Hand me Downs: Warlock
Welcome to the sixth instalment of my 10 part series on how to best prepare for levelling a new character of a given class. This time, we look at the dark wielders of Fel and Flame, the Warlocks! This guide will cover levelling specs, heirlooms and professions. It also assumes you have access to a level 80 character and a reasonable amount of gold.
Understanding a Warlock
Warlock is a pure ranged DPS class. All three talent trees are devoted to DPS. The first is Affliction, a raiding and PvE dps tree with a large amount of PvP potential, and a DoT heavy rotation. The second is Demonology, with different raiding uses and some PvP application, and with stronger AoE components. The third is the heavy single target damage tree, Destruction, which also has its place in PvP. The recommended talent tree to level as is Demonology with sub-points into Destruction, as it buffs the minion you have with you and allows for massive fire damage later on. It also allows the acquisition of the powerful Fel Guard. This hybrid spec is very durable, reasonably mana efficient and works in most both PvP and PvE.
You should fill up the Demonology tree before moving on to the talents in Destruction . Also, when purchasing Glyphs, you want to be using the Life Tap Glyph as soon as the slot opens up, and Fel guard Glyph next time you get a new major. The Incinerate glyph is nice for big fire crits later on.
The main mechanic for Warlocks is Soul shards, which are gathered when you land a killing blow on something using Drain Soul. These shards are used in lots of different spells, including summoning of Minions and the crafting of Healthstones and Soulstones. When soloing as a Warlock, you should take care to be at maximum range from the thing you want to kill. Warlocks have a large amount of spells designed to make life easier for them, such as storing their soul in a Soulstone which you can use on yourself to allow yourself to resurrect after you die. Healthstones act as a useful health potion, you should always keep one on you for emergencies. In terms of Minions, you should use the voidwalker until you get access to the Felguard. Maintain whatever the highest rank of Warlock Armor is that you have. Life tap is a useful mechanism for getting mana at the cost of health, but don’t overuse it: Going below 40% health is unwise because of sudden attacks. There is a lot of stigma about using this spell in a dungeon, especially if you choose to life tap your health to nothing. As with all spells, intelligent usage is everything.
Another core Warlock mechanic is Fearing. This is unwise to do in Dungeons and whilst questing, as all mobs have their own aggro radius: If you fear one mob you’re attacking into one you’re not, the second one will aggro onto you as well. In PvP, it’s a highly useful control spell with no risks to use.
Your spell rotation should be something like this:
Immolate, Corruption, Curse of Agony, Incinerate, (If you get a Decimation proc) Soulfire
The last two only come in at the higher levels of Warlocking, so don’t panic if you can’t find them. At lower levels, Incinerate can be replaced by Shadow Bolt.
Weapon: Dignified Headmaster’s Charge Enchanted with Enchant Weapon – Spellpower
Shoulders: Tattered Dreadmist Mantle
Chest: Tattered Dreadmist Robe Enchanted with Enchant Chest – Greater Stats
Trinket: Discerning Eye of the Beast x2
The enchants are not vital, the main part you need is the Shoulders and the Chest for the experience bonus. The other items are just for optimum speed and levelling. You want to be looking out for cloth Gear with the following stats on it: Intellect, Spellpower, Crit, Haste.
Professions for Warlocks
The main recommended profession for Warlocks is Tailoring – you will be able to craft lots of gear for yourself to wear, all the way from 1-80, and in Northrend levels you will be able to add Embroidery to your cloak for large DPS boosts, and very cheap leg enchants. Tailoring is completely self supported, however most people take Enchanting with it, so you DE the things you don’t need whilst levelling Tailoring. Also, some Tailoring bags require Enchanting materials like dusts.
So there you have it! I hope this guide is most useful to you. Watch this space for the next class to be covered, and happy levelling!