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Restoration Shaman State in Shadowlands Alpha - Battle Shaman, Earth Shield, Covenant Abilities
2020/06/18 시간 02:07
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Thanks to Sylvanas Windrunner, the veil between Azeroth and the realm of death has been shattered threatening the cosmic balance between life and death. On April 9th, the Shadowlands were flooded with the Champions of Azeroth as select players were invited to the Alpha test for World of Warcraft's next expansion. As adventurers explore the Shadowlands and the covenants that are core to this new realm, players learn that the machine of death has broken. This realm we become a part of is in desperate need of mending and the mechanism of death must be restored if we are to bring balance back to the Shadowlands. Who better to do that than healers? We've been bringing back players from the brink of death and resurrecting our allies for years. It's time we take our gifts to the Shadowlands.
In this episode of the state of healers series, we'll explore Shadowlands Restoration Shamans and see how these elemental magic wielders with a affinity for the restorative properties of water heal afflictions and purify their allies like fierce tidal waves washing upon the shore.
Previous Articles in the Series:
Restoration DruidMistweaver MonkHoly Priest
Currently all classes with their updated toolkits are able to be tested, but so much has changed with each healer on a base level and the introduction of covenants adds a completely new twist and set of tools for each class. Moreover, we have still yet to see the full toolkits for healers as soulbinds, conduits, and legendaries have yet to be tested. Additionally, only a limited amount of content is available for testing including the
저주받은 자의 탑 토르가스트
, and 4 leveling dungeons (
티르너 사이드의 안개
). The types of encounters have just as much of an impact on healer balance as the toolkits of the healers themselves.
Although we don't have the entirety of healing toolkits and Shadowlands content to test, we can and
still offer feedback on the current state of healers on the Alpha. This series will attempt to give a first look at each healer specialization in Shadowlands and hopefully provide early feedback on the current changes including baseline toolkits, covenants, and even the hot topic of abilities that feel lackluster still on the GCD.
Previous articles (ie.
) ranked healers according to desirability in previous raid tiers. While those articles were helpful especially for new and returning healers to determine what healers would be in high demand, it's nearly impossible to determine any sort of ranking or demand this early in development of Shadowlands due to how much is still unknown or in flux regarding healing.
Remember, this is only my opinion on healers so far in Shadowlands and primarily comes from a PvE point of view. Everyone should provide as much constructive feedback as possible. As always, the information presented here is based on the 9.0 Alpha cycle as of this article's release date and thus will almost certainly be inaccurate when the Shadowlands officially launches. Expect lots of changes to classes, covenants, soulbinds, conduits, legendaries, items, and encounters between now and launch. It should be noted that we're trying to hit the
changes to each class, yet for the sake of brevity we won't cover every single spell differential or mana cost reduction. If you're interested in the entirety of the spell differentials for each class please see the Class Change link listed at the top of the section for each class.
About the Author
This article is written by
a veteran healer and contributing writer to both World of Warcraft content and other Blizzard games content here on Wowhead. I've been raiding in WoW for almost 15 years at various levels of progression. I've contributed to the theorycrafting of multiple healing classes, notably Mistweaver Monks and Restoration Druids. Find me on
or on the
Niseko, the Restoration Shaman for Entropy on Draenor-EU, co-creator, author and theorycrafter for
, admin in its Restoration Shaman specific
and MVP in the
Shaman Class Discord
. Collaborator for
where I'm actively contributing and keeping the spec up to date. Also contributing on
to make simming Restoration Shaman DPS possible.
Shaman Class Changes
Because we don't have a lot of Shadowlands content to test, we'll be primarily be looking at how Restoration Shamans have changed since Battle for Azeroth, especially in the stripped down world of healing sans Azerite, Essences, and Corruption. The additional systems of Battle for Azeroth didn't largely change Restoration Shaman's healing playstyle; however, the
Azerite Trait significantly boosted the single target damage output of Restoration Shamans. Combine this with damage-only essences and corruptions like
뒤틀린 신체 부위
; and Restoration Shamans competed with more traditional damage dealers. While this 'Battle Shaman' playstyle required the player to heavily invest in dealing damage at the cost of their healing throughput, Battle Shamans were occasionally used in scenarios when a full dedicated healer wasn't entirely necessary opting to provide damage in low impact phases and providing cooldowns and healing support during more intense phases. While a lot of the support systems for Battle Shamans are going away, hopefully the playstyle can be supported either in the base class or expansion systems.
Baseline Toolkit Changes
- While it's nice to receive some additional tools for dealing damage, none of these are particularly that impactful.
require you to be in melee and do very minimal damage.
requires you to be melee'd to provide damage which is very unlikely outside of solo content and as a Restoration Shaman you'll most likely run
for the mana regen.
is probably the most useful of the returning damaging abilities due to the added utility of a 50% slow. While the damage of
recently received a buff on Alpha, it's likely only going to be used when you either need the slow or when you're moving and
is on cooldown.
- This talent will be nice to have baseline for the passive healing and 10% healing increase on a single target; however, all the issues that made this a rarely picked talent still remain even as a baseline ability. With BFA,
was put on the GCD making this already low impact ability and maintenance buff feel even worse to maintain on your tank. Where before you could quickly put it up between spell casts, you're now having to expend the GCD to do so. With a 3s internal cooldown and 9 stacks, you're looking at recasting
every 24s or so for normal play or even more often if using the new
. If this ability is returning baseline, please make it more impactful for the GCDs spent to maintain. Increase the stacks, give an upfront benefit, increase the healing.
- The mana totem returns for Shadowlands albeit with a 15 yd range. While I don't mind the range restriction to differentiate it from
마나 해일 토템
needs a visual indicator otherwise it'll likely be completely lost during an encounter for other healers. As an interesting and possibly unintended interaction, multiple
마나 해일 토템
s currently stack multiplicatively with each other on Alpha. This means having multiple shamans pop
마나 해일 토템
at the same time will yield higher mana returns. For one shaman that's 2x normal mana regen; two shaman 4x normal mana regen; and three shaman 8x normal mana regen and so on and so forth. For a single shaman,
마나 해일 토템
is pretty weak only generating 6.4% max mana with each use compared to the 144% of max mana that you regen every 3 mins between
마나 해일 토템
casts. Fairly weak overall so could use a small buff.
- The mana regen elemental shield returns. As added flair of encircling watery orbs, the ability definitely encapsulates the class fantasy of a Restoration Shaman, but it does little to provide any sort of meaningful gameplay. Yes, the passive mana regen is nice but the mana gained from taking melee hits is likely to be very rare outside of solo content. It's sorta this set and forget buff that doesn't have any real player interaction.
Shadowlands Leveling Perks
Reincarnation now revives you with an additional 20% health.
A nice addition to
to help ensure that you're not instantly killed after reincarnating. Not huge but I'll take it.
Reworked Restoration Shaman Abilities
Rank 2 (Level 27)
Casting Chain Heal or Riptide reduces the cast time of your next Healing Wave by 30%20% or increases the critical effect chance of your next Healing Surge by 40%. Stacks up to 2 times.
While the nerf to the cast time reduction of a
doesn't seem that huge, it seems unnecessary to do this especially for a class that already struggles to find footing in the heavy single-target healing situations of Mythic+. Perhaps this nerf is to better differentiate
, but just seems odd but not too impactful.
Flat Healing Increases and Mana Cost Changes
~25% Healing Increase & Cost changed from 25% to 30% of base mana
~33% Healing Increase & Cost changed from 9% to 14% of base mana
~8% Healing Increase & Cost changed from 18% to 23% of base mana
~20% Healing Increase
*Factors in the
Core passive healing modifier reduced from 46% to 0%.
Flat Damage Changes
~37% Damage Decrease
~21% Damage Decrease
~36% Damage Increase
The base toolkit for Restoration Shamans hasn't changed significantly in Shadowlands and the playstyle will largely remain the same as BFA. The strengths and weaknesses of Restoration Shamans still remain in Shadowlands. Utility has always been Restoration Shaman's strong suit with abilities like
정신의 고리 토템
선조의 보호 토템
, and much much more. They always seem to have an ability or cooldown to answer any situation. Where they've tended to struggle is single target sustained healing and spread AoE group healing.
The biggest letdown of the entire baseline toolkit changes is the general lack of support for Mythic+ which is an area that Restoration Shaman has struggled to find footing since the inception of the dungeon mode. While they have a lot of utility that works quite well in dungeons including
(the only healer interrupt),
바람 질주 토템
, their single target healing throughput and lack of damage reduction has always seemed to hold them back. Restoration Shamans did get additional single target healing with
baseline as well as some small buffs to
, but I'm not sure that's enough to compete in dungeons.
To contribute to the plight of Restoration Shamans in dungeons, damage-wise they've fallen below the mark compared to other healers, especially in the absence of
. Most damaging abilities have long cast times or long cooldowns leading them to feel unimpactful. Moreover, AoE damage for Restoration Shamans has largely been restricted to 3 targets. With more and more content meant to be soloable by any class/spec, including Torghast in Shadowlands, Restoration Shaman damage is falling at the wayside.
Finally, Restoration Shaman
특화: 깊은 치유
remains unchanged despite a lot of scaling issues especially over the course of a tier. While highly valued at the start of progression when players are learning encounters and making lots of mistakes,
특화: 깊은 치유
loses significant value as fights are learned, the raid gears up, and progression turns to farm. Additionally, modern WoW encounters rarely have damage patterns with frequent hard-hitting bursts of damage that aren't covered by raid cooldowns. Ideally,
특화: 깊은 치유
would have benefits even at high health instead of the current reverse scaling with itself.
Every 0 mana you spend brings a High Tide, making your next 2 Chain Heals heal for an additional 20%10% and not reduce with each jump.
As the always taken talent for raiding Restoration Shamans, it's no surprise to see this talent nerfed and some of the power directly baked into
. This will likely mean
will see more play but will largely depend on final tuning.
Consume up to 3 charges of Earth Shield to heal up to 6 allies near your Earth Shield target for per charge consumed.
Tier 2 Talent, in place of
This talent isn't bad, but it's not great either. The problem is
as an AoE heal doesn't really do much to solve shaman issues. For reference,
does a little less than the upfront healing of
on 6 nearby targets for the cost of 3
charges and a little more mana than the cost of a
. This in total is a bit less than a
worth of throughput albeit at a slightly cheaper price and limited to allies near your
on a 20s cooldown. The only real benefit is the instant cast and lower mana cost compared to
. Easy way to fix this talent is to just allocate all or some of the healing as a single target heal on the
target turning the ability into a
-like ability allowing Restoration Shamans a way to quickly recover and respond to incoming single target burst damage.
Unfortunately, the Restoration Shaman talent tree saw very few changes in Shadowlands. Ideally, I would have liked an additional pass on more mandatory talents and then perhaps making others in the utility section baseline with a replacement talent to support the Battle Shaman playstyle of BFA that is likely to become extinct without some intervention. Without trying to harp on this too much, talents would be a perfect place to explore more dungeon oriented abilities to help Restoration Shaman Mythic+ viability.
- Versatile and powerful ability with a lot of control. This cheap 1 min cooldown ability comes with a ton of AoE healing and damage. The damage and healing components are separate meaning you'll get 3x healing activations and 3x damage activations. The only real downside is the small 8 yd range for the pulses, but because relocating the totem is off the GCD it makes it easy to reposition to maximize output. The damage is a little lackluster single target, but on multiple targets in Mythic+ this ability will be strong. Ideally, I'd like the activator for the damage to be healing as well since passive damage tends to be more highly valued, but others might also like the control so perhaps a way to choose whether active or passive damage would be nice. Overall a strong covenant ability that will be hard to beat.
- The steward offers some quality of life options like free talent changes or a vendor to sell things, but it essentially boils down to
, a glorified healthstone for all intents and purposes. The healing will be nice and contribute albeit minimally to throughput, and the personal bleed, disease, and poison dispel for Restoration Shamans could come in handy as you can't normally dispel those; however, the circumstances where the phial will be invaluable will be few and far between compared to other covenant abilities which are more universally valuable.
- Think of this as a free dual
combo with a variable cooldown based on crit. With a 20yd jump range, players can be a bit more spread out with
's 15yd jump range. The problem with this ability is it doesn't really have many pros in the way of throughput except for the fact that it's free. The actual healing is very similar to
without a lot of the extra tie-ins like
or building stacks of
. Even if all hits crits reducing the cooldown to 40s, the throughput just doesn't compare to that of
. The only significant benefit
is allies can be significantly more spread out.
- Quite possibly the star of the covenant signature abilities, it's hard to say no to a 35yd teleport with a minute cooldown even if it has a 1.5s cast time. This type of movement is almost universally valuable and it's hard to think of an occasion where it'd be useless. Full Venthyr dungeon groups can plan skips around this ability. As a Restoration Shaman, I can't turn down additional mobility.
- This covenant ability comes with a lot of setup. Because this healing is tied directly
, you'll need to make good use of your
to ensure that you're maximizing the throughput on targets that will actually need the healing. The upfront healing is significantly less than a
to start even when factoring in the applied
but also can't be buffed via
. Only your cast of
not the copied casts. At a 45s cooldown, the healing throughput on this one is comparable with
especially when you take
and can achieve 5
out at a time. It's also fairly cheap for the extra throughput. The problem comes when you're also not getting any damage out of the ability and only healing. It would be nice if the ability also triggered
targets when we used
and rewarded multitasking
. I think allowing the additional
s to interact with the rest of our toolkit via
would go a long way in rewarding an even higher skill ceiling.
- This extra self survivability will be nice and as an absorb will contribute minimally to overall throughput, but where this one loses me is the 4s channel. . I would really like to see the channel time reduced or allowing this ability to channel while moving would go a long way to making this ability more palatable. Even with those changes it's a bit of a hard sell against the other movement oriented covenant signature abilities.
- While this covenant ability has an interesting damage to healing mechanic, the fact that the healing throughput scales based on the number of targets means that when you're only facing significantly fewer targets the healing will be much less. Unfortunately, at fewer enemy targets, which is the norm in a lot of PvE content, the healing just can't compete with other covenants. Now throw in a 8yd radius for both the damage and the healing, a 3s channel, and a 2min cooldown and you'll begin to understand why this ability feels like a less versatile
As someone who adored
, it's nice to see this come back as an option although more watered down. Blinks and teleports are universally valuable and while it might not be the Venthyr ability this is a strong second place option. You likely won't be coming up with skips for such a limited 10 yard blink, but you get 3 in the 12s duration so you may have some opportunities to blink over some particularly nasty mechanics. It should be noted that you can cast while shapeshifted and you gain the
if you started out in
. Comes with a cosmetic collecting minigame which is fantastic.
We don't have the full class toolkit yet with soulbinds, conduits, and legendaries still to be released, so it's hard to make a clear choice right now as to what covenant is the best and for what type of content. However, if I had to pick one now based solely on the information we have on Alpha I think I'd be hardpressed not to pick
for Restoration Shamans.
is a versatile healing tool that works great in both dungeon and raid content. There's very little setup, a lot of control, and solid throughput. Unfortunately,
have somewhat lower tier signature abilities, but for how powerful the covenant abilitiy is you can't go wrong with
- As I mentioned earlier this low impact ability feels more like a maintenance buff especially while on the GCD. Adding something upfront like a small heal would go a long way to making this ability feel better. Alternatively, increasing the number of stacks so fewer refreshes are necessary would limit the impact these GCDs have on your rotation.
마나 해일 토템
- The extra mana is nice, but it's sorta this set and forget type ability. The trickling of mana regen you have normally you get more of but I'm not sure you'll notice the difference. Maybe making the first cast after gaining
마나 해일 토템
free at least gives players some interaction with the totem.
Mythic+ Viability - While there are a lot of factors that determine how well a spec performs in Mythic+ (utility, damage, single target throughput, etc.), I'd really appreciate if future development could be focused on helping Restoration Shamans become stronger and more relevant in dungeon content. I know it's a big ask and there isn't an exact solution, but perhaps the additional systems of Shadowlands could really offer some more tools for Restoration Shamans. For a lot of players the spec tends to let them down in dungeon content causing players to feel forced to class swap to feel more viable. Outside of spamming
, Restoration Shamans feel like they don't have the tools to handle the incoming damage of higher Mythic+.
- This Azerite Trait for
정신의 고리 토템
took an already outstanding ability raised it to another level by adding a throughput component. This made timing the
정신의 고리 토템
an added skill component to dealing with incoming damage. I'm not sure how this functionality could fit in, but I welcome this addition to the toolkit going forward.
That's a wrap for now for Restoration Shamans. I hope you enjoyed the breakdown. More Shadowlands healer breakdowns will be coming very soon so stay tuned to Wowhead.
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