Frost vs Unholy PvP

Death Knight
Post Limit:
I've been wanting to get back into PvP this expansion. In Cata, I did mostly Unholy the few times I ran with guildies because of the pressure I could put on healers with constant Necrotics and having multiple ways to shut them (and other casters, of course) down alongside my shadow damage from Scourge Strike. With spell resistance removed and DK talents and abilities more homogenized, is unholy still a strong pressure spec in PvP or has Frost become the go-to spec with pure damage output?

tl;dr: Looking for a serious comparison between Frost and Unholy for PvP.
Yes. However, with PvP's focus on burst as it currently is, Frost is considered more valuable since getting off a string of hard-hitting Obliterates in a couple GCDs can end an arena match rather quickly.
Reinhart's been making Unholy work in 3's but it's not a very common spec, check out his videos. It's not bad in BG's if you don't have the enemy team tunneling you the whole match.
12/05/2012 11:10 PMPosted by Chaledric
Reinhart's been making Unholy work in 3's but it's not a very common spec, check out his videos. It's not bad in BG's if you don't have the enemy team tunneling you the whole match.

If the enemy team isn't tunneling the DK they deserve the loss they're going to get.
Season 12 PvP:

Unholy: 260k in Necros through burst in 5 seconds

Frost: 260k in Damage in 5 seconds.

Take your pick.
Unholy shines in 3s but not very well in 2s. I suggest you do Unholy mostly in BGs and 3/5s.
I really can't recommend Unholy for PvP. I've been Unholy since Lich King and it's total garbage now. Deaths' Advance is a talent that forces you to sacrifice other good talents to obtain. Your diseases no longer have dispel protection. Unholy CDs are forever. AMS must be glyphed to absorb 100%. Timmy is made of paper. Any cleave will demolish him and his CD is STILL 2 minutes(even though everyone else had their pet CDs reduced to 60 seconds). Desecration is straight up gone, so you'll get kited like you're crawling backwards. Unholy damage is lackluster and the burst potential simply isn't there. Frost Damage is only marginally better, but the burst potential with multiple crit oblits is higher.

In general, DKs get the shaft in PvP this expansion. We lost a lot of abilities, the wrong abilities became talents, not enough abilities went baseline, and our defensive CDs will be laughed at by every wizard cleave out there. I've seen ppl frostbomb nuked clean through IBF and AMS has to be reserved for offense if you want to have any shot at killing a target, ever.

All in all, go Frost, but if at all possible, roll another class.
12/07/2012 02:38 AMPosted by Soshii
All in all, go Frost, but if at all possible, roll another class.


Now that is just depressing. Makes we wanna stop gearing. It's an alt anyways, so meh.
I really can't recommend Unholy for PvP. I've been Unholy since Lich King and it's total garbage now. Deaths' Advance is a talent that forces you to sacrifice other good talents to obtain. Your diseases no longer have dispel protection. Unholy CDs are forever. AMS must be glyphed to absorb 100%. Timmy is made of paper. Any cleave will demolish him and his CD is STILL 2 minutes(even though everyone else had their pet CDs reduced to 60 seconds). Desecration is straight up gone, so you'll get kited like you're crawling backwards. Unholy damage is lackluster and the burst potential simply isn't there. Frost Damage is only marginally better, but the burst potential with multiple crit oblits is higher.

In general, DKs get the shaft in PvP this expansion. We lost a lot of abilities, the wrong abilities became talents, not enough abilities went baseline, and our defensive CDs will be laughed at by every wizard cleave out there. I've seen ppl frostbomb nuked clean through IBF and AMS has to be reserved for offense if you want to have any shot at killing a target, ever.

All in all, go Frost, but if at all possible, roll another class.


I agree with this so much. I hate how dks basically choose between abilities we already had, while other classes got everything baseline and got to choose new and unique abilities
12/05/2012 11:10 PMPosted by Chaledric
Reinhart's been making Unholy work in 3's but it's not a very common spec, check out his videos. It's not bad in BG's if you don't have the enemy team tunneling you the whole match.


Reinhart's videos are invaluably beneficial for anyone looking to learn or improve upon the Unholy spec. I recommend them as well.

I really can't recommend Unholy for PvP. I've been Unholy since Lich King and it's total garbage now. Deaths' Advance is a talent that forces you to sacrifice other good talents to obtain. Your diseases no longer have dispel protection. Unholy CDs are forever. AMS must be glyphed to absorb 100%. Timmy is made of paper. Any cleave will demolish him and his CD is STILL 2 minutes(even though everyone else had their pet CDs reduced to 60 seconds). Desecration is straight up gone, so you'll get kited like you're crawling backwards. Unholy damage is lackluster and the burst potential simply isn't there. Frost Damage is only marginally better, but the burst potential with multiple crit oblits is higher.

In general, DKs get the shaft in PvP this expansion. We lost a lot of abilities, the wrong abilities became talents, not enough abilities went baseline, and our defensive CDs will be laughed at by every wizard cleave out there. I've seen ppl frostbomb nuked clean through IBF and AMS has to be reserved for offense if you want to have any shot at killing a target, ever.

All in all, go Frost, but if at all possible, roll another class.


I agree with this so much. I hate how dks basically choose between abilities we already had, while other classes got everything baseline and got to choose new and unique abilities


I almost entirely agree, however there was one other class that didn't get everything baseline and was forced to choose between important abilities they already had: rogues. They, however, were buffed in 5.1 (inadequate as they no doubt were), whereas we received nothing but a death strike NERF for our struggles...Things are looking pretty bleak.

Join the Conversation