Updated for Warlords of Draenor
This is the Affliction Warlock PvP Guide. Your job is to suck the life out of the enemy and leave their corpses around the battlefield.
Whether Affliction is or is not the Flavor of the Month (FOTM) isn’t the point of this page. The point is to get your ‘lock to a better place in PvP. So let’s do it.
If you’re looking for the raiding or leveling info then see the links just below.
If you like this page how about recommending (“like,” +1, etc.) it and/or commenting?
Affliction PvP Contents
- Stats and reforging
- Your Talents
- Your Glyphs
- PvP Gear
- Race Choice
- Affliction Macros
- Faster Leveling
Other Warlock Pages
- Warlock Overview, Warlock Leveling
- Affliction Raiding, Demonology for Raids, Destruction for Raids
- Destruction PvP, Warlock PvP, Tips
Stats for Affliction Warlocks in PvP
Getting your stats in order is fairly important, though not like it used to be. Why? Because Hit, Expertise, PvP Power, and Resilience are all dead. Reforging (big in Mists of Pandara) is also dead. So things are much simpler than they used to be.
You do have two new secondary stats, Multistrike & Versatility, to play with.
‘>’ = “Greater than” or “better than.”
Keep in mind that these will vary a bit depending on exact gear levels, buffs, debuffs, etc. In all cases though:
- Priority: Int > Haste/Mastery > Crit > Multistrike > Versatility*
- Look for: Mastery/Haste gear.
Int is your #1 stat. Int provides Spellpower which improves everything you do. You get more Int through gear, runes, and chemicals (Flasks, etc.) In Draenor it’s not (yet) available on gems or enchants.
Mastery – Mastery pulls ahead of Haste when multi-dotting (fighting two or more.) Note that when “multi-dotting” (DOTing 2 or more targets) mastery’s value will pull ahead of Haste as it simply affects more stuff. Also, Mastery is a good stat for all Warlock specs, so if you favor Mastery you don’t need separate gear sets.
Haste increases casting speed and how quickly your DoTs tick. It’s possible, with large amounts of Haste to get extra DoT ticks. (These points are known as the soft caps.) The extra ticks don’t add as much damage as Mastery will.
Crit Is not a great stat for Affliction. Nothing procs from crits and it only gives you a chance for 150% effect from your attacks/heals (200% in PvE.)
Multistrike gives you one chance (two in PvE) at an extra attack at 30% effect. Also pretty much a “meh” stat for you.
Versatility is an add to your damage (and any healing you do) and, at half value, to your damage reduction. It doesn’t help with healing done to you, but does to your personal heals. It’s a small add to your survival, unless you can stack up on a decent amount. If your damage is fine and you really need the defense, then rank Vers. right after Haste.
Affliction PvP Talents
Note that there are times when you will want to switch talents to suit a particular situation or you style of play. Always keep a stack of Tome of the clear mind handy for those changes. You will also need the tomes for any glyph changes.
Talent remarks are below the image.
Our picks are checked:
Tier 1, level 15:
- Dark regeneration is a decent “heal over time,” but the +25% to healing received for those 12 seconds can be a lifesaver and it works well with your Healthstone.
- Soul leech will put up nice shields, but you’re generally busy DOTting, and not Haunting or Draining.
- Harvest life requires channeling, but it’s a solid heal. It just needs to be channeled. Glyph of Drain Life is highly recommended if you take this talent.
Tier 2, level 30:
- Howl of Terror lets you leap in and Fear the Healer and his protectors.
- Mortal Coil combines a brief fear (single target) with a small heal. If your team needs a stun then Shadowfury is your pick. If you need the extra heal then take this one. Also nice for 1 on 1 fights. Longer cooldown than Shadowfury.
- Shadowfury briefly stuns all nearby enemies and is generally your best option of this set. It has a short cooldown and can really help peel for your team. Being instant cast it can be used to interrupt and the 30 yard range doesn’t hurt.
Tier 3, level 45:
- Soul Link should be the “go to” talent for most situation. Damage reduction and heals are always nice and they make you more “tanky.” You will take a lot less overall damage with this talent than with the others.
- Sacrificial Pact is just not up to Soul Link in usefulness.
- Dark Bargain throws up a shield which blocks all damage and then returns part of it to you after the shield drops. Best used in situations where you know you’ll be facing large bursts. If it’s dispelled you get no benefit.
Tier 4, level 60:
- Blood Horror helps keep those pesky melee types off you (one per cast.) It’s of no use Vs casters. It can be reflected, so stay alert to what is attacking you (Warrior) and what they are doing.
- Burning Rush is pretty useless in Arena, but certainly has its uses in PvE and situations where health is not really a concern.
- Unbound Will is an extra escape, which is always nice, and it’s usable while mounted, stunned, feared, etc. Note that spells like Unstable Affliction will go off if dispelled with UW, doing critical damage and silencing you. Aside from that, UW is a lot more useful against casters than Blood Horror.
Tier 5, level 75:
- Grimoire of Supremacy gives you a tougher pet, which is nice with your Soul Link. It’s more powerful and, with the Observer, you get a Spell Lock (Optical Blast.) Note that your Glyph of Demon Training does affect the Grimoire of Supremacy demon.
- Grimoire of Service pretty much only gives you a spell lock on a 2 minute CD.
- Grimoire of Sacrifice is nice when you’re going to lose the pet a lot anyway. Finish it off and get the buff. You’ll lose your Soul Link, some damage, and Devour Magic, but if the pet is going away anyway you might as well get the buff.
Tier 6, level 90:
- Archimonde’s Darkness is the best choice here. You get more uses of Dark Soul: Misery.
- The other two talents,Kil’jaeden’s Cunning and Mannoroth’s Fury, are mainly for PvE.
Tier 7, level 100:
- Soulburn: Haunt is the best option. It’s a pretty nice damage boost.
- Cataclysm is a long cast (3 sec, reduced by Haste) which just begs the other team to interrupt you.
- Demonic Servitude – The demons just aren’t that useful.
Glyphs for Affliction Warlock PvP
The first two are highly recommended, the others are more situational. Keep some Tome of the Clear Mind handy for switching glyphs. Checked glyphs are the most important.
- Eternal Resolve – Gain a passive 10% damage reduction against any damage, but can no longer use Unending Resolve. Works nicely with your Soul Link, making you that much more “tanky.”
- Unstable Affliction – Faster cast time makes your UA significantly harder to interrupt.
- Glyph of Drain Life – Take this if you took the Harvest Life talent.
- Siphon Life – Gain a bit of healing every time your Corruption does damage
- Demonic Circle – More teleports = more mobility and more escaping from sticky melee.
- Healthstone – 100% more healing, but spread over time.
- Unending Resolve – More uses of Undending Resolve.
- Glyph of Health Funnel – Instantly adds some health to your demon, but your Health Funnel now has a cooldown.
- Glyph of Nightmares – because being able to run over water has it’s uses.
- Glyph of Unending Breath – just in case you ever go swimming
- Glyph of Eye of Kilrogg – Modifies your “eye” in potentially useful ways.
Affliction Gems for PvP
There are no gem sockets on PvP gear in Warlords. PvE gear does, on occasion, have a gem socket. If your socketed PvE piece’s item level is close to or better than that of your PvP piece then use it instead and gem it.
All of the Warlords sockets and gems are prismatic, which means that you can put any Warlords gem into one of those sockets. Primary stats (Int, etc.) are not available on gems, only the secondary stats.
Also listed are gems for lower level PvP, since that gear can be socketed.
So, assuming the gems actually become available for level 100 PvP or you’re using a PvE piece with a socket, drop a gem into it.
- Level 100: Mastery gem in all sockets. Haste if you’re just doing 1 on 1.
- Levels 80-100: Int gems in red sockets, Mastery in yellow, Int/Mastery (or just Int) elsewhere.
- Under 80: Just Int and don’t worry about the socket colors.
|Gems for Warlords of Draenor|
|Mists of Pandaria Gems, for gear under ilevel 600.|
|Meta||Sinister Primal Diamond: +20 Critical Strike, and chance on spell damage to gain 30% spell haste
Capacitive Primal Diamond: +20 Critical Strike, and chance on melee or ranged hit to gain Capacitance
Burning Primal Diamond: +14 Int & 3% Increased Crit Effect
Forlorn Primal Diamond: +14 Intellect and 10% Silence Reduction
|Red||Brilliant Primordial Ruby: 10 Int|
|Yellow||Quick Sun’s Radiance: +20 Haste
Fractured Sun’s Radiance: +20 Mastery
|Blue||Lightning Wild Jade: +10 Haste and +10 Crit|
|Orange||Artful Vermilion Onyx: +5 Int & +10 Mastery|
|Green||Sensei’s Wild Jade: +10 Crit and +10 Mastery|
|Purple||Veiled Imperial Amethyst: 5 Int and 10 Crit|
|Cogwheel||Requires an engie helm, such as this.
Quick Tinker’s Gear: 38 Haste
Fractured Tinker’s Gear: 38 Mastery
Affliction PvP Enchantments
Short on gold? If you want to buy the best enchants, fund all of your alts, donate to the guild, etc., but don’t have the cash, then see what the Tycoon Addon can do about about fixing your poverty.
Warlords Notes: There are no head enchants, all shoulder enchants come from the Inscription profession and are only for items under item level 600. There are new enchants for Neck, Cloak, Weapons, and your Rings. Not for any other pieces. (Not yet, anyway.)
As with earlier enchants any of the Warlords enchants can be applied to lower level gear, where it will scale down appropriately. Yes, you can put one of these enchants on your level 1 heirloom item.
- Level 100: Mastery. Haste if you’re just doing 1 on 1.
- Levels 80-100: Int where available, Mastery, after that, Haste if nothing else.
- Under 80: Int and Haste
|Warlords of Draenor Enchantments|
Main & Off-Hand
|Enchants for item levels below 600.|
|Shoulders||Greater Crane Wing Inscription: +15 Int and 5 Crit|
|Chest||Enchant Chest – Glorious Stats: +9 to all Stats|
|Bracers||Enchant Bracer – Super Intellect: +15 Int
Enchant Bracer – Mastery: +25 Mastery
|Gloves||Enchant Gloves – Superior Mastery: +25 Mastery|
|Belt||Livingsteel Belt Buckle: Gem slot for a nice Int gem|
|Leggings||Greater Cerulean Spellthread: +19 Int and +11 Crit|
|Boots||Enchant Boots – Greater Precison: +12 Crit rating
Enchant Boots – Pandaren’s Step: +10 Mastery, slight run speed increase.
Enchant Boots – Greater Haste: +12 Haste
Need more gold for all this? See our Gold Guide.
Affliction Warlock PvP Gear
For the background on how the PvP gear system works in Warlords, see our Warlock PvP Gear page.
Gearing Up for Affliction
The set bonuses in Season 1 are:
- 2 piece set for Affliction: Getting stunned, silenced, interrupted, or feared generates 1 Soul Shard. Can only occur once every 15 sec. Combine this with Nightfall and you should be seeing a useful number of shards appearing, especially since you will constantly be stunned, silenced, interrupted, or feared.
- 4 piece set for Affliction: After using Demonic Circle: Teleport, you gain 1300 Versatility for 10 sec. Nice if you’re being pressured as it will add a bit of defense.
There’s an order to things here, so consider these points:
- If you don’t have the escape trinket yet then that’s your #1 pick. And why wouldn’t you have one (assuming that you’re not human?)
- The PvP trinket pair gives you a 15% damage reduction from other players. Consider the DPS trinket as your second pick, for this reason. Or the escape trinket, since earlier versions do not have the damage reduction feature. Just get both if you need the defense.
- Weapon next, due to the Spellpower. It can also be enchanted.
- Are the set bonuses a nice match for your game? If so then get two or four of five of the five pieces with the set bonus (Head, Shoulder, Chest, Legs, Gloves.)
- Get the rest of the big pieces, since their stats are better (more Int, etc.) than the smaller pieces.
- Get the rings, neck, and cloak pieces, since they can be enchanted.
- Get the rest.
The Actual Gear for Affliction
The links are for the Conquest gear, but the Honor pieces have the same names and stats. You will note that if you skip the set bonuses you will find yourself with more optimal stats. If you don’t consider the set bonuses useful then go for it. Your set will be made from the Chest, Legs, Shoulders, and Gloves, with the head as the off-piece.
Rep (Reputation with your faction) is gained by handing in Artifact Fragments in Ashran.
- Trinket #1: Primal Gladiator’s Medallion of Tenacity or, if human: Primal Gladiator’s Badge of Dominance
- Trinket #2: Primal Gladiator’s Insignia of Dominance (Int proc) or Primal Gladiator’s Emblem of Tenacity (Stam and “One Use” health boost.)
- Chest: Primal Combatant’s Felweave Raiment – Crit & Haste & Set Bonus. The other piece is Mastery/Haste. The rep piece is Multistrike and Versatility. Yawn.
- Gloves – 2 piece bonus: Primal Gladiator’s Felweave Handguards, Set bonus, Haste, Mastery. Perfect.
- Legs: Primal Gladiator’s Felweave Trousers – Set bonus, Mastery, Multistrike. Best of all available options.
- Shoulder: Primal Gladiator’s Felweave Amice – 4 piece set bonus, Mastery, Crit. Best of all available options.
- Head: Primal Gladiator’s Hood of Prowess – Mastery & Multistrike, no set bonus. Best of all available options.
- Cloak – enchant has + movement
- Ring #1: Primal Gladiator’s Band of Prowess – Haste & Multistrike
- Ring #2: Primal Gladiator’s Band of Cruelty – Haste & Crit
- Neck: Primal Gladiator’s Pendant of Cruelty – Mastery & Multistrike.
- Belt: Rep piece: Primal Gladiator’s Cord of Victory, Mastery & Versatility.
- Honor and those without rep should go for the Cord of Cruelty, with Haste & Crit.
- Boots: Primal Gladiator’s Treads of Cruelty – Haste & Mastery, Perfect.
- Bracers: Primal Gladiator’s Cuffs of Prowess
Affliction Abilities and their Use
How to PvP as Affliction
Your role in Arena, BGs, etc. is to spread damage as much as possible and to be as disruptive (as annoying) as possible. The more you can disrupt the healer the better off you’ll be.
- Spell Lock
Professions for Affliction
All of the professions bonuses, such as a better enchant in one gear slot, were slain when Warlords of Draenor arrived. There is no longer any special advantage to leveling any given profession.
The advantages to Warlords crafting (and gathering) is that it’s much easier than before and you can make some pretty nice gear that you can put on at level 91. You can put on three pieces of this gear. It starts at ilevel 640 and can be leveled to 685. (630 and 675 for weapons.) This makes it at least as good at the Season 1 PvP Honor gear. See the gar section, above, for more notes.
The catch? It’s time intensive and/or very expensive.
Some of the benefits shown below will requires a follower working in your level 2+ profession hut (in your garrison.)
|Professions for Affliction|
|Tailoring||Cloth armor, flying carpet, murlock chew toy and allows you to make nets (Embersilk Net) and battle standards (such as: Fearsome Battle Standard)|
|Leatherworking||Nothing to see here, move along.|
|Jewelcrafting||Make nice gems, including the new ones, plus mounts and jewelry.|
|Enchanting||You can cast illusionary enchants. These are basically transmogs for your current enchant. Want your current enchant to look like an older one? Then this is for you.|
|Inscription||Glyphs, caster weapons, darkmoon cards, trinkets, and misc other stuff.|
|Alchemy||Better living through chemistry, can do transmutes.|
|Engineering||Rockets, shields, and other useful items (not usable in raids or rated PvP.) Mounts, portable bank and repair device, and various other goodies.|
|Blacksmithing||Nothing to see here, unless you like the caster blades. Otherwise, move along.|
|Skinning||Nice for gold gathering or fueling a profession. You can use a garrison service to trap animals and get furs and skins without having the skinning skill.|
|Herbalism||Nice for gold gathering or fueling a profession. You can gather herbs in your garrison without having the herbalism skill.|
|Mining||Nice for gold gathering or fueling a profession. You can gather ores in your garrison without having the mining skill.|
Affliction Warlock Races
Pandarens cannot become Warlocks. Neither can Tauren, Draenei, or Night elves.
Best Horde race? Troll, for the burst from Berserking.
Best Alliance race? Human for the escape, two DPS trinkets, and the bonus to Versatility.
- Blood Fury increases spell damage. Just the thing for those times when you’d really like a bit more burst.
- The increased pet damage (a feeble 1%, on command) makes the Orc one of the better Warlock races.
- The decreased stun duration is nice.
- Undead– What’s better for demon summoning and Affliction then being already dead?
- Will of the Forsaken is a nice ability (anything that breaks Fear, etc is a nice PvP skill.)
- Cannibalize is useful when you just have to rub it in to that other player you just killed. Maybe that’s good enough reason to go Undead.
- Touch of the Grave drains life and heals you for the same amount.
- Indefinite Underwater Breathing might have use every now and then.
- Blood Elf – Can a magically addicted elf make a good Warlock? Wouldn’t they sell their souls for a taste? Perfect.
- Arcane Torrent is a nice spell interrupt with some PvP utility, but since it’s melee range and you don’t want to be in melee range. It does restore some mana, so is hardly useless.
- And ok, Blood Elves look good. A truly devastating Warlock Ability. Really.
- +1% to Crit rating.
- Good with Enchanting.
- Hmmm… Increased casting speed, when Berserk, is very nice. The Haste increase is arguable better than the Orc’s Bloody Fury.
- More XP gain from beast slaying is nice for leveling, but has no PvP use.
- Reduced duration of movement impairing effects is always nice.
- Goblin – Souls for sale? A Goblin Warlock will give you a great “deal” on your soul.
- Goblins can Rocket Launch forward, or away, which is be a nice escape ability.
- 1% Increased Haste. One of your bests stats, so this is nice.
- Improved Alchemy skills allow better effects from your own potions.
- The Human escape ability is a nice DPS skill as it allows you to use two DPS trinkets.
- Go Human if you want to waste less time gaining faction.
- Bonus to Versatility.
- Gnome – Tech and Demons, together again? Why would a Gnome be a Warlock?
- Escape artist is very nice for PvP, as is their small size,
- Gnomes get a slightly increased mana pool.
- Good with engineering, which allows you to blow up opposing players in addition to draining their souls.
- Dwarf – Various Dwarves factions are putting away their differences and joining forces after the Cataclysm and that’s where the Warlocks are infiltrating…er… coming from. This probably explains the thingscrawling around in the shadows of Ironforge.
- Stone Form is a nice PvP talent in that it will wash away that bleed that the Rogue or Feral just put on you and reduce damage by 10%.
- +2% critical effect
- Worgen – Fur, fleas, snuffling…
- They can periodically move quickly, which has its uses,
- Wargen have a reduced duration of curses and diseases (affecting them.)
- Increased crit chance isn’t as valuable as the Goblins’ Haste, as it’s your weakest stat.
- Good with skinning, but since other players can’t be skinned…
Tip: Always, Always, Always…Cast your Demonic Portal. Always. You never know when you’ll need to get out of a Situation, and if its not up, you cant get out of immediate danger.
Targeting – this is more for arena, but the idea applies to other areas. These three separate macros will let you target each enemy in Arena 3v3. You only need the first two in 2s, add two more for 5s.
Bind these to some easy to reach keys. For example, Mouse scroll up, press scroll button, mouse scroll down. Scroll up and enemy #1 is targeted, press that button and #2 is targeted, scroll down and it’s #3. This will greatly speed up your target selection.
Targeting with spells works the same way, just add the spell name
Like this: /cast [target=arena1] Name of Spell
Example: /cast [target=arena1] Unstable Affliction
Focus Targeting: Cast a spell on your focus target without losing your current target. You can use this for any spell that you might put on a focus target.
#showtooltip Name of Your Spell
/cast [target=focus] Name of Your Spell
Example: Your healer is being pressured by your focus target. Stun it.
/cast [target=focus] Shadowfury
For World PvP or BGs you might find the Spy addon useful. Get it from Curse.
Blow everything for max damage: Blows all of your CDs for when you just absolutely, positively have to kill the guy right now. This is intended for those who have two “on use” DPS trinkets (ie: Humans.) 13 and 14 are the two trinket slots.
#showtooltip Dark Soul
/cast Dark Soul
/cast Blood Fury
Macros for Your Pets
Casts certain pet abilities, depending on your pet. use the Ctrl key for the axe toss.
- /cast [pet:succubus] Seduction; [pet:felhunter] Spell Lock; [pet:voidwalker] Sacrifice; [pet:imp] Singe Magic; [mod:ctrl] Pursuit; Axe Toss
When below 25% health. This is designed as a very GOOD heal macro, to save yourself from certain death.
- /use Healthstone
- /cast Soulburn
- /cast Drain Life
Faster Affliction Warlock Leveling
Are you leveling your Warlock to reach the end-game BGs and Arenas? Already there and leveling another class? It can be a daunting thing, with thousands of quests and a few bazillion mobs to destroy. The trip to the level cap can take a while. A long while.
Do it the easy way, use an in-game leveling guide, like Zygor’s Guide. It makes leveling so easy that you could almost say that it automates the whole leveling process for your ‘lock. You still have to play the game, of course, but the “where to go, what to do, and what to get” part is neatly taken care of.
Pick your starting point and Zygor’s will show you exactly which quests to pick up and the most efficient way to do them. Zygor’s automatically updates and advances as you complete tasks and quests, sets a waypoint arrow automatically (always showing you where to go next,) and includes all the important quest info. You will probably never need to look at your quest log again, much less stop mid-play to browse some website in the search for clues.