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Shadow Priests - From A Consistent #1 Player Page1

Hi, for starters let me introduce myself. I started to "seriously" PvP back in season 2 on the server Mannoroth, where I was able to keep consistant top 10 teams throughout the season with my highest ratings being ~2600, ~2500, and ~2400 in 2v2/3v3/5v5. In season 3, I was able to achieve triple rank 1 with the set ups SP/Rogue, SP/Druid/Rogue(or Lock), and a Euro set up with a shadow priest. In season 4, I transferred to a different server with a whole new set of teammates, where I 3v3/5v5'ed with the ratings: ~2300-2400 as SP/Warrior/Shaman and SP/Lock/Shaman, with a 5v5 as JAC set up which we got rank 1 with, with minimal losses. On my alt shadow priest on Medivh, I took a SP/DS Druid set up to 2500. I have never looked away from shadow until WotLK came out.

I have gotten a name change recently (inside joke), but I'm probably more known as Noxn rather than Skyyhealer (lol).

So anyway, now that you know that I have been high rated and understand PvP pretty well, on to the real post!:

With every update and blue posts I've seen since WotLK was released I keep asking myself if Blizzard is giving Shadow Priests the attention they deserve. Even though you couldn't say the spec was dead in TBC given the representation of a handful of skilled Shadow Priests in the arena ladders, the general consensus was that the spec wasn't competitive. PvE damage was the lowest out of all classes, yet we still had guaranteed raid spots, thanks to our mana battery mechanism and support abilities. Now, in WotLK, our support power was sacrificed for higher damage. Was it worth it?

Here's a compilation of everything I think that's wrong with Shadow Priests right now. Every item will have a suggested change and a reason behind it, you can expect some comparisons between TBC and WotLK. My goal is to show Blizzard what are the most critical problems with the spec from an experienced player point of view, and at the very least let them know that we still need some love. Please keep in mind that most of the changes are PvP oriented, but PvE won't be neglected at all. With that being said, the suggested changes are meant to show what I think that could be possible solutions, not the holy grail.

This is the list, from top priority to lowest priority:

Mana Efficiency
Change: Lower the mana cost of Shadow spells, buff Mental Agility, reduce the mana cost of Shadowform, Hymn of Hope now works in Shadowform
Reason: I've seen Ghostcrawler say that it's very rare to see players surprise them with talent specs. I'm sure that's the case with Shadow in PvE, as almost all Shadow Priests will run with a very cookie cutter 14/0/57.

When it comes to PvP though, you start to get the feeling that they didn't really care. Right now you can either go with Shadow power (14/0/57) or with mental agility/absolution (20/0/51). With the former spec you can get incredible crits, but you run out of mana way too fast. The latter offers no big crits for a little more outlasting power, but still with such horrible efficiency you'll end up asking yourself if there's a good choice at all.

Hymn of Hope (a very weak spell, but I know it's being looked at) drops you out of Shadowform for some unknown reason. Shadowfiend's avoidance has been obviously nerfed, when it was almost invulnerable back in TBC, even though it still felt like a joke against any team that knew what they were doing. Also, thanks to the low survivability of all classes (specially our warlock and rogue partners) we have to drop form to heal very often, and you can ask anyone how threatening a Shadow Priest outside Shadowform is.

Considering the fact Shadowform limits the class by half, is it really necessary to be such a gigantic mana sink?

Obviously not a PvE issue, but still the biggest PvP issue a Shadow Priest have. It's by far the worst mana efficiency out of all classes/specs.

   
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