**THIS GUIDE IS NOT UP TO DATE FOR PATCH 3.3 AND WILL NOT BE UPDATED**
This guide will be under construction constantly to keep up with the most recent changes and is up to date for 3.2. Most of my information is coming from personal raid experience, Warlock’s Den & Elitist Jerks threads.
This post is intended to inform players about the raiding aspect of deep Destruction specced Warlocks. This will not focus on any form of 0-41-30 or 0-40-31 type hybrid specs.
As of 3.2, Destruction hasn’t changed much at all so there will not be a new 3.2 Destruction Guide. If any significant changes are made in the future, I will update this guide instead.
Here is a variation of 0-13-58 using 1 filler point in Destructive Reach for 10% more range and 5% threat reduction but you can opt to max it by dropping 1 point from Backlash. This variation also takes Improved Soul Leech, not only to buff your raid with Replenishment but for the 2% mana return as well. If you aren’t convinced that it’s worth 2 points (and already have Replenishment going in your raid somehow), the 2 points can be spent elsewhere. The downfall of this spec is having to gear for 3% hit without taking 3 points in Affliction for Suppression.
You will need 2 filler points to reach the tier 3 Demonology talents for 3/3 Demonic Aegis so you can either go 2/2 Improved Healthstone to provide more utility for your raid or 2/3 Demonic Embrace for 7% more stamina (Life Tap fodder).
This variation of 3-13-55 takes Suppression for 3% hit, uses the 2 (Demonology) filler points in Improved Healthstone (but can also be used for 2/3 Demonic Embrace) but can only afford to put 1 point in to Backlash, 1 in to Destructive Reach and 1 in to Improved Soul Leech. 1/2 Improved Soul Leech isn’t a bad thing. You still restore 1% mana with a 50% chance to proc Replenishment and it’s a much better choice than taking points out of anything that will lower your DPS.
Minor glyphs are a bit of a sore subject for any Warlock but the 3 obvious choices would be Drain Soul, Souls & Enslave Demon. All 3 are quite situational and mildly useless (Drain Soul is debatable) but with the only other options being Kilrogg, Unending Breath and Curse of Exhaustion, you can see why these three are the better choices.
Your 3 major glyph choices will depend on your level of gear.
A fresh 80 will most likely get more out of Immolate, Conflagrate and Imp or Incinerate. My personal opinion is to take Imp over Incinerate at this point. Incinerate becomes a much better glyph when you obtain more haste and spellpower but for just heading in to raiding you’ll get more use out of the Imp glyph, IMO.
If you have 4 pieces of T7 for the set bonus (Life Tap increases your spirit by 300 for 10 seconds), Glyph of Life Tap should replace your previous glyph of Imp/Incinerate. This will work together with your set bonus every time you Life Tap, increasing your spirit by 300 and increasing your spellpower by 20% of your spirit for 40 seconds. The average spirit count for a Warlock new to raiding is around 280-300ish and while this glyph may look great on paper you’ll only be receiving around 50-ish spellpower per use until you reach a higher level of gear.
Once you are at the Naxx-25 to Ulduar/Colloseum level of raiding, the 3 major glyphs that will provide you with the highest possible DPS are Incinerate, Conflagrate and Life Tap.
Why Glyph of Life Tap over Glyph of Immolate?
Immolate used to be the preferred glyph in 3.1 over Life Tap. Patch 3.2 increased the duration of the Life Tap glyph buff from 20 to 40 seconds making this glyph edge out Immolate by a small margin but still provides higher DPS. The Life Tap glyph used to be dropped by ISL specced Warlocks who have grown out of their 4T7 in to their T8 sets. ISL provided enough mana back to us that we didn’t have to Life Tap more than once every 45-50 seconds, losing a lot up uptime on the buff, but with the recent duration increase to 40 seconds it is MUCH easier to keep the buff up 100% of the time. (Thanks to Sean for pointing this out in the comments)
Why Glyph of Conflagrate over Immolate?
Conflagrate consuming Immolate causes you to disrupt your rotation by putting Immolate back up on the target every 10 seconds rather than every 15 seconds, resulting in a loss of DPS.
CoE -or- CoD -> Immolate -> Chaos Bolt -> Conflagrate -> Incinerate X times
The amount of Incinerates that you can weave in your rotation depends largely on the amount of haste you have. Immolate lasts for 15 seconds while Conflagrate has a 10 second cooldown, so you can use it twice in your opening rotation and then blow it every cooldown afterwards. Taking Fire and Brimstone in to account (+25% chance to crit with Conflagrate if Immolate has 5 or fewer seconds remaining), try to use Conflagrate close to the 5 second mark if you’re in the middle of a rotation where it is off cooldown. Using it at the 6 or 7 second mark means less of a crit chance but freeing up that GCD for something else could always be better.
Which Curse to choose?
If you do not have anyone else to provide the +13% spell damage debuff, Curse of Elements is your #1 choice. If you do, they don’t stack so Curse of Doom will provide you with the highest possible DPS.
Why not Curse of Agony?
For starters, with Molten Core moving from Destruction to deep in the Demonology tree, you no longer need its ticking damage to proc it. Curse of Agony provides less DPS than Curse of Doom and requires you to use a global cooldown twice as often. Curse of Doom is a RONCO (“set it and forget it!”) spell and gives you much more bang for your buck. Don’t even consider glyphing CoA because you’ll be gimping your damage elsewhere.
Hit Rating is your #1 priority, hands down. You need to aim for 17% (446 hit rating) but that includes talents or buffs given by other players.
Suppression – +3%
Misery (Shadow Priest) – 3%
Improved Faerie Fire (Moonkin) – 3%
Heroic Presence (Draenei Racial Aura) – 1%
Misery & Improved Faerie Fire do not stack with each other. The Heroic Presence is not raid-wide so you will only get the benefit if you are in the same party.
If your raid constantly brings these classes, feel free to gear for as much hit as you need to reach 17% and then concentrate on other stats.
In order of importance – Hit Rating, Spellpower, Spirit, Haste, Crit, Intellect
Epic Gems Note
3.2 introduced epic quality gems and it is highly recommended to use these over the blue quality gems that were previously available. While the gems are new, the prefix remains the same. For instance, Runed Scarlet Ruby is now Runed Cardinal Ruby. Runed = Spellpower. If you want to upgrade to the epic version of your gems, look for the prefix and use those instead.
Are you a Jewelcrafter?
Jewelcrafters can use up to 3 Dragon’s Eye gems in their equipped gear and having 3 Runed Dragons Eye is pretty sweet. Keep in mind that with 3.2 these gems are no longer prismatic so you still will need to use 2 Purified Twilight Opal to make your Meta Gem work.
Need to gem for hit still?
Veiled Monarch Topaz (spellpower/hit) if you just need a little, Rigid Dawnstone (hit) if you need a lot.
Runed Scarlet Ruby. Thats it. Pack ‘em in! Use 2 Purified Twilight Opal to make your meta work but no more unless the socket bonus is +spellpower and will not give you less of it.
Head – Arcanum of Burning Mysteries (Revered Kirin Tor)
Shoulder – Master’s Inscription of the Storm (Inscribers only), Greater Inscription of the Storm (exalted Sons of Hodir), Lesser Inscription of the Storm (honored Sons of Hodir)
Chest – +10 stats, +8 stats, +15 spirit
Wrist – +30 spellpower, +23 spellpower
Hands – +28 spellpower
Belt – Eternal Belt Buckle
Legs – Brilliant Spellthread (or Tailoring-only equivalent), Shining Spellthread
Feet – Icewalker (hit/crit)
Rings – +19 spellpower (Enchanter-only)
Cape – Lightweave Embroider (Tailor-only), +23 haste
Weapon – +63 spellpower, +50 spellpower, +81 spellpower (to staff weapons only)
Flask – Flask of the Frost Wyrm
Weapon – Firestone. While Haste is a preferred stat over crit, the +1% damage to direct damage spell boost outweights the Haste given by the Spellstone.
Food buff – Fish Feast, Firecracker Salmon
**This post will always be under construction for the most up to date changes but still feel free to comment**