Restoration Druid Healing Guide — Season 4

Last updated on Apr 22, 2024 at 12:50 by Torty 65 comments
General Information

Welcome to our Restoration Druid guide for World of Warcraft — Season 4. Here, you will learn how to heal as a Restoration Druid in both raids and Mythic+ dungeons. We cover everything from the basics all the way to min-maxing techniques to optimize your output.

If you were looking for WotLK Classic content, please refer to our WotLK Classic Restoration Druid guide.


Restoration Druid Overview

Restoration Druids specialize in maintaining a steady stream of healing on a few targets in the raid and offer strong bursts of healing after using cooldowns. Restoration Druids also do well when healing a small number of targets for a prolonged period (such as players with debuffs).

Restoration Druids generally suffer when they have to react to damage for which they were not prepared and when they did not have the time to set up their HoTs. Tranquility Icon Tranquility, Incarnation: Tree of Life Icon Incarnation: Tree of Life, and Flourish Icon Flourish offer decent burst healing when needed.

To properly play a healing role, you will need more than just class-specific information. To better understand healing in general, we recommend that you read our healing guide.


Strengths and Weaknesses

V Strengths
  • +A lot of cooldowns, such as Tranquility Icon Tranquility, Incarnation: Tree of Life Icon Incarnation: Tree of Life, and Flourish Icon Flourish.
  • +Ability to sustain good healing on the move.
  • +Retains strong healing even in situations of heavy spread.
  • +Very good survivability.
X Weaknesses
  • -Lack of a raid-wide damage reduction cooldown.
  • -Very punishing in the case of mistimed cooldowns.
  • -Reliance on cooldowns leaves healing outside of them weak.

Restoration Druid and Guide Changes for Dragonflight Season 4

  • All healing done reduced by 5%.

This is the only change. It is not significant and there are also nerfs to both Discipline Priests and Mistweaver Monks which are our main competition in raids. In Mythic+ this is unlikely to affect anything.


Restoration Druid and Guide Changes in Patch 10.2

  • Heart of the Wild Icon Heart of the Wild — Now additionally reduces the cast time of Balance spells by 30% and increases their damage by 20% (was 30%), and generates 1 combo point per 2 seconds while in Cat Form and increases Physical damage by 20% (was 30%).
  • Innervate Icon Innervate duration is now 8 seconds (was 10 seconds).
  • Circle of Life and Death has been removed. Replaced by Liveliness.
  • New Talent: Liveliness Icon Liveliness — Your damage over time effects deal their damage 25% faster, and your healing over time effects heal 5% faster. Note that this does not reduce the duration of these effects.
  • Cenarius' Guidance Icon Cenarius' Guidance’s Incarnation: Tree of Life functionality has been redesigned — During Incarnation: Tree of Life Icon Incarnation: Tree of Life, you summon a Grove Guardian every 10 seconds. The cooldown of Incarnation: Tree of Life is reduced by 5 seconds when Grove Guardians fade.
  • Incarnation: Tree of Life Icon Incarnation: Tree of Life now additionally empowers Wrath Icon Wrath, causing it to deal 20% more damage and be instant cast.
  • Reforestation Icon Reforestation now grants Incarnation: Tree of Life for 10 seconds (was 9 seconds). This allows Cenarius' Guidance Icon Cenarius' Guidance to summon a Grove Guardian, if you are specced into Incarnation: Tree of Life Icon Incarnation: Tree of Life.
  • Grove Guardian’s Nourish healing reduced by 16%.
  • Grove Guardian’s Swiftmend healing reduced by 20%.
  • Grove Guardian’s Wild Growth healing from Wild Synthesis reduced by 20%.
  • Grove Guardians are now present on the totem bar.
  • Regrowth Icon Regrowth initial healing increased by 20%. Regrowth heal over time effect increased by 42%. Regrowth now costs 3.2% base mana (was 3.4%).
  • Rejuvenation Icon Rejuvenation healing increased by 25%.
  • Wild Growth Icon Wild Growth healing increased by 15%. Wild Growth now costs 4% base mana (was 4.4%).
  • Cenarion Ward Icon Cenarion Ward healing increased by 25%.
  • Swiftmend Icon Swiftmend healing increased by 30%.
  • Wrath Icon Wrath and Starfire Icon Starfire damage increased by 90%.
  • Sunfire Icon Sunfire now costs 1.8% base mana (was 2.4%).
  • Luxuriant Soil Icon Luxuriant Soil now causes Rejuvenation Icon Rejuvenation to have a 1%/2% chance to jump to a nearby ally (was 1.5%/3%).
  • Grove Tending Icon Grove Tending healing increased by 30%.
  • Abundance Icon Abundance now caps at 12 stacks, for a maximum of 60% crit/cost reduction (was uncapped).
  • Inner Peace Icon Inner Peace now reduces the cooldown of Tranquility by 30 seconds (was 60 seconds).
  • Spring Blossoms Icon Spring Blossoms healing reduced by 25%.
  • Embrace of the Dream Icon Embrace of the Dream healing reduced by 30%.
  • Flourish Icon Flourish now extends the duration of all your heal-over-time effects on friendly targets within 60 yards by 6 seconds (was 8 seconds), and increases the rate of your heal over time effects by 25% (was 100%) for 6 seconds (was 8 seconds).
  • Flourish cooldown is now 60 seconds (was 90 seconds).
  • Flourish Icon Flourish procs from Convoke the Spirits Icon Convoke the Spirits now extends heal over time effects by 3 seconds (was 4 seconds) and lasts 3 seconds (was 4 seconds).
  • Druid Restoration 10.1 Class Set 2pc Icon Druid Restoration 10.1 Class Set 2pc — Now increases the healing of Regrowth’s periodic heal by 35% (was 50%).
  • Druid Restoration 10.1 Class Set 4pc Icon Druid Restoration 10.1 Class Set 4pc — Now increases the rate of your heal over time effects by 26% (was 30%).

These changes represent a significant throughput loss. Luxuriant Soil Icon Luxuriant Soil and Flourish Icon Flourish nerfs reduce the average Rejuvenation Icon Rejuvenation count by a very large amount. This results in less Abundance Icon Abundance stacks and higher Mana usage.

The Flourish nerf also means that Convoke the Spirits Icon Convoke the Spirits becomes weaker. After acquiring Druid Restoration 10.2 Class Set 2pc Icon Druid Restoration 10.2 Class Set 2pc we will swap to Incarnation: Tree of Life Icon Incarnation: Tree of Life.

The addition of Liveliness Icon Liveliness instead of Circle of Life and Death means that this talent point is now a straight-up throughput gain without any downsides. Our initial Talent builds for Raiding will want to go through it on the path towards Photosynthesis Icon Photosynthesis.

For Mythic+ however, all these changes represent significant buffs. Basically, all the damage got buffed. Direct healing got buffed across the board. Healing of the Grove Guardians Icon Grove Guardians got reduced by quite a bit, but both new tier set bonuses work a lot better in Mythic+ than they do in raids.


Leveling and Getting Started as a Restoration Druid

Before you start leveling your Druid, we suggest you take a look at our Addons page, as setting up your UI before you begin will allow you to get more comfortable with playing your character on max level.

Unfortunately, leveling as a Restoration Druid is only optimal if you have a group and plan on doing it in dungeons. But if you decide to do it anyway, refer to our leveling guide:

Restoration Druid is all about using your abilities strategically. Rather than a fixed rotation, you will be using your flexible spell kit to adapt and overcome whatever the game throws at you.

Two abilities require constant maintenance throughout the combat: Efflorescence Icon Efflorescence and Lifebloom Icon Lifebloom. Wild Growth Icon Wild Growth has a relatively low cooldown, high Mana efficiency, and high group-wide healing. Using these 3 spells often is one of the basic things to learn as a Restoration Druid. Rejuvenation Icon Rejuvenation will be used as a filler spell for as much as your Mana will allow, but preferably concentrated around heavy group damage and coupled with your cooldowns such as Incarnation: Tree of Life Icon Incarnation: Tree of Life, Innervate Icon Innervate, Flourish Icon Flourish.

If you are an absolute beginner to the spec but would like to learn the fundamentals of the class, recommend looking through the Spell Summary first, as well as the Easy Mode page linked below.

If you are familiar with Restoration Druid, go to the Talents and Rotation pages for more detailed information.


How to Gear Up a Restoration Druid

Gearing can get complicated as a healer due to many variables and multiple available group sizes. You can find information on how best to gear a Restoration Druid on the gearing page, which includes Best in Slot recommendations from this tier.

After acquiring gear, you will want to ensure you have the best consumables, gems, and enchants. You can also find more information about the role of each stat for a Restoration Druid, which one you should be stacking and why.


Restoration Druid End-Game

End-game content can be very daunting right after leveling. Our Mythic+ Dungeon, Raiding, and PvP guides can guide you to perform as well as possible, regardless of your content preference.

Another important aspect of the end game as a Restoration Druid is dealing damage. You can check the in-depth guide here.


Improving as a Restoration Druid

If you find your performance lacking and are trying to figure out what you are doing wrong, you can check out the pages below that will help you improve.



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