- Jul 15, 2009
- 0 Comments
Can you describe for us what the intended identity and versatility of the Tree of Life druids are supposed to be?
This is a pretty philosophical answer here. If you only read one answer in this Q&A, you might want to check out this one. The strength of the Resto druid is in heal-over-time spells. They can also do some decent single-target healing through Nourish or group healing through Wild Growth. The tree pretty much used to be a PvE mechanic since “rooting yourself” in PvP to benefit from ToL greatly limited the druid’s crowd control and escape abilities. We made enough changes to the talent to get trees into PvP in Lich King… arguably too well. Druids overall have a strong niche. We are at a little bit of a crossroads with the Tree of Life however. We are currently wondering if druids sacrifice too much just to be as good as a healer as everyone else. What I mean is that if druids were good healers in caster form but great healers in Tree form, then there might be a decision there. However, we pretty much assume that healing druids are in Tree form nearly all of the time and balance around that. We don’t think it would be fair for them to be the best healers just for taking that talent. In addition to having to give up utility in order to heal as a Tree of Life, we have become less enamored with druids locking themselves into one form. In fact, you really never see the basic tauren or night elf druid form (you know, the one that actually shows off the awesome armor art) because all druids are in cat, bear, tree, or moonkin form nearly 100% of the time. I’m not saying we would just cut Tree of Life from the game. It’s been around awhile and for better or worse, it’s part of World of Warcraft now. However, we could see taking the druid in a direction where shifting was much more common and easy to do. Maybe you only go into tree form for certain spells but leave for other spells — this didn’t work previously because of the high cost of shifting, but in the absence of power shifting, we’d love to get rid of the costs completely. Another way to go would be to make Tree of Life form a cooldown, more like Metamorphosis. You shift into tree when you need a healing boost, but you don’t stay in it all the time. Now, I am totally waving my arms here. This is not the kind of change you are going to see in the next patch. But it is something we’re thinking about long term, and the kind of thinking we’d love to have more feedback on from the community. Note to other healers: this is why you are unlikely to see any kind of “Holy form” ever. Giving up healing to do damage works okay. Giving up everything to heal is lame
As you can tell, Blizzard is looking seriously at ToL, but instead of locking druids into a healing form, they are looking at allowing us to switch to ToL in emergency situations, and I will beg and grovel against such a change.
From a lore perspective, I have never understood why a druid can call upon the forces of nature to turn himself into a tree, but can’t use that same power while a tree to pop a wrath in someone’s ass. I don’t think ToL druids are asking for an entire arsenal of damage spells while in tree form. What I do think is druids are asking for an ability or 2 to serve as filler when we are healing and there are downtimes. Please understand we are talking about 5 mans, or when the raid is on farm. Keeping up HoTs, allowing lifeblooms to explode, and maintaining the overall feel of druid healing is not the complaint of the community; we like those things and if we didn’t, we’d roll a shaman or priest or paladin. We just want to be able to defend ourselves in Violet Hold when we draw Zuramat and happen to get void shifted. I am hoping that the GC response doesn’t mean they are planning on changing the overall feel of ToL.
Remember that healers aren’t setting up DPS rotations. In a PVE environment, druids are looking to do things like shock the boss, make a judgement every now and then, or spout a word and bring the pain. Don’t make the ToL problem bigger than it already is. Let druids use their balance spells while in ToL. They aren’t going to hit as hard because they aren’t propped up with all the talents a balance druid has at their disposal. Is it really so game changing to allow a tree cast a moonfire or starfire during healing downtime?
Please GC, don’t make the ToL solution more complex than the problem.