Shadow Priest Changes in 8.1

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The next PTR build includes some changes to Shadow Priest with the following goals:
  • Make Voidform matter more, make staying in Voidform longer matter more, and give the player more agency over extending its duration
  • Improve Shadow’s defensive power and utility

Make Voidform Matter More
Moving into Battle for Azeroth, we consciously reduced the maximum power of Voidforms, for the purpose of evening out Shadow’s heavily backloaded Voidform cycle damage. This had some positive impacts, which many of you are aware of – mainly this greatly reduced the harsh penalty for dropping out of Voidform early – a common occurrence in any content outside of raids, including dungeons or questing. That said, we think we went a little too far with peeling power off of Voidform, which has resulted in Voidform not feeling impactful enough, and with not enough reason to work to extend it. We are easing this change back a bit:
  • Voidform increases spell damage by 20% (up from 10%)
  • Insanity drain increase per second in Voidform reduced by 15%
  • Void Bolt Insanity generation increased by 25%

Dispersion’s damage reduction has been increased to 75% (up from 60%). We agree that because it comes with the penalty of not being able to cast spells, it deserves to be stronger. Additionally, it now increases movement speed by 50%.

A new talent Intangibility replaces Mania (which was similar to and far less popular than Body and Soul), and reduces Dispersion’s cooldown by 25% and causes it to heal you for 50% of your maximum health over its duration.

Shadowform’s Physical Damage Reduction
Shadowform's 10% physical damage reduction was intended to feel like a bonus to Shadowform, but instead felt like a penalty to Voidform, since you lose that defensive benefit going into Voidform.

We’re replacing this bonus from Shadowform with the Focused Will passive (which the other two Priest specs already have), causing melee abilities and attacks to reduce all damage taken by 15% for 8 sec.

Hallucinations (the PvP talent) is becoming a baseline passive, and allows your successful Dispel Magic, Mass Dispel, Purify Disease, Vampiric Embrace, and Power Word: Shield casts to generate 6 Insanity (same amount per cast as your filler, Mind Flay).

This give you more freedom to use your on-global cooldown utility buttons, especially in Voidform, without incurring as much damage loss, since Insanity is constantly draining.

Other talent adjustments worth mentioning:
  • Mind Bomb and Psychic Scream now take 40% longer to break from damage.
  • Void Torrent generates 30 Insanity over its duration and deals 20% increased damage. Additionally, no longer requires Voidform to cast, so you can choose to use it on a priority damage target at any time.
  • Lingering Insanity fades every 3 sec instead of every 2 sec.
  • Surrender to Madness cooldown reduced by 33% and penalty duration reduced by 50%.
Awesome changes guys. This should make them feel much better in PvE.

A bit concerned that these changes will make SPriest a bit over the top in PvP in combination with edge of insanity though, specifically the dispersion and focused will changes in that they might be able to just be crazy tanky and then do crazy burst when dispersion is off CD risk free theoretically.
10/22/2018 07:19 PMPosted by Ojoverde
good, warlocks when???

Yay for Spriests
God I wish voidform would just go.
Heck yeah
Shadow priests: "Get rid of Voidform!"
Blizzard: *Makes it "matter" more*.
Glad to see much needed changes, but spriests are actually quite good defensively already, while out of void form. Need to keep an eye on how this plays out over time, because you might have just given them an immortal build. Encouraging and enabling more void form usage is obviously good, but you have to consider what you can already do outside of it when considering these changes in pvp.
SW:D still a talent!?
Shadow priests: "Get rid of Voidform!"
Blizzard: *Makes it "matter" more*.

We don’t all hate voidform. I like these changes more than 10% more mind flay damage.
Some welcome changes.

Can we have returned some of the previous baseline abilities that you forced into talents?
The class just doesn't feel the same without Shadow Word Death as baseline. Even Void Torrent would be great if it were returned.
10/22/2018 07:31 PMPosted by Kiiarina
Shadow priests: "Get rid of Voidform!"
Blizzard: *Makes it "matter" more*.

We don’t all hate voidform. I like these changes more than 10% more mind flay damage.

Nobody said get rid of Voidform in Legion when it made them unstoppable gods. They only said that when it suddenly made their rotation trash, and actually was a detriment for them to stay in it.

If they can make VF feel actually impactful, it's a good thing.
It took until 8.1 for this? This feels like stuff you can and should have rolled out weeks after release in an 8.0.5 patch
I really, truly, appreciate these changes. These are like 80-90% of my wishlist for the spec.

Is there any chance you can change SW:D to be baseline again? Please? I promise not to ask for anything else again.
So presumably the next patch will include nerfs to counteract the increased value of VF, and the old problem of ramping damage will be back.

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