Holy Priest PvP Rotation and Playstyle (Shadowlands / Patch 9.1)

Last updated on Jul 02, 2021 at 11:04 by Mysticall 6 comments

PvP requires you to perform various actions in the course of a duel, match, or battleground: interrupting/silencing enemies, healing your teammates and yourself, defending yourself, keeping yourself alive, etc.. It is a game mode that fully utilises your kit, especially spells that are rarely used in PvE. On this page, we go through all the spells you need to use in PvP as a Holy Priest, how you should use them, and we explain what your playstyle should be.

This page is part of our Holy Priest PvP Guide.

1.

Playstyle for Holy Priests

The main role for a Holy Priest, besides keeping your team alive, is to use your utility to prevent your teammates from using cooldowns and keep them offensive. You will be able to keep your team alive by using your powerful utility, such as Greater Fade Icon Greater Fade and Holy Ward Icon Holy Ward. By rotating these two cooldowns you should not be in crowd control often.

To keep your team offensive, you will often push in with your team to try to get a Holy Word: Chastise Icon Holy Word: Chastise on the enemy team. You can use Angelic Feather Icon Angelic Feather to increase the uptime your teammates have.

1.1.

Before Gates Open

If you are playing against a team without the ability to steal/dispel buffs on yourself, you will want to use Holy Ward Icon Holy Ward before the gates open. However, if you are playing a team with the ability to steal/dispel buffs you will want to use it right before you enter crowd control. Make sure to use Power Word: Fortitude Icon Power Word: Fortitude on your teammates. It can be dispelled by abilities like Purge Icon Purge or Spellsteal Icon Spellsteal, so be prepared to apply it often

Make sure your team has a strategy for crowd control. Holy Word: Chastise Icon Holy Word: Chastise is a strong stun if you are using the talent Censure Icon Censure. You should use Angelic Feather Icon Angelic Feather to get in range of the enemy healer for Psychic Scream Icon Psychic Scream.

1.2.

The Opener

The other team is going to try to force your trinket in the opener so they have an advantage later in the game. If you are about to be put into crowd control try to use Greater Fade Icon Greater Fade if you do not have Holy Ward Icon Holy Ward active.

As soon as the gates open you will want to use Renew Icon Renew on all of your teammates, including yourself, and use Prayer of Mending Icon Prayer of Mending.

2.

Healing Techniques

2.1.

Damage Rotation

Something to always keep in mind during the course of an arena match is dealing damage while also healing. Do not sacrifice healing to do more damage, but when there are situations where your team is safe, it is a good idea to output some damage. Here is what you can do to deal more damage:

  • Use Shadow Word: Pain Icon Shadow Word: Pain on the enemy your team is trying to kill. If you can, try to use it on as many enemies as possible. You can also use this while kicked on the Holy school.
  • Holy Fire Icon Holy Fire is a casted spell that deals a decent amount of damage. This does open you up to being interrupted, so it is best to use when the enemy team does not have interrupts available.
  • Smite Icon Smite is another casted spell. If Holy Fire Icon Holy Fire is on cooldown and you still want to do damage, start casting Smite to do some single-target damage. It is important to note that the more you do damage with Smite, the faster Holy Word: Chastise Icon Holy Word: Chastise will come off cooldown.
  • Shadow Word: Death Icon Shadow Word: Death is a very interesting damage ability. The primary use for this ability is to deal damage with it to an enemy before they crowd control you. If it does not kill the enemy, it will deal damage to you, breaking the crowd control.

Ideally, use Shadow Word: Pain Icon Shadow Word: Pain on your primary target. If there is downtime and the enemy team has no interrupts, cast Holy Fire Icon Holy Fire for a moderate amount of damage.

2.2.

Burst Healing

The great thing about Holy Priest is that they have the multiple ways to keep teammates alive and high on health. It is important to note that if you are using Apotheosis Icon Apotheosis, try to wait until you have at least one Surge of Light Icon Surge of Light proc. This will guarantee a shorter cooldown on Holy Word: Serenity Icon Holy Word: Serenity and it is all instant.

  1. The first method is best when the enemy team has multiple kicks available. It is also the fastest way to heal someone to high HP.
    1. Use Power Word: Shield Icon Power Word: Shield on any teammates taking damage.
    2. Use Prayer of Mending Icon Prayer of Mending if it is off cooldown.
    3. Use Renew Icon Renew on all of your partners, including yourself.
    4. Use Holy Word: Serenity Icon Holy Word: Serenity.
    5. Use Holy Word: Serenity Icon Holy Word: Serenity again if you are using the Miracle Worker Icon Miracle Worker PvP talent.
    6. Use Holy Word: Concentration Icon Holy Word: Concentration if you have this talent.
    7. Use Power Infusion Icon Power Infusion.
      • Use Power Infusion when you feel you are about to cast a few spells and need the extra Haste. This is a baseline ability at Level 58.
    8. Use Flash Heal Icon Flash Heal if you have Surge of Light Icon Surge of Light.
    9. Cast Greater Heal Icon Greater Heal if you are using this PvP talent.
    10. If you are stunned or need additional cooldowns to keep your teammate alive, Guardian Spirit Icon Guardian Spirit should be used.
    11. Use Mindgames Icon Mindgames on the kill target if you are Venthyr.
  2. The second method is best used when playing against teams with strong spread pressure.
    1. Use Power Word: Shield Icon Power Word: Shield on any teammates taking damage.
    2. Use Holy Word: Sanctify Icon Holy Word: Sanctify.
    3. Use Prayer of Mending Icon Prayer of Mending.
    4. Use Renew Icon Renew on all of your partners, including yourself.
    5. Channel Divine Hymn Icon Divine Hymn behind the pillar so it does not get interrupted.
    6. Use Holy Word: Serenity Icon Holy Word: Serenity.
    7. Use Holy Word: Serenity Icon Holy Word: Serenity again if you are using the Miracle Worker Icon Miracle Worker PvP talent.
    8. Use Power Infusion Icon Power Infusion.
      • Use Power Infusion when you feel you are about to cast a few spells and need the extra Haste. This is a baseline ability at Level 58.
    9. Cast Greater Heal Icon Greater Heal if you are using this PvP talent.
    10. Cast Flash Heal Icon Flash Heal if your team is still low.
    11. Cast Heal Icon Heal if your team is stables and want to save Mana.
    12. Use Mindgames Icon Mindgames on the kill target if you are Venthyr.

Holy Priest cooldowns are relatively short and you will not have to cast often. It is important to take advantage of this by using Prayer of Mending Icon Prayer of Mending as soon as you can.

2.3.

Sustained Damage Healing

Use this to heal sustained damage throughout the match (damage done when the other team does not have burst cooldowns available).

  1. Use Power Word: Shield Icon Power Word: Shield on any teammates taking damage.
  2. Use Prayer of Mending Icon Prayer of Mending as soon as it is off cooldown. This will make up a large majority of your healing.
  3. Maintain Renew Icon Renew on all of your teammates, including yourself.
  4. If you are not in danger of being interrupted, cast Heal Icon Heal to save Mana.
  5. Cast Greater Heal Icon Greater Heal if you are using this PvP talent.
    1. This heal is crucial when you are single-target healing. You need to be able to predict incoming damage and start casting this even if your teammate is at high health.
    2. It is best to stay max range when you are casting this to avoid interrupts the other team might have.
  6. Use Flash Heal Icon Flash Heal if you have Surge of Light Icon Surge of Light.
  7. Use Flash Heal Icon Flash Heal if one of your teammates is taking strong single target damage.
  8. Use Holy Word: Sanctify Icon Holy Word: Sanctify on your teammates to deal with spread pressure.
  9. Cast Heal Icon Heal to conserve Mana if your team is not in any danger of dying.
  10. Use Mindgames Icon Mindgames on the kill target if you are Venthyr.
  11. Use Divine Hymn Icon Divine Hymn if your team is having trouble recovering from spread pressure.
  12. In the downtime of an arena match try to use Smite Icon Smite to reduce the cooldown of Holy Word: Chastise Icon Holy Word: Chastise.
  13. Cast Smite Icon Smite if your team is safe and you want to play aggressively with your team.
2.4.

Holy Word Passives

A unique passive that Holy Priests have is with their Holy Word spells. This passive lets you use certain abilities to reduce the cooldown of your Holy Word spells.

3.

Cooldowns/Defensives

  • Power Infusion Icon Power Infusion is by far one of the strongest healing cooldowns you have. Not only can this ability be used on yourself, but it can be used on a teammate. This means that, if you are playing against a team that does not have many interrupts for you, you can use this on someone on your team and they will get the Haste buff. Use this when you need to start casting healing spells, or use it on a teammate when they need to cast important spells.
  • Symbol of Hope Icon Symbol of Hope is an incredible defensive cooldown for your teammates. A full channel of this spell reduces the cooldown of any major defensives by 60 seconds. In addition to this, they will also regain a large amount of Mana back. Use this when you need Mana and when your teammates need to get their defensives back. This can be used while out of line of the enemy team. If you do this, you will not be able to get interrupted and get full value out of the spell.
  • Shadow Word: Death Icon Shadow Word: Death should be used on enemies below 20% health, it has a much more important use for a Discipline Priest. You can use this ability at any time, but if the target does not die, it will deal damage to yourself. This is extremely important because, if there is an enemy Mage on the other team, you can use Shadow Word: Death at the end of the cast and deal damage to yourself, breaking the crowd control on you.
  • Greater Fade Icon Greater Fade will be your primary defensive if teams focus you. When active, you will take little to no damage, but will still be vulnerable to interrupts. It is best to get interrupted and then use Greater Fade Icon Greater Fade to greatly reduce incoming damage.
  • Guardian Spirit Icon Guardian Spirit should be used when you or a teammate is very low on health and you have do not have a way to get out of a stun. Instead of dying, you will instantly heal for 40% of your maximum health.
  • Desperate Prayer Icon Desperate Prayer increases your health by 25% for 10 seconds, and instantly heals you for that amount. This is great for when you get are being targeted or get interrupted on a Shadow ability, like Mind Control Icon Mind Control.
  • Fade Icon Fade/Mind Soothe Icon Mind Soothe. In PvP, these abilities do the same thing: they reduce the range at which attacks can be made to you. This is great versus teams with ranged classes on them. This will either force them to wait or make them overextend to deal damage/crowd control you.
  • Although not a defensive for yourself, Leap of Faith Icon Leap of Faith is great for helping teammates who are stuck in a stun or overextended. This ability can also be used to get your teammate behind a pillar to heal them.
4.

Macros

It is advised to use Macros to use abilities on enemies or allies without having to target them. For this reason, we have a page dedicated to them.

5.

Changelog

  • 02 Jul. 2021: Updated Defensives section.
  • 08 Mar. 2021: Reviewed for Patch 9.0.5.
  • 05 Dec. 2020: Updated Rotations to include Covenant Ability.
  • 30 Nov. 2020: Removed outdated Traits and Essences.
  • 15 Oct. 2020: Updated for Shadowlands pre-patch (9.0.1)
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