Tobold's Blog
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Kel’Thuzad healing addon?

I'm 44. While I still get through life fine without Viagra and a Zimmer frame, thank you very much, my reaction times in video games are below average. That usually doesn't cause much of a problem in World of Warcraft, which is not a very twitchy game. But last time we were at Kel’Thuzad me and the other healers had problems dealing with his frost tomb ability. This ability deals 104% of the victims health in damage to him over 4 seconds. Which means the moment somebody is trapped in a frost tomb, a healer has to interrupt whatever other healing spell he was currently casting, target the frost tomb victim, and get a fast healing spell on him. Not easy, especially if you include problems like global spell cooldown and some lag.

So I was wondering whether I could improve my performance if I had an addon where I could with a single click target somebody and at the same time cast lets say Renew on him. A bit like Decurse, which lets me with a single click target somebody and cast Dispel Magic on him. Anyone know whether such an addon exists? Is there a "Defrost" addon working like Decurse? Or are there general healing addons (I'm not using any yet) which would have that functionality? What healing addons are you using, and what exactly do they do? Up to now I got along fine just targeting people by clicking on their raid frame and casting spells with the keyboard shortcuts. But for Kel’Thuzad I need something faster.

or Grid with Clique
Clique, definitely.
You can assign different heals / dispels etc.. to different combos. i.e. Shift-click = Heal, Ctrl-Click = Dispel and so on.
And a more intuitive raid interface, like Grid.

Can massively improve your healing skills (it did for me). Even if it does just seem like you're playing whack-a-mole and watching the little boxes light up.
I've heard good things about Clique, but I just have all of my heals in macros with [target=mouseover] in them. Then you don't need to target the player you're healing, just move your mouse over their healthbar and click your heal.
Grid + Clique is amazing. Add the raid debuff module for Grid and you have little icons for whoever gets frost tombed. It makes an amazing difference in reaction time.

Adapting to Clique is rough though, it took me at least a couple of weeks to get up to speed on it. It was very frustrating at first but I'm glad I stuck with it and built the muscle memory that lets me heal quickly with it. I played with a hand scibbled crib sheet next to my desk repeating the important ones over and over again to myself. I PuGGed battlegrounds and heroics to build the new habits with it. It all worked, I feel like I'm a stronger healer and I can react faster with less mistakes than selecting target + pushing hotkey.

Grid is very configurable. I'd recommend keeping it minimalistic, only enabling important indicators that are relevant to how you heal.
I also recommend Clique. You don't need to use grid with it, but it does help.
Personally I hate Clique / healbot etc. Its too much like whack-a-mole.

Personally, I use mouse over macros. It means you don't have to target anyone at all. I keep the tank targetted, and hold down control when I want to heal him. The rest of the time, I'm hovering my mouse over the raid frames, pressing whatever heal button is most appropriate. I use the same macro for Flash heal, Greater heal, PoM, Renew, Bubble, etc etc.

If you put /stopcasting in front of it, then whenever you press a heal button, it will cancel whatever you're already casting. If you're using something like X-Perl or Grid, the player should get an icon showing that they're frosted. As soon as you see that icon, get your mouse onto it and slam some heal buttons...
/cast [target=target,exists,modifier:ctrl] [target=mouseover,exists] [] Flash Heal
Some people here like to diss Healbot when they are doing the exact same thing with more work: clicking heathbars. But if that suits your play style or your ego, go ahead.

On the KT healing, from one holy priest to another (10 mans experience only):
I don't know of an addon that can clearly identify AND be a means of heal at the same time. Healbot doesn't give you any indication who is in the ice apart from the health bar start dropping. TBH I still wait to see the block on screen (or someone screams on vent) and then PoM, PW:S the person.

Save those freesbees, shields or guardian spirits for the ice block. Since this is a fight where everyone is spread out but still near enough PoH and CoH still do wonders and Flash and Greater Heal (yeah, yeah, big mana waster, I know, I know, I have the mana and overhealing is fine with Serendepity) and Renew are your friends.
First of all I use X-Perl Unit Frames, which gives me a little indicator on the person being tombed. It is not large but very clear and easy to see and since I'm watching the raid unit frames anyway as a healer I can't miss it.

Secondly regarding the spell to use, I would not use spells with CD (PW:S, Prayer of Mending) or long cast time (GH). If the spell is still on CD from the last time you used it you will waste precious time and probably lose the person. FH is enough to get the 4% you need assuming the person was topped-up before the tomb.

Stopcasting/mouse-over tricks are all nice but not sure if not quicker than just "click the person's raid-frame ; hit button for FH". Maybe binding FH to a mouse button? Personally I don't use /stopcasting as I am not sure if that works well with my hectic "spam FH button in an emergency" style :)
I am using healbot since its release. It optimizes your heal abilities by serveral levels by simply:

- communicating heal or decurse targets better than the default UI
- by selecting much targets easier
- by casting spells faster due to assigned mouse buttons

At Khael my healbot immediately turns the healthbars of the Frosted targets purple and I can heal them up VERY fast. We never have someone dying due to the faster communication Healbot allows.

For me healbot isn't a luxury, its a patch of the bad raid UI WoW has
You could do that without any addons by just making a mouse-over macro for your spell then assigning a mouse-click of your choice to that macro. Personally I use a combination of Grid and mouse-over macros for my healer.
I use X-Perl and an icon appears next to the person that's got it. Although you do need to be somewhat quick, the damage doesn't start ticking for a second so hopefully that buys enough time. The other thing I think is almost absolutely necessary is to assign one person to call it out for everyone or have everyone call out their own. Assign a healer or two to insta-heal if possible. Pallies should Holy Shock that person, it should heal for more than 4% of their health giving the healers enough time to heal.
I use healbot, because it makes up for the horrible UI. I don't understand why people don't like healbot. It's about the same as a mouseover macro. You are mousing over the person's bar instead of their portrait frame. Same difference.

Also, healbot keeps track of buffs and debuffs if you so choose.
I'll add another vote for at least using Grid in combination with mouseover macros. As a resto drood I have my main heal mouseover macros hotkeyed to my number key row. So I can just hover my mouse over Grid and 1 button heal.

Configure Grid to show Frost Tomb and then simply move your mouse to the affected player and hit the hot key associated with the macro below.

/cast [modifier:ctrl,target=focus] [modifier:alt,target=player][target=mouseover] Renew

I did the macro just from memory based on what I use, so it's possible I might have messed up the syntax a little but you get the idea.
I'm a healbot fan, I couldn't live without it now that I'm used to the single-click mechanism :D

I have a problem with seeing the little debuff icons on player's portraits, so the colour-coding for diseases, magic effects, poisons etc is very, very useful.

It doesn't take away from needing healing skills, and muscle memory still plays a part, but it definitely makes it easier for less twitchy people like us :P

Plus plus, it frees up a lot of space on your bars for other less used spells that you might want close at hand.

Haven't used grid/clique so I can't comment on that.
I'm a big fan of healbot. It offers all the party health bars in a small box on your screen (size configurable) and a player's bar lights up if they have aggro at any given moment. To heal, you click directly on the health bars. For priests, the default configuration is left click = Flash Heal, right click = Greater Heal, middle click = Renew, and after a few fights you'll have all this down through muscle memory. (I also played with Grid + Clique, but it wasn't intuitive to me and I never managed to get the settings the way I wanted them. I was able to use healbot immediately.)

When you cast Renew on a player, healbot adds a symbol with a timer to that player's health bar to let you know how many ticks the spell has left. It also adds a symbol for Prayer of Mending, so that you can see who has it and how many more times it will jump before it runs out. It also has visual heal built in, so that you can see what the overall impact of your heal will be on the total health of the player once the cast is done.

Another priest in my guild has configured the macros within healbot to also pop his trinkets and stuff like that, but I still do all of that manually. I've altered my UI (using Bartender 4) so that right next to my healbot box, I have buttons for Prayer of Mending (this is a macro, targeting the tank), Binding Heal (also targeting the tank), Circle of Healing, and all those other goodies. This limits the amount of mouse movement necessary to reach all my healing spells.

Overall, this setup has really improved my reaction time and healing efficiency. I know some would criticize the setup because it encourages people to be "clickers," but frankly, I have too many alts to memorize keybindings for each.
I'm trying to figure out a good setup at the moment, and wonder if anyone could help me. I'm a resto druid and I currently use AGUF for 10 mans, as I like the bars...but I use Grid for 25 mans so it doesn't take up so much space. I'm tempted to either switch to mouseover or click casting but I have some reservations.

Firstly, with click casting I lose the need to press all my keyboard binds which I'm very used to and work well. Also with clicking and with mouse over casting, how does it work when running around? I tend to spend a LOT of time moving (mostly out of habit, just jumping or whatever) but I like the ability to be able to target the guy that needs healing and then still be able to use my mouse to move around whilst throwing hots out to the target. Do I lose the ability to do this with click/mouse-over casting?
I'm a great fan of Healbot. Grid + clique is arguably more powerful, but Healbot is a lot easier to get into. Give it a go - it makes multi-target healing a dream.
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I tend to target the MT (or whoever my main healing target is), so that I can use the keys while mouse moving. Everyone else gets covered with healbot and in practice 80% of my heals on my main target are done that way too. That allows me the best of both worlds.
I use Grid, which I believe has some way of showing the debuff. Still, I'm mostly 25-man raiding, and I get jumpy enough that sometimes I'm not really focusing on the Grid frames, I'm looking at what's happening onscreen. Fortunately, I have a mouseover macro, a bit like the ones above (stolen from ElitistJerks paladin healing thread, actually):

/cast [target=mouseover,help], [help], [target=targettarget,help], [] Flash of Light

This will first try to heal a friendly player you have your mouse over, then whomever you have targeted if they're an ally, or your target's target if the enemy is a boss. (Usually this would be the tank, but in some fights it's handy to be able to heal whoever has boss aggro.) Lastly, it will do whatever just hitting the button would do (heal yourself, for example).

When someone gets Frost Tombed, I can put my mouse over the big ice block on screen or their Grid unit frame and press my heal button, and it will start casting on them.

It works for me anyway...
Thanks Sven.

I've just set up some mouseover casting now with /stopcasting bits. I'm really liking it. The macros (which I found here but adapted for druids: are a bit more complicated, such as allowing your alt self cast modifier to override any mouseover or targetting and casting on target's target if your target is an enemy, and it still functions normally (i.e. casts on your target) if you're not mousing over. I've combined one with my nature's swiftness/healing touch macro so that I could be in the middle of a regrowth cast on another target and all I have to do is not mouseover anyone and it will cast an instant heal on the MT (even if I have the boss targetted!). Loving it! Thanks.
Think you might be casting the wrong heals. When I'm healing KT on my priest I find that there's plenty of time to cast Penance (I prefer disc) or CoH (which should be enough). Maybe you're trying to flash heal or renew? Both of those are too slow, especially if your reaction time is already poor. CoH is especially a good spell to use on ice tombs as if more than one of your melee (or just bad ranged) gets tombed CoH will save them all.

I think you should give a raid disc build a try by the way. You won't rock the healing meters, but you'll definitely save lives. Penance prevents wipes, period. Plus you'll cast so much faster (the way you talk about your gear, you should be able to get close to 400 haste as disc) which will make up for your reaction time. I mean after all, the majority of your heals as holy probably aren't even landing due to faster players sniping anyway.

As for all the mods being talked about here ... I didn't realize healing in WoW was so hard as to warrant the existance of so much stuff o_0 Pitbulls (and CTMod before it) have always served me fine.
"Personally I hate Clique / healbot etc. Its too much like whack-a-mole.

Personally, I use mouse over macros. It means you don't have to target anyone at all. I keep the tank targetted, and hold down control when I want to heal him. The rest of the time, I'm hovering my mouse over the raid frames, pressing whatever heal button is most appropriate. I use the same macro for Flash heal, Greater heal, PoM, Renew, Bubble, etc etc." realize that clique does the same exact thing as your macros?

All Clique does is let you bind your spells to your mouse buttons and mouse over your target to heal does still require thought, effort, and decision making on your part to choose what to cast and on whom to cast. For example, for me, right click is regrowth, shift-right click is rejuv, etc. It is no more whack-a-mole than what you are doing now...only it simplifies the requirement of needing to figure out how to make macros to do this. It is so much more efficient than have to target someone and then mash whichever button you have bound to the heal you want to cast.

As for Clique...I cannot say enough good things about it. And Cladehaire does a fantastic job keeping it updated (the mod can be found at wowinterface). When I read your post Tobold, my interal dialoge was screaming "HE NEEDS CLIQUE!!!". It will work with any raid frames, including the WoW default raid frames. It is also dead easy to set up, and will let you make custom macros and bind them to keys (for example, my paladin has trinkets bound to flash of light, and free mana spells bound with my holy light).

I use healbot with my shaman. I've never tried Grid or Clique, but healbot has worked fine for me, so there's been no need to try them out. I'll give reasons why I use it.

First, healbot allows you to see all the raid frames in 1 window, arranged in whatever way works for you. 2 rows of 3 columns, 3 rows of 2 columns, pets in their own group, etc. You can also set it up so that if your group/raid member isn't in LoS or not within range, the bars change to notify you of this. Works extremely well in BGs, as well as raids.

Second, healbot allows you to click and alt-click heals using the healbot window and the players name. Whack a mole, yes...but thats all healing is anyway. Healbot is basically a huge focus frame for everyone, allowing you to target the boss you are fighting, the tank, yourself, a critter, while being able to heal by left/right/middle/alt clicking the person's name in the healbot window. I'm able to do about 500 dps while healing in an instance, interrupt bosses, etc, because I can target the boss rather than constantly having someone else targetted from healing. Not necessary, but it definetely helps out.

Third, healbot shows debuffs, hots, aggro, and if with other players using healbot, incoming heals by other players. Want to avoid wasting mana and overhealing? Don't cast a 9k heal when you see someone is about to be healed for 7k by another player. Your incoming heal shows up for other users of the mod also. Prevents wasted healing. If a poison or some defbuff is on your group member, you can easily remove it using healbot.

Fourth, the UI itself is much better than dragging out your raid groups or members. I've had problems with players names' getting stuck offscreen, misplaced, etc. In terms of easy use, healbot pulls the names out into its compact window. If you want, you can enlarge the window or make it more compact. You can choose different visual options for the window frame, etc. You can drag the healbot window to wherever you want it on your screen. Can change font sizes, font types, colors, etc.

I've never used grid, so I'm not sure what it does that is different. It took me about 20 minutes screwing with healbot to get it the way I like it. I'd give it a shot, Tobold. If you set it up and dislike it, just remove the mod, no harm no foul. Or try grid and healbot and see if one is better for you.

IMHO, using the default raid UI is not only gimping yourself as a healer, its terribly inefficient compared to healbot/grid in showing incoming heals and time wasted actually changing targets before healing. Spend 20 minutes configuring it Grid/Healbot, do a couple of heroics with it, and you'll likely keep using it.
Grid and Clique. Make sure you install the GridRaidDebuff's package, which will have a status for Frost Tomb (optionally, you can add this Debuff in yourself). You actually don't need Clique, you can use mouseover macros + Grid.

I find Grid invaluable, though. It shows me, at a glance, all statuses of everything I want to know. Who's cursed, who's poisoned, who has a "raid debuff," who has a swiftmendable-HoT on them, etc. Cannot recommend it enough.

The caveat with Grid is that it does take some time to get setup just right.
I stopped reading about halfway down the comments, so sorry if this is already mentioned. Since T5 content was new up to sunwell (yay for a dead KJ!) and into wrath, I've used Grid+Clique (used to use click2cast - but that point is moot). There SHOULD be an addon to work WITH grid as well, but I always set them up by hand. Whatever Debuff you want shown prominently on your grid (Like frosttomb) set it up as a bright yellow or red color and set it to whichever corner icon spot you aren't using. I haven't raided much in wrath as I gave up, but I was always assigned as an encapsulate healer on Felmyst - so I would get a big yellow icon in the top left when someone got the debuff "encapsulate" and then instantly mouseover with my big NS+HT click macro. This is a bit cluttered - so bottom line
1 - Get grid+clique (or mouseover macros, whichever you are more comfy with)
2 - Tell grid when and where to warn you for a debuff
3 - ???
4 - Profit!
"All Clique does is let you bind your spells to your mouse buttons and mouse over your target to heal them.."

Yeah, unless you don't like assigning spells to your mouse buttons. Will Clique let me assign spells to keys on my keyboard, and let me cast them when I mouse over that person? Even if it could, I'd rather be using macros than addons where possible, since addons tend to use a lot of memory and can bug out at strange times.

I can't stand Clique myself because I have a hard time remembering which spell was assigned to shift-control-right click or whatever. It's a lot easier for me if they're assigned to numerical keys. I don't have to click with my mouse at all, I simply hover my mouse and use my keyboard to cast.

Never used Healbot, haven't used Clique in years since I learned how to use macros. I've got a combination of Pitbull and mouseover macros, and it's been working fine for me all through BC raiding and now Wrath raiding. I just set up Pitbull to show debuffs as really big icons next to people's frames (people usually don't have more than one or two debuffs anyway) and color health bars for percent health, and my reaction time is great because of it.
i heal with clique on my priest (and used it for my druid), but i find grid tries to be so compact that I don't know how to read it, or glean the useful info from it.

I use x-perl unit frames, which for all intents and purposes are just cleaner representations of blizzard's own, with a few nice additions (player targets for everyone in your local party, etc). I clique cast on those frames themselves. I leave vanilla left and right clicks out of the situation, so when I choose to target someone, or right click and inspect or whatever it doesn't start casting.

for me, I only really use 4 binds

Ctrl+L = renew
Ctrl+R = PW:S
Alt+L = flash heal
Alt+R = greater heal

Penance, Binding heal, and things like abolish or dispel are bound to keys.

i also use smartbuff and smartdebuff... smart buff just let's you set up a few rules to make buffing easier (if I'm soloing, i want fort, innerfire, and DS up... if in a raid put X buff on XY&Z classes), and smart debuff puts up a grid like window for helping decurse or whatever. It puts a big L or R on targets that need to be right or left clicked to cast the appropriate cleansing spell.
im using Click2cast - it can assign any action on mouse click on any raid frames. so with 5 button mouse i can have like 4 spells assigned (considering that left click is reserved for selecting target) without any keyboard modifiers.

as im using logitech mx revolution mouse, i dont use keyboard for healing at all. tilt-wheel gives 2 hotkeys (watershield on self anf earth shield on focus), side quick flip gives me another 3 muttons (for removing totems, casting riptide on target under mouse cursor and canting lightning shield on myself), search button also can be reasigned (for me it is macro for ns+tw+HW on MT - can save a day:)) back and forward mouse buttons are for CH and LHW, right mouse button is for HW (alt-click for menu) and middle button is for cleansing.

So... keyboard is just for chatting or running)
I personally would recommend Vuhdo. It is a lot like Healbot (which I used to use) but I think it is more powerful and more configurable. It also has the AWESOME ability of flashing the ICEBOLT icon on the bar of the player(s) that just got ice bolted. So you know exactly who to heal and if they are in range.

It also has all the nasty abilities of Ulduar built in... Slagpot, Gravity Bomb, Light Bomb, etc...
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