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Member Since 19 Feb 2012
Offline Last Active Jun 12 2016 05:57 PM

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Discipline Priest PvP Guide - Warlords of Draenor by Zunniyaki

30 April 2016 - 06:52 AM

This guide is created to you by Zunniyaki, a Multi-R1 Discipline and Shadow priest and 3x Blizzcon Competitor. Zunniyaki has played at the highest level of arena throughout many expansions and is considered to be one of the top priests of all time. He has taken a considerable amount of time to put together an exceptionally detailed summary of information explaining everything you could possibly need to know about getting started as a discipline priest in PvP.

Zunniyaki Priest - http://eu.battle.net....st/Zunniknows/

1 - Sugested talents and glyphs
2 - Resource management
3 - Race selection
4 - Stats and enchants
5 - Healing rotation and priority system
6 - Surviving as discipline priest
7 - Crowd control
8 - Utilizing your mobility
9 - Making the most of your utility
10 - Sugested keybinds
11 - Sugested macros
12 - Sugested addons / scripts

(1) Suggested Talents

Posted Image

When choosing talents there are often many choices you can make based on the comps you play, the comps you are playing against and the type of bracket you are playing such as 2v2, 3v3, 5v5 or Rated Battlegrounds. Below you will find Zunniyaki's thoughts on the best talents to take for each tier and why.

Level 15

Posted Image

Best Talent: Spectral Guise
- Spectral Guise can be used while locked out on your holy magic school.
- It is useful for both offensive and defensive play. (Going in for fears, changing position without the risk of being crowd controlled or going invis for a short period of time when being targeted.)
- Spectral Guise can be used to avoid CC.

Is there an alternative talent?: No
Why?: Both Desperate Prayer and Angelic Bulwark are worse defensively due to their long cooldown.

Situational Usage of the "weaker" talent choices? ([World PvP, BG's, RBG's, Arena.):
There is no situation where Desperate Prayer or Angelic Bulwark would be more useful.

Level 30

Posted Image

Best Talent: Angelic Feather
- Angelic Feather gives you the best mobility overall.
- It adds an extra magic debuff to you which can act as dispel protection.
- It can be used on your partners.

Is there an alternative talent?: Yes, Body and Soul.
Why?: It can be useful in some situations where you get dispelled alot due to the fact that it gives you 2 magic buffs when you apply Power word: shield giving you extra dispel protection.

Situational Usage of the "weaker" talent choices? (World PvP, BG's, RBG's, Arena.):
When participating in World PvP, Battlegrounds and Rated Battlegrounds you can use body and soul to give people a sprint to increase their mobility and give them an extra magical buff for dispel protection. In these situations you will find it difficult to keep feathers up on multiple targets making body and soul easier to manage.

Level 45

Posted Image

Best Talent: Surge of Light
Why?: Surge of Light gives you the most healing output of the 3 choices available.

Is there an alternative talent?: Yes, Mindbender and Power Word Solace.
Why?: Both of these talents are useful when you know that mana is going to be an issue. They both give an average of around 12% mana per minute. You will however have to keep an eye open when using mindbender as it can be crowd controlled.

Situational Usage of the "weaker" talent choices? (World PvP, BG's, RBG's, Arena.):
None that come to mind.

Level 60

Posted Image

Best Talent: Psychic Scream
Why?: Psychic Scream is our most effective CC because it is instant cast and it is AoE meaning we can CC multiple targets with it at once.

Is there an alternative talent?: Yes, Void Tendrils.
Why?: Void Tendrils is useful when playing with a warlock as psychic scream will DR the warlock's fear. Void Tendrils can also be useful when playing against specific match-ups in 2v2 such as warrior's and death knight's.

Situational Usage of the "weaker" talent choices? (World PvP, BG's, RBG's, Arena.):
None that come to mind.

Level 75

Posted Image

Best Talent: Twist of Fate
Why?: All three talents are very good in different situations but twist of fate is favoured overall because the 15% increased healing buff is up when you need it the most.

Is there an alternative talent?: Yes, Spirit Shell and Power Infusion.
Spirit Shell is very useful against teams with long CC chains such as hunters and mages.
- Power Infusion is really nice for burst healing but it is dispellable making it very unattractive against teams with alot of offensive dispels.

Situational Usage of the "weaker" talent choices? (World PvP, BG's, RBG's, Arena.):
None that come to mind.

Level 90

Posted Image

Best Talent: Divine Star
Why?: Divine Star doesn't really heal for alot but it can trigger up to 2 surge of light procs when cast and it is instant.
(Both cascade and Halo have cast times which makes them less attractive in arena.)

Is there an alternative talent?: No

Situational Usage of the "weaker" talent choices? (World PvP, BG's, RBG's, Arena.):
Both Cascade and Halo can be quite useful in larger raid situations, World PvP, BGs RBGs, especially if you are not specced for Surge of Light..

Level 100

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Best Talent: Saving Grace
Why?: It simply proves the strongest healing output and is instant cast.

Is there an alternative talent?: Yes, Clarity of Will.
Why?: Clarity of Will is decent against some double DPS teams in 2v2 as you can shield both yourself and your partner for 200k+ absorbs before the other teams opens up on you giving you an advantage and strong survivability in the opener. The main weakness of this talent is that the absorb from the spell can be dispelled.

Situational Usage of the "weaker" talent choices? (World PvP, BG's, RBG's, Arena.):
None that come to mind.

(1) Suggested Glyphs

Posted Image

Glyphs are very important to maximising our characters potential. You will find yourself needing to change your glyph setup based on the comps you play and face. Below is an explanation of what glyphs you should use and why.

Standard Glyph Setup.

What are your mandatory glyphs?:
  • Posted Image
  • Posted Image
Why is each important?:
  • Posted Image is very important because it allows us to cast it while moving which is really important for our mobility as a disc priest.
  • Posted Image is a must because it gives us immunity to silences and interrupts for 5 seconds every 1min 30 seconds which is useful in almost every situation.
What glyphs are optional and when should you use them?: Our optional glyph choices are...
  • Posted Image Good when your not facing Posted Image or Posted Image as you will take the inquisitor glyph in that situation.
  • Posted Image Useful to Holy Fire yourself out of traps and polymorph's. ONLY used against Posted Image and Posted Image.
  • Posted Image Useful when your teams strategy is to go on the opposing teams Posted Image/Ret/Holy Posted Image or Posted Image to remove Iceblock, Divine Shield, Blessing of Protection or Dark Bargain.
  • Posted Image Is useful against Posted Image/Posted Image to get your team out of CC more efficiently as it gives you 2 charges of purify but increases it's cooldown to 14 seconds.
  • Posted Image If you know that a certain comp will try to focus you down it can be very usefull to pull yourself away.
  • Posted Image This glyph is mostly used in 2v2 and it very useful against Posted Image / Posted Image, or anyone that will try to focus you down.
Minor Glyphs

Are there any mandatory minor glyphs?: No, all minor glyphs are purely visual changes.
Are there any fun minor glyphs that stand out?: Yes!
  • Posted Image Changes the appearance of your Shadowfiend/Mindbender.
  • Posted Image Changes the colour of your shackle ability.
  • Posted Image Gives you periodic wings when you cast heals.

(2) Resource Management

Posted Image

Every class has its own resource to manage in order to to be able to get the most out of the class and spec being played.

What is your primary resource as a priest?

Our primary resource is Mana

How does your primary resource work?

On your characters unit frame you will see a blue bar, that is your mana. You will start off with 160k mana as standard and each spell you cast will cost you a certain amount of mana. (For example, Posted Image costs 6624 mana per cast.)

How can you generate your primary resource?

  • You passively generate around 5000 mana every 5 seconds while in combat and around 7000 mana every 5 seconds while out of combat.
  • If you choose either "Mindbender" or "Power Word: Solace" as your level 45 talent you will regenerate on average an additional 12% of your total mana every minute.

What do you use your primary resource on?

You will mostly spend your mana on using the following spells...
  • Posted Image
  • Posted Image
  • Posted Image
  • Posted Image
  • Posted Image
There are other spells that you will use that cost mana but the above spells are the ones that you will spend the most mana using over the period of a game.

What is an efficient way of using your primary resource?

As a Discipline Priest your most mana efficient heals are...

Posted Image > Posted Image > Posted Image > Posted Image > Posted Image in that order.

Do you have any abilities that consume a lot of your primary resource?

  • Posted Image Costs around 20k mana so use this spell carefully.
  • Posted Image Costs 4000 mana per cast and is spammable, so make sure to use it wisely.
Prayer of Mending is not often used due to the fact that it's heal is very weak and has a 1.5 sec cast time.
You will use this spell occasionally to add another magic buff acting as dispel protection or sometimes against DoT teams (Warlocks/Boomkins).

Prayer of Healing isn't currently used in your PvP healing rotation as its a very weak heal for its cast time.

(3) Race Selection


Picking what race you would like to be can be a tricky process when confronted with the different types of racial abilities and passives each race has. Below i will talk about the different races, what they offer and which race is best for both horde and alliance for pvp.

*Only racials that have any real use for pvp will be listed*

So what choices do i have to choose from if i was to play alliance, and what does each race offer?

  • Posted Image - Removes all movement impairing effects and all effects which cause loss of control of your character. This effect shares a cooldown with other similar effects.
  • Posted Image - Versaility increased by 100 (scales with level).
  • Posted Image - Reduces frost damage taken by 1%.
  • Posted Image - Removes all poison, disease, curse, magic, and bleed effects and reduces all physical damage taken by 10% for 8 seconds.
  • Posted Image - Reduces Arcane damage taken by 1%
  • Posted Image - Removes roots and slows.
  • Posted Image - Maximum resource increased by 5%
  • Posted Image - Haste increased by 1%
Night Elf
  • Posted Image - Reduces nature damage taken by 1%
  • Posted Image - Increases your chance to dodge melee and ranged attacks by 2%, and your movement speed by 2%
  • Posted Image - Activate to slip into the shadows, reducing the chance for enemies to detect your presence. Lasts until cancelled or upon moving. Any threat is restored versus enemies still in combat ipon cancelation of this effect. (You can use this ability to avoid CC and to drop combat. This ability also allows you to stealth when used making it useful to rogues and druids.)
  • Posted Image - Increases your haste by 1% during the night, and your critical strike by 1% during the day.
  • Posted Image - Reduces shadow and nature damage taken by 1%
  • Posted Image - Activates your true form, increasing current movement speed by an additional 40% for 10 seconds
  • Posted Image - Increases critical strike chance by 1%
  • Posted Image - Strikes the target with lightning speed, incapacitating them for 4 seconds, and turns off your auto attack.

What races are the best for alliance?

The best races in order are..

Human > Night Elf > Dwarf > Gnome > Draenei > Worgen > Pandaren .


*Only racials that have any real use for pvp will be listed*

So what races do i have to choose from if i was to play Horde, and what does each race offer?

  • Posted Image - When activated, regenerates 7% of total health and mana every 2 seconds for 10 seconds. Only works on humanoid or undead corpses within 5 yards. Any movement, action or damage taken while channeling this spell will cancel its effect.
This ability is really situational and is only really used in battlegrounds, or when you land a kill on somebody in arena and need to heal from their corpse.
  • Posted Image - Reduces Shadow damage taken by 1%
  • Posted Image - Your attacks and damaging spells have a chance to drain the target, dealing 1932-2244 shadow damage and healing you for the same amount.
  • Posted Image - Removes any charm, fear and sleep effect. This effect shares a 30 second cooldown with other similar effects. (Trinkets etc.)
  • Posted Image - Critical Strike bonus damage and healing increased by 2%
  • Posted Image - Increases your stamina by 197 (scales with level).
  • Posted Image - Reduces nature damage taken by 1%
  • Posted Image - Stuns up to 5 enemies within 8 yards for 2 seconds
  • Posted Image - Health regeneration rate increased by 10%. 10% of total health regeneration may continue during combat.
  • Posted Image - Increases your haste by 15% for 10 seconds.
  • Posted Image - Reduces the duration of all movement impairing effects by 15%.
  • Posted Image - Increases your haste by 1%
  • Posted Image - Launches your belt rockets at an enemy dealing "X" amount of fire damage.
  • Posted Image - Activates your rocket belt to jump forward. Other effects which slow the rate of falling cannot be used within 10 seconds after using this ability (Levitate, Slowfall).
Blood Elf
  • Posted Image - Silence all enemies within 8 yards for 2 seconds and restores 3% of your mana, 15 energy, 15 focus, 1 holy power, 1 chi or 20 runic power.
  • Posted Image - Increases critical strike chance by 1%
  • Posted Image - Reduces Arcane damage taken by 1%
  • Posted Image - Strikes the target with lightning speed, incapacitating them for 4 seconds, and turns off your auto attack.

What races are the best for the Horde?

The best races in order are..

Undead > Tauren > Goblin > Troll > Blood Elf > Pandaren.

What is the best race overall? (Both Factions)

  • Overall i would say human is the most useful as you can switch out different trinkets depending on the comp you are fighting. (Defensive trinkets like Battlemasters or Offensive Trinkets like the Insignia/Bade of Dominance).
  • Undead would be my 2nd choice as it is very useful against many classes. (Posted Image, Posted Image, Posted Image, Posted Image (Wyvern Sting).
  • Dwarf is very useful for defensive use, specifically against shadow priests as you can remove their 5 second silence with stone form.
  • Night Elf is useful to avoid crowd control abilities, but is not as reactive as it used to be.
  • Gnome's Posted Image racial is pretty underrated, and is really useful for getting those offensive fears off or removing a slow/root to get away.

How do the best Alliance and Horde races compare against each other?

Alliance is far better as it has a wider range of useful races to choose from. Undead is the only really good horde race.

Racial Impact

How much does your race impact your class?

Races impact our class quite abit especially when facing specific comps.

  • Night Elf is great against Mage/Warlock because you can Shadowmeld their CCs, giving you more time to get into a better position or to top your partner's health back up.
  • Undead gives you the ability to break fears with Will of the Forsaken which essentially gives you 2 trinkets against Warlock/Priest/Warrior teams.

Is it worth race changing for a better race?

If you are wanting to improve and get better at your class, and your goal in pvp is to be the best you can possibly be i would definately recommend it. Maximising every little thing possible with your character can make all the difference.

(4) Stats, Enchants, Gear Selection


What is my primary Attribute, and what does it do for me?
Your primary attribute is Intellect and it increases your spell power which makes all of your spells hit for a larger amount wether they are Healing/Absorbs or damaging spells.

What do each of the enhancements stats do for you?

  • Critical Strike - Critical Strike makes my damaging and healing abilities hit for 150% of their normal damage/healing.
  • Haste - Haste reduces my overall global cooldown and reduces the casting time of all my spells.
  • Mastery - Mastery increases the potency of all your damage absorption spell by a certain percentage, as well as all of your healing done by a percentage based on the amount of mastery you have.
  • Spirit - Spirit increases our Mana Regeneration.
  • Multistrike - Gives me a chance to do extra damage/healing for 30% of the total damage/healing dealt by the last spell cast.
  • Versatility - Increases all damage and healing you do, and decreases the damage you take by half the percentage of versatility you have.
  • Note: 130 Versatility rating = 1% damage and healing increase, and 0.5% damage reduction.

Attributes vs Enhancements

How does your primary attribute compare to your enhancement stats?

Our primary attribute (Intellect) is the most valuable by far and is currently better than our enhancement stats and should be favoured at all times when choosing upgrades.

Gearing, Enchanting, Stat Priority

Your stat priority for discipline in Warlords of Draenor is as follows.

  • Intellect = Spell Power
  • Mastery
  • Versatility
  • Spirit
  • Haste
  • Critical Strike
  • Multistrike

When gearing your priest for discipline in pvp you want to make obtaining the weapons your highest priority as they have the most Spell Power/Intellect on them of any piece of gear you can buy. Secondly you want to focus on getting the pieces with the most mastery on them as possible, this is because mastery is your most favoured secondary stat as you can see in the stat priority above.

Is it worth replacing a piece if you already got the wrong one? (Either you already bought the wrong item or obtained it from an ashran strongbox / RBG drop?)

In most cases it is NOT RECOMMENDED to replace a piece when it is the wrong item in that slot until you are fully epic geared. This is because you gain alot more intellect from your epic items over your blue items even with the loss of a few better attributes.


What items can you enchant, and what are the best enchant for each slot?

Neck - Posted Image 75 Mastery
Cloak - Posted Image 100 mastery and 10% movement speed
Rings - Posted Image 50 Mastery
Weapon - Posted Image 500 Mastery for 12 seconds, Proc.

You should enchant for mastery as it is the best stat that you can enchant your items with to maximise your healing output. Versatility enchants are an option and can be useful if you find yourself playing a comp where you are the kill target for the enemy team.

Is it worth enchanting your blue items?

Yes you should be enchanting all the pieces of gear you can to maximise your characters potential. If you find yourself struggling for gold there are some cheaper options available to you which are..

Neck - 40 Mastery (Breath of Mastery)
Cloak - 100 Mastery (Breath of Mastery)
Rings - 30 Mastery (Breath of Mastery)
Weapon - 500 spirit proc - Mark of Shadowmoon

Healing Rotation and Priority System

Posted Image

Basic single target healing rotation

Below is our basic healing rotation as a discipline priest.

Posted Image > Posted Image > Posted Image > Posted Image

Why should you follow this rotation?

  • First you should prioritize your instant spells such as Posted Image and then your channeled spell Posted Image as they give the most healing output.
  • Secondly you will usePosted Image when your partners are dropping abit low and when bothPosted Imageand Posted Image are on cooldown.

Why do you want this to happen?

You want this to happen because if we decided to cast Posted Image first for example and it gets interrupted we won't be able to use any of our spells on the holy school for the next few seconds. If you cast Posted Image first your partner will have an absorb on him in the event that we do get interrupted on our next cast, giving him those extra few seconds needed to survive until you can cast again.

Situational Rotation Changes

When should you change your healing rotation?

There is 2 situations in which you should change up your healing rotation.
  • When we know that we might get interrupted (by a pummel or counterspell for example).
  • When our partner is very low on health (sub 20%) or when you know that you are about to get CCed.
In the event that any of these 2 scenarios happen you should...
  • Posted Image as your top priority
  • Instead of risking to cast a penance, you would simply cast Posted Imagex2 to pick your partners HP bar up as it is instant cast and you do not risk getting interrupted.

Surviving as a Discipline Priest

Posted Image

Reactive Use of Cooldowns

What does it mean to reactively use cooldowns?

  • You need to use your cooldowns reactively, when you know that you would probably die otherwise or fall behind with your healing alot.
  • A great example of this is when you are against a class like Feral Druid or Warrior using their Berserk or Recklessness abilties and you are dropping low on health. This is a situation where you need to react fast and use your defensive cooldowns to survive.

Defensive Cooldowns

What are your main defensive cooldowns as a discipline priest?

Our main defensive cooldowns are...

Posted Image 40% damage reduction for 8 seconds. Our 4 set pvp bonus reduces the cooldown of our pain suppression by 60 seconds bringing it to a 2 minute cooldown. Pain Suppression is also castable while stunned.

Posted Image 25% damage reduction for 10 seconds for anybody standing inside the barrier. This ability has a 3 minute cooldown.

This ability can be placed which is useful if you were to face a rogue team and your partner was to get smoke bombed you could place this on top of a smoke bomb to reduce the damage your partner will take during the rogue's burst attempt.

Posted Image 25% haste and 20% mana reduction on all spells for 20 seconds. This ability has a 2 minute cooldown.


What other abilities do i have that can be used to assist in my survival?

  • Posted Image Is one of our best survival tools we have as a discipline priest, due to its short cooldown and great effectiveness. It can save you no matter what HP you are currently at.
If you Spectral Guise yourself and Power Word: Shield right after without using any abilities, your Spectral Guise ability will not break meaning that you will remain stealthed for 6 seconds unless the opposing team uses any sort of AoE ability next to you which will break you out of stealth. Those extra few seconds you gain while in spectral guise can be the difference between living and dieing especially if you get locked out on your holy tree.
  • Posted Image Our second best ability defensively is our PvP trinket, the "Medallion" for non-humans or the "Every Man for Himself" racial if you play a human. Our PvP trinket has a 2 minute cooldown and when used will break ALL forms of crowd control currently affecting your character.
Our PvP trinket is a key ability in wow pvp because it has a fairly long cooldown and can most likely save you in any situation. It's really important that you do not waste your trinket out of frustration, saving it for the correct time in most cases will save you from dying or losing a game. In an survival situation you will usually want to use Pain Suppression before using your pvp trinket.
The main reason for this is because as mentioned above, your PvP trinket is your most important cooldown and using Pain Suppression first will usually be enough in order to survive.
  • Posted Image is our third main defensive ability which has a 2 minute cooldown thanks to our 4 piece pvp bonus reducing the cooldown of Pain Suppression by 60 seconds. Pain Suppression can be cast while stunned and should be used to counter important offensive cooldowns being used by the enemy team such as...
  • Posted Image / Posted Image from Death Knights.
  • Posted Image from Warriors.
  • Posted Image from Combat Rogues.
  • Posted Image from Feral Druids.
These are just a few of many big offensive cooldowns you should be prepared for by using your pain suppression to counter the huge damage output on you or your partners during pvp combat.
  • Posted Image is our fourth main defensive cooldown which can be used more sparingly than your trinket or pain suppression as it only provides 25% damage reduction and should be used when you feel like pain suppression or trinket will not be needed to survive a burst.
You can also use this ability before you get stunned and switched to therefore preventing any damage during the swap, or you can place it over the top of a rogue's smokebomb ability if your partner was to get stuck inside it during a stun lock while the enemy team is going for a kill attempt.
  • Posted Image is our last main defensive ability (if you Talent for it), and should be used whenever enemies use large offensive cooldowns and/or when you need to top yourself or your partner's health quickly.

Offensive Abilities

What offensive abilities can i use to assist in my survival?

Our main offensive abilities that can assist with survival are...
  • Posted Image
  • Posted Image
  • Posted Image
Each of these abilities when used offensively will give 1 stack of Posted Image when used on an enemy target. Using Holy fire on cooldown and some occasional Smites can help you to build up your Archangel stacks thus giving you more healing (5% per stack, stacking up to 5 times) when you use your Archangel ability.

General Defensive Playstyle

What steps should i take when i need to survive?

Positioning is key in every arena games that you will play, it is important that you always play as close as possible to a pillar or out of line of sight of the enemy, whether it is to avoid getting crowd controlled or getting swapped to.

Movement: Always try to kite the enemy players that are on you, especially if your team is focusing on killing them, it will make the opposing healer's job much more difficult if you drag his partners behind your pillar.

Posted Image should be used every time that you have a free global cooldown and can greatly help in survival if the enemy team's slow effect runs out on you.

Posted Image should be used as discussed previously right after casting Posted Image on yourself which can help you escape the most tricky situations.

Posted Image is useful against any class that is going for you with the exception of Posted Image as they can break every fear with Posted Image due to it being on the same cooldown as Psychic Scream. Make sure that you use Psychic Scream wisely as the enemy healer can simply dispel it from his team.

Using Psychic Scream on enemies around you with a Silence on the enemy healer is a great option, as it gives you some extra time before they will be dispelled out of the fear.