So, I got tagged for the Circle of Healing thing that’s apparently going around. Normally, I’m not one of those “meme” type people, but hey, why not give this a shot at least? I was tagged by a new follower on Twitter, @middleforest, from The Middle of the Forest, so I’ll be happy to oblige on this one.

To give a quick premise, it’s simply a questionnaire about your healing main. Miss Medicina started a webring for healers not too long ago, similar to the 20 Days of WoW you might have seen going around. In this, I’ll be answering 20 questions for you good folks regarding me and my priest. And then I get to tag some of you guys! To that end, here’s how it works:

Post this questionnaire, with your answers, on your blog. Pick the healing class you know most about (or is the focus of your blog) for the questionnaire, and then send it over to another healing blogger you know and love who heals with a DIFFERENT class. Include a link to the blogger who sent you the questionnaire, as well as a link to the blogger to whom you are sending it.

1. What is the name, class, and spec of your primary healer?

Tomaj, holy priest.

2. What is your primary group healing environment? (i.e. raids, pvp, 5 mans)

10-man raiding, though I don’t mind 5-mans, and have done PvP and 25-man raids in the past.

3. What is your favorite healing spell for your class and why?

I might get flack for this from some people that are naysayers, but Lightwell. I actually managed to train my raid to use this during Icecrown Citadel, back when the range was shit. It’s always been a very potent spell with high HPM, HPCT and HPS. The only downside is relying on others to click on it, but it’s gotten some extreme nice quality of life buffs to make it a great spell.

4. What healing spell do you use least for your class and why?

Holy Word: Sanctuary. I was originally going to say Holy Nova, but even that has a niche now with Occu’thar in Baradin Hold. As a 10-man healer, Sanctuary really just doesn’t have a place.

5. What do you feel is the biggest strength of your healing class and why?

Versatility. The amount of options you have as a holy priest are great, and you can usually find a way to get through a situation without too much trouble.

6. What do you feel is the biggest weakness of your healing class and why?

Also versatility. The sheer number of spells a holy priest has can be extremely overwhelming to a new player to the class (this also goes toward Discipline in this regard). It also kind of lends toward a somewhat clunky talent tree in its current iteration, with several buffs to single target spells and AoE spells, but they aren’t always used (read: most single-target spells in 25-man raids).

7. In a 25 man raiding environment, what do you feel, in general, is the best healing assignment for you?

I’m going to convert this to 10-man, since 25-man currently does not apply to me. In general, I’m best-suited for raid healing, but I also perform well as a tank healer in a variety of situations. This goes back to a holy priest’s versatility, because it can perform well in both roles. The major downside is that due to holy’s raid healing capabilities, tank healing is not usually more than an afterthought in 25-man raids.

8. What healing class do you enjoy healing with most and why?

Short of the holy priest, I’m torn between resto shaman and holy paladin. Both lend well to my personal preference as a reactive healer, but shaman have LAZER BEEMZ and holy paladins are a nice challenge.

9. What healing class do you enjoy healing with least and why?

This is going to sound a little odd, but discipline priests and restoration druids. I don’t like preventative healing. It doesn’t make sense to me. I mean, I get how it works and everything, but my brain doesn’t function in a way that will allow me to play these correctly. Discipline is actually a lot different from holy, too, as are druids, despite constant comparisons from other classes on how similar they are.

10. What is your worst habit as a healer?

Forgetting to check boss timers before using a Concentration Potion/Divine Hymn/Hymn of Hope. There have been so many occasions where I’ve timed these poorly and had to interrupt them early due to RNG boss mechanics I could have otherwise avoided had I been watching my timers better.

11. What is your biggest pet peeve in a group environment while healing?

People not eating while I’m drinking. Yeah, your health bar is close to empty. So is my mana bar. We will move faster if you eat while I drink instead of waiting for me to heal you up, and subsequently, drink again. Anraphet’s room in Halls of Origination is the ONLY exception to this (but people usually think to eat here, anyway, so moot point).

12. Do you feel that your class/spec is well balanced with other healers for PvE healing?

Yes and no. From a healing capability standpoint, right at this moment, holy is holding its own. However, as mentioned in some previous posts of mine, I do fear for some scaling issues due to Test of Faith. Secondly, without some form of damage-to-mana conversion or max-mana based regen on a short to medium cooldown, I also wonder if holy’s mana regen will be shortchanged compared to our other healing counterparts later on down the road.

13. What tools do you use to evaluate your own performance as a healer?

“Is everyone alive” is not a tool that I use. “Is the boss dead” is also not a tool I use. Mostly because they are not necessarily indicative of the encounter’s mechanics. World of Logs and efficient use of Recount or Skada are superior in checking either on-the-fly or after-the-fact for healing, overhealing, and what I might be able to do differently. Using a death log in either circumstance is also highly useful in checking to see what might need to be done differently (cooldown usage by myself, the other healers or tanks, for example). I’ll also use these logs to see if I can heal more efficiently or boost my output with different spell choice.

14. What do you think is the biggest misconception people have about your healing class?

There are a lot of misconceptions about the priest class, never mind holy priests alone. One of the biggest, though, is how much utility a holy priest brings to a raid. Yes, we have Inspiration. So do shaman, and frankly, they do it better, since it procs off all their heals (including Riptide ticks) – not sure on whether it procs from Ancestral Awakening or Earthliving, however. Yes, we have Body and Soul, but this utility is fairly limited (Shannox, Atramedes). Yes, we have Guardian Spirit, but it’s a tank cooldown on a 2.5 minute cooldown, at minimum. Divine Hymn? Not the greatest spell in the world, but the +healing is decent, I suppose.

15. What do you feel is the most difficult thing for new healers of your class to learn?

When to use what spell. Seriously. Like I said in #6, versatility is both the biggest strength and one of the biggest weaknesses of the holy priest (and discipline, for that matter). The number of spells you have as a priest to heal with is extremely daunting once you get up to 85. Finding keybinds for all of them can be a chore, but knowing how and when to use each of them is also hard to master.

16. If someone were to try to evaluate your performance as a healer via recount, what sort of patterns would they see (i.e. lots of overhealing, low healing output, etc)?

It depends entirely on the encounter, and what the raid composition is. Generally, I tend to be between our shaman and whatever our other healer is, so I like to think that I hold my own. Some encounters I can be more lax and end up with more overhealing, but others I get to be blissfully low on overhealing. Still, I usually end up with the lowest of the overhealing, but that’s usually due to the third healer being a paladin (PotI/Beacon), Disc (bubbles) or a druid (HoTs), and Healing Rain can cause a decent amount of overheal on its own.

17. Haste or Crit and why?

Haste, for sure, but that doesn’t mean you should forgo crit at all costs, either. Should you not have a shaman or discipline priest, Inspiration is still something that relies on your critical strike rating. If you don’t have either, remember that it does not proc off your periodic heals, and doesn’t proc from some of your non-periodic heals (such as Power Word: Shield or Dispel Magic glyphs, or Holy Word: Serenity). Haste is, point-for-point, better than crit, but definitely don’t neglect your crit; try for a balance. The same goes for mastery, to a degree, but in a 10-man environment, haste will always be better than mastery.

18. What healing class do you feel you understand least?

For the same reasons as I stated in #8, resto druid and disc priest. Not because I haven’t tried, but because my thought process doesn’t work that way.

19. What add-ons or macros do you use, if any, to aid you in healing?

Grid for raid frames (plus several plugins for it – StatusHots, StatusRaidDebuff, StatusTankCooldown, SideIndicatorsPlus, SideIcons), ForteXorcist and Power Auras Classic for cooldowns, Dominos to clean up action bars, mouseover macros (I heal exclusively with these), Quartz (for latency indicator).

20. Do you strive primarily for balance between your healing stats, or do you stack some much higher than others, and why?

Admittedly, I tend to stack spirit and haste. I do like to keep mastery and crit about on par with each other, however. Since I stack haste for faster heals, I do need to keep up my regen to be able to use that haste. The mastery becomes a buffer, but is also helped along with both haste (to stack it faster) and crit (to stack it higher).

So for now, here’s who I’m tagging:

DiscoPriest from Disciplinary Action, Restokin from Restokin, SaltySlainte from Ask a Salty, and Gina from Healbot.net. Yes, I know, discipline priest. But holy and discipline may as well be two different classes at the moment. I wanted to find a resto shaman to tag, but apparently, I don’t know any that blog regularly. O.o