Right now I envy resto shamans. As I've come to know myself, that'll probably change sooner or later. Until then, the grass seems much greener on that side of the fence.
What do I envy about shamans?
- Mail armor: Oh, the toughness.
- Shield: Granted, much less useful with Dismantle around, but far from useless. Anticipation counters dismantle somewhat.
- Earth Shield: Pre-emptive healing at it's best.
- Water Shield: Free mana! Best dispel fodder in the entire game.
- Chain Heal: Incredibly good multi-target healing. That means I have a good substitute for Circle of Healing.
- Ancestral Awakening: Now, *this* is one of the best multi-target "heals" in PVP, given a reasonable crit-rating.
- And speaking of crit rate: Tidal Mastery + Blessing of the Eternals + Thundering Weapons grants a total of 14% spell crit from talents alone. To compare: A holy priest can get 11% spell crit on targets at less than 50% health, and a discipline priest can get spell crit of 9% on targets affected by Weakened Soul, but only on a few selected spells. Generally, they only get 5% spell crit from talents, unless you count in spell crit gained from Mental Strength. Shamans get a bit less, but not all that much worse from Ancestral Knowledge
- Earthliving Weapon: Free healing, undispellable (it might get temporarily removed while disarmed, but it'll return on it's own unlike a buff that needs to be reapplied). Also comes with a nice proc. Even better with Blessing of the Eternals. And if I need damage instead, Flametongue weapon instead. Granted, priests get Inner fire with spellpower attached, so it's not so important difference in PVE. Actually, priests get the better cake in PVE, as they can also use some kind of oil on their weapons. But I think I'd rather have the cake that is better in PVP for that purpose.
- Totems galore: I think the totem system is incredibly neat, really. Granted, a lot more work than "buff fortitude, divine spirit and shadow protection as they run out." I think I like i. Especially the part that I can buff the damage output of any class at all.
- Speaking of totems: Grounding totem: G-R-E-A-T defense. Requires a lot of timing, has a high skill cap, and I love it. Kinda hard to use effectively in a swarmed BG, though, as spells fly around all the time.
- But hey, that's not the only thing: Earth Shock/Wind Shock, I can actually interrupt spells! Guess what I've never been able to do as a priest.
- Frost shock and Earthbind Totem: I can slow people too.
- Nature's Guardian: Excellent passive defensive ablitity. Much better than Blessed Resilience for PVE, but worse for PVP.
- (Improved) Ghost Wolf: Runaway! Okay, it's much worse than Travel form on my druid, but it's much better than nothing.
- Reincarnation: Game over? No, wait, I have an extra life! Priests are the only healer class without a form of wipe recovery. Druid: Rebirth on a res class (okay, you actually need a res class, but they're pretty common). Paladin: Divine Intervention (which also prevents durability damage, those lucky b...). Priests? ... pray?
- Bloodlust: More powerful than Power Infusion, but isn't a talent. Longer cooldown, but affects the entire raid. I feel the envy in my veins.
- Earth Elemental: Pocket tank! In fact, superior tank, from what I've seen. When a shaman has dropped it, the tank just can't peel aggro from the elemental until it's dead. "Mohahahaha, you'll have to pray aggro from my dead hands!"
- Fire Elemental: Pocket dps! I want overpowered cooldowns! A priests have none... yet. I'll get one with Divine Hymn at lvl 80.
- Thunderstorm: if I ever feel like speccing for damage.
Stuff I'm going to miss from my priest:
- Dispel Magic: Okay, the offensive version of this spell is preserved through Purge. But I'll be trading the ability to remove magic from friendlies for the ability to remove poison and curses. The dispel magic glyph makes it even better... I healed the tank for about 1200 by dispelling a dot on him in Kharazan.
- Mass Dispel: For really messing up pallies and mages in PVP.
- Prayer of Mending: My preeeecious. One of the key selling features of a priest, in my opinion.
- Renew and Power Word: Shield: Solid and good abilities with no/low cooldown. Granted, Riptide isn't all that bad, but it's not a perfect substitute. In addition, the absorbing mechanic of Power Word: Shield and Divine Aegis is a major help against any class with healing-reducing effects, of which which there are a lot.
- Panic buttons: Pain Suppression or Guardian Spirit depending on the spec. Okay, Nature's Swiftness isn't all that bad, but I'd say either of the first two are better. Especially since I have Desperate Prayer which works like a NS+big heal on myself only.
- Psychic Scream: Crowd control, baby. Have saved my behind a lot of times. Now, that's going to hurt, not having it. Okay, shammies get Hex at 80, but it's not really the same.
- Mind Control: Oh, how many alliance has falled down from Lumber Mill thanks to this. Too bad it doesn't kill them unless they're already at half health.
- Levitate, especially with the glyph.
- Shadow Word:Pain and Devouring Plague: I like having dots as a way of damaging peeps.
- Mana Burn: I can destroy enemy healers!
- Binding Heal: I actally like this spell. Very good hps-output for PVP, given you've taken damage.
- Spirit of Redemption: When everything else fails, this can save lives. Literally. Even better if I'll glyph it.
- Surge of Light: As described in my earlier post.
- Buff spells: While less interaction than with totems, it's nice to fire-and-forget buff 40 people with a single buff in AV.
Edit: Forgot reincarnation.
Edit 2: Forgot Earth Elemental, Fire Elemental and Bloodlust. How could I?