Resto Druid 9.1 FAQ

Last Updated: 2 December

Patch 9.1 is shaping up to be a decent one for Resto Druid. Our healing throughput is unrivalled, we have some of the strongest cooldowns in the game, and several other specs saw nerfs. It’s still unlikely that you see many resto druids in the world first race, but when well played the spec has a huge amount to offer the average raid or mythic+ team.

Are we changing Covenant?

In raid? No, Night Fae remains dominantly powerful in all types of raid content. In Mythic+ you have more choice. Night Fae is very good for healing, Necrolord is great for personal DPS and Kyrian gives you incredible group benefit through the new legendary. You can basically play whichever you like. Venthyr is likely the second strongest option for raid, but it’s much less flexible than Night Fae and doesn’t put out quite as much healing.

9.1 Legendaries

Replacing Current Legendaries

The Domination Socket system requires that we leave the Helm, Shoulders, Chest, Gloves and Boots slots open for special Domination pieces that’ll drop from the new raid. That sadly means that if you might need to recraft a few of your existing legendaries as follows:

  • If you (correctly) crafted Vision of Unending Growth in the Helm slot then it’ll need to be remade in the new Legs slot that’ll open in 9.1. This is of lower priority with the new Celestial Spirits buffs (mentioned below)
  • If you crafted Verdant Infusion in either of the current options (Shoulders / Gloves) then it’ll need to be remade in the new Cape slot.

You’ll want to recraft before thinking about rank 5s and 6s to save yourself time and energy later. This was particularly poor planning on Blizzards part, but it’s gone live all the same.

The new hotness: Covenant legendaries

9.1 adds a new legendary specific to each of the four covenants.

  • Celestial Spirits (Night Fae)

    Craft on: Legs

    Recommended Missives: Haste / Crit

    Blizzard recently announced a buff to Celestial Spirits, increasing the number of spells you get within a Convoke cast to 9 (was 6). This has a side effect of increasing the number of Flourishes you get. What was previously a so-so niche legendary is now incredibly strong, and one you will want as you start raid progression.

    Here’s some stuff you should know:

    • Each set of two convokes will proc exactly 1 Flourish cast approximately 85% of the time (was ~70% pre-buff)
    • Soulbinds like Grove Invigoration and Field of Blossoms are still full duration / stacks, despite getting twice as many Convoke casts.

    This is how many free Flourish casts you can expect per fight, assuming it’s worthwhile to Convoke on cooldown:

    In Mythic+ this is a more niche option. It actually feels very good to play since it basically gives you a full party heal on an extremely low cooldown. Those doing higher keys are likely to still fall back to Verdant Infusion for healing or Draught of Deep Focus / Circle of Life and Death for damage.

  • Unbridled Swarm (Necrolord)

    Craft on: Wrist (to avoid Domination socket)

    Recommended Missives: Haste + a secondary of your choice.

    While Necrolord isn’t particularly competitive in PVE content, it does have one key strength: huge single target damage. Unfortunately Adaptive Swarm already has a very complimentary legendary in Verdant Infusion, and Unbridled Swarm just ends up being a weaker version in most situations.

  • Sinful Hysteria (Venthyr)

    Craft on: Waist (to avoid Domination socket)

    Recommended Missives: Haste + a secondary of your choice.

    I’ll have more commentary on this in the next few days. There is a reasonable chance that it becomes the legendary of choice for the rare Venthyr raiders, so long as you are in a scenario where the damage window is long enough to justify it’s use.

  • Kindred Affinity (Kyrian)

    Craft on: Neck (to avoid domination socket)

    Recommended Missives: Haste + a secondary of your choice.

    This is actually quite a strong legendary, if such an idea was on any other covenant it might be a real contender in all content types. As-is, this is the de-facto pick in Mythic+ where the group DPS benefit makes it incredibly powerful.

9.1 Domination Sockets

Full Domination Socket Guide:

You can get your own version of the above chart, tailored to your character, in the Domination Socket Analysis module in QE Live.

They are still actively tuning Domination Sockets, despite the patch having gone live almost two weeks ago. Should they push through some bug fixes, the Frost set in particular could quickly rise in value. As it stands you will instead socket the three Unholy shards and the two healing-focused frost gems.


The patch adds three new rows to each of our existing Soulbind trees. This section is going to be Night Fae specific as the majority of the theorycrafting is currently focused on it, but information for other covenants will develop through the patch.

New Traits

  • Niya

    Called Shot (+ Defensive Conduit): When you critically strike you gain 20% movement speed for 5 seconds. May only occur every 10 seconds.

    Survivor’s Rally (+ Finesse Conduit): When you fall below 50% health, you regain 20% over 10 seconds and receive +5% incoming healing. 60 second cooldown.

    Honestly either of these are fine. We are already ridiculously good in both mobility and tankiness.

    Bonded Hearts: Gaining a stack of redirected anima from Grove Invigoration heals up to 5 allies for 2% of their max health. If any of them are of another covenant increase both the mastery amount and healing by 50% for 5 seconds.

    Recommended Tree

    Wowhead link

    Finesse Conduits are flexible. Take Herbs instead of Burrs or a third potency in all scenarios.

  • Dreamweaver

    Cunning Dreams (+Defensive Conduit): Soulshape and Flicker slow enemies near your starting point by 50% for 6 seconds.

    Waking Dreams (+Finesse Conduit): When you take damage below 80% health, you gain a shield for 30% of your max health. 60 second cooldown.

    Waking Dreams is a clear winner here, even with a comparatively weaker Finesse slot. In it’s current state Waking Dream isn’t insane since it’ll often proc during periods of low damage, but it can be huge in the right circumstances and the alternative is poor anyway.

    Dream Delver: Dealing damage or healing a target grants you +1% damage and healing to that target for 4 seconds, up to 3%.

    Dream Delver does proc off HoTs, can be on multiple targets at a time, and has a very high uptime for us. It isn’t ultra exciting, but you’ll get close to 3% throughput from the trait.

    Recommended Tree

    Finesse conduits and your second Endurance conduit are flexible.

  • Korayn

    Vorkai Ambush (+Defensive Conduit): After interrupting or disorienting an enemy, they deal 5% less damage for 5 seconds.

    Hunt’s Exhilaration (+Finesse Conduit): When damaging an enemy or healing an ally within 8 yards you gain 3% leech for 5 seconds.

    These are both quite low impact, but you’ll probably take Hunt’s Exhilaration in most cases. It’s a very high uptime 3% leech. It’s… fine for a utility soulbind row.

    Wild Hunt Strategem: This is a long and confusing ability but bear with me. When you proc Wild Hunt Tactics (damage an enemy above 75% health, or heal an ally below 35% health), gain a buff called Wild Hunt Strategem. The buff gives your next damage on a low health enemy (sub 35%) or high health ally (above 70%) a 5% increase, and increases your healing to such targets by 5% for 10 seconds.

    This is unnecessary complex for an ability that really isn’t that good. Often times simple is better. Korayn is weaker in 9.1 than in 9.0.

Niya vs Dreamweaver

At this time Dreamweaver is just a little bit stronger than Niya. Podtender is still amazing utility, Dream Delver is a great addition and Field of Blossoms is ridiculous on any fight where you’re able to stand still for it’s duration.

Quickfire Questions

  • Were there any class changes? None. We did get a nerf to the Well-honed instincts conduit which is still supremely powerful post-nerf.
  • What can I do to prep for the patch release? Get your Soul Ash weeklies in to save up for any legendaries that you have to remake. Soul Ash drops at a higher rate in 9.1 but it doesn’t hurt to have some prepped.
  • Are there any new consumables? No.
  • Which trinkets are looking good? QE Live has full trinket information, though Blizzard continue to make hotfixes.
  • Have our conduit rankings changed? They’re the same as in 9.0. Unstoppable Growth is S tier, Conflux of Elements is an acceptable second and the rest of our potencies are very poor. As Night Fae you will run two potencies in almost every progression scenario, but if you ever find yourself using a third then Adaptive Armor Fragment is very capable.
  • What are our best stats in 9.1? Our stats don’t change much with the patch and item level > haste > mastery = crit = versatility is still a good general rule of thumb. For specifics you will want to use QE Live.
  • What else do I need to know before the patch goes live? Items with special effects are back and you’ll want to pick up Passably Forged Credentials from the Tazavesh quest chain as soon as you are able. It got very heavily nerfed on the PTR, but is still better than any other neck of it’s item level. You can also pick up one 230 crafted item, however these are unique and you are hard locked to using one at a time.

17 responses to “Resto Druid 9.1 FAQ”

  1. Budino says:

    The new legendary covenant related for Fet isn’t good for damage as well? Is sCircle still much better??
    Thanks for this updated guide, it’s amazing!

  2. Koozi says:

    Thanks for all the great info and guides. My go-to site for all things resto druid!

  3. Shalashin says:

    ¡Muchas gracias!
    Reading you since Legion, you always bring useful and good info for us, the healing trees. Very appreciated your effort and time invested.

  4. Muyaa says:

    Killing it Voulk! Appreciate your hard work!

  5. Davlol says:

    Great guide – thank you as always!

    Question on the Convoke Leggo – I thought this would be quite good for M+ given the shorter CD which means you don’t need to hold it. Will it still be a powerful enough burst to handle sticky situations? Also being alternate between dps/heal convoke with less risk to next pull is big depending on play style?

  6. Gas says:

    Hey thank you very much for the informations ! Will you do a sanctum of domination boss guides ? I know it takes a lot of time so no problems if you don’t

  7. Atticus says:

    Another tremendously helpful State of the Union from QE. Thanks Voulk, great work as always.

  8. Heinzen says:

    When did the deck system for convoke change? Is it recent that we’re no longer getting 1 flourish every 2 convokes with the new legendary?

    • Voulk says:

      It’s potentially recent, but I did find some old logs too that seemed to have at least similar behaviour.

  9. Notjustcow says:

    Hey Voulk. Thanks for making this guide and publishing it to everyone. I have a question about Niya and dont know if it is stupid to think that way or not.
    “Bonded Hearts: Gaining a stack of redirected anima from Grove Invigoration heals up to 5 allies for 2% of their max health.”
    So when we use convoke of spirits it gives us 16 stack. Is it going to heal 5 people for %2 of their health 16 times? Thanks in advance.
    (Sorry if there are any grammer mistakes)

    • Voulk says:

      Oh good question and I’ll include this in the guide. Convoke heals 5 nearby allies one time, for 2000 health (which is the Bonded Hearts cap).

  10. Trimshadow says:

    Hey Voulk, thanks for the updates and efforts you put into making the information avialable for everyone, it’s awesome!

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