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Posts with tag shadowfiend

Spiritual Guidance: Choosing the best priest talents for you, pt. 2

Choosing the best priest talents for you, pt 2
WoW Insider brings you Spiritual Guidance for discipline, holy and shadow priests. Dawn Moore is a discipline priest by reputation, but still enjoys melting faces as shadow and bugging her raid to click the Lightwell as holy.

Last time on Spiritual Guidance we began a thorough look at level 15 and level 30 priest talents and considered when and why you would take one talent over the other. This week we're continuing that discussion with level 45 and level 60 talents.

From Darkness, Comes Light For healers, this talent serves as a regen talent by saving players mana instead of returning it. The performance of it is very dependent on your spell usage, which means the regen cannot be easily quantified down to a simple number.

From Darkness, Comes Light can only be triggered by a handful of spells (Heal, Flash Heal, Greater Heal, Binding Heal, and Smite) making the talent practically useless to some players. For example, a holy priest who spends most of her time raid healing her 25-man raid (that always stands in fire) could go a whole fight without seeing a single proc from this talent. On the other hand, a 10-man disc priest who spends most of his time swapping between healing the paladin tank and spamming Smite heals could expect several procs during a fight.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Spiritual Guidance: Lightwell vs. Lightspring, plus new priest glyph and talent animations

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Spiritual Guidance for discipline, holy and shadow priests. Dawn Moore covers the healing side of things for discipline and holy priests. She also writes for LearnToRaid.com and produces the Circle of Healing Podcast.

The latest build on the Mists of Pandaria beta allowed players to purchase the newly implemented major and minor glyphs we spoke about two weeks ago. In the video above, you'll find animations for Glyph of Shadowy Friends, Glyph of Lightspring, Glyph of the Heavens, Glyph of Holy Resurrection, and Glyph of the Val'kyr. Is it just me, or does it look like Lightspring is casting mini Penance balls at its target? Perhaps there is a tiny disc priest trapped inside every Lightspring ... Hmm.

While we're on the topic of Lightspring, there has been an interesting development since the glyph was first announced. Originally, it looked like Lightspring would heal players for less than Lightwell, a sort of toll for the fact that Lightspring was automated. In the latest beta build, however, it now looks like the HoTs from both Lightwell and Lightspring will heal for the same amount over time.

I'm guessing the developers decided there wasn't much reason to reduce the amount of healing Lightspring does per tick since the 5 seconds of downtime between each heal is a limitation in itself. By only allowing the Lightspring to heal once every 5 seconds, the heal isn't any better than a single-target heal from another player, save for the fact that it will work while you're doing other things.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Mists of Pandaria: Priests get an optional Shadowfiend upgrade, Zoidberg approves

Getting tired of your Shadowfiend, priests? After having served us faithfully over multiple expansions, your Shadowfiend will be able to be talented into an upgraded Shadowfiend. Enter the Mindbender!

The Mindbender is a floating, squid-like creature that'll leech mana off opponents just like the original Shadowfiend --not just that, but the Mindbender hits harder and you get more mana back. Mindbender can be talented into at level 45. (That spot used to be blank before.) At level 87, my little minion was doing around 12,000 damage with possible crits up to 30,000 against the raider training dummies while I was in a healing spec.

Pretty cool facelift for the little guy! It'll be an interesting choice between Mindbender, Archangel, and From Darkness, Comes Light.

Too bad we can't give these pets names. I'd name mine Zoidberg.

It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Priest, Analysis / Opinion, Mists of Pandaria

Spiritual Guidance: Shadowfiends retire, more priest talent news from Mists beta

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Every week, WoW Insider brings you Spiritual Guidance for discipline, holy and shadow priests. Dawn Moore covers the healing side of things for discipline and holy priests. She also writes for LearnToRaid.com and produces the Circle of Healing Podcast.

Do you want to know the greatest and most amazing new thing priests are getting in Mists of Pandaria? It's a squid. Well, it could be an octopus, but I think it's a squid. It's called a Mindbender, and it's our new level 45 talent. The Mindbender is a flying, shadowy squid that serves as an improved version of (read: replacement for) our old pal, Shadowfiend. Our new squid friend does double the damage of Shadowfiend and thus returns twice as much mana. I can only assume the reason he can do this is because he latches onto the heads of our enemies and sucks out their brains, sort of like a Mind Flayer, the squid-faced monsters from Dungeons and Dragons with telekinetic powers. Mindbender, Mind Flayer ... That's right, Blizzard, I'm on to you.

Anyway, I imagine Squiddy will become the prime choice for healing priests in MoP because 1.) mana is mana, and 2.) the other level 45 talents are a bit lackluster. That will unfortunately mean leaving Shadowfiend at home, which is awfully sad, but I've painted up a scenario in my head where Shadowfiend tells me, "Look, Dawn, we've been raiding together for a few years now, and it's about time that I caught up on all the prime time television I've missed. There's Mad Men, Breaking Bad, and I've still only seen one episode of Game of Thrones. I need a break."

"OK, Shadowfiend," I say to it, "you can stay home this expansion."

"Thanks, dollface," it responds with Don Draper-esque charm and winks an eye at me I never knew it had.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Spiritual Guidance: 5 things I want for shadow priests in Mists of Pandaria

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Spiritual Guidance for discipline, holy and shadow priests. On Wednesdays, shadow priesting expert Fox Van Allen comes from out of the shadows to bask in your loving adoration.

We're exactly one week away from the big Mists of Pandaria press event. What does it mean, exactly, that Blizzard is giving Team WoW Insider a major reveal? It means that we're getting closer and closer to that magical day the beta opens and, of course, the magic day that MoP hits store shelves and goes live to the public.

In the meantime, there's a lot of development going on behind the scenes. But what kind of priorities are the development team working under? What priorities should it have? What do you want out of your spec in Mists of Pandaria? And does your priority make the list?

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Spiritual Guidance: Is the tier 13 shadow priest bonus really worth it?

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Spiritual Guidance for discipline, holy and shadow priests. On Wednesdays, shadow priesting expert Fox Van Allen comes from out of the shadows to bask in your loving adoration.

I get a lot of email at my WoW Insider account. Granted, most of the emails I get are intriguing business deals from the African continent. But I get real mail too, and lately, I've been getting a lot of mail about our four-piece tier 13 bonus.

Oh, no! My Tier 13 four-piece bonus isn't as good as I thought it would be! My wallet's too small for my fifties, and my diamond shoes are too tight!

Signed,
Everyone

I haven't answered the mail publicly yet, because I couldn't imagine the concerns being valid. After all, could it really be worth it to keep two-piece tier 12 over four-piece tier 13? But with so many of you concerned ... hey, maybe there's something to this. Maybe it is worth keeping your two-piece tier 12.

I decided sit down with a pen and paper and find out for myself.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Spiritual Guidance: Minor glyphs for discipline and holy priests, plus some pre-BlizzCon silliness

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Spiritual Guidance for discipline, holy and shadow priests. Dawn Moore covers the healing side of things for discipline and holy priests. She also writes for LearnToRaid.com and produces the Circle of Healing Podcast.

Whenever I'm scoping out priests on the Armory or even in my own raid team, I always like to see what glyphs they pick. Mind you, there doesn't actually tend to be much variety from priest to priest. The best glyphs usually stand leaps and bounds ahead of the competition, especially with major and minor glyphs, so there isn't usually much difference between one priest or another. So why do I check? Because I'm looking to see if the priest has Glyph of Shadowfiend equipped.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Spiritual Guidance: Breaking down the shadow priest tier 12 bonuses

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Spiritual Guidance for discipline, holy and shadow priests. Every Wednesday, shadow priesting expert Fox Van Allen rains sheer purple destruction down on all who oppose him. In stereo, where available.

Historically, tier bonuses for shadow priests have been pretty boring. From tier 4 onward, we've had very little to look forward to beyond mana cost reductions, spell-specific damage increases, and extended spell durations. These bonuses were valuable, to be sure -- we could all benefit from an extra DOT tick -- but nothing was game-changing.

Towards the end of Wrath of the Lich King, though, things began to change. The tier 10 four-piece shadow priest bonus, a .5-second reduction to the Mind Flay channel, was a literal game-changer. It put Mind Blast on the back burner. Some shadow priests only cast it to refresh Replenishment; others dropped it from their rotations entirely. Whether or not the tier 10 bonus was a positive thing from a gameplay perspective is debatable, but there's no debating what a powerful force it was.

Now, after a relatively tame set of tier 11 bonuses to start off Cataclysm (damage increases -- oh boy!), game developers are dropping a pair of nuclear bombs on us. The tier 12 bonuses for shadow priests are compelling, controversial, and game-changing -- all at the same time.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Spiritual Guidance: Has mana regen become collateral damage in patch 4.0.1?

Spiritual Guidance's shadow-specced Wednesday correspondant Fox Van Allen recently got his performance evaluation here at WoW Insider, and it wasn't pretty. While his ability to recall distant pop culture references and melt faces has been deemed "adequate," his people skills "need improvement." Action item: "Stop ganking Dawn Moore in the hallways." Salary action taken: "Convert salary from U.S. dollars to old America Online CDs."

If you're a regular reader of WoW Insider, you may have noticed an interesting trend about patch 4.0.1 and the upcoming class changes it brings: Almost everyone's freaking out. It's bad enough that almost every other class columnist on here is telling it's readers not to panic. It's as if we're running some kind of Douglas Adams convention around here.

You won't hear all that from me, though. And it's not just because I'm too cool for books. It's because shadow priests aren't panicking, for the most part. There are disappointments here and there -- mostly regarding the mastery mechanic and the (currently) low value of the mastery stat -- but otherwise, things are pretty decent in this neck of the woods. So decent, in fact, that there's someone complaining on the beta forums that shadow priests are probably so overpowered because Blizzard reps all play shadow priests. (I LOLed.)

But that's not to say we don't have our concerns. My latest concern is mana regen. While our damage has actually been buffed in some of the latest beta patches (most recently, Dark Archangel has been buffed from 3 percent per stack up to 4 percent), our mana regen continues to get hit with nerfs. Granted, Blizzard is really trying to aim for healers, but with most holy and disc nerfs to regen affecting our abilities too, are shadow priests becoming collateral damage?

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance, Cataclysm

Spiritual Guidance: The greatest Shadowfiend nerf (or maybe buff) of all time


The race to represent the Spiritual Guidance column is turning into a nail-biter. Dawn Moore, writer of the Sunday version, took an early lead due to her natural dual constituencies, holy and disc. Recently, though, Fox Van Allen, the shadow-specced author of the Wednesday column, has taken a statistically insignificant 46-44 percent lead over his rival in the polls. Some credit Fox's well-written, intelligent columns. Others point to the recent discovery of yet five more Shadowfiend-bite-riddled corpses; Dawn supporters all. "Yes we can" is so 2008 -- "... or else" is the new catchphrase for a new decade!

Ladies and gentlemen of the shadow priesting jury, I am outraged. Or possibly thrilled. You see, just this past week, Blizzard has done something totally unconscionable. Or possibly ground-breakingly awesome.

Of all the tools at the disposal of the shadow priest, there's one I hold in higher regard than most the others: my Shadowfiend. You see, spells like Mind Flay and Vampiric Touch -- they're all just spells. My shadowfiend is more than that. He's a pet. A friend. When I was sick and alone this past week, it was my shadowfiend who brought me a box of tissues and a remote. It was my shadowfiend that brought me a bowl of gnome noodle soup. It was my shadowfiend who rode across yellow- and blue-colored waves of sound to fight the evil dust empire that exists under my coffee table when I look down there and cross my eyes a little so things get blurry.

Granted, most of that may have just been a fevered dream or cough-syrup-induced hallucination. The key point stands, however: You don't mess with my shadowfiend.

This week's problem: Blizzard's been messing with our shadowfiend. Maybe. I mean, it's possible that Blizzard's been buffing it. I am incensed. Or possibly elated. We'll try out some funky, back-of-an-envelope math after the break to try and sort through exactly what's happening with our beloved shadowfiend and figure out whether or not this is cause for alarm ... or the best thing to have happened to shadow priests in the history of ever.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance, Cataclysm

Spiritual Guidance: Of lore, the forsaken and shadow priests


In addition to being the author of Wednesday's shadow priest edition of Spiritual Guidance, Fox Van Allen is an accomplished songwriter. After Dawn Moore refused to use Power Infusion on him during a lengthy raid encounter, Fox wrote the song In the Air Tonight. He mailed Dawn front-row tickets to his first concert performance, and as he reached the chorus, a bright spotlight engulfed Dawn. She cried in shame. It was awesome.

Regular readers of Spiritual Guidance know that over the last month, I've been putting together a leveling guide for aspiring shadow priests. In the last installment, I made a seemingly innocuous comment about shadow priests' being able to take the talent Shadowform at level 40:
We're able to make that fateful decision to forsake the light in exchange for causing more destruction more effectively.
I was literally describing the game mechanics; staying in Shadowform requires you to give up the spells in the holy tab. One of our commenters, aramis, used the line as a launching pad for an interesting comment that addressed a very basic question for us shadow priests: What the heck are shadow priests supposed to be, anyway?

I won't reprint the entire comment here, but it's definitely worth reading. The gist of it can be understood by reading just the first few sentences:
Mr. V-A, we don't FORSAKE the light as Shadow Priests. On the contrary, we embrace it ... We accept the light as the balance of ourselves. Life is about balance: pleasure and pain; good and evil; life and death; light and shadow.
Is aramis right? Follow me past the break as we explore a little bit of shadow priest lore, dip our toes into the cold waters of shadow priest roleplay, and try to solve an identity crisis that most of you probably don't even realize exists.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Breakfast Topic: Design a unique healing spell

There has been quite a bit of talk on the forums about the various spells each of the healing classes have available to them and how those might be expanded in Cataclysm. One poster asked when we'll see healing variants of some various DPS spells like Cone of Healing or Rain of Healing (which was actually announced for Shaman). This led to a fun little conversation here at WoW.com between Dawn Moore, Chase Christian, Elizabeth Harper and myself.

We came up with ideas like Holyfiend, a pet that healed people. You could either target it or set it to "aggressive" and it would heal people at random. Another idea was a talent turning a paladin's Consecration into an area healing effect that ticked when stood in (standing in stuff on the floor is good?). There was also the idea of creating a healing wand similar to the healing rod from Final Fantasy VI that did healing instead of damage on the target you attacked.

What would be some interesting mechanics you'd like to see turned into a healing ability? Would you turn the moonkin's little treants into mini resto druids? How about something like Pestilence that spread your heal over time spells to the rest of your party?

Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Priest, Shaman, Breakfast Topics

Patch 3.3 PTR: Slight leveling Priest buffs


So we got some patch 3.3 PTR notes and information on our hands. Let's talk about these buffs. Do they help us do our job in some way? Well, no not really. We're not getting any spell power buffs or mana buffs or anything remotely useful. Instead, we get this:

Glancing Blows: The mage, warlock, and priest classes no longer have an increased chance for their melee attacks to be glancing blows; and the damage penalty due to their glancing blows is the same as for other classes.

How's that, eh? This was a much needed buff for the Priest class. Now I can finally become a battle priest and not be completely handicapped if I have to resort to hand to hand combat!

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Filed under: Priest, Patches, Leveling, Wrath of the Lich King

Priest Q&A: Tackling the Shadow Priest answers

Our resident Holy Priest guru tackled the healy bits of the Priest Q&A recently, and I've been mulling over the various Shadow commentary in the meantime. Going into the Q&A being fully aware that it wasn't intended to be a list of changes coming to the class, and more a look into the current design around the classes, I honestly wasn't too disappointed with the Shadow items. It's a case where, with a few exceptions, I think Ghostcrawler (and the other developers) actually know what's going on with the spec quite well. You can try and call me out on that, but hey. It's the truth. As far as Shadow was concerned, it wasn't too far off.

The general spec overview at the beginning of the Q&A was pretty spot on. It's easy for us to get momentum in PvE and lay down the damage, but the nature of PvP/arena doesn't really let us do that. Our long buildup time is harsh. We don't lend ourselves well to stop-and-go. We're pretty much all about the 'go' and a little bit of 'stop' sets us back to where we started. There's really no picking up where you left off. If the opposing team locks you down for a little too long, you pretty much need to start over. Your offensive momentum is irrecoverable. PvE usually doens't have to worry about that. Now, from this point forward, I'm going to address each Shadow-relevant quote point by point.

First question:

"Q: Since a lot of the damage a Shadow priest does builds with damage-over-time (DoT) spells, are you concerned about them being well-rounded enough to do adequate damage in shorter PvE encounters, 5-player dungeons, or in the Arenas?

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Filed under: Priest, Analysis / Opinion, PvP

Priest Q & A: Healers remain indifferent

The Q & A for Priests just came out. The first section had Ghostcrawler cover a brief history and the Blizzard perspective of Priests. We used to be the absolute top of the line healer many years ago. At the present, we have been balanced to become on par with the other healing classes (Druids, Paladins, and Shamans). The crustacean one is bang on when he states that Priests have a wide variety of spells to respond to nearly any situation.

Let's get straight to it then. What do healing Priests have to look forward to?

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Filed under: Priest, Patches

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