I know when I first started playing World of Warcraft, the first thing I was thinking WASN’T how to maximize my heals to be most effective. I think it was more or less something along the lines of “ah, omg HOW do I get back to Ironforge from HERE?!” Reminds me of my third year french class. Learned how to pick up a train ticket, order coffee and ask where the monkey was.. but not ONCE did we cover how to ask where the bathroom was. I guess it’s implied that you just don’t go. That explains a lot actually.
Wait… how DO I get to Ironforge from here?
I digress. I wanted to talk about some of the most important addons I’ve come across in my time as a healer in some form or another. A lot of these are going to be general healing addons and not specific to any one class, although I know a few class-specific ones I would like to share. This is going to be broken up into different posts, because I can and I’m fairly certain I’m evil. I steal the last girl scout cookie and the last slice of pizza.
Anyways, we’ll start off hardcore. The first thing I was REALLY concerned with when I started to raid as a healer was indeed, how to maximize my healing output. You hear about people who aren’t even within 15-20% of the other healers in output for fights, spam healing rain and nothing else, don’t use prayer of mending, spam divine light, or worse, just run in and melee the boss (mad at not being picked as dps I’m guessing?).
There are several addons that are useful for adjusting your equipment based on what is BELIEVED to be best for your healing class. I say believed because Healers really AREN’T thrown into a mold and bam, instant awesome. Granted, MoP has been great and baselined the fact that EVERY healer is going to prize spirit as the top secondary stat, but what of crit, mastery and haste? Disc priests, as an example, have two “styles” of play. Smite, which uses Holy Fire and Smite to do damage to mobs to heal a player, can crit for extra damage and healing and in doing so provides a Divine Aegis shield on the lucky recipient. Prayer of Healing, when crits, provides a fantastic bonus to the already automatic Divine Aegis shield that it places on the party. You can see why Crit is nice. Another style of play still focuses on an increased usage of Power Word: Shield and Spirit Shell, which both play nicely off of mastery (though that looks like that won’t be the case for Spirit Shell come 5.2 as of last patch notes).
So why do I mention this? Because everyone’s playstyle will be a little different and your mileage off of these addons will vary. Research, practice and fine tuning are the only way you’ll get the most out of your healing. These are to be used as tools that will help you squeeze the most out of whatever you pick.
Anyways, enough of that, let’s get to the good stuff.
The two reforge addons that I’ve used so far are ReforgeLite and Reforgenator. Their jobs are to make reforging your character’s stats a little less daunting and even automatic. This is great for a couple of reasons: Say you get told by your raid leader that you’ll need to double duty as dps. What to do with that extra gear you’ve been given? Aside from the obvious answer of “Give it to me!” Here’s your chance to have some fun and do something different, let’s do it with style!
Reforgenator is a pretty lightweight program. You just type /reforgenator in-game when you enable the addon and you get this nifty little box. It recognizes your class immediately and asks what type of spec you’re looking to reforge to. The Consider Reforging Anything tab can be changed to just reforge what hasn’t been touched if you’re happy with everything else. Reforge for Raiding can be changed to Reforge for Heroics (for people who haven’t gotten raiding gear yet) or PVP.
What it does is take in consideration what you have for gear and basically tells you what to reforge FROM and what to reforge TO on it. The first item, my Trinket, it wants me to reforge FROM Spirit and turn it into Mastery. There inlies a small problem – spirit is my #1 secondary stat, I shouldn’t be reforging from it right now. But this addon is more suggesting I do it than automatically switching it for me. My personal recommendation? You’d probably be better off using this for dps type characters. This addon is sweet that it also considers any sort of Racial bonus to expertise, hit, etc that you might have. Moving on.. Ironforge. Where the #%@# *IS* Ironforge?! ARG!
ReforgeLite: Automated Glee!
Alright, alright, I know what you’re thinking. “OMGwhattheclusterfrigisallTHIS?!” So, yes, ReforgeLite doesn’t appear all that light just from it’s initial appearance. Compared to Reforgenator, it isn’t. However, this gem does a bit more than Reforgenator will. So, the first difference you might notice is that this will pop up when you click on a reforging npc, as opposed to just calling this up. Once this is up, you can then choose a preset selection by clicking on the PRESET button (such as Shadow Priest, Disc, Holy, and yes this works for all classes), this addon actually allows you to prioritize the secondary stats the way you want to. Under Import Pawn, it lists Spirit, Crit, Mastery and Haste. there’s also arrow buttons you can click next to each to set the priority how you would like it. Once you have it set, click on CALCULATE.. below, it shows what it could potentially reforge for you. In the above case, it found 306 points of mastery it could switch to crit for me. The graph to the left shows the equipment it reforges to get that. Hit SHOW and it shows the equipment again and the full cost of the reforge. Hit Reforge and BAM.. it automatically reforges the equipment for you. Awesome. Bonus part? It also takes into account any sort of Racial (like an orc’s axe expertise) as well!
There are also some offline options for reforging as well. www.askmrrobot.com is a a great example, though my above warning holds for this site too. Be mindful of ANYTHING that’s telling you what’s best. Only research done through math (Adinne is a math dynamo!) and trial and error on your part will tell you exactly what you want to focus on.
Part 2 of Healing Addons!, we’re going to be talking about cooldown trackers! Thanks for reading!