So far, three of my chars have arrived at the beta-server, because other than the questing on Pandaria, I wanted to check out healing. I have of course taken a look at the new talents, even though I didn’t get to try them all in “normal” situations such as instances (still downloading parts of the data, and also, last night was raid-night in DS)
While the shaman- and priest-talent look nice, I was blown away by the changes to the druid. I dunno whether that is just early euphoria, but so far, this looks like FUN, and might help me get back into playing the resto-druid. I really loved the spec, but during Cata, I felt like something was missing, and compared to my shaman and priest, I felt like I was struggling more with the druid in the same situations… it just felt like something was missing.
1. Treant form
The good ol treant-form is back. In Cata, I used the glyph to make my tree-form look like the old treant, because it’s…I dunno, THE healing-form for me. Sure, the shape is rather cosmetic right now, but it sure feels good to see it being back, and it seems the backlash from druids convinced Blizz to bring it back.
I was hoping for this setup: If you want to, you can use the treant form (which is plain cosmetical, not boosting your stats), and in situations where you need to boost your output, you switch to the “new” tree-form… like a “primal tree” or something.
2. Cenarion Ward
One thing I like about shaman-healing is Earth Shield. It allows me to switch my attention to others in the group while the tank gets some healing from ES. Now, with CW, I can add that to the HoTs I have on the tank. Its not as same as the Earth Shield, as it has lesser charges, and a 30 sec CD. It does LAST 30 secs, but the charges get used up, so you can’t keep it on the tank if he keeps taking damage. Still, a nice tool.
3. Healing Mushrooms
Of course, a stationary effect you can trigger is tricky sometimes, but imagine a fight like Zon’Ozz… before the fight, or during the “bouncing phase”, you position them where the raid will stack, and use them when the dark phase starts, providing extra heals.
Or, if you know where the tank will keep the boss, and he won’t move much, you can place the shrooms there for an emergency heal. I am pretty sure that more and more possible uses will be found.
Love them or hate them, the mushrooms are an interesting mechanic for the druid in general (it took me a while to get used to them, but I actually like using them when I play balance), and it makes sense that there now is a healing-version. Let’s try to put it to use!
I can be a whole forest! Imagine being in treant form, then calling out three more treants that provide extra healing… a treant-emergency squad. I can’t measure yet how much healing output they add, but just like the shrooms, this can be a very useful CD when the group/raid takes a lot of damage.
Other stuff: Glyphs arent as essential anymore, they just add cosmetic effects or some useful stuff that fits your healing style. Still, I like the new swimform (orca)… as “classic” as the old form is, many players agree the swimform is incredibly ugly. I did use the Glyph of Rebirth (when using CR, the target comes back at 100% health…a nobrainer IMO), and will play with the others.
Obviously, I cant test out the lvl 90 talents yet, and with 3 healers at 85 and a monk I wanna lvl, it might be some time until I can, but so far, the changes to talents and glyphs seem like a lot of fun. Maybe it’s just because this stuff is new, but to me, it feels as if there are more options for the druid now, more Cooldowns and things like the Cenarion Ward, which might just make resto-style healing more fun for me again. Hope that will happen, and I hope that when I try to heal some instances, that those changes will turn out to actually make a difference =)