Decisions – Healer, Tank or Ranged DPS?

So, yesterday I watched Syiler on TwitchTV exploring the various DPS classes with respect to the amount of damage that they were doing. Although I realise that I will not be involved in the high end raid content, and that the only place I really need to consider my role would be in LFR, I thought it was time to start to consider which role I would be playing in the forthcoming expansion.


I am going to discount melee DPS due to the reasons I explained early in my raid role post although I do need to level either with a pet or doing melee DPS. What I am going to do is explain my thinking – please don’t think this is a recognisable process that everyone should use, its just helps to record my thoughts

  • Healers – I basically have a 90th level shaman, paladin, monk, priest and, at the moment, an 83rd level druid. All these classes, save the priest, have a melee off spec that I could use for leveling. The priest I can level using their divine shield spell to protect me as I get whacked in close combat, so would be happy with that. The paladin and monk also have a tank spec which, according to my play testing on the beta, is a good leveling spec. The healing role is very tempting although there are some concerns. Firstly is whether I would be able to heal the dungeons and raids – not only with the new spells and rotations but also with my often lacking item level. The second is the need to have two sets of equipment. Although this may not be a problem with the dual stats equipment, it is important when it comes to items such as jewellery and weapons. Also, as I am leveling and a choice of item drops, do I select the melee DPS item or the healing item? Finally there is the issue that if I was ever accepted into a guild, my off spec would be melee DPS which, as mentioned before, at the moment I find difficult to play in a raid situation.

  • Ranged DPS – Options here include the aforementioned shaman, priest and druid but also my warlock and hunter. The latter two have the advantage that they only generally need one set of equipment and I find leveling with a pet a lot easier. The problem here comes with the LFR and dungeon waiting times. People who only ever play DPS will probably not realise the difference in waiting time between this role and that of a tank or healer. It is considerable. I’ve also never been able to ‘master’ a ranged DPS class when it comes to damage on the meters. The first three class also continue to have the difficulties of having to have a different set of gear as well.

  • Tanking– My two classes to tank with would be either the paladin or monk. My druid is currently healer/dps spec and although I have a deathknight it is only 60th level and I have never been able to master the playing style. These classes have a very good wait time for dungeons and raids and effective specs for leveling however I do not feel I know enough about raids and tactics to operate these effectively. It might be that I can actually learn this role which would require time. Within any guild, there appears to be limited number of tanks, and this could have an impact on my raiding – if I manage to get membership in a raiding guild. With the monk, paladin and druid, there is option to have healing as an off spec, although this might complicate the whole situation. After watching Treckie on Twitch he makes tanking look very easy – although I am aware that is this completely deceiving. There is also probably the need to understand all the tank classes in order to truly support a guild and its progression.

  • So that’s it – my current thinking. As usual I am no further forward to deciding what to play although I am considering trying to heal some dungeons within the beta to see how I do. I feel that once I have decided on my role then my application to a guild might be more focused although there is always the challenge that a guild says “we need you to play a…”. Maybe that would solve the indecisiveness.

    2 comments for “Let Me In! – Simon’s Cat – YouTube

    1. February 19, 2017 at 2:00 pm

      Would be cool to play an one off, one of the dungeon crawls you made! Maybe the 8 level one!!!

    2. March 21, 2017 at 12:05 am

      I miss those early days so much. The current state of rpg’s , the rpg xubculture if you like, doesn’t feel like it did back then. I can’t quite put my finger on it.

      I was introduced to Advanced D&D 1st Edition, by my sisters boyfriend (the BEST boyfriend of the many she had IMHO..), who showed me S3 Expedition to the Barrier Peaks module after discovering I enjoyed computer based adventure games, I was hooked immediately and it wasn’t too long before I was hanging around the local game shop, Games Gallery, from which I was invited to join in a game run by the assistant manager, who was to become my long and good friend Steve, who was coincidentally, the reason I got to work at the local branch of Games Workshop for a time. Working there, in those days, before it became a Warhammer only shop, was amazing. It was the proverbial kid in the sweet shop!. Staff discount made it even sweeter – 50% off GW’s own products, and 25% off everything else. We also ran a great rpg club, with about 60-80 members at its peak.
      I was always the GM for my main group as no one else had the time it took to prepare a game properly, though after a few changes to the group, and people from the club popping up, I eventually got to play. Games by a company called Fantasy Games Unlimited (FGU) were very popular in all of my groups. FGU sold games such as Bushido, Aftermath,Space Opera, Chivalry & Sorcery, Freedom Fighters, and Bunnies & Burrows, but there were many many more games, by many different companies, covering all sorts of genres – and I still have them all. Many were, as was the style back then, table and chart and rule HEAVY. We loved that. Comparing themto the current crop of “rules lite” systems, I would certainly go back to the old games instead. We played these games sometimes 5 days a week, as for a time we were all unemployed. It was all we did.
      I often spent days creating scenarios, making maps, creating player characters as well as npc’s. I found it quite therapeutic, as is miniature painting – thousands of the little buggers packed away testify to the time I spent doing it. My “toy soldiers” as my brother in law calls them…
      I used to get quite attached to my favourite characters, and whilst one or two died over the decades, most did not.
      For almost all of my characters I would go overboard by most people’s standards. I like to have an image for my characters, whether a photo or artwork. Sometimes I will see an image and that is the base for the whole character, built around the image.
      I always believed as a player, that giving the GM a detailed background, list of goals, motivations, friends, contacts and enemies, will help the GM bring my character into the game more, by using some of what I have given him in the game. As a GM I like to see what players come up with for their characters, and will often use it in the game. It involves the player more, makes the game more personal if part of the game is suddenly about them, and it can help the players become more invested in their characters.
      For myself, I would often map out the characters home, create a family tree, siblings, etc.
      For our Star Trek RPG (by FASA Corp), I created the whole crew of a 500+ personnel star ship… All as detailed player characters. Unnecessary and a bit OTT I know, but it helped bring every department on the ship alive, every member of the landing party was a person not simply a red shirt.

      I am often bemused whilst watching streams when I see the gm of a streamed game pull some “new” idea out of his box of tricks, and the players are like “wow!”, “that’s original”, “I would never have thought of doing it that way!”, knowing we did it 30-40 years ago.

      The games my most recent group and I played/ran, were very detailed games with a lot of depth. Quite dark games too, mature themed, and often very emotional and intense. Having played with the same people for nigh on 20 years, you create a bond, a closeness and familiarity that allows you to communicate in a way you couldn’t, with people you don’t know very well.
      I have been brought to tears several times in recent years during the last (decade long) game we played ,as some scenes were simply too emotional or powerful, overwhelming (GM was a bastard – but an EXCELLENT GM).

      Sadly the group folded, but the GM offered to keep the game going for just me, which he did for a few years, which to be honest I really needed, as it helped me through a bad depression at that time).
      Over the years I have experienced a lot of things because of rpg’s, and made some great friends, too. I have a lot to be grateful for, regarding rpg’s. I was discussing with my brother in law, my collection of rpg’s and miniatures. When he realised how much they are worth, (some regularly sell for £100’s!) he always tells me to sell sell sell. He doesn’t grasp what they mean to me .
      Yet I won’t. Part of me hopes and prays that I will get a local group together (even some of the old group!) and start using them again. But aside from that, as my memory fails, little by little each year, these boxes and books and miniatures on the shelves are my constant reminders of happy and sad and exciting moments, and great fun, and more importantly, great friends.

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