Shadow Priest Changes in 8.1

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God, just give us Devouring Plague and Orbs back. I'm so tired of the reworks..if it's not broken, don't fix it. Almost no one enjoys Voidform and that's part of the reason I have yet to have seen more than maybe 2 geared Spriests raiding heroic Uldir in pugs. MoP style Spriest was amazing (although the dps was undertuned at the time). If blizz could put some energy into the specs no one's playing my sub wouldn't be cancelled. I'm so tired of playing this boring as crap warlock that I had to re-roll to because Spriest is a friggin' mess of nightmare proportions. Everything about the spec went downhill as soon as Clarity of Power was introduced (mind spike, mind spike, mind spike, insanity...ya that was a great rotation *eye roll*) and their fix? Voidform. Yuck.
10/22/2018 11:25 PMPosted by Kamiri

Better yet give us another tree so we can have shadow, holy, disc and void priests. Then everyone can be happy I can be sane again.

This might be the best suggestion I’ve ever seen. Why not just give us a fourth spec? It would make everyone happy and we already know how to design each one
10/22/2018 07:26 PMPosted by Netherspike
God I wish voidform would just go.

Not a huge fan either, but I've made it work. I was hoping for more foundational changes, but for whatever reasons, they're not going down that road, yet. Or at all.

If they took a couple things off the GCD, I think it would be more reactive, and I'm still wondering where mobility is - I really hate getting locked into one spot on the ground when the devs love making monsters spew !@#$ all over it.

But - and I fully admit this - I am not an expert in any sense on the class, and have only been playing it again since BfA, so I'm going to be paying close attention to you guys, along with trying it out on the PTR.
I think most people can agree the problem is in our talents and what is and should be baseline.

We should have 2 charges of Mind Blast base-line. We suffer from the same issues that Fury Warriors did in the past. All of the issues you had with Raging Blows + BloodThirst we're having now.

Shadowy Insight is *fun*. Can we make it competitive with Fortress of mind? Part of this is 2 charges on Mind Blast.

Lv30 talent row is a mess. Body and Soul is what almost everyone is going to get or it feels bad. Why not give us back feathers and move San'layn to a purely defensive line?

Make Dark Void also apply Vampiric Touch? SPriest DESPERATELY needs help in M+. This would be a good step in the right direction.

Why is SW:death not baseline? Replace it with Call of the Void(little tentacles that mind flay).

Legacy of the Void feels mandatory. Move more of the power of Void Eruption to other AoE avenues or else we'll never get to enjoy Dark Ascension or Surrender to Madness. Alternatively, once again, make Legacy of the Void baseline. Buff Dark Ascension's AoE - it requires tiny proximity, why not buff its damage?

If you want to keep Eruption as strong as it is, add a talent somewhere that uses all remaining energy and stacks in void form that releases an AoE burst based on stacks and energy. Spriests in M+, please. :(
It took this long...just to up a few abilites by 10-20 % ?....what a failure.

Not even fixing problems just shoehorning everything.
Finally I can stop dying so often and before any other class starts yelling 'what about us?' we've waited a long time for this.

PS Can't post on my main as it's an EU account.
nice to see some changes, but it does not addressing the main issue, which is flat gameplay and impotence to manage VE, now more then before when VF matter more again.

Dispersion change and hallucinations are good changes for sure, those talent tweaks also.

I think good change would be to make ToF and SWD baseline again to make gameplay more dynamic again. Interlink ToF to proc only from SWD and put Void Torrent talent in the ToF spot to have a single target choice on that talent line. Also dodging the bender-Void Torrent issue on the 90 level talent live, they are basicly same usecase and choosing only by which do the better numbers.

And second very nice change would be to make VE not casted when entering VF, instead you get stack of VE for like 15 sec and can use it during that window, eliminating punishment of not being able to control when to use it wisely and effectively, again improving the dynamic of the gameplay quite a lot. Or smth in that manner.

Something in this manner would fix a lot of problems SP has and still kept the current design of the class.
While these changes are needed... I was expecting something more "mind blowing" for the promised "rework" that was announced back on the 14th June (131 days).

So I have to ask "Why did this take over 4 months to review for such balance changes which seem mostly spell timing (duration, cooldown) and % shifts?"

Blizzard you have to realise a player experiences WoW, not through the game, but through their favourite characters, its class and chosen spec performance is a critical customer experience... yet the reports from players and even by the developers own admissions the class was not "working as intended" before BfA was even released.

This isn't a huge leap in class changes with new abilities (*cough* stealth *cough*) or new rotations, its an adjustment of key performance behaviours of the class (which players reported way back in Beta as being a critical issue)... so does this change feel justified in leaving Shadow Priest's hanging for 4 months in limbo?

I believe class performance should have a far higher priority than it has been given so far, improved testing (seriously Feral Druids were so broken I cant understand how anyone missed that, you just had to switch to Retribution Paladin to see it was broken - still took weeks to get a response, and more hotfixes than I can count). We need faster diagnosis of class issues, concise responses & improved performance repairs.

This "we will fix it next patch" class balance can sour a players experience so much. 3-4 months waiting for this change is BRUTAL given its not only a whole Patch phase and its the opening phase of an Expansion where leveling, rep grinding, looting, dungeons and raids are all the experience players want to rush head long into... and realise they are 20% slower, take longer to clear trash and are basically unwanted in Mythic+ or Raid and are asked constantly "Change Spec/Class or GTFO". Getting "kicked" when you already down, when your should be "UP" with excitement for new content is HARSH!

My two main toons are a Feral Druid and a Shadow Priest for BfA... both victims of your inability to provide a satisfactory class experience. I cancel my subscription 7 weeks ago and am not planning to renew it at this time until I see far better performance from your team in class management. I am sick of waiting for fixes.
So... Let me be clear. As a casual player, I am happy about the direction that Blizzard is taking shadow priest to.
At the same time, I am more worry and upset than ever.

Blizzard, I seriously just waited a whole patch for a number tuning fix?!?

Now, let me put my complaint aside.

Please allow me to elaborate why these fixes troubles me so much.
You are bringing shadow priest back into the Legion status which is "[COLOR="#008000"]our niche is that we can do more damage than anyone if you give us ramp up time.[/COLOR]"
And, this is a balancing nightmare in this multi-dimension game that we all came to love.

In terms of end-game content: Raid v. M+
To start, we excels as a Raid DPS due to long combat time. By nature of an class that already brings high damage value to the team, you can't really give shadow priests too much utilities without shadow priests becoming OP. On the other hand, in short combat time fights, the low damage value combining with the lack of utilities turns shadow priest into a fatally flawed and undesirable class.

In terms of play style: Casual v. Competitive
In a casual setting, the niche provides a romance that I personally fell in love with. A shadow priest doesn't do high damage in short fights because the team doesn't need its high damage to finish the fight. In longer fights, a shadow priest does more damage exactly when the team needs the damage. On the other hands, the story is totally different in a competitive settings such as M+ tournaments. Time is of the essences, and bringing a ramp up class is simply a waste of time.

Now, you certainly can and have design the gaming environment just to address these specific issues. For example, in short duration fights, increase the value of purge, and off-heal (King's Rest, and Temple comes to mind). However, this approach not only adds value to shadow priests, but it also adds value to other dps classes with the same types of skills set who outburst shadow priests. Additionally, over applying such method greatly limits the scope of content design.


1. Shadow priests are not going to be competitively viable in M+ tournaments.
Now, if you like to see a shadow priest on the tournaments with this niche, you might actually need to apply like a minus 30 secs to the final counter if a shadow priest is on your team. The actual amount of time awarded is gonna be a whole other nightmare though.

2. Shadow priests are going to dominant raiding scene.
With some exceptions, boss encounters generally give us the ramp up time we need, and therefore we are going to out perform other classes. Even if the raid has to bring 10 other dps to deal with specific mechanics, that still leaves 2~3 spots to stack shadow priests on. That's what we get for sucking at M+.

3. If you nerf our damage, we are fatally flawed.
Well, whole point of this reply.

============I know it's long====We are almost done===============

On the other hand, the shadow priest communities has pointed out several good directions that you can fix this deeply flawed class by giving up this niche. While I understand the charm of the niche (again, i do love Legion's iteration of shadow priest), the benefit of coming up with a new niche is expanding the game design potentials, increasing competitive scene diversities, and the easing of future balance effort.

Blizzard, this is why I love the buff, but am also deeply troubled by it.
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.

My shadow priest thanks you from the bottom of her void-touched heart.
That Thread reached it's Limits after almost 4 Hours.

Guess the changes must be awesome....
After how long we waited to see the "anticipated" 8.1 changes, I am left feeling extremely underwhelmed. As someone who has played a shadow priest since the Burning Crusade, these are just a few of my suggestions if you choose to keep this hot mess you call void form: (I don't pvp much, so most of my feedback and suggestions are based purely on pve)

  • Twist of Fate + SW:Death baseline. We sacrifice so much single target dps and our niche of being an execute class by needing to select talents to help our pitiful AOE damage. Please, if there's ANYTHING you do to this class, do this!
  • Void Eruption should be instant. 2.5 second base cast time feels AWFUL.
  • Remove Surrender to Madness and replace it with something else altogether.
  • Allow movement while casting during voidform (or at the very least, mind flay)
  • Remove Dark Void and replace it with something else altogether and then add the Shadow Word: Pain effect to Shadow Crash.
  • Body and Soul baseline. Add another defensive talent in it's place. We NEED the mobility, so even buffing the other two talents on that row is not going to do much for us, because if we need mobility, Body and Soul will ALWAYS be the #1 pick.
  • Shadow Word: Void - This ability is practically mandatory to make the rotation in Void Form feel smoother, because of the cooldown overlap of Void Bolt and Mind Blast. This effect should be made baseline as well and this talent replaced with something else.
this doesnt seem like it will help at all i really like the idea behind void form it feels cool on every level out side of the game play but the second you click that button in the game its self you realize how bad it is. The idea of transforming into a power mode can be really cool but it just isnt working.
Damn. I wish I didn't hear of this. My sub runs out today but I might actually keep subbed because of this buff.
10/23/2018 02:10 AMPosted by Saltharas
That Thread reached it's Limits after almost 4 Hours.

Guess the changes must be awesome....

Disappointed. Not really shocked or surprised by the lack of meaningful changes. Was maintaining my priest in the hope that they made substantive changes. Now I have no reason to play that toon anymore. Saves me some time I guess.
10/22/2018 10:00 PMPosted by Scrye
10/22/2018 07:29 PMPosted by Female
Shadow priests: "Get rid of Voidform!"
Blizzard: *Makes it "matter" more*.

Hahahahaha, this is so true.

I hate Voidform so much. . . . >_<

You do know what the sad part is right? The stacks themselves still dont matter just being in it matters more now and we already had like a 70% uptime on void form already.

10/23/2018 02:10 AMPosted by Saltharas
Guess the changes must be awesome....

Nope guess again
We have band-aid fixes to an already problematic issue for the spec. ie: The doubling down of Voidform which causes issue for non-raid content.

There's been so much solid feedback from players that range from the major theorycrafters, to the casual. But be clear that the implementation of Voidform has issues that is not addressed in these notes..

Gone through Alpha, Beta and release with no information given until now for 8.1, it's really not a good way to treat the players.

Seriously, a mechanic where the player is given an ability that feels amazing to press, but the more you you do after you've activated it, the further away you are from activating again.

Linking Eruption to Voidform activation is a mistake that's easily recified by detaching it from the existing Voidform mechanic.

Here's a spitball rough idea to show how to please both M+ and raiders:
Simply unattach Eruption to Voidform making them separate entities. Insanity works as usual. Activating Voidform puts you in Voidform (surprise surprise), where the player can manage the minigame that in raiding we know so well. Moving onto Eruption which now a separate ability spends the Insanity generated into our large, extremely satisfying burst AoE without activating Voidform, resetting the resource to 0 where the player can then work immediately towards blowing their voidy load again!!!
This will improve the feed of the spec significantly in non-raid content.

In addition: The new Shadowform graphic? The smoke and alpha swirl effect from the base form are much too low a resolution which in turn makes it look extremely poor (it's even worse on movement). The glyph bugs that have been in game since Legion that make Voidform look like a lava lamp!!!

I believe this is unintentional.

Has been bug reported through Legion numerous times, and is still in game for BFA.

A recent SS (my Orc Priest) of the bugged Voidform with it's glyphs:

This design along with the Shadow Form issues...
I expect better...
You need to do better...

Edit: To tone down, but the sentiment is still very much there ♥
10/23/2018 02:18 AMPosted by Lightfaller
Damn. I wish I didn't hear of this. My sub runs out today but I might actually keep subbed because of this buff.

Because of this buff? xD
It's changed nothing, just numbers <3
I am thankful shadow will finally, after far too long, get some much needed attention. Having said that, this feels more like a quick fix attempting to placate the players rather than actually fix the spec. This falls so far short of expectations, for such a long delayed fix, it makes me less hopeful other specs will receive worthwhile adjustments instead of just band-aid numbers tuning.
10/22/2018 09:47 PMPosted by Varrow
Definitely think Shadow Word: Death should be baseline. Sooooo stupid to take a god damn baseline ability of the class, like forever? And turn it into a damn talent. Artifact abilities becoming talents is one thing, baseline abilities of the class are quite another.

You mean like taking 75% of a class and giving them 25% of it back via talents(druids)?

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