Thursday, July 31, 2008

Frost DK PVP

So I uploaded a video to give a glimpse into what frost DK pvp is like right now. Against a warlock that won't spam you with curse of exhaustion (which is now awesome btw!), I can actually catch up to them and do substantial damage.

This isn't going to be an in depth look at how well we function vs each class. It's just me vs lemonayd (who is playing as destruction + soul link), and some random clips of how useful Hungering Cold can be in a pinch, and how hard hungering cold + howling blast combos can hit. Granted, it's really, really hard to find any sort of organized pvp on beta right now. There are no BGs or arenas, so you really have to go out and stir up trouble if you want to test some things as you go. I'm not sure if 4-6k howling blast crits will be OP at 80, but it sure is fun to 1shot a bunch of level 60 newbs that you can round up in one go.

Anyways, back to frost: My melee damage is still pretty good. I went with this build. It has RP generation that can't be beat thanks to chill of the grave and dirge. It also has cheaper RP usage due to runic power mastery. Annihilation is great for keeping the disease synergies up. Icy talons I find to be pretty worthless outside of single target DPS. It's not a pvp talent, and is in no way worth the talent sink of 10 points with imp icy touch > icy talons. If you can't be glued to your target, haste is pretty shitty. This fact is driven home even more when you find out how little of our damage is actually white damage. Death chill not only works on howling blast combos, but also frost strike and obliterates. Deathchill is the burst you should save for when your target gets low. Double crit obliterates can really mess someone up if you save up your runes.

Acclimation is great against casters, and will be even better in the arean. Each stack adds 50 resist to the school that it procced off of, so if a warlock/shadow priest combo starts dotting you up, you AND your party be sitting at around at least 150+ shadow resist in no time. I also believe this affects party pets as well. This can actually be more effective and scale better than anti-magic zone. It requires no GCDS or resources such as runes or RP to activate. It's simply passive goodness. If this was changed to be made raid-wide, it would secure a spot for frost DK tanks in any AOE-intensive fight in pve, as Anti-magic zone only absorbs so much, in a limited area, consumes an unholy rune, and has a 2 minute cooldown.

Guile of Gorefiend is one of my favorite talents in the tree. However, they need to remove the crit damage bonus from mind freeze, and replace it with howling blast, if not icy touch. It's a great offensive + defensive talent in one. Letting icebound fortitude last 18 seconds instead of 12 is actually a very noticeable bonus. It's 18 seconds of taking 50% less damage from ALL sources, AND being immune to stuns. Take that, warrior RNG!

Hungering cold I could see being pretty clutch in the arena after people blow their trinkets. It's essentially an AOE hunter freezing trap. Any damage breaks the blocks of ice, and it's a wonderful way to set up some nasty combos in coordinated pvp, or to simply use as emergency CC. Think of it as an AOE repentance that lasts 10 seconds in PVP, and 26 seconds in pve with runic power mastery. My only gripe is that it uses your entire runic power bar. I wish it had a 60 RP cost (bringing it down to just under 50RP with runic power mastery), and lasted the full 10 seconds as well. In addition, it would be nice if it had a short 2-3 second "defrosting" period where people gradually recover full movement/attack speed. During this time, it would still be possible to land some combos via howling blast/frost strike. It IS a 51 point talent after all.

The other nice thing about this build, is that it's also pretty good for tanking as well. You won't be a 25man tank with this spec, but you will be very effective at 5mans and maybe even 10mans. Time will tell.



nerfme said...

Nice post.

One thought though...

"Unthawing" is not a word. I think you mean "thawing" or "defrosting" instead.

Any word on DK stat conversion (str to ap, ap to sp, str to parry, agi to dodge/etc)?

Anonymous said...

Finally another PvP video, yay!

Question: Wouldn't Virulence be better than Epidemic for PvP?

Leiah said...

For arenas? Yes, virulence will be a must-have talent. Not for the kind of pvp we have right now on the beta server, however.

Keisu said...

1st off: nice spec. Talks were going around that Unholy was going to be the PVP spec, Blood PVE Dps, Frost Tank, but when I saw the talents I definetly saw the things given to unholy, but some of the best are at the top of the tree.

Frost give two things that I really like, a slow to your icy touch / mind freeze, and hungering cold a CC. Both of these skills are very important for PVP since deathknights get kited around so easily without them. Personally I think Icy touch needs a slow from the start, and talents that buff that slow.

Anyway, HC + Howling Blast is definetly a powerful combo. I saw a video of a guy with the Killing Machine talent, and when it procced he did that combo for the guarenteed crit. Deathchill works, but requires RP which Hungering cold gets rid of.

Overall great video, I lol'd at the honor hold guard CC because I just killed 20 afk allies there a few days ago and had to bubble to run from the guards.

Keep up the good work, and hopefully we can see an 80 level cap here in the upcoming weeks.

Leiah said...

Deathchill requires no resources to use whatsoever.

Keisu said...

Well in that case, every 2 minutes you can use that to guarentee it.

BTW: Siked about the upcoming tank changes, as well as rune changes on spells. Plague Strike 1 unholy, Obliterate 1 unholy 1 frost. AWESOME!

Tank stuff here for anyone reading this interested.

Can't wait to see how all of this turns out, this is why the beta is so important, people play it, report feedback and things get changed. Unlike that ignorant deathknight you talked to today jayde.

Solid said...

Dueling destruction lock is a big deal LOL!

Dude I can beat them with my level 66 rogue.

Go find some better opponents.

Syntz said...


You sir, are an idiot.

Derekeen4 said...

Oh Hell Yes! Freeze that gnome and shatter his bones! Oh, erm...anyway, thanks for posting this video. As someone who's been planning to go for the HC Frost spec since I saw it, it's good to see it in action in a PvP standpoint. Not only is it an excellent CC ability, but combined with Howling Blast it just drips awesomeness.

A question though. Is Lichborne a super essential ability. I was planning to take some blood talents instead to use in a spec more for tanking. Bladed Armor, Forceful Deflection, and Improved Blood Strike to combine with Blood of the North. Maybe even Improved Rune Tap. I've heard a lot of talk that says Lichborne is the way to go for tanking. Your thoughts?

Breathweapon said...

Hungering Cold needs to be 10 Ruinic Power for 2 seconds of freeze, and then it needs to add 2 seconds of freeze for each 10 Ruinic Power after that.

So if you have 10 Ruinic Power, you may freeze for 2 seconds, if you have 20 Ruinic Power you may freeze for 4 seconds, if you have 30 Ruinic Power you may may freeze for 6 seconds etc. so Hungering Cold is a 100% Ruinic Power dump that scales based on the amount of Ruinic Power you have.

Leiah said...

Uhm, it IS like that. >_>

Breathweapon said...

Alright, for some reason that last post was cut short, what I meant was the reason Hungering Cold needs to scale based at 10 Ruinic Power = 2sec freeze is because a fixed Ruinic Power cost prevents you from using Hungering Cold for shorter or longer CC increments.

Even Hungering Cold at 10, 20, 30 and 40 Ruinic Power is a significant CC in PvP, and not being able to cost Hungering Cold at those smaller increments is a nerf in PvP. If you need to CC ASAP, you can't afford to spend a couple more Runes and activate a couple more GCDs before you reach the Ruinic Power threshold.

Think of all the situations where you wouldn't be able to Hungering Cold for 50 Ruinic Power when you needed to, or think of all the situations where you wouldn't want to Hungering Cold for 50 Ruinic Power when they're PvP trinket or dispells were active.

Reaching 50 Ruinic Power is a lot worse than casting a Death Coil and then casting a Hungering Cold if you don't want to freeze them for an entire bar's worth.

David said...

I have to be honest, you really destroyed that warlock. Granted, he had a tough spec for pvp (only control is shadowfury stun. also fear, but he never used that). Do you worry that death knights will be overpowered? After all, you also said you destroyed a warrior because of your ability to slice through armor.

Leiah said...

The ability to destroy warriors has been nerfed since the alpha.