Discipline Priest Talents Guide

Patch 10.2.5 Last Updated: 23rd Jan, 2024
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Class Talents

The class tree for Discipline Priest is a mixed bag in terms of that there are some must have talents, and some situational talents that can be swapped depending on different situations. A lot of the time you’ll be picking talents based on which way will be the path of least resistance in terms of how many points you’ll have to spend to move further in the tree, rather than the talents' own merit. The class trees are split into three tiers where you need to fill out a certain amount of talents in each tier to move onto the next. Let’s talk about them and when you’ll want to pick them up, tier by tier.

Tier 1 Talents

First let’s talk a bit about talents that you’ll most likely always be taking as Discipline. Shadow Word: Death and its following node Death and Madness will always be taken. Now that Shadow Word: Death is able to heal through Atonement it is an incredible tool in both dungeons and raid, as it is able to put out incredible damage and healing in execute ranges, as well as be an activator for Twilight Equilibrium outside of it. 

To path downwards through the middle you'll want to pick up Improved Flash Heal, Protective Light, Angelic Feather and Leap of Faith.

Improved Flash Heal is just a baseline healing buff and the only option that allows you to go further towards Protective Light.

Protective Light will always be taken due to its synergy with a talent later in the tree, Binding Heals, allowing you to heal others and having the 10% DR (Damage Reduction) still apply to yourself when casting Flash Heal on other targets. Having an on demand 10% damage reduction is incredibly helpful, as Discipline is spread thin in terms of strong defensive options so any DR helps.

Angelic Feather has been a must pick for Discipline through the entirety of Shadowlands and this is not changing since it is still our strongest option for on demand movement speed. Even though we got the addition of Body of Soul these two do not stack, and Angelic Feather is simply better as it allows you to boost your movement speed more often and for no added mana cost.

Lastly we have Leap of Faith. In the right hands this spell, often referred to as grip, can be a lifesaver or save a lot of time in many situations. This spell is one of the spells that is synonymous with the priest class and for good reason, as it has infinite applications so be sure to look out for moments where you can help out your team by gripping them to safety or saving time by taking them to your location to name two examples.

In the first tier we also want to pick up either the choice node between Void Tendrils / Sheer Terror or Dominate Mind / Mind Control. The reason for this is that we want to pick up Vampiric Embrace or Sanguine Teachings no matter what content you are doing. Which one of these you pick depends entirely on the type of content you are doing, but for general use purposes Dominate Mind is the best option as it can have situational usage on certain mobs like the Spiteful affix in Mythic+ dungeons. Dominate Mind is generally preferred over Mind Control as it leaves you able to still control your character while controlling an enemy mob.

This leaves us with one extra talent point in the first tier. For raid you will most likely path down to the left through Holy Nova to pick up Spell Warding and Rhapsody later as for priests a 3% magic damage damage reduction is nothing to scoff at; and after the recent buffs to Rhapsody, its now a must pick talent point as its now a core part of your ramp. There will be times where you need to shift some talent points into utility nodes so let’s talk about those.

Many bosses and mobs have the ability to apply magic buffs to their minions or themselves making Dispel Magic an excellent pick if you are facing mobs that apply these types of buffs since you’ll be able to remove them at the press of a button. Some mobs and bosses will also apply dangerous disease type debuffs to your teammates so picking Improved Purify is very nice to have to be able to remove them and make your job easier. 

Shackle Undead, Sheer Terror, Void Tendrils and Psychic Voice are all talents allowing you to expand or improve upon your ability to CC (Crowd Control) enemies. Depending on the exact type of content you are doing these talents can be situationally useful.

Phantasm in the right situation can save your life, as being able to remove all snares and slows instantly has many applications in different types of content.

Prayer of Mending is simply not worth a point in raids or dungeons, so picking it up is a waste as you do not have the mana pool to be casting this enough to warrant its talent point. Sadly this talent has no interactions with the Discipline kit like applying Atonement, so it is purely used for its raw healing. That also means we will not be picking up Focused Mending since we won’t be taking Prayer of Mending.

Tier 2 Talents

In the second tier your goal in a lot of builds will be to move through this section and be able to pick up at least two of the three “end-nodes” of this tier Unwavering Will and Twist of Fate as they will allow you access to a majority of the bottom of the class tree. Most of the time you will want to do this with no more than 20 points if possible, as you would like to enter the final tier with as many talent points as possible to pick up some much needed defensives and other great talents.

On the right side if we have picked Death and Madness we can find the talent Tithe Evasion. This talent is incredibly useful, as it will remove the risk of dropping dangerously low whenever you are using Shadow Word: Death, in patch 10.2 the potency of this talent has been reduced, the damage reduction was reduced from 75% to 50%, but in return Shadow word: deaths damage to yourself now factors in your own damage reduction. This talent is still highly valued and you will pick it in most situations, unless you are stretched thin for talent points an require them elsewhere. 

Power Infusion + Twins of the Sun Priestess are always taken, as they represent a massive increase in throughput and helps out your desired Power Infusion target a ton. It also allows you to get to Twist of Fate, which makes these choices a no-brainer. From here you’ll always pick up Twist of Fate, no matter which build you are playing.

On the left side of this tier, how you move through it depends on whether you need Mass dispel and Improved Mass Dispel, if the content you’re doing does not require you to have Mass dispel talented, you can save a point by pathing through either Body and Soul or Inspiration, this leftover point can either be put into Words of the Pious or Angelic bulwark for a more defensive option or a different piece of required utility.

To finish off the tier you’ll want to pick up Vampiric Embrace or Sanguine Teachings and San’layn to path downwards. To path to these talents you will need to pick up either choice-node above, even if you have no use for their utility. With Vampiric Embrace being taken off the global cooldown it is now a good choice. However, currently Sanguine Teachings will be the default recommendation. Throes of Pain is a good place to put leftover talent points, as its an ok throughput increase, but it does not connect to any talents you’d currently want to pick up nor is the damage from Purge the Wicked / Shadow word: pain currently big enough for this talent to be placed in the category of must pick.

The rest of the talents in this tier are rather situational or just straight up not worth the points. Move with Grace and Body and Soul can be situationally useful if your team needs some help moving around, but mostly these talents can be ignored. Apathy will never be picked in a PvE setting, as it is just too niche and isn’t even guaranteed to work on a Mind Blast cast as it requires you to get a critical strike. Void Shield is outperformed by Vampiric Embrace / Sanguine Teachings + San’layn so for that reason it will not be chosen.

Tier 3 Talents

In the final tier are a mix of throughput and defensive options. For this tier a lot of the time you will have 10 points available, as pathing through the Discipline Priest class tree is quite rigid and some points need to be taken.

On the far left of this tier we find the most powerful of these with the first being Binding Heals. This talent has incredible synergy with the Discipline Priest kit through applying two Atonements from one cast, as well as being able to activate Protective Light while casting on others. This makes it a must have, as having an almost permanent Atonement on yourself is fantastic.

Surge of Light is also quite useful, as it lets you save a decent amount of mana when you want to cast Flash Heal, as well as letting you cast it on the move.

These two talents are quite good on their own, but their true power comes from letting you access the end-row talents Power Word: Life and Benevolence. In both dungeons and raids these talents are a must pick. Both are powerful in their own ways, with Power Word: Life granting you the ability to have access to some much needed spot healing, while Benevolence straight up boosts your throughput by a flat amount.

The Divine Star / Halo choice node will always be picked, as it gives you a choice of two great tools to put out healing and damage. In raids the default choice will be Halo, as it interacts with your mastery, Mastery: Grace, giving you some good damage for ramps as well as great healing. However if your raid is almost always stacked and heavy damage is coming in more often than every 40 seconds there is an argument for picking Divine Star as it can pull ahead of Halo in some situations. In dungeons you can either go with Divine Star or Halo, your choice. Halo is less of a hassle to manage and generally preferred for healing throughput as you can safely be able to hit all your teammates with its long range.

Essence Devourer is a talent that has risen in power with the rework, as we now have more pet uptime, this talent is now worth putting a talent into in most if not all situations. 

Even with us playing Shadow Covenant in both M+ and Raids, Mindgames is not currently worth talenting into, mainly because pathing to it is too expensive, as it will effectively cost you 3 points to get to.

Crystalline Reflection is a returning Shadowlands legendary and is an incredible source of passive damage whenever you are casting Power Word: Shield, as well as giving you a small heal whenever you shield on top of the damage. That makes this talent another lock-in talent for raid, as its value is just too good to pass up. You can expect it to make up around 5-8% of your DPS. In dungeons you can decide to pass it up to pick up the defensive options which we will talk about next.

Lastly we have the defensive options available in the final tier. Translucent Image is a returning conduit from Shadowlands and is now even stronger, as it lasts the full 10 second duration of Fade instead of only 5 seconds. This makes it a must take since Discipline needs all the help it can get when it comes to defensives.

With the very recent nerfs to Undulating Sporecloak, Angelic Bulwark is now back on the table as a strong defensive option for priests, you should heavily consider on most fights if you have the option to spare talent points to pick this talent up, it's not a must pick, but it will be a really good option to talent into whenever it's possible.

If at this point you have one additional talent point left that is not needed elsewhere it is now time to decide between Light’s Inspiration and Improved Fade. Which one of these you pick often depends on how often you need access to your Fade. If you are taking heavy damage more often than every 30 seconds you’ll want to pick up one point in Improved Fade, but if you are more in need of a big defensive every 1 min 30 seconds you can shift that point into Light’s Inspiration.

If at this point you have additional talent points left that are not needed elsewhere it is now time to decide between Light’s Inspiration and Improved Fade. The go-to talent of the two will be Light’s Inspiration as the survivability gain from this talent is baseline much higher than that of Improved Fade. However, if boss timers or dungeon timers heavily favor Improved Fade you can shift your points into it.

Void Shift is the last option we have to talk about, but there is really not much to say. With its 5 minute cooldown as well as having overlapping usage areas with Power Word: Life you pretty much never take this. The only situation I can imagine this being useful would be a niche boss fight dealing with heavy healing absorbs. Outside of that Power Word: Life just does what this spell is supposed to do but better, and with a lower cooldown.

By design the new class talent trees are made to change depending on what you are doing and how you want to do it. Experiment with different talents to see what works best for you. For those wanting a template you can build from, I have made a class tree suitable for each of the different builds that will be available in the next section of the guide. Don’t use these builds as a cheat sheet, but rather build upon and change them depending on what you need for your current situation.

Talent Builds

Raiding Builds

Going into Dragonflight raiding in 10.2, there is mainly one competitive build for raid progression content, which will be the Default build. There are a lot of small talent changes that can be made to the default build, and we will discuss them in this section. 

Which talents you end up swapping in and out will also change your ramping rotation a slight bit, so make sure to take a look at the Rotation & Playstyle sections to see how each of the talent builds play out to get the most performance out of each of these builds.

Dungeon Builds

For Discipline Priests in dungeons there is mainly one build I would recommend. With this build you will pick up Mindbender, Inescapable Torment and Void Summoner as your core last row talents. This playstyle is quite similar to the raid one and has mostly the same talents, except for a few changes.

In dungeons you will more often encounter certain mechanics that will require you to swap around talent points to pick up utility that is required, such as Phantasm or Dominate Mind. To pick up an extra one of these options you would drop Tithe Evasion.

If you don't need Mass Dispel, Dispel Magic or Improved Purify for the dungeon you are heading into, you can shift these points into alternative utility, or if you have enough points you can pick up the leech talents that have been dropped from the raid build.

Discipline Priest Default Spec Tree


For Discipline Priests in raids, I recommend a talent tree that will provide the best overall raid performance. I will discuss some minor talent changes you can situationally make depending on the encounter.

Mindbender is a talent you can decide to pick up if fight design allows for it, this talent allows for you to have a smaller shadow covenant window in all of your 2x radiance casts instead of a big shadow covenant window in your evangelism ramp. It will overall be a slight throughput increase in a perfect scenario, but I recommend sticking with shadowfiend, as it is usually preferred to have stronger cooldowns in progression scenarios. However if you decide it is good for you to spec into Mindbender, I’d recommend dropping the point in Ultimate Penitence, as this button is usually used to fill out gaps in Shadowfiend uptime.

Heaven’s Wrath provides cooldown reduction to Ultimate Penitence and can situationally be a wanted talent if the fight design is tailored around you having lower cooldown on the spell. If you decide to put talent points into this, I'd recommend removing points in Blaze of Light, as it doesn't alter your rotation in any way.

Protector of the Frail is one notable talent you can pick up if you need it. Getting two charges of Pain Suppression and lowering its cooldown can be invaluable on specific encounters; however, you will have to make a sacrifice somewhere to get it. My recommendation on what to drop is a point in Blaze of Light, this talent is a good HPS increase, but does not impact your rotation in any way.

As most encounters in the raid don't require Mass Dispel, thus the default talent tree will not be selecting it, however if you need it for a specific encounter, you can talent out of tithe evasion to pick it up.

Inescapable Torment AoE Damage (Dungeon)


With this build, it places an emphasized focus on your Mindbender and Inescapable Torment. You’ll want to play around the two talents to squeeze out as much damage and healing as possible in the short window, and then use the cooldown reduction from Void Summoner to get your Mindbender back as fast as possible. After pressing Mindbender you want to prioritize pressing abilities that proc Inescapable Torment as much as possible, these abilities are Mind Blast, Shadow Word: Death and Penance. This will give you huge damage and healing windows on a short cooldown, which is great for the damage patterns in mythic+ dungeons.

This adds some complexity as you won't always be able to push the cooldown of Mindbender down in time for damage intake, due to mechanics requiring you to move or other factors. If that happens, don't be afraid to supplement with other damage reducing parts of your toolkit, and then perform a similar healing rotation but without the Mindbender. Sometimes this might even be more optimal for the dungeon or boss encounter.