A crisis of identity?
I realized after I clicked “Publish” on my last post that I started it as a warlock and ended it as a shaman. As you can see, I’m undergoing a slight crisis of identity.
I honestly couldn’t tell you which character is my main and which is my alt at this point.
I know the warlock class better. I understand the basic theorycraft: how to spec, how to gear and how to gem; exactly what my rotation should be, and why. I know some of the coefficients, and I know where to look for the ones I’ve forgotten. I can comfortably give advice to new warlocks on most aspects of the class. (For PvE, that is. If you want PvP, go to Out of Mana. PvE locks never OOM.)
I’m not quite there yet with my shaman. I’m still in soaking-it-all-in mode. I spent 20 minutes before work today researching gems I had never even looked at before. (Apparently, I should be socketing intellect as a resto shaman rather than spellpower/mp5; who knew?)
I raid 25-man’s on my warlock (more a necessity than a desire, since my guild currently has three restos but only one full-time ‘lock) and am working diligently to max out her rep. But I run 10-man’s on my shaman and will almost always volunteer to heal a heroic instance before I reluctantly agree to DPS it.
(Mine has to be the only guild in the entire world right now with a DPS shortage. WTT tanks and healers for ranged DPS, PST.)
I hate competing on the damage meters — especially because I often can’t. Trash pulls and fights like Kel’thuzad, P1, and Gothik, P1, bore me to tears. Nevermind casting my DoTs; raid DPS being what it is, mobs die within the space of a single Shadowbolt cast so there is literally nothing for me to do other than farm Soul Shards off of other players’ kills.
(From the Shadow Priest to me on our last Heroic Kel’Thuzad: “Damn it, Sar, stop ninjaing the Soul Shards! Leave some for the rest of us.”)
And yet … I love the “mini-game” that is raid healing. I find myself more engaged in the fight, more aware of what everyone else is doing. I don’t feel compelled to compete with the other healers; each healing class has its niche, and our contributions to the raid can’t be wholly or accurately represented by percentage of healing done.
I chat more in the Healer channel than the warlock channel … but that might have something to do with the fact that I’m the often the only ‘lock in the raid. (The priests have taken to joining the warlock channel on the grounds that their ability to spec Shadow makes them “honorary ‘locks” — and they don’t want me to be lonely.)
After spelling it all out (literally!), I think it’s obvious that I’m leaning more and more towards my shaman, but playing my warlock out of sentimentality and obligation. She is truly my alter-ego, to the point that my boyfriend’s pet name for me is, simply, “Warlock.” And as I found out during one exceptionally painful night of hockey-induced wipes, you tend to forget about all of the little things a ‘lock brings to the raid — Healthstones, Soul Stones, summons every time you fall off the pipe between Globbulus’s room and Glutch’s or die to Frogger ten times in a row — until you don’t have one.
I’m hoping to be able to keep the shaman reasonably well-geared in 10-mans, and maybe start bringing her to 25-man raids once we open them up to alts and off-specs (lower Naxx is on farm status, and we’re already DEing more epics than we can actually use). Then, once Uldaur is released and we’re back in progression mode, I’ll see what the raid actually needs and go from there.
In the meantime, is it bad that I’m praying for one of our resto shamans to get bitten by the DPS bug and beg to go Enhancement or Elemental? … Because, I totally am.