The other night I had my very first foray into heroic modes. Ever. Normal mode Dragon Soul has got increasingly boring over the last couple months and at many points I felt distinctly too powerful while downing the bosses. Heroic modes have changed all that and although I’m entering these rather late in the expansion, they provide me with a fun challenge that has me pushing healing to my limit. And here’s the very first of them – Morchok!
Heroic Morchok in a nutshell is pretty much whether you can 5-man him and his evil twin. At 90% health, Morchok splits into two and will be pulled to different sides by the tanks. At this point the raid will be split into two seperate groups and will down Morchok and his evil twin with much of the same mechanics of normal mode Morchok: the stomp, crystals, and staying out of black goo. Healing-wise, my perspective is as a Discipline priest solo-healing one side.
The name of the game in this fight is burst healing and timing it to line up with incoming spikey damage. As a healer, here’s our checklist:
– Heal through Stomp: Morchok’s Stomp hits for a significant amount of damage. The key thing here is to watch timers closely and be ready for it when it hits. Make sure the tank is topped off and throw out pre-emptive shields to help mitigate damage. I also squeeze in a Prayer of Healing before stomp hits just to have the Divine Aegis help with mitigation.
– Top off the soaker’s health before Stomp: In addition to hitting the tank fairly hard, stomp will also hit a second player closest to the tank for double damage. It is usually decided before-hand who this will be so make sure you top them off before stomp hits.
–Heal through Crystal soaking: The crystal is the other source of heavy damage. It’s imperative that people soaking it are topped off before it hits or they die. There is little time between the stomp and crystals however, so feel free to use quick heals and bubbles to get them back up. Binding Heal in combination with Shields and Penance, with a quick Prayer of Healing works well. In a pinch, it’s always a good idea to use Power Infusion on yourself to make those heals go quicker.
–Regen Mana during the Black Blood Phase: This is the only respite in the entire fight for mana and its a good time to pop Hymn of Hope or Potion of Concentration if you need it after using those fast and expensive heals. It’s also a good time to throw Renews up on folks and top them off. Shields are usually wasted since there is nothing here to be absorbed, so I prefer Renew or a direct heal during this time.
–Cooldown Management: This is a fairly quick fight requiring burst healing so it’s ideal not to hold back on cooldowns. I usually save Pain Suppression for the tank or the stomp-soaker if they get dangerously low. Power Infusion is a fantastic cooldown that can be used early to give yourself a head-start in healing and not have to play catch-up later. The Barrier is a little trickier – I found that using it to help with the crystal damage worked well for me since we were all guaranteed to be stacked up at that point. I would’ve loved to use it during stomp but we’re not really stacked then.
When I initially attempted this fight, I found that I was being way too conservative during the burst healing phase and it resulted in a few unfortunate deaths. This is very much a fight where you want to know your heal and regen phases well. During the heal phase, heal like no tomorrow and during the regen phase, pop a potion/cooldown if necessary or if you’ve been taking advantage of Rapture returns, simply put your feet up until the damage begins again! Happy healing! 🙂