If you’ve gotten your gear all ready to go, it’s time to go into healing strategies on your druid!
Instant cast HoT that ticks every 3 seconds for 12 seconds. Used to help stabilise tanks, to top people off, or to provide a buffer against steady and predictable raid damage. It can also be Swiftmended for a fast, direct heal (and a ground area of effect heal if talented into Efflorescence – see below). Applying it to a target will buff the size of your subsequent Nourish casts. Rejuvenation also returns mana to you through Revitalize. If talented into Nature’s Bounty, applying 3 or more Rejuvenations to your group/raid will allow you to cast faster Nourishes.
Instant cast HoT that ticks every second for 10 seconds. Usually stacked to 3 for a potent stabilising HoT on tanks or anyone else taking sustained damage, but can only be placed on one person at a time (and placing it on a second person will make it disappear from the first). When allowed to expire, it “blooms” for a good-sized direct heal (which can crit). While using Tree of Life, you can have Lifebloom on an unlimited number of people. Lifebloom triggers Omen of Clarity procs if talented into Malfurion’s Gift, and returns mana to you and your party through Revitalize – so it is vital to keep Lifebloom on someone in your party at all times.
Instant cast multi-target HoT that ticks every second for 7 seconds, with an 8 second cooldown. The initial tick is the strongest, tapering off to the weakest tick at the end, meaning that the heaviest healing will be at the beginning of the spell. Targets up to 5 friendly units (up to 6 with glyph) within 15 yards of the target that you cast the spell on. Can be cast on hostile units. This means that you can cast WG on a boss, and it will target 5 of your raid members within 15 yards (very handy for healing melee). It is also a smart heal – it will target the people who require healing the most, but is range-dependent, and can also target pets. Only useful on fights where sufficient people are clumped together; if spread out, and only hitting 1 or 2 people, it is not worth casting. Also buffs the size of your Nourish casts.
Instant cast direct heal that consumes either a Rejuvenation or a Regrowth from your target. This Rejuv or Regrowth can be yours or another druid’s. The amount healed is now set rather than being a portion of Rejuv or Regrowth. Swiftmend scales with your spellpower and is boosted by some talents. If using Glyph of Swiftmend, the HoT is not consumed, and continues to tick as normal. If talented into Efflorescence, Swiftmending a target also leaves behind an Efflorescence healing circle.
1.5 second cast (less with haste) heal with a direct portion and a HoT portion that ticks every 2 seconds for 6 seconds. This is our “flash heal” – our fast heal to get someone out of immediate danger, and then follow through with more healing. Can be Swiftmended for an instant emergency heal. Also buffs the size of your Nourish casts.
3 second cast (less with Naturalist and with haste) direct heal. Small base heal, but can be buffed by adding a HoT to your target first, in which case Nourish will heal for 20% more (note: Lifebloom counts as a single HoT, regardless of the number of applications on the target). Only your own HoTs count towards boosting your Nourishes – other druids’ HoTs do not have an effect. Used for tank healing, or for topping people up quickly (in cases where HoTs will not top them up quickly enough). Can be used without HoTs on the target, but this is inefficient as you are losing the 20% from not having a HoT present. The bottom line: try to avoid ever using Nourish on a target that doesn’t have a HoT.
3 second cast (less with Naturalist and with haste) direct heal. This is our largest heal, and has the same cast time as Nourish, so it might be tempting to use it (why take the same time to heal for less, right?) but it is expensive, and using it too often will cause you to go OOM. It is best to try to use HT with Omen of Clarity procs, to get large heals for free.
Channeled, party/raid-wide spell that ticks every 2 seconds for 8 seconds (with haste, ticks are closer together) and also places a stacking HoT on the targets. 3 minute cooldown. This is a powerful group heal for emergencies where healing one person might mean that others will die – for example, when everyone in your party is taking damage at once, and HoTs or single target healing won’t keep them alive. This spell must be channeled, but it now has built-in push-back protection, so you no longer have to use Barkskin before Tranquility.
If talented, when you Swiftmend a target, a green Efflorescence circle (or “puddle”) is placed at that player’s feet, and smart heals the three lowest people inside the circle every second for 7 seconds. To get the most out of it, you should cast it when you know there are three people close together who have all taken moderate damage; however, if you need/want to use it for a tank heal, it basically acts as another HoT while the tank stands in it (you’ll just miss out on a bit of healing if there’s nobody near the tank).
Healing on your Druid:
There are many ways you can heal on your druid when it comes to raiding, 5 man dungeons and even, pvp! This is mainly focused on PvE content, and with this in mind, mana management also comes into play when you are healing. An OOM healer is useless!
Roll Lifebloom up to 3 stacks, and keep refreshing it with Regrowth, Healing Touch or Nourish, depending on how low your tank is. Throw on a rejuvenation to stabilize your tank further, and use your clearcasting procs wisely since this gives you free /instant regrowths. If your tank is missing large chunks of health, you should use Healing Touch, while you are running Rejuve so you can also Swiftmend in case your tank takes a sudden and large hit. Otherwise, keep Nourishing. Remember, let your HoT’s do the work, and your tank does not have to be at 100% health at all the times. 80% and above is perfectly acceptable so as long you know there isn’t any additional incoming damage that could get him killed from sitting at 80%.
In some encounters where you are required to keep your tanks topped off and have large incoming damage happening in succession, you have to chain Healing Touch together and throw in Rejuves/regrowths in between HTs. Be prepared to pop Innervate when you get to the 80% mark on your mana bar if you are doing this. If you Innervate past 80-70%, you run the risk of going OOM early and end up running on fumes with your innervate, this will disturb your attempts in keeping the tank topped off. It’s better to pop Innervate when your mana is at 80%, so that you are continuing to get mana from the innervate and when it goes on cd, you’re still at 80% or more. The innervate will also likely be off cd when you need it again, and it won’t be when you’re running low. Wise use of your innervates at the right time is vital in managing your mana when you have to keep people at full health!
This can be a bit complex, but fun! As a raid healer, you need to weave some direct heals in with your HoT’s on multiple players. While you are doing this, it is recommended you also keep rolling Lifebloom (usually on a tank) for returns on your mana and to get clear casting procs in addition to helping your raid’s tank healer.
If more than 3 people need healing, Swiftmend a target in a group for Efflorescence and use Wild Growth for aoe heals. Follow up with Nourishes and/or Rejuves as needed, providing they are not in danger of dying. This is usually enough to bring a group of people back up.
If it is not urgent but they need a lot of healing, use the method above, and weave in your direct heals, be it Healing Touch or Regrowth, preferably using your clearcasting procs.
For massive raid-wide damage, this is where Tranquility comes in. When your single target heals are not enough and healing one person means other will die, you have to use this. It ticks every 2 seconds for 8 seconds and also places a stacking HoT on the targets with a 3 minute cooldown. This is probably one of my favorite spells to use, because it’s also so darn pretty.
Tree of Life (ToL)
Use your ToL cooldown early in raid encounters so you can use it again later in the fight. If you know that there is a hard time coming up later on, you might want to save ToL. Though, when you get familiar with a fight, you can decide whether you should use it early and often, or save it for a particular period in the fight. If you alternate Tranquility and Tree of Life, you can have a healing cooldown every 1.5 minutes.
On fights with huge damage periods where you need a big Tranquility, hit ToL and use Wild Growth before you cast Tranquility. ToL will boost your Tranquility healing by 15%, and having Wild Growth down on up to 8 people will mean that those people will benefit from even more healing. Doing this will squeeze as much out of it as possible!
Roll Lifebloom on as many people as you can, it will also give you lots of Clearcasting procs from Omen of Clarity + Malfurion’s Gift. When you get a Clearcasting proc, you will want to use it for free instant Regrowths. With Lifebloom on multiple people, the Clearcasting procs will often come in faster than you can use them, so you can fire off lots of instant Regrowths. You can use the Clearcasting procs to cast Healing Touch if someone needs more healing, if you need to.
Try to top up the Lifebloom stacks before ToL finishes and let them expire- it’s “free” top-up healing. If you pay attention to your Clearcasting procs and use them well, ToL can be an extremely efficient period that can even let you regen mana (since your heals are either cheap, or entirely free!).