Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Leveling Healy vs Respeccing

I leveled both of my healers as a healing spec. That said, if you choose to be sane and go the other route (level as DPS, respec heals), I don't blame you (though disc is seriously underrated as far as leveling ease goes).

But which is "better"? *drum roll* It depends!

Benefits of Leveling as a Healer:
-You have an easier time getting groups
-You have the time to become familiar with your healing tools in bits and peices, rather than having them thrown at you all at once at a higher level
-Getting healing gear is easier (presumably, as the healer in the group, you have little/no competition when it drops)
-Practice makes perfect

I will sadly never be able to recreate the healing experience I had with Ambrosine. She healed 5 man and 20/40 man raids at 60. She healed leveling to 70 and did some more 10 and 25 man healing there. Then she healed her way to 80 and thrashed and flailed her way through 5 mans to 10 and 25 man content. I have healed a looooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooot on that toon, in all sorts of circumstances. I had greater finesse with her at 80 than I will on my priest for a long time.

Cons of Leveling Healing:
-Soloing can suck (unless you're a disc priest. Weee holy fire!)
-If you're on a PvP server, I have one word for you: bait. Lyr can defend herself to a point, but Ambrosyne is well nigh helpless. C'mere and let me holy shock you to death!....once every six seconds!
-Soloing can suck A LOT

Pros of Leveling DPS:
-You kill things/level faster
-You can defend yourself in PvP
-Big numbers are fun!

Cons of Leveling DPS:
-It can be harder to find groups
-You get less time to hone your skills
-It can be harder to get gear for later healing (less so if you run with other kinds of healers, but you still might fight over rings and cloaks)
-You might get more irritated with trying to do things as healy specced later (dailies as heals = D: )

Yes, the list of 'cons' I have is longer, but the whole 'killing things faster' is pretty heavily weighted by most people.

If you chose to level as DPS and respec heals, there's a couple of ways to handle it:

-Respec before hitting max level. DPS to 70 and then switch and heal your way through Northrend
-Respec at 80, but throw yourself at a lot of normal instances until you get the hang of things. Reading strats just isn't the same. Progress to heroics later, when you're certain you have the gear for them. Being undergeared in heroics just makes for frustration. Even if you happen to have the gear for heroics right off the bat, they're not the place to start learning!

Lyr learned in the Nexus that if your level 72 Death Knight tank in blues and greens makes pulls as if he were on his 80 warrior in blues and epics, you die!


  1. Interesting opinions.

    There are some points which I'd like to comment on, though.

    For the three squishier healing classes, we can solo as a ranged spellcaster (in fact, as a priest you don't have any alternative). Spellcaster dps and healing shares a lot of the same stats now, with only Spell Penetration and Hit rating being exclusive to dps and mp5 being slightly more in a healers interest. That means you hardly need to swap gear from healing to dps and the other way around, and more importantly that you have just as much reason to roll for that gear in instances as a healer.

    There's also the option of specking healing while making sure to pick talents that will aid you while soloing. Priests have a much easier time there, druids have the worst, but there are some talents here and there for all.

    The next option is speccing dps while picking up all the healery-talents. There's quite a lot of them in the druid balance tree, both holy and disc priest tree and the elemental shammy tree. Paladins have a sort of mix in Holy.

    Holy Fire is pretty neat spell for priests. But I must admit it's slightly worse than Lava Burst which I got at 75. Garantueed crit if you have a flame shock on the enemy? Perhaps more circuimstancal, but a heck of a lot more fun to see big crits on demand, even as a healer.

    Neat picture, by the way.

  2. My druid is feral and my shaman never made it past 16, so my knowledge on those two classes in their healing roles is...not good! Though my feral druid does have some of the healy-flavored things in the feral tree, because her shaman buddy likes to try to die.

    The change to spell power was a great one, I think-the +heal/+dmg bit was just a pain in the ass. I did notice that the lack of hit whenever a holy fire missed. BLARGH.

    You can spec DPS and pick up the healy talents in that tree--but while that will help you pick up healing skills, it's still not the same experience as, say, leveling straight Healing Spec O' Choice.

    And thanks-levitate is for screen shot!