Tag Archives: Penance

Evaluating Discipline Priests with World of Logs

The second part of my updated Guide to Evaluating Healers with World of Logs focuses on Discipline Priests. Thank you to the awesome Derevka of Tales of a Priest, who reviewed the post and shared some of his Priestly knowledge with me.

(This post may be easier to read, with less squishy pictures, over on the guide page).


 Here are specific things to look for when analyzing discipline priest logs. It’s best to look at specific kills or attempts in order to get meaningful numbers.

Healing Done

Discipline priests are the masters of mitigation. They are great tank healers but are also capable of putting out a huge amount of absorbs on the raid through Spirit Shell, DA and PW:S. Disc Priests have a wide variety of spells and cooldowns to manage.

Healing by Spell

Disc Priest healing done on World of Logs

Spell selection – Is the priest using the appropriate spells?

Priests have: Heal, Greater Heal, Flash Heal, Binding Heal, Penance, Atonement, Power Word: Shield, Spirit Shell, Prayer of Healing, Prayer of Mending, Renew, Divine Aegis (passive effect), and one of Cascade, Halo or Divine Star (Tier 6 talents).

Top Spells

With few exceptions, Spirit Shell and Divine Aegis should be a Disc Priest’s top heals. Spirit Shell is extremely powerful when used correctly. Atonement and Power Word: Shield should be up there as well. On fights with lots of raid damage, the Tier 6 talent (usually Cascade) should also provide a lot of healing.

Spells that may show not show up in the logs much – or at all – include:

  • Flash Heal: For lesser geared healers, Flash Heal should be used in emergencies only since it is extremely inefficient. For healers who are overgeared and/or have access to a lot of mana cooldowns, it may show up more frequently.

  • Renew: This spell is very weak for Disc Priests. It may be rolled on a tank or cast on the move, but overall it should not make up a significant portion of healing done.

  • Heal: Though Heal is very efficient, it does relatively little healing. Priests may not use it in favour bigger, more expensive heals.

Notes on specific spells:

Power Word: Shield

WoL: Power Word Shield
Power Word: Shield should be kept up on the tank(s), or cast on anyone else taking very heavy raid damage. PW:S should be cast often – at least every 12 seconds for the Rapture proc, but usually more often than that. You want to see fairly low overhealing on this.

Penance
Penance is a fairly cheap heal that hits 3 times in rapid succession. It is an excellent way to get a 3-stack of Grace up on a target, and is also great for Atonement heals. This should be used close to on cooldown (cooldown is 9 seconds). Priests should be using Penance more for Atonement healing than direct healing.

Power Word: Solace

PW-Solace
On most fights, you want to see that Priests have taken (and are using) Power Word: Solace as their Tier 3 talent. It provides a free, instant, smart heal so is great in terms of both HPS and HPM. It has a 10-second cooldown and should be used often.

The only reason for a Disc Priest to not take PW:Solace is if the extra damage from Mindbender is really needed.

Atonement

WoL Atonement

Atonement in the healing by spell tab

 

WoL Disc Priest damage by spell

Atonement healing in the damage by spell tab

There are three spells Priests can cast offensively that cause Atonement healing: Penance, Smite and Holy Fire (or Power Word: Solace, depending on talent choices). To see how these spells are being used, check the damage by spell tab. Penance is the most efficient, powerful heal and should appear at the top of damage done, followed by Smite, then Holy Fire/PW:Solace.

Cascade
Cascade will be a Disc Priests tier 6 talent of choice in most situations. It’s a smart heal that heals 15 people and has only a 25 second cooldown. You should see this used often and providing a fair amount of healing on any fight where the raid is taking significant damage.

Prayer of Mending
Priests should be casting this on cooldown so it should provide a fair bit of their healing. With the 2T15 bonus, PoM should account for even more.

Void Shift

WoL Void Shift
This is a newer cooldown for Priests that allows them to switch their health with the health of their target. It’s not something that will be used on cooldown or anything, but it you should see it used at least a few times over the course of a raid. Check the amount healed (it should be high per cast) to see if the Priest is faster with VS than your Pallies are with LoH. There is a slight delay in the health exchange after this has been cast.

Buffs Cast

This screen will tell you how often a priest is using their cooldowns, along with the uptime on key abilities.

World of Logs - Disc Priest buffs cast

Prayer of Mending – PoM should be cast on cooldown and be up as much as possible. 80%+ uptime is a good target for most fights. However, if the fight has people constantly taking damage (like Tortos) it will likely run out of charges before the cooldown is up again and the uptime will be lower (probably around 60%.)

Grace – With Disc Priests’ focus on Atonement healing, Grace is a bit of an outdated mechanic. If the Priest is strictly assigned to tank healing, you want to see Grace up on that target all the time. However, since Discs are such powerful raid healers, Grace uptime is likely to be low and not something to worry too much about. Grace should have a higher uptime in 10s than 25s.

Archangel – Archangel consumes stacks of Evangelism, giving 5% increased healing per stack. It has a 30 second cooldown and lasts 18 seconds, so the maximum uptime is 60%, though it won’t be up this often in practice. You want to see the Priest using Archangel often throughout the fight, and only when they are at 5 stacks of Evangelism.

Evangelism

To see how Evangelism and Archangel are being lined up, click the # beside both. Hovering over the Evangelism bars will show how many stacks it was at. You want to see 5 stacks before the Archangel bar lights up.

Inner Focus – Inner Focus makes your next spell cost less mana and a guaranteed crit. It has a 45 second cooldown and should be used often. A good practice is to use Inner Focus before a PoH while Spirit Shell is active.

Inner-Focus

Clicking the # next to Inner Focus and Spirit Shell will show you if these things are being lined up, as they are in the example above.

Inner Sanctum / Inner Will – One of these should be up all the time. However, if the Priest casts one of these before the fight begins and never switches it, it won’t show up here.

Hymn of Hope – Hymn of Hope restores mana to the raid and should be used on every fight. It has an 8 minute cooldown. You should see 12 ticks to indicate that it was channelled for the full duration.

Pain Suppression – Pain Suppression has a three-minute cooldown. Its use will often be prescribed by the raid leader. You should see PS used 1-3 times on most fights, depending on length.

Power Infusion (optional talent) – Power Infusion reduces casting time and the cost of spells. It has a 2 minute cooldown. It should be used often. Pairing it with Spirit Shell can make a very powerful combo.

Trinkets – If the priest has any on-use trinkets, or racials like Arcane Torrent they should be used as much as possible. Compare the cooldown to the amount of times used.

Other things to look for

There are a few important things that won’t show up under Healing Done or Buffs Cast, and you’ll have to look for them using the Expression Editor.

Power Word: Barrier 

WoL Power Word: Barrier

To find out how often PW:B is used, you need to use the Expression Editor. Go to Dashboard > Expression Editor and add in the following (replace the sourceName with the name of the priest):

sourceName = "Priest"
and (Spell = "Power Word: Barrier")

This will show you how many times PW:B was cast. If you want more details, such as how many people were affected by the Barrier, just use (Spell = “Power Word: Barrier”) as the query.

Shadowfiend 
This restores mana to the priest and does some damage too. Shadowfiend has a 3 minute cooldown. Paste in the following query (replace the sourceName with the name of the Priest):

sourceName = "Priest"
and (Spell = "Shadowfiend")

If the Priest has specced into Mindbender, it has only a 1 minute cooldown. Paste in the following query (replace the sourceName with the name of the Priest):

sourceName = "Priest"
and (Spell = "Shadowfiend")

No matter which ability the Priest has, you should see it used first within about a minute of the start of the fight and then again whenever it’s off cooldown.

Pasiphae’s Priestly Power Auras

Here are all the power auras I use on my Discipline Priest. I only use 5 auras, and this is what they all look like together:

Priest power auras

1. No Inner Will/Inner Fire buff

When neither Inner Will or Inner Fire is active, a blue rune appears around my character to remind me to use one of them. This aura will activate at any time.

Power Aura - Inner Will or Inner Fire missing

Version:4.22; b:0.9647; g:0.6196; icon:priest_icon_innewill; buffname:Inner Fire/Inner Will; r:0.0549; texture:2; alpha:1; stacksOperator:=; texmode:1; inverse:true

2. Penance

Penance is not visible on my action bars, so I use this aura to let me know when it’s off cooldown. It will only activate when I am in combat.

Power Aura - Penance off cooldown

Version:4.22; icon:Spell_Holy_Penance; buffname:Penance; x:-119; bufftype:15; alpha:0.8; owntex:true; combat:true; size:0.25; y:-24; texmode:1

3. Prayer of Mending

I want to keep PoM up as much as possible so this aura appears whenever it is off cooldown. It also includes a ‘ping’ noise as an extra cue to cast it. This only appears in combat, while in a party or raid.

Power Aura - Prayer of Mending off cooldown

Version:4.22; icon:Spell_Holy_PrayerOfMendingtga; buffname:Prayer of Mending; x:101; bufftype:15; alpha:0.8; owntex:true; sound:23; exact:true; groupOrSelf:true; inParty:true; combat:true; size:0.34; inRaid:true; y:-128; texmode:1

4. Power Torrent/Lightweave

I like to know when my Intellect procs happen so I can time the use of my Arcane Torrent and Shadowfiend. These auras appear whenever my weapon or cloak enchant proc while I am in combat.

Power Aura - Lightweave and Power Torrent proc

Lightweave (purple):

Version:4.22; b:0.698; g:0.1647; icon:Spell_Arcane_PrismaticCloak; buffname:Lightweave; r:0.6667; x:102; texture:231; combat:true; size:0.35; y:23; texmode:1; finish:3

Power Torrent (white):

Version:4.22; b:0.5804; g:0.9529; icon:Ability_Paladin_SacredCleansing; buffname:Power Torrent; x:102; texture:231; combat:true; size:0.35; texmode:1; finish:3

Evaluating Discipline Priests with World of Logs

This is part of a series about using World of Logs to evaluate raiders.

First, thank you to all the people who reviewed or helped contribute to this post. Nyahm and Baerd of Arm of Hades, Kaleri of Apotheosis and Power Word: What?, Viktory of The Leetsauced Podcast and Gina of Healbot.net. You should go pay them a visit when you’re done reading this.

Now, on to the post.

Here are specific things to look for when analyzing discipline priest logs. It’s best to look at specific kills or attempts in order to get meaningful numbers.

Healing Done

Discipline priests are the masters of mitigation. They are great tank healers but are also well suited to raid healing, especially when damage is constant and/or predictable to make the most of Power Word: Shield. Priests have a wide variety of spells and cooldowns to manage. Disc priests have two viable healing styles: one that uses Atonement/Archangel and one that doesn’t.

Player Details

Healing by Spell

Is the priest using the appropriate spells?Discipline Priest healing breakdown by spell

Priests have a very diverse tool set and how they play will depend not only on their assignment, but also their raid size, composition, gear level and personal preference. Top spells used can change from fight to fight and priest to priest. If in doubt, ask the priest in question why they’re using the spells they are.

Tank healing
The main tank healing spells are: Power Word: Shield, Penance and Greater Heal. These are often supplemented by Prayer of Mending, Binding Heal, Atonement (if available) and possibly Flash Heal or Heal.

Raid Healing
The main raid healing spells are: Power Word: Shield, Prayer of Healing and Prayer of Mending. Penance, Greater Heal and Binding Heal are also used for spot healing. Divine Hymn is a good raid healing cooldown.

Divine Aegis will usually near the top  of healing done in terms of damage mitigated, though it’s not a spell that is actually cast.

Spells that may show not show up in the logs much – or at all – include:

  • Flash Heal: For lesser geared healers, Flash Heal should be used in emergencies only since it is extremely inefficient. For healers who are overgeared and/or have access to a lot of mana cooldowns, it may show up more frequently.
  • Renew: This spell is very weak for Disc Priests. It may be rolled on a tank or cast on the move, but overall it should not make up a significant portion of healing done.
  • Heal: Though Heal is very efficient, it does relatively little healing. Geared priests may not use it in favour bigger, more expensive heals. Atonement-specced priests should be using Smite instead of Heal.

Notes on specific spells:

Power Word: Shield

Power Word: Shield will generally be one of the top spells for healing done whether the priest is tank healing or raid healing. PW:S provides all kinds of goodness, from awesome mitigation, haste for the next spell through Borrowed Time, mana return through Rapture and extra crit chance for direct heals through Weakened Soul and Renewed Hope. PW:S will usually account for around 25-40% of heals and glyph of PW:S will provide an extra 5-10%. Overheal on PW:S should be low, ideally under 20% or so. If the overheal is much higher than that, absorbs are being wasted and the priest is likely casting PW:S more than they should.

Penance

Penance is a fairly cheap heal that hits 3 times in rapid succession. It is an excellent way to get a 3-stack of Grace up on a target. It has a 10 second cooldown and should be used often, especially when tank healing. With the Tier 11 bonus, it also provides extra spirit whenever it’s used.

Flash Heal vs. Binding Heal

Since most raid fights involve significant raid damage, Binding Heal should be used more than Flash Heal in most situations. Use of Binding Heal shows the priest is taking care of themselves in addition to the rest of the raid.

Divine Hymn

Divine Hymn healing on World of Logs

Divine Hymn has an 8 minute cooldown, so can only be used once a fight. Besides the healing it provides it also increases healing done to those it heals by 10%. It should be used on every fight, especially when raid healing.

Divine Hymn is affected by haste. The base amount of ticks is 12, but with 12.5% haste (which most raid-buffed priests will have) it will heal 15 times. If cast while under the effects of Power Infusion, Borrowed Time or Bloodlust,  it could tick up to 18 times. You should see at least 15 direct heals from Divine Hymn. If it’s less, the priest is probably using it at a bad time and had to interrupt the cast before it was finished.

Atonement

If a priest is Atonement specced, they should be using Smite/Holy Fire to heal on every fight to some extent. Otherwise, they’re wasting 5 talent points that could be spent elsewhere. How much healing Atonement accounts for really depends on the fight. On a fight like Halfus, where the mechanic is very powerful, it could make up the majority of the priests healing. On most other fights, Atonement is mainly used during times of light damage to stack Evangelism up to 5, then use Archangel when damage ramps up for the 15% extra healing.

Buffs Cast

This screen will tell you how often a priest is using their cooldowns, along with the uptime on key abilities.

Discipline Priest - Buffs cast on World of Logs

Prayer of Mending – PoM should be cast on cooldown and be up as much as possible. 75-90% uptime is a good, attainable target.

Grace – Uptime on Grace will depend heavily on healing assignment and fight. For tank healers: If the tank is taking damage throughout the encounter Grace uptime close to 100%. The nature of the fight will affect this number. For example, on Atramedes the tank isn’t taking any damage during air phase, so it’s likely Grace will fall off and have a lower uptime over the duration of the fight compared to a fight like Maloriak, where the main tank is taking damage all the time.  Raid healers and Atonement-specced priests will have a lower uptime  since Grace it isn’t triggered from Atonement, Power Word Shield or Prayer of Healing.

Inner Focus – Inner Focus makes your next spell free and more likely to crit. It has a 1 minute cooldown (less for those with Train of Thought) and should be used whenever it’s available.

Hymn of Hope – Hymn of Hope restores mana to the raid and should be used on every fight. Like Divine Hymn it has 12 base ticks but is affected by haste. You should see at least 15 ticks.

Pain Suppression – Pain Suppression has a three minute cooldown. Its use will often be prescribed by the raid leader. You should see PS used 1-3 times on most fights, depending on length.

Power Infusion on World of LogsPower Infusion – Power Infusion reduces casting time and the cost of spells. It has a 2 minute cooldown. It should be used often.  Click on Power Infusion in the Buffs Cast table to find out who it was used on (whether the priest was using it on themselves or someone else).

Fade – Fade is something to look for if the priest has pulled aggro on something. If they’re pulling aggro and getting killed without using Fade, there’s a problem.

Trinkets – If the priest has any on-use trinkets, or racials like Arcane Torrent they should be used as much as possible. Compare the cooldown to the amount of times used.

Other things to look for

There are a few important things that won’t show up under Healing Done or Buffs Cast.

Power Word: Barrier –  To find out how PW:B often it is used, you need to use the Expression Editor. Go to Dashboard > Expression Editor and add in the following (replace the sourceName with the name of the priest):

sourceName = “Pasiphae”
and (Spell = “Power Word: Barrier”)

This will show you how many times PW:B was used. If you want more details, such as how many people were effected by the Barrier, just use (Spell = “Power Word: Barrier”) as the query.

Power Word: Barrier in the World of Logs expression editor

Archangel/Evangelism – Archangel increases healing and restores mana and should generally be used whenever the priest reaches 5 stacks of Evangelism. It has a duration of 18 seconds and a cooldown of 30 seconds, so the maximum uptime is 60%, but it will generally not be up anywhere near this often. How much Atonement is used for healing really depends on the priest and the fight, so there’s no target uptime for this. However, you can use the Expression Editor to find out how well it is used. Use this expression (replace the sourceName with the name of the priest):

sourceName = “Pasiphae”
and (Spell = “Evangelism” or Spell=”Archangel”)

Evangelism in the World of Logs expression editor

In this screenshot you can see that I got to a 5-stack of Evangelism, continued to cast Smite or Holy Fire for 11 seconds then used Archangel to consume the stacks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Things to look for:

  • Ensure that Evangelism is always at a 5 stack before Archangel is used.
  • Check how long after getting a 5 stack of Evangelism it takes for the priest to use Archangel. It’s fine to save it for a short time but if the priest is reaching 5 stacks then waiting more than 30 seconds to use it, it’s a waste.
  • Check to see if Evangelism ever falls off without Archangel being triggered.

Discipline Priest mana returns on World of LogsShadowfiend – Shadowfiend restores mana to the priest and does some damage too. It should be used on every fight. To make sure it’s used, go to the player details and check the Buffs Gained screen. You should see Mana Leech in the Power Gains table.