In Defence of Regrowth

I’m always hearing people say negative things about Regrowth. It’s a wanna-be Flash Heal. The front-end heal is too small. The HoT is too short. It costs too much mana.

I love Regrowth, and here’s why:

  • Regrowth increases our haste rating by 15% for 15 seconds (1 minute cooldown) with Nature’s Grace.
  • With 3 points in Nature’s Bounty Regrowth is the healing spell that is most likely to crit (both the direct heal and the HoT).
  • The high crit chance means lots of Living Seed procs (if you’re specced into it).
  • It’s fast.
  • It’s instant while in Tree of Life.
  • It’s free with a Clearcasting proc.
  • It gives you something to Swiftmend.

Since Wild Growth was nerfed, many druids are leaning very heavily on Rejuvenation in order to put out enough healing in Dragon Soul. Yet at the same time, druids are complaining that we don’t have enough burst.These two things seem very contrary to me.

Rejuvenation is not bursty at all. But you know what is? Regrowth. With 3 points in Nature’s Bounty it crits more than 80% of the time, hitting for around 25-30k depending on spellpower and leaving a HoT which will heal for an extra 8k or so.

Since I’ve been in Dragon Soul I’ve been dealing with the Wild Growth nerf a little differently than most druids. While many others are seeing Rejuvenation as their top heal, it’s never on top for me. It’s usually not even 2nd. I’ve been balancing between Rejuv and Regrowth use and I have to say, it’s been working really well for me. I use Rejuv on those who are at a safe level of health but are taking constant damage and Regrowth on those who are dipping a little too low for my comfort level.

There are all kinds of mathematical arguments for favouring Rejuvenation over Regrowth. Rejuv is better HPS (healing per second); it’s better HPM (healing per mana).

But you know what? Healing isn’t all about math. It isn’t about winning meters. It’s about keeping people alive. A clutch direct heal that saves someone from dying is usually worth more than a blanket of Rejuvs. It might cost more mana, it might heal for less overall, but how important is that?

The more I heal the more I think that healing is not just a numbers game. Spreadsheets and math are great and I really respect all the theorycrafters out there, but sometimes it’s not about math – it’s about what feels right and what works best for you. Spreadsheets are based on a set of ideal conditions. Raids, especially when you’re learning a new fight, do not have ideal conditions. The unexpected happens, people screw up. Healers need to be both proactive and reactive in dealing with incoming damage. This is why I really prefer to base my decisions on gear and spell usage on my own experiences and my own logs. Every person plays a little different and what’s best for one may not be best for another.

Here are some logs from my last raid where I used Regrowth quite heavily.

Spine of Deathwing

Overall healing

Spine of Deathwing - Healing Done

Healing Breakdown

Spine of Deathwing - Resto druid healing breakdown

Madness of Deathwing

Overall healing

Madness of Deathwing - Healing breakdown

Healing breakdown

Madness of Deathwing - Resto druid healing breakdown

Some important things to note:

  • Rejuv usually does only around 10% of my healing.
  • Regrowth is also around 10% of my healing.
  • Rejuve has way more overheal than Regrowth. Rejuv is around 50% overheal while Regrowth is only around 30%. The big differences in HPM and HPS that you see between these two spells on paper is lessened when you factor overheal into the equation.
  • I was often very close to using up all my mana on these fights, but I never had to completely stop healing because I was oom.
  • Many of my Regrowth casts were mana-free because of Omen of Clarity.
  • I think my HPS is still pretty good.

If you’re getting bored with Rejuv spam, or are feeling like your spells lack burst, you might want to try increasing your Regrowth use too.

Give Regrowth a shot – you might like it. 🙂

25 responses to “In Defence of Regrowth

  1. I love that you’re talking about how healing meters don’t matter and yet, you’re still topping them. 😉 It just shows that what you’re doing works very well for you (and our raid group) so I have no complaints, obviously.

    (Well, the one complaint is that the screenshots include a paladin at the bottom of said healing meters and the paladin is definitely me. But that’s just a pride thing. ;))
    Kurn recently posted..Of LFR and Shields and Offhands

  2. Curious, I thought I was like the only resto druid out there that used Regrowth heavily! It’s never anywhere near my top heal, but I use it very frequently (~10+% of my heals) and it is probably why I end up using more mana than other druids. Regrowth gives me the assurance that the person has enough large heals coming that they won’t easily die. Rejuv is just like a filler for when I can’t be bothered to cast anything else, or on tanks/healers for Swiftmend purposes.

    I found I couldn’t spam it on the Spine fight though… I had to blanket HoT and Nourish/HT spam to work on getting debuffs off people and I had to pick and choose who to keep Regrowth up on. (Some DPS just seemed to take far less damage than others, for example).

    • On the Spine fight I don’t work specifically on removing the healing debuffs. I find that they will generally come off by themselves through all the heals being tossed around. I keep a Rejuv on the people with the debuff and use them for targets for things like Swiftmend, but I found that trying to single target heal them until the debuff comes off is a waste of time for most of the fight. The only really dangerous time I find is when someone has the debuff and gets gripped, but once the dps are used to the fight, the Grip should be broken way before it can kill them.

    • Many druids may not be aware of this, but Tranquility is one of the crazyest spells on the Spine fight.

      here is how I heal it:

      rejuv all affected targets
      Nourish ontop of them
      Help with HT on targets below 30% HP
      Right before an 9 stacks, I wait for the next bunch of debuffs so there are as many up as possilbe…preferably about 8 targets.
      When the thing blows up, people will be low on health, but in most cases those with debuff will be lowest, then i pop tranquil, and about the time the tendon dies, my tranquil has made sure all debuffs are gone. 🙂

  3. @Kurn – Sad Moose.

    Interesting analysis Jasyla! I love that you’re taking the approach of actually trying different things and using what works/feels right for you, instead of the – to put it gently – whining and moaning that so many other players are falling back on. That aside though, the speed/often free nature/super high crit rate of Regrowth does make it seem like it’d be a useful tool in a Druid toolbox. 😀

    • Thanks Rades! I just want to get the word out that Druids are capable of burst healing to some extent. I hope this makes some people consider their toolset differently.

  4. I’m happy to see a pro Regrowth post! I also use a lot of Regrowth (in fact I use it every OOC) probably because it’s faster than HT and also it triggers Nature’s Grace. I do also have 3 in Nature’s Bounty so the crits are pretty to look at too. I don’t have 4 piece tier but I will probably like Regrowth even more (though not sure that’s possible since I am already a fan). Thanks for the great post Jas.

    • Thanks Navimie. I almost never use HT in raids. I think I may cast it 2-3 times per fight on average. Unless I’m specifically assigned to tank healing (which I never am), Regrowth and Swiftmend take care of most of my single target healing needs.

  5. I couldn’t agree more with this. I’ve been stacking spirit so i can use Regrowth more without worrying about going oom. We run a 10 man group with 2 resto druids and a Pala healing team, so the WG nerf hit us hard ( especially as we have neither raid haste buff or DI). Heavy Regrowth usage has been the answer to our problems.

    • Eep…no haste buff must be painful. I’ve just started upping my spirit. I managed to used Regrowth heavily in Firelands with only around 1800 spirit, but mana has been very tight so far in Dragon Soul. I think I’m around 2300 now.

      • With my trinket I hold about 3000 spirit
        See many with as low numbers as yours and I cant understand how they manage…. 😛

        I can never get enough spirit..:P

  6. As someone who doesn’t like or use regrowth very (generally only as a flash heal or sometimes on OoC to refresh LB) this post makes for very interesting reading.

    I agree with your description of what healing is – keeping people alive regardless of the meters, hps etc. It is something I repeatedly tell people myself. With that in mind I should probably try and work regrowth into my healing more.

    Checking my WoL for our last night’s raiding, I see that I am only using 2-3 times a fight. This is partially due to running with 3 healers, meaning that we don’t have to work very hard, but even so, I can see the benefits of more RG usage.

    I try and teach flexibility to my healers, but maybe I have become a bit too rigid in my style myself, thank you for making me reconsider my healing 🙂


    • Heavy Regrowth use may not be right for everyone, but I think it’s good to reconsider your healing occasionally and try out new things. Let me know how it works out for you if you do try it.

  7. I stumbled upon this post while trying to optimize my healing in heroic 10 man Zon’ozz. I took 2 points from Furor and a point from Perseverance to use in Nature’s Bounty and I am really happy with the effect. The high crit chance on Regrowth now gives me the quick heal I need to get someone healed enough to withstand an incoming orb explosion or dispel. It was hard to give up the max mana, but I realized quickly that I didn’t need it. Definitely good advice on Regrowth, and certainly worth consideration if your play style fits well with it.

    • Hi Valwren, I’m glad it worked well for you. I don’t think I could live without those 3 points in Nature’s Bounty, I feel it gives us some burst that we would otherwise be sorely lacking.

  8. Thanks so much for your post! With 4.3, I took my points out of Nature’s Bounty, and as a result I have really changed my healing style. Everything was fine until our guild started working on the Deathwing’s Spine. I need my burst back!
    All your posts make me think about my job as a healer. Thank you!

  9. Im glad to read this post being a lover of Regrowth myself. I have been selecting spirit gear as well to accomidate for it. Currently enjoying my class in 10 man DS. While theory crafting has its place, I do heal by feel too. Keep up the posts I enjoy them very much!

  10. Having healed since vanilla, I got chills reading this post of yours.
    Going with still mostly heroic firelands gear, I hold on average 17-20k HPS, but what people usually don’t see is that my main job is saving their asses when there are screwups, or people are an inch away from dying.

    I have gone so far that I have set my hps meter to disable on combat, and I never reforge spirit as it’s the one thing that boost my combat regen, allowing me to use any spell, regrowth especially, when I can, want or have to.

    For me, in treeform, Regrowth is probably the most powerful spell we have in our arsenal in a pinch.

    Those people who don’t use it are too afraid to go oom, and usually come bragging they never go oom, because all they do is spam rejuv and WG over and over again not even using nourish.

    Well….your article hit it spot on imo.

    Regrowth is a very nice spell, and as you listed it has some awesome benefits.

    Thanks for this enlightening article.

    Just found your site today, but i will be back 🙂

    • Hi Boof. I’m glad you liked the post and glad you’ll be back.

      Though I love Regrowth, I also favor output talents and stats over regen ones. I’m not sure exactly how I manage it, but I tend to reforge away from spirit, and have only recently picked up 2 points in Moonglow to help my mana last longer (though I’m thinking about getting rid of them again). I think my secret is mincromanaging my mana – Innervating as often as possible, using ToL as a way of saving mana through Lifebloom spam and OoC Regrowth casts.

      I’ve always loved Regrowth but in Dragon Soul I’m finding it especially effective when a bit of burst is needed. I love seeing it doing ~10% of my healing on most fights.

      • Fore pure regen i find having loads of spirit gives me the most…(not counting in innervate)..

        for comparison..according to the stats display in the character pane, if I add 300 intel i get about 100mp5 extra while casting, if i add 300 spirit I get 150mp5…then again spirit don’t give me bigger innervate or +healing so i take intel anytime i can.

        Only now in heroic T12 gear do i find my regen to surpass in combat what i use. Although I don’t really manage my mana that much, I find my regen to be sufficent enough to let me heal whenever and however needed. Spell power is just under 12.000 and mastery is at 17% when i hold 2009 haste cap.

        With T13 I probably will need to reforge a tiny bit of spirit to be hold the 2005 haste cap, but primarily i prefer mastery to boost my heals, so all over 2005 i try to go for mastery when reforging. 🙂

        I see loads of druids doing better HPS numbers than me, but when i inspect them i find them holding maybe 10 rejuvs up constantly and WG-ing constantly, and they don’t take time to cast any other spells as they need to maintain the above to hold their HPS.

        My HPS dips down a bit, but I can do extreme burst heals if I need to.

        The way I see it, all fights in wow, be it 5-man or heroic 25-mans all have basicly 1 need, to be able to adapt your healing to the specific fight.

        When newbie druids ask me how to learn to heal as a druid, I tell them to do 5-man dungeons, normals, in as poor gear as they can get, and try to keep people alive, while avoiding going oom…it’s like a crash course in spell management and mana management. 🙂

  11. I just found this article and I just wanted to chime in as another Regrowth fan. Earlier in Cata, I didn’t have the mana to use Regrowth on anything but OOC procs to get the haste buff. (And even then I had to be careful to haste when I really needed it, or the increased spellcasts could cost more mana than I had.) Fast foward to DS/T13, and I’ve got mana out the wazoo, tons of regen, and I can finally get really creative about spell choices. I rediscovered Regrowth, and for the first time, I’ve spec’d 3 points into Nature’s Bounty to increase its burst output. Popping into ToL when things start to go wrong, I can spam Regrowth for a crazy amount of burst healing. (It’s also really fun to do that in BGs. I have survived being pounded by multiple melee players this way.)

    I do maintain a high amount of spirit on my gear to support Regrowth’s increased mana costs. But so far I’ve been able to keep pace with our pallies/shaman/holy priests during heroic 10-man DS attempts.

    • Thanks for adding your perspective Nuraa. I definitely think 3 ponts in Nature’s Grace is needed to make Regrowth as strong as possible (when it doesn’t crit the amount healed is a little sad). I love instant RGs in tree form, and it’s saved me a lot in PVP as well. 🙂

  12. Finally a post that fits the way I heal. The only thing I might see a problem with using RG heavily is mana regen, yes RG is one of our best heals since WG got “nerfed”, but the mana cost doesnt help if you don’t have the spirit for it. The way I do it, everytime my OOC is running out I RG followed by either rejuv or nourish spam unless quick, high crit chance heals are needed. Also, swiftmend triggers OOC so RG isnt really needed till later in the fight. Healing meters dont matter as long as everyone is kept alive.