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Spiritual Guidance: 4 common myths about Discipline Priests

Matt Low

Every Sunday (usually), Spiritual Guidance will offer practical insight for priests of the holy profession. Your host is Matt Low, the grand poobah of World of Matticus and a founder of PlusHeal, a new healing community for all restorative classes. This week, Matticus wants to dispel a few common beliefs about the Discipline Priest.

Even though I'm still a Holy Priest at heart, I wanted to raise more awareness for Discipline Priests. This week's post in particular is aimed at raid leaders or players who don't think Discipline can't cut it.

There are a few common misconceptions about Disc Priests out there that I wanted to help clear up. I've received emails and read forum posts from Disc Priests with their own horror stories about how they're not understood or that they feel shunned and all that. I had one case where a Disc Priest was made to respec or else he wouldn't be allowed to raid.

So let's start with the first one. Priests themselves know what they can and can't do.

Myth: Disc Priests can't solo heal


The abilities of a Priest revolve around their Power Word: Shield and Divine Aegis procs. I can't emphasize this enough. It's all about the damage prevention with healers littered in between.

They can hold their own in a raid environment provided they are used correctly.

Raid leaders and analysts need to remember that prevented damage may not always show up correctly. Even though it looks like a Disc Priest may not be healing as much as Joe Paladin, you have to factor shielding in there somehow. A good rule of thumb I like to use is to take the Priest's overall healing and add 30% to see how much damage has been mitigated or healed.

I'm probably way off on that though.

Myth: Disc Priests can't raid heal


While it is true that a Disc Priest cannot match the throughput of a deep Holy, Circle of Healing Priest, that does not mean they can't raid heal. They're just not the best for the job. Think about it this way. A Paladin can raid heal. They're just not optimized for it.

Prayer of Healing and Holy Nova are there to help. Don't write them off entirely. They can still do it.

Myth: Disc Priests run out of mana quickly


After inspecting various Priests that I've pugged stuff with, I've come to the conclusion that there are a few... shall we say, misguided players out there.

I beg you.

Please do not use some sort of hybrid 35/35/0 talent selection and then promptly complain about running out of mana. A Disc Priest is not a player who goes down the Disc tree to pick up Improved Divine Spirit and then invests the rest into Holy.

It doesn't work that way.

A Disc Priest is one that actually goes deep down the Disc tree. We're talking like at least 45 points. Give or take.

All the good stuff and mana regen stuff? You pick that up deep in the Discipline or Holy trees. It's virtually impossible to pick both of them up unless you can somehow hack yourself into getting 120 talent points.

In Discipline, mana regen talents revolve around Rapture. I guess you could factor in Enlightenment, Power Infusion, and Mental Agility as well.

Under Holy, it's all about Surge of Light, Serendipity, and Holy Concentration.

(On a side note, do other Priests get annoyed when Surge of Light or Holy Concentration procs and no one has taken any damage? I suppose you could Surge off a free Smite.)

Myth: Disc Priests are useless


Okay, so I might have made that last myth up. But seriously, if I had to give an opinion on this, I think the reason Disc Priests are discriminated against is because they're still relatively new. The game's only been out for a little over a month and Disc Priests have had a reputation as being all stars in PvP action and not so much in the PvE area.

So to raid leaders, the next time you think about turning down a Disc Priest, please make sure you're doing it for the right reasons. Turn them down because you're full on healers. Turn them down because you don't have enough raid healers. Or if they're not geared enough for the content you're doing.

Give them a chance to change your mind.

Remember when Protection Paladins used to be scoffed at? Then they started to main tank Karazhan without shackles or CCs. Pretty soon, doing Hyjal practically required a Prot Paladin (because it was easier to, not because it was absolutely necessary).

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 out our other Leveling Guides as well as our Wrath Guides and Galleries!

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