Mind Spike Madness

A couple of weeks ago, in the comments of one of his posts, Trout mentioned that he wasn’t exactly sure what to do with Mind Spike. I gave a guesstimate answer, but can now provide a much more informed assessment of just what this spell can do after spending one and half levels last night questing with it.

For those who aren’t familiar, Mind Spike is the spell that priests get at level 81. If I was awesome, I could make that a mouseover link and you could see the tooltip, or I could post a screenshot of the spell description. Alas, I’m not that awesome. So I’m going to copy/paste what the tooltip says, instead.

Mind Spike Level 85
12% of base mana 40 yd range

1.5 sec cast

Blasts the target for 1083 to 1143 Shadowfrost damage, but extinguishes your shadow damage-over-time effects from the target in the process.Mind Spike also increases the critical strike chance of your next Mind Blast on the target by 30%. Stacks up to 3 times.

So, the part that confused Trout was the end of the first sentence,  “extinguishes your shadow damage-over-time effects.” Obviously, you don’t want to cast that in the middle of a rotation, or you’ve just wasted a bunch of mana on DoTs and then removed them yourself.

The part that most piqued my interest was the last sentence … “increases the critical strike chance of your mind blast by 30%. Stacks up to 3 times.” Now, my crit (at level 81) was sitting around 21%, so even a single mind spike to open with will give my mind blast a 50/50 chance to crit. Not too shabby. And the mind spike itself often crit for around 11k.

Ok, that’s pretty awesome on its own. But what REALLY is totally BEYOND awesome is its synergy with a couple of the talents in the shadow tree.

Firstly, check out Mind Melt.

Mind Melt Rank 2
Increases the damage done with your Shadow Word: Death by 30% on targets at or below 25% health, and when you deal damage with Mind Spike, the cast time of your next Mind Blast is reduced by 50% lasting 6 sec. Mind Melt can stack up to 2 times.

You see that? A single Mind Spike cuts the cast time of Mind Blast in HALF.  Two of them … makes it instant cast. Now, Mind Blast only has a 1.5s cast time anyway. So a single Mind Spike cuts that down to 0.75s … modified by my haste rating, the cast time of my Mind Blast with one Mind Spike is about 0.6s.

Yeah, I know … too much math for me, too. What we’ve covered up until now can be summed up as … Mind Spike gives shadow priests a way to do a lot of damage to burst down a mob, rather than having to rely on DoTs ticking away. It may not be AS good of damage as, say, a mage or lock can do … but I can see spriests having fun on dungeon trash now instead of standing around crying about the ramp-up time of their DoTs. At least, I hope that’s how it is now. I haven’t done a dungeon yet.

One more thing … less important for dungeons maybe, but totally the shiznit for questing. Remember how Mind Spike increases the crit chance of Mind Blast? Read this talent description for Paralysis…

Paralysis Rank 2
When you critically hit with your Mind Blast, you cause the target to be unable to move for 4 sec.

Hellz yeah! I was mostly going with a single Mind Spike, so I was only getting paralysis half the time, but it would be a simple thing to stack it twice and get an instant cast Mind Blast that has an 80% chance to crit. A few times both my Mind Spike AND my Mind Blast crit … leaving me with a paralyzed mob with only 10% of its health left. Yeah … SW:Death that sucker and move on. God I felt powerful!

(Side Note: When questing, get the Glyph of Spirit Tap and try to use SW:Death to finish off every mob … you’ll never run low on mana.)

A couple of caveats on Paralysis … it doesn’t seem to do much to a target that’s in melee range. I’m guessing that ‘unable to move’ just means ‘unable to take a step’ rather than ‘unable to take any action.’  Also, against a target that has a charge ability, such as the Twilight Dragonkin in the Sethria questline …. well, charge negates the paralysis. So make sure you have your PW:Shield up, because you’re gonna get beat on.

I had so much fun with this, that I spent the ENTIRE EVENING of playtime on Ragle. He started some 5% into level 81 and finished 60% into level 82, and finished every single quest in Hyjal. Maybe I got so into it because it plays more like a mage than a shadow priest when done this way. Rumor has it that some certain friend of mine thinks I should learn Holy, though. I guess I’d better get to reading up on it eh? hehe


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9 Responses to “Mind Spike Madness”

  1. slice213 Says:

    Wut? Holy! cult of holy always accepts more members.

    But then again looks like Disc is getting a buff again. PW:S getting a HUGE buff…may have to respec to holy/disc….

  2. gromitdaddy Says:

    Wonderful stuff for me to remember when Myste gets there. Thank you!

  3. repgrind Says:

    Yeah well, we might have a need for a backup raid healer, and we already have a disc priest on the roster so … of course we also might need a tank from time to time, hence me halfassed leveling my 3 hybrid alts who are ALL level 82 now. heh. (The paladin is locked in to the other raid group)

  4. Ragnvald Says:

    Yay! My level 23 gnome priest has some fun to look forward to.

    As for the wowhead tooltips, there’s info on how to do it here:


    However, I appreciate that you copy/pasted the tooltips. since they usually don’t show up in google reader.

  5. Shawndra Says:

    Oh, thank you, this is so awesome! How did I miss this? Probably the two levels of archaeology fried my brain to reading spell tooltips. Delgada is almost 85, so this will only help for the rep grind (how appropriate!), but Halinka is just out of Hyjal and this will be fabulous once she gets the spell.

    I am constantly out of mana with Del, even with the glyph of Spirit Tap. This may totally change things 🙂

  6. Troutwort Says:

    This is a great post! Really puts into perspective the importance of this ability which I previously thought was just for using on trash. 😛

  7. Analogue Says:

    Oh, that does look fun. I don’t think I did this quite as methodically when leveling my priest. I’ll have to check her when she’s out doing quests.

    Still, a holy priest would be useful…. but I just know we’ll be down a tank and a healer the same week and whatever you’ve leveled, will be what we’re able to drum up somewhere else…

  8. ReversionLFM Says:

    That distinction between a real ‘stun’ effect and just a ‘root’ is darn annoying to my bear. Bear charge roots targets instead of stunning them. This is annoying with casters since then they don’t move or get interrupted or anything. We only have one ability that stuns. Warrior tanks on the other hand have two charges, both stun, one of them can stun three targets. Plus they have and AOE stun, and if you glyph your intimidating shout TWO aoe stuns. All that and they have both a melee range interrupt and a melee range stun.

    Druids have a similar problem with their roots, since it does not stun or anything. Good thing hibernate works on dragonkin or we would have almost no CC in this patch.

  9. repgrind Says:

    Eh, eventually I’ll be back to my preferred state of ‘able to fill any role in a given week.’ Kaly is probably next after Rags because … well, we already have multiple warriors tanks at our disposal and he’s my JC and … well, you know, I logged on him last night to cut a gem for the new relic I bought for Kerick, and when he mounted up on his violet proto I thought ‘you know, this drake is proof that this toon has been well loved enough to do ALL the holiday crap, and here he sits doing nothing … ‘

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