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More on Circle of Healing, Cooldowns, and Regen

An in-game friend of mine commented on my last post, and had a lot to say. I’ve got his permission to post this and make some commentary. /love Bhoz It brings some quality insight to COH that I might have missed mentioning in my previous post.

“1) I’m already much more involved in my healing than pre-WotLK (well, pre-3.0 patch). If a CoH proccs Surge of Light or Holy Concentration, I’m automatically looking for someone to get the free heal. Or I’m hitting Inner Focus if it’s up (for some extra OOFSR mana regen), then looking for a target for the free heal. I’m actually tracking my PoMs a lot tighter now, to make sure I’m getting the T7 bonus extra jump. I’m trying to find 8 seconds of down time to get maximum use of Hymn of Hope. I’m timing Divine Hymn for maximum effectiveness. Toss in some lucky PoM crits proccing and things get even more fun.”

I really like a lot of what was said here. I do feel a lot more engaged in my healing in WotLK than I did in BC. Some of that is directly related to the changes in the priest trees and key character stats. The introduction to crit to proc Improved Holy Concentration and Surge of Light now working on Flash Heal has really made me need to pay attention to more things to allow me to leverage those crits a bit more, and thus get some OOFSR time.

Any more “involvement” and I’m going to start “standing in the fire and dying” again.

2) Because I think Blizzard missed on our mana regen adjustment (With BeastMaster doing so much damage and the new exciting pets, when was the last time you saw a Survival Hunter in a 10-man? And is it just me or did DeathKnights step into the role previously filled by Ret Pallies? Where did the Replenishment go now that we need it most?), I’m finding myself using CoH to proc a SoL/HC so I can Inner Focus, cast the free heal at the last second, and maximize OOFSR time for, again, mana regen. This no doubt artificially inflates CoH numbers across the board. In this situation, the CoH is almost incidental; I’m looking for the Free Heal as a gateway into some mana regen. And the greater the Crit chance (which they’ve pushed us towards), the greater the allure of the Free Heal.

I’m not sure I’m having too many mana issues due to lack of replenishment, since we always have both a Ret Pally and Shadowpriest in raid. But I too, have been using COH to proc SOL, to then chain with Inner Focus for some quality OOFSR regen time. Example: Malygos. We usually have the Shaman handle the Arcane Storm damage in Phase 1, and priests focus on the MT. I have been quickly self casting COH (assisting the Arcane Storm damage) and with 25% raid buffed crit) Surge of Light usually procs, allowing a chance to chain with Inner Focus.

3) They say they’re going to adjust the Vortex, but there’s several other fights where CoH is borderline necessary: topping off bad dancers on Heigan. Hitting the “other” group if you’re single AoE healing Loatheb or Sapphiron to even out bad PoM distribution. On the run Meteor recovery during Four Horsemen. Heck, anytime things go just south of “bad” and digging the raid back out of trouble is required. My thoughts are that they’re not going to adjust *all* of those fights or they would have mentioned it in the post.

We’ll see… Its always hard to speculate what Blizzard will and won’t forget. The Heigan dance, I am a little less forgiving on saying that COH is needed on that fight. You shouldn’t need to heal more than once every 6 seconds help out laggy dancers. (Worst case, Guardian Spirit them)

I don’t know. I would think they could do something else besides a 6-second cooldown: Increase the mana cost so it’s effectively unspammable (although two weeks into 80, iLvl 200+ across the board, more or less, and I’m still in mana trouble on the longer fights without Replenishment of some sort). A diminishing returns debuff. Or start with a 3-second cooldown and work up if needed.

The best thing I’ve read as an alternative to a CD has been a Arcane Blast like effect. It would provide an interesting change to the spell, and I do agree would allow you to use it should you be ready to pay the price for casting it too quickly in succession.

A little info on the contributor of a lot of this post. Bhoz has been a good friend of mine in game for a long while, and a priest whom I often will talk healing strategy and gear with. Thanks for taking the time to write a little something here! /cheers

Written By: on December 12, 2008
  1. My love of CoH during the Heigan Dance Phase mostly comes from the Smart Target effect. Since it now lends targeting weight to those most in need of the heal (in theory), I don’t have to try to retarget while on the run. I’ll usually keep the MT targeted (makes it easier to get an Abolish/Cure Disease off right before the transition back to Phase One, because Heigan always does the disease thing on the switch) and CoH on him, trusting that whoever needs the heal will get the heal.

    If I thought I could get a GS off on someone who is lagging behind on the dancing I would, but I’m keeping busy enough not *being* that person.

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