So it’s been a busy week! We have a first look at the 6.0 patch notes, and a crap-ton of other news that popped up too, like the Draenor Perks, glyphs, talents, etc. Let’s have a look at what some of that means!
(note, all of this is subject to change, especially datamined stuff! With that in mind, I wanna say a BIG thanks to Wowhead for all their datamined info, it proved so useful in making this blog)
- Soulburn: Unending Breath. No more water walking for us! Unless we take Glyph of Nightmares, of course.
- Soulburn: Health Funnel. That might hurt the affliction soloing potential somewhat, as the damage reduction is a great help to them.
- Soulshatter: Apparently it’s scarcely used. I use it a lot in soloing, but hey ho.
- Rain of Fire: For affliction, that is. It’ll be replaced by Seed of Corruption (much like Hellfire replaces it for demonology).
- Pyroclasm: Its effect has been baked into Backdraft.
- Metamorphosis: Cursed Auras: Now curses affect a 10 yard area around a target, this is slightly un-needed.
- Fel Flame: The controversial one! How will affliction deal with totems now? The removal of fel flame is a very sore point at the moment with most of the warlock community. Almost as much as…
- Drain Soul: Its basic damaging effect is being baked into Malefic Grasp (courtesy of a Draenor Perk), and the soul shard regeneration is going to be balanced around Nightfall procs (which are boosted by 5% courtesy of another Draenor Perk). Upsetting though, as we lose the awesome visual effect, and classic warlocky-sounding name that conjures the images of you DRAINING YOUR ENEMY’S SOUL.
- Soulburn: Drain Life: Again, Draenor Perks are modifying this spell. It’s generating embers?!
- Metamorphosis: Void Ray: Well, nobody used it anyway, to be honest.
- Metamorphosis: Carrion Swarm: Aww. What’ll Demo do for an interrupt now? They don’t use Feldogs/Tentacle Eyeball Monsters.
- Curse of Enfeeblement: They’re removing cast speed slowing abilities because it makes caster PVP terribly unfun.
So the two major ones there are Drain Soul and Fel Flame, ones everyone suspected would get cut, but few actually wanted them to. Personally, I don’t use Fel Flame as I take Kil’jaeden’s Cunning, so I just Incinerate spam when I need to move, but on occasions when I take Archimonde’s Darkness, it’s nice to have the option of using Fel Flame!
In terms of Drain Soul, if they’re dead set on removing it, then if they made a minor glyph that replaced the visual of Malefic Grasp with that of Drain Soul, I’d like it, even if it only worked in execute range. As for having our in-combat shard regeneration depend entirely on the RNG of Nightfall, they really need to make it a reliable source. If we’re sitting at 0 shards for an extended period of time because we’re not lucky enough, then that’s bad. Maybe make a passive that regens a soul shard every 15 seconds in combat?
The loss of the soulburn abilities is no great loss, bar Health Funnel for a soloing warlock. The loss of Soulshatter though is not fun. Manage my own threat?! I think not!
- Blood Horror’s cooldown is now 60 seconds. Shares diminishing returns with other Mesmerize effects.
- Spell Lock only interrupts spellcasting, no longer silences.
- Mortal Coil shares DR with other Mesmerize effects.
- Optical Blast only damages and interrupts, not silences.
- Sear Magic’s cooldown is now 30 seconds.
- Seduction and Mesmerize have a 30 second cooldown.
- Terrorguards no longer cast Terrifying Roar when they die (I never even knew they did tbh)
- Unbound Will’s cooldown is now 2 minutes.
- Voidwalker/Voidlord’s Disarm is removed. Seems to be replaced with Suffering at the moment?
All classes are getting changes to their CC to tone it down in PVP somewhat. I’ll miss being able to disarm Warbringers though!
Warlock Patch Notes
So what else did the 6.0 patch notes bring for us? Not much else, but here goes.
The cooldown on a healthstone will no longer begin until the player leaves combat. This is making them a once-per-battle dealy, and can no longer be a critical heal. It’s effectively merging them with health potions.
Demonic Gateways no longer have charges! Yay! Unfortunately, you can only use them once every 90 seconds, and the gates can only be 40 yards apart. Ouch.
Drain Life heals for 30% less than before. The Glyph of Drain Life doubles healing from Drain Life.
Shadowburn no longer generates mana. Not a good change, as even though our mana regen is high, there are still times when we run low. We cast a Chaos Bolt at this time, and most of our mana is back by the time the LOOOOONG cast is done. With Shadowburn being an instant cast, we don’t give our mana a chance to regen in execute range, which’ll encourage either “wasting” an ember on Chaos Bolt during execute, or literally standing and doing nothing as our mana regens to a comfortable level. This was an issue in the MoP beta, and it was fixed by making Shadowburn generate mana in the first place.
I’ve mentioned these a few times already, what are they? When levelling from 90-100, you randomly get one of these perks when you level up, appropriate to your class/spec. At level 100 you will have learnt them all. They basically act to augment your current abilities, rather than grant new ones.
- Improved Demons: Increases all damage done by demon pets by 20%.
- Empowered Drain Life: Health gained by this ability grows by 10% each time it heals you.
- Improved Life Tap: Life Tap grants 20% additional mana.
- Empowered Agony: Agony now stacks up to 12 times.
- Enhanced Haunt: Haunt lasts 2 seconds longer.
- Improved Corruption: Corruption deals 20% additional damage.
- Improved Unstable Affliction: Unstable Affliction deals 20% additional damage.
- Improved Malefic Grasp: Malefic Grasp deals additional 100% damage on targets below 20% health.
- Enchanced Nightfall: Nightfall is 5% more likely to proc.
The affliction perks seem pretty straight-forward. Damage boosts on your main spells, stronger demons, stronger life taps. Malefic Grasp becomes your execute, Nightfall is your only shard builder.
- Improved Demons: Increases all damage from demon pets by 20%
- Improved Molten Core: Molten Core reduces cast time and mana cost of Soul Fire by a further 25%
- Empowered Demons: Grants your demons additional 10% haste and 10% crit chance.
- Improved Shadow Bolt: Shadow Bolt deals 20% more damage.
- Enhanced Corruption: Corruption generates 1 additional Demonic Fury per tick.
- Empowered Doom: Doom has 20% increased crit chance.
- Enhanced Hand of Gul’dan: Hand of Gul’dan’s radius increased by 2 yards.
- Improved Touch of Chaos: Touch of Chaos deals 20% more damage.
- Empowered Drain Life: Health gained by this ability grows by 10% each time it heals you
Again, improvements to your main spells, and also further improvements on your demons! Makes sense, Demonology is the demon-empowering spec after all.
- Enhanced Chaos Bolt: Cast time of Chaos Bolt is reduced by 0.5 seconds.
- Empowered Immolate: Immolate deals 100% additional damage on the initial hit on the target.
- Improved Conflagrate: Conflagrate deals 20% extra damage.
- Empowered Incinerate: Incinerate has 20% increased crit chance.
- Improved Ember Tap: Ember Tap heals you for an additional 20%.
- Improved Shadowburn: Shadowburn deals 20% more damage.
- Enhanced Backlash: Physical strikes against you have a 15% increased chance to trigger Backlash.
- Enhanced Drain Life: Drain Life now generates embers.
- Improved Demons: All damage done by demon pets increases by 20%.
Ah, the one I most care about! Destruction sees some nifty changes. Our ember spenders improve slightly, our ember generators do too (and with that 20% increased crit on incinerate, we may well be swimming in embers!), and Drain Life actually becomes somewhat useful! Will I put it on my action bars? I may well do, watch this space.
- Glyph of Curses: Increases the radius of Curse of Elements and Curse of Exhaustion by 10 yards. Double radius! Woop.
- Glyph of Dark Soul: Reduces duration and cooldown of Dark Soul by 50%. Ergo, we use it more often for a shorter period of time? Sounds good to me.
- Glyph of Flames of Xoroth: Flames of Xoroth is now free to cast. Great for those “oh shit my pet’s dead” moments, but as it stands we all use GoSac anyway. Maybe that’ll change?
- Glyph of Life Pact: Mana costs on all spells reduced by x%, Life Tap can no longer be cast, and your health will drop by x% per second. You health can’t drop below x% from this effect. Sounds like healers are gonna hate warlocks this time around! We don’t have the exact numbers for it yet (tooltip shows 159677%!) but it sounds really interesting! Hoping for more info on this soon.
- Glyph of Metamorphosis: When you activate Metamorphosis, you no longer transform into a demon, but instead grow wings on your normal form. Cosmetic glyph yay!
- Glyph of Shadowflame: Increases the movement speed reduction on the Shadowflame effect from Hand of Gul’dan by 20%. PVP benefits I’m seeing here, but also useful for slowing dangerous adds in PVE.
- Glyph of Soul Swap: You can hold inhaled period effects from Soul Swap for an additional 27 seconds. Oh look, reverting that change are we?
- Glyph of Twilight Ward: Twilight Ward now absorbs damage from all magic schools. Awesome! I love this spell, and making it apply in more situations can only be a positive in my book.
- Glyph of Strengthened Resolve: Unending Resolve reduces damage by a further 20%, but the cooldown is increased by 60 seconds. A more powerful effect, but less often, basically. Great for predictable periods of heavy damage.
Datamined Warlock Stuff
Again, a massive thanks to Perculia and Wowhead for this stuff. As usual, take it with a massive grain of salt, datamined information isn’t exactly gospel! A lot of changes can and will occur between now and when Warlords comes out.
Our Command Demon ability for our voidys seems to be Suffering, so we get an on demand taunt! This makes the binning of Soulshatter slightly better, as we can manually get our pet to taunt crap off of us! Does this mean that Suffering will no longer be able to be autocast though? This’ll also solve that little problem in dungeons of people using voidlords that taunt off the tank, similar to the “HUNTER TURN OFF GROWL!” problem.
Enslave Demon sees a change too. When you enslave something, its haste is reduced by 32%. This is a 2% decrease in haste, but we’re likely seeing a boost in damage by PvE sources, as our health pool is effectively doubling in size, so the reduction in haste was a necessary evil to keep things getting too outta hand. The increase in monster damage was to balance out the increase in health in PvE, which was implemented to increase survivabilty against other players in PvP.
Glyph of Siphon Life sees a change too! Instead of Corruption/Immolate healing you for 0.5% of your maximum health per tick, it’s now 0.35%. Small change, will it have a big effect? We’ll see.
Pandemic by all accounts seems to be gone! We’ll have to be refreshing our DoTs more often I guess.
Grimoire of Sacrifice is getting changed too. Demonology gets a spec-specific version that halves your crit chance, and doubles the crit chance of your minion. How useful that is remains to be seen, but it kinda makes thematic sense that Demonology retains the pet in all circumstances, even when taking the sacrifice talent!
Grimoire of Sacrifice for Affliction and Destruction is also getting changed. It retains the health regen, and health boost with Soul Link, but instead of a flat damage boost on some of your spells, it increases the critical strike chance of them by 35%.
This means your incinerate, with the perk Empowered Incinerate, has a 55% crit chance. 55%! That doesn’t take into account Dark Soul: Instability (making it 85%!) or your own personal crit rating! If you’re taking the Charred Remains talent, then HELLO EMBERS! You know what, I’m very excited about that. It also gives a 35% boost to Chaos Bolt damage, and Charred Remains doesn’t reduce CB damage. Looks like 6.0 is gonna be the day of the Chaos Bolt! BOOM!
Mortal Coil and Dark Regeneration are seeing reductions in their healing, presumably to balance out personal survivabilty (of which warlocks have a crapton) and make healers more aware of how their raid’s health is. Users of that Life Pact glyph may well tax their healers, which for some reason amuses me.
The healing reduction may also be a necessity because of how our health pools will be different. You have no base health, and all your health comes from Stamina. Base damage and base healing is also gone, and all damage will be scaled to whatever stat you use for it (in a warlock’s case, Intellect!).
Metamorphosis is getting an armor boost of 35%, and reduces the duration of stun/snares by 35% too! This isn’t a buff though, it’s a baking of the passive ability Nether Plating into Meta.
Fel/Wrathguards seem to be losing Pursuit, Axe Toss and Wrathstorm? A bit of speculation on MMOC says they may be changing the level the abilites are learned at, so they come with the pet and not as seperate abilities in the spellbook. It’s either that, or they’re removing the abilities of the Demo-exclusive pet. Wait and see, again.
Glyph of Drain Life increases healing by 100%, up from 30%. An attempt to make a rarely-used spell more useful?
Well, all in all, a large number of changes in store! And the coming weeks/months will only bring more. Exciting times, that’s for sure.
And I promise I’ll start on the ICC solo guide soon.