I had a chance to briefly play around with my toon over on the PTR last night and it was certainly interesting. I can’t say that it is enlightening because I don’t think the mana costs of our spells are nearly that bad at 80 so I can’t really feel the squeeze the same way beta testers are. On the PTR right now my druid has roughly 49K mana self buffed (with Furor and HotW), 4200 spellpower, and something like 1400 mp/5 oo5sr and 800 mp/5 i5sr. I was able to spam regrowth for a fairly long while before I needed to think about innervate. I also couldn’t really put my mastery into action.
I know they want us to make difficult choices when speccing out our character however as a healer it isn’t a matter of “do I take this talent that increases my dps slightly or this other unique talent that can offer a nice bonus”. There are at least 33 points in the bloated resto tree that feel mandatory and I’d be hard pressed to give those up even though I know I’d want some Furor and some Nature’s Grace off of the bat at 80. Compare that to the Balance tree that has barely enough talents to make a 31 point spend interesting.
Single target healing felt pretty decent on the PTR. Nourish was slow, as I knew already, but with my haste a 1.9 second heal that costs 220 mana was not terrible. Regrowth cost roughly 1300 mana and was critting regularly for 9K+ and leaving Effloresence which, relative to level 80 health pools, felt really strong. Healing Touch was exactly what you’d expect it to be. Rejuv hit up front for approximately 1500-1600 and ticked 5 times I think for 2600-2700. Haste and crit on rejuvenation does bring it a little closer effect wise to the longer duration we are used to on live. Wild Growth felt a bit weaker per tick however its haste scaling is significantly more fluid just like Lifebloom.
To be honest all of these first impressions don’t actually mean anything. The mana costs for the really cost prohibitive spells were too low relative to my mana pool and without raid testing on the PTR I cannot tell you the effect it would have on my general spell choices. I think it is nice of them to showcase the new material to the general player base however I almost feel like this will act as a placebo effect for the healers who are not currently leveling up in the beta. These mana costs at 80 are just too tame to convey what really lies in store for us.