Friday, July 29, 2011

I Love Good Players + The Ultimate Heal

The Ultimate Heal

I was in a ZG run with a tank and DPS from my guild on my shaman when I pulled off one of the most amazing feats of healing ever seen in the game.  On the second boss, the one that likes to decapitate people, which is a one shot death, I healed through the decapitate and kept the person being decapitated alive.

I am so glad that there were two guild members with me because no one would have ever believed it if I told them that.  On vent the tank said, did you just heal through a decapitate and I said, sure as hell looks like I did.  The guy is still alive.  Low, but alive.

Decapitate hits for a huge number, the type of number that no one can out health.  Even a stamina stacking tank will still die from it.  There is not enough life in the game to be able to survive it.  It is the true definition of a one shot ability.

How I healed through it could only be what I consider a bug or one of those super weird rare occurrences.  The person that was decapitated was also being the target of blood letting at the same time so I was already spamming heals on them to keep them up when they got targeted and I believe that is the key to how I was able to keep them alive.

I am guessing this is what happened. 

When someone dies, it reduces their health below zero, then it settles it at 0, calculates they are dead and sets them to 1 so they can rez all within the time of a microsecond.  Being I was casting heals on them at the time I am going to guess that my heal landed at the time that was happening. 

Just before they where calculated as dead, which would have interrupted the heal, it landed.  From that point it must have been that exact moment they where calculated at 0 before they where set to 1 for revival that the heal finished being added.  It is the type of thing you can not time because it all happens in a fraction of a second.  So the heal landed on a person at 0 and gave them life so the system never set them to 1 so they could be revived because they where now alive and it was not needed. 

Either way, I healed through the unhealable.  That is a rare occurrence, the ultimate heal.  It was kind of cool.  I doubt I will ever see that one happen again.

I heal dead people.

I Love Good Players

It is not all about the numbers, it is about the skill.  Doing my standard ZA, ZG, ZA, ZG, etc runs this week on a few characters I came across a wide selection of groups as usual.  The previous week I was lucky enough to get in on last bosses a lot more then this week and get some seriously great groups but this week I did not have such luck.

However I did have some really good runs even if they where without overpowered people.

A tale of two ZA runs as we will call it.  I'll keep it short, for me at least.

Run one, as a healer, the DPS on the entry mobs was really low which had me worried to begin with.  Usually that first pull, same as that first mob in ZG, you will see some huge numbers on.  I once saw someone pull 52K on the opening ZA mobs but that is beside the point.  The top DPS of the three DPS was 11K, the other two where 8K and 6K.  Yeap.  On that opening fight where everyone usually pulls insane numbers that they never keep up with that was what this group presented with.

To be honest I was a little scared if they could not even pull 10K on the opening mobs but over all the run went perfectly.  No one ever rocked the charts.  On bosses usually one of them was sub 10K even but everything went down in a reasonable, if slightly slower, time.  On trash the focus fired, I never even saw a flamecaster get blazing haste which means they where on the ball there, they never took aggro or avoidable damage, they made the run easy peasy to heal. 

Sure, I needed to drink a little more often because everything took a while to go down but it was because I was using my mana to keep the tank up and not because I was using my mana in a near panic to try to save everyone.  I do not mind that at all.  I hate having to drink after every fight because I am healing 4 people like crazy.  That is a recipe for a wipe when they happens.  One mistake on my part by healing someone else at any given moment as the tank takes a damage spike and it means a wipe.

I never came close to having to make a decision like that with the group and we never came close to anyone ever being in danger of dying.  The only damage anyone every took was because it was unavoidable.  They interrupted everything that could be interrupted which again made healing a dream job.

The second group was nothing of the sort.  They never interrupted anything, they never considered CCing anything, they did not even bother with removing the blazing haste debuff even if everyone in the group had the ability to do so.  But if you where to ask them I am sure every single one of them would have told you how awesome they where.

All three DPS where easily over 25K DPS which meant things went down fast which is a good thing for a healer but it is a bad thing for a healer when there are four mobs and all four are attacking four different people.

It became an effort of wipe after wipe or at least it sure felt like.  On the rare occasion where they did target the same mobs it was nice and easy even without them interrupting or removing buffs.  How much damage can a mob really do in 6 seconds when that is all they live for.

It was when they did not focus fire that things lived longer and it required me to heal 4 tanks basically.  That was nearly every single pull.  If any of these people had even half a brain we would have made the bear timer with 10 minutes to spare.  Seriously, they where putting out that much DPS and if everyone was doing the right thing I would have really never needed a mana break.

Bosses where the same thing.  Everyone pulling off the tank causing me to go into panic healing to keep people up.  Not moving from dragon hawk fire.  Not moving for bear always thinking it would be the other persons job to move into their position and end up dying from it.  Not moving to the electrical storm because it was so far from them and it might hurt their DPS.  All things like that.  The run was hell.

I do not care if you did 35K on the boss if you are going to keep causing trouble by taking avoidable damage, pulling aggro, and ignoring one shot mechanics.

All in all we had seven wipes.  Four on trash and three on bosses.  I think I did about as well as my skill would allow me in keeping them up.  Most trash pulls I decided that I could only heal three tanks so one person, usually the first person to start taking sick damage, had to die each time.  It was their own fault really.

As a healer I hate to let anyone die but the more I heal the more I become bitter about people that cause their own deaths.  I just do not let it bother me any more.  I used to get really upset if anyone died, always felt like it was my fault if they did.  I don't any more, I know better now.  If someone accidentally gets aggro once in a while I will do anything in my power to keep them alive.  If someone keeps doing it I no longer take responsibility for it.  If they want to commit suicide then I say let them die.

Amazing how a sub par group, one that honestly based on numbers had no business being in a Zul, did fantasic and a super group with a tank in some heroic T12 gear and DPS that all did over 25K could not fight their way out of a paper bag.

It is not about gear.  It is not about DPS.  It is about doing the right thing.  No amount of gear or DPS will ever be able to compensate for good game play.

I love good players.


  1. re: "I heal dead people"

    I wonder if that was actually the interaction of bloodletting (which AFAIK reduces your health to 1/2 of what it was each time it ticks) and decapitate, and a rounding error caused by a bloodletting tick landing when the player had 0 health (half of zero is... erk, NaN > better make that 1 > half that is 0.5, not valid > round up > you now have 1 health > heal lands)

  2. Xayíde@GurubashiJuly 29, 2011 at 1:47 PM

    Half of zero is zero, not NaN. If you try to divide something BY zero you get NaN. If you divide zero by anything else, you get zero.

  3. Xayíde@GurubashiJuly 29, 2011 at 2:01 PM

    As the above guy said, you don't have to madly heal someone with that debuff, just heal them a little when they are very low until it ends. Yes, you do have to heal at some point, despite it always removing half your health, which theoretically would never kill anyone, but it does somehow.

    But I really doubt your feat of healing happened because of what you said... If what you described was possible, that kind of thing would happen much more often, not only on that boss. It's much more likely that the game queues incoming heals between a health change and the checking if someone is dead and processes both of those things before it gives any mind to any incoming healing.
    Having said that, I still have no clue how that was possible, hehe.

  4. Even though I know bloodletting will not kill them itself I still always heal. Healer habit? I can't help it.

    It is like trying to keep myself from debuffing people in ZG. My first time in there I kept debuffing out of habit. lol

    I think it was just a freak bug that happened to land at the exact perfect time.

    The only facts I can be sure of are that the heal had to land...
    1) After the decapitate. (or it would have been eaten up by the damage like normal life)
    2) Before the game declared the character dead. (or it would have interrupted my heal)

    So if there is a time in game between them, even if it is a unit of measurement we are not used to calculating in terms of the game, that is the moment the heal landed.

    Not sure if healbot is a good source of information for that but when someone takes over kill damage it shows a negative number, then it changes to 0, then it changes to 1.

    Hence why I reasoned that there are actually three stages of death in terms of coding.

    Damage, which brings you below 1 to a negative number.

    Rounding, which brings you to 0 and counts you as dead.

    Death, which sets you at dead 1 (so you can be revived), not a live 1 (which would allow you to be healed).

    I'd love to see what theory crafters would have to say about this. I doubt that this is something that has never been experienced before. It was just the first time ever for me.