WoW WotLK Affliction Warlock guide: PvE and PvP talents, glyphs

The WoW WotLK Affliction Warlock spec is certainly nothing to smirk at, as it’s easily one of the MMORPG’s strongest DPS classes. If you’re looking to dive into Northrend as one of these black magic bombshells, we’ve got a rundown of the best PvE and PvP talents, glyphs, leveling rotation, and stat priorities right here.

If you’re an Affliction Warlock main, you’ve probably absolutely hated playing through The Burning Crusade Classic as a support. Rejoice, oh heathens, because coming into WotLK we see these mysterious magicians take on the role of DPS, both enhancing the spec’s gameplay as well as letting you absolutely obliterate your enemies.

In order to do so, however, you’ll need to know which PvE and PvP talent builds are best, as well as the glyphs you’ll use to power yourself up, and the leveling rotation you’ll need to grow accustomed to. Don’t worry denizens of the dark, we’ve got you covered with our WoW WoTLK Affliction Warlock guide.

Best race for the WotLK Affliction Warlock

While we always encourage you to pick the race that you synergise with, some are built to wield the power of corruption a little better than others. On the Horde side, Orcs are the only real choice, while humans are the best at tapping into the shadow realm for the Alliance.

These are the two best options because of their racial abilities. The Orc’s Command grants a serious damage buff to your demonic companion (who becomes a core part of the build in WotLK Classic), and the spell power granted by Blood Fury is pretty damn powerful.

On the human side, Will to Survive removes all movement impairing effect which is perfect for burst CC in PvP, and Human Spirit works perfectly with Fel Armour to grant increased spellpower. It also synergizes with the Glyph of Life Tap, which we’ll discuss in more detail below.

Best glyphs for the WotLK Affliction Warlock

Glyphs are all new buffs that can be created using the Inscription skill. They effectively grant extra power to your character, but as per usual some are a little better than others. For Affliction Warlock, you’ll want to pick up:

  • Glyph of Life Tap: Life Tap turns spirit into spellpower, which is exactly what Warlocks need to rain fire on their enemies. Of all the glyphs out there, this is the most useful for the Affliction spec.
  • Glyph of Quick Decay: This means core spell Corruption now benefits from haste rating, as well as any other talents that increase casting speed.
  • Glyph of Haunt: Boosts Haunt by three percent.

There are three other minor glyphs: Drain Soul, Unending Breath, and Souls. Only the first has any real impact, as it increases the shards dropped from Drain Soul. The latter two simply let you swim faster and reduce the mana required to cast Ritual of Souls respectively.

Best PvE talents for Affliction Warlock in WotLK

If you’d much rather massacre monsters than other players, then there’s only one real build for the Affliction Warlock in WoW WotLK Classic. Your focus is to do damage over time instead of one-shot opponents, so make sure you position yourself behind your tanks or far enough away from danger in order to sit back, relax, and watch those health bars dwindle.

Talent Spec Rank
Improved Curse of Agony Affliction 2
Suppression Affliction 3
Improved Corruption Affliction 5
Improved Shadow Bolt Destruction 5
Bane Destruction 5
Soul Siphon Affliction 2
Fel Concentration Affliction 3
Ruin Destruction 5
Nightfall Affliction 2
Empowered Corruption Affliction 3
Intensity Destruction 1
Shadow Embrace Affliction 5
Siphon Life Affliction 1
Improved Felhunter Affliction 2
Shadow Mastery Affliction 5
Eradication Affliction 3
Contagion Affliction 5
Malediction Affliction 3
Death’s Embrace Affliction 3
Unstable Affliction Affliction 1
Pandemic Affliction 1
Everlasting Affliction Affliction 5
Haunt Affliction 1

Best PvP talents for Affliction Warlock in WotLK

While Affliction Warlocks are hardly going to be popping heads in the Arena, they’re the perfect duo for kiting enemies into their partner and unleashing all manner of curses upon them. You’ll want to pick up the following talents, as well as the Glyphs of Quick Decay, Siphon Life, Shadowflame, Drain Soul, and Curse of Exhaustion in that order.

Talent Spec Rank
Suppression Affliction 3
Improved Corruption Affliction 5
Improved Healthstone Demonology 2
Demonic Embrace Demonology 3
Fel Synergy Demonology 2
Soul Siphon Affliction 2
Fel Vitality Demonology 3
Improved Fear Affliction 1
Fel Concentration Affliction 3
Amplify Curse Affliction 1
Soul Link Demonology 1
Fel Domination Demonology 1
Demonic Aegis Demonology 3
Nightfall Affliction 2
Empowered Corruption Affliction 3
Master Summoner Demonology 2
Shadow Embrace Affliction 4
Siphon Life Affliction 1
Curse of Exhaustion Affliction 1
Improved Felhunter Affliction 2
Shadow Mastery Affliction 5
Eradication Affliction 3
Contagion Affliction 5
Improved Howl of Terror Affliction 2
Malediction Affliction 3
Unstable Affliction Affliction 1
Pandemic Affliction 1
Everlasting Affliction Affliction 5
Haunt Affliction 1

Stat priority for WotLK Affliction Warlock

Stats are pretty easily overlooked in WoW, but they’re an essential part of every build and can really help you push your damage to the next level. For Affliction Warlocks you’ll be prioritising Hit Rating, followed by Spell Power. Haste Rating and Critical Strike Rating are next, followed lastly by Spirit and Intellect.

The first three are your damage dealing stats, so it’s a no-brainer that you want to make sure they’re as amped up as they can be.

Leveling rotation for WotLK Affliction Warlock

The leveling rotation for WoTLK is pretty intense, and will likely take a few tries to get right. It centres around your Corruption spell, which is the backbone of all things affliction. Start off with Life Tap (aided by the Glyph of Life Tap), then start firing out Shadow Bolts to proc Shadow Mastery. You’ll want Shadow Mastery to be active before you cast Corruption, as that 5% critical hit chance will roll over onto your poor victims. Ensure Fel Armour is up as well.

It’s now time to unleash Corruption upon your foes, followed by Unstable Affliction (which you want to be active at all times). Pick Curse of Agony next, then Haunt to boost the damage over time caused by Corruption, Curse of Agony, and Unstable Affliction. With all of your debuffs running, dish out some Shadow Bolts, or use Drain Soul if you’re below 25% health because its damage is increased.

For larger mobs you can use your Seed of Corruption, as this deals more damage the more targets there are (capped at ten) – just ensure it doesn’t overtake the base Corruption. Inferno can also deal passive AoE damage.

So that’s everything you need to know to master the WoW WotLK Affliction Warlock. Go forth and cause havoc, but if you’re looking to try out another equally creepy class be sure to check out our WoW WotLK Death Knight guide, and you may as well pick up the best WoW Classic Addons to enhance your Classic experience while you’re at it.

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