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Haste and the Warlock

I’ve been feeling kind of ambivalent about haste (and by extension, Eradication). General knowledge says: “Haste good. More haste, more good.” In general I agree.. but in the specific case of the Affliction warlock I’m still hesitant.

-IF- I’m chain casting haste-able spells then haste is the bomb. It lets me get one-more-spell into the “normal” cast time for the spell thus increasing my DPS.

But.. what if the spells I’m casting don’t benefit from haste?

Spells I use that immediately benefit from haste: Shadow Bolt, Drain Soul*, Drain Life*
Spells I use that are bound by GCD: Haunt, Unstable Affliction, Immolate, Corruption, Curse of Agony, Siphon Life

So.. Shadowbolt, which makes up ~20-50% of my DPS is immediately effected. Right there, that might be enough for me to start valuing haste. Faster cast Shadow Bolts means more Shadow Bolts means more DPS. But I’m not sure how “faster cast time” of Shadow Bolts stacks up against “more spellpower” though.

But there’s still a lot of spells in that second group. Those bound by GCD. In patch 2.4 Haste was changed to effect the GCD. In effect, you need 50% haste to reduce the GCD to 1 second (ie, casting at 150% normal cast speed). At 80 that’s 1639.5 haste rating. ZOMG! That’s HUGE. That’s like unattainable huge.

Then again, reading over the talent Eradication it says “Your Corruption ticks have a 10% chance to increase your casting speed by 20% for 12 seconds.”

Whoa.. suddenly this is just got interesting.

Assuming I’m keeping my Corruption up (and why wouldn’t I.. it hits hard and procs Nightfall) Eradication looks pretty sweet. If Eradication pops.. then I’d only need an addition 30% (984 haste rating) to reduce the GCD to 1 second. That’s still huge.. but not as huge. Even if I don’t have the additional haste, that’s still 20% more spells in the same amount of time.

Assuming I don’t fat-finger it.. and can actually take advantage of the reduced cast time.. this means an overall increase in DPS. That sound like a win.

Sources:
Wowwiki: Casting Speed

Drysc wrote: “Haste will reduce the global cool down on spells, down to a minimum of 1 second. It won’t apply to melee and ranged abilities though however.” (so no effect on GCD for hunters or melee)

32.79 haste rating = 1% gain in speed at 80

*as of patch 2.1, haste effected channeled spells as well.

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7 comments to Haste and the Warlock

  • Tiatix

    Are channeled spells (Drain Life, Mind Flay, etc) no longer affected by Haste? Previously, I believe these spells were. That stinks if they aren’t affected now.

  • Nibuca

    OOO, good catch.

    I thought channeled spells were uneffected. It looks like that was changed in patch 2.1.

    Spell Haste: The amount of spell haste rating needed per percentage of haste has been increased substantially. However, spell haste will now affect channeled spells, increasing the rate of their effects and decreasing their total duration. The same amount of damage/healing per casting will occur, but will take less time.

    So. 20% haste from Eradication would make DS/DL/DM do the same amount of total damage in 20% less time. So move those up to the top of the list with Shadow Bolt.

    Haste is looking like more of a win all the time.

  • Nigel

    From wowwiki: http://www.wowwiki.com/Haste

    Haste works by this formula:

    Cast Time / (1 + Haste Percent)

    So for the GCD:
    1.5 / (1 + .5) = 1 (can’t go under one second)
    That would require 50% haste.

    Including eradication (it multiplies I believe):
    1.5 / ((1 + h) * (1 + .2))
    The value for h works out to be around 1.25 or 25% haste.

    Also, do you have Amplify Curse? If so, the GCD is already at one second.

  • Nigel

    I meant to say the GCD for curses in that last line.

  • Nibuca

    @Nigel
    Hmm.. Looks like the Wowiki article has a percentage wrong in it. It lists the haste as 33.33% when really it’s 50% haste which reduces the cast speed by 33.33%.

    Unmodified, GCD is 1.5 seconds. 50% haste give me 150% cast speed.. which meant it takes 1 second to cast (ie, 33.33% faster).


    The amount of haste required to reduce the global cooldown to a desired value can be calculated by:
    Haste = ( ( BaseCastTime / DesiredCastTime ) – 1) * 100
    For example: 50% haste = ( ( 1.5s / 1s ) – 1) * 100

    I’ve updated my number above.

  • Honestly I am not a big fan of haste at the moment. I run a deep affliction spec and between juggling haunt and unstable affliction uptimes coupled with keeping your curse up and maybe even siphon life there’s very little room in my rotation beyond the occasional sbolt.
    More often than not I get a nightfall or a glyph proc that reduces the cast time of sbolt to 0.

    Sbolt unfortunately also has a fairly long cast time, which makes it benefit more from haste of course. But even with eradication, bane and some haste trinkets + haste gear sbolt cast times are still around the 1.5 sec mark.

    Faster, sure… but it still has to fit into your rotation which is difficult enough with all the dot-juggling life tapping and whatnot.

    More often than not, I find myself not casting sbolt as much as I did in the pre-wrath days simply because by the time I squeeze out 1 or two shadow bolts it’s time for a haunt which has a higher priority due to it’s damage increasing effects.

    For a destruction spec, haste is beautiful… for an affliction spec I am still very much inclined to stack stamina -> spell power and for me it’s a toss up between spirit, crit and haste which I only really use in the form of trinkets to correct my casting cycle (i.e. your corruption is running out and you need to haunt / sbolt to refresh it).

    And even now I am leaning more towards spirit for that extra nudge on my spell power which is just overall more damage in the end.

    I will probably have to check the math on all of it again… it’s still too fuzzy and with all the haste and crit gear + additional spirit it becomes hard to figure out what direction is optimal.

    Captain The Firsts last blog post..How much time did you waste?

  • Not to plug myself, but about two months ago, I wrote this: http://killingemslowly.blogspot.com/2008/10/lets-be-hasty.html

    If you frequent the Warlock’s Den you may have seen the article I reference, which is a stat comparison of tiered sets, and basically I was talking about how the writing was “on the wall” for us to really benefit from haste using this and other early indications. There are many signs that seem to indicate that the vision Blizzard has is one where haste is very useful to warlocks: The sets, the talents, the spell stone…

    Right now, I’m taking this stat approach: hit (till cap) > SP > haste > else. I’ll throw some stam in there to keep that up to a respectable level, but what else do we need? Spirit is okay, but only if it comes with those other stats. Same with int and crit.

    I’m also filling out eradication. It was the last place I’m putting my points, but I think it can be useful as you pointed out with your clever maths.

    That’s my personal opinion on it, anyways, Blizzard’s vision may be completely flawed… it’s not like they’re perfect. Usually though, I give them credit for knowing more than I do about their game :-) .