Death Knight Patch 3.1.0 Changes – Blood

March 9, 2009

Surazc – Death Knight Tank

As I said yesterday, with the 3.1.0 PTR patch notes currently live at MMO Champion, it is my duty to share with you my thoughts on the Death Knight changes, not only from the perspective of tanking, but from the class as a whole (with of course, an emphasis on tanking).

Today, we’re going to look at changes to the spec called:


  • Pestilence is now only one rank and no longer deals damage
  • Strangulate no longer deals damage
  • Blood Boil damage increased, range nerfed
  • Death Pact can no longer critically heal
  • Blood Strike mechanic changed
  • Heart Strike mechanic changed (still cleaves)

The change to Pestilence we saw coming and can’t complain about.  With its new glyph, Pestilence will probably be the best Death Knight skill in the entire game; Blood Boil changed to pick up the slack in damage. Strangulate is now JUST a silence for a Blood Rune… total horseshit. Death Pact can no longer Critically Heal: Doesn’t really affect tanking, more a PVP change.

The BS and HS mechanic changes are what I’m excited about the most. They have both been changed to increase the damage dealt by the strike by a flat 12.5/10% per disease on the target. Notice how it no longer specifies “YOUR” disease. The more DKs you bring to a raid now, the fatter DPS will be from your Blood knights.

  • Blood Gorged now grants % armor penetration
  • Might of Mograine nerfed down to 10/20/30%
  • Sudden Doom is now an instant off-GCD uncontrollable Death Coil, changed to 3 points: 5/10/15%
  • Blood Aura changed. Keeps your 4% healing self-buff in other presences and increases healing done to you while in Blood Presence by 10%
  • Blood Strikes is now a flat % increase to damage from BS, HS, and BB
  • Scent Of Blood now procs off Dodge, Parry, or Direct Damage (spells too!)
  • NEW Improved Death Strike: 8th Tier- Improves your Death Strike damage by 15/30%

The only thing that I’m going to really dig into here is the addition of the Improved Blood Presence (replacing Blood Aura) and how it will seem to interact with the new Tier 8 talent Improved Death Strike. I assume everyone reading this is well versed enough in tanking to know that Armor Penetration is NOT a stat we need, and thusly we will be ignoring the changes to Blood Gorged

Firstly, with the Death Strike glyph restored to its former glory, Death Strike is once again raid-viable for damage (it will never keep up with obliterate, but we’ve been given a concession here) and for producing Death Runes without eating diseases (for those super deep blood knights). Second, with the Improved Blood Presence increasing all healing done to you by 10% while IN Blood Presence AND  with Improved Death Strike, I wonder if Blood Tanks are supposed to tank in Blood Presence.

It seems like a silly idea. Sacrifice 80% more armor, more health, and 15% global magic reduction for a %10 boost in healing received? I know blizzard is bad… but this is just absurd. Perhaps the change was meant more for PvP rather than PvE.

Oh yeah, almost forgot: Sudden Doom CAN proc off the cleave from Heart Strike!