Please upgrade your browser for the best possible experience.

Chrome Firefox Internet Explorer
×

Thinking about respeccing as healer, need advice

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Classes > Sage / Sorcerer
Thinking about respeccing as healer, need advice

Khevar's Avatar


Khevar
06.18.2012 , 11:47 AM | #1
I have a Commando and a Sage at 50.

I've tried in the past at a healer instead of a dps role and I stumble all over myself trying to make it work. But seeing as how my guild needs healers more than dps, I figure I'll leave the Commando as dps and give the Seer tree another whirl.

Part of the problem I have is that my companion's dps is pretty terrible compared to my sage's dps, and so trying to do dailies while "practicing" has been a chore. I've read a few of the threads about rotation priorities and things to watch out for, but since I spend the last 50 levels doing dps it is very very hard to wrap my wits around what to do when.

Note that I don't pvp -- the idea here is that I can either bring Commando dps or Sage heals to a HM or Ops depending on what is needed.

Here is a few questions I hope someone can help me with.

1. I've had troubles using both a tank companion (Qyzen) and a dps companion (Nadia). I figure the best thing to do is stick with one and focus on gearing them up. What experiences have other had doing dailies as a healer? Which do you prefer and why?

2. I'm hurting for interrupts without instant force lift -- only have mind-snap and force stun (too far away for force wave). Are there any others I'm overlooking? Or is this not really important.

3. The complete shift in thinking from dps to heals leaves me stumbling over the someone complex rotations I've read about. Can someone recommended a starting idiot simple rotation just to get a handle on it, which I can then add to as I gain confidence? (This is coming from someone who likes the 1/12/28 idiot simple dps rotation).

4. How much damage dealing should I work into a rotation? Or leave it completely alone?

Thanks in advance, I really would like to make this work.

SeppukuA's Avatar


SeppukuA
06.18.2012 , 12:35 PM | #2
Quote:
1. I've had troubles using both a tank companion (Qyzen) and a dps companion (Nadia). I figure the best thing to do is stick with one and focus on gearing them up. What experiences have other had doing dailies as a healer? Which do you prefer and why?
I've got Qyzen and Nadia geared. Qyzen is recruit gear and Nadia is a mix of recruit and battle master. I can go through Ilum dailies fine with both of them, it's slower than when doing them as a DPS. Qyzen is obviously useful because he keeps threat and dies less quickly and you can combine DPS and healing. If you're wanting to practice healing, I think Qyzen gives more room to breathe. Nadia will kill quicker than Qyzen and whilst she doesn't match my DPS spec, she's got good DPS for a companion. In general I tend to use Nadia more just because she gets through mobs quicker and I can keep us healed.

Also, if you're looking to practice, try going into PvP as a healer, it doesn't matter if you're not scoring high for healers to begin with (you've got to start somewhere), other players will make it challenging, as a Sage you're not very mobile and you'll have to learn to compensate in PvP and PvE. Also, watching Sages on YouTube might help as you'll see what people do in practice.

Quote:
2. I'm hurting for interrupts without instant force lift -- only have mind-snap and force stun (too far away for force wave). Are there any others I'm overlooking? Or is this not really important.
Force Quake can knock people off of their feet too - I sometimes go straight in with it if there's a group. But I've only ever focused on interrupts where it matters most - on the most damaging attacks. Instead of an interrupt you can put force armour up to give you or an ally some extra resistance whilst you're casting your heals.

Quote:
3. The complete shift in thinking from dps to heals leaves me stumbling over the someone complex rotations I've read about. Can someone recommended a starting idiot simple rotation just to get a handle on it, which I can then add to as I gain confidence? (This is coming from someone who likes the 1/12/28 idiot simple dps rotation).
I don't think the rotations have to be complicated.

I tend to Force Armour -> Rejuvenate -> Healing Trance

If on cool down:
I throw in Deliverance if they're not losing health too quickly.

I spam Benevolence if somebody is losing health quickly (and add Force armour), but it can be costly in terms of Force, which is where Noble Sacrifice helps (and using Rejuvenate on yourself), but I tend to try and avoid spamming Benevolence.

With a group, using Salvation (your AoE heal) can be very useful, it can save you spending force and keeps people alive. Useful in HM bosses. If your group keeps tights, you can keep them safe and helps that little bit more to keep some of your DPS guys alive and you can focus on healing those most at risk (like tanks or anybody who has got hate).


Additional Notes:
I think gear is pretty important, which I think kinda goes without saying, but I think it's easier to get away with a DPS who's still building their gear than a healer, it may be even harder if you're still unfamiliar. When I hit 50 I went straight into a hard mode EV with my guild, it was challenging and we kinda went Normal mode to build my gear up a bit better instead (as we got wiped by the first boss), though I have beaten that boss on HM, but I've decided to go DPS whilst my gear builds to something more acceptable. I don't know what your gear is like, you may already have got enough to not worry about this.

Force Armour I think is pretty important, if there's a sudden, "oh sh-! They're gonna die!" moment, Force Armour comes first, then Trance or Benevolence (quick cast time).

At least this is coming from my play style. Others may have different suggestions, or heck more efficient suggestions. I've been level 50 for just over a week, so I can't claim to be an expert, but just relate what I've found works.
The Liljasson Legacy
Wayward Star & We're Not Republic Spies (Correlia Run)
Saefinn - 50 Jedi Sage Healer. Asathor - 24 Gunslinger
Muspel - 44 Sith Juggernaut Tank. Apsu - 18 Mercenary Healer

Khevar's Avatar


Khevar
06.18.2012 , 01:28 PM | #3
Thanks very much for this.

When doing HM with a team, do you find yourself with downtime that would be filled by extra dps? Or would that be a waste of resources that should be saved for the "Oh ___" heal that might be need right around the corner? Or are things generally so busy with heals needed that there really isn't time for extra dps anyway?

Marrkin's Avatar


Marrkin
06.18.2012 , 02:46 PM | #4
Greetings,

Lvl 50 Sage Ops healer here,

With regards to your companions, pick one Tank (recommending Qyzen) and one DPS (Nadia) and gear them. I have both of mine in mostly Tionese/Columi armors and they are both beasts. Most of the time, I use Nadia simply because with her things die fast enough that I don't need to have a tank present. If I know I'm going to be doing some harder pulls, then I will use Qyzen and heal him like I would anyone else.

Other than that, healing really isn't all that tricky once you learn your own preferred rotations. There are plenty of threads here that you can extract some ideas from. I know for me personally I have different rotations for different reasons. However, I basically always always start with Force Armor > Rejuvination and then select what to throw from there. There are advantages to casting certain things in certain orders. Do you want a short duration armor increase? Do you want to spend less force on a big heal? Do you need something virtually instant? etc, etc, etc...

Tailor your casting to how you gauge the fight. Just remember, do not overheal!. Admittedly, there are times I also will choose to let a DPS die to ensure I can cast to keep a tank or the other healer alive.

Regarding DPS, if you have the force and the time between heals, Feel free! In this case it is all about how you manage your force usage, force regen, and Noble Sacrifice's. My sage is specced so that I must cast Disturbance for a small amount of Force regen speed. Between that, and correctly using Salvation and rejuvination, Force is not a terribly scarce commodity. It's not infinite either, but manageable to say the least. Unless you have squishy tanks, then theres a good chance that you are just gonna burn it up anyway. Just do not sacrifice any more Force thannecessary if you want to dps some. I will usualy limit it to 3 casts of Disturbance, Weaken Mind, and Mind Crush. Every once in a while I'll shoot some pebbles if needing to really burn something down on a hard DPS push.

Alot of places state that playing a Sage is mostly about Force management, and I have to agree. It's really a somewhat unforgiving class, as making certain mistakes can cost the lives of your entire group or raid.

Khevar's Avatar


Khevar
06.18.2012 , 03:13 PM | #5
Thanks.

To get the 2 points in concentration (for the disturbance regen), do you run something like a 31/9/1 spec?

http://www.torhead.com/skill-calc#60...0dGzZf0bMZ0z.1

Cleet_Xia's Avatar


Cleet_Xia
06.18.2012 , 05:44 PM | #6
Quote: Originally Posted by JeffKretz View Post
1. I've had troubles using both a tank companion (Qyzen) and a dps companion (Nadia). I figure the best thing to do is stick with one and focus on gearing them up. What experiences have other had doing dailies as a healer? Which do you prefer and why?
As a fresh 50 31/x/x seer healer - Q is your best bet. Nadia speeds things up a bit, but is riskier. You really need Q's damage mitigation for soloing the Heroics. In his DPS stance Q isn't too far behind Nadia. The good news, as you replace your own gear, Nadia can use your old stuff. So she'll get geared by default. Put Q in full orange gear with 50 mods from Corelia comm vender, orange weapon from Belsavis heroics, armorings & barrel from the daily comm vender, & enhancements from the Ilum heroic daily. At that point you should be able to solo the Ilum daily heroic. If you get tired of Q- you can just put his gear on Iresso with a gun from the Belsavis heroics. Once you can solo the H2+ on Ilum, you're ready for HM FPs. I run all the solo missions on Ilum & Belsavis with Nadia. I do the BH dailies & solo all H2+ with Q. If grouped with a player tank for the BH H4+ I use Nadia, and I use Q if grouped with a player dps.

Quote: Originally Posted by JeffKretz View Post
2. I'm hurting for interrupts without instant force lift -- only have mind-snap and force stun (too far away for force wave). Are there any others I'm overlooking? Or is this not really important.
Project & force quake will interrupt on weaker mobs. Mobs that heal will outheal Q's dps- so you need to interrupt those heals. But you can flat outheal any of the dps from single elites. You need your interrupts on AoE from Champs & multiple elites to solo the H2+ missions.

I look at interrupts as really cheap big heals, that have to be landed at the right time - for them to be cheap & big. You don't want to interrupt too early, a casting mob isn't doing any damage. Cleanse follows the similar rules- because many casts you might interrupt can also be cleansed just as easily after they are cast ~ a partial interrupt. But you don't want to clease too late. If I've missed that timing window for them - I just missed them.

If your specced for cheaper & bigger Force Armor- use it to absorb the damage from strongs & elites for those casts that will do less than 4000 damage, & save your real interrupts for bigger things.

Quote: Originally Posted by JeffKretz View Post
3. The complete shift in thinking from dps to heals leaves me stumbling over the someone complex rotations I've read about. Can someone recommended a starting idiot simple rotation just to get a handle on it, which I can then add to as I gain confidence? (This is coming from someone who likes the 1/12/28 idiot simple dps rotation).
It's not as big a shift as you might think. It's still mostly a game of managing CD's / buffs/ debuffs. While you try not to waste any little piece of a Global CD by waiting for something to come off CD, or having to idle while you're out of resource. You've still got to plan ahead with your casts- or you're not maximizing your throughput. The biggest difference between DPS & heals is how often you need to change targets. And the need to plan out your casts ahead of time, so you can make those target changes very quickly.

This is about as close to a rotation as you can get with seer healing.
long or channelled >Force Armor on tank>instant> long or channeled

Disturbance>Force Armor on tank>Rejuvenate>Deliverance
IF FA is on debuff - skip it
IF you don't need to heal cast Disturbance

That will get you through all of the solo dailies.

Got that down? - This is the next step
IF you need to heal your tank
- always cast Rejuvenate for the converyance proc before casting a larger heal

IF you both need healing -
-replace Deliverance with Salvation, but Keep Rejuvenate on your companion for the Shelter buff. Dont cast salvation if you just cast FA before Rejuvenate - or you'll probably lose your 3 concentration stacks here, by placing the AoE target. The FA will carry Q until after your next Disturbance cast if he has more than 25% of his health remaining.

IF you & Q both have 75% of your health -
- replace Rejuvenate with any other instant cast (Interrupt, stun, cleanse, project, weaken mind, saber)
- replace Deliverance with Mind crush, TK throw, knock back, or 2 instants if you skipped FA
- replace both with a single cast of Force Quake
- mix it up how ever you like, the order doesn't matter, but don't miss your next disturbance cast

With 2 points in concentration on the Tele tree - you can do this for almost 3 minutes, if you hit the Disturbance cast on time. Change targets DURING your long casts if you can, so that there is no delay between the end of the long cast and your next cast. Use your mobility during instants to position yourself to [TAB] target the correct mob after an instant, and to avoid AoE damage.

Keep your timing tight- and you'll have 3 stacks of concentration all the time, a conveyance proc available before every expensive heal, Force Armor always on debuff, a Force Shelter buff on your tank whenever you really need it, & never jam up waiting on any CD.

When you start going OOF - stop all dps casting & start building stacks of debuff from Noble sac while using rejuv>salvation to keep everyone healthy, & keeping the tank's FA on debuff. Once you're back above 75% force, let the stack of noble sac debuff fall off, chain cast 3 Disturbance to get your concentration stacks back, & resume your rotation.

Replace Deliverance with Healing Trance anytime you're having problems with being interrupted by fight mechanics, or if you're treading water healing your tank until FA becomes available. Just make sure you try and land it for the full effect, or it will wreck your resource efficiency.

Seriously, Never cast Benevolence on anyone but yourself or your tank, and not if FA is available. Use a medpack or FA on yourself first. The ability ought to have a horribly long CD. It's barely faster than Rejuvenate>Healing Trance. Never cast Benevolence if you already have conveyance up ~ cast Healing Trance instead.

If you have to reapply a lift during a long combat- Disturbance>Lift>instant>Disturbance. Watch the CD- it lifts for 60 seconds & has a 60 second CD. You have all day to plan for the need to reapply the lift, because you always know exactly when it's going to end.

Quote: Originally Posted by JeffKretz View Post
4. How much damage dealing should I work into a rotation? Or leave it completely alone?
My answer is to dps as much as you can, but not at the expense of players. So if your in a HM- keep those bars up to at least 75% Otherwise- not dpsing- is just wasting game time. You can solo some lvl 50 champ mobs with Qyzen, casting nothing but FA & Rejuvenate on CD. But why would you want to? Don't believe me? - try out Naarud Nyydo in the southern H2+ on Belsavis ~ Q will never drop below 85% health & you'll never drop below 90% of your force. ~ only takes about 7 minutes.

This is the spec I'm using atm.
http://www.torhead.com/skill-calc#600GGMRMdbdGzZf0dM.1
~Master Telagtun Telag of Lord Calypho~

SeppukuA's Avatar


SeppukuA
06.18.2012 , 06:03 PM | #7
Quote: Originally Posted by JeffKretz View Post
Thanks very much for this.

When doing HM with a team, do you find yourself with downtime that would be filled by extra dps? Or would that be a waste of resources that should be saved for the "Oh ___" heal that might be need right around the corner? Or are things generally so busy with heals needed that there really isn't time for extra dps anyway?
On the HM I did do as a healer (I do them as DPS at the moment). I was kept pretty busy and I didn't try to DPS it, that could partly be down to my gear. On NM, I did do some DPS on Soa next to my healing, especially on the last stage, but people stayed alive enough and we kinda needed him to go down before he berserks. Generally I think it's better to keep focused on heals, but if you think you can land extra damage in a fight, I say, "why not?" I generally did it when levelling and have done it on hybrid classes on other MMOs. I think if you're trying to get the hang of healing, I think it's a good idea to play it safe and find where you're comfortable, which I am still kinda doing myself - hence I'm in DPS mode at the moment (our guild has enough healers for me to get away with it).
The Liljasson Legacy
Wayward Star & We're Not Republic Spies (Correlia Run)
Saefinn - 50 Jedi Sage Healer. Asathor - 24 Gunslinger
Muspel - 44 Sith Juggernaut Tank. Apsu - 18 Mercenary Healer

Khevar's Avatar


Khevar
06.18.2012 , 06:57 PM | #8
Thanks very much for your comprehensive post.

This caught my eye and I found very interesting
Quote: Originally Posted by Cleet_Xia View Post
... Once you can solo the H2+ on Ilum, you're ready for HM FPs ...
Currently, I find Darkness on Ilum difficult even with 2 players+companions, so there is a definite room for improvement. This seems like a good goalpost for me, and I'm sure I'll have better contributions to a HM/Ops once I can actually pull this off.

I noticed your build has Confound instead of Valiance. I don't currently have it due to the 20% slow not being effective on many bosses. I can see its usefulness on elites and below however. Do you try to keep Weaken Mind up all the time, or just when there's downtime in the rotation?

Cleet_Xia's Avatar


Cleet_Xia
06.19.2012 , 06:23 AM | #9
Quote: Originally Posted by JeffKretz View Post
Thanks very much for your comprehensive post.
I noticed your build has Confound instead of Valiance. I don't currently have it due to the 20% slow not being effective on many bosses. I can see its usefulness on elites and below however. Do you try to keep Weaken Mind up all the time, or just when there's downtime in the rotation?
Confound is almost worthless in PvE ~ but it can help you kite in PvP. If I stop PvPing altogether, I'll drop confound. I cast weaken mind as sort of a minimum dps. It's super cheap & easy to fit in somewhere. It's not necessary to let the last 5%fall completely off, or to keep it up all the time. But over the course of a 3 minute fight it adds up to a nice chunk of dps.

I don't actually stick to a solid rotation of abilities. But I drift back to long>instant>instant>long, because it works out better for target swapping than long>instant>long>instant. IF you don't need to be mobile, you might chain cast Disturbance, or burn down weak mobs with Force Quake. In an emergency you'll drop your dps and resort to Rejuvenate>Deliverance>Healing Trance.

The most important things are to keep your FA on debuff, keep force shelter up on your tank, and try not to cast a big heal without conveyance. Those 3 things alone go a very long way. It doesn't hurt at all to cast Rejuvenate on a tank with 90% health just for Force Shelter. The conveyance proc lasts longer than the CD, so you don't ever have to worry about not being able to take advantage of it.

Strictly speaking for PvE, and the style of play that I described- this build is actually better.
http://www.torhead.com/skill-calc#600RGrRrd0dGzZf0dM.1
It noticably reduces the downtime while rebuilding force with Noble Sac/Salvation. But I've been experimenting lately, and trying to learn how to reduce my use of both Noble Sac and Salvation, without going idle.
~Master Telagtun Telag of Lord Calypho~

Marrkin's Avatar


Marrkin
06.19.2012 , 09:33 AM | #10
So I thought I'd share as well. I was a bit vague in my post above, and I can pretty much agree with all I have read from others here. I typed this up a while back, and its still mostly valid. As always though, anything is situational:

And yes my spec is here: Marrkin's Heal Spec

This spec, post 1.2 update, is built in a way which basically requires you to do nuke damage to obtain additional Force generation. It also maximizes the ability to regain health during those times you may need to use Noble Sacrifice. This is due to the fact that with 1.2 they removed the skill that allowed you to obtain a "free" noble sacrifice, which seems to have been a large topic of gripe in various places. I have actually found now that I am better able to manage my Force pool since BW made these changes. Apparently from the reading I have done, many of the Sage/Sorc class healers had gotten used to healing with a cerain spec that allowed you to "double dip" proc'd effects for better force management. Fortunately in my case, I never made myself aware of this and was not exactly affected by the newest changes.

I do have a cast order for heals, which I generally only use during Boss Frenzy's, and also on initial pulls. Other than that, spot healing is more or less all that is needed to keep folks alive. Watch the health bars, select the best suited heal to use, and pop it off.

Any of the numbers I use are not taking any characters crit chance/+power/cubes/+skills into consideration. These are just raw numbers.

Cast order is :
1. Force Armor
2. Rejuvinate (which will proc Conveyance AND Force Shelter granting 10% increased armor rating of the target)
- 2.(Optional) Disturbance - starting your first wave of Concentration (then throw in a Disturbance anywhere in the rotation below if possible)
3. Benevolence (affected by the Conveyance for an 60% chance crit heal, usually ~2.6k)
- 3.(Optional) Deliverance (of course our largest single target heal, when affected with Conveyance has a 30% reduction in Force needed for the cast)
4. Healing Trance
5. Rejuvinate again
6. Deliverance (if needed)/ Or / Force Armor refresh
....and basically rinse and repeat from there.

After casting any Rejuvinate outside of the cast order, judge what is needed next. With the Conveyance proc, you also have the choice of:
1. Healing Trance with a crit chance of 25% (which I believe either affects only the first tick, or its a 25% chance per tick)
2. Salvation with a 30% reduction in Force needed to cast (taking it down to approx 60pts instead of the natural 91) <---- Cool thing about this is that it makes this 3400+hp HoT cost only 10-ish Force more than Deliverance, which is 51 Force for a 2.8k (natural max) heal.

Its best to gauge the necessity of using either Benevolence or Deliverance depending on how big a heal is needed, and on what you may have your cast time down to. With the 1.2 changes, the natural cast time of Deliverance was increased to 2.5 seconds. This was a .5 second increase, which can mean all the difference between a hurt tank and a dead tank. This increase was also one of the biggest gripes in the healing community, but mostly for PvP purposes. Currently, I have a reduction to 2.19 seconds, which is manageable overall with attention and timing. Amazing what a fraction of a second can determine!

Now, as far as the Force regen goes, I will usually finish one healing rotation then cast off a quick 3 rounds of Disturbance, depending of course if I happened to fit it into whatever rotation I started the fight with. The purpose for this is to acquire 3 stacks of Concentration, which grants you a 10 percent increase of Force regen per stack for 10 seconds. This may not seem like a lot of time, but to me it makes all the difference in the world. *EDIT* : I ran a little test and found that the 3 rounds of Disturbance does NOT grant 10% Force regen per stack. Turns out that basically you may time it so that the regen takes place over a period of nearly 30 seconds if you watch the Concentration effect icon, and simply recast it as it gets low each time. Once you hit 3 stacks you must let that 3rd stack dissipate, and then you may start the cycle over again.
<--- I could be wrong on this, but I am basing my numbers purely on what appears in my character sheet after casting this.
Keep in mind, this is not an easy answer to power, as Concentration will only net you an overall ~2% increase over your natural Force Regen.


Along with this you have your Noble Sacrifice, which is generally best used when you are in the upper 50% of your force pool and you can spare either a Salvation AE heal or a Rejuvinate for yourself (or both depending on proximity to other damaged folks). Take a look at this rotation:

1. Rejuvinate (gaining Conveyance)
2. Noble Sacrifice (Gaining back X Force a the cost of X Health/X Force- partially healed back by the Rejuvinate HoT)
3. Salvation (AE HoT @ 30% reduced force cost)
4. Noble Sacrifice (mostly healed back by the Salvation HoT)
5. Healing Trance (gaining 100% chance for Replendence)
6. Noble Sacrifice (with 0% force cost from the Resplendence - still has health cost)
7. Rejuvinate.....back to healing rotation.....

Note: these rotations are naturally situational, and are typed out in an ideal situation. I fully do not expect any Sage healers to have that many "ideal situations"!!
Shattner: 55 VG Tank Marrkin: 55 Sage Heals
Simmett: 55 Sentinel Hungwei'lo: 55 Sharpshooter
Guild: The Church of Alvis - Jedi Covenant Server