Disc PvP: Initial Thoughts

90 Blood Elf Priest
12855
I thought I'd post my Initial Thoughts here, because, well, they're the most extreme. I haven't had enough time to really settle into it, but I thought that I'd really put down some of my observations. I'm sure as I play through some more, I'll be able to see how my opinions change.

1.) It's hard to compare yourself to other healers. I mean, I healed 2.5M and did 2.5M DPS in Warsong Gulch. Died several times and ran right back into our flag room to heal. When you see that the enemy Druid in the room did 16M healing and 2.5M DPS, it's a bit disheartening. Then you see your Druid is 10M healing. The Paladins are up there too. Their mana bars always seem full while I go OOM despite throwing out a Mindbender every time it's up. You just have to detach yourself from that.

2.) I feel like our style is a bit disconnected. We want mastery to increase our absorbs, but my crit is much lower than it's ever been. So I'm not getting enough Divine Aegis procs to really justify having a high Mastery. When you have 3 stacks of Grace up, hit Archangel, Inner Focus and pop a greater heal onto someone, it's sad to see it really only hit for 150K when you know that Shaman just used less Mana on a Greater Healing Wave and did 250K. (Arg, I need to stop comparing myself to other classes. Or just hope that my aegis makes up the difference.)

So it's really a crazy thing... I need to keep Grace Stacked up on my targets. But now with Atonement, if you're casting Penance on someone in a melee type fight who already has Grace on them, you're wasting the healing. You should be throwing out DPS. It doesn't seem to hit that hard nor heal that much. But you're going to need Archangel again, so you have to get Holy Fire and Penance out there to build it up again. The skill cap is really upped for Disc... you have to know when you restack grace versus DPS Atonement versus straight up cast healing.

3.) Void Shift as a 6 Minute Cool down is cruel for PvP. First off, you can't really use it when someone is low. Yeah, there's a 20% increase to the lower party, but if they're being trained or you're being trained, a few hits with the burst dps around can kill you. So you have to use it when someone is nearing the 30% mark, so you have a little more breathing room. It's not really an emergency button at PvP, it's a "well, I might as well use it" type of ability. I'd really love to see a lowered cool down on PvP gear, like on the wrist or part of a Set Bonus. For PvE this ability deserves its 6 minute cool down. (Aside: I still need to test Holy on this - I want to know if the 20% is bumped up if you cast guardian spirit on yourself and then void shift someone who's low.) This wasn't the worst ability in the arena, but again, I used it when my DPS was at 20%, and my 40% HP bar was heroically leaped upon and eaten before I could do anything.

4.) Survivability is extremely low. With the talent selections, I felt taking the speed boot enchant was better than taking Angelic Feathers (and I'm really good with the feathers) or Body and Soul. Being able to Fade when the Poly is coming, or when faced with a lot of ranged trying to take you down or use ranged CC... it's the new Shadow Word: Death skill. Sadly it comes with a much longer cool down.

All in all, every class seems to be doing pretty decently against me. I think I did okay against some Hunters and Holy Paladins, but everything else seems to be able to take me down faster than I can take them down.

5.) Mind Sear as an AoE is sad. I'm glad they added the fact that Shadow Word: Pain can interrupt flag caps. I think that's a nice change. Any shadow spell seems really hard on my mana, so I try to avoid them as much as possible. This is leading me to more frequent spell lock outs. Since I try to keep Fear, Mind Bender, and Psyfiend on cool down, having access to Shadow Spells is well, not that useful unless one of those abilities are up. But if I'm being trained, then well, it's not going to matter much.

6.) It's not that the CC is out of control. It feel that way. It just feels that I used Psyfiend, Psychic Terror, and both the DK and Warrior always have the "immune" message light up. I try to time it so it's not AMS'd or Berzerker Rage'd, but I seem to die faster than I can wait it out. It seems my best hope is Spectral Guise, move away, Inner Focus a Greater Heal, Fade, and fear / run. But it's all so tenuous at best. I try to use Line of Sight as best as possible, but not all BGs and Arenas have that. And well, sometimes people die because you LOS'd them.

7.) Dispels. I get that we need to dispel a whole lot more mindfully now. But I think Priests need to dispel two buffs offensively as a baseline. Or I'd take an 8 second cool down on Dispel Magic if I could dispel all the magic buffs on an enemy. The big problem is that multiple healers in a pack (i.e. Druid and Shaman) can keep themselves up indefinitely. There's so many buffs to dispel on them to reduce their healing output that I go oom rather quickly. It's hard to DPS harder than they can heal. I try to do my part in that respect, but offensive dispelling against healers feels pointless.

8.) Glyphs. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I think every Disc Priest is lamenting the new glyph set up. I've been running with Penance and Holy Fire. I just feel like I need the movement the Penance Glyph offers, and an instant Holy Fire gets me to Archangel faster. I've ditched Desperation, because every three minutes is just too long to use a glyph for. I've rotated several through. My Inner Focus is still being stunned or I'm getting locked out (since Counterspell may not interrupt the spell but the lockout doesn't seem to be tied to it successfully landing the counterspell).

Renew is probably a better choice overall. It's far more mana efficient than the other choices. With us not throwing bubbles around, it's rough.

9.) Secondary stats. I can't wait for better gear because I'm desperate for the scaling. Power Word Shield is costly. Not having Borrowed Time that often means my Flash Heal is interrupted far more than I like. 4% Haste... Wahoo. Less DA Procs... wahoo. My feeling is like, "Well if I'm a lame Healer, well at least I'll be a lame dps too! That way I can feel twice as bad!"

10.) New Abilities. Halo was awesome for Arena to knock out the Mage and Hunter from Stealth. Costly, but nice. I rarely touched it because of the mana cost. I liked Divine Insight for PvP, because, well, in Arena it was nice to be able to bubble someone fast after their last shield was blown apart. But it may still be lackluster compared to Power Infusion. I think Power Infusion can be dispelled or spell stolen, so that may make it a liability than an asset. I have to check that out.

---

All in all, I feel like I have a lot to learn. But right now, the only thing I really felt was OP was having Cyclone in the Arena. OMG, that's just amazing to have a CC other than fear. Now if we could get a more reliable mana regen that a fiend that can be CC'd (and if your Dispel is down, cry at your lack of mana return!), we'd feel like kings and queens even if we still feel underpowered at PvP.
Edited by Feythylan on 10/2/2012 5:04 PM PDT
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90 Pandaren Priest
8200
They have to implement massive changes to make priest healing viable in pvp and pve. Since all of these issues were known by the devs in beta, and they still didnt act, you have to assume they will do nothing about it and reroll now.
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90 Dwarf Priest
6675
+9000
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90 Night Elf Priest
14605
My initial thoughts: it's just as bad as everyone warned it would be.

I am very sad.
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90 Blood Elf Priest
6415
Kill.

Me.

Kill.

Me.

Kill.

Me.
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90 Undead Priest
6830
Kill.

Me.

Kill.

Me.

Kill.

Me.


We get killed anyway, no need to be proactive about it.
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Yeh, I went into arena yesterday and after 4 games of getting destroyed I decided that this season is going to be hell if I play my priest. Guess Kidloso will be taking a break for a bit.
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90 Night Elf Priest
5830
Haven't cracked 1700 yet in 2s, tryin' my hardest.

Keep getting cockblocked by hunters and warriors.
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85 Gnome Warrior
wat
4375
Spot on. I went Holy. It's a little better. Disc is just too depressing right now.
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get that resil dawg
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100 Undead Priest
11300
Resilience isn't enough, I wish that was the problem.

/rerolled monk until things are better
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90 Pandaren Priest
8565
10/03/2012 06:39 PMPosted by Cub
get that resil dawg


Resilience is part of the problem, dawg.

Disc is reliant on Smite for their basic healing, well smite deals significantly reduced damage in pvp due to resilience.
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90 Night Elf Priest
6360
Inc giant reply.

1.) It's hard to compare yourself to other healers. I mean, I healed 2.5M and did 2.5M DPS in Warsong Gulch. Died several times and ran right back into our flag room to heal. When you see that the enemy Druid in the room did 16M healing and 2.5M DPS, it's a bit disheartening. Then you see your Druid is 10M healing. The Paladins are up there too. Their mana bars always seem full while I go OOM despite throwing out a Mindbender every time it's up. You just have to detach yourself from that.


Disc heals have always been among the lowest, our shields and offensive dispels make us an extremely aggressive healer, and is why comps such as RMP shine, this has changed little over the expansions.

As for mana issues, people need to stop speccing Mindbender. It is a PVE talent that gives us overall more consistent mana, but the pet itself actually returns LESS mana than Shadowfiend, the design of the ability is to cater for longer PVE fights and allows disc to be able to rotate CD's to keep mana higher over a long encounter, From Darkness Comes Light is a much more powerful talent for PVP (both burst and for mana).

I am currently specced with FDCL and it took a 2700 rated DK 10 minutes to oom/kill me in 2s, so yes it's amazing.

2.) I feel like our style is a bit disconnected. We want mastery to increase our absorbs, but my crit is much lower than it's ever been. So I'm not getting enough Divine Aegis procs to really justify having a high Mastery. When you have 3 stacks of Grace up, hit Archangel, Inner Focus and pop a greater heal onto someone, it's sad to see it really only hit for 150K when you know that Shaman just used less Mana on a Greater Healing Wave and did 250K. (Arg, I need to stop comparing myself to other classes. Or just hope that my aegis makes up the difference.)


Like I said, Disc healing is supposed to be low, the highest I think I've healed is a 150k greater heal followed by an 80k flash proc from FDCL, our shields and control allow us to keep team members safe while we heal or help them DPS.

3.) Void Shift as a 6 Minute Cool down is cruel for PvP. First off, you can't really use it when someone is low. Yeah, there's a 20% increase to the lower party, but if they're being trained or you're being trained, a few hits with the burst dps around can kill you. So you have to use it when someone is nearing the 30% mark, so you have a little more breathing room. It's not really an emergency button at PvP, it's a "well, I might as well use it" type of ability. I'd really love to see a lowered cool down on PvP gear, like on the wrist or part of a Set Bonus. For PvE this ability deserves its 6 minute cool down. (Aside: I still need to test Holy on this - I want to know if the 20% is bumped up if you cast guardian spirit on yourself and then void shift someone who's low.) This wasn't the worst ability in the arena, but again, I used it when my DPS was at 20%, and my 40% HP bar was heroically leaped upon and eaten before I could do anything.


Void Shift isn't as good as people make it out to be, but it is still an awesome ability. You can use it to swap HP with your DPS, put a shield up to keep him safe (2 gcds, by then good opponents will know you've used it) then LoS and heal yourself up without fear of interruption. As it stands it's a worse version of Lay On Hands.

4.) Survivability is extremely low. With the talent selections, I felt taking the speed boot enchant was better than taking Angelic Feathers (and I'm really good with the feathers) or Body and Soul. Being able to Fade when the Poly is coming, or when faced with a lot of ranged trying to take you down or use ranged CC... it's the new Shadow Word: Death skill. Sadly it comes with a much longer cool down.


The feathers are overrated in my opinion, if you get gripped or affected by another CC ability that moves your camera (there are lots) you will misplace them and waste a lot of time/mana/cds. Body and Soul is what I'm currently using, although the Fade one is also very powerful.

As for "the new shadow word: death", you can still utilize the self-damage effect of SWD by buying the Glyph of Shadow Word: Death, which reverts it back to it's old form.

5.) Mind Sear as an AoE is sad. I'm glad they added the fact that Shadow Word: Pain can interrupt flag caps. I think that's a nice change. Any shadow spell seems really hard on my mana, so I try to avoid them as much as possible. This is leading me to more frequent spell lock outs. Since I try to keep Fear, Mind Bender, and Psyfiend on cool down, having access to Shadow Spells is well, not that useful unless one of those abilities are up. But if I'm being trained, then well, it's not going to matter much.


Mind Sear isn't useful for it's damage (especially in PVP), it is used primarily to get invisible targets out of stealth, or to put yourself in combat (to avoid saps etc). As for SWP dealing instant damage, that's a very nice change that allows us as healers to help stop flag caps.

Also, I don't see why every single priest has to spec into Psyfiend. Dominate Mind is extremely useful (it always has been), even with the 15 second cooldown added, I feel it is infinitely more useful than an obnoxious pet that can sometimes fear the right target (and DR it at the same time).

6.) It's not that the CC is out of control. It feel that way. It just feels that I used Psyfiend, Psychic Terror, and both the DK and Warrior always have the "immune" message light up. I try to time it so it's not AMS'd or Berzerker Rage'd, but I seem to die faster than I can wait it out. It seems my best hope is Spectral Guise, move away, Inner Focus a Greater Heal, Fade, and fear / run. But it's all so tenuous at best. I try to use Line of Sight as best as possible, but not all BGs and Arenas have that. And well, sometimes people die because you LOS'd them.


Disc has always had issues getting trained by the bully classes like warriors and death knights, in order to survive you really need proper peels from team-mates and a bit of luck (with procs/crits), but in arena you will eventually die, your team simply has to score a kill first.

7.) Dispels. I get that we need to dispel a whole lot more mindfully now. But I think Priests need to dispel two buffs offensively as a baseline. Or I'd take an 8 second cool down on Dispel Magic if I could dispel all the magic buffs on an enemy. The big problem is that multiple healers in a pack (i.e. Druid and Shaman) can keep themselves up indefinitely. There's so many buffs to dispel on them to reduce their healing output that I go oom rather quickly. It's hard to DPS harder than they can heal. I try to do my part in that respect, but offensive dispelling against healers feels pointless.


I'm happy with the current state of dispels, especially adding cooldowns to them, it means retard priests no longer have the ability to spam dispels while their melee dps global much better players. This separation in individual ability allows for more interesting and technical gameplay, which is what this game needs badly. Offensive dispels could be upgraded with a glyph (like the shaman one), but I wouldn't mind if they didn't (I'm happy with my glyphs: MD, SWD and Inner Focus).

8.) Glyphs. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I think every Disc Priest is lamenting the new glyph set up. I've been running with Penance and Holy Fire. I just feel like I need the movement the Penance Glyph offers, and an instant Holy Fire gets me to Archangel faster. I've ditched Desperation, because every three minutes is just too long to use a glyph for. I've rotated several through. My Inner Focus is still being stunned or I'm getting locked out (since Counterspell may not interrupt the spell but the lockout doesn't seem to be tied to it successfully landing the counterspell).


I see a lot of priests picking up Penance glyph, I tried it out a while back but I think there are much more important glyphs to take (like shadow word: death and inner focus), instant holy fire isn't too bad, but I find myself doing other things offensively (dispelling, cc'ing healers or peels) too often to have the time to be helping with dps.

9.) Secondary stats. I can't wait for better gear because I'm desperate for the scaling. Power Word Shield is costly. Not having Borrowed Time that often means my Flash Heal is interrupted far more than I like. 4% Haste... Wahoo. Less DA Procs... wahoo. My feeling is like, "Well if I'm a lame Healer, well at least I'll be a lame dps too! That way I can feel twice as bad!"


Gear does help, gemming spirit also helps with mana issues. The main problem with mana/healing is people seem to be spamming the wrong abilities, or speccing into the wrong talents. Mindbender is absolute trash for PVP, FDCL is much more mana-efficient and the instant-cast flash heals are lifesavers (quite literally). As for things like crit, I've noticed they are somewhat lacking but I'm still having a ball.

10.) New Abilities. Halo was awesome for Arena to knock out the Mage and Hunter from Stealth. Costly, but nice. I rarely touched it because of the mana cost. I liked Divine Insight for PvP, because, well, in Arena it was nice to be able to bubble someone fast after their last shield was blown apart. But it may still be lackluster compared to Power Infusion. I think Power Infusion can be dispelled or spell stolen, so that may make it a liability than an asset. I have to check that out.


Halo is wonderful, but yes quite costly. If you can aim it properly you can crit up to 160k instantly (heals) and 90k (damage), so it has a lot of potential, not to mention popping invisible scrubs out.

I tried Divine Insight but I found it simply didn't proc enough for my liking (i think i'm unlucky) so I'm sticking with PI for the time being, yes it can be dispelled so you might want to incorporate a /cancelaura macro (if you have the spare binds!).

Overall I'm happy that I re-rolled, I've had way more fun getting 2 shot by warriors on my priest than I ever did on my mage, some things do need tweaking but people need to experiment properly when they get better gear and whatnot.
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90 Blood Elf Priest
12855
I'm really curious why you're not taking Phantasm. It doesn't cancel an enemy's cast, but I think (I'm not 100% sure) it'll cause a spell like Hex to go on cool down. Since you're immune to ranged attacks, you don't have to try and SW: Death it.

I think that's why Spectral Guise is good too. Spells will hit it, and not you. So you can avoid a Poly that way too.

---

But yeah, I think there's a lot to learn. I use FDCL on Holy all the time... I loved the Old Surge of Light too. But I guess I'm curious if you only proc it from Flash Heal, or are you smiting at all? Are you using Archangel at all?

I pretty much feel like Desperation isn't a good choice. It's the one I keep dropping in my attempts.

The only nice thing about Psyfiend is that it's got a 25 yard range to it. It's nice to plop it down on the mage casting Poly, you Fade or Spectral Guise, and it registers as the one attacking you. You still have your Psychic Scream for the people in your range. It's a bit trickier to maneuver, but it can be very fast fears that don't hit DRs as they're on different targets. And if the Ranged runs away, it creates an easier 40 yard line of sight. I don't think it's quite as useful in the Arena, but works better in a Battleground.

---

But yeah, I need to grind grind grind this weekend! And I'll end up doing some as Holy and see how that goes.
Edited by Feythylan on 10/4/2012 6:27 AM PDT
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90 Night Elf Priest
6360
The main reason I skip Phantasm is because I don't have any spare binds left lol, I don't smite too often but the proc rate does seem to be higher for it.

Also I made a quick basic thread about my build/reasoning behind it, I'm no gladiator but hopefully i can help with a thing or two:

http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/6794230145
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