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WOW: Demonology Warlock guide (7.1)

Our always updated guide to playing the Demonology Warlock specialization in WOW Legion.

Posted in Class guides Tagged with demo, Warlock By Luis Magalhães Published

While all Warlocks wield the demonic power of the Burning Legion, the Demonology Warlock specialises in summoning and enslaving demons, and directing said demons to wreak havoc upon their foes, resulting in a very distinct take on the “pet class” archetype popularised by the Hunter. It can prove a bit complex to learn and play though, and so this Demonology Warlock guide is here to help you in getting to grips with - and utlimately mastering - the specialisation.

Even though Demonology Warlocks are cloth-wearers, they are very resilient, being able to withstand a lot more punishment than Mages or Priests. In addition to that, Demonologists can often rely on their demons to take the brunt of the enemy threat away from their master. As such, this is a very “safe” specialization to play in any kind of content.

It is important to note that Demonology Warlocks take a while to reach their maximum damage potential in any given fight, and as such they perform better in drawn-out battles than in lightning-fast skirmishes. They are at their best when they are able to focus on a specific target for a long time, and at their worst when they need to quickly kill several smaller targets.

Regardless, Demonology is a viable specialization for both endgame content and the levelling process. By following our recommended build and rotation, you'll be able to level up from 100 to 110 with ease, and the same strategy will serve you well when tackling the endgame too.

In future updates of this Demonology Warlock guide, expect to see a detailed path to upgrading your Demonology Artifact Weapon, and a breakdown of each main and secondary stat and the ways in which they affect your spells and talents. This will help you make optimal gear choices.

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Demology Warlock talent build

We recommend you pick up the following talents when playing a Demonology Warlock. You’ll find they are well suited for both levelling up and playing through the endgame content.

They are tuned for ease-of-use, but with some tweaking you can theoretically squeeze a bit more damage out of your class. If you do so though, the playstyle will become harder and more prone to mistakes. Your chosen “permanent” companion should be the Felhunter at low levels, and then the Felguard once it's available.

LevelTalent ChoiceReason
15Shadowy Inspiration - Demonic Empowerment also causes your next Shadow Bolt to be Instant.You’ll be using Demonic Empowerment very often through each fight, so this is the talent you’ll benefit from the most.
30Improved Dreadstalkers - Call Dreadstalkers now also summons 2 Wild Imps.More Imps. You can never have too many Imps. (Also, this is another flat boost to one of your most commonly-used spells).
45Demonic Circle - Summons a Demonic Circle for 6 min, allowing you to cast it again to teleport to its location and remove all movement slowing effects.Anchors you to a spot to which you can quickly go back to, a great time-saver during battles where you quickly have to move to specific locations. Be sure to cast it at the optimal location before initiating a boss encounter!
60Hand of Doom - Hand of Gul'dan now also applies Doom to all enemies it hits.Both extra damage and extra Soul Shard generation make this one edge over the other options in this tier.
75Demon Skin - Your Soul Leech absorption now passively recharges at a rate of 1% of maximum health every 1 sec, and may now absorb up to 20% of maximum health.A further boost to your already impressive survivability.
90Grimoire of Synergy - Damage done by you or your demon has a chance to grant the other one 40% increased damage for 15 sec.A big, passive damage boost that will trigger more often than not and requires no interaction on your part, besides your regular rotation.
100Demonbolt - Draws energy from your demons and launches a ball of demonic energy at the target, dealing Chaos damage. Damage increased by 20% for each demon you have active.This replaces Shadowbolt and as such reaps all associated benefits, including the previously picked Shadowy Inspiration. Its sister talent Summon Darkglare is an equally good choice when questing.

Demonology Warlock rotations

The key aspect of Demonology Warlock rotations involves managing your resources so that you have as many demons out as possible, and maximise the time they are affected by Demonic Empowerment. Note that it's more beneficial to cast Demonic Empowerment after each new demon(s) enters the fray, instead of waiting for several to be present before buffing them all at once. This is due to the damage loss you’ll incur from not buffing the first demons while summoning the newest.

Using our set of talents and rotation, it’s actually easier to cap your secondary resource - Soul Shards - than to run dry on it. This is due to Hand of Gul’dan placing the Doom debuff on several enemies, which grants a Soul Shard upon expiring.

While you should always keep a Shard in reserve - to be able to fire your most powerful summons as they come off cooldown - you should generally spend your Soul Shards pretty liberally.

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Demonology Warlock rotation - Single target

This is the optimal rotation for a single target. While practicing it, remember the principles outlined above.

ActionCondition / Further Instructions
1DemonboltIf at 3 or less Soul Shards and no Doom debuff (from Hand of Gul’dan) is about to expire.
2Call Dreadstalkers + Demonic Empowerment
3Hand of Gul’dan + Demonic EmpowermentAt 4+ Soul Shards
4Summon Doomguard + Demonic Empowerment
5Command DemonAssuming you are using the Felguard as your main pet, resulting in a cast of Felstorm. Disregard this if using the Felhunter.
6Thal'kiel's Consumption (lvl 100 Artifact Weapon ability)
7Life TapIf at under 60% mana, and preferably when you need to move.
8Repeat from Step 1

Demonology Warlock rotation - Multiple targets

While multiple target fights aren’t the Demonology Warlock’s strong point, there are some tweaks you can make to the rotation described above in order to eke out a bit of extra performance.

ActionCondition / Further Instructions
1DemonboltIf at 3 or less Soul Shards and no Doom debuff (from Hand of Gul’dan) is about to expire.
2Call Dreadstalkers + Demonic Empowerment
3Hand of Gul’dan + Demonic EmpowermentAt 4+ Soul Shards
4Summon Infernal + Demonic Empowerment
5Command DemonAssuming you are using the Felguard as your main pet, resulting in a cast of Felstorm. Disregard this if using the Felhunter.
6DemonwrathIf 3 or more targets around your demons, and you have less than 4 Soul Shards.
7Thal'kiel's Consumption (lvl 100 Artifact Weapon ability)
8Life TapIf at under 60% mana, and preferably when you need to move.
9Repeat from Step 1

That’s it for the initial version of our Demonology Warlock guide! Please use the comment section below to let us know of any questions or comments you have.

In future iterations of the guide, we’ll reveal the best path to take when powering up your artifact weapon, and how the stats on your gear influence your talents and abilities.

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