Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Tyger, Tyger, burning bright, in the forests of the night...

What immortal hand or... ah,
forget it, let's incinerate something.
To borrow the words from William Blake, who could conceive of such a concept as the Warlock? The idea of a person who casts spells that destroy foes has been around in weaker forms (i.e. wizards/mages), but Warlocks are more insidious by drawing upon demonic forces; forces that seek the destruction of everything lawful and good.  The first two weeks of this stint were spent exploring the degenerating forces of the Afflock.  Now, we'll swing the pendulum in the complete opposite direction by looking at the Destruction Warlock - he of the ever burning fire.

In the discussion of the Affliction tree, we explored the ideas behind the base spells for that spec in an attempt to understand the thought process behind the Afflock.  In Destruction, we'll do the same thing, but a key ingredient in identifying what a Destro Lock is lies in determining what (s)he is not: a fire mage.  Some of the following discussion will go towards laying a groundwork for the differences in these two similar (how I hate to admit that) class specs, primarily through the differentiation of the purpose of the Destro Lock.

Before Mists, the Destruction spec was primarily the intro to Warlockery; it did decent damage with poor gear, was moderately good on mana management, and had an easy-to-learn rotation.  This was good in the beginning of an expansion, but I always found something lacking.  There was little rhyme or reason for the spells other than 'ooooh, demon fire.'  In Mists, I have to brag on Blizzard a little for their revamping of this spec; not just for the mechanical changes, but also for the idea behind these changes that revolve around the concept of lighting yourself on fire.

Whereas affliction is sadistic - enjoying inflicting pain on others - I believe that Destruction is masochistic - taking pleasure in hurting yourself.  Of course, each side has elements of the other, but all of the power now for a destrolock revolves around burning embers.

These little things fuel our big hitting spells, but look at what it does: your character starts becoming engulfed in flames the more embers you have; therefore, the path to power is to burn your mortal coil, torturing yourself.  You could argue that the warlock, since it's his own power, has some natural defenses against this inflammation, but what does fire do?  It consumes.  That's it.  The consumption of fuel to create heat and light.

This week discussed the font of power behind the spells; next week, we'll explore the chaotic spells of a destrolock themselves to further prove that this spec is focused as an opposing balance to Affliction's sadism.   Until then, have fun and Happy New Years!

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