Wednesday, September 23, 2009

FMN: Dual Wield Death Coil Spam


Is DC spam moar better than DW Frost? :P






Right, my second attempt to figure out what might be 'right for me' in 3.2.2 was the DC spam build. Talk about a wonky spec; none of those typical FU FU (frost/unholy) big strikes, and the only spec in which unholy presence is favored.
There are a few variations, some of which use ghoul frenzy, but the one I went with was 0/17/54. For any of these builds, the main concept is to use icy touch to build runic power for multiple powerful death coils.

The rotation would be something like:
PS IT BS DC IT BS DC
PS IT IT DC DC PS IT IT DC DC

Your priority for unholy DC spam is:
Diseases (BP, FF) > DC > IT > BS > PS

It's very fast-paced compared to other specs, and you have to be on your toes to use all your global cool downs (gcds). How did it do?
Pros: Good on movement fights when often out of range (IT/DC for decent damage) Decent single target AND aoe/add dps. No armor pen needed as most of damage is magic-based
Cons: No cleave damage. Lack of big, solid hits on single target. May lag behind blood on Patchwerk-type tank'n'spank fights. Carpal-tunnel sydrome inducing spamming. Even in unholy presence, can fall behind in rotation.

I ran the spec for a full raid night on regular TOC Anub and some heroic Northrend Beasts attempts. I enjoyed the playstyle, which is simple but frenetic. The rotation is easy to maintain and not too sensitive to interruption. Some burst is there from gargoyle, and aoe isn't bad. As you can see, I did well in relation to my guildies, but wasn't top dps. The gear I used is a mix of Ulduar/TOC gear for the most part and my wow-heroes score is a little below 2600. I was double-wielding 10-man Lion's Maws, with 4000ap unbuffed (pretty much the same as Frost DW gear - which may slightly favor frost as I used Grim Toll - armor pen trinket). I found the raw dps numbers somewhat disappointing, although given the fight dynamics etc., it wasn't too bad. It's not exactly apples to apples given the different fights, and both of these screenshots/tests are based only on one raid. Interesting to note, then, that my dps for both DW specs was almost the same. So, here's the report card:

1. DPS: solid, but not great. Better, but not the best, for aoe/add fights. A-
2. Raid utility: EPB buff is good but not unique since we have a boomkin. A- (probably the best DK buff though)
3. Fun: reasonably fun and decent all around. Lacks 'big hits' of 2H dps, and has a couple of added 'fun buttons' in gargoyle and more frequent Army of the Dead uses. Enjoyed being able to dps when out of range compared to the frustration of being unable to do anything in DW frost. A-

Overall, I'll give this spec an A-, but for me, a small but clear edge over DW frost. To see if DC spam is 'home' for 3.2.2, see my next article on Blood!

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