Blizzard changed healing with the latest expansion, Cataclysm. They wanted to make healing more challenging, so that healers could no longer get away with using only a couple of spells to heal (like Holy Paladin Holy Light spam). For players like me who used most or all of the healing spells in their arsenals, healing wasn’t supposed to change that much… but healing feels very different to me in Cataclysm.
My biggest complaint is that the different healing classes feel too similar now. They all have an inexpensive, quick, small heal; a more expensive, slow, greater heal; and a quick, expensive, large heal. I use HealBot and I have the same sorts of healing spells mapped to the same mouse/key combinations… and it feels like I could heal effectively on any of my healers without knowing which one I’m healing as. I really hope Blizzard is planning on making the healing classes feel more unique in Mists of Pandaria. I know that monks, at least, are supposed to have a pretty unique healing style that focuses on melee damage.
I do, however, like how Blizzard started encouraging healers to DPS (for example, adding the Atonement, Evangelism, & Archangel talents to the Disc Priest tree). I’m not sure yet if that’s really useful at level 85, but I had fun healing via Smite while I was leveling. 😉
Another change is that healers have to pay much more attention to their mana in Cataclysm. This is to prevent healers from spamming one or two expensive healing spells, though, so it makes sense. Maybe it changes after you get into raiding gear (I haven’t done any raid healing yet in Cataclysm), but in dungeons I find myself drinking a lot, which is more annoying than anything. I really wish water refilled mana faster. :-/
Perhaps I play differently than other healers (or maybe I just need to get better gear), but healing used to feel more creative and fun than it does now. I’m hoping things improve as my gear gets better. 🙂