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Selecting Talents For the Priest

Updated Sat, Sep 17, 2011 by Mem



Priest Talents

Each class in World of Warcraft has access to three distinct Talent Trees. Here players will have the chance (starting at level 10) to place talent points that are earned as they level into various class-specific abilities known as talents. At one time picking talents could be a difficult and daunting task, but thanks to a few changes in Patch 4.0.1 by Blizzard, picking talents has become less of a headache.

Once a player has decided on a talent tree and placed their first point in it they must place all future points in that specific talent tree until they have spent a total of 31 point, unless a total respec is done. After the 31 point limit is reached, the player may then place their points in any talent tree they wish.

Each talent tree provides the player with a distinct play experience and you should choose the one that appeals most to you, even if it is a little off the beaten path. For Priests these talent trees are Holy, Discipline, and Shadow. Learn more about the Priest talent trees below:

(Remember, the following is only a suggestion based on tried and true methods, how you ultimately choose to spec is entirely up to you.)

Holy

Blizzard describes the Holy Priest: 

  • “A versatile healer who can reverse damage on individuals or groups and even heal from beyond the grave.”

Holy Priests are considered to be one of the most versatile healers in the game, easily able to heal large groups and single targets with ease. The talents in the Holy tree focus around this, providing vast improvements to their Holy spells, making their already epic heals even more awesome.

Players who choose the Holy tree will automatically gain access to Holy Word: Chastise, which is to say the least, seems like a

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disappointment for this healing based tree. However, don’t be fooled by first appearances. Holy Word: Chastise is but the tip of the Iceburg. When combined with the Chakra and Revelations talents, Holy Word: Chastise becomes a powerful tool indeed. Put these talents on your “must have” list.

Other must have spells for the Priests include: Guardian Spirit, Surge of Light, Inspiration, Circle of Healing, and Lightwell if you think you have a group of people that are capable of actually clicking on the stupid thing.

Players will want to deposit most of their talent points inside the Holy tree, however, while most the talents here are excellent, some should be avoided such as: Rapid Renewal, and State of Mind. While seemingly useful, these talents are currently not worth putting talent points into. Any remaining talent points can be placed in the Holy tree. Here you will find Twin Disciplines and Mental Agility, both excellent additions to the Holy Priest’s arsenal.


Discipline

Blizzard describes the Discipline Priest: 

  • “Uses magic to shield allies from taking damage as well as heal their wounds.”

Players who choose the Discipline tree will find the talents here focus on strengthening the Priest’s already awesome abilities as well as damage mitigation. Discipline Priests are usually found taking up the role of healing in groups and raids. Here they excel, especially in single target healing.

Upon choosing the Discipline tree Priests will automatically gain access to Penance, a very useful spell indeed. Not only is

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Penance one of the best single healing spells in the game, but it can also be used against the player’s enemies to do damage. This will be one of your primary healing spells, as well as damage spells if needed. Access to Penance is free, which means no talent points are required for this spell.

Thankfully speccing in the Discipline tree is fairly easy as almost all the talents here are useful in some way, however you will want to steer clear of a few including: Focused Will and Reflective Shield. Both of these talents are really only useful if you are soloing.

Some must have talents include: Devine Aegis, Power Infusion, Pain Suppression (great for tanks!), and Power Word: Barrier. Any extra points you may have should be placed in the Holy tree where talents like Empowered Healing, Divine Fury, and Inspiration compliment the Discipline tree nicely.


Shadow

Blizzard describes the Shadow Priest: 

  • “Uses sinister Shadow magic, especially damage-over-time spells, to eradicate enemies.”.

Embracing the dark side of the Priest, this talent tree, and all the talents in it are made for one thing; pure uninhibited damage. This talent tree is vastly different from the others, yet strikingly similar in that even when a Priest is doing damage they rely solely on spells to do the damage for them. It is highly doubtful we will be seeing any melee Priests anytime in the near future. Priests who wish to heal; this is not the tree for you!

Upon speccing into the Shadow tree Priests will gain Mind Flay, a powerful channeled spell that will become part of any good

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Shadow Priest’s basic damage rotation. Mind Flay is a freebie, so no talent points will be required to gain this spell. Other awesome spells that are considered must haves in the Priest talent tree are spells such as: Improved Shadow Word: Pain, Twisted Faith, Shadowform, Harnessed Shadows, Vampiric Embrace, Dispersion, and any other spell that will increase the Priest’s damage and usefulness.

All the talents in this tree look pretty amazing, but despite appearances, some talents should be avoided. These include: Improved Psychic Scream, Phantasm, Paralysis, and Psychic Horror all of which are only really useful in PvP or solo situations.

Any extra talent points you may have should be placed in the Discipline tree where the Shadow Priest will find useful talents such as: Twin Disciplines, Mental Agility, Evangelism, and Archangel, all excellent choices to round out your Shadow based spec.


Want to test the talents available in all the trees for yourself? Check out Blizzard’s handy dandy talent calculator. Or head back to our Priest Guide main page to find more useful information!



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