Transitioning to 25 Man: Your Tips?

Nikalia on Plus Heal posted a question:

Do any of you have any tips/hints/tricks/advice on some things one might expect when transitioning into 25 man hard mode healing after being used to 10 man for so long?

As I’ve primarily been a 25 man healer for the longest time, it’s difficult for me to do a compare/contrast between 10 man hard mode healing and 25 man hard mode healing.

Healing Assignments

One of the replies made to the thread by Oleander is the importance of healing assignments. Vik and I (both priests) will usually tag a pair or groups in 25 man. For example, on Ultraxion, I’ll tell him I’ll target groups 4 and 5 and he generally takes 1 – 3. That doesn’t mean I won’t heal the other groups if needed, but even though I’m casting Holy Word: Sanctuary on the ground, I’ll be dropping Prayer of Healing bombs on the 4th and 5th groups meaning he can effectively “blank out” players in those groups from his target selection.

Egos

I don’t know how often one would encounter this in 10s, but there is a high chance that you may be working with player egos in 25.

Be prepared for it.

Don’t let other players get under your skin and don’t take it personally when you have the occasional bad day. Some players like to playfully use meters as a way to proclaim their own sense of superiority (namely Druids, because I find that they’re compensating for something ^^). That being said, feel free to go along with the banter a bit. But when push comes to shove, make sure you shove that ego aside and troubleshoot any healing problems you come across collectively.

Damage

The sheer amount of incoming damage can be staggering. Instead of 10 players, you’re responsible for 25. Know which players to prioritize (As in, oh that guy’s a Mage, he can Cauterize himself and is going to die in 8 seconds but that guy’s a Rogue, he’s probably going to die in 2 seconds so I better heal him). Your decision making needs to both get better and faster. But the bright side is more players means more cooldowns you can use to for raid saving purposes.

What other piece of advice would you offer a player making that change from 10 to 25 man?

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About Matticus

Matticus is the founder of World of Matticus and Plus Heal. Read more of his columns at WoW Insider. League of Legends player. Caffeine enthusiast.

Comments

  1. Generally I have always found 25man healing easier than 10man. Simply because there is much more smart heal going on at the same time that the heals will more often go where they are needed anyways.

    Now the transition from 10man normal to 25man heroic, not sure. That might be quite the step up, but my group will be starting heroic 10s this weekend so I’m not sure what the step is from normal to heroic.

    I think that organization in 25s will be a bit stricter generally speaking as well. You have to, more people, more opinions, so you cannot just run with ‘heal who needs healing’ the way we often do in 10s. (yes, even on new fights). So listening well to the healing lead will probably be quite important.

  2. I agree with Shy, I have always found 25 man healing easier than 10s (boring is the word I normally use). In 25s, you stick to your strict assignment, do what you’re told, and use your cooldowns when you’re asked to. One brilliant player can make less of a difference out of 25 people than they can out of 10.

    On group healing fights or if you’re a raid healer, I very much doubt that you’ll be expected to prioritise heals across all 25 people. You’ll likely be assigned to 1 or 2 groups, depending on how heavy the damage is. Prioritisation is much the same for both 10s and 25s – I am responsible for these people, who is likely to die first? Who might be covered by smart heals due to proximity? Who is really bad at using personal damage reduction cooldowns? Who has damage reduction baked into their spec or class? Who is higher priority to keep alive (throughput or utility)?

    We don’t run with “heal who needs healing” in 10s, but at the same time there’s a certain fluidity to assignments because you know when to help people out, and when you think they’ll help you out. In 10s, you’re often healing with the same person or people every week, whereas in 25s, you will have a larger healing team and you won’t know how they heal as well as you do a smaller group. 25s tend to have higher turnover as well (depends on the guild).

    Regarding egos – they are part of every raid team, and every group of people on the planet. You get just as many in 10s as you do 25s. I guess you have more chance of running in to one with a bigger group of people, but you normally get 1-2 in a 10 man group already 😉

  3. Like the posters above have said, I have found 25-man healing much easier than the 10-man version, and I feel like my contribution matters much less. If a healer dies on a progression fight, it doesn’t necessarily spell “wipe” like it does on 10-man. For me, switching from 10 to 25 was relaxing and frustrating at the same time. Relaxing, because I felt less pressure; frustrating, because I felt like I was not very important.

    One other big difference was assignments. Except for (sometimes) tank healing, in my 10-man it was free for all. In my 25-man we pretty much know what to do all the time, and the RL calls out cooldowns, battle resses and so on. It took a while for me to get used to that… but I can understand the need for stricter “control”. I rarely have group assignments (the only one I can remember is Yor’sajh heroic), but it might depend on class. I’m a druid so my heals aren’t group-targeted. Otherwise, my healing style hasn’t exactly changed – I keep LB on the tank and raid heal, just like in my 10-man.

    (I have to disagree with Matt on two points:
    1. Egos are just the same in any guild. Actually, I had a drama queen healer in my 10-man and 6 very relaxed healers in my 25-man.
    2. More people might take damage, but there are also more healers to heal it. In my experience, 10-mans were harder in terms of o-shit moments.)

    Bottom line: it’s not *such* a big change, so relax and just go for it!

    • “frustrating, because I felt like I was not very important.”

      Willing to elaborate on that a bit? Psychologically speaking, theres’ more healers but there;’s also more players that will rely on your coverage. Proportionally it would feel the same.

    • The bit about the amount of damage? It’s just anecdotal, but it just feels that way to me. With all the AoE heals going around, people taking damage are usually getting healed up pretty fast (or well, at least it feels fast to me, since my HoTs take a while to tick :P). In a 10-man it was either me or the other raid healer – what if she was too slow and I was too slow and someone died? Panic! In a 25 there’s at least 3 other healers who can see the dying rogue and toss a heal at him (and, also, 2 sets of AoE heals vs 4 sets of AoE heals). It’s the shared responsibility which makes it feel easier, I guess.

    • I also felt the “not as important” quality in 25-mans. Say you have one weak healer, who does half the healing you’d expect and is always slow on reaction mechanics like Frost Blast. In 10-man, that slack is either taken up by one or two other people, which means a big increase in their workload. In 25-man, that’s taken up by more like 5 extra people. In my experience, that means one weak healer is often hardly noticed in a 25-man. And if one weak healer is hardly noticed, that makes me feel less important.

    • On the other hand… Alysrazor heroic. That was the fight that made me so happy I was in a 25-man guild. I am bad at dodging the tornadoes so I’m pretty sure my 10-man would’ve hated me after a short while…

    • You and me both. *high five*

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