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Spiritual Guidance: Monk healing vs. priest healing in Mists of Pandaria

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.

Well, I don't know about you, but I'm starting to feel pretty pumped up after Monday's release of the information from Blizzard's Mists of Pandaria press event. Some of the new zones are very striking, the pandaren ladies are absolutely adorable, and monks get an ability called Shuffle, which means we'll have an expansion full of Party Rock Anthem jokes to look forward to. Priests didn't see anything new on Monday, but with all the information released about mistweavers and monk healing in general, I thought I might make some comparisons to get a better idea about what priest healing is going to look like in MoP.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Spiritual Guidance: A shadowy work in progress

The Spiritual Guidance duo, Fox Van Allen and Dawn Moore, haven't always gotten along so well. While some attribute that to the natural way that the shadow abhors the light, the real reason is the time they were on The Price is Right together in 2003. I mean, two hundred dollars for a grandfather clock, Dawn? What were you thinking?

Some days, I wish Spiritual Guidance was a TV show. Not only would the world be better able to appreciate my own physical beauty, but I'd be able to do one of those "Last time, on Spiritual Guidance" opening montages, filled with dramatic clips that tell you exactly what happened last week.

"Fox, we need to get to level 10, and fast! Before the orphanage explodes!"

"But if you're the Priest trainer ... then who's that?"

"You're not casting Smite enough! Faster! Faster! More Smite NOW! Hurry, there's not much time!"

KABOOM!


"The orphans, they're on fire! Quick, cast Renew!"

Things are often a lot more awesome in my head than in real life, I'm afraid. Still, last week, we did address the process of starting a new priest, getting him geared up with heirlooms (or heaven forfend, green items) and the basics of the early spells (Smite, lol). This week, we're digging a bit deeper, getting to 20, rocking some instances and doing some PvP -- that's right, life as a priest is finally ready to begin.

Follow me after the cut. And don't mind the random explosions and orphan debris -- they're just there for next week's opening montage.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Spiritual Guidance: Starting a shadow priest from scratch



Like all shadow priests, Fox Van Allen is a resilient sort. He has few weaknesses: accidentally dropping Shadowform by casting a holy spell; the silver arrow from the far upper left room in level 9; and his own gargantuan ego. By comparison, Dawn Moore's weaknesses include scratchy sweaters, Shadowfiend bites, and the nasty case of the sniffles she gets when the thermostat dips below 67. The Sunday edition is all about warmth, hugs and kisses. Today is Wednesday.


It was a cold December day when the respawn timer ticked, creating the most elite shadow priest to ever grace the Wednesday version of Spiritual Guidance.

"Surely, he'll make a fine holy spec priest one day," the nurses assumed. "Such fortitude! And, why look, he can cast Smite already!"

"In between sips of milk, of course."

"Of course."

Those of us who already made the journey from level 1 to level 80 no doubt have some mixed feelings about the earliest, most formative years of our shadow priest. Heck, even mages, balance druids, elemental shaman, warlocks know the same pain. Starting a new caster can be a repetitive experience.

The good news, of course, is that World of Warcraft is revitalizing the leveling process in Cataclysm. They're giving us Shadow Orbs and refurbishing our talent tree to make shadow priests feel more like shadow priests. That's great. I can't wait for the change.

But still, if you haven't started a new priest in the last few months, you may have missed some of the more recent changes to the leveling process. It really is better now, and I can honestly say there's been no better time to start a priest. Why wait until Cataclysm?

(And don't you dare say because you want to roll a gnome.)

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

[1.Local]: Shoved into the deep end


Reader comments – ahh, yes, the juicy goodness following a meaty post. [1.Local] ducks past the swinging doors to see what readers have been chatting about in the back room over the past week.

Yeah, we know you've already got Algalon on farm -- WoW.com readers are just uber that way. But for the rare handful of you still playing at a somewhat less stratospheric progression point ... How about those patches? Is the flow of new content keeping pace with your playstyle and interest?

"The pace of new content is fine – ooh, shiny :)," wrote Julie. "What worries me is the rate at which old content becomes obsolete (which is way too fast). For example, I'm glad Ulduar and Emalon are out. I hate the fact you can't do Archavon without doing Emalon. I also hate the fact that there's no reason to go into Naxx (Pro-Drake, badges, etc.) or heroic five-mans, for that matter. Basically I'm ok with the new content coming out; not ok with being forced to move to the new content the moment it does, however. There should be some balanced incentives to keep doing older content."

Is your guild working patiently through the existing content at its own rate, or has the addition of new content shoved you out into the deep end before you were ready?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Features, [1.Local]

Patch 3.1 PTR Priest glyph changes thus far

One of the things Patch 3.1 is supplying in spades is glyphs and glyph changes. Every class is getting a ton of them, and it's really hard to keep up with them there are so many. Priests are coming out alright so far through the whole process, with a lot of our current glyphs being improved and our new glyphs being legitimately useful, if situational. Let's see what's new, shall we?

Glyph of Fade - Reduces the cooldown of your Fade spell by 9 sec. (Old: Increases the duration and cooldown of your Fade spell by 50%.)

This is massively better than what it was previously, and I suspect that this will become a popular Shadow Priest glyph in PvP. Two points in Veiled Shadows plus this glyph means a 15 second cooldown on Fade. Every 15 seconds, a Shadow Priest will be able to clear all movement impairing effects, assuming they have Improved Shadowform. That's pretty friggin' sweet.

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Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Wrath of the Lich King, Inscription

All the World's a Stage: So you want to be a Priest

This installment of All the World's a Stage is the seventeenth in a series of roleplaying guides in which we find out all the background information you need to roleplay a particular race or class well, without embarrassing yourself.

Priests in the World of Warcraft are a single class that incorporates a wide variety of characters. They are best known for casting spells that call forth the power of the Holy Light, but the priest using these spells in the game mechanics doesn't necessarily have much connection to the Light as such -- rather they have a connection with their own religion which grants them similar effects to those of the Light.

When WoW was being developed, Blizzard realized that night elves and trolls, for instance, would not follow the Light in the same way humans and dwarves do, so they tried to represent a bit of this diversity through race-specific spells. It didn't work out, though -- some were too powerful, while others weren't worth reading about, much less putting on one's action bar. The end result was that they made some of these spells universally available to all priests, and completely removed the rest. Here the lore had to surrender to the game mechanics in order to provide the best game balance.

In roleplaying, however, there is a lot of room for players of different races to behave differently, and draw their powers from totally different sources. Greater Heal, for instance, could come either from the Light or the power of Elune. A Shadowfiend could either be a spawn of the Forgotten Shadow, or a dark trollish voodoo spirit. If you are roleplaying a priest, the only thing that really matters is that your character have some sort of faith or profound belief, which could serve as the source of their divine magical power. A priest's magic revolves around his or her strong beliefs and ideas -- but what those beliefs are is entirely up to you.

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Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Human, Night Elves, Dwarves, Undead, Trolls, Priest, Analysis / Opinion, Draenei, Blood Elves, Lore, Guides, RP, Classes, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying)

Spiritual Guidance: Level 1 to 5 on your new Priest


So you're rolling your first character... or perhaps rolling the latest in a series of alts. And for some crazy reason you've picked a Priest. Maybe you just like being blamed for every instance wipe in every group you'll be in. Maybe you enjoy being yelled at for not healing in a battleground when you're at the top of the DPS chart. Maybe you enjoy leveling at an insanely slow pace (at least until you get in the level 40 range). (Okay, it's really not all that bad -- at least not all the time. After all, I've leveled two priests to level 60 and beyond and I'm a perfectly rational, sane individual. Right?) I couldn't say why you rolled a priest -- I'm only here to help you along the way. So read on as we discuss the journey from level 1 to level 15.

If this sounds like fun to you but you haven't yet rolled your priest, check out the last episode of Spiritual Guidance, where we talk more realistically about whether Priest is the class for you and cover picking the right race for your newbie-to-be.

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Filed under: Priest, How-tos, Leveling, Guides, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

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