I’m a raiding Resto Druid. And I do quite well. I’m one of the guild’s strongest healers (11/0/50). But I battle to heal a heroic. *sniff* Some heroics are fairly okay, but something like Magister’s Terrace gives me leaf curl. What am I doing wrong? I have more than 2K +Healing when buffed (1.9K unbuffed), and mana isn’t a problem. My average ping is 400ms, a result of where I live and where the server is situated.
I’ve reached a stage where I actually don’t want to heal heroics for my guildies … but I’m too scared I’m going to be the cause of a wipefest.
It feels like I just can’t cope with splash damage, and I’m doomed to always have a back-up healer in my groups because I can’t cut it on my own. Rolling Lifebloom, Rejuvenation, Regrowth, NS + HT, SM — you name it, I’ve tried it and I’m using it as best I can. It feels like we survive by pure luck … not because I can heal.
*serious case of Resto Blues*
Any suggestions would be welcome.
Dealing with splash damage can certainly be tricky for a Restoration Druid, though not unfeasible. You’ve mentioned some of our most well known techniques (NS + HT, Swiftmend) above, but there are a few other things I would recommend that you try, particularly with respect to Heroic Magister’s Terrace.
There are two encounters where party-wide damage is distributed at regular intervals. The first such fight is Selin Fireheart who performs an ability called Fel Explosion after each crystal is drained. You will know it’s coming because he shouts, “Yes! I am a god!” but just before he starts to drain a crystal, he’ll yell, “My hunger knows no bounds!” That should be your cue to start throwing a Lifebloom on each of your party members. These Lifeblooms should end up blooming just after he’s started damaging your group, and you should have no trouble putting up a LB on 3 of your groupmates before refreshing the LB stack on your main tank, leaving you to top off just one other group member. This type of preemptive healing via cheap and fast-casting Lifebloom is a great way to deal with damage you know is impending.
Vexallus can be a particularly tricky fight, depending on your group’s composition. The strategy relies upon having one or more groupmates or their pets available to soak up the charges of Energy Feedback debuff from the Pure Energy adds that spawn throughout the fight. Because this debuff increases the amount of damage taken (and due to Vexallus’ periodic AOE), it’s important to get rid of these charges periodically. There are several methods of doing this:
- Have a Hunter pet or Voidwalker soak 2 rounds of the debuffs before allowing it to die
- Have a Paladin kill the adds and then use Divine Shield
- Have a Mage soak the debuffs and Iceblock and Cold Snap/Iceblock (when available)
- Have a Rogue soak the debuffs and use Cloak of Shadows
Either way, you’ll want to coordinate with your group to decide who will take which round of charges. You should be able to heal most players through 2 rounds of debuffs (2 mobs per round = 4 total debuffs) before he or she needs to use the appropriate special ability to remove them, though some are certainly more squishy than others. One additional ability at your disposal as a Restoration Druid is Rebirth. You can opt to use one of your DPSers to kill the Pure Energy and soak the debuffs, allowing her to die after two rounds, then cast Rebirth on her so that she can do so again. This will often buy you enough time to kill Vexallus, at which point the debuffs are removed automatically.
This is a tricky fight and one for which you definitely don’t want to be using Tree of Life. It’s also a great opportunity to show off your amazing crowd control skills with 1-2 mobs that you can effectively crowd control at a time. If you happen to get Garaxxas the Hunter and his ravager pet Sliver, you can keep the pet locked down with Hibernate until your party is ready to deal with her.
Perhaps most valuably, you can cycle Cyclone between all of the other adds with the exception of Priestess Delrissa herself. Your groupmates will invariably be switching targets throughout the fight so just pick who you’re opting to take out of the fight for 9 seconds and let them know not to worry with them. I find Cyclone to be especially helpful on Yazaai the Mage as it interrupts long-casting spells like Blizzard (don’t forget you can shapeshift out of his Frost Nova and Polymorph) and for stopping the massive damage from the Rogue or one of the two Warriors who have elected to pick on a clothie groupmate. Just don’t forget that Cyclone only has a 20-yard range.
Also, be sure that your tank pulls ALL of the groups that come before the Gazebo area, including the two small groups tucked into the enclaves on either side. One or more unlucky Fear uses and you’ll have 3-5 more mobs to deal with.
There are several things you have to watch out for during the Kael fight. Don’t stand on top of the flaming spheres that indicate an incoming Flamestrike, don’t stand within melee range of the Phoenix, and keep strong healing focused on your tank during the ground phases. During Gravity Lapse (the phase where everyone is thrown upward and can “swim” through the air), you’ll notice beams that connect each party member to Kael’Thas, draining their life away. For these phases, I find it most helpful to “swim” back and forth behind his stage area (affording a significant amount of coverage from the orbs) and throwing a Lifebloom on whoever is in range before moving back across. Make sure that your groupmates know that they must be in range of one end of the stage or the other and that they shouldn’t travel toward the door if it can be avoided.
General Tips for Magister’s Terrace
In addition to the fight specific tips above, I’d also give the following general advice:
- You can often view Tranquility as a fight “reset.” If group healing ever gets out of your control, pop Barkskin and use Tranquility to restore your whole group to full health again. And then don’t let it happen again for another ten minutes.
- To maximize the benefit you’re getting from abilities that have cooldowns (Nature’s Swiftness, Swiftmend, Tranquility), I recommend using the addon Ghost Pulse. Originally recommended to me by reader Ammeli, GP flashes the icon of any ability as soon as it becomes available.
- Ethereum Smugglers can be very annoying, teleporting into the middle of your group and exploding all over everyone. Stop them from doing this by casting a Cyclone on him just after he teleports. The ability is on a cooldown, and he won’t be able to do so again immediately.
- Make sure someone in your group takes out any Warlock Imps that come with trash pulls. They’re very low health and can be dispatched with 1-2 hits by most casters but can harry you mercilessly if left to their own mischievous devices.
- Have all your ranged stand as far as possible when fighting the Sunblade Sentinel. Their Chain Lightning AOE won’t hit outside of a certain range, reducing the amount of group-wide healing you’ll have to do and letting you focus more on your tank.
- During the packs of Brightscale Wyrms that lead up to the fight with Vexallus, do not start casting HoTs on your tank too early. If you pull them away from him too soon, he’ll have trouble regaining aggro on them and you’ll die. A better option is to wait until he’s about half life and then hit him with a larger heal.
- Whenever possible, your tank should pull any groups around a corner. Many of the mobs in Magister’s Terrace are ranged casters who will happily blast away at you or your tank unless forced to run around a corner to reach you.
I hope that this advice is helpful to you! Magister’s Terrace can be a very fun instance to run as a Resto Druid once you’ve learned enough tricks to help you deal with splash damage. Of course, even the best healer can’t make an instance successful if her groupmates aren’t supportive. Make sure you nudge your tank, CCers, or DPSers in the right direction if something they’re doing is making your job harder!
Does anyone else have advice to share from their time in Magister’s Terrace?
Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.