Guides See All →
[Resto] Mists of Pandaria 5.4
This is a compendium of information on raiding as a Resto Druid. It summarizes well-known points of Resto play, and serves as a starting point for discussion of healing in Mists of Pandaria. While there's a lot of room for discussion, people should be generally familiar with the contents of this post before replying on this thread.
The new talents are such that the intention is for one not to be exceedingly better than the other, which leaves you many options. You should explore the talents and find those that suit both your play style and the dynamics of each encounter. With the ease of respeccing, you may find that certain talents are more advantageous for different encounters. As such, you may want to consider using the new flexibility to respec based on the demands of each encounter.
- Recommended - This talent will be very useful to nearly all Restoration Druids, but there are some instances in which you may want to skip it in favor of a different talent in the tree.
- Situational - This talent will be useful in some situations depending the style of the fight.
- Skip - There are very few circumstances in which this talent is worth considering in PvE content, but should not be overlooked if there are boss mechanics in which it could be useful.
Here's a typical spec that can get you started in the right direction:
Tier Talent Recommendation Comments 15 Feline Swiftness Recommended The static movement speed increase will be beneficial in almost all situations and is always valuable. 15 Displacer Beast Situational While not as continuously beneficial as Feline Swftness, this instant movement ability will port you 20 yards. Moderately long cooldown. 15 Wild Charge Situational While not a poor choice, it will not be as continuously beneficial as Feline Swiftness. However, do not discount the usefulness in encounters where a quick, instant movement might be of benefit. 30 Ysera's Gift Recommended Every 5 sec, heals you for 5% of your maximum health. If you are at full health, the most injured nearby ally will be healed instead. 30 Renewal Skip Of the three talents in the tier, this is the weakest option for PvE. The direct heal isn't insignificant and is off the GCD - but as resto you have other, stronger tools for self healing. 30 Cenarion Ward Recommended The weakness in this ability is that it offers another heal over time ability, that you cannot direct, and has a lot of potential for overheal and wasted healing. 45 Faerie Swarm Situational Provides the option to stack weakened armor and snare for 15 seconds. 45 Mass Entanglement Situational A crowd control ability that is essentially entangling roots on crack. Gives the ability to root up to four additional targets near the initial target. 45 Typhoon Situational A crowd control ability that allows a knockback of all targets within 30 yards and dazes them for 6 seconds. Can also be used to torment tanks and troll melee. 60 Soul of the Forest Recommended Gain 100% haste after using Swiftmend. Can be very powerful when combined with Wild Growth for extra burst AE healing during heavy raid damage or to refresh Lifebloom or Rejuv during periods of heavy tank damage. This choice can be strong in encounters with consistent raid damage. 60 Incarnation Recommended Permits you to shift into Tree of Life. Gives 15% increased healing as well as the ability to enhance Lifebloom, Wild Growth and Regrowth. In addition to the healing boost, it is very powerful as a mana saving resource due to the relative low cost of Lifebloom and the extra clearcasting procs resulting from multiple Lifeblooms being active. 60 Force of Nature Situational Summons a treant to help you heal. Upon summoning the treant will cast Swiftmend on your target. Despite the changes to improve this talent, it remains the weakest of the three abilities in this tier and its use remains situational. 75 Disorienting Roar Situational Crowd Control ability that lets you fear all enemies within three yards for a short duration, but you must be in melee range of your target to activate this ability. 75 Ursol's Vortex Situational Crowd Control ability that snares enemies and ports them back to the center of the vortex upon attempting to leave the vortex. Can be used at range. 75 Mighty Bash Situational Crowd Control ability that stuns one target for five seconds, but you must be in melee range of your target to activate this ability. 90 Heart of the Wild Situational Offers a static 6% increase to intellect and also offers the ability to enhance specific abilities outside of the resto specialization for 30 seconds. While the "enhanced" portion of the ability is situational, the Intellect increase is quite strong. This ability will also increase healing by 25% while active. Note: This is a very strong option for Challenge Modes, where the enchanced portion of the ability is quite strong as a means to add extra DPS during periods of low damage. 90 Dream of Cenarius Situational The least attractive ability in this tier, Dream of Cenarius will cause wrath to do 20% more damage, and will heal nearby allies for 100% of the damage done. The weakness in this ability is the high cost of Wrath and the interaction with the healing portion not being a good trade off comparatively. 90 Nature's Vigil Recommended Increases all damage and healing done by 12% for 30 seconds. and causes single-target healing spells to trigger an additional heal on a nearby ally for 25% of the amount healed. It also permits your healing spells to do damage to nearby enemies for 25% of the healing done. This is a strong option due to the increased healing provided, which offers us an additional cooldown during high damage times.
Talent Calculator - World of Warcraft
There are few adjustments you might consider making:
- Incarnation:Tree of Life: You may find that you prefer the play style and performance that ToL offers, and may want to consider it as an alternative to Soul of the Forest.
- Heart of the Wild: You may find that you prefer the static 6% intellect boost and 25% healing cooldown to having the increased healing cooldown offered by Nature's Vigil.
A few additional facts for the people who are interested:
- Omen of Clarity: Clearcasting can only be procced by Lifebloom (via the Malfurion's Gift ability that is part of the baseline resto abilities). Among healing spells, Clearcasting is only consumed by Healing Touch and Regrowth. A proc lasts 15 seconds.
- Efflorescence is now combined with Swiftmend and will show as Efflorescence in your logs. The individual ticks can now also crit.
- You can now glyph Efflorescence to decouple it from Swiftmend.
- Wild Growth: The base heal decays with each tick, but all extra healing from spellpower is equal across the ticks.
- Mark of the Wild: Now only provides Strength, Agility and Intellect.
- Heart of the Wild is calculated utilizing your total intellect as opposed to base intellect.
Use [Glyph of Efflorescence], [Glyph of Wild Growth]*, [Glyph of Regrowth]. If you do not want to lose the HoT from utilizing [Glyph of Regrowth], consider utilizing [Glyph of Healing Touch]. It should also be noted that [Glyph of Rebirth] is now an optional glyph, as Rebirth restores a player to 60% of their health.
It should be noted that [Glyph of Efflorescence] will be very strong, and will also permit decoupling swiftmend from efflorescence.
You may also want to consider [Glyph of Stampeding Roar] for its situational usefulness on certain encounters.
*When working on Challenge Modes, you will want to opt for [Glyph of Stampeding Roar] or [Glyph of Rebirth] in place of [Glyph of Wild Growth]
Minor Glyphs are all now largely cosmetic or “fun” options, and you should feel free to choose whichever glyphs you like best. I might recommend [Glyph of the Stag], [Glyph of the Orca] and [Glyph of Charm Woodland Creature] if you are looking for some fun new forms or toys to play with. Alternatively, for those who languished in caster form, you may want to utilize [Glyph of the Treant] to get back to your roots(pun intended!). You may want to play around with [Glyph of One with Nature] for what is essentially a Wormhole Generator: Druid!
Lastly, for those who prefer to keep the targeting reticule for mushrooms, rather than planting them underneath someone, you can opt to select [Glyph of the Sprouting Mushroom]
Horde: Troll is best, since it gives Berserking. Tauren gives no healing benefit.
Alliance: Worgen is best, since it gives 1% crit (Darkflight is also a nice perk). Night Elf gives no healing benefit.
In both cases, the difference is very minor.
Please see the post below for a list of Pre-Raid gear.
Resoration Druids receive a passive bonus, via Leather Specialization, that increases intellect by 5% provided that all applicable item slots are filled with leather gear. This is a very easy bonus to obtain and the bonus far outweighs any benefit that you may receive by wearing non-leather items. To take advantage of this bonus, you should always opt to wear leather items.
In roughly descending order of importance.
Intellect provides 1 spellpower and 0.00039% to crit per point.
Several abilities and bonuses may interact with Intellect to provide an increased value for each point of Intellect that you have. There are three main abilities that will have this effect: Leather Specialization (5%), Heart of the Wild (6%) and Mark of the Wild (5%). As such, assuming use of Leather Specialization and MotW, 1 point of intellect will be worth 1.1025. If you add in Heart of the Wild 1 point of intellect will be worth 1.169 (this will also provide you with 0.00046% crit per point). Note that it takes 2168 points per 1% crit, which is about 3.5 times weaker than 1 crit rating.
Intellect will be your best stat for throughput.
Intellect, without the talent bonuses or crit bonus. Basically a weaker form of Intellect that only appears on weapons and trinkets, but is still good.
Since Intellect no longer increases our mana pools, or has any effect on our regen (or innervate), Spirit has become our primary regen stat. 1 point of spirit will grant you roughly 1.128 MP5 (~.56 MP5 in combat). With Meditation (which is baseline), you will gain 56.4 MP5 in combat for every 100 Spirit.
It should also be noted that with the changes to Innervate and Spirit's interaction with it, Spirit effectively gains an additional 0.138 MP5, making the total effect in practice approximately 0.70 MP5.
480 mastery rating adds 1% to our Harmony bonus. This is essentially a flat bonus to all healing (albeit an additive bonus, so slightly weaker than it looks). Aside from haste breakpoints, mastery is the secondary stat giving the best throughput.
425 haste rating gives 1% spell haste. This reduces the cast time and GCD of all of our spells, to a minimum of 1 second GCD (there is no effect on Rejuvenation, which automatically has a 1 second GCD from talents). It also causes our HoT's to tick faster and potentially gain extra ticks (see below for more on breakpoints). Aside from a few very significant breakpoints, haste is a weaker secondary stat since it doesn't improve Rejuvenation at all, and increases mana consumption.
Critical strike rating:
600 crit rating gives 1% to crit. All healing effects are able to crit. Due in part to its greater itemization cost, crit adds ess throughput than mastery.
As noted above, much of the value of haste lies in its ability to add extra HoT ticks at certain specific values. Here are some of the most important ones that tend to be useful to know while gearing your character:
The 5% haste buff referred to below comes from a Moonkin, Shadow Priest, or Elemental Shaman.
All values are courtesy of Binkenstein and his great work on the Healer Haste Breakpoint Cards.
Spell # Ticks Percent +5% Raid Buff Unbuffed Lifebloom +1 16 3.36% 0 1428 Wild Growth (SotF) +8 15 107.25% 0 1542 Wild Growth +1 8 7.12% 860 3028 Lifebloom +2 17 9.95% 2004 4229 Wild Growth (SotF) +9 16 121.48% 2325 4566 Rejuvenation +1 5 12.51% 3039 5316 Tranquility +1 5 12.52% 3043 5320 Lifebloom +3 18 16.62% 4703 7063 Regrowth +1 4 16.65% 4717 7078 Wild Growth (SotF) +10 17 135.57% 5176 7559 Wild Growth +2 9 21.43% 6652 9109 Lifebloom +4 19 23.38% 7440 9937 Wild Growth (SotF) +11 18 149.69% 8033 10559 Lifebloom +5 20 29.95% 10101 12731 Wild Growth (SotF) +12 19 164.20% 10970 13643 Wild Growth +3 10 35.78% 12458 15206 Lifebloom +6 21 36.71% 12834 15600 Tranquility +2 6 37.50% 13157 15940 Rejuvenation +2 6 37.52% 13163 15947
Intellect will be your primary stat. While chosing gear you will need to find a point where you have a comfortable amount of throughput and regen. To facilitate this, you will want to optimize trade offs between spirit and other secondary stats so that you have enough regen to fit your playstyle (and raid environment) without neglecting other secondary stats. If you are ending encounters with excess mana, continue to devalue spirit until you reach a point that you can successfully end the race with your mana bar empty while continuing to feel that you had enough mana to successfully navigate the encounter.
Healer epics have Intellect, Stamina, spellpower in the case of weapons, and 2 out of the 4 secondary stats: crit rating, haste rating, mastery rating or Spirit. Reforging allows you to change 40% of one secondary stat on an item into another secondary stat that's not already present. When planning what to equip and reforge, keep the following in mind:
- You should be aware of haste breakpoints for your HoT's (see above).
- The first breakpoint we will want to try to reach is 3043, for your first Rejuv and Tranquility tick. One thing to note about the Tranquility breakpoint is that it only affects the HoT portion of Tranquility and you do not gain extra ticks of Tranquitly itself. It may be appropriate to give up some Int if necessary to reach your breakpoints (by using haste gems or swapping an item). As we continue to gear through SoO, you can aim for the sixth rejuvenation tick attainable at 13,163 haste. It is perfectly fine to remain at 3043 and reforge any excess haste into mastery if you cannot reach the higher breakpoint.
- It is important to note when you are gearing for breakpoints that you should select one and gear accordingly - you will want to be at either 3043 or 13163. If you cannot reach your selected breakpoint, do not continue to gear haste that will leave you in between break points. Simply reforge your gear appropriately until you are capable of reaching the next benchmark.
- Otherwise, always choose an item of higher ilvl (and if possible, higher socket count) in each slot. You should opt for items that have both Int and Spirit, until you have reached a comfortable regen level, and then you can opt for items that have alternative secondary stats.
- Outside of haste breakpoints, your basic choice is between throughput stats (mastery and crit) and regen (Spirit). When it's not getting you extra HoT ticks, haste is your weakest stat since it doesn't benefit Rejuv and increases your mana consumption.
- Between mastery and crit, mastery winds up being a better throughput benefit.
- With the change to mana pools and the regen paradigm, you should look to find a regen level you are comfortable with relative to your preferred play style, and then reforge to mastery or haste depending on your preferred haste breakpoint. You will receive the same mana return from innervate as you did pre-5.4 at 12,000 spirit.
The end result is that once we are comfortable with our regen (spirit levels) we will continue to stack mostly Int as much as possible, and try to reach 3043/13163 haste if you can reasonably do so in your gear. Otherwise, generally try to fill any remaining stats with mastery.
T14 2 Piece Bonus: The 2T14 will be quite attractive as we enter the first tier of raiding, due to the reduced mana cost of Rejuvenation (10%). Use it as soon as you can get it.
T14 4 Piece Bonus: The 4T14 is also quite good for the decreased cooldown on Swiftmend. When used in conjunction with Soul of the Forest it helps to better synergize the cooldowns on Wild Growth and Swiftmend.
T15 2 Piece Bonus: This bonus will be quite nice in a 25 man setting due to the likelihood of consistently having four targets grouped for Swiftmend, but may not be as useful in a 10 man setting.
T 15 4 Piece Bonus: The value of this bonus is about a 16% increase to rejuv's healing, the later, more powerful, ticks are more likely to be overhealing - which synergizes well with the new mushroom format.
T 16 2 Piece Bonus: I think that this is an interesting bonus. Essentially, at 5 stacks you have a completely free HT. I’m not 100% sure it will be worth picking up until you have your four piece bonus – as I’m not sure it’s worth losing your 4 T15 bonus. That being said, if you are not in T15 Heroic Gear and/or you don’t have your T15 4 piece bonus – the item upgrades may be worth moving to right away, so keep that in mind and consider it as you make a gear plan for yourself.
T 16 4 Piece Bonus: This is a pretty powerful four piece bonus, and is something that you will want to try and pick up as soon as you can. It’s a very nice boost to Wild Growth, and give it something it sorely needs in today’s healing environment: the ability to offer a nice heal instantly
[Jina-Kang, Kindness of Chi-Ji] The Legendary Cloak - While not a set bonus, I do think that the cloak is worth mentioning. As a druid, this is going to be especially powerful given the nature of HoTs and the relationship that they have come to have with overhealing, especially in today’s healing environment. It is also worth noting that utilizing Wild Mushroom or Tranquility during a proc will be very effective. You will want to try to acquire your legendary cloak as soon as it’s feasible for you to do so.
Note: I did not add any crit trinkets to this list, with the assumption that we will favor trinkets with some form of mana return in this first tier. The only exception is the Direbrew trinket, as it may be an easy "gimme" starter trinket.
Trinket iLevel Average Spirit Average Intellect MP5 Location Comments [Prismatic Prison of Pride] 528/540/553/559/566/572 N/A 1620/18112/2045/2162/2308/2442 Based on Current Spirit + Stat Increase Sha of Pride Stat Increases are at: 6%/6%/7%/7%/8%/8% [Nazgrim's Burnished Insignia] 528/540/553/559/566/572 N/A * N/A Nazgrim RPPM is .92. Multistrike. [Thok's Acid-Grooved Tooth] 528/510/553/559/566/572 N/A 1620/18112/2045/2162/2308/2442 N/A Thock Cleave. [Dysmorphic Samophlange of Discontinuity] 528/510/553/559/566/572 * 1552/1735/1959/2072/2211/2339 * Siegecrafter Blackfuse RPPM is .92. [Stolen Relic of Zuldazar] 502/522/528/535/541 1218/1467/1552/1657/tbd n/a 686.95/827.39/875.33/934.55/tbd Primordius - Throne of Thunder RPPM 3 [Inscribed Bag of Hydra-Spawn] 502/522/528/535/541 1218/1467/1552/1657/tbd n/a 686.95/827.39/875.33/934.55/tbd Megaera - Throne of Thunder RPPM 1.13 [Lightning-Imbued Chalice] 502/522/528/535/541 N/A 1218/1467/1552/1657/tbd N/A Lei Shen - Throne of Thunder RPPM 6 [Horridon's Last Gasp] 502/522/528/535/541 N/A 1218/1467/1552/1657/tbd tbd Horridon - Throne of Thunder RPPM 1 [Soothing Talisman of the Shado-Pan Assault] 522 N/A 1467 828 Friendly - Shado-Pan Assualt [Spirits of the Sun] 483/496/509 1166/1316/1485 1021/1152/1300 652.90/736.85/831.57 Tsulong - Terrace of Endless Spring 15% proc chance, 105 sec ICD (confirmed) [Qin-xi's Polarizing Seal] 476/489/502 956/1079/1218 1274/1450/1624 535.36/604.24/682.08 Mogu'shan Vaults Zone Drop 15% proc chance, 45 sec ICD (confirmed) [Jade Courtesan Figurine] 489 899 1079 503.3 Trash Drop: Mogu'shan Vaults click to use, 15 sec. active time, 60 sec. CD [Scroll of Revered Ancestors] 489 705 1079 395.08 Valor Points: Shado-Pan Revered click to use, 15 sec. active time, 60 sec. CD [Relic of Chi Ji] 476 1345 1157 753.39 Darkmoon Card: Crane Deck 15% chance to proc, 45 sec ICD (confirm) [Thousand-Year Pickled Egg] 470 N/A 904 N/A Coren Direbrew/Brewfest Haste Proc 5082, can only be obtained during Brewfest [Vial of Ichorous Blood] 463 707 847 395.83 General Pa'valak - Siege of Niuzao Temple click to use, 2 min cooldown [Price of Progress] 463 N/A 847 ~550 Darkmaster Gandling - Scholomance Healing Spells have a chance to grant 5082 (+100% of spell power) mana. [Empty Fruit Barrel] 463 847 1129 474.32 Ook-Ook - Stormstout Brewery proc rate 15%, 30 sec. ICD (confirmed via beta logs) [Zen Alchemist Stone] 450 300 (after reforging mastery) 1140 168 + Alchemy Bonus Crafted - Alchemist Only +18,000 mana with Potion of Focus, +12,000 mana with Master Mana Potion, 60 sec. ICD (?)
Sometimes you simply want to activate a trinket on cooldown. Here's a macro you can stick into any of your spells to do so without spamming error messages or sounds:
/script UIErrorsFrame:UnregisterEvent("UI_ERROR_MESSAGE"); /console Sound_EnableSFX 0 /use [combat] 14 /console Sound_EnableSFX 1 /script UIErrorsFrame:RegisterEvent("UI_ERROR_MESSAGE");
Something that is important to note with regards to food and flasks is that they do not have the same 1:2 benefit that gems share with regards to secondary stats. That means that the trade off is 1:1 for both of these forms of consumables; or put more simply you would be trading the same amount of a primary stat as you are a secondary stat for the trade. While the benefit of spirit consumables is a topic of debate, the general consensus (and the math!) is that it is not worth the trade off to utilize spirit consumables over intellect.
I have continued to include them in the guide for completeness purposes (and so I don't get a million notes telling me they've been forgotten!), but as a Resto Druid, you should generally always make use of intellect consumables.
- Flask of the Warm Sun will provide 1000 Intellect and will be your best flask for throughput.
- Flask of Falling Leaves will provide 1000 Spirit and is an option for Regen, although a sub-optimal one and generally should not be utilized (i.e. you really are better off with an intellect flask!).
- Mogu Fish Stew will provide 300 Intellect and will be your best option for throughput. You can also utilize Braised Turtle.
- Steamed Crab Surprise will provide 300 Spirit is an option for regen, although a sub-optimal one and generally should not be utilized (i.e. you really are better off with the intellect food!).
- It should be noted that individual food will provide higher stats than feasts.
- Potion of Focus will provide 45,000 mana over 10 seconds and works similarly to concentration potions.
- Master Mana Potion will provide 30,000 mana instantly.
- Alchemists have access to Alchemist's Rejvenation, which are a nice alternative to the Master Mana Potion.
- Courageous Primal Diamond - The meta gem from the Black Prince Quest Line offers you the equivalent of three free rejuvenation casts during its proc. it's quite good and should be sought after as soon as you are able to obtain it.
- Burning Primal Diamond - This will be the main throughput gem once you have found a comfortable level of regen from gear and are ready to move into more throughput. It will likely continue to be the main choice for meta gem for challenge modes.
- Revitalizing Primal Diamond - This gem focuses on regen and becomes less valuable as regen increases from gear.
- Ember Primal Diamond - This gem focuses on throughput and increased mana pools. However, the 2% mana increase is not as strong as the regen gained from the additional spirit in the Revitalizing gem. You should never use this gem if there is a Revitalizing Primal Diamond available for use.
It should be noted that, unlike in past expansions, socket bonuses are generally quite strong. This means that, outside of extraordinary circumstances, you will want to match your sockets for desirable bonuses. Once you reach T16 level of gear, you will want to start favoring secondary stats when gemming.
- Brilliant Primordial Ruby - Will be an option as throughput gem, but it's worth taking a look at secondary stat and hybrid gems to see if they will offer more throughput in red sockets as gear increases before opting for this gem.
- Sparkling River's Heart - As gear levels increase, this gem becomes less desirable. You will utilize hybrid gems to meet socket bonuses; and, as such, will not want to utilize straight spirit gems.
- Fractured Sun's Radiance - Will be an option as a throughput gem at higher gear levels and can be used to fill yellow sockets.
- Purified Imperial Amethyst - This is a hybrid throughput/regen gem. Use this gem to fill blue sockets with good set bonuses.
- Zen Wild Jade - This is a hybrid throughput/regen gem. Use this gem to fill yellow or blue sockets with good socket bonuses.
- Reckless Vermilion Onyx - This is a hybrid haste/throughput gem. Use it to meet haste breakpoints as needed. Favor yellow sockets, when possible, if using this gem.
- Artful Vermilion Onyx - This is a hybrid mastery/intellect gem. Use in yellow sockets when haste or spirit aren't needed and there is a good socket bonus.
- Energized Wild Jade - This is a hybrid haste/regen gem that can be utilized in assisting with reaching high haste breakpoints.
- Quick Sun's Radiance - This is a haste gem that can be utilized in assisting with reaching high haste breakpoints.
Excluding profession bonuses, you should use:
- Head - Helm Enchants were removed with MoP.
- Shoulders - Greater Crane Wing Inscription
- Back - Enchant Cloak - Superior Intellect
- Chest - Enchant Chest - Glorious Stats
- Wrists - Enchant Bracer - Super Intellect
- Gloves - Enchant Gloves - Greater Haste or Enchant Gloves - Superior Mastery
- Waist - Living Steel Belt Buckle
- Legs - Greater Pearlescent Spellthread
- Boots - Pandaren's Step
- Weapon - Jade Spirit
- Offhand - Major Intellect
Aside from a few unusual ones, most professions provide roughly equal gains:
- Alchemy: Mixology with Flask of the Warm Sun will give you 320 Intellect as well as double the duration of your flasks. Alternatively you can utilize Flask of Fallng Leaves which will provide an additional 480 Spirit, however this is a weaker option and is less desirable.
- Leatherworking: 500 Int to bracers in place of the usual 180 Int, for a 320 increase to intellect.
- Blacksmithing is similar. An extra socket each in your wrists and gloves, each with a Brilliant Primordial Ruby, gives 320 Intellect. Alternatively, you can socket them with two Sparkling River's Heart for a 640 spirit increase.
- Enchanting: 160 Int to each ring gives 320 Intellect.
- Inscription: 520 Int/100 Crit to shoulders in place of the standard shoulder enchanter gives 320 Intellect.
- Jewelcrafting: 2 Brilliant Serpent's Eye in place of Brilliant Primordial Ruby gives 320 Intellect. Alternatively you can utilize two Sparkling Serpent's Eye in place of two Sparkling River's Heart for a 320 increase in spirit, however this is a weaker option and is less desirable.
- Engineering Synapse Springs give an average value of 320 int (1920 Intellect for 10 seconds, with a 60 second cooldown).
A macro similar to the one given above for trinkets can be used for glove tinkers--the glove slot is number 10.
- Tailoring Lightweave Embroidery gives 2000 Int for 15 seconds, 20% proc on spellcast, 60 second cooldown. The average benefit is around 500 Int, minus the 180 Int you usually have on your cloak, for an increase of around 320. However, Darkglow Embroidery gives 3000 Spirit for 15 seconds, 20% proc on spellcast, 50 second cooldown. The average benefit is around 900 Spirit, however it becomes less desirable as gear levels increase.
The remaining professions are weaker:
- Herbalism gives a haste cooldown via Lifeblood. At 2880 haste for 20s every 2 minutes, it averages out to 480 haste. Additionally, you can loot Water Spirit's.
- Skinning gives 480 crit rating.
- Mining provides 480 Stamina, but no healing gain.
It's important to not waste time between casts. This is an easy way to lose quite a lot of healing over the course of a fight without realizing it. This section contains a bit of information that you should know about spell targeting, timing, haste, queueing, and the GCD.
By default, a heal targets your target, if it exists and is friendly. Otherwise, if you have Auto Self Cast activated (Interface->Game->Combat), it will target yourself. If not, you will get the dreaded "blue hand" asking you to choose your target.
You can control targeting priority using macros. For example, if you want to heal your target's target if your target is hostile:
#showtooltip /use [@target, help][@targettarget, help] Rejuvenation
/use [@mouseover, help] Rejuvenation
You now have the option to have the client process events when you release the key or on your initial key press. Keep the option you choose in mind for learning your timing. It should be noted that, by default, this is set to cast on key down. If this is unsatisfactory, you can select your preference under Interface -> Combat.
When you send a spell command to the server, if your character is unable to cast immediately (typically because it's still casting or GCD-locked from your last spell), the server will see if you become ready to cast within a certain short window. If you do, it will begin the cast immediately. You can set the length of this window with an interface option called "Custom Latency Tolerance." You want to set this value to a high enough amount that you can always press the next spell key comfortably before the current spell finishes, and never have a gap between casts. But you don't want to set it too high, because you can't change your mind after you queue a spell, so your reaction time is effectively slower if you "lock in" each spell a long time before it begins casting. Experiment and find something you're comfortable with.
We spend a large portion of our time casting instants, so you want to get very comfortable with the rhythm of your GCD spark. If done perfectly, each GCD begins as the previous one ends, with no visible gap.
This section is a summary of basic principles--detailed discussion of various healing techniques and spell usage will be largely be the focus of the discussion thread.
Rejuvenation: Though we have to manage our mana, and will not be able to sustain blanketing the raid, this spell is still central to our healing. It does very high amount of healing, is quite efficient, and it enables Swiftmend. Because it is a moderately expensive instant, it can burn your mana quickly if you start spamming it. But whenever you can cast a Rejuv that will not be mostly overheal, it is an excellent choice. In addition, you will often maintain Rejuvenation on a tank who's taking any significant amount of damage. In general, your "filler" healing is a mix of Nourish and Rejuv, based on your mana. It is also worth noting that your rejuvenation will now also instantly heal for the equivalent of one tick upon being cast.
Wild Growth: This remains an excellent spell all-around. It will automatically target the 5/6 lowest-HP people within range (not necessarily including the target). Because the radius is now so high (30y), you can often just cast it on anybody and get a good result. Make sure to cast it anytime an AoE effect hits some people in the raid. In heavy damage situations you'll use Wild Growth on cooldown. Even though it is expensive, it does more than enough healing to be worth it. Wild Growth is unusual in that in can be targeted on a hostile unit and will still apply to the lowest-HP raid members in range of that unit. Additionally, you will want to consider that if you opt for Soul of the Forest you can “prep” your Wild Growth to be more powerful by using the haste bonus from Soul of the Forest to add a nice healing boost. To do this, simply cast a Swiftmend and make sure that Wild Growth is the next spell that you cast. This will be very useful during times when the raid is experiencing heavy damage and needs to be topped up quickly.
Lifebloom: You want to keep this rolling on a tank at virtually all times. It is a strong, cheap HoT, has a very fast tick rate to help stabilize the tank. It is also helps to enable Omen of Clarity procs, so that you enter a clearcasting state. Try to get used to the timing of refreshing this on the last tick without breaking your casting rhythm, both with Lifebloom itself and with Nourish/HT/RG. With the increased duration of Lifebloom, you should always have an opportunity to refresh it in your healing rotation. Always have a Lifebloom stack on one person, even if there's no tank at the moment. Additionally, with [Glyph of Lifebloom] you can swap around your three stack for the cost of one GCD and utilize it as a quick ticking HoT for quick, emergency healing on another member of your raid, provided it's not needed on the tank at that time.
Nourish: The Druid's cheap heal. Nourish's healing per mana is now quite low, and your mana may be better spent filling time with extra Rejuvenations instead, when you can afford them, even if it means you have some down time in casting. Based on this there is almost no optimal time to utilize nourish where another spell will not better serve you.
Healing Touch: Has the same cast time as Nourish, but is less efficient and much larger. While a typical use was to top off a tank who needs a direct heal, glyphed Regrowth now does this quicker and more efficiently. As such, you will almost never cast Healing Touch in its current state. However, with the 2 T16 set bonus you will want to make use of HT with the procs. You will also likely want to revert back to pairing NS with HT again.
Combined with Nature's Swiftness (now on a one minute coolodwn), it provides an emergency instant heal which is somewhat stronger than Swiftmend. You'll usually use it with Swiftmend when you need two consecutive instant heals on someone. Macro for this:
/showtooltip Nature's Swiftness /stopcasting /use Nature's Swiftness /use [@mouseover] Healing Touch
Regrowth: The Druid's fast, inefficient direct heal. When people in the raid need immediate healing to avoid death, use this (also use Swiftmend if it's available). Whenever a Clearcast procs, you can more liberally throw a Regrowth on anyone in the raid who isn't topped off. With the [Glyph of Regrowth], Regrowth becomes a very powerful, fast, direct heal and will be your main direct heal. If you are utilizing the glyph, Regrowth has almost equal healing to Healing Touch, and will also plant a living seed on your target. As such, you may want to consider pairing it with Nature's Swiftness. You can utilize the macro above to achieve this - just replace "Regrowth" with "Healing Touch". Regrowth has another important use during Incarnation: Tree of Life, discussed below.
Swiftmend: A strong instant heal on a short cooldown. Swiftmend now has efflorescence baked into it as one of the base effects of the ability, so in addition to the instant heal, you will also provide AE healing to those 10 yards around the target. Additionally, if you are spec’d into Soul of the Forest, your Swiftmend will provide a haste boost to the next spell cast, and is very complimentary when used in concert with Wild Growth.
Swiftmend is one of our best spells. Always be vigilant for people at low HP on whom you might use this. It's great for helping stabilize a tank anytime you see them sit low for more than a GCD, or making sure any raid member is safe while your HoT's do their work. You can Swiftmend another Druid's HoT's, so you want your raid frames to show who's Swiftmendable. Using Swiftmend on cooldown also helps to ensure high Harmory uptime.
Glyph of Efflorescence: While this is not a spell, I do feel that it deserves a note of its own. This glyph will make Efflorescence a permanent spell as long as you have a Wild Mushroom active in the raid. Additionally, utilizing the glyph will allow you to decouple swiftmend from efflorescence, which effectively means that you no longer have to rely on swiftmend to place efflorescence and will be able to utilize the two abilities individually without any negative consequence.
Clearcasting: Not a spell, but deserves an entry. Clearcasting lasts 15 seconds and can only apply to the expensive spells Regrowth and Healing Touch, so it's difficult to waste. When Clearcasting procs, you simply have to make sure to cast a Regrowth in the next few seconds. A Regrwoth should generally be your first thought--based in its current place in the Druid toolkit. The tank is a good target; and regrowth on him for a free heal and LB/Harmony refresh is never a bad option. If, however, people in the raid are in need of a quick heal, a Clearcast is a good chance to throw a Regrowth on them as well. Clearcasting has a 4% chance to proc.
Incarnation: Tree of Life: In addition to the 15% healing bonus, this has a few effects on our healing spells:
- Lifebloom: now castable on any number of targets. This is handy since Lifebloom does moderate healing and is very cheap. In a fight where you don't need Tree for other purposes, shifting to cast primarily Lifebloom for 30 seconds lets you use ToL as a very good mana cooldown.
- Regrowth: now instant cast. Not a throughput gain since Regrowth is a 1.5 cast anyway, but this allows use while moving and also gives you much quicker reactive healing. Because of all the Lifeblooms you use during Tree of Life, you get a lot of Clearcasting procs from Malfurion's Gift, and can turn each one into a free instant Regrowth. The Regrowths even refresh the Lifeblooms.
If many people in the raid need healing quickly, shifting to cast instant Regrowths can help hit people who need the most healing immediately. Similarly, it is also quite strong for tank healing in challenge modes during periods of quick, heavy tank damage. Be careful though, as this can be expensive. Still use a good amount of Lifebloom when people aren't in danger of death.
- Wild Growth: now targets 2 extra people. Simply makes WG slightly better to use even than it ordinarily is.
As as final note, in my experience, I tend to use ToL form at fixed times each encounter (once I've seen the fight enough times to have a plan), rather than in much of a reactive way.
Soul of the Forest: Similar to Clearcasting, this is not an ability, but also deserves an entry. If you opt to take the Soul of the Forest talent, you will have the ability to add 100% haste to your next every time you cast Swiftmend. The bonus is multiplicative and will result in a flat increase and a multiplier to your existing haste value. This can be very powerful when used smartly. You will want to pair this with Wild Growth when able, but it can also be a very strong buffer to both Lifebloom (which has been fixed) and Rejuv when used on the tank. You will also want to be careful that you don't utilize a NS/HT or 2 T16 HT right after casting SM, so that you do not lose the benefits gained from Soul of the Forest.
Tranquility: This spell is very strong now, and outputs massive amounts of healing during its channeling time. Due to the new smart targeting mechanics, it's basically self-working. Can easily save people from dying if you mash it quickly when the raid takes a lot of damage. You can now use it 2-3 times per fight, so depending on the encounter, you might use it reactively when the raid is at low HP, or you might plan its use around certain boss abilities. The spell is now immune to pushback, so you no longer have to protect it with Barkskin. When Tranquility is cast in a 25 man setting it will heal 12 injured raid members. In a 10 man setting it will heal five injured raid members.
Wild Mushroom/Wild Mushroom:Bloom: You are able to place on mushrooms under a party member or on the ground (utilizing the glyph) and then "bloom" them to heal all allies within 10 yards of the mushrooms. Your rejuvenation overhealing with "charge" the mushroom, but to 33% of the Druid's total health. If you are required to move a mushroom, it will retain the "charge" that has been built up in the mushroom. The mushroom suffers from diminishing returns for everyone they hit beyond six people. You will need to determine when mushrooms will be a benefit to your healing, and when other options will be preferable.
To utilize mushrooms, it will be important to have both placement and bloom keybound to easier facilitate the mechanics required by the ability. You want to always have a mushroom active, so that you are gaining the benefits of the Glyph of Efflorescence - and will you want to bloom them at opportune times as damage patterns require. Because of the change to only require use of a single mushroom, it should be very easy to keep on active, even after having bloomed it. It should be noted that there is a 3 second cooldown between placing your mushroom and being able to bloom it, so you will want to try to plan out your blooms in advance, when possible.
Genesis Genesis is a new addition to our toolkit that targets all party or raid members within 60 yards and accelerates the casting Druid’s Rejuvenation effects, causing them to heal and expire at 400% of the normal rate. This will be a very powerful burst healing tool that will allow you to be able to cause your Rejuv to heal their targets more quickly. You will want to find optimal times in an encounter where Genesis will be valuable and pre-plan utilizing it so that you can ensure that you have sufficient rejuvenations spread on the raid. It can also be utilized in an emergency, provided that you have sufficient rejuvenations on the raid to make it benefical. You will want to be careful to utilize Genesis smartly, so that you can maximize its usefulness without expending unnecessary mana when it is not required - as Genesis does not add healing, it simply accelerates it for an extra mana cost.
Living Seed:While this is not an ability it is worthy of a note, as Living Seed is now baseline for all resto druids. Every time you critically heal a target with a direct heal, you will plant a Living Seed on them that will stack up to 50% of the casting druid's health and heal when triggered. Living seed will not trigger if the target is at full health. Swiftmend, Nourish, Healing Touch and Regrowth can all plant a Living Seed.
Rebirth: This will allow for an in combat resurrection of an ally. The most important issue is to avoid wasting it, especially now that the raid can only use a limited number per attempt (3 in 25-man, 1 in 10-man). First, make sure to coordinate with other Druids/DK's/Warlocks in your raid using macros or Vent so two of you don't cast on the same target. Second, people love to accept the resurrection as soon as it appears and die to something immediately. It can be good to warn them if it's a bad time to accept.
Here's a macro that casts Revive instead of Rebirth if you're out of combat, and also alerts your raid if Rebirth is used:
#showtooltip /use [nocombat] Revive /stopmacro [nocombat] /use Rebirth /ra Rebirth on %t
Nature's Cure: On an 8 second cooldown, this will remove poison, magic and curses. It will be important to prioritize cleanses in order to make sure the most imported debuffs and/or the most important people are cleansed first. It will likely also be important to work with your healing team to organize cleanses on any encounter where the need to cleanse multiple people exists.
Barkskin: Remember that this doesn't use the GCD, so you can cast it almost anytime without disrupting your healing. It should be on an easily-accessible bind, and you should make it second nature to hit this instantly when you foresee a threatening amount of damage coming.
Iron Bark: Castable on a friendly target, it will reduce 20% of all incoming damage. It has a one minute cooldown, and should be coordinated with the other healers on your healing team and treated as a tanking/raid cooldown. However, with such a short cooldown, you should not hesitate to utilize the ability freely across your group/raid as it is needed.
Symbiosis: Creates a link with another member of your party or raid that gives you one of their abilities, and provides your ally one of your abilities. The strongest abilities for you will most often be the extra survivability abilities offered, however it will likely be determined by your raid team where they would like Symbiosis for maximum benefit to the raid. Additionally, keep in mind that certain encounters may have mechanics that can favor a specific symbiosis set up.
You can find the abilities gained and the abilities given in the charts below. It should be noted that some of the abilities gained are modified versions of the original and may not contain all aspects of the original ability.
Class Restoration Death Knight Icebound Fortitude Hunter Deterrence Mage Ice Block Monk Fortifying Brew Paladin Cleanse Priest Leap of Faith Rogue Evasion Shaman Spiritwalker's Grace Warlock Demonic Circle: Teleport Warrior Intimidating Roar
I'm not going to say too much about UI; it's largely a personal issue. The only major point specific to Resto Druids is that we can move continuously while casting many of our normal spells. You want to have a control setup that allows you to be proficient at moving and casting independently--experienced Druids get very comfortable doing this. But it's a matter of practice more than anything else.
You need some kind of raid frames. Grid, Vuhdo, Healbot, and Shadowed are all in use currently. You can find all of them at typical addon sites. Choosing between them is up to you. Whichever you use, you want to have it set up to show you at least the following:
- Each raid member's HP (including pets)
- Which of your HoT's are on which targets (particularly Rejuvenation)
- Their durations
- Which raid members are in range
- Which targets are Swiftmendable
- Debuffs you can remove (Curses/Magic/Poison)
- Customizable debuffs for important boss abilities
- Which players are being targeted by mobs
- Which players have incoming heals from other healers
- Notifications for when a player is resurrected, offline, or has the Spirit of Redemption buff (all important to make sure you use Rebirths wisely).
A few other UI tips specific to Resto Druids:
- Since we use instants so much, you want to have some kind of prominent indicator for your GCD. The Quartz (below) GCD spark can be put anywhere; right next to your raid frames is a good option.
- Now that you usually only have Lifebloom on one target, it's good to have a timer somewhere outside your frames. I keep one just above my raid frames by my casting bar, so I can see when I need to refresh by looking in one prominent place, regardless of whom it's on. I also have an aura set up to notify me if, for whatever reason, I’ve let Lifebloom drop.
- A UI tip that applies to anyone, but is too important to omit. In whatever buff mod you use (e.g. Raven, Power Auras, Weak Auras, Tell Me When, etc.), make a central and very large buff indicator (i.e. a substantial portion of your screen), that contains only those critical boss debuffs that require immediate reaction to prevent a death or wipe. The goal is to grab your attention and make it impossible to not notice immediately when you get one of these debuffs, no matter where on the screen you're looking. People who do this are far less likely to be the one who wipes the raid because they had tunnel vision, and that is more important than any amount of healing technique.
Clique: If your raid frames don't inherently support click-casting (Grid, for example), this is a simple, popular mod for setting it up.
Quartz: as a primary caster, you should have a proper cast bar. This is an excellent one.
Weak Auras is a powerful tool that you can adapt to create auras and notifications to alert you to important events, either with your character or in a given encounter. While they certainly are not necessary, learning Weak Auras and utilizing them will help to allow you to monitor important things while healing. Below are some basic auras for Resto Druids. You can use them as they are, or modify them to better fit your needs.
Nature's Vigil - Active Time
Soul of the Forest
Wild Mushroom: Bloom
Incarnation: Tree of Life
Low Mana Warning
Legendary Meta Proc
Trinket - Soothing Talisman of the Shado-Pan Assault
The foundation of this guide came from Hamlet's work during Cataclysm. While he is no longer as active in the game, he has left a lasting memory on many of us with his mathematical prowess and knowledge of the class. We would not have many of the resources we have today without his hard work and I thank him for his contributions to the community. In addition I would also like to thank both Binkenstein, for his work on the haste breakpoints for all healers and Kjeldorian, for his work on optimal use of Soul of the Forest.
I would also like to note that I am not Hamlet. This guide is a work in progress. It can, and will, evolve with the knowledge that comes out of the Mists. I am not infallible, I make errors (and have probably done some math wrong somewhere already!) and I am sure that the initial thoughts we have now will change as we move further into the expansion and have more hands on experience with the content. I am happy to make any changes necessary, entertain healthy conversation about the class as we move forward, and update the guide as needed from the resultant conversations. In return, I kindly ask that you are respectful in all feedback offered. If you notice an error, please feel free to post it below or PM me, and I will correct it as soon as possible.
May your leaves flourish in the fresh breezes bringing us to Pandaria!
Click here to view the guide