Tag Archives: Draenor

Warlocks of Draenor: Build 18522!

A new beta build went out while I was sleeping, and it contains a few changes for us! Shall we have a look?


  • Demonology 2pc: Hand of Gul’dan now has 1 additional maximum charge, and Corruption has a 10% chance to generate 1 charge of Hand of Gul’dan when dealing damage.
  • Destruction 2pc: When Immolate deals damage it has a 15% chance to generate a full Burning Ember.
  • Destruction 4pc: When a Burning Ember is filled up, you have a 25% chance to get a Chaotic Infusion. Chaotic Infusion reduces the cast time of Chaos Bolt by 50% and causes Chaos Bolt to consume no Burning Embers when cast.

Well, look at that. With the Charred Remains talent and the 2/4pc set bonuses, you’re gonna be seeing a LOT of Chaos Bolts. Like, a huge amount. I’m all for Chaos Bolt, but would that run the risk of making casting it TOO frequent? I’m not suggesting that this will turn us into the Arcane Mages of Cata, but we’d be somewhat close.

The addition of an extra charge to Hand of Gul’dan is a nice change, and will hopefully ensure that procs of the HoG charge don’t go to waste.


Soul Swap now costs a soul shard to use, meaning Soulburn: Soul Swap will cost TWO shards. General consensus seems to be that as we’ll spend a lot more time manually refreshing DoTs rather than spreading them around easily with Soul Swap, we should get a damage buff on the DoTs to compensate. This, combined with the Soulburn: Haunt talent, means you’ll be out of shards in 5 seconds if you’re not careful. Personally, I think this can be seen as a limit on Affliction’s multidotting. Just look at some of the DPS logs for Affliction on Fallen Protectors, and tell me that was intended.

To reduce the risk of wasting a valuable shard, however, I feel that the 3 seconds you hold the DoT for should be lengthened slightly. Not necessarily to the 30 seconds of old, but maybe to 6? Even 10?


Now, instead of lasting 15 seconds, it lasts 8 seconds, but the cooldown has been halved too, to 1 minute.

Honestly, I’d still prefer Fel Flame. Sure, this iteration of KJC is slightly better, but it still isn’t “on-demand” movement DPS. You hit the ability, move for 8 seconds, and hope that there’s both no more movement than that, and that you don’t have to move a second time until the spell’s back off cooldown. With Fel Flame, we can throw that out as we move, then settle back into our rotation (which looks to be Chaos Bolt Chaos Bolt Chaos Bolt) rather easily. Sure, being able to do our rotation on the move is nice, but what happens when it’s on cooldown, and we need to move again? Nothing.

Well, that’s the news I guess. A small amount of changes that have big repercussions on how we play. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Let’s hope the new patch notes fall in our lap soon. That’d be nice. Until then, have a paladin and a panda.

Lorewalker Cho makes EVERYTHING better.

Lorewalker Cho makes EVERYTHING better.

#warlordsofdraenor #warcraft #warlock


Warlocks of Draenor: FEL FLAME?!

Well, isn’t that just the most spiffing piece of news you ever saw? Yes, after countless weeks of complaining, we may be getting Fel Flame back! We’ll have that totem crusher, that button to press when we’re moving and Conflagrate is on cooldown, that easy way of nuking a low HP target in old raids/dungeons! Speculation time! Reduced effectiveness could mean a number of things.

  • Increase the mana cost. Frankly the mana cost prevents you from chain-casting the spell as it is. As Destruction you’ll get the mana back fairly quick, but with Affliction and Demonology, you’ll have to Life Tap, which can be rather dangerous if you’re not careful about it.
  • Reduce the damage. Frankly, as long as we are outputting SOME damage when we move, instead of literally not pressing anything, then it’s a gain for us.
  • Eliminate ember gain. Leaving the above two things as is, and preventing us from gaining embers looks to be the best solution. We have something to do when we move, but when we’re NOT moving, we will do our standard rotation, because if Fel Flame doesn’t give embers (or only does on critical strikes), then it’s not gonna push any spells out of our rotation.
  • Give it a short cast time (that we can move during) or a cooldown to prevent spamspam.
  • (idea courtesy of @Dobablo) Same damage as now (scaled appropriately for the stat squish of course!), but applies a debuff called Burnt Out, which reduces the damage of the next cast by 50%.
  • Some profane combination of some/all these things.

While it remains to be seen what will happen (or if we even get it back at all), it’s always fun to speculate. We’re still waiting on updated patch notes too, as this batch will almost certainly contain our further pruning (of which we know at LEAST includes our curses and our instant demon resurrection abilities).

And it looks like they’ll be coming soon.



Warlocks of Draenor: Build 18505

Well, it’s a new build, stuff has been datamined, let’s get to it.


First of all, a book has been added into the game. Grimoire of Summoning Secrets. It reduces the cooldown of your Summon Infernal and Summon Doomguard by a whole 8 minutes!

And yes, it definitely is an Ashran-only thing. Each class got an item like this, and most of them were missing the clarification in the tooltip.

Nice to have, but it seemingly becomes useless if you take the talent that allows you to have one of these pets permanently. Does this mean we get screwed over? Could they be changing this talent to something else? Wait and see, I guess.


We also have a look at our non-mythic tier set! Looks pretty snazzy, and I kinda like it more than the Mythic set, which is probably a good thing as I won’t be doing Mythic raiding. Click the picture to see it big!



I prefer the Mythic shoulders, but I like the rest of this set a lot more. I think the purple one looks more warlocky, but the red is nice I guess.


It’s back! And it’s been reworked slightly! You may remember that there was a blanket removal of some CC, one of them being disarms. Our Voidwalker and Voidlord’s Command Demon ability was a disarm, and now it’s Suffering, ie a taunt. We can command our demon to taunt off us when we want now! This is a lovely change for me, as I am quite often pulling threat off an enemy, or in danger of being attacked first. Now, I can use Suffering as an opener on a mob in the wild/boss I am soloing so Mr Voidlord can build threat quicker, without me having to find it on the pet bars.

Presumably this would mean that Suffering isn’t an automatically used ability now, that we have to activate it ourselves. I don’t mind this. Sometimes, I WANT an enemy to hit me once in a while (hello Lich King, hello Cho’gall).


Twilight Ward and Curse of Exhaustion are still gone, meaning we have no curses. No curses on a class that supposedly specializes in them. Sure, Agony, Corruption et al are curses in a sense, but they aren’t explicitly called Curse of Agony, and so it feels like a bit of our warlocky flavour has been lost.


Nothing specific to warlocks here, but I really want the Talon Queen title on Raenah! And I think Timber Lord will be an AWESOME title for a druid healer.


Tailoring gets a 30 slot bag called the Hexweave Bag! Awesome. I need more space, and though the toy box/heirloom interface will sort some of that out, I still need MORE.

Tailoring also gets a new magic carpet, the Creeping Carpet, and a Minature Flying Carpet too. Maybe that’s for our battle pets? That’d be cool. If not, it’s probably just a battle pet itself, which is also cool. I wanna see my Voidlord sit on it.


They still have the same effect, but they now have snazzy names! Affliction’s Haste Attunement is now called Eradication, Demonology’s Mastery Attunement is called Demonic Tactics, and Destruction’s Critical Strike Attunement is now called Devastation. Nice warlocky flavour to them now, rather than being generically named. Each class gets these snazzy class-themed names for their attunements (e.g. Shamans get Purification, Lightning Strikes, and Elemental Overload).


Well, something I nearly skipped over when reading Wowhead’s datamining post was that normal and heroic raids scale up to 30 people now, up from 25! Great for those of you with a lot of guildies, great if you’re looking to PuG some people. More friends! More killing! More loot!

Well, that’s it from me for now. Nice to have some warlock information, and I hope you beta players keep people like me informed!

We are sailing! WE ARE SAILING!

We are sailing! WE ARE SAILING!

Warlocks of Draenor: Alpha Build 18443!

A new alpha build hit servers Friday, and with it some new information! We have a look at the warlock tier 17 armor, some updated set bonuses, a small change to Cataclysm, and not a lot else.


Cataclysm, one of our level 100 talents, has been modified slightly. Before this build, when in Affliction spec, it dealt damage and applied Corruption to all enemies in range. Now, it applies Agony instead. Perhaps to differentiate between each spec? A different flavour of DoT for each spec to play with! It could also be because of Seed of Corruption. The Soulburned effect of SoC applies Corruption to all mobs the explosion hits, which may devalue Cataclysm’s effect, so to avoid redundancy, made it apply/refresh Agony instead. Awesome.

Set Bonuses: UPDATED!

Yes, the datamining from Wowhead and MMO-Champion revealed that some of the more boring set bonuses got changed! So, what are we looking at now? My comments on the change will be in (bracketed italics!)

  • Affliction 2pc: While channeling Drain Soul on a target afflicted by Agony, Unstable Affliction, and Corruption, the chance for Nightfall to activate is increased by 5% (so basically rewarding playing your spec well, it seems, by boosting the rate at which you regain your secondary resource)
  • Affliction 4pc: When Nightfall activates, the cooldown of Dark Soul is reduced by 10 seconds (which makes this set bonus tie in nicely with the 2pc. The first makes Nightfall more reliable, the second bonus strengthens it immeasurably)
  • Demonology 4pc: Shadowbolt has a 50% chance to empower your inner demon, temporarily bringing your Metamorphosis form out even while you are not transformed (Nobody knows! Does this mean we get the damage bonus from the Meta form, without the transformation of our spells? Are we forced into Meta, and thus have to spend fury? Are we forced into Meta, but with a free spell or two? Do you get Dark Apotheosis-style wings and the Meta damage bonus? Until Celestalon gets back from his jollies, we just don’t know.)
  • Destruction 4pc: Consuming an ember reduces the cooldown of Dark Soul by 5 seconds (well, in conjunction with the Charred Remains talent [which boosts our ember generation massively] this could be an absolutely massive DPS boost for us! Using Charred Remains means you cast Chaos Bolt more. More Chaos Bolts = less time between burst periods courtesy of Dark Soul.)

Dark Intent

This build takes off the stamina boost, and adds in the multistrike boost we talked about in the last blog. The stamina bonus comes as part of a passive buff called Blood Pact (it’ll be nice to see that name in our spell book again!), and affects all party/raid members in a 100 yard area.

Tier 17 Mythic Set

(Image courtesy of MMO-Champion)

Click the image, make it big!



Looks typically warlocky, and a bit reminiscent of the Corruptor set from tier 5.

It's the shoulders, I feel.

It’s the shoulders, I feel.

Perhaps deliberately too. Tier 5 is an Outland set. We’re going to Outland BEFORE it went explodey. We’re getting a set that is a bit of a call-back to it.

No? Just me who thinks that? Fine. If the normal/heroic set looks like the tier 4 Voidheart set, then you owe me a tenner.



Black Harvest Title

No, you can’t have your shaman be Shamawhama of the Black Harvest (secret sadface).

But if you get the title on 1 lock, you get it on all of them!

Well, until next time, here’s a picture of a cowardly panda.




Warlocks of Draenor: New News! Patch Notes and Alpha Stuff

This is me reappearing like a bolt of lightning. WHOOSH.

This is me reappearing like a bolt of lightning. WHOOSH.

Well, it’s been some time since my last blog post, but I am back off holiday with a tan (ish) and a keen eye for all the crap I’ve missed since I’ve been away! So how about we dive straight in with:

Feat of Strength/Title

Yes, those of us who defeated/will defeat Kanrethad before 6.0 drops will get an awesome new feat of strength called Breaker of the Black Harvest, and comes with a snazzy title for you, “…of the Black Harvest”! Well, isn’t that exciting?

It’s something a lot of people wanted, and it’s nice that we’ll be able to get it! And for those of you who haven’t done it yet, just get some Siege LFR/Flex gear on your warlock and nuke the crap outta him, like I did! At item level 550, poor Kanny didn’t even summon his felhunters.

Datamining: Tier Bonuses

Courtesy of those fine folk at Wowhead, we have some datamining from the current alpha build! However, with these tier 17 tier bonuses, bear in mind that some may be fleeting:

  • Affliction 2p: Unstable Affliction damage up 10%
  • Affliction 4p: Haunt periodic damage bonus up 10%
  • Demonology 2p: Shadowbolt/Touch of Chaos damage up 10%
  • Demonology 4p: Corruption has a 10% chance to generate 1 Hand of Gul’dan charge when it deals damage
  • Destruction 2p: Incinerate damage up 10%
  • Destruction 4p: Immolate has a 10% chance on dealing damage to generate a charge of Conflagrate
  • Demonology 4p PVP: When Corruption or Doom is dispelled, you gain 100 Demonic Fury
  • Destruction 4p PVP: Conflagrate generates 1 extra stack of Backdraft

Rather boring, right? Flat damage increases, but remember, these are most likely not our actual bonuses. Expect change, people!

Drain Soul Visual

I’ll just leave you with this.

I’ve seen it in action courtesy of Sparkuggz’s stream and it’s GLORIOUS.

Patch Notes: Secondary Stat Attunements

It seems in Warlords, each spec will receive an “attunement” to a particular secondary stat. This comes as a 5% buff to all increases of that stat, so a piece of armor that grants you 100 Mastery will grant 105 Mastery to a spec “attuned” to that stat.

For us warlocks, it helpfully coincides with our Dark Soul abilities, so Affliction’s attunement will be Haste, Demonology will be Mastery, and Destruction will be Critical Strike.

To me, this sounds like while they’re trying to make the secondary stats about equal, they also want each spec to have some sort of “defining” secondary stat. Crit increases Chaos Bolt damage, and makes a bursty spec even burstier. Haste was always an Affliction warlock’s lover after Mastery, as it made your DoTs tick more often, and Mastery was the main stat for Demonology as it increased demon AND demon-form damage.

Important to note Celestalon’s tweet here. These stats may be subject to change, as is everything in the Alpha.

Top warlock Zinnin also provides an interesting perspective here.

Patch Notes: Ability Pruning

Nothing new for us, but be warned!

Patch Notes: Buffs & Debuffs

Well, in a bit of a sweeping change, it seems all classes won’t provide any sort of enemy debuff anymore. Warlocks are seeing Curse of Elements removed, and rogues are losing Master Poisoner, which had the same effect. Also being dropped are class’s ways of inflicting Weakened Armor and Physical Vulnerability.

With the new secondary stats (Versatility and Multistrike), come two new raid buffs, one of which we provide! Blood Pact has been reintroduced as a passive 10% increase to the stamina of all in your group within 100 yards. The stamina boost has been removed from Dark Intent, and replaced with a 5% Multistrike boost.

Patch Notes: Self Sustainability

They’ve modified how most classes function in regenerating health, primarily in a solo-questing format. Drain Life heals for 1.5% health per tick, instead of 1%. Harvest Life increases that heal to 3%, up from 2.5%. This’ll provide us a smidgen extra healing when out and about killing things, either when soloing raids, or just when levelling. Coupled with the Draenor Perk that lets Drain Life generate embers, could this be the point where we start actively using this currently-rubbish spell?

Anything Else?

Well, before anyone complains that there’s not much news, despite it being a week since there was, bear this in mind:

Not all the classes were done! You saw what he said further up in regards to ability pruning; there’s more to come. And I’ll be here to tell you about it!

In other news, here's my shaman dressed up like a raid boss.

In other news, here’s my shaman dressed up like a raid boss.

Stats, Garrisons, AoE Chaos Bolt


So thanks to Sparkuggz, it’s been discovered you get access to your level 100 talents at 92 in the alpha, presumably for testing purposes and whatnot, and I have to say the AoE Chaos Bolt from the Charred Remains talent is one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen.

Brought a tear to my eye, it did. Glorious.

Also, thanks to AlternativeChat’s Twitch stream this morning, I also got a glimpse into how your garrison will work in real time, and I must say it all looks very exciting. Quests offering the construction materials, quests for followers, quests for this and that and it all looks very well done, and I can see why there’s a bit of a delay now. They seem to be knitting this garrison experience in with the very core of the expansion’s gameplay, giving you this massive hub you’ll keep coming back to in order to get new things, or just check up on your followers.

There’s still the group of people who want to ignore garrisons, and that’s all well and good, ignore it if you like, but you’re going to be missing out on a big chunk of gameplay. It’s not mandatory, but it’s going to be BIG.

Grumpy Panda would like you to at least try them!

Grumpy Panda would like you to at least try them!

Also yesterday, Blizzard released a blog post about the stats we’ll be seeing in Warlords. As we all know, hit and expertise are going to be a thing of the past, and dodge and parry will not appear on items, replaced instead with bonus armor. So what’s the situation?

Current stats: Mastery, Crit, Haste, Spirit, Hit, Expertise, Dodge, Parry
Draenor stats: Mastery, Crit, Haste, Spirit, Multistrike, Bonus Armor, Versatility
Draenor Tertiary Stats: Movement Speed, Avoidance, Indestructible, Leech, (Cleave)

Wow, that’s a whole bunch. Our favourite secondaries are staying. Healers get Spirit but on “non-armor items” like necks, rings, cloaks and trinkets. Tanks get Bonus Armor instead of Dodge/Parry, also on non-armor items. We’re not tanks or healers, so Spirit and Bonus Armor don’t matter to us.

Multistrike, however! It caps at 100%, and grants that percentage as a chance to all your attacks (be they Incinerates, ticks of Corruption, or Soul Fires, or even auto attacks if for some reason you’re doing that) to activate up to 2 further times, for 30% of their usual damage. Example!

  • Multistrike is 50%
  • Incinerate for 5k
  • 50% chance to proc a second incinerate for 1500 damage, another 50% chance to proc a third.

Sounds pretty cool. We don’t know how much rating will be required to get 1% yet, or even if it comes as a flat %age increase on an item (ie instead of saying “598 Multistrike” it may say “+10% Multistrike”) so if anyone in the alpha can clarify that, it’d be fantastic!

I’m excited about Multistrike. Kardris’ Toxic Totem is one of my favourite trinkets, and the Multistrike proc off that contributes to a good portion of my DPS, almost comparable to my cloak procs.

Versatility is a new stat that is being introduced, with a fairly simple but pretty powerful-sounding effect. 1% Versatility translates at a 1% increase to damage dealt, your healing and your absorbs, and a 0.5% damage reduction. And yes, it works on self-heals too, so Ember Tap will become stronger as you get more Versatility too.

This one will need to be tuned to absolute perfection, as if it’s too strong, it becomes the best stat for EVERYONE by miles. Too weak, and nobody’ll want it. I’m excited about it, because anything that directly increases how much my Chaos Bolts do, I can get behind!

Tertiary stats are new to Warlords, and they are small bonuses that appear IN ADDITION to other stats, as opposed to INSTEAD OF. This means that two pieces of gear with the same name and same primary/secondary stats will still have the potential to be different from each-other.

Movement Speed is pretty self explanatory; it increases the speed you move at by a flat percentage. It stacks with other forms of speed boost, but in order to make it balanced, it’s not going to be tuned overwhelmingly high, but more at a lower level. They want it to feel like a “fun bonus”, not a drastic increase in power.

Avoidance is a familiar term to us warlocks. It’s the ability a demon has that reduces AoE damage by a certain amount! This doesn’t mean we’ll suddenly be able to stand in all the fire, or take a Corrosive Blast to the face from Immerseus like our imps can, but it softens the blow. Gives you more of a chance to get out of Yu’lon’s green circles of death, to give a current example.

Leech grants you a percentage of damage you deal as healing to you, much like how Soul Link works when you have a pet out (10% of damage you deal heals you and your pet), but also has a healer benefit we don’t care about. It makes a percentage of what they heal to others also heal themselves. Well, whatever keeps them alive I guess.

Cleave is shelved for the moment, hence it being in brackets. They’re trying to puzzle out how to make it more valuable for all roles, as it’s almost vital for healers (turn single-target heals into potential multi-target ones? Always a win!), useless for tanks, and only useful for DPS on fights like, say, Galakras, rather than Malkorok.

Indestructible on an item makes it take no durability damage. Ever. Useful for those of us who have NO GOLD EVER.

Well, that’s my brief spiel on the new stats. I’m gonna go and level up my new horde shaman. Maybe grind some gold in preparation for the new expansion too.

Niuzao! The character I'll miss most about Pandaria. <3

Niuzao! The character I’ll miss most about Pandaria. ❤

ShamWHAT? Also Featuring Warlock Stuff!


Angry yet grumpy!

Angry yet grumpy!


So, that happened. I got into a group for Gates of Retribution because goddamn I need to get a decent weapon to go with the heirloom shield I won off Garrosh on my warlock a while back. I knew those pesky thorns in my side, the Dark Shamans, dropped a pretty decent one, so I went for it.

It didn’t drop, but their cosmetic armor did instead! Now I don’t have to puzzle out a look for my shaman, she can look like this instead!


Shamwhoa is my best-geared alt at the moment, sitting pretty at item level 544. Rock those totems, girl! She’s also made the furthest progress of my alts in the legendary quest, being halfway through A Test of Valor (yes, this VP buff is helping me out a lot here), so fingers crossed I can get that out the way soon and make her even more awesome.

In future planning-related news, I’m thinking I’m finally going to write that quick Blackwing Descent solo guide. It’ll also be slightly notable for the first solo guide I’ve written to have a section dedicated to one boss’s trash packs! Oh Atramades, you go down in infamy.

Any notable warlock-related news? Well, an interesting thing was datamined recently. Those of us who bested Kanrethad at the Black Temple to get our green fire while at level 90 will be getting a special Feat of Strength, Breaker of the Black Harvest! I’m guessing you’ll be able to get this feat in future expansions as well, kind of like how you can get Herald of the Titans nowadays. Wouldn’t it be awesome if it added a special title as well? Just imagine, Raenah of the Black Harvest!

Has a snazzy ring to it.

That Shadow Bolt tooltip error from last time has been corrected too, it’s back up to 2.5 seconds sadly. Nothing else to report on that front.

Have a roaring panda to make up for it.

Have a roaring panda to make up for it.

Warlocks of Draenor: Alpha Build 18297!

Well, we finally have an update! And we have some warlock-related news! I’m getting my information courtesy of MMO-Champion here.

Bear in mind the damage changes we are seeing are NOT NERFS according to Celestalon. It’s just rejigging the damage calculation for the stat squish that’s taking place, as I understand it.

So! Let’s get to it. Click on an image to enlarge it.



This is the first part, and seems to be general stuff, though there’s one detail that stand out for me. For Curse of Elements, the stuff about only having 1 curse per warlock active on a target seems to be gone, so does this mean we can apply more than 1 curse? Can I go off and solo something, and apply both Curse of Elements AND Curse of Exhaustion? The way it looks, that appears to be the case.

Secondly, it appears Soulshatter is back! Those of us worried about our Voidlords (or bad tanks of course!) not taking the threat off us quick enough have our “GET THE FRIG OFF ME!” button back! The rest of the data is rejigging numbers, it seems. Remember, these are not necessarily nerfs, and yes I will keep saying that.

Shadow Bolt appears to have a cast time reduction! 1.7 seconds, down from 2.5, which is lovely news! Its rather low damage didn’t seem to justify such a long cast time, honestly. It’s not like it’s Chaos Bolt, is it? Considering this isn’t listed in the spec-specific areas (i.e. Demonology) most likely means this only affects the spell before a talent spec is picked. Hold your excitement, people.

UPDATE @8:10pm



Next section is for talents, and here we have the change to Kil’jaeden’s Cunning we all knew was coming! It’s reverting to the active ability from Beta 5.4, akin to the Shaman ability Spiritwalkers’ Grace, in that you activate it when you need to move, and can cast ALL spells while moving. I’m genuinely surprised they’re keeping this cast-while-moving component, I expected them to scrap it completely and put Fel Flame there. I can only hope that we won’t have to run marathons during fights in Draenor! *shakes fist at Dark Shamans*

The other changes are rejigging damage values of talents we don’t have access to, so there’s not much to comment on really. Demonbolt looks to be a very heavy hitter for Demonology though!


Affliction! Just number-jigging, plus the aforementioned potential removal of limits on Curses from targets. Moving straight on…


Number jigging for Demonology. Again, we can’t make a comment until we see how the squish works out.


Destruction number adjustments. Not nerfs. See how squish works. Wait and see. Blah.


Glyphs! This seems to be changing the wording of 3 of them, not the effects. Soul Consumption was at a 20% restoration, now down to 15%. Warlocks have strong self-healing anyway, and frankly I never used this glyph before, and I sure as hell won’t be now! Glyph of Curses doubles your Curse range (remember, they now curse all enemies within 10 yards of your target), which is always helpful on an encounter with adds you wanna kill that little bit quicker.


That’s not warlock-related! No, but it’s related to Blizzard’s favourite thing; POOP! Huzzah!

Well, what does all this mean? Could we finally be lurching to beta, where these numbers will be testable? Is this just another tantalizing morsel for us to nibble on as we wait for more information? It does throw up a few interesting points though. We seem to be getting Soulshatter back, Kil’jaeden’s Cunning is going through the first of probably many changes, and curses are potentially losing their 1-curse-per-warlock-per-target limit. The rest is just numbers, and if they’re not buffs/nerfs, but mere damage calculation adjustments, there’s not really much to be outraged about yet.

Yet. Damage buff/nerf news will come via the official patch notes where they say “we increased/reduced damage of X” and when that happens, I’ll be here to rejoice/be outraged with you!

Lillorigga and her friend, a bear!

Lillorigga and her friend, a bear!

Warlocks of Draenor: Twitter Edition!

Well, that may explain why we’re not getting much warlock information, and to be honest I think we were all expecting it. We received a MASSIVE overhaul going from Cataclysm to Mists, with each spec becoming massively different from the other, so naturally because of this, we’re not being seen as a class that needs too much done to it. Other classes won’t be overhauled to the extent we were, but will receive things to make each spec more unique (something I feel rogues and hunters desperately need!).

Ah, an answer to an oft-asked question! It was a worry among some players that the permanent doomguard/infernal would not receive any new abilities, but it seems this is not the case. Huzzah! Why have we heard nothing? Because they’re not ready.

Seems Mannoroth’s Fury is staying as a once-a-minute deal. I don’t personally use it (it seems to be the go-to talent for Demonology and I play Destruction/Affliction), but I must admit I do miss the permanent version of it. It made killing the elementals on the Lady Vashj encounter a lot easier.

In further Demonology-related news, when you proc Multistrike (one of the new secondary stats) on one of your spells, it doesn’t provide bonus fury. I’ve never really had a problem building fury on the few times I’ve played Demo, but what do you think? Any Demo experts out there?


All those people wanting warlocks to have a tank spec will probably have to keep on waiting, apparently a LOT of work would have to go into it. Sadface!

Finally, we have some word on Kil’jaeden’s Cunning. Could it see a reworking? Could it be removed entirely? If so, what would replace it?

Personally, I’d like to see Fel Flame make a comeback as the potential replacement. That way, each talent in the level 90 tier would be directly linked to DPS still. Archimonde’s Darkness affects burst DPS, Mannoroth’s Fury would be for AoE DPS, and Fel Flame would affect movement DPS.

All of us lamenting a lack of warlock-specific information should just be relieved we’re not getting another massive overhaul, causing us to have to learn to play our class again!

In other news, here’s my shaman Shamwhoa chilling with her homies from the Shado-Pan, Taoshi and Nurong, watching Niuzao obliterate a raid group.

(no really, they all got to close to him when he started charging and they all dropped like flies. It was glorious to watch.)



WoD Raiding: A Personal Story!

Going into Warlords, we’re getting a new raiding structure. I think the popular image from the Blizzcon slide can explain it better than I can. 1000 words and all that.


Everything’s going flex bar the hardest difficulty, and various modes are consolidating into 4 types of raid. LFR, Normal, Heroic and Mythic. Each of these will be on a separate lockout, blah blah, this is stuff we already know. What has been revealed recently is that while LFR has higher item level loot than heroic 5-man dungeons, it won’t have tier set pieces or the same trinkets as the higher difficulties. What it WILL have is unique-looking loot with no set bonuses, and trinkets more akin to basic dungeon ones, as opposed to game-changers like the Purified Bindings of Immerseus and its amplifying brethren.

5.4 introduced to us the new Flexible difficulty. A step up from LFR, but not as punishing as normal, it was a way for guilds who may never have raided before (like mine!) to organise a group, chat rubbish on Mumble (which has now spilled to outside of raid times, which is fantastic for us!) and just generally be more social. The fact it was flexible difficulty meant you didn’t have to exclude people if you were a 10-man guild and 15 of you showed up, and if you were 25-man but only 22 showed up, you didn’t have to cancel.

Why do I bring up what is common knowledge? Well, in terms of myself and my relationship with raiding, I was exclusively an LFR raider. LFR Hero, I think we were called (disparagingly, like we weren’t as worthy as the hardcore heroic raiders and whanot). I’ve been in the same guild since the end of Wrath of the Lich King. We’ve always been a social, casual guild. We first raided together as a guild in the first week of patch 5.2 (when Throne of Thunder was introduced), and even then it was only Mogu’shan Vaults.

We got stuck hopelessly on Elegon. Stupid see-through dragon.

The next time we raided together, it was in 5.4. The introduction of flex raids excited us! It pushed us out of just doing LFR alone, seperately, into doing this awesome new content together, as a guild. It also created a fairly good PUG mentality on my server (at the time, a low-medium population one called Nagrand. We’ve since been connected to Runetotem and Kilrogg, and if anything the PUG scene has exploded into life), so if we were short a player or 6 (we were always short!), we could always grab one off /2, or even through OQ.

The gear we got through Flex allowed us to attempt to tackle Normal Siege, and we’re so far 4/14N! For all of us, on our mains at least, we saw LFR not as a method of gearing this time around, like we had done previously, but as a sort of training ground. Our tanks learnt the mechanics for the fights there, the tank swaps and whatnot, our healers learnt the best ways to heal fights, when the heavy damage was coming in, and when they could ease off and conserve their mana. Us DPS learnt not to stand in fire, and that’s pretty much it. Any gear we got in LFR was a small bonus, quickly replaced by superior gear in Flex or Normal (and as we gradually acquired our legendary cloaks, from Ordos too).

I suppose my point is this. You can see the removal of tier gear and uber trinkets as gutting LFR if you wish, a slap in the face to those who can only do that. I personally feel it’s Blizzard trying to get people into doing what will soon become Normal and Heroic raids instead, if not as a guild, then as a PUG through OQ (or their new spangly group finder, which personally I cannot wait to see), or even through trade chat. The introduction of flex raiding in 5.4 was the catalyst my guild needed to get into raiding together, beforehand we had thought it impossible! We all kept different schedules, we were free different times, but splitting the raid into several wings meant we could do it as bite-size chunks when we all had an hour or two to spare.

Now, the raids of Warlords are supposedly going to be less linear than the raids of Mists.


If, say, you get stuck hopelessly on boss #2 of the Iron Assembly, then there’s always bosses in the Slag Works or The Black Forge for you to go and try. Currently, if you get stuck on, say, Norushen in Siege, you’re there bashing your head against him for hours until you beat him. Sure, if you’re Flexing it, you can just go onto wing 2 and Galakras, but really, if you’re struggling with Norushen, it’s doubtful Galakras will give you much more joy.

I’d imagine at first, we’d be able to do a wing a night. As we gradually gear up, maybe we’ll do two wings, then eventually we’ll get the whole place done in a few hours. Currently, we can get to Malkorok on Flex in under 3 hours. When we first did Flex, we couldn’t get past the Protectors!

People who want to raid only LFR, they’ll probably stay there. That’s fine, that’s their endgame. It used to be mine. People who want to go on to do the more difficult content will have a multitude of ways to do it. The fact that Normal and Heroic’ll be cross-realm will mean that you’re not restricted to only grouping with people on your server, meaning more opportunities to raid those difficulties in times that suit you. Yes, random PUGs can sometimes be horrendously painful, but honestly, for every time I’ve had a bad group, I’ve had about four brilliant ones.

I am still a little miffed that they’re not including tier sets in LFR. While I still believe it’s intended as a push for people to do the harder stuff, for the people that don’t WANT to, it basically means “you see all this cool-looking armor? You can’t have it. Have this rubbish-looking LFR armor instead.”

Like, seriously, have you SEEN the LFR sets? Here’s a link to (hopefully) the Wowhead preview of the LFR Plate. Look at it, then look at the warrior tier set above it. The LFR set is crap compared to that! That warrior tier set is goddamn BEAUTIFUL, whereas the LFR set elicited a “meh” response from me. The only LFR set I like is the red/blue cloth one.

On the whole though, I feel that this change to the loot system can be the push for even more people to move into “organised” (or in the case of my guild, disorganised!) raiding. Not only that, but for people like me, who don’t see themselves as LFR heroes anymore, but nor as an organised raider (is Flex Hero a thing? Let’s make it a thing), it’ll be more incentive to get into PUGs, maybe even make new friends! There are naturally some downsides; the people who only ever want to run LFR may see the removal of tier pieces as being treated as second-class citizens by Blizzard itself, who can’t have the nice-looking armors. In the first tier, the “hardcore” people will still feel obligated to run LFR, as well as Normal, Heroic and Mythic for upgrades, though this “obligation” will lessen as the expansion wears on (Watcher stated that the first tier’s Mythic items will be of a higher item level than the following tier’s Normal items, therefore people who will be raiding Mythic won’t ever need to do LFR or Normal as it won’t drop ANYTHING worthwhile for them once they’re Mythic geared).

That does bring up another interesting point though. When LFR Siege or Throne first opened, how many of us read the tactics beforehand? I did, though there really is a massive difference between reading about a fight, and actually experiencing it! The first time I did Durumu? Lei Shen? Garrosh? Galakras? Nazgrim? Heck, Garalon way back when? I, and many others in my group, were dependent on those who had already run it on Normal modes to help us through. Now, in the first tier, we’ll get those people. They’ll be looking for upgrades to their quest/dungeon gear that they haven’t replaced doing the other modes. In later tiers? Well, they won’t need to run it. Why would they? No tier sets, no broken-ass trinkets, they’ll be Mythic geared from the previous tier, and won’t see the need to run LFR, so you won’t get that contingent of people who know the tactics inside-out because they’re run it several times already. You’ll have a split of people who have read up a little bit, and the people who haven’t looked at a thing, both running it for the first time.

I predict those first couple weeks of LFR, just like the first couple weeks of Durumu, Garalon, Elegon, et al, to be rather painful, as people get used to the fights.

But hey, isn’t the struggle what it’s all about? If we struggle together, we can get through it together, and next time, we’ll be stronger, and we’ll be ready for it.