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VE nerf, DPS buff for shadow priests in beta

In the wake of sweeping alterations to shadow priests going live tonight, the inimitable Ghostcrawler has posted about a few more changes that will be making their way into the Wrath of the Lich King beta.

  • Vampiric Embrace is getting nerfed to bits. Fully talented, it currently heals group (not raid) members for 25%. It's being changed to 5% to the group and 25% to the caster, again fully talented. A bit confused about this given GC's statement that "we don't want it to be terrible for priests in small groups" - 5% is pretty terrible.
  • Vampiric Touch's coefficient is getting doubled, from 20% to 40%. Cool, though I don't expect this makes up a huge part of your damage at 80.
  • Big DPS change: "Your Shadow Word: Pain, Devouring Plague and Vampiric Touch do an additional percentage damage equal to your critical strike chance." This is crittable DoTs, basically, with the randomness taken out. Instead of critting (say) 25% of the time for double damage, you just hit for 125% damage all the time. And of course our other damage spells (Mind Flay, Mind Blast, SW:D) can already crit normally.

I can't say I'm pleased by the massive VE nerf, but it's nice to see them picking up on promises of grade-A DPS for us now that we have less utility. Going from a state where two of our damage spells benefit from crit rating to a state where all of them do will be interesting.

Filed under: Priest, Wrath of the Lich King

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