Blood Death Knight Tank Talents & Builds For M+ (shadowlands)



Tier 1 (Level 15) Talent Discussion

Talent Details

Option 1: [Heartbreaker]

Basic Description: Increases RP generation based on the number of targets hit with [Heart Strike].

Option 2: [Blooddrinker]

Basic Description: A high-damage single-target channeled life drain that costs a rune.

Extra Details:

  • Defensive abilities can be used during the channel without interrupting the cast.
  • You can move, dodge, and parry while channeling.

Option 3: [Tombstone]

Basic Description: An ability that converts up to 5 [Bone Shield] charges into an absorb shield and RP.

Recommendation: [Heartbreaker]

Basis: All of these talents either directly or indirectly increase self-healing, while influencing damage output in different ways.

In a single-target situation:

In a multiple-target situation:

  • [Heartbreaker] gains a *very large* amount of mitigation with extra targets and begins completely outclassing the alternatives in this area with the extra RP generation (even from as little as one extra target).
  • [Heartbreaker] gains maintains its small damage increase, while [Blooddrinker] goes from being a moderate increase to a small increase (often less than [Heartbreaker]). [Tombstone] becomes a small damage loss, since the [Heart Strike]s you are losing to offset the [Bone Shield] cost would have done more damage on multiple targets.

With higher levels of incoming damage:

  • [Heartbreaker] mitigation fully scales with incoming damage, since its mitigation is provided in the form of more casts of [Death Strike].
  • [Tombstone] mitigation mostly does not scale with damage taken, since a large portion of [Tombstone] is a fixed-value absorb shield and only a small portion is RP generation.
  • [Blooddrinker] provides a flat amount of healing that does not scale with higher amounts of incoming damage, at all.


In most scenarios, [Heartbreaker] will provide the most mitigation, by far, and it does so in a way that scales with incoming damage. Also, the damage loss isn’t too significant in multi-target situations, though it’s more noticeable on single targets.

[Blooddrinker] could be justified in a situation where its superior single target damage outweighs its poor mitigation as well as its poor scaling with more targets and higher levels of incoming damage, such as in raid, but it does not compete well with [Heartbreaker] in M+.

[Tombstone] could be justified for pure single target situations where mitigation is important and especially when its cooldown-based nature can be taken advantage of, such as in a more mitigation-oriented tank swap raid encounter. However, since it scales poorly with multiple targets *and* increasing levels of damage intake there isn’t much use for the talent in M+. It can also be noted that this talent is clunky to use and many players find it unenjoyable.

Tier 2 (Level 25) Talent Discussion

Talent Details

Option 1: [Rapid Decomposition]

Basic Description: A minor increase in [Death and Decay] and [Blood Plague] damage/healing output.

Extra Details:

Option 2: [Hemostasis]

Basic Description: [Blood Boil] now increases the amount of damage and healing from the next [Death Strike] used, based on the number of targets it hits.

Extra Details:

  • This talent does *not* increase the size of the absorb shield from [Blood Shield].
  • The buff effect can only stack up to 5.

Option 3: [Consumption]

Basic Description: An instant-cast ability that hits all enemies in a melee, 180 degree frontal cone and heals you for 150% of the damage dealt.

Recommendation: [Hemostasis]

Basis: All of these talents increase damage and healing based on the number of nearby targets.

In a single-target situation:

  • [Hemostasis] is the only option that provides a moderate amount of mitigation, while the alternatives provide an insignificant amount.
  • All options provide a small and *very* similar amount of damage.

In a multiple-target situation:

  • The mitigation and damage benefit of all talents on this row proportionally scale with the number of targets, though [Hemostasis] stops scaling at 5 targets and [Consumption] stops scaling at 8. 

With higher levels of incoming damage:


In most scenarios, [Hemostasis] will provide the most mitigation and it does so in a way that scales with incoming damage. No significant damage trade-off is being made and the extra damage it provides can be funneled into any target.

While [Rapid Decomposition] can technically provide the most damage with enough targets, it is by a small margin and with almost no mitigation benefit, so there is little reason to consider this talent in M+.

[Consumption] is in a similar boat as [Rapid Decomposition], except it has a target cap of 8 and it is cooldown-based. However, the cooldown-based nature isn’t enough of an advantage to chance decision-making.

Tier 3 (Level 30) Talent Discussion

Talent Details

Option 1: [Foul Bulwark]

Basic Description: A passive increase in maximum health that scales with the number of [Bone Shield] charges active.

Extra Details:

  • Health % stays the same when gaining and losing stacks of [Bone Shield].

Option 2: [Relish in Blood]

Basic Description: Using [Death and Decay] with [Crimson Scourge] active provides healing based on [Bone Shield] stacks as well as RP.

Option 3: [Blood Tap]

Basic Description: This ability can be used to instantly generate runes. The cooldown gets decreased when [Bone Shield] stacks are consumed.

Extra Details:

  • [Bone Shield] stacks consumed by [Tombstone] contribute to the cooldown reduction.
  • This ability is not on the global cooldown.

Recommendation: [Blood Tap]

Basis: These talents are all defensive in nature.

In a single-target situation:

In a multiple-target situation:

With higher levels of incoming damage:

  • [Blood Tap] mitigation scales fully with damage taken, since its mitigation comes fully from RP generation that allows for more [Death Strike].
  • [Relish in Blood] mitigation partially scales with damage taken, since its benefits are split between flat healing and RP.


[Blood Tap] provides superior mitigation on multiple targets. And, while [Blood Tap] does not generally provide as much potential mitigation as [Relish in Blood] on one target, [Blood Tap] enjoys some unique advantages in real-world situations. First, you can pool an additional rune with no loss of rune regeneration, which you can strategically use when resources get low. Second, you can recover charges with time out of combat, when damage intake is trivial, or when kiting. With these advantages, better scaling into higher levels of incoming damage, more damage, and some unique downsides to [Relish in Blood] (as explained below), [Blood Tap] would be the most desirable option even on single targets. One notable downside to [Blood Tap] is that it reduces our rotation downtime, which can cause some amount of resource generation loss, since it takes more time to get everything on cooldown.

[Foul Bulwark] is the only EHP option and could be used if it provides a level of EHP that is thought to outweigh the raw mitigation and damage provided by the other options. While this is not the general recommendation, if you are looking to increase EHP beyond the standard guide recommendations then this is one of the more efficient ways to get additional EHP (see the Build Modification section for more details).

While [Relish in Blood] mitigation looks somewhat competitive with [Blood Tap] on paper, and even looks stronger than it on one target, [Relish in Blood] suffers from unique disadvantages. Sometimes we need to use [Death and Decay] before [Crimson Scourge] procs for the utility reasons and (if we are a (Night Fae)) we want to use [Death’s Due] regardless of whether or not [Crimson Scourge] is active; both of these situations can significantly lower the benefits of [Relish in Blood] when they apply, since they reduce [Crimson Scourge] proc frequency.

Tier 4 (Level 35) Talent Discussion

Talent Details

Option 1: [Will of the Necropolis]

Basic Description: This reduces damage taken at low health and is an increase to EHP.

Extra Details:

  • The initial damage instance that reduces your health below 30% is affected by this talent for the portion of damage that took you below 30% health.
  • This talent reduces damage by instantaneously absorbing 30% of the damage taken below 30% health. So, the damage reduced by this talent still increases the healing of [Death Strike].

Option 2: [Anti-Magic Barrier]

Basic Description: This increases the effectiveness of [Anti-Magic Shell] and lowers its cooldown.

Extra Details:

  • This also increases the potential Runic Power generation of [Anti-Magic Shell] from 25 to 32.

Option 3: [Mark of Blood]

Basic Description: This ability debuffs an enemy target so that they heal *their* target on every successful auto-attack.

Extra Details:

  • The heal does not occur when auto attacks miss, are dodged, or are parried.
  • This heal cannot crit and does not scale with versatility.

Recommendation: [Will of the Necropolis]

Basis: These talents are defensive in nature, but they all operate differently.

In a single-target situation:

In a multiple-target situation:

  • [Mark of Blood] has the ability to be active on multiple targets, which can increase its mitigation substantially and make it mitigate more damage than [Anti-Magic Barrier]. At least before considering that we don’t have enough cast time to do this and use all of our other resources without cutting something.

With higher levels of incoming damage:


[Will of the Necropolis] is thought to provide the most benefit as a pure EHP option, particularly in M+. However, the other talents have their uses if you are in a situation where the EHP isn’t particularly useful, though that mostly includes a subset of raid encounters.

[Anti-Magic Barrier] can potentially provide the most mitigation out of the available options (if enough magic damage is present) and is attached to a cooldown (which is useful for targeting high damage intake periods), but a magic-specific mitigation option has limited uses in M+ dungeons, where physical damage, alone, is often what we are most worried about (especially since BDKs are already better equipped than most tanks to handle magic damage).

[Mark of Blood] provides an often weaker, less situational, and sustained form of mitigation than [Anti-Magic Barrier]. It can be used on multiple targets at one time, but, even on single targets, [Mark of Blood] can cause us to become GCD-capped when used. This means that we often need to sacrifice other resources to use [Mark of Blood]. Swing timers vary widely in M+ and can have a large effect on the healing provided by this talent. Ignoring pure casters and ranged attack mobs (who won’t generate much, if any, healing), 2 second swing timers are the most common followed by 1.5 second swing timers, but a select few mobs have swing timers as high as 4 seconds or as low as 1 second. In any case, the tradeoff is questionable, at best, in M+ scenarios.

Tier 5 (Level 40) Talent Discussion

Talent Details

Option 1: [Grip of the Dead]

Basic Description: This provides a strong tapering snare on [Death and Decay].

Extra Details:

  • The full 90% snare effect can sometimes persist on the targets for the full duration of [Death and Decay].
  • Sometimes the snare is not applied immediately to targets passing through the ground effect of [Death and Decay].

Option 2: [Tightening Grasp]

Basic Description: This lowers the cooldown on [Gorefiend’s Grasp].

Option 3: [Wraith Walk]

Basic Description: This ability removes roots and snares on cast, while providing bonus movement speed for a short duration.

Recommendation: [Grip of the Dead]

Basis: These talents all manipulate movement, either your own or that of your enemies.


The mitigation, damage, and EHP comparisons used in the other talent rows don’t apply to this utility row.

Still, the strength of a strong, low cooldown, and AoE snare from [Grip of the Dead] cannot be ignored in a dungeon environment. The utility of the other two talents just don’t provide a comparable benefit, since they don’t allow for easier disengaging from enemies and they are more disruptive for your other group members than an AoE snare. However, when [Sanguine] is active and when normal kiting isn’t necessary, it can be argued that [Grip of the Dead] can do more harm than good.

[Gorefiend’s Grasp] provides situational utility in dungeons, but generally [Tightening Grasp] doesn’t allow for enough extra casts to make it comparable in strength to [Grip of the Dead], unless you truly believe you are in a situation where an rotational AoE snare has little to no value for you (such as on [Sanguine] weeks, where [Gorefiend’s Grasp] is also a useful tool to reduce [Sanguine] healing).

[Wraith Walk] is potentially useful when snares or an increased frequency of [Gorefiend’s Grasp] has no value for you, which isn’t generally thought to be the normal case in dungeons, though it’s not impossible.

Tier 6 (Level 45) Talent Discussion

Talent Details

Option 1: [Voracious]

Basic Description: This ability amplifies the effectiveness of [Death Strike] and provides a leech buff whenever you cast [Death Strike]. This talent has a hidden benefit of increasing the minimum healing of [Death Strike] by 50%.

Extra Details:

Option 2: [Death Pact]

Basic Description: This ability provides burst healing at the cost of also applying a healing-absorb shield.

Extra Details:

  • This heal cannot crit and does not scale with versatility.

Option 3: [Bloodworms]

Basic Description: This periodically summons bloodworms that sacrifice themselves to heal you for a percentage of your missing health when your health gets low.

Extra Details:

  • Bloodworms will never stop attacking targets you have damaged and are in combat with until either they or their target dies.
  • Once your health falls below 50%, all of your bloodworms will do their sacrificial heal at the same time and they will all heal you for an amount based on your initial missing health.
  • Bloodworm healing cannot crit and does not scale with versatility.

Recommendation: [Voracious]

Basis: These talents all focus on providing healing.

In a single-target situation:

  • [Voracious] provides a very large increase in mitigation, [Bloodworms] provides a moderate increase in mitigation, and [Death Pact] provides a small amount of mitigation.
  • [Bloodworms] provides a small amount of damage, while the alternatives provide *no* damage.

In a multiple-target situation:

  • [Voracious] becomes an even more dominant mitigation option, with more targets to leech from and the increased RP generation from multiple targets.

With higher levels of incoming damage:


[Voracious] is the superior mitigation option in any situation and by a large margin. And so, it’s the general recommendation.

[Death Pact] provides burst mitigation on a cooldown, but its overall effectiveness is an order of magnitude weaker than the alternatives on this row and it has no redeeming qualities unless you are taking significant damage while you are outside of melee range of an enemy for significant periods of time.

[Bloodworms] is the only damage option for this talent row, so, if you are in a situation where a small amount of single target damage could make a difference, it’s possible this talent may help. However, while it warrants more consideration in single target raid encounters, it’s a very low efficiency damage tradeoff on multiple targets, in particular. The smart healing nature of this talent is not enough of a benefit to change decision-making, especially since [Voracious] mitigation via [Death Strike] is controllable.

Tier 7 (Level 50) Talent Discussion

Talent Details

Option 1: [Purgatory]

Basic Description: This ability provides you with a cheat death effect.

Extra Details:

  • Very rarely and for unknown reasons, this ability will instantly kill the player on activation.
  • If you have multiple cheat death effects, the effect with the longest cooldown gets used first.

Option 2: [Red Thirst]

Basic Description: This ability significantly reduces the cooldown of [Vampiric Blood].

Option 3: [Bonestorm]

Basic Description: This ability uses RP to do AoE damage and provide self-healing based on the number of targets hit.

Extra Details:

  • This ability does not scale with haste.
  • The healing portion of this ability cannot crit and is not affected by versatility.
  • Partial ticks are provided when the amount of RP spent is not a multiple of ten; the damage of this partial tick is proportional to the amount of RP spent, while the healing is the same as a full tick.

Recommendation: [Red Thirst] or [Purgatory]

Basis: These talents have no set theme.

In a single-target situation:

In a multiple-target situation:

  • [Red Thirst] allows for even more uses of [Vampiric Blood] due to increased RP generation (increasing mitigation and situational EHP), while [Bonestorm] becomes a bit less of a mitigation loss (but still a large loss overall).
  • [Bonestorm] now provides a moderate damage increase on multiple targets.

With higher levels of incoming damage:

  • [Red Thirst] scales with damage taken, since it increases all sources of healing.
  • [Bonestorm] does not scale at all with incoming damage.


[Red Thirst] is the only option on this row providing an increase in raw mitigation and a direct EHP benefit, which is provided in the form of more uses of a cooldown-based ability whose mitigation scales with incoming damage. It’s a strong benefit with no strings attached, which is why it’s the general recommendation. However, the other talents in this row are situationally useful.

[Purgatory] can be used as a method of dealing with situations where a lack of EHP is leading to occasional tank deaths from burst damage. Being a cheat death effect, it can accomplish a few things: First, as you are moving into higher and higher level keys, it provides you and your healer a 4 minute cooldown mulligan to adjust to the higher levels of damage and to test new tactics. Second, once key levels get higher, it is more likely that you can be put in situations where you can get killed from near-full health with little to no opportunity for counter-play; as long as these situations don’t occur more often than every 4 minutes, [Purgatory] will prevent those deaths from happening. Third, it gives you the option of making high risk and high value decisions that would not be responsible to make without a cheat death to fall back on (such as trying to preserve defensive cooldowns or foregoing kiting in dangerous situations). Due to how this talent works, the value you get out of it depends entirely on your risk of burst damage deaths and how it’s used, so it’s hard to define when [Purgatory] may or may not be better than [Red Thirst]. However, this talent will not be helpful if you dying due to a lack of mitigation throughput or a lack of external healing.

[Bonestorm] is the sole damage option and it does an alright job of that in AoE situations; it’s also one of the few methods BDKs have to try and address threat issues on large packs (which, in patch 9.1, can be a problem with some group compositions and in some dungeons). In either case, using [Bonestorm] comes at a cost; it is a noticeable mitigation loss in any *remotely* difficult content, since it scales poorly with higher incoming damage and scales poorly with gear (since we are losing uses of [Death Strike] that scale with mastery and versatility per point of RP). While this can be used at trivial key levels (where incoming damage is low) to increase damage at little cost, it’s recommended to swap to one of the other two options as soon as you feel the need to layer additional defensive cooldowns on top of [Bonestorm] to stay alive in AoE packs, unless it’s necessary to solve significant threat issues. As a (Venthyr), [Swarming Mist] often gives more RP than necessary to self-sustain over a short time period, so (Venthyr) BDK’s can use [Bonestorm] with [Swarming Mist] to negate some of the mitigation losses associated with [Bonestorm] (though you will still be missing out on the benefits of the other two talents).

Build Modifications

While this guide generally recommends a build and play-style aimed at maximizing most players chances of timing M+ keys, higher keys continue to put a greater emphasis on EHP to manage pulls, while the highest of keys for some of the more timer-limited dungeons have such high damage requirements that options to increase a tanks personal damage at the cost of other metrics may be the only way a higher key level gets timed (assuming overall group damage isn’t lost as a result). The purpose of this section is to discuss and compare options for how the base build could be modified if you believe yourself to be in a situation where you can benefit from more EHP or Damage (or if you are just looking to experiment).

EHP Modifications

EHP not only lowers the chance of dying to burst damage, it also gives BDKs more margin to safely dip to lower health levels before using [Death Strike], which can indirectly increase our mitigation in keys. EHP tradeoffs are tricky to judge because overall survivability comes from a combination of EHP and mitigation, and the value of EHP, in particular, is heavily dependent on the levels of incoming damage you are receiving as a tank and its benefits likely suffer from diminishing returns. So, optimizing an ideal combination of mitigation and EHP is more of an art than a science. Furthermore, BDK’s become more self-sufficient as expansions progress, which tends to shift priorities more towards EHP by the end of an expansion (at least in M+). The generalized figures below lay out a number of EHP tradeoffs that can be made to most efficiently move from a mitigation focused build to an EHP focused build in one target and five target scenarios (the green dot represents the guide recommendations):

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Theotar to Draven – Even with low uptimes for [Hold Your Ground], Draven (thanks to the 9.1 soulbind changes) is far and away the most efficient EHP tradeoff a Venthyr BDK can make in multiple target scenarios and he’s still very efficient on single targets. Thus, he is a part of the general recommendations. As with most of these EHP options, this swap also causes some drop in damage output for the EHP gained. From this listing, Draven provides minimal damage loss per EHP given with multiple targets, with a worse, but still reasonable, tradeoff on single target. 

Secondary Stats: X -> Versatility – Note, this generalized listing was generated using a sample profile with mythic ilvl 9.1 gear; this gear has a secondary stat allocation of 50% in versatility, 30% in mastery, and 20% in haste, which is roughly reflective of guide itemization recommendations. Tradeoff efficiency for secondary stats can significantly move with major changes in your current secondary stat build (especially if you start hitting the diminishing returns thresholds).

The first listed modification is haste into versatility, which, other than Draven, will likely be the most efficient source of EHP per mitigation lost on multiple targets and can often be the best source of EHP per mitigation lost on single targets. Similarly, the damage losses are a bit less than Draven’s per EHP given, though they are larger than Draven’s on multiple targets. This tradeoff is a part of current guide recommendations, which direct players to prioritize versatility/mastery gear over haste at similar ilvls.

Further along the spectrum is the mastery into versatility tradeoff, which, with the sample profile, involves more of a mitigation loss than most of the other options. The damage tradeoff is much smaller than the previously listed options on single target, but on multiple targets it’s a larger damage tradeoff than Draven. Note, this tradeoff becomes a lot more efficient relative to mitigation and damage as you gain more mastery relative than versatility, but its current placement is a caution against sacrificing excessive amounts mastery for versatility. 

Critical strike is not on the spectrum in any form because swapping critical strike to versatility is *both* a mitigation and EHP gain, so it’s never a consideration.

[Foul Bulwark] – This talent provides less EHP per mitigation loss than Draven on single target by a good amount, while also providing less EHP per mitigation than haste to versatility on multiple targets by a smaller, but noticeable amount. The damage tradeoff efficiency is similar to Draven on single targets and slightly less than haste to versatility on multiple targets. These comparisons do not take into account the fact that [Blood Tap] can pool an extra rune and be strategically used or the fact that [Foul Bulwark] will result in more empty cast time (making our base rotation slightly more efficient). In any case, this would be the next EHP option to consider if you wanted to increase the EHP of the recommended build and it is a choice that some BDKs are currently making.

[Rune of the Stoneskin Gargoyle] – While certainly not a popular or flashy option, [Rune of the Stoneskin Gargoyle] provides more EHP than any other runeforge and, when you ignore the value of having 20 more maximum RP or using [Rune of the Fallen Crusader] for an efficient damage tradeoff, it technically provides the next best EHP vs. mitigation tradeoff behind [Foul Bulwark] on multiple targets. It is also a slight damage increase over [Rune of Hysteria], which makes it the only listed tradeoff that is increasing damage over guide baselines. It can be argued that [Rune of the Stoneskin Gargoyle] should be considered before [Foul Bulwark], but the shift in miscellaneous benefits between the two tradeoffs are thought to make [Foul Bulwark] the better tradeoff. Granted, runeforge swapping gives you the option of only using this tradeoff for certain encounters, which isn’t an option that is available to [Foul Bulwark].

Rotational [Rune Tap] [Rune Tap] is an EHP gain for a loss of mitigation and damage, so it generally isn’t recommended for use outside of specific situations that are outlined in the guide (situations where it can be used with little to no downside). This specific modification assumes that it is, instead, being used as a standard defensive cooldown with no special considerations.

Used liberally, [Rune Tap] provides a similar EHP vs. mitigation tradeoff as [Foul Bulwark] on single targets, while being the least efficient tradeoff on multiple targets. It will also result in far more damage losses per EHP gained than any of the other listed option. The one advantage it *does* have is that you can actively choose when to use or not use [Rune Tap] on any given encounter, so you can selectively make the tradeoff during some parts of the dungeon and not during others. Also, if you are using [Rune Tap] during specific times (such as when the [Crimson Rune Weapon] buff is active), it can become around as efficient of an EHP tradeoff as Draven and haste to versatility from both a mitigation and damage standpoint.

Stamina on Cloak – This tradeoff is unique from the others listed in that the mitigation benefit being lost does not scale with damage taken, so it doesn’t compare nicely with the other options. Even during high damage burst windows the EHP vs. mitigation tradeoff is not particularly impressive on multiple targets and, while it performs reasonably well on single target in these conditions, we are more concerned with the multiple target efficiency. The leech benefits will further benefit our resource recovery when damage intake is low relative to the other mitigation-focused options (even on single target). Even if no damage is lost from changing enchants, the net effect of this enchant is judged to be less desirable than the other options at all target counts.

DPS Modifications

More damage has the potential to lower completion time on a key, as long as overall group damage doesn’t decrease as a result and the increased risk of group deaths does not result in lowering overall key success rates. While damage-focused tank modifications aren’t particularly helpful at most key levels, damage requirements exponentially increase with key level and it will start to become a consideration once you get close to cutting edge key levels for your given group composition. At first, advanced routing techniques will be a much more impactful way of improving dungeon completion times, but there are limits to how much a route can be optimized. That being said, the options for effectively increasing our damage output in dungeons are extremely limited. The generalized figures below lay out a number of damage tradeoffs that can be made to most efficiently move from a mitigation focused build to a damage focused build in one target and five target scenarios (the green dot represents the guide recommendations):

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[Rune of the Fallen Crusader] – This runeforge provides the most efficient damage relative to mitigation lost of all available options and at all target counts. Granted, this comparison does not consider the 20 increased maximum RP associated with [Rune of Hysteria] or the fact that that most of the mitigation associated with [Rune of the Fallen Crusader] is uncontrollable relative to controllable RP. This modification also happens to be a small EHP increase, which isn’t true for most other damage modifications. Still, if you are looking to increase damage from the standard guide recommendations, this should be your first consideration. It can also be selectively used on a per-encounter basis with runeforge swapping, if desired.

[Bonestorm] – This talent provides the second most efficient damage increase relative to mitigation lost on multiple targets, though it is significantly less efficient than [Rune of the Fallen Crusader] on standard measures and it is a damage loss when actively used on single targets. Since the damage gain is only on AoE, this ability will not be as influential as it appears on the damage meter, which tends to overemphasize the value of AoE damage by default.

While the original discussion of [Bonestorm] still applies, it is worth re-emphasizing that (Venthyr) BDKs have an opportunity to make [Bonestorm] usage more efficient by pairing it with [Swarming Mist], which would boost its efficiency by removing some amount of the mitigation losses associated with its use. This style was not factored into the comparison and is difficult to quantify.

Furthermore, even if the general tradeoff isn’t all that impressive, [Bonestorm] provides a method of addressing chronic threat issues on large pulls, should they occur at a troubling frequency and a more efficient solution isn’t possible.

Strength Food – One of the better damage tradeoffs at all target levels. It’s significantly less efficient than [Rune of the Fallen Crusader] at all target counts and [Bonestorm] on multiple targets.

DPS-optimized Secondary Stats Again, this generalized listing was generated using a sample profile with mythic ilvl 9.1 gear; this gear has a secondary stat allocation of 50% in versatility, 30% in mastery, and 20% in haste, which is roughly reflective of guide itemization recommendations. Tradeoff efficiency for secondary stats can significantly move with major changes in your current secondary stat build (especially if you start hitting the diminishing returns thresholds).

The first option involves optimizing non-critical strike secondary stats for dps, which will generally be a lot more efficient than picking up critical strike, especially when it comes to multiple targets. However, this will be noticeably less efficient than strength food at all target counts and on single target in particular unless your original build has large differences between your highest and lowest non-critical strike secondary stat. Also, this will probably result in some amount of EHP loss, depending on your original secondary stat build and your modified build.

While generally an even less efficient option than the above, you can start implementing critical strike into your stat distribution to further increase your dps. Again, critical strike is especially weak on multiple target mitigation, so that’s why it is less efficient than optimizing non-critical strike stats for dps.

[Bloodworms] – For multiple targets, this talent is the least efficient damage modification listed and it’s the least efficient by a large margin. It does, however, perform as a *relatively* more effective damage tradeoff on single targets, where it’s only a bit less efficient than strength food. Assumed [Bloodworms] lifespan (~10 seconds) is based on dungeon log data from moderately high keys and the tradeoff could be better or worse than what is listed depending on your exact circumstances, but it’s unlikely to change when you’d consider this, regardless.

[Blooddrinker] – For multiple targets, this talent usually isn’t even a damage increase over [Heartbreaker] while being a gigantic mitigation loss, though it’s the second most damage efficient modification relative to mitigation lost if are are only talking about single target. While it’s not a thrilling M+ option, [Blooddrinker] definitely has a place in raid content.


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