It’s time for Priest upgrades on the Dragonflight Alpha, as Blizzard have detailed changes coming with this week’s build, featuring significant improvements for all trees.
Priest Feedback (Source)
With the next alpha update, you will see that all trees within the Priest class, including the core talent tree, have received substantial changes in terms of pathing, arrangement, and choices. For the entirety of these changes, please look forward to this week’s patch notes. That said, let’s Leap of Faith in and take a peek at some of the changes we have in store for Priests in Dragonflight.
The original tree had limited choices as it was obvious which direction you were supposed to go based on specialization. Additionally, we wanted to reel back on how much throughput was available in the Core tree. While there will still be some throughput options available, we wanted to focus on utility options within the Core tree to let the Specialization trees focus more on throughput choices. Here are some abilities you will see in the Core tree:
(New) Angelic Bulwark – When an attack brings you below 30% health, you gain an absorption shield equal to 15% of your maximum health for 20 seconds. Cannot occur more than once every 90 seconds.
(New) Void Shift – You and the currently targeted party or raid member swap health percentages. Increases the lower health percentage of the two to 25% if below that amount.
Holy Word: Life – A word of holy power that heals the target. If the target is below 35% health, Holy Word: Life heals for 400% more and the cooldown of Holy Word: Life is reduced by 20 seconds.
Our goal with Holy was to allow for further specialization into your favorite spells. Whether it’s increasing the power of your single target heals, AoE interactions with Prayer of Healing and Holy Word: Sanctify, or you just want Renew on your entire group, we hope you are able to find a playstyle you enjoy.
(New) Revitalizing Prayers – Prayer of Healing as a 30% chance to apply a 6 secondsond Renew to allies it heals.
Harmonious Apparatus – Circle of Healing reduces the cooldown of Holy Word: Sanctify, Prayer of Mending reduces the cooldown of Holy Word: Serenity, and Holy Fire reduces the cooldown of Holy Word: Chastise by 2/4 seconds.
(New) Spirited Litany – After Prayer of Mending heals 80/40 times, gain Power Infusion for 10 seconds.
With Discipline, we aimed to address a lot of the dependency issues that existed and, like Holy, address the lack of connectedness in the tree. Along with this, we took a hard look at what choices were being offered to the player and revised those as well. Here are some examples of new spells in the Discipline tree along with some changes to core spells:
Power Word: Shield now has a cooldown and its absorb has been significantly increased. Weakened Soul has been removed. Renew and Flash Heal can now apply Atonement and are intended to be primary sources of Atonement application. Our aim is to allow for individual Power Word: Shield casts for each spec to be more valuable as well as reducing frustration surrounding the Weakened Soul debuff.
(New) Expiation – Increases the damage of Mind Blast and Shadow Word: Death by 10/20%. Mind Blast and Shadow Word: Death consume 3/6 seconds of Shadow Word: Pain or Purge the Wicked, instantly dealing that damage.
(New) Aegis of Wrath – Power Word: Shield absorbs 30% additional damage, but the absorb amount decays by 3% every 1 seconds.
(New) Divine Aegis – Critical heals create a protective shield on the target, absorbing 15% of the amount healed. Lasts 15 seconds. Critical heals with Power Word: Shield absorb 15% additional damage.
Shadow has received the largest batch of changes among the group. Our initial aim was to address dungeon gameplay surrounding Searing Nightmare. Here’s a few changes that we expect will improve Shadow’s dungeon gameplay:
Shadow Crash – Now applies Vampiric Touch to 4 targets.
(New) Dark Void – Deals damage to your target and nearby enemies, and applies Shadow Word: Pain to 8 targets.
(New) Pain of Death – Shadow Word: Death deals 20% of its damage to all targets affected by your Shadow Word: Pain within 40 yards.
Mind Blast’s damage can be increased through a few talents, allowing for Psychic Link to become more valuable in AoE.
Mind Sear now costs Insanity instead of generating Insanity. Its damage has been significantly increased.
Searing Nightmare has been removed.
We also discussed a design where Voidform is not central to the spec. Prior to Legion, the spec had its share of fun talents and abilities that we have modernized and brought into the talent tree, including Mind Spike and Dark Evangelism.
We appreciate the abundance of feedback given and your patience as we worked on bringing the Priest talent trees in line with our current design philosophy. We will continue to monitor feedback in the coming weeks as we bug fix and finish implementation on these last few talents. Thank you and we will see you in the Dragon Isles soon!