Patch 3.0.2 Priest Survival Guide

There is about a week until the release of patch 3.0.2, titled “Echoes of Doom.”  This post should serve as an overview of the changes that we priests will see from this patch. I tried to keep it as simple as possible, but there really are a lot of changes.  You may have to bookmark this post and come back to it, or just use the menu below to read what interests you. (The full patch notes are available here.)

This was continued on to the WotLK Priest Survival Guide.  Check it out here.

Menu:

Mechanics Changes

Spell pushback has been overhauled.  It now has a cap, only letting us be “pushed back” twice at most on any given spell (with each “pushback hit” being 0.5 seconds).  This is a great change for us.

Spell crit, spell haste, and spell hit are all gone.  They are now a singular stat with crit, haste, and hit. This is just a nominal change for us.

Bonus healing and bonus spell damage have been lumped into a singular stat: spellpower.  Each 1 point of spellpower is worth about 1 spell damage and 1.88 +heal. Having a singular stat should allow you to use one set of gear to go between healing and DPS.

Downranking has been removed.  All ranks of spells will cost the same amount of mana regardless which rank is used (Greater Heal rank 1 will cost the same amount of mana as Greater Heal rank 5, etc.).

The previously unmitigatable 1% miss chance on all spells against enemies has been removed, which means 17% hit is needed to reach the cap on bosses (for DPS).

Many buffs and debuffs have been made raid-wide instead of party wide and utility has been spread around to more classes and specs than before.  Certain raid buffs and debuffs will no longer stack, and only the most effective version of a given ability will be effective.  An overview of the changes to the raid buff/debuff system can be found here.

Mana Regen

We cannot use a potion more than once during an encounter or an attempt.  You will want to use your fiend before your potion, as shadowfiend could potentially be used more than once in a given encounter.

Shadowfiend now regens 4% of our total mana per hit (it hits about 10 times).  It’s mana return is no longer based off of our spell damage stat. For most priests, this is a buff.

Certain talents and abilities have been changed, allowing for greater control over your personal mana regen (for example: Spirit Tap now has an improved version allowing for procs mid-combat).  The aim was to have players not be as dependent on raid composition for viable mana efficiency.  Talent and gear choices will have to be made with a greater eye towards mana conservation.

Replenishment is a new buff, replacing the mana regen aspect of Vampiric Touch.  The mana return from Replenishment is much lower, less than half of what we were seeing from Vampiric Touch before.  The trade-off is that it now affects twice as many people (up to 10). It will regenerate 0.25% of your max mana every second you have the buff.  The buff lasts 15 seconds and gets refreshed with spells.

Shadow priests apply (and refresh) Replenishment by casting Mind Blast at a target afflicted with their Vampiric Touch spell.  Replenishment targets the ten players in the raid with the lowest mana that do not already have the buff on them from another player.  Each time you trigger the buff, it will check to see if it’s on the players with the lowest mana.  If not, it will switch to the lowest. It will refresh on the others.

Ret paladins and survival hunters will also have spells that can grant the Replenishment buff, and it will not stack.  You will only need to bring one player to the raid for Replenishment in 10-man raids, or two for 25-mans.

In this patch, Intellect will become a more important mana regen stat than Spirit, due to mechanics with Shadowfiend and Replenishment (and Rapture, for those who are deep Discipline).

Spells

Priest racial spells have been removed.  Each priest will receive Hymn of Hope (a watered down version of Symbol of Hope, the draenei racial), Devouring Plague (formerly the undead racial), and Holy Nova as spells.  Desperate Prayer (the human/dwarf racial) will take Holy Nova’s place in the holy tree.

There have been a number of changes to pre-existing spells:

  • Dispel Magic – Range increased to 40 yards for friendly targets (range for hostile targets remains at 30 yards).
  • Pain Suppression – Cooldown now 3 minutes.
  • Power Infusion – Cooldown now 2 minutes.
  • Circle of Healing – Now works on raid members, not just party members.  It will target the players with the lowest health first.
  • Desperate Prayer – Now a holy tree talent.  Has a mana cost and a 2 minute cooldown.
  • Hymn of Hope – This is the reworked version of Symbol of Hope and is available to all priests at level 20.  It was moved to the holy tree (from the disc tree). It regens 2% of your raid members’ base mana every 2 seconds for 8 seconds (total: 8% base mana returned).  It’s channeled. At level 70, you would be returning 210 mana to yourself with this.
  • Holy Fire – Cast time is now 2 seconds (base).
  • Holy Nova – No longer a talent. Now available to all priests at level 20.
  • Lightwell – Now has 10 charges, 0.5 second cast time, and heals for more. Cooldown reduced to 3 minutes.  Will no longer break on damage, unless the hit is greater than 30% of the player’s max health.
  • Prayer of Mending – Can now crit.
  • Devouring Plague – No longer a racial spell.  Available to all priests. Now a key spell for shadow priest DPS.
  • Mind Flay – Damage coefficient increased. Its ticks can now crit!  It also has a new, cheesy spell graphic.
  • Shadowfiend – Now returns 4% of your max mana each time it hits (no longer scales with spell damage). Overall benefit increase for most priests.
  • Shadowform – Will now also grant the priest 30% threat reduction.
  • Silence – No longer triggers the global cooldown.
  • Vampiric Touch – Now grants the Replenishment buff for up to 10 people instead of returning 5% of your damage as mana (we’ll see a little less than 1/2 its previous benefit individually).

Also: buff spells (Prayer of Fortitude, Prayer of Shadow Protection, etc.) now affect the whole raid each cast.  You no longer have to cast them on each group.

The mana costs of spells have been changed to be a percentage of your base mana (meaning, your mana pool assuming no buffs, talents, or intellect).  Base mana for level 70 priests is 2,620.

Discipline %
Base
Mana
L70
Mana
Cost
Dispel Magic 14% 367
Divine Spirit 26% 681
Fear Ward 03% 79
Inner Fire 14% 367
Levitate 3% 79
Mana Burn 14% 367
Mass Dispel 33% 865
Pain Suppression 8% 210
Power Infusion 16% 419
Penance 16% 419
Power Word: Fortitude 27% 707
Power Word: Shield 23% 603
Prayer of Fortitude 69% 1,808
Prayer of Spirit 69% 1,808
Shackle Undead 9% 236
Holy %
Base
Mana
L70
Mana
Cost
Abolish Disease 12% 314
Binding Heal 27% 707
Circle of Healing 21% 550
Desperate Prayer 21% 550
Flash Heal 18% 472
Greater Heal 32% 838
Holy Fire 11% 288
Holy Nova 25% 655
Hymn of Hope 0% 0
Lightwell 17% 445
Prayer of Healing 48% 1,258
Prayer of Mending 15% 393
Renew 17% 445
Resurrection 60% 1,572
Smite 15% 393
Shadow %
Base
Mana
L70
Mana
Cost
Devouring Plague 25% 655
Fade 15% 393
Mind Blast 17% 445
Mind Control 12% 314
Mind Flay 9% 236
Mind Soothe 6% 157
Mind Vision 3% 79
Prayer of Shadow Protection 62% 1,624
Psychic Scream 15% 393
Shadow Protection 31% 812
Shadow Word: Death 12% 314
Shadow Word: Pain 22% 576
Shadowfiend 6% 157
Shadowform 32% 838
Vampiric Touch 16% 419

Talents

The Wrath of the Lich King talent trees will be introduced, giving us 51-point talents and other goodies to play with.  Many of our previous talent have changed as well.

Things That Have Changed

Discipline:

  • Silent Resolve
    Now only requires 3 talent points to get the full effect (down from 5).  Also, it now decreases the chance of your spells being dispelled by 30% (up from 20%).
  • Improved Inner Fire
    This will now also increase the number of charges of your inner fire buff, in addition to the armor bonus.
  • Mental Strength
    Now increases your intellect by 3% per rank (up from 2%).
  • Improved Divine Spirit
    Increases spellpower by the amount of spirit it grants (buffed), but will not stack with other spellpower-increasing raid buffs, such as Totem of Wrath, that are more effective.
  • Focused Power
    Now also increases damage/healing done by 2% per rank.
  • Focused Will
    The increased healing effects bonus of this talent was decreased to 3% per rank (from 4%).
  • Reflective Shield
    Down to three talent points (from five).  Reflects 45% of the damage absorbed by the shield (at max rank).

Holy:

  • Holy Nova
    Removed as a talent. Replaced with Desperate Prayer (see below).
  • Blessed Recovery
    Fixed so that multiple crits against you do not overwrite the effect, but add onto it.
  • Surge of Light
    Changed to make your next Smite or your next Flash Heal instant-cast and mana-free (but be incapable of a crit).
  • Holy Concentration
    Now a 30% chance at max rank to enter a clearcasting state on a critical Flash Heal, Binding Heal, or Greater Heal.
  • Lightwell
    Changed to not break on damage (unless damage > 30% of your health).  Number of charges increased to 10 (from 5). Casting time reduced to  0.5 sec (from 1.5 sec).  Healing done increased.
  • Empowered Healing
    At max rank, will increase the bonus healing effects of greater heal by 40% and flash heal/binding heal by 20%.  (This is an increase of its current values due to the change in the spellpower mechanic).
  • Circle of Healing
    Now affects any raid member, as opposed to just party members.  Will “smart heal” by selecting the players with lowest health first.

Shadow:

  • Spirit Tap
    Now only 3 talent points (down from 5) to get the same effect.
  • Shadow Focus
    Now also reduces the mana cost of shadow spells by 2% per rank.  The number of ranks has been reduced to 3 (from 5), but the spell hit awarded is still 1% per rank.
  • Improved Fade
    This talent was renamed to Veiled Shadows.  It now also decreases the cooldown of your shadowfiend by 1 minute per rank (2 ranks).
  • Shadow Weaving
    Now only 3 points (down from 5) to get the same effect.
  • Shadowform
    Now has the added bonus of reducing your threat by 30% while in shadowform.
  • Shadow Power
    Now only increases the critical strike damage bonus awarded by 20% per rank. This finally lets shadow priests do double damage on critical strikes.
  • Vampiric Touch
    This talent was changed to regen mana through the Replenishment buff (based off of recipient’s max mana) instead of being based off of your DPS.

New Talents

Discipline:

Twin Disciplines – Tier 1
5 ranks – This replaced Wand Specialization.  Increases the damage and healing of your instant cast (and most channeled) spells by 1% per rank.  This is an excellent talent choice for any priest talent spec!

Renewed Hope – Tier 8
2 ranks – Increases the crit chance of Penance, Greater Heal, and Flash Heal by 2% per rank on targets with weakened soul.

Rapture – Tier 8
5 ranks – Returns up to 0.5% per rank of your max mana each time you heal with Greater Heal, Flash Heal, Penance, or damage is absorbed by your Power Word: Shield or Divine Aegis (The amount returned depends on the amount healing. The most you’ll see at level 70 is about 265 mana returned).

Aspiration – Tier 8
2 ranks – The cooldowns of Inner Focus, Power Infusion, and Pain Suppression decreased by 10% per rank. Aspiration should have aspired to more; this is a lackluster talent.

Divine Aegis – Tier 9
3 ranks – Creates a shield on targets you heal that lasts for 12 seconds and will absorb 10% of the healing done, per rank.  This is a great addition to the damage reduction arsenal for PvP.

Grace – Tier 9
2 ranks – Will give your targets a “Grace” buff (that is susceptible to magical dispel) after receiving a Greater Heal, Flash Heal, or Penance heal from you. Grace, per rank, reduces the damage taken by 1% and increases the healing received from you by 1% on that target.  The Grace buff can stack up to 3 times, making this another solid choice for the PvP healing arsenal.

Borrowed Time – Tier 10
5 ranks – You can think of this talent as “More Improved Power Word: Shield” if you wish.  For each rank, the amount of damage your power Word: Shield absorbs is increased by 8% of your bonus spellpower. It also grants you 5% spell haste (per rank) on your next spell after casting Power Word: Shield. This talent stacks with the Improved Power: Word Shied Talent.

Penance – Tier 11
1 rank – New spell.  2 second channeled. If cast on an ally, it will heal them twice for a moderate amount.  If cast on a hostile target, it will damage them for a smaller amount twice.  It isn’t spammable (10 second cooldown!).  Its another “fast heal” option, and a high throughput healing spell for Disc.

Holy:

Desperate Prayer – Tier 3
1 rank – This replaced Holy Nova.  Instant-cast self-only heal for about 2k. 2 minute cooldown. Base cost is 550 mana at level 70.

Serendipity – Tier 8
3 ranks – If your Greater Heal or Flash Heal overheals at all, this talent will refund 25% (max rank) of the spell’s cost. What a phenomenal PvE healing talent.  It synergizes with spell crit, too (an unusual concept for a holy priest!).

Improved Holy Concentration – Tier 9
3 ranks – Increases the chance of entering Holy Concentration by 5% (per rank).  Increases your spell haste by 10% (per rank) for your next 2 heals after entering Holy Concentration.  This should be a requisite for any holy healing build. Do not pass this up!

Test of Faith – Tier 9
3 ranks – For your targets under 50% health, your healing is increased by 2% (per rank) and spell crit chance increased by 2% (per rank).  It’s like the Crystal Spire of Karabor up and became a talent.  At first glance, this feels a little weak for how high it is in the tree, but the overall increase to healing power over long periods of time (such as raids) is quite measurable.

Divine Providence – Tier 10
5 ranks – The amount healed by Circle of Healing, Binding Heal, Holy Nova, Prayer of Mending, and Prayer of Healing is increased by 2% per rank.  Yes, this is less of a talent than Spiritual Healing and Mental Agility.

Guardian Spirit – Tier 11
1 rank – Summons a guardian to “watch” a target for 10 seconds.  If the target would have taken a killing blow during that time, the guardian “dies” healing that target for 50% of their (max) health and saving them from death.   While the guardian is active, healing on the target is increased by 40%.  This spell has a 3 minute cooldown.  Let’s just call this what it is: an instant-cast buff that give a fast, emergency heal if a target is going to perish, else just increases the healing done on the target by a  substantial amount for 10 seconds.  This spell has flexibility.  It can be an “oh shit!” button, or a handy helper during boss enrages.

Shadow:

Improved Spirit Tap – Tier 1
2 ranks – Critical strikes from Mind Blast and SW:D increase your spirit by 5% per rank and increase your mana regen by 10% per rank for 8 seconds.  This talent is important for shadow priest mana efficiency.

Mind Melt – Tier 6
2 ranks – This replaced Shadow Resilience.  Increases the crit chance of Mind Blast and Mind Flay by 2% per rank.

Improved Shadowform – Tier 8
2 ranks – This gives Fade a 50% chance per rank of removing movement impairing effects while in shadowform.  It also reduces the amount of spell pushback encountered by 35% while casting shadow spells.  This talent is great for PvP, but won’t see a lot of use in PvE (not until WotLK, at least).

Psychic Horror – Tier 9
2 ranks – When the effects of Psychic Scream wear off, a (dispellable) debuff will remain on the target(s) that reduces their damage done by 15% per rank for 6 seconds.  This talent is weak; half of those 6 seconds the enemy will spend running back to you.

Pain and Suffering – Tier 9
3 ranks – Gives your Mind Flay a 33% chance per rank of “refreshing” SW:P on your target.  It also reduces the damage you take from your SW:D by 20% per rank.  This is one of the more controversial new talents as it is easily misunderstood.  The word “refresh” is a little misleading here. When your SW:P gets “refreshed”, it does not start ticking all over again from the beginning.  Time is just added to the end.  The 3 second interval between DoT ticks is not interrupted.  This talent is essential for PvE for the SW:P refreshing alone (saving mana and time).

Twisted Faith – Tier 10
5 ranks – Increases your shadow spell damage by 2% of your spirit per rank. Increases the damage done by Mind Flay and Mind Blast by 2% if your target is afflicted by SW:P.

Dispersion – Tier 11
1 rank – For 6 seconds, reduces damage taken by 90% and regenerates 6% of your mana per second.  You can move, but cannot attack or cast.  Dispersion has a 5 minute cooldown.  The PvP benefits are quite obvious, and the cooldown appropriately limiting.  It’s not necessary for PvE, but worth trying out.  In PvE, it could have its benefits as an “Oh Shit!” button or as a useful thing to pop during boss phase transitions (free big mana potion!).

Talent Specs

The Wrath of the Lich King talent trees will be introduced, giving us 51-point talents and other goodies to play with. In this month-long transition period between Burning Crusade and WotLK, I strongly encourage you to try as many different talent builds as you can.

  • Holy Priest PvE(14/47/0)
    As a holy priest, given your reliance on mana conservation, you’d have to be nuts to give up Meditation, making at least 13 points in Discipline mandatory for PvE healing.  Serendipity, however, is a better talent choice for mana efficiency (and, fortunately, you can get them both).  Holy Concentration and Improved Holy Concentration rely on higher crit ratings than you will likely be able to obtain in order to make them a competitive pair of talents in terms of mana efficiency.  However, I recommend picking them up anyway so that you can get used to how procs from Improved Holy Concentration feel.  Empowered Healing is crucial for the strength of your heals.  Healing Focus is not worth taking for PvE, given the change to the spell pushback mechanic.  Silent Resolve was picked up in the Disc tree, but don’t get used to having it.  In WotLK you’ll want to pick up Improved Inner Fire instead for the spellpower bonus.
  • Disc Priest PvE(52/9/0)
    Deep disc healing just doesn’t have the healing throughput that holy does at this level, but if you are eager to give it a go, this is the spec I’d recommend.  Core Power Word: Shield improving talents were picked up, as was Penance. Those two spells are core to healing as disc.  Greater Heal/Flash Heal and Renew/PoM are sprinkled in between them as needed.  Mental Agility is a must for mana efficiency with the shield, and Mental Strength does a lot for your mana regen.  Grace and Divine Aegis really highlight the potential strength of discipline: preventative healing.  Divine Spirit and Improved Divine Spirit are optional to this build; due to raid stacking they won’t make a difference if there is someone with a more powerful spellpower buff in the raid.  If you really don’t think you’d see yourself using Pain Suppression, move the point over to the holy tree for Divine Fury.
  • Disc Priest PvP(53/8/0)
    I will admit: speccing for disc PvP is the only time I really feel that any of our talent trees are bloated.  There are some tough choices deep in the tree which come at the cost of almost-necessary holy talents.  Similar to disc PvP now, there is a great reliance of Power Word: Shield and the talents that increase its effectiveness. Divine Aegis will be a crucial mitigation tool.  Penance is very powerful in PvP (fast heal, high throughput).

  • Shadow Priest PvE(7/0/54)
    You have to make a choice to go for Dispersion and Twisted Faith, or stay 14 points in disc for Inner Focus/Meditation.  I’m going to opt for the deep shadow talents, as they are better for DPS.  We gained talents that passively increase our mana efficiency (such as Improved Spirit Tap), allowing us to focus more on DPS.  I found that 2-3 points in Imp. MB worked well for me, but your results will vary based on your lag.  If you have mana problems, you can move some points into Veiled Shadows for the decrease in cooldown to Shadowfiend. The points in Shadow Affinity may not be needed, depending on how well your tank(s) can generate threat.
  • Shadow Priest PvP (10/0/51)
    New talents have been introduced to the shadow tree that address some of our main PvP concerns.  With Improved Shadowform and Veiled Shadows, we can move around more freely.  Dispersion is like a strange Pain Suppression/Evocation hybrid.  Psychic Horror gives us an extra edge to our fear. Silent Resolve, in the disc tree, is still important for reducing how often your spells are removed.

Healing

Downranking of spells has been removed, changing the the way we heal and think about mana conservation.  Cheating the 5 second rule becomes imperative to our longevity.  We will have to gear and select talents with a keener eye toward mana efficiency.  Mental Agility, while not a sexy talent, will become an important one once again.

With the downranking change, you won’t be spamming heal spells as much.  Casting things like Greater Heal will become somewhat reactive. We now will be using top rank Greater Heal as our “oomph” healing spell after a tank takes a lot of damage.  For smaller amounts of healing, or to top someone off, we will be turning to Flash Heal (where we used to downrank GHeal). 

Circle of Healing was changed to be raid-wide, and to “smart-heal” the players in its range lowest in health.  However, due to mana changes, it isn’t as spammable as before.  Hitting it more than 4 or 5 times in a row takes too large a chunk out of your mana pool.  Use of this spell will be situational.

Stabilization spells will become quite important as a mana conservation tactic, as they generally have the highest healing throughput.  Renew remains unchanged and as efficient as ever.  Prayer of Mending now credits the healing threat to you, but is otherwise unchanged.  Due to an increase in the amount of threat tanks generate, they can now handle having Power Word: Shield on them (but due to its mana cost, you won’t be using this much as a holy priest).

The Discipline talent tree was greatly revised to allow it to be a PvE healing tree in WotLK.  It centers around using PW:S and Penance whenever possible, and interweaving between the cooldowns of those two spells other healing as needed (Prayer of Mending/Renew for stabilization, or Greater Heal/Flash Heal to top off players).  Unfortunately, Discipline PvE healing has a heavy talent point investment, limiting its viability until we can get closer to level 80 (it comes at the cost of too many necessary holy talents).

Be careful not to make a rookie mistake by loading up a tank with Prayer of Mending, Renew, or Power Word: Shield before (or immediately after) a pull.  All the threat from those spells go to you.  Wait a few seconds into combat before casting them on the tank. Safety first!

Lightwell is going to be our highest throughput healing spell, if used properly.  There will be many encounters in WotLK where it will be quite handy.  It may be worth your while to start training your raid members now on how to use it.

As for how we think of stats, intellect has caught up to spirit as a mana regen stat due to how Replenishment and Shadowfiend work (and Rapture, if you are deep disc).  In the bigger picture, spirit still wins out over intellect for holy builds due to how much it increases our spellpower through Spiritual Guidance.  Spellpower is obviously strong for us (it’s our throughput) and haste has diminished (sure it increases throughput, but at the cost of mana, a now precious commodity). Crit has come a long way for us, now increasing both our healing output and mana efficiency in both trees.

For gearing, I am looking at LootRank lists with the following stat weights:

These lists give a little more emphasis to crit and int than we saw in the past, but are pretty close to what we’re using now.  Most players will be fine sticking with their current gear.

DPS

Fundamentally, the way we shadow priests cast spells in raids will change very little.  You will still have a core set of DoTs/buffs that you will want to keep up on the mob, and then will toss in other spells around those. Keep Vampiric Embrace, Vampiric Touch, Shadow Word: Pain, and Devouring Plague up; burn Mind Blast every cooldown; and interweave Mind Flay and SW:D as well as you can fit them.

General Priority:

  1. VE / VT – For utility
  2. MB – To keep Replenishment up, and for DPS
  3. SW:P / DP – Keep up for DPS
  4. MF / SW:D – To fill the gaps between the rest of the spells

SW:P will be refreshed for you with Mind Flay, provided you have the talent Pain and Sufferring (which really is a must-have).

Vampiric Embrace is going to be a key spell, and taking the Improved version of it will be a benefit to your raid.  Remember to be put in the main tank group to optimize the health return from it.  Don’t put VE up at the start of the fight.  Wait 2-3 casts before doing so as it can be an aggro monster.  Given how much tank threat generation has changed, you shouldn’t have to worry too much about threat, but it is still wise to be mindful of it at the start of battle.

As for stats, spirit will become a much more imporatant stat for you due to Twisted Faith. Crit will as well, due to Shadow Power. Shadow priests will be losing 7% hit going into this patch, so finding hit gear will be important.  You will need 139 hit to reach the hit cap for bosses (provided you have Shadow Power and Misery).

You may have to spend some time resocketing your gear for spell hit (yellow gems), spell hit/spellpower (orange gems), and spirit/spellpower (purple gems) if you plan to continue raiding through to the release of WotLK.  Shadowpriest.com has made a wonderful list about which gear will be best for you, given the changes in stats.

PvP

Not too much will change in the way of PvP for us.  Discipline is still king for priests, but now shadow can make a good showing as well with new abilities such as Dispersion and Improved Shadowform.

The changes to spell pushback will be helpful to us when we are focus-fired in PvP.

On the negative side of things, we will no longer be casting downranked versions of spells for utility purposes (Holy Nova, Fade, SW:P, Psychic Scream, etc.). This will hurt our mana conservation to a small extent.

The largest changes we will see are from what other classes will be bringing to the table. It’s a little too hard to call right now (as finding good PvP on the PTR is difficult), but it looks like feral druids, frost mages, and ret paladins are going to be our toughest competitors.   When the patch actually goes live, I think we’ll have a better idea what we’re up against.

Professions

Professions now have more ways of benefiting you.  Here is a short list of their advantages:

  • Herbalism – You get Lifeblood, a HoT that heals 1,200 health over 5 seconds (self-only) and scales with your herbalism level. It is castable in shadowform. In WotLK, you will be able to use the consumable Fire Seed to increase your spellpower by 200 for 10 seconds.
  • Mining – A 300 bonus health. The health bonus scales with your mining level.
  • Skinning – Bonus 15 crit rating.  This scales with your level in skinning.
  • Alchemy – Double duration on flasks and elixirs. Increased effects of flasks and elixirs on you (by ~20%).  New epic BoP Alchemy Stone trinkets will be available in WotLK.
  • Tailoring – In WotLK, you will be able to make nice cloak enchants and spellthreads (tailoring-only), receive bonus cloth drops, and access to a BoP Flying Carpet mount. You will also be able to make some entry-level raiding gear at 80 (that will be quickly replaced in your first raid).
  • Inscription – This is the new profession that is being introduced this patch (more info about it below).  Its benefits are improved shoulder enchants.
  • Enchanting – More ring enchants.
  • Engineering – In WotLK, you gain the ability to enchant various peices of your armor with engineering-like utility spells (rocket launcher to gloves, increased run speed to boots, etc.). You get a portable mailbox and portable vendor, too.
  • Jewelcrafting – Epic gems unique to jewelcrafters with slightly better stats. Rare BoP trinkets (easily replaced).
  • Blacksmithing – In WotLK, you will have the ability to add an extra socket to your gloves, bracers, and 1H weapon.  You can also craft a BoP epic weapon at 80 that will be replaced in your first or second raid.
  • Leatherworking – Better bracer enchants. Drums that were previously crafted by leatherworking were given a once-per-encounter debuff and made unusable at level 80.

Alchemy seems to be a strong choice for PvE.  For PvP, engineering remains a good bet. I’m not putting it past Blizzard to add better tailoring patterns in later raiding.  It may be worth sticking with it if it’s your cup of tea.

In general, its nice that gathering professions now benefit more than just your gold reserves.  In the WotLK beta, I enjoyed being a shadowpriest herbalist for the mana-free heal usable in shadowform. It was nice for soloing and PvP.

The benefits of enchanting, inscription, leatherworking, jewelcrafting and blacksmithing are all quite similar, if you think about it.  They each give you slightly higher stats due to more sockets or better enchants.  Tailoring similarly has spellthreads and embroidery that will augment some aspects of your healing or DPS.

The thing about professions is that you never know what kind of pattern could drop in a later raid.  Blacksmithing and Leatherworking are unlikely to be good choices, as the majority of the items crafted by those professions are completely unusable for us.  Gathering professions (skinning, mining, and herbalism) are not likely to develop benefits beyond what we see already.  However, their financial benefits are quite nice and should not be overlooked.

As for tailoring, enchanting, jewelcrafting, engineering, alchemy, and inscription, we don’t know where they will go in with end-game raiding in WotLK, so select or stick with whatever feels best to you for now.

Inscription

Inscription is the new profession being introduced.  Similar to enchanting, it is a profession that will benefit everyone, not just the people who spec for it.  There will be a tab on your spellbook where you can socket 3 major and 3 minor glyphs (at level 70). Similar to jewelcrafting, glyphs that you socket will remain until you choose to overwrite them with a different glyph.

Major glyphs are intended to bring a significant change to the mechanics of the spell (duration, power, range, etc.). Minor glyphs are supposed to affect spells cosmetically, or superficially.

If you are interested in leveling Inscription, bananashoulders.com has a great guide.

Priests have 27 glyphs available (21 of which are major glyphs). Inscription and glyphs will likely see a number of changes after the patch goes live.  Blizzard is still working things out with it.

Prime Choices (and when to use them):

  • Glyph of Renew – Major Glyph
    Reduces the duration of your Renew by 3 sec. but increases the amount healed per tick by 40%.
    PvE Healing – It comes at a small cost, but this is a huge overall increase in HPS (healing per second) and in HPM (healing per mana spent).
  • Glyph of Flash Heal – Major Glyph
    Reduces the mana cost of your Flash Heal by 10%.
    PvE Healing – With this glyph, Flash Heal becomes a lot closer to Greater Heal in terms of mana efficiency.
  • Glyph of Circle of Healing – Major Glyph
    Your Circle of Healing spell heals 1 additional target.
    Holy Healing – Tremendous increase to healing done by CoH. You won’t be using CoH as much as you used to in raids, but it will still see a bit of use in splash damage encounters.
  • Glyph of Power Word: Shield – Major Glyph
    Heals your target for 20% of the amount absorbed.
    Disc Healing – This glyph obviously has the best synergy with the disc healing mechanics.
  • Glyph of Dispel Magic – Major Glyph
    Your Dispel Magic also heals your target for 6% of maximum health if it removes a damaging effect.
    PVP – There is still a good amount of dispelling being done in PvP.  Free heals!
  • Glyph of Mass Dispel – Major Glyph
    Reduces the mana cost of Mass Dispel by 20%.
    PvP – Mana conservation is so important now, especially in PvP.
  • Glyph of Shadow Word: PainMajor Glyph
    Reduces the mana cost of your Shadow Word: Pain spell by 20%.

    Shadow PvP – SW:P is still one of the costliest spells a shadow priest will typically cast, but the Pain and Suffering talent will be refreshing this spell for you in raids.  This glyph is clearly aimed toward soloing/grinding or PvP.
  • Glyph of Fading – Minor Glyph
    Reduce the mana cost of your Fade spell by 30%.

    Shadow PvP – Best minor glyph for shadow pvp.
  • Glyph of Mind Flay – Major Glyph
    Increases the range of your Mind Flay spell by 10 yards, but it no longer reduces the target’s movement speed.
    Shadow PvE – Increase of 10 yards (putting Mind Flay at 34 yards with talents).  Getting over that 30 yard threshold in raids is going to be extremely helpful to shadow priests.
  • Glyph of Shadow Word: Death – Major Glyph
    Targets below 35% health take an additional 5% damage from your Shadow Word: Death spell.
    Shadow PvE – For lack of better alternatives, this is one of our best options for raiding as a shadowpriest.
  • Glyph of Smite – Major Glyph
    Increases the chance you’ll resist spell interruption when casting your Smite spell by 50%.
    Holy/Disc Soloing – Laugh if you must, but this is a godsend for priests who depend on soloing without respeccing.  Also, it’s worth holding onto if you think you will stay holy/disc for leveling in WotLK.
  • Glyph of Levitate – Minor Glyph
    Your Levitate spell no longer requires a reagent.
    FUN! – This is our cosmetic glyph.  It exists solely for the sake of letting us look cool.

Questionable Benefits

  • Glyph of Lightwell – Major Glyph
    Increases the amount healed by your Lightwell by 20%.
    Lightwell won’t see a lot of use until we can train raids to use it and have better situations to use it in.  This will be a great glyph in WotLK, but not as useful now.
  • Glyph of Prayer of HealingMajor Glyph
    Your Prayer of Healing spell also heals an additional 20% of its initial heal over 6 sec.

    This glyph really ups the group healing potential of Prayer of Healing, especially in predictive damage situations.  However, due to the insane mana cost on Prayer of Healing, we will rarely be casting it.
  • Glyph of Fear Ward – Major Glyph
    Reduces cooldown and duration of Fear Ward by 30 sec.
    There are better options for PvE glyphs.
  • Glyph of Scourge Imprisonment – Major Glyph
    Increases your hit chance with Shackle Undead by 8%.
    Not a bad option for healers who don’t want to have to worry about the spell hit in PvE.
  • Glyph of Mind Control – Major Glyph
    Increases the duration of your Mind Control spell by 12 sec.
    This doesn’t do anything for PvP (doh!) and CC with Mind Control in PvE is usually not much of a problem at its current length.  This glyph will have situational use in certain WotLK encounters.
  • Glyph of Inner Fire – Major Glyph
    Increases the charges of Inner Fire by 20.
    Inner Fire is so cheap mana-wise, is it really that much trouble to recast? It isn’t really worth the major glyph slot for PvP, given our better choices.  This glyph will be useful in WotLK when Inner Fire grants spellpower.
  • Glyph of Holy Nova – Major Glyph
    Your Holy Nova spell heals for an additional 40%, but deals 40% less damage.
    Holy Nova will cost 655 mana.  Even with the glyph, it is still too expensive for what you get out of it.
  • Glyph of Fortitude – Minor Glyph
    Reduce the mana cost of your Power Word: Fortitude and Prayer of Fortitude spells by 5%.
    We’re typically casting this out of combat, so mana isn’t really a problem…
  • Glyph of Shadow Protection – Minor Glyph
    Increases the duration of your Shadow Protection and Prayer of Shadow Protection spells by 10 min.
    It’s rare you’ll be situations where you may have this expiring in combat. However, this is one of our best options for minor glyphs.

Near Useless…

  • Glyph of Fade – Major Glyph
    Increases the length and cooldown of Fade by 50%.
    Who would need this?  If you really need to buy yourself extra time for your tank to gain control of mobs, then you need a new tank.
  • Glyph of Mind Soothe – Minor Glyph
    Increases the duration of your Mind Soothe spell by 5 sec. and reduces the range at which the victim will attack by an additional 100%.
    Who uses this spell?
  • Glyph of Spirit of Redemption – Major Glyph
    All heals cast while Spirit of Redemption is active have a 20% chance to increase the remaining duration of Spirit of Redemption by 5 sec.
    No one takes this talent for the actual effects; they take it for the spirit bonus.
  • Glyph of Shackle Undead – Minor Glyph
    Increases the range on Shackle Undead by 5 yards.
    The range was never the issue on this spell.  Spell hit was, especially for healers.
  • Glyph of Psychic Scream – Major Glyph
    Increases the duration of your Psychic Scream by 3 sec.
    It won’t be full duration in PvP anyways, so where is this supposed to be useful.  Soloing?
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84 Responses

  1. Hands down a fantastic summary, I’m thinking it will take me a day to get through all of what you’ve mentioned here; can’t even contemplate the verbose patch notes yet.

    Thank you Dwarf Priest, you’re on the friends list. :) When I understand this enough after the patch, I’ll come asking questions.

  2. Thanks for a fantastic guide! It’s now bookmarked and I will most definitely come back to read up more! Thanks for letting me understand all the numbers and math I can’t really figure out by myself :)

  3. That’s an exceptional input, that I’m gonna link on our boards right now.

    One slight clarification about shadow dps casting sequence. Analysis of level 80 raids in Naxx starter gear show that using SWD in casting sequence grants around ~1% of extra dps, but even this miniscule number comes at a severe cost. You can read more info and groundings in our feedback post: http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=10043253758&sid=2000

    I didn’t make calculations for level 70 characters, but there are good chances that with all those buffs to Mind Flay and Mind Blast (via Mind Melt, Misery and Twisted Faith), SWD will become extinct even in late TBC.

  4. Here’s the promised post: http://shadowpriest.com/viewtopic.php?f=54&t=16657

    And while we’re on it, I’ve got another enhancement for shadow-related section of your super awesome guide. While qualitative estimates of gear stats for shadowpriests are quite correct, I’d love to see exact numbers that would aid the reader in choosing gearz for pre-WotLK raiding. Our community offers exactly the resource I’m talking about: http://www.shadowpriest.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=16224

    Thanks a lot. To reiterate, that was a pleasure to read your guide.

  5. Oh, delete my previous comment, please. I’ve failed to locate link to our 3.0 BRGA thread in your original post.

  6. Great overview! Consider it bookmarked.

    Btw, I thought the being able to use only 1 potion each fight thing was taken back out a while ago?
    I sure hope so.

  7. @ Battlemaid – Thank you for the link. That was very kind! It means a lot coming from someone as knowledgeable and respect on those forums as you. :)

    Will I still use SW:D in this patch? Yes.

    Why? Two reasons.

    1) It increases my DPS! By a small amount, yes, but it’s still higher DPS. I don’t think the drawbacks to the spell make it not worth the risk. With Imp VE and DP, I’m not as worried about my health.

    2) My lag is kinda funky and inconsistent, and I can’t always depend on being able to clip Mind Flay to optimize DPS (or, perhaps I just suck at it…). I will need something to weave in between DoT applications and MB. Mind Flay and SW:D are my choices. SW:D fills a smaller gap when needed.

    In Wrath, I may drop SW:D altogether. The risk becomes greater. I’m just focusing on patch 3.0.2 at the moment.

  8. @ Tesnia – It’s still there. They just removed the little debuff icon that you’d get.

  9. Thanks so very much – this has been invaluable.

    Although bleh, it makes me depressed for the future of our class. :/

  10. This is a great post – consider it linked (as soon as I remember my blog password, whose session has expired! :).

    One question, about Dispersion – I’d understood that the damage reduction had been reduced to 60%. Has that been reverted?

  11. Great articule! I haven’t read it completely (skimming at work), but Mental Strength is wrong. The current version it increases your mana by 2% per talent, while the new one increases your intellect by 3% per talent. So it’s a bigger buff than stated. :-)

  12. By the way. If I’m not mistaken, on wotlk beta server Penance ticks three times over 2 seconds (first tick is instant, and subsequent two are just like normal dots/hots). Is it different on 3.0.2 ptr?

  13. […] has a very thorough Patch 3.0.2 Priest Survival Guide over at A Dwarf Priest. Priests of any stripe should read this writeup before the patch hits (next […]

  14. […] I know I still get a lot of you coming by, so please heed this public service announcement.  Go here. Read it, ponder it.  What is it?  The Dwarf Priest has done an outstanding report of the changes […]

  15. And one more comment about qualitative evaluation of new manaregen talents.

    As our researches show, 2 ranks of Improved Spirit Tap are roughly equal to 1 rank of meditation in the raid setting. However, while being quite a nice talent, IST doesn’t scale well neither with Crit, nor with Spirit, nor with Meditation due to quite low multipliers. More details about IST and *its uptime* you can read in our sticky: http://www.shadowpriest.com/viewtopic.php?f=54&t=13969

    Another very fun and elegant conclusion has been made today about Dispersion. As our discussion shows Dispersion has the same effectiveness for manaregen as 3 ranks of Meditation! More details here: http://www.shadowpriest.com/viewtopic.php?f=54&t=16556&start=15

  16. d’oh! I don’t know whether to cheer or cry that you’ve not only taken the subject of my previous and future posts, but done them much better and more legibly than me.

    I think I’ll settle for just linking ;) Thanks for the work.

  17. (continues my previous comment)

    Another very fun and elegant conclusion has been made today about Dispersion. As our discussion shows Dispersion has the same effectiveness for manaregen as 3 ranks of Meditation! More details here: http://www.shadowpriest.com/viewtopic.php?f=54&t=16556&start=15

    If you can use dispersion twice in a fight that is <6 min it can get even better than that. Meditation doesn’t scale with fight length like that.

  18. Thank you for this wonderful compendium. What a wonderful service to the priest community!

    Mugglebane
    The Sacred and Profane
    http://priestlyendeavors.blogspot.com/

  19. Great post… Thanks!

  20. Awesome write up!

    One thing is that Shadow Weaving has changed – it is no longer a debuff on the target but rather a buff on yourself. This is a big deal in terms of dispel protection – your personal buffs haves greater protection due to the shadow weaving stack but your debuffs/dots lose protection by not having the stack. Not to mention other classes losing the weaving benefit, though I believe you covered this is your raid stacking post.

    Thanks for the awesome blog!

  21. Dispersion is a great skill raid wise 3 min cd on it sometimes seems like it should be longer for the ability to regen that much mp in a short time people can bitch about the dps hit all they want the 6 seconds of regen is more sustained dps than a SP preying on MP5 per cast

    if timed right with 3/3 veiled shadows you can cycle the feind / dispersion for basicly no mp downtime in boss raid / lvling
    managed to go from 70-74 sitting only 4 times to drink
    also it’s only a 3 min CD not 5min

    Dispersion – Tier 11
    1 rank – For 6 seconds, reduces damage taken by 90% and regenerates 6% of your mana per second. You can move, but cannot attack or cast. Dispersion has a 5 minute cooldown. The PvP benefits are quite obvious, and the cooldown appropriately limiting. It’s not necessary for PvE, but worth trying out. In PvE, it could have its benefits as an “Oh Shit!” button or as a useful thing to pop during boss phase transitions (free big mana potion!).

  22. looking at the holy build for pve
    skip silent resolve in the Dis tree for imp inner fire
    3538 Armor / Spellpower 174 / 32 Charges
    vs
    2440 Armor / Spellpower 120 / 20 charges

    threat is not much of an issue anymore for the raiding priest
    the HTPM was reduced to a 1:1 Ratio and tanks got a passive 30% increase in threat on top of there damage threat

  23. @ Chris A. – I believe it got reverted.

    @ Battlemaid – It’s only ticking twice that I see. The current tooltip agrees.

    @ Xanchra – I’m just talking about patch 3.0.2. We don’t get a version of Inner Fire that grants spellpower until level 71. So, for the time being, nothing is terribly good in the second tier of disc. Silent Resolve is as good as anything else. In WotLK, yes, I will be putting 3 points in Imp. Inner Fire.

  24. […] has written an excellent summary of priest changes in Wrath of the Lich King in her blog.  Although the changes aren’t 100% fixed yet the […]

  25. Awesome post! I appreciate the amount of work this would have required.

    Gobble gobble.

  26. According to the spell theory threads on the Elitestjerks site, regen from spirit has dropped significantly in recent weeks, to where they’re having to depend much more on MP5 gear in order to get decent regen, and the push seems to be going toward int gear over spirit. Can you comment on this?

  27. […] tweaks to new spells and talents, all of each of them explained and changes documented. Consult Priest Survival Guide for additional […]

  28. Awesome post. Many thanks for pulling this all together.

  29. Any word on the AOE spell Mind Sear?

  30. If you have this talent for pvp or certain raid bossfights, the glyph of fade might be usefull. As its basically a trinket of the horde / alliance on a seperate cooldown. With the cooldown of fade reduced by the glyph you can use the effect more often, and basically break out of movement impairing effects easier.

    Improved Shadowform – Tier 8
    2 ranks – This gives Fade a 50% chance per rank of removing movement impairing effects while in shadowform. It also reduces the amount of spell pushback encountered by 35% while casting shadow spells. This talent is great for PvP, but won’t see a lot of use in PvE (not until WotLK, at least).

    Glyph of Fade – Major Glyph
    Increases the length and cooldown of Fade by 50%.
    Who would need this? If you really need to buy yourself extra time for your tank to gain control of mobs, then you need a new tank.

  31. @ Todd – I have to make a whole separate post about how we look at stats. I should have something up soon.

    @ Deliria – You get Mind Sear at level 75. I’m just talking about patch 3.0.2 here. When Wrath comes out, I’ll make a post about the stuff we get in Wrath. :)

    @ Elory – Am I missing something? It says it increases the cooldown on Fade, not decreases it. If anything, this glyph would be a detriment.

  32. […] to stumble upon Dwarf Priest’s breakdown of priestly talents that we’ll see in patch 3.0.2. Wrath of the Lich King isn’t too far […]

  33. Wow, what an awesome article/resource! The amount of information covered is staggering. It’s going to take me a few days to digest it all, but having it all together in one place is incredibly valuable.

  34. Finally! Thank You!!
    It’s so nice to find pretty much everything on one page… thanks for the hard work mate.

    After reading this page and a few of the links I now have a much better idea of the upcoming changes than I got from days of forum trolling.

    Now I can get back to praying for a decent dps increase to make up for no moar manamanaz :(

    Judz out.

  35. […] Caveat – I know its all about to change, this will be useful to act as a comparison after the “v3.whatever” patch is made live. Go read Dwarf Priest for a great summary. […]

  36. […] DwarfPriest’s 3.0.2 Priest Survival Guide – everything you need to know, all in one convenient place.  Fantastic guide to specs, mechanics, professions – the whole bit!. […]

  37. Gosh I think your spam filter hates me! I just highlighted this wonderful guide on my blog. Just clicky clicky on the URL above!

    Mugglebane
    The Sacred and Profane.

  38. This is awesome. Thanks!

    My only thoughts, is that I think the glyph of Holy nova should be looked a little more. I haven’t tested it, nor am i a theorycrafter, but I saw some very interesting numbers crunched on that spell in comparison with CoH and PoH. PlusHeal.com is where it was posted. Not sure if it looks good enough for me to pick it as only one fo two glyphs for that level, but it looks good enough for me to consider in certain situations.

  39. Excellent and highly educating guide, DP. Many thanks!

  40. If I am not mistaken, then Holy Nova WILL be a more efficient heal than CoH with the Glyph, but only if your party is close together.
    If you’re spread out, CoH will be better, because of its range.

    Anyways, I personally find Holy Nova to be awsome…

  41. “Glyph of Spirit of Redemption – Major Glyph
    All heals cast while Spirit of Redemption is active have a 20% chance to increase the remaining duration of Spirit of Redemption by 5 sec.
    No one takes this talent for the actual effects; they take it for the spirit bonus.

    I use that spell quiet alot, and it is very usefull that you can be able to kill yourself when low on mana, then heal, and if you have it, use a soulstone.

  42. As much as my guild leader loves to see the holy priests in the raid angel… I agree with you on the Glyph of Spirit of Redemption. It seemed very worthwhile when it was originally 20 seconds, but now, not so much.

    Do you know if it can continually proc and keep stacking on seconds? (I’m thinking no, but just wanted to ask) I’m actually dropping Enchanting for Inscription… just to try out something new so this guide is definitely great for seeing what cool priest glyphs there are.

    For WotLK, I’m thinking of going a smite spec (Surge of Light + PI http://wotlk.wowhead.com/?talent=bVhbkhxtr0oZcgt0bbabZh) for leveling. With the amount of gear we’re going to get in WotLK and what I have now (both sets of T6), I figure I could heal any instance regardless of spec due to the high level of gear I currently have. Any thoughts on that? Think it really makes that big of a difference or should I just holy?

    Just wanted an opinion from someone who actually plays the beta ;p

    I definitely enjoy reading your articles, keep up the good work!

  43. Glyph of Holy Nova – Major Glyph
    Your Holy Nova spell heals for an additional 40%, but deals 40% less damage.
    Holy Nova will cost 655 mana. Even with the glyph, it is still too expensive for what you get out of it.

    If they reduced the healing and buffed the dmg, I would use it for its awesome AOE running lowbies uses… Otherwise I got COH.

  44. Excellent summary, thank you :).

  45. First, thank you SO much for a wonderful article. Having such a plethora of useful information in one place is a real time-saver.

    Second, what are your thoughts on the Imp Divine Spirit build (23/38/0) that I for one have used since I dinged 70? Since we had multiple, better-geared, priests who specc’d CoH, I have just stayed in the IDS build and have been quite happy with the results.

    With the changes to IDS in the Disc tree (if I read correctly, while the buff itself is better than current, it will not stack with other buffs that are better [you mentioned totem of Wrath]) and the increased emphasis on INT, have we seen the last of the IDS priests once the next patch hits? Will all raiding holy priests be at least 47 points into the holy tree?

    Thanks again for a well-written article (one of many on your site!). Keep up the great work.

  46. […] So instead, I’m going to link to the definitive guide to the expansion for priests – A Dwarf Priest Wrath Survival Guide. […]

  47. Great job done! *bows*
    Extremely well done as always.
    <3

    P.S.: linked on plusheal.com
    http://www.plusheal.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=570

  48. Linked on my guild’s website. Fantastic formatting makes it easy to read and understand. Especially the glyphs section.

    Only thing I’d argue differently about is the usefulness of Twin Disciplines. Reduction in time spent silenced/feared/stunned by 15% is huge! Especially for raiding (i.e.: Archimonde). 5 talent points for 5% increase in healing is too costly imho.

  49. i have a question.

    are those glyphs replacable once u put them into ur slot?
    are they similar to gems?

  50. In theory, Glyph of SoR could provide you with an immortal, infinite mana healer that can’t move, provided they could endlessly spam heal someone. So, not sure how ‘useless’ it might turn out being. At any rate, no-cost healing having its duration expended, especially if you die in or near the zone the MT is tanking in, could be a huge benefit.

    It’d certainly be damn nice for fights like Archi to have a healer who doesn’t have to leave the MT/melee group, bonus that this particular healer has AOE heals. :o

  51. Glyph of SoR Has many uses. How often has a Holy priest gone to PVP(i know Disc is better for it, but some of us just need 1 or 2 marks and don’t want to respec for 2 runs) and died at the flag. imagine a healer that cannot be killed defending her allies while they lay waste to all around them with free constant heals. Also more so, this comes into play at places like Kara – Shade – Where its all nice and close and dying in the middle means u can practically reach the entire 10 man raid without a problem. Allowing you to keep the party members alive, spamming flash heal and Mending prayer, renews as well, with no chance of being hit by Shade or his spells. You would need to be really lucky if your going to use Greater Heal due to the 20% chance for 5 secs, you would need either great luck or lots of quick casts to keep it up. But potential is there to stay alive for the entire fight.. Other places would be prince, Gruuls, or basically any other long term fight in close quarters. With no mana pool, over heals arn’t a concern so even just over healing the tank to keep a healthy heal buffer on them alone makes it very useful. I was brought to this Link by our guilds Lead Holy Priest, and thankful he has deemed this a must read. great post, lots of information i was having a hard time tracking down on other posts/forums. Thanks for all the hard work and effort you have put in to allow us to see what we will be dealing with/have access to in the next patch. Shailar.

  52. I’m sorry but you call glyph of spirit of redemtion almost useless? Its a very good glyph for PvP. It kind of allows you to heal until no one is there to heal anymore, or unless you’re realy unlucky.

  53. I’m talking about patch 3.0.2 (not WotLK). Holy PvP will not be very viable, and an extra 10-15 seconds of SoR healing on death in raiding isn’t that helpful. If you haven’t figured out not to stand in the fire by now, get out of the raid! :) In seriousness, there are many better raid healing glyphs out there for you.

  54. I just wanted to say thanks a lot for doing this.

  55. ” * Glyph of Mind Soothe – Minor Glyph
    Increases the duration of your Mind Soothe spell by 5 sec. and reduces the range at which the victim will attack by an additional 100%.
    Who uses this spell?”

    Who?… I will tell you who… skilled shadow priest who know their classes and know all it’s abilities and how(when) to use it. Not that shadow priest wannabies who write w/o any idea.

  56. @Grashoverride – Go ahead and humor me. Do tell. I could use a good laugh.

  57. As always, an outstanding treatment of the changes coming down today. I’m only sorry I didn’t read this a week ago! However, I have made your article required reading for all the priests in my guild. Woe unto he or she who casts PoM before the tank has aggro!

    Oh…and I use Mind Soothe when picking herbs. Sometimes. Guess I phail at being a priest. Good thing I’m not shadow, I guess. Meh…I’ll try not to encourage the trolls.

  58. wow, great post… I found this 2 hours before the 3.0.2. server patch is done going live… took me about 30 minutes to read through all of it.. I am a huge fan of disc priest mechanics. It seems my play style will fit the new patch perfectly.. I already used flash of light in raids when I wasn’t using greater heal.. always kept up renew and mending, and I would use pain supression and improved shield on people and tanks without pulling too much threat.
    (i know 5% decrease in threat, but with our tanks, it doesn’t change much).

    I’m really stoked on the ageis talent, that looks like the best pvp talent for disc priest i’ve ever seen… imagine sitting in your shield with pain supression spamming flash heals on yourself, that are now going to be only pushed back 1 sec max…. go ahead, focus fire me.. i don’t care :) lol @ 3v3’s.. i think disc priests are going to make a big hit in that arena.

    anyway, still got about another hour until i can login and spec disc again…. going to go deep into disc for sure..

    also.. in large raids with good gear (i sit around 2.1-2.2k before the patch) deep disc as a support healer (even main healer in some raids) is great with pain supression. especially when people make mistakes or a mage/lock/hunter pulls a mob off a tank before enough threat was generated (we all know that one).. drop pain supression on them until a hunter md’s the boss back to the tank… not enough people have it spec’d. but I’m going to change the way people think!!!!

    thanks again for the guide.. great stuff.

  59. Thanks, this is fantastic. I’ve linked this to my guild’s forum and lots of good feed back from them as well.

    Just a note about Glyph of Mind Soothe. It may effectively allow you and your party bypass a great deal of trash. And it could be a nice time saver on some quests as well.

  60. To begin with, thank you so much for all the effort you put into this, and your other writings.

    To continue with: Ack! I must be missing something. I tried the (14/47/0) build, and my bonus healing is HALVED what it was pre-3.x, and I cannot see any way of getting it back up again.

  61. It looks like “Glyph of Renew” has been slightly nerfed… it now only heals for 25% more, not 40%.

    To me the lose in uptime doesn’t make up for the added heals. I guess it’s a nice upgrade for tank passive healing, but seems like a downgrade for other raid healing when having it up for a while is typically better.

  62. […] though, it came time to actually respec Osprey. Thanks to Dwarf Priest and her outstanding Priest Survival Guide to 3.0.2, I was able to quickly and easily assign my talents. I did make one slight change to her Holy PvE […]

  63. FIRST OF ALL, the statement that you made about Discipline being ‘king of pvp’ is completely wrong! There is a holy/shadow spec (30/31) build that OWNS a shitload more than any discipline build. The damage output is tremendous and the holy tree increases the damage output for shadow priests more than any FULL shadow spec, and survivability is rediculous as you can heal just as well (HP amount) and as fast as a holy priest. Downfall is mana. Hey….no build is perfect. But this 30/31 build will allow you to dual top heal and dps in ANY pvp. Every pvp battle I was #1 in heals and #1 in dps (normally 300,000+ dps/heals per game, AB, WSG, EOTS, it didnt matter) Tell me a discipline priest that can do that. I hate those overrated newbs.

  64. I presume that when you say (30/31) you mean (0/30/31)? Anyway, I’m not disagreeing with you PriestTrainer because I also rock the same talent build. But don’t speak out too much, that build is suppose to be secret, lol. But anyway, PriestTrainer is right, the 0/30/31 build is a very versitile build, but you have to know HOW and WHERE to place your talents. Saying 0/30/31 doesn’t mean nothing. There is a very specific way of placing your talents in order to do 2 important things, 1) use your holy tree to increase dps damage for your shadow tree 2) use holy tree to increase heals to nearly 95% of that of PURELY spec holy priests, and be able to heal exactly at the same speed of FULL holy spec priests. One thing many priests do not know is that you are “full holy spec” (in regards to amount healed, and speed) with only 31 talent points in the tree. Of course you miss all the auxillery talents that adds smoke and mirrors and mana conservation, but as far as heals go 31 talents points is all you need. This is why the 0/30/31 talent build works, and I agree that it universally is better than any disciple build. DPS damage is at it’s highest (because holy + shadow), and you can survive pretty good due to being able to heal. I too experience getting #1 heals and #1 in dps over 90% of all battlegrounds I play. You have to have the right gear–not top notch, but decent. Also make sure your gear is all out spell damage based, don’t mix bonus heals/spell damage–and gameplay skill to make the build work. 0/30/31 build is for EXPERIENCE priests, and it works. Good call PriestTrainer

    –Detrathu “The priest who says you pwns, but Det pwns more”

  65. Incredible article! Haven’t gotten through all of it yet, but something like this is exactly what I’ve been wanting to see in explanation of some of the new talents. If only I’d found it a day sooner!

    Thanks again.

  66. Great write up! How do you feel about the new emphasis on FoL in light (haha) of the Surge and the Holy Concentration upgrades? It seems rather paladin-ish imo.

  67. for what its worth, my two cents is that the fade glyph might have a bit of use in shadow pvp (imp. shadowform) :o

  68. […] theorycrafting based stats weighting scheme yet for disc and holy? Only one I found so far are from Patch 3.0.2 Priest Survival Guide A Dwarf Priest: disc lootrank holy lootrank But he doesnt give the reasoning behind these schemes. I haven’t […]

  69. Just a quick correction: Glyph of Fortitude – Minor Glyph
    Reduce the mana cost of your Power Word: Fortitude and Prayer of Fortitude spells by 5%.

    Mana cost reduction should be 50%, not 5%.

    Great read! Wish I had seen it last week :)

  70. […] Dwarf Priest: Patch 3.0.2 Priest Survival Guide (Note: Covers Discipline, Holy and Shadow) […]

  71. About the Lootrank lists, they’re telling you to gem with “Seer’s Eye of Zul”, which is a wotlk gem. I was wondering which gems would you recommend in place of those. They are also basing what gear is best in accordance to how many sockets they have, purely for the eye of zul gems. (10 int, 10 spirit)

    Right now its a bit harder to decide which is better, however I’m still picking the more spirit/regen and spell power items. Obviously more int is going to be taken into account now.

    Thank you for posting an awesome priest guide!

  72. Unbreakable will was also changed (nerfed) from a 3/6/9/12/15% to RESIST stun, fears and silences to a 3/6/9/12/15% TIME REDUCTION on fears and silences.

  73. Hi, iam new to the World of the Priests :) And i like them much, like i like your Guide ^^

    Could you somehow manage to make a Skill Level Guide? Like wich one you should Skill while leveling :)

    Like 10-15 – This Skill
    15-20 This One
    20-22 This One and so on… ^^

    Thank you <3

  74. Any chance of an update for 3.0.3? Good guide, best I’ve seen outside of shadowpriest.com, and easier to follow.

  75. Shadow Word: Death will always have a place in my heart… sniping kills away from other DPS classes in order to milk the benefits for Spirit Tap in raids. That used to be the only reason I ever had mana left during Morogrim…

  76. man i wish i had a pally instead

  77. I would like to point out that LEVITATE is not just ‘cosmetic’ talent and now, not requiring Light feathers, it becomes used all the time. It is great for saving life and time.
    You can use it to run across a water surface instead of swimming – 40% faster. You can jump down from anywhere to make a shortcut or to run out of fight at high places (esp. BGs). Yes, all this was possible before. But now there is no “where can I get those damn feathers without having to farm or spend enormous money” concern while using it, so you can mash the Levitate button all the day. For me it is MUCH better than other minor glyphs.

  78. I love, love, love your blog.
    <3

  79. The Spirit of Redemption glyph isnt as useless as you think. In the event of the death of the healer during boss fights, the extra seconds gained from this glyph allowed me to keep the tank (as well as other DPS classes) alive long enough to defeat the boss. Remember healers are encouraged to spam their heals, mostly flash heal, on tanks/DPS classes simply because it costs no mana and it has no pushback, and also simply for the 20% chance to obtain more time for more spamming. Spamming flash heals (or any other heal for that matter) is simply something they dont do when they are still alive due to mana issues. We usually wait until the tank/dps classes gets damaged by a certain threshold before we start to heal them.

    Due to the excessive and costless spamming, tanks and dps classes shouldn’t die at all. In fact because of all this spamming priests heal better as a ghost than when they were alive. Without the glyph, its 10 seconds flat. Spam all heals in 10 seconds. If the boss doesn’t die by then the fight is over. But with the glyph healers have a good chance to convert this 10 seconds into 20+ or even half a minute if they spam their flash heals fast enough, giving the group enough time to finish a boss fight.

    In arena/organized pvp, correct me if im wrong but people usually target the healers first. So when they die they become god and spam flash heal on whoever is remaining and keep them alive without worrying about pushbacks, or dying (they are already dead). And if they have the glyph, they have a good chance to keep spamming heals throughout the entire match.

    In my own experience the other day, somewhere in Borean Tundra, i was alt-tabbed away from the game. By the time i came back i saw myself in spirit of redemption form with around 5 seconds left. In front of me was 2 lvl80s from the opposite faction and a lvl71 from my faction. Obviously they killed me while I was afk and I saw them attacking the lvl71 guy. I started to spam heals on him and kept the little fellow alive for more than half a minute before i managed to die. Although the lvl71 couldnt do much due to the huge lvl difference, but if he was lvl80 he could have killed at least 1 of them during this time.

    Although It’s true during raiding bosses that lasts for several minutes, this extra 15-20 seconds isnt as useful, but still the uses it has for normal instance bosses, as well as healing during pvp would place it in what you call as “Questionable Glyphs” section rather than near useless.

  80. Phenomenal overall summary of changes in spec, abilities, and play style! Thanks for putting this all in one source, I will be having my guild member frequent this post. My only argument is with your opinion of glyphs, mostly just one. Glyph of Spirit of Redemption is HUGE for PVE Healing in my opinion. Especially in learning boss strats and gearing runs where wipes are expected. Although I haven’t timed it, I have had this ability proc more than 3 times in one death. That’s an extra 15 seconds, which can and for me has bought enough time to kill a boss. You just have to learn to use as many fast or instant casts as possible to get the biggest benefit from it. I think this was geared more for (OH S%$T!) situations since most everything enrages now either time or HP% based. But again thank you very much for alll the effort put into this post! Great work!

    Nymphae 80 Night Elf Holy Priest (Stonemaul)

  81. […] has a very thorough Patch 3.0.2 Priest Survival Guide over at A Dwarf Priest. Priests of any stripe should read this writeup before the patch hits (next […]

  82. I would like to make a mention on the use of the levitate glyph in world pvp….I have always used levitate to mess with people who think they are untuchable on flying mounts… glyph of levitate along with the “loaned wind rider” free mount you get in k3, which can be used while moving and while in combat as well….so you can fly near someone levitate and dot them up and remount while still falling and repeat…just saying it’s pretty cool.

  83. Several of these talents/spells have been changed as of 3.1 patch. Any chance on correcting the website? As of now, I can’t decide which one is correct when I happened upon this site. I did notice however that there are several inconsistencies.

  84. […] loads of info about the new patch and such around, here’s the one for Priests: Patch 3.0.2 Priest Survival Guide by Dwarfpriest.com. btw, I was so glad that the dwarfpriest blog/site was still around, and bigger […]

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