I missed the point? What about tree FORM is fun?

In my last post, I explained my history with tree form – and one thing that people caught on to was that how much fun I have with tree form is pretty much tied up in whether or not healing as a resto druid is fun for me.

To me, tree form is pretty much just a graphic, that has very little functional value at this point. In a raid with another druid in tree form, or a prot pally with the right talents,I could probably heal outside of tree form and no one would know the difference in terms of my healing done. I basically gain a tiny bit of spellpower from spirit, and that’s about it. My armor is a little higher, but if I’m taking melee hits, I’m probably dead anyway.

So, is healing in tree form different from healing out of tree form? Not really. Does it need to be different? Not really. One of the reasons that our mana reductions were given to us out of tree form was to take away some of the cost of shapeshifting to normal caster form during PvP. Not being able to do things out of tree form is annoying to PvP druids and all the other specs that rely on our heal spells. Making it such that I HAD to be in tree form to be a good healer would anger me much more than it would make healing fun for me.

That’s why about the only thing they could do to make ‘tree form’ more fun on it’s own would be to change the graphic (make the leaves/necklace color customizable, give us new graphics so that we don’t look just like the moonkin pets, etc). Outside of graphic changes, I don’t really see the need to do something to make the FORM fun. Giving tree form “unique” abilities that aren’t available outside of the form would actually make things worse in some ways. I mean, the “unique” abilities that retoration druids get are things like wild growth that you spend talent points on that help define the spec as a whole. One talent point shouldn’t really be that big of a deal – and tree form is basically just a talent point (or a couple if you include the improved tree talent).

Silly things like the mini-tree pet from the Argent Tournament actually makes tree form more fun. I mean, all you really get out of being in tree form for raiding is the looks and a little spellpower. So, it’s really hard to analyze and give feedback on whether or not a graphic form is fun, when all I think of it is a graphic form that is fundamentally tied to whether or not I think healing in said form is fun. I have fun /dancing with my mini-tree pet that follows me around and gets bored & falls asleep when I’m working on my fishing.

The old “only HOTs in form” restriction was what actually part of what made the form not fun, so now that we have access to a lot more abilities in form, it’s actually kinda fun to heal in that form – because it doesn’t feel as restrictive anymore. Sure, I have to shift out to moonfire something, but shifting back in doesn’t even cost that much mana anymore.

So, as long as graphic form changes are eventually coming for trees (please!), that’s pretty much all I can really hope for in terms of making tree form more fun. Bear and cat forms have much more definition than moonkin and resto, in terms of giving access to abilities – but that’s okay in my book, because cat form can still not be fun if you don’t like how cat form looks (or the playstyle), even though it has it’s own set of abilities. Shapeshifting is what druids do, and so having a shapeshift for healing is fine, even if it doesn’t really give us all that much.

7 Comments

  1. Kazril
    Posted May 22, 2009 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

    I agree. While it doesn’t add a lot, there’s not a problem with it the way it is now. It doesn’t really need to add a lot. And there are little things that do make it more fun, like the mini-me pet.

  2. Posted May 22, 2009 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    I greatly dislike the graphic of being turned into a “grumpy old man” tree :( It’s the reason I avoided speccing tree form on my night elf–and still do. If tree form had a more feminine version for girl characters, it would be much more tolerable.

  3. Togusan
    Posted May 22, 2009 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

    How about making survivability a little better. I have notice that whenever i take damage, i’m a friggin paper sheet. I’m always the 3rd damage taker, god know why. How about a little nature barrier when i’m in tree form.

  4. Galashin
    Posted May 22, 2009 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

    Sounds good to me, thanks for the clarification. I care a bit less about aesthetics than the vast majority of the community, but even I would appreciate some new graphics at this point–even if we just grow leaves in the spring, have them in summer, and lose them in the fall again.

  5. Leirynn
    Posted May 22, 2009 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

    I’d rather see us made on par with the other healing classes outside of tree form, and have it turned into a temporary buff similar to the warlock Meta spell they get from their Demon tree. Give us some special, tree-only abilities, and maybe a few other perks while in it.

    I don’t really like tree form as it stands. At least cat and bear change my playstyle (and as feral, I love being able to change between them as needed). Tree… adds some numbers, but doesn’t change anything.

  6. Aelinna
    Posted May 23, 2009 at 5:46 am | Permalink

    I like Leirynn’s suggestion.

    For me ToL is 150 SP and 4% healing done (Master Shapeshifter). You can’t gain much back from speccing out of MS + iToL either.

    I do DPS on the heart and Yogg’s brain btw. IIRC I don’t even necessarily innervate on those fights. I am largely a RJ bot though, standard 50%+ done. Brain being an exception, 0-hot nourish gets used then…

  7. scaresome
    Posted May 23, 2009 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

    When I learned tree form, one of the first intances was Utgarde Keep. When you first learn UK, there are times you run up the stairs and sneak over into a little cul de sac to face the bad guys.

    I run in to my corner and the camera zooms because there is a wall behind me. Suddenly my darn tree is right in front of me and in my line of sight.

    I laughed and laughed when the animation turned the tree to look right at me! I was so surprised and I’d not noticed it all before.

    So, yeah; that made it fun.