Over at Blog Azeroth this week’s shared topic is:
When should a healer let someone die?
suggested by Ecclesiastical Discipline.
Now my first instinctive response is NEVER EVER EVER. Conditioned perhaps by five years of healing groups in WoW, I get upset with myself if anyone or anything dies on my watch. Hunter’s pets, suicidal mages and lifetapping warlocks.. doesn’t matter the circumstances leading up their demise. I always feel guilty. However I realise that is an unrealistic approach. Sometimes sacrifices have to be made for the good of the many.
My priority list for 5 mans goes something like this:
- The tank. Why the tank first? Well if they are at all competent they stand between the other four people and certain death. Why not me first? In five mans, quite often a tank can survive without a dedicated and specced for healer. I’ve healed a couple of heroic fights purely as a ret paladin throwing art of war procs at the tank for example. In reverse though, if your party is a bunch of undergeared casters facing a melee boss, you might not make it without the tank. Luckily spells like binding heal mean you don’t have to make that call often.
- Sensible non-fire hugging Dpsers
- Anyone else
Even category four gets a couple of chances to allow for lag and/or mistakes. If they never move from anything bad or never use any relevant cooldowns to help out when things get hairy (like barkskin, cloak of shadows etc), then I’ll start to get a little grumpy. Even whilst grumpy though as long as no one else is in any danger, I’ll keep them alive.
I tend to avoid blanket statements like “If dpsers pull aggro I’ll let them die”. In my time I’ve seen some truly awful tanks who couldn’t hold aggro off a wet paper bag. Paladin tanks who refuse to use consecration because it cost too much mana even when a herd of mobs was rampaging around trying to eat healers being the example which springs to mind. In that case, any dpser who managed to pull aggro would get lots and lots of loving heals. After all better him or her than me.
So are there other reasons why I might withhold a heal from someone? Not that I can think of. Sure I might get mad if someone was being a complete jerk but I’d rather get through the instance as fast as possible so I had to spend less time in their company. Letting them die repeatedly makes me as bad as them, after all we are both griefing others by our actions. Also I can’t help but think it’s a bit self defeating. What if the most obnoxious dpser in the group is the one doing the best dps? Trying to kill them just slows down the pace.