I finally caved in and relented to switch mains from [armory]Karalana[/armory] to [armory]Karalyss[/armory] for the benefit of our healing core for at least duration of the current raiding tier (T11). Running 2 main spec resto druids, and 2 off spec is just not the ideal raid healing comp. I love my druid, and I’ll admit to having withdrawl symptoms… no tranq, no NS+HT, no seal form, no instant flightform, no dps offspec … what the heck do you do when not running something?
With all the snow we had last week, I finished off questing in twlight highlands trying to replace some of the greens that I was still wearing, then moved onto Deepholm to open up the Therazane rep. Thursday night I took the plunge and unlearned my shadow spec and respec’d holy (keeping the halfus disc smite + attonement offspec). I spent about 45m with our resident holy priest guru ([armory]Celdrid[/armory]) setting up keybinds, mouse overs, and power auras… then queued up for a regular random.
As we were waiting in the queue, [armory]Celdrid[/armory] asks if I switched my glyphs… oh crap, I hadn’t. Luckily the queue was long enough that I could cough up 10g a piece for some [item]Dust of Disappearance[/item] and switch them out. [armory]Celdrid[/armory] started off in his disc halfus smite spec, and switched to using mindspike after the first couple of pulls. A couple of regulars later, he went shadow.
I had always been scared of specing holy… I knew holy priests could kick some arse, but the number of spells seemed overwhelming. I leveled up [armory]Karalyss[/armory] as shadow, and she was specifically spec’d as disc for Heroic Lich King fights.
Learning Holy healing has a lot of synergy and some of the same concepts of the resto druid. [spell]Renew[/spell] as a replacement for both [spell]Lifebloom[/spell] and [spell]Rejuvenation[/spell]. [spell]Circle of Healing[/spell] is similiar to [spell]Wild Growth[/spell]. [spell]Heal[/spell] is the equivalent of [spell]Nourish[/spell], [spell]Flash Heal[/spell] the equivalent of [spell]Regrowth[/spell], and [spell]Greater Heal[/spell] the equivalent of [spell]Healing Touch[/spell]. I was already familiar with [spell]Prayer of Mending[/spell], [spell]Prayer of Healing[/spell], and [spell]Power Word: Shield[/spell] from my time spent as discipline. [spell]Guardian Spirit[/spell] replaced [spell]Pain Suppression[/spell].
The new stuff:
[spell]Lightwell[/spell] aka LoL well — dang can that thing heal. I’ll admit to very infrequently clicking on it prior to specing holy. Did you know that it now has a 20y ‘clickability’ and doesn’t interupt casted spells (but does interupt channeled ones)? 5k healing ticks for 6s, yes please!
[spell]Chakra[/spell]… while I love the effects of the mechanic, it made my brain hurt learning — heck it still makes my brain hurt. I spend most of my time in 5 mans in the Serenity (Heal) Chakra, but in raids I found myself flipping back and forth quite frequently. Macroing the spell abilities Chakra enables, like [spell]Holy Word: Serenity[/spell] is a royal pain in the arse because the same button morphs into [spell]88686[/spell] when you are in Sanctuary Chakra.
The NS+HT macro is replaced by a [spell]Flash Heal[/spell] x 2 + [spell]Greater Heal[/spell] via the [spell]63733[/spell] talent.
Had I not already had Looking for Many, I certainy would have earned it this weekend. I got guild groups when I could, and when I couldn’t I bravely joined LFD. In the begining I was slightly cheesing the ilvl requirement with an alchemist stone in my bag, but not equipped.
I ventured into my first heroic as holy… in an LFD pug. I was lucky enough to get a 4 man same guild group who had both a compentent well geared tank and compentent CC’ers/dps’ers all pulling over 10k. We breezed through Lost City, with one death… shammy ate a bomb while I was being hung. I probably could have saved him with a Guardian spirit, but the keybinds are not ingrained quite yet. I couldn’t have asked for a better group for my first heroic, and I made sure to thank them for their patience (glug glug glug — drinking like a fish out of water between pulls) and allowing me to practice on them.
Every heroic I entered, I was able to finish. Some of them were certainly easier than others — Stone core is still a pita, while Lost city seems like a walk in the park.
By raid time on Sunday, I was upto a 344 ilvl equiped and feeling alot more comfortable with my power auras and keybindings. I made an appearance on the healing meters… way down at bottom. I overused [spell]Prayer of Healing[/spell], and underused [spell]Circle of Healing[/spell]. I was horible with staying in [spell]Chakra[/spell], and frequently wasn’t in the correct state for the type of damage the raid was taking.
Lessons learned: Power Auras settings that were fine in 5mans are lost in the spell effects of 25m raids… and I just plain need more practice.