Restoration Druid Healing Spec, Builds, and Talents — Shadowlands 9.1
On this page, you will find out the best talents for each tier for your Restoration Druid in World of Warcraft — Shadowlands 9.1. We also have default talent lists for various types of content, such as raiding or Mythic+. If you play with Warmode on, we have your PvP talents covered as well.
If you were looking for TBC Classic content, please refer to our TBC Classic Restoration Druid talents.
Talent Choices for Restoration Druid
|15||✓ Abundance||✗ Nourish||✓ Cenarion Ward|
|25||✓ Tiger Dash||? Renewal||✓ Wild Charge|
|30||✓ Balance Affinity||? Feral Affinity||? Guardian Affinity|
|35||? Mighty Bash||? Mass Entanglement||✓ Heart of the Wild|
|40||✓ Soul of the Forest||✗ Cultivation||✓ Incarnation: Tree of Life|
|45||? Inner Peace||✓ Spring Blossoms||✗ Overgrowth|
|50||✓ Photosynthesis||✗ Germination||✓ Flourish|
Talents can be freely changed when out of combat and in a rested XP area (such as an inn or a capital city). Moreover, Tome of the Still Mind and Codex of the Still Mind can be used to temporarily allow players to change talents anywhere, as long as they are out of combat.
Talent Cheat Sheets for Restoration Druid
While optimizing talents on a contextual basis is the highly recommended method of setting up your build, the talent builds listed below work great for specific purposes.
There are multiple talents that require a change to your rotation in order to use them optimally. You can find more information on how your rotation will look after selecting your talents on our rotation page below.
This is the best generic raid healing build for Shadowlands.
- Level 15: Abundance
- Level 25: Tiger Dash / Wild Charge
- Level 30: Balance Affinity
- Level 35: Heart of the Wild
- Level 40: Incarnation: Tree of Life
- Level 45: Spring Blossoms
- Level 50: Flourish
The build suggested above does not account for specific fights in the current raid tier. If you wish to have a boss-by-boss breakdown of talent choices, you should check out our dedicated page below.
This is our recommended build for dungeons.
- Level 15: Cenarion Ward
- Level 25: Wild Charge / Renewal
- Level 30: Feral Affinity
- Level 35: Heart of the Wild
- Level 40: Soul of the Forest
- Level 45: Spring Blossoms
- Level 50: Photosynthesis
If you want more detailed advice specific to Mythic+, check out our page below.
Tier 1 (Level 15) Talents for Restoration Druids
|✔ Abundance||✘ Nourish||✔ Cenarion Ward|
- Nourish is an active ability that heals your target for a moderate amount. Receives triple bonus from Mastery: Harmony.
- Cenarion Ward is an active ability with a 30-second cooldown. It places a buff on an ally, lasting up to 30 seconds. When the player takes damage, Cenarion Ward activates a 8-second HoT on them, consuming Cenarion Ward in the process.
- Abundance causes each instance of Rejuvenation that you have active to reduce the Mana cost of Regrowth by 6% and increase its critical effect chance by 6%.
Abundance can be a strong talent both in dungeons and in raids. It provides stronger spot healing for dungeon healing and an efficient filler for raid healing. You should only be using this talent on fights or in dungeons where you use Regrowth a lot. Usually, this is the case for weeks with Grievous or Bursting, or on fights with heavy hitting debuffs.
Tier 2 (Level 25) Talents for Restoration Druids
|✔ Tiger Dash||? Renewal||✔ Wild Charge|
- Renewal is an active ability with a 90-second cooldown. It heals you for 30% of your maximum health, it is usable in all shapeshift forms, and it is off the global cooldown.
- Tiger Dash replaces Dash with a 45-second cooldown, 200% movement speed sprint that decays over 5 seconds when activated.
- Wild Charge is an active ability that is off the global cooldown
and which differs based on the
shapeshift form you are in, as follows:
- No shapeshift form: you fly to an ally's location.
- Travel Form: you leap forward.
- Moonkin Form: you leap backwards.
- Bear Form: you charge an enemy, immobilising them for 4 seconds.
- Cat Form: you leap behind an enemy, dazing them for 3 seconds.
- Aquatic Form: your swim speed is increased by 150% for 5 seconds.
In this tier, you will have to choose between two movement talents. Taking Renewal for survivability is generally unnecessary until you reach higher Mythic+ levels or for raid encounters with nearly no movement.
Tiger Dash's biggest downside is the fact that it replaces Dash. The movement speed increase is very strong, it is very easy to use. Although cooldown is a bit too long, Tiger Dash should be a fine choice, especially for dungeons and solo content.
Tier 3 (Level 30) Talents for Restoration Druids
|✔ Balance Affinity||? Feral Affinity||? Guardian Affinity|
- Balance Affinity grants you the Astral Influence passive ability, which increases the range of all your abilities by 5 yards. Additionally, you gain access to the Balance-spec abilities Moonkin Form, Starsurge, and Starfire.
- Feral Affinity grants you the Feline Swiftness passive ability, which increases your movement speed by 15%. Additionally, you gain access to the Feral-spec abilities Rake, Rip, Ferocious Bite, Swipe, and your energy regeneration is increased by 35%.
- Guardian Affinity grants you the Thick Hide passive ability, which reduces all your damage taken by 6%. Additionally, you gain access to the Guardian-spec abilities Thrash, Ironfur, and Frenzied Regeneration.
The passive damage reduction you gain from Guardian Affinity is extremely valuable during progression content, and even the active abilities can be very beneficial. Notably, Frenzied Regeneration can be used after taking heavy damage in order to heal yourself for free. The HoT from Frenzied Regeneration scales with Mastery and contributes to it. In cases where you expect to take a heavy hit, you should put Rejuvenation on yourself beforehand to make Frenzied Regeneration even stronger.
Balance Affinity could be used for fights where the raid is spread out, due to the passive increase in the range of your abilities. A 5-yard increase is not much and will only see niche use on fights where both your survivability is not important and players are spread far enough for 5 yards to make a difference. Furthermore, Typhoon can be a very potent tool in dungeons.
Feral Affinity offers the ability to deal substantial damage without Mana cost. This can be useful on progression content, to help your raid beat enrage timers, while leaving you with healthy amount of Mana for healing phases. For a few encounters, a passive movement speed increase can be considered as the sole reason to pick this talent. This talent can do substantially more damage in dungeon content than Balance Affinity with the Draught of Deep Focus Legendary.
Tier 4 (Level 35) Talents for Restoration Druids
|? Mighty Bash||? Mass Entanglement||✔ Heart of the Wild|
- Mighty Bash is an active ability with a 60-second cooldown, which stuns the target for 4 seconds. It is usable in all shapeshift forms.
- Mass Entanglement is an active ability with a 30-second cooldown, which roots the target and all enemies within 15 yards of them in place for 30 seconds. Damage done to rooted targets may break the effect. Mass Entanglement is usable in all shapeshift forms.
- Heart of the Wild is an active ability with a 5-minute cooldown. It substantially increases your chosen Affinity's abilities.
It is generally obvious which talent you should be picking on this tier, since they have different purposes entirely. If you specifically need one of the Mighty Bash or Mass Entanglement, then you pick them. In all other cases you should default to Heart of the Wild, because free damage increase is strong in all types of content.
Tier 5 (Level 40) Talents for Restoration Druids
|✔ Soul of the Forest||✘ Cultivation||✔ Incarnation: Tree of Life|
- Soul of the Forest causes Swiftmend to grant you a buff that increases the healing of your next Regrowth or Rejuvenation by 200%, or of your next Wild Growth by 75%.
- Incarnation: Tree of Life is an active ability with a 3-minute cooldown. It lasts for 30 seconds and increases all healing done by 15% as well as increasing your armor by 120% and making you immune to Polymorph effects. Moreover, it improves some of your spells.
- Cultivation causes Rejuvenation to place a 6-second HoT on targets that are below 60% health when Rejuvenation heals them.
Incarnation: Tree of Life is a very strong cooldown. Both the flat healing increase and the buff to Rejuvenation apply to spells you cast before activating Tree of Life and last through entire duration of the Tree. Tree of Life has a very good synergy with Flourish since it lines up with every second one.
Soul of the Forest is a potent option for both raids and dungeons. The buff is best used on either Regrowth or Wild Growth, depending on which type of healing you need. For maximum throughput it is advised to use it strictly with Wild Growth.
Incarnation: Tree of Life is a default option for raid content, while Soul of the Forest is a default option for dungeon content. Cultivation does not provide enough throughput the other two options give you.
Tier 6 (Level 45) Talents for Restoration Druids
|? Inner Peace||✔ Spring Blossoms||✘ Overgrowth|
- Inner Peace reduces the cooldown of Tranquility by 60 seconds.
- Spring Blossoms places a 6-second HoT on targets who are healed by your Efflorescence.
- Overgrowth instantly applies Lifebloom, Rejuvenation, Wild Growth, and Regrowth's heal over time effect to an ally. It has a 60-second cooldown.
Inner Peace is a very strong talent for raids. The power comes from fitting extra casts of Tranquility into a fight. In cases where it is impossible to do so due to either awkward timings, movement, or your raid cooldown assignments, it is advised to take Spring Blossoms instead.
Overgrowth unfortunately costs too much Mana for the healing it provides and has too long of a cooldown. You will find better results from Spring Blossoms even in dungeons. It is unlikely to find use in any dungeons and raids.
Spring Blossoms requires a few players in the group to be stacked, because it makes your Efflorescence prioritise targets that do not have Spring Blossoms HoT on them and ignore the injured player rule. It is the most optimal if you can keep Efflorescence under 9 people or more consistently throughout the fight, although it is still strong if there are only 5-6 players standing in Efflorescence. The HoT effect is extended by Flourish, but does not speed up or scale with Haste, with the exception of Photosynthesis. You should pick this talent on any fight you cannot utilise 2-minute cooldown Tranquility effectively. Otherwise, Inner Peace would be the preferred choice.
Tier 7 (Level 50) Talents for Restoration Druids
|✔ Photosynthesis||✘ Germination||✔ Flourish|
- Photosynthesis makes all your HoTs heal 20% more — by giving them 20% Haste — while Lifebloom is on yourself. Alternatively, while Lifebloom is on another ally, each of your periodic heals on them has a 4% chance to cause a final bloom.
- Germination allows you to apply two Rejuvenations to the same target. When Rejuvenation is already applied on a target, a second cast of Rejuvenation applies a second version of the HoT. From this point on, as long as both HoTs are active on the target, Rejuvenation will always refresh the HoT with the shortest remaining duration.
- Flourish is an active ability with a 90-second cooldown. It extends the duration of all your HoTs within 60 yards by 8 seconds and speeds up their tick rate by 100%.
For raiding, the best talent in this tier is Flourish. The power of this cooldown is too strong to pass up on. Furthermore, it has good synergy with every single covenant ability.
Photosynthesis is, unfortunately, too weak for AoE healing in raids. While it provides a steady healing increase, it does so by removing Lifebloom as a source of tank healing. Lifebloom will mostly overheal while being on yourself, thus reducing the added throughput substantially. Photosynthesis is, however, the best Mythic+ option.
Germination is unfortunately a very lackluster pick in both dungeons and raids.
Photosynthesis can find niche use in raid content. Most of the time you will want to pick it for tank healing, sacrificing significant a portion of your raid healing in return. Do not make the decision to pick it lightly, your role needs to be clearly defined for Photosynthesis to be worth it over Flourish.
PvP Talents (War Mode)
In Shadowlands, you have the option to go into "War Mode". Enabling War Mode provides the following benefits:
- PvP talents enabled in the outdoor world.
- 10-30% increase in World Quest rewards at maximum level.
- 10-30% more experience gained while leveling.
- Earn Conquest Points which can reward gear every week.
With the benefits of enabling War Mode for leveling and PvE content, it is recommended to enable the feature to maximize your leveling and rewards at maximum level. However, you will make yourself available for open world PvP, and the possibility to be killed while leveling or doing World Quests exists.
Restoration Druid War Mode Talents
In this section we will rank the PvP talents best for leveling and doing solo / small group PvE content. Below is a ranking of both General PvP Talents and Restoration Druid-specific PvE talents.
Restoration Druid PvP Talents
- Thorns is a good choice, that offers a direct damage increase. It is usable in any form and can provide significant damage on big pulls.
- Master Shapeshifter offers a very strong damage increase in Cat Form and Moonkin Form.
Disentanglement, Entangling Bark, Deep Roots, Focused Growth, Early Spring have limited effect on PvE content in terms of increasing your damage in the open world, or healing in a small group setting.
- 14 Jul. 2021: Adjusted Affinity talent recommendation for Mythic+.
- 28 Jun. 2021: Reviewed and approved for Patch 9.1.
- 09 Mar. 2021: Reviewed for Patch 9.0.5.
- 23 Nov. 2020: Page updated for Shadowlands Patch 9.0.2.
- 12 Oct. 2020: Page updated for the Shadowlands pre-patch.
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