Monthly Archives: March 2011

A look at all the resto 4.1 changes

Since the patch for 4.1 has now been on the PTR for a month, that means it is possible it could go live at any time from this point. With their goal of having more “frequent” patches, this also means we need shorter PTR cycles. I’m going to start preparing now for the 4.1 patch, especially since I’m going to be out of town most of next week for a psychology research conference.

So, lets look at the overall set of resto changes for 4.1 & what they mean:

  • Cyclone was reduced from 6 to 5 seconds in the official patch notes, but mmo-champion is reporting this reversed back to 6 in their latest datamined set of notes. So, cyclone may or may not have been changed.
  • Lifebloom’s bloom has been reduced by 20% (note: no change to the mana cost). This will be a minor bummer for people who let their LB bloom often, but it should still be pretty strong.
  • You no longer need to use barkskin before tranquility, since tranquility will innately have pushback protection (meaning that getting hit with melee & spell attacks won’t shorten the duration).
  • Malfurion’s Gift talent: now reduces the cooldown on tranquility by 5 minutes at 2 ranks. This means that you will get to pop tranquility every 3 minutes (so, likely twice per fight).
  • Efflorescence has been changed. It is now smarter, and will heal the 3 most wounded players standing in the healing circle. It also now scales with haste. The benefit of the new version is that it will do substantial amounts of healing to wounded players, rather than wasting most of the heal by dividing it by up to 25 people. While the tooltip change is slightly confusing, the talent heals more than before, and heals more meaningfully than before. It will feel less wasted when used on a tank, and it will still do decent healing as an AOE heal.
  • Living seed has also been unlinked from Efflorescence, giving you more options & choice in making your talent builds. In some cases, tank healing resto druids will want to keep 1 or 2 points in living seed, and in other cases, you may skip it in favor of other healing talents (not that your other options are much better, however, as several of the lower tiered talents have very small/negligible effects on your overall healing).

The newest addition to our round of changes comes to Nature’s Swiftness, which needs further discussion below:

Nature’s Swiftness may be getting buffed. It is showing up in mmo-champion’s unofficial patch notes and WoWhead’s latest PTR info. The change would make Nature’s Swiftness increase the size of the heal by 50%, meaning that when you paired NS with Healing Touch, you’d get an even bigger HT. While this isn’t as helpful as a damage reduction attached to it, the change makes NS slightly more useful, and makes the talent slightly better (but still not “required”). While it won’t look great in your HPS according to WoL, sometimes that extra instant boost to save a tank may be worth investing in (because your job as a tank healer is to keep the tank alive, not to top meters).

If you are often assigned to tank healing, then I would recommend that you pick up the 4.1 version of Nature’s Swiftness along with the Healing Touch glyph. With the glyph, your healing touches on the tank will reduce the cooldown on nature’s swiftness and amplify the effects of this buff on keeping your tank alive. In this case, you would keep the rebirth glyph and then either drop the innervate or WG glyph from your set (drop innervate glyph if you only innervate yourself, or drop WG glyph if you do trade innervates). You may be able to shave a minute (or more!) off the NS cooldown timer with a normal tank healing rotation (given that you can’t just spam HT the whole fight). I wouldn’t recommend the HT glyph for people who AOE/raid healing primarily, since you may not cast enough HT for the glyph to be worth it compared to the benefits you get from the other glyphs.

Posted in patch 4.1, Patches, Restoration Healing Trees

Replacing Living Seed: Talents in 4.1

So, the 4.1 patch actually has some important changes that  may influence how you choose your restoration talents. Regardless of your role or size of raid, you will want the new version of Efflorescence in your talent spec – so, in some cases, the variability in talent specs may converge somewhat (with people wanting to avoid living seed but invest in efflorescence). However,  there will still be subtle differences in how you choose your talents:

My current spec (8/2/31) with living seed & Efflorescence.

If I drop living seed from my spec, I have to put 2 points in Tiers 1 thru 3, and 1 point I can move higher in the tree (for me, that point will go in GotEM). My options for T1 thru 3 talents are:

  • Living Seed (some people may still keep points here, but I don’t plan on keeping it)
  • Blessing of the Grove (people who raid heal a lot with rejuv will benefit more from this talent than living seed, but it’s still going to have a minor impact on healing at best)
  • Nature’s Swiftness (This is still unappealing to me. Swiftmend, with efflorescence procs, will do more for me than NS).
  • Perserverence (Decreasing the damage you take increases the probability that you will live, and while it doesn’t inflate meter numbers, dead healers can’t heal)
  • Fury of the Storm Rage (not recommended for PvE raiding specs)

With these options, I’m most likely going to pick up either Perseverance or Blessing of the Grove. I really like the idea of picking up a damage reduction talent. Since most of the damage done is magical damage, getting 4% reduced magic damage should help with keeping me alive, especially when working on “new” content.

The benefit of Blessing of the Grove on rejuv is actually pretty small (though sometimes preferable to living seed). If you are struggling with your output numbers and want to increase your healing done output, then you should invest here.

Tangedyn made a calculator for you to input some variables and get an estimate of how much living seed, blessing of the grove, or nature’s bounty would effect your healing output. In some cases, living seed is still coming out on top of these other 2 talents (which is why in some cases, I throw my hands up and pick the utility talent – perseverance instead).

There are, of course, other specs that don’t start with the template I highlighted here. When we hit patch day, I’ll post up a set of specs that are based on some of the other templates (such as specs that don’t invest in moonglow). I just wanted to get the discussion started.

How much does the un-linking of Living Seed from Efflorescence (along with the improvement of efflorescence) change your 4.1 healing talent spec plans?

Posted in patch 4.1, Patches, Restoration Healing Trees

A couple of podcast updates

Hey guys, I wanted to highlight a couple of podcasts.

First, for fans of Keeva at Tree Bark Jacket, we have a special Team Waffle Podcast “waffle bite” where you can listen to me interview Keeva! While the previous Waffle Bite episodes have been feral-related, this one is packed full of Resto Druid goodness! I had a lot of fun with the interview. I always enjoy getting to talk to other resto druids! It was an extra special treat to get to interview one of my favorite trees, too!

Second, I did a guest appearance this weekend on the Group Quest podcast (hosted by Medros). On that podcast, we talked about recent WoW & Blizzard-related news. It’s not particularly druid-centric, but sometimes it’s worth taking some time to talk about the other news happening in the WoW community. Thanks for having me on the show guys!

Posted in Cataclysm, Druid - General, patch 4.1, Patches, podcast, Restoration Healing Trees

Caster druid loot in 4.1

So, it looks like the ZA & ZG new 5-man instances coming in 4.1 have a lot of goodies in store for us (that is, if we can convince those pieces of gear to actually drop!). The epics are all ilevel 353.

Most important,  there are a set of bracers!

Somewhat disappointingly, all the leather caster items (INT gear) have crit on them, with crit as the least valuable stat for either resto or moonkin (ie. they will have crit + another stat). With being such a high item level, though, they will all certainly be upgrades to any blues you have from other heroic 5-mans, or even some of the other normal-mode 10/25-man raid gear. We can just reforge off some of the heavy amounts of crit they have (not that reforging makes up for non-optimal itemization).

To see the full loot list, head over to MMO-champion. I was going to list it all here, but since we don’t have locations yet, I think I’ll wait.

Blizzard also honored Fasc’s departure from the feral druid community with a set of agi leather shoes.

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On an unrelated note, I wanted to take a moment to send out my support for all the WoW community members in Japan (or who have family/friends in Japan). I know that this blog is read by people all over the world, and my heart goes out to those who have been affected by the earthquakes in Japan this week.   *sends big hugs*

Posted in Cataclysm, patch 4.1, Patches

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