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We’ve been given some interesting glimpses into 3.1. Let’s talk about those a little bit…

First and foremost, Divine Spirit is baseline. I have to admit, I gave up on this spell as becoming a baseline spell for all priests ages ago. Currently I am Discipline spec’d and the only reason why I have regular DS is because it cost only one point, even though Spirit is fairly useless to a Disc Priest. If they somehow find a way to make Improved DS worth putting 2 points into it, then we can talk.

The allusion to this new Discipline spell: Power Word: Barrier should be interesting to see. Blue likened it to a AOE/Party Wide Power Word: Shield. It seems interesting, however I am curious of the overall practicality when compared to Prayer of Healing- it needs to be different in SOME way. It would need to absorb more damage than ProH restores, especially considering it is a talented spell, not baseline.

Penance is now self castable… meh. More of a PVP attraction in my book. Most of the time, if I need a heal, I use binding heal. Though, likely this spell should have been self castable already.

Onto the mana regen changes; while it does seem like it’s this huge and incredible nerf, I have to admit mana isn’t an issue for me at all at the moment. I pretty much chain cast an entire fight to keep Grace up on my tanks, crit Aegises on them quite often (raidbuffed I’m around 35-38% crit rating), and my guild typically has at least 2 if not 3 or 4 Replenishment providers in any given raid. I can’t even tell you the last time I had to pop a Runic Mana Potion. I’ve mainly be using Wild Magic potions during those “GO GO HEAL!” moments.

Divine Providence now allows for a faster Gheal when you cast Flash Heal. Eerily similar to the T4 Set bonus. I have to admit, very lackluster. However, perhaps it will return Gheal back into the arsenal of more priests. With a Glyphed Flash Heal being so bloody efficient and coupling in the insane overhealing amounts, it isn’t cast nearly as much as it used to. I think a lot of this is due to the fact that so many priests are used to downranking, and flash heal is so similar to a downranked Gheal. I am curious to see how this talent plays out on the PTRs.

There should be a number of other changes coming once Blizzard gives us a bit more than what they have. I am looking forward to some PTR time and Ulduar, as I am getting tired of farming the same content over and over. I’ve copied over Derevka to the PTR already, and now just await a PTR build to be pushed out to the masses. I will keep everyone updated with what I experience on the PTRs—stay tuned!

I would expect some major healing changes in the near future. Blizzard keeps commenting that healing seems to be too easy, alluded to threat changes, and a number of other insinuations. We’ll see what happens, but I forsee some changes soon.

We also saw a preview of the T8 sets. (You can see them in person if you go to the Argent Crusade just outside of Dalaran – there is a NPC out there that is in Priest T8). It’s nice, but it seems a little too futuristic to me. Then again, I think most priests will compare all Tier sets to T6…. Man, I miss my smokey faces.

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