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Xalfen

Warlock PvE

Hello everyone,

 

I am starting this thread to gather opinions of the Warlock in PvE. The main reason for this thread is motivated by the fact that I am hesitating between Warlock and Mage. Not having played Vanilla since 2006 (I was playing hunter at the time), I rather be honest saying that my memories on Warlocks are a bit blur..

So my question being , what is the Warlock really worth in PvE for MC , BWL , AQ , Naxx... How many are generally needed when PvE ? Would a mage be prefered ?

 

Thank you for all your answers ;)

Edited by Xalfen
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Mage is better for many reasons... but it doesn't really matter. A guild needs a fair amount of both, and every guild will take both, so you may as well play the one you like. I will say that raiding as a Warlock is more difficult, but there's less competition for raid slots (because there's fewer Warlocks). So guilds might slot a few more Mages than Warlocks (mainly because of higher availability), but they're going to take both regardless. Personally, I like Warlock more. Biggest plus for me is not having people bug me for water all the time. Players don't care about healthstones that much. Most don't bother to use the thing. And making my own means it's always available every fight without trying to get it traded.

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Alright,

Thank you for the quick response. As for the DPS , would a mage be much higher than a Warlock ( i understand the play what you like concept , I am just being curious here).

Soulstone and Hearthstone are a real "plus" to me in raid. 

 

also , what are you belief when it comes to PvP , I never played Warlock in Vanilla ( only TBC as a main). From what I recall Warlock was a pain in the ass in PvP. Mage was however I would say better suited for PvP though.

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Warlock can easily be higher if he gets to use Corruption, which eats a debuff slot (-> Nightfall). But there's not enough slots for everyone, and this is assuming you have 16. Classic, in most patches, ran with 8. But regardless, Mage has the better deal because of threat reduction talents and spells to survive being targeted. A Warlock has nothing of the sort. Mages have -threat talents, so they can achieve a higher DPS without pulling threat. What's more important than top DPS is NOT pulling threat of the thing you're shooting at. Mages basically don't have to worry about this. Warlocks do. Mages also have spells to survive being targeted or debuffed. Ice Block removes/negates practically everything in the game. But as I said... you can play the one you like. Knowing that Warlock is less competitive for slots, it's a winner for me on that alone. I was a Hunter on Nost, (2nd rarest class) but if I'm not getting my character back, I'd rather roll up something new next. I don't want to be stuck outside behind 10 Mages either when a Warlock would likely have an open slot.

Warlock is a derp class for PvP in Classic, and it's another reason why they were incredibly rare in retail. In Classic retail, people barely even played this class, and you'd often be the only one in BGs or even raids. They're far less rare now, but still underpicked vs other classes. They can 1vs1 quite well vs most classes, but stick them in a BG, and they're just an inferior Mage. Mage btw gets 1 decent build that can do everything, aka BG+Raid. A Warlock does not. Your only decent build to raid with is 30/0/21, which doesn't BG for shit because it has no survival at all. You could try 30/21/0, which grabs many defensive talents, but without Ruin or the bolt talents, your DPS will nosedive in content, and you sacrificed Blood Pact. The best build to BG with is actually full Destruction, but gearing fire is quite harder than gearing shadow, and as soon as you enter a raid, you'll notice everything in T1 is fire immune. So you can't commit to this build unless you don't raid at all. Basically, while Mage gets an all in 1 build, Warlock has to choose between oppose ends, or a build in the middle that isn't as effective for either. You could also run Soul Link, which does PvP well, but is the lowest DPS build available. I liked running it on my Warlock before I quit Nost. He did not raid. In dungeons I ran 3/3 Succubus, which helped the DPS and added CC, but it was still moot vs the other trees, and in many fights, she'd just get killed.

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Alright , that's basically what I remembered from retail. Thanks for all the explanations.

I am still highly considering rolling Warlock (or priest). But when thinking about it , it is true that blizzard put so much attention to mages and not warlock in retail. The whole Warlock system is absolutly fantastic but has so many more "limitations" than a mage. 

I also remember my warlock in TBC. I was absolute king. Good times.

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I don't know if it's true or not but it certainly looks that way. In Classic, Warlock was a poorly thought out class with too many junk or conflicting talents. The class itself had a sloppy design, such as buying demon books, then the game not remembering which ones you've bought. I always ran a mod for this, which I still use for these servers. The class also had a ton of other issues. Originally, when you had a mount, the pet would not keep up, so after falling behind, it'd literally vanish, then you'd have to resummon it. It was terrible to play the class back then. It got much better by 1.12, but the damage was already done from a shitty launch, and almost no one played the class. They didn't decide to really give this class any respect until BC. The irony was that in BC, due to overwhelming buffs to the class in order to get people to play it, it became so OP that PvP and even PvE was effortless. Resilience was also released in a shitty state, which they didn't fix until a good 8 months later, allowing Warlocks to cheese top ranks for most of 2007. By the time they finally fixed things, Warlocks already had gladiator titles and mounts, which they basically cheesed without real skill or effort.

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I played warlock in classic wow and again on kronos 1. 

i like the different abilities the class provides. You have alot of survivability skills and can run around with pets. Personally demo lock leveling is one of the smothiest things on earth for me. Especially after hitting lvl 40 for soullink. At this point shitty meele gankors will be raped and you become god himself. You run around with -40% dmg, full stamina buffed thru talents, and a voidbubble (which absorbs in case of fire ~ 900 hp), insta resummin a new void (so you have the opportunity for another bubble) and furthermore the free potions aka life gems. And If you have failed pretty hard and got killed althouh you have 1 million skills to avoid dying, you can go for the "walk of shame" and give it a second try because of soulstones.

sadly Demo isnt viable when it comes to raiding. And heres the problem. Drain said pretty much everything about that.

For me as little pve tryhard i dont like the fact of trying to be #1 on dpsmeter and suddenly being forced to afk in fight, cause of a shadowboldcrit and aggro issues. The raid playstyle of locks and mages are very similar. You're just hitting that Bold-button afap. Mages build less aggro, dont need that much hit gear - which makes locks more rng dependend cause you wont be hitcapped - and furthermore the mages have an aggro reset with ice block. Everytime i was raiding with a lock i was telling me "next time you go for a mage" . really a hard decision. I couln't even tell you if i would roll a warlock or a mage this time if i had to choose...

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There is so much wrong information in this relatively short thread that I feel forced to intervene. There might be people deciding against rolling Warlock because of what they read in this thread, which makes me worried. I'll do my best to debunk the incorrect statements made this far:

On 2016-10-11 at 8:44 AM, Drain said:

Warlock can easily be higher if he gets to use Corruption, which eats a debuff slot (-> Nightfall). But there's not enough slots for everyone, and this is assuming you have 16. Classic, in most patches, ran with 8. But regardless, Mage has the better deal because of threat reduction talents and spells to survive being targeted. A Warlock has nothing of the sort. Mages have -threat talents, so they can achieve a higher DPS without pulling threat. What's more important than top DPS is NOT pulling threat of the thing you're shooting at. Mages basically don't have to worry about this. Warlocks do. Mages also have spells to survive being targeted or debuffed. Ice Block removes/negates practically everything in the game. But as I said... you can play the one you like. Knowing that Warlock is less competitive for slots, it's a winner for me on that alone. I was a Hunter on Nost, (2nd rarest class) but if I'm not getting my character back, I'd rather roll up something new next. I don't want to be stuck outside behind 10 Mages either when a Warlock would likely have an open slot.

When it comes to Warlock PvE there is no reason to believe that the class is bad at its job, quite the contrary.

In T1 and T2 content where Mages are Frost specced Warlocks do more damage than Mages with the same amount of gear. MC/BWL are bad instances for casters in general for a few reasons but Mages are in the exact same boat as Warlocks. The minus threat talents are great, but since the damage output for casters in these instances aren't the greatest you shouldn't be threatcapped on many bosses (There are a few exceptions like for example Lashlayer, but they are few). There is also a potion called Limited Invulnerability Potion (which is absolutely mandatory in raids) which does the same job as ice block does (but has lower cd, potions only have 2minute cooldowns). I have a very hard time understanding how Mages>Warlocks pre-AQ.

In T2.5 and T3 content Mages use fire spec which relies a lot on Ignite to do damage. To explain it shortly you basically have all Mages casting fireball and one of the Mages will get the combined Ignite damage (fireball dot), meaning he will do a very high amount of damage while all the other mages boost his damage. So it's a teamwork dps class in AQ/Naxx instances as opposed to Warlocks which is all about solo dps-ing. In these instances Warlocks, Rogues and Warriors will all have consistently high dps while there will be one mage on top and the other mages slightly lower than the average WL/Fury/Rogue. Don't get me wrong, the Mage dps averages out decently well and they justify their raid slot, but their focus on boosting one Mage's dps brings a ton of aggro issues, more than Warlocks can ever cause. Important to note is that Mages aren't better (neither damage nor aggro-wise) than Warlocks in these instances and both of these classes will compete with Rogue/Warrior just fine. And on the last boss (KT) Warlocks on the server will be headhunted since it's the superior dps class in that situation (just like Protection Warriors are headhunted for 4HM progression). And that's not the only boss they are the top performers on.

Video on how Ignite damage looks like in case someone is curious: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RYVtIpdQntA

Warlocks have always been wanted in PvE guilds and for a good reason. Obviously pre-AQ Casters aren't as well-performing as Melee classes, but that changes later on. Also, Mages have no upper hand against Warlocks in any progression state, so I don't see how Mages out of all classes is the one being argued as the "superior class" to Warlocks.

On 2016-10-11 at 8:44 AM, Drain said:

Warlock is a derp class for PvP in Classic, and it's another reason why they were incredibly rare in retail. In Classic retail, people barely even played this class, and you'd often be the only one in BGs or even raids. They're far less rare now, but still underpicked vs other classes. They can 1vs1 quite well vs most classes, but stick them in a BG, and they're just an inferior Mage. Mage btw gets 1 decent build that can do everything, aka BG+Raid. A Warlock does not. Your only decent build to raid with is 30/0/21, which doesn't BG for shit because it has no survival at all. You could try 30/21/0, which grabs many defensive talents, but without Ruin or the bolt talents, your DPS will nosedive in content, and you sacrificed Blood Pact. The best build to BG with is actually full Destruction, but gearing fire is quite harder than gearing shadow, and as soon as you enter a raid, you'll notice everything in T1 is fire immune. So you can't commit to this build unless you don't raid at all. Basically, while Mage gets an all in 1 build, Warlock has to choose between oppose ends, or a build in the middle that isn't as effective for either. You could also run Soul Link, which does PvP well, but is the lowest DPS build available. I liked running it on my Warlock before I quit Nost. He did not raid. In dungeons I ran 3/3 Succubus, which helped the DPS and added CC, but it was still moot vs the other trees, and in many fights, she'd just get killed.

First of all, Warlock in 1.12 is a class which is heavily dependant on gear. In lower gear they are very easily bursted down but in top BWL gear or T2.5/T3 gear they are an extremely feared class. On Horde side they are borderline broken because of how strong Fear is, but even on alliance side they can sway games in their favour just through their strong presence on the field. Fear, Curse of Tongues, Spell Lock, Devour Magic, Death Coil, Curse of Exhaustion are all insane CC abilities which changes the outcome of teamfights a lot (And on horde side where Succubus is an alternative you have even more CC. Just look at Drakedog). Combined with the burst damage possibilities (Shadowbolt + Shadowburn, Immolate + Conflagrate + Shadowburn, Nightfall procs etc) and their high survivability (at T2+ gear level, at least) they are unstoppable killing machines in pvp, stick a healer on a Warlock and he can farm GY for days. And that's not even mentioning Alterac Valley. That said, without gear it's a class that isn't hard to burst down and there are obviously upsides to playing a mage as well. If you just wanna jump in and be effective in green gear that's absolutely possible to do as a mage. Rank 1 frostbolts, polymorphs, novas etc can be very effective and they have lots of FC capabilities whereas Warlocks don't. There are upsides and downsides with both these classes.

With that said, I'll try to adress the (incorrect) comments made by Drain:

"They can 1vs1 quite well vs most classes, but stick them in a BG, and they're just an inferior Mage."

That works the other way around, Mages are very strong in 1v1 (or 1vX) while Warlocks' strength lies in teamfight battles.

"Mage btw gets 1 decent build that can do everything, aka BG+Raid. A Warlock does not. Your only decent build to raid with is 30/0/21, which doesn't BG for shit because it has no survival at all."

Mages are the ones that has to respec the most because of the fire immunities in the Tier 1 and Tier 2 instances so Warlocks overall has to respec less than Mages, so this shouldn't be an argument in favour of Mages in the first place. But even if Mages didn't have to respec for PvE then Warlocks are one of the few (if not the only?) class that doesn't need to respec between PvP and PvE to be effective. SM/Ruin (the 30/0/21 spec mentioned) is for the most part the go-to spec for PvE and it's also probably the most used PvP spec. Just look at PvP videos made by Seuche or Dush, they usually have several SM/Ruin clips in their movies. Personally I'd say SM/Ruin is the strongest Warlock PvP build (you could argue that allocating the points differently like for example skipping SM for Demonic Embrace is a good idea but that's not a game-breaking change), it's one of the very few specs that is top performing both in PvP and PvE. I myself am still undecided about which class to roll on CF but one of the things that could convince me to roll Warlock again would be because I wouldn't have to respec as much as I would have to playing another class (like Mage).

"You could try 30/21/0, which grabs many defensive talents, but without Ruin or the bolt talents, your DPS will nosedive in content, and you sacrificed Blood Pact."

30/21/0 is only useful for one thing and that would be dot farming mobs, otherwise I have no idea why you would suggest it. Also, you always sacrifice Blood Pact when PvP-ing, Imp is the worst PvP pet so there is no reason to use it outside of PvE anyway.

"You could also run Soul Link, which does PvP well, but is the lowest DPS build available."

Obviously there are pure PvP builds for Warlocks that doesn't work out in PvE situations but you can find similar talent builds for every other class as well, including Mages (PoM/Pyro comes to mind).

On 2016-10-11 at 10:27 AM, Drain said:

I don't know if it's true or not but it certainly looks that way. In Classic, Warlock was a poorly thought out class with too many junk or conflicting talents. The class itself had a sloppy design, such as buying demon books, then the game not remembering which ones you've bought. I always ran a mod for this, which I still use for these servers. The class also had a ton of other issues. Originally, when you had a mount, the pet would not keep up, so after falling behind, it'd literally vanish, then you'd have to resummon it. It was terrible to play the class back then. It got much better by 1.12

These things you mention are bugs and should not be on Crestfall. And as you mention the class got much better by 1.12 which will be the patch that we will be playing on (spells, talents etc will be 1.12). So no problems here. Pets are in many cases bugged in one way or another on private servers, but bugs can affect any class, unless we discover that Warlocks will be more bugged than other classes there is no reason to make an argument like this.

On 2016-11-20 at 2:56 AM, Topkek said:

i like the different abilities the class provides. You have alot of survivability skills and can run around with pets. Personally demo lock leveling is one of the smothiest things on earth for me. Especially after hitting lvl 40 for soullink. At this point shitty meele gankors will be raped and you become god himself. You run around with -40% dmg, full stamina buffed thru talents, and a voidbubble (which absorbs in case of fire ~ 900 hp), insta resummin a new void (so you have the opportunity for another bubble) and furthermore the free potions aka life gems. And If you have failed pretty hard and got killed althouh you have 1 million skills to avoid dying, you can go for the "walk of shame" and give it a second try because of soulstones.

This comment shows another example of how strong Warlocks can be with some preparation. Demonology with Soul Link build removes 30% of the damage you take (your pet takes it instead). Combine that with the heal from death coil, 15% more stamina from Demonic Embrace on your already stamina-heavy gear, healthstones healing and spellstones dispelling and providing a shield. And then you can sacrifice voidwalker for a 2500 damage shield, just to quick resummon it and sacrifice it again for double the effect. Despite being a cloth-wearer it's very easy to reach an effective hp in the 5-digits.

On 2016-11-20 at 2:56 AM, Topkek said:

For me as little pve tryhard i dont like the fact of trying to be #1 on dpsmeter and suddenly being forced to afk in fight, cause of a shadowboldcrit and aggro issues. The raid playstyle of locks and mages are very similar. You're just hitting that Bold-button afap. Mages build less aggro, dont need that much hit gear - which makes locks more rng dependend cause you wont be hitcapped - and furthermore the mages have an aggro reset with ice block. Everytime i was raiding with a lock i was telling me "next time you go for a mage" . really a hard decision. I couln't even tell you if i would roll a warlock or a mage this time if i had to choose...

As I mentioned earlier Mages are using Ignite in instances that aren't MC/BWL, meaning that their overall damage isn't split out between all players equally but it's mostly concentrated on the Mage who currently controls the Ignite damage (doing two, three or more times the amount of damage of the average dpser, which obviously makes threat an issue). Despite having threat reduction from talents Fire specced Mages have a harder time than Warlocks to not draw aggro. There is a reason the trinket Eye of Diminution (threat-reduction trinket with spell crit) is Mage prio. I mean it obviously depends on the instance, but I think it's very hard to argue that Warlocks are more threat-dependant than Mages overall. And even then you have Limited Invulnerability Potion as I mentioned earlier (which you have time to react to and use since you will have distance between yourself and the raid boss, unlike Fury Warriors for example). Anybody telling you "next time you go for a mage" is most likely clueless and shouldn't give you advice on what class to roll.

 

I raided Warlock from ZG to Naxxramas week in and week out for year(s?) on 1.12 private servers and played ~40k HKs in vanilla and ended up with basically full BiS-gear both PvP- and PvE-wise so I'd like to think that I have some credibility in what I'm saying. But I hope that this post on its own explains some of the strengths of the class as well as disproves some of the worrying posts in this thread. If you feel like rolling Warlock go ahead, there are negative aspects of the class (just like with any class) but their performance in PvE is a strength if anything. I'd also like to mention that it seems like "Drain" played the class in retail, aka pre-1.12-patches, where Warlocks weren't as strong as they are in the 1.12 patch (which will be the CF patch), so that might be one reason for why our views on the class differ.

 

Over and out

Edited by Topdps
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@Topdps May I ask a couple of questions please?

I read somewhere that from AQ40 onwards since there is 16 debuff slot that Shadow priests will get a an opt-in on raids as a shadow weaving toy battery for Warlocks.

Also, there was another comment on having a Shaman in a Warlock group who would plant a Tranquil Air Totem down to reduce threat by 20% as Warlocks would find themselves frequently on the edge.

In your experience are any/both of these statements true?

Thanks in advance

 

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5 minutes ago, Outstanding said:

@Topdps May I ask a couple of questions please?

I read somewhere that from AQ40 onwards since there is 16 debuff slot that Shadow priests will get a an opt-in on raids as a shadow weaving toy battery for Warlocks.

Also, there was another comment on having a Shaman in a Warlock group who would plant a Tranquil Air Totem down to reduce threat by 20% as Warlocks would find themselves frequently on the edge.

In your experience are any/both of these statements true?

Thanks in advance

 

Yes, all guilds uses one Shadow Priest in their raids for Shadow-weaving. 15% increased shadow damage easily pays off in the later raids where you start stacking more Warlocks. Multiple Shadow specced Priests are also a necessity on Instructor Razuvious where you need hitcap for the mind controls, but other than that there is no reason to bring more than one. (Usually you just have Holy Priests respeccing to Shadow for that boss, just to respec back to Holy right after)

And yes, Tranquil Air Totem is very useful.

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21 hours ago, Topdps said:

Anybody telling you "next time you go for a mage" is most likely clueless and shouldn't give you advice on what class to roll.

I raided Warlock from ZG to Naxxramas week in and week out for year(s?) on 1.12 private servers and played ~40k HKs in vanilla and ended up with basically full BiS-gear both PvP- and PvE-wise so I'd like to think that I have some credibility in what I'm saying.

more reading, less trolling....

 

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