Healing Guide (The base for a healing team)

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Healing Guide (The base for a healing team)

by Kailas » Mon Nov 23, 2015 8:47 pm


1. Introduction
2. Awareness of your surroundings
3. Gear optimization
4. Down ranking spells
5. Addons and Macros
6. Communication
7. Analyzing realmplayers data
8. Preparation for Raid
9. World buffs

1. Introduction

This guide was first made as a guild thing but I later decided to post it on Nostalrius forums as there was not a similar guide there and I wanted to contribute to the community and improve the guide itself with feedback and further discussions. I have not tried every addon out there, talked to every healer or read every class guide/healer guide however this guide is based on my long time experience in playing World of Warcraft as a damage dealer, healer and lately tank as well and it has drawn from posts of Qiraji (guild) EmeraldDream (server) posts, Purge (guild) Nostalrius posts, many vanilla guides and conversations I had with many healers. Special thanks to Egregious, Scar/Aslan and Vodou/Tazvodou for their significant contributions. Although Purge is no longer recruiting contrary to the writing on the above image I have decided to add the image as I do recall someone (sorry forgot who) spent some time working on it and I liked it a lot and still do.

Through explanation of basic healing principles and overview of what a healing team set up consists of this guide can help beginners to advance rapidly or experienced players to perfect their trade or just serve as a remainder. This guide does not contain any sort of heal bot addon and personally I don't consider the use of such addons as fair play therefore I will not be going over them although they can benefit healing when it comes to shear reaction time. As you will learn by playing the game healing is more than reaction, it is prediction.
Healing is a team play; trying to achieve success by working together. Success for a healing team in vanilla WoW is everyone in your raid (including pets) surviving the fight with the least amount of mana possible used so you can continue progressing with least amount of downtime (drinking/ressing/buffing) possible. Healing is a big part of what effects whether or not everyone survives but tanks and damage dealers (DPS) will also effect it in various ways dependent on the situation. For example: fail taunt rotations (MC Lava annihilators, ZG berserkers), overaggroing (DPS taking the target focus away from the tank by overtaking the tank on the target "hatelist"), standing in fire (popular among the masses), not spreading out or spreading out, etc. Recognizing these situations and reacting to them preemptively if possible is part of what makes a good healer.  
Each class has its own ways to min/max and specialize but in this guide I will talk mainly about tweaking shamans as that's the class I am most familiar with. However, this mindset can be applied to any class and parts of this guide related to shamans will help priests, druids and paladins as well. There are many class guides on Nostalrius forums and elsewhere on the net so these short class specialization/role/task descriptions below are just to give a basic idea of what each class can do for purposes of this guide which is oriented more towards the basis of a healing team and is not going to be detailed on every healing class.
Shamans will be tank healers,raid healers, dispellers or a mix thereof depending on setup, encounter and gear (full t1 shamans on tank healing only unless you have no choice because of chain heal being so much stronger than healing wave without full t1). Shamans provide totems during the whole raid and his ability is often judged on how good was his totem up time. A certain WoW patch makes it so WF applies to the weapons instantly allowing for a more efficient totem swap. Totem swapping and up time is very important for melee groups and can drastically increase their DPS. Full restoration shamans are very strong and versatile healers if properly geared. Depending on gear available to you, the length and demands of an encounter you would switch from different gear sets suiting each situation. Improved totems shamans are raid healers only and on fights where low raid healing is required they can provide nightfall or at least some dps which is better than doing almost no healing.
Priests will be tank healers,raid healers, dispellers or a mix thereof depending on setup and encounter. You will often cast Prayer of Healing on your own group (on horde usually in ranged groups since shamans normally are assigned to melee groups and on alliance most often in melee groups) and keep people from death by shielding when in danger (low health/dots etc). Can spec into Power Infusion to boost casters or deep holy for more healing. Can spec 20 points in shadow to provide Shadow Weaving (+15% shadow debuff) if your setup doesn't include a dedicated Shadow Priest with the patch that allows for 16 debuff slots and if the raid is warlock heavy.
Druids will be tank healers, raid healers, dispellers or a mix thereof depending on setup and encounter. They can also be useful in other ways such as feral resto druid if properly geared! So it can be used as offtank if its required also known as no other choice. Healing touch and swiftmend are both raid and tank healing speccs. 

Paladins will be tank healers,raid healers, dispellers or a mix thereof depending on setup and encounter. Providing Auras and buffs is as important as totem up time for shamans.  
Healer tasks
Raid Healing
Having Boss as target you can see his target through Target of target luna feature or similar addons that enable ToT feature. That along with Show agro indicator on raid frames will help you notice someone taking agro off the tank easy if you set up your UI properly. Each healer would prioritize those in his group over others when PREHEALING and topping up.
Tank Healing
You have your assigned tank targeted the whole fight and by using Forecast along with other healer/s assigned you synchronize the spells so each lands in a evenly spaced interval ensuring maximum health of the tank through the fight.
Mainly focuses on dispelling but when no debuff is up you can try to add another heal to tank or just top the raid up if needed.
Nature Swiftness Rotations
Macros to announce usage in order to notify next in line to use his NS.
Resurrection should be done mainly by shamans (horde side) due to priests needing to use mana for buffing as well.

2. Awareness of your surroundings and your character position

Here is what you have to do: 
-Type in 

/console SetCVar("cameraDistanceMax", 50)

-Try zooming out
or if that did not work try this
-Type in your chatbox:

/console cameraDistanceMax 50

-Restart your client
-Try zooming out
And here is what it does:
Default view on a raid:
After the command:

This is mostly useless in Capital Cities where you want to be close to your character to be able to read names and guilds of other characters, but all it actually does it enables you to zoom out further. It does not mean you have to zoom out further at all times! So I recommend everyone to change their settings as shown above, keep the cameradistance as you prefer it, but zoom out on fights like: Majordomo, Ragnaros, Nefarian, Onyxia, Chromaggus, Razorgore etc. It will let you see the whole boss and all other players, not only the bosses legs and some players in front of you! You can position yourself much smarter to be in range of everyone!
Another thing that helps you see your character easier is to go to interface options. turn off player names and turn on show own name (must in suppresion room for everyone, and all the time for melee)
Make sure no addon is covering the middle of your screen. You should try to have all UI stuff (bars,addons, etc.) below the feet of your character and the whole screen as clear as possible in order to have a good view on whats going on around you. At the start of every fight make sure you are positioned properly (in range and LoS of the raid and dodging any encounter mechanic as needed). Forty yard range on healing spells gives you plenty room to position to avoid major mechanics like Fears, Counterspells etc.

3. Gear optimization

You plan ahead about which items/sets would benefit the raid the most depending on your set up and tactics. Using realmplayers to calculate mana gain from mp5/spirit to determine the value ratio on mp5 and healing based on the length of the fight and damage intensity. For example a shaman with 100 mp5 in a 60 sec fight would get 1200 mana regained. From this you can conclude that the value of mp5 gear for a 60 sec fight is relatively low compared to healing. The shorter the fight is the less mp5 gear you should have if you are assigned to healing.
Shaman sets I use
Restoration PvE:

Healing set maximum
MP5 set maximum
Healing/MP5 best of both
Tier 1 8/8 
Tier 2 3/8 (this set bonus would usually be used with healing set max., mp5 set max or best of both)
Restoration PvP 
Elemental PvP
Elemental PvE
Enhancement PvP
Enhancement PvE
Each set requires different enchants and each set has its uses in raids (PvE or PvP). Each can be modified a bit to fit every situation if you have the gear at your disposal. For example value of mp5 goes up the less mana you have at any given time. This is more important in PvP where circumstances change all the time then in PvE where this occurs at a more steady pace.
Here a great addon comes into play. Outfitter offers you the ability to change a complete gear set with a keybind or a click. It also has auto gear switch on events such as mounting (equiping selected items with mount speed increase)...


Keep in mind critical chance for healing is almost always useless (semi useful for stacking ancestral healing and priest equivalent of the same talent for the main tank healers) as it will be overheal 90%+ of the time. Why ? When you see a player is missing 1k health you would use appropriate rank of healing spell to top him up to 100%. If you crit naturally it will be overheal. You would never use a lower heal rank spell and hope for a crit cause that is wasting your time and HPS unless you are trying to trigger the armor buff as mentioned.


4. Down ranking spells

The way to calculate optimal spell is by dividing average spell healing amount by spell mana cost. You get healing power per mana used for each spell and you can determine the most efficient one. Being aware of these ratios is the first step towards efficient healing. In these calculations you can include a spells chance to crit, however crit is more of a nuisance for efficient healing as you cant rely on it and most of the time crit amount ends up as overheal.
Downranking healing spells makes use of your + heal on your gear in order to be effective at healing and mana efficient at the same time. Note that long casted spells (3 sec and more ) get a better coefficient then faster casted spells! The point is to constantly heal over a longer period of time while avoiding overhealing.
Depending on your role as healer (tank\raid healer) and fight length\strategy\situation you would use appropriate gear, spell ranks and consumables.
For shamans these would be
Chain Heal ranks 1, 2, and 3
Lesser Healing Wave ranks 4 and 6
Healing Wave ranks 1, 4 or 5 (whichever is more sustainable for your gear), 7, and max rank (rank 1 for ancestral healing and healing way procs)

Shocks rank 1 - Earth for interrupts on encounters vs casters like Sulfuron, Major Domo etc. , Flame and Frost are more for pvp although frost can be helpful on mobs that can be slowed. Flame would be used to tag a rogue so he cant vanish.

5. Addons and Macros

A crucial part of a healing team is every member of the team using the same best available addons and UI set up. 
Your whole UI has to be set up so everything is close to the center of the screen where most of your attention should be. This is just one of many ways you can set up your UI and I can point you to a lot of useful addons that allow you to modify your UI. The idea behind moving everything close to center of screen is that you move your eyes and cursor the shortest possible distance when healing; as fast reaction is required.
8 hidden bars are shown in top left. 
Healerassist is also usually hidden. Only used to test trials and during forming of the healing team. In the top a good overview on all important things with titans panel. 

in combat - raid healing
(no weapon buff at the time of ss - its positioned same as above)

Tank healing - The only difference is you are not targeting boss but your assigned tank and you can see Forecast bars above the target frame, this is where ToToT is handy as you can see boss who would in this case be ToT and you can see him changing target clearly.

Addons absolutley required for a healing team:
Lunaunitframes (or addon that gives you luna incoming healing amount feature callled Healcomm also by Rhena )
Bonusscanner gives precise info on healing spell power/rank to Luna
Forecast show cast bars of healing spells on target and self from all using the addon
HealersAssist gives an overview to healing team leaders
Strongly recommended
Aftercast enables you to use the Nature's Swiftness Macro below; keeps you from spaming chat when pressing announcement macros (Tranq and NS macros).
RABUFFS for druids, priests and mages which gives you visuals on when buffs will expire and who needs one or Pally Power for paladin buffs 

Decursive and Detox
Although it can be a useful addon for a beginner a more experienced player will use Luna with decurse/dispell/remove poison/remove disease and /lunomo macro. This will enable you to see debuffs on raid frames and to remove the debuffs manually with direct control over your debuff removing priorities. Example would be dispelling tanks on Garr and than later on Baron not having to dispell tanks would require you to change your Decursive priorities. Another more important example would be mages having to decurse healers on Lucifron and then later any player with low health on Gehenas. Proper Gehenas fight is fast and its a waste decursing someone who doesn't actually need healing. Decursing someone on low health is of utmost importance so a heal doesn't get the 75% amount reduction.
Why Luna over other UNIT frame addons?
-An amazing tag system lets you completly customize the text being displayed
-A huge selection of bar textures and fonts to choose from
-Buff timers. (for your own)
-Totem timers
-Shows your mana while in cat / bear form
-XP and Reputation Bar
-You can reset instances via the right click menu
-All bars are positionable in a custom order. You can make the portrait into a bar too or disable it
-Enemy castbar
-Predicts incoming heals on you, your target, party and raid (also shows other people if they have this addon)
-Shows incoming resurrections from cast start till the accept window expires
-Range checker for the party and raid
-Energy ticker
-The fastest healthbars of all the raidframes out there (Actually blizzards are the same since its the same method of updating every frame but don't tell anyone)
-Raidframes show units with aggro by an indicator
-Click casting interface (no 3rd party addon required)
-Mouseover casting system: Use /lunamo or /lunamouseover followed by your spell of choice to make the macro behave like a normal spell button on your bar but when you are over a frame it casts on that target
-Tracks buffs on raid frames (excellent for shamans ancestral healing and healing way as well as the priest version of ancestral healing)
LUNA UNIT FRAMES check for it on github - link below

During the times I was part of guild leaderships I often found myself in arguments with players over why I demanded from them to use LUNA over anything else. Some thought GRID is better, some just didn't like LUNA for whatever reason, some preferred not to use any addon at all. During the time Nostalrius was down I played TBC and in TBC LUNA is not available. I was forced to use GRID the whole time and I can't say I hated it but I definitely missed LUNA. Main things that bothered me was not that it missed some options LUNA has but GRID missed settings to adjust these. The default settings on GRID were just awful and I found myself setting it up for a long time and in the end still not being satisfied with the results. Now there might be versions of GRID I am not aware of, maybe ones developed exclusively for vanilla like LUNA was. If anyone can confirm it and vouch its better than its TBC version I will be willing to try it and I will post a more detailed comparison. Until then I recommend LUNA without doubt over anything else. Reason I chose GRID for this "comparison" is most people (if not all) not using LUNA preferred GRID instead. Also you can set up luna to look like GRID and other raid frame addons.

Luna raid frame buffs shamans should track (priests, druids and paladins can remove healing way). You can remove Blood Fury if you are tracking all debuffs (use only if tracking only dispellable debuffs otherwise you will have two same icons on a frame when someone uses blood fury)

All addons I use - https://www.dropbox.com/sh/0fbglssqaht0ze6/AACj0Ppey098XRqCH87lqj3Qa?dl=0

Addons on dropbox explained
The idea is that each class gets the addons for the role they are playing. Everyone would use raider addons, healers would use raider+healer addons and if its a healer officer than he would user raider, healer and officer addons. All healers are required to use Luna unit frames or other frame addon in combination with healcom and bonusccaner (luna has healcom integrated and bonusscaner can be found in healer folder) while useful addons and Action Bar Addons are optional. Most of the addons I use I found on Elysium or Nostalrius forums so you can get them there yourself as well. Addons that have their link for Github will not be found on my dropbox as they may have new updates. You can also report any issues you find with those addons on its github page 

Raiders (required by everyone)
Lazypig - Minimum configuring necessary (might want to turn off some of the options off) | /LP
ImprovedErrorFrame - Instead of an error poping up in middle of your screen and require you to click ok it will put it in a button on minimap. 
CEnemyCastBar - Use to track different cc durations , enemy cast bar warning on which you can click to select the one casting and more. | /necb
ClassicSnowfall - instead of using upon key release it will use a spell on key press
KLHThreatMeter - KTM threat meter.  |  /ktm gui show
Ora2 - Minimum configuring necessary. Raidassist addon | minimap button or in my case fubar plugin

Forecast - A tank can use it to determine wheter or not to pop a cd and when
Bonuscanner - No configuring necessary. Provides information on spell rank casted for healcom. Required for proper function of healcom and Luna
Luna or Healcom - Enables a tank to see the amount of incoming healing.
Supermacro - Useful for warrior macros | /macro
Tankbuddy - Minimum configuring necessary. Warrior announcements in chat. Failed taunts , used SW , LS..

Aftercast - No configuring necessary. Allows spam of button without spaming channel for NS , totems, shields, Tranq shot.. Required for macros below
Bonusscanner - No configuring necessary. Provides information on spell rank casted for healcom . Required for proper function of healcom and Luna
Forecast - Minimum configuring necessary. Provides a visual of incoming spells cast on yourself and your target. Only works in raid with people who have it as well
Healerassist pack - No configuring necessary. Window to track healer cooldowns and assignments.

CT_RaidTracker - No configuring necessary. Failsafe for Realmplayers/LegacyLogs. /raidtracker
ExpandAssist - No configuring necessary. Enables those with assist to move members from group to group.
Healerassist pack - No configuring necessary. Window to track healer cooldowns and assignments.
Healorganizer - No configuring necessary. Assign heals easy on bosses (ora2 dependency)   |   /healorganizer dialog
XLoot - No configuring necessary. Expands your loot window enabling you to see all loot in one window

OmniCC - No configuring necessary. Adds numbers to cooldowns on your bars
AdvancedTradeSkillWindow - No configuring necessary. Addon for proffesion
Aftercast - No configuring necessary. Allows spam of button without spaming channel for NS , totems, shields, Tranq shot.. Required for macros below
Atlas - No configuring necessary. Loot tables , rep rewards and more.
Aux - No configuring necessary. Auctioneer addon (less extensive and buggy than auctioneer) | Github https://github.com/shirsig/aux-addon
Bagnon - No configuring necessary. One bag addon
Banknon - No configuring necessary. Enables you to see bags of other characters on the same account
BetterAlign - Adds a grid over your screen to make that perfect symmetrical UI. | /ba
Cartographer - No configuring necessary. Map addon 
CustomNameplates - No configuring necessary. Self explanatory | Github https://github.com/Road-block/CustomNameplates
DebuffTimers - No configuring necessary. Adds timers for your debuffs on target frames | Github https://github.com/Voidmenull/DebuffTimers
DoTimer - No configuring necessary. Used mainly by warlocks (there are other similar addons)
EQCompare - No configuring necessary. Adds another tooltip window to compare an item you hover over with what you wear in that slot
EQL3 - No configuring necessary. Extended quest log window
Fubar pack - Minimum configuring necessary (titan panel has the same use) | rightclick panel for menu
Gatherer - No configuring necessary. Tracks picked up herbs and mines
Healcom - No configuring necessary. Used with bonusscanner by those not using Luna to get the Healing Prediction feature
LoadIT - No configuring necessary. See which addons are turned on from ingame. Turn them on by reloading UI
MBB - No configuring necessary. Puts some of the buttons into one menu button | Github https://github.com/laytya/MinimapButtonBag-vanilla
MobHealth3 - No confguring necessary. Target HP From % to numbers 
ModifiedPowerAuras - You need to set up anything you want to track yourself. | /mpowa Github https://github.com/Geigerkind/ModifiedPowerAuras
MikScrollingBatlleText - Minimum configuring necessary. Costumizable combat text | /msbt Github https://github.com/AtheneGenesis/Vanilla_MikScrollingBattleText/releases
ocb3 by athene - Minimum configuring necessary. Cast bar addon | Github /ocb config https://github.com/AtheneGenesis/Vanilla_oCB/releases
Outfitter enables you to switch gear sets with a key bind also auto equips gear based on event. Further explained under Gear Optimization part.
TotemTimers Enhanced - Minimum configuring necessary | Github /totemtimers https://github.com/MOUZU/TotemTimers-Enhanced
Postal - No configuring necessary. Mail addon (mass open mail, mass send...) | Github https://github.com/shirsig/Postal
Prat - Minimum configuring necessary. Standard blizz look without the buttons on the side. | /prat playernames toggle
simpleMinimap - Minimum configuring necessary. Configure your mini map and position quest timers, durability icon, quest timer | right click mini map
SpellAlert - No configuring necessary. Text alrets in the top of your screen
TheoryCraft - No configuring necessary. Adds useful information for beginner players
TipBuddy - Completley costumizable tooltips. | /tipbuddy
TrinketMenu - Minimum configuring necessary. Trinket window
VCB - Costumizable buffs, debuffs and weapon buffs | /vcb Github https://github.com/Geigerkind/VCB
WeaponQuickSwap similar to Outfitter but does not cause any lags on swaps and therefore is very useful during combat | WQS macros explained here https://wow.curseforge.com/projects/weapon-quick-swap
WIM - Warcraft instant messenger. Don't miss a whisper, block spammers.

Action Bar Addons |  /bongos or /dab for Discord
Tried Bartender , Bongos 2 and Discord so far and with Bartender and Bongos I had issues so I tried Discord and liked it however it is complicated to set up. I would recommend bongos over discord to someone who is just starting out with using addons. The major issue I had with Bongos was on my warrior so for healers it shouldn't matter much. Bongos also has a nice feature which I still use and that's configuring your roll window (you can probably get the same option with MoveAnything addon).  

RABuffs - Track buffs, needs a bit of configuring depending on how many things you want to track (officers should track all raid buffs)

LunaUnitFrames is posted separatley due to frequent updates it got in the past |  Github https://github.com/Aviana/LunaUnitFrames

Dropbox may include addons that I haven't listed and explained and if you need more information about them feel free to ask or /w Kailas in game. I try to avoid using any addons that cause errors and so far I have been managing it. Supermacro and luna are the only addons you might run in problems with and this led me to using supermacro the least possible amount I can and finding vanilla macros that work without it. Luna bugging is just the inevitable consequence of luna getting bigger and having more options but its working good most of the time.

Worthy mentions (some of these perform same or similar role as the ones above):
Macro extender | Github http://proxicide.github.io/MacroExtender/
Cooldowns | Github https://github.com/shirsig/cooldowns
SpamThrottle | Github https://github.com/Orukxu/SpamThrottle
Enemyframes | Github https://github.com/zetone/enemyFrames/issues
Crafty | Github https://github.com/shirsig/crafty
ccwatch | Github https://github.com/shirsig/ccwatch


All healing spells including shields, instants and dispell/remove disease/remove poison should be made as macros with luna mouseover feature ( example: /lunamo Chain Heal(Rank 1)  ) and consumables like Greater Fire Prot. Potion, Runes, Healthstone/pot, trinkets should be on your bars and key binded. You can access the macro panel by typing /macro
Lunamouseover macros (each is a separate macro and requires LUNA addon to work)
These macro basically give you the ability to hover your mouse cursor over a LUNA frame such as group , raid, player, target etc. and use a heal without having to select the person as target or "using" the heal on the target frame enabling you to replace either of these 2 actions with one which saves incredible amount of time in the long run and will definitely impact your overall results.

/lunamo Chain Heal(Rank 1)

/lunamo Chain Heal(Rank 2)

/lunamo Chain Heal(Rank 3)

/lunamo Cure Disease

/lunamo Cure Poison

/lunamo Healing Wave(Rank 1)

/lunamo Healing Wave(Rank 4)

/lunamo Healing Wave(Rank 5)

/lunamo Healing Wave(Rank 7)

/lunamo Healing Wave(Rank 9)

/lunamo Lesser Healing Wave(Rank 4)

/lunamo Lesser Healing Wave(Rank 6)

Autoattack check and use auto attack if not on after spell cast and this can be used for every shock spell. 99 represents the position of your auto attack ability on your action bar (in this case auto attack is on the 99th cell/slot of the action bar - if each bar has 10 cells or slots then 99th position would be 9th on 10th bar)

/cast Earth Shock
/script if not IsCurrentAction(99) then UseAction(99) end;
add /target NearestEnemy(); or /target [MobName] to this on top. I find it good for tagging mobs.

Bandage without losing target
- 53 is the position of the bandage on your action bars same as the auto attack macro

/script p="player";t="target";if(not UnitCanAttack(t, p))then ot=UnitName(t);TargetUnit(p); else ot=nil;end;UseAction(53);if(SpellIsTargeting())then SpellTargetUnit(p); end if(ot) then TargetByName(ot);end

WeaponQuickSwap macro example (change weapon names to fit your needs, there is a possibility to put in more than two weapons into one macro so it does a rotation of the ones in it - check WeaponQuickSwap addon for details)

/script WeaponSwap("Aurastone Hammer", "Malistar's Defender");

Trinket use macros (or use trinket menu addon)

/script UseInventoryItem(13);

/script UseInventoryItem(14);

Berserking macro (Trolls only)

/aftercast +done /5 DO NOT HEAL "yourname" ! Berserking used!
/script CastSpellByName("Berserking")

Swap between mining and herbalism on one button

/run c=CastSpellByName;if(_t_f==nil)then _t_f=CreateFrame("frame");end;if (_t_f.h) then c"Find Minerals";_t_f.h=false;else c"Find Herbs";_t_f.h=true;end

Party chat notifications (These require the addon called aftercast)

Mana tide totem
- inform your party members that you used mana tide and they should move closer if they don't have the buff
/aftercast +done /run SendChatMessage("Mana Tide Totem up!","PARTY",nil,"5")
/script CastSpellByName("Mana Tide Totem(Rank 3)")
Tremor totem
/script SpellStopCasting()
/aftercast +done /run SendChatMessage("Tremor Totem up!","PARTY",nil,"5")
/script CastSpellByName("Tremor Totem")
Nature's Swiftness
/script SpellStopCasting()
/aftercast +done /5 NS USED!
/script CastSpellByName("Nature's Swiftness")
Grounding Totem
/script SpellStopCasting()
/aftercast +done /run SendChatMessage("Grounding Totem up!","PARTY",nil,"5")
/script CastSpellByName("Grounding Totem")


On my keyboard F1-F6 are on the left side of keyboard making them a lot easier to use.
I used 9 action bars for my set up (only 2 visible). Recently I made one big bar I can turn visible with a keybind (discord bars addon)
Alt for selfcast
Separate invisible bar (Discord action bar) with forced selfcast and each healing spell keybinded with alt modifier. Its the only solution I had for the selfcast I wanted to have. Even when a friendly target is selected it heals you when using alt modifier. 
The idea I follow when keybinding is to have all spells and abilities that have short cooldown, require fast action and are used often close to my left hand fingers which will be mainly over my movement keys. 
My keybinds:
Shift modifier
Ctrl modifier

W forward (no modifiers so you can move while pressing a modifier key)
A strafe left (no modifiers so you can move while pressing a modifier key)
D strafe right (no modifiers so you can move while pressing a modifier key)

Q Lesser Healing Wave(Rank 6)
ShiftQ Lesser Healing Wave(Rank 4)
E Healing Wave(Rank 4)
ShiftE Healing Wave(Rank 1)
R Tremor Totem
ShiftR Purge
T Earthbind Totem
ST Tranquil Totem

S Auto Attack macro
ShiftS Mana Spring Totem
CtrlS Berserking (Troll Racial)
AltS Frost Resistance Totem
F Earth Shock
SF Earth Shock Rank 1
G Grounding Totem
ShiftG Stoneskin Totem

< Lightning Shield
Shift< Windfury weapon
Alt< Flametongue Weapon
Y Magma Totem
ShiftY Magma Totem(Rank 1)
X Fire Nova Totem
ShiftX Searing Totem
C Lightning Bolt
ShiftC Chain Lightning
CtrlC Healing Stream Totem
V Trinket slot 13
B Trinket slot 14
Space stopcasting
ShiftSpace Jump

¸ (key left of number 1) Flame Shock(Rank 1)
Shift¸ (key left of number 1) Flame Shock(Rank 5) 
1 Nature Swiftness macro / Stormstrike / Elemental Mastery
2 /lunamo Healing Wave(Rank 7)
3 /lunamo Healing Wave(Rank 9)
4 Frost Shock(Rank 4)
S4 Frost Shock(Rank 1)
5 Bandage
Shift5 Bandage self macro
6 Hearthstone
Shift6 Astral Recall

ESC toggle Main menu
F1 Mana Tide macro
F2 Ghost Wolf
F3 Far sight
F4 Ressurection

7 Who
8 Honor
9 Score Screen
0 Battle map
' Talents
+ Spellbook
Z Sheath/Unsheath Weapons
U Reputation
I Character
O Raid
P Skills
Š invisible selfcast bar

H Show Name plates
ShiftH Show Friendly Name plates
J Friends list
K Guild
L Quests
Ž main invisible bar 8x8 slot

N Open all bags 
M Cartographer
ShiftM Mount
, SWStats
. Heal Organizer Dialog
- Sit/Stand
Insert Auto Run
Delete Walk/Run

Ctrl Q, E, R , F , T, ¸

Number Pad
0-7 Raid Marks
+ , - zoom in / zoom out
Shift + , - mini map
Ctrl + , - sound

Shift 1-3
Ctrl 1-4
Outfitter keybinds
Up Arrow T1 set
Down Arrow Restoration PvP
Left Arrow Elemental
Right Arrow Chain heal best of MP5 and Healing gear

F5 and F6 are close to my left hand due to gaming keyboard. WeaponSwap macro
F5 Hand of Edward the Odd + Malistar's Defender
F6 Jin'Do's Hexxer + Lei of the Lifegiver
Mouse Binds
Left click + Right click and hold Mouse steer
SCRLDWN /lunamo Cure Disease
SCRLUP /lunamo Cure Poison
SSCRLDWN  /lunamo Healing Wave(Rank 5)
SSCRLUP /lunamo Chain Heal(Rank 3) 
CtrlSCRLDWN /lunamo Chain Heal(Rank 2) 
CtrlSCRLUP /lunamo Chain Heal(Rank 1) 
MB4 Granades
ShiftMB4 Holy Water
MB5 Push to talk VoIP software (usually i use voice activation)

*Note Keybind similar spells with same binds on different characters. For example I use F for silence/interrupts on every character since i started playing WoW. So on warrior id have pummel in fury, shield bash in arms and prot stances, kick on rogue, silence on mage and warlock(fel hunter) 


6. Communication

If you die during a fight, your assigned tank will still need to be healed. Make sure others are aware of it. 
Look at other healers, be aware of their assignments and their mana. If one dies or goes oom step in and make sure his tank survives.
When someone is standing in fire, taking agro or getting cleaved constantly and you notice it make sure it doesn't happen in the future by discussing it with the person or officers.
Healing channel is used primarily for assignments and notifications through macros. 
The chat channels sometimes bug on log out/relog (has been fixed 27 January 2017 ) and set up (change the color of the channel to a distinct and easy to spot color)
You will need 2 macros (No longer required on Elysium servers)
one to leave channels and one to join

/leave World
/leave channelname

/join World
/join channelname
I also recommend having two separate chat windows; one chat for loot, raid, officer/class and guild channel and the other one for world , general, trade and local defense. Turning off Detailed loot information (on advanced interface options) while raiding so your window doesn't get spammed can help.

Teamspeak Whisper Lists
TS has a nice feature called whisper lists which allows you to have separate keybind to speak to people on a particular whisper list. Enabling you to speak among your class or role without confusing the rest of the raid. 

7. Analyzing realmplayers data

Everyone in raid should use the same addons that realmplayers uses to gather data in order to make the data as precise as possible.
If you want to become a data contributor read here http://realmplayers.com:5555/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=15

There is also a new Legacy Logs which adds many new features like tracking dispelling and more. It uses DPSMate as its record tool and you can read more about it here https://legacy-logs.com/Contribute/
Efficient healing vs Raw healing
Efficient healing is the healing you did that was 100% heal and 0% overheal. The more experienced, disciplined and organized a healing team and individual is the more efficient healing there will be in a raid.
Raw Healing is Efficient + Overheal. This shows the effort of the healer (mainly shamans, paladins and druids due to priests using up part of their mana to shield). Your raw heal is something you should work on first. Using all your consumables and cooldowns in order to achieve the maximum amount of raw heal you can with the least possible amount of overheal is your goal if you want to top the charts. 
Overheal in general (Bad overheal vs Good overheal)
Overheal in itself is not a bad thing. If your overheal is high it means you also do a great raw heal output . After all; if the heal you put through really would have been needed, you would have been more useful than others with less overheal and less raw heal. In short: Better overheal than no heal. Better top all 3 meters (efficient, over and raw heal) than no meter! Because the raid knows they can rely on you as a healing machine if something goes wrong! 
Healing over time (HoT) spells can be a big part of your "bad overheal" if you do not use HoTs properly. While you want HoTs on tanks or someone receiving constant damage on most fights a HoT will be overheal  (except on tank receiving constant dmg) so HoTs for raid healing aren't efficient on most fights. This also has a lot to do of other healers being aware that a person has a HoT on them. For example a person that has 80-99.99% health and has a hot on them is not as High on healing priority list as someone who is lower or same health without a HoT on them, this is something that can be tracked with LUNA. If the whole healing team is aware of it a HoT can be a more efficient heal.
Standing in place and spaming heals on one target that is in no danger of receiving any damage is of course no use and is also known as bad overheal. Overheal should be a  critical heal hit that overhealed or a side effect (mistakes) of trying to PREHEAL players in order to minimize the time required to bring everyone to 100% of health after damage received.  PREHEAL. This is the single and most important thing you can do to beat every other healer. If you can predict incoming damage and PREHEAL it, your HPS will improve greatly. Not trying to preheal will put you in a place where a bot can outperform you or anyone using those addons that autoheal (select appropriate spell rank and cast on one button).
Extrapolating on this: a very strong raw healer (by this I mean doing his max output of the combined use of mana pool, consumables and cooldowns) has the predisposition to become a very strong efficient healer.  A very efficient healer with low Raw heal is not as likely of ever becoming a very strong raw healer unless he changes his foul ways. This means that as a healer you should work on raw heal first and when you master using all cooldowns and consumables and ending the fight with as close 0% mana, you can concentrate on using that mana more efficiently. It should be clear however when doing a speed run, everyone fully buffed and using a flask it will not be possible to spend all your mana and having some left over is very important to continue clearing straight away after a boss fight.
Realmplayers can't tell you if a healer is using his cooldowns, dispelling when required, using consumables like flask, foods etc. and most importantly keeping people alive by shielding / fast reactions on ns and similar actions that require focus and fast reaction. This is something that should be monitored during the raid and healerassist addon does help out with this problem somewhat. 


8. Preparation for Raid 

Tactics and boss mechanics
In order to perform to the best of your characters capabilities you have to know every fight mechanic to its fine details. Every boss has its own way of affecting your play. On some you have to move, on some you have to dispell etc. Knowing exactly what to do and whats going on during a fight will enable you to focus on your primary task.
There are many guides to all raiding content in vanilla and preparing for upcoming release if you have not done it before has to be of utmost importance for you as it will drastically effect your performance.
Complete list of Dungeon + Raiding Guides
Consumables and buffs
Having achieved everything above you now have the prerequisites for the raid to benefit maximally from you using consumables and buffs. Each class has its own required consumables and each boss and your role in a fight can effect consumable usage differently (for example Vael you dont use major mana pots, int food instead of mp5 food, poping greater fire prot pots like you would mana pots in order to avoid pushback on spell casting from the damage)
Consumables like Demonic Runes, Dark Runes and Mana Potions are bread and butter of every healer and you should not heal any raid without them. During raid, whether you are doing a pug or a speed run, a healing team needs to be as mana efficient as possible so the raid can clear content as fast as possible and that means using consumables, drinking at any possible moment and trying to save mana so you end the fight with as much mana as possible, therefore needing to drink very shortly in which time the rest of the raid can already prepare and pull the next mob/pack/boss. 

Bags before raid time (pre AQ)
9. World buffs

Blasted Lands buffs
on use consumable, at the bloodelfs in north Blasted Lands. Lasts one hour
Does not stack ! Can pop one and carry one of each in bags

Cerebral Cortex Compound
+25 Intelligence – 10 Basilisk Brains , 2 Vulture Gizzards

Gizzard Gum
+25 Spirit – 10 Vulture Gizzards, 2 Snickerfang Jowl

Darkmoon Fair buff
available once a month for a week alternating between Goldshire and Thunder Bluff. Lasts two hours
1-10% Damage (1-1 answers to the npc questions - DPS and Tanks)
1-10% Intelligence (2-2 answers to the npc questions - Healers)
*Note The darkmoon fair buffs are RNG from 1-10% and if you do not get the 10% or close to it you will have to wait 2h to retake it

Felwood Songflower buff
+15 stats and +5% critical chance (Requires Cenarion Beacon! Farm for at least 2x Cenarion Plant Salve). Lasts one hour

Heart of Hakkar buff (turning in Heart of Hakkar at Zandalar Isle)
10% all stats, lasts two hours

Zanza’s Potent Potables (requires revered with Zandalar)
Each flask is 3x Zandalar Honor Token and lasts 2hrs
Does not stack ! Can pop one and carry one of each in bags

Sheen of Zanza
Increases the chance that the player will reflect hostile spells cast on them by 3%. Will automatically reflect the first offensive spell cast against the user

Spirit of Zanza
Increases the player’s Spirit by 50 and Stamina by 50

Swiftness of Zanza
Increases the player’s run speed by 20%

Dragon head buff
10% spell crit, 5% physical crit, 140 Attack power (turning in onyxia or nefarian head), lasts two hours

Warchief’s Blessing – Giving in head of rend Blackhand (Not available)
Increasese hit points by 300, 15% haste to melee attacks, 10 mp5

The order in which you take these depends on wheter or not you can get portals and summons when needed, do you have a cleared Dire Maul North (tribute) id, is DarkMoon Fair in Mulgore or in Goldshire, is your guild popping (or leeching) a head and heart buffs etc. Best way for a healer would be:
DM tribute > DMF > Songflower > Blasted Lands > ZG heart > Dragon head.
Naturally you would need people with summoning warlocks to be able to pull it off without losing much time on tribute buffs. 

The troll sitting on the Ivory raptor roughly in the middle of the circle is me in the last days of Nostalrius Begins

If you have any questions or want to add something feel free to post here or /w me in game.
Last edited by Kailas on Tue May 15, 2018 7:46 pm, edited 56 times in total.
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Re: Healing Guide (How not to suck as a healing team)

by Umrad » Mon Nov 23, 2015 10:42 pm

Great post man, definitely going to check out that oCB addon.
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Re: Healing Guide (How not to suck as a healing team)

by Arev » Mon Nov 23, 2015 10:50 pm

sticky material imo
Arevor - <Dankk Budz Collective>
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Re: Healing Guide (How not to suck as a healing team)

by Kailas » Tue Nov 24, 2015 1:38 am

Added addon pack link. Thanks for the kind words ^^
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Re: Healing Guide (The base for a healing team)

by Jeniwyn » Tue Nov 24, 2015 11:55 am

Priests would primarily keep people from death by shielding when in danger (low health/dots etc). 

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Re: Healing Guide (The base for a healing team)

by Kailas » Tue Nov 24, 2015 12:51 pm

Jeniwyn wrote:
Priests would primarily keep people from death by shielding when in danger (low health/dots etc). 


UPDATED. Know it sucks but priests are the only ones that can shield. Most priests dont care for shielding as it doesn't benefit their HPS but there is no one else that can shield (same goes for dispelling on horde) :P
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Re: Healing Guide (The base for a healing team)

by Jeniwyn » Tue Nov 24, 2015 4:40 pm

Shield sees use, but the reason it is fairly fringe is its bad scaling and the general unpredictability of much raid damage.

It sure has its uses, it's not without reason I have it bound to right click, but overuse leads to inefficient healing and that in turn hurts the heal team as a whole.

Overall I'd just cut the class section and leave that part to the specific class forums if someone wants to make a guide there.
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Re: Healing Guide (The base for a healing team)

by Kailas » Sun Dec 06, 2015 2:30 pm

It already is just basics and I point out I focus more on shamans. If you need details concerning priests and druids check class forums
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Re: Healing Guide (The base for a healing team)

by Jeniwyn » Mon Dec 07, 2015 10:50 am

The reason I'm complaining is that I think the guide overall is good and unique. If you really want to keep the class specific texts in then I suggest something like this for the priest quickie to improve accuracy:

Priests will be a tank healer, raid healer or a mix thereof depending on setup and encounter. You will often cast Prayer of Healing on your own group (on horde usually in ranged groups since shamans normally are assigned to melee grps and on alliance most often in melee groups due to more frequent aoe damage on such groups) and keep people from death by shielding when in danger (low health/dots etc).
Can spec into Power Infusion to boost casters or deep holy for more healing. Can also spec 20 points in shadow to provide Shadow Weaving (+15% shadow debuff) if your setup doesn't include a pure Shadow Priest.
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Re: Healing Guide (The base for a healing team)

by Kailas » Tue Dec 08, 2015 7:38 pm

No problem I am happy to correct any mistakes or add to the guide to make it better. Thanks for feedback
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