Unholy Death Knight DPS Guide — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.1.5

Last updated on May 19, 2019 at 13:49 by Abyssalwave 36 comments

Welcome to our Unholy Death Knight guide for World of Warcraft — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.1.5. Here, you will learn how to play as an Unholy Death Knight in both raids and Mythic+ dungeons: from the very beginning to maximizing your DPS.

1. Unholy Death Knight Overview

The Unholy specialisation currently provides moderate single target damage, as well as excellent cleave damage against 4+ targets. It is better in this regard when compared to many other specialisations.

2. Patch 8.1 Changes for Unholy Death Knights

3. Unholy Death Knight Strengths

  • Strong single target, AoE, and cleave DPS depending on talent setup
  • Excellent damage-mitigation capabilities
  • High raid utility in the form of Death Grip Icon Death Grip and Asphyxiate Icon Asphyxiate
  • Has ability that provides immunities to knockback and movement-impairing effects

4. Unholy Death Knight Weaknesses

  • Poor target switching due to Festering Wound application
  • Lack of damage immunity
  • Low movement speed
  • A variable amount of ramp-up time before it can deal effective DPS (due to the application of Festering Wound Icon Festering Wounds)

5. Unholy Death Knight Viability in the Current Patch

Unholy Death Knights are currently outshined in Uldir in comparison to Frost Death Knights. Unholy's current strength is in their burst AoE, which Uldir does not require much of. Unholy is very strong for trash pulls in Mythic+, with the ability to solo very large trash pulls with the right build.

6. Changelog

  • 19 May 2019 (Crucible of Storms page): Added Mythic tips.
  • 07 May 2019 (rotation page): Minor changes made to the multi-target section.
  • 06 May 2019 (mythic+ page): Updated the Mythic+ Azerite trait recommendations.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (azerite traits and gear page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (FAQ page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (gear page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (easy mode page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (addons page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (rotation page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (this page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (how to improve page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (enchants page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (mythic+ page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (spells page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (stats page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (Uldir page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (Battle of Dazar'alor page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (Crucible of Storms page): Guide added.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (simulations page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 16 Apr. 2019 (talents page): This page has been reviewed and no changes are necessary for the release of the Crucible of Storms raid.
  • 04 Mar. 2019 (gear page): Fixed gear sources.
  • 24 Feb. 2019 (Battle of Dazar'alor page): Updated boss talent recommendations slightly.
  • 18 Feb. 2019 (Battle of Dazar'alor page): Fixed the boss order.
  • 08 Feb. 2019 (Battle of Dazar'alor page): Updated talent recommendations.
  • 24 Jan. 2019 (Battle of Dazar'alor page): Updated talent recommendations.
  • 22 Jan. 2019 (mythic+ page): Updated for the release of BfA Season 2.
  • 22 Jan. 2019 (Battle of Dazar'alor page): Added first version of Unholy DK advice for Battle of Dazar'alor.
  • 22 Jan. 2019 (gear page): Added a Recommended Gear List for Battle of Dazar'alor, and an introduction to the RaidBots Droptimizer feature.
  • 22 Jan. 2019 (azerite traits and gear page): Added Treacherous Covenant and second Outer Ring information.
  • 18 Dec. 2018 (FAQ page): Added 3 new questions to the FAQ.
  • 16 Dec. 2018 (enchants page): Fixed a typo in the recommended food section.
  • 14 Dec. 2018 (enchants page): Updated the recommended food for the new personal food.
  • 14 Dec. 2018 (talents page): Updated the PvP talent section.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (FAQ page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (how to improve page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (simulations page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (gear page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (addons page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (enchants page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (stats page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (Uldir page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (mythic+ page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (azerite traits and gear page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (spells page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (easy mode page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (this page): Added Patch 8.1 changes.
  • 10 Dec. 2018 (rotation page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 09 Dec. 2018 (talents page): This page has been reviewed for Patch 8.1 and no changes are necessary.
  • 22 Nov. 2018 (this page): Added a section for viability in the current patch.
  • 25 Sep. 2018 (azerite traits and gear page): Redesigned the Azerite page to provide a tier list for each trait ring.
  • 14 Sep. 2018 (azerite traits and gear page): Updated for Azerite changes and Uldir.
  • 03 Sep. 2018 (Uldir page): Added information for all bosses in Uldir.
  • 29 Aug. 2018 (azerite traits and gear page): Added the new Bloodmallet Azerite trait chart and recommended traits.
  • 29 Aug. 2018 (gear page): Added a hectic add cleave trinket chart.
  • 26 Aug. 2018 (enchants page): Updated the consumables section.
  • 26 Aug. 2018 (talents page): Updated for the All Will Serve fix.
  • 23 Aug. 2018 (azerite traits and gear page): Updated for recent Bloodmallet sim changes.
  • 20 Aug. 2018 (azerite traits and gear page): Updated the recommended Azerite gear.
  • 18 Aug. 2018 (rotation page): Removed Chains of Ice from the single-target rotation.
  • 12 Aug. 2018 (mythic+ page): Page added for Battle for Azeroth launch.
  • 12 Aug. 2018 (FAQ page): Page added for Battle for Azeroth launch.
  • 12 Aug. 2018 (enchants page): Updated for Battle for Azeroth launch.
  • 12 Aug. 2018 (azerite traits and gear page): Page added for Battle for Azeroth launch.
  • 12 Aug. 2018 (stats page): Updated for Battle for Azeroth launch.
  • 12 Aug. 2018 (Uldir page): Page added (empty for now).
  • 12 Aug. 2018 (gear page): Updated for Battle for Azeroth launch.
  • 12 Aug. 2018 (talents page): Updated for Battle for Azeroth launch.
  • 12 Aug. 2018 (rotation page): Updated for Battle for Azeroth launch.
  • 12 Aug. 2018 (simulations page): Updated for Battle for Azeroth launch.
  • 12 Aug. 2018 (easy mode page): Updated for Battle for Azeroth launch.
  • 06 Aug. 2018 (gear page): Updated the legendary list and tier 21 description to fix some mistakes.
  • 06 Aug. 2018 (talents page): Fixed a typo in the War Mode section.
  • 30 Jul. 2018 (gear page): Updated the legendary list to better reflect the current meta.
  • 30 Jul. 2018 (addons page): Removed Corpse Shield from the macro list.
  • 26 Jul. 2018 (talents page): Updated level 56 talent choices to be more accurate.
  • 23 Jul. 2018 (stats page): Updated the stat priority for the pre-patch with a more accurate priority.
  • 21 Jul. 2018 (rotation page): Fixed the single target rotation priority to show Defile and to better word Death Coil usage.
  • 21 Jul. 2018 (talents page): Updated the talent page with more detailed explanations on certain talents.
  • 21 Jul. 2018 (this page): Updated the strengths and weaknesses section to better reflect Unholy's current strengths and weaknesses.
  • 21 Jul. 2018 (easy mode page): Updated the recommended talents and rotation priority.
  • 21 Jul. 2018 (rotation page): Fixed the Cold Heart tooltip to show the Legendary instead of the Frost talent.
  • 16 Jul. 2018 (this page): Updated for the Battle for Azeroth pre-patch.
  • 15 Jan. 2018 (azerite traits and gear page): Fixed the placement of Helchains and Magus of the Dead on rankings.
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