Part II in my 2-Part series on recapping the Talent Trees, prior to Wrath.
The main “healing tree”. Priests are unique when compared to Druids, Shaman, and Paladins – we have 2 healing trees, while the other classes, could really just dump all their points into one tree and “boom!”, healing spec’d!
Priests nearly always have to take a mix of Discipline and Holy. For you’ll see most Holy priests going into Disc for Meditation and Inner Focus (to chain for 5 Sec Rule, breaking) for mana regen. Then dumping the rest into the Holy tree for the benefits therein. Holy is different than Discipline where it focuses on pure healing, not damage mitigation.
Holy Specialization – Nothing new here, however both Disc and Holy priests alike should be getting this talent as crit is important for both specs. In TBC, you would see a lot of non 5/5 Specialization specs, simply because crit wasn’t essential.
Healing Focus – Originally a PVP talent, however in some raids it can be invaluable if you are taking damage, and still need to heal. (Remember Bloodboil’s Fel Rage? Illidan’s Flame Burst? Nearly every encounter in Sunwell)
Improved Renew – Coupled with the glyph, renew ticks can hit higher than ever.
Divine Fury – Gheal cast time reduction? Yes please.
Inspiration – With priests critting more than ever, keeping this buff up on the tanks is a cakewalk. 3/3 for PVE. Disc and Holy.
Desperate Prayer – Sigh, I used to have this baseline, but now its 1 point. Yes, I found situations where it saved me, but for PVE I want to just use binding heal instead and save the point. Honestly, a coin toss use of a talent point. Take it or leave it, personal choice.
Holy Reach – If you are planning on getting COH, nab this up for improved range. At least 1/2 if not 2/2
Improved Healing – Mana reduction on our most common heals. Get it. End of story.
Spirit of Redemption – for 1 point, the 5% spirit increase is worth it alone. The “improved death” is just icing.
Healing Prayers – I’ve never been a huge fan of this, but ProH has a fantastic HPS rating. For 10 mans, it can be nice, a little less so in 25 mans. If ProH ever breaks Party targets, get this for certain. Right now, its situational at best, especially if you carry T6 2 piece bonus through Naxx.
Spiritual Guidance – Worth the points since spirit is usually a pretty prominent stat on our gear. It seems less so in WotLK, but getting at least 3/5 here is worth it.
Spiritual Healing – 10% bonus to healing at 5/5. A must have.
Surge of Light – This is interesting now that it includes a mana free, instant, non-crittable Flash Heal. At 2/2, 50% proc rate on all crits, once you get your crit rate up to ~25-30% (which seems to be the number people are aiming for raid buffed), this pays for itself really quickly. (Note that it can proc off of COH, and with COH able to hit 6 people glyphed, assuming a 20% crit rate, you can almost count on a free Flash Heal)
Lightwell - Now that its buffed its actually a nice spell, the healing it can pump out is good. The hard part is providing Lightwell 101 for your DPS casters. Breaking the DPS out of the “A healer will get me” mindset is the hardest part, second only to breaking the Lolwell stigma.
Holy Concentration/Improved HC – Proccing off of crit, now makes crit gear important, but at 80, you should have ample crit to have this weigh itself out if you are comparing it to the older version.
Serendipity – Mana restoration for overhealing, even by 1HP, for 25% of the mana cost at 3/3 – always nice.
Circle of Healing – Even at a 6 second cooldown (not yet implemented) for 1 point, worth it. Period. Less QQ, see my earlier post on Circle of Healing and Cooldowns
Test of Faith – Talented version of the Crystal Spire of Karabor. In my eyes, mainly there to augment COH. With COH spam being nerfed, I see this talent as less helpful in day to day healing.
Divine Providence – Pretty hefty at 5/5 and for this deep in the tree. Again, mainly there to augment COH – the added bonus to ProM is nice, but with COH spam nerfed, I see 5/5 in this talent as a very expensive price to pay for little return on investment.
Guardian Spirit – Finally a “Oh $#(*! Button”. A little gimmicky, and was majorly buggy for a while. If you are going deep Holy, you’d be foolish not to get this. Also provides a nice healing bonus while your other healers Battle Rez, pop Hymn of Hope(/sigh), or are face down because they stood in the quintessential fire.
After looking at both the Disc and Holy trees, its important to remember that a lot of changes are likely to occur in the coming weeks after WotLK launches – so what you think is a good talent today, might not be a good talent tomorrow.
I do want to take a second at discuss our two new baseline spells.
Divine Hymn – If it was available prior to 80, it would be a good spell to cast if you accidentally pulled to many quest mobs. However, in dungeons it has proven to be very situational regarding the Crowd Control- to the point where it has been more of a quick pause in the mobs whie other CC take affect and tanks grab mobs. The AOE heal, is a nice quick heal to throw out there to assist, but the long cooldown makes it not as effective as I’d like. Verdict: Situational
Hymn of Hope – Far inferior to the original Draenei racial, Hymn of Hope. With an 8 second channel (and we all know that 8 seconds seems like eternity to a healer), use of this spell requires communication to the other healers. Personally, I’d like to see a change in some aspect of the spell to make it more useful in a raid enviorment, as 8 seconds is really prohibitive. Verdict: Lackluster, and potentially dangerous to use.
We’re at the final countdown, Wrath is nearly here.