Saturday, February 28, 2009

3.1 Lifebloom nerf

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It looks like there's a BIG change to Lifebloom coming in the 3.1 patch. Uh, wut? This kind of came out of nowhere, in my opinion - check out this tool tip:

Lifebloom: Mana cost of all ranks doubled. When Lifebloom blooms or is dispelled, it now refunds half the base mana cost of the spell per application of Lifebloom, and the heal effect is multiplied by the number of applications.

Let's break this down.

Mana cost of all ranks doubled. Holy mana drain, batman. /wince That is a heavy duty mana cost.

However....

When Lifebloom blooms, it now refunds half the base mana cost of the spell for each Lifebloom you have on the target. So essentially, you get half of the mana that you just spent on LBs back IF you let it bloom and not refresh it.

Heal effect is multiplied by the number of applications. So you have two lifeblooms on the target, and the bloom will heal for more than usual. With three, it will bloom for even more.

A quote from Ghostcrawler from this source:

"We think rolling is a fun part of the spell. It's just too efficient and makes Lifebloom the best heal per second and heal per mana. We don't want you to change the way you use the spell, at least in terms of single tank healing. The bonus on a bloom or dispel is just supposed to be a bonus."

Lifebloom is too efficient? I use Lifebloom far less than I used to because they upped the mana cost. Putting a three stack on someone costs 42% base mana. With the 2 piece T7 bonus, that's reduced by 5%, sure, but that's not a huge decrease. Now they're going to DOUBLE that? Bah.

If you let a 3 stack bloom, LB is technically buffed - you've spent the same mana as you would have pre-3.1 (because you gain back half of the doubled mana you just spent), but you get a heftier bloom than you would have pre-3.1. But if you keep LBs rolling, *each* LB you put on the person is going to be 28% base mana.

I realize that mana is going to be an issue come 3.1, especially with the nerf to out of combat mana regen, but instead of looking at mana issues, what about the basic healing done?

Let's pretend that all these spells costs no mana. Just go with me here. Because the heal of the bloom with a three stack will be bigger come 3.1, is it now actually better (in terms of raw healing numbers) to let the LBs fall off and bloom, and then spend 3 GCDs restarting another stack? It's widespread knowledge that as of right now, pre 3.1, letting LBs fall of the tank and having to restart another stack is bad news, because the overall healing that it does, even with the bloom, is slightly less than keeping them rolling (plus all the mana you "waste" putting another 3 quick LBs on the target). But with a bigger bloom, will this not be the case? I'm going to try to log onto the PTR tonight and test this out myself based on numbers I get from letting LB bloom.

Overall, this is going to force healers to pay attention more. Instead of just focusing on timing a refresh to a stack of LBs, you're now going to have to maintain those stacks, and also know when to let them bloom - "when" meaning 1. in what general situations, and 2. an exact time (think Loatheb).

I am 100% for making healers pay attention. I don't like healing on auto-pilot; it gets boring to me. I was actually kind of excited when they announced the the out of combat mana regen nerf, because I knew it would make my healing rotation tighter and more challenging.

But the mana regen nerf paired with this Lifebloom change? I'm not sure how I feel about it.

What do you guys think?

Next post (hopefully): some LB healing numbers from the PTR!

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7 remarks:

Arctos said...

Well as a new sprout of a tree, I find myself letting Lifeblooms drop if focused on party or raid healing. I have been getting better however I think this type of spell mechanic will help me rather than hurt with the restored mana as well as stronger heal. It does bite that Blizzard is doing this to our most efficient heal but we Druids do know how to adjust. Looking forward to seeing some numbers on this and I appreciate you bringing this to light.

Peli said...

Averna and all my other lovely trees, this is my proposed healing rotation:

Step 1. Throw up one of each on the tank (I have talent 11 points in Balance for the necessary buffs and the 4-piece T7 bonus).: LB, Rejuv, Regrowth, WG.

Step 2. With the buffs to Nourish, Spam the crap out of it, hoping for a SoL proc.

Step 3. Refresh HoTs as needed one major change is that I will not be stacking or rolling LB. I plan to simply put one instance of it on the target to get the benefit for Nourish and then refresh it like I do Rejuv (reapply as soon as it expires).

Corgii said...

I also find myself using Lifebloom MUCH less than I did in The Burning Crusade. Typically it ends up at about 30% (or less) of my healing done, with Nourish and Wild Growth hitting > 30% or even as much as 40%.

I need to get on the PTR to test out everything and see it for myself, but I'm hoping this nerf isn't as bad in action as it seems.

Dilamon said...

Now its live and I find lb very good in pvp and pve. Resto druids with set bonus can cast lb with 733 mana cost. It will refund 489 with final value (since it refunds half of the base mana cost). That makes it cost 244 mana per lb. Before 3.1 lb cost 366 mana so that has come down 33% if you know how to use it. Not to mention clearcast lb's will give you 489 free mana. I like it this way

Averna said...

@Dil: I don't know if you're right about that... it says on the tooltip that it refunds half the cost of the spell, not half of the base mana it costs. I'll check it out on the live servers when I get home to be 100% sure.

John said...

Well, at first glance this looks to be a beast of a nerf. On my first forays into Ulduar, I haven't changed my style of healing. Roll LB, Rejuv, Regrowth on MT... Roll LB, Rejuv the OT... Spot heal the raid with HoTs/Nourish. I haven't had any mana issues yet (Naevia/Medivh), but I was appalled when I seen this: http://img23.imageshack.us/img23/7509/31lifebloom.jpg

Yes, that was almost a 22k crit on a bloom. My effective healing had one to hit for 20.5... but that was the biggest one I had seen.

John said...

... silly image link got chopped off... the file is "31lifebloom.jpg"