A very different and interesting healing class is the Discipline priest, and we have one name Melissandra looking for some assistance.

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Welcome, to the ninth edition of our column here at WoW.TenTonHammer.com called Gear Eye for the WoW Guy. In it Byron "Messiah" Mudry takes a look at a character that needs some help in the game, and gives them a run down on what what they need to do to improve their character. Essentially providing a complete gear makeover in an attempt to get them moving on to new content in the game.

Sometimes that advise is slight upgrades, sometimes a full scale redo for those that are completely lost. Tune in each week to learn the tuning tips that will help you stand out from the average player.

Visit PlayerScore to find your score.

Of course there are two big tools that are needed to be able to check out a player and make useful recommendations. The first of those tools is an in depth knowledge of the game, specifically the classes, mechanics, best stats, best gear, enchants, gems, and more. This isn't something that everyone has for the first little while that they play the game or even for the first while after they hit the level cap.

The second major tool is PlayerScore, which luckily is available and usable by anyone and hosted right here on our network. You can find search for your own character and see how you stack up by visiting the PlayerScore site.

Our Victim

This week I look at a Discipline Priest from the server Zul’Jin called Melissandra. This priest has so far not raided all that much but is looking to get as much gear as possible to be able to raid when she wants to. She already has a good amount of gear and seems to have a pretty good handle on Discipline Priest priorities, but as always there is room for improvement.

Melissandra's Playerscore

Melissandra has already done a lot of great work getting ready for harder content

While not a whole lot of info was provided but I can see that she is a non-raider from the past, not having defeated any of the current raids or the WotLK raids. She did state that she is looking to at some point in the future though, so let’s go with that.

A look at Melissandra on the WoW Armory.

This character seems to follow the stat priority pretty well with the reforging that has been done, and even with most of the gear selection. For those that don’t know what the priority is for a Discipline Priest let’s check it out here:

Discipline Priest Stat Priority

Intellect > Spirit > Spell Power > Mastery > Haste > Crit

It is important to note that unlike most spell casters where the order is intellect and then spell power, here spirit is second. Also critical to note is the importance of mastery, it is a huge stat for Discipline Priests.

You can find Melissandra's PlayerScore information here: Melissandra's PlayerScore, remember however that it will change over time compared to what is listed here. This is due to PlayerScore constantly being updated to reflect any new gear, achievements and anything else that happens as he plays and upgrades or changes gear.

Good Item Choices

Melissandra has some great gear already, in fact many are best in slot pre-raiding and some are even best in slot tier 11 and even rank up on the top few even when considering tier 12 gear. That’s a great way to start, especially as a healer since they are a key slot in any group.

This is one of the best items out there at this level as it is perfectly itemized.

Starting with the neck piece Melissandra has the BIS (Best in Slot) pre-tier 12 neckpiece with the Nightweaver’s Amulet. The only thing better out there are only three necks. Two are from the Firelands raid and the third is the Firement Pendant for 1250 valor points. While all of these are upgrades, the piece she has is already a great pre-raid piece, and while long the valor neck may be the way to go, I would leave it until all the other slots are upgraded.

Next up the best is pure win. The Cord of the Raven Queen is a best in slot pre raid and a great item that has Intellect, Spirit, and mastery, what more could you want on a piece of gear.

Lastly both the legs and checst slot already have the tier 11 Mercurial legwraps and robes. There isn’t really anything better out there until she can upgrade to tier 12. When she does have the points the best way to go is to get the tier 12 chest. The tier 11 chest has spirit and crit, while the tier 12 has spirit and mastery. Long term this would be a great place to spend valor points. The legs go the opposite way (from mastery to crit) so I would not get them as a priority.

Another really good piece is the Mantle of Desire for the back slot. While it is a solid piece, it doesn’t have spirit on it, so long term I would upgrade it to Heavenly Breeze for justice points, since it trades the haste on Mantle of Desire for Spirit and keeps the mastery. While it isn’t a huge upgrade it is still worth it.

Discipline Priest Gear Upgrades

Having looked at quite a few characters since I started doing this column, I have to say for a non-raiding toon this Priest has some really good gear, especially compared to the average PUG player. As always though there is room for improvement though, and a lot of it has to do with finding some higher item level items with better itemization on them.

Hey, at least Milassandra didn't have a ton of PVP gear equiped like a bunch of the recent characters that I have looked at.

Milassandra’s helment is only a blue item level 346, however, really there isn’t a whole lot better out there as it is itemized fairly well.
Probably the next upgrade short of raids would be The Hexxer’s Mast from Zul’Gurub. However you can also find the Je'Tze's Sparkling Tiara that is a BOE drop from in Bastion of Twilight. It’s a great piece and now that BOT is easier many people are farming it for the boe drops.

Helm Upgrade

While you would lose mastery on this upgrade, haste is a close second stat wise. You would also gain 39 Intellect and 44 Spirit in the process. You also would trade a blue gem socket for a red socket which is another upgrade.

For your main hand weapon, the obvious upgrade is to the new blacksmith created Lightforged Elementium Hammer, so I won’t even talk about any thing else.

For an offhand weapon the one she has is so-so, there are two great and easy upgrades though. To get more spirit you could get the Lost Bag of Whammies from Zul’Gurub, which also has crit. An even better upgrade is simply gotten by finishing enough Fireland daily quests to finish the Filling the Moonwell quest and get the Globe of Moonlight. It has crit and mastery instead of spirit and because ii is a higher item level it has higher stat numbers.

offhand Upgrade

Sure you lose spirit, but you gain 33 Intellect, 36 more crit (which still sucks for you), and 134 mastery which is awesome to stack.

Next up in the wand slot Cookie’s Stirring Rod isn’t bad, but there are a lote better out there. The simplest and probably the best to get is the Scorchvine Wand for 700 Valor points. You could also get the Touch of Discord from Zul’Gurub or the wand of Untainted Power from Grin Batol.

Wand Upgrade

This is a big upgrade since you would bick up 33 Intellect and 20 Mastery. You also trade 63 crit for 86 spirit which is a great exhange.

Shoulders are a pain in the arse for most classes to find upgrades for and priests are no exception. Here however you actually have pretty damn good shoulders already. The only better shoulders you can get outside of raiding is the Claw-Fringe Mantle from Zul’Gurub, which are really only a marginal upgrade.

Shoulder Upgrade

Because of the gem socket colour change these end up granting 35 more intellect at the cost of 2 spirit. You would however trade mastery for crit, which is a horrible trade. The intellect gain makes up for it, but only by a little.

The wrists that you have already are really sub-par because they do not have spirit. You can get much better from Zul’Aman in the form of the Wristwraps of Departed Spirits which have spirit and mastery. Or the absolute best in slot are the Firesoul Wristguards from the vendors for 1250 valor points, which are best in slot in the game. I would really save for the Firesoul Wristguards as they would remain best in slot for a long while.

Wrists Upgrade

This is a massive upgrade as it is from an item level 346 to 378 that gains 69 intellect, trades 112 mastery for 158 spirit, and 112 crit for 140 haste. All three of those are awesome upgrades. Now if only it was trading teh crit for spirit instead of mastery to spirit.

Hands, here while you have a good piece and they are a level 353 epic, they are really sub par as they have no spirit on them but have mastery and crit. In fact there are several blues that I would take over these, such as the Dolomite Adorned Gloves from Stonecore that have spirit and haste. Or even better the Gloves of Purification for Justice points that have the ideal of spirit and mastery, however if you are spending justice points its better to go straight to the epic tier 11 gloves the Mercurial handwraps that offer the ideal spirit and mastery.

You could also choose to save valor points for the tier 12 gloves or save a lot of gold and buy the bis crafted Grips of Altered Reality. But they are REALLY expensive and almost identical to the valor gloves.

Glove Upgrade

Besides counting towards your tier 11 set bonus this is a solid upgrade. Essentially you trade crit for spirit and gain a gem socket. It is a huge upgrade across the board, especially since you get spirit on the tier 11 gloves.

Both rings need replacing as they are no where near up to par and easily replaced. The two best to get would be the Soothing Brimstone Circle for 1250 valor points and the Twined Band of Flowers for 1250 justice points. A close third is the Spirit Fragment Band that you can get by finishing enough Fireland Daily quests to complete Calling the Ancients. I would go for the first two though as they have spirit, which the Spirit Fragment Band doesn’t.

Ring Upgrade

Both of these are gigantic upgrades for the slot, and both in the top 5 that you can get in the game.

Item Modifications

Here once again Melissandra makes good use of item modification, better than most characters I look at. There are however a few items missing enchants. These are the pieces that most players would feel are in the most obvious need of upgrade though as they are the blue pieces that are equipped. However since many of them are still ok pieces and one of them is the shoulder slot I would enchant them any way.

This is especially the case with her shoulders as the enchant is cheap because it is sold by a vendor and grants 50 intellect and 25 haste. Adding an enchant to her off-hand would also give a big boost as it is a cheap enchant that grants 40 intellect. The same goes with the wrist slot, I would put an enchant on them even though they are going to be replaced, it is a great item slot for enchants with up to 50 spirit available from the enchant there.

Looking at gems, they should all be Brilliant Inferno Ruby unless the bonus is at least 10 intellect per socket on the item. If the socket bonus is at least 10 intellect per socket then for yellow sockets you can use the artful ember topaz (int/mastery) and for blue sockets use purified demonseye (int/spirit).

I see at least one wrong gem based on the above and that is the yellow gem in the feet where the colour of the socket is followed. The socket bonus is 10 spirit yet she followed the yellow socket colour instead of just putting a red +40 intellect.

Ok, on to reforging, and here it is done with the exception of a single item, so that's good. Even better she basically follows the advice I would give, stacking spirit and mastery. Before getting into details though if you are unsure of reforging you hcan read Reforge This, right? Make sure you bookmark page 3 that clearly shows the reforge priority for each class - Class / Spec Priorities for Reforging.

In this case it means go in and reforge like this:

Discipline Reforging Priority
Spirit > Mastery > Haste > Crit

It is also important to understand to understand how important mastery is for a Discipline Priest due to the mastery bonus granted. The bonus is that all absorption spells are boosted by 2.5% per mastery point. This is a huge boost as much of your healing isn't actual healing but damage prevention through the use of absorbtion effects.

This means it is critical to get as much mastery as possible.

Reforging priority should be followed, but the simple rules for gear are:

  1. Get Intellect any way you can (better gear, enchants, gems, etc).
  2. Reforge to spirit if the piece doesn’t have it.
  3. Reforge to mastery if the piece already has spirit and no mastery.
  4. Reforge crit to haste if the piece already has spirit and mastery on it.

Overall Review of Melissandra

Melissandra was a great character to review and provide suggestions for due to a few reasons. Firstly, the player already has a pretty good idea of what they are doing which makes it easier to make suggestions, as I get the feeling they will be followed. Secondly, there are some really good upgrades still available out there that are pretty easy to get, which makes my job a bit easier.

Lastly discipline priests are just such an awesome class and spec. They are healers, but function so differently to most other healers, the closest really being a Druid healer, which sounds odd. The reason for this is so much of a discipline priests healing is not healing at all it is from the absorption that the abilities grant. Because so much is from damage absorption and has to be in place before the damage comes in, it is like a druid having to have HOT’s rolling before damage comes in, in many ways.

To me it looks like Melissandra is already pretty much ready to be healing tier 11’s if she so chooses, especially once a few key upgrades are done such as her weapon. Once that is done though I would have no trouble taking her in to an easy raid.

Given a few more upgrades past the weapon I wouldn’t even have issues pulling her into a tier 12 raid for trash of even for the first few bosses.

Overall, very good job getting ready Melissandra, solid gear so far, and really only slight tweaking and progressive upgrades to keep moving forward.

How to Request your Makeover by the Messiah

Response has been really good for this column and while I have a few characters in the queue to be looked at, I am always looking for more! I would especially like to find those that I can make fun of (while still offering some real help), so if you have a character that you want reviewed, or know of one that badly needs help but is just too lost to even know they need it, feel free to sent me a link to their PlayerScore page. One lucky player, will be selected for a gear makeover in this column each week.

Visit PlayerScore to find your score.

Right now I would really like to find some characters to review that I have not looked at their spec or class in the past. This means for right now I would like to find some Rogues, Druids, Mages, or Death Knights that require some assisstance. So if you have one or know of one that needs some help please send them my way.

To submit a character for a review make sure you lookup the character's PlayerScore and send me a link to that character. Also if you want to provide any basic information on you're goals, how far advanced you want to plan for, how much time you invest in the game, or just a bit about your self, please include it all in a comment below or a note to the Messiah.

Thanks for actually making it to the bottom of this edition of Gear Eye for the WoW Guy everyone, hope you enjoyed.

World of Warcraft - Related Content
Reforge This | Priest Guide | Patch 4.2 Portal

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Last Updated: Mar 29, 2016

About The Author

Byron 1
Byron has been playing and writing about World of Warcraft for the past ten years. He also plays pretty much ever other Blizzard game, currently focusing on Heroes of the Storm and Hearthstone, while still finding time to jump into Diablo III with his son.