Friday, September 18, 2009

Healing Heroics: Part 2, How to heal

Healing heroics as a new 80 Shaman is tough. Our heals are not as big as some other classes, we only have one HoT (not counting Earthliving procs), and we bring a different type of buff to the group that takes some getting used to. But what we do bring to the party is totally awesome. We bring Totems, we bring Bloodlust, (Or Heroism, for you Alliance types) and we bring the totally awesome Chain Heal!

With the new Shaman totem interface it is easier than ever to place your totems. I have 2 standard totem sets when I heal. I have the With a Paladin, and without a Paladin sets. With a Paladin I drop Flametongue, Stoneskin, Healing, and Wrath of Air. If we do not have a Paladin I swap Healing with Mana.

The most important thing when you first start healing is knowing when to heal and what heals to use.

ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS have EarthShield on the tank. Not only does it benefit from your spell power but any threat generated from the heal goes to the tank, not yourself. (Edit: Turns out I missed in patch notes, like a year ago, Earth Shield threat now goes to the Shaman who cast it.) Get the Riptide Glyph, and spread it around the group, but be careful it generates a lot of threat and sometimes you can get aggro early in the pull.

Master the Jump. I always have a heal casting on the tank, even if she is at full health. If I get to the last 15% of the cast bar, and the tank has taken no damage, hit the space bar to jump and interrupt the cast. Then recast Healing Wave, watch the cast bar etc. etc. etc. This way you always have a heal almost ready to go, but you are not wasting mana on overheals.

Once you start getting geared into early Naxx gear you will find healing as a Shaman much easier. Your mana pool gets bigger, your MP5 goes up and your heals land bigger heals. Once you get over 2k bonus healing your Chain Heals first jump will land for a 10k heal, your healing wave will land for 15-20k. There is nothing quite so awesome as seeing a tank go from 50% health to 100% in 1.8 seconds.

One last note on this guide to Shaman healing. Never forget to imbue your weapon with Earthliving. The proc is quite nice as it heals the target of your last crit with a pretty nice HoT, and it costs zero mana! You gotta love free heals right, that doesn't cost a CD, a Global Cool Down, or any mana. On top of all this it increases your bonus healing by another 150.


There is a little bit of leeway in the glyphs you choose, and it depends on your healing style and role. The glyphs I heal with, and I recommend are:

Glyph of Earth Shield
Glyph of Riptide
Glyph of Chain Heal

You can swap out one with either:

Glyph of Healing Stream
Glyph of Lesser Healing Wave

The problem all 5 Shaman greater glyphs are so awesome it is hard to pick one. If you are mostly raid heals, I would recommend the top 3 glyps, you could loose Glyph of Earth Shield for Glyph of Lesser Healing Wave to increase passive raid heals. If you are mostly MT heals I would switch Glyph of Chain Heal for Glyph of Lesser Healing Wave.

I hope this gets you well on your way to healing through Ulduar and beyond. Happy healing!


  1. LOL Please come heal our heroics.. Or at least teach our Shamans how to do it right!!!

  2. "If you are mostly raid heals, I would recommend the top 3 glyps, you could loose Glyph of Earth Shield for Glyph of Lesser Healing Wave to increase passive raid heals."

    Lesser Healing Wave Glyph on increases healing done on your target that has earth shield up, so its not going to increase your raid heals any.