leap, charge, intercept, a rogue can lock down a player completely. I also understand the huge balance shift a 30-50k heal can have when it comes to Player v. Player. I also, lastly, understand that it cannot be even across the board. I just hope that through this, you can start to see there are some big issues when it comes to that cast time. People shouldn’t be walking away from what they love or even from the game itself because they can’t do anything. There are ways to fix this, I hate it when people complain but don’t offer a solution, but I don’t think this is the time for those, maybe I’ll bring em in later.


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