We continue our early look at class and specialization design with the Priest. In these blogs, we’ll be exploring class identity, discussing Legion’s new designs, and presenting core combat abilities for each specialization—laying out the foundation upon which talents and Artifacts will build further. With that in mind, let’s delve into what it means to be a Priest in World of Warcraft.
Priests have a strong identity as spiritual practitioners who harness divine power to inspire and protect allies, heal the injured, and cure the ailed. But while this clearly holds true for Holy Priests, these ideas are less fundamental to Discipline Priests—and the ideals and beliefs of Shadow Priests are antithetical to those of Holy Priests.
Despite these differences, Priests of any spec share one key thing in common: unwavering faith in something from which they draw great power. What delineates specializations is the source of that power. In Legion, we’re going to explore that dichotomy in greater depth than ever through the gameplay for each specialization.
After spending much of their lives in temples studying ancient doctrine, preaching the tenets of their faith, and pledging their full devotion to the divine powers they follow, the most adept priests leave their houses of worship to serve on the battlefield, as shepherd to flock. There, they use their holy powers to bless allies and mend wounds. And while most stay behind the frontlines to aid their comrades, these holy champions are also capable of smiting foes and carrying out sacred justice. They’re also morally opposed to the use of Shadow and Void magic—rather, they are exemplars of the incredible grace and power of the divine and the Light, and even death cannot fully stop their healing capabilities.
"The most adept priests leave their houses of worship to serve on the battlefield, as shepherd to flock"
Given the innate purity of the spec, we want to ensure that Holy Priests continue to have a large repertoire of compelling healing spells. The Chakra system was cumbersome, requiring additional setup to optimally use most spells and restricting how much you could fluidly shift between healing methods. We have removed it in favor of a more dynamic play style focused around Holy Words. New Holy Word spells are designed to feel absolutely miraculous, having huge effects balanced with long base cooldowns. The new passive effect of Serendipity allows those long base cooldowns to be reduced, letting you use them more frequently. Finally, in keeping with the resolute beliefs of the Holy Priest, they can make no use of Shadow spells. Smite, Holy Fire, and Holy Word: Chastise are the instruments used by Holy Priests to inflict damage upon their enemies.
Here’s a basic look at the core combat healing abilities for Holy Priests:
- 2.0% Mana, 40 yd range, 2.5 sec cast
- A slow but efficient spell that heals an ally for a moderate amount.
- Flash Heal
- 3.5% Mana, 40 yd range, 1.5 sec cast
- A fast but expensive spell that heals an ally for a moderate amount.
- Holy Word: Serenity
- 4.0% Mana, 40 yd range, Instant, 1 min cooldown
- Perform a miracle, healing an ally for an absolutely massive amount.
- Prayer of Healing
- 8.0% Mana, 40 yd range, 2.5 sec cast
- A powerful prayer that heals up to 5 injured allies within 15 yards of the target for a strong amount.
- Prayer of Mending
- 2.0% Mana, 40 yd range, 1.5 sec cast, 10 sec cooldown
- Places a spell on a party or raid member that heals them for a moderate amount the next time they take damage. When the heal occurs, Prayer of Mending jumps to another party or raid member within 20 yds. Jumps up to 5 times and lasts 30 sec. after each jump.
- Holy Word: Sanctify
- 5% Mana, 40 yd range, Instant, 1 min. cooldown
- Release miraculous light into a target location, healing up to 6 allies within 10 yards for a huge amount.
- 2.5% Mana, 40 yd range, Instant
- Fill the target with faith in the Light, healing them instantly for a minor amount and then a large amount over 15 sec.
- When you cast Flash Heal or Heal, the cooldown of Holy Word: Serenity is reduced by 6 sec.
- When you cast Prayer of Healing or Prayer of Mending, the cooldown of Holy Word: Sanctify is reduced by 6 sec.
- When you cast Smite or Holy Fire, the cooldown of Holy Word: Chastise is reduced by 6 sec.
- Mastery: Echo of Light
- Your direct healing spells heal for an additional 25% (with Mastery from typical gear) over 6 sec.
Additionally, to give you an idea of how some talents may build upon this, here’s an example of one of their Holy-specific talents:
- Instant, 3 min cooldown
- Enter a pure Holy form for 30 sec, increasing the effects of Serendipity by 200%.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this early preview of our approach to Priest class and specialization design in World of Warcraft: Legion. We’ll continue our review later today with a look at Mages.
Return to the overview for the full class preview series.
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