Thursday, 2 June 2011

PTR Feedback - Resto Mastery Duration

I decided to make a post on the WoW PTR Discussion Forum regarding the Resto Mastery to give some feedback on the Harmony duration and thought I'd post it here as well to hopefully increase readers of it a bit! You can see the original post on the forums here: [Feedback] Harmony (Resto Mastery) Duration. You can upvote the thread by hitting 'Like' in the top right hand corner and feel free to contribute with any constructive comments, thoughts, or ideas of your own! (Just keep it constructive so we avoid the forum trolls).

Full post is the following:

As a preface, I’m very pleased and excited about the 4.2 mastery changes for Resto druids. The change not only boosts our direct heals and our interaction between our direct heals and HoTs (with the former activating the HoT buff), it should go a long way to encourage more direct healing from Resto druids and clever play and not just mindless spamming. I was also pleased to see on PTR that the direct heals actually proc a buff for Harmony, which is extremely helpful in tracking its uptime, whether through an addon like Power Auras or simply glancing up at our buffs to ensure it’s up.
My only concern is with the actual duration of the buff. At only 10 seconds, it’s feeling very restrictive. Taking into account the GCD following the spell which activated it, the buff is only active for ~9 seconds, and 1-3 seconds of that will be required to reactivate it (through casting a direct heal) if we want to maintain continuous uptime, which will be the ideal we aim for. 
A 15 second duration would be nice, however, that may seem a bit too easy to want to implement, as it could easily be refreshed by simply Swiftmending on cooldown, which could quickly become a mindless auto-cast without any real thought. Particularly with Swiftmend, we don’t want the spell to become the main mastery activator, especially for raid healers, as it could likely just lead to wasted Swiftmends hit unnecessarily without thought just for the mastery proc.
The 10 second duration should be very maintainable in 5mans, and likely not too bad in 10mans, where there's generally plenty of direct healing going on along with party/raid healing, especially in 10s with generally only 2 or 3 healers. In 25 man raids in particular I see this being much more difficult and restrictive, particularly for those druids who are focussed primarily on raid healing rather than necessarily tank healing. If refreshing the Mastery with a Nourish or Healing Touch, that's essentially 2-3 seconds of the buff spent simply refreshing it. You could arguably refresh with a Regrowth, particularly if you have an OoC proc, but that seems like it might just encourage poor and random Regrowth use. 
A 12 to 14 second duration for the buff seems like it may be a good balance. Not so long that it could be so easily refreshed by just spamming Swiftmend off CD without thought, but long enough that you don't feel you’re constantly struggling to refresh it and can actually make good use of spreading your HoTs on targets while raid healing and take advantage of the HoT boost component of the mastery. Regardless of final duration time chosen, definitely something that should be adjusted and ideally increased.
Overall, very positive about the mastery change and am looking forward to when it goes live. 

1 comment:

lissanna said...

For the sake of argument, lets say that Swiftmend keeps it up for 10 out of 15 seconds. Then, it's really only one direct heal every 15 seconds that you need to cast. If you are keeping up Lifebloom on a tank, you'd just want to use a direct heal to refresh LB on your tank every other time you refresh LB (on the part of the cycle where SM is on cooldown). Given that my 25-man raid healing benefit from the current mastery is probably about 40 to 60%, I don't lose any healing power compared to the old mastery at a 2/3rds up-time (from only SM refreshes).