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Warlock mana efficiency

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The focus of this article is about mana efficiency. The table below lists the amount of damage generated by a spell for each mana used. DPS efficiency is offered as a secondary article focus.

DPM shows Damage per Mana. DPS shows the Damage per Second. The Time listed is the time needed before the spell can be used against a single target (in the case of DoTs, the time represents the duration of the DoT. Of course, a player may apply the same DoT to the target before the expiration of the time listed, however, doing so will reduce the DPM and DPS value of the first application).

Note that some spells can be used in parallel, which would add to the total DPS against a single target. Warlocks also have talents that can increase damage of certain types of spells, or certain spells themselves (increased damage to fire damage, shadow damage, and bonuses for Curse of Agony and Immolate).

The maximal DPS also depends on the casting time of the spells, which can be modified by talents. However, the baseline casting times for each spell is used for equality of comparisonin this analysis .


Assumptions Edit

  • The result of bonus from equipment is not taken into account.
  • Talent improvements are not factored into calculations.
  • DPS calculations do not account for AoE effects against more than one target.
  • Secondary effects (such as creation of soul shards, stun, daze and horror effects or life-gaining effects) are ignored in this analysis.


Spell Mana Damage DPM Time DPS
Shadow Bolt (Rank 1) 25 14 0.56 1.7 8
Shadow Bolt (Rank 2) 40 26 0.65 2.2 12
Shadow Bolt (Rank 3) 70 52 0.74 2.8 19
Rain of Fire 1480 1212 0.82 8 152
Shadow Bolt (Rank 4) 110 92 0.84 3 31
Death Coil 600 519 0.86 GCD 346
Shadowfury 710 670 0.94 .5* 1340
Shadow Bolt (Rank 5) 160 157 0.98 3 51
Shadow Bolt (Rank 6) 210 217 1.03 3 72
Shadow Bolt (Rank 7) 265 298 1.12 3 99
Shadow Bolt (Rank 8) 315 381 1.21 3 126
Shadowburn 515 631 1.23 GCD 421
Drain Life (+540 Life Gained) 425 540 1.27 5 108
Shadow Bolt (Rank 9) 370 481 1.30 3 150
Shadow Bolt (Rank 10) 380 510 1.34 3 170
Shadow Bolt (Rank 11) 420 572 1.36 3 191
Searing Pain 205 295 1.44 1.5 197
Siphon Life (+630 Life Gained) 410 630 1.54 30 21
Incinerate 355 599 1.69 2.5 240
Drain Soul (Creates Soul Shard) 360 620 1.72 15 41
Conflagrate 405 710 1.75 GCD 473
Immolate (Rank 7) 370 743 2.01 15 50
Immolate (Rank 8) 380 789 2.08 15 53
Corruption (Rank 6) 290 666 2.30 18 37
Corruption (Rank 7) 340 822 2.42 18 46
Seed of Corruption (DoT + Detonation) 882 2244 2.54 18 125
Unstable Affliction (DoT) 400 1050 2.63 18 58
Hellfire 1665 4590 2.76 15 306
Unstable Affliction (Dispelled) 400 1575 3.94 - -
Soul Fire 250 1130 4.52 6 188
Curse of Agony (Rank 6) 215 1044 4.86 24 44
Curse of Agony (Rank 6) (with Amplify Curse) 215 1566 7.28 24 62
Curse of Doom 300 3200 10.67 60 53


Note: Instant cast spells have their DPS calculated against the global cooldown value of 1.5 seconds. This value is offered in order to give the reader an idea of the DPS done by a spell against the investment in time to cast and to recover from casting it (as opposed to selecting other damage dealing options).

Conclusions Edit

  • If the fight will last at least 1 more minute, use Curse of Doom, which is by far most mana efficient of all spells.
  • Use Curse of Agony if at least 24 seconds of the fight remains.
  • Corruption and Immolate both have average high values of DPM, but still almost twice as good as Shadow Bolt.
  • Far and away, Shadowfury offers the highest DPS of any Warlock spell. However, its 20 second cooldown time prevents it from being spammed.
  • Soul Fire has a very high degree of mana efficiency coupled with a high value DPS. It offers approximately the same DPS value as Rank 10 and 11 Shadowbolt, but is three times more mana efficient. However, its 6 second cast time limits its use when the Warlock is receiving damage that can interrupt the casting time.
  • Shadow Bolt has a high DPS but low DPM. If there is a shortage of mana, the first step should be to stop using this spell.

Notes Edit

  • The raid or party may have special assignments and restrictions on the usage of DoTs.
  • Criticals with Shadow Bolt and Immolate will give an improved DPM which is not the case for DoTs. However, the improvement is not high enough to give Shadow Bolt better average DPM than any DoT. Unlike DoTs, however, Shadow Bolt can be cast in semi-rapid succession, causing far more damage for the mana if you hit with a critical.
  • DoT vs. Spell DPM depends highly on talents, with increased criticals, mana reduction, increased types of damage, and debuffs, this can cause the DPM to fluctuate a great deal depending on the warlock, and even sometimes his party (another warlock using Curse of Elements, and Shadow Weaving, for instance, can increase critical damages to very high levels).
  • There is always the possibility to use a wand when the mana pool is depleted.
  • See Warlock tactics for tips on how to acquire the mana efficiently.

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