Holy Priests – How to Build the Ultimate Group and Raiding Spec
When it’s time to be in a large raid group, or quest with a group of friends, getting the most out of your Holy talent tree is important. It’s the only tree where you can maximize your health regen and at the same time increase places like spirit, mana, and movement speed in your favor.
And now that you can duel-spec with the patch 3.1 changes, it will be important to keep the Holy talent tree set up for specific runs.
I’ve played my priest a lot, and actually respecced the guy so many times I’m almost embarrassed – but in the process I’ve worked out what really works in a hard-core raid.
This is it.
Row 1 (Healing Focus, Improved Renew, and Holy Specialization)
As a healer you probably know how important it is to be able to heal without interruption. This is why you should place 2pts in Healing Focus and gain 70% reduced pushback during any healing. Right now, don’t worry about the Holy Specialization. Instead, fill the IR and increase the amount you heal by 15%.
Row 2 (Spell Warding, Divine Fury)
I played back and forth with these 2 forever. When it comes down to it, just add 5pts to each run and move on. You reduce the amount of damage you take from spells by 10% with SW, and reduce casting times for 4 different abilities by .5 seconds.
Row 3 (Desperate Prayer, Blessed Recovery, Inspiration)
Well, you definitely need to add 1pt to the DP because it gives the caster an instant 263 to 325pt heal. The other 2 abilities I just skip for now because they don’t give me immediate results.
Row 4 (Holy Reach, Improved Healing, Searing Light)
Even after only adding 2 points in the 3rd row, you should have opened up the 4th. Here it’s important to maximize Holy Reach out because you gain 20% extra range on 6 different healing spells. IH will need to be full as well so you can get the 15% reduction in mana cost for 5 different abilities. I skipped over Searing Light for now, but only because it increases damage from spells and isn’t a healing setup.
Row 5 (Healing Prayers, Spirit of Redemption, Spiritual Guidance)
Healing Prayers is another mana reduction, and when full it will take away 20% of the mana cost for Prayer of Healing and the Prayer of Mending. The Spirit of Redemption is a great weapon when you’re in a group or raid. It allows you to run out of health, but heal others for 15 seconds, and then die. You never know who will need more help. Obviously you need a little fight in you during your adventures and the SG will do this easily. Add all 5pts and receive a 25% increase of your Spirit to spell damage.
Row 6 (Surge of Light, Spiritual Healing)
Okay, you have two options here. I personally try to stay away from Smite and Flash Heal when I’m at the higher levels, but if you use them a lot you’ll want to fill Surge of Light. I say skip it for now and fill the Spiritual Healing. It increases the amount of health you heal by an additional 10%. Plus it opens the next level.
Row 7 (Holy Concentration, Lightwell, and Light Resilience)
One of my favorite abilities in the Holy talent pool is the Lightwell ability. It is kind of like the equivalent to a portal, and members of your group or raid can click on it to gain additional health. They will receive 801 health over a 6 second period. It’s a lot nicer then shuffling through each person. Plus, you can skip over the other two and still reach level 8.
Row 8 (Body and Soul, Empowered Healing, and Serendipity)
I like the body and soul ability, but it’s not needed right now. I pass on it when trying to keep some of the talent points, and only add 2pts to Empowered Healing. The idea here was to keep 5pts in the row, and filling up Serendipity with 3 did the trick.
Row 9 (Empowered Renew, Circle of Healing, Test of Faith)
This is probably one of the most important rows to fill up. The Circle of Healing is my 2nd favorite trick, because it can heal 5 party members at the same time. Keep in mind they have to be within a 15 yard radius of you though. Test of Faith gives you a 12% increase in healing abilities towards any friends that are below 50%. Then of course, the ER does pretty much what it says.
Row 10 (Divine Providence)
You will notice that you don’t need to fill this up with 5pts to reach row 11, like other trees. Just use 3pts. It will still give you a 6% increase on several healing abilities, but we don’t need the other 4% possible.
Row 11 (Guardian Spirit)
As a player this isn’t my favorite thing to use, unless I throw it up on a tank or something. Whoever you heal gets a 40% increase in HP. There’s a few other things as well, but if you haven’t paid attention to it before, I won’t spoil everything.
20 Points Away! Do you go Shadow, or Discipline?
Personally, when I’m healing raids I’ll use up the rest of my points on Discipline to up my survivability a tad. The last thing your group needs is their primary healer getting killed (don’t you HATE that feeling?), so I tend to err towards Discipline.
Will that in mind here’s a bonus Discipline suggestion for super dedicated raid healers who want to keep that whole dying thing to a minimum:
Unbreakable Will 5/5, Silent Resolve 3/3, Improved Power Word Fortitude 2/2, Martyrdom 2/2, Meditation 3/3, Improved Power Word Shield 3/3.
All of the effects under these talents will boost your survivability by either making you harder to kill, or by reducing threat. The combo of which should help you stay alive that extra 10 or 20 seconds you need.