1. #1

    Question Swapping from shadow to healer spec

    Hello all,
    I'm fast approaching 85 and i have levelled as shadow spec and i've always been a dps (Huntard) however dabbled a little in healing in bg's and i have to say i'm really enjoying it and thinking of healing in pve too, my question is how am i best at making the changeover? ive been getting stamina/intellect gear as i've been progressing and i know i need stam/int/spirit gear to heal.
    i have my addons ready (grid and clique) but as im going to be grouping up with people really without much knowledge of best practices in situations.
    i was thinking maybe i should keep going as dps spec till i out gear the normal modes and then start on them to get my practice as i should have a bit of a buffer if things start to go wrong?

    thx in advance

  2. #2
    Meh if you want to start healing no time like the present...

    It all depends on if you want to go holy or disc, both have different ways of keeping people alive... Different "Oh shit" buttons and things like that.
    Int gear isnt bad as a healer, certainly as a disc healer where a lot of your mana regen comes from Rapture... Though even as Disc spirit definately is not bad.

    On average though the healing requirements are not that high assuming people your doing dungeons with do not do 1k dps and understand to stay out of shit that is avoidable.
    Make sure you know how to heal before you start healing. I.e. Should I use renew a lot or use Power word shield at all?

    For either spec, dont abuse the flash heal becuase it will eat your mana like it was never there.

  3. #3
    given it ago and i have found disc priest is defiantly for me,ran a bunch of 5man normals to get me going seem all good, another question those atm i have mostly stam/int gear and not much spirit which i need to improve on, but as a player i will be doing heroic's and lfr would i be really low on numbers if on the times i go shadow i use my stam/int/spirit gear instead of have to get two sets of good gear? that way i can concentration on one set getting it all gemmed and enchanted for healing but use it for dps too?

  4. #4
    Stood in the Fire Kirse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Grats! My main was hunter, and now I'm priest through and through. I feel kind of bad neglecting her, but healing is just so much fun!

    Definitely get some practice in now; it will only get more difficult at 85, and I struggled for a while even leveling up as a healer. BGs are a great place to practice, as are dungeons and LFR when your gear is ready. Keep in mind that some abilities that you would use in PVP are better to avoid in PVE (renew for disc isn't very good pve). Heal is useless, and I don't have it on my bar. Being a good healer/priest requires a fair bit of research to understand when to use each ability, which are most efficient, and which have synergy with other abilities (such as rapture), so read guides to become really comfortable with those facts... In order to properly advise you, I would have to write up pages of info, so guides ftw

    Get used to using Greater Heal and Binding Heal. Cast times feel uncomfortably slow when you see someones health go down by a large chunk, but when you are used to how fast/how much they heal for, they are by far some of your most efficient mana friendly spells. Don't forget Prayer of Mending! Use it on CD. I left it out of my rotation for a while, which really hurt my healing.

    Hit rating/resil/spell pen are only for PVP. You want Spirit on every item that you wear. I only play Disc. Disc - Haste/Mastery/Crit all strong stats; which you chose depends on the abilities that you use the most, and in which context (5 man vs 25, whether you shield a lot vs Prayer of Healing for example). Programs which advise you on reforging are not great for healers, so best to read up on these. As Disc, Int is your best stat even for mana regen.

    Don't cheap out on gems/enchants because it will have a large impact on your healing. You don't need to get +50 int gems for example, but +40 int is what you want to aim for (though it gets expensive). Don't guess on best gems/enchants, read up on it. I still see lots of Disc players at 85 wearing +40 spirit instead of +40 int, when Int is the best stat.

    Addons: I use the standard Blizz ui + mouseover macros. Grid + Clique is a popular setup. Most agree that Healbot isn't as good as other healing addons these days. Which of these you chose is up to you. I recommend watching videos of these addons on youtube to get the best idea of how they work, and which appeals to you.

    howtopriest.com is a good resource, but be mindful of the dates/patches articles refer to. I thought that Elitistjerks was up to date, but even the 4.3 guide has outdated info on there so it's not a good site to go off any more.

  5. #5
    Ah interesting ive been using my renew to top off party member who have taken 10%ish damage just to top them off and heal as my main spam for healing after ive used penance, admittedly i am siding on the air of caution in regards to my mana pool til i have geared up more and increased my spirit/int pool.

  6. #6
    Stood in the Fire Kirse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012


    Quote Originally Posted by Xanthian View Post
    Ah interesting ive been using my renew to top off party member who have taken 10%ish damage just to top them off and heal as my main spam for healing after ive used penance, admittedly i am siding on the air of caution in regards to my mana pool til i have geared up more and increased my spirit/int pool.
    As Disc, I still use renew during movement in some fights, but otherwise you have better options. A lot of disc healing is predicting damage, and throwing up shields (mine are glyphed so they also heal a little), using Prayer of Mending, Pain Suppression, Prayer of Healing to proc Divine Aegis, using Shadowfiend etc. It all depends on what kind/how much damage you expect the party to be receiving, whether you need mana, etc. Sometimes you can simply wait until a larger heal is needed, or if you spec AA you can dps to build stacks of Evangelism. Of course using renew isn't terrible, you could have better healing habits.

    Once you know it and practice this all becomes very intuitive, don't worry it's a fun and fluid process

    Eventually I'm going to trip up and say something silly and totally untrue, so I'm going to leave it at that

  7. #7
    High Overlord Ambereldus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    The frozen north
    I agree with Kirse, practice makes perfect. Guides are a great place to start, but make sure you also take a good look through your spellbook. There are SO many spells you can use in different situations that it can be overwhelming, but knowing what options you have availible is a very good idea.

    As for some general healing tips, don't underestimate the variety of your healing arsenal; priests have a tool for pretty much everything if you know how to use them. Binding heal is amazing if it doesn't overheal, use it whenever you can afford to. You can smooth damage spikes with Power word Shield in all three specs if damage becomes dangerous. (Very useful in shadow to survive a harder hit) And as Kirse also mentioned, PoM is phenomonal, use it on CD if you can. Even your "for fun" spells can be useful sometimes, like using Mind Soothe to "stealth" past mobs while doing dailies. I can't offer much for PvP, but I imagine those ones are transferrable.

    With regards to your earlier question Xanthian, you can definately use your healing gear to dps! All three specs use crit/haste/mastery/spirit about equally in PvE, ignoring specific stat weights, so there isn't much of a difference in gear between the specs.

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