Country music warning, I’m a geek but I’m also a southern geek….and this song really fits the situation….
Picture this, you’re on Madness of Deathwing, your mana is at a 4 digit placer, you need mana but your mana regen is on cool-down…oh crap now what?! You think to yourself. Suddenly the first set of adds are all down and everyone is getting back on the chin and you ask your co-pilot in healing “is your mana trick up”, they confirm (Hi Brae) and so you run and stand beside them…and bam tranquility is also up so you use your cool-downs together and the madness ends with only a couple casualties instead of a 20 minute fight that wound up in a wipe. How did I know that Brae would have her mana trick available and she know I would have my big oh crap heal ready? Communication and teamwork is part of it but another part is knowing the fight. We’ve only downed it twice on 10 man, but man we’ve both ran raid finder until we were blue in the face so we had the experience to do the fight already.
In my opinion, the difference between a good healer, and a great healer, is knowing when to use your cool downs. As the song indicates, even then it can be a gamble, but bear with me here. We’ve all been guilty on a progression fight of holding on to those cool-downs ”just in case” I don’t think I cast tree-form the first 6 months I healed as a druid in raids, I always forgot it was there and when I did remember I had the mentality that I should only use it for “oh crap” moments…it’s on a cool down don’t ya know? Now that I have a better understanding of the fights though, I’ve gotten better at using my cool-downs effectively.
So this leaves the question…when should I use my cool-downs? When they are useful. Does this mean you should save them? Well if you are just learning a fight, sure…you don’t know ahead of time yet when they will be useful. After you’ve learned the fight and you’ve gotten through it without those cool-downs, you’ll get to noticing a pattern of when there are lulls in the healing. Anytime not in a lull where the healing is needed and it doesn’t put you at risk later is a great time to use a cool-down. Also, as I like to say to people who are reluctant to use their cool-downs just in case they need them later…if the crap hits the fan and we wipe with cool-downs not used…well, later doesn’t matter if you’re not getting past phase x now.
More importantly is to work with your other healers to use your cool-downs in a way that is most effective for your fight. Since Brae and I tend to two heal everything together, I know that if she’s going to cast her mana trick (which is the Hymn of Hope, a channeled spell) then I’m going to need to cover healing for both of us, I’ll most likely tell her I’m about to use tranquility so that she knows I have the healing for about the same amount of time. We also have a pretty good rotation of knowing if I use my Tranquility now, on the next one, she’ll need to use her Divine Hymn. That is the communication part I mentioned earlier…Brae and I really heal well together because we kinda speak each other’s language…so much so that even when I’m in boomkin, I can look at her bars and say “Brae I’m hitting Tranquility” and she knows that I’m covering her so she can get some mana back either through hymn of hope or concentration potion.
When do you like to use your cool-downs? Do you save them, or weave them in to make your healing quality of life easier?