Based on the points given definitely not shaman, I only have experience with shaman and druid.
Druid has not much buttons and a couple of instant heals, but i'd say to be honest the learning curve is harder for druids (although they are both pretty easy).
Instant heals? If you mean movement-castable, try priest. Whether holy or disc, up to chocie really. Disc has a ton of shields which are instant, even if mana heavy, as well as glyphed penance castable on movement. Prayer of Mending in both specs, and instant aoe heal for holy, as well as cascade, divine star or the expanding circle-thingy-which-name-i-forgot. Easiest learning curve imo.
I have every class at 90 and i can tell you that the healer classes do not have significant differences in difficulties.
Also successful healing in raids/pvp requires fast reflexes and accurate thinking, plus a vast knowledge of enemy pvp classes or boss fights.
That alone takes much longer to learn and adapt to compared to just mere "amount of keybindings" - so if your gf is not keen on spending enough time to learn keybindings, the entire concept/role of healing might not be for her.
Out of all the healing classes in the game i would have to suggest Priests - they have the most auto-targeting heals ("smart heals"), they are the least bit limited by how much the raid is spread/stacked for AoE healing, and they have 2 separate healing specs that allow you to adapt to any possible situation and personal preference.
On a personal note, consider that your gf might be "expressing interest" in WoW just because she wants to spend more time with you - and might be not at all truly interested in playing WoW.
cheers, thank you all for very insightful comments ( even for the bandage spec'd mage )
Aleksej89 - luckily we live together and spend virtually every moment together talking and doing stuff so nah; but I do know couples who struggle with the problem you mentioned so big ups for keeping an eye on that
Edited: I heal on all but a Palladian, so I can't give u any insight there.
Druids are no more complicated than the other healers, the shapeshifting is kinda of irrelevant these days (bar tree of life boost, which then isn't much different from the shaman elemental form thing)
I find I enjoy my shaman, monk and disc priest more than my druid sometimes, because when there's no major need to heal, I can either dos with smart heals anyway (monk and priest) or just spam msg without mana worries on the shammy.
But that's in heroics, scenarios and raids. It's been so long since I lvld a char, that I'm not sure if anything I say applies to levelling as a healer.
I guess the ultimate deciding factor is what suits het when she has a go, and she's only gunna find that out by having a go on all.
Nit sure I'd recommend lvlling via instance healing, if the complaints are anything to go by, it'll put her off for life
- - - Updated - - -
Originally Posted by Sarac
Are there honestly still guilds out there were healers get blamed more for wipes? Must be some really shitty guilds.
No, I was thinking more along the lines of pugs, people standing in shit for its whole duration, dps pulling, occasionally shit tanks, that kinda thing.
I'm just a social with my current guild
Honestly if she's new to MMOs and wants it to be "easier" at first i'd rec commend she just starts off as DPS, especially new healers get a lot of abuse and it can be tough to "learn your trade" especially when you're not used to MMO style play.
I'd like to play WoW very casually with my GF; me being some dps class and her the healer.
What healer class would you recommend for a girl who is completely new to WoW and mmorpgs in general?
I know that you'll probably say " let her choose the class she likes the most", which might in fact be the case, but apart from that? Ideally I'm looking for a healer that has:
* possibly the smallest amount of keybindings
* possibly a lot of instant heals ( the more the better)
* an almost horizontal learning curve
Based on that I can already say that it's not going to be a druid ( a lot of shapeshifting, different skills in different forms = hard to get a hang on for a newbie)
So what would you suggest? Thanks for any help
Druids have few buttons to work with, but tracking your hots is important, so it's a trade off. As far as the shapeshifting issue, for the healing that she's probably going to be doing she won't need to shapeshift, even the ToL CD is unnecessary for things like 5 mans, etc. But the healing is simple enough.
Shaman healing is mind numbing, but totems are cool.
My question though, is she ASKING to be a healer? Because if not, I would not ask her to if I were you. If she's on the fence about the game, (or if she's starting because you asked her to), then negative encounters with other players could cause her to shy away from the game very quickly, i.e. your first couple 5 mans telling her she's bad because she's getting used to the game.
If she IS saying that she WANTS to heal, then yeah, I'd probably suggest shaman to start.
And I just want to say this again, you need to let her do what she wants, how she wants and when she wants. Once she gets sucked into the game, it's another story... But if you're "convincing" your girlfriend to start playing and there is even the least bit of stress or demand on your part toward her about the game, then you're fucked as far as having a longterm player on your hands.
If she want to wander over that mountain to see what that tree is on the other side, you better damn well follow her and tell her that's a great idea. If she wants to run around killing critters or picking flowers, you better damn well be right there with her. Remember, as a first timer, this will ALL be new to her... She won't give a shit about gear, or ilvl, or leveling up (yet) or 5mans, or trade chat, or what spec is best or what raid is currently out...
So just make sure you understand this or you might lose her. I know from experience. I tried to get one of my exes playing once, she did fine until I tried to tell her what would be her "best" options for spec, zones to level, pets to have (hunter) etc, and the game lost its magic because I was too focused on preparing her to be a good player... She didn't want to be a good player, she just wanted to play. My girlfriend now, though, just started playing, and I'm just following her around with a character I started with her. It's slow as hell, but it's fun watching the game draw her in without me egging her on. I don't even have to ask her to play, she asks me if I want to.
I know this long rant doesn't really help specifically with the healing decision, but I just wanted to share gamer-to-gamer to make sure that you and your girl have a great time with the game and that it can be something you enjoy together without pushing her too hard or too fast.
Just remember, it's all brand new to her. When you started, the last thing you were probably worried about were stats or raiding or any of this other bullshit we "seasoned" WoWers get distracted with... You just wanted to see what that "zone in the distance" was. Let her have that magic, enjoy it with her, bring back some of your own nostalgia...
And yeah, I'm gonna stop now. Best of luck, I hope you guys have a great time
I would probably have her shy away from priest and pally.