Dear DPS….. (and some tanks + healers)

Dear DPS….. (and some tanks + healers),

So, I sit here in my little space I call home in the glorious city of Darnassus, the gentle patter of light rain calms and soothes this troubled druid. Gazing out from my haven, I can see the trees swaying in a light breeze and happily I can feel my recent rage ebbing away. This more serene and mediative state allows me to now put my word to paper and pen this open letter to the dps of the World (of Warcraft), as well as some tanks and healers out there.

Having fought my way through a few rather awful dungeons groups, both as a bear and a tree, I feel I really must point out a few things that can make the difference between a good, smooth run and a horrible, depressing one.

As I still have my feral presence upon me, I will begin with the troubles of the most ferocious of my aspects – the Bear.

We bears are tough creatures and able to easily hold a swarm of ravaging creatures at bay long enough for our less survivable party members to reduce them to, well, gobbets of quivering burnt flesh. Many a time have I stood on the bridge in Zul’Aman seeing it as a note of personal pride that not one of the wretched trolls will get past me. However, as great as we are, Elune has not blessed us with the ability to get INSTANT ******* AGGRO!  This affects some more than others, in my case, tanking is not my primary role so sometimes it takes me a little while to slip back into it.

So, I am afraid, this means that all the dps who can’t be bothered to wait a couple of seconds for me to gain aggro really should learn to let the tank pick up the bad guys and then open fire. Also, as a bear, I really need rage to fuel my attacks, I gain rage by attacking and being attacked. If the monsters are attacking you, then they are not attacking me and I am not getting rage. No rage means no attacks to help get them off you. Yes, I have a growl, but not that I can spam repeatedly if different people decide they want to attack different things.

This effect has been summed up before as the “OMG! ITS A BEAR!!” effect (can’t remember when I first saw this, think it was on a fellow druid blog somewhere). When I charge and smash into my target, it’s first thought is “OMG! ITS A BEAR!!” as I start to rip it’s face off. However, at this point, any friends it has are only at the stage of “oh look, a bear” and as such are more inclined to start screaming “OMG! ITS A MAGE/WARRIOR/ROGUE etc!” if you you start shooting magic missiles in their eyes and such. I need a few good swipes and maybe a bit of thrashing to push them to the level of “OMG! ITS A BEAR!!” Once I have them at that point, you can nuke away to your heart’s content, as they will be focusing on the large angry bear currently tearing their kneecaps away, but for those first few crucial seconds you have to just focus on the main target and hold the aoe.

That is the main issue troubling me, the other is the random pulling of things, either accidental or deliberate. This most frustrating when it is from a healer. I am the tank, I am the one getting walloped and the one trying to ensure that the group doesn’t have pulls any bigger than it (or I) can cope with. I do not appreciate the fact that you think you know better than me how big my pulls should be. Just because you have full mana does not mean I can take on all of Zul’Gurub at once. So please DO NOT PULL when you are not a tank. This was especially brought home last week when I was moonlighting on my protection Paladin in Zul’Farrak. The healer  pulls all the trash in the pool area and I get chain hexed. 12 minutes later, I finally kill the last mob and the only person still alive is me. The rest of the group had all died. I don’t know why, but for some reason the fact that they were shouting “USE CONSECRATION YOU FUCKING RETARD!” didn’t make it come off a 30 second cooldown any quicker. Strange, will ask Greg to look into it next time he drops by for tea and cake.

So very simply my two gripes are – let me get aggro before you open up an AoE nukefest, and if you are not the tank do not pull a damn thing that is not already in combat with the party.

Now that those little issues are somewhat out of my system I will move onto the other role I normally fill – that of a healer.

Once again, I am afraid the damage dealers are top of the bad list here. There is a very simple idea at the core of this problem – if you (or a friend) didn’t put it on the floor DON’T STAND IN IT!. While I know there are some exceptions to this, if you are unsure of any mechanics at any point in a dungeon or raid fall back to this and you will be better for it. Some of the shit out there on the floor hurts you really badly and it is not always possible to heal through it. Also, more healing on you means less on the tank and therefore more chance of the tank taking a dive and we all follow very quickly.

Likewise, if you pull extra mobs, charge randomly without waiting for the tank etc I won’t bother healing you. We all have roles to fill in the dungeon; a make sure you lot stay alive, the tanks ensures you don’t have your face eaten and you kill stuff while we do our jobs. A lot of dps whine if you tanks do more damage than them as it’s their job to do the damage, likewise they complain if a healer does dps and they die because of no heals. You expect us to do our jobs correctly and so, likewise we expect you to do yours – YOU do not control what is pulled or when, leave it to the tank and concentrate on doing your job properly while not standing in shit.

To the tanks of the random pugs I end up in – I do not have infinite mana, though as a druid it does feel like it at times. I do not mind a fast run if I have warning. However, having a really bad pull(s) that drains my mana followed by an instant huge pull or pulling lots of trash into a boss (especially in a Zulroic) will result in a wipe and one that is not, despite your claims, my fault. If you pull when I am out of range, have no mana, am dead etc then it is your fault we wiped not mine. If I need them, I will try and call out for mana breaks but sometimes I do not get the chance. Generally my little blue bar doesn’t move at all, but sometimes, due to undergeared tanks (or ones in PvP/dps gear) or trigger happy dps it does drop to level that I feel I need a quick drink. It would be greatly appreciated if you actually checked this before barreling into another large trash pack.

So then, that concludes my little poke at the various people I seem to get grouped with, I try to be as patient as possible but we have to work together, not as 5 individuals so anyone reading this remember that regardless of your role, things only work well if you help me to help you – and that applies to any other tanks, healers etc you find yourself in a group with 🙂



Posted on September 30, 2011, in Feral, General, Healing, Instances, PvE, Resto, Tanking. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. As someone who pretty much exclusively heals, I like to live by a rule of thumb that I have about the only two non-healing spells I ever use: Soothe and Faerie Fire. In regards to FF, I keep an even tighter rule of “only on bosses” to avoid accidentally throwing it on something the tank doesn’t have aggro on.

    Stuff is going to get burned down whether I’m part-time DPSing or not and with my lack of pretty much any hit, it’s not apt to make a difference if I throw in a Wrath here or there, so why bother potentially complicating things? I know Blizzard ditched ToL as a full time form so that we could do a little DPS’ing in certain situations, but well, screw it. It’s not like I ever really utilized my DPS abilities when healing with my Priest pre-Cata anyway.

    Your point about DPS being careful about pulling applies to healers too. With all the aggro changes of late, I can’t remember ther last time I pulled aggro off of a tank. I do, however, still occasionally pull it off of a trigger happy DPS after an ill-timed WG or Efflo on a DPS, especially if they’re popping a threat reduction cooldown (Feign Death is the bane of my existance).

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