Home > Cataclysm, Talking about a spell, Warlock superiority > Cataclysm warlock changes @85, the cliff notes edition

Cataclysm warlock changes @85, the cliff notes edition

Ok, so you know how to play a warlock post 4.0, but you havn’t bothered to look up @85 changes? You want the cliff notes edition, quick and easy. Well here we go, this is going to be a fairly quick guide to the warlock changes at level 85, our new spells, and a few other important pieces relevant to warlocks.

Perhaps you’ve been to busy with a 11th hour, 59th minute and 58 second kill of LK or some such (I’m STILL trying to get bane, 30% wipe D:) and haven’t had a chance to look things up. Well here it all is.

Your going to have 3 new spells. Who what where how are these new spells?

Fel flame
Fel flame is our direct new damage spell. Ever wanted to just burn a critter without a cast time? This is for you. Instant critter killing satisfaction. >:]

For a slightly more practical use, this is going to be our new movement spell.

Its damage is (currently at least) pitifully weak,  and doesn’t actually get used in any rotation (although after the base damage nerf, and it might not of been caught by that, this *may* change things up a bit, need to simcraft that, or prod others with greater theorycraft foo than myself, I’ll have to do some research @85 I guess), so what do we want to use it for?

When you move. Use it. A lot.

For destruction, while moving, your priority will look something like this

  1. Soul sharded soul fires to keep up ISF
  2. Conflag
  3. Corruption
  4. Fel flame

Demon soul
This is our damage CD. What it does depends upon what pet you have out at the time.

  • Imp – Now this is the interesting one, it increases your crit damage. So when you get a crit you do 260% damage, instead of 200% damage. Then you lose some damage and only do 240% (I think its 240%?) damage.it works similarly to never melting ice crystal. You get a mass of crit, and every time you crit you lose some. Only applys to cast time spells, so not conflag.
  • Voidwalker – Essentially becomes a mini misdirect for 15 seconds, this will likely lead to some great soloing
  • Felhunter – All your shadow based DoTs deal 20% extra damage for 20 seconds
  • Fel guard – 15% haste and 10% fire/shadow damage. Sadly I never actually thought (on the beta) to test if this stacks with ISF, but my ‘gut’ tells me it won’t, I mean really? 30% spell haste? 😐
  • Succubus – Shadow Bolt damage increased by 10% for 20 sec.

This is on a 2 minute CD, and as far as I can see there is no way to reduce this, I could be wrong (I didn’t look very hard).

This is going to be something new to most warlocks, we’ll have a damage based CD, and unless you’ve been playing around with a demonology spec, this will be new, I’m forseeing a lot of “When to use?” “How to use?” Questions flying around.

The simple answer is to use it on CD, without maybe being incapacitated by something raid mechanics wise, what I mean by this is don’t use it right before bone spikes, unchained magic etc. If theres a chance you won’t get the full use from it, then its probably a good idea not to bother using it just yet.

To be slightly more complicated, you want to try and match this up with trinket procs. Esecially any major trinkets you may, with BIG or especially POWERFUL procs. A current example would be phylactery of the nameless lich, it procs 1k spell power, thats a massive boost, a massive boost + 60% crit (from Demon soul – Imp) is even better though. While doing this, you’ll also need to watch out for bone spikes, UCM, etc, and make a call if your trinkets going to come of its ICD just before one of these things, should I try to time them together? Or use it after?

Dark intent
This is a buff we can put on others (and is automatically applied to us, so putting it on warlocks is out of the question) that applys a small haste buff. Every time a dot and/or hot crits you gain 3% dot/hot damage/healing.

This might seem like it doesn’t do much for destruction but you have to remember we now have 3 spells that can apply this, and 4 that benefit from it.

  • Immolate
  • Burning embers (imp/SF dot)
  • Corruption
  • Conflagrate (despite not being a dot, this scales with immolates damage)

Who you put this on is going to depend quite a lot based on your raid composition. The following are some specs I’m thinking for now I’ll be leaving this one on any resto druid/holy priest that’s raid healing, with preference to a holy priest. This list is put together with the aim of giving YOU, the casting warlock, the most benefit. If you were looking at giving the other person the most benefit you would look not at number of dots/tick lengths but rather a percentage of total damage coming from dots.

  • Shadow priests (3 dots)
  • Others who I can’t think of now D: LEAVE COMMENTS PEOPLE


  • Holy priest
  • Resto druid

Theres a lot more depth that could be gone into with this list, taking into account the time between ticks, number of dots, and if those dots have any passive crit bonus’s, and gear stat priority’s., and to be brutally honest its a lot of work, I can’t be bothered just yet, and some classes don’t even know what stats they like most yet.

Portal hubs
There’s been a lot of talk about the portals in dalaran and shatrath being removed, but what a lot of people don’t know about is the new portal hubs in SW and Orgrimmar. These hubs house portals that can take you to all of the new zones, but only once you have been to that zone.

Uldum, deepholm, Vashj'ir and mount hyjal portals locations

Improved soul fire
While this isn’t strictly a level 85 change, for non destruction warlocks this will still be new.

In short this is a 15 second buff, with a 15 second ICD applied via soul fire hitting the target. The buff itself is 15% haste (wow thats a lot of 15’s). Essentially this is the tier 2 talent you want to aim for when your constructing your talent build. It should also be noted that this buff is exclusive with some other raid haste buffs. Namely Heroism/blood lust/time warp and power infusion. (there may be others, point them out if I’ve missed them). As such I’m sad to say that we probably aren’t the best targets for power infusion anymore. #sadPanda.

Mostly due to the long cast time, and 15second ICD this buff can be rather annoying to maintain, and has a harsh penalty if you mess it up. Especially without so much haste, the 3 second cast time of soul fire is a huge pain to recast, and soul fire hits before ISF has fallen of

If your feeling very confident of yourself, or are far away from the boss, and as such have a long travel time, I would suggest trying to get soulfires cast finished before the buff has worn of, so you can get another cast of with the 15% haste, have it wear of during this cast, and (maybe) be refreshed before the next one.

If your close to the boss, or like me aren’t very confident about it, I would suggest letting ISF get as close, if not actually falling of, during soul fires cast time. While this provides less benefit, its also less likely to screw you about.

This also gives affliction and demonology a more regular use for soul shards, I would recommend using these during large/important trinket procs, or burn phases.

Crowd control
Learn your abilitys. If your aff learn how to kite with curse of exhaustion. You have 2 primary forms of crowd control. Banish and fear. In order for fear to be an acceptable form of dungeon/heroic crowd control you’ll want to use glyph of fear. If you’re not affliction short term kiting may be done with glyph of shadowflame.

Yes. You will need to be using these spells regularly enough to deserve a spot on your bars.

Don’t want the healer to have to drink every second trash pack? CC so they don’t have to heal quite as much.

Good CC is a skill. As is the tanks picking up the rest of the adds if/after you pull with CC. CCing after the tank has pulled is also difficult, your going to have to learn. Theres going to be a lot of learning all around. Give people time to get it right, be accommodating.

Unlike some classes, we’re somewhat lucky. Our game play doesn’t change a whole lot from level 80 to 85. For the most part our class is having what I would like to say is depth added to it. We have a CD and something to press while moving. Using these right will be another way to separate great warlocks from the good and the bad ones.  Affliction and demonology warlocks will have to learn how to use improved soul fire, and work that in, its not *that* hard, but it does take work and a certain level of skill.

So really all I have to say here is…. happy dragon hunting in cataclysm! =D

(also, I liked, this post wasn’t fairly quick in the end, sorry guys >.>)

Edit; I made a mistake reading the imp demon soul tooltip, its now fixed. >.>’

  1. jayesh
    December 6, 2010 at 10:10 am

    Hmm good read. Think dark intent can be safely given to fire mages too. Their mastery does revolve around dots.

    • December 6, 2010 at 10:30 am

      I had heard that fire mages may be a good candidate, but I wasn’t quite sure of how many dots etc they had. Although (I believe) they like crit, so this may make them a valid target.

      Tbh I have a feeling that raid healers (that use HoTs, or have hots proc of direct heals) will be the best target until dps classes have the combat ratings (crit, haste) to be able to keep this up reliably. Granted this may be fight, and raid damage dependent.

  2. December 6, 2010 at 10:44 am

    “Ever wanted to just burn a critter without a cast time?” — Yeah, it’s called Corruption, and it’s even more satisfying to watch the bunny continue hopping along while knowing of its immediate and horrible fate. Especially if you get a crit and its final flop is extra high. 🙂

    I was looking at the WH page for Demon Soul and noticed that it required Metamorphosis (in the tooltip). o_O I hope that’s not true.

    “Voidwalker – Essentially becomes a mini misdirect for 15 seconds, this will likely lead to some great soloing” — or a very cool way to pop all your things and go all out while also having a threat dump. And then sac your VW when you’re done for free shielding. Especially easy to do with instant pet summoning.

    Though personally I’m wondering whether Demon Soul (assuming I can use it as afflic) will flip the succubus back over to the felhunter for a pet or not.

    “If your aff learn how to kite with curse of exhaustion.” — (l2diff btwn your/you’re plz) If you’re afflic, just learn the diff between all the curses and when to use them properly. Not just CoEx. “If your not aff short term kiting may be done with glyph of shadowflame.” <– But Afflic would still use this; glyphed shadowflame is like AoE CoEx except more speed decrease.

    "CC so they don’t have to heal quite as much." — They still have to heal through whatever the mob is going to do to damage your tank, the difference lies more in how much healing over an amount of time. CCing gives the healer time to regen and/or heal people up, not less to heal.

    "As is the tanks picking up the rest of the adds if/after you pull with CC." If the tank doesn't pick it up, then…CC it again. I mean, at worst, the healer will try to drink and people will go "wtf still in combat," but they're rather idiots if they didn't kill the CCed mob yet. If *you* are damaging adds you are CCing (which would break the CC), you're doing it stupidly & wrongly. Even recklessly.

    Dark Intent: yeah, I've heard fire mages want some. Pfffffttttt. Also, it doesn't say spell haste, it just says haste, so possibly feral cats (especially with their love of crit) can make the list as well. I've heard, anyway.

    • December 6, 2010 at 11:00 am

      Sif corruption, it doesn’t give that INSTANT satisfaction of watching it just flip over dead.

      Demon soul (Unless bugged on the beta) doesn’t require metamorphosis. Similarly to infernal/doomguard the tooltips appear to be bugged.

      I’m sorry 😦 English never was my strong suit, I’ll go fix it in a moment.

      and the difference between a CC’d pull and a non CC’d pull is actually rather large. If you CC it allows the healer to use their high HPM spells instead of high HPS. It doesn’t seem like much but it does make a huge difference.

      and yes CC is totally a pain in the ass >.>’ After doing several CC pulls in RS and dieing horribly I’ve now learnt to set my portal some way back. and to RUN.

      And I’m all for giving it to makes if it gives us the biggest bonus, we’re simply using them for our own damage increasing needs. >:] (Either way I’m totally giving it to a holy priest in return for extra heals >.>)

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