Don't use Grimoire of Service or Imp Swarm

I know many demo warlocks (myself included) have been frantically checking sims and guides to see which talent/glyph setup is the best. I didn't see any resources out there to convince me either way, so I did extensive real world testing.

While Grimoire of Service/Supremacy sim essentially even with each other, as does Imp Swarm/No Imp Swarm glyph (if used with CDs), I have found that Grimoire of Supremacy (Wrathguard) and NO Imp Swarm glyph is the way to go.

I am confident I'm using Grimoire of Service and Imp Swarm at the optimal times during fights, and to fend off some comments that I'm just incompetent and aren't using them at the right times, I've linked the following logs where I'm #1 demo warlock on 3 of the 5 Mogu'shan Vaults bosses we've cleared (Damn you Will of the Emperor).

http://worldoflogs.com/rankings/players/Mogu'shan_Vaults/Elegon/10N/Demonology_Warlock/

http://worldoflogs.com/rankings/players/Mogu'shan_Vaults/Feng_The_Accursed/10N/Demonology_Warlock/

http://worldoflogs.com/rankings/players/Mogu'shan_Vaults/The_Spirit_Kings/10N/Demonology_Warlock/

I still can't get Service or Imp Swarm to be a DPS gain. The only time when I use Service/Imp Swarm is when a fight is less than 90 seconds.

Just some friendly advice to demo warlocks trying to min/max like I am. Feel free to ask any other questions / offer any interesting tips that we might find useful!
Edited by Gremory on 10/11/2012 6:16 AM PDT
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90 Orc Warlock
5805
^ Sounds about right for PVE...
The same can't be said for PVP though. I only say that because I get locks telling me this in BGs. more focused on DPS (in a PVE mindset) than the benefit of burst!
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Very true regarding PVP. That being said, I think if you're PVPing you're better off going affliction anyway. At least I've had far more (albeit very limited as this was an alt before MoP) success with Affliction.
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90 Orc Warlock
10260
^ Sounds about right for PVE...
The same can't be said for PVP though. I only say that because I get locks telling me this in BGs. more focused on DPS (in a PVE mindset) than the benefit of burst!


Agreed. The burst demo has just isnt enough for PVP IMHO unless you pop a second FG and imps. I try my hardest to pvp with my current spec but without real burst I always end up with destruction and chaos bolts.

I was however curious about its uses in PVE (although being a HUGE consistency fan) but I like the constant of a wrathguard vs the every so often burst. Granted its cool to see 2 FG though.
Edited by Thaenatos on 10/11/2012 7:46 AM PDT
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90 Orc Warlock
13335
I don't know about Service since I use the Wrathguard as well when I run demonology but as for imp swarm I can't wrap my head around the math that this is a dps loss. Unbuffed it does nearly 150k damage and procs molten core 4-5 times in one global and generates demonic fury. Where's the dps loss in all that?
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90 Undead Warlock
7545
10/11/2012 08:36 AMPosted by Xeios
I don't know about Service since I use the Wrathguard as well when I run demonology but as for imp swarm I can't wrap my head around the math that this is a dps loss. Unbuffed it does nearly 150k damage and procs molten core 4-5 times in one global and generates demonic fury. Where's the dps loss in all that?


As with any ability that has a cooldown, it's people remembering to use it every time it's up.
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The reason it's a DPS loss is because it's not just free imps. Your wild imps ability no longer occurs while it's on CD. In addition, if you leave it off CD a bit at the start of the fight while building demonic fury for your first burn (as you want to use it while dark soul is active), your imp CD will be 24 seconds instead of 20 seconds during that time. This means that over the course of a long fight you're going to be losing total imps. This also applies to any time you're saving dark soul for an increased damage burn phase i.e. waiting out a few orbs on Elegon.

Now - the way to offset this and make it theoretically around even is:
1) Killing the boss right after your wild imps ends, meaning you get higher than average uptime because you got one instance of the CD without having to wait out the cost.
2) Using it when you have CDs up like dark soul which increases the imp damage. This concentrates bonus imp damage on more imps vs. if you don't have the glyph you'll have a steady stream of imps, more of which will be unbuffed.

My point is that in testing I have found that #2 is easy to do, but that's not enough to offset the reduced total # of imps you get over the course of a >90 second fight. If you are able to consistently take advantage of #1 and kill a boss right after one of your wild imp durations ends, then you're probably going to see a situational DPS increase. I have not been able to see this kind of consistency in raid performance yet, however, and can't guarantee that the boss will die at an exact time every time like one might have been able to with ultraxion in mostly heroic gear and the same raiders week to week.

Finally, the benefit of having it to generate fury and keep you in meta for longer is that you can pop your initial CDs sooner (say around 550 fury instead of 750 fury) and the imps will generate enough fury to keep you in meta for the duration of dark soul. This is only really a benefit if you can squeeze in at least part of an additional dark soul at the end of the fight, as it's not like your on-proc trinkets or jade serpent potion will remain up by the time you get to 550 fury any more than they will be up at 750 fury.
Edited by Gremory on 10/11/2012 9:06 AM PDT
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90 Blood Elf Warlock
10540
I think Imp Swarm is still very good for whenever you need to push a boss over a phase.

Also, what about total damage done? Assuming you would save Imp Swarm for whenever Dark Soul was up, was it not a damage gain?
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I have found in testing that the gain you get from using Imp Swarm during dark soul (its CD is adjusted by haste and therefore will be less than the 2 mins of Dark Soul meaning you will not be using imp swarm on CD if you want to do this throughout the fight) is only enough to make it almost as good as no Imp Swarm. If Dark Soul and Imp Swarm had the same CD it might pass it, but since you're going to be waiting ~20 seconds at the end of every Imp Swarm until dark soul comes back up, you're going to be losing more than just 1 or 2 imps over the course of the fight.

That being said, you're definitely correct about the burst. If you have to have a huge DPS boost at some point in the fight to push something over, or if there's a phase in the fight a-la-Magmaw where there's huge bonus damage done, then Imp Swarm will definitely be a DPS increase. In that way it's in the same bucket as Grimoire of Service - it performs the best when there are brief moments of damage buffs. It might be useful on Will of the Emperor, for example, if you save it for when Titan Gas is up, and take advantage of the bonus damage.

Overall though on an endless target dummy fight I find it's hard to make it a gain.
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90 Human Warlock
9625
10/11/2012 07:04 AMPosted by Gremory
d, I think if you're PVPing you're better off going affliction anyway.


I haven't seen ANY other warlocks that are affliction in my bracket of 2300+

Also, any time we found one getting up to here. We laughed at our free wins.
Edited by Gnomemind on 10/11/2012 9:33 AM PDT
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90 Blood Elf Warlock
10540
So essentially dont' Imp Swarm on dogs in MV, Imp Swarm during whichever is your least favorite phase for Feng, etc.
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10/11/2012 09:32 AMPosted by Gnomemind
d, I think if you're PVPing you're better off going affliction anyway.


I haven't seen ANY other warlocks that are affliction in my bracket of 2300+

Also, any time we found one getting up to here. We laughed at our free wins.


I'm sure you're right. My expertise is in the PVE realm, I'm afraid. I'm a total PVP noob.
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90 Human Warlock
9625
10/11/2012 09:36 AMPosted by Gremory
I'm sure you're right. My expertise is in the PVE realm, I'm afraid. I'm a total PVP noob.


You just have less burst as affliction, and it's easy to wipe all of your dots away.
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10/11/2012 09:39 AMPosted by Gnomemind
I'm sure you're right. My expertise is in the PVE realm, I'm afraid. I'm a total PVP noob.


You just have less burst as affliction, and it's easy to wipe all of your dots away.


That's why I prefer BGs where I can bind my Soulburn: Soul Swap and /dance macro to every key and then mash my face on the keyboard to top Damage done while my team gets demolished for ignoring the objectives.

Good times.
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90 Human Warlock
8745
thanks grem.

simcraft agrees with you on the imp swarm (dont use it)

simcraft also allows for any talent use. im going to try the wrathguard. thanks for the tip.

on a side not: can i borrow your gear for heroic feng tonight? lol
Edited by Warician on 10/11/2012 9:55 AM PDT
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90 Undead Warlock
3670
Again this is pve advice. For pvp imp swarm is vital burst. No time to wait for single imps to spawn when somebody is smashing your face in.
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thanks grem.

simcraft agrees with you on the imp swarm (dont use it)

simcraft also allows for any talent use. im going to try the wrathguard. thanks for the tip.

on a side not: can i borrow your gear for heroic feng tonight? lol


Ha - If you guys are already at Heroic Feng I'm sure you don't need the gear help.
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1 Gnome Warlock
0
Gremory, I would eventually test this out, but with demo (and its fury building aspect) there are a number of dynamic factors going into the mix, as you know. I know that with the IS glyph you can obtain your highest bursting output, but you can also maintain your longest Meta. Haste, of course, is playing into the cd on IS to boot.

The toss up between a marginally higher availability MC rate vs the IS dynamic, is negligible. Aside from that, Shadowflame procs MC fairly well, and if your haste is high enough (or with haste augmentation), you can find an offset or balance between the two routes.

While its awesome that you've been buckling down from the starting gates, and grats on cutting edge performance, it's worth noting that during these few weeks, you've likely gone from one gear profile to another with at least 4 or 5 upgrades between WoL stamps. So there is a haziness to the practicality of the IS glyph assumption.
Edited by Loxlove on 10/11/2012 11:04 AM PDT
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90 Undead Warlock
15380
Well, I parsed 8th on 10 Feng yesterday as demo, and I did use Imp Swarm, as well as GoSer.

Here's the log if you want to check.

The only off thing about it is the fact that our mage got a little selfish and didn't lust right off the bat in P3, or I would probably sit with around 5k more DPS.

http://worldoflogs.com/reports/3lhvl5770g4msmlv/sum/damageDone/?s=8406&e=8842

Edit : Imp swarm's CD is reduced by haste, so it is good to use, and then leave it up when it comes off CD to line up with DS and Trinket, which usually amounts to 1 minute of wild imp procs.

I've found this approach to work out the best instead of keeping it on CD, or not using it at all.
Edited by Achrome on 10/11/2012 11:30 AM PDT
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