Only one week into Cataclysm, but feels a lot more. I was 85 Thursday night last week, got my item level to 329 shortly after and started doing heroics that weekend. First impression: very, very hard. I was pretty concerned when the tank took 25 % damage each hit and my mana pool was down to half after one trash mob down, with 3 to go. I realised pretty fast that I had to change my WotLK play style completely, something I am still working on.

There’s no Boom in Oom

My face is covered in blood, I’m missing several teeth and I’m not sure I have use of my right leg anymore.


I immediately had to bug my healer friends about it. “Omg I just spent 5 hours inside DM and used 38 mana pots, 78 waters and still couldn’t do it. Do I suck? Do I, do I?” Luckily it’s just not me struggling at the moment. We all share the curse called easily oom’d. One hunter not nuking the right add, and all that delicious,  precious 80k mana is gone. One silly mage standing in silly purple spot, and it’s a wipe. Pretty much. Of course there is room for tiny mistakes, I still haven’t seen a heroic completed to perfection, but it is very hard and requires that every group member use their abilities to a maximum.

After some upgrades, I can notice a big difference and can afford to spend a bit more heals. However, while in WotLK I pretty much felt like a slacker if a single party member was below 80 % health, now in Cata, I can’t think like that. If all the dps are more or less alive and the tank still got some hp left at the end of a boss fight, I am very pleased. I guess it’s not about keeping everyone on top anymore, but keeping everyone alive (apart from silly mage standing in silly purple, he can stay there til dead).  If I on top of that got more than 20k mana, big grats to me.

Welcome back, CC

Mobs see me trappin’, they hatin’!

But I’m lovin’!

Balance of the group is also important, of course. All the hexes, traps, bindings, shackles, mind controls and saps are now my new best friends. Some people say CC is still not required, but I haven’t heard a single healer say “pull ’em all”! yet.  There are also differences between the tanks. I still think a pala healer is the easiest to keep up, if he uses holy word on himself, I ♥ him even more. Bear tank was fun and effective, warrior tank left no room for slacking, and dk tank, well, uhm, I  just want to buy them a shield for x-mas. Sure, a decent geared dk tank who actually knows how to play is not that big of an issue, but a “I just dinged 85 and imma  smack those mobs with mah 2 hander” is just a nightmare and /cry all the way.

So do we like?

I think they require some nerf so people have a small margin to make mistakes. Not all of us are hardcore players who can afford perfect tactics.

There is a lot of discussion going on about this, some say they are too easy, many say they are too hard, most seem to enjoy the challenge. I think I am in the last category. There has been times when I have thought “gah I’m going dps from now, this is no fun”, but when the boss is finally dead and you did a good job, that thought is pretty much gone. Til next boss, rinse and repeat. My shaman was resto from day 1, I was 80 before dual spec came out and I leveled as resto all the way. Imba mace poking and 45 min to kill one mob ftw! Still, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

But back to the heroics, true, if you started in WotLK and are used to pulling whole rooms without CC, spamming mana / casts and always be on top, these heroics will probably not feel too great. I guess most of us need to learn to play in a different way. And hopefully we will learn to know our classes better. In late ICC raid there were several hunters which didn’t know what frenzy shot was or what it did, not to mention the time I hexed a mob and a fellow shaman gasped and asked “omg how did you turn that guy into a frog??”. Less of that in Cataclysm and I will be a happy panda. And hopefully not a oom’d one.

  1. new subscriber says:

    nice piece again. you write with a refreshing zest for the game.

    for some of us this is just a return of the way things used to be. for me vanilla instances we simply better than their successors – better visually, in terms of dungeon layout and in terms of the strategy required. blizz’s return to their original formula has hit the spot for me and i loved running SFK and Deadmines without a level 15 tagging behind. Great job resurrecting those instances.

    keep writing Elise, it’s the only blog I read. 🙂

    • Tribeca says:

      Hello mystical new subscriber, thank you for comment.

      I weren’t so lucky to do instances back in vanilla. I agree that I love sfk, it’s my favourite so far. And the Cookie fight in Deadmines is madness.

      I am glad to see you read the blog 🙂

  2. Heidi says:

    Personally I’m loving Cata so far, but then again I refuse to pug tanks. There is just so much pain I can take as a healer. 😦

    Done all but one of the heroics with mainly guild groups by now and I think Deadmines might be the favorite, or possibly Vortext Pinnacle. Even if that damn dragon boss caused me so much trouble with positioning with the winds! I almost hit my flatmate in the face when he tried being a backseatdriver for that one. :p

    But yes, it’s definitely time to change it up, resto shaman style. Healing surge – away with you evil thing! The same goes for chain heal, sadly. It just doesn’t do enough for what it costs anymore, 7k heal on a 140k hp tank is just… depressing. So now I’m all about the riptide and unleash elements, glyphed my healing wave for the free heals and use ghw only with riptide used (tidal waves?) and I am using it on cooldown! Also – LOVE healing rains. It might not be super efficient yet, but it’s so pretty! 😀

  3. Tribeca says:

    Hey Heidi,

    Pug, no way. I didn’t even like pugging in Wrath, so very unlikely it will happen now.

    Lol @ dragon boss situation. We went there first time with Gwyn / Ani, and my oh my, he was frustrated. He threathened with throwing his keyboard into a wall, and we are talking Gwyn 😮 I pretty much gave up seeing the position, people went “Elise, you need to stand downside with wind, stand with wind in your face, no wait, wind in back, or was it upside with wind?” Ehh…? I just healed and hoped for the best.

    Oooh yes healing rain is so pretty. Gief buff on it, we will rock the world and balance will once more be set. Nothing beats shamans. 😀

    • Steve says:

      Another nice post Elise. As a lovely pally tank it is now possible to spec into an almost self-healing tree making the most of ‘Word of Glory’ at every opportunity. When that was introduced during the end of ICC I must admit that I thought it was pretty useless. Now however I use it all the time and it really helps the healers out (and we all want to do that). Threat doesnt seem to be too much of an issue really so staying alive is the order of the day. New cooldowns such as ‘Guardian of Ancient Kings’ is a nice touch too.

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