Mages, ten-man raiding, and other things that are awesome.

In Cataclysm, it’s been pretty firmly established that I am playing a mage (primarily) and my Holy paladin is my real secondary character. I have a group of lesser-played alts, none of which have hit 85 yet. It allows me to experience different aspects of the game as it suits my mood. Now that Millya doesn’t need anything from instances, I make sure to pug a heroic as a healer pretty regularly. I’ve also been driving myself crazy trying to get this trinket for Vid but we won’t talk about that. Oh no. I did a whole stint of archaeology over the holiday weekend until I just couldn’t take it anymore and I needed a break.

Then I started queuing for battlegrounds with my guildie Fsob. It’s been a fun experience, I haven’t PvPed with any regularity in ages. And of course, I used to do it primarily as a mage. It’s fun to be able to keep your team mates alive while they kill the other team. Going back into battlegrounds I’ve discovered a few things.

People don’t really change. I’d forgotten about the NERD RAGE that PvP seems to inspire in people. Usually at least once per battle (no matter how well the battle is going for our side) someone is raging in bg chat. “Why are you noobs fighting in the ****ing middle?” and “Way to go you ****,” is pretty much the order of the day. You have to either completely ignore what the people are saying (apart from when they’re calling incoming people) or just maintain a thick skin where nothing anybody says will bother you.

BGing with a friend (or friends) makes for insurmountable fun. When I BG alone as a healer, I usually try to pick a competent looking DPS and stick with them as best I can. The problem is, it’s often a crap shoot as to whether that person notices or cares about what I’m doing, so it often led to frustration on my part. I don’t have this problem when I’m playing (quite literally) someone’s pocket healer. Thanks to slowfall and a chopper I stuck to Fsob like glue and we’d soar off cliffs and rumble down the road, being a pretty devastating team. We used Vent/Mumble (yes, we’re currently sort of in-between on these) to communicate things quickly, like “This rogue is all over me,” or “I’m sheeping the paladin.” It was seriously awesome good times.

PvP can’t get stale the same way PvE sometimes can. At one point we were guarding the flag at Farm in Arathi Basin. There was a warlock on the Horde-side named “Puzzler.” He was a real puzzler, because he charged up to where the three of us were – all by himself, and we killed him in about five seconds. In just about the time it took him to rez and run back, he did this again. Initially we just thought he was a bit slow, but then we realized he was a bot. He’d always run up to the same spot, dismount and begin casting the same spell rotation (shortly before we killed him). It occurred to me that he might as well be an NPC or “mob” instead of someone PvPing, and the difference was incredible. In an environment that changes depending on the players, he was completely static and that made him a joke. He was like a PvE encounter. “The boss will do this at x percent of his health, or he’ll begin to channel this spell.” Sure, real bosses have more RNG. But a real player doesn’t move like that, either. And even if you’ve been in the same BG a hundred times, the people there with you will never be the exact same twice! That’s pretty neat. (a.k.a. this is the stuff I think about while I’m standing at Farm).

In one WSG match, the only people to successfully return the flag (twice) were the two of us. I didn’t know flag running could be so much fun! I think Fsob agreed at least partially, because he said, “This is so much easier with a healer!”

I’m actually trying to adapt my healing to suit a BG as we keep practicing. The nice thing is (from what I can tell) a PvP healing spec and a PvE healing spec really aren’t that different. I ran into a few holy paladins that were obviously great BG healers so I had a look at what they were casting. I still need a good PvP trinket, and I’m pretty sure that PvP gear will help me. Anyway, one thing is for sure, I will be doing this again. I’m going to have to dust off Millya’s PvP set as well and maybe do more mage PvPing. The thing is, it’s not as unique. You can hardly move in a BG for tripping over six water elementals. Yes, I like to be a special snowflake, and I’m okay with that. I’ll be sure to update as we proceed – I might even try arena, something I did for a mere evening back in Wrath. With any luck I’d run into other people with as little clue as I have, and less clue than my arena partner might have. How badly could it go, right?

I don't have a screenshot actually relevant to this post content, because when I'm BG healing it sounds something like, "Oh no, okay, oh what the heck, OH GOD, DON'T DIE." You can imagine it doesn't leave much time for screenshots.

Other minor highlights:

An orc shaman named Mooches that charges up to us at Stables on a Kodo and is promptly annihilated. I see the emote, “Mooches thanks you.”

“What the heck?” I said in Vent. “Why did that orc thank me?” Then I looked closer – I was sporting a pair of bunny ears. I’d forgotten about those achievements! He must have needed a draenei paladin and was just thanking me for being me. Well, I’m okay with that. We saw him again later and I thought we were friends now so I blew him a kiss but he tried to kill me anyway. It seems that what we had wasn’t special after all.


I see, “Masterbait has assaulted the Gold Mine!”

“You know, that guy is on our team,” I remark.

“Classy,” Fsob replies. Several minutes later:

“Fsob. I’m healing ‘Masterbait.'”

“You might not want to do that.”


“OH MY GOD what are there, eight of them? They’re all killing me!”

“Every single one I’ve targeted has been targeting you, haha.”


Facing down an inexorable Tauren paladin in WSG:

“This paladin really, really wants to kill me. Like really badly.” I kited him around the Alliance flag room, back down the corridor, back up the corridor, I bubbled, other people attacked him, he bubbled, he was slowed – and the whole time he just charged on towards me in slow motion. I healed myself, I fled. The whole thing felt like it went on about five minutes. “Seriously, he is STILL TRYING TO KILL ME. Why – won’t – you – just – DIE?” Eventually someone got him from behind and he collapsed at my feet. “FINALLY.” He put up a good fight, though, and he nearly got me several times. Then Fsob stole his wings. Poor Tauren paladin, you put up a good fight!


A warrior named “Sniggaz” is raging in raid chat. “CAN WE GET A HEALZ TO LM I’M TRYING TO GET WRECKING BALL.” He continues on for the next few minutes.

“I’m not going to be healing him.”

“Really? But he asked for healz. With a ‘Z.'”

“I’m not specced for those. I only give out grammatically correct heals.”

Comments on: "There’s Only One Way to Spell Heals" (15)

  1. Another reason to run BGs: the queue for everyone is miniscule. Can’t beat that in an era of 30+ minutes for DPSing an instance.

    Is Fsob’s toon’s name really ‘Fsob’? If so, I think I ran into him in AB over the weekend. (I was on Q at the time.) I wasn’t paying too close attention to the server name, but you don’t forget a name like Fsob.

    Honestly, I’m so not geared for PvP right now. At best my three toons have about 6 Cata PvP pieces of gear between them, but that doesn’t stop me from enjoying myself. Ignore the crazies who nerd rage, and just go out and hit somebody.

    That Tauren Pally, by keeping the focus on you, meant that there was one less healer supporting your team. In the right circumstance, that’s the best thing you can do.

    • His toon’s name really is Fsob, and he’s the only character I know of named Fsob in the armory so it probably was him! Maybe we’ll run into each other sometime. It would actually make me laugh if someone said, “Vid! I saw you in a BG!” Actually, if it was you, what would I do? I suppose you’d have to try to kill me. D:

      And oh yes, I know the Tauren was doing the RIGHT thing, it was just hilarious and scary. He had commitment to his goal. I have the utmost respect for his valiant attempt. He nearly had me!

  2. MORE PVP ADVENTURES! 😀 This was a great post, very fun to read. You should definitely try Arena! I’ve been tentatively testing it out, and it’s so not as bad as I thought – though, less zany than random BG antics, haha.

    I love the part about Mooches. 😉

    You are a better PVP partner than I am! As my hunter, I tend to work more as a roaming sniper. When my friend and I queued for Arathi Basin, we were fighting at Lumber Mill and an overwhelming Ally team swept in. We defended for a moment, then I said (we were in the same room, playing) GOING TO BLACKSMITH! and rocket boots-leaped/parachuted away to safety. He only had time for “Wait, WHAT?” before being violently killed, haha. (I’m used to working alone in BGs!)

    I also make it my job (as my DK) to absolutely stick like glue to my chosen target, usually a healer. The way I look at it, if I’m pressuring a healer and they’re busy self-healing to stay alive (and maybe panicking), they’re NOT healing a few of their teammates, so it’s a good trade-off!

    • I also make it my job (as my DK) to absolutely stick like glue to my chosen target, usually a healer. The way I look at it, if I’m pressuring a healer and they’re busy self-healing to stay alive (and maybe panicking), they’re NOT healing a few of their teammates, so it’s a good trade-off!

      Great Minds Think Alike, Rades!

      The worst pair of incoming people to see are the dreaded Hunter/Warlock pair; even more than the tank/healer pair. That’s because two enemies turn into four at the drop of a hat.

  3. Noodlestein said:

    Not only does BG’ing with friends make it more fun, but bging with a healer is MUCH more fun.
    I mean, I had fun when it was just Fsob and myself, but when you stepped in it was much more fun… Seems to be that way in games, the less you die the more fun you have ;P

  4. “I’m not specced for those. I only give out grammatically correct heals.” – Nice! I love it! Thank you for making me laugh after a long, stressful day =D

  5. Gameldar said:

    The pally was probably me – well like me (given that I’m Alliance too)- prot pallies can be hard to kill, but unless they get lucky or find a squishy healer it can be hard to take a healer down.

    All said I’ve been loving playing my paladin in BGs – so much so I’m thinking about making him a full time pvp character (having changed to my bear for pve) but I haven’t tried healing since wrath – the pvp gear is shared between ret and prot.

    Now if only I could get some guildies to come with me…

  6. Katherine said:

    Lol. Not specced for ‘healz’ indeed. I’ll have to remember that one.

  7. “BGing with a friend (or friends) makes for insurmountable fun.”
    Can’t agree enough with this!

    I think I stole that pallys wings twice during that fight in our flag room. There were too many healers around and he just wouldn’t die!

    • Haha. Just would. not. die. It’s sad that with the Valor -> Conquest conversion I could easily outfit Millya better for PvP than Vid. >.< We should do this again soon though, now honor is earned at a higher rate, right? Maybe it'll be easier!

  8. First off, I love your comment about grammatical-only heals. Love it.

    That said, I have (had) always hated PvP. I was tank specced for my first toon, before there were dual specs, and was useless in PvP, so I avoided it. Also, I got ganked over and over leveling on a PvP server, and that put a bitter taste in my mouth about it.

    That said, when I switched to pally healing, I decided to do arena with a buddy of mine, a dps warrior. To train, he and I (and others at times) went into “dirty BGs” (I’m to understand this is a real term describing PvP with PuGs) and learned the ropes. We had a blast. We still talk about the time seven guys jumped us when we were headed to GM in Arathi and we were able to fight off all seven (just the two of us).

    Perhaps that’s the angle I can use to reignite my interest in WoW. Great post!

  9. Bots like Puzzler there make me feel absolutely PRO as a healer. I’m like, “YES! I killed something on my own! Yeah sure, it was a bot, but I DID IT.” /beam

  10. “I only give out grammatically correct heals.” Absolutely priceless and 100% my take as well. Few things put me off more than dmeands for heals that can’t even be taken seriously due to their leet speak.

    About the only other thing that stood out to me was the guy who kept saying “Healer, stay alive.” Really? I thought I’d just lay down and die, kind of like you (he) did.

    Great read and fantastic perspectvies. Keep up the great work.

  11. I am so glad I started Arena-ing again. I love it so much, and it really reinvigorates the game for me.

    BGs with a pocket healer are OMGSOAWESOME I’m way too used to having one now and if I queue without one I feel so lost.

    I love WSG and TP for exactly the reason you pointed out – a 2-person healer/dps team can single-handedly turn the tide on that BG. 10-man BGs are fantastic for that sort of thing.

    AB is fun, but reducing it to a 10-man in BfG doesn’t seem to have translated quite so well. It’s cap one each leave 3 for D on the cap’d and AoE spam over WW until someone manages to cap it. Yawn. But I loathe loathe loathe AV and IoC. Ugh, so boring. Barely any PvP – storm the gates and kill the boss.

    Last weekend was AB weekend and I must’ve run 50 matches on both my toons. Plus Honor gains have been bumped! WOO! 😀

    It’s a great time to PvP. And I would highly recommend Arenas – it is a lot of fun right now for some reason. Balance teams do really well as there are so many cleave teams out right now.

    My warlock is on a cleave team and that’s fun too, but it feels more like a kamakazi rush than my paladins balance matches.

  12. Rochmoninoff said:

    what time to Business Timers do BG?
    (the correct answer would be “late night server time”)
    If you guys are ever doing any late night BGs, I’m your rogue!

    Have y’all considered assembling a rated BG team?
    We’ve talked about it in Drop Bears but (in spite of the guild have like 100 members) only 6 of us are serious about it and split into groups of 4 and 2 for when we could queue.

    PS: did you notice who got server first for level 25 guild?

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