Booming it up in Karazhan!
(Amanna says – this is Cybeline’s first post, and an interesting one at that. Please give her a warm welcome via comments).
I’ve been to Karazhan before but always as the Tree of Life to fill a main healer spot. It was enjoyable to take Tree form out for a spin and to test out the deep resto talent form — I’ve always had a deep balance spec — but I could barely contain my excitement when the assignments for Wednesday’s Kara runs came out and I was slotted for dps.
The moonkin was set loose in Kara! Woot! Or should I say, “Hoot!”
Good preparation for any instance run is key to success and for Kara it is even more so. Remember to bring plenty of reagents for Gift of the Wild because chances are good that you’ll be buffing both groups. Get mana pots, whether you make them yourself, have a supplier, or buy them off the auction house. When you think you have enough, put even more in your bags. Trust me, you are going to need them especially if, like me, you save your Innervate for the healers. Finally, make sure you bring plenty of vendor water and/or ask the mage in your raid for lots of conjured water. I don’t normally need to drink much while questing or 5 man instancing, but for Karazhan it is a good idea to keep the mana bar topped off as often and as quickly as possible so you don’t slow down the progression of the raid.
So I’ve got my reagents, my mana pots, my drinks, my key to Kara, and my +damage trinkets are set to hot buttons. I’m ready to boom it up.
The first several pulls in the instance are bread and butter trash mobs. The priests have the hard work in keeping targets shackled until it’s time for focus fire on their target, so my job here is to listen to the raid leader’s instructions and burn down the right target, carefully keeping my threat below that of the tanks. (During one trash pull in between Attumen and Moroes, I did have a series of chain crits that pulled aggro from the tank…gotta love the way Nature’s Grace facilitates chain critting. Luckily I am in an awesome guild.)
The first boss battle — Midnight and Attumen — didn’t pose any particular challenge to the moonkin. Again, listening to the raid leader and making sure to keep Moonfire and Insect Swarm ticking away on the focus fire target were my goals here in addition to staying flexible. If healing fell behind or if a downed guildie needed a battle rez or if I needed to help decurse the melees, I needed to be ready to drop down to caster form as fast as possible.
More bread and butter trash mobs lie in wait between Attumen and Moroes…but this time there are some AoE pulls to deal with. For those pulls, I stayed in caster form. The mage or warlock in the group are going to burn the mobs down really fast and they are going to need lots of healing. So I slapped on some Lifeblooms and Rejuvenations as soon as the AoE started in order to boost the main healers.
There are also a few mobs in this section that cause party members to get tipsy and when they get tipsy, they need lots of healing. Here I stayed in caster form too in order to quickly give a boost to healing if needed.
And then we were on to Moroes and his party of four. This boss battle is definitely more challenging than the first with the garrotes that Moroes puts on selected party members. My goals remain the same for this fight as with Attumen, but it’s a long one so in addition I kept a very close eye on mana consumption. Here’s where having those all mana pots came in handy. I didn’t wait to get into a desperate mana situation before taking remedial measures; once I hit 50%, I downed my first pot and kept on dpsing. (My innervate had already gone to a healer.) I did get dangerously low on mana by the time we were taking out the final target. Moroes was long gone at this point and the target was getting low on HP. So instead of using another pot, I put up a couple DoTs and then ran in for a bit of melee to help finish the last mob off. (Elune’s Touch procced a few times, too, though I rarely rely on it for mana regen.)
The march through Karazhan continued after the downing of Moroes; on to the Opera Event!
More of the same here with the exception of a few pulls where this moonkin’s heart was warmed considerably. (Have I mentioned that I am in the best guild?) This is where the raid encountered some Skeletal Ushers and we paused for the leaders to do some strategizing. Extra tanking was needed and there was some talk of using me as an offtank. Eventually the decision was made to have one of the paladin healers take the offtank position while I was to be a main healer until the first target went down and freed up the paladin to return to healing.
For me, this is what the moonkin brings to the raiding table. Players can battle over whether or not a moonkin can top the damage charts; sometime I do top the chart and most times I don’t, but I’ll sidestep that issue. Flexibility and versatility is what I bring to the raid. In one night, I burned down targets, I offhealed and main healed, I innervated healers, I battle rezzed, and I almost was called on to do some offtanking.
Beyond the sense of accomplishment and the thrill of raiding with my big feathery owl, I carry with me the warm fuzzies from comments made by guildies, among those being the expressed desire never to leave home without a moonkin, the delight in the massive healing crits (I think the moonkin aura helped with that!), and especially the praise from my guild master on how nice it is to have a moonkin in the raid.
P.S. We did end up making it to the stage where we found Romulo and Julianne waiting for us. We made two runs at them before the raid ran past its scheduled end, so the doomed lovers will be waiting for us when we reenter Karazhan again. Parting is such sweet sorrow!