Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Avoidable Damage and You!

Don't Stand In The Fire.

Okay, I'm done. 

Is that all blizzard seems to think avoidable damage is?  That is all they ever have in their rotating helpful tips with concern to avoidable damage.  The sad part is that most players in the game seem to think that if they do not stand in the fire/void zone/freezing circle/etc that they are doing their job by avoiding avoidable damage.  They are wrong.

Avoidable damage is way more then just moving from the fire.  There are other forms of avoidable damage that people do not even consider as being avoidable.

1) Don't stand in the fire.
- This should go without being said.  It is the cardinal rule of avoidable damage. If it is under you and it is doing damage, unless you are rooted, move.

2) Avoiding Damage > Mechanics sometimes.
- I'm looking at you VP.  Wind at your back = Good thing.  Taking 100K damage to get the wind at your back = Bad thing.  Less DPS is okay sometimes.  So you do not get to flex your epeen on this fight if you get unlucky.  Don't worry, you will live, I promise.

3) Aggro is not your friend.
- Taking aggro from the tank is avoidable damage, don't think otherwise.  You can avoid getting aggro by getting omen and actually using it.  As ranged I do not grab aggro until 130% and I still set it at 80% warning.  Remember, you can always just stop attacking for a few seconds.  It will help.

4) Move before the fire is under your feet.
- There are many things you can see coming.  The spike on mini marrowgar, the stone spikes from the earth elemental, the fire spout from the fire elemental, all in HoO for example.  You can see them happening before they actually happen.  You do not have to wait until there is fire under you to move.  You can move before the fire gets there if you know it is coming.

5) Avoid Debuffs
- Not all damage is damage in the form of a number.  Some bosses do things that have effects that are not numbers but can hurt a lot in the long run.  Static cling on the last boss in VP.  Casting speed debuffs on the second boss in GB.  Pay attention to those things and avoid them by jumping (VP) or moving (GB).

6) Haul Ass
- Forget DPS.  Sometimes you just need to worry about running.  GB, 3rd boss, run or die.  It is as avoidable as avoidable gets.  No need to try to get in one more shot.

7) Mechanics
- Sometimes just knowing what to expect is enough to avoid everything.  If you have never done a boss and do not want to admit it say brb 1 minute in chat open a browser and take a quick look.  Reading is never as good as doing but at least you now have an idea what is coming. 

Avoidable damage is not always just about damage you avoid personally.

1) Interrupts
- Anything that can be interrupted is avoidable damage.  Interrupting helps the tank and other avoid damage.

2) Stuns
- Something stunned can not do damage.  Easy to avoid damage when something isn't doing damage.

3) Slows
- Slowing down one of the mobs heading for the tank is almost like CC.  A few extra seconds where the tank is taking 3 people hitting them instead of 4 is a good thing.

4) CC
- I think I mentioned something about being easy to avoid damage when something isn't doing damage didn't I?

If you do a heroic and do everything in your power to avoid damage and to help others avoid damage you can take a hard dungeon and turn it into a laughfest. 

The biggest difference between guild runs (which everyone has no problems with) and pugs (which seem to be a world of hell) is people avoiding (or not avoiding) avoidable damage.

I can tell you from my recent experiences healing that people that do not avoid damage make a healers life a living hell and basically doom a run for failure. 

Last night doing GB is the perfect example.  Wiped a ton on it but did not give up.  Every time someone got hit by blitz, we ended up wiping.  Every time the tank did not get out of the ground siege, we ended up wiping.  Every time the purple throgg was not under control, we wiped. 

When we went through it and the throgg was controlled and no one got hit by the blitz and the tank avoided the siege we walked through it as if it was nothing.  They are all thing we all knew to do.  They are all things we all tried to do.  When we did not do them and took all that avoidable damage we wiped.  When we did do them and avoided all avoidable damage it was a breeze.

Remember next time that avoidable damage isn't only about the fire on the ground, there is much more to it.

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