Monday, February 15, 2010

Apparently I'm a Bad Healer and a Ninja

Friday was a weird night. First of all I got online a little late because it was snowing in Charleston for the first time in over 10 years. I took Mrs. Hammer and Little Hammer out in the snow. We made a snowman, had a snowball fight, and made snow angels. It was one of those nights I'll never forget, and I hope they won't either.
After we got in and warmed up, we put Little Hammer to bed and then I got online.
While I was running the Daily Random Heroic on one of my 3 Level 80s, one of my guild mates, we'll call him Mr. D, started to put together a PuG 25 man for ICC. I think everyone in my 5 man volunteered to go. Mr.D said they just needed Heals and DPS. I was a little disappointed because I had hoped to go tank it. I was a little more disappointed when I found out one of other guild tanks was going to tank it. But it made sense. Mr.D knew him from their 10 man group, so Mr.D was probably comfortable with him tanking. I'm sure if one of the guys from my 10 man group had started it, they would have asked me to tank. But I got really disappointed when I realized Mr.D had PuGed a Tank. I didn't say anything out loud to him and mostly kept my disappointment to myself outside of what filtered through my tone of voice. I tend to wear my emotions on my sleeve and I’m not good at masking. The whole competition to Tank spots was part of what drove me away from doing 25 mans in the first place.
So I offered to go on my Hunter. They were reluctant to take him because the raid already had at least 4 or 5 Hunters. Yeah, cool. I can understand that. So my Hunter and Paladin were out and my Druid wasn't near geared enough. Okay, cool, I'm not going to be going on this 25 man half guild / half-PuG run. I was disappointed because pretty much everyone online in my guild would be doing it. No worries. I was actually kind of pleased (and pleasantly surprised) with the way I was handling myself.
Then Mr. D whispers me and asks if I can be a healer on the run. I hem and haw and think it over. I need Emblems, and to a lesser degree, Rep. Then I have an idea. I whisper Mr.D and ask him if I can still roll mainspec Tank on drops even if I go heals for the raid. He gives me the green light.
Good thing that I do next: tell the Tank from our guild what is going on.
Bad thing that I neglect to do next: tell the rest of the tanks.
The irony of the situation was not lost on me. Back when I was in Mal Katai and Naxx was the only show in town, I had had a Warrior, who had gone DPS for the raid, grab the shield off Kel'Thuzad over me. I was less than completely pleased. In my defense, I didn't know at the time he was a tank. I had only ever seen him DPS in our raids. Once the situation was explained to me I calmed down and apologized to him and the Raid Leader. Now here I was, doing essentially the very same thing that had gotten me upset way back then.
We filled up the raid with PuGs and got started. I had a bad feeling about it.
My Twitter:"Pugging 25 man ICC, this is probably a bad idea"
@honorshammer It's a great idea! You'll probably make it through Saurfang at least, and with a little luck, pick up some nice loot!
The PuG tank essentially took over the raid declaring loudly that he can lead this thing, and started pulling. It was a little rough at first. The first pulls were disjointed and we lost our Guild Tank. He spent the next couple of pulls mostly dead. The Mr.PuG Tank went freaked out when one of the rogues disarmed a trap because he wanted the Rep. He was everything I can't stand in a tank: pushy, bossy, and a rock star type. It stung a little that on top of everything else, I also out geared him. I will give him this though, the guy made some sick high Threat.
After the first couple of pulls everyone settled down and before you know it we're ready to pull Marrowgar. I cast Beacon on the PuG Tank and started bombing Holy Lights on our our Guild Tank. Right after the first Bone Storm, we lost a healer, and then lost a tank, and it went down hill from there. Everyone stayed with the raid, no first wipe jumpers that I recall. We pulled again and the same thing happens.
As we run back in to regroup, one of the PuG Holy Paladins pipes up that he thinks Healing might be an issue and specifically my healing. He called me Honor Shammer so it took a moment for me to realize he was talking about me. His issue was that my HPS was low, and much lower than his. He claimed I was sub 2k, while he was at 4k. I began to wonder for a moment if I had gotten into a PuG with Gevlon. Basically he said I wasn't pulling my weight, causing us to wipe. He then claimed it wasn't the first time he had seen me not pull my weight. He must have gotten me confused with someone else. I generally don't do 25 mans or heal. The only other time I remember healing in a 25 man was a VoA a couple of weeks ago, but I bailed after the first wipe because it was time for our 10 man raid. Now I was causing someone’s Rank Watch to go bananas because I hadn’t trained Holy Shock since Level 70. Oops! I got a port to Silvermoon and took care of that issue.
It strikes me as I writes this that perhaps he hadn't reset his meters and was including the Trash. I didn't heal a whole bunch on trash so that may have made my numbers look worse than they were. He never linked a meter. I know I'm not the greatest Healer in the World (of Warcraft), but I'm fairly sure that Healing Meters aren't the best measure of a healer.
My guild mates weren't going to hear it. Before I could say a word, they rushed to defend me. One linked a Healing meter showing me as 3rd in Healing Done. This led to a heated exchange in vent. Names were called and the PuG Healer left in a huff. Keep in mind that the raid was about 15 to 16 of my guildmates and 7 or 8 PuGs using our Vent Server. Since he was PuGing with a Guild, it might not have been the best idea to call out one of their own. Especially a relatively tight guilds like Devolve.
After that little bit of drama reminded me once again why I quit doing 25 mans, one of my guild mates identified the real problem. We hadn't assigned Healers and the third Tank wasn't getting enough heals. After we assigned healers to the Tanks and to the raid, Marrowgar was a one shot.
Drops were Bryntroll, Legguads of Lost Hope and a Bulwark of Smouldering Steel. Bryntroll was the biggest reason Mr.D had organized the PuG raid. To his credit, when he lost the roll he looted it to the winner who was none other than Boston (my DK co-Tank). As if I didn't already have trouble holding threat off him, lol. Mr.D probably offered some insane amount of gold to Boston to trade it, but Boston wouldn't hear of it.
Then it came time for the Pants. I never roll high, ever, but wouldn't you know it I outrolled the other Tanks. Mr.D loots the pants to me and of course someone asks about a Healer getting Tank gear. I explained I was Main Spec Tank but I was healing for the Raid because we were fine for Tanks and short on Healers.
I thought Grim had told me he had the mats for the Pillars of Might so I offered the pants to him in exchange for the Pillars (because I like the Pillars better). I had misunderstood him. He was starting to gather the Saronites for the Pillars but didn't have them. So I kept the Pants. Our Shaman was really excited about a shot at the Shield, but one of the PuG Shamans won it.
We headed over to Lady DeathWhisper and cleared her trash. At this point Grim took over the raid and assigned Tanks, DPS and Heals to various locations to handle Adds. We made several attempts, pushing to Phase 2 on about half of them, but we seemed to have trouble controlling the Adds and interrupting Frost Bolts. After multiple wipes the raid fell apart. Mr. D decided his Raid Leading days were over. He would just PuG and hit stuff from now on. As the raid fell apart I got an amusing tell from one of the PuGs. "You're not only a bad healer but a ninja too. kthxbai."
What a lovely way to end the evening. Man I should have gotten a screenshot of that, but I didn't think about at the time. I logged off as quickly as I could and jumped on my Hunter to go shoot some stuff before calling it a night.


Bacon said...

Yeah, healing meters are so hard to use to judge healers. I'm constantly leading on the overhealed list, but that's the way it is with healing over time spells.

At least your 25 man PUG got Marrowgar down. All the runs I've been on ended up just being rep runs.

Chris said...

Stuff like that happens with pugs. In a week, they probably won't remember anything.


Lakini said...

Someone sent me a tell letting me know I was terrible after I left a 25 pug toc. The group fell apart before we ever pulled. Kids are stupid and they do 25 man pugs.

Anonymous said...

Think of it this way: they're pugging for a reason.

Also, it may sound weird, but I think the weather may have something to do with it. Maybe it's just anecdotal, but I've been seeing (and experiencing) a lot more pug friction in the last several weeks since everyone got buried by snow.

Dargnash said...

I too hate the curse of X/Heal dual spec. I have asked my raid leaders before if I go as Holy can I still roll MS on tank drops, but normally get told no. Main reason being if SP plate drops I would have first picks.

Anonymous said...

That kind of drama is why i don't raid. i sympathize with you, but it seems that is the "nature of the beast". i would like to raid but i don't need or want to deal with people like that. my raiding consisted of 1 10-man naxx run with guildies and a couple of 10-man naxx pugs. now i stick to LFD, at least there's not much whining over gear.

Raist said...

Honestly, after reading your blog for a while and the fact that you are on Schmaladin, I find it hard to believe you are a bad Holy Pally. I am a raiding Holy Pally and am consistently the leader on the HPS meters, actually, the more damage folks take, the higher I am, hitting 11K on some fights (that usually end horribly), so there are lots of factors...

You beaconed, you sacred shield and you hit holy light and try to not run out of mana. I don't use shock a ton. If the tanks you are assigned to don't die, you won..

I am an offspec tank, just tanking heroics and I sometimes roll on tanking gear. Usually, if we have any pugs, we lay out the groundrules first off and cite any exceptions. I never pug a raid unless the leader is in guild or someone I know...

It does suck when people are mean and stupid.

Anonymous said...

You've identified one of the fundamental problems with 25 man raiding. On 10's you can do a glance and figure out who else might be rolling on what you want, and it's easy to check and discuss pre-drop. On 25's, so many folks and dual specs to keep track of, it's far more straightfoward to make sure the LM knows what you want to roll on and approves. Folks will NEVER all be happy about it, and healers who complain about meters cannot be very good themselves. I've had a holy pally for 3 years now and have never kicked or called out anyone on meters. I use them more to see if folks are afk or healing the correc targets. Beyond that, as long as folks stay alive and bosses die, you did your job as a healer.

Ty Zucker said...

The loot issue was the fault of the raid leader. I've been in plenty of raids where during the announcement of loot rules, any exceptions were announced (ie, a healer gets to roll on non-heal gear). People then get to decide if those rules are acceptable.
That being said, I can understand if one of the tanks who didn't know about this at the beginning was upset at you getting to roll on tank gear. No one told him and he didn't have the opportunity to leave the raid before getting saved. I'd think long and hard before raiding again with the same raid leader.

In terms of holy pally healing, I don't think there is much in-between. If you're good, your tank stays alive (assuming raid heals keep you alive). If you're bad, your tank dies.

Overall though, the whole story sounds like fail raid leader. He pugged a tank when a guild tank was available. He didn't make loot rules clear. He let a pug tank take over and lead things. He didn't assign healers. Furthermore, if he would have been a stronger leader I'd bet big money that you wouldn't have people calling one another out on vent and laying blame. People do that only when it seems like no one is in charge of the raid.

Anonymous said...

Honors, I love your blog but I really feel you did yourself and all the other tanks there a disservice by arranging to roll need on tanking gear. I would be pissed if I got bound to a PUG raid and lost a roll to another tank who was rolling as a healer. Would you have just as easily passed on the loot if some holy plate dropped?

This is why when I form PUG runs, there are NO exceptions on loot drops. You come as an offspec, you roll as an ifs, ands or buts. It saves your reputation and avoids drama.

Honors Code said...


1. I acknowledged I made a mistake not telling the PuG tank I was rolling on gear. Not much else to be done at this point. I won't do that again.

2. I made an arrangement with the Raid Leader. He needed a Healer, I needed Tank gear.

3. I would have rolled as offspec on Holy Paladin Plate, meaning I would have rolled only if none of the other Holys in the raid wanted it, and I would have rolled against the Rets. I didn't roll on the Healing Shield that dropped.