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Blood Pact: Meet the minions, part 3 - the succubus and crowd control, page 2


Death Coil

This is an instant cast spell that not only damages the target and heals you, it also applies a Horror effect for three seconds. Horror is different from fear in that it can't be removed but that's not a big issue on a three second duration (except maybe in that PvP thing). This is very handy for interrupting casters but while it is instant cast, it does have a travel time, so if you are a long way from the target they might finish the cast before it lands. It's also good for buying enough time to follow it up with a Fear. The two minute cooldown means you don't get to spam this one too often, so make sure you use it at the right time.

Howl of Terror

This is essentially the same as Fear in that it makes those affected by it run about screaming. The differences are that it doesn't last as long (8 rather than 20 seconds), doesn't need you to target anything and affects five targets rather than just one. This is all sounding good but if I have several mobs around me then typically they are hitting me and a 1.5 second cast isn't quick enough. It can get you out of some jams though, especially if you use the voidwalker bubble trick. You can also spend some points in Improved Howl of Terror to make it instant cast. Generally this is less a matter of CC, more a matter of buying a little time to run away and regroup.

Seduction

This is where the succubus comes in and shows off her party trick. Seduction has a cast time and is then channeled which means if she's doing this then she's doing nothing else. That's okay though because it leaves you completely free to do all the other stuff. It's a very fragile spell, in that damage to either the mob or the succubus will break it, but the fact that it's being done by the minion and not the caster makes it very powerful indeed. I found it was especially handy in places like Shattered Halls and Shadow Labyrinth where there were large groups of trash. I always used a macro to manage it as it can get very fiddly, especially if you are also fearing another mob and nuking a third (see below).

Intercept

Not commonly considered as crowd control as it only lasts for a few seconds but when needed, it can be used as CC. If you're pootling about soloing or grinding with your felguard then it's not a bad idea to just let him Intercept whenever he likes. It can delay the mob doing damage and hold them in place while the big-fella gets some threat. In instances and raids you often don't have need of the stun effect and the only reason to leave Intercept on autocast is so he gets into a fight more quickly. If you leave it off, however, you can then decide to use it at need. A focus or mouse-over macro turns Intercept into a handy panic button.

Another use I find is in the gauntlet for Thorim. As the first mini-boss dies I send a Death Coil through the door at the healer, my FG then dashes in and stuns him. In the 6 or so seconds this guy is unable to fight, the DPS have plenty of time to get into place, do a load of damage to him and be ready to interrupt any heals he might try to get off.

Macros for crowd control

Crowd control can seriously distract you from your main job of doing damage and from knowing what's going on in the fight -- both bad things to be minimized. It helps to have macros that take away the awkward work of retargeting etc. I tend to use the focus frame before the pull and set it to the target I need to look after -- this way I can use this as a condition in the macro and also keep an eye on the CC debuff so I know when it runs out.

You set your focus by targeting the mob and using the following command:
/focus
It's handy to have this as a macro on its own and then you can hotkey it to save time. Once you have your CC target focused you can target something else (the one to nuke for example) and then use a macro like this for the CC:
/cast [target=focus] Banish
This will cast banish on the mob you have focused without changing your current selected target. You can change Banish for Fear or Death Coil but if you want your minion to do something you need one like this:
/cast [pet:succubus,target=focus] Seduction
These are fairly basic macros and if you want to get more fancy you can add in all sorts of extras to make them more useful. For example, here's one I found on Wowhead that is very similar to the one I was using in those TBC heroic instances:
#showtooltip Seduction
/clearfocus [modifier:alt]
/focus [target=focus,noexists]; [target=focus,dead]
/clearfocus [target=focus,help]
/petstay
/petfollow
/cast[pet:succubus,target=focus,exists,harm] Seduction; Seduction
This looks a little daunting but basically it better controls the succubus and will either seduce your focus or (if you don't have one) it will focus your target and then seduce it.

That's it for this week -- who knew spells that don't do damage could be so much fun? Don't forget to send in pics of dead, or otherwise compromised, mages to arcanebrilliancepics@yahoo.com and bloodpactpics@googlemail.com; especially any pics of one particular mage. I'm off to go and get sweet, feathery revenge on all rogues.


Blood Pact is a weekly column detailing DoTs, demons, and all the dastardly deeds done by Warlocks. If you're curious about what's new with Locks since the last patch, check out the Patch 3.2 Warlock Guide or find out what's upcoming in Cataclysm from the BlizzCon 2009: Class Discussion Panel.

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