PTR 4.0.6 Resto Druid changes
In the last few days Blizzard have updated their patch notes for version 4.0.6 on the PTR. In addition to the usual slight buffs/nerfs to mobs, instances and everything else there are a few slight changes to resto druids as well.
“Empowered Touch now also affects Regrowth. In addition, after Tree of Life is no longer active, this talent will only refresh the most recently cast or refreshed Lifebloom, and will not refresh other copies of Lifebloom.” This one I am unsure about, atm I don’t use regrowth a lot so I am not that bothered about it being affect by empowered touch, however the lose of multiple lifeblooms could be quite serious. I know a few people used this trick (exploit?) to basically roll LB on multiple targets after using ToL. Now though, that trick is removed as casting HT/nourish/regrowth will only refresh the most recent cast/refresh of LB. Oh well, all good things come to an end.
“Natural Shapeshifter has been reduced to a 3/6-second increase to Tree of Life’s duration, down from 5/10.” This is quite serious, especially combined with changes to ToL anyway (noted below), this now means that a fully talented ToL will last just 31 secs instead of 40, Thats nearly a 25% reduction in duration while not buffing it in any way. Hopefully somewhere along the line we will get some minor buffs that mean we are having to pop ToL less but atm we have lost 25% uptime with no discernible gain.
“Symbiosis (Mastery) benefit from mastery increased by approximately 16%.” As I have always said something that increases healing for free is no bad thing, and that is exactly what this does. If you are a healer that rates mastery quite highly (I believe the general rule is if more than 30% of your casts use mastery then its good) then this is an immediate bonus. Your spells will be healing for slightly more, which means in the long run you will be using less mana and able to cast more.
“Tree of Life no longer grants immunity to Polymorph. In addition, its duration has been reduced to 25 seconds, down from 30.” I believe the polymorph change is a PvP thing to avoid druids popping ToL in arenas and avoiding some CC, it doesn’t really affect PvE that much. However, the nerf to duration isn’t great as I said above (see Natural Shapeshifter notes).
“Wild Growth healing has been increased by 30%, and the cooldown has been reduced to 8 seconds, down from 10.” This change I do like, WG is a staple spell for me and since Cata it has seemed a little weak on the AoE healing front and really good for nothing except a bit of a top up, now that its healing has been increased and the CD lower it becomes more viable to chain cast during bad AoEs, especially when the druid is also getting hit so that Tranquility isn’t an option.
On the whole, if these changes are permanent and make it past the PTR I will be quite happy, sure the ToL nerf is a bit meh, but we gain extra healing from WG and our mastery so overall not too bad.
There are also a another change that may affect us too, as many druids (including myself) are alchemists. We now have a new alchemists stone! Instead of the frankly not-very-good-unless-you-tank trinket, there will now be similar stones but with agility, strength or intellect on them. I am not on the PTR so I am unsure of the exact figure, but looking at other trinkets and the iLevel of the stone it should have around 380 intellect unless they adjust the other stats. So we gain a trinket with potentially 380 intellect, mastery and a bonus to potions (always a help in these days of mana issues)
EDIT: They have now reverted the ToL being non immune to polymorph, so it is back how it was 🙂