Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Druid healing in 5v5's

Last night, I tried my hand at 5v5 as the only healer with 4 dps (warrior x 2, mage, hunter).

It did not work out well - 3 wins, 7 losses and about a 1450 rating.

A druid healer's strengths in 2v2 (and to a little bit lesser extent, 3v3) do not work well in 5v5. You can't play the LOS game in 5v5 - there's too many people, and you need to be constantly healing someone - especially if you're the only healer. HOTs take time to ramp up - 6 seconds for Rejuv + 3 x Lifebloom, plus another 2 seconds for Regrowth. Your healing target is long since dead by that point. Sure, you could skip a couple of lifeblooms and go straight for the Regrowth - but either way you're not going to outheal the combined DPS of 3 or 4 opponents.

I admit I did not play well in a number of the matches. I got caught out in the open and killed in seconds (even with 256 resilience & 9K HP). I did not cyclone nearly as much as I should have.

Our wins came when we adopted the following strategy:
- All DPS charges in, and tries to nuke the holy living hell out of a single target (preferably a healer)
- Mage attempts to sheep a DPS (then goes to nuking)
- I attempt to Cyclone a DPS, stay out of sight, and heal + cyclone.

I learned a lot on what NOT to do in 5v5's. That being said, I don't think that particular team makeup is sustainable beyond perhaps a 1600 rating. I'd prefer to swap out a DPS for a disc/holy priest. The priest could main heal, I could support heal and do a better job of keeping someone constantly cycloned.

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