Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Raiding Spec Roundup - Part 2 - 53/3/15

Today's build is a 53/3/15 build, Haunt/Ruin with Improved Imp. The imp is the affliction pet of choice at the moment, mainly because of felhunter bugs, along with a boosted imp mana regen rate which allows him to never go OOM in most raids. For the rotation, see my previous blog post on affliction raiding. Below 25% on a boss, I use drain soul as my filler, and I drop immolate from my rotation. There are a few points here or there that can vary in this build. However one thing I must stress is that once you're using decent gear, any 1 point in ISB is better than 1 point in Molten Core.

It probably goes without saying this is one of my favorite builds. I was able to pull 5700 dps on patchwerk last night using a Doomguard, though we had a bit of lag, so I think I could have done more. (Oh what I wouldn't give for one lag-free night of raiding these days) This build is also probably one of the most difficult specs to raid with. It's a complicated spec that requires absolute focused attention, the use of DoTimer, and coordination. Blizzard is going to be simplifying this spec in some way, which will be a welcome change for most. Especially considering that when the content becomes more difficult, this spec will too.

This spec thus far has been edging out the competition to seemingly be THE top dps spec. Several warlocks have broken the 6k dps barrier with this spec. The more you have to move around while using this spec, the more difficult keeping the rotations becomes. Some argue this spec loses more when you have to move around compared to other specs, but there is no way to quantify one way or the other with any certainty. But, played correctly, this spec is truly awesome.

This spec also scales far better than some might think. Haste is actually great for this spec, as it allows you to get through rotations quicker, throw more nukes in between refreshes, and ramp back up after dps pauses due to fight mechanics. It benefits tremendously from spell damage, and benefits from spirit more than any other spec as well. Simulations show this spec actually scales better than any other spec that warlocks have.

Even with the difficult rotations, I have to rate this spec 10/10. Well played, it's a kick ass spec in every sense of the word.


the mudshark said...

With this spec, are we using Curse of Elements instead of Curse of Agony when there's no Moonkin or Unholy DK?

Keith said...

Wouldn't 1/3 improved imp and 2/2 demonic power yield higher dps? Or would it push the imp to go oom?

Keith said...

I also wanted to ask you about your specific rotation at the <25% mark.
Do you find yourself waiting for one or two ticks of soul drain then refreshing all your dots (except for immolate)? What I mean it more important to get that last tick of soul drain or to keep near 100% of your dots up?

Also do you refresh corruption at 25% since it does more shadow damage or does it automatically increase?

Thank you in advice.

Keith said...

hehe I thought of another question: Pandemic seems to be about 3%-4% of my dps. What are you thoughts on possibly dropping 1 or 2 points in that and fully speccing your imp (3/3 improved imp and 2/2 demonic power)?

My mathematical skills aren't that great and it seemed that Pandemic barely edged out the Imp, but I couldn't figure out which would scale better in a raid environment. Thanks again. =D

Fallenman said...

@ mudshark. yes.

@ Keith. I honestly am not sure about flipping the imp talents around. It's not something I've personally looked at, but the theory holds merit.

Consider each tick like a casted shadowbolt. If you have a tick of drain soul, and there isn't anything you can refresh right that moment, then you'll wait til the next tick before stopping DS. Even if it means a second of downtime on a dot.

Corruption damage will automatically increase with the next refresh from EA.

As for pandemic vs imp, I would still lean towards pandemic because it scales better. But, i could be wrong, again haven't tested for sure. :)

Keith said...


Nachtschaduw said...

Would you consider 3/3 imp imp better than 2/3 eradication + 2/3 molten core?

Than another thing, would you go 3/5 ruin with 2/2 demonic power to make your imp fire faster if you're going to invest points in him?

Nachtschaduw said...

What I was thinking about too is the current utility in demons at the moment.

For example, I have no points in imp felhunter so when the other affli warlock in my guild is using his I just change to imp cause it does matter cause all demons atm are pretty crappy, but in heroics etc it might be worth to have your felhunter out on some bosses etc.

I used the felhunter on malygos last night for example instead of the imp cause the other affli warlock used his imp cause he was scared the FH would die (which didn't happen).

The problem is what I am seeing especially for destro, the idea of having warlocks think about what demon to use goes to waste when you require destro for example to put like 10 points in their imp.
I'm excluding demon cause that's not even an argument really.

Jeff said...

I was wondering if you could make a video of you going through the affliction rotations a few times (including drains soul) doesn't have to be on a boss a test dummy will do.

I have great dps/damage, tend to be #1 in both 10 and 25man but im not pulling anywhere near 5500-6000 dps
and I think it has to do with my drain soul usage and when i reapply haunt. I do it on cooldown out of "fear" it will falloff in travel time.


Fallenman said...

I'll try to get a patchwerk video up next week during our naxx. which means I'll have to stop being lazy and fix the SCT spam I get during raiding. :p

@ nacht. notice that i have changed my current choice of the affliction build to the following, as number crunching has shown this to be advantageous for dps:

Again this is assuming using CoA and the Imp.

Hrath said...

Just curious about the 53/1/17 spec. How much more damage does that 1 point in Improved Imp do compared to Molten Core?

I guess the most unsettling thing with me is the fact that there are a few fights (Sarth/Saph primarily) where a pet can be very hard to keep alive. This combined with the fact of using infernals + doomguards on bosses regularly makes me want to put those points into ISB, MC or even Eradication instead of buffing the imp. Does the number crunching account for warlocks dropping infernals the last minute or using doomguards at all?

And my last question is with a 53/1/17 spec, do you still use glyphs of Corr, SL, and Immolate or would an Imp glyph be better than maybe the Corr glyph?

Nachtschaduw said...

Screwing around a bit I found my imp was doing 100 dps (with CoE (which is most likely being put up in raid (boomkin/dk))) more than a felhunter on the heroic test dummy even though his shadow bite was affected by all my DoTs.

However, as soon as my imps mana was through which was around 2 minutes or so his dps dropped down a lot.

On one side, you do invest 3 talents points and a glyph to get him going, but I am afraid that fully raid buffed a felhunter with might and kings might be more useful cause he stacks better with his buffs than an imp that really only benefits from kings when it comes to DPS, same goes for the pet food (30 str, 30 sta).

An added bonus however is that since imp isn't melee range it tends to die less.

Fallenman said...

@ hrath.

I can't say i agree with you on the difficulty of keeping a pet alive. I have no problems keeping my imp up even on fights like sapph and 3 drake sarth. It's simply a matter of calling him back to you when it's time to avoid the major AoE things in those fights. And yes, we do use infernals and doomgaurds, but they have long cooldowns, so the imp is still going to be your pet on the majority of your fights.

And yes that 1 point in imp imp is definitely more of a dps increase than MC. For me, MC is about a 23dps increase per point, while imp imp is around 25-30 dps per point increased.

I'll have a blog post later next week discussing these very questions, along with math showing why I'm choosing these talents over others.

And glyph of imp is absolutely better than glyph of corruption. Once again, glyph of imp is a 25-30dps increase, while glyph of corruption is only around 18dps increase.

@ nacht. your imp will never run out of mana in a raid, so long as you have things like replenishment from a ret pally, etc. He seriously never goes OOM.

aside from the fact that the felhunter has pathing bugs that cause him to stop attacking randomly and temporarily, the melee armor nerf hurt him too, since his melee damage is still usually more than shadowbite is.

Hrath said...

Thanks for the reply and all info Fallen!! I hate to pick your brain but I have two more questions:
Do you only switch to 53/1/17 after you are able to reach the hit cap without Cataclysm?

There are many times when I am dpsing as Affliction and I run into the problem where I have for example 3-4 seconds left on UA/Immo or 2-3 seconds on coa/sl. I generally try to squeeze out another shadowbolt when this happens, even though my dots end up falling off for 1-2 seconds. Is this optimal for dps?

Karl Kristian said...

Very gratefull for all your great warlock work! Just wondering what the prefered glyphs are atm, in addition to the imp one?

Karl Kristian said...

Forgot to mention, what are the preferred glyphs as Affli, not all speccs:-)

Johan said...

Should I reduce my hit rating because of suppression and cataclysm or just take other talents than those? At the moment I have nearly 14% hit rating, which in raids means i am hit capped most of the time.

The reason I am asking this is because suppression and cataclysm reduces the mana cost of affliction and destruction spells, which in turn means less life-tap.

The downside of reducing my +hit would be that the demonology spell soulshatter would not be hit capped.

A bit unsure on what to do.

Fallenman said...

@ karl. immolate, imp, siphon life.

@ johan. I would stick with the gear you have, and skip those talents. the mana savings generally isn't even enough to save you one GCD. it's pretty weak.

heinrich said...

hey fallen. this is heinrich. i bullshitted with you a couple times on the class forums. thanks for all your help. you made my return to the game and affliction much easier. anyway, here's my armory link. plz comment on it in relation to gear and spec. i'm definitely dropping the two points in imp fel and want to move the three suppression and cataclysm points as well. i'll fill out fel concentration. that leaves 5. should i dump them into imp imp, molten core or isb? lastly, could someone clear up for me the summoning of doom guard or infernal towardz the end of boss fights?

heinrich said...

bah. here's the link. sorry.

heinrich said...

almost forgot. as far as point allotments go wanted your comments on the following:

which one have you settled on? 53/3/15 or 53/1/17?

Michael said...

Thanks for all the gr8 info Fallenman! I have seen stats to 5k plus on patchwerk but lpersonally did 3700 with infernal use at end. I checked both our armories and matched ur spec glyphs and have similar stats (Dagnytaggert on Frostmane) and use the same rotation u posted on wowmb . . . What could make such a difference? Raid buffs perhaps? I'll try to get a wws report. Sry for no links - on mobile device.

Cody said...

I've been running this spec for 2 weeks now, and I like it as much as you do. However I'm curious to try out the hybrid 0/41/30 and 0/31/40 soon, just wondering if you'll be trying the latter out for this roundup? Think I'm going to try it tomorrow night and compare notes if you give it a go too.
Thanks for all the advice given freely btw :)

Michael said...

Here's the armory link. I have been starting with SB>Haunt>Corr>UA>Immo>CoA>SL, then refreshing without clipping. On Patchwerk I topped the chart with 3700 dps, my infernal out about the last min of the fight, and I also dropped Immolate during DS Execute phase at <25%. Can you please take a look at our gear/stats and help me understand why I am not hitting 5000K dps? We have pretty similar stats, you have more haste. Is it likely that you are in a well balanced group and getting every raid buff possible? Many thanks for all the great info!

richard said...

Hey michael, my gear is a little worse than yours, you have more sp. haste and a tad more crit, but I have been able to pull off 4k in 25 man patchwerk with my spec which currently is 56/0/15.

Regarding your rotation, I'm pretty sure fallenman uses

"Shadowbolt > Haunt > UA > Immolate > CoA > Corruption > Siphon Life" and Ds when >25%

I have been neglecting the DS under 25% and didn't use it on the patchwerk but will definately make more of an effort to incorporate it. Michael I can only suggest using the suggested spell rotation and trying to get some food and maybe a flask. Being fully raid buffed also helps.

Michael said...

@ Richard - HOLY HASTE RATING BATMAN!!! Did you log with Embrace of Spider proc'd or something? Shows you with 696 haste!

Thx for the reminder on placing corruption later in the rotation...I corrected that and did some Boss dummy test last night and saw me immediately ramp up about more dps. I was also doing about 20K more dmg until I ran out of mana (no LT test).

Thanks a bunch Richard - I'll do some WWS testing and I am pretty sure we will get well past Patchwerk tonight so hope to have some WWS info.

richard said...

np michael and GL. And yea I definately logged with the trinket proc. It procs off of almost everything... I think logging in procs it haha.

Anyway, I'm going to be trying out this 53/1/17 spec tonight because it looks promising.

Michael said...

Definitely got great results with the new spec. I did 4100 dps on Patchwerk 25 man last night (with only 20 in the group), that is 400 more than last week on 55/0/16. 53/1/17 is the way to go - all hail fallenman!

Hrath said...

I had a question about glyphs- I've been under the impression that the glyph for CoA is largely useless and provides a very minimal dps gain (mostly helps with MC uptime). However, I have noticed that EJ is listing Glyph of CoA as being worth over 40 dps. Should Affliction be using the CoA glyph over Corruption?

Michael said...

Every affliction lock should have Immo and SL.

I have read another post indicating that the CoA dps while slightly increases, it only really give you something like 1 GCD across 168 seconds...

I switched to Corruption and found that I was getting a lot of Nightfall procs...but then after reading some of Fallenmans forums and testing out the 53/1/17 spec, I went glyph of Imp...the little sucker did 11% of my total damage on Patchwerk 25 man...nuff said.

Hrath said...

I am moving over to a guild that does not have a DS priest so I will more than likely the other Affliction warlock and myself will switch back and forth with Felhunter duty- so using the DP/Imp. imp and Glyph of Imp would probably not be a good idea.

I read the same post that you did- something along the lines that Glyph of CoA is only like a ~7 dps increase and its main use is to give more ticks to proc MC but I was browsing EJ forums the other day and notice that they it's dps worth as being ~41. If so, it almost puts it on par with SL/Immo glyphs and much better than the Corruption glyph.

Nachtschaduw said...

"It probably goes without saying this is one of my favorite builds. I was able to pull 5700 dps on patchwerk last night using a Doomguard"

When I read that again I went "wuh?", since you put 3 points in the imp and than bring out a doomguard saying it is better dps.

However, I do agree, this spec when using imp is better.

However, I think I still go back to 53/0/18 cause of the nice addition of MC and 1/3 cataclysm on addition to fights that prefer either no or different pet (patch, sapph, thaddius, heigan, gothick (like to use pets on aggresive + stay on this fight for the living side) four horseman.

Yes, on paper it's best dps spec, in reality imp out is not always viable and useless if you're going to max your dps with doomguard+infernal anyway.

Today for example I went patch 25 with doomguard/infernal and got nearly 4.6k dps, with MC and 1 in cata I might just hit up to 4.7 since I just used up 3 talent points in a pet I don't even use on the fight.

Nachtschaduw said...

Also, would like some critique on my current gear if you like cause I can't figure out why you would do over 1k dps more (granted I did miss a meta/ruin warlock on patch 25).

Is it pure the 5% crit rating? else I can't think of anything.

Do you have a wws available?

Michael said...

Felhunter bugs sometimes and doesn't attack. Also, his buff is outweighed by Aracne I don't understand why anyone would use a felpuppy unless solo questing...

I think that EJ forum missed the effect of CoA, while it adds two ticks early, it believe it changes the ticks completely, and the overall dps is not much higher...if you read WAY down in that post you will see some guy went nuts and did the math. Other that the initial poster saying CoA was good, I have seen 10 that say it is crap - I believe Fallenman has said that its SL/Immo for Afflicion and Imp (or Corr) if you want to, Imp glyph doing 25 dps, and Corr doing 18.

Fallenman said...

I think you guys kinda answered each other's questions, but if I missed something let me know.

Now one thing I'm going to warn you of right now. Pretty much since the start of WOTLK, Mal'Ganis has LAG terribly bad just about every night. The one night we didn't have lag was the 5700 i did on patchwerk.

That parse is here:

Note that WWS doesn't include doomguard to the owner. So add the doomguard to my total here:

Michael said...

Just found this update on fix to Glyph of CoA - now adds ticks to end:

Michael said...

@ Fallenman - Sorry to go off topic - not sure where to ask about Trinkets...the wowmb page kinda fails for such a specific question.

I was using Egg of Mortal Essence and Sundial of the Exalted. Just got Extract of Necrotic Power. Noticed you use the two latter items. I did a lot of test dummy work and it seemed like missing that 98 spell power hurt me slightly, and at lootrank, it actually ranks the Sundial and Egg both higher than the Extract, with ** of course. Thoughts?

Fallenman said...

I'd actually direct you to a thread on EJ. The trinkets you mention are all discussed in depth.

Michael said...

Awesome - thanks!

Samuel said...

since the last comment someone posted in 2 weeks ago, i don't know if this blog is still active, i hope so.

Hello fallenman!
first of all, thank you for your inspiration. i fell in love with my lock in vanilla wow is because of its affliction tree.

i have read a lot of posts from elitist jerk, your blog site, this site and i finally chose my stand in a talent spec for raiding. Affliction.

this spec has taught me a lot to become a discipline and focus raider. 7-8 dots is not an easy juggle, but with lots of practice on dummies, raid bosses. it's quite a challenge yet manageable, and i find it sometimes during boss fights i want the fight to last longer lol. coz as affliction, we last longer than anybody else.

now. to the point. i managed to acquire my gears and got a hit rating of 468 hit rating without any gem socketed. spell power is 1974 unbuff (my birth year) since crit and haste is a lower priority as an Afflock i'm not going to mention it..
now my talent looks like this

and my gears in armory as follows:

as you can see , since i'm already hit cap, i choose not to put any points in supression, and catalysm. i put 2 points into Improve drain soul as threat is becoming an issue for me now.and 1 point in fel concen, 23% is still better than 0% imo.
and i still have 2 points left undecided where to put.

i was thinking of putting them into Improve Imp 2/3. but somehow after reading alot of posts, something tells me i have a few options that i should do.
a)put the remaining 2 point all in molten core. becomes 3/3
b) respec and put all the 3 points into improve imp. (no molten core, everything else is the same)
c) respec and go bald figuring out distributing 4 points into 0/3 improve imp and 0/2 demonic power.(no molten core, everything else is the same)

what do you think. i'm not sure how to do a calculation for all these 3 options for maximising dps.
currently, with imp out on dummy i'm only 3.3k dps. is that normal?

thank you for taking the time to read and looking forward to read your replys.

cheers..from Da-Bag

heinrich said...

53/1/17 is the way. ur points in threat reduc aren't necessary. its ur tanks' fail not urs. dumping 3 points in fel concentration is the best use imo. armory heinrich of bonechewer (us) to see how i distributed the points. use glyph of sipon life, immolate and imp. of note (per elitest jerks): 1 point in mc is good, 2 is ok, 3 is over doin it. the imp glyph with 1 point in imp talent combine to make to the effect of 2 points in imp imp. with the two in demonic power, you'll gain more net dps then you would from investing points in mc (especially if you're dumping more than 1 into it). make sure u using ash's dot timer and use the following rotation: (coe)sb,haunt,ua,immolate,corruption,coa,siphon life and refresh as needed. use coe only if there's no boomkin/unholy dk in raid. drop immo and use drain soul at 25%. the rotations become easier as they become familiar. within a week or two you'll see its no challenge at all. things get funny when lots of movement's required but other than that it's still e-z mode. after work i'll post wws reports of a couple of my guild runs. i'm less geared than the other locks, but i out dps them by far. ones imp/deep destro and the others imp/snf. both out gear me yet i trounce them on meters (and yes, they do know how to play). deep aff is max dps spec.

Ssejors said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ssejors said...


You Sir, Are a God Among Mere Mortal Men!

Thank you again!