Welcome to the beginning of new things! It’s here – patch day – the day of DOOM, or excitement… or maybe a little bit of both. One of the first things you’ll notice when you log in today is that you have no more talents!
Ok. The first thing you’ll notice is that your interface is all buggy (if you use UI mods) or that your lag is obscenely high over by the Inscription trainer.
The *second* thing you’ll notice (hopefully) is that all of your talent points have been refunded to you – a fresh start and a chance to try out some really tasty new talents. Remember that all gear now is done by +Spellpower, so healing specs can do more damage than in previous builds, but you should see only small changes in the *actual* healing output of your spells. The +Spellpower number will be much lower than your previous +Healing number. Fret not, and forge forward with fortitude! (wait… that’s still a priest spell)
First off, I need to introduce you to Earthliving Weapon.
No longer will Resto shamans have to quibble with inferior weapon buffs (or be disappointed when the Enhancements gloat about Win-fury) – we have our own weapon buff now, and it’s TASTY.
Not only does it give your weapons a yummy green glow, but this sucker has a glyph to improve it, and is buffed by one of the new talents, Blessing of the Eternals. Not only that, but it can proc off every bounce of chain heal (not “each spell” but “each HEAL”), and it receives a bonus from your +Spellpower that’s equivalent to any other 12 second HoT. The combination of talents with Earthliving and Chain Heal glyphs will make AOE healing a thing of unsurpassed beauty.
Minor Talent Tree Adjustments and Additions:
- Tidal Focus and Totemic Focus have switched places. This doesn’t really matter, as Totemic Focus isn’t where you should be spending points anyway.
- Nature’s Blessing now increases healing ONLY, instead of Spelldamage and Healing. This is a balance issue with the +Spellpower change (since healing spells get a larger bonus than damage spells). Minor, and not really going to change much.
- New Talent: Improved Earth Shield (2 points, requires 40 points in Resto and 1 point in Earth Shield) – Increases the charges of your earth shield by 1/2, and increases the amount of healing done by each charge by 10/20%. Bread and butter talent, but nothing earthshattering.
Major Talent Tree Changes and Additions (YAY!)
- New Talent: Tidal Force (Requires 10 points in Restoration) – Increases the critical effect chance of your Healing Wave, Lesser Healing Wave, and Chain Heal spells by 60%. Each critical heal reduces the chance by 20%.
- This talent, by itself, is kind of nice – hey look – I can force my next heal to crit. It really shines when combined with Ancestral Awakening (all the way down at the bottom of the tree).
- New Talent: Improved Water Shield (Requires 10 points in Restoration) – When you gain a critical effect from your Healing Wave, Lesser Healing Wave or Riptide spells, you have a 33/66/100% chance to instantly consume a Water Shield Orb. Another reason for all the crit talents and abilities you’ll see flying around, this is a nice mana regen buff for stacking crit rating.
- New Talent: Cleanse Spirit (Requires 5 points in purification and 30 points in Restoration) – 1 point – Cleanse the spirit of a friendly target, removing 1 poison effect, 1 disease effect, and 1 curse effect.
- Shaman get an all-in-one decurse ability (like Paladin’s Cleanse, only not as awesome). VERY useful!
- New Talent: Blessing of the Eternals (2 points, requires 35 points in Restoration) Increases the critical effect chance of your spells by 2/4% and increases the chance to apply the Earthliving heal over time effect on the target by 80% when they are at or under 35% total health.
- A nice buff to an already nice weapon buff, this one is pretty self explanatory – not only do you get more crit (see below, for Ancestral Awakening) but your Earthliving Weapon kicks in almost doubletime when things start to go bad.
- New Talent: Ancestral Awakening (Requires 40 points in Restoration) – When you critically heal with your Healing Wave, Lesser Healing Wave, or Riptide, you summon an Ancestral spirit to aid you, instantly healing the lowest percentage health friendly party or raid target within 40 yards for 10/20/30% of the critical heal.
- And now all the crit buffs make sense! This is a nice passive heal that’ll come in handy – especially since Riptide is one of your new o-shit buttons (basically, you have an o-shit button that comes with a free second heal!).
- New Talent: Tidal Waves (Requires 45 points in Restoration) – You have a 20/40/60/80/100% chance after you cast Chain Heal to lower the cast time of your next Lesser Healing Wave or Healing Wave spell by 30%. In addition, your Healing Wave gains an additional 4/8/12/16/20% of your bonus healing effects and your Lesser Healing Wave gains an additional 2/4/6/8/10% of your bonus healing effects.
- This is a handy little passive spell that will help out with Shaman versatility in small groups. While in large groups, Chain Heal is still King, Chain Heal doesn’t heal 5 mans all by itself very well – and this buff lets you chain heal to top off the melee and then pop two bigger (and faster) heals on your tank. Good stuff.
And the Piece de Resistance… the new 51 point talent for Restoration shamans, here behind door number 3…
- New Talent: Riptide (Requires 50 points in Restoration) – Heals a friendly target for 849 to 919 and another 665 over 15 sec. Your next Chain Heal cast on that primary target within 15 sec will consume the healing over time effect and increase the amount of the Chain Heal by 25%.
- This spell has trainable ranks from 60-80 – I’ve put in the stats for rank 2 here, the level 70 version.
- While this isn’t a game changing spell, it gives Shamans something we’ve never had before. An instant heal on a reasonable cooldown. No more choosing between self-death in fire or tank-death while running – pop a Riptide, smack him with a lesser healing wave, and then consume the Chain Heal HoT for extra melee sharing.
- Also – this talent can proc Tidal Waves. Another “versatility” spell that won’t change Shaman in raiding, but will be really nice to have on those leveling 5 man runs!
Hopefully that’s a good rundown of the changes that are directly located right here in your very own Restoration tree. I’m quite pleased with them (on paper and with VERY MINIMAL testing on the PTR), and hopefully will remain just as pleased with them as I spend the rest of this week figuring out how the heck I play a Shaman again! Whee!
This is the build I’m going to be ending up with – a full 57 points in Resto. I’ve not yet really nailed down just what I want to do in the Enhancement tree, but I’m pretty sure that’s where I’m headed. Some variation of this build will be my 70 build.
Keep your eyes open here for run-downs on the other shaman trees, as well as (less detailed) looks at the other classes I’m going to be working on for the next month.
Good luck, and may the inscription lag Loot-Fu be with you!
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