Improved Mark of the Wild
Increases the effect of your Mark of the Wild and Gift of the Wild by 7% per talent point. 5 point limit.
5 points in this talent makes the druid’s class buff, Mark of the Wild, even better. Its not an absolute necessity, but for any druid focused on healing it’s the no-brainer first choice in the restoration tree, and its useful for all druids. Most talent builds will pick this up.
Gives you a 20% chance per talent point to gain 10 rage when you shift into bear form and 40 energy when you shift into cat form. 5 point limit.
This is obviously a feral druid talent despite its place in the restoration tree. If you are solely focusing on healing its not particularly valuable. A feral druid or a hybrid that intends to use forms a good deal will find it very useful. Your dps in cat form will increase because you can use abilities faster, and in bear form the instant range opens up some possibilities when combined with other bear talents, the most common being the instant shift/feral charge to disrupt a spell being cast. Without this talent, even if you have feral charge you won’t have the rage to use it immediately after shapeshifting. This is a very versatile talent and is highly recommended if you have any intention of using bear and cat form with some frequency.
Improved Healing Touch – Requires 5 points in Restoration tree.
Reduces the casting time of healing touch by .1 seconds per talent point. 5 point limit.
Making healing touch cast slightly faster is useful, but the primary reason for any druid to get this is that it’s a prerequisite to Nature’s Swiftness. Therefore, any druid speccing moderately into the tree will have to get this ability.
Improved Enrage – Requires 5 points in Restoration tree.
Your enrage ability now generates 5 rage points instantly per talent point. 2 point limit.
Another feral ability hidden in the restoration tree. This ability is useful if you plan to spend a lot of time in bear form. Most druids won’t find it worthwhile however, its too situational to get a great deal of effective use. Consider it for a heavily specced bear-form feral druid, but otherwise there are better places to spend your points.
Nature’s Focus – Requires 5 points in the Restoration tree.
Gives you a 14% chance per talent point to ignore interruption to your healing touch, regrowth, and tranquility spells from damage. 5 point limit.
This sounds like a nice talent, and in some situations it can be useful, but in general it is not that worthwhile. In PvE, in general unless you are soloing you should not have anything hitting you while you are trying to cast a heal, and if you are soloing its unlikely the mob is hitting you enough that you need to get a heal off incredibly quickly, if you’ve picked a target of your level. In very high end PvE, if a monster goes off the tank and gets on you you’re going to die almost regardless of what you do, so this becomes pointless.
In PvP, it has some larger benefits, but keep in mind it only helps w/ damage interruption, not special abilites. So you will still find your spell’s cancelled by a rogue’s kick, warrior’s shield bash, mage’s counterspell, etc. When something is doing damage to you you are almost always better off trying to root him and get away rather than just taking it while trying to get a heal off.
This isn’t a terrible talent, but there are better places to put your points in the restoration tree.
Subtlety – Requires 10 points in Restoration tree.
Reduces the threat generated by your healing spells by 4% per talent point.
This ability is only focused on PvE, so if you are mostly interested in PvP its pointless. It can be very helpful in PvE in extremely high level raiding dungeons, as management of threat becomes a very big part of winning some encounters. Many druids’ claim it is not necessary, but it can certainly smooth over any small issues you might have controlling your threat while healing. Definitely don’t get it when leveling up, but consider it once you begin to get into the top end raiding dungeons. Don’t be surprised if some guilds require all their druids have this ability.
Reflection – Requires 10 points in Restoration tree.
Allows 5% of mana regeneration per point to continue while casting. 3 point limit.
Normally, whenever you cast a spell your natural mana regeneration (based on spirit), stops for 5 seconds after the spell is cast. Reflection means that you will still regenerate a small amount during this time. This isn’t a particularly useful ability pre-level 60, as the majority of fights won’t require you to be regening mana over a long period of time. In raids, however, especially once your gear begins to improve, it can be very useful. In some of the top level fights in the game, which can take from 10 to 20 minutes, every little bit of mana regen is helpful. Definitely skip this while leveling up, but if you are interested in end-game raids strongly consider it once you hit 60.
Insect Swarm – Requires 10 points in Restoration tree.
The enemy target is swarmed by insects, decreasing chance to hit by 2% and causing 324 nature damage over 12 seconds. Instant cast, 160 mana.
For one talent point, this is a very nice ability to pick up. While the DoT that it applies is relatively small, it is almost the equivalent of having a second moonfire DoT on the target, and most non-elite mobs will die surprisingly quickly w/ those two DoT’s on them. While the chance to hit decrease isn’t large, it doesn’t hurt to keep it on any melee mob at all times. It’s very useful during raids, as it does affect raid bosses, making the tanks slightly more capable of mitigating damage.
In PvP a restoration specced druid will almost certainly be trying to outlast his opponent….insect swarm is a cheap, mana efficient way to keep the damage coming on the enemy player.
Tranquil Spirit – Requires 15 points in Restoration tree.
Reduces the mana cost of you healing touch and tranquility spells by 2% per point. 5 point limit.
On its own this is a pretty worthless place to put 5 talent points. However, if you are speccing full restoration in order to get innervate, you have to put 5 points here. If you are only going far enough into Restoration for Nature’s Switfness put your points elsewhere. If you are getting innervate, you don’t have a choice.
Improved Rejuvenation – Requires 15 points in Restoration tree.
Increases the effect of your rejuvenation spell by 5% per point. 3 point limit.
As a restoration specced druid you’ll be using rejuve a lot, and this just makes it better for a small talent point investment. This is a good place to put some points if you’re speccing up far into restoration.
Improved Tranquility – Requires 20 points in Restoration tree.
Reduces the threat caused by tranquility by 40% per talent point. 2 point limit.
Tranquility is such a situational spell that this is almost useless. Probably one of the least useful talents a druid has access to, not worth bothering with at all.
Nature’s Swiftness – Requires 20 points in Restoration tree and 5 points in Improved Healing Touch.
When activated, your next nature spell becomes an instant cast. 3 minute cooldown.
Nature’s Swiftness (NS) is one of the highlights of the druid restoration tree. Many druid builds revolve solely around whether they get NS or not. The uses for this spell are almost endless. A NS Healing Touch can save a druid in almost any situation, giving them in effect almost a 2nd life bar worth of health. The same ability can save a party member who takes some sort of spike damage, or is beset by damage dealers in PvP. NS can be combined w/ entangling roots to stop someone trying to flee, or hibernate to immediately take a beast mob or hunter’s pet out of action. Once you learn to use NS effectively, it’ll be tough to imagine playing without it. If you are speccing far enough into restoration to get here, always get this ability.
Gift of Nature – Requires 20 points in Restoration tree and 1 point in insect swarm.
Increases the effect of healing spells by 2% per point. 5 point limit.
This is a good talent to fill in the gaps if you are going for a full restoration build, but it is not essential for a druid to be a good healer. Every little bit helps, and a druid solely interested in healing should definitely pick this up. Otherwise, there are other places to spend points that give a great deal more versatility.
Improved Regrowth – Requires 25 points in Restoration tree.
Increases the critical effect chance of regrowth by 10% per point. 5 point limit.
With this talent, at level 60 with decent gear, a druid’s regrowth spell will crit somewhere in the 60-70% range, meaning the initial heal will be about as big as a healing touch, w/ the HoT thrown in for good measure. Since regrowth is significantly faster to cast than healing touch, this is of great benefit. Regrowth becomes much more useful with this talent, and it is a requirement for any druid seriously interested in speccing as a primary healer.
Innervate – Requires 30 points in Restoration tree, 5 points in Tranquil Spirit.
Increases the target’s mana regeneration rate by 400% and allows 100% of regeneration to continue while casting. Lasts 20 seconds, 6 minute cooldown. 1 point.
Like Nature’s Swiftness, Innervate is the jewel of the druid’s restoration tree. In general, in dungeon and raid situations, you will want to use this primarily on yourself or another druid or priest. Since the mana it regens is based off of the targets spirit, high spirit players like druids and priests gain the most benefit. Use innervate early and often…many big boss fights take longer than 6 minutes, and if you see a priest down around half mana, give it to them early so you have a chance to use it again later in the fight. Also be sure to educate people about how innervate works….you do not need to stop all casting to get its full effect, it will regen just as much mana if you cast the whole 20 seconds than if you stand and do nothing.
Don’t let people bully you into saying innervate should only be used on priests, but also don’t be dogmatic and say you’ll only use it on yourself. The person who needs it most is the one who is out of mana and therefore ineffective. If that’s you, use it on yourself instead of the priest who’s half full…if a priest needs it and you are getting by, give it to them. A druid’s role is to make the whole raid work better, and being flexible w/ targets for innervate goes a long way toward accomplishing that.
Innervate is also very useful in PvP, especially in one on one fights where a restoration druid is seeking to outlast his opponent and gradually wear him down. Innervate essentially gives you a new mana bar every 6 minutes…don’t forget about it, and use it when you need the mana.
There is a tendency with innervate (and other long cooldown abilities), to hoard them for when you really need them. Try to avoid this, and if you think an ability is useful, use it. 6 minutes passes surprisingly quickly in WoW, and you’ll often find the cooldown is done well before you need the ability again.