When you choose the Resto tree in which to apply your first talent point, you will gain the following bonuses:
The definitive class ability, Earth Shield will become trainable once you hit level 10.
Providing a passive 25% increase to healing power, Purification’s real power lies in the 0.5sec cast time reduction for Healing Wave and Greater Healing Wave, making them a baseline 2.5sec cast for all Restos.
Like many other healers, to encourage Resto Shaman to take more Spirit on gear, Blizzard incorporated Meditation as a part of Resto’s base talent tree. With Meditation, Restos will gain precisely half of their out of combat regen while in combat. In the new character window, this number is calculated for you and displayed as “In Combat Regen”.
The real reason you’re going to love speccing Resto, Deep Healing provides an increase to our healing based on the target’s health. The effect functions much like a sliding scale, with the maximum effect being achieved on a target at 1% HP and no effect being applied to a target at 100% HP. At level 80, you start with a maximum 20% gain in healing, and for every point of Mastery you gain (179.6 mastery rating is equal to 1 point), your maximum Deep Healing increases by 3%. Deep Healing’s effects stack with other healing multipliers, and were changed in 4.1 to modify the healing done by all spells (including Healing Stream Totem). The only heal not affected by Mastery is from the talent Cleansing Waters.
The following chart details the effects of Mastery and its application:
Finally, there are a couple things to remember when considering the effects that Deep Healing will have on your personal throughput:
1. Because of its scalable application, Deep Healing’s effects cannot be represented by a constant buff percentage. The % increase represents a MAXIMUM amount, which will only be achieved if the target of your heal is at ~1% HP at the time of the heal. More likely, your applicable Deep Healing range will be on targets at greater than 40% HP, in which case the benefits of Mastery will be significantly reduced. The following represents how much Deep Healing will benefit you at varying levels of target HP.
|Mastery||HP @ 30%||HP @40%||HP @ 50%|
2. Deep Healing’s benefits are offset by overhealing—the more overhealing that you do with a spell affected by Mastery, the less you are gaining per point of Mastery on your gear. So, ideally, to gain the best value from your gear’s Mastery, you need to aim for as little overhealing as possible.
An in-depth discussion on Resto Shaman’s Mastery can be found here: Resto Shaman Mastery: The Complete Story (+ Math!)
Note that “optional” spells are defined as those which has a marginal impact on performance, “recommended” talents are those which do have an impact on performance but are not vital, and “strongly recommended” was as close as I was willing to go to absolutely, unequivocally, do-you-really-want-the-math-on-this mandatory.
Restoration Tree Talents:
- Ancestral Resolve – Reduces the damage you take while casting by up to 10% (optional)
- Tidal Focus – Reduces the mana cost of your spells by up to 6% (strongly recommended)
- Spark of Life – Increases the (active and passive) healing your spells do on other targets by 6% and increases the healing you receive from all sources (active and passive) by 15%. Note that this effect is multiplicative when you heal yourself. (Strongly recommended)
- Improved Water Shield – Provides up to a 100% chance to gain a Water Shield orb when you land a critical heal with GHW, HW, or RT, a 60% chance when you crit with HS, and a 30% chance when you crit with CH. Do note, in regards to the latter spell, each CH bounce has the chance to proc Imp WS, so it is possible (although unlikely) that you will proc multiple mana returns on one CH cast. (Strongly recommended)
- Totemic Focus – Reduces the mana cost of your totems by 30% and increase their duration by 40%. Do note, the increased effect does apply to Mana Tide totem, adding 5 additional seconds to its duration, which in turn, equates to more regen. (Strongly recommended)
- Focused Insight – Reduces the mana cost of any heal which follows a successful shock and increases the effectiveness of that heal by 30%. Do note that Wind Shear will not proc this effect and the shock must land for FI to be activated. (Optional)
- Nature’s Guardian – Whenever your health is reduced to below 30%, your total HP is increased by 15% for 10 seconds and your threat against that target is reduced. (Optional, this is primarily a PVP talent, despite the inclusion of threat reduction)
- Ancestral Healing – Reduces the physical damage taken by a target of one of your critical heals. The effect lasts 15 seconds and can be refreshed by subsequent critical heals on the target in question, though it’s worth noting that the effect does not stack with multiple shaman nor does it stack with Priests’ Inspiration. (Strongly recommended)
- Nature’s Swiftness – Makes your next spell an instant-cast, provided that you cast it within 10-seconds of activating NS. NS can be combined with any cast-based spell in the Resto arsenal, including Healing Rain. (Strongly recommended)
- Nature’s Blessing – Increases the effectiveness of healing done on Earth Shielded targets by up to 15%. This applies to direct healing spells (HS, HW, GHW, RT’s initial hit and CH) and is shared between Resto shaman (meaning that your healing on an ES’ed target is increased even if it is not your ES on the target). Do note that this effect also stacks with other healing modifiers like Spark of Life and Focused Insight. (Strongly recommended)
- Soothing Rains – Increases the amount healed by your Healing Stream by up to 50% and increases the amount healed by your Healing Rain by up to 30%. (Strongly recommended)
- Improved Cleanse Spirit – Enables you to dispel magic effects along with curses. Do note that this no longer enables you to remove poisons or diseases. (Strongly recommended)
- Cleansing Waters – Reduces the cost of cleansing by up to 40% and provides a heal on the cleansed target. Do note that this heal is generally around 4k. (Optional)
- Ancestral Awakening – After you critically heal with any single-target healing spell (HS, HW, GHW, and RT), you will also heal the lowest HP target in your party or raid for up to 30% of the amount of the critical heal. Do note that this effect is not instant, as indicated in the tooltip, but rather follows your critical heal by about a 1-second lapse. (Strongly recommended)
- Mana Tide Totem – Increases party members’ Spirit by 350% for 12 seconds, 17 seconds when you pick up Totemtic Focus. Do note, the return is unique to each player based on their total Spirit, and the return does benefit from Meditation and other regen-increasing talents. (Strongly recommended)
- Telluric Currents – Will restore 40% of the damage dealt when you cast a Lighting Bolt. Do note, although this talent was intended to be mana-neutral, testing thus far has shown that the regen potential is in the realm of 1.5k mana per LB cast. Working LB’s into your rotation will yield a significant amount of mana in return. (Strongly recommended)
- Spirit Link Totem – Will link the health pools of all players within 10 yards of the totem, causing any damage or healing taken during the duration to be shared by all affected targets. More information about the nuances of Spirit Link can be found here. (Strongly recommended)
- Tidal Waves – After casting RT or CH, you will gain 2 charges of a Tidal Waves buff which will decrease the cast time of the following GHW or HW spells by 30% and increase the critical effect chance of Healing Surge by 30%. Tidal Waves will last until 2 spells are cast or after 10 seconds. (Strongly recommended)
- Blessing of the Eternals – Gives your Earthliving hot an 80% chance to proc on targets below 35% HP. (Recommended)
- Riptide – An instant cast spell which also applies a hot to the target, when applied to a target it will also increase the healing done by a CH hit by 25%, regardless of whether or not the target is the primary hit. (Strongly recommended)
Enhancement Tree Talents
- Elemental Weapons – Increases the passive bonus granted by Earthliving Weapon by up to 40% and increases the effectiveness of Unleash Elements. The boost on ELW equates to 213 spellpower, while the effect on UE: ELW is boosted by 50%. (Strongly recommended)
- Improved Shields – Provides up to a 15% increase in the return of Water Shield orbs and a 15% increase in the healing done by Earth Shield. This effect stacks with other healing modifiers like Spark of Life. (Recommended)
- Ancestral Swiftness – At 2/2 points this talent makes Ghostwolf an instant-cast, and provides a movement speed increase of 15% (comparable to the one gained through Lavawalker Enchant. Because this movement speed increase does not stack with the enchant, this means that you free up your boots for +50 Haste). (Recommended)
Elemental Tree Talents
- Acuity (Elemental) – With an increase of up to 3% on all spells (both dps and healing), Acuity goes a long way to making up some of the crit lost during the conversion to 31-point trees. (Strongly recommended)
In contrast to WotLK specs, the new 31-point talent trees allow for some flexibility based on playstyle and personal preference. As such, there are a handful of potential Resto specs out there, all of which are viable (although some may excel beyond others depending on the fight). You’ll notice that in the following builds, I’ll be sticking with some very core talents which will give you a significant edge in all encounters (but which I do get questioned about quite frequently):
- Totemic Focus – It’s a little-discussed fact, but mp5 actually returns mana in 2-second intervals, so your rate of regen is actually 40% of your in-combat regen value every 2 seconds. Keeping that in mind, the gain from this talent amounts to two additional ticks of in-combat regen during the extended (16.8sec) Mana Tide duration. When combined with double +Spirit on use trinkets, these two additional ticks can amount to upwards of 10k mana per MT drop—that’s nothing to scoff at.
- Nature’s Blessing – Although players oftentimes discount this talent as one for “tank healers”, NB is actually a boon for raid healers when utilized to its fullest extent. Not only does this talent affect direct heals like HW, HS, GHW and RT, but it also increases the primary hit of CH, and thus all subsequent hits, which in raid-healing situations can equate to a sizable increase in the total healing done. When combined with the fact that the lines between “raid healer” and “tank healer” are considerably blurred these days, I would highly advocate taking NB in any Resto healing spec.
- Ancestral Swiftness – Often overlooked by Resto Shaman (and by players in general), movement speed enchants and talents work to the player’s benefit by fractionally reducing travel time. And while the 15% gain to movement speed (+7% beyond the boot run speed enchant) won’t have you running laps around the boss while firing up Chain Heals, the second it saves you moving out of fire, away from AOE, or towards a charging tank (not to mention the instant-cast GW which is helpful in traveling long distances) is more than worth the investment of points.
- Telluric Currents – Lastly, the talent that some Restos love to hate, Telluric Currents provides a way for Restos to regen mana through Lightning Bolt casts. Although performance of this talent is lackluster for a newly dinged 85, with high average ilevels, its performance markedly improves, to the point where an average net return on an LB cast can range from 1.5 – 2.5k mana. Strategic timing and interweaving of your LB casts (during phase transitions, especially) can provide a multi-tasking Resto much greater longevity in fights designed to push your mana bar to its limits.
Ultimately, as is Blizzard’s intention, you won’t be able to get every talent point that you need. And like I mentioned above, some specs will be better than others for certain fights. But the best advice I can give when it comes to choosing a spec is—know what you’re giving up. Don’t take a spec because “everyone has it”, take it because it’s the right fit for the content that you’re raiding.
What it includes: Acuity (3), Ancestral Swiftness (2), Cleansing Waters (2), Blessing of Eternals (2)
What it excludes: Telluric Currents, Ancestral Resolve
Why it’s good: A solid entry-level spec for players just starting into dungeons, heroics and raiding, this spec benefits from a large majority of Resto talents, including Cleansing Waters, while excluding TC, which goes largely unused in dungeons and heroics. Fully-talent Acuity and Ancestral Swiftness also mean that you’re benefitting from the highest level of stats possible (for Crit and movement speed, respectively) while BoE aids in stabilizing groups during high-damage periods.
What it includes: Blessing of the Eternals (1), Cleansing Waters (1), Acuity (3), Ancestral Swiftness (2), Telluric Currents (2)
What it excludes: Ancestral Resolve
Why it’s good: A basic build that affords you a minor heal upon cleansing and still benefits from 3/3 in Acutiy, this spec is one I’d recommend for healers getting into raiding. With a limited number of harsh dispel mechanics, the heal from Cleansing Waters constitutes a loss of convenience at most. Obviously, the loss of 2/2 Blessing of the Eternals will be less than ideal on Chimaeron, however the allocation of points in TC (if utilized) will provide a greater benefit in increasing your longevity.
What it includes: Blessing of the Eternals (2), Acuity (2), Ancestral Swiftness (2), Telluric Currents (2), Ancestral Resolve (1)
What it excludes: 1 point in Acuity, Cleansing Waters
Why it’s good: The talent spec that I used through normal modes and am currently using for hardmodes, this spec drops a point in Ancestral Resolve to benefit from 5% incoming damage reduction (which although a small reduction, still constitutes mana saved over the course of an encounter). 2/2 Blessing of the Eternals is achieved by dropping a point in Acuity, which although a reduction in hps, can be made up for by a more crit-heavy gear set. The movement speed boost and instant-GW are a boon in movement-heavy encounters, because when combined with smart positioning, increase the amount of available time you have to spend healing or regenning through TC.