death-knight-talents

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  • Ghostcrawler and Daxxarri talk classes in patch 5.2

    by 
    Sarah Pine
    Sarah Pine
    03.08.2013

    With the advent of patch 5.2, World of Warcraft Lead Systems Designer Greg Street "Ghostcrawler" and Community Manager Daxxarri have been posting a series of class overviews and changes. Part one went up on Tuesday, covering death knights, druids, and hunters. Part two was posted Wednesday evening and covers mages, paladins, and priests. Part three, on rogues, shaman, and warlocks, went up yesterday evening, and part four, covering warriors and monks, was posted earlier today. For many classes, most of the changes involve PvP balancing as well as trying to improve a number of talents in some way to make them more useful and thus more attractive to players, at least situationally. If you're curious about either the philosophy of class balance design or just want to know what happened to your class this patch, make sure to check it out. What I love about these posts is that little glimpse of insight they provide into the thought process that goes into balancing the class mechanics in a game like World of Warcraft. I'll be honest, I'm glad I'm not one of the people involved in that job. To me it seems like an endless headache to try and make sure all classes are different enough to feel unique, but similar enough such that a raid or dungeon group isn't punished for lacking one indispensable class, and I wouldn't have the patience for it. But I certainly admire and respect those who do!

  • Lichborne: Patch 5.2 loot for death knights, part 3

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    03.06.2013

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. This week, we'll face down the final few bosses of Throne of Thunder to see what loot they have. After that, we'll take a look at our valor point offerings and the world bosses of patch 5.2 for their loot. This will round out our look at patch 5.2's loot, and as with the last 2 weeks, the same disclaimers apply. Since this is based on PTR information, drops can change. In addition, this preview focuses on normal gear, so your gearing priorities may change if you get thunderforged gear or heroic gear.

  • Lichborne: More death knight loot from patch 5.2's Throne of Thunder

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    02.26.2013

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. We continue our loot preview this week by delving into the Forgotten Depths and Halls of Flesh-Shaping in the Throne of Thunder. The same disclaimers apply as did last week. Since this is based on PTR information, drops can change. In addition, this preview focuses on normal gear, so your gearing priorities may change if you get Thunderforged gear or heroic gear. With that in mind, lets dig in and see what the next six bosses of Patch 5.2's Throne of Thunder raid have to offer.

  • Lichborne: Patch 5.2 Last Stand of the Zandalari loot preview for death knights

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    02.18.2013

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. With the PTR getting closer to release, it's about time to start looking forward to that most cherished of patch rituals, the changing of the gear. Today, we will look at the first few bosses of Throne of Thunder and see what they have in store for death knights. There are a few words of warning to offer here. First, this is based off PTR Info, which means they may or may not decide to adjust, remove, or add loot before it goes live. Second, this information is based off normal mode raid loot. You may find monkey wrenches thrown into the gearing process courtesy of both heroic gear and Thunderforged gear, which can be 6 ilvls higher than usual for the item. You will have to make your own judgement calls in cases where you have access to that gear. Adding to the complication is the fact that tier gear won't be Thunderforged, meaning you may have to give up some Thunderforged gear despite the higher ilvl in order to keep set bonuses. We'll first look at the bosses in the The Last Stand of the Zandalari, the first section of the Throne of Thunder.

  • Lichborne: Switching death knight specs for patch 5.2

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    02.12.2013

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. When a new patch comes, especially one with some major class changes like patch 5.2, it becomes a good time to reflect on your play style and priorities. Does your spec serve those priorities? With a new patch coming, it's a good time to experiment with new stuff. You can do it pretty easily on the PTR, and when the patch goes live, the game's got some fresh new content, so it's as good excuse as any to jump into a new spec and get used to it while killing trolls for all these new quests. You'll also be getting new gear, so changing up gearing priorities becomes easier. Today, we'll take a quick look at all the death knight specs, with some of their pros and cons, so you can make a solid judgment call as to whether to switch and try something new, or stick with the familiar. This isn't meant to a complete guide to playing each spec, just a quick overview so you can decide if the play style and responsibilities of the spec are right for you.

  • Lichborne: Tier 15 set bonuses and other death knight changes for patch 5.2

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    01.29.2013

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. In the weeks since the patch 5.2 PTR has been up, death knight changes have held pretty steady. The announced unholy changes have stayed in place, and so far seem to be working out much as expected, making the spec a little easier to handle and overall promising to put unholy in a better place once patch 5.2 comes out. That said, there have been a few other tweaks added, as well as the revealing of the tier 15 raid gear set bonuses. Today, we'll dig into these changes and see how they're stacking up. Tier 15 death knight DPS bonuses Death Knight T15 DPS 2P Bonus Your attacks have a chance to raise the spirit of a fallen Zandalari as your Death Knight minion for 15 sec. Death Knight T15 DPS 4P Bonus Your Soul Reaper ability now deals additional Shadow Damage to targets below 45% instead of below 35%. Additionally, Killing Machine now also increases the critical strike chance of Soul Reaper. I'm going to be honest, I'm a little bit in love with the current 2 piece DPS bonus, if only for the flavor. A few columns back, I mentioned that one of my wildest dream updates for death knights would be a Wild Imps style ghoul summoning, and the 2 piece tier 15 bonus is sort of probably the closest we'll come to that. We'll need more solid parses to see if stacks up damage bonus wise, but in flavor, I'm pretty excited for it. The biggest issue here may be if the summoned pets end up dying prematurely to mobs before they can do their damage.

  • Lichborne: 2012 predictions for death knights and how they actually shook out

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    01.01.2013

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. As it was for, to some extent, all classes, 2012 was a busy time for the death knights, as one expansion ended and another began. As the news of Mists of Pandaria began pouring in, I started making some predictions. As the Mists beta progressed, I started mentioning things that I felt, or that the death knight community felt, needed to change or would change. This week, I figured it might be interesting to look back on some of those old articles and see what exactly happened, and how far off the mark I was (or wasn't).

  • Lichborne: Unholy death knights get some gifts in patch 5.2

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    12.26.2012

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. Given that I have been talking the past few weeks about unholy's woes and some things Blizzard will probably never give us, I wanted to spend this week talking about some of the good things Blizzard has given us. Luckily, Blizzard decided to give us the greatest Christmas gift of all: Meaningful balance and mechanics changes to the unholy death knight on the upcoming patch 5.2 PTR. Plague Strike delivers both diseases Applying diseases when Outbreak is on cool down has been one of the most awkward parts of playing unholy ever since Scourge Strike was switched to a single rune model. Applying via the usual Plague Strike/Icy Touch model leaves orphaned runes that cannot easily be spent on a standard strike that fits into the basic unholy priority system, throwing off the rotation in a pretty jarring manner and making fights with multiple target switches a bit of a pain. However, in patch 5.2, Ebon Plaguebringer will allow Plague Strike to apply both Frost Fever and Blood Plague.

  • Lichborne: 3 popular death knight requests that won't (or shouldn't) be fulfilled

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    12.18.2012

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. Death knight complaints and requests can change with patches, dealing with current issues or balance problems, but there are other death knight requests that come up time and time again, and will probably be asked about until the day they finally shut down the servers for good. This week, we're going to look at three requests that probably will be around that long, just because it seems very unlikely Blizzard will ever fulfill them. The power of the hero class The "hero class" moniker has a long and storied history. It comes from Warcraft III, where hero units like paladins and death knights towered over the rest. By design, you only had a few of these every game, and they had more powerful skills that allowed them to dominate the battlefield when deployed. When WoW came around, rumors of the hero classes spread throughout beta, but in the end, Blizzard went away from the model. Paladins, a hero class in WCIII, were made a regular class, for example, while other hero class mechanics, such as the Far Seer's Chain Lightning, went to regular classes.

  • Lichborne: Why unholy death knights aren't popular

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    12.11.2012

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. On the PvE side of the death community, one of the most hot button topics right now is unholy DPS. All through the Mists beta, there was a large clamoring for an overhaul to the spec that never really came, and while Blizzard did add some decent quality of life and power changes, overall, many death knights felt the base flaws remained. As it's played out in Mists so far, unholy death knights do appear to be a much rarer creature than frost death knights at the raid level. In addition, while sims suggest unholy should only lag slightly behind frost, actual raid parses often show unholy lagging behind by a far larger margin. What does all this mean? How does unholy continue to have these issues? This week, we'll look at some unholy spec issues, and consider how, or if, they should be fixed.

  • Death knight Mionee solos Madness of Deathwing

    by 
    Anne Stickney
    Anne Stickney
    12.09.2012

    Proving once again that there is just about nothing that can stop the former servants of the Lich King, level 90 death knight Mionee from the Auchindoun server (EU-H) has managed to solo Madness of Deathwing. Although the kill was done on 10 man difficulty it didn't really make the fight any easier -- Mionee hit the enrage timer and lived just long enough past it to happily murder the giant metal-jawed dragon seconds before taking a dirt nap of his own. Death knights have long been amazing at soloing content -- earlier this week, we featured a video of Aelobin, a level 80 death knight who soloed 25m heroic Baelroc. But it's absolutely mind-boggling to think that a player can gain a mere five levels and solo the final boss of the expansion prior, mere months after the new expansion launched. And it's even more entertaining watching a dragon being smacked around by a character who is smaller than even one of said dragon's teeth. Check out the video above for the full fight and a jaw-dropping look at the capabilities of a death knight. And just because I'm curious ... what's the hardest thing you've soloed in game, past or present day?

  • Level 80 Death Knight solos Baleroc 25-man heroic

    by 
    Olivia Grace
    Olivia Grace
    12.05.2012

    Raegwyn has previously held the crown of death knight soloing, but from the ashes of the Firelands, a new pretender to the throne has arisen. In the header video, you can watch Aelobin, a solitary blood death knight, take down the Firelands gatekeeper, Baleroc, on 25-man heroic difficulty by himself. And no, that's not a typo in the title, he really is level 80. You can check his armory if you like, as a link is provided in his channel. Aelobin has a mixture of Cataclysm blues and Wrath purples equipped, and as you can see one minute and 30 seconds into the video when the boss hits his enrage, he has managed to hit the avoidance cap. Thanks to the changes to vengeance, Aelobin's attack power is also rather high, 1.5 million when he brings up his character pane at 1:59, awarding him a melee damage increase of 109,766 damage per second. It climbs still higher after that, peaking at almost 1.9 million attack power, and his damage meter reports his DPS as 275,715 for the entire fight! It's very entertaining viewing, and congratulations to Aelobin on the kill, and on getting Share the Pain at the same time! A cursory check of his raiding achievements indicates that this isn't his first trip into the Firelands at level 80, either. Cutaia noted that, actually, this is the first boss he's killed in Firelands. Thanks, Cutaia!

  • Lichborne: What I learned about death knights by playing my alts

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    12.04.2012

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. I love my death knight. He will probably be my main for as long as I play WoW. That said, sometimes you want a change of pace. Sometimes, you've finished all the dailies, ground all the factions to exalted, and run every heroic dungeon and raid on a single character until your eyes are bleeding. Sometimes you want something else. And for that, we have alts. Of course, alts don't mean you've completely abandoned your death knight. Sometimes, alts teach you something about your death knight. In my case, most of my alts were created before the death knight, since he didn't come along until Wrath. That means that a lot of what I learned playing them has informed how I play my death knight from day one. This week, I'm taking a look at my stable of alts and seeing what lessons they've taught or reinforced for me about my death knights. Keep your diseases up I've been playing a warlock alt since the vanilla era, sticking mostly to affliction, although demonology's been proving pretty fun so far in Mists. My priest I don't play quite as much, but I still like taking shadow out for a spin every once in a while.

  • Lichborne: Patch 5.1 for death knights

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    11.27.2012

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. Patch 5.1 contains relatively few direct death knight changes, but those changes it has are large enough to talk about. PvE escapes relatively unscathed and gets a few nice goodies, but PvP takes a bit of a hit. Today, we'll talk about what patch 5.1 has in store for death knights thus far. The death of Death Strike in PvP? So far, there is one single class change for death knights in the patch notes, but it is a doozy. Death Strike's bonus healing from taking damage will no longer apply to damage received from PvP combat. This doesn't mean, of course, that death knights are completely without healing in PvP now. They should still successfully get the minimum heal and the shield it provides. It does mean, however, that they lose a lot of self healing, enough that a lot of people are working on their frost and unholy PvP skills once again.

  • Lichborne: What do I do at level 90? And 2 other burning death knight questions

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    11.20.2012

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. Reading a guide is all well and good, but sometimes, even after you read, you still have questions or need clarification. This week, I've taken 3 questions I see death knights ask a lot at various places around the web, and provide some advice and clarification. Why don't tanks need so much hit and expertise? If you've been reading the column, you've probably noticed that I have de-emphasized hit and expertise when discussing blood death knight tank gear and strategy. This is for a very good reason. Certainly, active tanking is the rule of the day in Mists, which means in theory that tanks should want hit and expertise so their abilities land. In theory, if your Death Strike doesn't land, you don't get the healing or the blood shield, right?

  • Lichborne: Terrace of Endless Spring gear for death knights

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    11.13.2012

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. Terrace of Endless Spring is the last raid of tier 14, but features the same item levels as the Heart of Fear. If you didn't find an upgrade there, chances are you'll find it here. As with previous weeks, we'll be examining the loot on a boss by boss basis, in order to give you a better idea about which bosses to spend your Elder Charms of Good Fortune on. In addition, our analysis will be based primarily on normal gear drops. If you are raiding LFR or heroic tiers, your gear choices may vary a bit based on item levels.

  • Lichborne: Mogu'shan Vaults loot for death knights

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    10.22.2012

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. It's actually more important than ever to know what loot drops from what bosses in raids in Mists. This is because, if you've been collecting Elder Charms of Good Fortune, you'll have the option when a boss dies to spend one for a chance at extra loot. Knowing what loot is available means you can be better informed when you spend coins. With that in mind, let's take a quick look at the bosses of Mogu'shan Vaults and figure out if their loot is worth spending charms on. This analysis is made on the basis of the normal 25-man raid drops. If you are running raid finder, many valor point choices may pull ahead because of superior item level. On the other hand, you do have a highly limited number of valor points due to the 1000 per week cap, so in some cases you may want to "settle" for the raid drop so you can use your valor points to buy something else. In addition, DPS will want to maintain 7.5% hit and 7.5% expertise at the raid level. This can usually be accomplished via reforging, but there may be times you take an "inferior" piece of gear to hit one of those caps.

  • Lichborne: Level 90 primary professions for death knights

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    10.16.2012

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. This week, we'll cover the personal benefits of the primary professions for death knights at level 90. Many of the perks and benefits are the same as they've been at levels 85 and 90, but there's stronger versions, of course, and a couple other changes that are worth covering. This guide will focus primarily on the self-buffs and bind on pickup rewards, though many professions will, of course, have its own BoE things that all death knights will want to make use of, so consider that when you pick your professions.

  • Lichborne: Heroic dungeon gear for death knights

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    10.09.2012

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. In the past, dungeons have been seen as a stepping stone to raids. If you stopped there, so be it, but the goal was generally to get past them and get on to bigger things. With challenge modes now in game, it may be that 5-man groups will be seen as a pinnacle of end game activity. With that in mind, getting the good gear out of these dungeons may be more important than ever. This week, we'll take a look at heroic dungeon drops. For the most part, in comparing these pieces, we will be focused on getting parry and dodge for tanks, critical strike and haste for unholy and two-hand frost, and haste and mastery for dual wield frost. Note, of course, that you still want to get 7.5% hit and expertise each as DPS, so that may override other gear choices at time. Note that Scenarios will also have a chance to drop an item level 463 item, so if you do Scenarios, keep an eye out for those. However, since they are all items with randomly generated prefixes, it's difficult to preview them in a gear list, so just know they exist.

  • Lichborne: Mists of Pandaria reputation gear for death knights

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    10.02.2012

    Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done. One of the first things you'll likely do once you hit level 90 in Mists of Pandaria is start looking into reputations. Faction reputation reward gear, at least at the start of an expansion, is one of the quickest and easiest ways to get the item level for heroic dungeons and raids. In Mists of Pandaria, however, it's a bit different. Valor and honor point gear is now on reputation vendors, and if you want it, you will actively have to grind out those reputations (via dailies, no less, as tabards no longer grant reputation in dungeons). This week, we'll take a look at the gear offered by these factions, and how it stacks up for death knights. Note that we will cover only those factions that offer gear specific usable for death knights to better their tanking or DPS. I hope getting rep for Tillers, Anglers, and Loremasters for the awesome vanity gear goes without saying.