Affliction Warlock Essences — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.3

Last updated on Jan 14, 2020 at 12:19 by Motoko 99 comments
General Information

On this page, we go over the Essence system in Patch 8.3 of World of Warcraft — Battle for Azeroth, and we tell you which are the best essences to use as Affliction Warlock, both for minor and major powers. Please refer to our Patch 8.3 Essence Guide for more information about the new essences introduced in Patch 8.3 and to our Essence guide for more general information about the Essence system and where Essences can be obtained from.

1.

Azerite Essences for Affliction Warlocks

Introduced in Patch 8.2, Essences are unique items that drop from various forms of content. They are activated through your Heart of Azeroth Icon Heart of Azeroth, and they buff your character in various ways, depending on the Essences that are currently active.

For more information about essences, please check out the following:

What follows on this page will relate directly to how Essences affect this spec, since generic information is beyond the scope of this guide.

2.

Choosing Essences as an Affliction Warlock

Each Essence has 4 different ranks. While the last rank is purely cosmetic, previous ones can have a noticeable increase in power, thus determining if a certain Essence at a higher rank is your best available option at a given time.

Essences powers scale with Heart of Azeroth Icon Heart of Azeroth item level.

Simulations through Raidbots or done locally can help you decide your best trait, but some degree of critical thinking is required beyond just picking the highest ranking Essence.

3.

Summary

3.1.

Major Essences

3.2.

Minor Essences

For AoE situations consider swapping the first 2 essences with the following.

4.

General Essences Recommendation

For single-target situations, The Crucible of Flame (Concentrated Flame Icon Concentrated Flame + Ancient Flame Icon Ancient Flame) and Condensed Life-Force (Guardian of Azeroth Icon Guardian of Azeroth + Condensed Life-Force Icon Condensed Life-Force) offer the highest output.

Worldvein Resonance (Worldvein Resonance Icon Worldvein Resonance + Lifeblood Icon Lifeblood) is a well-rounded option for both single- and multi-target situations. With multiple users, you can achieve 100% uptime on 4 stacks and cover any possible movement requirement. It may not be a good option for open world activities since you tend to travel a lot. With 8.3, when you use the major you gain 4 times the primary stat you would otherwise, and at neck level 80 that translates into 4,800 Intellect for 18 seconds every minute, which could be competitive when paired with Strive for Perfection Icon Strive for Perfection and 1 Dreadful Calling Icon Dreadful Calling if you can manage a 2 minutes Summon Darkglare Icon Summon Darkglare; otherwise, in a default situation, it is generally worse than Condensed Life-Force Icon Condensed Life-Force.

If a bigger burst every 2 minutes is required, Memory of Lucid Dreams (Memory of Lucid Dreams Icon Memory of Lucid Dreams + Lucid Dreams Icon Lucid Dreams) allows you to pump out more Unstable Affliction Icon Unstable Afflictions under Dark Soul: Misery Icon Dark Soul: Misery. Another option is Vision of Perfection (Vision of Perfection Icon Vision of Perfection + Strive for Perfection Icon Strive for Perfection), coupled with at least 1 Dreadful Calling Icon Dreadful Calling bringing Summon Darkglare Icon Summon Darkglare's cooldown closer to 2.4 minutes.

For AoE scenarios or in Mythic+, Essence of the Focusing Iris (Focused Azerite Beam Icon Focused Azerite Beam + Focused Energy Icon Focused Energy) offers higher damage per activation, however maintaining stacks in a multi-target situations can be difficult due to a relative short-duration buff. Consider running Purification Protocol (Purifying Blast Icon Purifying Blast + Purification Protocol Icon Purification Protocol), if you do not feel comfortable with the Essence of the Focusing Iris's minor power or you think you can leverage the 10% damage increase for each dead targets during Purification Protocol's major power activation.

The new Essence introduced in Patch 8.3, Breath of the Dying (Reaping Flames Icon Reaping Flames + Lethal Strikes Icon Lethal Strikes), may look appealing at first glance, especially as a replacement for The Crucible of Flame in a situation with multiple low-health adds, however in practice even in the best possible scenario the issue is the GCD competition: in a relatively busy spec like Affliction, where you want to cast multiple spells for each new target, adding yet another one may not result in a gain net (similarly to how Siphon Life Icon Siphon Life is not used in multitarget or AoE). Its minor is, however, extremely good in single target situations.

5.

Essence Rankings for Affliction Warlock

5.1.

Best Essences

5.1.1.

Condensed Life-Force

Once you unlock Rank 3, it suddenly becomes the best option by a long margin. Condensed Life-Force's major power, Guardian of Azeroth Icon Guardian of Azeroth, lines up naturally with your Summon Darkglare Icon Summon Darkglare enabling eye-watering 20 seconds burst windows every 3 minutes, further amplified by its minor's, Condensed Life-Force Icon Condensed Life-Force, damage increase.

5.1.2.

Essence of the Focusing Iris

At Rank 2, this is your best option in single target, but whenever there are multiple targets, Essence of the Focusing Iris's major power, Focused Azerite Beam Icon Focused Azerite Beam, is what you are looking for: a very hard hitting channel every 1.5 minutes.

Its minor power, Focused Energy Icon Focused Energy, is a powerful complementary power that gives you valuable haste, often chosen as minor.

Rank 3 offers some nice quality of life changes, such as being able to channel Focused Azerite Beam Icon Focused Azerite Beam while moving or starting at 3 stacks of Focused Energy Icon Focused Energy instead of 1.

5.1.3.

The Crucible of Flame

Tied for your best pick at Rank 2, The Crucible of Flame's major power,Concentrated Flame Icon Concentrated Flame, becomes your best general option if you do not have access to Condensed Life-Force Rank 3. The addition of a second charge gives more flexibility and bigger burst when needed.

Its minor power, Ancient Flame Icon Ancient Flame, being able to stack up to 3 times makes this the best minor, only marginally beaten by at least 4 people stacking Lifeblood Icon Lifeblood in the vicinity.

5.1.4.

Breath of the Dying's Minor: Lethal Strikes Rank 3

Breath of the Dying is a new Patch 8.3 Essence that is mostly appealing for its minor power, Lethal Strikes Icon Lethal Strikes, which on top of giving extra corruption resistance, thus enabling you to wear more corrupted gear, also provides a very strong single target damage proc with increased chance to proc if the target is in execute range.

5.1.5.

Worldvein Resonance's Minor: Lifeblood Rank 3

Worldvein Resonance's minor power, Lifeblood Icon Lifeblood, forces 3 Lifeblood Shard Icon Lifeblood Shards to spawn, but by taking the major you are missing out much more impactful Essences.

The minor, however, lets you retain all the benefits without sacrificing a major slot. Consider running this minor as first choice whenever you are doing group content with at least 3 more wearers and there is relatively low movement involved so you can have high uptime.

Rank 3 increases the radius from 8 yards to 12 yards, making the minor much more usable in actual encounters.

6.

Essence notes for Affliction Warlock

  • Blood of the Enemy's major power (Blood of the Enemy Icon Blood of the Enemy) requires you to be in melee range in order to benefit from the increased critical strike chance on targets. Its minor power (Blood-Soaked Icon Blood-Soaked) is one of the strongest available. It has no internal cooldown and procs off every instance of damage that crits, which means AoE spells that crits on multiple targets will give you multiple stacks. Being a DoT spec, Affliction has a high number of damage instances per minute, even in single-target situations, allowing you to reliably reach 40 stacks in 1 minute or less.
  • Condensed Life-force's major power (Guardian of Azeroth Icon Guardian of Azeroth) lines up naturally with Summon Darkglare Icon Summon Darkglare further increasing the 3-minute burst. Each shard from both the major power and the minor power (Condensed Life-Force Icon Condensed Life-Force) applies a 6 second debuff increasing all damage you do to that target, stacking with Unstable Affliction Icon Unstable Affliction passive 10% damage increase.
  • Conflict and Strife (major power: Conflict Icon Conflict, minor power: Strife Icon Strife) enables the passive Endless Affliction Icon Endless Affliction, which has been reworked in 8.2
  • Essence of the Focusing Iris's major power (Focused Azerite Beam Icon Focused Azerite Beam) has an initial cast followed by a channel that does all the damage. Its minor power (Focused Energy Icon Focused Energy) grants you a buff on spell impact, Affliction being one of the best specs to maintain that buff with DoT applications.
  • Memory of Lucid Dreams's major power (Memory of Lucid Dreams Icon Memory of Lucid Dreams) allows for a bigger Unstable Affliction Icon Unstable Afflictions burst during Dark Soul: Misery Icon Dark Soul: Misery. Its minor power (Lucid Dreams Icon Lucid Dreams) often results in a handful of extra shard each minute.
  • Purification Protocol's major power (Purifying Blast Icon Purifying Blast) becomes strong once you can leverage the 10% damage buff for each target dying during its effect. Its minor power (Purification Protocol Icon Purification Protocol) is rather mediocre unless it hits Aberrations.
  • Ripple in Space's major power (Ripple in Space Icon Ripple in Space) works like a 2-second delayed Blink with a bit of damage, rather unappealing as Warlock in general, considering we have both Demonic Gateway Icon Demonic Gateway and Demonic Circle Icon Demonic Circle. Its minor power (Reality Shift Icon Reality Shift) can be procced by using Demonic Circle Icon Demonic Circle and Demonic Gateway Icon Demonic Gateway, as well as by moving for more than 25 yards in 4 seconds since you last cast a spell.
  • The Crucible of Flame's major power (Concentrated Flame Icon Concentrated Flame) is a straightforward single-target damaging spell, on a 30-second cooldown. Its minor power (Ancient Flame Icon Ancient Flame) is one of the strongest (if not the strongest) option for single-target situations.
  • The Unbound Force's major power (The Unbound Force Icon The Unbound Force) is rather underwhelming unless you can sync it with its minor power. Its minor power (Reckless Force Icon Reckless Force) seems to have around 40-50% proc chance off your non crits. Depending on the situation, you can probably sync it with Phantom Singularity Icon Phantom Singularity.
  • Vision of Perfection's major power (Vision of Perfection Icon Vision of Perfection) does not really have a big impact on Affliction, due to the reduced 2-second DoT extension you get from additional Darkglares. Its minor power (Strive for Perfection Icon Strive for Perfection), coupled with Dreadful Calling Icon Dreadful Calling can bring Summon Darkglare Icon Summon Darkglare's cooldown close to 2 minutes in a multi-target situation.
  • Worldvein Resonance's major power (Worldvein Resonance Icon Worldvein Resonance) allows you to maintain high stacks after moving. Its minor power (Lifeblood Icon Lifeblood) allows you to benefit from the main stat increase at the expense of relying on other people when movements is required, if you take the major power of another essence.
7.

Essence Comparison Simulations for Affliction Warlocks

As with all simulations provided in our guides, they only provide a general guideline.Please use Raidbots.com to sim your own character.

7.1.

Single-Target Esssence Simulations for Affliction Warlock

7.1.1.

Major Essences for Affliction Warlock

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For the complete simulation results, check out Bloodmallet.com
7.1.2.

Minor Essences for Affliction Warlock

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For the complete simulation results, check out Bloodmallet.com
7.2.

AoE Esssence Simulations for Affliction Warlock

7.2.1.

Major Essences for Affliction Warlock

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For the complete simulation results, check out Bloodmallet.com
7.2.2.

Minor Essences for Affliction Warlock

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For the complete simulation results, check out Bloodmallet.com
8.

Changelog

  • 14 Jan. 2020: Updated for Patch 8.3.
  • 15 Jul. 2019: Updated Essence recommendations.
  • 25 Jun. 2019: Page created.
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