Affliction Warlock DPS Mythic+ Tips — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.3

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

In this guide, you will find tips and advice to tackle Mythic+ dungeons with your Affliction Warlock in World of Warcraft — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.3.


Mythic+ Introduction for Affliction Warlock

Mythic+ has become a large part of the World of Warcraft endgame, but the sheer amount of different variables has left many players feeling overwhelmed. The group composition, weekly affixes, the item level of the group, the keystone level, and the experience and comfort level of the group are just several of the factors that will influence how you approach each dungeon. The purpose of this page is to prepare you for the key differences that set Mythic+ apart from the typical World of Warcraft endgame experience, including talents and rotational anomalies that may not be obvious at first glance.

If you are unfamiliar with Mythic+ and its associated general mechanics, you can read more about it on our dedicated Mythic+ page below.


Affix List


Tier One Affixes

  • Fortified Icon Fortified increases the Health pool of all non-boss enemies by 20% and damage dealt by 30%.
  • Tyrannical Icon Tyrannical increases the Health pool of boss enemies by 40% and their damage dealt by 15%.

Fortified Icon Fortified and Tyrannical Icon Tyrannical are two affixes, one of which is always present on all Mythic+ Keystones, regardless of level. These affixes shift the focus of dungeons from boss damage to trash damage depending on the current affix. Affliction Warlocks excel in both Tyrannical and Fortified environments, providing both high single target and exceptional cleave.


Tier Two Affixes

  • Raging Icon Raging increases the damage dealt by enemies below 30% by 100% until they die.
  • Teeming Icon Teeming adds additional trash mobs to certain packs throughout each dungeon.
  • Bolstering Icon Bolstering buffs remaining enemies Health pools and damage dealt by 20% when an enemy dies nearby. To counter this affix, DPS all mobs down evenly and focus your casts into high Health mobs if there are any.
  • Sanguine Icon Sanguine places a pool of blood on the ground when a mob is slain. This pool will heal remaining enemies who stay inside the zone and also damage players.
  • Bursting Icon Bursting forces enemy mobs to detonate when slain, afflicting the group with a stacking debuff that causes players to suffer 10% of their max Health in damage every four seconds..

Tier Three Affixes

  • Volcanic Icon Volcanic spawns volcanic plumes underneath and around players when in combat with any enemy. When damaged by Volcanic, players suffer 50% of their maximum Health pool in damage. The more enemies you are in combat with, the more Volcanic that will spawn.
  • Grievous Icon Grievous afflicts players with a stacking DoT when they fall below 90%.
  • Quaking Icon Quaking will periodically attempt to interrupt casters by creating a damaging zone around each player. About 3 seconds after the zone forms, it will deal 20% maximum Health in damage to each player caught in the zone as well as interrupting any hard casts being finished during the shockwave.
  • Explosive Icon Explosive will occasionally spawn Explosive Orbs that need to be targeted and burned down within a short period of time or they will deal significant damage to the party.
  • Necrotic Icon Necrotic debuffs the target of enemy melee swings with stacking healing reduction and minor DoT.
  • Skittish Icon Skittish reduces the amount of threat generated by tanks throughout the dungeon.

Focus on fitting in Unstable Affliction Icon Unstable Afflictions when you have a moment to stand, while using the movement to continually cycle Agony Icon Agony on all targets.


Seasonal Affix


Season 4: Awakened

Awakened Icon Awakened is the seasonal affix for season 4 of Battle for Azeroth. In each dungeons there will be 4 Black Empire Obelisks in various points. When interacting with an Obelisk, player will cross into N'Zoth's realm and will have to face the Obelisk Lieutenant, which will summon additional adds in aid. After the Lieutenant is defeated a portal will appear allowing the player to phase back. While phased out, players will be immune and invisible allowing to navigate through the instance and skipping parts that would have been otherwise possible only with a Rogue in the party. Players can also opt to not kill every Lieutenant before the end of the run, but doing so will materialize the remaining Lieutenants during the final boss encounter, albeit with no additional adds.

It is important to have cooldowns for each Lieutenant and to pay attention to each ability they cast:

On Samh'rek, Beckoner of Chaos, you can use the Imp's Singe Magic Icon Singe Magic to dispel Cascading Terror Icon Cascading Terror if your healer is busy, but make sure to not fear additional party members in the process.

On Blood of the Corruptor, you can interrupt Mindred Tentacles' Mind Flay cast with your Felhunter.


Mythic+ Talents for Affliction Warlock

Level Choices
15 Nightfall Nightfall Drain Soul Drain Soul Deathbolt Deathbolt
30 Writhe in Agony Writhe in Agony Absolute Corruption Absolute Corruption Siphon Life ? Siphon Life
45 Demon Skin Demon Skin Burning Rush Burning Rush Dark Pact Dark Pact
60 Sow the Seeds Sow the Seeds Phantom Singularity Phantom Singularity Vile Taint ? Vile Taint
75 Darkfury Darkfury Mortal Coil ? Mortal Coil Demonic Circle Demonic Circle
90 Shadow Embrace Shadow Embrace Haunt Haunt Grimoire of Sacrifice ? Grimoire of Sacrifice
100 Soul Conduit Soul Conduit Creeping Death ? Creeping Death Dark Soul: Misery Dark Soul: Misery

Talent Explanations

Most of our explanations are geared towards keystones that challenge the current item level of your group. If you are doing keystones that are well below the current power level of the group, you should default to our build recommended above, as you will likely be able to do pulls much larger than intended, which skews the talent choices towards AoE and burst focused choices rather than builds that support sustained damage.


Tier 1/Level 15

Deathbolt Icon Deathbolt is the default choice for many situations due to the high damage it provides. Effective on both bosses and trash, Deathbolt's power as a nuke is really nice to have.

Drain Soul Icon Drain Soul, after the 8.3 buff, is actually a viable alternative, especially in dungeons. While being only 1.5% behind Deathbolt Icon Deathbolt in pure single target, it offers execute and superior shard generation as long as there are targets dying.


Tier 2/Level 30

Absolute Corruption Icon Absolute Corruption is the neutral/passive choice for Mythic+ as it increases your AoE without compromising your single target, its main benefit is freeing some globals dedicated to Corruption uptime.

Writhe in Agony Icon Writhe in Agony should be taken on high Mythic+ keys as it greatly increases our multitarget damage. Its downside is that you need to cast more Seed of Corruption Icon Seed of Corruption to maintain Corruption Icon Corruption uptime without Absolute Corruption Icon Absolute Corruption.

Siphon Life Icon Siphon Life can be considered on Tyrannical Icon Tyrannical weeks to increase damage on bosses, and is the superior choice for strict single/two target scenarios.


Tier 3/Level 45

Dark Pact Icon Dark Pact is a great choice for challenging keystones, as the cooldown is often necessary to survive lethal boss abilities or the more difficult trash pulls.

Burning Rush Icon Burning Rush is the best choice for any situation where you feel Dark Pact Icon Dark Pact is unnecessary.


Tier 4/Level 60

Phantom Singularity Icon Phantom Singularity provides strong AoE damage and remains the best choice for single target. This is the best choice for most situations.

Sow the Seeds Icon Sow the Seeds is a potential option for groups doing very large pulls, however is currently overshadowed by Vile Taint Icon Vile Taint in that niche.

If sustained AoE damage is your focus Vile Taint Icon Vile Taint start outperforming everything else above 3 targets.


Tier 5/Level 75

Demonic Circle Icon Demonic Circle can be used creatively in some dungeons, such as to make certain bosses easier for yourself.

Darkfury Icon Darkfury can be used to provide more frequent access to AoE stuns. If you do not find yourself making use of Demonic Circle Icon Demonic Circle often in dungeons, take this talent and provide more crowd control.

Mortal Coil Icon Mortal Coil is another option if you need more/better Crowd Control in dungeons, while also offering a noticeable burst heal on demand.


Tier 6/Level 90

Haunt Icon Haunt is typically our best choice for damage, regardless of the affixes.

Grimoire of Sacrifice Icon Grimoire of Sacrifice is a small damage increase especially multitarget and can provide some utility and quality of life, as it grants the player the ability to interrupt casts from ranged or sacrifice Summon Voidwalker Icon Summon Voidwalker for an additional defensive cooldown.


Tier 7/Level 100

Creeping Death Icon Creeping Death is the passive choice, not requiring any cooldown planning but being numerically worse than Dark Soul: Misery Icon Dark Soul: Misery.

Dark Soul: Misery Icon Dark Soul: Misery is the preferred choice as it offers both stronger sustained and incredible burst potential over the course of 30 seconds. If you expect hard packs and bosses this is the best choice.


Essence Choices for Affliction Warlock

Essence of the Focusing Iris (Focused Azerite Beam Icon Focused Azerite Beam + Focused Energy Icon Focused Energy) is an exceptionally strong choice for dungeons, substantially increasing Affliction output during trash pulls, as it provides a powerful AoE cooldown on 1.5 minutes cooldown.

Blood of the Enemy (Blood of the Enemy Icon Blood of the Enemy + Blood-Soaked Icon Blood-Soaked) is an interesting choice in dungeons where you can easily stand in melee range, in order to activate the major power and benefit from both increased critical strike chance and critical damage. The 1.5-minute cooldown makes it line up nicely with Affliction cooldowns, outside of Dark Soul: Misery Icon Dark Soul: Misery.

For the choice of Minor, if you need to bolster your AoE damage, consider taking Purification Protocol (Purification Protocol Icon Purification Protocol).

Vision of Perfection's Strive for Perfection Icon Strive for Perfection with at least 1 Dreadful Calling Icon Dreadful Calling can greatly reduce Summon Darkglare Icon Summon Darkglare's cooldown to 2 minutes.

If you prefer single-target output, consider running The Crucible of Flame's Ancient Flame Icon Ancient Flame.

Lastly, for a balanced approach, take Essence of the Focusing Iris's Focused Energy Icon Focused Energy or Blood of the Enemy's Blood-Soaked Icon Blood-Soaked.


Stat Priority for Affliction Warlock

  1. Mastery;
  2. Haste;
  3. Critical Strike >= Versatility;
  4. Intellect.

Pet Choice for Affliction Warlock

The Felhunter is the best choice in terms of single target damage and if you need interrupt or purge, consider swapping to Imp if you need a dispel.

If you are using Grimoire of Sacrifice Icon Grimoire of Sacrifice we recommend sacrificing the Felhunter to provide your group with an extra interrupt. If you need an extra cooldown to survive, you can also sacrifice a Voidwalker before a difficult boss to gain access to the Shadow Bulwark Icon Shadow Bulwark cooldown.



  • 14 Jan. 2020: Updated for Patch 8.3.
  • 18 Jul. 2019: Updated for Season 3 release.
  • 25 Jun. 2019: This page has been reviewed for the release of Patch 8.2 and no changes are necessary.
  • 22 Jan. 2019: Updated for Battle of Dazar'alor release.
  • 11 Dec. 2018: Pet advice update.
  • 10 Dec. 2018: Updated for Patch 8.1.
  • 30 Oct. 2018: Updated talents recommendation.
  • 09 Oct. 2018: Updated talent advice.
  • 04 Sep. 2018: Updated for Battle for Azeroth.
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