So, we’ve learned a little bit about our spells, but perhaps more importantly we must learn when to cast what. This is usually very encounter specific, and we cover it in detail in the encounters guide. These are more general strategies that can work well in a wide variety of situations.
You should look to keep a full set of HoTs on the tank at all times, even if you’re raid healing since we offer pretty good tank healing value for very few GCD’s spent and tanks are much squishier in BFA than Legion.
- Keep Lifebloom up at all times. Refresh it in the 0-4.5 second range to proc the bloom effect without losing any Lifebloom ticks.
- Keep Rejuvenation up at all times. If you are running Germination then keep both Rejuvs up at all times.
- Respond to extra damage by first casting Cenarion Ward. It’s very mana efficient and applies another stack of our Mastery.
- Respond to bursts of damage by casting Regrowth, or Swiftmend if a 1.5 second cast is too slow.
- Use Regrowth if the damage is spiky. If it’s not, trust your HoT’s to do their job. You shouldn’t expect to have the tank at 100% HP for an entire fight.
- (Extra) Use Ironbark if the incoming damage is too much to handle, or if you’re expecting incoming damage to be huge.
- (Extra) Your Efflorescence can be dropped under the tank to supplement healing. Just make sure you hit the melee group with it too.
To raid heal as a Resto Druid you will learn to anticipate damage. This can be a very rewarding play style as you’ll find your numbers going steadily up as you learn how best to heal each boss. It can be easy as a new player to react to damage going out by casting Rejuvenations on damaged players which is acceptable but not optimal. Raid healing is very encounter specific, but here are a few general strategies:
- Keep Efflorescence on a stack of at least three allies who are likely to take damage. You can often line up both the tank and melee group to guarantee full value.
- Cast Wild Growth on cooldown if there are six or more allies that have taken damage. You shouldn’t cast Wild Growth before the damage hits as the first few ticks of the HoT are the largest and shouldn’t be wasted. Wild Growth is very efficient, and should be cast as often as possible.
- Cast Rejuvenation on any allies that are about to take damage, or that have taken significant damage.
- Use Regrowth and Swiftmend to keep low HP people from dying. Prioritize targets with already existing HoTs for a larger emergency heal.
Always remember: Your job is to keep people alive, and you should throw everything into making sure that’s the case. Even when they stand in fire, or volcanoes, or ooze explosions.
What to do with downtime
Especially early in fights, you’ll have many opportunities where there just isn’t any / much damage going out. Instead of wasting your mana overhealing, consider the following line:
- Keep your tank rotation going, including Efflorescence as tanks are likely to take more consistent damage and often won’t have much Rage / Runic Power / Fury early in the fight for defensive abilities.
- Cast Moonfire, and Sunfire, then chain cast Solar Wrath on the boss. A more optimal DPS rotation might be available if you’ve taken the Balance or Feral affinities.
- If raid-wide damage will occur in the next 10 seconds, start pre-hotting the raid with Rejuvenation.
Innervate gives you 12 seconds of free casting. For best results:
- Pop your innervate 5-6 seconds before raid-wide damage hits. Open with Efflorescence to maximise mana saved.
- Spend your 5-8 free global cooldowns blanketing the raid in Rejuvenations.
- As the damage hits cast Wild Growth and then follow it up with Flourish.
- This puts eight to ten 15-21 second rejuvenations ticking at double speed across the raid. All. For. Zero. Mana.
This can easily boost your hps numbers above 1m for the duration of the Rejuvenations, and can easily take the place of a proper Raid healing cooldown like Tranquility if you anticipate the damage correctly. There are opportunities in every fight for a good Innervate Bomb and it’s always the optimal way to use Innervate if your raid team lets you cast it on yourself.
This one will depend on your raids general healing strategy but because of the way mastery works we are somewhat better at healing a smaller group of targets instead of blanketing the entire raid. So if we’re going to blanket the raid in Rejuvenations we should prioritize those that we can hit with other HoTs. Using the Spring Stacker strategy (you can substitute ‘melee group’ for ‘ranged group’):
- Run the Spring Blossoms talent and keep Efflorescence up at all times on the melee group.
- Cast Wild Growth on a melee target. It’s a smart heal within 30 yards and should hit mostly damaged melee allies (unless your raid is stacked).
- When casting Rejuvenation, prioritize those in this melee / tank stack.
- Prioritize the same group with any Regrowth procs that you get for an even bigger boost.
- This means that you’re getting a 30-40%+ boost to your two strongest spells (Wild Growth / Rejuvenation) and even more on the tank target and anyone low enough to proc Cultivation.
Note that with current balance you’re unlikely to take the Spring Blossoms talent on some raid fights.
As powerful as Tranquility is, it is even more so on targets with stacks of HoTs. Unless it’s an absolute emergency, consider doing the following before you pop it:
- If you are running Spring Blossoms, make sure an Efflorescence is out.
- Cast Wild Growth for 6 free mastery boosts.
- (Extra) Cast Rejuvenation on key targets. Cultivation will proc when the raid damage goes out giving targets 2 stacks of mastery (that can easily be a 30% stronger Tranquility).
Have your own “Special Technique” that’s getting you a lot of love in raid? Let me know!