Holy FAQ

October 23, 2009 at 3:31 pm (5 mans, Binding Heal, Circle of Healing, Divine Hymn, Empowered Renew, Fade, FAQ, Flash Heal, Gearing, Glyphs, Greater Heal, Grouping, Guardian Spirit, Healing Mechanics, Holy FAQ, Holy Spec 14/57/0, Holy Spec 18/53/0, Mana, Power Word: Shield, Prayer of Healing, Prayer of Mending, Raiding, Renew, Spells, Stats, Surge of Light, Talents)

What do I shine at?

Like Discipline Priests, Holy Priests make great healers in small 5 man groups because of their tremendous utility, their range of AoE and single target spells and their ability to dump aggro and self heal through Binding Heal and Desperate Prayer.

In raids Holy is primarily seen as a Raid Healing build. That is to say, you are in your element healing multiple targets simultaneously using spells like Prayer of Healing, Prayer of Mending and Circle of Healing.

You are less capable as a Tank Healer as you miss some of the mana efficiency of Discipline, or the mitigation talents like Grace. However, you still have some Tank healing ability if you spec for it, in particular through larger Flash Heals and utility spells like Guardian Spirit and talents like Inspiration. As a result Holy priests are tremendously valuable both in 25 man raids for their mass healing, and in 10 mans for their ability to fill a variety of roles as required.

Spirit of Redemption

What’s my spec?

There are essentially two specs for a Holy Priest. The first focuses on mana efficiency and is best for Priests starting out when mana is an issue. This spec picks up Mental Agility from the Discipline tree whilst still collecting as many of the powerful Holy talents as possible. That would look something like this: 18/53/0

Once you gear up you move even more towards improving your healing picking up things like Test of Faith. So more like this: 14/57/0. Your crit is higher so only one point in Surge of Light. And because you’re focusing more on raid healing Empowered Healing looks less attractive than some other raid heals. You might drop Lightwell if your raid gets no use out of it. You’re taking Spell Warding over Divine Fury because you’re not casting Greater Heal and the additional spell reduction means you take less damage in heavy AoE fights – which are exactly the fights you’re needed for the most.

Some personal choices:

Body and Soul can be a fun utility talent in certain situations. It helps people avoid fire and other dangerous boss abilities. However, Power Word: Shield is a very inefficient heal for a Holy Priest so you should not ordinarily be casting it. Furthermore, Body and Soul is only useful for a Priest who is very good at keeping track of the fight. If you don’t have a good sense of what it happening to all the players in your raid and who could really benefit from a speed boost you won’t make the most of this talent.

Another personal choice is Lightwell, more on this later. It will depend a lot on the willingness of the rest of your raid to make use of it.

Finally Inspiration is a fantastic talent if you are planning to do a lot of five mans or you want to be versatile enough to help with Tank healing in certain fights. However it is a very mediocre talent for a Priest who intends to only be the best Raid Healer that they can. This will depend a lot on your raid group and the other healers you play with.

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Discipline FAQ

October 2, 2009 at 4:44 pm (5 mans, Binding Heal, Borrowed Time, Discipline FAQ, Discipline Spec 57/14/0, Divine Hymn, Flash Heal, Gearing, Greater Heal, Grouping, Healing Mechanics, Mana, Naxxramas, Pain Suppression, Pain Suppression, Penance, Power Infusion, Power Infusion, Power Word: Shield, Prayer of Healing, Prayer of Mending, Raiding, Renew, Spells, Stats, Talents, Trial of the Champion, Ulduar)

Starting a Discipline Priest and confused about something? Lets try and help out with some useful information.

What’s my spec?

See the article on Discipline spec here.

The standard spec is something like: 57/14/0 getting all the good heal talents in the Discipline tree, then going up the Holy Tree to pick up Inspiration.

Attribution: GENZOMAN

Attribution: GENZOMAN

What do I shine at?

As a Disc Priest your specialism is Tank Healing and Damage prevention. Because you are a priest however you have a great deal of flexibility because of your huge range of spells. This means you can ably heal 5 mans, 10 mans as a Tank or a Raid healer, in 25 mans you are a great Tank Healer, and you make a good PvP healer.

Because of your shields you really shine in fights where there are periodic spikes of damage which you can prepare for by casting shields on people before they take damage.

PvE Stat values –

Not perfect, but a rough guide is something like:

  • Intellect – 0.6

  • Spirit – 0.22

  • MP5 – 0.67

  • Haste Rating – 0.59

  • Crit Rating – 0.48

  • Spell Power – 1.0

So you should favour Spell Power, Intellect, Haste, Crit, MP5 and Spirit in pretty much that order. However, obviously if you need more mana stack Intellect, if you need to do more healing stack Spell Power. If you have enough mana there is NO benefit to getting more Intellect, Spirit or MP5. Mana is only useful if you are spending it. If you finish fights with lots of mana, you should stop getting more.

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Shadow Priest FAQ

September 25, 2009 at 4:23 pm (5 mans, Devouring Plague, FAQ, Gearing, Glyphs, Grouping, Mind Flay, Naxxramas, Raiding, Shadow FAQ, Shadow Word: Death, Shadow Word: Pain, Shadowform, Stats, Talents, Trial of the Champion, Ulduar, Vampiric Touch)

A list of common questions people look for when they first start. This isn’t really high end discussion and some things are glossed over. Furthermore, I rarely raid as shadow anymore so much of this comes from (I hope) thorough research. Big thank you to the sites out there like Shadowpriest.com and the various shadow blogs (Shadowaffinity) for their great information.

All rights belong to *Genzoman

All rights belong to *Genzoman Deviant Art.

What’s the spec to use?

The standard PvE spec is this:


The two points in Veiled Shadows are optional and could be moved to Improved Vampiric Embrace. However the reduced cooldown on Shadow Fiend is a nice mana boost and adds a small DPS burst in certain situations.

For PvP your spec would look something like:


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What Stats Do

September 11, 2009 at 10:41 am (5 mans, Gearing, Grouping, Mana, Raiding, Stats)

Another back to basics post because everybody can always ue the recap. I’ll get into some proper deep healing super advanced theory next week if I have some inspiration.

If you’re new to WoW, new to playing a caster, or just new to playing a Priest it helps a lot to know about what the different stats do.


Unfortunately for my blog work-flow the whole system is already destined to be utterly overhauled when World of Warcraft: Cataclysm comes out. So much of this will one day be very outdated. However, until that time, lets nail down exactly what each of the different stats do, why you want them, and how much you need.

Common wisdom is to put all healer stats into one of two groups: Mana stats, or Throughput stats.

Mana Stats

Mana stats are stats which improve how long you are able to cast for. If you run out of mana you can’t heal. If you can’t heal you might as well not be there because, apart from your witty banter and knowledge of internet memes, that’s your sole reason for being in the group. No matter how much your spells heal for, it won’t help if you don’t have enough mana to cast them when you need to.

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Spirit: Worth less but not Worthless

September 1, 2009 at 9:21 pm (5 mans, Gearing, Glyphs, Grouping, Mana, Raiding, Stats)

Spirit and Mp5 (mana per five seconds) look like two sides of the same coin. You get mana over time. That’s pretty much it. Yet as always, for the people who care about this sort of thing there is maths and graphs about which is the best and under what circumstances. Rather than laying out the decimal places and coefficients I want to just pick a few salient points which I think are useful.

Spirit Image

If you’re a Holy Priest Spiritual Guidance turns 25% of your Spirit into spell power. This means that unless Spirit turns out to be completely awful (which it isn’t) it’s much better for you than pure MP5 because of all the extra spell power it gives.

As a Shadow Priest you also get spell power from Spirit but it’s a little less. Glyph of Shadow and Twisted Faith each give you a nice 10% of your Spirit as Spell Power. This means that, whilst as a Shadow priest you don’t really need much extra spirit for mana, it’s at least a little bit of a DPS boost for you if you do happen to pick some up. On the whole as a Shadow Priest most of your mana will come from Shadow Fiend, Dispersion and Replenishment, but at least any Spirit on your gear is not wasted.

As a Discipline Priest there is no big bonus to Spirit. You get 6% more of it from Enlightenment, but you get no benefit from Spirit except for more mana. So as a Discipline Priest all you really care about is: “Which gives you more mana, Spirit or MP5?”

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Should I gem for…?

July 24, 2009 at 11:30 am (Gearing, Gems, Glyphs, Stats)

I was chatting to a fellow guild healer today and I realised we held different opinions on something I thought was really straight forward. I had always been told, and looking at complicated maths, it seems correct to say, Discipline Priests and Holy Paladins share pretty much the same gear preferences. Spirit is not fantastic, Intellect is great, Spell power, Haste, Crit are all good stuff. So I was surprised to find how much the two of us disagreed about how to gear our characters.

Holy Priests, if you’re about to stop reading because it’s a Discipline article, I promise you it isn’t.

He’s a Holy Paladin and the guild Jewel Crafter, and when I got a new hat from Flame Leviathan 10man, I was looking to gem it. The hat wants a blue gem, but given how bad the socket bonus is (+8 spirit), I decided to ignore it. I was weighing up 16 intellect, versus 19 spell power. It ought to be the most cut and dry decision. Spell power is the best way of increasing my healing. Intellect is the best way of increasing my mana. So it ought to be simple, do I need more mana or more healing?

My thinking is, I’ve got enough mana, you can’t have enough healing. His opinion was very much, I already heal for a lot, you can never have too much mana.

Healers, more than anybody, have to be responsible for their own gearing decisions. Whether you heal the raid or you heal the tank. Whether you usually heal along with a Shaman or a Paladin. Whether you heal aggressively or conservatively. Whether you glyph Guardian Spirit or Flash Heal. All these things influence how much Intellect you need versus Spell Power. Glyph of Flash Heal means you can get away with less intellect, but because you don’t have Glyph of Guardian Spirit, you might want more more Haste to make up for that. Just an example.

I think, I’ve got enough mana for now. If I don’t usually run out of mana, then I am in a sense “over the mana cap”. That’s to say, just like a player who has more hit rating than they need, that extra hit is wasted. If I’m ending every fight with 50% mana, then I don’t need as much mana as I have. Mana sitting unused in my mana pool is wasted stats. If I never need to use Shadow Fiend, then I should ditch some intellect because clearly I’ve got too much. Thus I’d rather gem for Spell Power so I can heal bigger if the boss is doing lots of damage. Or gem for Haste if I find that sometimes my heal lands just that half a second too late.

My Paladin friend on the other hand feels differently, and justifyably so. His feeling is, Paladin heals already land for fourteen thousand, he commonly has overhealing because of it and so, for him, more spell power is wasted. On the other hand, more intellect means for those fights where the other healer dies, he’s almost always got enough mana to see him through to the end. If it’s possible to solo heal the fight, he’ll almost always have enough mana to do it. So who’s right?

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