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Posted byon 02 August 2013 - 09:27 AM
Posted byon 17 March 2013 - 12:05 AM
Kanrethad is the final encounter of the quest line for warlocks to obtain green fire spell-effects. At the time of this post, he is one of the hardest solo encounters to date; from experience I’d say it’s more difficult than the benediction/anathema event. I’ve also been told it’s more difficult than the solo encounter to obtain Teragosa.
There are many ways to approach each facet of the encounter and this guide contains what I have found to work best. It is by no means an all-inclusive guide but I will try to shed light on some of the more important factors of the encounter.
My video guide of the fight: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5IcodMZVDcY
Please post reply and +1 if you enjoyed this or found it helpful
All three specs work for this encounter but I have found that destruction is the easiest to pull it off with and it is what I’ll be using in this guide. With destruction you have only one DoT to track and it has one of the most basic spell rotations. This will allow you to mindlessly cast while dedicating almost all of your attention to the mechanics of the fight.
Destruction contains some very nice burst (both AOE and single target), which will be Important during the Imp and Felhunter phases (covered in detail later). The ability Ember Tap can also be useful when low on HP.
Icyveins guide to Destruction Warlocks: http://www.icy-veins...w-pve-dps-guide
Soul Leach: Provides you with 10% of your damage as an absorption effect, a nice passive ability that will add a lot of points to your overall HP pool during the fight.
Shadowfury: Used during the Imp and Felhunter phase to reduce damage received.
Sacrificial Pact: Used to soak Chaos Bolt or other incoming damage.
Unbound Will: Used to dispel yourself when you can’t use your Pit Lord dispel.
Grimoire of Sacrifice: You will be enslaving a Pit Lord the entire encounter so you will not be able to have one of your own pets out, might as well pick up the extra damage and regeneration. Be sure to sacrifice the Imp for Cauterize Master, which can be used in conjuncture with the Pit Lord Fel Flame dispel and Unbound Will (more on this later).
Kil’jaeden’s Cunning: There is a lot of movement in this encounter and being able to cast while doing so will dramatically increase your DPS.
Glyph of Siphon Life: Provides passive HP regeneration.
Glyph of Healthstone: 100% more HP from your healthstone, nice in clutch situations.
Glyph of Ember Tap: Provides 5% extra healing from your ember tap ability, but over 10 seconds. You may choose to not use this glyph if you will be relying on a quick injection of hp (preparing for incoming Chaos Bolt).
Glyph of Dark Soul: If you have T14 set bonus Dark Soul will be off cool down most of the fight since you will be saving it for the Felhunter phase, this is where this glyph will benefit you most. You may feel that you can manage the timing of the cooldown to be able to use it in-between each Felhunter phase (I like to use it a second time during each cycle in-between Doomguard and Imp phases), if so, don’t use this glyph, but be warned that having it ready for the Felhunter phase is a MUST.
Glyph of Enslave Demon**: You need to use this for this encounter as the Pit Lord will Charge you and stun for 5 seconds if you don’t get this cast off fast enough. You will casting Enslave Demon more than once throughout the fight.
Glyph of Gateway Attunement** (or alternatively a Gateway Control Stone): Allows you to walk through your demonic gateway to use it, rather than having to click it. Since using the gateway as much as possible is a necessity in this fight, this glyph (or the stone) is a must.
Curse of Ultimate Doom: 2 second cast debuff- 500 million damage after 7 minutes. This is Blizzard’s way of capping the time limit on the fight. It can be easily dealt with by using a Purification Potion to remove it once, potentially extending the time to 14 minutes.
Excruciating Agony: A slow ticking DoT that will build up in damage as it stays on you (must be dispelled).
Seed of Terrible Destruction: A debuff that will expire after 15 seconds, randomly applying one of three effects.
1.) Annoying Imp: This is an undispelable debuff, an Imp will latch on to you and interrupts casting and stops movement every 2-3 seconds.
2.) Void Zone: Knocks you back about 20 yards and generates a void circle about 10 yards in diameter at point of knockback. If you step into this void circle it will suck you in and trap you while doing continual damage, eventually killing you.
3.) Backfire: Debuff that provides a 25% damage increase.
Soul Fire: 35k damage – 3 second cast; uninterruptable single target cast, easily mitigated with Pit Lord tanking and self-regen/absorbs.
Chaos Bolt: 450k – 6 second cast; he will cast this on you about every minute, you can choose to line of site Kanrethad to avoid this or absorb it with Sacrificial Pact, Twilight Ward, and Unending Resolve. I would not recommend using the Pit Lord Charge to interrupt this spell as it will be needed to interrupt Cataclysm.
Cataclysm: Inflicts 25k damage over 15 seconds, at the end of the 6 second cast it does 1 million damage to all targets within 100 yards. During phase transition Kanrethad will run to the center of the room and start casting Cataclysm, if this is not interrupted with Pit Lord Charge ability before the cast finishes, it will nuke the hell out of you and you will die a horrible death while being thrown one hundred feet into the air.
Summon Pit Lord: 10 second cast; Kanrethad moves to his gateway and summons a Pit Lord; this thing has a lot of HP and must be enslaved immediately with Enslave Demon (use a macro). You will rely on the Pit Lord’s abilities and large health pool to complete this encounter. If the Pit Lord is left uncontrolled you will quickly find out he can make your life very difficult with 100k cleaves.
Summon Wild Imps: 10 second cast; Kanrethad moves to his gateway and begins to summon 60 Imps to attack you; he will continuously summon Imps until the cast finishes. These will take you down fairly fast if left unchecked.
Summon Felhunters: 10 second cast; Kanrethad moves to his gateway and summons 3 Felhunters, these do some damage and dispel your Enslave Demon on the Pit Lord (more on how to deal with this later).
Summon Doom Lord: 10 second cast; Kanrethad moves to his gateway and summons a Doom Lord to attack you. The Doom Lord can be banished, but I prefer to let the Pit Lord tank it so I don’t have to re-banish throughout the fight.
Pit Lord Abilities:
Cleave: His main attack, this should be on passive auto-use and is none of our concern.
Fel Flame Breath: A frontal cone AOE that does 25,000 damage per tick and each tick also dispels one of your debuffs. It has a range of about 10 yards and has an 8 second cooldown. This should be used as often as possible to constantly be dispelling yourself and to provide another source of damage/aggro for your Pit Lord. Make sure this ability is macroed and bound. In this guide I instruct you to only use it on yourself with the macro provided below then you can direct it where you want with your own movement.
Charge: Charges the target and stuns them for 5 seconds, while stunned the target takes 100% increased damage. Save this ability for interrupting Cataclysm during each phase transition; it has 20 second cooldown. I recommend binding this ability with a target focus macro.
Demonic Siphon: An ability that will heal you for 200k hp, it has a 20 second cooldown. This should be bound/macroed and used whenever you have some missing HP.
Abilities to pay attention to outside of your “normal” rotation:
Demonic Gateway: This is your bread and butter for surviving the fight; use it as often as possible (when off cooldown). Be sure to have the stone or the glyph so you don’t have to click on your gateway to use it. I found the best positioning for me is to have one end near the center of the room and the other end in front of Kanrethad’s gateway (as seen in the video); this allows you to line up your Pit Lord’s Fel Flame Breath for maximum damage and dispels since Kanrethad sits in the same two spots for most of the fight.
Demonic Circle: Use it to travel key locations quickly, whether it is to line of site Chaos Bolt or positioning for Imp and Felhunter phases.
Singe Magic: Use this to dispel your debuffs when you are unable to use Pit Lord’s Fel Flame.
Soulshatter: A nice aggro dump, save this for Felhunter phase (more on this later).
Shadowfury: An excellent utility spell, use this to stun Imp/Felhunter groups for reducing incoming damage.
Sacrificial Pact: Save this for incoming Chaos Bolt’s or emergencies.
Twilight Ward: Save this for incoming Chaos Bolt’s.
Unending Resolve: A nice damage reduction, to be used to reduce incoming damage during Imp/Felhunter phases or incoming Chaos Bolts.
Unbound Will: Very useful for removing debuffs when Pit Lord Fel Flame is unavailable, save this for the beginning of the Felhunter phase (more on this later).
As stated before, this strategy is what I found to work best and is by no means the only way to complete this encounter. The fight consists of an entry phase, and then it repeats a three phase cycle until the fight has been completed. There is a transition between each phase that is the same where he will run to the center of the room and cast Cataclysm.
Phase Zero (Pit Lord)
After clicking the soul well, a demonic gateway will pop up and Kanrethad will appear, PUT HIM ON FOCUS. Whilst bragging about his huge e-peen and talking a little trash, he will walk to one side of the platform. He is attackable about 5.5 seconds after he turns towards you, during this time I like to pre-pot with Jade Serpent Potion before combat begins. Make sure that you pot before combat begins as you can only use one potion per combat cycle and you may need to use Purification Potion later in the fight to remove Curse of Ultimate Doom.
You will have a good chunk of time to free-cast on Kanrethad before he summons the Pit Lord. Take advantage of it and use all your dps cooldowns, throw in a couple Chaos Bolts.
Enslave the Pit Lord immediately after it appears or you run the risk of being Charged and stunned for five seconds. Have the Pit Lord attack Kanrethad, use Fel Flame Breath on him and then jump through your gateway so your Pit Lord can get aggro and tank him. Kanrethad will be almost exclusively attacking the Pit Lord while throwing debuffs on you if you manage your threat correctly. Position yourself behind Kanrethad and use Fel Flame Breath (macro listed below) to damage Kanrethad and dispel yourself at the same time. Continue to use your gateway and Fel Flame Breath as often as they’re off cooldown.
**This fight is much easier when Kanrethad is aggressed on the Pit Lord at all times. I have found that he will cast chaos bolt much less while aggressed on the Pit Lord and you will receive little damage from Kanrethad himself if you are consistently dispelling yourself. That is why it is so important to constantly use your Demonic Gateway.
After a minute or so Kanrethad will run to the center of the room and begin to cast Cataclysm, use your Pit Lord’s Charge ability to interrupt Cataclysm and take advantage of the 100% damage increase on Kanrethad while he is stunned. I noticed that every once in a while during this first phase he will not cast Cataclysm after he runs to the center of the room, if you notice he doesn’t start casting it shortly after he gets to the center, it’s safe to use the Pit Lord stun to take advantage of the extra damage.
Phase 1 (Imp Phase)
After a minute Kanrethad will run back towards his gateway and begin the Imp phase. He will continuously summon Imps while the spell is being cast (10 seconds). I like to position my Pit Lord near the front center of the gateway (with ctrl+3), about 7 yards from it, and I like to position myself right in front of the Pit Lord, in between the Pit Lord and Imps. Save your damage cooldowns. As the Imps begin to flow out toss a couple Rain of Fires on the gateway, wait until all of the Imps have been summoned, then throw down your Shadowfury and cast Fire & Brimstone + Immolate on the Imps. Right after your F&B Immolate use the Pit Lord Fel Flame Breath on yourself and stand in the Imps. At this point most of them should be dead, you may need to toss another rain of fire to finish them off and use Demonic Siphon to cap your HP. Continue damage on Kanrethad.
Phase 1.5 (change phase)
Kanrethad runs to the center of the room and you interrupt his Cataclysm with Charge, SAVE YOUR EMBERS AND DPS COOLDOWNS, you will need them for the Felhunter phase. Immediately after the stun falls off you will manually move (default ctrl+3) your Pit Lord behind the pillar that is located behind the gateway and to the right (as seen in the video). This will allow you to move to the center-left of the room and deal with the Felhunters without running the risk of them dispelling your enslave demon. Continue damaging Kanrethad.
As your Pit Lord is running behind the pillar to LoS the incoming Felhunters you will be unable to use Fel Flame Breath to dispel yourself, use Cauterize Master as much as possible during this setup to reduce incoming damage and then use Unbound Will right as Kanrethad begins to cast Summon Felhunters to remove any further debuff you may have.
Phase 2 (Felhunter Phase)
Right before the first Felhunter comes out use Soul Shatter to clear your aggro table so Kanrethad will ignore you and run over to continue damaging the Pit Lord. Pay attention to your warnings because he may still cast Chaos Bolt on you while you are dealing with the Felhunters.
As the three Felhunters begin to come out, pop your damaging CD’s and use Chaos Bolt, I like to have at least 3 embers saved for this phase since it is the most difficult one to get through. Make sure immolate is on all of them and take one down at a time by using Chaos Bolt + Conflag + Incinerate + Shadowburn. You may need to cast additional Incinerates before you can Shadowburn depending on your gear or how lucky you get with crits. Remember that you can use Shadowfury on them to reduce incoming damage.
Phase 2.5 (Phase Change)
After all 3 Felhunters are dead command your pet to attack and continue damaging Kanrethad, he’ll go through another phase change by casting Cataclysm. Deal with it the same way as before, use your embers on Chaos Bolts while he is stunned. Keep using your Demonic Gateway and Fel Flame Breath!
Phase 3 (Doom Lord Phase)
This is the easiest phase to deal with. While Kanrethad is casting Summon Doom Lord, take advantage of this time to dismiss your Pit Lord and re-enslave him so you don’t have to worry about losing control of him later in the fight. Continue to damage Kanrethad while he is summoning, try to time your Demonic Gateway debuff so you will be able to use it right as the Doom Lord comes out, when this happens attack command your Pit Lord on the Doom Lord and use Fel Flame Breath. Jump through your gateway, the Doom Lord should be attacking your Pit Lord and you can command him to continue attacking Kanrethad.
Phase 3.5 and on to Cycle Repeat
Kanrethad casts Cataclysm and you interrupt it with Charge while continuing to use Fel Flame Breath and Demonic Gateway. The cycle of phases 1-3 will continue to repeat itself until you have finished the fight. Use the same strategy for each phase as it repeats. The only difference is that there will be a Doomguard out, but he should be attacking your Pit Lord the entire time and he will be of no concern. Deal with additional Doomguards the same way.
**Remember to use a purification potion before Curse of Ultimate Doom is allowed to tick. Make sure you don’t have the Excruciating Agony curse on you when you use it or the potion may be wasted. Wait to use it after Fel Flame Breath clears your debuffs.
/target Pit Lord
/cast Enslave Demon
Fel Flame Breath (at self)
/cast [@player] Fel Flame Breath
Pit Lord Charge
Pit Lord Heal
/cast Demonic Siphon
Chaos Bolt Defense
/cast Sacrificial Pact
/cast Twilight Ward
/cast Unending Resolve
Important things to remember and Tips
-Have your Imp sacrifice, Dark Soul, flask, food buff, healstones, and potions ready before starting
-Put Kanrethad on focus
-Use Demonic Gateway as much as possible; get a Gateway Control Stone or the Glyph of Gateway Attunement so you don’t have to click your gateway to use it.
-Use the Fel Flame Breath macro on yourself as much as possible (make sure it’s up for Imps) and line up your positioning so it hits Kanrethad and the Doom lord(s).
-Use Singe Magic to dispel yourself when Fel Flame Breath is out of range or on cooldown
-Make sure your DPS cooldowns are up and you have at least 3 Burning Embers going into Fel Hunter phase.
-Save Sacrificial Pact and Twilight Ward for incoming Chaos Bolts
-Use Ember Tap + Healthstone if you get a little low and the Pit Lord heal is on cooldown, I like to use these in conjunction with their glyphs during Imp Phase while I’m waiting for all of the Imps to appear before blowing them up.
-Use your Shadowfury on Imps and Felhunters
-Save Soulshatter and Unbound Will (to remove debuffs) for when Kanrethad is summoning Fel hunters
-Pre-pot with Jade Serpent Potion, don’t use any potions during combat so you are able to use Purification Potion to remove Curse of Ultimate Doom.
-When you see Kanrethad running to center of the room to begin casting Cataclysm, anticipate it and begin to cast Chaos Bolt before he starts casting Cataclysm. This way, right as you Charge him with the Pit Lord, a Chaos Bolt will land and you can get in an additional 2 chaos bolts before the 100% damage increase on Kanrethad fades. This can add up to a lot of extra damage if timed right. (Remember don’t do this during the change between Imp and Felhunter phase, you need to save embers for that!)
Thanks for reading, if you have any questions you can post them here and I’ll try to respond. Please rate if you found it helpful.
Posted byon 12 June 2013 - 05:45 PM
Posted byon 04 November 2013 - 01:14 PM
Posted byon 01 March 2013 - 04:14 PM
Greetings, Warlocks! This guide will be a source of supplemental information that is intended to help you get a better grasp on how to better play your Demonology Warlock.
Table of Contents
1) Demons and Grimoires
2) Demonology’s Feel and Nature
3) Demonology Resources
4) Opener and Execution Phase
5) Metamorphosis and Caster Form
6) Corruption and Doom
7) Hand of Gul’dan and Chaos Wave
8) Mastery, Haste, & Crit
9) Unerring Vision of Lei Shen and Wild Imps
11) Pandemic, Fel Flame, and Doomguard
12) Talents and Glyphs
13) Tier 16 Set Bonuses
15) Theorycrafting and Math
1. Demons and Grimoires
Demonology is all about you, you as a demon, and your demons corrupting and punishing your opponents with the art of dark magic. As a Mastery: Master Demonologist, your pets gain significantly more power than Destruction and Affliction’s pets. That said, your companion will be a trusty Felguard if you choose Grimoire of Service, Wrathguard if you choose Grimoire of Supremacy, and any demon you’d like to sacrifice with Grimoire of Sacrifice. Typically, you’ll prefer to sacrifice your Voidwalker for his Voidwalker: Shadow Bulwark ability or your Felhunter for his Felhunter: Spell Lock ability. If you elect to employ your demon instead of sacrificing him or her, you’ll be using Felguard: Felstorm or Wrathstorm to blend many opponents into gory remains.
2. Demonology's Feel and Nature
Demonology has been declared to be the hardest of the three Warlock specializations. Demonology requires paying attention to your demon, your mana bar, your unique resource, Demonic Fury, as well as 2 DoTs, a charge system for Hand of Gul'dan, and Molten Core procs which alter your rotation. This guide will try to diffuse some of the difficulty and explain all of the complexities of the class in easy-to-understand terms.
3. Demonology Resources
Demonologists have the following resources:
Mana – consumed in caster form to generate Demonic Fury and generated via Life Tap
Demonic Fury – consumed in Metamorphosis form
Molten Core procs – consumed with the use of Soul Fire
Hand of Gul'dan charges – regenerates over time, 2 total charges
Managing these resources is the key to optimizing your Demonology rotation and damage.
Mana management is rather simple as a Demonology Warlock. You'll use Life Tap to regenerate mana, but there are things to remember.
1) You don't need mana in Metamorphosis. Use long periods of Metamorphosis to passively regenerate some mana. This method won't be enough to rely on this method alone, but every global you don't spend using Life Tap is a DPS gain.
2) You should end the fight with very little mana. Finishing a fight with more than 25% mana means you used Life Tap at least one too many times.
3) Do your best to not Life Tap during periods of heavy damage or a future spike in damage.
Demonic Fury management is moderately more complex than mana. You need Demonic Fury to do high damage, so maximizing your Demonic Fury generation is key. This can be done by executing your rotation properly. There are a few Demonic Fury rules you should follow.
1) Try to never get above 900 Demonic Fury. If you come close to 900, shift into Metamorphosis and spend some until you are around 650 or 700 depending on the length of time until your next Dark Soul: Knowledge or a trinket proc.
2) Try to end fights with 0 Demonic Fury left. Maximize your damage by depleting your entire Demonic Fury bar before a fight ends.
3) Try to have at least 800 Demonic Fury for Dark Soul: Knowledge burns. You will be spending Demonic Fury and you do not want to leave Metamorphosis during Dark Soul: Knowledge. If you have the 2pc T15 set bonus, you should only need about 650 Demonic Fury for the same effect.
4) Deciding between Metamorphosis: Touch of Chaos and Soul Fire as your Metamorphosis filler will depend on your Demonic Fury. Make sure not to use Soul Fire if you have less than 200 Demonic Fury while Dark Soul: Knowledge is up.
Molten Core charge management is rather simple. If you have a Molten Core charge, cast Soul Fire instead of Shadow Bolt in caster form. This will do more damage and generate higher Demonic Fury. Beware, however, that it will cost significantly more mana. You can have a maximum of 10 Molten Core charges. Try to follow these rules regarding Molten Core charges.
1) Never let yourself hit 10 Molten Core charges. Spend them either in Metamorphosis form or caster form.
2) Never ever cast Soul Fire without Molten Core charges.
Hand of Gul'dan management is discussed in section 7.
4. Opener and Execution
Demonology Opener involves some luck and finesse. You'll be precasting Soul Fire to gain some extra Demonic Fury and give yourself a 20% chance to boost your opener by 20% with your 2pc bonus.
@ 4 seconds left, pre-pot
@ 3.5 seconds left, Soul Fire
Metamorphosis: Touch of Chaos or Soul Fire if you have enough Demonic Fury to not drop out of Metamorphosis during Dark Soul: Knowledge.
Execution phase presents the situation where hitting an enemy below 25% with Shadow Bolt or Soul Fire will guarantee a Molten Core charge. This will slightly increase your DPS, but Soul Fire spam will either deplete your mana or your Demonic Fury rapidly, so use with caution.
5. Metamorphosis and Caster Form
Demonology Warlocks have two forms you will be performing your rotation from. One is caster form and the other is Metamorphosis form. Caster form has access to the core abilities Shadow Bolt, Corruption, Hellfire, Hand of Gul'dan, and Soul Fire. These abilities consume mana and generate Demonic Fury. Metamorphosis form turns Shadow Bolt into Metamorphosis: Touch of Chaos, Corruption into Metamorphosis: Doom, Hellfire into Metamorphosis: Immolation Aura, Hand of Gul'dan into Metamorphosis: Chaos Wave, and modifies Soul Fire to consume Demonic Fury instead of generating it. These abilities consume Demonic Fury and do considerably more damage due to Mastery: Master Demonologist. If your Demonic Fury ever goes below 40, you’ll automatically be returned to caster form from Metamorphosis form. Maximizing your time in Metamorphosis will prove to be a challenging, yet very rewarding endeavor in boosting your DPS.
6. Corruption, Doom, & Snapshotting
Metamorphosis: Doom and Corruption play a large part into Demonology’s DPS, but perhaps not where one might think. Metamorphosis: Doom’s damage is pretty important to the overall contribution a Demonology Warlock brings, but Corruption’s damage is pretty small. However, they both play a part in optimizing Demonology DPS and should be treated with utmost concern. Your absolute number 1 priority is to keep both of these DoTs running on your target as well as any extra targets. Details of each follow:
Corruption generates a small amount of Demonic Fury, is refreshed by Touch of Chaos and Void Ray, and does a small amount of damage. This ability, if played corrected, should only need to be placed on its target one time as Metamorphosis: Touch of Chaos is regularly used in your rotation and will extend the duration of Corruption 6 seconds. Metamorphosis: Void Ray will extend the duration of Corruption 4 seconds and will be refreshed this way during AoE situations.
Metamorphosis: Doom generates moderate to high damage in large intervals of time as well as providing an opportunity to generate a Wild Imp upon dealing critical damage. When Metamorphosis: Doom crits, it also generates 50 Demonic Fury. A special section is devoted further down in this guide regarding the trinket Unerring Vision of Lei Shen and what it means to Metamorphosis: Doom. Metamorphosis: Doom should always be cast on anything that will live for at least 1 tick of the DoT.
Snapshotting is an effect put into the combat mechanics of World of Warcraft that is used when any damage over time effect is placed on a target. Snapshotting means that when a DoT is applied, your stats are taken into account at that very moment and maintained for the duration of the DoT. When you have a proc of a trinket or Bloodlust, applying a DoT such as Metamorphosis: Doom will give that DoT a huge buff. The buff remains for the duration of the DoT, even past Bloodlust wearing off. This is a very important feature to remember as you try to maximize your DPS. This will be covered in the last section of this guide.
Metamorphosis: Doom and Corruption can be extended past their original durations of 18 and 60 seconds via Pandemic.
7. Hand of Gul'dan, Shadowflame, & Chaos Wave
Hand of Gul'dan uses a 2 point charge system. Hand of Gul'dan deals moderate damage to its target and splashes to targets nearby within 6 yards. When Hand of Gul'dan hits its target, it leaves a DoT called Shadowflame which has a slowing effect as well as generating Demonic Fury for the duration of Shadowflame. Hand of Gul'dan can stack twice due to the charge system. Both the damage and snaring component of Shadowflame are doubled upon the 2nd application of Shadowflame.
The proper way to utilize your charges of Hand of Gul'dan are to maximize the duration of Shadowflame while obtaining your 2nd stack. Since each Shadowflame duration lasts 6 seconds, you’ll want to apply the 2nd Hand of Gul'dan within 5 seconds of your first Hand of Gul'dan. Hand of Gul'dan has travel time, so you must consider this in wanting to properly utilize Hand of Gul'dan and Shadowflame. The way this can be accomplished varies by Haste levels but can always be done by this spell order:
1) Hand of Gul'dan
2) Shadow Bolt / Soul Fire
3) Shadow Bolt / Soul Fire
4) Hand of Gul'dan
5) Metamorphosis should be used directly after the 2nd Hand of Gul'dan in order to buff the damage of Hand of Gul'dan as well as the 2nd stack of Shadowflame.
With high levels of Haste, you can push a third spell in between the two Hand of Gul'dans to increase Demonic Fury and optimize Shadowflame damage.
Metamorphosis: Chaos Wave is the Metamorphosis form of Hand of Gul'dan. This does very high damage at the cost of a lot of Demonic Fury. This is great for burst AoE, but if the targets being hit would survive the duration of Shadowflame (6 seconds), then Hand of Gul'dan would be a better choice than Metamorphosis: Chaos Wave. Metamorphosis: Chaos Wave is very situational and is not commonly used.
8. Mastery, Haste, & Crit
There is an unwritten rule about Crit and Warlocks… “Crit is Shit.” You’ll typically want to avoid Crit the best you can because of how well Haste and Mastery act with Demonology. A great way to approach Haste and Mastery is not to think one is better than the other but to realize they work together with incredible synergy to maximize your DPS. Each fight is unique and may see Haste valued over Mastery or Mastery valued over Haste, but the best approach is to build for both.
When putting gems and enchants on your gear, prioritize gems based on your preference. If you are pushing higher Haste, then use the Haste version of gems. If you prefer Mastery, plug those in. For red sockets, you should always use the Intellect hybrid gems. For yellow sockets, you should use pure secondary stats, and for blue sockets, you should use either the Hit secondary hybrids or Stamina secondary hybrid gems. Stamina gems should only be used when you cannot possibly reforge out of any more Hit.
Red Sockets: Reckless Vermilion Onyx or Artful Vermilion Onyx
Yellow Sockets: Quick Sun's Radiance or Fractured Sun's Radiance
Blue Sockets: Lightning Wild Jade or Sensei's Wild Jade or Puissant Wild Jade or Forceful Wild Jade
There are many Haste thresholds which are not incredibly important to Demonology Warlocks thanks largely in part to Pandemic, but because it’s unreliable to find a solid breakpoint for Haste in terms of the spec overall, Haste breakpoints should be chosen based on how close you can get Haste and Mastery to each other. In terms of your important Haste breakpoints, these can be found at askmrrobot.com. For simplicity, I will include the various values here on this page I feel are relevant:
*Assume 5% Raid Haste*
8064 Rating = 24.92% Haste = +2 ticks
14873 Rating = 41.75% Haste = +3 ticks - recommended
Therefore, recommended Haste threshold is:
14873 Rating - no Amplification trinket
14165 Rating - LFR Amplification (5%)
14032 Rating - Flex/Normal Amplification (6%)
13900 Rating - Warforged/Heroic Amplification (7%)
13772 Rating - Heroic WF Amplification (8%)
This threshold will cover the breakpoints of Shadowflame, Corruption, and Doom.
Corruption breakpoints are negligible due to the nature of it being constantly updated via Metamorphosis: Touch of Chaos and its relatively minor damage.
It's almost impossible to get to a 1.000 second Soul Fire or Shadow Bolt under normal situations. However, at 40.60% personal Haste + 5% raid Haste + Bloodlust + Tempus Repit, you can get to a 1.000 second Shadow Bolt. Under the same scenario, Soul Fire reaches 1.000 second cast with 15% personal Haste. Building for this scenario is foolish and would only be obtained under rare situations and a high personal Haste rating which I discourage.
In terms of Haste and Mastery, keep them close together in value. And remember, reforging won’t make your DPS skyrocket. Your secondary stat allotment is a small contribution to your DPS. Focus more on perfecting your rotation to see the largest increase in potential damage.
9. Unerring Vision of Lei Shen and your Imps
There is a game-breaking trinket for Demonology, and it’s called Unerring Vision of Lei Shen. It drops from Lei Shen in the Throne of Thunder raid and it is absolutely beautiful. What this trinket does is snapshots any DoTs you might cast under its proc called Perfect Aim, and makes it so they will always have a critical hit. While snapshotting Corruption is nice, it really doesn’t compare to what snapshotting Metamorphosis: Doom does.
Remember that when Metamorphosis: Doom does critical damage, you spawn a Wild Imp which will generate 50 Demonic Fury. When Perfect Aim procs, you should apply Metamorphosis: Doom. This will result in a plethora of Wild Imps and this effect is only increased with multiple targets. Your absolute number 1 priority in this specialization is to apply your 100% guaranteed crit Metamorphosis: Doom to anything without it.
Without this trinket, Demonology’s DPS suffers a bit. With it, Demonology becomes one of the top specs in the game. Acquire this trinket at any cost if you want to be a serious Demonology Warlock.
As of 5.4, Unerring Vision has been modified to the point where it is no longer the best possible trinket for Demonology. It no longer procs at the beginning of fights with consistency and its proc rate no longer super inflated by Haste.
10. AoE Damage
AoE is one of Demonology’s specialties. Whether it is burst AoE or sustained AoE, Demonology has one of the best toolkits in the game to deliver.
For 4 or fewer targets, you’ll want to apply Metamorphosis: Doom and Corruption to everything, maximize Shadowflame and Hand of Gul'dan damage, and perform your single target rotation in a rotating manner so that you don’t let Corruption fall off. It will get refreshed as you bounce from target to target and apply Metamorphosis: Touch of Chaos. The rule of thumb for Metamorphosis: Doom is apply it if it will tick at least one time. Remember to use Felguard: Felstorm or Wrathstorm on cooldown.
For 5 or more targets, assess how long they will live. If it is more than 20-30 seconds, apply Corruption and Metamorphosis: Doom to all of them. Maximize Hand of Gul'dan and Shadowflame damage, apply Metamorphosis: Immolation Aura, use Carrion Swarm on cooldown (make sure it’s glyphed), and spam Metamorphosis: Void Ray. As always, Felguard: Felstorm and Wrathstorm should be used on cooldown. When you run out of Demonic Fury, use Hellfire to quickly generate it then pop back into Metamorphosis and continue your onslaught.
11. Pandemic, Fel Flame, and Doomguard
Pandemic is a passive ability acquired by Warlocks at level 90 that give them the ability to extend DoTs past their original duration, up to 50% of the original duration. Pandemic can be used to extend DoTs when you get a great proc and utilize your ability to snapshot your stats. Pandemic increases the effect of your DoTs as seen here:
Corruption: 18 seconds -> 27 seconds
Corruption + Glyph of Everlasting Affliction: 27 seconds -> 41 seconds
Metamorphosis: Doom: 60 seconds -> 90 seconds
Metamorphosis: Doom + Glyph of Everlasting Affliction: 90 seconds -> 135 seconds
Fel Flame is an ability that was utilized lots in the previous expansion to be able to cast and move at the same time. It was even built into a set bonus to make Warlocks want to use it. Casting Fel Flame was mana inefficient in 5.3, but in 5.4, it had its damage buffed and mana cost removed making it a very solid spell to cast while moving. If you avoid the KJC talent in favor of AD or MF, then Fel Flame will be a staple part of your rotation while moving in caster form.
Doomguard and Terrorguard are 10 minute cooldowns that, when utilized, will contribute a small portion of your damage. Doomguard and Terrorguard do 20% more damage when a target is below 20%, but they also scale with your stats. It’s almost always more beneficial to cast your Doomguard or Terrorguard at the beginning of combat when all of your trinkets, potions, and other buffs are live. Doomguard and Terrorguard DO NOT benefit from Haste. They will cast 17 Doom Bolts and no more. Casting them at the beginning of fights also ensures you get the full utilization out of them. If you wait until execution phase, they may not get in all 17 of their Doom Bolts.
12. Talents and Glyphs
Icy-Veins does a great job covering the Talents and Glyphs.
Mandatory Glyphs are Glyph of Imp Swarm, Glyph of Shadow Bolt and Glyph of Everlasting Affliction (with Unerring Vision of Lei Shen.)
As of 5.4, these glyphs are no longer necessary. Imp Swarm has been reduced to 4 Imps bringing it in line with not using the glyph at all and Everlasting Affliction has been removed and replaced with Glyph of Unending Resolve.
Talents and Glyphs are often situational. Please refer to the T15 Warlock-centered guide for more information on a fight by fight basis.
13. Tier 16 Set Bonuses
Demonology's T16 2pc Set - Soul Fire has a 20% chance to increase you and your pet's damage by 20% for 10 seconds. This 2pc bonus will put a higher prioritization on Soul Fire when you don't have the buff up and a lower prioritization on Soul Fire when you do. You don't want to clip the proc of this, nor do you want to waste your Molten Core charges while you have your buff up. You'd be better off spending your Molten Core charges to maximize uptime of this buff. This will also make it so you do NOT desire the Imp Swarm glyph. You'll want a constant flow of Wild Imps in order to get a more steady flow of Molten Core charges.
Demonology's T16 4pc Set - Shadow Bolt, and Metamorphosis: Touch of Chaos have an 8% chance to proc a Hand of Gul'dan on your target. This bonus Hand of Gul'dan cannot stack beyond 2 stacks as it does without the set bonus. If you're in Metamorphosis, you'll cast Metamorphosis: Chaos Wave as a bonus spell.
The synergy between these two effects is quite high. It will be highly recommended that you spend your time casting Soul Fire as long as you have Molten Core charges to get your 2pc to proc and then switch to Shadow Bolt, or Metamorphosis: Touch of Chaos to proc your 4pc bonus as often as possible. There's no real change to your rotation from normal except that you'd want to cast Soul Fire any time you got a Molten Core proc and didn't have the 2pc buff.
The 2pc bonus value is dependent on the RNG of your uptime. Since it's a 20% damage buff, the uptime of the buff coorelates directly into a damage increase. If it's up 10% of the time, it'll be a 2% DPS gain. 20% = 4% DPS gain, etc. Modifying our rotation to pool Molten Core charges should make it so that prioritizing this set bonus is achievable. Since the proc rate is 20%, or 1 in 5 casts, I would estimate this set bonus's uptime to be somewhere between 20% and 40% giving it a worth of approximately 4% to 8% of your DPS.
The 4pc bonus value is, again, dependent on RNG. With an 8% proc rate, it would also depend on whether or not you cast a Hand of Gul'dan or a Chaos Wave. Regardless, extra free damage is always nice. This set bonus explodes in effectiveness if more than 1 target is available. While the value of this 4pc is dependent on the number of enemies, it should be deemed necessary, contrary to T15. Prioritize at least 4 of the T16 Tier pieces.
1. Purified Bindings of Immerseus
2. [wowicon=inv_jewelry_orgrimmarraid_trinket_13]Kardris' Toxic Totem
3. [wowicon=inv_jewelry_orgrimmarraid_trinket_02]Black Blood of Y'Shaarj
15. Theorycrafting and Math
Imp Swarm Math
Imp Swarm is an interesting Glyph in that it alters the CD based on Haste Rating. Here, we can see some various CDs along with how long the base CD on Demonic Calling is.
Wild Imps should be summoned when all of your Haste procs are live in the opener. These procs will be +5% Haste + Bloodlust + Tempus Repit. If you are a Troll, using Berserking will have an even greater effect. Note the following Imp Swarm CDs with these procs live:
+5% Raid Haste + Bloodlust + Tempus Repit = 77.5% Haste
0% Haste = 67.6 sec
10% Haste = 61.5 sec
20% Haste = 56.3 sec
30% Haste = 52.0 sec
40% Haste = 48.3 sec
50% Haste = 45.1 sec
(Troll) +5% Raid Haste + Bloodlust + Tempus Repit + Berserking = 112.9% Haste
0% Haste = 56.4 sec
10% Haste = 51.2 sec
20% Haste = 47.0 sec
30% Haste = 43.4 sec
40% Haste = 40.3 sec
50% Haste = 37.6 sec
Remember, Demonic Calling's base CD is 20 seconds. This value can be reduced by Haste as well. The synergy of these two effects has some importance tied into Haste. Demonic Calling remains on CD while Imp Swarm is on CD and using the Glyph of Imp Swarm adds a 4 sec CD to Demonic Calling, so we're looking at 24 sec baseline if using the Glyph. Here are the two scenarios, glyph and no glyph:
NO GLYPH OF IMP SWARM (assuming only 5% Raid Haste for Imp proc rate)
0% Haste = 19.1 sec
10% Haste = 17.3 sec
20% Haste = 15.9 sec
30% Haste = 14.6 sec
40% Haste = 13.6 sec
50% Haste = 12.7 sec
Looking at 30% Haste, we see a 14.6 sec CD on Demonic Calling which translates ROUGHLY to 4 Imps per minute. If we look at it on a 2 minute baseline, we'd see roughly 8 Imps proc in 2 minutes. This number would vary as Tempus Repit and Bloodlust were applied, but to keep things simple, let's just assume none of that applies. If not using the glyph, there is no Haste threshold for Imps. More Haste = more Imps, plain and simple.
WITH GLYPH OF IMP SWARM (assuming only 5% Raid Haste for Imp proc rate)
0% Haste = 22.8 sec
10% Haste = 20.8 sec
20% Haste = 19.0 sec
30% Haste = 17.6 sec
40% Haste = 16.3 sec
50% Haste = 15.2 sec
These values tie into the CD of Imp Swarm when used. The opening Imp Swarm will have a greatly decreased CD because you'll have all of your procs running live. The following values assume that you are popping Imp Swarm with Dark Soul and letting Imp Swarm be available but not used until Dark Soul comes off CD (120 sec).
0% Haste: Imp Swarm CD = 114 sec, Demonic Calling CD = 22.8 sec = 6 Imps per 2 minutes
*This would mean Imp Swarm would come off CD 114 sec in and Demonic Calling would proc an additional Imp. 6 seconds later, Dark Soul would be available, so you'd apply Dark Soul and pop Imp Swarm imposing an additional 114 sec CD on Imp Swarm. What we try to find here is the thresholds of maximum Imps proc'd between Imp Swarm uses.*
10% Haste: Imp Swarm CD = 103.9 sec, Demonic Calling CD = 20.8 sec = 6 Imps per 2 minutes (next Imp would be at 125.7 sec meaning you'd have to delay DS/Imp Swarm for 5.7 sec)
20% Haste: Imp Swarm CD = 95.2 sec, Demonic Calling CD = 20.8 sec = 7 Imps per 2 minutes (next Imp would be at 136.8 sec meaning you'd have to delay DS/Imp Swarm for 16.8 sec)
30% Haste: Imp Swarm CD = 87.9 sec, Demonic Calling CD = 17.6 sec = 7 Imps per 2 minutes (next Imp would be at 123.1 sec meaning you'd have to delay DS/Imp Swarm for 3.1 sec)
40% Haste: Imp Swarm CD = 81.6 sec, Demonic Calling CD = 16.3 sec = 8 Imps per 2 minutes (next Imp would be at 130.5 sec meaning you'd have to delay DS/Imp Swarm for 10.5 sec)
50% Haste: Imp Swarm CD = 76.2 sec, Demonic Calling CD = 15.2 sec = 8 Imps per 2 minutes (next Imp would be at 121.8 sec meaning you'd have to delay DS/Imp Swarm for 1.8 sec)
Remember, this is worst case scenario (no Bloodlust used, no Tempus Repit procs) so you'll likely see higher Imp rates than what is listed here. However, the value we want to see is at what Haste % you JUST get another Demonic Calling proc and Dark Soul and Imp Swarm come off CD. You can see that value lies somewhere between 10% and 20% and another between 30% and 40%. Those values are:
14.29% Haste: Imp Swarm CD = 100.0 sec, Demonic Calling CD = 20.0 sec = 7 Imps per 2 minutes
33.40% Haste: Imp Swarm CD = 85.7 sec, Demonic Calling CD = 17.1 sec = 8 Imps per 2 minutes
14.29% Haste = 6,074 Haste Rating
33.40% Haste = 14,195 Haste Rating
These thresholds are not meant to be aimed for when reforging and gemming. This is just a value that shows how many additional Imps you would get if you didn't use Bloodlust or have 0 Tempus Repit procs. The actual required Haste Rating will be much lower because of temporary procs.
As of 5.4, Glyph of Imp Swarm is no longer necessary, and in my opinion, no longer desired, especially when the T16 2pc bonus is acquired. All text with a line through it is old math derived from 5 Imps. New math coming soon.
Spell Cast Times
Read Chart with Character Haste at the top.
Posted byon 31 August 2012 - 07:28 PM
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Posted byon 08 October 2014 - 10:27 PM
7. Gameplay Tips and Tricks
The above sections should fill in the intricate details of what goes on behind the Demonology specialization. This is the section that explains the details of what each ability does, what impact it has, and how to best use it.
With the removal of snapshotting and Haste breakpoints, the only things to worry about with Corruption and Doom is maintaining them at a 100% uptime. Always. There are some minor notes about each ability detailed below.
•Ticks over 18 seconds with a 2 second baseline interval
•Generates 3 Demonic Fury per tick at level 100
•Generates 1.5 Demonic Fury per second at 0% Haste; 2 DF/sec at 50% Haste
•Safe to reapply with no DPS loss at 5.4 seconds remaining in duration
•Ticks over 60 seconds with a 15 second baseline interval
•Safe to reapply with no DPS loss at 18 seconds remaining in duration
•Generates Wild Imps with Critial Strikes
•Critically Strikes 20% more at level 100
As a bonus, here is a chart on how many Wild Imps you could expect to see with various Crit and Haste % values. Note: to calculate the total number of Imps generated per fight, take your expected Imp number and multiply by the minutes of an encounter. For example, for a fight that lasts 5.5 minutes with 20% Haste and 25% Crit, you could expect 2.2 Imps x 5.5 minutes = 12.1 Wild Imps.
Shadow Bolt - this spell will be your primary Demonic Fury builder. Shadow Bolt deals 126% of Spell Power in damage along with generating 25 Demonic Fury. Shadow Bolt's base cast time is 2.5 seconds. At 0% Haste, Shadow Bolt generates 10 Demonic Fury per second. At 10% intervals of Haste, Shadow Bolt generates another 1 Demonic Fury per second.
Soul Fire - this spell will be your secondary Demonic Fury builders if you use Demonbolt as your level 100 talent. If you use Cataclysm or Demonic Servitude, Soul Fire will be your primary Demonic Fury spender instead. Soul Fire deals 86.1% of Spell Power in damage along with always dealing a Critical Strike and generating 30 Demonic Fury. Soul Fire's base cast time is 4.0 seconds but this decreases to 2.0 seconds as long as you have Molten Core charges. You should never cast Soul Fire without Molten Core as the mana or Demonic Fury cost is too expensive. At 0% Haste, Soul Fire will generate 15 Demonic Fury per second. At 10% intervals of Haste, Soul Fire generates another 1.5 Demonic Fury per second.
Hand of Gul'dan - this spell has a charge system with a baseline of 2 charges that goes up to 3 with the 2p T17 bonus activated. Hand of Gul'dan deals 165% of Spell Power in damage and initiates 129.6% Shadowflame damage over 6 seconds as well as generating 2 Demonic Fury per second per enemy hit. Maximizing Shadowflame damage is a key element to playing Demonology to a high level. In order to maximize Shadowflame damage, you want to cast Hand of Gul'dan and follow it with another Hand of Gul'dan approximately 4 seconds later. The 2nd Hand of Gul'dan will land and ignite a 2nd stack of Shadowflame. When the 2pc T17 bonus is activated, you'll want to follow up the 2 stack with another Hand of Gul'dan to extend the 2 stack for another 6 seconds by applying it with less than 2 seconds to go on the previous 2 stack. Shadowflame cannot stack beyond 2.
Spending Demonic Fury is how you deal the most damage as a Demonology Warlock. There are many ways to spend Demonic Fury and they all must be done in Metamorphosis. Here, we will explore the various ways to spend Demonic Fury.
Touch of Chaos - this spell is the transformation of Shadow Bolt and deals 67.2% of Spell Power in damage while adding 6 seconds to Corruption's duration. This ability can be cast while moving. Touch of Chaos consumes 40 Demonic Fury.
Soul Fire - this spell is transformed while in Metamorphosis to consume Demonic Fury instead of generate it. Soul Fire deals 86.1% of Spell Power in damage as well as always dealing a Critical Strike. Further, Critical Strike chance boosts the damage of Soul Fire. Soul Fire costs 160 Demonic Fury to cast which is reduced to 80 with Molten Core. This is your primary spender unless you're using Demonbolt.
This section covers the level 100 talents for Demonology Warlocks all of which are intricate parts of dealing optimal damage.
Demonbolt - this spell is very unique in that it completely alters the playstyle of Demonology. Once this spell is acquired, it becomes your primary spender of Demonic Fury and what you build your play around. Demonbolt deals 412.5% of Spell Power as damage and also has a stacking mechanism that increases the damage done and the Demonic Fury spent for each successive cast. The effect that increases the damage and Demonic Fury cost has a 40 second duration that is reduced by Haste. With Demonbolt, your goal will be to build Demonic Fury as fast as possible to spend on Demonbolts with procs up.
In one burst phase, you can't go higher than 4 stacks because of the 1,000 Demonic Fury cap. However, you can exit Metamorphosis and build back up to further stacks by building to the DF required, casting Demonbolt, and leaving Metamorphosis to build DF again. By doing this method, the following is achievable:
•Stack 5 = 742.5% SP + 400 Demonic Fury
•Stack 6 = 825% SP + 480 Demonic Fury
•Stack 7 = 907.5% SP + 560 Demonic Fury
•Stack 8 = 990% SP + 640 Demonic Fury
•Stack 9 = 1072.5% SP + 720 Demonic Fury
•Stack 10 = 1155% SP + 800 Demonic Fury
Remember, the debuff scales with Haste, so the more Haste you stack to build more Demonic Fury, the shorter the window will be to maximize your Demonbolt. Going past a 4 stack will never be a viable decision in PvE, but you can still create some pretty interesting situations if you wanted to.
Cataclysm - this spell is the AoE nuke of the level 100 talents that deals 750% of Spell Power in damage and applies Corruption to all targets hit if cast in caster form. However, in Metamorphosis, all targets hit will be afflicted with Doom! Cataclysm is a 3 second base cast time that uses a targetting reticle similar to Rain of Fire.
Demonic Servitude - this talent replaces Summon Doomguard and Summon Infernal spells with actual summoning spells similar to your Imp and Felguard. With this talent, you can have a permanent Doomguard or Summon Infernal out. Better yet, with Grimoire of Supremacy, you can have a permanent Summon Terrorguard or Summon Abyssal! This talent could be classified as a passive DPS talent that performs well but doesn't come close to Demonbolt. It does, however, win badass points.
5. AoE - Hellfire and Immolation Aura
Hellfire - this spell deals AoE fire damage equal to 15.75% of your Spell Power and also deals 15.75% of your Spell Power in damage to yourself. You are unable to cast any other spells while channeling Hellfire.
Immolation Aura - this spell is the grown up version of Hellfire. Immolation Aura deals xx.xx% of your Spell Power in AoE damage while in Metamorphosis and becomes an aura of damage while you cast other spells. Immolation Aura also does not deal damage to yourself.
6. Imps, Felguards, & Doomguards - OH MY!
Demonology uses an arsenal of demons to help destroy any foes that stand in its way.
Wild Imps - these little fellas come from two different places and deal a lot of damage while generating a lot of Demonic Fury. Doom Critical Strikes and Demonic Calling procs will pull Wild Imps from the twisting nether to cast 10 spells which generate 5 Demonic Fury each before these little guys scurry away. Wild Imps cannot be controlled and act as guardians in that they will attack what you are currently attacking with a slight delay in changing targets. Haste reduces the effects of Demonic Calling and sits at 20 seconds baseline.
Summon Felguard - this will be your primary demon used when not using Demonic Servitude. Your Felguard should always have Legion Strike on auto-cast and should have Felstorm used on CD except in situations where numerous targets will soon be present. Your Felguard also comes equipped with a 4 second stun in Axe Toss.
Summon Doomguard - this spell has been heavily buffed since 5.4 and serves as an actual cooldown again. The Summon Doomguard will come out and shoot out 18 Doom Bolts at your target that also deal 20% more damage to enemies below 20%. This is a great execute spell but also a valuable cooldown for any part of an encounter that you want to be over just a little bit quicker. The Summon Doomguard becomes a permanent pet with Demonic Servitude and becomes a Summon Terrorguard with Grimoire of Supremacy.
Summon Infernal - this spell has also been heavily buffed since 5.4 and no longer is the laughingstock of cooldowns. The Summon Infernal will land dealing massive damage in the form of Summon Infernal Awakening. He will then melee enemies while burning them with an AoE Immolation spell. The Summon Infernal becomes a permanent tank-oriented pet with Demonic Servitude and becomes an Summon Abyssal with Grimoire of Supremacy.
7. Bringing It All Together
With DoTs, Demonic Fury generators and spenders, and demon pets explained, let's bring it all together and figure out how to optimize our DPS!
A. The Opener
Your opener is going to be a bit different with various talents. For optimal DPS, we're using Grimoire of Synergy or Supremacy, Archimonde's Darkness, and Demonbolt as our level 75, 90, & 100 talents.
•Pre-Pot + Soul Fire
• Hand of Gul'dan
• Shadow Bolt
• Dark Soul: Knowledge + Hand of Gul'dan
• Metamorphosis + Doom
• Soul Fire until out of Molten Core charges then Touch of Chaos
This opener generates some Demonic Fury up front in order to let us cast 2 Demonbolts. Any excess Demonic Fury should be spent on Soul Fire as long as you have some Molten Core charges. Dark Soul: Knowledge is used with Hand of Gul'dan to buff the 2 stack of Shadowflame as well as the two Demonbolts and any extra spells. When you run out of Demonic Fury, go into your build phase.
B. The Build Phase
Building Demonic Fury follows a rather simple checklist:
1. Corruption applied? If no, then apply it.
4. Use Shadow Bolt
Basically you want to spam Shadow Bolt as long as Corruption and Doom are applied. Use your Hand of Gul'dan spell appropriately so that you're never sitting at max stacks and that you maximize the time Shadowflame is up with a 2 stack. If you're using Demonbolt, use Molten Core Soul Fires in caster form because all of your Demonic Fury is going towards Demonbolt in the burn phase. Soul Fire builds Demonic Fury faster.
C. The Nuke Phase
In order to maximize Demonbolt damage, you'll need to enter your burn phase with 850 Demonic Fury. When you enter Metamorphosis, cast Dark Soul, Doom, and then Demonbolt 4 times. You'll fall out of Metamorphosis and begin your build phase again.
There is some math as to why you would want to do it this way. When it comes to spending Demonic Fury in Metamorphosis, you want to deal as much damage as possible. With a limited Demonic Fury pool and a small window of time, you have some decisions to make. Since Demonbolt has a 2 second cast and Soul Fire has a 2 second cast, let's assume you can get 5 spells off. With some moderate Haste, you could easily get 6 done, so let's look at a model of different combinations.
Here is the model that is sorted by number of casts to see different combinations:
Here is the model that is sorted by maximum spell power with red showing impossible combinations, yellow showing fuel-inefficient combinations, green showing the ideal combination, and orange showing less-than-efficient combinations:
As you can see, 0 Soul Fires and 4 Demonbolts is how to do it if the Spell Power coefficients of Soul Fire and Demonbolt remain the same as they are today (81.6% and 412.5%). Remember, the Soul Fire combination is assuming no Demonbolts Critical Strike! If they do perform a Critical Strike, it only solidifies 4 Demonbolts as the absolute way to go. The reason the line with 800 DF is optimal is because you'll want to go into burn phases with 850 DF. You'll apply Doom and then use Demonbolt 4 times.
8. Summing It Up
So, the TL;DR of Demonology Warlock would go something like this:
5. Use your Summon Doomguard and Felstorm correctly.
6. Delay Dark Soul: Knowledge for Demonbolt but do not delay Demonbolt for Dark Soul: Knowledge when it is glyphed! If you choose not to use the glyph, use Dark Soul: Knowledge on CD and it will align with Demonbolt every 2 minutes.
12/08/2014 - Modified "Summary" section to include information about delaying Dark Soul for Demonbolt for clarification
11/26/2014 - 25% buff to Shadow Bolt, Soul Fire, and ToC & 10% buff to Demonbolt, added stat TL;DR, added note about Glyph of Healthstone with Dark Regeneration
10/9/2014 - Added Grimoire Simulations showing Synergy = Supremacy > Service for single target and Grimoire of Supremacy > Synergy > Service for 2, 3 targets
10/9/2014 - Fixed some typos, added ToC SP Coefficient, modified Human racial to Versatility, and updated tooltip for T17 2p to 2%, down from 4%.
10/8/2014 - Published
*Grimoire of Synergy tooltip not working
*Metamorphosis ability tooltips not on wowhead
*Damage coefficients missing on some abilities
*Glyphs coming - Dark Soul glyph will be needed
9. Contributors & Thanks
Lockybalboa - enduring my "thinking-out-loud" spouts
Liquidsteel - proofing, clarifications
Recklessfear - collaboration efforts
Gahhda - countless discussions and clarifications; Simulationcraft
Posted byon 21 March 2014 - 09:00 PM
3 years ago, we were launching Icy Veins with a couple of class and raid guides. What initially started as a very modest World of Warcraft fansite slowly evolved into a much more comprehensive resource, to the point where, last year, Vlad and I switched to working full time on it. We still have many plans for the future and I am going to talk a bit about them here.
As you may have noticed, we have not really posted anything in the past 2 months. The reason is that our strength lies in writing technical content (guides) for World of Warcraft and Hearthstone, not writing news. So, we kept copy-pasting the announcements published on battle.net, grew tired of it (especially with the emergence of the battle.net launcher, which presents players with all the announcements from Blizzard), and eventually stopped.
The news section will live again soon, but in a different form. We do not plan to provide our readers with news, in the strict sense. MMO-Champion already does that and they do it well. Our goal is to have articles of interest to our readers published on a regular basis. By articles of interest, we mean interviews, world first race coverage, important changes in the way classes are played, important strategy changes after hotfixes, new transmogrification sets, Hearthstone-related stuff, etc. We also want to have mini-guides (professions, farming, etc.) featured in the news section. Finally, we will do weekly recap of the important news from Blizzard and will post a website changelog whenever we feel that we have made enough updates to the website to warrant an article. The idea is to provide readers with articles that have synergy with the rest of the content we have on the website.
Updating the guides on the website and working on new features is already a full-time job in itself for Vlad and I, so we hired Miyari, former Content and Community Manager at Wowhead (from 2008 to 2011). This is pretty exciting news for us and we hope that the first articles will be released next week or the one after!
In early November, right before BlizzCon, we published a few basic decks for Hearthstone to see if they would attract new visitors. The experiment was very successful and we decided to keep publishing more guides and decks. Eventually, we reached the same situation that we reached early last year with WoW when we started having all our class guides reviewed by top players. We realised that we needed someone with a lot of experience in online card games to help us make sure that the Hearthstone content we were providing was of the highest quality.
At the time, we were looking for a new Protection Warrior reviewer (Sco no longer had the time), so we reached out to Poyo, Guild Master of Envy. It turned out that he is a former Magic the Gathering player and that he competed in many international tournaments, so we started collaborating on Hearthstone content. This collaboration has proved very fruitful and Hearthstone now accounts for 25% of our traffic.
In the near future, we are going to busy ourselves with 3 things mainly. First, we are soon going to release profession guides for WoW that will blow your mind. Second, we intend to cover Heroes of the Storm as soon as the beta starts. Third, we are pretty excited about Warlords of Draenor and we cannot wait to start writing about it.
Keeping Icy Veins going would be incredibly difficult, if it were not for everyone who helps us on the forums and the support we get from our visitors and the WoW Community Team at Blizzard. We also have very healthy relations with other WoW-related websites, such as MMO-Champion (and the folks over at Curse, in general) or Ask Mr. Robot.
Posted byon 30 August 2012 - 01:31 PM
Here are some notes on how to better play your Affliction Warlock. Be sure to read through these series of posts to find other players' thoughts and ideas. I've done my best to summarize here.
Table of Contents
1) DoTs and You
2) Affliction's Feel and Nature
3) Affliction's Resources
4) Opener and Execution
5) Soul Shard Management
7) Unstable Affliction & Corruption
8) Dark Soul:Misery
9) Seed of Corruption and AoE
10) Stat Priorities
11) Empowered DoTs and maximizing your Warlock
12) Pandemic and Fel Flame and Doomguard...OH MY!
13) Talents and Glyphs
14) Tier 16 Bonuses
16) Affliction Math and Theorycrafting
1) DoTs and you
Affliction Warlocks are all about their DoTs and Mastery: Potent Afflictions. In 5.4, this is even more true as damage has been pulled from Malefic Grasp and Drain Soul and put into Agony, Unstable Affliction, and Corruption. Affliction's execution is based on keeping DoTs as powerful as possible by reapplying with procs, buffing with Haunt, and managing Soul Shards as its spec-dependent resource. Affliction is all about making split-second decisions and reacting to things that change on a second by second basis.
2) Affliction's Feel and Nature
Affliction is reverting back to how it felt before Mists of Pandaria which is a strong multidotting class with high potency in both single target and AoE scenarios. You'll be spending over 60% of your time casting Malefic Grasp, but most of your damage will come from your ability to correctly apply procs to your DoTs and sustain them as long as possible. With the 5.4 DoT buff, you're going to want to put DoTs on anything that is attackable. If it's alive, DoT it.
3) Affliction's Resources
Affliction relies on two primary resources: mana and Soul Shards.
Mana is consumed by casting any spell and is gradually consumed during Malefic Grasp and Drain Soul on a per tick basis. Mana is regained by using Life Tap. You will never need to worry about mana issues as an Affliction Warlock. Your ability to recover large portions of mana with Life Tap is intended to be part of your rotation. However, you should use it as little as possible and try to end each fight with very low mana.
Soul Shards are Affliction's specialization-dependent resource. Understanding what they are, how to use them, and how to generate them separates mediocre Warlocks from great Warlocks. Soul Shards come with an initial value of 4. They can be spent in a multitude of ways, but your 3 primary damage dealing methods involve Seed of Corruption, Soulburn: Soul Swap, and Haunt.
Using Soulburn activates special properties for the next spell you cast. For Seed of Corruption, it empowers the explosion that happens and makes it apply Corruption to each mob the explosion hits. Using Soulburn before using Soul Swap enables you to apply all 3 DoTs to your target instantly. Finally, casting Haunt will consume Soul Shards. More will be discussed with each of these in subsequent sections of this guide. Soul Shards are acquired passively outside of combat at a slow rate. Inside of combat, there are only two ways to acquire Soul Shards: by killing something with Drain Soul applied to it or by proccing Nightfall.
When Corruption ticks, you have a 10% chance to proc Nightfall which returns Soul Shards to you. In 5.4, this effect can no longer occur from all Corruptions currently applied. It, instead, applies ONLY to your most recent Corruption.
4) Opener and Execution
Affliction's opener should be like this:
(prepot) Curse of the Elements -> Dark Soul: Misery -> Haunt -> Soulburn: Soul Swap -> Malefic Grasp until all procs up -> Soulburn: Soul Swap -> Malefic Grasp spam + Haunt maintenance
This opening allows you to get Haunt out followed by all of your DoTs. As your procs happen, your spell power will explode into a very high value. You'll want to take advantage of this by reapplying all DoTs and taking advantage of Pandemic to lock in those procs for a long period of time. A strong opener is important for Affliction. Thankfully, it is very simple to execute.
Affliction's execution should be like this:
As soon as an enemy hits 20%, you should no longer be casting Malefic Grasp. While you are casting Drain Soul, each 2 ticks will generate Soul Shards. You will use this mechanic to ensure 100% Haunt uptime during execution. If your DoTs are about to fall off, reapply with Soulburn: Soul Swap. Otherwise, refresh Haunt and keep Drain Soul applied.
It has been said by a few highly skilled Warlocks that consuming all of your Soul Shards by spamming Haunt before going back to Drain Soul during execute phase is stronger with the changes to Affliction in 5.4. I've not yet tested, but I trust these guys. In execute phase, spam Haunt before going back to Drain Soul!
5) Soul Shards Management
Soul Shards management is VERY important to Affliction Warlocks in order to maximize damage. Remember, Soul Shards can be regenerated throughout combat and you should always maximize your opportunities to do so.
During single target DPS rotations, you should optimize your DPS by performing your opening which will cost two Soul Shards. After that, you'll be spending your Soul Shards on Haunt, which has been greatly buffed in 5.4. Haunt now deals 50% more damage on hit as well as increasing all periodic damage by 45%, up from 30% in 5.3. This puts a higher emphasis on maximizing your Haunt uptime via Soul Shards management. Because Haunt has a high priority, you will not be wanting to use Soulburn: Soul Swap during single target DPS scenarios. You'll want to reapply DoTs individually while using Haunt during periods of increased damage or high Intellect, Haste, or Mastery procs. Corruption will be a high priority to maintain due to Nightfall. With a 10% chance on tick to generate Soul Shards, leaving this DoT off will severely limit your Soul Shards generation.
During any fight with extra targets that die quickly, you'll want to use Drain Soul to finish them off. Doing this will replenish all 4 of your Soul Shards. You can use this to your knowledge by spending all of your Soul Shards before an opportunity to replenish them so that Soul Shards are not wasted.
Since Soul Shards are limited, you should strive to optimize their usage as 100% uptime is nearly impossible to achieve and tied heavily to the RNG of Nightfall. In order to maximize your limited resource, you should always use Haunt during Dark Soul: Misery, Bloodlust, Haste Trigger, or any time you have a large Intellect proc empowering your DoTs. Try to not use Soul Shards and Haunt during periods of time where your DoTs are not empowered.
Agony is your most important DoT and is worthy of its own section. Agony operates by dealing increasing damage by the number of stacks it has, up to 10. Reapplying Agony will maintain its current stacks, so you will not start over at 1 if you reapply Agony while Agony has a 10 stack. Maintaining a 10 stack of Agony is Affliction's absolute most important task. Keeping Agony's spell damage as high as possible by reapplying with procs and buffs is also very important. Letting Agony fall off has extremely negative consequences.
At approximately 40k Spell Power, Agony's 10 stack will hit for about 28,000-30,000 damage. With procs, this gets even higher. For calculation purposes, let's assume 30,000 for non-crits. If you maintain a 10 stack for an entire random 10 tick duration, you'd do 30,000 x 10, or 300,000 damage. However, if you were to have let Agony fall off and had to rebuild during this same 10 tick cycle, your first tick would hit for 3,000, your 2nd for 6,000, etc. For emphasis, this is what you'd be losing:
Tick 1: 3,000 (-27,000)
Tick 2: 6,000 (-24,000)
Tick 3: 9,000 (-21,000)
Tick 9: 27,000 (-3,000)
Tick 10: 30,000 (-0)
Total lost = 0 - 3000 - 6000 - 9000 - ... - 24000 - 27000 = 135,000 damage. That's a lot of damage lost for letting Agony fall off, and this number is enhanced by other buffs and critical hits. Don't EVER let Agony fall off.
These are the other two DoTs in the Warlock arsenal. They are less potent than Agony, but important nonetheless. Unstable Affliction hits harder than Corruption, but it requires more applications. Make sure you keep Unstable Affliction uptime as high as possible. Letting Unstable Affliction fall off for a second isn't the end of the world because it doesn't have a stacking mechanic such as Agony. Corruption's damage is the least important, but it is most important for the previously mentioned Nightfall effect. Keep all 3 DoTs up all the time.
Dark Soul: Misery is now Bloodlust/ Time Warp for 20 seconds with a 2 minute CD. 30% Haste is an incredible cooldown. Use it often and love it. Try to time it before applying DoTs so that they benefit from the increased Haste thresholds. If you already have DoTs applied, reapply them. With Pandemic, you'll receive the bonus damage from the DoTs while extending the duration. Your last Dark Soul: Misery should be saved for execute phase.
9) Seed of Corruption and AoE
Keep your 3 primary DoTs rolling on all targets at all time. With the buff to DoTs in 5.4, Malefic Grasp and Drain Soul are less important than your DoTs. Maintain Agony at all costs and keep your other DoTs + Haunt rolling as much as you can.
Simply apply a Soulburn: Seed of Corruption to one target and do any damage to the same target. This should trigger the explosion and put Corruption on all targets. After applying a Soulburn: Seed of Corruptionto put Corruption on all targets, simply tab and put Seed of Corruption on as many enemies as you can. The Corruption on each will do enough damage to trigger an explosion which will trigger all the other seeds. For prolonged AoE, maintain the Soulburn: Seed of Corruption part of your rotation once every 16 seconds. For 4-6 targets, after doing this, just use your Soulburn: Soul Swap macro to put more DoTs on 4 targets and Malefic Grasp one of them. Use Drain Soul to replenish Soul Shards for more DoTs.
10) Stat Priorities
"Crit is Shit" is a good line to remember about your stat priorities as a Warlock in general, especially Affliction. Affliction's stat priority focuses on some Haste thresholds to maximize ticks of DoTs while gathering tons of Mastery to empower DoTs on a large level.
Relevant Haste thresholds:
9778: +4 Agony
12439: +3 Unstable Affliction
13157: +5 Agony
13737: +4 Corruption
Any Haste level past this is simply too expensive in terms of given up Mastery to pursue. While Corruption is not an important threshold, since the next threshold is only 600 rating past the Agony threshold, we should pursue it. This threshold also covers most reasonable thresholds during +30% Haste procs. Therefore, your recommended Haste threshold is 13,737 Rating. This rating is affected by the Amplification buff provided by the Purified Bindings of Immerseus. The Haste threshold you should pursue will be dependent on the version of this trinket you have. See the trinket post on the Warlock forums for more detailed threshold breakdowns.
11) Empowered DoTs and maximizing your Warlock
There is a lot of complexity to maximizing Affliction's DPS. It's all about knowing what trinkets are proc'd, what buffs are currently on you, and what debuffs are on the boss. To simplify everything, I prioritize keeping my DoTs up with minimal effort which is what Soulburn: Soul Swap does. Obviously RNG plays into your Haunt uptime, but a rule of thumb is to never overwrite a powerful DoT with a lesser DoT. Sounds simple, but it's not.
Take these scenarios for example:
Let's say you don't have any trinkets on. You can test this at your local test target. Apply some DoTs. They will tick for the same damage at the same time interval all the time. The only modifier to their damage will be critical hits. Let's say (these numbers are SO wrong, but I'm using for simplicity) you have 3 DoTs running.
Corruption ticks for 10 damage and has 14 seconds left
Agony ticks for 15 damage and has 22 seconds left
Unstable Affliction ticks for 12 damage and has 6 seconds left
With no buffs present on these adds, they will continue ticking for that damage and only the time left matters. Feel free to extend these DoT durations whenever you see fit. Reapplying Unstable Affliction will make Unstable Affliction continue to tick for 12 damage but now the duration will be 20 seconds (14+6, because 6 is less than the maximum allowed to be added to 14 via Pandemic, which would be 7).
Now let's say you're a tailor or engineer and you use Synapse Springs or have your Lightweave proc. If you do NOT reapply DoTs, your DoTs will continue to tick for the same damage. However, let's say you're alerted to one of these procs and you reapply your DoTs. Again, remember these numbers are made up for simplicity, but you see the effect...
Corruption ticks for 13 damage for 24 seconds (16 + 8)
Agony ticks for 18 damage for 36 seconds (24 + 12)
Unstable Affliction ticks for 15 damage for 20 seconds (14+6)
Now we have empowered DoTs ticking for their maximum duration! Let's JUST look at Agony. Let's say Synapse Springs lasts for 10 seconds (not sure, not an engineer). So at that point, you'd have Agony ticking for 18 damage with 26 seconds left on its timer. If you were to reapply Agony at 18 seconds to get back up to 36 seconds, you would LOSE the empowered DoT. You'd go back to Agony ticking for 15 damage for 36 seconds. In this scenario, it's better to NOT reapply DoTs until your empowered DoTs are about to wear off. Follow?
Now let's add trinkets to the mess. At the beginning of the fight, you will have all of your procs line up. Lightweave, a potion, Dark Soul: Misery, two trinkets...I call this the "works." You won't get the "works" at any other point in the fight because of different timers. However, you can use knowledge of internal cooldowns on trinkets to see if you can line up things you can control, such as a potion or Dark Soul: Misery, . If you set up some auras or classtimers with WeakAuras to notify you of stuff procing, you can use that moment to reapply DoTs for a bigger effect. You can also see when Dark Soul: Misery, or a trinket has 4 seconds left on its buff, you could reapply DoTs again benefitting from Pandemic AND receiving the damage buff for the extended duration. At the beginning of the fight when you apply your DoTs, they are going to be mega DoTs. This is what Pandemic is designed for. Affliction is as good as you make your DoTs last, but if you want to excel, learn to REALLY understand that empowered DoTs remain empowered throughout their duration even after your buffs wear off. Take advantage of this and see your numbers skyrocket.
RPPM factors come into play on how often they proc. The 5.4 trinkets include some RPPM procs and some ICD procs. For ICD procs, you'd do well to track timers so that you know when they will proc. This allows for planned Haunt and CD use. RPPM trinkets are more random and require a notification system such as a WeakAura string to notify you of a proc. Managing these procs is what makes or breaks an Affliction Warlock.
Fel Flame has been changed in 5.4 to do more damage, cost less mana, and most importantly, not reapply or extend DoTs. This gives Affliction a very healthy spell to use while moving without destroying our potential buffed DoTs. Fel Flame will be a very solid choice, especially if you elect not to take Kil'jaeden's Cunning.
Now, we've done all of that without really looking at Pandemic. With Pandemic, it states that when you refresh a DoT, up to 50% of the maximum duration will be added to the current casting DoT. Maybe it sounds confusing, so I'll lay it out here.
Unstable Affliction = 14 second base duration with a tick speed of 2 seconds. With Pandemic, you can add up to 7 seconds of your previous remaining time to a new cast. Let's look at some reapplying methods and timings for emphasis:
Refresh Unstable Affliction at 2 seconds left --> Unstable Affliction with 16 second duration
Refresh Unstable Affliction at 5 seconds left --> Unstable Affliction with 19 second duration
Refresh Unstable Affliction at 7 seconds left --> Unstable Affliction with 21 second duration
Refresh Unstable Affliction at 10 seconds left --> Unstable Affliction with 21 second duration
Refresh Unstable Affliction at 14 seconds left --> Unstable Affliction with 21 second duration
As you can see, the optimal time to refresh Unstable Affliction is ANYTIME below 7 seconds remaining. If you do this, you gain the maximum duration via Pandemic.
Using Pandemic and stat snapshots is what separates Warlocks who score in the 50th percentile versus the ones who score in the 90th percentile. Knowing how Pandemic and snapshot for stats works, you can monitor many things. The way I work my DoT application is based off of trinket procs. For example, right before Dark Soul: Misery wears off, I reapply DoTs no matter how much time is left on them to get the maximum benefit of additional ticks with the 30% spell haste buff. This is importat at the start because all of your trinkets and enchants would have proc'd as well. Typically the way the stars align, right as my Dark Soul is about to wear off (3 seconds left), my trinkets are about to fall off as well. With 3 seconds left, I refresh UA, Corruption, and Agony. Now, for the full duration of these DoTs, I will NOT refresh them. They are super powerful DoTs that if refreshed would revert back to your current stats which are nowhere close to what you were just under the effect of.
For the Summon Doomguard, he doesn't do a whole lot more damage when he's under execute phase. Execute phases are typically shorter than the minute duration you get him for so when the boss dies, you'd likely be standing there next to your big friend and he has nothing to target. This means you wasted potential DPS. Your Summon Doomguard also benefits from snapshot stats. I prefer to use my Summon Doomguard at the beginning when my static spell power goes up with all of the procs. I know I at least get full uptime with super mega stats that likely won't be nice enough to align when the boss hits 20% for optimal use. It is, however, to note that your Summon Doomguard should be used on any part of the fight that requires an extra push to get through a phase faster
Note that your Summon Doomguard will only cast 17 Doombolts. Make sure he's getting them all in. He's not a powerful CD, but he is still important.
13) Talents and Glyphs
5.4 has seen some talent overhaul. All fights are unique enough to warrant a fight-by-fight talent and glyph selection process. I have a separate forum section devoted to that. For a good default build, I suggest the following:
Soul Leech - 5.4 has reduced this cap to 15% of your max HP, down from 100%. This was a hefty nerf, but it is still strong and will provide a high amount of absorption/damage reduction.
Mortal Coil - 15% of max HP heal every 45 seconds? Incredible. This should be your staple raiding talent. Use liberally when taking damage.
Soul Link - reworked in 5.4 to transfer 20% of damage done to your pet and provide 3% of all damage done as healing to you and your pet. VERY solid choice for any fight.
Unbound Will - staple raiding talent. You can use this to instantly break out of magic effects
Grimoire of Supremacy - Affliction's go-to talent choice. Use the Imp or Observer.
Archimonde's Darkness - reworked in 5.4. Essentially gives you an additional Dark Soul. For stationary fights, this talent will be very solid.
Mannoroth's Fury - boosts the area and increases damage of AoE by 100% for 10 seconds on a 60 second CD.
Glyphs are entirely situational and none provide an absolute DPS increase. Take what is best suited for the encounter at hand. Note the Haste spreadsheet in section 16 as to whether or not you should use the Glyph of Unstable Affliction. During Bloodlust, you're going to see a 1.000 sec cast of Unstable Affliction with just 8% Haste. However, for the rest of the fight, the glyph might be a viable option as you would need over 40% Haste to have a 1.000 sec cast without the glyph. Use at your discretion.
14) Tier 16 Bonuses
Affliction's 2pc T16 set bonus causes Unstable Affliction critical hits to have a 50% chance to increase all damaging effects of Malefic Grasp and Drain Soul by 15% for 10 seconds. This is a pretty nice set bonus because it results in a pretty high uptime. At BiS gear levels deprioritizing Crit, Crit rating is close to 25% raid buffed. This means each Unstable Affliction tick has a 25% to Crit and those Crits have a 50% chance to proc a buff that lasts for 10 seconds. Considering non-BiS levels of Haste with the recommended threshold of 13737, you'll be getting 17 Unstable Affliction ticks in 14 seconds. While actual results will vary, you could expect 4 of those Unstable Affliction ticks to Crit and 2 of those Crits to proc the buff. This is without considering the Malefic Grasp and DS ticks of Unstable Affliction. This 2pc bonus will have a high uptime, which coorelates to a significant DPS gain. The best part is it requires no change in gameplay. It is purely a DPS buff.
Affliction's 4pc T16 set bonus causes Haunt to have a 10% chance to refund its Soul Shards cost. This is pretty awesome in that it increases your Haunt damage as well as your overall Haunt uptime which vastly increases DPS.
The 2pc is absolutely essential as it comes out to a high DPS gain. The 4pc is largely RNG reliant and can be good but can also be unnoticeable. High Haunt uptime doesn't require this set bonus, so if you have better itemized pieces of gear, feel free to pass up the 4pc bonus.
The Multistrike trinket will be interesting. Since Black Blood was changed to be a better version of Wushoolay's, it looks solid again. Bindings proc is 115 sec CD while Black Blood and Toxic Totem have RPPMs of 0.92.
16) Affliction Math and Theorycrafting
EDITED: 08/28/2013 (Patch 5.4)
Posted byon 25 December 2013 - 10:14 PM
Merry Christmas everyone! Today is also the day our Christmas Contest ends and I have the pleasure to announce the 5 winning entries (we will write to the authors in the next few days, to send them the prizes). We received so many submissions that it is really hard for us to be able to reward only 5 of them.
I would like to thank everyone who submitted an entry. It was very hard for us to choose the finalists fairly (by finalists, I mean the 20 entries that made it to the public vote), because in such a contest, the criteria for winning are very subjective. We also realised that asking for a public vote for deciding the winners is not a particularly good idea. In the future, we will definitely try to improve and have more objective criteria.
Naturally, I also want to thank everyone who helped with the contest: all the sponsors and everyone who helped us choose the 20 finalists.
Posted byon 24 April 2013 - 09:58 PM
We are very pleased to announce that we have recently completed the great labour of significantly improving the quality of our class guides.
We have always been dedicated to providing guides of the highest accuracy and quality, so we have enlisted the help of respected authorities and top players to review our existing guides and help us improve them.
Below you will find a complete list of those wonderful individuals who have helped make our class guides
even better, after which we go into a bit more detail about the process.
- Blood: Reniat, the author of the Blood Death Knight guides on the Official Forums and MMO-Champion.
- Frost and Unholy: Mendenbarr, a prominent theorycrafter who maintains Death Knight guides on Elitist Jerks.
- Balance: Imsupersdw, one of the best Balance Druids in the world, who raids in Method.
- Feral: Fragnance, one of the best Feral Druids in the world, who raids in Method. You can watch his stream on Twitch.
- Guardian: Arielle, (@riftmaker), a prominent Guardian Druid theorycrafter and the main author of The Inconspicuous Bear (a very respected Guardian Druid resource).
- Restoration: Celece, one of the best Balance Druids in the world, who raids in Midwinter.
- Beast Mastery, Marksmanship, and Survival: Kennyloggins, a leading figure in the Hunter community, who raids in Blood Legion.
- Brewmaster: Sunnier, who maintains the most respected Brewmaster Monk resource site: Sunnier's Art of War.
- Mistweaver: unpl, a Mistweaver Monk who raids in Paragon.
- Windwalker: Gondlem, one of the best Windwalker Monks in the world, who raids in Midwinter.
- Holy: In the process of being reviewed by Atismund, who raids in Envy (25-man), and by Smirk who raids in Paragon (10-man).
- Protection: Theck (@TheckPhD), the main author of Sacred Duty (a well respected, and arguably the most valuable Protection Paladin theorycrafting resource).
- Retribution: Anafielle (@Anafielle), a respected Retribution Paladin who contributes to Sacred Duty and Morgeine, one of the best Retribution Paladins in the world, who raids in Envy.
- Discipline and Holy: Jhazrun, one of the best Discipline Priests in the world, who raids in Paragon.
- Shadow: Artzie (@Artzieh), a Shadow Priest who raids in Method and Twintop, a Shadow Priest theorycrafter from How To Priest.
- Assassination, Combat, and Subtlety: Dryaan, one of the best Rogues in the world, who raids in Envy and frequently stream on Twitch.
- Elemental: Leeds, one of the best Elemental Shamans in the world, who raids in Method.
- Enhancement: Purge, one of the best Enhancement Shamans in the world, who often contributes to the Enhancement Shaman section of Totem Spot.
- Restoration: Zetian, who raids in MCO, one of the most efficient 10-man guilds in the world, and Sonie, one of the best Restoration Shamans in the world, who raids in Method (25-man).
- Affliction, Demonology, and Destruction: Gahddo, one of the most prominent Warlock theorycrafters, who maintains the Warlock profiles and rotations in Simulation Craft, and Evrelia, who raids in ScrubBusters, and frequently streams on Twitch.
- Arms: In the process of being reviewed by Gondlemstyle of Midwinter.
- Fury: Gondlemstyle, one of the best DPS Warriors in the world, who raids in Midwinter.
- Protection: Sco, Guild Master of Method, and one of the best Protection Warriors in the world.
Initially, when we first started writing these guides, they were all entirely created by Damien and myself, based on our experiences with playing the classes, and on extensive testing and research. However, as our workload on the site grew (and especially as we finally completed our offering of 34 class guides), the amount of time and attention that we were able to dedicate to each guide dropped.
Given the enormous popularity of our guides, and large number of people around the world who use them extensively, we decided that we had to find a way to do better. So, we contacted experienced players of each class and spec, and asked them if they would be willing to review our guides, and offer any corrections or pointers required. The responses we received have been overwhelmingly positive, and after more than a month of intensive work on the subject, all of our 34 class guides are now reviewed and approved by either a prominent theorycrafter or a top player of the spec. The remaining 3 guides will hopefully receive the same treatment soon.
We intend to continue working with these people in the future, to make sure that the guides are always up to date (especially when new patches are released).
For the sake of consistency, we prefer to only have one reviewer for each spec (with the exception of healing guides where we prefer two so that we can look at both 10 and 25-man perspectives). If you want to contribute to a guide for which we already have a reviewer, then you are more than welcome to post in the guide's comments thread, or to e-mail us.
We thank you all for your support.
Posted byon 23 April 2013 - 07:01 PM
Posted byon 11 December 2014 - 04:42 AM
The unholy rotation auras were a huge success in helping my dps, and a bunch of other people as well. By popular demand (and because I like frost better also). here's a set of frost weak auras to help with the frost rotation. Admittedly the frost rotation is much easier than the unholy rotation, but the biggest advantage of these macros is they'll tell you went to save your runes for killing machine, and when you should be spamming away. In my first testing while making these auras I was bursting 26k dps and sustaining 19-21k dps on the target dummy in my garrison! that's at least 1-2k higher than what I do as unholy to a target dummy, so I'm already extremely impressed with this particular set of weak auras, and with the recent frost buffs.
As always if you have any feedback or suggestions I'd love to hear it.
Also a couple of things. These weak auras are designed around using Plague Leech, and Defile for talents, and also Glyphed Outbreak.
Update 12/13/14 (or 13/12/14 if you're EU): Added support for Necrotic plague if talent is selected. also added Death and Decay when defile talent isn't selected. And added plague strike for blood plague if outbreak isn't glyphed. All are dps losses in my experience, but if there's a situation where it's better, or you just have a preference, they've all been added to the rotation.
Here are the Auras:
latest update 1/13/14
2H Frost Rotation
Posted byon 03 October 2014 - 07:24 PM
6.0.3 Demonology Guide by Zagam
This will be an ever-changing guide as improvements are made. This guide is live for 6.0.3 with the buffs from 11/25 in effect.
1. Specialization Overview / What Has Changed
In 6.0, Demonology received numerous changes that departs from the 5.4 model. Those changes include:
- Pandemic effect reduced from 50% to 30%. This effect is now baseline for all classes with HoTs and DoTs.
- Void Ray, Carrion Swarm, and Twilight Ward have been removed.
- Fel Flame has been removed.
- Snapshotting has been removed.
- Mastery: Master Demonologist has been reworked.
- DoTs no longer have traditional breakpoints; instead, they deal partial ticks
- Grimoire of Sacrifice has been removed and replaced with Grimoire of Synergy.
- Shadow Bolt and Soul Fire have had their damage coefficients modified.
- Summon Doomguard and Summon Infernal have had their damage coefficients increased.
- Hand of Gul'dan and Shadowflame damage coefficients have increased.
What this all translates from is Blizzard's mass removal of many abilities as well incorporating a "stat-squish" which vastly reduces the size of numbers in World of Warcraft's combat experience.
Pandemic used to be a Warlock exclusive ability that enabled them to freely cast their Damage-Over-Time effects (DoTs) within a larger window without losing DPS. This effect has been reduced to Warlocks and gained by all other classes in regards to DoT-type mechanics in that you can apply DoT and HoT (healing-over-time) spells to refresh the duration and add up to 30% of the original duration of the spell to the DoT time remaining. In 5.4, Doom had the ability to gain up to 30 additional seconds on the total duration. In 6.0, Doom will only be able to gain up to 18 additional seconds, for a total of 78, down from 90. Corruption will be reduced in the same manner dropping from 27 seconds in 5.4 to 23.4 seconds in 6.0. This means that Doom's application should happen only when the remaining time of Doom is below 18 seconds and Corruption's application should happen only when the remaining time of Corruption reads less than 6 seconds in 6.0.
The removal of snapshotting will impact Demonology on a rather large scale in terms of gameplay. Snapshotting Doom will no longer be a part of gameplay. Corruption was never snapshotted before, so this will be of little change. The major snapshotting change comes from how Hand of Gul'dan was snapshotted in 5.4, affectionately referred to as "HoG Weaving" which dealt with casting Hand of Gul'dan and then activating Metamorphosis to snapshot bonus damage. This no longer works with the re-working to Mastery: Master Demonologist. You will still, however, want to maximize a 2-stack of Shadowflame, the DoT that results from Hand of Gul'dan.
Partial Ticks & Haste
DoTs and Haste ratings have always had a reliable relationship. Certain Haste levels gained access to new ticks because of how Haste worked with DoT durations. In 5.4, gaining a certain amount of Haste lowered the duration of a DoT until it was reduced by the amount equal to the tick interval which gave an additional tick. In 6.0, the DoT duration will remain exactly the same as the tooltip says with a partial tick coming at the end of the duration. This removes the complication of finding certain Haste thresholds which is nice with the removal of Reforging.
To clarify more on partial ticks, in 5.4, a small amount of Haste might reduce the duration of Doom down to 56 seconds from 60 seconds. Instead of ticking 4 times every 15 seconds, Doom would tick 4 times every 14 seconds. However, when you got enough Haste that Doom would last 48 seconds, Doom would reset to a 60 second duration and include an additional tick thus ticking 5 times in 60 seconds. The benefit of hitting this breakpoint was two-fold: DoTs ticked for longer and ticked more often. The penalty for not achieving a threshold, however, was that you had to apply your DoTs more frequently, such as every 56 seconds in our example. In 6.0, with the same amount of Haste in 5.4, Doom would continue to tick for 60 seconds but would do it with the interval calculated in 5.4, every 14 seconds. When Doom has it's 4th tick in 6.0, it will deal full damage and have 4 seconds left on its remaining time. If Doom is not refreshed, Doom will tick for damage equivalent to the amount of time remaining. In this example, the amount of time remaining would be divided by the tick interval of 14 seconds, or 4/14. This would result in a partial tick equal to 28.57% of a normal tick. Partial ticks give all the bonus of hitting Haste thresholds without the penalties of not achieving a Haste breakpoint.
Dynamic updates to Haste effects will be of little worry since there's essentially nothing to control. If you have Haste procs up, the tick interval of your DoT will speed up giving you more ticks within that Haste proc's duration. If a DoT expires with a Haste proc up, the partial tick calculation would be the same as described above.
Grimoire of Sacrifice has made sense for other Warlock specializations, but hardly ever made sense for Demonology. For Demonology Warlocks, Grimoire of Sacrifice has been removed and been replaced with Grimoire of Synergy. This new talent works similarly to the Warlock T16 2 piece bonus.
Shadow Bolt, Soul Fire, Hand of Gul'dan, Corruption, Doom, and Shadowflame have all had their damage coefficients modified. These abilities will be tuned appropriately to make Demonology a balanced specialization.
Fel Flame has been removed which severely hurts Warlocks' mobility from 5.4 to 6.0. However, Demonology still has Touch of Chaos, Corruption, Doom, Hand of Gul'dan, Chaos Wave, and Life Tap, all of which can be cast on the move.
Demonology Warlocks will still focus on the optimized building and spending of Demonic Fury, maximizing Metamorphosis uptime, and maximizing Shadowflame uptime while maintaining 100% uptime on Doom and Corruption.
2. Racial Perks Evaluated
Racials have been modified in 6.0 to become more balanced going forward. Alliance Warlocks can be 1 of 4 races while Horde have access to 5 different Warlock races. Offensive perks are analyzed as follows:
- Human - The Human Spirit = small Versatility buff
- Dwarf - Might of the Mountain = 2% bonus Critical Strike Damage and Healing
- Gnome - Expansive Mind = +5% mana; Nimble Fingers = 1% Haste
- Worgen - Viciousness = 1% Crit Chance
- Troll - Berserking = 15% Haste for 10 seconds, 180 second CD
- Orc - Command = 1% Pet Damage; Blood Fury = xyz Spell/Attack Power
- Goblin - Time is Money = 1% Haste
- Blood Elf - Arcane Acuity = 1% Crit Chance; Arcane Torrent now restores 3% mana as well as interrupting spell casting
- Undead - Touch of the Grave = ~0.3% DPS gain
These racial perks have been Simulated using Simcraft and show as follows:
Level 90 Demonology Horde
1. Goblin - 17,716
2. Orc - 17,694
3. Troll - 17,674
4. Undead - 17,666
5. Blood Elf - 17,579
*assume error of 0.25%
In complete seriousness, your race doesn't matter. They all give you something that is relatively the same and it comes down to preference. To give you an idea of scale, the difference between #1 and #5 is 0.77%. With offensive balance looking solid, take in consideration the bonus perks such as the Goblin Rocket Jump, Blood Elf's Arcane Torrent, or Orc's Hardiness. If that fails, take what looks the best.
Level 90 Demonology Alliance
1. Human - 17,793
2. Dwarf - 17,775
3. Worgen - 17,741
4. Gnome - 17,734
*assume error of 0.25%
Just as with Horde, the DPS variance here is so minimal that choosing one based on DPS performance is impossible. Consider the defensive traits such as Human's Every Man For Himself, Dwarf's Stoneform, Worgen's Darkflight, or the Gnome's Escape ability.
For fun, I've simulated the level 100 racial effect. The top is Gnome at 42,325 and the worst is Blood Elf at 41,879 for a difference of 446 DPS, or 1%.
In all honesty, the racial decision has been removed based on offensive power. They all have their own flavor which essentially lets you pick based on how you want to play, not what you are forced to play. Blizzard has done a great job balancing racials and balancing secondary stats to the point you can pick a gameplay style without affecting your DPS by more than a percentage point.
3. Talents & Glyphs Explained
Tier 1 - Defensive Tier
Soul Leech is going to be very strong for encounters with residual, constant raid damage. Harvest Life requires dropping from your optimal DPS rotation to heal which may be useful in Mythic level raiding. Dark Regeneration has a very potent heal, but its long cooldown makes it a choice for when burst damage comes less often. This talent is increased in efficency with the Glyph of Healthstone.
As a default, use Soul Leech. Exceptions can be made for the other two talents, but those will be unique situations.
Tier 2 - The CC Tier
Howl of Terror is somewhat useful against a pack of mobs but usually has limited usefulness in raids due to the scattering of mobs. Mortal Coil provides a very helpful heal on a 45 second cooldown which could prove to be very useful during periodic bursts of damage. Shadowfury is very useful when stunning adds. For fights without adds or the need for stuns, Mortal Coil will be the default selection.
Tier 3 - The Mitigation Tier
Soul Link proves to be very valuable as Demonology due to your pet being a reliable 20% damage reducing shield that works well in synergy with Soul Leech. On top of the damage reducing mechanic, you are also healed for 3% of the total damage done which is a great passive healing tool. Sacrificial Pact is superior for massive damage bursts that Soul Link can't mitigate as well. Dark Bargain usually has some unique places that it can be used, but the long cooldown makes Soul Link and Sacrificial Pact more valuable as a defensive survival talent.
For low to gradual raid damage, take Soul Link. For predictable spike damage, take Sacrificial Pact.
Tier 4 - The Utility Tier
Blood Horror has very little PvE implications since it requires a target to melee you. If adds are hitting you, something isn't going right with the encounter. If a boss is hitting you, something REALLY isn't going right with the encounter. Burning Rush is a very useful toggle ability that increases your speed by a whopping 50% at the cost of 4% of your HP per second. Use this sparingly but always when quick movement is called for. Burning Rush has been altered slightly from it's 5.4 version to where it will now go through absorption effects before consuming your HP which further values absorption effects. Unbound Will is useful in encounters where a Magic debuff will be applied to you and others putting a dispelling bind on healers. More often than not, your healers will handle dispels.
Tier 5 - Pet Tier
Grimoire of Supremacy will empower your default pet of a Felguard and turn him into a dual-wielding badass Wrathguard. This Wrathguard will do 20% more damage and generate 20% more Demonic Fury through his attacks. Grimoire of Service will grant the Warlock a cooldown with the ability to summon an Imp, Felhunter, Succubus, Voidwalker, or Felguard who will instantly use his or her signature attack and remain attacking its target for 20 seconds generating Demonic Fury as well. Grimoire of Synergy gives you and your pet a chance to proc Demonic Synergy which will give the other a 15% damage increase for 15 seconds. Grimoire of Synergy simulates at a 34% uptime and is currently tied with Grimoire of Supremacy.
Simulated Grimoire Choices
Single Target Normal GoSynergy = 30,038
Single Target Normal GoSupremacy = 30,038
Single Target Normal GoService = 29,068
Single Target Mythic GoSynergy = 42,296
Single Target Mythic GoSupremacy = 42,217
Single Target Mythic GoService = 40,876
For 2 Target and 3 Target, Grimoire of Supremacy pulls ahead of Synergy by 1,800 DPS with 2 targets and 3,700 DPS with 3 targets. Wrathguard seems to be hitting very hard with Mortal Cleave being your 3rd highest source of damage. Bring on the Armageddon wielding Wrathguards!
Tier 6 - The Enhancement Tier
Archimonde's Darkness grants an additional charge of Dark Soul: Knowledge. For Demonology Warlocks, this means an extra use of a 30% damage bonus. However, the charge system works like Hand of Gul'dan where each charge does not recharge independently. This means that you get 1 additional use of Dark Soul: Knowledge per fight meaning the longer the fight lasts, the lesser the value of Archimonde's Darkness. Kil'jaeden's Cunning grants full mobility while casting for 8 seconds on a 60 second cooldown. This ability has been nerfed significantly from its 5.4 cousin, but still could provide some useful DPS while moving on an encounter that has strict moving requirements. Mannoroth's Fury increases the radius and damage of Hellfire and Immolation Aura by a significant amount. The radius is increased by 500% and the damage is increased by 100%. This effect lasts for 10 seconds on a 60 second cooldown. This talent will prove to be very useful on fights with any amount of AoE. Even when a fight has minimal AoE, Mannoroth's Fury will still be a potent selection in a fight that is lengthy and has little movement requirements.
This talent selection will be on a fight by fight basis depending on the encounter's needs.
Tier 7 - The Destruction Tier
The level 100 talents provide a huge DPS boost to Demonology Warlocks in 3 different flavors. Demonbolt is a very potent spell that consumes Demonic Fury in a stacking fashion to deal high burst damage. Cataclysm is a large AoE ability that deals significant damage and applies Corruption ( Doom if in Metamorphosis) to all targets hit on a 60 second cooldown. Demonic Servitude makes your Doomguard, Terrorguard, Infernal, and Abyssal summonable as permanent pets.
Currently, Demonbolt is the clear winning talent in terms of additional DPS gained at level 100. This spell will have an impact on how Demonology is played because of the additional spell.
Talent selection is by and large a fight-by-fight decision. More information will be given on which talents to select on each fight in the encounter-specific guide made for Tier 17.
4. Stat Analysis
In 6.0, Hit and Expertise were removed leaving only Mastery, Crit, and Haste from 5.4. However, two new stats were added in 6.0 called Versatility and Multistrike. There have also been extra stats called Tertiary Stats that can be found on gear with similar frequency as seeing Warforged gear in 5.4. In 6.0, Demonology Warlocks also gain the passive ability Demonic Tactics, which is an attunement statistic added which gives 5% more Mastery from all sources.
Haste is the secondary that that makes everything go faster, namely spell casts and DoT tick speeds. For Demonology, Haste decreases the cast time of Soul Fire and Shadow Bolt while increasing the DoT tick speed of Hellfire, Immolation Aura, Doom, Corruption, and Hand of Gul'dan. Haste also decreases the global cooldown (GCD) of Touch of Chaos and Hand of Gul'dan. Haste also increases the attack speed of your pets.
Critical Strike (Crit) is the stat that gives you a percentage chance to deal 100% bonus damage to your target. All damage done by Demonology Warlocks is capable of dealing a Critical Strike. On top of dealing extra damage, Critical Strike plays an important role for 2 abilities: Soul Fire and Doom. When Doom critically strikes, a Wild Imp will be created which will deal damage and generate 50 Demonic Fury over 10 casts. Soul Fire's damage is always a Critical Strike and Critical Strike percentage further increases Soul Fire's damage.
Mastery: Master Demonologist is the stat that gives you a bonus percentage to you and your pet. Your Mastery stat also further increases damage of certain abilities while in Metamorphosis. Increasing Mastery increases your overall damage.
Multistrike is a new stat in 6.0 that gives you and your pet a percentage chance to deal 1 to 2 additional strikes that deal 30% of the original damage dealt. For example, if your Shadow Bolt hits for 10,000 damage, a Multistrike Shadow Bolt will hit for 3,000 additional damage. For each spell hit, your Multistrike chance is used to calculate whether or not a Multistrike hit is delivered. This happens twice per cast. Multistrike hits are capable of Critical Strikes even if the original ability did not Critically Strike. Similarly, Critical Strikes of the original spell do not guarantee Critical Strikes of the Multistrike hits. It is yet to be proven if Multistrike hits generate Demonic Fury.
Versatility is a new stat in 6.0 that gives you bonus damage and bonus damage mitigation. Point for point, it's a relatively weak stat compared to the rest, but it still has value as it's a flat DPS gain and a flat damage taken reduction.
Overall, the secondary stats in 6.0.3 are much closer in value to each other than they have ever been before. The balance between secondary stats has been a goal of Blizzard's and it's been done well. Simulationcraft stat weights show very little variance between builds which lends itself to playstyle variances. Early simulated values show Haste and Crit having high values followed closely by Mastery, Versatility, and Multistrike. With Demonbolt, Haste will play a strong part in building Demonic Fury quickly enough to have the amount required for burst windows but you don't need much more than 10%. This allows for ample building, even with moderate movement, in order to get to your next burn phase. Crit will empower Soul Fires and increase Demonic Fury generation via Wild Imps. These two stats will work together in harmony to give a good feel for Demonology. Multistrike, Versatility, and Mastery will be for DPS gains. Once you have enough Haste to create enough Demonic Fury for burn phases, the stats to go for will be Crit and everything else.
TL;DR - Mastery >= Haste (to about 10%) > Crit = Multistrike > Haste = Versatility
5. Gear Acquisition and Tier 17 Bonuses
Gear acquisition will come at the speed of content you and your guild are able to clear. There are many ways to collect gear and with secondary stats being moderately close in value, you'll traditionally want anything that is higher item level due to the higher amount of stats on the piece of gear. Warlock's Tier 17 gear is called Shadow Council.
Helm - Shadow Council's Hood
Shoulders - Shadow Council's Mantle
Chest - Shadow Council's Robes
Legs - Shadow Council's Leggings
Gloves - Shadow Council's Gloves
T17 2pc Bonus
The Item - Warlock T17 Demonology 2P Bonus states that Hand of Gul'dan will have an additional charge and Corruption will have a 2% chance to generate a charge of Hand of Gul'dan on each tick. This set bonus will greatly increase your Shadowflame uptime, give you an additional charge on an ability you can cast while moving, and increases the number of times you can cast Chaos Wave for burst AoE. Once this set bonus is acquired, be prepared to never let your Hand of Gul'dan charges get to 2 so that you don't waste a Corruption tick proc. Treat Hand of Gul'dan the same and you'll get additional Shadowflame uptime because of it.
T17 4pc Bonus
The Item - Warlock T17 Demonology 4P Bonus states that Hand of Gul'dan has a 50% chance to unleash your inner demon. What this translates to is that you get a new guardian pet type that comes out, fires out some Soul Fires, and then disappears. This passive damage is being tuned, but it currently presents about 1-2% of a DPS gain. The Soul Fires that this extra demon guardian do not generate Demonic Fury.
All in all, it is recommended to acquire both the 2pc and 4pc bonuses as both are significant DPS gains. The 2pc, however, is much more powerful than the 4pc bonus while the 4pc bonus is simply a passive DPS gain with no other effect.
6. Trinket Breakdown
There are 4 trinkets in Tier 17 that include 3 RPPM trinkets and 2 on-use trinkets. Just as before with 5.4, trinket procs and base values are calculated with the slightly confusing formula: P(ilvl) = P(665) * 1.15 ^ ((ilvl - 665)/15). To solve for a proc or base value, simply plug in the item level you're curious about. For example...
P(665) = 220 * 1.15 ^ ((665 - 665)/15) = 220. The 220 here is given with the 665 item level.
To solve for P(680), plug the value in...
P(680) = 220 * 1.15 ^ ((680-665)/15) = 253.
This value is listed as the 680 version of the RPPM trinkets which verifies that the baseline calculation for item levels is 665. If you can't follow this, don't sweat it - I break it down for you.
DUT is baseline Intellect with a Haste proc for 10 seconds with an RPPM value of 0.92. The Haste value and baseline Intellect scale with item level. This trinket will have the feel of Tempus Repit with a sizeable Haste proc being worth 65% of Bloodlust at the 665 item level and being worth almost Bloodlust at 695.
- 665 = 220 Intellect, 19.13% Haste
- 680 = 253 Intellect, 22.00% Haste
- 695 = 291 Intellect, 25.30% Haste
- 701 (Warforged) = 308 Intellect, 26.75% Haste
The Haste proc is called Instability with Spell ID = 177052.
BMC is baseline Intellect with a Multistrike proc for 10 seconds that scales every 0.5 seconds and stacks 20 times. This trinket has an RPPM value of 0.92. With a rapidly building Multistrike value, this trinket will start off with little value but grow quickly into giving a burst spike of damage towards the end of the proc.
- 665 = 220 Intellect, 131 - 2620 Multistrike
- 680 = 253 Intellect, 150 - 3000 Multistrike
- 695 = 291 Intellect, 173 - 3460 Multistrike
- 701 (Warforged) = 308 Intellect, 183-3664 Multistrike
The Multistrike proc is called Molten Metal with Spell ID = 177085.
GSR is the 3rd of the RPPM trinkets with a value of 0.92 that works exactly as DUT except instead of Haste, the proc is Crit which lasts for 10 seconds.
- 665 = 220 Intellect, 1913 Crit Rating
- 680 = 253 Intellect, 2200 Crit Rating
- 695 = 291 Intellect, 2530 Crit Rating
- 701 (Warforged) = 308 Intellect, 2675 Crit Rating
The Crit proc is called Howling Soul with Spell ID = 177047.
CC is a trinket with an on-use proc that lasts for 20 seconds and has a 120 second CD. This trinket has obvious value in that you can control when it procs and has a proc length and CD equal to Dark Soul.
- 665 = 220 Intellect, 1467 Spell Power on use
- 680 = 253 Intellect, 1687 Spell Power on use
- 695 = 291 Intellect, 1940 Spell Power on use
- 701 (Warforged) = 308 Intellect, 2052 Spell Power on use
The Spell Power proc is called Sudden Clarity with Spell ID = 177594.
SoN is a baseline Intellect trinket with a Haste on use that lasts for 20 seconds and has a 120 second CD.
- 655 = 201 Intellect, 13.37% Haste on use
- 670 = 231 Intellect, 15.38% Haste on use
- 685 = 266 Intellect, 17.68% Haste on use
- 691 (Warforged) = 281 Intellect, 18.70% Haste on use
The Haste proc is called Void Shards with Spell ID = 176875.
Without simulating the trinkets, the top two from a theoretical point would be 1 of the RPPM trinkets and CC. CC's value comes from being a dependable 2 minute cooldown with a 20 second duration making it ideal to line up with Dark Soul. For Demonology, the Haste proc is highly valuable and ensures higher DPS on a consistent basis since the Haste proc will affect 100% of your spells while under its effect. The Crit and Multistrike trinkets have some RNG within them that could underperform or overperform depending purely on RNG in terms of how many spells are effected from the trinket proc.
Simulated values show the RPPM trinkets with an average uptime of 18% at the 665 item level. CC would be up for 20 seconds every 120 seconds, so its uptime is calculated abetween 16.7% and 23%. For those of you who used BBoY and KTT in 5.4, you'll remember how good or how bad some of your trinket uptimes could be with RPPM proc rates. Remember this as you may see variance in individual pulls with the RPPM trinkets.
Simulated Trinket Values
665 Item Level
- Darmac's Unstable Talisman - 28,149
- Blackiron Micro Crucible - 27,846
- Copeland's Clarity - 28,768
- Goren Soul Repository - 28,105
- Shards of Nothing - 27,863
- CC + DUT = 29,323
680 Item Level
- Darmac's Unstable Talisman - 32,997
- Blackiron Micro Crucible - 32,791
- Copeland's Clarity - 33,712
- Goren Soul Repository - 33,224
- Shards of Nothing - 32,707
- CC + GSR = 36,501
695 Item Level
- Darmac's Unstable Talisman - 39,051
- Blackiron Micro Crucible - 38,739
- Copeland's Clarity - 39,780
- Goren Soul Repository - 39,257
- Shards of Nothing - 38,617
- CC + GSR = 43,299
The first thing that should jump off the page of these numbers is how close they are. The clear winner is Copeland's Clarity with Goren Soul Repository and Darmac's Unstable Talisman in a close 2nd. My advice is to always use the highest item level of these three trinkets that you have. If you use Goren Soul Repository, you'll have lots of Crit damage. If you use Darmac's Unstable Talisman, you'll have some Haste procs that will help you build and spend DF. As a rule of thumb, always use the two highest item level trinkets you have, regardless of what they are. Even Shards of Nothing isn't that far behind, but the value of the trinket is a bit lower because of the lower item level.
Posted byon 25 September 2014 - 02:02 PM
Alright Warlocks, based on the most recent build deployed, here are some observations and things to think about as you transition into 6.0, still at level 90, clearing SoO.
- Curse of Elements is gone. Don't sweat this debuff at all anymore.
- 2pc Tier Bonus is still worth as little as it was before, but gained a small bit due to Devastation giving us 5% more Crit. This will invoke more of the Haste vs Crit debate and it might be worth going more into Crit. It will, however, largely be irrelevant and will make very little difference.
- 4pc Tier Bonus has gone down in value greatly with the inability to snapshot a higher crit chance with Immolate. Gone is the high-end Warlock maneuver of recasting Immolate on 4pc procs to gain higher Ember generation. This will likely not impact a majority of Warlocks, but it will hit those who were executing this technique.
- With KJC modified to a temporary 8 second buff on use, moving as a Destruction Warlock will be nerfed significant. Gameplay modification will require you to use your Conflagrate charges for moving, not using them as liberally as we've been used to. KJC might still be of value, but the value of the talent has been nerfed to the point that AD significantly outgains it except for a few, unique situations.
- In terms of tuning, Destruction feels the smoothest of all the specs available at level 90. Classes have been tuned to include their level 90 talent, and Destruction is hurt the least in this manner.
- Pandemic has been reduced from 50% to 30% duration. For Destruction, this means Immolate has a smaller window to refresh Immolate without a DPS loss. Immolate's duration is 15 seconds, so the window to reapply goes down from 7.5 seconds to 4.5 seconds.
Overall, Destruction feels somewhat like it did before - keep Immolate up, use Incinerate as filler, use Chaos Bolt with procs. DPS will be nerfed on a relative scale due to removal of Immolate snapshot which will reduce Burning Embers which will reduce Chaos Bolt overall damage. Not being able to move and freely cast Incinerate will hurt a noticeable amount. Think ahead what you will be doing on fights like Iron Juggernaut, Siegecrafter, and Garrosh when you can't move and cast outside of short 8 second windows if you take KJC as a talent.
- Curse of Elements is gone. Don't worry about this debuff anymore.
- Shadowbolt damage has gone down a noticeable amount.
- Soul Fire damage has gone down slightly.
- Touch of Chaos damage has gone down significantly to the point that Touch of Chaos is a marginally worse decision to use in Metamorphosis than Soul Fire. All Molten Core charges should be spent on Soul Fire in Metamorphosis. Touch of Chaos should only be used while moving.
- Snapshotting Doom is no longer applicable. Using BBoY and trying to snag Doom in the 10 stack is pointless. Just keep Doom and Corruption up 100% of the time. Hope for syncronized trinket procs at the precise time that Doom ticks.
- Hand of Gul'dan damage has been increased. Shadowflame damage has also been increased. However, Hand of Gul'dan snapshotting, affectionately referred to as HoG weaving, is no longer a thing. No longer do you have to pop into Metamorphosis to buff your Shadowflame damage.
- Mastery has been changed, slightly. There's no longer a flat damage gain while you're in Metamorphosis. Instead, while in Metamorphosis, certain spells are increased. This was a way to remove the HoG snapshotting technique. You also gain 5% more Mastery from your stats now, so expect to have slightly more Mastery when you log in the first time in 6.0.
- Grimoire of Sacrifice has been changed to Grimoire of Synergy. Grimoire of Synergy is essentially our current T16 2pc bonus in talent form. Our 2pc gives us a chance to proc 20% bonus damage for us and our pets for 10 seconds. Synergy gives 15%. During 6.0, with the T16 2pc, you could have both effects up at the same time for a whopping 35% damage increase for a period of time. Both of these buffs would be valuable to track without snapshotting as the 2pc T16 bonus is worth 67% of Dark Soul and Grimoire of Synergy procs are worth 50% of Dark Soul's bonus damage. Grimoire of Synergy is coming ahead of both Service and Supremacy in my own personal tests.
- Without Fel Flame to move, Metamorphosis will be your primary movement crutch if you don't need to Life Tap. Keep this in mind with timings on CDs and such so that you aren't caught without a healthy supply of Demonic Fury.
- Pandemic has been reduced from 50% to 30%. This means that both Corruption and Doom have had their maximum debuff timers reduced. Doom's maximum duration was 90 seconds and it's threshold to refresh was 30 seconds. Those values have been reduced to 78 seconds and 18 seconds, respectively.
Overall, Demonology feels empty - as if it's missing something. This something is Demonbolt. The spec feels balanced with Demonbolt but empty without it. While we continue to clear SoO as Demonology, you have 4 buttons to worry about - Shadowbolt/ToC, Corruption/Doom, HoG/Chaos Wave, and Soul Fire. With snapshotting gone, the spec's compexity goes down significantly - just keep Doom up on anything that moves without concern of when you apply it. Same with Corruption. Prioritize Shadowbolt in caster form unless you hit 10 Molten Core stacks. Bleed a few off in caster form or Metamorphosis as long as you don't impact your burn phase.
- Curse of Elements is gone. Don't worry about this debuff anymore.
- The Pandemic change affects Affliction the most. All three DoTs will now only be able to refreshed to a lower maximum duration from their 5.4 values. Safe refresh value for Unstable Affliction goes down from 7 seconds to 4.2 seconds. The value for Corruption goes down from 8 seconds to 4.8 seconds, and the value for Agony goes down from 12 seconds to 7.2 seconds. This means you'll be reapplying your DoTs approximately 20% more often. Unstable Affliction feels like it runs its course quickly - pay attention to this one in 6.0.
- Snapshotting removal will drop Affliction from one of the most dominant specs in the game to one of the worst. Affliction was due some buffs that it never received, so damage in 6.0 is going to be low. Without snapshotting, there is no longer an urgency to reapply DoTs with trinket procs - simply reapply your DoTs within the safe threshold windows listed above for maximum DPS opportunities.
- Nightfall has been reduced to accomodate the perk gained while leveling from 90-100. Why Blizzard gives us a perk and then nerfs the ability for a net change of nearly nothing is truly confusing. Worse is that it impacts us without the perk in a negative fashion. Soul Shards are hard to come by in 6.0 - treat them with care.
- Drain Soul has had its Soul Shard generation effect reduced greatly. When you kill something while using Drain Soul on it, you will regenerate a single Soul Shard, not the maximum you get in 5.4. However, with the reduction in Nightfall, you'll want to Drain Soul "snipe" as often as possible to keep your flow of Soul Shards healthy.
- You now get 5% more Haste from your stats thanks for Eradication. You'll have a bit more Haste in 6.0 than you did in 5.4.
- Goodbye, Soul Swap. It was nice knowing you. Soul Swap now costs a Soul Shard. With the gutting of Nightfall, you can't afford to spend a Soul Shard spreading DoTs that are not empowered. Soulburn:Soul Swap is a horrible decision that burns TWO Soul Shards. For those of you with the bad habit of using Soulburn:Soul Swap to apply DoTs - break that habit yesterday or you'll be in a world of misery for 6.0 and WoD.
- Affliction's 4pc bonus is now more attractive as any additional Soul Shard resource is going to be beneficial. Consider using it.
Overall, Affliction feels very bad without the Soul Shards. DoTs tickle for very little damage and Soul Shard drought leaves Haunt damage on the low end. Without Soul Swap, DoT spreading is hurt majorly. Fishing for Soul Shards has also been reduced. The spec was and is still in dire need of a buff, of which we haven't received yet. I would avoid Affliction for SoO in 6.0 until the extra perks roll in.
- Multistrike is a thing. Pets can benefit from it (have proof of this in logs). This means KTT isn't a bad option for Demonology anymore. Until WoD, we won't see gear with Multistrike on it aside from KTT, so it's fortunate that we can provide it with Dark Intent.
- Doomguard damage feels much better as a percentage of your damage. It feels like a cooldown again.
- With the nerf of KJC, get really acclimated to Burning Rush. You'll be using this ability much more often to get into position quicker, especially for things like closing Rifts on Heroic Sha of Pride or running from Mines on Siegecrafter Blackfuse. Also, if you aren't used to it, find and learn how to use Demonic Leap. It activates Metamorphosis, so planning is necessary, but it can be a help with movement.
For 6.0, I would heavily suggest Demonology or Destruction for almost every fight. Affliction feels too heavily gutted compared to how we played it in 5.4. Be prepared to make heavy adjustments with the notes listed above. We will need to do a better job of planning positions with things like doing engineers on Heroic Garrosh. Please report your findings here so that we can create a comprehensive guide for others to follow on what has changed.
Posted byon 18 December 2013 - 04:51 PM
This is our semi-official Christmas card from all of the moderators. I missed some of the newer mods that I don't have pictures of, but I promise I'll get everyone next year. I'm not sure if it'll get posted anywhere else officially so I'm sharing it here for everyone to see.
From left to right, Front row: Vlad, Omaric, Zagam, Damien, Storm
Back row: Akraen, Marco, Oltier, Peelyon, Krazyito
Posted byon 07 April 2014 - 09:03 PM
I want to say with 99% confidence that this is how the legendary development went
"We need something epic. We just had legendary daggers and a staff in last expac - what can we do?"
"Lets give EVERYONE weapons! And make them power them up over the xpac!"
"Brilliant idea! Let's implement Sha into them just for the fucking lore!"
"Sha-Touched! AND we'll make them look better BY ADDING A SPECIAL SOCKET!"
"GIVE THAT MAN A RAISE!"
Somewhere between Phase 1 and Phase 2, Phase 1 genius quit and took his scrapbook of ideas
"Ok, let's keep powering up the weapons in Throne of Thunder!"
"Yeah, that would take some effort. Let's just add a socket."
"A socket? Like another special socket? Cool idea!"
"No, like a regular socket. Just like, ya know, just a socket like a blacksmith would use."
"Hmmm, how much work would this take?"
"Oh, none at all for us. But the players - they have to get SIX THOUSAND VALOR!"
"SIX THOUSAND VALOR? That's like, six weeks, isn't it?"
"Oh yes, six weeks for a socket. That's like...25 stats per week!"
"Anyone else have any good ideas?"
"SOCKETS IT IS!"
"Ok, sockets felt a little boring. What can we do for the reward to collecting 20 absurdly difficult to obtain Secrets of the Empire?"
"How about a gem?"
"A gem for the socket?! BRILLIANT!"
"No, a gem for the helmet. Like another regular gem."
"God damn it dude, you have played the game right? Those get special meta gems."
"Oh, well lets give them a 'legendary' meta gem."
"GIVE THIS MAN A RAISE"
"Ok, so what kinda legendary meta gem?"
"Well, let's make it really awesome for some. In fact, let's use it to FIX some of the classes like Boomkins and Shadow Priests! This will save us a lot of time and money."
"DOUBLE THIS MAN'S SALARY YESTERDAY!"
"What about melee? What kinda gem do they get?"
"Oh, they can just have one that does some lightning bolts or something. That's kinda neat, right?"
"But sir, casters get periodic bursts of Bloodlust!"
"Yeah, going to stick with the 'fuck melee' theme of Mists. Let's go with it."
"Alright guys, we have SERIOUSLY done way too much with gems and sockets. We need a new idea. Should we go back to the weapons?"
"Well, weapons are really good. Do we want to give them the tools they need to beat the bosses of SoO right away?"
"Well, I think that some of them are still collecting their Titan Runestones"
"Titan Runestones? What happened to Secrets?"
"Oh, we put in a new drop, you know, pre-emptively for our next item."
"Hmm, what should we use."
"Hey, we had these like, you know, aspects or something, kinda like in our best raid, Dragon Soul! What if we like, used the new aspects and implemented them?"
"Aspects? Those are gone. We do have the guardians of Pandaria. We kinda explored them early on but left them alone. That's a lot of content we ignored"
"You mean that green dragon or the cute white kitty?"
"Oh YEAH! THOSE GUYS! Holy shit, we can TOTALLY IMPLEMENT THEM! I play a Paladin and I think the kitty is adorbs. I want him to be my guardian."
"Well I play a Warlock and the green dragon is totally badass."
"I don't even remember their names - does anyone remember their names?"
"THE KITTY'S NAME IS XUEN!"
"XUEN?! I WANT THAT TO BE THE DRAGONS NAME!"
"Guys! we need to focus on what we're giving the players for the legendary quest! this is the end of the expansion - it needs to be LEGEN- wait for it -"
"Dude, we need to nerf Cloak of Shadows."
"Did you just say cloak?"
"Yeah man, Cloak of Shadows is really over powered"
"LEGENDARY CLOAKS! That's what we'll give them! AND WE'LL TIE IN THE GUARDIANS OF PANDARIA! OMG, this will look planned all along!"
"STRENGTH KITTY XUEN FOR MEEEE!"
"Well, if Xuen is taken, I guess casters can take Yu'lon. He's the 2nd most badass."
"Hmm, that leaves agility, healers, and tanks."
"I'M A HUNTER AND I WANT ANOTHER KITTY!!"
"Well - we COULD just give the kitty to agi users too. We did confuse them with the Darkmoon Faire Trinkets."
"It is done. Huntards, you get another kitty."
"So like, we have an ostrich like thing and a big bulldozer type ox. I'm pretty sure we should give the ox to tanks, yeah?"
"Yeah, so healers get the flamingo. Tanks get the ox"
"Ok, so let's give them legendary cloaks!"
"So like, after they get their Runestones, we have to make Wrathion talk to them. That'd be cool as shit. Hashtag lore!"
"YEAH, GREAT IDEA!"
"Ok, so after Runestones, they get a cloak. Let's make it an epic cloak."
"But, we're doing this for the legendary quest!"
"Oh, but we have this new Timeless Isle. We have to get all the players out there to check it out. How will we implement the new island to the new quest...."
"WE CAN FIGHT THE KITTY!"
"THAT'S A BRILLIANT IDEA! We can fight the guardians! HOLY SHIT, we can use them for the tier and pvp drop boss! Now we don't even have to use this stupid Huolon model!!! YOU ARE A FREAKING GENIUS!"
"Yes, let's make them fight every single one of them. Then we will power their cloak up to legendary status - WITH A SOCKET!"
"You're a God damn genius, you know that? That's brilliant. Let's make the socket."
"Let's add some hashtag lore into the cloaks!"
"I WANT MY KITTY CLOAK TO SWIPE ENEMIES WITH ME!"
"Oh yeah, my dragon cloak can breath some dragon fire on the enemies!"
"OH MAN, MY HEALING CLOAK CAN HEAL PEOPLE! MY DISC PRIEST WILL BE EVEN EASIER!"
"What will tanks get?"
"Brilliant. IT IS DONE!"
Posted byon 02 March 2014 - 11:47 PM
Current as of patch 5.4.7.
After the unexpected amount of positive response garnered by my treatise on Warrior icons, I figured I'd try my hand at helping other classes with the harrowing task that is skill icon comprehension. I received a request to tackle warlock icons next from Lockybalboa, my good friend (read: he doesn't know me, but I like his name)--so here we are. Note I still think Zagam would've done a fine job of this, but he was likely afraid that warlock icons wouldn't be "easy targets" like warriors'.
Icon confusion is an important issue; one which many of us have had to deal with since the days when we weren't allowed to cast Curse of Agony because it'd overwrite the Curse of Agony cast by your guild's Warlock Class Lead. In spite of this long history, few efforts have been made to evaluate and explicate each ability icon, and compile this information in one place. This ultra mega serious guide will attempt to do so.
A wise man once said--I think it was Thomas Jefferson or maybe Yogi Berra--that if it ain't broke, don't fix it. Thus I'll keep the structure similar to the warrior icon guide, and group warlock skill icons into familiar spaghetti-western-inspired categories, based on their effectiveness in representing their respective skills.
Category I: The Good
- Chaos Bolt - If you are warlocky enough to be reading facetious posts about warlock icons, you probably already know that the Chaos Bolt spell looks like a crazy dragon/shark/velociraptor thing when viewed from the front. But if you hadn't been aware, well, now you know why this icon is a bolt with a mouth.
- Command Demon - A good generic demon, not easily confused with any of your summonable demons. We can assume this guy is the one doing the commanding.
- Conflagrate - And thus begins our iconic saga of fire and hands. (Hmm, sounds like George R.R. Martin.) I like that this could be showing either a guy conflagrating or a guy getting conflagrated. I still don't agree with the MoP changes to this spell, though--thematically I liked how you used to light the fuse with Immolate, and Conflagrate blew em to bits.
- Corruption - Sometimes an icon doesn't look like much from a distance, but one day you take a closer look and see Dhalsim from Street Fighter 2 Turbo vomiting blood. And you are forced to concede that it is pretty cool.
- Curse of Enfeeblement - This spell reduces physical damage, as might come from a sword. Here we see a sword being magically F'd up. Good icon.
- Dark Soul - Well, the dude's definitely dark. And I think that from the lack of muscle tone, we can assume he's a soul. More concerning than the icon is Blizzard's choice of naming the spec-specific buffs. Let's play a fun game of "Which one of these things does not belong?"
- Instability: "Infuses your soul with unstable power, increasing your critical strike chance..." - Okay, unstable power randomly splurts out of you. I can buy that I guess.
- Knowledge: "Your soul is infused with demonic knowledge, increasing the effects of Mastery: Master Demonologist..." - Demonic knowledge makes you a better master demonologist. I'm with ya.
- Misery: "Infuses your soul with the misery of fallen foes, increasing spell haste..." - Now you lost me.
- Demonic Breath - I don't remember ever using this spell, but the icon's pretty neat.
- Demonic Gateway - I could be talked into classifying this one as "bad." It does kinda look like the in-game lock gates, but since it's an icon, they could've gone with a little less green and a little more gate.
- Drain Life - This is actually one of my favorite icons in the game. Brings back fond memories of drain tanking with my 30/21/0 siphon life+demonic sac build.
- Drain Soul - Yeah, it looks a bit more like "Drain Skull" than "Drain Soul," but maybe someone in the chain of command had a speech impediment.
- Dreadsteed - FIERY HORSESHOE
- Enslave Demon - Everyone knows that no demon can withstand the power of Metal. Shred on, my hard rockin' amigos.
- Eye of Kilrogg - The picture is not conclusively Kilrogg's eye, but once you've seen one disembodied floating organ, you've seen em all, right?
- Fel Flame - Looks more like a Fel Sneeze, but I seem to recall the in-game projectile does too.
- Felsteed - LESS GOOD HORSESHOE
- Hand of Gul'dan - Gul'dan is apparently Demonspeak for "One who has difficulty grabbing things." But I think the icon artist deferred to the 3D spell effect here, too.
- Hellfire - I love this guy's comical proportions. "BWAAAAAAAH IT'S HOT AS HELL IN THIS FIRE"
- Howl of Terror - I was on the fence here. Pink poodles generally don't invoke much terror, except maybe to Fel Fire Hydrants.
- Mannoroth's Fury - No one comes between Mannoroth and his burrito.
- Metamorphosis - Indeed!
- Rain of Fire - It came down, down, down, and my embers went higher. And it burns, burns, burns...
- Seed of Corruption - Yeah, I guess it's a grungy seed. For a long time I thought it was a corrupted pothole, though--we had some like that when I lived in the city.
- Shadow Bolt - I'm not really sure if Shadow Bolt looks like this anymore, as for some reason they decided to give a classic warlock spell to Demo only, and I can't tri-spec. But back in the day it definitely looked like this.
- Shadowfury - Yeah, I guess. They could also rebrand it "Fabulous Fury" and give it to Theralion.
- Soul Fire - "Hey man, sorry to keep bothering you, but how did you guys animate 'Soul Fire'? Oh, it's just a big fireball? K, I'll draw that."
- Soulburn - Well, Skullburn; but see above.
- Twilight Ward - If this were a warrior icon, I'd have some choice words for it, but since it's your only shield I guess it's okay.
- Unending Breath - Delightfully watery!
- Unstable Affliction - The dude's face is melting off. You'd be a little unstable too! No hooker is worth catching an affliction like that.
- Mortal Coil - On the one hand, I think the guy who thought up the replacement for Death Coil (why did they have to give it to DKs again?) was trying to be punny and clever (death vs. mortal, Shakespeare reference, etc.), which doesn't translate well to icons. I haven't looked at the spell enough to know if the Skittles-colored icon is accurate.
- Flames of Xoroth - How accurate this icon is depends entirely on what the hell a Xoroth is.
- Agony - The agony caused by this DoT is nothing compared to the agony this icon causes me. Maybe in the beta it was "Curse of Sunder Armor"?
- Banish - So it begins. During my research into the inanity of warrior icon design, I found the artists were under a mandate to adhere strongly to a "theme"--in their case, you could basically sum up the theme as "shields." The warlock artist, on the other hand, preferred a motif of vaguely scary hands.
- Blood Horror - This icon makes a lot of sense if the pictured bloody orb is in fact a testicle. Otherwise I dunno.
- Burning Rush - Here we see some red goo. If you cheat and look at the filename of the icon: ability_deathwing_sealarmorbreach. "Ah, yes!" You exclaim. "It does indeed look like one of Deathwing's skin plates getting torn off." I think Blizzard was in a... Rush... to reuse art assets.
- Carrion Swarm - Carrion Swarm is an ability that you get in demon form. By this artist's logic, most icons should conversely be pictures of unmetamorphosized warlocks just standing around.
- Create Healthstone - Far be it from me to say what a healthstone does or does not look like. It seems in such cases, however, that maybe the icon should try to like, you know, convey some useful information about the skill.
- Create Soulwell - Don't quote me, but I want to say that at one time this spell had "ritual" in its name (similar to the summoning one). If that's true, this icon of a guy dancing with the devil in the pale moonlight makes some sense.
- Dark Bargain - This icon doesn't have much to do with dark bargains, but it would've made a better icon for Blood Horror than the one they went with!
- Dark Regeneration - Scary hand = regeneration! Or something.
- Demonic Circle: Summon - So that's where the ninja turtles came from!
- Fire and Brimstone - I could actually see placing this in the "good" category. Naysayers may point out the lack of brimstone, and even fire, but from a distance Skeletor's apparel suggests the split or dispersion the ability enables.
- Haunt - This is a cool spell, a cool concept, and there's so much they could've done with it! Instead, they went with Scary Hand + Mike Tyson's skull.
- Havoc - Though "havoc" is admittedly an abstract noun, the in-game ability itself would be trivial to represent artistically. Plus Skeletor has gained some weight since his famous appearance in Fire and Brimstone.
- Health Funnel - I guess shiny blood is more or less acceptable, especially to Twilight fans. It's just always struck me as a pretty lackluster drawing. Good thing I can basically take it off my bars these days--that's one solution!
- Immolate - I feel bad having to relegate Immolate to this category, but my personal quota of "scary hand fire" had already been met.
- Incinerate - Ah, yes, what to do when you, a humble icon artist, are faced with several fiery abilities? How do you breathe a unique spark of life into each? (Don't worry if you don't know the answer; the guy Blizzard hired didn't know either.)
- Siphon Life - Would somebody please give this hand a job?!
- Soul Leech - It took a while to decipher what the hell is going on in this icon, but fear not, gentle reader: I do this for you. Here we have a shadowy hippie, his back facing us, on a clear summer day. And then suddenly, a taser! Maybe that'll learn him to get a haircut.
- Soul Swap - This icon takes a stab at answering the age-old question: "What if Edvard Munch had sucked?"
- Soulstone - At least the Healthstone guy deigned to create something more evocative than "round thing."
- Unbound Will - More like Unbound Number of Hands
Special Section: Grimoires
We shall return to rambling incoherently shortly, but I feel the work of the Grimoire talents artist deserves an especial mention. Consider the following three icons and determine which represents which talent. (Try not to cheat.) Keep in mind that icons are very handy for differentiating a tier's talents at a glance.
- Grimoire of Sacrifice - If you look closely, you can see the demon head is crying bloody emo tears at being sacrificed.
- Grimoire of Service - In case you left your electron microscope in your other labcoat, there are in fact two demon heads on this book cover.
- Grimoire of Supremacy - I think this is an imp with horns,
which I'm guessing only the upgraded Fel Imp gets.Update: Nope, regular imps have horns too.
- Curse of Exhaustion - This drawing of a Sacagawea dollar isn't even good!
- Curse of the Elements - "But wait," you are saying, "This icon sucks, but you categorized similar ones as merely bad." To that I respond: Shut up and write your own fake guide.
- Dark Intent - This one is a real head-scratcher--quite possibly the head-scratcheriest of all warlock icons. A crack team of investigative iconoclasts determined the following explanation is most likely accurate: A night elf (based on hand color) darkly intends to touch a Fel Boob. Perhaps the after-effects of doing so are pictured in the previous icon.
- Ember Tap - We are dying to know: Will the fiery spermatozoa reach the burning ovum??
- Fear - Apparently the artist is afraid of goths.
- Life Tap - This icon is informally known in the business as "The Emperor's New Icon." You see, Blizzard's art department hired a very expensive consultant to illustrate Life Tap, as at the time it was to be a warlock's most iconic spell (pardon the pun). Sacrificing one's own essence for greater access to magical power--now that's warlockian! Well, what you see here is what the consultant came up with. Though he wasn't given any more work, management had a dilemma: how to justify what they spent to the higher-ups? Thus began a harrowing tale of rationalism, deceit, and shame. To cover this embarrassing incident, Blizzard has been gradually de-emphasizing the spell, requiring it to be cast less and less in each expansion. I wouldn't be surprised if it were removed from WoD entirely.
- Malefic Grasp - Now this one just floors me. The one spell whose name basically means "scary hand" does not get a scary hand icon.
- Sacrificial Pact - I think this is supposed to be some sort of demonic symbol superimposed on a wizard. But it could also be the Taj Mahal.
- Shadowburn - Scary Hand 2: Judgment Day features a liquid metal scary hand that is sent back in time to kill the icon artist in his youth, but the plan is thwarted by Arnold Schwarzenhand.
- Soulshatter - What do you mean, "soul shatter"?! This is obviously a picture of a refreshment table.
- Unending Resolve - Here we see a fat kid doing a handstand, or possibly breakdancing. Apparently we are to believe that his skill was acquired via insurmountable determination in the face of mockery at the (scary) hands of his peers. I remain unconvinced.
Posted byon 16 October 2013 - 05:01 PM
HOW TO FIX YOUR DPS LIKE A PROFESSIONAL!
Alright, so analyzing logs is a specialty of mine, but the work is becoming overbearing with the frequency of logs coming in. More troublesome is the consistency with the issues. Here will be a list of tools YOU can use to fix YOUR DPS!
Incredibly awesome World of Logs guide: http://www.icy-veins...ehensive-guide/
Incredibly awesome Warcraftlogs guide: http://www.icy-veins...ehensive-guide/
^This guide shows you how to find issues, solve them, and track so many things you didn't know you could track.
ALL WARLOCKS FAQ'S
1) Did you prepot and use a 2nd pot? You should see 49 to 50 seconds of uptime on your Potion of the Jade Serpent.
2) Did you keep Curse of Elements up the entire time? Remember, it wears off after 5 minutes.
3) Did you use your Doom/Terrorguard and get all of his casts off in time? If not, cast him earlier or use him at the beginning of fights.
1) Is your Immolate uptime below 90%? If yes, bring it up. Immolate should be on anything you can't one shot.
2) Are you using Shadowburn? This should be used on every single thing possible including adds and bosses. This does high damage, is instant cast, and generates 2 Embers upon killing something.
3) Are you using Rain of Fire on 2+ targets? If no, then use it.
4) Are you using Dark Soul every 2 minutes? If no, then do it.
5) Are you maximizing your Chaos Bolt? Prioritize using Chaos Bolt during trinkets procs. Average Chaos Bolt should be as follows:
ilvl 540 - 800k
ilvl 550 - 900k
ilvl 560 - 1M
These are general guidelines. If your average Chaos Bolt is below these numbers, you're not using Chaos Bolt with procs correctly.
6) Are you allowing yourself to hit 4.0 Burning Embers? If so, stop it.
7) Are you consuming Backdraft with Chaos Bolt? If so, stop it.
8) Is your Chaos Bolt damage higher than Incinerate? Good, it should be. If not, work on maximizing Chaos Bolt damage.
9) Are you using Havoc in multi-target situations? Havoc has a cooldown of 25 seconds. You should see at least 2 uses per minute when the situation exists. For Sha of Pride, for example, you should see one every minute. For Heroic Sha of Pride, you should see 2 per minute. Use Havoc with Shadowburn if possible; otherwise, use it with Chaos Bolt.
10) Curious about your 2pc or 4pc? 2pc is called Destructive Influence and 4pc is called Ember Master. You can check their uptimes. If you felt like your DPS was otherwise unexplainably low, check to see if these two were giving you trouble.
11) Trinkets: PBI > KTT > BBoY > KFC Mashed Potato Bowl > FCoR
1) Is your Doom uptime over 99%? If not, bring it up. Doom should be on anything it will tick on at least ONCE.
2) Is your Corruption uptime over 99%? If not, bring it up. Corruption should be on anything it will tick on at least FOUR times.
3) Is your Metamorphosis uptime over 40%? If not, bring it up by making sure you are building Demonic Fury and spending Demonic Fury properly.
4) Did you have a pet out? If not, you should do that. Using GoServ? Use that Felguard on CD as well.
5) Are you using Felstorm every 45 seconds? If not, you should be.
6) Are your Metamorphosis Soul Fires a higher damage portion than your caster Soul Fires? If not, work on casting more Soul Fires in Metamorphosis to bring your damage portion up.
7) Are you using Dark Soul:Knowledge every 2 minutes? If not, you better be. Also, are you keeping Metamorphosis up throughout the entire 20 second buff?
8) Are you casting Soul Fire when a mob hits 25% HP? Soul Fire has a built in execute mechanic which makes it superior to Shadow Bolt. Make sure you're casting lots of Soul Fires.
9) Is Doom hitting like a truck? Without UVLS, our focus should be on maximizing the spell power of Doom when it is applied. Use Affdots to track this.
10) Trinkets: PBI > BBoY > KTT > KFC Mashed Potato Bowl > FCoR
1) Is Agony's uptime over 99%? If not, make sure that 10 stack never falls off.
2) Is Unstable Affliction's uptime over 99%? This is difficult, but strive for it. UA is now the most powerful DoT and takes precedence over everything.
3) Is Corruption's uptime over 99%? If not, make sure it gets better.
4) Are you using Haunt? Haunt uptime should ALWAYS be over 50%, usually in the 60-70% range with some overachieving RNG giving 90% uptime. Haunt MUST BE USED.
5) Are you using Soulburn:Soul Swap too often? You should only be using this in your opening sequence and during brief, important windows of opportunity such as a 10 stack of Black Blood to snapshot awesome DoTs.
6) Is the damage from Agony and UA very close? Sometimes Agony wins, sometimes UA wins, but they should NEVER be far apart. If they are, look at questions 1 and 2.
7) Are you using Malefic Grasp when DoTs don't need reapplied and Haunt is on the target? This is your filler spell, but only on targets above 20%.
8) Are you using Drain Soul when a mob goes below 20%? This is a high damage option that gives you tons Soul Shards.
9) Are you keeping Haunt up 100% during execute? If not, do it.
10) Do you have Affdots installed? If not, get it. Use appropriately to employ the Empowered DoTs method in getting the most out of your DoTs.
11) Is your DoT damage high because of appropriate snapshotting? Your UA ticks should be breaking into the 100,000 range on crits around 555 item level. If you're a little below, you should be a little below. If you're higher, you should be higher.
12) Are you using Soul Swap correctly? Are you using Soulburn:Soul Swap too often? Soul Swap should be used to spread DoTs to new targets, not Soulburn:Soul Swap.
13) Trinkets: PBI > BBoY > KTT > KFC Mashed Potato Bowl > FCoR
Posted byon 15 November 2012 - 07:07 PM
Greetings, users of Icy-Veins! There have been lots of questions on how to improve DPS, figure out why you're wiping, how to fix other raiders' mistakes, etc. This guide will contain a plethora of answers to those questions and answers to questions you didn't know you had! Let's get started.
World of Logs - if you're unfamiliar, head on over to http://www.worldoflogs.com/ to Register and get started. All of the instructions are there on how to get you set up. Once you're set up, you will start logs by typing "/combatlog" in your chatbox. You'll get a message saying that combatlogs are being recorded in your Logs folder in your WoW main folder. To stop recording logs, you type "/combatlog" again and you'll end logging. Once you do that, exit WoW, boot up the client you downloaded, and load your log. Now let's dig in.
The first page you'll see is the title page. It contains a whole bunch of crap you don't really need to see. What we're interested in here is the top menu bar. It looks like this:
What you'll see here is your guild name, the date and time, and some other drop down menu items. We only really care about Dashboard and Full Report. Highlight over Dashboard, and you should see the following menu:
Some notes on each item:
Compare Fights - ignore this.
Analyze - super useful tool for analyzing details within a fight. Covered later.
Damage Done - everyone's favorite menu. Personalized fight details for individual members of damage done.
Damage Taken - everyone's least favorite menu. Personalized fight details for individual members of damage taken.
Healing Done - Healing details
Healing Taken - ignore this.
Friendly Fire - ignore this.
Deaths Overview - useful to track who died to what and how.
Survivability - ignore this.
Log Browser - This is for advanced users. I will update guide to include how to use this some day...
Expression editor - ignore this.
Ranking info - details information on ranking performances. Detailed later.
Now, highlight over the Full Report button. You should see the following menu:
Some notes on each item:
Bosses - ignore this.
Kills - shows combat parses of boss attempts in which you won! Celebrate your glory with this tab.
Wipes - shows combat parses of boss attempts in which you did not win. Learn from your mistakes with this tab.
Trash - ignore this unless you're really hyped up on how good you are on trash.
Full Report - ignore this.
Now that the menus have been explained, lets see what's under the hood.
The first menu most people will care about is the best for analyzing single player's damage measures. Let's pretend you are Zagam, a Warlock, and you want to see your performance on Gara'jal. Under Dashboard, you'll click Damage Done. Under Full Report, you'll go down to Kills and move your mouse over to the kill record and click it. You'll be rewarded with the following window:
We now see everyone's damage contribution for the Gara'jal encounter that lasted 4 minutes and 53 seconds. There's a spiffy chart there, but that's not what we came for. Take a look at the numbers. You might be thinking 'Wow, your Hunter is TERRIBLE.' He's not, I promise you. The reason I picked this fight is to demonstrate the difference between DPS and DPS (e). Gara'jal is a unique encounter in which some players will go into a different realm for a period of time. World of Logs is not able to pick up those players' combat logs during that, so they appear to be idle during this. This provides me the opportunity to show you the difference between DPS and DPS (e).
Look at Zagam's record. He shows 81,952 DPS but 81,509 DPS (e). DPS is a measure of your damage done divided by your ACTIVE time. Notice that my active time is 99.8% because I was there and doing things the entire time. DPS (e) is a measure of your total damage done divided by the TOTAL time of the encounter, regardless of what you were doing. Take a look at Cazlek, the Hunter. His DPS is 68,399 but his DPS (e) is only 28,648. This is because when he went into the other realm, the combat log basically assumed he stopped for that period of time. Since his active time is 42.0%, you can see that he spent 58% of his time in the other realm executing those mechanics. His DPS is a measure of how much damage he did in the time he wasn't in the realm, but his DPS (e) is a measure of his total damage done NOT in that realm over the total time. Take this as an easier to understand example:
Mage 1 does 500k DPS for 30 seconds and then dies.
Mage 2 does 300k DPS for 60 seconds.
The fight lasts for 60 seconds.
World of Logs will parse Mage 1 at 500k DPS but only 250k DPS (e) because he was active 50% of the time. This fight's parse is an exception with the phasing issue...typically on other fights, all players should be over 99% on their active time percentage. If it's not, that shows the greatest opportunity for improvement. They need better focus and to be active at all times. Follow the caster's cardinal rule: ABC = Always Be Casting.
One other thing to notice here: notice the white triangles by certain players names. This indicates pet usage. Clicking the white triangle will create a drop down menu where you can see how much a Warlock's Doomguard did or laugh at the fact the Beast Mastery Hunter's pet almost beat the Hunter himself. A Doomguard parse is an EXCELLENT way to see DPS vs DPS (e). The Doomguard will only be out for 1 minute. Let's say a fight lasts 5 minutes and he's out for a full minute. Let's say while he was out, he did 10k DPS. Under DPS, it will say 10,000, but under DPS (e), it will say 2,000. This is how you see how much certain pets contribute to your OVERALL DPS.
Alright, with that explained, let's take a look at Zagam's details. You can see anyone's details you care about by simply clicking their name.