Discipline in 7.2.5

Class Development
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Some changes I would like to see for Disc, or that could move them in a better direction:

1) Atonement duration doesn't tick down until the target has taken damage.

2) Stop trying to make Shadow Covenant work.

3) Castigation should be baseline, not The Penitent. (1 bolt of Penance with 2 Atonements heals more). No one is going to take Sanctuary over Castigation, this is a straight nerf to our raid healing; It's roughly a 3-5% healing nerf.

4) Plea should either scale in mana, as on live, up to 5/6 Atonements *then* cap in mana OR cost 1% - 1.5% mana. Costing 2% max mana, you might as well cast Shadowmend if it isn't going to overheal much.

5) With limited Atonement's our Shadowfiend and Light's Wrath have been nerfed indirectly. To compensate many players have suggested making Nero's effect baseline for PW:Barrier.
6) If the PW:Radiance charges go live it, at the very least needs to have cast time reduced to 1 - 1.5 seconds. Some players have suggested instant cast similar to the PvP talent.

7) Archangel (PvP Talent) being added in PvE would probably be too strong. But having a way to extend our Atonements or move them around would help a great deal. Prehaps if Halo/Light's Wrath refreshed active Atonements?

8) As opposed to trying to balance us around saving all of our mana to apply atonement to the whole raid with Radiance and burst healing, why not reduce Atonement applications mana cost? Disc Priests are essentially forced to use Blessing of Wisdom, Innervate, and Dark Moon deck of Promises to stay relevant in a raid as is. Most Disc Priests take Amalgam's Seventh Spine as well. Our trinkets have been decided for us with the way our class has been designed. Multiple players have said PvP/RBG Disc is a lot more fun because they have options. Instant PWR's, Archangel extending duration, options for buffed atonement or direct healing output. One of the main reasons Disc is so underplayed is because all we are is set up + burst heal as old MWs were.

edit: Going in to the expansion and hearing all of the Disc changes I was thrilled. 75% healing, 25% damage niche healer? Hell yeah, let's do it! But, none of the raid encounters or damage patterns supported this, for the most part. My team 3 healed M Krosus progression as most did, and without a Balance or Ret Pally at the time, I had to sit out for the more equipped healers. If the fight was tuned *slightly* different, we could have 3.5 healed with a Disc Priest. The case for Star Augur and Elisande are almost identical as well.

Instead of Blizzard saying Disc should focus on damage or Disc can be a viable healer whenever it is convenient, why not give us the opportunity to choose one or the other for ourselves and make more than 1/3 of our talents a viable option?
04/19/2017 03:21 PMPosted by Evry

The approach of making atonement applicators the main mana spenders and the dps spells nearly free seems flawed. The DPS is what is actually doing the healing -- putting the burden of mana investment on atonement applications that might or might not end up needing the amount of healing the mana cost is balanced for is the main reason current Disc feels difficult and punishing


This. 100% this.

People give up on disc because you can spend your whole mana bar on a setup that ends up not lining up right and then heal for nothing...which can happen a lot when you are learning a spec/fight. But on the other hand you have to do the setup or you heal for nothing.

The setup shouldn't cost the mana. The payoff should.
People give up on disc because you can spend your whole mana bar on a setup that ends up not lining up right and then heal for nothing...which can happen a lot when you are learning a spec/fight. But on the other hand you have to do the setup or you heal for nothing.

The setup shouldn't cost the mana. The payoff should.


04/19/2017 05:03 PMPosted by Jogab
04/19/2017 03:21 PMPosted by Evry

The approach of making atonement applicators the main mana spenders and the dps spells nearly free seems flawed. The DPS is what is actually doing the healing -- putting the burden of mana investment on atonement applications that might or might not end up needing the amount of healing the mana cost is balanced for is the main reason current Disc feels difficult and punishing


People give up on disc because you can spend your whole mana bar on a setup that ends up not lining up right and then heal for nothing...which can happen a lot when you are learning a spec/fight. But on the other hand you have to do the setup or you heal for nothing.

The setup shouldn't cost the mana. The payoff should.


You just used Rapture and 1 or 2 of your Radiance charges to prep for that Krosus Slam and the Monk hit Revival/Druid Tranq'd? It's okay, we changed Disc to react to less predictable damage better! Get ready! That ranged DPS didn't realize he took the Warlock Gate out for the last Orb and he's standing 10 yards behind the raid~
04/19/2017 03:21 PMPosted by Evry
At the end of the day, these PTR changes, and the blue posts in this thread, sound very reminiscent of the 6.2 Demonology changes, where the intent was explicitly to get people to stop playing the spec. These disc changes go back to early alpha/beta iterations of disc that were very flawed and not fun to play. Meanwhile the pvp talents for disc for rbgs offer plenty of inspiriation for ways to make PW:Radiance play more fluidly.


This is exactly what I thought when I read this. All of these changes, simply reading them, shows the devs don't either understand the spec's true problems and the mechanics that are in play, or they don't want us to play discipline at all. In the beginning of the expansion, there was a tweet saying that Blizz didn't think of Disc even as a healer anymore, but more so a support role (which has no place in WoW currently). And that they didn't expect Discipline to be able to even compete in high end content.

Couple that with people like Lore during Q&A's where he couldn't even verbally label Discipline as a healer on the fly, and had to say 'Whatever we consider Discipline', this all seems like the devs are just trying to make players no longer want to play the spec, which is a flippin' crime considering how much investment is put into the actual artifact weapon, honor talents, grinding AP, so on and so forth.

The problem with Disc and the reason why people don't play it is because, as is stated in the OP, Discipline is a one-trick pony. What isn't stated is that, at all levels of content, Discipline is also performing fine, adequately, and for those dedicated to the spec, at high levels. People are making it work and dealing with it, and have been performing at fine levels. People who have taken the time to learn the spec now are going to have to learn how to deal with these changes, which is basically gutting the spec AGAIN and people are gonna feel worse, just like they did in 7.0, all over.

If you don't want us to play disc, just tell us you don't want us to play disc, don't be passive aggressive about it. Watcher during a Q&A had the balls to say: "Well, we don't want you to play demonology. Because <insert rant here>." I'd much rather that be said to me than this nonsense.

Also, as someone else pointed out:

04/19/2017 05:03 PMPosted by Jogab
The setup shouldn't cost the mana. The payoff should.


Absolutely this.
I'd love to see something where the less atonements you have out, the larger of a transfer you get from atonement healing. Need a tank healer? Focus on having atonement out on only 2 targets (tanks) for more meaningful damage. Having to deal with the current meta of burst damage suits the "new" atonement fine if there is a longer base timer, or a shorter/instant cast PW:R.

I'd also love to see something like Archangel for a 2 min or 3 min cooldown. Extended duration on Atonement (or refresh to whatever the duration it was when applied) and increase the amount of damage transferred by atonement (this makes more sense given the above change if that were to happen).
04/19/2017 01:40 AMPosted by Zvn


I was playing around with ultimate radiance on the pvp dummies, If the spell functioned like this pvp talent it actually feels way more fluid and consistent. I could actually back a change using this design. maybe.... if they don't completely mess it up.


well, well. another blue thread, another series of great posts by a variety of players offering insight, helpful feedback, and occasionally brilliant suggestions. will it, like so many others, go completely ignored? one barely has to spend brain power to grasp the most likely outcome...

but what i'd like to know, blizz, is this. is it working? the quoted posted highlights the new design direction you've taken for Legion, namely, separating classes into PvE and PvP designs. or rather, if we're being exact, you get about 75% of the class if you only play PvE, and 100% if you play PvP. why? because your PvP design sucks so much that extra incentive is required to get the playerbase to participate? i mean it is the player's fault anyway, right? so your customers are the ones who should pay the price for it, and not even get the whole class available to them, unless they play the game your way.

i mean when you design a zone so badly (ashran) that your playerbase ends up calling it Trashcan instead, its obviously not the devs who should pay the price, or self-analyze, or rethink how you are doing things. nope, its time to carve out chunks from each class, put them PvP only, and that's the only way you get to experience certain things that make your class function better, like instant-cast spells, or better CDs, or previously baseline functionality.

so, is it working, blizz? are more people playing PvP? because if the PvP scene is actually healthier (and you people would have the numbers on it) then by all means, continue down this path of breaking classes, in your quest to make your decisions look like good game design through coercive behavioral engineering.

and for everyone else, good luck on anything when stuff like the PvE/PvP divide is splitting class design apart.
How are we ever supposed to heal more than 10 people without being horribly mana inefficient? This is the opposite of what Disc needs.
There are various things still being discussed, so it will be better to talk about it after some changes settle down more, but one good point of feedback was about the targeting on PW: Radiance. We're going to try smart targeting of some sort in the next PTR build. Details TBD, but potentially: "true smart" (lowest-HP) targeting while maintaining the current behavior of favoring targets without Atonement.
04/19/2017 05:38 PMPosted by Sigma
There are various things still being discussed, so it will be better to talk about it after some changes settle down more, but one good point of feedback was about the targeting on PW: Radiance. We're going to try smart targeting of some sort in the next PTR build. Details TBD, but potentially: "true smart" (lowest-HP) targeting while maintaining the current behavior of favoring targets without Atonement.


My main concern is in the line "it will be better to talk about it after some changes settle down more" A lot of the changes that was proposed is problematic and limit the spec even more. By the time the "changes settled down more" the class would of been gutted to a point where more changes are needed.
What about the range? Radiance has a smaller spread range than most if I recall correctly. It would be a huge (moreso than any other healer cluster targeting) detriment to the player if they target a player out of range of others.
04/19/2017 05:38 PMPosted by Sigma
There are various things still being discussed, so it will be better to talk about it after some changes settle down more, but one good point of feedback was about the targeting on PW: Radiance. We're going to try smart targeting of some sort in the next PTR build. Details TBD, but potentially: "true smart" (lowest-HP) targeting while maintaining the current behavior of favoring targets without Atonement.


I'm not sure this will address the issues with the long cast coupled with it being a two part system (the cast then getting your healing from a second spell). Yes you apply to the targets you want more, but that just eases setup some, not the actual healing.

In a raid setting by the end of the cast a holy priest would've thrown out a flash heal or other spell for example or any other form of 'heal sniping'. If that part is already in the works good, but otherwise just making atonement apply to more in need targets doesn't help the situation too greatly.
04/19/2017 05:38 PMPosted by Sigma
There are various things still being discussed, so it will be better to talk about it after some changes settle down more, but one good point of feedback was about the targeting on PW: Radiance. We're going to try smart targeting of some sort in the next PTR build. Details TBD, but potentially: "true smart" (lowest-HP) targeting while maintaining the current behavior of favoring targets without Atonement.


Thanks for the reply. I know we're waiting for more word and things are being discussed, but I want to reiterate one major issue: could you consider a reduction in cast time for PWR or at least make the duration change for Atonement go from 50% reduction to a 25% reduction instead? It seems to be making PWR unwieldy for getting Atonements out for Lights Wrath (burst damage).
I don't want to step on the toes of the raiding disc players by whining about things that will affect my game play as a non raider but was thinking that a good solution to keeping balance among the various fields of play would be to implement any changes that are occurring specifically for raiding with a raiding talent tree (much like what exists for pvp via honor talents).
I also want to mention that I personally love what was done with disc in the pre-Legion patch... I think it made for an exciting, complex brand new play style and I can't complement the team responsible enough!
I really like the mechanics/class fantasy for disc; I like the idea of healing the raid through dealing damage. I like that the spec is considered challenging and to be the most skill-intensive of all healers. But I have some trepidation about playing disc in progression because it feels clunky and ineffective at dealing with unanticipated damage, which is a lot of what progression entails and a significant part of progression as a healer is learning an encounter's exact damage patterns and timings. I also don't like the idea of gobbling up an inordinate share of Blessings of Wisdom and Innervates just so I can play a "good" disc priest at the expense of other healers being able to play their best too. So the vast majority of the time where I do play disc right now is on farm encounters that only last a few minutes, where I have enough mana to spam Power Word: Radiance and maintain high Atonement stacks; and this doesn't exactly feel as challenging or rewarding as I would like.

So I think you are on spot on with identifying a lot of the issues facing discipline and some areas for improvement. And I like the objective of moving the playstyle away from spamming Power Word: Radiance quite so much. But I'm afraid that throwing the kitchen sink at Radiance by reducing its Atonement duration AND limiting it to a prohibitive maximum of only 2 charges AND putting it on a punishing 15-second recharge timer ends up overshooting this objective. As a result, it ends up hurting the spec in other unintended areas and contradicting a couple of the stated goals for discipline in 7.2.5.

In an expansion that's all about our artifacts, our artifact ability, Light's Wrath, is central to our playstyle. I see no reason why we shouldn't be able to hit a 20-Atonement Light's Wrath anymore; neither this nor our general ability to provide brief windows of high burst healing were listed as one of discipline's problems. And this can still be possible while meeting all of the stated design objectives. Just raise the maximum number of charges on Power Word: Radiance to 3. This gives us the decision of whether to deal with some incidental AoE damage, or save all our Radiance charges for a bigger anticipated burst in the future. And having to make such quick decisions is central to what makes healing so fun and dynamic, and leads to the "less degenerate and more varied" playstyle.

15 seconds is also too long of a recharge time for Radiance. The Developers' Notes suggest that we should have 1 charge available for some AoE spot healing in between burst windows, and also suggest that the intent is for Radiance+Penance to be used in situations where other healers would cast Wild Growth/Light of Dawn/Prayer of Healing/Chain Heal. But Wild Growth has a 10-second cooldown. Light of Dawn has a ~10 second cooldown (12 seconds affected by haste). Prayer of Healing and Chain Heal have no cooldown. Radiance+Penance already has the drawback of requiring 2 casts to get our healing done (and assuming Penance is even off cooldown to cast right after Radiance); it doesn't need to have such a punishing cooldown on top of that. Also, with a 10-second cooldown, any 7.5 or 9-second Atonements applied by Radiance during a previous burst healing window will have already fallen off. 10 seconds also works well since it wholly divides the 30/60-second damage patterns that occur in most raid encounters, which again gives us a choice of using a charge in between the bursts or saving it for more healing on the next burst.

Finally, and I believe you're already aware of this, but Power Word: Radiance having a 2.5-second base cast time is a major component "of Discipline's difficulties in responding promptly to damage." Especially with the Atonement from Radiance now only lasting 7.5 or 9 seconds, this needs to be reduced.

tl;dr: Increase the maximum charges on Radiance to 3, reduce its recharge timer to 10 seconds (unaffected by haste), and reduce its base cast time to 1.5 seconds. This meets all of the stated design goals while also not hurting us in other, unintended areas.

p.s. Why not let Clarity of Will apply Atonement? It's already the least-picked talent in the tier, and now Halo and Divine Star are just getting buffed. It would also contribute to the "decision of more Atonements vs. more damage." As Smite's damage is increased, we would be able to decide whether the raid needs more damage to push the boss faster or more proactive healing to survive the next ability. And it wouldn't contradict the goal of getting out fewer average Atonements in the raid — with Clarity of Will's cast time, using it would actually result in less Atonements than if we were just casting Plea and Shadow Mend in that time instead.
This is perfect! Now let's buff Holy1
04/19/2017 05:38 PMPosted by Sigma
There are various things still being discussed, so it will be better to talk about it after some changes settle down more, but one good point of feedback was about the targeting on PW: Radiance. We're going to try smart targeting of some sort in the next PTR build. Details TBD, but potentially: "true smart" (lowest-HP) targeting while maintaining the current behavior of favoring targets without Atonement.


its still doesnt help
putting a hard cap on how many atonement s we can have out still cripples our out put

Krosus for example his scripted bursts happen more then every 30 secs
the pw:r change isnt good at all

don't get me wrong i like the fact you guys are taking a look into disc but i dont see the benefit in time / hard cap how many "usable" atonement we have out
04/19/2017 05:38 PMPosted by Sigma
There are various things still being discussed, so it will be better to talk about it after some changes settle down more, but one good point of feedback was about the targeting on PW: Radiance. We're going to try smart targeting of some sort in the next PTR build. Details TBD, but potentially: "true smart" (lowest-HP) targeting while maintaining the current behavior of favoring targets without Atonement.


So while we're just giving every healing spec Wild Growth, how about a 1.5 second cast time too? It would be a shame to keep it at a 2.5 second cast time just for the sake of being different when that would rob the spell of all ability to respond "promptly" to any sort of damage.
It would certainly be interesting to mirror the action of 'purge the wicked' for atonement. What I mean is that it if a person has atonement, you could spread a certain amount of their atonement to others by using penance on them. Only saying this since we're currently stuck with 10 people max of heals for 6-8 seconds of atonement. You could plea a few more, but you're cutting into the time of your radiance's atonement. However, I guess since radiance is half the time, you could always just plea a few then spend both radiance for 15+ people. That's almost 9 secs of setup though. Adding this talent could bring up the number to 13 (1 atonement per penance bolt).

Also, as a side question. Does contrition not affect radiance's atonement? On the PTR it wasn't when I tried.
04/19/2017 05:38 PMPosted by Sigma
There are various things still being discussed, so it will be better to talk about it after some changes settle down more, but one good point of feedback was about the targeting on PW: Radiance. We're going to try smart targeting of some sort in the next PTR build. Details TBD, but potentially: "true smart" (lowest-HP) targeting while maintaining the current behavior of favoring targets without Atonement.


Are we still intended to use Light's Wrath the way we do now? Or S Fiend?

It would be more helpful if we understood how you want us to heal - Run us through some examples how you want us to heal. Tell us what we are missing in your grand scheme.

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