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Destruction Warlock Tree Revamped in Latest War Within Alpha Build

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Today's War Within Alpha build focuses on the overhaul of the Destruction Warlock tree, aimed at simplifying talent choice and improving underutilized abiltiies.

The developers wanted to reduce fluctuation in power, enhance underutilized talents, and simplify decision-making within the talent trees with the latest Destruction tree update.

Some highlights:

  • Chaos Bolt is now baseline for Destruction Warlocks.
  • Avatar of Destruction has been removed.
  • Decimating Bolt is reintroduced to boost the power of your rotational spells.
  • Underutilized talents like Soulfire and Cataclysm have been improved to increase their viability.

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Today’s Alpha update focuses primarily on Destruction.

The Path Ahead

Before we dive in, we want to acknowledge that our work with each specialization tree is not complete. We’ve seen the recent discussions regarding how bloated the Demonology and Destruction tree are in terms of available talents and ranks, as well as thoughts on the pathing of the Affliction tree.

In the near future, you will see that the Demonology tree is being restructured and condensed. Both the Destruction tree and the Affliction tree will also undergo a restructuring in the near future. In this context, a restructuring means that: the amount of 2-rank talent nodes will be reduced, talents may be removed, talents may be added, new pathing will be added, and talent nodes may be moved.

Destruction Update

Here are our stated goals, with the addition of a new goal, for Destruction moving into the War Within:

  • Reduce the fluctuation in throughput in relation to the number of targets in combat.
  • Improve underused talents such as Soulfire and Cataclysm.
  • Condense the number of talents and talent ranks available.

Beginning with our general changes, we are moving Chaos Bolt to be baseline. This is mainly to provide a Soul Shard spender once your specialization is chosen. We are also removing Chaosbringer but plan to provide additional tuning to Chaos Bolt, Rain of Fire, and Shadowburn baseline to ensure their power remains relatively the same.

Avatar of Destruction

We are removing Avatar of Destruction for a couple of reasons. First and foremost, we want to highlight Summon Infernal as a powerful moment and Avatar of Destruction lessens that by increasing the cadence in which an Infernal is present.

Secondly, Avatar of Destruction provides Destruction warlocks with a powerful, multi-target stun on a frequent basis. We could remove the stun, but we want to stay in line with our philosophy that when a player sees a demon there’s an understanding of what function that demon provides.

To replace Avatar of Destruction, we want to try bringing back Decimating Bolt as it fits the fantasy of a Destruction warlock well and provides more power to your rotational spells. We plan to iterate on this decision based on feedback we see from the community.


We have redesigned Inferno to reduce how much throughput fluctuates based on the number of enemies present during an encounter. This will allow us to tune Destruction in all situations, regardless of the number of targets available. Additionally, this allows us to tune this talent to be a competitive option against Cataclysm rather than have it remain the correct choice.

Soulfire, Shadowburn, Channel Demonfire

We want to make each of these spells more appealing. In this build, you’ll see a redesign of Decimation as an experiment to accomplish this for Soulfire however we plan to expand more on this as well as Shadowburn and Channel Demonfire with the restructuring of the Destruction tree, mentioned earlier in this post. Stay tuned for future updates as we work to address this goal.

Thank you for the discussions thus far. We appreciate the continued feedback!

You will find all the changes that went live for Warlocks this week linked below.

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    • Hellcaller
      • Seeds of Their Demise has been redesigned – Blackened Soul damage increased by 30%. When Blackened Soul deals damage, you have a chance to gain Ritual of Ruin/Tormented Crescendo.
      • Malevolence, Wither, and Seeds of Their Demise icons have been updated.
    • Demonology
        • You now have a 35% chance (was 100% chance) to generate a Demonic Core from your summoned Dreadstalkers when they fade.
    • Destruction
      • New Talent: Devastation – Increases the Critical Strike chance of your Destruction spells by 5%.
      • New Talent: Emberstorm – Increases the damage done by your Fire spells by 2/4% and reduces the cast time of your Incinerate spell by 10/20%.
      • New Talent: Decimating Bolt – Hurl bolts of decimating magic at your target, dealing Shadow damage and increase the damage of your next 3 Incinerates by 40%. Decimating Bolt’s damage, and the bonus to Incinerate both increase as your target’s health decreases.
      • New Talent: Summoner’s Embrace – Increases the damage dealt by your spells and your demon by 3%.
      • Ruin has been redesigned – Increases the Critical Strike damage of your Destruction spells by 5/10%.
      • Inferno has been redesigned – Rain of Fire damage is increased by 20% and its Soul Shard cost is reduced by 1.
      • Decimation has been redesigned – Your Incinerate and Conflagrate casts on targets that have 35% or less health reduces the cooldown of Soulfire by 5 seconds and reduce its cast time by 40% for 10 seconds.
      • Chaos Incarnate has been redesigned – Chaos Bolt, Rain of Fire, and Shadowburn always gain 70% of the maximum benefit from your Mastery: Chaotic Energies.
      • Chaos Bolt has been removed from the Destruction specialization tree and is now baseline.
      • Conflagrate has been moved to row 1.
      • Backdraft has been moved to row 2.
      • Roaring Blaze and Improved Conflagrate have been moved to row 3.
      • Ruin has been moved to row 9.
      • The following talents have been removed:
        • Avatar of Destruction
        • Chaosbringer

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8 hours ago, Staff said:

The following talents have been removed:

  • Avatar of Destruction


RIP Avatar, you were my favorite part of destruction

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