The talk of damage and DPS and utility and such has filled my chats the last few days. In particular, this tidbit caught me from a friend that raids as both a mage and a DK:
thats the new trend with mages, no aoe, no raid contributions, just raw damage
We had been discussing the last OS25 +1 drake we had run the other day. I was undergeared looking at 3 of the 4 other mages in the group, I could see T7.5 sets and was overcome with much jealousy. Yea verily I did covet their gear for it is purple and shiny and better than mine. But I got over it.
Obsidian Sanctum can really be broken down into two parts – everything before Sarth and then Sarth.
Before Sarth, you kill the trash and the drakes not staying up for the Sarth fight. One type of trash casts a Curse of Mending that causes the cursed player to heal the mob with attacks instead of harming them. If your top DPS gets hit with this and it doesn’t get removed or they don’t stop attacking, it can make for some serious un-damage to overcome.
I get that as the lower-expected DPS member of the group, it makes perfect sense for me to take on the de-cursing. One of us has to sacrifice a GCD to remove the curse, the group loses less if the 2500 DPS mage does it instead of the 3500 mage. I’ve always felt that it should also not fall into the healer’s camp to remove curses; it’s only a few classes/specs that can do so, and again their GCDs are better spent keeping someone alive.
So in our OS 25, this is what it looked like for dispels after all the trash had been cleared. There was no discussion or instruction on de-cursing, we were left to our own devices on the trash.
The druids were doing their share. The other mage that was closer to me in gear is the one that came in at number 3 with 8 dispels. Priest and pally dispels were fire-related. Out of 38 curses, I took 42%.
Did my DPS suffer? Oh gods, yes! Sometimes the curse would land just at the end of a cast sequence… have to cut it short to de-curse them before they do more good than harm! (That really does make sense with this curse.) Sometimes 5-6 people would be cursed at the same time. Remove Curse either needs to be independent of the GCD or I need a gabillion more points in haste and a hax to eliminate the “GCD cannot be reduced past 1 second with haste” rule. Even if my GCD was a second, 6 remove curses would be 6 seconds or at least 1.5 of my nuke casts. Not to mention the cumulative affect of the people that haven’t been de-cursed that are merrily plugging away at the mobs.
I’m cool with this arrangement. I am providing utility to the raid. It makes me feel good, dammit! I also like to think my de-curses are high in comparison because I’m so situationally aware and quick to react… but then I remember who I am.
We get to Sarth, we’re leaving Tenebron up.
Engage Sarth. Fire Elementals start swarming, portal is up and whelplings are out, OT picks them all up.
Wait 2 seconds for the tank to secure threat, go go Blizzard! My Blizzard… and one other Blizzard… there are 5 mages. Raid Leader is calling for AoE on whelplings and elementals… shouldn’t there be 5 Blizzards? The sky should be darkened with the fury of our icy storms!
Newp. 3 mages sit on Sarth the whole time. One finally pops a pity Blizzard when the leader calls again, but only once. Remember that other lower-geared mage? He was the other reliable Blizzard.
I get that overall, they were probably able to contribute more damage to the raid individually, by focusing on Sarth. But because the adds weren’t brought down quickly, the tank could not keep all of the elementals out of the flame wall, a few became enraged, and guess which mage bit it?
That’s right, the mage that was following directions. I don’t blame the tank, he was absolutely swarmed, I couldn’t even see him after the whelplings hit – he was literally covered in adds, and he was busy peeling more off the healers.
Now, if the other 2 mages had cast 1 Blizzard each, with their better spellpower… it would have almost doubled the damage on the adds, the adds would have dropped in almost half the time, the healers wouldn’t have had to battle rez me and the other few that got snuffed by elementals, the healers would have had less pressure keeping the OT up, the OT could have gone back to chasing down the new elemental spawns before they latched on to the healers, myself and the other mage could get back to pounding on Tenebron and Sarth that much faster.
A sacrifice of 8 seconds (probably less since they were sporting some heavy haste) each from 2-3 players would have positively impacted half the raid and would not have put much of a dent in their impressive DPS. Sounds like a good trade off to me. Apparently not to them.
And so I dub these people DPS whores. They are the ones that play only to top meters, even at the expense of the functionality of the raid. They are the ones that should be playing pinball. Go flip your score and leave the rest of us out of it.
I like seeing big numbers as much as the next (non-DPS whore) player. I squeal when I get a particularly good crit. I positively beam sunshine when I top the meters.
However, if something needs to be de-cursed, I do it. Spellsteal? Sure! Counterspell that caster on the side? With pleasure! Sheep that archer in the back? You know I love it! (Especially if it’s something in shadow form, shadow sheep are adorable!) I joke about it in the guild, that every time I have to de-curse one of them it eats into my DPS, but I wouldn’t dream of leaving the curse there just so I could push my meters up.
Mages are a DPS class. We can’t heal, we shouldn’t tank, we deal damage. But we are more than just damage-dealing robots. We have utility and we should be proud of it. And FFS we should use it.
But at the end of the raid, does anyone post the dispel meters? The interrupts? The polymorphs? Nooooooo… what gets posted at the end is ThatMage kicks ass and you don’t. (OK, so there isn’t a polymorph meter on Recount. Doesn’t matter, no one would post it anyway.)
There needs to be a meter for following directions and not being a self-serving DPS whore.