Destruction Warlock Shadowlands Leveling Guide From 1 to 60
When leveling up, you should always choose the piece of loot with the highest item level. If the item levels are equal, you should choose the piece with stats that are most favorable to your specialization. If your current item is an Heirloom, it should not be replaced.
Level by Level Rotation and Talents
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Talents to Level Up as an Destruction Warlock
Your first talent row unlocks at Level 15.
Your talent set up should be as follows.
- Level 15: Soul Fire
- Level 25: Shadowburn
- Level 30: Burning Rush
- Level 35: Fire and Brimstone
- Level 40: Mortal Coil
- Level 45: Rain of Chaos
- Level 50: Channel Demonfire
Rotation to Level Up as an Destruction Warlock
Starting at Level 1, you only have one main attack ability: Shadow Bolt.
- Level 2 — the first DoT, Corruption, becomes available, which should be used to tag and soften up multiple enemies whenever spamming a few Shadow Bolts will not kill them quicker.
- Level 42 — Cast Summon Infernal whenever possible to burst targets down.
- Level 25 — Use Shadowburn on targets below 20% health in order to trigger the 50% additional Critical Strike chance and hopefully the shard refund.
- Level 27 — Use Havoc when there is a second target to duplicate every single-target spell.
- Level 10 — Cast Chaos Bolt whenever you have at least 2 Shards.
- Level 28 — Cast Rain of Fire when you have 3 shards and there are at least 3 targets stacked.
- Level 11 — maintain Immolate on as many targets as possible for high damage and shard generation.
- Level 13 — Cast Conflagrate when moving and when you do not have more than 4 and a half shards.
- Level 10 — Incinerate replaces Shadow Bolt for almost twice the damage and the ability to generate Soul Shard bits.
In addition to these baseline abilities, there are a number of passive effects that you unlock throughout the leveling process that are worth knowing about:
- Level 10 — Mastery: Chaotic Energies increases the damage of destruction spells by a fixed amount and then another variable amount.
- Level 14 — Backdraft makes Conflagrate reduce the cast time of your next Incinerate or Chaos Bolt by 30%.
- Level 23 — Conflagrate now has a second charge.
- Level 48 — Soulstone allows you to instantly resurrect a player.
- Level 54 — Havoc has its duration increased by 2 seconds.
- Level 56 — Rain of Fire deals 10% extra damage.
- Level 58 — Summon Infernal deals twice the damage on its initial impact.
Destruction Warlock PvP Talents for Leveling
- Bane of Havoc replaces Havoc with a ground targeted AoE variant, enabling to deal massive damage on any target caught in the area.
- Cremation increases Conflagrate's damage and is best paired with Flashover.
- Essence Drain stacks a damage reduction effect on enemies that are damaged by your Drain Life. You can reduce their damage by up to 25%, which is a large increase to your ability to survive and sustain.
- Demon Armor substantially increases your survivability, allowing you to tank much more physical damage, should you choose to do so.
- Fel Fissure is mostly useful for its movement slow while leveling.
- Focused Chaos increase Chaos Bolt damage by 40% at the cost of being unable to interact with Havoc making a suboptimal choice unless the player prefers to pull only 1 target at a time.
Pet Choice for Destruction Warlock Leveling
Summon Imp is your first available demon. This pet is not particularly useful for leveling, but you have no choice for the early levels.
If you are leveling alone, Summon Voidwalker can be a helpful choice while leveling up, as it takes a lot of the pressure off you. Avoiding casting pushback can also increase leveling speed.
Summon Felhunter can be a good choice if you are leveling in a group, or venturing into dungeons. The extra interrupt is helpful for dealing with troublesome caster mobs.
- 31 May 2022: Page reviewed for Patch 9.2.5.
- 28 Jun. 2021: Reviewed and approved for Patch 9.1.
- 03 May 2021: Clarified Shadowburn usage within the rotation.
- 09 Mar. 2021: Reviewed for Patch 9.0.5.
- 12 Oct. 2020: Guide added.
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