Welcome to my blog!

Gather 'round one and all, and behold the spectacle of the mundane, that of the casual druid.

Monday, December 28, 2009

I was reading a new post over at World of Matticus, about how he had learned to heal effectively. It got me thinking to how I figured out healing as a resto druid, and it was this...

The hard way.

My first healing character, and my first raiding character was my Holy paladin, Domni. I started in BC, where healing consisted of spamming FoL as long as you could. In WotLK, it got a little better, you had to use more of your heals but I was still limited to using FoL and HL most of the time, cleanse, and the occasional Holy Shock. Not a lot to worry about.

As my time in wow progressed, and I found my way to the druish-side, I was pretty stunned. I didn't begin healing whatsoever until I turned 80, so I had no gradual practice as I leveled up, learned a new spell, and had 10 levels to learn how to use it effectively. All of a sudden I went from 3 healing spells to 9 . Healing Touch. Rejuvenation. Regrowth. Nourish. Wild Growth. Swiftmend. Lifebloom. Tranquility. AND my 1 Cleanse turned into 2, Abolish Poison and Remove Curse. 9 spells. 4-9. More than double.

It was pretty rough at first, my gear was decent for a fresh 80, but my play style was WAAAAAY off. I started by trying to play like my old paladin. I spammed Nourish on any who needed it, but I was often going oom mid-fight. What was I doing wrong? Domni could spam non-stop without running out of mana, what was the difference. I caused wipes. I made enemies. It was sloppy at best. But out of all the name calling and noob-bashing, I picked out certain tidbits.

At first I was confused. I had a regular HoT. I had one that was a big heal, with a HoT on the end of it. I had a straight-heal that was bigger when I used HoTs. I had a HoT that could heal my whole group, but got weaker as it ticked. I had another group HoT, but I had to stand still and channel it! Hell, I even found this HoT that was a quick HoT with a heal at the END! And you could put it on not once, not twice, but thrice! My mind was blown. Where had the simplicity of Domni gone? One big heal. One small heal. Maybe even the odd medium heal. Apparently all those HoT spells are there for a reason.

I scoured the internet in search of answers. Of hope. Of my destiny! On my quest, I came across a little blog known as Restokin. Through Lissanna's helpful healing guides and posts, and a little extra help from the WoW druid forums, and all the verbal abuse I took, something magical happened.

Did you know, that while your HoTs are ticking away, keeping people alive, you can just sit back and let your mana regen? Who knew?! Once I figured out this little gem, it was a short time before I found out that all of those HoTs had different uses and applications. Someone just took damage? Rejuv. Someone just took a lil' damage? 1 Lifebloom. EVERYONE took damage? Wild Growth that shit. Tank got spanked? Nourish him, son, Nourish! Hell, I even manage to remember I have swiftmend (although I can thank my pally days for it, half the time I keep calling it Holy Shock) and Nature's Swiftness macro'd to a Healing Touch.

I would like to take this time to apologize to all of those who had to suffer through my ignorance. I'm sorry. Truly.

It took some time, but I got it down pat. I consider myself an exceptional healer, skill-wise. There's no challenge I won't gladly face. It was a rocky road, but i strode it.

How about you? How did you figure out how to heal? Or tank? Or even dps? Did someone take you under their wing, did you read a helpful guide, or like me, the hard way? I want to know.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Melee and Expertise

I was having a chat with a guildy yesterday, a fresh 80 Death Knight (also his first 80). We ran a few random PuG's together, and I kept reminding him to "try and stand behind the mobs when you are attacking", to which he replied "Why?". Why? Well, the reason I gave him on the spot was because a target can't parry when you are behind it, only dodge, so more of your attacks land, and you do more dps. To get rid of those dodges, I let him know he needs 26 expertise without talents, and God bless his little undead soul, he loudly proclaimed he would get it ASAP! Once we were done, and he did do much better at staying in the back, as it were, I explained it a bit more from a tanks perspective.

As a tank, I try and get expertise on my gear so more of my attacks land so I generate more threat, procs, etc, but also because when a target(s) parry one of my attacks, their next attack comes 50% faster! That means more damage, and the whole point of tanking is to keep damage to a minimum. I'm over the dodge cap for exp. and a good way in for parry, so I can live with the few that slip through, my concern is with ignorant dps. As a melee dps, you owe it to your tank to cause as few parries as possible. Take a fury warrior for example. You swing two weapons. You Whirlwind a lot. You have no expertise. You like to face your foes head-on. BAD! What if we're taking out a 5-mob trash pack, you Whirlwind, and 3 or more of them parry it? You just hurt the tank. A lot. Now the tank's scared. And the healers yelling. And the mage is crying about how the tank must not be def. capped (lol).

Do us all a favor. If you are melee dps, please get at least 26 expertise, and for the love of God, stand behind my targets! A tank can't keep you alive, if he isn't.

Here's the deal. You don't cause parries for me, and I promise to turn the mobs fat ass right at you. Deal!

Monday, December 21, 2009

The Casual Druids Wish List : Tanking

I'm casual. I've done about 3 VoA's, a half-naxx, and 2 Ony 25's. I've been reading a lot of gear guides, filled with long lists of obtainable "Best In Slot" gear I can get in ICC and the ilk. This does not really work for me since I'll most likely never see any of this content. So, in response, I whipped up my own little wish list of the gear I can obtain on my schedule. I think I'll call it the "Casual Best In Slot" list. This is composed of 232 tier 9 gear that is easily earned by grinding PuGs, 2 pieces of pvp gear, one crafted cape, 4 dungeon/heroic drops, and a couple of non-set badge loot. Easy to get, and I STILL manage to achieve the dodge expertise cap, as well as the melee hit cap. Who needs raids, amirite?

Head - Runetotem's Headguard of Conquest
32 stam meta, and a tear for the other gem
Neck - Shard of the Crystal Forest
Shoulders - Runetotem's Shoulderpads of Conquest
Glad's glyph, gem for stam
Chest - Runetotem's Raiments of Conquest
enchant +stats, gem stam
Back - Durable Nerubhide Cape
enchant agility
Wrists - Furious Gladiator's Armwraps of Triumph
enchant stamina
Hands - Runetotem's Handgrips of Conquest
enchant agility, gem stam
Belt - Belt of the Twilight Assassin
belt buckle, throw in stam
Legs - Runetotem's Legguards of Conquest
gem stam, with the stam/agi patch
Feet - Furious Gladiator's Boots of Triumph
enchant stam OR Tuskarr's, gem stam
Ring 1 - Mark of the Relentless
Ignore the parry. Gem stam
Ring 2 - Clutch of Fortification
Trinket 1 - Essence of Gossamer
Trinket 2 - The Black Heart
Idol - Idol of Mutilation
Weapon - Orca-Hunter's Harpoon
gem stamina, and enchant with Mongoose

Not much effort, and you'll impress your friends!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Count back from 10 for me...

So, in true Backrubs fashion of poor timing, I have decided to launch my blog the day before I get my wisdom teeth out at 7:30 in the morning. So, instead of the "lazy druids gear guide" I was going to work on, I will later regail you with tales or oral surgery. Maybe evena picture of my swollen grill, if it so pleases you. Update later today.


Back from the dentists. Was only supposed to be an hour long operation, but I guess my teeth were real bastards. For those out of the know, the problem with wisdom teeth is that the roots end up hitting the nerves in your jaw, and when that happens, it's no good. So the dentist showed me the x-rays and said it was a miracle they weren't hurting me because it showed the roots passed my nerve. Turns out, about 10% of the time the roots actually curve in and "hook" underneath the nerve and are much more difficult to remove.

So I was in for quite a bit longer, and woke up 8 hours later at home all looped out of my gourd, thinking it was closer to 9 o'clock...instead of the actual 4. Picture to follow shortly.

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Hello one and all (whoever may be reading this first post)! How do I find you this day? Oh my, where are my manners, introductions first! My name is Ryland, and I play a lil' game by the name of World of Warcraft. I play as horde (although not always) on Blackhand server. I am the guild leader of an uber-casual guild, , which is home to the most delightful congregation of noobs, first-timers, and goofs, but oh boy do we have some fun. I have played a few characters in my day, but I have found myself in a perfect little niche called a Druid. I feel I play him to his potential, in what capacity I can, and through my research and readings I have stumbled upon a slough of well written, informative, and even humorous blogs about druids. Through them all though, I noticed the vast majority (or even all) are from the perspective of raiding druids. This is all well, and I love to read them, but I yearned for a blog about my class from my own perspective...that of the casual druid.

So here I am, to hopefully fill that void, to spill my guts, share my many anecdotes, and give my fellow casuals out there another source of information and humor. I will most likely have a second post up right away, and would like to aim for Tuesdays as update days (to give you something to read while the servers are down).

Hope to see you around!