Before jumping into all that mumbo-jumbo about the different talent trees, tactics and stats, it’s important to understand your role.
WotLK Discipline priests are a very interesting and rather peculiar group of healers. Compared to other classes they lack beast aoe crits, like resto shammies, and mastodontic Beacon of Light holy pally heals. Nonetheless, they still are a crucial element of almost every raid composition.
Why? Due to the ability to absorb huge amounts of damage done. Period. Your role as a disc doesn’t focus on spamming Renew nor Flash Heals/GH but to eat up as much incoming damage as possible. The shielding mechanism itself is in my opinion one of the most alluring ideas successfully implemented in a mmo.
Thanks to the most useful Windows tool, Paint, I was able to prepare pictures for those without imagination:
As you can see, mr HP bar is being mugged by an incoming damage thug. This is when officer shield springs into action. By reducing the amount of damage done he defends mr HP bar leaving him untouched as an old maid.
But why stop there?
Bubble’s are also supposed to be a, so to speak, extension of the HP pool making it easier for the other healers to keep players alive although they already took damage.
Meh, but I’m a priest, I want to be able to heal (╯°□°）╯︵ ┻━┻)
Fear no more, with a special tool your shield’s can now heal the shit out of partner’s. On top of that, even crit!
More to come.