This post was published long before the Mists of Pandara Expansion.
The tips and techniques explained here may be outdated.

Warlock Spell: Unstable Affliction

UA Tooltip


Unstable Affliction is only available to those who are fully affliction spec’d. It’s the 41 point talent at the bottom of the tree.

Here’s my visualization of the spell cast. Above is the timeline. It’s dotted in 1 second intervals with an extra dark dot at each 5 seconds to make it easier to read.

The spell is cast at time 0. It has a 1.5 second cast and the “X” is the Global Cooldown (GCD) (1.5 seconds) which occurs while it is casting. The dotted purple/grey lines are where damage actually occurs. Assuming the dot runs for full duration it will do 6 ticks.

Min Total Damage = ({Min Damage} + ({Shadow Damage} * {Effective Coefficient})) * {1+Shadow Mastery bonus}

Assuming I have 1k bonus shadow damage each tick should hit for ~431 for a total of ~2587.

Relevant Talents:

Unstable Affliction 1/1 – Shadow energy slowly destroys the target, causing 1050 damage over 18 seconds. In addition, if the Unstable Affliction is dispelled it will cause 1575 damage to the dispeller.
Shadow Mastery 5/5 – Increase the damage dealt or life drained by your Shadow Spells by 10%

The icky math

Affliction Shadow based DoT (cannot crit) 1.5 sec cast. 6 total ticks. Every 3 seconds for 18 seconds.

Rank Mana Min Max duration Effective Coefficient (with downranking)
3 400 1152 1158 over 18 sec. If the UA is dispelled it will cause 1728 to 1737 damage to the dispeller and silence them for 5 sec. 180%(if dispelled)/120%(Dot)
2 330 - 924 1386 damage if dispelled.
1 270 - 726 1089 damage if dispelled.

Min Total Damage = ({Min Damage} + ({Shadow Damage} * {Effective Coefficient})) * {1+Shadow Mastery bonus}
Min Total Damage = (1152 + (1000 * 1.2)) * 1.1
Min Total Damage = 2587.2

Min Damage/Tick = Min Total Damage/ number of ticks
Min Damage/Tick = 431.2

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