Wednesday, February 9, 2011

They Called Me "Imp Lover"

A quick follow up on yesterday's posting bonanza... Was breaking it up into separate posts easier on the eyes? Easier to skim? Those notes were huge!

I got in some good play time last night after patching. Just enough to give my 'lock a test run in the Halls of Origination. My first thought? Ouch!

Is it just me or does everyone else feel about 3k lighter on short lived mobs? I was pretty panicky at first (where'd mah DPS go?!), but after getting a couple boss fights in (and dealing my usually respectable, though perhaps a bit subdued, amount of damage), I was less jittery. I guess I just didn't realize how much we'd miss the front loading of an instant SB and haste for helping get numbers on stuff that dies quickly. Apparently, it's back to the old days where we can afk through the trash and just show up for bosses.

Now Soul Swap still helps to relieve some of this. So if the groups are large enough, we can get up to speed and transfer appropriately. However, this does place even more emphasis on soul swapping properly. I wish they'd lower the CD a little bit, because a lot of times I struggle to case Corr, BoA, UA.... dead. SS only works if it lives for longer than 4.5s (variable with haste, of course).

So yeah, it hurt a little more than expected. I'm not preaching doom and gloom though. What I am doing is advocating a respec to put 3 points into the low hanging fruit on the demo tree, improving your Imp, and busting the little guy out. Trust me, there is no one that finds this idea of being shoehorned into becoming an Imp-lover more abhorrent than I. After all, he's Destro. And they're just that side of the grave from being . Not like us pure warlocky aff'locks. Furthermore, why have us all use the same pet? Ugh.

But let's look at the facts:
  • Imp can DPS - With the talent, he's rumored to be better than the Succy, though I'll need to keep an eye out for updated numbers
  • Imp can Dispel - Singe Magic is a pretty useful PvE ability to have at your disposal. Even better probably than Devour Magic or even Seduction (especially if you're fear glyphed).
  • Imp can Phase Shift - I daresay he's a bit safer in PvE than any of the other pets. (Edit: Sadly, I believe this has been removed. Stupid Imp. Thanks Kinz.)
  • Imp can Buff Health - Though I think mine will be getting overwritten (does anyone know for sure which classes/buffs overwrite the Blood Pact?), it's a pretty nice buff when you need it.
  • Imp is ranged - This makes him less likely to get hit by random crap and die or need heals.
It's hard to ignore. The Imp has a lot of upsides. He's annoying as fel, but if my DPS is going to feel a bit like wet toilet paper, then I'd better bring some other utility to the table, and I need all the help I can get.

So yeah, I'm going to go with my Imp and I've already respecced to support that. I'll be updating the guides soon to reflect this, but I wanted to bring it up today. Any other 'locks out there feeling the same thing? I haven't gotten any replies to the question on Twitter yet, but I did see that @Nibuca thought something was off with hit rating and percent. Maybe something is a little bugged, I don't know. I didn't even look at that. With a round of hotfixes already coming through today, I didn't see anything that indicated we were broken. Certainly not to the tune of ~3k on trash like I felt.

I guess if nothing else, the pressure is on again. Aff'locks are going to have to know what they're about and play extremely well to even be competitive. I can wish they'd offer some more affliction-friendly talents lower in the other trees, but then I'd just have a handful of demon poop. To me, in an ideal world, the pets would all DPS the same basically, and the choice would be between the various buffs/extra abilities that they have. (Maybe that's what we're heading for?) Also, I think I have a fundamental dislike for feeling like I need to use the first, basic pet we got for end game raiding. Shouldn't the natural learning curve of a 'lock mean we figure out more powerful demons later in our leveling path? (I realize this contradicts the "ideal world" I just described).

I'm not sure there's a great solution and we'll likely see more changes, but for now... this patch sorta hurt. Locks have avoided the heavy hand of dev changes for a long time (getting mostly minor tweaks here and there), I'm not sure if I'm terrified or simply intrigued at seeing the Great and All Powerful Bloz turn my way.


  1. I might pack a few Dust of Disappearance and see what this imp thing is about in raid tonight. >.> I still love my pup more.

  2. Yeah, I don't believe I ever glyphed for my pet, but I have to say: I sort of like having a dispel at my disposal... especially one that most people won't know about so I won't be "required" to use it... :-)

  3. Blood Pact is in the same buff category as Warrior Commanding Shout, Priest Power Word:Fortitude and Hunter (exotic Silithid pet) Qiraji Fortitude. (I use raidcomp on MMO-Champ to see these

    Last night I logged in and immediately got pulled into a Heroic run with guildies. I didn't get a chance to respec or twiddle things before the run so I don't think the run was optimal. That said.. I found the trash and boss numbers to be on-par with pre-patch.. which unfortunately means I come up low on trash and then bust out ahead on the boss. C'est la vive.

    I will say I didn't miss having to keep up the haste buff from Soul Fire.. though it did leave me sort of feeling like I was forgetting to keep something up when I ran out of things to cast and fell back on Shadow Bolt earlier than I had before the patch.

    When I read at EJ that the Imp is now the pet of choice I was both surprised and disappointed. I mean I guess I'm supposed to love all my pets equally.. but I'm starting to miss my fel puppy.

    Regardless I'll play with this for a while and see how it goes. Keeping in mind that if the healers are struggling.. and you don't already have the buff covered, it may be better for the group to run with the fel pup for the MP5 rather than the "better personal DPS pet".


  4. Oh.. and about the hit rating/hit% thingie.

    My character screen was all buggered. The screen would show me at 16% hit (ie, under cap) but mousing over it showed me at 1937 hit rating (ie, way over cap) and regardless of how I fiddled my gear (even when I dropped down to 1000 hit rating) it showed me as missing level 88 bosses 0.0% of the time. So yeah.. buggered.

  5. Thanks for the BP info. I remembered Commanding Shout, but not the others. Especially Hunters... ewww.

    I had the same thing where I was pulled in without twiddle twaddle. Perhaps I was just having a bit of /flailfail like you because I felt like I was missing something or whatever. I think having that haste buff right off the bat really helped me to get going on quick dying stuff, and I'm missing it. I would like something to replace the front oompf even if it can only be used once per minute or something.

    Did you ever get an answer about your hit suspicions?

  6. This comment has been removed by the author.

  7. Nah, I filed the GM ticket and then went straight to bed (it was past my bedtime and I had to run this morning).

  8. Speak of the demons! Or Devil... or hit rating... Man, now I don't want to mouse over mine. Bah!

  9. RE: Imp can Phase Shift
    I could be wrong but I believe this was removed from the game with Cata or even before Cata.

  10. Fie! I do believe you are correct. Instead we have "Flee". Shows how much I've paid attention to my Imp. I'll remove that.

  11. Just finished a raid night of Blackwing Descent post-patch. I did respec a bit, but I didn't re-glyph and still brought out the Succubus.

    Doing the same exact routines as previous weeks (minus keeping ISF up), I dropped down from the #2 or #3 position to #5. The DPS decrease was indeed noticeable.

    For one fight, Maloriak, I always switch to Demo because the AoE really helps out during the "Green" phase. My Demo DPS was fine. Didn't really notice a difference there.

    What really caught me off guard was my health bar. I rarely had to worry about staying above I really have to watch it and utilize Drain Life or grab a healthstone. Even our healer noticed this, and asked what's up because she never has to heal me that much.

    I'll give it a couple more nights to tweak. I may re-glyph to utilize Imp. Still waiting to see what others have to say about it.

  12. I believe EJ has again gone back to Succy as top DPS for affliction, it was something to do with their sims not calculating the Succy's basic attack damage correctly. Unfortunately, I can't link as I'm at work, but you'll have to take my word for it :)

  13. @Beldum - *sigh* it just doesn't seem like we got compensated for how good ISF was for us. I guess the good news is that we might be in line for a buff, even if its as simple as making mastery worth more for us.

    @Oprah - I saw the same thing. A big difference is that they're glyphing for the Succy too and I'm not. That adds 25% damage to her Lash of Pain. I may diverge a bit from what they're doing, not because I don't trust the infallibility of maths, but more because some things strike me differently.

    For instance, they're taking the Glyph of Corruption over the Glyph of Bane of Agony. Does that strike anyone else as odd? I was always under the impression that GoCorr is pretty minimal DPS gain. I'll probably post more about this when i update the guides... but I might rather put the points in Dark Arts rather than Fel Synergy/DE... DA sort of gives me a nice talent buff for my Imp and Felpup should I choose to use either of them (and they seem more useful to me than the Succy). And I'm not real sure how they stack up without the glyph.

  14. The only thing I can think of with the Glyph of Corruption is when you use Demon Soul: Succubus it increases the damage of your Shadow Bolt. So an extra instant Shadow Bolt buffed would be a higher dps gain.

    At least if I am using the logic correctly.

    I personally haven't had any issues with Soul Swapping. Depending on the size of the trash packs (my guildies gave up on CC long ago) I can get off at least 2 sometimes 3 before all the trash dies. I pop up my 2 instants and then UA, SS then on the new target I pop up Haunt. Then I tab over to another target and put up the 3, by that time SS is off cooldown and I can grab again and move to the next target. Rinse and repeat.

    I ran with the Succi last night and I saw my numbers go up from running with the puppy.

    I don't even want to think about using the imp. >.< I am glad they finally retracted the need for the use of him.

  15. Sure, that's good logic, but how much DPS is that going to add over a typical boss fight of like 5+ minutes? How many extra bolts are you going to realistically get while your DS is up? Seems like a drop in the ocean to me.

    What you're describing in terms of SS isn't really single target DPS, you're indicating that you switch and DoT while previous mobs still live. This is something we had to get used to in TBC in order to eek respectable numbers out, but I see it as "cheating" since, technically, if we're good raiders, we're supposed to stay on that skull until it reads 0, right?

    Not that I don't cheat too, mind you, just that it indicates a lack of balance to me if we can't keep up with true single target tactics.

    I'm going to do some dummy testing on my own tonight and update my guides. I don't plan to glyph Succy (contrary to EJ recs), and I wonder how my setup will flesh out.

    I'm actually willing to give the imp a shot. Singe Magic can be incredibly useful, and someone asked over vent last night "who's that little guy yelling all the time?" I replied morosely, "That's my damn imp." He came back with: "He's hilarious!" First time I've gotten that response :-).

  16. I feel like as Affliction Locks there is no burst. I'm bothered that there isnt anything i can really do when my raid leader says "blow those cooldowns" other than drop infernal if he's not already been aff locks we're just too steady with no where to go for quick burst dps....soulburn should have been a source of that.

  17. I was getting the same DPS with glyphed imp (before patch) and felpuppy after patch in bastion of ill probalby just stick with the Fel for the mana boost for the raid group.

  18. Totally agree with the lack of burst/empty feeling when RL calls for extra DPS. I'm like, wtf have the rest of you been doing, I only got one speed and it's FULL ON BABY! lol

  19. I do use Soulburn for that. If I know the fight I save my additional demon souls for when they are most useful. The same goes for my guardian and soulburns.

    For example:

    On Magmaw when his head is exposed the first time I pop my guardian (and if it is up my demon soul) along with a soulburn: soul fire. Yes I know it doesnt give us haste anymore, but really what else are you going to use your SB for?

    Then on the 2nd head phase I pop another SB (and demon soul if it is off cooldown).

    I get the burst my spec is lacking and boost my deeps too :)

  20. At EJ they're talking about saving your shards in order to summon different pets. I.E. - Maybe you start with the Succy but then as you go into the "execute" phase (under 25%), you pull out the Felpup since his Demon Soul really helps then (as opposed to the DS of the Succy then which is worthless).

    Totally random and complicated, I know, but an interesting consideration nonetheless. It also lends a bit more credibility to my musing that perhaps we should pick our demon more based on utility and less based on pure DPS in a chart. (In other words, I would test out how your playstyle meshes with your pet on a dummy and even in raids if you want to be sure... the simple sims don't cut it really).