#0 - 2010/09/21 03:55:17 AMFirst off, apologies if this is the wrong place to ask this question, or I'm just behind the times... I canceled my WoW account because I was bored with the EZ-mode WotLK raiding, and hadn't been following things too closely. So imagine my surprise when I heard through the g!%!*vine that Cataclysm was supposed to be bringing back challenge to healing!
My understanding of this new model is each healer is given a slow, efficient heal, and a grab-bag of other heals that are all better than it in various ways (faster, stronger, multiple targets etc), but worse in mana efficiency. The basic paradigm is you cast the efficient heal until you have a pressing reason to cast something else. If you cast 'something else' too much you go OOM and everyone dies. Similarly casting the efficient heal when you should cast 'something else' or you cast the wrong 'something else' and people die, possibly leading to a wipe.
I guess this is interesting enough in its way. One of the rare moments of fun I had healing in WotLK was 3-drake 10-man Sartharion before it became zergable, and before Regrowth and LB were nerfed into the ground and Nourish over-buffed. Back when (almost!) every heal had its place, and you had to learn when was the right time to cast every heal, or risk wiping your group. However, that brings me to my main point, which was I used all my heals in that encounter not just because I risked running out of mana, but because there was so much going on in the encounter I had to deal with that I needed to use the right heal at the right time for. Even if mana was no object, it wouldn't have effected my spell choice much (beyond probably dropping Nourish from the rotation).
So I guess I see possible healing models as:
a) WotLK ICC model: Spam your highest throughput heal(s) all the time every GCD, risk someone dying if you're not quick enough, very simplistic boss fights where the baddie just whams your raid over and over again with massive damage
b) Mana starved model: Spam your efficient heal, cast your inefficient heals very rarely and as a last resort.
c) Sarth 3D style model: Mana means you can't avoid using your efficient heal altogether, but the majority of your spell choice is dictated by reaction to encounter mechanics.
As I said, I find a) boring as anything, and don't want to see that again. I like c) and I would put most Vanilla and TBC content in that basket. However, it sort of sounds like Cataclysm is going to be b), which I guess has the potential to be challenging, but also sounds as exciting as doing vector calculus in my spare time (zzzz).
Challenge in healing = good.
Challenge in healing from reacting to mechanics and not casting the most inefficient thing all the time = good
Challenge in healing from calculating out how many inefficient heals you can afford to cast over encounter duration = boring
Am I completely off base here about what makes WoW fun? Or completely wrong about how Cataclysm raiding will be?