Not Pushing the Button

I’m a heal­er. I have oth­er toons: a raid-ready tank that I love to play, a cou­ple of decent dps toons. But in my heart, I love being a healer.

I’ve recent­ly real­ized that peo­ple who are annoy­ing tend to die more often in raids where I’m healing.

For exam­ple, my guild’s cur­rent off­tank is as annoy­ing as hell. He’s the liv­ing exam­ple of the Dun­ning-Kruger effect… I could go into great depth, and I very well might in a future piece, but suf­fice to say that there is often an under­cur­rent of pri­vate tells derid­ing him dur­ing every raid he par­tic­i­pates in. How­ev­er, our guild is like a fam­i­ly, and he’s the weird cousin who makes it to every cook­out. His avail­abil­i­ty is decent, he’s not com­plete­ly ter­ri­ble at his class/role, and he tries to be friend­ly even if he lacks the social skills to pull it off. But there are all-too-fre­quent occa­sions where I wish I had a but­ton I could push that gives him an anony­mous elec­tri­cal jolt in his real-life chair.

Actu­al­ly, as it turns out, there’s a lit­tle but­ton that I don’t push that does the same thing. It’s actu­al­ly a series of but­tons, each of them bound to heal­ing spells. He dies more than average.

I only real­ized this pat­tern of behav­ior a cou­ple of weeks ago when, over guild chat, this fel­low was instruct­ing new raiders to make sure they do their dailies every day in case of high repair bills, and also how elixirs are a waste of time–just get flasks, even for farm con­tent. I was ready to type out a reply say­ing that we only die often enough to mat­ter in pro­gres­sion runs, then thought… hmm. He does die pret­ty often, but the new raiders won’t. And I some­how know this ahead of time.

It’s fun­ny how you can sud­den­ly real­ize that your behav­ior is com­plete­ly counter what you thought your goal was.

I don’t seek out the oppor­tu­ni­ty to let him die, and I don’t try to man­u­fac­ture events where it will be pos­si­ble. Because he’s an off­tank, there are many events where we sim­ply don’t need his off­tank­ing. In the remain­ing events, you only need off­tanks up to a cer­tain point. Out­side of that? Oppor­tu­ni­ties. And I occa­sion­al­ly partake.

It’s not just me. I mean, we often have two or three heal­ers on our 10-man runs, so some­one could bail him out. But it just does­n’t hap­pen. Consistently.

This behav­ior isn’t lim­it­ed to just this per­son, or just raids. In one of my ear­ly Mag­is­ter’s Ter­race runs, I ran with an annoy­ing shad­ow priest who told us all how inef­fec­tive all heal­ers are with­out a shad­ow priest in their group. He died a few addi­tion­al times. Not a word was spo­ken. The oth­er three mem­bers of the group knew exact­ly what was happening.

The same thing hap­pens when a dps class pulls too much aggro or breaks crowd con­trol too often. In the past, I’ve advo­cat­ed let­ting those peo­ple die, because they’re hurt­ing the group/raid from a tac­ti­cal sense and need feed­back. How­ev­er, I guess that via my exam­ple I extend that behav­ior for oth­er rea­sons too. I know that my heal­er friends all do the same thing, even though we rarely speak about it.

Is this counter to the group’s goal? Sad­ly, yes. We want smooth and speedy progress. Is this counter to my goal? No. My goal is to have fun. Is this part of why I love being a heal­er? I’d like to say “No!” but I strong­ly sus­pect that the answer is “Yes.”

I’m not proud, but I am smiling.

More Words!

One thought on “Not Pushing the Button”

  1. I don’t mind dying every now and then to get taught a les­son… the big ques­tion is: Is the les­son known?

    I don’t blame you, hell I have done the same on heal­ing toons… but some­how you need to get the mes­sage across that the heals go to the deserv­ing and… umm­mm… you don’t deserve them ;-)

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