Friday, June 6, 2008

Help with PUGs?

I have recently been changing my build. My previous attempt at a Resto/Balance build lasted only a very short time. Truly hybridized, that build excelled at....nothing. Healing remained my goal, so I have now specced 13/0/48. This build is very nice for healing in BGs.

Once I get out into the world of the 5-man, non-heroic PUG, my equipment begins to fail me. I get way too much aggro when healing. Two Lifeblooms are generally enough to pull the 3 non-CC'd mobs off the tank. The hunters in the group can rarely even drop a trap at my feet after the pull starts to prevent at least one of the mobs from reaching me.

Fortunately, the tank can generally continue to maintain his/her assignment for at least the next 5 minutes, which allows me to move around in Tree Form while healing myself. I find this maneuver to be very effective in attracting the attention of rogues and warlocks, who will generally stop soloing their mobs and try to solo the mob chasing me, which also gives me more time to heal.

Clothies are also generally very considerate in keeping out of range of my heals. While communication is important, vent can be overused. Nothing says "I respect that you are running around to attract the attention of the rogue, so please don't distract yourself by healing me" like getting well out of range of my heals. Thanks clothies, keep that up, you don't hold onto health very well anyway.

We are going to be at the second boss within the next 50-90 minutes and we can't be using up our Battle Rez as druids, so thanks for understanding why I won't be rezzing anyone after a wipe. Nature's Swiftness takes a little while to cooldown as well, so I may not use that much either.

At any rate, these experiences really made me take a close look at my spec and my gear. I did a little search and found some gear and little known spells that I thought could help me in these situations.

And for Unbearabely HoT:

A F K Tank Pull
Trap? O O M Rogue Solo
PUG HoTs No Fix Fix

Anyone else have stories or newfound gear or abilities that can help me PUG better?



Cynra said...

I'm a notorious PuGer and a good 95% of my heroics and groups are found using the LFG tool. That said, you can run the gamut PuGing and if you're a masochist like me that likes looking for a challenge you can definitely find what you're looking for!

If threat's an issue, find ways of reducing it! Now, I've never leveled a druid past 20 and I know almost nothing about Restoration healing, but threat and aggro are staple issues. Consider the following gem and enchant:

* Bracing Earthstorm Diamond: if you have a meta gem slot, you can reduce your threat by 2%.
* Enchant Cloak - Subtlety: a cloak enchant that will further reduce your threat by 2%.

I'm also going to assume that you have five points in Subtlety, which gives you a 20% threat reduction on spells you cast.

Remember that threat is multiplicative. In other words, that should give you a total healing threat modifier of:

0.80 × 0.98 × 0.98 = 0.76832,

or approximately 77%. While that's not a big difference, it's something that might help you survive a bit longer.

Also, I know you mentioned Vent and the like, but communication does go a long way. If people are messing up and it's leading to their deaths, grit your teeth and try to amicably explain the problem.

If line of sight is an issue, speak up! If the tank fails to tag all of the mobs and some are breaking off branches, speak up! If a mob that can be crowd controlled isn't being crowd controlled and a class is around that can do it, speak up! You're the healer; use your considerably clout to get things in line. Remind them that a dead healer can't heal people. Be vocal, but be polite, because, sadly, a cranky healer isn't a loveable healer and she isn't going anywhere with a chip on her shoulder.

And that's about it. Until you start hitting gear, those are the only things that I can think of. Of course, I assume you're doing the requisite gemming and echanting of your gear. You don't need to spend a lot on pre-Karazhan gear, but you should at least put forth the effort to get that done.