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Spiritual Guidance: 2 Talent Specs to Power Your Priest to 80

Matt Low

Every Sunday (usually), Spiritual Guidance will offer practical insight for priests of the holy profession. Your host is now Matt Low, the grand poobah of World of Matticus and a founder of PlusHeal, a new healing community for all restorative classes. Matt scored a beta key and busied himself speccing and respeccing his Priest multiple times to figure out funky ways to level to level 80 and has arrived at 2 possible specs!

What do all Priests have to look forward to when Wrath of the Lich King comes out?

Leveling. The grind starts all over again.I'm going to dive right into it and suggest not one but two possible talent builds that you may wish to consider once you get your shiny copy of the new expansion.

Oh wait, before we get into it, we're going to go on 2 assumptions:

  1. You're not Shadow (I'm sure my shadowy counterpart Alex Ziebert will address the leveling patterns of our Shadow brethren at some point, am I right?)
  2. You're a fresh level 70 with nothing but healing gear

Don't forget about the universal spell power deal. Even though your healing gear may not be as potent as DPS gear of similar level, it'll still pack a punch. You'll end up with almost little hit, unfortunately. Right now, my Spellpower rests around the mid 1200 mark. For reference, my healing in the current Burning Crusade level is around 2150 healing.

The Straight Holy DPS Build

The main strategy behind the Straight Holy DPS Build(tm) is that you do nothing but straight Holy DPS down mobs with your healthy combination of Holy Fire, Mind Blast, and Smite. If the mob in question is extra chunky in size, a DoT might help speed up the process. Yeah we only have Shadow Word: Pain. But it's still some extra DPS, right?

Talent spec and play style useful only if you plan on soloing your way to 80 without running dungeons or doing any kind of real healing.

Here's a look at the 31/27/3 talent sequence:

(Image link takes you to the WoW Head talent calculator)

Notable talents

Don't worry, we're not going to go knee deep in the Shadow tree. We're going deep enough to snap up Spirit Tap. It's served us well on the grind from 60 to 70 and it shall serve it's purpose here again.

Under the Holy Tree, we're going to pick up a few key talents here. Holy Specialization is highly recommended as the majority of our damage done will be Holy. We'll want to increase our damage and range of Smite with Holy Reach and Searing Light and decrease the cast time with Divine Fury. Make sure you pick up Surge of Light! That talent is overpowered! It may not seem like much, but you'll grow to love it when you're out in Northrend incinerating Murlocs and other local wildlife.

Finally in the Discipline Tree, that never used Wand damage increase talent has been replaced with the far more enticing Twin Disciplines. Once you max that out, you can either opt for Improved Power Word: Shield (which I personally like since it could mean an extra few seconds where I am not affected by spell pushback or a combination of Improved Fortitude and Martyrdom. I'm not that picky about the stuff we pick in the early to mid range talents. It's the latter ones that I'm far more interested in. Don't forget our staple talents Meditation, Inner Focus, Mental Agility, and Mental Strength. Improved Inner Fire is an option that I chose because of the recent change where it boosts spell power instead of just healing. Finish off with a combination of Focused Power (for the increased spell damage) and a combination of either Power Infusion or Enlightenment. I exercised option on Power Infusion just so I could go to town on the early mobs.

Trust me when I tell you to open your cast sequence with Holy Fire. It takes forever to cast the spell right now, but the cast time dropped to about 1.5 when you have it talented. Keep Inner Fire active. It boosted my Spell power from the mid 1200's to the upper 1400s (give or take). Anyways, open with Inner Fire. I like to follow it with a Mind Blast and several Smites until the mob gets into Shadow Word: Death range. The Spirit Tap talent should ensure that you won't need to drink too much.

This is my personal plan of choice. I'm hoping to shoot to 80 as quick as possible and get me that Prophet title!

The Semi Holy DPS-but-can-heal-dungeons Build

(Image link takes you to the WoW Head talent calculator)

Plan B is for the Priest that plans to be as flexible as possible. In other words, they want to dish out some pain in the event they need to solo alone but not feel completely useless when they're asked to heal an instance.

Major changes here that we see are departures from various DPS enhancing talents. We're skipping out on Spirit Tap (so bring water in case you need some mana).

The Holy Tree sees the return of Improved Renew and Healing Focus. Spirit of Redemption ought to be snapped up in the later tiers. The 3 points in Spiritual Healing are optional. It depends on how much you foresee yourself healing. I instance grinded my way from 60 to 70 (but that might not be the best course of action here in Wrath).

The Discipline Tree remains largely unchanged except for the subtle pickup of Silent Resolve to help offset for the various tanks you may be partying with.

What about beyond 70?

I'm leaving that choice entirely up to you. In the beta, I'm pushing hard on the Disc side of things finishing out Enlightenment and Aspiration to help make the grind to 80 that much easier. The other Holy talents are there to help boost your healing in various ways.

When the expansion is on the verge of release (and I've hit 80 and had a chance to play with the stuff), I'll write a piece on suggested raiding specs. Although I've mentioned them before slightly, I didn't get the chance to put it to practice in a real raid environment.

Before you go

You may wish to read up on Dwarf Priest's take on Priest leveling. She has a bit more depth including which stat points to prioritize.

Want to find more great tips for carrying out your Priestly duties? Spiritual Guidance has you covered with all there is to know!And don't forget to check the WoW Insider Directory for more priestly info!

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