I’m Growing Nervous About Tranquilty   33 comments

There is some great news floating around the druid community regarding some tweaks that are being made to Efflorescence.  Decent enough tweaks that it feels slightly less painful having to shovel 6 of our precious talent points to acquire the talent.  Both Jarre and Keeva have talked a bit about the change, and what it means for resto druids, so I’m not going to spend a lot of time on it outside of pointing you in their direction if you’d like to read up on the change.  Ok, I suppose that I will also state that it’s a good change for us.  There.  That’s all I’m going to say on it!

But only because I’d like to talk about something else.  Tranquility.

A while back druids and shamans were given the hope that they would be getting a healing cooldown to match those seen with both paladins and priests.

We agree with the sentiment among some players that Restoration druids and Restoration shaman are lacking in the healing cooldown department. The shaman buff and Power Word: Shield adjustment above should bring all healers reasonably close in terms of throughput. The decision on who to bring then might end up being dictated by the strong cooldowns offered by paladins or priests. This isn’t the kind of thing we can address via a hotfix, but it is something we are looking at for the next major content patch.

There was much joy, elation and, of course, speculation about what this cooldown would be and what it would do for everyone.  Druids across Azeroth have waited with bated breath and anticipation for Blizzard to announce our new cooldown.  Well, I’m starting to wonder if the wait is over for us.  You see Shaman had their cooldown announced yesterday.

Spirit Link Totem (new talent) reduces damage taken by all party and raid members within 10 yards by 10%. This lasts 6 seconds, and every second it is active the health of all affected players is redistributed among them, such that each player ends up with the same percentage of their maximum health. This counts as an Air totem and has a 3-minute cooldown.

Vixsin did a great write-up on it, and how she expects to see it play out.  If you are interested in our shaman brethren I highly recommend checking it out.

Of course, the announcement of Shaman’s cooldown started making me very, very nervous.  Partly because we haven’t really seen a new talent/ability come our way in the form of a raid saving cooldown yes, but partly because of this:

Malfurion’s Gift now also reduces the cooldown of your Tranquility by 2.5/5 minutes.

Now, this change will bring our tranquility down to a 3 minute cooldown.  I know you are probably thinking “great!  Tranquility is a very powerful healing tool”.  But what has me extremely nervous is the fact that this puts it on par with cooldown timing for Paladin, Priests and now Shaman’s coodlowns.  I’m afraid to say that I think tranquility is our new “cooldown”.

Now, I really REALLY hope that I’m wrong.  And I’d love to have to eat my words if I am.  Except I don’t think I am.

I’m sure that Zinn will disagree with me and say that not only did we not need a mitigation cooldown to begin with, but having Tranquility on a 3 minute cooldown is more than enough to count as our raid saving “cooldown”.  Only it’s not.  And if this is truly Blizzard’s “gift” to resto druids, it completely misses the mark.

You see, the issue with druids has long been that the play style bases the strength of druid healing on pure throughput.  The only option that we have ever had to deal with incoming damage is simply to heal more.  We have zero, zilch, nada cooldowns or abilities to mitigate damage.  We don’t have an inspiration or ancestral healing effect to boost armor on the tank.  We don’t have a Guardian Spirit, Pain Suppression or Hand of Sanc to give to the tank in a pinch.  All we can do to solve problems is…heal more.

And that’s well and good.  Except that no matter any way you slice the pie, mitigating damage taken will always be a better solution to healing damage taken.  And druids currently have no way to mitigate damage.  I don’t think that I’m off base when I say that when Blizzard made their announcement that Druids and Shaman would be receiving cooldowns to put them on par with Priest and Paladins (because yes, it was an extremely noticable omission) that the entire community believed that we would be receiving a mitigation cooldown of some sort.  In fact, I would almost even go as far to say that Blizzard all but lead us to believe that we would be getting a mitigation cooldown.

And yet, what we’ve got is a reduced cooldown on Tranquility.  What we’ve got is yet more “heal more”, which I’m sorry to say isn’t going to solve the problem and is nowhere near comparable to the tools that (now) all three of the other healing classes have to mitigate either raid or tank damage.  And that doesn’t even to begin to address the other issues that come with Tranquility.

To try and highlight why Tranquility is going to be a sub-par “raid saving cooldown”, let’s make a list, shall we?

  1. Tranquility offers no mitigation to either raid or tank damage.  While pure boost to healing output is nice, it’s fairly insufficient to counter the raid and tank damage we’ve seen this expansion – at least compared to what we’ve seen done with things like PW:B.  Mitigating damage is always, ALWAYS superior to healing through it.
  2. Tranquility is a channeled spell.  This is problematic because it means that to get the full benefit of the spell you must root yourself in place while casting.  Which in turn means that you will not always get the full benefit of cast because you may be forced to move before it’s finished.  Just last night we had a druid get off less than half a second of her tranq cast before she had to move to dodge a frost orb on H Maloriak.  I myself mistimed when the sound discs were going to spawn on H Atramedes last night and was forced to move less than half a second into my cast – virtually wasting the spell.  I could go on and on here, but I think you get the point.
  3. Because Tranquility is channeled, it’s susceptible to being interrupted and suffer pushback. Any druid that has done any amount of healing knows that if you don’t want to risk losing ticks of tranquility, you have to barkskin before you cast.  However, this also means that we are now forced to use another (personal) cooldown in order to maximize our “raid saving” cooldown.  No other healing class is forced to do this.
  4. Tranquility offers no mitigation to either raid or tank damage.  What?  You don’t think I know I said this already?  I think it bears repeating.  Because Tranquility does not solve the issue of druids lacking zero mitigation abilities – and will not make us “equal” to the other healers in that regard.

I can’t help but feeling that if I am right, and this reduced cooldown Tranquility is our new “cooldown” that Blizzard completely missed the point – and that we aren’t being given what we’ve been promised: a cooldown to make us as viable as priests and paladins.  Please, please, please Blizzard, I’m begging you.  BEGGING.  Do not let this be our promised “cooldown”.  Please let us know that you understand that healing output is not the same thing as damage mitigation.  Please tell me that the reason that you’ve not announced our spiffy new mitigation ability is because it’s still being developed.  Just whatever you do, don’t tell me that this revamped Tranquility is all you’ve got for us.


edit: As I thought on it a little more I thought of another pretty big problem – if these change goes through there is no way Tranquility is going to keep the potency that it has as a healing spell.  The intentions to do so may be well and good – but mark my words here is what will happen:

  • Tranquility is implemented as a “cooldown” for Resto Druids on a 3 minute timer.
  • Druids start pounding the shit out of everyone in terms of throughput, because instead of receiving the mitigation cooldown that they wanted, and that everyone else has, Blizzard decided to stick with the “just heal through it” model – giving druids an insane amount of throughput.
  • Everyone who isn’t a druid starts crying that druids are far too overpowered, and that Tranquility needs to be nerfed.
  • Blizzard looks at the numbers, forgets their reasoning behind putting tranquility on such a short cooldown, and decides that druids aren’t equally “balanced” with the other healers because their output is too high.
    • I mean, c’mon!  We know that they want all healers to be equal on terms of throughput, they’ve even said as much(in the post announcing cooldowns for druids and shaman’s no less!).
  • Blizzard nerfs the hell out of Tranquility to put druid throughput in line with the other 3 healing classes.
  • Druids suffer – as not only did they not gain the cooldown that they wanted, but one of their raid healing tools got nerfed to hell in the process, ultimately placing druids in a worse place than they were before the tranquility change went into effect.  Double Whammy.

Mark my words this is what will happen.  I will be sure to give you a nice “I told you so” and link back to this post on the day the nerf is announced, just so you don’t forget that I predicted it!

Posted March 4, 2011 by Beruthiel in Changes, Druid Healing

33 responses to “I’m Growing Nervous About Tranquilty

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  1. My thoughts exactly. I was nervous when I saw the reduction to Tranquility’s cooldown. I got really worried when I saw the Shaman CD announcement last night with nothing for us. I really hope it’s still to come, but the longer we wait the less optimistc I can be.

  2. I really hope this isn’t our ‘new’ cooldown ability.

    Not only does it not address our one weakness (lack of mitigation), but I have an awful feeling that the healing output of Tranquility will be lessened after druids rocket up the healing meters.

    • I am absolutely in agreement.

      I actually added an edit at the bottom of my post with exactly that prediction. There is no way tranquility will keep its potency on a 3 minute cooldown.

  3. Raid-wide barkskin — could even increase the damage mitigation to some insane amount like %50, but give it a snare effect…that way you have to make a choice about lowering overall damage, but possibly having it backfire because people are more apt to stand in bad stuff (and of course blame it on you cause you snared them…a healer’s plight unfortunately). On top of that they could add in a glyph that causes it to lose the snare in exchange for lower mitigation value.

    • Honestly, I’d be happy with a tank saving cooldown. With Shaman getting a raid wide cooldown – I’d have no problem having a single target cooldown added into our arsenal.

  4. Excellent posts and my thoughts exactly ^^ I will be extremely disappointed if a 3 min Tranq is ‘our cooldown’, especially now that all three of the other healing classes now have some sort of damage reduction cooldown. I really hope that this is not all to come for Druids in the cooldown department and that Blizz listens to the rumblings already out there in the community.

    I posted about it as well on the WoW Healing Forums, hopefully some good discussion will arise there that the devs will see: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/2186019300

    • Sadly – I think if this goes live as is we are going to ultimately end up in a worse spot than we were prior to the change. As I can’t help but agree with Jaslya that as druids start smashing the hell out of the other healers from a throughput perspective, Blizzard will nerf Tranquility.

      So not only will be out the mitigation cooldown we wanted, but we will also have one of our only “cooldowns” castrated.

  5. When I first saw the Tranquility change I thought, “Great!” cause who doesn’t enjoy popping Tranq? But the more I think about it the more nervous I get. It doesn’t help the notorious tree Achilles’s Heel of burst healing. You’ve got a bunch of good reasons why this won’t be a good cooldown for druids as well.

    I’d love to see Living Seed redesigned somehow into an absorb/cooldown. I’ve seen some ideas on the forums with lots of potential in that area. It can even stay attached to Efflorescence if they do that! And I hope they finally prune the resto tree down a bit, we’ve been complaining (legitimately) about the bloat for what, six months now? That’s at the top of my “needs to be addressed list in 4.1” with the cooldown issue.

    • Ugh – if only they would do something worthwhile with Living Seed! I’d even take something as small as changing it to be an Inspiration type buff on the target healed.

  6. I just assumed that the lower CD was in anticipation of them changing the fundamental nature of tranquility itself.

    “Tranquility now heals for X amount every second to every raid member within 30 yards (or whatever it says now) and also reduces their damage taken by 5%” or something along those lines. *shrug*

    • I really hope that they don’t change the fundamental nature of tranquility itself. I don’t think that taking away one of our current tools is an acceptable solution. Druids already have enough struggles with adequately dealing with burst damage.

      In all honesty – I’d rather them keep tranquility on the 8 minute timer and give us a new mitigation ability, similar to what they did for shaman.

  7. I am twitchy for the same reason…a spell so powerful as Tranquility on a 3 minute timer… it just strikes me as wrong, but I don’t know yet where Blizz is going with this… But yes, This will end with the nerfing of Tranquility, and I do hope we still have a new ability coming down the pipe… but yeah, announcing the Shaman abililty but not anything about druids makes me VERY twitchy.

  8. I could have written this word for word, it’s exactly how I feel.

    I’ve peppered the web with “this better not be our cooldown, but I feel like it is” comments.

    As you said, if this is “it”, it really misses the mark.

    • I really hope that we see more than this. It really just doesn’t solve any of the complaints that we have, and really is fairly uncreative and almost feels like “well, we’ve got to do something, let’s do this”. It’s almost like there hasn’t been a whole lot of thought put into it, to be honest 😦

      At this point I can only hope that some of the devs pick up on the discontent in the druid community and rethink it.

  9. Haha… totally agree with your “edit” section there. That’s what they’ll do alright. But damn, I wish Divine Hymn was on a 3 min CD… I’d give up GS in a heartbeat for that. Random use on a single target vs huge boost to raid healing (which is what I am normally doing).

  10. I agree that a nerf to tranquility seems inevitable.

    Let me offer one tiny reason to hope that a real CD is in the works.

    As it stands right now, it seems to me that there is one reason druids can’t have a DR cooldown: PVP.

    Resto druids are very powerful in pvp as it is, but tranquility is not the reason. Changing the CD on tranq won’t affect pvp prowess either. A DR CD? That would be a serious boost to resto druid pvp.

    Now, the reason for hope: Blizz is trying to bring resto druids back to earth in pvp as evidenced by the lifebloom nerf for 4.1. Maybe, juuuust maybe, once they figure out how to bring resto druids in line with other healers in pvp, we’ll see some sort of DR cooldown.

    • I’m so….weary of changes that occur (or don’t occur, as the case may be) as a result of PvP. Honestly, the lack of mitigation cooldowns with certain classes is a largely PvE issue. If they are that worried about a mitigation cooldown will unfairly balance PvP – just make it so that it can’t be used in PvP.

      It would be nice, for once, if PvE decisions weren’t made based on how they would affect PvP.

  11. Keep in, ind that 4.1 has only been on the PER for maybe 2 weeks. We’re still in the early stages of getting info for 4.1. I have not lost hopes about getting a new cooldown. Relax, guys.

    • I think everyone is aware that 4.1 is still young as far as the PTR cycle is concerned. However, I do not think that it is out of line to proactively address concerns about what is happening on the PTR, and offering the devs constructive feedback while they still have the time to effectuate changes before things go live.

      After all, isn’t the entire point of having a PTR so that they can get player feedback?

  12. Pingback: Tranquility and the Elusive New Druid Cooldown | Cannot be Tamed

  13. Keep in mind that a new cd could be coming in 4.2 also (giving it more time to develop and test) which I think most people would be ok with since thats when the new raid(s?) is coming out. In my opinon they should just make whatevere the new cd is the living seed talent, any healing lost from that talent will be easily made up for with the increased effloressence and the cd’s usefulness itself.

    • Unfortunately I don’t really hold your faith that it’s in development for 4.2. I think it’s there intent to roll both the shaman and druid cooldowns simultaneously – so that you don’t have one healing class left without while all of the others have theirs.

      The terribleness of Living Seed is is an entirely different issue 🙂

  14. Whats the matter with being the master of raid healing and just being average at tank healing?

    • Except that druids aren’t “masters of raid healing” this expansion. I believe that crown has passed over to Holy Priests.

      The issue isn’t who can tank heal, raid heal, or just plan heal better, that really has nothing to do with it. The issue is that certain healing classes are missing key mitigation abilities while others have them, and this ommission has been not only recognized by Blizzard as a problem, but they have outright stated that it is something that they wanted to fix.

  15. I couldn’t agree with you more especially Tranq getting nerfed once the numbers start rolling in. It also feels like we’re going to be highly encouraged to chain Tree, barkskin and Tranq together to get the most bang for our buck. This will of course lead to exactly the senario you described.
    Unfortunately it has the feel of being exactly in line with what Blizz wants Druid healers to be – master of hots with no new spells.

  16. Hello, first time reader, wanted to comment here from the perspective of a part time resto druid.

    What if they gave tranquiltiy some sort of damage reduction instead of a hot during the channeling process? x% damage reduction for y seconds instead of the hot ticks. Just thinking out loud here.

    I do agree that if it’s going to be our cooldown something needs to be done to make it uninteruptable by random damage aside from us popping barkskin (which I do every time I use it). If we get targeted by a spell interupt, sure.

  17. What I wish blizz would do is have our spells work differently in PvE and PvP situations. It just feels like the easiest fix to me. Considering lifebloom is my highest heal next to healing touch, my druid is going to get hit hard as far as desirability in raids is concerned.

    As for tranquility, Im just gonna assume its going to be nerfed if they reduce the cooldown. Or if they change the spell effects on it to become our mitigation cd, there’s gonna be some pissed off druids out there. Other healing classes got some fancy new spells with cata, so why can’t we?

  18. Interesting addition to the PTR patch notes:

    Druids now innately have 100% pushback protection from damage while channeling Tranquility.

    Makes it even more likely that this will be our new cooldown.

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