Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The 5.2 resto druid - A mid range PvP and raiding druid's perspective

Beruthiel made me think again (yes, and I think my brain nearly collapsed with all that thinking) with her post Mileage May Vary.  She talked about how druids effective healing is altered by the holy pallies and disc priests they play with.

My USUAL raid team runs heals with a resto druid, holy pally and disc/holy priest. However Bish, our priest, had his computer BROKEN by Nalak - he was there at our first guild encounter of Nalak and then suddenly the AOE must have been too much and his computer BROKE - so he's he was out of action for a fortnight.

"The sky weeps for your demise!  Say GOODBYE to your graphics cards HEROES!  I will DESTROY your puny computers!"
All through MSV/HoF, I had felt like the poorer healer.  Disc priests, resto shamans and holy paladins were the winning healers, with so many more USEFUL abilities brought to a raid.  Who needs MotW when you have a paladin who could buff kings or monks could buff.... whatever that is (not that we have a monk)?  Shamans have spell power and blood lust, priests can lifeswap, bubble and buff stamina, and paladins have lovely beacon and their disco ball aoe healing and bubbles.  At least I had some small mitigation thing with my Ironbark, but I would rarely need to use it and the CD is so damn LONG.  My burst healing was not great, and I would only feel useful in fights with constant damage where hots would actually tick and heal.  Most of the time my overheals would look ridiculous compared to my effective heals.

In patch 5.2, I have noticed an improvement in my healing.  Heals are bigger, mana is better, and I really enjoy placing mushrooms.  I use them on tank positions a lot for emergency heals because each mushroom pop is a whopping 200k so a 600k heal well placed can be damned useful!

I have never been one to say how wonderful my class has been.  Gutsy one of our healing priests, who plays a druid alt and raids with another guild on it would often tell me how he topped heals in LFR or in his raid, but I never had that experience, really.  I tend to play to conserve mana, though every now and then for fun with my friends we snipe heals and use things like tranq every CD to pump out the healing numbers just to be silly.  What, you don't do that? Come on, it's just for fun!

What really surprised me was that Beru and Jas said that fights that you would think druids would excel on, they don't.  I remember I had that experience with Hagara in Dragon Soul, my heals were always low compared to the others.  I didn't know why.  Jasyla specifically mentioned Horridon in her comment, as being a bit lackluster for her.  Beru mentioned that it was probably because of 25 mans, and when I think about it, she's probably right.

In a 10 man, Wild growth rarely hits all its targets.  More people are spread out, with only 2-3 melee clumped together.  That would be different on 25 man, where you would have at least 5 people together.  That's why I don't have the Wild Growth glyph.  However, it's much more useful in 25 mans, so I would expect a 25 man healer to have much better healing numbers from Wild Growth than me.

Efflorescence is another one that rarely gets its full potential.  I am a bit worried because the Tier bonus is lousy for me as hitting a few extra targets with Swiftmend won't happen unless we are stacking (like during Storm in Jin'rokh).  I might be lucky to get ONE extra person!  I guess that's not too shabby.

However, Rejuvenation seems to be the real winner for heavy raid healing.  I still like the Tier bonus from T14 because of the decreased cost of Rejuv (for mana heavy fights) so for fights that I'm going OOM, I put my T14 gloves back on.  The mana cost reduction for Rejuv has helped a lot as well!  I rarely go OOM now except in times of massive damage when I go tree and spam regrowth on the tank so they don't die.... and that's mostly for new fights.  For farm fights I am put my higher level gear back on and don't worry about the T14 bonus.

I've read a lot of resto druid complaints about mushrooms.  I actually like them a lot!  In 5.2 they changed them to absorb 33% of rejuvenation overheals and then when popped they heal up to 33% of my health in bonus healing amongst all players in 8 years.   I still am not sure how this works, as my health pool is 410k, but EACH mushroom heals for 200k.  Is there bonus healing from spellpower put in there somewhere?  It's a good aoe heal if you can use it but it's also great for an "emergency heal spot".  I can't train my raid team to go to them and call out for a mushroom if they need a big heal, but on fights where tanks tend to be static, I use it then, stacking 2 under the tank and one for me.  Since everyone can't be bothered using them, I set that one up for myself!  I put the one in some spot and put myself there if I am expecting heavy damage so I can pop the shrooms and heal myself.  I am not sure about this, but in 10 man you aren't throwing out as many rejuvs as you would be on 25, so I tend to think you have more "rest time" so you have more of an opportunity to place your mushrooms.  They cost no mana to place so in a spare moment where I have a free global cooldown, I'm putting down mushrooms somewhere!

It really hit home as I healed the Horridon fight with 2 Discs and 2 Pallies. There was nothing for me to do – no way my HoTs were going to get in more than a token amount of healing around all those shields. Our dps was completely on the ball and we had zero poisons or curses go out too, so by the end of the fight I was actually thinking “why am I even in here?”
- Jasyla, comment on Falling Leaves and Wings, April 17 2013
"Symbiosing a Paladin or Warrior would be my last choice since, really, who wants Cleanse or Intimidating Roar on a boss fight?"

Heh, I saw Jas wrote these two things and I thought I should tell her that to stop being bored in Horridon she should Symb a pally and dispel on the third door for fun LOL!  I used to complain about dispelling all the doors, but with the nerf to Horridon, the complaints seem to uwarranted now.

With all these buffs to our healing, I feel very competitive and more useful that I had in the previous tier.  Horridon is a good fight for me, as a druid, with all that running around, as is Council.  Council is so amazing for me, all that running around!  It's really hard to charge up mushrooms at times because of all the raid damage going - but at least my hots are getting used!

And, I hear with 5.3 there are MORE druid buffs!  I can't imagine that it will last, as they will probably smack us with a nerfbat after.
  • Ironbark CD halved to 60 seconds
  • Swiftmend's AOE effect radius up to 10 yards from 8
  • Wild Mushroom Bloom heals allies for 100% more and includes bonus healing from rejuvenation.
Wow, how much will a mushroom heal for now??  That will be crazy!  I can't imagine that PvP will be happy - the healing output from one mushroom will heal someone for at least 50% of their health!  Of course, people still need to position correctly, but mushrooms will be an amazing burst heal if they are buffed that much (though, they require planning).  I don't know about you, but I think that right now, it's a very nice time to be a resto druid. And I can't be the only one thinking that - it feels like every LFR I go in there are 4 healing druids AT LEAST!

4 comments:

  1. This is a great post Navi. I run with a monk and disc priest normally. As a resto druid I've read plenty of information saying we're not in great shape atm and while they are perfectly valid claims, I'm still really happy being a resto druid. Our mobility in fights is excellent. Like you I love mushrooms when I can use them fully charged and stacked under people, they get people up fast. I'm starting to play around with talents I haven't touched like SOTF. I was always under the impression it was a bad talent but now I'm starting to try it out, it actually seems really good on some fights. I can't wait to try it more.
    And yay roll on 5.3, druids look like they will be having some love.. if it stays that way :)

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    1. Thanks Zeirah! I see a lot of druids out there, so it must be going OK, I'm thinking!

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  2. This makes a lot of sense since the Druid has not benefited much from the past few expansions or patches. When Cata. came out I completly stopped playing my druid re-started a few of my other toons because they received nice up-dated abilities. So far I like the 5.2 patch and I will bring my druid out of retirement but I think that blizzard might have gone overboard with the big emphasis doing dailies.
    Still, it's good to see blizzard making a better effort to improve world of warcraft and not just add new territories and stuff.

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    1. I think there will always be tweaking with characters. I wonder if there will ever be time when it's all "perfect"?

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