Welcome to the Neat guide on Restoration druids in Wrath of the LichKing. This guide will focus on endgame25-man content and will cover stats andpriorities, specs, healing spells andbreakdowns, glyphs, gear/enchants,gemming, common questions withmacro/addons and tricks.
Stats and Priorities
Stats and priorities. I will do these in order of importance.
This is by far our most important stat to get capped before we start pouring on the spell power. Why is that you ask? The reason why it’s important to get haste capped is simple. It allows us to cast rejuvenation, our best heal, as fast as possible in the game.
The game has a built-in 1 second global cooldown or GCD. That’s the reason why you cannot spam your instant cast spells as fast as you can spam them.
All casters have a built-in 1.5 second global cooldown. And in order to get our rejuvenation down to 1 second, you will need 735 haste with 5/5 Gift of the Earthmother talents and 3/3 in Celestial Focus talents.
Without the 3/3 in Celestial Focus, you will need a haste rating of 856. For instance, let’s say you are a druid who can only cast rejuvenation every 1.5 seconds versus a druid who is haste capped and can cast one every second. After 6 seconds, you would have casted 4 rejuvenations versus the haste capped resto who is casting 6.
The 2 haste specs, 735 and 856, are only soft cap specs. To be hard capped, we will need the following: a shaman’s 5% haste totem and either Improved Moonkin Form or Swift Retribution from a paladin in our raid composition.
The totem in either of the latter talents will provide us with enough haste in 25-man raids to be hard capped for the 1 second rejuvenation. It’s important to remind your raid leader, in order to maximize your healing, that you will need these buffs.
Real quick, I want to cover why you don’t want to go over haste capped. While going a few points over might be necessary due to your gear, going anything past that is really kind of pointless as it offers no bonuses.
Simply because all of your spells minus regrowth and healing touch will be at the global cooldown in a 25-man raid. Spell power increases our healing. And the reason why this is so important is because most of our healing is done through HoTs or healing over time spells. And we want these to hit as hard as we can.
By far our 3rd best stat. With the Improved Tree of Life, any spirit we have, 15% of it is converted into spell power. Not only is that great, but spirit also is great for our mana regeneration.
Critical Strike Rating
While critical strike rating is good for those players rolling tier 9 gear, it becomes not as good as haste at the higher end due to the fact that haste is more important and a better pickup gear-wise.
Once you reach the haste cap however, crit should be something you aim to pick up for those rare times you do find yourself casting direct heals. Do not gem for crit. Simply after hitting the haste cap, gear up for it.
Intellect increases our mana pool and crit rating. Other than that, what comes off your gear, don’t go around stacking for it.
MP5. While it may look good, it gives us no benefit to spell power like spirit does and does not scale with druids as well.
Specs. There are 2 specs that you could possibly roll as I’ve mentioned before. The 735 haste cap spec and the 856 haste cap spec. So, which spec is better and why? Well, as you can see by looking at the talents, rolling the 735 spec allows for less talents in the restoration tree. While some people may say, “Well, those are just useless talents anyway”, that could not be further from the truth.
Everything in the 856 spec is meant to maximize all of our heals even for those heals we do not use as much. Let’s break down a few of the talents used in both specs and compare them.
The 856 spec, Living Seed, great for those times when you directly heal a tank or proc your lifebloom effect on him or even a swiftmend heal. This heal acts like a shaman’s earth shield. Not that you would be spamming a tank all day with this but when you do, it is a nice bonus heal to have.
Natural Perfection. This talent provides you with more crit for those times you do direct heal. And since there’s nowhere in the talent tree to pick up any more spell power, it is a good choice.
Empowered Touch, a great addition for our best hard-hitting direct heal, nourish, and also good if you’re running Glyph of Nourish. Both specs use Revitalize. In just reading this talent, you could see why it’s such a great talent pickup. Both of our top two heals proc it so it’s a no brainer why it’s a must have.
Great way to keep your DPS up and give them more mana, rage and energy as well as runic power. Rogues, feral druids and death knights really rely on this to push their DPS to the max. Also great for the abomination on Professor Putricide as you can give him more energy so he could slow more oozes.
The 735 spec. Okay, yes. You have to waste a point to get to Celestial Focus. It’s a waste of a talent point but necessary to get to Celestial Focus. You could put this point in anything in the balance tree you wish.
Nature’s Grace, this talent looks like it would be great. However, it does nothing for the majority of our spells since they are HoTs. Nor does it help with the others as much once we reach either of the soft haste cap specs and are in a raid group.
It is needed only in the 735 soft cap spec in order to reach Celestial Focus. Do not use this if you are at the 856 haste cap spec or if you have a little bit more. A lot of people put points in here thinking it’s a great thing to have even after they reach the caps.
Read the talent carefully. This talent would only affect Healing Touch, Regrowth, and Nourish. Nourish is already at 1.08 second cast time outside of a raid. And thus, once in a raid, gains no benefits from this talent due to the haste buffs provided by your raid being able to cap this heal at a global cooldown.
Well, what about Regrowth? It’s at a 1.44 second cast time when using the 856 spec. In a raid, this drops to 1.1 seconds if you have the proper buffs. So even in a raid with full haste buffs, you’re only shaving off .1 seconds.
Again, this is a pointless waste of 3 talents points and considering we don’t do a lot of direct healing as it is because of our other spells being better. When it does proc, you have 3 seconds to use it. If you’re in an AOE fight, for example, you’re not going to stop blanketing the raid just to cast that one specific heal to shave off .1 seconds on Regrowth.
Well, what about Healing Touch? I’ll cover this in the spells portion of the video a little further on. I see so many druids running this in their specs even after 8 years on Warmane. And I cannot understand why anyone was using this talent in 25-man raids.
So in comparing the talents to each other, the 856 spec provides us with more healing options and more power than the 735 spec does.
Healing spells and the breakdown of each. Rejuvenation or rejuv is our best heal. You want to spray this throughout the raid as much as possible which is called blanketing. The reason we do this is to anticipate heavy raid damage before it actually starts.
Swiftmend also works in conjunction with Rejuvenation. To get ahead on your healing, you also want to start pre-HoTting or casting your rejuvs right before the encounter starts.
If you are running the Revitalize talent as you should be, make sure you try to keep this up almost all the time on any energy-based class as this is the only spell that gives them energy back minus their own abilities and it is a huge DPS boost to them and your raid.
Wild Growth. Wild Growth should be cast every time it’s off cooldown. It is a very powerful heal and should be cast on raid members standing in a group so that the heal hit its maximum amount of targets. Casting this heal on a target not stacking up is also a loss in healing and does not help your raid.
Swiftmend. Swiftmend should be used on every global cooldown if there’s a player who is at low health. It is an amazing heal that could hit as hard as a paladin and shaman’s top heal. I’ve seen procs in the 30k plus range possible.
It’s like having other instant cast hard hitting heal at your fingertips to use. This is one of our best heals to use while on the move and when you need a target up.
Regrowth. Regrowth is kind of our ‘oh shit’ spam heal for burns when Heroism is thrown and the raid is taking massive damage. Or if you have something like GTS procs. Also a great idea to keep this rolling on the tanks and players who are constantly taking large amounts of damage.
Lifebloom. Lifebloom is a weird spell that should be used with caution. Stacking it should only be done on tanks and other certain times like Mark of the Fallen Champion on DBS and only if you have the mana pool to do so.
It sucks up a lot of our mana. Use your Clearcasting procs to cast mana-free Lifebloom spells that will give you the mana effect back as well.
Good for fights where tanks are getting hit hard such as Heroic Lich King and they need all the healing possible while your range group is busy moving from traps. Also try not to refresh this if you have 3 stacks on a target as it will further drain your mana.
Nourish. Nourish is our go to heal to get players up fast. Remember, it gains bonuses from HoTs already on the target. Try to use it on tanks and low raid members who have a HoT on them already.
Another great heal for Heroic Lich King any other time you need on demand healing.
Tranquility, party heals only. Good for when you feel your party members are taking large amounts of damage and need to be topped off fast. It is also a great combo to use the GTS and Hero/Bloodlust.
Healing Touch. It does basically nothing that a Nourish can’t do. Only good for Nature’s Swiftness macro. The cast time for this spell is really what puts it behind the curve with our usage of it. It is just too long of a cast time for it to be any use to us.
What about using the Glyph of Healing Touch? Getting the Glyph of Healing Touch usually means you’ll have to put 5 points into Naturalist as well. Compared to using the Glyph of Nourish.
Nourish is a better throughput. You’ll also have to account for moving 5 points into Naturalist which, depending on what points you end up moving around, will generally hurt the crit bonus of the heal. Thus making it less effective.
The first two are must haves for any resto druids. Our third glyph, however, is really a toss of what you think you would like more.
Swiftmend. it saves us a global cooldown which means we do not have to recast the rejuvenation or regrowth on the target affected by the swiftmend.
Wild Growth, hitting one more target with the spell’s an awesome effect and really helps healing the raid. Possibilities for 3rd glyph slot; Glyph of Rejuvenation, not to be confused with the Glyph of Rapid Rejuvenation, adds a little extra healing that may be possible for those who are getting hit hard. I find this glyph to be very useful in pugs where other healers seem to be slacking.
Glyph of Innervate, great for the extra mana regen for both the person you casted it on and yourself.
Glyph of Nourish, great for fights like Heroic Lich King or Valithria Dreamwalker or just a nice boost in general to this heal.
If you are doing zero buff content with really good healers, I would recommend this glyph over the other two.
Why no rapid rejuvenation glyph, is a great question I get asked a lot. And has a very simple yet complex answer. It’s great for 10-man, bad for 25-man. We were talking about AOE fights. The glyph can be useful in fights such as DBS.
However, as there is much less raid damage going on and the damage is more focused on a few players in the entire encounter. It reduces the tick on your rejuv from 18 seconds to 15 seconds when you’re at the 856 haste cap, of course, which means you can HoT 3 less targets before having to press your rejuv plus your chances to swiftmend more raid members drops by three.
To break it a little bit down more for you guys, rejuvenation when specced into Nature’s Splendor is an 18 second tick, meaning it will hit a target six times every three seconds. With rapid rejuv, it hits faster and thus cancels out the three seconds on the timer.
Same amount of healing ticks for both of them so the max number of rejuvs, however, that you could spam while having this glyph is 15 versus without it at 18. That's three more targets you could have HoTed up and three more targets that basically could have been used for swiftmend.
Rapid rejuv also does a lot more over healing on 25-man content since most of the fights are AOE fights in the ICC encounters. This gets even worse when heroism is thrown and you have this glyph on. It jumps down to around 10 seconds depending on your haste, over healing by large amounts.
You'll want more rejuvs ticking on more players because damage is random. Rapid rejuv again does not work well for that.
End Game Gear
Gear. Best in slot items are as follows. For tier 10, you want the head, the legs, the hands and the shoulders. Your non-tier gear, your chestpiece will be the Sanguine Silk Robes from Blood Prince Council.
The neck will be the Bone Sentinel’s Amulet from Marrowgar.
The back will be the Greatcloak of the Turned Champion or the Cloak of the Burning Dusk, Saurfang and Ruby Sanctum.
And I'll cover those a little bit later. Bracers of the Fiery Night from Ruby Sanctum. Belt is Professor’s Bloodied Smock from Professor Putricide.
Feet: Boots Of Unnatural Growth from Gunship.
Rings, the Ashen Verdict reputation ring and the Memory of Malygos from Sindragosa.
Idol is Idol of the Black Willow from the badge vendor.
Trinkets: Glowing Twilight Scale and Althor’s Abacus; Ruby sanctum and Gunship.
Weapon: Val’anyr, Hammer of Ancient Kings, the quest in Ulduar.
Offhand: Sundial of Eternal Dusk from Sindragosa.
Enchants are as follows. Head: you want the 30 spell power, 20 crit strike rating from the Kirin Tor which you’ll need revered reputation to get.
Shoulders: 24 spell power, 15 critical strike rating from Sons of Hodir and you’ll need to be exalted.
Cape is 23 haste. Chest: 10 stats. Wrists: 30 spell power. Gloves: 28 spell power.
Leggings, 58 spell power, 20 spirit.
Boots: either the Tuskarr’s Vitality or the 18 spirit.
Weapon: 63 spell power to a one-hand or 81 spell power to a staff.
Questions About Gear Choices
I usually get a lot of questions about this as well which I will try to cover. Why is a cloth chest our best in slot? This is before Cataclysm and the buff that gave you a bonus for wearing your armor class set.
The chestpiece offers the highest amount of haste because the pieces such as your chest and legs have higher stats than those of the other pieces such as hands and shoulders. This is to maximize your stats, to boost your haste from gear and not gems which is a loss in spell power.
What if I don’t have the legendary? Look for items with haste and spell power first if you are in a good enough gear that would keep you close to the haste cap. I would suggest the Royal Scepter one-hander from Lich King or Trauma from Rotface.
If you do not have a good offhand, then Archus, Greatstaff of Antonidas from Lich King becomes your best in slot. Swapping weapons for certain fights such as swapping to Trauma on Lich King’s Frostmourne room is a good idea and will benefit your raid with the healing it provides.
Does the legendary mace really do that much healing? Yes it does. The mace really excels at any AOE healing fight and is great for Infest on Heroic Lich King to help your disc priest cover on bubbles. However, there are some drawbacks.
For one, you will lose haste when you acquire it compared to some other weapons, making you gem more haste and losing some spell power. It also does not stack with others who have the mace. As in you do not get a double shield, only one shield per mace.
The bubble will also be taken off first if you and the disc priest have bubbled the same target so long as you are the one who bubbled the target first.
Why Bracers of the Fiery Night and Gunship boots over Phaseshifter’s Bracers and the Plague Scientist’s Boots? What about other bracers in the game? None of the other bracers that we would use have a higher combination with any boots or any offset pieces that these 2 sets provide.
So pieces like Death Surgeon’s Sleeves and Bracers of Eternal Dreaming will not be included in this comparison. By doing the math, we come up with the following.
So they nearly have the same stats. You will lose a ton of haste. However, if you’re gemming appropriately and assuming your gear’s best in slot, you should only have to use three 12 spell power + 10 haste gems to get at or slightly above cap depending on which cloak you have on.
You should also be able to hit the socket bonus on the Gunship boots. Thus giving you an additional +7 spell power since the Plague Scientist’s Boots have a blue gem socket and thus, the bonus cannot be hit without using a purple or blue gem which would be a bigger stat loss.
So including the 15% spirit conversion to spell power, the total difference between them are as follows.
Why not use Crushing Coldwraith Belt over Bloodied Smock? Well, the stats look similar minus the change from spirit to crit rating. It is easily possible to hit the socket bonus on the Bloodied Smock, thus giving you a boost in spell power.
And when you add in the 15% conversion of spirit into spell power,
Bloodied Smock actually has 18 more spell power. Even if you hit Coldwraith socket bonus, it would still fall short in terms of spell power. Not to mention, you would have to gem additional 12 spell power + 10 haste gem somewhere else in your gear, assuming you have one there.
Why not use the Ring of Phased Regeneration over Memory of Malygos? Phased Regen has more base spell power plus the socket bonus. So in theory, it looks better. However, Memory does have spirit on it.
And when you add in the 15% spirit to spell power conversion and all the raid buffs which will increase your spirit, they actually have the same amount of spell power. The difference in the rings is how spirit works with mana regeneration compared to MP5. You will actually be getting more mana returns from using the Memory of Malygos versus the MP5 on Phased Regen.
Why that 4-set? Why not use the shoulders with haste and the crit chest instead?
Because the shoulders have lower haste gain than the chest does. The chest has a higher set of stats that the shoulders do not have. Thus getting the haste cap is easier by choosing the chestpiece over the shoulders for the haste stats.
Greatcloak of the Turned Champion or Cloak of the Burning Dusk? Greatcloak will put you exactly at the haste cap and offer more mana regen but Cloak of the Burning Dusk will provide more crit, 1.5% roughly and 13 more spell power. In fights that last longer and harder on mana like Lich King, you might want to swap out cloaks to fit the raid setup.
Gemming. Your gems should be itemized to help you haste cap while not sacrificing too much to help you stack more spell power gems. Reckless Ametrine, 12 spell power, 10 haste. Runed Cardinal Ruby, 23 spell power.
Meta gem is going to be the +25 spell power, +2% intellect or the +21 intellect and chance to restore mana on spellcast.
Why no spirit gems? You should not be gemming for mana regeneration. You should be focused on haste or spell power to maximize your haste cap or your healing spells. Druids have one of the most powerful mana regeneration spells in the game. Besides gemming for 2 or 3 spirit, it’s not really going to have that much of an impact on your mana return.
But what about the socket bonuses? No, guys. Hit them where you can but do not gem all your gear to hit them. Let’s say, for example, that the BIS chest I’m wearing has a +23 spell power gem, +12 spell power +10 haste gem, and +12 spell power +10 spirit gem in it to hit the socket bonus of 9 spell power. So that’s 47 spell power + 10 haste + 10 spirit.
Now let’s add in the socket bonus and the 15% spirit conversion to spell power from the Improved Tree of Life talent. This will give us a grand total of 57 spell power + 10 haste and + 10 spirit.
However, let’s say you’re already at the haste cap, adding the other 12 spell power + 10 haste gem just added another unneeded 10 haste. If you had rolled all +23 spell power gems instead, you’re talking 69 total spell power.
Common questions. Is there a rotation that we should use? Yes and no. When healing, there is no real rotation. A lot can happen that makes a rotation useless. Breaking off the soul heal, or using some CDs to help a raid member out, really prevent any healer from using a set rotation.
That being said though, rejuv and wild growth are our bread and butter spells that we should be using most of the time to proc things like revitalize, our idol and our tier gear benefits from both.
Is the 4-set bonus from tier 10 worth it? Yes. it does around anywhere between 6% to 10% of my total healing in any AOE fight. This proc helps me to blanket most, if not all the raid, in any AOE fights. For those who think that 2% chance is too low or don’t see it proccing enough, then you’re not blanketing enough. Every tick of rejuv has a chance to proc this free rejuvenation.
Powershift Macro (all forms) for breaking snares fast and staying in form:
/cast [stance:1] !Dire Bear Form; [stance:4] !Travel form; [stance:3] !Cat Form; [stance:5] !Tree of Life
Nature's Swiftness + Healing Touch
/cast Nature's Swiftness
/cast Healing Touch
Nature's Swiftness + Rebirth
/cast Nature's Swiftness
Flask: Flask of the Frost Wyrm for increased spell power or Flask of Pure Mojo if you’re running low on mana.
Tips and Tricks
A neat trick as I mentioned before that you could do to conserve mana is when your Omen of Clarity procs, is to cast Lifebloom and you will still get the mana back effect from the spell without having the cost of the spell. Essentially, free mana.
I know a lot of players ask me, “Who should I cast my Wild Growth on to maximize the effect”? Since ranged are usually spread out during most fights, I tend to hit those guys with my Rejuvenation more. Hit the melee every 6 seconds with my Wild Growth. Thus covering both groups.
If you’re ever in doubt however, go stand in a group and cast it on yourself. Do not refresh HoTs before the timer expires. Clipping yourself only hurts your healing and mana. Keep an eye on your timers or whatever you’re using to track your HoTs on your unit frames.
What unit frames should I use? Debates still go on to this day.
Grid, Grid2, Healbot, VuhDo, etc. It’s really a matter of personal use. I,myself, prefer Grid2 for its smooth look and upgraded abilities over Grid. Use what is most comfortable for you. You could find these addons I named above and get them to work by using wowace, curse or wowinterface and searching for the previous downloads and getting the latest version dated for 3.3.5.
What about other addons? ForteXorcist for cooldown tracking and EventAlert to watch for key procs. Clique is a great mouseover addon in conjunction with your raid frames.
What about professions? To get the maximum effect from your professions, choose ones that boost spell power. If you really are about min maxing your gear, drop your gathering professions and go do professions such as jewelcrafting and enchanting.
I hope you guys enjoyed the guide. I will try to answer any questions down below in the comment section. Also, make sure you check the description and click on the links there as I think a lot of those will help answer some of your questions you guys may have.