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Warlock Guide - Basics

Updated Sun, Aug 21, 2011 by Mem



Warlocks are just one of the many classes in World of Warcraft, however, this is one class that won’t simply blend into the background. Warlocks are limited, unlike other  classes, to only participating in the DPS aspect of the game. Unable to heal or tank, it would seem a class like this would leave a player with few options for variety, but this is simply not the case. The Warlock class, despite its limitations, or perhaps because of them takes DPS to a whole new level.

In this section of the Warlock Guide you will find the most basic information regarding the Warlock class. This includes why you should play the Warlock, professions information, important statistics, and also help choosing a race. Enjoy!

Getting Started

Why should you play a Warlock?

With all the other excellent class choices out there you may be wondering if you have made the right decision in choosing the Warlock. To help secure your choice check out the list below for just a few of the defining aspects of this class:

  • The Warlock can dish out massive amounts of damage using the combined forces of dark magic and their demonic minions.
  • Able to summon minions to do damage, protect the Warlock, or even bewitch foes.
  • Can drain enemies health to rejuvenate their own.
  • Uses various curses to hinder and ultimatly help destroy opponents.
  • Warlocks can create health stones, summon their friends, and even teleport short distances when the need arises.
  • Warlocks, like Paladins, get a free mounts once they reach the correct level.

Warlock Race Selection

What's the best race for the Warlock?

One of the first big decisions you will make as a Warlock is what race you will be, but first you should decide which faction you wish to be part of, Alliance or Horde. Your choice of faction will dictate which zones you spend the most time in, who your comrades will be, and who you will consider your enemies.

Remember that the ultimate decision of what race you choose should be based on your personal feelings rather than stats, this will ensure that you love the race you are playing and most likely will never regret your choice. However, if your looking for a more technical way to choose your race you may wish to check out the various racial abilities attributed to each. Check out the listings below to see the racial abilities for each race:

Horde
Blood Elf Blood Elves racials provide them with an increased resistance to Arcane effects, increased Enchanting skill, and Arcane Torrent; a silencing ability.
Forsaken Forsaken racials provide the race with an increase in Shadow resistance by 1, the ability to breathe underwater for longer than normal, the ability to gain back health and mana through cannibalization, and Will of the Forsaken; an ability that removes any movement impairing effects from the player.
Goblin Goblin racials provide them with the best possible gold discount at vendors, regardless of faction, an increase in Alchemy skill, a 1% increase in attack and casting speed, and the ability to use their belt to launch rockets at enemies and jump long distances from time to time.
Orc Orcs racials provide an additional 3 points in expertise with Fist Weapons, Axes, and Two-Handed Axes, increased damage dealt by pets by 3%, a reduction in the duration of stun effects by 15%, and Blood Fury; an ability that increases spell power for 15 seconds.
Troll Troll racials provide this race with 5%  increased damage verses beasts, 20% increased attack and casting speed, a 1% increased chance to hit with bows, a 10% health regeneration rate, an 1% chance to critically hit with throwing weapons, and a 15% reduction to the duration of all movement impairing effects.

Alliance
Dwarf Dwarven racials provide a 1% increase to critically hit with Guns, expertise with Maces and Two-Handed Maces increased by 3, an increased resistance to Frost effects, the ability to find additional fragments when looting arcaelogical finds and the ability to survey faster than other archaeologists, and Stoneform; an ability that removes all poison, disease, and bleed effects, and increases the player’s armor by 10% for 8 seconds.
Gnome Gnome racials provide an increase in resistance to Arcane effects by 1, a 15 point increase in Engineering, a 5% increase in the player’s mana pool, a 3 point increase in expertise with Daggers and One-Handed Swords, and Escape Artist; an ability that allows the player to escape the effects of any immobilization or movement speed reduction effect.
Human Humans have an increase in Spirit by 3%, a 10% increase in reputation gain, an additional 3 points of expertise in Maces, Two-Handed Maces, Swords, and Two-Handed Swords, and Every Man for Himself, an ability that removes all movement impairing effects which cause loss of control of your character.
Worgen Worgen racials provide a 15 point increase in Skinning and allows the player to skin faster, increases critical strike chance by 1%, allows the player to shift between Worgen and Human form, a 13 point increased resistance to harmful Nature and Shadow effects, the ability to drop to all fours to run more quickly, and Darkflight, an ability that allows the Worgen to transform into their true form, increasing movement speed by 70% for 10 seconds.

Warlock Professions

What’s the best Profession for a Warlock?

Choosing a profession can seem like a difficult task, but let me assure you that it is easier than you might think. Thanks to some changes made by Blizzard, currently every crafting profession in game will offer a basic bonus to a player’s stats. These bonuses are designed so that none are better than the other. This means that players for possibly the first time ever are able to pick a profession based on their own personal preference instead of picking one simply because it helps out their class. So feel free to pick the profession that most appeals to you and go from there.

Warlock Specializations

What spec should I pick for a Warlock?

There are three major specializations that a Warlock can choose from; Affliction, Demonology, or Destruction. Each specialization has its own benefits and will offer the Warlock a distinct playing experience. Choose the one that best fits your personal play style. See a basic description of each of these specializations below:

  • Affliction - Warlocks who choose the path of Affliction will become terrifying damage dealers who rely on the power of DoTs to slowly and (hopefully)  very painfully drain the life from their enemies. While they can still do other types of damage the Affliction tree truly specializes in damage over time spells. Because of this the Affliction Warlock may have more mobility than other specs, however, they will also need to be constantly checking and rechecking the timers on their active DoTs. 
  • Demonology - Demonology Warlocks have the potential to be heavy damage dealers, however, instead of doing the damage themselves they instead rely heavily on the assistance of their demon minions. The Deomonolgy tree revolves around talents that boost the Warlocks pet and other utilities much like the Hunter’s Beastmaster tree. Demonology currently reigns supreme in AoE DPS.
  • Destruction - Destruction Warlocks unlike their Affliction counterparts, will take the focus off the DoTs. Instead this tree focuses heavily on direct damage dealing and bursts. But, as we all know a Warlock would not be a Warlock without the use of DoTs and these will still play a role in this specs damage rotation.

Warlock Equipment and Statistics

How should I choose equipment and stats for the Warlock?

Choosing Equipment for your Warlock is as simple as knowing which basic stats are best for you. Know which stats you need and you can easily discern which pieces of gear you should pick up and which you should pass by. While each spec will require similar stats, some will be more important for certain specs than other.. Find a listing of the most useful stats (listed in order of usefulness) for each spec below:

Affliction Demonology Destruction
Intellect
Hit (To Cap)
Haste
Crit
Mastery
Intellect
Hit (To Cap)
Mastery
Haste
Crit
Intellect
Hit (To Cap)
Haste
Crit
Mastery



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