Cataclysm Warlock Guide


Cataclysm Warlock Guide

Warlock Guide

Patch: 1.12

Author: Nirmit

Cataclysm Warlock Guide

Cataclysm Warlock Guide


Welcome to our Cataclysm Warlock Guide. This guide has the Talents, Glyphs, Gems, Stats, Professions, and anything else you would need to play a Warlock in Cataclysm.


0/7/31 as a base spec, with 3 points at your disposal.

Destruction Talents :

1 Bane – Required 3/3

1 Shadow and Flame – Required 3/3

1 Improved Immolate – Required 2/2

2 Aftermath – Optional, as an added CC in dungeons. Raid bosses are immunte to this effect.

2 Emberstorm – Required 2/2

2 Improved Searing Pain – Skip

3 Improved Soul Fire – Required 2/2

3 Backdraft – Required 3/3

3 Shadowburn – Required 1/1. Useful execute spell that hits harder than your usual nuke, and generates 3 Soul Shards.

4 Burning Embers – Required 2/2

4 Soul Leech – Required 2/2. Steady mana regeneration.

4 Backlash – Optional. You shouldn’t get hit by physical attacks in PvE, but sometimes you get fail tanks, so this isn’t a bad option. You can skip this one for Nether Ward.

4 Nether Ward – Optional, but better than Backlash. You should get this one and Nether Protection instead of Backlash.

5 Fire and Brimstone – Required 3/3

5 Shadowfury – Optional, but a very good CC on fights with add-control. 1/1 Recommended.

5 Nether Protection – Optional, read Nether Ward above.

6 Empowered Imp – Required 2/2. Helps in keeping Improved Soul Fire up.

6 Bane of Havoc – Required 1/1

7 Chaos Bolt – Required 1/1

Demonology Talents:

1 Demonic Embrace – Optional. More stamina is nice for survival but there are better talents than this one for 3 points.

1 Dark Arts – Required 3/3. Your imp will account for about 10% of your total damage over a fight, and this talent has great synergy with Empowered Imp and Burning Embers.

1 Fel Synergy – Required 2/2. Keeping your pet alive is very important and this helps a lot with it.

2 Demonic Rebirth – Optional. Healers hate your pets. They won’t heal them. This talent will save you a lot of frustration. Recommended 2/2.

2 Mana Feed – Required 2/2. Another good mana regeneration tool.

2 Demonic Aegis – Optional. The extra healing would help with survival, but it’s not spectacular.

2 Master Summoner – Optional. Your pets will die because your healers hate them. This talent can save you some mana, but Demonic Rebirth is better.

Affliction Talents:

1 Improved Corruption – Optional. Corruption does very little of your total damage (about 5% with a 100% uptime with the talent for me so far, so I decided to skip it). These points are better spent in Demonic Rebirth.

1 Doom and Gloom – Optional. Again, Bane of Doom/Agony does not comprise a big enough part of your damage to justify 2 talent points.


Prime –

Glyph of Immolate

Glyph of Imp

Glyph of Conflagrate

Major –

User’s Choice, but Glyph of Soulstone, Glyph of Life Tap are recommended.

Minor –

They’re all awful, except for Glyph of Health Funnel.


Intellect > Spell Hit (1742 rating, 17%) > Haste > Mastery > Crit.


Meta – Burning Shadowspirit Diamond

Red – Brilliant Inferno Ruby

Yellow – Reckless Ember Topaz

Blue – Veiled Demonseye


Blacksmithing, Enchanting, Alchemy, Leatherworking, Inscription all provide 80 Intellect.

Jewelcrafting allows you to use 3 epic gems with +67 Intellect each, which comes out to a little

more than the other professions.

Engineering Gloves Enchant provides 480 Intellect for 10 seconds every minute, which can be used

with other procs for a solid burst. Also includes other tinkers.

Tailoring provides 580 Intellect every minute for 15 seconds, which can be sync’d with your other

cooldowns for a very good burst, although you cannot always get the proc on-demand like with


Jewelcrafting + Blacksmithing or Tailoring + Engineering are the best combinations, depending on whether you prefer static stats gain or burst.


Alliance – Worgens are best because of an extra 1% crit chance, Gnomes aren’t bad either. Rest of the races don’t affect DPS directly.

Horde – Trolls are a good race for any caster class because of Berserking, Goblins are a good option with 1% increased casting speed (though this is not the same as haste), Orcs are the best race with Blood Fury and Command.


a) Keep Improved Soul Fire buff up at all times.

b) Keep Immolate up.

c) Keep Curse of the Elements up.

d) Keep as close to 100% uptime on Corruption.

e) If the target is going to survive at least 15 seconds, use Bane of Doom, otherwise use Bane of Agony.

f) Conflagrate

g) Shadowburn if the target is at less than 20% health.

h) Incinerate

i) Chaos Bolt

You will always want to keep the Improved Soul Fire buff up all the time. Either start casting Soul Fire when it has 3 seconds left on it or use a Soul Shard to make it instant.
Curse of the Elements, Corruption, Bane of Doom/Agony and Immolate should have as close to a 100% uptime as possible.
Conflagrate is your hardest hitting ability, use it on cooldown, even if it means letting Corruption drop for a second or two.
If you can get in melee range, use Shadowflame on cooldown.
After that you just spam Incinerate using the haste provided by Backdraft.
Chaos Bolt has a short cast time but it does less damage than Incinerate, so you should use it in the time when all 3 Backdraft charges have been used by Incinerate and Conflagrate is still on cooldown.
During sub-20% boss health stage, use Shadowburn on cooldown.
You can use Fel Flames to refresh Immolate when you’re moving and don’t need to Life Tap for mana.

Use Demon Soul on cooldown, or whenever a fight requires burst.

For AoE, Use Shadowfury, Shadowflame on cooldown and just put up as many dots on as many targets as you can, including CoE. Use Bane of Havoc on the mob that has most hp, or will live longest.

Also, you have to make sure the pet is alive throughout, or you lose a major chunk of your dps. DO NOT USE SOUL LINK (unless you intend to kill your pet).

Dark Intent

If your healers are geared enough, you should use it on a Shadow Priest, Fire Mage or Moonkin, otherwise a Resto Druid or Holy Priest are decent choices.

If you don’t have the choice, use it on any class that has any kinda dots, just make sure you have that precious 3%(9%) haste buff. (Anything other than Frost/Arcane Mage, Holy Paladin).

Refer to this post on mmo-champion for more details on DI.

Bane of Havoc

You can use BoH in raid settings to improve your dps.

Bastion of Twilight :

Halfus Wyrmbreaker – Use BoH on Halfus as you dps the drakes.

Double Dragons – Use BoH on the drake that is flying.

Ascendant Council – Use BoH on the boss that you are not dpsing.

Cho’gall – Use BoH on Cho’gall when the big add spawns.

Blackwing Descent :

Magmaw – Place BoH on Magmaw’s main body just before he goes down and place it on his exposed head just before he returns to normal phase.

Chimaeron – N/a.

Atramedes – N/a.

Maloriak – Use BoH on Maloriak when you’re killing the adds.

Omnitron – Use BoH on the tron with less than 50 energy, but do NOT use it on Magmatron.

One important point to note is that you always want to keep CoE on BOTH targets. BoH double dips into CoE. CoE affects the damage that BoH itself does and it buffs the damage that’s transfered via BoH. Also, never forget to switch back to BoD or BoA when you switch back to DPS’ing the target.

If you’re using BoH in an AoE situation, you should place it on the target that will live longest so as to not have to re-cast it often.

Hope you find the guide useful. Suggestions are welcome.

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