Warlock Specs!


Active Member
Here is a run-down of the three Warlock specialization trees as I see them.

**Note! These Pros and Cons are based around raiding.**

<(-_-)> Affliction! - Great Raid spec, Great solo PvE spec, Good PvP spec.

The Pros-
  • With improved Drain Life, every Affliction effect on the target will cause your Drain Life to go 5% more damage, up to a limit of 60%. Therefore you are healed for that much more.
  • Siphon Life Aids in healing you, allowing you to take on multiple mobs with no aid from a friend or a pet (imp is out).
  • In Raids, your Drain Life (which you should be spamming, especially in 25 mans due to Improved Drain Life) and Siphon Life help you to stay alive, making you very easy to heal. If you have an SPriest in your group, you almost require no healing intervention.
  • Unstable Affliction is wicked damage, and even Wickeder (new word) in PVP if it is dispelled. And yes, it can crit.
  • Nightfall, which is an instant shadowbolt. Nightfall 1/2 = 2% and Nightfall 2/2 = 4% chance to proc with a cast of Corruption or Drain Life. This is a very nice spike in your DPS.
  • Instant Howl of Terror, 'nuff said.
  • Low Soul Shard Dependence.
The Cons-
  • Slow damage. You have almost no burst DPS, other than Nightfall.
  • Irrational threat gains once DoTs are applied to a target, beware!
<(-_-)> Demonology! - Mediocre Raid spec, Good solo PvE spec, Great PvP spec.

The Pros-
  • Felguard. This pet is phenomenal in PvP, and is a good tool to have in PvE. It has Intercept, which can stun your target and interrupt spell casts. It also makes a viable tank for solo grinding.
  • You have absolute control over your pets, even the ability to summon one in .5 seconds.
  • Demonic Sacrifice. This ability will give you a buff depending on which pet you sacrifice. For example, when the Imp is sacrificed, it yields an additional 15% fire damage and the Succubus, +15% shadow damage.
  • Improved buffs by 30%. This means that your Fel Armor II will give you 130 +damage, instead of the standard 100.
  • Demonic Resilience. Great for PvP and Arenas.
  • Demonic Knowledge, the best talent in the tree by far. On average this gives warlocks an additional 130 spell damage at 70.
The Cons-
  • Despite all the extra +damage this spec has to offer, there are no new ways to apply damage.
  • Yes, you get a new pet, but pets are the least reliable form of DPS by far.
  • If your pet dies, you lose what Demonology has to offer, and you have to summon another one, lowering your DPS.
  • For some people, their pets are liabilities for the raid.
  • Demonic Sacrifice. Do you really want to gain a buff and lose 130 additional spell damage?
  • As a Warlock gets more geared, the benefits of the other two specs begin to out-weigh what Demonology has to offer because of how they are setup to work. (Affliction and Destruction bonuses are not based on stationary stats, ie, the pet, but on the player's stats, which are much more likely to change and improve over time.)
  • Heavy Soul Shard dependence.
<(-_-)> Destruction! - Great Raid spec, Mediocre solo PvE spec, Mediocre PvP spec.

The Pros-
  • Highest DPS output spec for a Warlock.
  • Two ways to apply damage, Shadow or Fire.
  • Shadowburn - Instant cast Shadowbolt-like damage that costs a shard to use with a small cool down. If the target dies with the Shadowburn debuff on them (target does not have to die from Shadowburn) you will receive a shard.
  • Conflagrate - Instant cast Shadowbolt-like damage that is usable on a target with Immolate on that target. Conflagrate consumes the Immolate and has a small cool down.
  • Backlash - A talent that allows you to cast an instant Shadowbolt or an instant Incinerate when hit with any kind of mele damage, whether its ranged or not. With each point into Backlash, your critical rating gains 1%, to top out at 3%.
  • The 41 point talent, Shadowfury, half second cast that does Shadowbolt-like damage, and stuns the target in the surrounding area of the spell. Great for PvP.
  • Nether Protection - This talent activates when you are hit with a fire or shadow based spell, and makes you immune to fire and shadow spells for a certain period of time thereafter.
  • When coupled with Demonic Sacrifice and Curse of Elements or Curse of Shadow, you do more damage (and that should be the only curse you use for PvE).
  • Low Soul Shard dependence.
The Cons-
  • This spec is not for solo grinding. Because your spells you should be using (Immolate, Shadowbolt / Incinerate, Searing pain) all have a casting time. Backlash alleviates this to some extent, but the spell push back is still prevalent.
  • This spec is not the best for PvP, again, because of the spell push back.
  • If you are not careful you will become the main tank.
Common Raiding Specs:

Affliction -Demonology -Destruction -Shadowbolt Spam Spec - Woot! Theres my Warlock rundown!
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Pertaining to the 0/21/40 spec, i dissagree with the mediocre solo PVE statement. I love it for solo PVE I 1-3 SB shot everything, but for PVP its el'stinko, to much standing still.

Great Post Odd:):)
The only think I could add is that while demonology seriously lowers DPS, a voidwalker + sacrfice makes a warlock very difficult to kill. In a raid, that might be good for a long fight with big hits from a boss.
I can't edit them anymore, but the demo spec, 15.41.5 is actually supposed to be 5.41.15. Darksorrow's (Illyria) reply on the Redeemed's forums pointed that out...