Talents, talents, talents. Unless you’re this joker, you gotta have talents, right? And if you’re a priest (and why wouldn’t you be?) you’re going to have a choice between three trees: Discipline, which is your mitigation tree, Holy, which is the healing tree and Shadow, your DPS tree. But what does all this lumber mean? Which is the best? How do you decide?
Well, as anyone who’s reading this site should know, I went the way of the Holy spec for raiding. But Holy Dueg was not always so holy, oh no, gentle jerkwads, at one point I was Discipline Dueg, and trust me when I say that I swung a pretty mean ruler on knuckles of those who would not pay attention… I’m watching you Merkowski. At the time discipline was considered “weak like capitalist pig” and was thought to be confined strictly to a PvP healing spec. I wanted to believe… no, I NEEDED to believe that disc could be a viable PvE spec. So I leveled all the way to 60 on a wave of disc loving and it worked… for a time.
You see, once you hit BC you really need to start specializing in order to handle some of the content. The problem with disc is that it specialized you in the wrong direction by dumping healing talents in order to up survivability (aka, making you PvP viable). I wanted to heal though, I felt the urge in my veins and could no longer deny the fact that I belonged in the back of the group throwing heals like it’s no big deal…s. But I didn’t want to completely abandon the disc tree that I had touted for so long, so I did the only option I had left. I went Hybrid.
Of course, I’m not the only one who went this route, Anea over at Holy Discipline (ever get the feeling you’re being stalked?) actually took a hybrid spec into end game raids and seems to be all out of gum at the moment. I’m not here to talk about her spec though, I’m here to argue the case for mine and I’ll do so starting…
Now. The idea behind my spec was that it’s designed to squeeze the maximum amount of benefit from your gear, namely the Int and Spi stats. It forgoes specialized talents such as Power Infusion in order to draw more directly from your stats. Though holy is the lesser of the trees used here, it’s really the backbone of this spec because of Spiritual Guidance. The addition of Spiritual Healing along with Improved Healing and Renew will also help you to see bigger numbers pop above your group members heads. So in other words, you’re going to be gearing like you’re holy.
Now over to the Discipline side of things. Of course, you have your standard fall backs. Meditation, Improved PW:F, Twin Discipines, all that good stuff. However, you also get to have all the mana effeciency bonuses thrown in with Divine Spirit and Enlightenment to give you some extra oomph for your spirit friendly talents in the holy tree. Rapture mixed with Mental Strength is really going to make your blue bar sing and you’ll definately feel like an azure god when you see that bar hold steady near 90% mana most of the time.
This spec will also make renew one of your sexiest spells with a 34% bonus to it thanks to your various talents. Add the additional spellpower and glyph bonuses if you do it right and you should start seeing huge ticks on this one (I can’t give you numbers as I’m not specced this way anymore, but I remember being pretty happy back when I was). You also automatically get an additional 10% spirit bonus on your items coupled with the 25% bonus to SP with that. I guarantee you’ll see a huge difference on your stats (at 80 and geared out in all dungeon blues, I lost about 200 Spellpower and over 1000 mana when I switched).
Now if I had it all to do over again, I would probably shake some things up with the discipline side. First off, I would remove those three points from Silent Resolve. By the time you reach end game you shouldn’t be having threat problems if your group knows what they’re doing. I see now that Improved Inner Fire is more important, so I’d put two of those points in there and place the third in Improved PW:S because without all three points still in the disc tree you’ll get locked out at a lower level. So my revised spec for the level 80 raider/dungeon diver would like this.
Now some of you might wonder why I switched if I like this build so much. Well, my guild requested a second Circle of Healing / Guardian Spirit priest when I joined and you should try to fill what roles your guild needs, so here I am. Trust me when I say I really love my Holy spec and am not going to switch back anytime soon (I’d have to change the name of my blog). However, should you ever hear a quiet sigh and see a slight sparkle at the corner of my eye when someone casts a shield… well, you’ll know why.