Shadow priests of the Forsaken are members of the Cult of Forgotten Shadow. A single shadow priest serves as a bishop for a community. There are also shadow priests among the trolls, they find Forsaken to be kindred spirits, supporting them because they are evil. There are also shadow priests that follow Kil’jaeden.
Shadow priests in World of WarcraftEdit
Shadow Priests are a specialization of the Priest class who have put the majority of their talents into the Shadow Tree. Priests interested in soloing and PvP usually select a heavy amount of Shadow talents, as Shadow spells dole out high DPS. These priests lack the healing power of priests specialized in the Holy and Discipline trees, but are formidable opponents in PvP.
Prior to The Burning Crusade, Shadow priests were of limited use in group PVE, as they were generally inferior to primary DPS classes. Shadow priests now have little need to concern themselves with mana availability or crit rate, allowing them to focus almost solely on maximizing spell damage. Shadow Priests can also be invaluable support, whether by silencing casters, shielding a party member, or dropping Shadowform to help with healing.
It is a common misconception that Shadow Priests are incapable of healing instances. As long as the Priest stays out of Shadowform and focuses on healing, he or she should be able to heal well enough to serve a group. This can be easier accomplished at high levels if the priest has an alternate set of gear for healing. An experienced Shadow Priest with high +Shadow Damage can even heal through trash pulls with Vampiric Embrace and Shadowform.
Shadow Priests in EndgameEdit
Shadow priests are extremely useful in endgame content, especially in fights that are extremely mana-intensive (Nightbane), and fights that include multiple people taking damage (Maiden of Virtue). Also, shadow priests with 3/3 Misery increase chance to hit the target with spells by 3%, and with at least one talent point in Shadow Weaving allows for up to an additional 10% shadow damage against the target, which synergizes well with warlocks. Although still a valuable source of mana regeneration, the 3.0.1 changes to Vampiric Touch have made it less useful for as it regenerates a fixed amount of mana based on the receiving character's mana pool and does not scale with the priest's damage.
Threat is a serious problem for shadow priests in endgame content. The healing from Vampiric Embrace, coupled with the damage caused can generate more threat per damage than most other classes. In addition, both Mind Flay and Mind Blast cause additional threat, the former because of the snare effect and the latter because of innate additional threat. Priests also do not have a threat dump; Fade only reduces threat temporarily. This is especially a problem in fights like Void Reaver in Tempest Keep: The Eye, where the boss has an aggro reducing ability on the main tank. In these cases, many shadow priests will reduce their threat by soulstone suiciding (dying, and reincarnating with a soulstone to wipe their aggro). With the 3.0.1 changes to Shadowform, some of these issues have been mitigated with additional threat reduction. Points into Shadow Affinity is used to reduce overall threat in a party/raid.