Restoration Shaman Healing Spec, Builds, and Talents — Shadowlands Pre-Patch 9.0.1

Last updated on Oct 18, 2020 at 12:14 by Seksixeny 1 comment
General Information

On this page, you will find out the best talents for each tier for your Restoration Shaman in World of Warcraft — Shadowlands Pre-Patch 9.0.1. 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 WoW Classic content, please refer to our Classic Restoration Shaman Healer talents.

1.

Talent Choices for Restoration Shaman

Level Choices
15 Torrent ? Torrent Undulation Undulation Unleash Life Unleash Life
25 Echo of the Elements Echo of the Elements Deluge ? Deluge Surge of Earth Surge of Earth
30 Spirit Wolf Spirit Wolf Earthgrab Totem ? Earthgrab Totem Static Charge ? Static Charge
35 Ancestral Vigor ? Ancestral Vigor Earthen Wall Totem Earthen Wall Totem Ancestral Protection Totem ? Ancestral Protection Totem
40 Nature's Guardian ? Nature's Guardian Graceful Spirit Graceful Spirit Wind Rush Totem ? Wind Rush Totem
45 Flash Flood ? Flash Flood Downpour Downpour Cloudburst Totem Cloudburst Totem
50 High Tide High Tide Wellspring Wellspring Ascendance Ascendance

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 Tranquil Mind Icon Tome of the Tranquil Mind and Codex of the Tranquil Mind Icon Codex of the Tranquil Mind can be used to temporarily allow players to change talents anywhere, as long as they are out of combat.

2.

Talent Cheat Sheets for Restoration Shaman

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.

2.1.

Raid / Large Group Talents

The talent setup below is a good starting point for raiding. It is highly recommended you read the individual talent points as this specialization, in particular, is highly situational with respect to talent choices.

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.

2.2.

Dungeon / Small Group Talents

The talent setup below is a good starting point for dungeons. The optimal setup depends on both your group composition and the dungeon you are clearing.

Higher Mythic+ can potentially require a mix of certain AoE and Single-Target talents, depending on affixes and other variables. If you want more detailed advice specific to Mythic+, check out our page below.

2.3.

Soloing / Horrific Vision Talents

You should use the talent setup below when soloing, especially in Horrific Visions.

3.

Level 15 Talents for Restoration Shaman

Torrent ? Torrent Undulation Undulation Unleash Life Unleash Life

Level 15 talents offer a boost to sustained healing.

Torrent Icon Torrent is a fine choice for all situations, as it gives your Riptide Icon Riptide a little more direct healing. It can be helpful for quickly getting low health group members back up to safe levels, and given Riptide is already one of your most efficient heals, odds are you are casting a lot of Riptide already. The only problem with this talent is that it is not as powerful as the other two in their niches.

Undulation Icon Undulation's performance depends on how much of your total throughput consists of Healing Wave Icon Healing Wave / Healing Surge Icon Healing Surge casts. If these 2 spells are your main healing sources, then this talent is a great pick on the tier, otherwise you should probably take a different talent. It has higher potential throughput than Unleash Life but can suffer from poor timing on its buff effect.

Unleash Life Icon Unleash Life provides an extra instant heal and strong boost to your next direct heal. This should usually be used on Chain Heal Icon Chain Heal, as you can reliably increase Chain Heal output by 35% with a single global cooldown and negligible Mana cost. If the buffed Chain Heal would cause heavy overheal, you should instead use it on Healing Surge Icon Healing Surge or Riptide Icon Riptide, as it improves its healing over time component as well as its direct heal. This is the best talent on this tier for group healing, and the overall best when timed correctly.

4.

Level 25 Talents for Restoration Shaman

Echo of the Elements Echo of the Elements Deluge ? Deluge Surge of Earth Surge of Earth

Level 25 talents also offer a boost to sustained healing.

Echo of the Elements Icon Echo of the Elements allows you to save instant spells for movement periods without losing throughput. The extra Lava Burst Icon Lava Burst charge makes Lava Surge Icon Lava Surge nearly always grant you an extra Lava Burst rather than just shortening its remaining cooldown and making it instant, thus increasing your single target DPS. It also allows you to place up to three Cloudburst Totem Icon Cloudburst Totem in a row, although only one can be active at a given time. This is a great all around talent that works in all situations.

Deluge Icon Deluge empowers your main spells significantly, as long as they hit allies inside your Healing Rain Icon Healing Rain / with Riptide Icon Riptide. That makes it a decent talent for increasing your general healing, but keep in mind that you will be losing on Echo of the Elements Icon Echo of the Elements's versatility and damage increasing potential if you take it.

Surge of Earth Icon Surge of Earth is yet another area of effect heal for the kit. It has relatively weak numbers and does not fill a special role. Its range is very limited and, because it consumes Earth Shield Icon Earth Shield charges, it will force you to refresh it sooner, making it a very weak talent in all situations.

5.

Level 30 Talents for Restoration Shaman

Spirit Wolf Spirit Wolf Earthgrab Totem ? Earthgrab Totem Static Charge ? Static Charge

Level 30 talents offer / enhance utility tools.

  • Spirit Wolf Icon Spirit Wolf causes you to gain 5% increased movement speed / damage reduction every second while transformed into Ghost Wolf Icon Ghost Wolf, stacking up to 20% of each.
  • Earthgrab Totem Icon Earthgrab Totem places a totem up to 30 yards away that lasts for 20 seconds and roots enemies within 8 yards for 8 seconds. Enemies that were previously rooted by the totem are slowed by 50% instead, while inside its effect.
  • Static Charge Icon Static Charge reduces the cooldown of Capacitor Totem Icon Capacitor Totem by 5 seconds for each enemy it stuns, up to a 20-second cooldown reduction maximum.

Spirit Wolf Icon Spirit Wolf is a good choice whenever you need that little extra damage reduction / speed to deal with encounter mechanics or when extra crowd control is not required. Due to its general flexibility, it is the recommended talent to take when you don't have a specific use for the other options.

Earthgrab Totem Icon Earthgrab Totem allows you to root enemies for a long duration. This is very helpful against melee non-boss enemies or when dealing with certain encounter mechanics.

Static Charge Icon Static Charge allows you to stun large groups of enemies more often, which is typically useful in dungeons or large scale PvP.

6.

Level 35 Talents for Restoration Shaman

Ancestral Vigor ? Ancestral Vigor Earthen Wall Totem Earthen Wall Totem Ancestral Protection Totem ? Ancestral Protection Totem

Level 35 talents are a mix of throughput and utility tools.

  • Ancestral Vigor Icon Ancestral Vigor causes targets healed by Healing Wave Icon Healing Wave, Healing Surge Icon Healing Surge, Chain Heal Icon Chain Heal — any bounce hit counts — and Riptide Icon Riptide's direct heal to grant their targets 10% increased maximum health for 10 seconds.
  • Earthen Wall Totem Icon Earthen Wall Totem can be placed up to 30 yards away and redirects a flat amount of damage taken from nearby allies to the totem, which has the same total amount of health as you. It has a 1-minute cooldown.
  • Ancestral Protection Totem Icon Ancestral Protection Totem can also be placed up to 30 yards away, lasts 30 seconds and grants two effects to allies within 20 yards of the totem: 10% increased maximum health and the ability to reincarnate at 20% health and Mana by consuming the totem. Players who took over 200% of their maximum health in damage as the killing blow cannot reincarnate with this totem and reincarnating does not count towards the combat resurrection limit. It has a 5-minute cooldown.

Ancestral Vigor Icon Ancestral Vigor is the most flexible, and least impactful, choice of this row and works decently in any situation. Your highest priority with this talent is to ensure it is running on the tanks and other priority targets at all times to grant them additional survivability.

Earthen Wall Totem Icon Earthen Wall Totem is good for reducing frequent incoming damage on a stacked group of allies. Since it only absorbs a small, fixed amount of each individual attack, it is not recommended to use against enemies that deal slow, powerful attacks, but is great in almost all other situations.

Ancestral Protection Totem Icon Ancestral Protection Totem is the best choice whenever you plan to intentionally have one ally die to bypass encounter mechanics, just be mindful of the 200% maximum health killing blow limit. It should also be picked whenever your group is consistently struggling to keep everyone alive through a short, specific part of an encounter, as its effect is extraordinarily powerful.

7.

Level 40 Talents for Restoration Shaman

Nature's Guardian ? Nature's Guardian Graceful Spirit Graceful Spirit Wind Rush Totem ? Wind Rush Totem

Level 40 talents offer / enhance utility tools.

  • Nature's Guardian Icon Nature's Guardian heals you for 20% of your maximum health whenever your health falls below 35% — this happens before the hit that takes you below 35% health — with a 45-seconds cooldown between activations.
  • Graceful Spirit Icon Graceful Spirit makes your Spiritwalker's Grace Icon Spiritwalker's Grace a 1-minute cooldown and increases your movement speed by 20% while Spiritwalker's Grace Icon Spiritwalker's Grace is active.
  • Wind Rush Totem Icon Wind Rush Totem summons a totem up to 30 yards away for 15 seconds that increases the speed of allies within 10 yards by 60% for 5 seconds. The speed buff is continually refreshed as long as they are within range. It has a 2-minute cooldown.

Nature's Guardian Icon Nature's Guardian is a small, but completely passive self-healing ability that can potentially save your life if you expect to be taking large hits while above 35% health — keep in mind it will never save you from hits that deal your maximum health in damage or higher due to the heal happening before the damage event. It can also heal you when you are, otherwise, unable to do so — due to being crowd controlled in PvP, for example.

Graceful Spirit Icon Graceful Spirit should be your go-to talent in situations where you need to be able to move while healing more often than once every 2 minutes, and if you do not require any of the other two talents to survive / deal with group movement.

Wind Rush Totem Icon Wind Rush Totem should be your go-to talent in situations where your group requires a group movement speed buff, typically while raiding, where it is an exceptional talent.

8.

Level 45 Talents for Restoration Shaman

Flash Flood ? Flash Flood Downpour Downpour Cloudburst Totem Cloudburst Totem

Level 45 talents offer a boost to burst healing.

  • Flash Flood Icon Flash Flood reduces the casting time of your next healing spell by 20% after you consume a charge of Tidal Waves Icon Tidal Waves.
  • Downpour Icon Downpour heals up to 6 allies in a large targeting circle when cast. It has a variable cooldown that ranges from 5 seconds (hit nothing / no effective healing done on hits) to 35 seconds (6 hits with effective healing done).
  • Cloudburst Totem Icon Cloudburst Totem replaces Healing Stream Totem Icon Healing Stream Totem when talented and places a totem beneath you that stores 30% of all spell healing and overhealing done while active. This healing is released up to 40 yards around you — not the totem — at the end of its 15-second duration, with a 30-second cooldown on the totem itself.

Flash Flood Icon Flash Flood significantly increases your average casting speed as long as you are spending your Tidal Waves Icon Tidal Waves regularly. This is beneficial for both single target and group healing, but requires you to spend more Mana to achieve the same group healing benefits as the other two talents, making it a poor choice.

Downpour Icon Downpour does very strong stacked group burst healing, but due to its high cooldown, has been out scaled by Cloudburst Totem Icon Cloudburst Totem, which can now do its job better with a similar cooldown. It should still be the talent of choice in this row for Shamans who are focused on dealing damage, in which case you can just use it every 35 seconds without needing the healing setup required for Cloudburst.

Cloudburst Totem Icon Cloudburst Totem's power depends exclusively on your ability to grow its stored healing with your other spells — items and Azerite trait direct healing does not count towards the stored healing (although Azerite traits that boost your baseline spells will contribute). Since it splits the stored healing evenly among hurt allies when destroyed, you want to try and destroy it manually ahead of the 15 seconds limit when not doing so will result in heavy overhealing. Due to replacing Healing Stream Totem Icon Healing Stream Totem, Echo of the Elements Icon Echo of the Elements causes you to have 2 charges of Cloudburst Totem, which can be used, for example, to ensure every Wellspring Icon Wellspring cast contributes to a Cloudburst Totem's stored healing.

9.

Level 50 Talents for Restoration Shaman

High Tide High Tide Wellspring Wellspring Ascendance Ascendance

Level 50 talents offer a boost to burst healing.

  • High Tide Icon High Tide grants 20% extra healing and no decrease after each jump to your next two Chain Heal Icon Chain Heal casts, every time you spend 40.000 Mana. This buff lasts for 25 seconds after you reach the 40.000 Mana threshold, and can thus safely be stored for situations where it is needed.
  • Wellspring Icon Wellspring creates a wave of healing which hits all allies up to 30 yards in front of you, in a wide arc, with a 20-second cooldown.
  • Ascendance Icon Ascendance causes a healing burst split among nearby allies when activated, lasts 15 seconds and causes all of your non-totem healing to be duplicated and evenly split between allies up to 20 yards around you.

High Tide Icon High Tide is the most flexible talent in this row, allowing you to bank powerful Chain Heal Icon Chain Heal casts to counter incoming burst damage, or simply passively increase your throughput. It performs well in most situations and exceptionally in short fights where you can be reckless with your Mana pool.

Wellspring Icon Wellspring allows for widespread group healing, a limitation Restoration often struggles with. With its relatively low 20-second cooldown, Wellspring works best when the encounter's damage pattern allows you to cast it on cooldown without heavy overhealing. As replacing Chain Heal Icon Chain Heal casts with Wellsprings is an efficient way to extend your Mana pool, longer fights favor this talent, but it does require a specific damage pattern.

Ascendance Icon Ascendance's duplicated healing is only spread into injured allies, which means you can use it to rapidly heal a single target when needed, or as a group healing cooldown when combined with your other group heals. While Ascendance is very powerful while active, its overall uptime is very low, making it unreliable in many situations.

10.

PvP Talents (War Mode)

In Battle for Azeroth, there will be the option to go into "War Mode". Enabling War Mode provides the following benefits:

  • PvP talents that can be used in the outdoor world.
  • 10% to 30% increase in World Quest rewards at max level.
  • 10% to 30% more experience gained while leveling.
  • Ability to earn Conquest Points in the outdoor world, which can reward powerful gear every week.

While War Mode can be beneficial to your character progression speed, it also brings significant risks of getting delayed by PvP combat, especially when venturing into the enemy faction's continent. This means that, after the initial leveling phase — where it is almost always beneficial since you mostly level in your faction's continent — you should only have it enabled if you do not mind being dragged into outdoor PvP regularly.

10.1.

Restoration Shaman War Mode Talents

In this section we will explain the PvP talents and rank them on their leveling and solo / small group PvE content usefulness.

10.1.1.

General PvP Talents

  1. Relentless Icon Relentless reduces the duration of crowd control effects by 20%. This is very useful in general and especially so when dealing with multiple enemies with similar crowd control abilities, which tends to be the case when leveling / soloing / small group PvE content in the outdoor world.
  2. Gladiator's Medallion Icon Gladiator's Medallion is an on-use ability that removes all movement impairing effects and all loss of control effects. Good for emergencies , but not ideal when dealing with multiple enemies with crowd control abilities.
  3. Adaptation Icon Adaptation automatically removes loss of control effects with a duration equal to or over 5 seconds. There are very few abilities in the game that cause Adaptation to activate, thus its strong potential is rarely realized.
10.1.2.

Restoration Shaman PvP Talents

  1. Skyfury Totem Icon Skyfury Totem creates a totem beneath you that increases the critical effect damage and healing of your spells by 20% for 15 seconds, on a 40-second cooldown. This totem is great to both increase your healing output and damage output of your group members on a short cooldown.
  2. Ancestral Gift Icon Ancestral Gift allows you to cast uninterrupted for 5 seconds after using Spiritwalker's Grace Icon Spiritwalker's Grace. This is critical when facing one or more opponents who can interrupt you, allowing you to land every spell cast during that window.
  3. Counterstrike Totem Icon Counterstrike Totem creates a totem beneath you that reflects 100% of the damage caused on allies within 20 yards of the totem back to enemies for its 15 second duration. It has a 45-second cooldown. This totem allows you to contribute significant area of effect DPS when your allies pull a lot of enemies or during PvP situations.

Swelling Waves Icon Swelling Waves, Voodoo Mastery Icon Voodoo Mastery, Electrocute Icon Electrocute, Cleansing Waters Icon Cleansing Waters, Grounding Totem Icon Grounding Totem, Spirit Link Icon Spirit Link, Tidebringer Icon Tidebringer and Spectral Recovery Icon Spectral Recovery have their own niches, but are not as generally useful when leveling / doing World Quests with a group as a Restoration Shaman. It is not recommended that you try to solo level and / or do World Quests, as the specialization's talents and ability to DPS is weak, slowing you down considerably.

Patch 8.2 brought us Conflict and Strife Icon Conflict and Strife, which grants the usage of Ancestral Gift Icon Ancestral Gift in PvE situations. While this is a great PvP talent due to the prevalence of interrupts in PvP situations, in PvE you will rarely be interrupted unless you screw up, making this essence irrelevant outside PvP situations. See our Essence page for more information.

11.

Changelog

  • 18 Oct. 2020: Reworked the talent recommendations and the explaining text for the level 15 row.
  • 12 Oct. 2020: Page updated for the Shadowlands pre-patch.
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