Saturday, August 29, 2009

Demonology Warlock Solos Last Rites

These days it's becoming harder and harder to find even one person to group up for Last Rites, the conclusion to that nice quest chain in Borean Tundra that rewards the player with a choice of nice blue weapons which will last until level 78 in many cases.

So I found myself with my level 71 Warlock at the end of the quest chain and since I had just respecced to Demonology, I felt cocky enough to attempt to solo this quest. This is still a 3-man quest so I wasn't 100% sure I could do it but at the same time I didn't want to wait who knows how long until I could find someone else.

The last time I finished this quest was on my level 71 Rogue with help from a level 80 Rogue that was nice enough to give me a hand. Unfortunately, even though I survived to finish the quest, the 80 Rogue died. He had forgotten how this fight works and had basically killed himself. More on this in a moment.

The Spec

Up until a couple of days ago, I had played my Warlock from 1 to 71 as Affliction, and I loved it. On a whim, I decided to get Dual Spec and make my other spec Demonology. Here's my Demo spec, the one I had when I attempted Last Rites, along with the glyphs I'm using at this level:


The Fight

Before I started the fight, I buffed up with some Shoveltusk Steak for Stamina and Spell Power, a Scroll of Stamina V and I also used another scroll on my Felguard. We both had over 10K HP. Now, I am aware that right from the start I made a bunch of mistakes during this fight with Prince Valanar.

For one thing, I totally forgot to use Immolate. An extra DoT would have been great. Instead, I used Curse of Agony and Corruption as well as Shadow Bolt.

Another mistake (I think, but not sure on this) is that I used my Felguard instead of my Voidwalker. I believe the VW would have been a better tank for this fight. Or not. At least I didn't forget to use Demonic Empowerment whenever it was up.

My third big mistake was that in the heat of the battle I totally forgot that I had Metamorphosis. To say it would have helped me would be an understatement.

The Strategy

My strategy here was to keep the Felguard alive and keep the DoTs up on Valanar. To this end, I punched Health Funnel when my pet was getting low on health. The big thing to watch out here for is the Prince's special attack called Soul Deflection. Whenever he starts channeling this spell, which looks like a tendril that connects to your character, you need to stop DPS or else you will be reflecting all the damage you do back at yourself. That, in fact, was the reason why the 80 Rogue died.

I'm not exactly sure how Soul Deflection works with DoTs but I believe each tick also damages you because my health went down alarmingly several times. Each time he started channeling that spell, I would recall my Felguard. During the fight I had to use some healing unfortunately: a Healthstone, a health pot and my Herbalism ability Lifeblood.

Finally, the Prince dropped. At the end, I was left with about 20% life and the same in mana. I have to say I'm pretty happy with how I handled this fight. Although there were a few mistakes that made the fight harder, in the end I prevailed. Still, this doesn't mean I am very good at Demonology, in fact it's the opposite.

From the rewards I chose the Staff of the Purposeful Mendicant.


Anonymous said...

Bravo, Sir, bravo. You've finally come into the realm of decent Warlock specs ;) Having said that, I solo'd this with my Paladin, but I had a group for the Warlock - first character and all that.

With regards to the fight, you've actually covered everything I'd have suggested as a Demo 'lock:

- Keep ALL your DoTs up, all the time, unless you can time them to expire when his reflecting ability is cast.

- When he does reflect spells, hit Shadow Ward. It ought to be powerful enough to negate all your shadow-based DoTs, so only Immolate is damaging you back, and it might have enough left to buffer a Shadow Bolt or two.

- Remember your cooldown abilities, namely Metamorphosis, as you mentioned. It's a huge damage increase.

- You could probably have used either pet (FG or VW) for this, though I'd have taken the VW due to its better threat generation and higher health pool. However, you'd have to do more of the damage yourself, because it hits like a female Gnome.

- Don't be afraid to heal; Drain Life, Death Coil, Healthstones, etc. Lifeblood is a God-send.

Also, your spec looks fine for leveling with, but consider points in Decimation after you fill out Demonic Pact. The (almost) instant Soul Fires are awesome, and it's possible to grind by chain-casting it with Shadow Bolts, but that's a topic for another time. Your glyphs look fine for leveling purposes also.


Darth Solo said...

@veliaf ty ty! Although, my fine sir, I do have a really cool Warlock spec that I love, namely the Affliction build. I will show that one shortly. I don't think Demo's for me. I'll continue using it for trickier fights but Affliction is awesome, I really love it.

Shadow Ward is another thing that I forgot to use. Just like you said, that's the best way to use it.

I could have obviously used Death Coil but that's one spell that I always forget to cast, even though I have it conveniently bound.

I have mixed feelings about Decimation. For one thing, I don't really use Soul Fire. For another, Decimation seems to be useful only for bosses and elites with lots of health, hence for raids. Since normal mobs go down so fast, I wouldn't have time to cast that Soul Fire.

Joar said...

Darth - on Decimation, it's going to depend on whether you plan on soloing any more quest / boss fights. It's a great talent for finishing off those bosses once they get down below 35% health. Really increases your dps a ton. That talent alone can almost be used to create a somewhat viable Felguard raiding spec. Also, the other advantage to having the voidwalker out is the potential to bubble if you need to.

Darth Solo said...

@David true on both counts. I might get Decimation for my Demo spec and, of course, next time I'll tank using the VW. The bubble was something I enjoyed when I was a young warlock.

Patrick said...

One thing to keep in mind about the demonology spec (you point it out) is that it has a number of nice abilities on long cooldowns. This makes it easy to forget them.

My life as a demononology warlock improved when I created macros that automatically cast metamorphosis and demonic empowerment (if they're available) whenever I use shadow bolt (usually my opener) or curse of agony (which every opponent gets). The macro also "pops" my trinkets if they're available, so I use all of my abilities without having to think now. As for the charge and immolation aura, well, changing into a big armored demon is all the reminder I need to turn those on.

Before macros, I was wasting so many of my abilities. Like you, I'd forget to use metamorphosis and the like. With so many abilities from all three skill trees, you just about have to create macros to use demonology to its full potential. But what potential it has.

Darth Solo said...

@Patrick thanks I'll probably do that - if I switch to Demo again. I turned back to Affliction and I love it more than ever.