Warlock PvE DPS Guide – WoW Classic

Wow Classic Warlock Raiding Guide 1.png
  • Author: Zephan
  • Date: December 6, 2021
  • Updated: October 28, 2023
  • Expansion: WoW Classic

An in depth raiding guide for Warlocks in World of Warcraft Classic, this guide was originally published by Topdps on the Crestfall forums. It is now updated and preserved here.


Warlocks are mainly brought to raids for their high damage output, and the class is arguably the most competitive DPS class in late 1.12 content. On top of that, they bring a ton of utility to the raid: Soulstones, Curses, Blood Pact, and top AoE abilities. I raided every instance in Vanilla WoW in a hardcore setting for a long time and decided to share what I learned. This guide is meant for players who are new to the Warlock class and want to understand the different playstyles and talent builds the class has to offer in PvE. This post also includes a list of pre-raid gear and enchants, details about world buffs and useful consumables, and so on. At the end of the guide there is also a chapter on how to tank the Twin Emperors in AQ40.

Race choice

Before I get into talent specs and gear I’d like to quickly talk about Race choice. The playable Warlock Races are Human, Gnome, Undead, and Orc — Gnome is the only Race with a racial that benefits Warlocks in PvE (“Expansive Mind” gives you 5% increased intellect which ends up being <1% extra damage in a normal raid setting). The big differences between the races are mainly PvP-basedL Stun resist (Orc), Wotf (Undead), Escape Artist (Gnome), and Perception (Human). Since this is a PvE guide I won’t waste your time discussing them but simply state that the Race you choose to play has minimal impact on your performance in a Raid.


While race choice have only a minor influence on our performance, professions can make a significant difference. I will only talk about professions that have a direct influence on our DPS potential. There are two of these: Engineering and Tailoring.


If you are serious about raiding you will most likely be forced into engineering. The reason is that aside from the cool gadgets, there are bombs. Bombs that have major AoE DPS potential. Sappers do a wide-area AoE; it is not uncommon for hardcore guilds to coordinate the use of sappers on certain trash packs or bosses to quickly nuke them down. Other benefits include grenades which can be used during the global cooldown caused by Life Tap, Teleporters to get easier around, movement speed boots, repair bot, resurrection tool, etc…

If you wonder what specialization to pick: Gnomish has the better gadgets and teleporter, while Goblin lets you craft your own sapper.


The other major must-have profession is tailoring. However, not from the get-go. In the first phase of the game, the only item that is of value for us and is tailoring locked is vestment. This chest is only a minor bit better than the other pre bis option which is bind on equip. This chest isn’t even our best in slot for the phase, as Robe of Volatility is better.

So if tailoring doesn’t come into play in the first phase, when does it? In Phase 4 with the release of Zul Gurub. Along with this comes our favorite looking pants, chest and boots: Bloodvine! You don’t need tailoring to equip bloodvine, but you do need it for the set bonus of 2% Hit. This set bonus makes Bloodvine the best you can get for a while. You can maybe break it if you have access to Kazzak pants and T2.5, as always you will need to sim this for yourself. Most will be wearing it going into Naxxramas.

Use the links at the top of this guide to navigate to the other sections


About the Author


I am a Classic Warlock enthusiast and in general like theorycrafting. I am the owner and admin of the best community in the whole wide world, being the Classic Warlock Discord. This is the home of some of the best Warlocks in this game and the basis for theorycrafting and figuring out the optimal plays for us warlocks. My aim is to make sure this up-to-date information is out there everywhere to be found and to give back to the community.
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