Brainstorming how to improve Nature’s Swiftness

So right now, Nature’s Swiftness is a talent that is borderline for many people or you may have already cut it. At a 3 minute cooldown, its effect is extremely lackluster. Once upon a time an instant version of our heaviest heal was a substantial amount of healing on a DPS player and a reasonably large amount on a tank. The ability to use it as an “oh crap” button was what made it rather valuable. With the inflated health pools in Cataclysm (all players not just tanks), an instant Healing Touch will, on a non crit, restore approximately 20% health to a raid buffed non-tank and approximately 13% health to a raid geared/buffed tank. Once upon a time we also had a LOT more points to spend on talents. An ability costing 1 talent point might have to be a bit more valuable to merit their worth.

So my thought was, brainstorm a couple of ideas for Nature’s Swiftness that still keep true to the general concept of the talent but try to take it one step further. Now before doing so we need to look at abilities such as Pain Suppression and Guardian Spirit at three minute cooldown abilities and make sure we don’t outstrip their general power level, though honestly I think Nature’s Swiftness needs to be on their power level to give druids a better emergency panic button. Here are a couple of options that I’ve bounced around, please let me know if you think any would get you to take the talent.

1.)     Nature’s Swiftness; 2 minute cooldown (to be adjusted if this is going to be our big cooldown, per recent blue post)

  1. Your next nature spell cast (with a cast time less than 10 seconds) will be instant
  2. If a healing spell is used, the target will be under the effect of Barkskin for 6 (adjustable) seconds. (this version is dispellable)

Note, if the developers are going to use this officially as our “big cooldown” then it would probably need to be a greater amount of damage reduction than barkskin, but proportionate to the cooldown of the ability compared to other major cooldowns available.

2.)     Nature’s Swiftness; 3 minute cooldown

  1. Your next nature spell cast (with a cast time less than 10 seconds) will be instant. This spell is further enhanced depending on which is cast:
  2. Healing touch – amount healed is increased by 200%
  3. Regrowth – affects an additional three (two?) players within 10 yards of your target (smart heal)
  4. Nourish – reduces the cooldown of Tranquility by 90 seconds (adjustable)
  5. Rebirth – resurrected player is immune to harmful attacks for 4 seconds

3.)     Nature’s Swiftness; 1 minute cooldown

  1. Your next nature spell cast (with a cast time less than 10 seconds) will be instant

4.)     Nature’s Swiftness; 2 minute cooldown

  1. Your next nature spell cast (with a cast time less than 10 seconds) will be instant
  2. In addition you gain a 5% (10%?) haste bonus for 12 seconds

5.)     Nature’s Swiftness; 3 minute cooldown

  1. Your next nature spell cast (with a cast time less than 10 seconds) will be instant
  2. If a healing spell is used, the target will benefit an from your healing done by an additional 25% (adjustable) for 12 seconds (adjustable)

At what point does this 1 point talent become necessary enough to take, or even be worth it as a floater talent point? I know a lot of people out there still have it in their spec, but it’s usually not because it is critical. I would think the logic for it is somewhere between the fact we’ve always had it in our spec and the thought of not having it is weird, and that its arguably one of the few “oh crap” buttons we have even if it is not that significant. This blog post is not me trying to rail against the talent because I know it can be useful, I’d just like it to be a little more useful.


10 responses to “Brainstorming how to improve Nature’s Swiftness

  1. Interesting ideas. I dropped Nature’s Swiftness from my spec a while ago. I never used it that much pre-Cata, and now that health pools are so large, an instant heal every 3 minutes is especially lackluster.

    I like your first idea the most. A damage reducing cooldown is the biggest thing we are lacking, and I think we would benefit from a change like that immensely.

  2. Interesting post. I’m actually one who still uses NS a ton… it’s crossed my mind to drop it from my spec, but I get enough use from it that it’s not really a wasted point for me. It’s no longer the life saver/topper it was in Wrath where a HT crit could get someone from 0 to full, but I have had it save someone just long enough to get more heals on them, whether it was a tank or a DPS.

    I think I like your 2nd or 3rd idea the most. Though I’d love a damage cooldown, the suggestion in your first idea I’m not too keen on the damage cooldown being tied into the NS. At least on heroic fights, I’d definitely be tied to saving my NS for an important cooldown call on the tank, and would rarely use it outside of that point. In which case, we may as well just have a separate talent (ie just the ability to cast Barkskin on other targets), as it’s most likely people won’t want to waste the NS / the cooldown at the wrong times. I think a similar sort of thing would come up with your 5th idea.

    I like idea 3 just for the reduced cooldown, I think it’d get a ton more use if it was a lot shorter. I think your 2nd idea is the most interesting though – I quite like that it affects all the different spells in a different way, almost even like our ToL activation for some spells, so the boost you’re looking for with NS could vary depending on the situation and which spell/effect you decide you want. That could be really cool and would definitely make NS a much more interesting talent rather than just the ‘weee instant spell!’ which it sort of is now hehehe.
    Good ideas!

    • You mimicked my sentiments almost exactly with the comment on the damage reduction cooldown. What I’d REALLY like to see is something, as you said, that allowed us to cast barkskin on another player, or make it so that when we cast barkskin on ourselves our current target gains some percentage of that (less ideal). This was more an attempt to try to bake the two things together at least for the moment to give it a little more oomph. Is it what we’d prefer? Not so much but it might be the best we’ll get.

  3. Some interesting ideas there 🙂

    I like both the barkskin and the smart heals idea myself – a heal hitting a random other (or 2 other) targets is interesting..
    Having the heal also plant a hot would have it more in keeping with the druid’s strengths as well.
    Or have it refresh _all_ the hots currently on the target..
    Or have the heal reapply itself at 1/2 strength, then 1/4 strength..
    I think the most interesting you’ve listed is that each use could have a different effect – and I kind of like how that ties in with the changes ToL brings.

  4. 6) Heal target for 3 times the amount of a healing touch.

    This solves two separate problems. One is that Nature’s Swiftness is gimpy in Cataclysm. Two is that nobody uses this spell except to cast a big heal. We’ve got this complicated spell that, once you analyze all the side conditions, amounts to “macro this to healing touch”. The game could macro it to healing touch for us and let us think about something more interesting.

    By the way, I dropped the talent, too. Moonglow and Furor are too good to be taking non-essential talents in the restoration tree.

    • Option #2 incorporates what you are suggesting I think. The boost it would apply to healing touch I currently listed as +200% or three times the normal amount total. Sounds like you are leaning towards that option then for the burst throughput on a single spell? (with other neat benefits as well ideally)

  5. I still have NS in my spec, but not for NS + HT. NS + Rebirth is worth it to me for the moment. Right now my raid rarely wipes for lack of live dps, but rather that we’ve lost the tanks too many times AGAIN. I’m glyphed, and the glyphed + instant cast makes a huge difference sometimes.

    All that said, as soon as we get a breather on healing, NS goes bye-bye for other more useful talents.

    A damage suppression talent would be worth its weight in treants. Too bad Blizz doesn’t want us to have one. ./sad

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  7. I still have NS in my build, but more from inertia than real usefulness. I like the idea of the talent, but the talent itself isn’t really all that useful to me. Most of my uses are when the tank starts dipping below where I’d like him to be and it’s a quick way to catch up. I use it, but not often enough to justify it in the build.

    In general I like #2, but more because it makes NS more useful (and fun; I love talents that make spell choices interesting) than because it’s a traditional “tank save.” I’d still like to see our new cooldown reduce damage on the target somehow, whether it’s tied to NS or not. But if any of the options you’ve presented were given to us as our healing cooldown, I think I’d probably be satisfied. I take that back. If they gave us #3, I’d be a bit let down that a reduction on the cooldown was the best we could get :P.

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