Wednesday, July 29, 2009
I would like to apologize for the severe lack of updates. I have been given the honor of being promoted to Guild Leader, and have been working on sorting everything out on that end, which turns out to be a full time job..for now. I am not abandoning the blog, far from it, I just figured you'd like to know why updates all of a sudden stopped. I have some good posts in mind and hopefully will be able to post them soon :) Thanks for your patience!
Saturday, June 20, 2009
Many a time, people ask me why I choose the most difficult of all specs, Affliction. The decision to do this came from countless trials of all the other aspects of Warlock, and found it to be the most DPS heavy.
Heres a list of its advantages -
- DoTs. Plain and simple this is the DPS bringer in our arsenal. With a good spell rotation (no DoT clipping!) you will see that even tho we don't do good "burst" damage, we make up for it in longer fights. They can crit now as well, making them even more deadly.
- Instant cast. Our curses are all instant. With shadow embrace, we can also get instant shadow bolts.
- Mana. We still use it, but not as often as a Destro lock will burn thru it.
- Damage. If done correctly, we are topping Damage Done meters by a pretty good percentage. We are slow to start, but in the length of a fight, you will see how we do.
- Less shard managment needed. Unlike our brother specs of Demon and Destro, our shard useage is minimal at best. Initial demon summoning, a soul shatter here and there, and other "novelty" spells. In a fight a shard spell is hardly used..one less thing to worry about.
- Self healing. Yep..we have Siphon Life (part of Corruption now if specced with it), Haunt (heals when its run its course). as well as Death Coil as an "emergency" heal.
Now theres always the downsides. WAY less Stamina than Demonology for one. We're the squishiest of all the specs. We are also pretty useless on short fights. I usually use these to top off my shards. A lot of mobs (especially in Ulduar) are immune to drain life spells. No advanced soul or life stones...ours are weakest. But those are all part of the game..you can't have all good without some bad, otherwise there wouldn't be any variation in the classes on this class.
As with everything else, in the end it comes down to what YOU feel is best, and what you have the most fun playing. This is a game, and never forget that.
Friday, June 19, 2009
Many will agree that Affliction Locks have the hardest DPS job out ot all other classes. It's all in the timeing, and keeping ourselves off the top of the threat list...all while keeping track of whats going on around us. Granted thanks to 3.1, our job has gotten a bit easier, but by no means are we to spam buttons, and any tools we can use to make our jobs any bit easier are a godsend. So here's a short list of a few that I would highly reccoment.
Omen Threat Meter
A threat meter? Doesn't WoW have one built in? And wait..we're not tanks!
Yep...we are NOT tanks..and thus should keep an eye on our aggro to make sure we don't pass them. The meter built in with WoW is a little iffy. and I prefer omen due to it not only giving an active meter, but an audible alert when you're approaching dangerous threat levels.
This is a no brainer. This thing is AWESOME! Helps by giving you countless amounts of options in all aspects of Warlocking...be it DoT timers, Shard managment, even summoning. It may seem a bit overwhealming at first, but spend an hour or so exploreing all its options and you'll see why its usefullness is immesurable.
This used to be the premiere lock addon, and it's still pretty usefull. It will make it easier for you to keep track of shards as well as what demons and shard spells you can execute...all in a handy layout. Plus, more DoT timers! (you can never have enough). Add to that the audible and visual icons that let you know what mobs are un-fearable, banishable, tameable, and when you're shadowtrance is up (instant shadowbolt).
Initially a shadow priest addon, this one has expanded to be a great visual aid for Warlocks. I live and die by this DoT timer. It may seem a tad confusing and cluttered at first, but when you realize what it does, you'll see why its perfect for your Affliction rotation. Go to the site and watch the demo..it'll make sence.
Nothing fancy here. If you're specced for it, your drain soul will do a significant amount of boosted damage when used on your mob when it is below 25% health. This addon does one thing, it tells you in big red text on the screen when the mob is in fact...below 25% health.
The classic. DPS and Damage done tracker. This should be used for your own personal improovment, and not to show off or spam a raid chat. I cannot stress that enough. Its a good gauge for you to see how different play styles are for you, and which does the most damage for you.
And those are the basics. Is this all I use? No..of course not. OmniCC, Bartender, oPie, MrDamage, and a few others are loaded up, but none are really "essentially important" in my opinion. So give these a spin and let me know what you think!
Thursday, June 18, 2009
And here it is, the end! 2 Bosses here, but they are not pushovers, so lets get this show on the road!
This is an Affliction Locks dream fight. We have the upper hand here because not only do we not have any frost spells, but we have quite a good range (even tho his hit box is large already) for our casts.
At the start of the fight you'll be attacking his side. Stay as far away from his front (cleave) and back (tail swipe) at all times. You'll want to keep an eye out for his blizzard (you really can't miss it), and be sure to NOT be standing in it. It moves at random so try to keep a good distance from it, it hurts, and slows you down. Lay your DoTs on, shadowbolt the hell out of him. When he starts taking flight, keep DPSing! You have a good 5-10 seconds before he starts laying out frost tombs. Take cover when you can, and keep doing what you're doing. Keep an eye on your life taps. If a lot of your raid is standing in a blizzard, dont life tap. The healers will be too busy keeping them alive. Best time to life tap is just after a frost tomb.
15 Minute enrage on this beast, I have never seen it reached. So have fun!
The last fight, the one that yields the best rewards, and the one that requires the most teamwork.
Doomguard is fantastic for this fight :) So bring him out. Soul well for your raid, and make sure your demon is on passive for Phase 1.
Speaking of which,
Phase 1 -
Everyone will be grouped in the center. No one, especially pets/demons will move outside. You don't want to pull more mobs than are already coming. You yourself will be dealing with the skeletons as well as the banshees. Your demon you'll set to attack the abominations.
Phase 2 -
Make sure ALL the mobs from phase 1 are dead before engageing KT. Once they're all down, you will position yourself somewhere where you are still in range of the boss, but not within 10 yards of anyone around you, at all times. In fact the only time you should move is when there is a Shadow Fissure under you (red void zone). They can kill you instantly, so when one pops and you're in it, stop casting and move fast. Once its gone, go back to where you were.
Another thing to watch for is when he mind controls members of your raid. As a Warlock, we are decent for crowd control. Fear is usefull here for most teamates, or banish if theres a tree drood MCed.
Other than that, its a fight mostly on the heads of your offtanks and healers. If all goes well this can be all done in under 10 minutes from start to finish. It's not nearly as hard as most make it out to be, and the loot rewards are fantastic!
And thats all she wrote! Hope these posts were helpful to you all, and can't wait to get back to the grind with more class tips for you all!
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Saving the best for last, and also the most complicated...so without further delay...
The legend. The DPS tester. The nasty. Everything you've heard about him is true, but man is it fun to knock him down. Again, this is a guide for Affliction locks and not tanks or healers..so really..as far as OUR role in this fight...its as simple as unleashing everything we have on him. In fact the only thing you need to do out of the ordinary is make sure you soul shatter often, and if there's a warrior tank, make em hit you with vigilance. Other than that..we don't even take DAMAGE in this fight. Life tap when its needed (and only when its needed), and keep max distance at all times.
Think of this fight as "Patchwerk 2.0". It's easy for us locks because chances are we aren't going to be asked to take care of the slime adds, and we're able to keep a good distance away and thus have to move less. It SUCKS for us because when we get slapped with Mutating Injection, we have to screw up our DPS rotation and lose some of our damage done.
DPS your heart out as always, stay behind-ish to the boss to avoid getting puked on (and thus spawning a slime add), and keep an eye on yourself for if/when you get mutated. When you do, just run against the wall BEHIND THE BOSS (he should be getting kited around the room), and then get back to your DPS spot asap. You may lay down a demonic circle here to save some running, but really its not needed.
The big dog. Literally. And man do we shine here! Its more than just a DPS slaughter for us, in fact we can single handedly turn the tables on how this fight is going. How so?
Well first off. Doomguard it up. His rain of fire will be a great "just in case" factor for the Decimate zombie blitz, and his DPS will fill in the spell rotation gap you'll have in that phase as well.
Secondly, also during decimate, your seed of corruption will make very quick work of those zombies. Don't even bother with rain of fire. these guys keep walking, so they'll quickly be out of its AoE.
Keeping those things in mind, the only other things to keep in mind are your position. That green square in the middle of the room works pretty well. Life tap OFTEN. You want MAX mana for decimate. Don't worry about your health, it's going to be gone anyway once that happens anyway. Lastly, make sure you pop a soul well for the raid before the fight starts (before the pipe, duh), to give the healers a little less strain.
There really is no easy way to explain this fight, its one of those "learn by doing" scenarios. However, once you get it down, its the most fun encounter in the entire Raid. Seriously!
Before you even start, you want to make sure everyone in the raid is clear as to what side of the platform is Positive, and which side is Negative.
For phase 1 (the Feugen & Stalagg), the first thing you will do once you're on the platform is pop a demonic circle at the BACK. Why? In case you miss the jump. Its like getting a 2nd try! You'll thank me later :) Other than that, all you really need to do is watch your DoTs. I know we can't pause them, but if you see that whatever side you're on is dieing way faster than the other, you may want to switch to a pure shadow bolt spam rotation. These guys HAVE to die within 5 seconds of each other.
Phase 2...*clears throat*...DO NOT MISS THE JUMP! :)
Ok ok...now that I got that out of my system, let me explain why. If you happen to miss the jump onto Thaddius's platform, you will have to run all the way around and jump again. HOWEVER, by the time you get there, the rest of the raid will already have a charge. If you just blindly jump, you'll most likely wipe the entire fight because you will not share the same charge as them. Confusing? Yes. So don't miss the jump!
So what do you do once on the platform? You will DPS. After you get your first charge, you will go to the appropriate side, and then get on vent and scream "EVERYONE BUNCH UP!". Seriously tho, you want to make sure everyone is within 5 yards from one another to ensure the charge buff stacks. Thaddius has a nasty enrage timer, and to be sure you get him down in time, you will want that buff stacked at all times. When the polarity switches, keep an eye on your DEBUFF bar (that's where it shows up), and IF you change (you may not change every time, or even at all if you're lucky), you will run as fast as you can to the other side, this is also a great time to life tap. Now, some say to swing to the right of him as you pass, personally, I've had no problems going right thru the center. Just do what your raid leader asks :)
And thats that! The next update will be the last 2 fights of Naxx, and then we can get back to our normally scheduled postings.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Some will leave this wing for last. Personally I prefer to give that honor to the Construct wing...since Thaddius is a true pain (you'll read about this tomorrow).
There's no easy way to discuss how this fight is done as it all depends on your tank/priest situation. But wait? This is a Warlock blog! So really for this article we will focus on a few tips to make sure you can maximize your DPS without pulling aggro from whomever or whatever is tanking :)
Its time once again for our favorite winged powerhouse - the Doomguard! Only suggestion for him on this battle is to turn off the autocast on his rain of fire. He will do crazy AoE and may kill the understudies otherwise.
So as he's doing his dirty work, what are YOU doing? Focusing 100% on Razuvious. Just make sure to give the tank about 5 seconds to get a good aggro lead before you engage, and that you are at max range to avoid all of his AoE abilities.
Once he's dead, you'll focus on downing the understudies (if any are left). Again...easy.
Gothik the Harvester
This fight sucks for warlocks. Plain and simple. Every class has at least one boss they are pretty much useless against, and this one is ours. We aren't COMPLETELY useless, but for phase 1, we're not ideal.
After its decided by the raid what side you will be on, you will pop a demonic circle on the OPPOSITE side of the one you're going to be at. Why? Two reasons...
One - In case the other side is getting overwhelmed with mobs and needs some more DPS (as little as you can do in this phase)
Two - Once the gate opens, you'll get a few yard head start on everyone else...if he's not on your side.
No matter what side you're on, you will want to keep yourself (and actually everyone) positioned with your back to the gate for max DPS and less "run distance". Seed of corruption every trash mob that comes out, over time more and more will arrive. Seriously, for the first minute or two you will be doing almost no damage as, in theory, the other DPSers in your raid will have killed the other mobs before you even hit them.
Phase 2 is thankfully more intensive for us. A pure DPS race (he plants a stacking debuff that with each application will make you weaker and weaker), and we'll be unleashing everything we have. Use the time when he teleports away from your side to life tap in order to maintain the least amount of stress on your healers. He should be dead before the 3rd (or even 2nd depending on your DPSers) teleport. Again..easy :)
The Four Horsemen
Oooook. I don't normally do this but I'm going to do two separate strategies for this one. Why? Because in 10 man you're going to be a tank, the ONLY tank, for the back 2 horsemen.
Wait? WHAT!? How!?
Summon your Voidwalker. Notice how much HP he has? He's a monster truck in demon form. The 2 mobs in the back do not hit hard at all. A single healer and some fancy demon work in the back will free up more DPSers for the front 2 horses, and in theory make this fight go by a lot faster.
At the start of the fight you, your voidwalker (making sure he has gotten the same buffs as the rest of the raid has gotten), and a healer should be already in position on that green circle in the back. Once the main tank starts the fight, send your demon off to tank Sir Zeliek while you go to town on Lady Blaumeux (and while on this side you will be keeping Shadow Ward up WHENEVER its available). Watch your debuffs and stay out of voidzones...once it reaches 3 stacks, you will have your demon attack whatever mob you are on, and you will go to whatever one he was on (don't worry, the horsemen don't move). Back and forth over and over until the fights done. After the fight is dead, it is your duty, your OBLIGATION..as a warlock...to let out a /roar so that the entire raid knows that yes..you are in cloth...but you just tanked 2 Naxx bosses at once. Its true...its required..I looked it up.
Well that's all hunky dory for 10 man, but we're heroic! 10 man? No way!
*cough* ANYWAY! For 25 man things are going to go way different. We're not going to waste our DPS by tanking (there should be MANY other able classes available to take up that job), no no...we're going to do what we do best. DPS!
So my raids strategy is extremely easy, and also pretty damn effective, but keep in mind this method only works if you have the DPSers to do it fast enough (a shaman comes in handy here for heroism). The ENTIRE raid minus the tanks/healer in the back, and one healer and tank on the other side of you will be stacked up as close as possible in the front left of the room. I mean it, act like that warrior doesn't have a body odor issue, or that rogue smells like sweaty leather and get all buddy buddy with em. The reason for this is simple...Thane (the horsemen you will be killing first) has a nasty Meteor he likes to summon. The closer you all are to one another, the less damage it does.
Back up for a second. You still didn't explain what we're doing!
I'm getting there. Its basically a "Do as much damage as fast as possible so that the tank can't get more than 3 stacks of that debuff" situation. Everyone will burn into Thane as much and as fast as possible (heroism if you got it!), once he's dead, you'll just hustle to the other side, and do the same with Baron Riverdare. Send the offtank to go make a sandwich (no..not really..have him go to the back to assist on whomever is doing their work back there), and just burn this mob down. Once he's dead, you will run to the back and do the same thing with the remaining 2 horsemen...keeping an eye on your own debuff the entire time. Once it reaches 3 stacks, you (and your demon) will switch targets. The entire encounter shouldn't take more than 5 minutes.
So a few extra tips for this one:
Shadow Ward needs to be up at all times.
After the first 2 horsemen are dropped and you're running to the back, suggest your raid split up so that they are all not focused on one mob at a time. This is less of a strain on the healers. Just make sure they (and you) are watching their debuffs.
A Doomguard is great for this fight too, if he's available that is. He has a 30 minute cooldown so he may not be ready yet after Instructor Raz. If he's not, no biggie...he's not NEEDED, just fun to use :)
Monday, June 15, 2009
Noth The Plaguebringer
As with most fights in Naxx, this one requires some massive team work. Your druids and mages need to be decursing as much as possible, and your tanks need to make sure to not only keep aggro even after the boss blinks, but keep all the adds rounded up in the center.
So as an Affliction lock, what do YOU do?
Basically you will position yourself in the corner farthest from the stacks of bones (all casters/healers should be here actually) as this will keep you out of range from the adds that come in over the course of the fight.
While Noth is in the fight (he teleports out)...you will focus all your DPS on him. Keep your finger on the soul shatter button and pop it whenever its up...as he resets aggro when he blinks and you will most likely be on the top of his kill list. Once he teleports out...AoE the adds...life tap between each of the waves.
Heigan the Unclean
Time for fun! This fight is affectionately called "the dance" by most raid groups..and for good reason.
Demon tip: Imp. On passive. The stamina boost is more beneficial than having any other demon in the fight as they'll surely die.
At the start of the fight, make sure the tank engages BEFORE you run up on the platform. Heigan has range aggro, and he'll one shot you with a bonk on the noggin if you're too close. Once on the platform, pop a demonic circle.
Phase 1, DPS DPS DPS! Make sure your tank is keeping him at a good distance from you so that you don't get his spell disruption aura (20 yard range).
Phase 2, Get into position to do "the dance". Cast a Curse of Agony and a Corruption whenever they're up (since they're instant and can be done while running). If you get a shadow trance (aka instant shadow bolt)..use it. At the end of this phase...as he is running down..run AWAY from the platform to let the tank once again get aggro..then use your demonic circle to get back to the platform. That ranged aggro is a pain...trust me.
He has no enrage..so even if 90% of your raid dies..this fight can get finished.
BONUS TIP! The Gauntlet!
Not a boss fight but still important. The main thing to remember on this next part (its the run to the next boss)...is to keep moving. Let the tanks lead...and make sure you and 2 people get across. Why? Because you can summon those who die on the way :)
DOOMGUARD! This is a great fight for this powerhouse, probably the best in Naxx actually. It's also a good idea to pop a soul well for this one just in case your healers get overwhelmed in that 3 second "heal" window they get.
This really is just a pure tank and spank battle for the most part. You will rip into him with all you have, making sure you get a spore buff whenever its up. The only real tip I can give you is to be weary of your life taps (remember, you can't heal yourself or be healed for 99% of this fight), and to zoom your camera all the way out so that you can see spore spawn points.
Part 3 is up tomorrow!