The Return of the Renew Priest?

Morning everyone, hope your Monday’s starting out well.

A few months ago, I wrote a post about an emerging style for Holy Priests who did little more than cast Renew on their raid.

Basically, they functioned like tree Druids (without the leafiness).

After speaking with Dawn and Kinasthesia about it on the Circle of Healing podcast at Learn to Raid, the consensus appeared to be that this style of play might be making a come back.


Partly due to the upcoming cost reduction of Renew by 24%.

Costs of Renew

  • On live right now: 4020 mana
  • On the PTR: 3150 mana

Note that both of those costs include talents in Mental Agility. When looked at from that perspective, that’s a fairly decent sized reduction. I never did like working with percentages. I prefer looking at the absolute values because you just never truly appreciate the magnitude of a number when it’s in a percentage form.

Now start looking at the other talents and glyphs that influence it.

All of these talents at the new, low mana cost warrant a second and closer look. I don’t think we’ll be blanket healing the whole raid with Renews during on the scale of tier 9 and 10 raids. At the same time, I think we’ll see a shift towards increased Renew usage as a whole on multi-target healing.

There’s better interaction with Chakra: Serenity. Using Holy Word: Serenity and Binding Heal will refresh the duration of Renew on top of the other direct healing spells.

So my question to you guys is, are you going to make a conscious effort to Renew more now that it doesn’t cost as much mana?

18 thoughts on “The Return of the Renew Priest?”

  1. To be quite honest, when I found out that people /weren’t/ using Renew because of the mana cost I was kind of insulted. As a holy priest it’s one of the staple talents that I probably use most… Even when it’s not in Sanctuary, it’s a great way to heal DPS in heroics in Serenity. Toss a renew on a DPS, cast a Heal, and just let them slowly regain their health. Not full? Cast another heal when your renew has 2-3 seconds left and let them be full HP. The whole thing about NOT keeping people topped off all the time may be a Wrath habit from me, but it’s still possible to do in Cata. Maybe not necessary, but you gain mana when you cast Heal anyways, so you’re really not missing out on much. Otherwise you’d just be standing there doing nothing with your DPS having a higher chance to die.

  2. Yeah, but druids only rejuv-spam ’cause Blizzard never gave us another choice. With priests, I would think you’d want to mix in those renews with an appropriate mix of other heals (especially if you already have a HOT-druid spammer in your raid).

  3. I didn’t like being pushed into a shieldbot role as Disc and I hate the thought of becoming a renewbot as Holy, especially as the toolbox is so vast and full of interesting and fun spells.


  4. Using it more? Yes, maybe I’ll use it more, but I will certainly not become a renew only priest. Now, of course, I raid 10s…not really an option there to be a renew or shield only priest since you really do need your entire toolbox luckily.

    I can see this being used a lot more in 25s, though I do think it’s fight dependant. For a lot of the fights renew spam would simply not be the most effective way of healing.

  5. I was using Renew as more of a single target heal when circumstances didn’t really warrant using PoH or CoH, due to it possibly being overkill.

    I can see Renew being spam being most useful if you have an assignment to heal a specific group or class of people (i.e. the melee). I think if you just use it random and attempt to come anywhere close to blanketing that it’s not going to work. Even then, if you were to Renew spam a group of five people, I would want to see numbers and do research to show that it’s better than using PoH or anything else.

    I don’t feel right now that it would be the clear winner, but again the numbers would have to determine that.

    So… I’m not against the possibility, but it would take some mighty strong convincing that it’s the better choice out of all the tools that we already have.

  6. An effort to use it more? No. Less of an effort to use it less? Yes. As it was I was trying to avoid it for the most part, honestly I never found much of a use for it other than putting it on the tanks to help out a bit. The cost where it was, you were almost better casting that PoH, getting the overkill and putting those 2 dots on the other four people in the group (echo of light and glyph of PoH). Chances are you will heal someone up from some incoming damage during your cast too.

  7. No. Renew is only good if the raid damage is slow and constant enough that it can tick for the full 12 seconds without anyone healing the target to full. That sort of raid damage doesn’t seem to exist anymore. In the content so far, the damage is either spiky aoe (in which case, PoH is better in every way) or single-target damage (in which case the person gets healed up by single target spells before Renew can tick more than twice).

    The only way Renew spam is going to make a comeback is if there are fights where people in a group are more than 30 yards from each other and the raid aoe damage is slow and steady.

  8. I think the purpose of this is to broaden raid healing away from just spamming Prayer of Healing. If you take a look at whats happening on World of Logs you’ll see that we’ve essentially become PoH spambots. Normally in a raid healing situation you rely on your PoH and instant casts spells to do the majority of your healing. With the amount of mana renew was consuming previously it was highly disadvantageous to our mana pools to do anything but PoH. This isn’t going to drastically alter how we play, the difference in mana cost isn’t nearly drastic enough, but it might just allow us to put another instant cast spell back into our raid healing rotation.

  9. Renew is basically your “filler” AE heal that you use when you can’t use PoH as your “filler” due to there not being a group you can cast it on for full benefit. Since this happens much more often in 10s than in 25s, holy priests in 10s will probably go more with renew spam while those doing 25s will stick with PoH.

  10. Personally I tend to view renew as the “I don’t need to cast PoH or CoH right now, but if I renew a few people, it will make the damage thats about to come in easier to deal with” spell. I don’t think it has much else of a use, and I know in 10’s it still isn’t very high on my list of spells to use.

  11. I’ll probably start using renew more than just keeping it on the tank(s) in a raid. Perhaps trying to place it on more people and see how my mana is coping.

    Won’t start renew spamming though, the fun part of being a priest is the toolbox!

  12. I’ve been pulling top parses using renew situationally alot.

    Especialy in heroic mode downtime.

    granted if you are a 6 or 9/12 holy priest stacking haste running with three other holy holy priests like kelesti from mmo champ and have no clue, sure haste is good mastery is bad and omfg whats renew…

    but honestly with the changes to the mana cost, the slight nerf to poh, I’m looking forward to letting my hots do more work, as well as my mastery, for less mana. sure you if you are 6/12 regular running three poh spamming priests like kelesti at mmo champ you’ll scream omfg haste haste.

    Push some real hardmodes, you’ll see the value. of letting spells work for you and not just overwriting it. Toss in a more powerful COH, hell yeah, really nice compensation for the POH mindless spam thing.

    Looking forward to using it even better on the proper target. =)

  13. When I get back into my priests, I’ll probably try to use it more, yeah. I don’t intend to raid, mind, but it ought to be more useful for regulars and leveling via LFD.

  14. I wrote about the changes to renew here I strongly believe it’s been a viable spell since Cate, and is more so as a result of 4.0.6; the mechanics of Chakra (specifically direct heals renewing the Renew ‘for free’) means it’s really powerful, but because of the mechanics of the refresh it’s not really viable to blanket a whole raid, the mana cost will still push you OOM very quickly if you do this.

    the reduced mana cost does make it more useful as a fire-and-forget spell, something to top up a player on low health when you’ve got something more pressing to deal with like keeping the tank up or staying alive yourself

  15. I’m liking the new changes overall, allowed me to secondary spec back into pvp and really makes the chakra more important when dealing with raid-wide damage, with the recent buff on CoH and the 2 second cooldown reduction from the chakra state. I’m definately seeing a lot more use out of renew outside of simple tank healing where you just pop on a renew and chain heals together.

    Since I really haven’t even noticed the mana regen nerf in our fights last night, I really guess we had it coming.


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