Holy Priest Playstyles (WoW)  

This FAQ is still a work in progress, I do not claim to know everything, your comments and suggestions are welcome. Your questions will be answered as quickly as possible.

Parts of this page were originally written by Agoge.
The original can be found at this link.

Contents [hide]

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Priest Basic
  3. Armor
  4. Weapons
  5. Racial Traits
  6. Priest Abilities
    • Holy
    • Discipline
    • Shadow
  7. Priest Talents
    • Holy
    • Discipline
    • Shadow
  8. Priest Macros
  9. Holy Builds By: lsfreak and MookusOU
  10. Guide to Healing
  11. Frequently Asked Questions
  12. Acknowledgments


Welcome to the Allakhazam Priest Forum FAQ. I would like to thank you for the opportunity to write and share all of the information that I have learned over the three years I have played. I have played both a Shadow Priest and a Holy/Disc Priest. Though the Shadow Priest FAQ looks to be good, I am here to write about Holy/Disc.

Though I will be refreshing a little of the Shadow Priest, my main focus is on the Holy/Disc Priest. Saying this, I have leveled both of my priest by speccing shadow. On one, I switched to Holy/Disc to be a healer. I cannot give accurate answer on leveling a Holy/Disc priest just end game.

Priest Basic

The Priest class is the most well known for it healing ability. Though a priest can spec down the shadow tree to become a powerful damage dealer, the priest class will spend the majority of there time healing.

Available Armor

The priest class can only wear cloth armor. Though like a mage, the priest, in a group, is near the rear of the pack. Expect to spend the majority of your healing the tanks up front. The higher in level that you get, the more cloth armor that comes with +healing and +spell damage on it. Though most of the low level gear will most likely have +int, +spirit, +mana/sec., on armor and weapons, you will find that most have bonuses to these items.

The two important stats are +healing, and in-casting regen (with ooc regen coming after that, still important for 5SR and Innervates). So basically, tons of healing, and a balance of mana/5 and spirit. Pre-50's, it's better to have a good amount of spirit along with balanced int and stam.

Primal Mooncloth + Whitemend are incredible for healers; the lack of stamina can be a bit of a problem, but nothing a secondary stamina set can't make up for. Gems should almost all be Royal Nightseye, unless there's an awesome socket bonus, in which case the +heal/+int noble topaz (Luminous?) will do. Best meta socket is probably the 5% mana restore on cast, since the "healing" one requires you to essentially give up all your Royal Nightseye.


Though priests start the game out with maces, at level 10 for both Alliance and Horde, priests can train to use a staff. In end game, maces will have more of the +healing than a lot of staffs. Though staffs while leveling will give better bonuses towards +int and +spirit.

Though your mace and staff are a contribute to your stats, wands also can have stats on them as well. Wands may also have the stats +int and +spirit. While leveling, it is a good idea to find a wand with +spell damage or as high +int as possible.


Enchantments will augment your stats and can be added to most item slots. In most cases, unless you're already an enchanter you're better of waiting until level 70 before you start spending huge amounts of gold on enchants.

Racial Traits

Alliance [1]

Draenei Racial Traits

Dwarf Racial Traits

Human Racial Traits

Night Elf Racial Traits

  • Shadowmeld: Activated ability outside of combat that puts the Night Elf into stealth while they remain still.
  • Quickness: +1% dodge chance
  • Wisp Spirit: Become a wisp when dead with movement speed increase
  • Nature Resistance: Innate +10 Nature resistance
  • Starshards: Rains starshards down on the enemy target's head, causing 785 Arcane damage over 15 seconds.

Horde [2]

Blood Elf Racial Traits

  • Arcane Affinity: +10 bonus to Enchanting
  • Arcane Torrent: Silences all nearby opponent for 2 seconds and restores mana or energy for each Mana Tap charge
  • Magic Resistance: +5 resistance to all schools of magic
  • Mana Tap: Drains mana from target and charges the Blood Elf with arcane energy, stacking up to 3 times
  • Consume Magic: which allows you to regain mana by consuming one of your buffs.

Troll Racial Traits

  • Berserking: Activated ability that increases attack and casting speed; increased effect when badly injured
  • Regeneration: Increase health regen bonus
  • Beast Slaying: 5% extra damage dealt when fighting beasts
  • Throwing Specialization: +5 weapon skill for bows and thrown weapons
  • Hex of Weakness and Shadow Guard, Shadow Guard is vary useful that often procs shadow weaving and also blackout.

Undead Racial Traits

Priest Abilities

In each class, you start the game off with few abilities. As you increase in level, so do your talents and abilities. I am going to list each spell and will divide up into 3 trees; Holy, Discipline, and Shadow. Spells are categorised by which tab of your spellbook they appear, this does not necessarily reflect they are part of, or limited to that school. Please note that only the maximum level of each spell is listed.

Mana costs are subject to talent adjustments in some cases, the full costs are listed below. Base mana is the amount of mana you would have without gear, enchants or indeed any intellect. For a priest this is around 2340 at level 70.

Holy Spells

Spell Mana Cost Range Details PvP/PvE/Both
Abolish Disease 12% of base mana 40 yds Attempts to cure 1 disease effect on the target, and 1 more disease effect every 5 seconds for 20 seconds.
Binding Heal 1034 mana 40 yds Heals a friendly target and the caster for 1042 to 1338.
Circle of Healing 450 mana 40 yds Heals friendly target and that target's party members within 15 yards of the target for 475 to 525.
Cure Disease 12% of base mana 40 yds Removes 1 disease from the friendly target.
Flash Heal 470 mana 40 yds Heals a friendly target for 1101 to 1279.
Greater Heal 825 mana 40 yds A slow casting spell that heals a single target for 2396 to 2784.
Heal 305 mana 40 yds Heal your target for 712 to 804.
Holy Fire 290 mana 30 yds Consumes the enemy in flames that cause 412 to 522 fire damage and an additional 165 fire damage over 10 seconds.
Lesser Heal 75 mana 40 yds Heal your target for 135 to 157.
Prayer of Healing 1255 mana 30 yds A powerful prayer heals party members withing 30 yards for 1246 to 1316.
Prayer of Mending 390 mana 40 yds, 10 sec cooldown Places a spell on the target that heals them for 800 the next time they take damage. When the heal occurs, Prayer of Mending jumps to a raid member within 20 yards. Jumps up to 5 times and last 30 seconds after each jump. This spell can only be placed on one target at a time.
Renew 450 mana 40 yds Heals the target for 1110 over 15 seconds.
Resurrection 30 yds Brings a dead player back to life with 1100 health and 1150 mana. Cannot be cast while in combat.
Smite 385 mana 30 yds Smite an enemy for 545 to 641 Holy damage.


Spell Mana Cost Range Details
Dispel Magic 14% of base mana 30 yds Dispels magic on the target, removing 2 harmful spells from a friend or 2 beneficial from an enemy.
Fear Ward 3% of base mana 30 yds Wards the friendly target against Fear. The next Fear effect used against the target will fail, using up the ward. Lasts 3 min.
Inner Fire 375 mana Self A burst of Holy energy fills the caster, increasing armor by 1580. Each melee or ranged damage hit against the priest will remove one charge. Last 10 min or until 20 charges are used.
Levitate 100 mana, reagent:Light Feather Self Allows the caster to levitate, floating a few feet above the ground. While levitating, you will fall at a reduced speed and travel over water. Any damage will cancel the effect. Last 2 min.
Mana Burn 335 mana 30 yds Drains 1021 to 1079 mana from a target. For each mana drained this way, the target takes 0.5 shadow damage.
Mass Dispel 33% of base mana 30 yds Dispels magic in a 15 yard radius, removing 1 harmful spell from each friendly target and 1 beneficial spell from each enemy target. Affects a maximum of 10 friendly targets and 10 enemy targets. This dispel is potent enough to remove Magic effects that are normally undispellable.
Power Word: Fortitude 700 mana 30 yds Power infuses the target increasing their Stamina by 79 for 30 min.
Power Word: Shield 600mana 40 yds, 4 sec cooldown Draws on the soul of the party member to shield them, absorbing 1315 damage. Last 30 seconds. While the shield holds, spellcasting will not be interrupted by damage. Once shielded, the target cannot be shielded again for 15 seconds.
Prayer of Fortitude 1800 mana, reagent:Sacred Candle 40 yds Power infuses the target's party, increasing their Stamina by X for 1 hour.
Prayer of Spirit 1800 mana, reagent:Sacred Candle 40 yds Power infuses the target's party, increasing their Spirit by 50 for 1 hour.
Shackle Undead 150 mana 30 yds Shackles the target undead enemy for up to 50 seconds. The shackle unit is unable to move, attack or cast spells. Any damage caused will release the target. Only one target can be shackled at a time.


Spell Mana Cost Range Details
Fade 330 mana, 30sec cooldown Self Fade out, discouraging enemies from attacking you for 10 seconds.
Mind Blast 450 mana 30 yds, 8sec cooldown Blast the target for 708 to 748 Shadow damage.
Mind Control 750 mana 20 yds, Channeled Controls a humanoid mind up to level 62, but increases the time between attacks by 25%. Last up to 1 min.
Mind Soothe 120 mana 40 yds Soothes the target, reducing the range at which it will attack you by 10 yards. Only affects Humanoid targets level 85 or lower. Last 15 seconds.
Mind Vision 150 mana 50000 yds, Channeled Allows the caster to see through the target's eyes for 1 min. Will not work if the target is in another instance or on another continent.
Psychic Scream 210 mana, 30sec cooldown 8 yds The caster lets out a psychic scream, causing 5 enemies within 8 yards to flee for 8 seconds. Damage caused may interrupt the effect.
Shadow Word: Death 309 mana 30 yds, 6 sec cooldown A word of dark bidding that inflicts 572 to 664 Shadow damage to the target. If the target is not killed by Shadow Word:Death, the caster takes damage equal to the damage inflicted upon the target.
Shadow Word: Pain 575 mana 30 yds A word of darkness that causes 1236 Shadow damage over 18 seconds.
Shadowfiend 30 yds, 5min cooldown Creates a shadowy fiend to attack the target. Caster receives mana when the shadow fiend deals damage. Last 15 seconds.

These are the spells located in the spellbook at level 70 without using any talent points. Though new spells are available to the priest once using talent points in the talent trees.

To view these new spells available when using talent point please go HERE for more information.

Priest Talents

For the priest there are three talent trees represented here. They are Holy, Discipline, and Shadow. I will give you each talent as if they were maxed with talent points.

Holy Talents

Talent Points Details
Healing Focus 2 points Gives you a 70% chance to avoid interruption caused by damage while casting any healing spell.
Improved Renew 3 points Increased the amount healed by your renew spell by 15%
Holy Specialization 5 points Increase the critical effect chance of your Holy spells by 5%
Spell Warding 5 points Reduce all spell damage taken by 10%
Divine Fury 5 points Reduces the cast time of your Smite, Holy Fire, Heal and Greater Heal spells by 0..5 seconds.
Holy Nova 1 point, 185 mana Causes an explosion of holy light around the caster, causing 28 to 32 Holy damage to all enemy targets within 10 yards and healing all party members within 10 yards for 52 to 60. These effects cause no threat.
Blessed Recovery 3 points After being stuck by a melee or ranged critical hit, heal 25% of the damage taken over 6 seconds.
Inspiration 3 points Increase your target's armor by 25% for 15 seconds after getting a critical effect from your Flash Heal, Heal, Greater Heal, Binding Heal, Prayer of Healing, or Circle of Healing spells.
Holy Reach 2 points Increase the range of your Smite and Holy Fire spells and the radius of your Prayer of Healing, Holy Nova and Circle of Healing spells by 20%.
Improved Healing 3 points Reduces the mana cost of your Lesser Heal, Heal, and Greater Heal spells by 15%.
Searing Light 2 points, must have 5 points in Divine Fury Increases the damage of your Smite and Holy Fire spells by 10%.
Healing Prayers 2 points Reduces the mana cost of your Prayer of Healing and Prayer of Mending spells by 20%.
Spirit Of Redemption 1 point Increases your total Spirit by 5% and upon death, the priest becomes the Spirit of Redemption for 15 seconds. The Spirit of Redemption cannot move, attack, be attacked or targeted by any spells or effects. While in this form the priest can cast any healing spell free of cost. When the effects ends, the priest dies.
Spiritual Guidance 5 points Increases spell damage and healing up to 25% of your total Spirit.
Surge of Light 2 points You spell criticals have a 50% chance to cause your next Smite spell to become and instant cast, cost no mana but be incapable of a critical hit. This effect last 10 seconds.
Spiritual Healing 5 points Increases the amount healed by your healing spells by 10%
Holy Concentration 3 points Gives you a 6% chance to enter a clearcasting state after casting any Flash Heal or Greater Heal spell. The clearcasting state reduces the mana cost of your next Flash Heal or Greater Heal spell by 100%.
Lightwell 1 point, 225 mana, 6 min cooldown, must have 1 point in Spirit Of Redemption Creates a holy lightwell. Members of your raid or party can click the lightwel to restore 801 health over 6 seconds. Any damage taken will cancel the effect. Lightwell lasts for 3 min or 5 charges.
Blessed Resilience 3 points Critical hits made against you have a 60% chance to prevent you from being critically hit again for 6 seconds.
Empowered Healing 5 points Your Greater Healing spell gains an additional 20% and your Flash Heal gains an additional 10% of your bonus healing effects.
Circle of Healing 1 point, 300 mana, 40 yd range Heals friendly target and that target's party members within 15 yards of the target for 285 to 315.

Discipline Talents

Talent Points Details
Unbreakable Will 5 points Increases your chance to resist Stun, Fear, and Silence effects by an additional 15%.
Wand Specialization 5 points Increase your damage with wands by 25%
Silent Resolve 5 points Reduces the threat generated by your Holy and Discipline spells by 20% and reduces the chance your spells will be dispelled by 20%
Improved Power Word: Fortitude 2 points Increase the effect of your Power Word:Fortitude and Prayer of Fortitude spells by 30%.
Improved Power Word: Shield 3 points Increases the damage absorbed by your Power Word:Shield by 15%.
Martyrdom 2 points Gives you a 100% chance to gain the Focused Casting effect that last for 6 seconds after being the victim of a melee or ranged critical strike. The Focused Casting effect prevents you from loosing casting time when taking damage and increases resistance to interrupt effects by 20%
Absolution 3 points Reduces the mana cost of your Dispel Magic, Cure Disease, Abolish Disease and Mass Dispel spells by 15%.
Inner Focus 1 point, 3 min cooldown When activated, reduces the mana cost of your next spell by 101% and increases its critical effect chance by 25% if it is capable of a critical effect.
Meditation 3 points Allows 30% of your mana regeneration to continue while casting.
Improved Inner Fire 3 points Increases the Armor bonus of your Inner Fire spell by 30%
Mental Agility 5 points Reduces the mana cost of your instant cast spells by 10%
Improved Mana Burn 2 points Reduces the casting time of your Mana Burn spell by 1 second.
Mental Strength 5 points Increases your maximum mana by 10%
Divine Spirit 1 point, 285 mana, 30 yd range, requires 3 points in Meditation Holy power infuses target, increasing their Spirit by 17 for 30 min.
Improved Divine Spirit 2 points, requires 1 point in Divine Spirit Your Divine Spirit and Prayer of Spirit spells also increase the target's spell damage and healing by an amount equal to 10% of their total Spirit.
Focused Power 2 points Your Smite and Mind Blast spells have an additional 4% chance to hit. In addition, these spells cause 10% additional damage against feared targets.
Force of Will 5 points Increases your spell damage by 5% and the critical strike chance of your offensive spells by 5%.
Power Infusion 1 point, requires 5points in Mental Strength, 3 min cooldown Infuses the target with power, increasing there spell damage and healing by 20%.Last 15 seconds.
Reflective Shield 5 points Causes 50% of the damage absorbed by your Power Word:Shield to reflect back at the attacker. This damage causes no threat.
Enlightenment 5 points Increase your total stamina, Intellect, and Spirit by 5%.
Pain Suppression 1 point, 3 min cooldown Reduces all damage taken by 60% for 8 seconds.

Shadow Talents

Talent Points Details
Spirit Tap 5 points Gives you a 100% chance to gain 100% bonus of your Spirit after killing a target that yields experience or honor. For the duration, your mana will regenerate at a 50% rate while casting. Last 15 seconds.
Blackout 5 points Gives your shadow spells a 10% chance to stun the target for 3 seconds.
Shadow Affinity 3 points Reduces the threat generated by your Shadow spells by 25%
Improved Shadow Word: Pain 2 points Increases the duration of your Shadow Word:Pain spell by 6 seconds.
Shadow Focus 5 points Reduces your targets chance to resist your shadow spells by 10%.
Improved Psychic Scream 2 points Reduces the cooldown of your Psychic Scream spell by 4 seconds.
Improved Mind Blast 5 points Reduces the cooldown of your Mind Blast spell by 2.5 seconds.
Mind Flay 1 point, 45 mana, Channeled Assault the target's mind with shadow energy, causing 75 shadow damage over 3 seconds and slowing their movement speed by 50%.
Improved Fade 2 points Reduces the cooldown of your Fade ability by 6 seconds.
Shadow Reach 2 points Increases the range of your offensive shadow spells by 20%.
Shadow Weaving 5 points Your Shadow damage spells a 100% chance to cause your target to be vulnerable to Shadow damage. This vulnerability increases the Shadow damage dealt to your target by 2% and last 15 seconds. Stacks up to 5 times.
Silence 1 point, 225 mana,requires 2 points in Improved Psychic Scream Silences the target, preventing them from casting spells for 5 seconds.
Vampiric Embrace 1 point, 30yd range, 10 second cooldown Afflicts your target with Shadow energy that causes all party members to be healed for 15% of any Shadow spell damage you deal for 1 min.
Improved Vampiric Embrace 2 points, requires 1 point in Vampiric Embrace Increases the percentage healed by Vampiric Embrace by an additional 10%.
Focused Mind 3 points Reduces the mana cost of your Mind Blast, Mind Control, and Mind Flay spells by 15%.
Shadow Resilience 2 points Reduces the chance you'll be critically hit by all spells by 4%.
Darkness 5 points Increase your shadow spell damage by 10%.
Shadowform 1 point, 1.5second cooldown Assume a Shadowform, increasing your Shadow damage by 15% and reducing Physical Damage done to you by 15%. However, you may not cast Holy Spells while in this form.
Shadow Power 5 points Increase the critical strike chance of your Mind Blast and Shadow Word:Death spells by 15%.
Misery 5 points Your Shadow Word:Pain, Mind Flay and Vampiric Touch spells also cause the target to take an additional 5% spell damage.
Vampiric Touch 1 point, 325 mana, 30yd range, requires 1 point in Vampiric Embrace and 1 point in Shadowform Causes 450 shadow damage over 15 seconds to your target and causes all party members to gain mana equal to 5% of any Shadow spell damage you deal.

Priest Macros

Coming Soon - Until then, please refer to RPZip's Macro Guide

Holy Builds

By: lsfreak and MookusOU

For builds, a 23/38 is, to the best of my knowledge, one of the best all-around healing builds. Once you get deeper into endgame (or if you're with a really good group and just goofing around in 5-mans :P ), getting 41 points into Holy for Circle of Healing becomes more useful (since an entire melee group, and sometimes ranged groups, will be taking several thousand damage at once).

Something along the lines of this. However, having one priest with DS and IDS is still very useful for the boost in damage and regen. For a much more casual build, if someone can't afford respeccing every other day, one of the best builds is going to be a PI/SoL build of some sort, but it'll be tougher to heal than a deeper Holy priest (but by no means impossible - with decent gear, an spriest can heal non-heroics, there's a PvP-heavy 41/20 priest in my guild that does quite well in Kara and heroics.

I speak of Holy priests but in reality almost all healing priests are a mixture of Dis/Holy.

The PI Build (31/30)

In this build Holy Nova and Inner Fire are used as filler talents. They can both be changed without major effect.


  • PI can boost the priest's healing or a caster's DPS.
  • The build contains ImpDS which is a good party/raid buff.
  • PI can help a holy priest farm/solo.
  • Should be able to heal all instances and heroics fine.


  • You lose significant healing power to pick up PI.
  • PI is also on a 3min CD.
  • A weaker raid build.

The ImpDS Build (23/38)

In this build the Disc tree is stripped down to the minimum in order to acquire ImpDS. ImpDS is a good buff that adds roughly 40-50 Healing or DPS to your casters so it is well worth giving up some of your own healing power in order to increase group efficiency.


  • ImpDS Buff.
  • Serious healing power over a PI build.
  • Holy Concentration really helps conserve mana during long boss fights.
  • Overall a better raiding build than PI.
  • Very strong raiding build, probably the most used.


  • Harder to solo/farm.

The AoE/2nd Holy Priest Build (18/43)

This build assumes that the raid already has a holy priest with the ImpDS buff. This healer goes for pure healing power and AoE healing instead.

You can toy with this build a bit but the important thing is to have the raw healing talents of the ImpDS build and then Circle of Healing for raid-wide AoE healing (Prayer of Healing only does your party and Prayer of Mending is very unpredictable/unreliable).


  • Most powerful unbuffed healing build.
  • Raidwide AoE healing with Circle of Healing.


  • No ImpDS means if the designated ImpDS priest does not make a raid, everyone loses a great buff.
  • Harder to solo/farm.

The SoL/Healing Build (23/38)

This build keeps many of the key talents from the ImpDS build but switches things a bit to boost damage and pickup Surge of Light.


  • Still retains good healing power.
  • Still retains the ImpDS buff.
  • Has Surge of Light which is the Holy damage talent. So the priest can solo/farm.


  • Gives up a slight bit of healing power.
  • Gives up inspiration. [3]

Guide to Healing

Coming Soon

Frequently Asked Questions

Coming Soon


First and foremost, I would like to thank Allakhazam for letting me write this FAQ. I would also like to thank RPZip, MookusOU, RedPhoenixxx, RoqueGnome,and Runthunter for the information and support they have given.

Please post any comments and corrections as I will make changes accordingly.

  1. ^ As the Dwarf looks to be a better choice for pvp with stoneform, and Desperate Prayer; Draenei seem to be a better choice for pve.
  2. ^ Though the Undead look like a better choice for pvp, the Blood Elf looks to be a better choice for pve.
  3. ^ This talent is debatable as to its usefulness. For MT healing some argue it is not good since most tanks have very high armor and damage reduction is capped out at 75%. However, until your tank is well geared inspiration will help them through hard hitting boss fights.

World of Warcraft

This page last modified 2008-09-15 09:47:27.