Leveling a Warlock: Level 2

Right then, so, continuing my guide to leveling a warlock. In this article I’m going to cover the spells and abilities gained at level 2, and there is, like last time, a video accompanied by a written summary.

NB: This guide, whilst explaining some terminology, assumes you’re not new to the game and understand its basic principles.

Level 2 then!

So essentially at level 2 we learn 2 major things: A DoT (damage over time spell) and how to summon our first pet.

Immolate is a spell which does both DD (direct damage) and leaves a DoT on the enemy. By casting it at the start of the ‘rotation’ (it’s not much of one yet), this allows the DoT the maximum amount of time to harm the enemy, so we’re making full use of it.

Our first pet is the Imp, and this is obtained through the quest from your class trainer at level 2. Whilst the quest varies from race to race, the end result is always the same: Summon Imp. You can cast this and ten seconds later an imp will appear, who will then stay with you until either you die, he dies or you dismiss him. At level 2 he only knows one spell, as can be seen from either the Demon tab on the spell book or from the pet action bar which appears, and this is Firebolt, which is, similarly to our Shadow Bolt, just a damage spell. So while you go about casting Immolate and SB and other nasties, your imp can merrily trot along behind you and blow things up, which is really all an imp does. Good times.

Level 4 coming soon!

Leveling a Warlock: Level 1

Okay, so hello and welcome to the first part of my guide to leveling a warlock! In this article I’m actually just going to cover the spells and abilities found at level 1. I’ve decided to do this guide (1-10) by video, because it’s more fun to watch a video than to read a really long article, although I’ll include a written write up of sorts alongside each video, to cover all bases. The guide will be written in several parts, dictated by the length and frequency of the videos.

NB: This guide, whilst explaining some terminology, assumes you’re not new to the game and understand its basic principles.

So, level 1!

Now, at level 1 we have two basic spells.

The first of these is Shadow Bolt, a staple warlock spell which you’ll be using throughout your career. It’s a basic damage spell – you cast, the mob takes damage. Simple, eh?

The second spell is a self-buff called Demon Skin, which, when applied, gives us extra armour so we take less damage and an effect that means we get about 20% more health when we generate health through a spell – this will become more apparent later on, when we actually have such a spell. It lasts 30 minutes.

With regards to killing things, we have a small dagger which does about 3 damage and a big bad Shadow Bolt which does about 15. Guess what we’re gonna be using. At this level all you can do is spam SB really – and so that’s what we do.

See you at level 2!

Fingers crossed

Well, finally decided I’d had enough of WoW errors causing me to DC, etc, so I’ve just spent the last day and a half re-installing the game – it took a very long time! I also discovered during this time that my internet is about 82 times faster at 1:30 am than it is at 5 pm… Oh well. Anyway, theoretically it’s problem solved now, though I must admit I’m not that hopeful about anything being fixed.

Vel.

Addendum: An apology and an announcement

Hi all,

Firstly, apologies for not having written recently, just had a lot going on IRL. But I’m still here, you ain’t gonna get rid o’ me that easily.

Secondly, just letting y’all know that I shall be working on my warlock leveling guide, but rather than just write about it, I’m going to actually jump in and level one as I write it, at least to level 10 – hence, the first part of the guide will be the 1-10 stage.

Watch this space!

Vel.

The contents of a well-traveled man’s wallet

NB: Not a WoW-related post

Amazing what one can find when rootling through one’s wallet:

  • A receipt from ‘The Family Lounge’ of P+O Ferries
  • A reservation slip from Tenpin Bowling, in my friend’s name
  • A receipt from Beamish Museum
  • A Park and Ride bus ticket
  • 2 GAME receipts
  • A receipt from RoadChef in Maidstone
  • A bank bag (the type you put coins in)
  • A receipt from Dusseldorf for Happy Haribo Cola Bottles
  • A receipt from Borders for ‘Never Hit a Jellyfish With a Spade’
  • 2 receipts from Superdrug
  • A receipt for chocolate from the Cologne Chocolate Museum
  • A Woolworths receipt with a phone number written on the top, which I don’t recognise
  • An anti-bullying helpline card from the local council
  • A Somerfields receipt – I was served by Joan today
  • A receipt for the Wensleydale cheese factory in Hawes
  • A receipt for some bitter chocolate from a shop called Hussel in Bonn, Germany
  • Another Woolworths receipt
  • A Christmas shopping list written on the back of an A4 piece of paper, the other side of which has a photocopied rough draft of a statement from my Karate instructor with regards to my Duke of Edinburgh’s Award
  • My grandmother’s address
  • A very faded receipt from somewhere called TravelCare
  • My library card
  • £5.40
  • A bus ticket from 30/03/08
  • An “If found, please return to…” card
  • My bus pass
  • A record of a bank transaction where the remaining account balance was £13.37

Just thought I’d share that with y’all.

Vel.

My rotation

Right, time to just grit my teeth and get down to it, or this post will never happen! I may produce a walkthrough video for a future post, but for the time being I’m gonna get down to business with the more ordinary text format.

Boss rotation

It’s pretty simple really. DoTs, then some DD spells, then some DoTs, then some DD, etc.

  1. Curse of Agony – Cast it first as it stays on the boss for the longest time of all my DoTs. If there’s no other Warlock in the raid, I will cast CoE, but generally the other ‘Locks like to put it up. Very situationally you may use CoD, but so rarely it’s not worth writing about, in this post at least.
  2. Corruption – Next DoT.
  3. Immolate – My third and final DoT.
  4. Shadow Bolt / Incinerate – I swap between them as I see fit, and these are just spammed until I need to refresh DoTs to be honest. If Molten Core is up, I always cast Incinerate, otherwise it’s whatever I feel like, the damage is essentially equivalent (provided you keep Immolate up!).
  5. Refresh DoTs – Generally the refresh sequence will be Corruption -> Immolate -> Curse of Agony, but as long as the DoTs aren’t clipped and aren’t left too long before they’re replaced once they run out, just do them all as soon as possible. The DoT rotation is nowhere near as important as Affliction’s.
  6. Shadow Bolt / Incinerate, etc. Rinse and repeat.

This continues until the boss reaches 35% health or less. At this point, Decimation can proc, and in conjunction with MC, which is usually up constantly anyway, it’s time to begin firin’ them souls. Now, there is a technique called weaving whereby it is possible to go SB -> SB -> SF -> SB -> SF -> SB -> SF, etc, or similar, but I believe it requires max distance and the assumption you’re not moving in order to time it properly. Personally, I cast my normal rotation and just swap a DD spell for Soul Fire whenever Decimation has proc’d. The important thing is remember to keep DoTs up – the temptation is to just cast DD spells constantly after 35%, but your dps will suffer if you don’t continue your rotation!

Solo rotation

When solo’ing, there’s no real reason to fully DoT a mob like you would a boss in a raid or instance – it’s a waste of mana and time. Therefore I usually just cast a DoT or two – usually Corruption and Immolate – and then spam Shadow Bolt or Incinerate until things die, throwing in Drain Soul where needed.

What can be fun, when killing solo mobs with fairly good gear on, is to Shadow Bolt / Incinerate the mob until Decimation procs, then cast the ‘free’ Soul Fire at another nearby mob and follow up with a SB / Incin which procs Decimation again, then cast the SF on a third mob, and continue thus. It makes for very fast killing, provided there are a lot of mobs about.

Alternatively, just spam Shadow Bolt. By level 80, you’ll need 3 at most to finish off a lot of the mobs you’ll see.

Trash

Trash is just that – trash. There’s no point wasting time working out a complex rotation for some scrawny little mobs that are really just filler before the big bad bosses. To tell the truth, use Rain of Fire on pulls of 3 or more, and spam something like Shadow Bolt on anything smaller, unless it’s Tough Trash like the big bi-pedial things in Obsidian Sanctum. In that case, they do take some time to go down, and using DoTs too is acceptable.

Misc. Notes

This is especially for bosses, but remember your CD abilities and work them into your rotation.

  • Set the FG (because what do we not do as Demo ‘Locks? That’s right, use a pet other than the FG!) to defensive so he charges in on the first spell you cast. Make sure he does attack the right mob, mind.
  • Cast Demonic Empowerment every 42 seconds, starting as soon as the FG is fighting so as not to waste it.
  • Now that Metamorphosis only has a 2.1 minute CD, it’s possible to use it twice per fight in some cases. The key here is working out when it’d be most effective – make sure you know when the Shaman is using Heroism, for example, as this is generally the best time to have a 20% increase in damage. If it’s at the end of the fight, you might be able to pop Meta at the start and have it come off of CD in time. If nothing else, use it whenever it’s up. Remember, Immolation Aura also provides a fairly large dps boost if it’s safe to stand that close to the boss. Just don’t hit Challenging Howl, whatever you do.

That’s all I can think of at the moment, but I can always come back and change the post if I think of anything else. Oh, and I haven’t included anything for PvP because it’s entirely situational and it would be impossible to write down what to do in every possible scenario. Besides, for PvP I’m speccing like GI Joe now – did someone need a light?

Vel.

Glyphs, glorious glyphs, just how do we do it?

So I’ve been deliberating as to the best way to go about this topic, and I’ve decided to settle for the following format:

  • Glyphs I use personally
  • Glyphs I could use
  • Other, usable glyphs
  • Other, non-usable glyphs (for other specs)
  • Minor glyphs

None of the glyphs listed are in any particular order, other than the aforementioned categories, though they may end up being alphabetical by accident or something.

Tally ho!

Glyphs I use

  1. Glyph of Metamorphosis – With this glyph, Metamorphosis lasts for 36s, and only has a 2.1m cooldown, assuming you have points in Nemesis, which you ought to as Demo. This gives the Meta effect an uptime of about 24%, which is pretty good considering the large dps increase the ability brings. An extra 6s certainly isn’t going to hurt you – unless you decided to spawn as an Ulduar boss today or something.
  2. Glyph of Life Tap – This is a fantastic glyph which was introduced in 3.1. Basically, by slipping a rank 1 Life Tap into my rotation every 20s, I can keep the buff up constantly with no adverse effects, granting me a constant spell power increase. Obviously the size of the increase depends on your spirit, but since I’m so cool as to have almost exactly 500 spirit, I get an increase of 100 spell power. Can’t say no to that!
  3. Glyph of Felguard – A straight-forward dps increase for the only pet a Demo Warlock should be dps’ing with. Definitely worth the slot and a glyph that should be found in any Demo ‘Lock’s glyph-space.

Glyphs I could use

  1. Glyph of Corruption – This is a dps increase, but not so great as the ones I use currently. However, if you can’t find any of the others, this is perfectly acceptable, as it should proc fairly often and does what it says on the tin – gives you an instant-cast Shadow Bolt.
  2. Glyph of Curse of Agony – A straight-up dps increase. However, you may often be using CoE over CoA, and Demo Warlocks don’t need to keep DoTs up quite as religiously as Affliction ones do, so the occasional CoA might be skipped over, which would make this glyph a little pointless. As with Glyph of Corruption, it’s a possibility, but better ones can be found.
  3. Glyph of Health Stone – If you can’t find anything better, this will help with survivability, and might be handy on a fight such as Loatheb. Honestly, though, it’s a PvP glyph and there should be better out there for raids.
  4. Glyph of Immolate – The main contender to the 3 I use, this could very easily be swapped in, especially for the Meta glyph; I’m of the understanding that this is almost equal to it in terms of dps increase, but I choose Meta instead as this one again relies on you keeping up your DoTs, which can sometimes be missed by accident. Either/or in this case.
  5. Glyph of Incinerate – Another basic increase to your dps but not as good as others. Possible for lack of anything else, or if you really like fire spells.
  6. Glyph of Shadow Bolt – This will certainly save you mana, and maybe save the healers’ mana when you have to Life Tap less, but it’s not really viable as a raiding glyph for Demonology. Better suited to shadow-specific / Destruction Warlocks.
  7. Glyph of Soulstone – I used this for a while when I didn’t have anything else, and it’s handy in 5-man heroics, etc, but in raids it’s less likely a SS will be used and more likely people will rez and run, so for the raiding Warlock it’s not that good. Might have some PvP usage though – popping back to life with full health (restored me to full anyway) could be handy.
  8. Glyph of Searing Pain – Not too sure on this one, I always advise against Searing Pain spam in raids due to the aggro issues, but it may be viable as Destro, as there are talents there to improve it anyway. Also, there would be some use in PvP, perhaps in a sniper/nuke build.

Other, usable glyphs

  1. Glyph of Death Coil – A blatant PvP glyph, and not even a very good one at that. I’d not ever take it for anything, I don’t think.
  2. Glyph of Demonic Circle – I think Blizzard were kidding about this. 4 seconds? Not worth the slot, my friends.
  3. Glyph of Fear – A good PvP glyph and one I use with my PvP off-spec. Not meant for the world of raids though (unless you really want to annoy the PuG members who have been harassing you for hours by pulling the instance down upon them).
  4. Glyph of Felhunter – I have no idea how much worth this has, and I don’t need to as Demo, because we always use our FGs.
  5. Glyph of Howl of Terror – No use in PvE unless you’re soloing and tend to pull badly. PvP-wise, it’s more useful, but not one I’d take myself.
  6. Glyph of Imp – Probably actually quite good in terms of a dps increase, except for the small drawback of us never using an Imp to dps since we have a big, bad FG.
  7. Glyph of Shadowflame – A PvP glyph designed to allow us to snare people. I don’t think it’s very popular, and I don’t use it myself. Either way, no use in PvE whatsoever.
  8. Glyph of Soul Link – Another PvP one. Unless you pull aggro badly, take tonnes of AoE damage from standing in those nasty things on the floor or enjoy tanking, this ain’t the raiding glyph for you. In PvP, it’s alright, but not hugely good.
  9. Glyph of Succubus – Need you ask? A no-go, because… We have a FG! I’m also a firm supporter of the Succubus being useless for anything except CC, so I’d not take this for PvP either, but opinions may vary.
  10. Glyph of Voidwalker – Yet again, nope.
  11. Glyph of Health Funnel – One might find this useful when soloing but I doubt it would be needed anywhere else.

Other, non-useable glyphs (for other specs)

  1. Glyph of Chaos Bolt
  2. Glyph of Conflagrate
  3. Glyph of Haunt
  4. Glyph of Shadowburn
  5. Glyph of Siphon Life
  6. Glyph of Unstable Affliction

Minor glyphs

  1. Glyph of Unending Breath – I use it, it comes in useful occasionally when swimming.
  2. Glyph of Drain Soul – Probably the most useful minor glyph we have, making it quicker to farm shards. Slightly.
  3. Glyph of Kilrogg – The third one I use, it’s not so much handy as it is fun, but hey.
  4. Glyph of Souls – Hardcore people might use this I suppose, it saves mana during raids.
  5. Glyph of Enslave Demon – Not sure anyone uses Enslave Demon except randomly for fun, these days, but if you do, here’s the glyph for you.
  6. Glyph of Curse of Exhaustion – Good for those PvP Affliction ‘Locks, I guess, bit useless for anyone without the spell though.

So, that’s that! Hopefully you can now see why I choose what I choose, and why I don’t choose what I don’t choose, and what I might choose if I couldn’t choose what I did choose but didn’t want to choose what I don’t choose. Or similar.

Until next time, when I’ll hopefully have produced something on rotations at long last,

Vel.