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Posts with tag warlock-demonology-blood-pact

Blood Pact: Stones, armor and artistry


Blood Pact is your weekly warlock digest, brought to you by Dominic Hobbs. "You have come a long way to speak with me. But fear not, I know why Gakin has sent you, and he was wise to, for I can help you in your search." -- Takar the Seer

Each week, the voidwalker hauls in the Blood Pact fan mail and dumps it at my desk. Those that don't end up lining the felhound's cage typically get used to fuel the furnaces in the succubus' torture den. Every so often, the imp picks one out and dances round the room reading it aloud, while dodging any spells and other projectiles I hurl in his direction. This week, he snatched up this one from Vincent Quillen.
Hi Mr. Hobbs,
I'm playing my first warlock currently, and it's my first character to make it past lvl 20 after trying six other classes. I'm currently at lvl 65, demonology. I've read all of your articles and they played a big part in feeding my love of the mighty lock.
The reason I write is with an idea for an article. After unlocking fel armor, i began to wonder about the various uses of the two armors and if there were any finer points that I'm missing. Also, the spellstone and firestone. As a demo lock, I expect the 1% perk to be indifferent, and my pet feeds on both stats. Is one beter hands down or are there different times for each?
Also, I've been scouring the internet for how to tell when it's a good time to pop Meta in a raid, but all i can find is people saying that it's "an artform."
Thank you for taking the time to read this, and thank you in advance if you decide to write about these questions.
Fan and loyal reader, Vincent Quillen
After suitably punishing the little snot-ball (he's currently cleaning out Matt Rossi's jock-strap drawer), I decided to indulge the little guy for once. Hell, it saved me coming up with anything else to talk about.

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

Blood Pact: Running circles around the Lich King

Blood Pact is your weekly warlock digest, brought to you by Dominic Hobbs. "The breaking of this one has been taxing. The atrocities that I have committed upon his soul. He has resisted for so long, but he will bow down before his king soon." -- The Lich King

It's been a while since Blood Pact had a foray into Icecrown Citadel, but we can't leave without a look at the king. With the increasing faction buff, more and more people are starting to encounter the final fight of the instance, either for the first time or as a hard mode. I'm not about to try and explain the whole fight; your best bet is to watch our strategy video for that. What I aim to do here is to once again look at the encounter through the filter of our spell book, to see how we can get that little bit more from the fight.

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

Blood Pact: Truth, science and flying monsters


Blood Pact is your weekly warlock digest, brought to you by Dominic Hobbs. "We do what we must because we can. For the good of all of us, except the ones who are dead." -- GLaDOS

Last week saw things in the world of WoW.com turn on their heads somewhat, with the Archmage Pants and myself trading columns for a week. A little back story might be in order. I was flicking through the forum for the Cataclysm mage changes ("Know your enemy" -- Sun Tzu) and found a lot of crying about spells being removed. For those who didn't read it, the feeling was that spells like Dampen Magic had "no clear role" in the game. Over 1,000 posts later, Ghostcrawler himself felt it necessary to step in and make a semi-retraction of the phrase to stem the flow of tears.

This experience played right into a hypothesis I have that mages are credulous crybabies. I stress here that this is a hypothesis, a tentative explanation for an observation, little better than a guess. However, these things beg to be tested and elevated to the status of theory. And so a test was performed to study both the credulity and propensity for lacrimation of mages. I put forward that this test was entirely successful in validating the hypothesis and that further such studies should be performed to corroborate -- maybe I should ask someone for a research grant. Either way, I feel that we are well on the way to scientifically proving that mages are indeed credulous crybabies.

This, my fellow warlocks, is how you come about facts. It has nothing to do with simply trusting the assertions of someone claiming a list of "facts" with no proper basis in reality. Especially when that someone is a mage.

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

Blood Pact: Leveling up through the Dungeon Finder tool

Blood Pact is your weekly warlock digest brought to you by Dominic Hobbs. "You want him? ... Oh, go ahead. I was gonna kill him anyway." -- Grand Warlock Nethekurse

Over the months, we have looked at the leveling process from a warlock's point of view. Mostly we looked at new talents and abilities, with a few glimpses at key quests. Today, Blood Pact has a look at one of the ways of getting your hands on the XP: the Dungeon Finder.

A lot of attention gets paid to using the Dungeon Finder (DF) at 80 to collect and farm emblems. For sure, this is a great way to get your fresh level 80 character some gear that will enable you to raid. But you can use DF right from level 15 (by which time you should have learned how to curse properly and figured out which end of a Shadow Bolt does the damage). It's a powerful tool for covering the rest of the distance to 80. You can even use it to get into RFC and Stocks, which previously tended to be out of bounds for one faction or the other.

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Filed under: Warlock, (Warlock) Blood Pact

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: Demonology 101

Blood Pact is your weekly warlock digest brought to you by Dominic Hobbs. "The time has come! Gul'dan, order your Warlocks to double their efforts! Moments from now, the gateway will open and your Horde will be unleashed on this ripe, unsuspecting world." ~ Medivh

You might think that you could always tell a demonology warlock on sight, its minions being bigger and more powerful, to reflect his greater dominion of demons. This isn't really the case though, every warlock's minions look the same irrespective of build. If they are over level 50 then they become easier to spot as you'll find that they'll have a felguard following them about. To be fair, he is bigger and more powerful than all the other minions.

If you're drawn to demonology so that you can summon a greater variety of demons, or maybe more exotic ones like those beastmastery hunters, then you're going to be somewhat disappointed. You'll have and use the same demons until you learn to summon the felguard then you'll have him. That said, the demonologist has an array of talents that really amplify your minion's power and also boosts your own by drawing on the power of your demon. If it is synergy with an embodiment of evil ripped from the nether that you are looking for, then this is the place for you.

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

Blood Pact: Be a raider not a robot

Each week Dominic Hobbs brings you Blood Pact. "Alert! You are marked for extermination! Calculating force parameters... Alternative measure commencing..." ~ Void Reaver

Having been a raid leader for a long time now, I'm very keen for everyone in my raids to be aware of the strategy we plan to execute. I get pretty frustrated when people deviate from it. I'm also interested in the theory and maths involved in maximizing gear choices and spell selections. When changes to warlock spell mechanics come along I always try and calculate the impact this would have on my gameplay -- and then do some research to find out what I missed or miscalculated. I believe that entering a boss fight with these things prepared is the foundation of good raiding.

You can't live on foundations though, you need a house. Being able to execute a perfect, DPS-maximizing spell rotation on a target dummy doesn't fully prepare you for dealing with a more chaotic situation. Knowing the strategy for a fight can still leave you floundering when something forces a change to your expectations. Today I want to have a look at how to prepare for the unscripted, how to be a raider and not just a robot.

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

Blood Pact: Meet the minions, Part 6 - the felguard

Each week Dominic Hobbs brings you Blood Pact. "You gotta be a moron... you gotta be a moron to wanna be a fighter. " ~ Rocky Balboa

Over the last few months Blood Pact has had a mini-series running to introduce the various demonic accessories. "Meet the Minions" has covered imps, voidwalkers, succubus and felhounds as well as infernals and doomguards. Along the way we have also covered such game-play lessons as pet-use, threat, crowd-control and mage-hate. So that only leaves the one minion to cover, the mighty felguard.

Unlike almost all the other minions there is no quest to gain the ability to summon the felguard -- you simply pop a point into the talent and this demonic knowledge is dropped into your brain. The talent is currently on the ninth tier of the demonology tree, so you will need to be level 50 before you can learn it. Even at level 80 you will need to invest almost 60% of your talent points into demonology just to reach it, leaving little room for anything in the other trees. Because of this the felguard is pretty much only seen with demonology-build warlocks. Hybrid builds were popular at the start of Wrath, but changes to spell mechanics have meant that they are rarely used these days.

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

Blood Pact: Patch 3.3.3 raid build roundup

Each week Dominic Hobbs brings you Blood Pact. "Ah, a most excellent recovery. The blood will suppress the Doomguard's magical defenses" ~ Daio the Decrepit

It's been a few months since we did a roundup of the raiding builds and how the current game mechanics impact their relative DPS. With the patch 3.3.3 changes becoming public there are a couple of interesting warlock changes that are worth having a closer look at. Back in November with the coming of patch 3.3 we saw destruction lose its crown as "the best by far." Before then it was simply hard to justify any other spec unless you were giving the Demonic Pact buff to the raid, and doing so came at a personal DPS cost, so wasn't very popular.

While we've been raiding Icecrown Citadel affliction and destruction have been pretty even in their competitiveness, with demonology still trailing along behind like a wheezy fat-kid -- you still want him with you cos he has all the sweeties, but he's not one of the cool-gang. Well, times are a-changin', that kid is growing up into a real power-house.

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

Blood Pact: Tanking the Blood Prince Council

Blood Pact is your weekly warlock digest brought to you by Dominic Hobbs. "Did they look like psychos? Is that what they looked like? They were vampires. Psychos do not explode when sunlight hits them, I don't give a damn how crazy they are!" ~ Seth Gecko

So there you are, raiding your way through Icecrown Citadel, merrily destroying everything in your path with shadow and flame, when all of a sudden your raid leader tells you that you're tanking the next boss. "That can't be right - surely" you think to yourself, "I'm still wearing this dress, I don't have a sword or shield, I don't feel any more stupid than before - why would I suddenly want to tank anything?". Well, Blood Prince Council is one of those special fights where a clothie can do the job of a meat-shield. When this is called for, there's simply no better clothie than a warlock to get the job done. So, step up and lets look at how to do it.

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

Blood Pact: Using SimulationCraft for gear selection

Blood Pact is your weekly warlock digest brought to you by Dominic Hobbs. "He who loves practice without theory is like the sailor who boards ship without a rudder and compass and never knows where he may cast." ~ Leonardo da Vinci

As warlocks, we're used to delving into the mysterious depths of the occult to seek the knowledge that brings us power. This week I'm going to attempt to lift the veil of mystery that covers what is possibly the most powerful theorycrafting tool at our disposal. SimulationCraft is a tool that anyone who has frequented the Elitist Jerks forums will no doubt have run into at least once. In my experience many people take one look and run screaming from all the "maths" that starts to intrude on their game.

With this article I would like to reduce the "fear factor" of SimulationCraft and show one way in which it can be very useful. Many of us put together lists of upgrades that we would like to get our hands on and we all do that by comparing the stats on each item. We may also use lists produced by others or even give different values or weights to an item's stats by using scores we find -- these tend to be based on theoretical 'model' warlock's gear set. What I want to show you is how you can generate these lists and scores for yourself based on your own gear.

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

Blood Pact: Mistakes other people make

Blood Pact is your weekly warlock digest brought to you by Dominic Hobbs. "So this is hell. I'd never have believed it. You remember all we were told about the torture-chambers, the fire and brimstone, the "burning marl." Old wives' tales! There's no need for red-hot pokers. Hell is--other people" ~ Jean-Paul Sartre

While I try not to read Arcane Brilliance if I can help it, I did notice that the one on January 16th had a lot of comments and an intriguing title. While I didn't expect Mr. Pants to actually start flaming mages I did hold out some hope for all those comments. Anyway, the piece inspired me to write a similar article. Not so much because there are a lot of warlocks that need improvement but rather they need a place to point others, so they may learn how to play with a lock.

So here's a short list of things I see in groups and raids that could be improved and make the whole experience a lot smoother.

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

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