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Posts with tag chaos-bolt

Blood Pact: Destruction 101 at 90 in the end of Mists

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Blood Pact for affliction, demonology, and destruction warlocks. This week, Megan O'Neill mentions in a quick announcer voice that green fire spells are sold separately.

So, you just boosted to 90 on your warlock and...now what? This whole pet deal is bananas to you and maybe you've heard that destruction (often abbreviated as "destro") -- is a simple spec, so you figure you'll try that one out first. but where do you start? And how can you learn without embarrassing yourself?

Let's start, shall we?

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Filed under: Warlock, (Warlock) Blood Pact, Mists of Pandaria

Blood Pact: Flow like a shaman, sting like a hunter

Blood Pact Flow like a shaman, sting like a hunter MON
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Blood Pact for affliction, demonology, and destruction warlocks. This week, Megan O'Neill wants to look into a popular counterargument to the nerfing of Kil'jaeden's Cunning.

Or not, as I'll argue we warlocks have our own style of play.

The damage dealing game isn't just about turning a mob down to 0 points at the end of the night, but about using the mob's health bar to vault over cooldown or resource barriers. Turning a warlock into a sitting duck in PvE requires either getting rid of all the mob health bars or getting rid of the warlock, which is usually accomplished by movement or threat of certain death. This struggle against being useless is what makes choices in a damage dealer's arsenal meaningful.

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Filed under: Warlock, (Warlock) Blood Pact, Mists of Pandaria

Blood Pact: Patch 5.4 has a few ups but mostly downs

Blood Pact Patch 54's ups and downs MON
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Blood Pact for affliction, demonology, and destruction warlocks. This week, Megan O'Neill's raid sadly realized that the changes to KJC mean there will be no more air-bound soulwells.

Well. It's been a hell of a week on the PTR for warlocks, hasn't it? A few of the original patch notes have been changed for the better again in response to player feedback on the forums.

Don't get me wrong, Patch 5.4 is still largely a depressing bunch of nerfs for warlocks. But let's go over the changes and make sure we have everything straight. The usual disclaimer of "things can and may change" still applies to all of these patch notes.

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Filed under: Warlock, (Warlock) Blood Pact, Mists of Pandaria

Blood Pact: Inner demons in our talent selection

Blood Pact Inner demons in our talent selection MON
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Blood Pact for affliction, demonology, and destruction warlocks. This week, Megan O'Neill thinks it's too difficult to convey moving while casting in a static screenshot, so, instead, have the Scholomance potion guy in front of a Demonic Gateway.

We covered Karazhan's pets, mounts, and fun last week, so this week, we'll cover Serpentshrine Cavern and Tempest Keep in the continuing quest to colle--

No. Sorry. If you really thought I was going to skip this past week's bombshell of warlock PTR patch notes for collecting pets from retro raids, I will scold you later for having no faith in me. Let's talk level 90 talent problems.

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Filed under: Warlock, (Warlock) Blood Pact, Mists of Pandaria

Blood Pact: Catching up on Patch 5.3

Blood Pact Catchup on Patch 53 MON
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Blood Pact for affliction, demonology, and destruction warlocks. This week, Megan O'Neill is free to pet battle all day, e'ry day.

I tried to gauge when Patch 5.3 would hit so that I'd end the series on World of Logs just in time, but unfortunately I overestimated and the new patch has cut me off. With my original plan of posts, I'd be a week short, but now...uhhhh it might be a halftime break.

In case you've missed the World of Logs posts so far, here's a recap:
  • A brief overview of ranking and the combo of how to tell what warlock or pet you would or should be looking at,
  • Looking closer at some of the graphs on World of Logs, and
  • How to use the buffs and debuffs graph to gauge proper cooldown or proc usage, as well as a basic understanding of what stats (for trinket procs) do for each spec.
I intend to explore some warlock-specific examples using the expression editor to dive deep into the combat log, but I'm not sure I can fit it all into one post. I'll finish the series off with a deeper look at the damage done tables and how the spells spread for each spec in general raid encounter styles.

But this week? This week is a little shorter and lighter while we go over what Patch 5.3 means for warlocks.

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Filed under: Warlock, (Warlock) Blood Pact, Mists of Pandaria

Blood Pact: The chaotic influence of haste

Blood Pact The chaotic influence of haste MON
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Blood Pact for affliction, demonology, and destruction warlocks. This week, Megan O'Neill may play affliction in-game, but really she's a destro 'lock IRL.

I'm starting to dislike hit rating again. Previously, with reforging, it was totally possible to sit there with 14.96%, 14.97%, 14.98%, 14.99%, or the occasional rare times I nearly hit fifteen-even, just off by a mere handful of rating points. Now, with the huge amounts of stats on our gear, I feel like we're approaching Wrath-era hit rating juggling, where a new piece means you're way under hit cap or way over hit cap.

This is not a fun stat balancing. Hit is coming back around to the pre-reforge era where it it's actually irritating to balance, not just annoying.

But I don't want to talk about spell hit this time. I want to talk about the very-coolness of haste.

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Filed under: Warlock, (Warlock) Blood Pact, Mists of Pandaria

Blood Pact: Playing an 85 warlock with MoP mechanics

Blood Pact Playing an 85 warlock with MoP mechanics MON
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Blood Pact for affliction, demonology, and destruction warlocks. This week, Megan O'Neill recovers from a near-death experience on beta in Vortex Pinnacle involving Falling Meteor.

Tomorrow, we can summon a wrathguard or an observer or a shivarra. Tomorrow, we can have AoE Drain Life. Tomorrow, we can ride felsteeds on water. Tomorrow, we can enter Metamorphosis whenever we wish. Tomorrow, players everywhere will be begging the superior class for summons. (I take bribes).

I've got your back with a summary of what to do as an 85 warlock with Mists of Pandaria mechanics in the final month of Cataclysm. Later, I'll flesh out the differences between levels 85 and 90. We'll visit tier 6 talents again, look at consumables and enchants, and get your gear ready for tier 14 raiding.

But for now, you just need to survive patch 5.0.4.

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Filed under: Warlock, (Warlock) Blood Pact, Mists of Pandaria

Blood Pact: Leveling is much better in Mists of Pandaria

Blood Pact Leveling is much better in Mists of Pandaria
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Blood Pact for affliction, demonology, and destruction warlocks. This week, Megan O'Neill delayed downloading the new beta build in favor of getting her witch doctor to 60. Priorities!

With the overhaul to the warlock class coming in Mists of Pandaria, guildmates and friends have been wondering whether to revive old warlocks or not. Those without warlocks on their character screens have been asking the age-old question: Should I level one now or wait until the expansion hits?

Unless you're particularly masochistic about your leveling, my advice is to wait. Here's why.

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Filed under: Warlock, (Warlock) Blood Pact, Mists of Pandaria

Blood Pact: Leveling a warlock, 60 to 80

Blood Pact is your weekly warlock digest brought to you by Dominic Hobbs. "Did you think we had forgotten? Did you think we had forgiven? Behold, now, the terrible vengeance of the Forsaken! Death to the Scourge! And death to the living!" ~ Grand Apothecary Putress

Whether you're racing towards the endgame or pootling along enjoying the ride, everyone likes to make that leveling experience a little smoother. Blood Pact caps off this series of guides with a look at the final (for now) twenty levels. We'll look at the talents you can play with, the spells you can learn and some of the quests you don't want to miss. We'll be covering the Outland and Northrend experience from the warlock's point of view.

Maybe you have been leveling for a while and are looking for some insight into this final push or have had a lock 'parked' at 60 or 70 for some time; hopefully this guide will help you push that demon-loving toon to the final malefic leveling milestone.

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Filed under: Warlock, (Warlock) Blood Pact

Blood Pact: Spelling test


With a flash of flame and a gout of smoke, Blood Pact appears again! It demands that columnist Nick Whelan make a sacrifice! Either he must write on a relatively simple subject this week, or be doomed to perform poorly during his finals! Left with no other recourse, Whelan submits to the will of the column.

Spells are the essence of playing a Warlock. Just about every part of playing the game, save role playing, has spell casting as a central feature for us. Fighting for control of Arathi Basin, dueling on matters of honor with some upstart Mage, questing and leveling, or any instance from assailing Defias scum in The Deadmines, to unlocking the secrets of Azeroth in Ulduar. Without spells the only things a Warlock could do would be run, jump, and weakly bonk our foes with our staffs. And there just aren't enough platforming sections in WoW to make that kind of thing fun.

Depending on our spec and in-game vocation, different Warlocks focus on different spells. And the decision of which spells to focus on is based on numbers. Such as the time required to cast the spell, potential damage output the spell has, or the amount of time that the spell will allow us to reign destruction on our foes while they run around screaming in abject terror. Understanding the mechanical uses of spells is essential if we're to be effective Warlocks. But as I've said in the past: Rain of Fire isn't just an area of effect spell channeled over 10 seconds which causes 2-3k non-crit damage every 2 seconds to enemies within a 15 yard radius--it's fireballs falling out of the sky!

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Filed under: Warlock, RP, (Warlock) Blood Pact

Fire and Brimstone buffed for patch 3.1.2


When patch 3.1 went live, Destruction warlocks (and 0/40/31s) had a lovely time smacking everything in sight with massive Conflagrates. This was promptly nerfed, for PvP purposes; the devs felt it was overpowered for 'locks to be able to do that much, that fast. However, it was acknowledged that Destro would need some PvE buffing to make up for it.

It looks like we'll see that buff in patch 3.1.2, when the deep-Destro talent Fire and Brimstone is currently planned to be changed to:

The first part is entirely reworked, and the second part used to only apply if your target's Immolate had 5 or fewer seconds remaining.

There was also a brief and terrifying time where they were considering changing Glyph of Conflagrate to give an entirely different effect, but fortunately, the current plan is to leave it as-is. Will this F&B revision be enough to make Destruction competitive with Affliction again? We'll see; I know I'll be trying it out.

Filed under: Warlock, Patches

Blood Pact: Destruction, my guilty pleasure


If you've been reading my Blood Pact posts in the past, you might already be of the idea that I'm not a big fan of Destruction. I'll be the first to admit that it just doesn't suit my playing style. I really enjoy DoTs because I like being able to move around, which is why I was a huge fan of SL/SL before Patch 3.0.2 broke it. I like Demonology, too, because it takes a bit of strategy to play well if you choose to go the route of utility. But I've never liked Destruction. Spamming nukes and not having a pet out -- I raided with 0/21/40 before Echoes of Doom -- didn't feel right. I felt like a Mage in Warlock's clothing.

But let's get this out of the way before I get (Shadow)flamed. I understand that some of you enjoy Destruction. I know that some of you like playing with Fire and Shadow. That's cool. I want to play with it, too. So I did. This whole week, all I did was muck around with a full Destruction build that went all the way up to Chaos Bolt, casting alien-like nukes, jets of fire, and burning things up. So how did it go? I surprised myself... because I actually had fun.

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Filed under: Warlock, Analysis / Opinion, Talents, (Warlock) Blood Pact

[UPDATED] Warlock changes in patch 3.0.3


Patch 3.0.3 isn't a hefty patch by any means, but it did bring some pretty nice changes for Warlocks. Some were simple bug fixes but others were outright improvements. As we reported, the Dreadsteed spell will become trainable to all Warlocks at Level 61. Players no longer need to do the quest line, which opens up at Level 60. The character must have Journeyman riding skill and the Felsteed spell learned.

Despite this welcome change, I implore all Warlocks to do the quest. It is one of the best and most flavor-rich quest lines in the game, and any Warlock worth her salt will have fun keeping up the Bell, the Wheel, and the Candle. The cost of materials are trivial in the new economy, so there really shouldn't be any excuse not to do the quest now. High level friends can and should (we're Warlocks, after all) be bribed to chaperone Level 60 Warlocks with the Dire Maul Achievement.

[UPDATE: Thanks to our industrious readers, I needed to change my shorts (I'm sending you my dry cleaning bill, Augustus) when I read about this change... the coefficients to Corruption and Immolate were significantly buffed to 20%. That's just... wait, let me change my shorts again (blast you, Augustus!). Oh, and apparently Ritual of Doom is actually cool now. It no longer kills a party member, the Doom Guard lasts for 15 minutes and just disappears afterwards like a zit to Oxy afterwards. How polite. So wow, yeah. Bdew, you can split my dry cleaning bill with Augustus.]

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Filed under: Warlock, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Talents

Patch 3.0.2 primer for Warlocks part III

Destruction
Long considered the most efficient raiding spec throughout the Burning Crusade, Destruction will get a run for its money with the new and improved Affliction. It also remains to be seen if Blizzard's efforts at steering the spec clear of mindless Shadow Bolt spamming will prove successful. Certainly, there's more emphasis on Fire spells this time around, which we'll see deeper into the tree. If you do spec deep Destruction, do tell me how it goes. Send me a postcard from Naxxramas.

Change is felt right off on the first tier as the popular Bane is moved up here. It's exactly the same, so getting it a tier earlier is a definite buff. Improved Shadow Bolt is unchanged, but I'd hold off on putting points here. Unless you're determined to pursue a Shadow Bolt spam spec, there're a good bunch of talents deeper in the tree to spend your points on.

Cataclysm swapped places with Bane but was buffed in a sense because it now just costs 3 points for a 3% cost reduction but now grants crucial +Hit. We'll need it as we level up and re-gear in Northrend. Three points here is mandatory. In more point-saving generosity, Aftermath was reduced to a 2-point talent for the same effect. Does it make the talent any better? No, it still sucks. But now it sucks for three points less.

On tier two we also see Molten Core, a new talent introduced to mix things up a little for Destruction. Molten Core encourages the use of DoTs, which are likely to proc it more than Shadow Bolts. This is great talent for Destruction Warlocks looking to specialize in Fire spells, as well as low enough in the tree for other specs such as Demonology, to pick up. If we want to diversify our play style, we should put three points here.

If you're only branching out to Destruction from another tree, you might be faced with the decision of choosing between tier three's Shadowburn and a 51-point talent. I'll say it right off that you should skip Shadowburn. On the other hand, if you're moving deeper into Destruction, pick it up because you'll be sure to find a use for it. Five points in the more accessible Ruin is mandatory, as well. We can skip Demonic Power, which is essentially Improved Lash of Pain and Improved Firebolt rolled together. [EDIT: Sephirah correctly reminds me that Demonic Power ups DPS directly because we're going to have our Imp attack, anyway. So, score some points for Demonic Power!]

The unchanged Destructive Reach on tier four is mandatory while the other talents are completely optional. If we're looking to PvP as Destruction -- why not? -- we should pick up Intensity not just for the pushback protection but because it's a prerequisite for a stun effect. We'll save points by skipping Improved Searing Pain. No, really. We're going to skip it.

Devastation was moved to tier five, swapping places with Ruin. Now it's one talent point for a 5% crit, which is one of the best single point investments we can make in any tree. We'll also want to get Improved Immolate because aside from the fact that it's been buffed from 25% to 30% for two talent points less, we'll need it to get something really cool deeper in the tree. Besides, Blizzard really wants us to use Immolate. Pyroclasm is entirely optional, even for PvP considering the only spell we'll really use that can proc it is Conflagrate.

We want Emberstorm. It's that simple. 10% more damage from Fire spells and a faster Incinerate is sweet. Also on tier six is the reworked Nether Protection, which now procs off any spell. It no longer grants immunity, but a damage reduction from any school. In some ways it's a buff since it can protect against Frost or Holy, for example, but it also no longer confers immunities to Silence or other Shadow spells (which probably wasn't intended to begin with). Unless we want more mitigation in PvP, we can skip that.

Tier seven is where it begins to get a bit tight. We want Conflagrate, since it's an excellent one point investment. If we're raiding, we can actually skip Soul Leech since we really should be healed, anyway. If we solo or PvP, it's a great talent to have. It also opens up opportunities for our pet on the next tier. Backlash is another PvP talent for those time when Rogues or Warriors are being mean to us, but because there's a 3% crit bonus, I'd say we pick it up.

Up next is Shadow and Flame in tier eight, which we'll max out because it scales Shadow Bolt insanely and tempt us to just spam the thing. Fortunately it also affects Chaos Bolt and Incinerate, so we may steer clear of the evil path of mindless Shadow Bolt spam. Since we skipped Soul Leech, we're obviously locked out from Improved Soul Leech. But feel free to pick it up for pet loving if you have points to spare.

On tier nine, I'm skipping Shadowfury only because we've been moving away from PvP-centric talents in this post. I know, I know, some of you insist that Shadowfury is awesome for PvE, so you can very well spend that talent point there. It's just one point, anyway. What I'm really interested in is Backdraft. Didn't I say Improved Immolate would lead to something cool? Well this is it. It's a mini-Bloodlust or Heroism for three spells. Because Destruction is all about cast times, 30% haste is gold.

Then we get Empowered Imp on the same tier. Check out that icon. That's one badass Imp. If little Rupjub crits, I crit. Well, almost. I get 20% more crit on my next spell, which is pretty darned good. The idea is to get the Imp into the action by spending talents to make it hit hard enough. He'll crit eventually. Here's where we can revisit Improved Soul Leech to keep the little guy topped up. See, I told you to hold off on getting Improved Shadow Bolt.

If you find spamming direct damage spells a little mind numbing, you can invest some points into Fire and Brimstone. Didn't I tell you that Blizzard wants us to use Immolate? Well, here you go. Immolate will hit hard with this talent. The cool -- or uncool, depending on how you look at it -- is having to watch Immolate's duration hit the 5 second mark before throwing out a Conflagrate. Yes, I know this screws our timing up, but someone's bound to make an AddOn to tell us when to cast Conflagrate. Right? Anyone? Bueller?

And then there's Chaos Bolt. It's a 51-point spell on a 12 second timer. Sure, it pierces through absorption effects and all that stuff... but 12 seconds? I mean, I can't kill a Pally with it anymore and I can only cast it every 12 seconds. Well, we're getting it anyway. We've gotten this deep, right? Besides, it deals whopper damage and it's great for teaching those Shadow Cloaked Rogues a lesson. It's a pretty decent one point investment and can do wonders once we figure out how to work it into our newly confusing and complex (but fun!) rotations.

Well, that's the last of our Warlock talents primer for 3.0.2. I hope that helped you decide which direction you want to take your Warlock when the realms go up. I'm leaning towards a hybrid myself, but Haunt is so deliciously sexy...

Zach helps guide you through the changes in 3.0.2, so you can be enthralled in all the demonic love Blizzard's thrown together. Check out other 3.0.2 Talent Guides, too, as well as everything about the so-called Echoes of Doom.

Filed under: Warlock, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Guides, Talents, Wrath of the Lich King

So much for Chaos and other Warlock stories in build 9014

You might have heard that Chaos Bolt now deals Fire damage instead of the nebulous "Chaos" damage, which was actually an amalgamation of all schools of magic. On one hand, this is good news because getting Kicked or Counterspelled while casting it won't lock Warlocks out of every spell. On the other hand, this means Fire immunities will stop it cold. This makes the spell easier to implement or work with, and further enforces the use of Fire spells for Destruction. It's not even a Shadow and Fire version of Frostfire Bolt. It's just... a bolt Fire that looks like Alien larvae.

Now, the coolest thing about Chaos Bolt was how it conceptually penetrated through immunities. Ghostcrawler explained that making immunities have vulnerabilities would only create a vicious cycle. Now, the spell only goes through absorption effects -- which is fine, really, but makes Chaos Bolt merely another direct damage Fire spell. Is it a great 51-point talent? I don't know. It deals pretty good damage, I'll give it that. But I'm not sure it's worth 51 points.

Curse of Doom can now only produce Doomguards from targets that yield experience or honor, which was a necessary change considering it's now a 100% chance if CoD delivers the killing blow. It still can't be cast on players, though, which is a bummer. Haunt was retuned to heal for 100% of the damage it deals, which isn't so bad considering the 200% I raved about last time was bugged to hell, anyway. Oh, and Everlasting Affliction affects Haunt instead of Shadow Bolt, which is excellent because it relaxes Affliction's already complex rotation.

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Filed under: Warlock, Analysis / Opinion, Talents, Wrath of the Lich King

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