I noticed that there is no centralized place for discussing discipline priests in raids and that there is no real discipline specific compendium either. I thus decided to make this thread as a place to discuss and get information about this quite new raiding spec for priests.
Note: This compendium lacks maths, most of the relevant math for both disc & holy priests can be found on the wotlk healing compendium.
The standard PvE raiding discipline build is 57/13/0. The one free is usualy put in either Healing Focus or Desperate Prayer. It is also possible to drop some talents in the discipline tree to be able to pick up Improved Healing, this would usually be done by dropping Renewed Hope, Aspiration and/or Enlightenment.
Strengths of a discipline priest
Discipline priests are highly effective at single target healing, usually on a tank. This is mostly due to their ability to throw some very powerful shields on the target of their choice and to be able to maintain extremely high hps for a short period of time with certain combos (Power Word:Shield , Penance, Greater Heal would be a good example). Discipline priests are also very efficient and will very rarely run out of mana thanks to rapture. When having a discipline priest in the raid other non discipline priests should be aware to not use Power Word: Shield on the tank at all, and limiting its use on other targets.
Weaknesses of a discipline priest
Discipline priests are weak at raid healing, they can currently not heal more then one person except if they are all in your own party (this is however changing with 3.1 with the addition of Power Word: Barrier and Prayer of Healing healing the party of the target). They do however not do a bad job at it by using a combination of Power Word: Shield (which will gain you borrowed time) , Flash Heal, Prayer of Mending and Penance. Currently, the glyph of PoH's HoT will reapply Grace each time it ticks, which makes it very effective to keep Grace up on your own party (and if it doesn't get changed in 3.1, on other parties as well). A portion of your heals will also proc Divine Aegis, shielding some of your raid members with protection against additional raid damage in the next 12 seconds.
Compared to Holy, Discipline lacks CoH, has a Prayer of Mending that is less effective and also has a more expensive Binding Heal (due to Binding Heal not proccing rapture).
Rapture - This spells is the main reason disc priests rarely run out of mana, their heals aren't efficient by themselves, but effective healing and absorbs will return a decent amount of mana back to the priest.
Divine Aegis - This talent will cause the target to gain an extra shield which will also return mana with rapture, this gives double benefit, there will be less healing needed in the next seconds on the target and when the target gets hit the priest will get mana back.
Borrowed Time - This talent allows for very high hps for a short period of time because the buff is not consumed by channeled or instant casts while still affecting them (this makes Penance very fast). A common example would be Power Word: Shield followed by a Penance and then either Greater Heal or Flash Heal depending on the situation.
Penance - This talent is probably one of the best heals ingame, it has an 8 second cooldown with the Aspiration talent. It is a 2 second channel, this has several advantages: The first heal tick occures immediately (it does however have a very short flight time) and after that there will be 2 other ticks every second. This allows Penance to very effectivly save someone that would otherwise have died.
Grace - This talent is very helpful mostly on bossfights, where it being up will cause the tank to take significantly less damage then he otherwise would while increasing the healing you do to him. The damage reducing part does however not stack with Blessing of Sanctuary.
Mana returns from Rapture
The formula for mana returns from rapture is
Rapture Mana Return = (Healed or Absorbed Amount / 11460) * 2.5% * Mana PoolBecause the amount healed or absorbed is divided by a constant factor rapture will be able to reach exceedingly high levels in the next few tiers of content.
Spellpower and rapture
Taken from TheDocter's post
Flash Heal -> 3/7*1.88 = 0.80571...
Greater Heal -> 6/7*1.88 = 1.611428...
Penance -> 6/7*1.88 total and /3 to get per tick = 0.537142...
So for looking at spell power to rapture you find that...
Flash Heal 1 spell power = .80571*1.04*1.06*(grace uptime% = 1 for simplicity) * (crit factor = 1 for simplicity) / 11500 * 2.5% = 0.0000019309 * mana pool Greater Heal 1 spell power = 1.611428*1.04*1.06*(grace uptime% = 1 for simplicity) * (crit factor = 1 for simplicity) / 11500 * 2.5% = 0.0000038618 * mana pool Penance 1 spell power = .537142*1.04*1.06*(grace uptime% = 1 for simplicity) * (crit factor = 1 for simplicity) / 11500 * 2.5% = (0.0000012873 * mana pool) * 3 ticks = 0.0000038618 * mana pool
Some obvious things here are the mana return contribution of spell power increases the larger the mana pool. I used 0% crit which sets the crit factor to 1 to get the baseline results. You can figure the crit factor using (1.0*(1-crit)+1.5*crit). If you go through the work you find that 1% crit yields 1% increase multiplier against the mana pool, though that should be obvious.
Given a 25k mana pool (what I consider standard raid buffed with Naxx 25 gearing) and treating the cast time as the regen period to get a mp5 value...
Flash Heal 1 spell power = 0.048275 mana per cast * 5 / (1.5/(1 + haste)) -> 0.16092 mp5(0 haste), 0.20115 mp5(25% haste) Greater Heal 1 spell power = 0.096545 mana per cast * 5 / (2.5/(1 + haste)) -> 0.19309 mp5(0 haste), 0.24136 mp5(25% haste) Penance 1 spell power = 0.096545 mana per cast * 5 / (2.0/(1 + haste)) -> 0.24136 mp5(0 haste), 0.30170 mp5(25% haste)
Obviously from the data you can see that Penance is the best mp5 from rapture, we already knew that. We also see that 1% haste -> 1% increased mp5 from rapture returns.
Power Infusion can be used in two ways, either to boost raid dps or to boost your own hps or another healers efficiency. How to use it depends on the encounter, but it should never be off cooldown for too long (to not forget this it can be handy to use an addon like power auras). It should be put on a dps on encounters where the enrage timer is being an issue (examples of this could be Malygos, where using it when there are two sparks on the raid will provide a very nice dps increase). Using it on yourself is good when you need that extra hps and efficiency. You should always keep in mind that Power Infusion does not stack with Heroism / Bloodlust, if both buffs overlap, PI will be partly wasted.
This spell is mostly useful when you know a lot of damage is incoming. This is the case on a lot of bosses that enrage (the last 5% of patchwerk would be a good example)
Regen and Throughput need to be balanced in a way you have as much Throughput as possible without running out of mana. Stats that will help Throughput are Spellpower, haste, crit rating and intellect (by granting crit). Stats that will help with regen are intellect, spirit, mp5, spellpower (bigger heals leads to more mana returned from rapture) and crit (mana returns via rapture caused by bigger heals and absorbs from Divine Aegis).
The value of Intellect
Taken from TheDoctor's post
1 Int = .1875mp5 (Replenishment)
1 Int = .208mp5 (6min fight, mana pool size)
1 Int = .083mp5 (6min fight, shadowfiend)
1 Int = .017mp5 (6min fight, DA absorbs procing Rapture) - Might need new modeling
1 Int = up to .5 mana per cast flash/greater heal = 4500/11460*.025*20*200/360*5 = ~.545mp5
1 Int = up to 1.5 mana per cast Penance = 3500/11460*.025*20*3/7*5 = ~.327mp5
1 Int = 1.3675mp5
Stacking crit increases your throughput and mana regen from rapture while also leaving a shield on the target that will grant you more mana when (if?) it absorbs damage. This means that stacking crit becomes less effective when your Divine Aegis start overwriting eachother. A reasonable maximum to consider for crit chance is 30%. This is not a hard cap however, as this is highly dependant on the current encounter.
This was taken from atrinitydream's post.
Below numbers indicate haste rating required to cap the GCD to 1 second. Note that PI/Heroism + BT always cap haste. Haste Modifiers stack multiplicatively. Enlightenment is included.
[TABLE]Haste Modifiers|Talents + Buffs Only|w/ PI (20%)|w/ BT (25%)|w/ Heroism (30%)
3% [Moonkin/Ret Paladin]|1268.85|510.88|359.28|219.35
5% [Wrath of Air]|1182.22|438.69|289.98|152.71|
3% + 5%|1052.29|330.40|186.03|52.76[/TABLE]
Haste for obvious reasons has a negative effect on rate of mana usage, but what is not widely recognized is that if you are able to add x amount of haste rating and consequently do less overhealing, the additional mana returned from Rapture can easily compensate for the loss in efficiency due to casting more.
At approximately mid-Naxx25 gear levels (2200 spell power, 30% crit, 200 haste) and average amounts of overheal (50% overheal on non-crits, 65% on crits, 25% of DAs lost due to overwriting or non-absorption), for FH adding 10 points of haste requires you do to .5% less overhealing.
This number is variable based on the amount of overhealing you do as well as your current gear level, etc., but the point is that haste does not have as great a negative impact on efficiency as is believed.
Furthermore, and perhaps more significantly, the amount of overheal needed to zero out the mana loss from haste decreases as crit, spell power, and particularly max mana increase (in other words, as gear improves).
Data is below:
Overheal (Throughout): 50.0%, Crit Overheal 65.0%, Aegis Overheal: 25.0% Spell Power: 2200.0, Crit: 30.0%, Max Mana: 25000.0 At 200.0 haste: Flash MPS Cost: 464.184964928 Flash Rapture MPS: 97.8292567561 Difference (net loss): 366.355708172 At 210.0 haste: Flash MPS Cost: 465.519213175 Flash Rapture MPS: 98.1104561144 Difference (net loss): 367.40875706 MPS Lost: 1.05304888811 Added Effective Healing to net zero: 0.568164864133% Spell Power: 2500.0, Crit: 35.0%, Max Mana: 30000.0 Overheal: 50.0%, Crit Overheal 65.0%, Aegis Overheal: 25.0% At 200.0 haste: Flash MPS Cost: 464.184964928 Flash Rapture MPS: 128.560334937 Difference (net loss): 335.624629991 At 210.0 haste: Flash MPS Cost: 465.519213175 Flash Rapture MPS: 128.929867374 Difference (net loss): 336.5893458 MPS Lost: 0.964715809115 Added Effective Healing to net zero: 0.399198539158%
The relevant portions of the Python script (I hate Excel) used to generate this data are below (so those more knowledgeable than I can check my math). I left out basic calculations like those for cast time and base flash heal amount. Grace is NOT assumed to be up. NOTE: For clarity, '_add' refers to calculations when adding x amount of haste (10, in my sample runs above), which as they're identical for everything except the last four lines I've omitted to try to save space. I can provide the full script upon request.
flash_total_healing = (noncrit_percent * flash_base_heal * noncrit_effective) + (crit_percent * flash_base_heal * 1.5 * crit_effective) + (crit_percent * flash_base_heal * 0.45 * da_effective) flash_rapture_return = max_mana * (flash_total_healing / 11460.0) * 0.025 flash_cast_time = 1.5/(1.05 * (1.0 + (haste_rating / 3279.0))) flash_mps_cost = flash_cost / flash_cast_time flash_rapture_mps = flash_rapture_return / flash_cast_time net_loss = flash_mps_cost - flash_rapture_mps needed_flash_rapture_return = flash_cost - (flash_add_cast_time * net_loss) needed_flash_total_healing = (needed_flash_rapture_return / (max_mana * 0.025)) * 11460.0 added_effective_percent = (((needed_flash_total_healing / flash_base_heal) - (crit_percent * 0.45 * da_effective)) - (noncrit_percent * noncrit_effective) - (crit_percent * 1.5 * crit_effective))/(noncrit_percent + (crit_percent * 1.5))
It also bears noting that haste increases ability (this is more noticeable in large quantities than small) to concentrate on more than one target at once as well as further supports Discipline's already strong ability to reactively, rather than exclusively proactively, heal.
Yellow slots: , or
is the superior metagem at lower gear levels and when regen is a significant problem.
will grant more intellect then the IED if you have more then 1.1k intellect. It is also the prefered metagem for Throughput. It does however usualy provide less regen overal then IED but the fact that it does not require any blue gems in your gear and also grants spellpower makes it the superior choice in most cases.
Regen granted by IED vs ESD
Taken from TheDoctor's post.
IED is worth ~30mp5 on average... So for ESD to equal its regen you need to reach, 30/1.3675 = 21.93 Int + 21 Int = 42.93 Int. This requires an unreal amount of Int somewhere around ~1900 unbuffed. Though at 1500 Int you receive more than the minimum mana regen that the IED models to.
Head: - Kirin tor revered
Shoulders: or - Exalted and Honored with Sons of Hodir respectively. If you are an inscriptor you will ofcourse use the inscriptor only enchant.
Cloak: Enchant Cloak - Speed or Darkglow Embroidery if you're a tailor
Chest: Enchant Chest - Powerful Stats
Bracers: Enchant Bracers - Superior Spellpower
Gloves: Enchant Gloves - Exceptional Spellpower
Boots: Enchant Boots - Greater Vitality or Enchant Boots - Greater Spirit, whichever gives most regen at your current gear level. Enchant Boots - Tuskarr's Vitality is also viable if survability is needed.
Rings: Enchant Ring - Greater Spellpower (enchanter only)
Weapon: Enchant Weapon - Mighty Spellpower
I consider the and the a must for major slots, the third major slot can then be filled with either , , or depending on personal preference and what encounter your guild is currently working on.
There are a few decent minor glyphs you can choose between, their advantages vary, I will list them all here.
- I consider any glyph that can save you mana in combat an acceptable minor glyph
- This removes the reagent cost from levitate, this is VERY handy. As it often happens to end up without light feathers right at the moment you need one to prevent getting killed.
- With this glyph, it is possible to get mana back from your shadowfiend the regular way, and then try to position it so it dies and you get another 5% extra mana. This is however quite tricky to do but can be quite rewarding.
- This glyph will make your Shadow Protection and Prayer of Shadow Protection last longer, this is mostly handy on very long encounters where you find you have to rebuff it midfight (though that is mostly irrelevant if you buffed everyone right before the fight or if a paladin is providing an aura of shadow protection)
The flash you choose depends if you need throughput or regen more, usually is taken but can be taken when regen is really an issue.
, , and are the superior choices when it comes to food. It is however also possible that someone in your raid will setup a for you to use, providing the exact same amount of spellpower as the salmon would have provided.
There are a few very good trinkets for discipline, what you use as trinkets very much depends on the encounter and on what gear you have.
- Nice trinket giving a lot of crit as well as a nice on crit regen proc, its internal cooldown is 45 seconds.
- With Disc priests usualy chaincasting, this trinket pretty much equals a permanent 200 spellpower bonus.
- This trinket gives a good amount of spellpower, has a decent regen broc and is BoE, it is a very good alternative to the above trinkets if they don't seem to drop.
- The value of this trinket depends how much use you take in the haste proc. If you see yourself getting full use of the haste proc most of the time, its a very valuable trinket.
- The intellect version of this trinket gives a very high boost to regen and procs often enough to combine it with shadowfiend, increasing its value. The amount of regen this trinket gives allows you to remove some regen from other slots.
Optimal gear list
Thanks to Ashnell for this gear list.
With raidbuffs and enchant you stats will look like this(from rawr):
Spellpower: 2633 + 200 from
Crit: 35,89% + (4% from Renewed Hope)