PVE Demonology Warlock DPS Guide WotLK 3.3.5a

Welcome to the Demonology Warlock DPS guide for World of Warcraft Wrath of the Lich King 3.3.5a. In this guide, you will learn about playing a Demonology Warlock in a raid. The guide includes Talents, Glyphs, Gems, Enchantments, Add-ons, Gameplay & Skill rotation tips.

Talent Tree

This build will give a 5% crit chance on the target. Additional spell power bonus to the raid, which is a really nice amount. Considered to be the maximum DPS spec for Demonology Warlocks.


Major Glyphs


Gems are situational and depend on the build and equipment. They are used to reach the required stat caps.


Chaotic Skyflare Diamond


Runed Cardinal Ruby

Yellow & Blue

If the socket bonus is more than 7 Spell Power:

Otherwise, use Red Gems




Demonology Warlocks have a priority system, rather than a strict rotation of skills.

Main skills

  • Life Tap – This spell triggers a buff of spell damage. It should be used all the time when the buff is about to wear off, or if you found yourself out of mana.
  • Shadow Bolt – Is used when the target doesn’t have Improved Shadow Bolt on it or to fill the time between cooldowns.
  • Immolate – Should be on the target all the time.



  • Metamorphosis – Use as often as possible. It is advisable, that you have it prepared when the Execution phase starts (that’s when the target’s health is 35%).
  • Immolation Aura – Use it only when Metamorphosis is active. Worth using when some additional monsters start spawnin
  • It’s better to combine Trinket cooldown with Metamorphosis.
  • Demonic Empowerment – Is used on cooldown. To make it easier, I suggest making macros for pet-spells that you use. The macros below will use Demonic Empowerment every time your pet casts a spell.

/cast [@pettarget,exists]Demonic Empowerment

Stat Priority

Hit Rating -> Spell Power -> Haste -> Spirit / Critical strike rating

Spells require 17% to always hit the target. This number can be reduced by:

With either a Balance Druid or Shadow Priest in your group, you will require 14% (367 hit rating). It’s safe to assume that you will have either of these classes in raids, where the hit requirements are the highest. [1% Hit = 26.23 Hit Rating]

Spell Power is the primary stat for the build as it improves the efficiency and damage output of all spells. It also converts partly into Attack Power and Spell Power of your pets.

Haste increases the number of spells you can cast in a certain period. Haste also reduces the tick intervals for Corruption with the help of Glyph of Quick Decay. The soft cap for Haste is 50% (1640 haste rating) with raid buffs, which reduces the Global Cooldown to 1 second.

Spirit is a valuable stat for the Demonology spec, as it converts into Spell Power for the whole raid via the Demonic Pact talent. Fel Armor provides 39% of Spirit as Spell Power with the Demonic Aegis talent, and Life Tap (with Glyph of Life Tap) adds another 20%. All of the above-mentioned is affected by raid buffs, such as Blessing of Kings, Divine Spirit, and the Human Spirit passive.

Critical strike rating is a secondary stat that increases personal DPS. Transferring critical strike rating to your pet is possible only if you choose to spec into Improved Demonic Tactics.

Stack Haste and Crit if you want to increase your damage output. Consider stacking Spirit instead of Crits to maximize the Demonic Pact and bring maximum utility to the raid. The personal gains from stacking Crit are less than the value you can bring to your raid by maximizing on Demonic Pact.


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5 months ago

BIS gear?

1 month ago

I’m very skeptical about 3/3 into Improved Demonic Tactics (10%/rank of your crit goes to demon). You’ll want to be spirit stacking as much as possible for your raid so that Demonic Pact is as strong as possible. Then, you’ll want Haste (ESPECIALLY if you’re close to a breakpoint) to increase the number of ticks of Corruption to increase Molten Core procs. Lastly, your demon is one of the lower (albeit not insignificant) sources of your damage.

Having it crit more doesn’t necessarily translate into a direct DPS increase for you when Haste is super valuable comparatively, and you will not be able to acquire enough for it to outweigh the benefit Spirit provides (Spirit -> Spellpower). The main advantage of Crit on your gear is for your Felguard to proc Demonic Pact. It is MUCH more important your demon does not lose stacks of Demonic Frenzy than it is for it to Crit more often to maximize personal DPS.

At lower gear levels, I’d probably consider putting some points into Suppression for hit. You won’t have nearly as much Spell Power at lower gear levels making Demonic Pact less useful. Shadowburn would be especially helpful on fights with many adds, and Mana Feed would help your Felguard make use of its skills more often. If you’re really tackling difficult fights, Improved Healthstone may be the thing that saves your raid from a wipe.

Reply to  Aurorlock
1 month ago

Where would you put those points later in the game though? I doubt you will need the extra hit when we are closing in on ICC. And all other options look a bit meh. Not saying that Improved Demonic Tactics is amazing but it does help your Demon Pact uptime.

16 hours ago

What backs the argument that in a fluid raid enviroment 3 points in Demonic Brutality (which results in less than 1.5% damage increase on your Fel Guard depending on it’s ability to constantly hit things) are better than Destructive Reach and the last point in Nemesis? I mean in a Patchwerk encounter okay, but overall?

Last edited 16 hours ago by Ravel
1 month ago

Your intro into the talent tree is incorrect. Affliction IS the highest Warlock dps spec, even your DPS Rankings give the spec a S rating. Affliction is stupidly gear dependent, and wants more haste than Demo. Demo locks are welcomed because the utility it brings to the raid, thus being the most played spec. Affliction can be tough to play keeping track of dots and timing everything just right. Tons of addons help this.

Reply to  Tundrawookie
1 month ago

The intro literally states “Considered to be the maximum DPS spec for Demonology Warlocks.”

Demonology, not ALL warlocks. I can only assume they mean that this specific talent tree is considered to be the best demo build.

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