Vonya, over at Egotistical, had a great post today on the upcoming Priest changes with Patch 3.1. She left her comments off of the Shadow tree changes, so Prin thought she'd toss her 2 cents in.
- Shadowfiend now creates a shadowy fiend to attack the target. Caster receives 5% mana when the Shadowfiend attacks. Damage taken by area of effect attacks is reduced, and the Shadowfiend has a reduced chance to be hit by spells and melee attacks. Lasts 15 sec. Didn't it always? I distinctly remember having a little Shadowfiend that returned to mana to me. Perhaps it's the 'Fiend's inherent defensive abilities that are the change. Must look into this.
- Dispersion (Tier 11) now clears all snare and movement impairing effects when cast, and makes you immune to them while dispersed. Hmmm… I can see this being useful in PvP, IF you have a partner to handle your foe while you're Dispersed. Otherwise, you're gonna pop out of that purple wind tunnel right back into a world of hurt. *snicker* World of Hurtcraft.
- Shadowform (Tier 7) now gives your Shadow Word: Pain, Devouring Plague, and Vampiric Touch spells the ability to critically hit. WHOO HOOO! That means I can REALLY stack on the crit now! Wait – that means I NEED to stack on the crit, now. Man…
- Darkness moved from Tier 6 to Tier 1. What is it replacing in Tier 1? Or is the Tier just expanding? Need more info here to be able to comment.
- Silence (Tier 5) range increased to 30 yards. (Previously was 20 yards) Meh.
- Vampiric Embrace (Tier 5) now lasts 5 mins. (Previously lasted 1 min) Okay, so now I only cast it once on a boss, and never on trash anymore. Still, that opens up a spare GCD for something else. I'll approve it.
- Spirit Tap (Tier 1) now increases mana regeneration while casting by 87%. (Previously 50%) Drool. With the upcoming Spirit changes, who wouldn't love even more MP5? Since that's basically what this is.
- Improved Spirit Tap (Tier 1) increases mana regeneration while casting by 17/33%. (Previously 10/20%) WOW – and even MORE. Hells ya, I'm going back to asserting that all Priests need these talents. Keeping them on Tier 1 keeps them in reach, regardless of spec, so I don't wanna hear any complaining about it! Just take it!! When joined by Meditation from the Disc tree, we're going to be just frothing over in Mana. We're going to have to keep fresh clothes with us at all times, just to combat the puddle of mana we'll be perpetually sitting in. It'll be like a portabled mana kiddie pool. I'm bringing the water wings!
- *New Talent* Improved Devouring Plague, Tier 6, 3 point talent – Increases the periodic damage done by your Devouring Plague by 5/10/15%, and when you cast Devouring Plague you instantly deal damage equal to 5/10/15% of its total periodic effect. Translation: DP becomes a damage-front-loaded DoT, and does more damage over time. Why would you NOT want this? I know Priests who aren't even using DP since it became trainable, out of habit, probably. Time to break that habit, especially if you're of the Purple Persuasion.
Concerning Vonya's comments on the State of Discipline, I have to say, I'm terribly enthused!! Disc is certain to become my off-spec, and I've always invested my spare points there. Trainable Divine Spirit is making me all kinds of bubbling over in joy, and having married a Disc Priest, my tanking DK is ever more thrilled to be healed by him.
Thanks so much for the heads-up, Vonya!!