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[Legion] Healing changes

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Hello, guys!

With the first chunks of data being revealed in Blizzard class blogs, I would like to talk a bit about upcoming changes in healing specs, even that there is still more guessing and extrapolation than actual information available.





The major common change for most healing classes is the removal of constraints that made our gameplay more complicated without gaining any actual bonus of it. I’m talking about additional powers and stances that certain classes had to deal with while healing.


It reminded me of a person that tries to cross a river walking on a tightrope while juggling. Is it complicated - yes, do you need more skill - yes, does it improve your walk or help to reach the destination faster - no.


The main goal of a healer in PvE environment is to keep the team alive. It’s not an easy task: damage that people take is never exactly the same even in the same boss fight. Healers can’t have a muscle memory rotation - there is a lot of decisions to make during every encounter, sometimes in a split of a second. And while it’s exactly what we love about healing - the complexity - I don’t think that managing additional powers added a lot of quality gameplay. Well, it did at the very start - these abilities were added for a reason - but with years abilities were added on top of other abilities on top of another abilities, making a complete mess in the end.

Now it all gone and we can have a fresh start.


- Holy Priest: Chakra system was removed

- Holy Paladin: Holy Power was removed

- Resto Shaman: a restriction to have only one totem of the same nature school was removed

- MW Monk: Chi power and dps stance in healing spec were removed.


I’m sure that not everyone would be happy with the changes but frankly, there is no logical reason to cast half of healing spells using mana and other half using additional power.

I would find some kind of logic if, for example, mana was used for healing, while Power for shielding or switching a stance changed all the healing spells to AoE. But it wasn’t like this: all the spells were artificially divided between mana, power and stance resources.

We are done with this system now and I think that it was the right decision.




Another major change that was announced but didn’t get further information in blogs is a new approach to role of healers  in PvE content or, let’s keep it short and say - in raids.


Healers were promised to have a choice now:

Healers should always have something to do. In Legion when you are doing group PvE content you will notice that you can do a lot more damage than you could before when you choose to spend globals and resources on it. When you are overgearing the content, the damage you do in your spare time will go from close to meaningless (now) to being a useful contribution to the raid (in Legion).


Blizzcon: Legion Class and Systems Community Amphitheater Discussion


This is a very serious change: until now healers were the most, well, not useless but problematic part of the raids. No one would question the amount of tanks or dps in fight: bosses need two tanks due to mechanics, you will never drop damage dealers when outgearing the content, but healers? Who needs healers when there is nothing to heal?


It is a right question to ask but always to be the part of “we have too many healers, switch to your off spec” is not that awesome. Gearing two specs, trying to decide what to do with 2-3 extra healers on farm, constant healers rotation or keeping some of them out of their preferred role most of time - all these issues had to be addressed and looks like finally they are!


My guess is that we’ll have three areas of choice in talent trees (I don’t believe in adding dps stance or dps power right after Blizzard got rid of them):

- AoE healing enhancement;

- single target healing / damage mitigation enhancement;

- dps enhancement.



- healing enhancement;

- utility enhancement;

- dps enhancement.


Having this choice, we would be able to keep more or less same amount of healers in raids just changing certain talents to adjust more to healing or dps. No double gearing, no spec switching, no frustration and bitterness trying to snip a bit of healing from each other just to be able to do something.


The general idea is awesome, let’s wait and see what we’ll get.







The least played healing spec during WoD. Having literally nothing special comparing to other classes, poor Holy Priests were always last in meters and last in lineups - really sad.


Looks like it may be different in Legion. After reading class blogs, for me personally Holy Priest and MW Monk feel the most appealing healing classes right now.


Instant very strong single target heal, instant very strong AoE heal, reducing cooldowns by direct healing, Mastery that leaves a HoT on a target - all this looks like a very decent, flexible and fun gameplay.




Kings of Healing Meters in WoD. Every raid without a disc priest must be disbanded and punished by two weeks in LFR!


Well, what can I say about incoming changes? Just like always, the OP abilities were nerfed to the ground, the new abilities seems like their only purpose is to complicate the gameplay.


Cooldown on PW: Shield is back (at least it’s written in the spell description), Rapture is back, Prayer of Healing and Prayer of Mending are gone (no mention in blog).

PW: Radiance same bad as was PoH: healing 5 nearest allies is good when they are injured but as we all know, many times they are not - huge overheal and waste of mana.


Atonement healing affects only previously ‘marked’ by certain spells targets:

Plea, Power Word: Shield, and Shadow Mend also apply Atonement to your target. When you deal spell damage, you instantly heal all targets affected by Atonement for 50% of the damage done.

The healing spells that ‘mark’ targets for Atonement look weak (Plea) or weird (Shadow Mend - the target takes DoT damage from healing).


It is hard to get to any conclusions without seeing new talents and their interaction with saying spells, but right now I am not impressed by the changes and think that there’s still a lot of work to do.




Holy Paladin remains the main lifesaver, receiving instant healing ability without cooldown (Light of the Martyr) in addition to Hands. But the price! Everything has its price. ^^


New Mastery (increased healing on allies near the paladin), localized beneficial effects from Auras, AoE healing frontal cone and melee dps spells hint us at the new preferable positioning of Holy Paladin in raids: in melee camp.

Well, why not?

The only question that I have here is how they will be marked for boss abilities in raids: as melee or as ranged? ^^




Nothing. Literally nothing.

The only healing affecting change we have is the general removal of one totem of one school restriction.

Our utility will be better with getting a targeting reticle for the totems but well, it’s not really about healing.


A possibility to have both Healing Stream Totem and Healing Tide Totem up in the same time that was mentioned in blog, is not a gain that worth special announcement in my opinion: for now Healing Stream with Rushing Streams heals for roughly 10% of Healing Tide, and hardly 5% without the talent.

More interesting would be a possibility to have both Cloudburst Totem and HST/HTT up without spending a talent. Or Storm Elemental / Spirit Link / Capacitor / Grounding totems in different combinations for 5-man content.

But right now it’s a pure speculation because we may even not have Cloudburst, Storm Elemental or High Tide talents in Legion.


Not much more to say here: looks like we’ll have to wait for more data to be revealed.




I really and truly like the changes.


I like stances and Chi being removed from MW: there is no reason to juggle three powers when other healers are sufficient with only one for the same kind of spells and amount of healing done.

I like Soothing Mist going passive: it felt forced to click channeling after almost every spell or move.

I like this new Mastery: small additional instant heal on the healed target is much better than frustration from seeing all these Spheres senselessly lying around.

I like reworked Renewing Mist, new AoE spells look fun and flexible: you can spend less mana to heal 3 targets or more mana to heal 6 targets.


The talent example in blog is fun and suites Monk mobile playstyle very well: dash to an ally, and heal them for a large amount (40 yd range, Instant, 2 charges).

Actually I can see it being used also as a position adjustment (to get out of fire, to avoid certain abilities or to move to a specific place very fast).


MW Monk is a class that I really look forward to play now.




Just like Resto Shamans didn’t get any significant changes.


Mastery was redesigned to be more ‘understandable’ and straightforward. Increased by 10% healing for each of HoT effects on the target brings a possibility to some planning.

For example you can keep just one Rejuv on target or, if you need a big healing boost without using a CD, Rejuv, Germination, Lifebloom and Wild Growth HoTs all together.


Other than that - not much to talk about. Let’s wait for the new talents and see how they would affect the gameplay.



That’s all for now.

Feel free to discuss, guys, but don't forget that all above is only my personal opinion (except of quotes) and extrapolations. There is no possibility to know how saying changes will affect the gameplay without checking their combinations with real talents and numbers.

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More insights from WarcraftDevs in Legion Class Preview Feedback (Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment):


MW Monks will count as ranged in Legion. No more avoiding of certain boss abilities. It also creates a problem with MW dps during healing downtimes: all MW dps abilities except of Crackling Jade Lightning need melee range. So you can't stay in melee to dps but you have stay in melee to dps. Devs' answer for now: "Use the Lightning". Sounds fun... ><


Soothing Mist going to be uninterruptible (may be interruptible by physical school) channeling spell with no duration. Looks like some kind of a passive HoT. The only usage I can imagine for it right now is just to keep it always on a tank.

There would be a talent that allows to move while channeling Soothing Mist.


Resto Druids: new Mastery dynamically counts all the HoTs on target. No cap planned (meanwhile).


Holy Paladins: Lightbringer Mastery doesn't affect the Beacon transfer but only the direct heal. The Mastery effect will have a minimum radius in which you will always receive 100% benefit.

Holy Paladins wouldn't get any cast on move abilities or talents. With a 10 sec. CD on Holy Shock and Light of the Martyr eating your own health, it makes the gameplay pretty stressful by constant hesitation to finish the cast or to move out of fire.


Healing Priests: Holy Nova is going to be a Holy Priest damaging ability.

Prayer of Healing group restriction is gone! In Legion it will choose allies within a radius instead of being group-based.

Divine Aegis and Illuminated Healing absorbs are pretty much gone (if I understood the Devs right: "The number of absorbs (especially passive ones, such as Divine Aegis and Illuminated Healing) is being heavily reduced.")


Nothing interesting for discs. I'm really worried how they will feel in 5-man challenging content, not having direct heal spells. As an example, when a healer sometimes has to provide 40-50K hps in Challenge Modes or Mythic dungeons, would it mean that a disc will have dps in 70-100K range (Atonement heals for 50% of Damage Done)? Would the damage/healing conversion be enough to keep people alive or Blizz will spend the first year of Legion tuning the numbers?


Resto Shamans: nothing. Enjoy the class, guys angry.png

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I'm pretty sad to see Fistweaving/Crane Stance go away tbh.  It was something nice to be able to do during periods of downtime/low incoming damage to build mana (and mana tea), while still outputting a decent amount of healing.  It acted more or less like a half-healer, half-dps player, so if, for example, having 3 healers turns out to be too rough, but 4 healers ends up not having the dps required for certain checks/phases, then bringing in a MW that utilized Crane Stance would be beneficial to the group by offering a good intermediate.  There's also the fact that they can stance dance as needed for large AoE healing with RJW and Revival (which, although it can be used in Crane Stance, is more effective in Serpent Stance).  The Mistweaving changes I actually quite like, and they look to be promising.  I haven't played enough of the other healers to really comment on them, but I feel like they'll be fairly balanced overall.

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You can't 'keep' soothing mists on a tank can you?  The way I read it, when ever you use an ability on a target (healing ability) it will automatically cast soothing mist on them, so you cant keep it on a tank unless you just heal them and just sit there / keep healing them.

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Yeah, how I read it working is you cast an ability and then after it you continue to channel Soothing Mists on that target until you cast another ability.

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You can't 'keep' soothing mists on a tank can you?  The way I read it, when ever you use an ability on a target (healing ability) it will automatically cast soothing mist on them, so you cant keep it on a tank unless you just heal them and just sit there / keep healing them.

Yeah, you can't just keep Soothing Mist on a tank, this is why I wrote 'sort of'.


There are only 3 spells that are triggering Mists:

- Effuse looks like a waste of time (1.5 sec cast that heals for a minor amount HP). The only purpose of it that I can see is a cheap triggering of SM;

- Enveloping Mist is an expensive cast that heals a lot and increases your healing done on a target, so in theory it should be cast on somebody who needs extensive healing (more than one cast);

- Vivify is a kind of 'light' AoE (3 targets, moderate amount of healing) so I'm not sure that we'll want to stop here for channelling


Thinking about a standard fight dynamic, you wouldn't normally 'sit' on an injured target other than tank for more than 3-4 sec: throw a HoT+direct heal or some AoE and move on, so SM wouldn't remain on this target for more than 2-3 ticks that is, I believe, pretty neglectable amount of healing.


So the only constant targets for 'working' Soothing Mist will be tanks who receive most of damage in fight. There would be definitely some other long term injured targets like people with a ticking DoT or soakers but this damage covering would depend on your raid healing setup. Beacons swapping, PW:S+Atonement mark, Lifebloom, Enveloping Mist+Soothing Mist - we just treat these targets like a short term tanks smile.png


How I see the SM usage:

1. Low damage: cast Effuse on a target you want to channel SM

2. Moderate / High single target damage: finish your healing by Enveloping Mist that will channel SM while you are deciding what to do next

3. AoE damage: I don't really see Vivify as a right source for SM - when you are healing AoE damage, you wouldn't stop on a single target to channel some neglectable healing.

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New blue post: "Genesis has been removed from Resto druid spells. Instead, Flourish and the new Mastery will help in similar situations."


Sounds a bit weird. The situation where you'd want to use Genesis is when you would like to burst a multiple target healing during very short period of time when a 'real' CDs would be a waste or it's a last resort after spending all the CDs.

Flourish extends the duration of all your HoTs by 10 sec., Mastery makes them stronger. Making your Rejuv to tick 25 sec. instead of 15 sec. for 110% healing (let's say for 90K HP) doesn't look to me same as bursting a Rejuv in 3 sec (let's say for 40K HP), but exactly the opposite.

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