Upcoming Battle for Azeroth Patch 8.1 Shadow Priest Changes Detailed; Voidform Buffs Alongside Defensive Power & Utility Improvements
Blizzard has detailed the upcoming Battle for Azeroth Patch 8.1 Shadow Priest changes that will soon be implemented on the game’s PTR.
The changes are intended to make Voidform matter more while also improving the Shadow spec’s defensive power and utility.
Make Voidform Matter More
Moving into Battle for Azeroth, we consciously reduced the maximum power of Voidforms, for the purpose of evening out Shadow's heavily backloaded Voidform cycle damage. This had some positive impacts, which many of you are aware of – mainly this greatly reduced the harsh penalty for dropping out of Voidform early – a common occurrence in any content outside of raids, including dungeons or questing. That said, we think we went a little too far with peeling power off of Voidform, which has resulted in Voidform not feeling impactful enough, and with not enough reason to work to extend it. We are easing this change back a bit:
- Voidform increases spell damage by 20% (up from 10%)
- Insanity drain increase per second in Voidform reduced by 15%
- Void Bolt Insanity generation increased by 25%
Dispersion's damage reduction has been increased to 75% (up from 60%). We agree that because it comes with the penalty of not being able to cast spells, it deserves to be stronger. Additionally, it now increases movement speed by 50%.
A new talent Intangibility replaces Mania (which was similar to and far less popular than Body and Soul]), and reduces Dispersion's cooldown by 25% and causes it to heal you for 50% of your maximum health over its duration.
Shadowform's Physical Damage Reduction
Shadowform's 10% physical damage reduction was intended to feel like a bonus to Shadowform, but instead felt like a penalty to Voidform, since you lose that defensive benefit going into Voidform.
We're replacing this bonus from Shadowform with the Focused Will passive (which the other two Priest specs already have), causing melee abilities and attacks to reduce all damage taken by 15% for 8 sec.
Hallucinations (the PvP talent) is becoming a baseline passive, and allows your successful Dispel Magic, Mass Dispel, Purify Disease, Vampiric Embrace, and Power Word: Shield casts to generate 6 Insanity (same amount per cast as your filler, Mind Flay).
This give you more freedom to use your on-global cooldown utility buttons, especially in Voidform, without incurring as much damage loss, since Insanity is constantly draining.
Other talent adjustments worth mentioning:
- Mind Bomb and Psychic Scream now take 40% longer to break from damage.
- Void Torrent generates 30 Insanity over its duration and deals 20% increased damage. Additionally, no longer requires Voidform to cast, so you can choose to use it on a priority damage target at any time.
- Lingering Insanity fades every 3 sec instead of every 2 sec.
- Surrender to Madness cooldown reduced by 33% and penalty duration reduced by 50%.
Blizzard already buffed Shadow Priests in Battle for Azeroth through a recent patch.