I’m sure you probably know the meaning of the word mayhem, or at least have some idea as to what is implied when it’s being used. I know that I was surprised to find out that the word mayhem actually has three meanings. Really, it does. Which is a perfect segue for what we’re going to discuss about Mortal Coil because as a talent, Mortal Coil has three great uses from one simple spell. See what I did there?
Mayhem is a great term to use to help describe Mortal Coil because with short definitions it means:
The crime of willfully inflicting a bodily injury on another so as to make the victim less capable of self-defense or, under modern statutes, so as to cripple or mutilate the victim
Random or deliberate violence or damage
A state of rowdy disorder
Now, I’m not advocating causing mayhem IRL, but when you talk about running your warlock in The World of Warcraft…well, that’s a completely different story! In game I’m all for bringing on the mayhem and I hope you are too! /em cackles loudly while cracking knuckles
You may have remembered from last week’s discussion that all of the Tier 2 talents which become available at level 30 all offer warlocks a choice in crowd control (CC) spells. Mortal Coil is in essence a CC spell that when used correctly can truly enhance the “I hate warlocks” factor from your enemies in PvP, it can make you look like a hero in a dungeon or a raid, and it’s a great “save-your-hide” spell for when you’re out and about solo questing. Let’s take a look:
Mortal Coil – is an instant cast spell with a 30 yard range on a 45 second cooldown. It causes the enemy target to run in horror for 3 seconds and the caster (the warlock) restores 15% of their maximum health.
Don’t be fooled by it’s simplicity. When you read it, Mortal Coil doesn’t look too spectacular all by itself. I know a few of the newer students in the Dark Arts might see this as a “meh” spell from it’s description. However, when you combine it with with some of our other spells Mortal Coil becomes quite an effective tool at your disposal.
Here’s an important mechanic to remember about Mortal Coil. When it’s used on a target, the inflicted mob or player will turn and flee in the opposite direction from you. Please, keep that picture simmering in your mind for now, and we’ll get back to it later as it plays an important role in the discussion. Also, did you notice anything a little different or missing in the Mortal Coil definition as compared to say our Fear spell? Yes, both are CC spells, but unlike the Fear spell there’s nothing in the Mortal Coil’s spell description that says damage breaks the CC. Muahahaha! That should make you giddy!
Mortal Coil Mayhem #1 – It’s another warlock cookie and then some
With the healing component of Mortal Coil you now have another warlock cookie to use. It’s another self-heal that you can use every 45 seconds if needed. As you know, a Healthstone will return an instant 20% of your health, and if you notice Mortal Coil will return 15%! Not too shabby for an instant heal that’s a crowd control spell! Yes, we might wear cloth, but because of spells like Mortal Coil we’re not glass cannons like a mage. Two big crit hits from a melee class and you can bet a mage is either spamming blink to get away or running to the nearest warlock in the hopes of protection. Two big crit hits from a melee class and as a warlock with Mortal Coil, you should be cackle laughing as you decide how to punish this obvious fool who tried to attack you. See the difference?
Mortal coil Mayhem #2 – It’s crowd control
You’re are a master of disaster and mayhem, you’re a warlock! Trust me when I say that jealousy from the other lower classes in game is always annoying; however, it’s not without warrant from a talent and spell like Mortal Coil. No one likes to loose control of their character. Even with only 3 seconds in it’s duration, this spell will still make a pvp opponent scream in anguish because those three seconds will feel like 30 seconds to them as they run hapless, and hopeless while button smashing on their keyboard waiting to regain some semblance of control. Mortal Coil is like the foreshadowing of pain because most players know when they have been hit by Mortal Coil they need to try anything to escape because a warlock is about to hit them with something worse.
Mortal Coil Mayhem #3 – It can be used for better positioning
I’m sure you’ve heard the old saying that the best way to a good offense is to have a good defense, and that the best way to a good defense is to have a good offense. Well, a warlock’s Mortal Coil spell fits that description perfectly. As we talked about before, when viewed alone and as a single spell Mortal Coil might not look that impressive. The key to understanding this spell’s true value and worth is when you stop to consider it’s use for positioning and offering you more options. Let me say that last line for greater affect and emphasis. The key to understanding Mortal Coil’s true value and worth is when you stop to consider it’s use for positioning and offering you more options both defensively and offensively.
Remember how we talked about using Mortal Coil on an enemy and how it caused them to flee in horror in the opposite direction? Good. Because positioning yourself for either protection or for using a stronger attack should always a driving force to your motivation. Yes, as warlocks we’ve often been accused of being conniving and ruthless, and with good reason too. Mortal Coil lays the ground work and the foundation on how we can destroy things. For the sake of brevity, and for the sake of not being too boring I’ll just mention a few examples of what I mean.
Mortal Coil going solo
Three enemies jump you (mobs A, B and C) and immediately you’re getting pelted with damage at the start of the fight. Cast Fear on mob “A”, Mortal Coil “B”, and then quickly destroy “C”. Instantly, you got back some health just from casting Mortal Coil and by the time “C’s” health is non-existent, target “B” hit from the Mortal Coil is now returning back to fight. Mob “B” arrives as his friend “C” is either dead or close to being dead, and his other companion “A” is still crowd controlled by Fear. What happens next? Well, I’ll leave that up to you to decide their fate because you now have the better position and more options to choose from.
There’s so many direction to go with this scenario and there really is no right or wrong answer. Imagine this same scenario with 3 or more mobs attacking you, but this time add your imagination to the mix. What would you do next? If you stop and think about it, all warlocks, should be thankful for Mortal Coil because it’s like an “Oh Noes!” button with it’s instant heal and a larger window of time to plan your next move for protection, for attacking, or for simply gaining some distance to outlast your attackers. It might not be be as great a distance as our Demonic Teleport or Demonic Gateway spells, but Mortal Coil still offers some breathing room to size up any situation.
I’d like to take a quick moment to give a /salute in praise for our Demonic Teleport again. The reason I bring it up is because I still very rarely see any warlocks using it. I cannot stress to a newer warlock enough about always setting one up at the start of any fight. Demonic Teleport is a life saver, and a game changer and the more you abuse it, the more you will understand my emphasis on it. All warlocks, new and old, should all get into the habit of dropping our teleports every chance we get. An easy way to make this a permanent habit is whenever you are fighting anything, stop and notice if you have a teleport dropped. If the answer is “No” then smack yourself and drop it. This is true for solo questing, pvp and for dungeons. I apologize for the Demonic Teleport commercial in the middle of the Mortal Coil post, but it really is the most under-utilized warlock spell IMHO! Use it and abuse it the way you should!
Mortal Coil in dungeons and in PvP
Ever been in a dungeon and someone pulls a large group (I’ve done this before…hehehe!) either intentionally or unintentionally? Hey, it happens and I’m sure you’ve either seen it or like me you accidently caused it too :P Well, you can easily lighten the load for your team by casting Mortal Coil on one of the mobs. As your target runs out of the group and away from any AoE, you can now CC them with Fear. By combining those two spells you’ve quickly and easily taken out one less mob giving you and your party a better chance at surviving. Have an under-geared healer having a hard time to keep mana in fights? Help them out and use this spell for a quick self-heal to lighten their load.
Ever been in PvP and watched an enemy healer hanging out on the edge of the fight helping to keep the opposing team alive? Well, smack’em with a Mortal Coil to peel them away from the group, and Fear them for CC. Ever thought about using Mortal Coil and Fear on a target who’s doing high damage just to buy your team some more time to recuperate? How about using it to stop a FC from capping? Has any of this got ya thinking about where to use it? I hope so!
As an important safety tip and qualitfy of life reminder I have to mention that you should always consider the direction your targeted mob will travel after Mortal Coil hits them. Please, be careful not to send them fleeing into another group pulling more aggro :) Keeping your target’s fleeing direction in mind is also a good idea to consider when you need to separate a mob from a pack for any CC, because you want to keep them away from getting hit with any AoE. After you have become accustomed to using Mortal Coil, you’ll soon be able to judge your distance and timing so that if you follow up with Fear, it will land the instant Mortal Coil falls off.
Mortal Coil recap
Remember it’s another free 15% self-heal available every 45 seconds
It’s a free self-heal after using Life Tap for more mana
Combine it with a Healthstone, Drain Life, Harvest Life, a healing potion, or even a bandage and be at full health fast
You can use it offensively and defensively
Damage doesn’t break the 3 second CC
It buys you more time to get to safety
It buys you more time to get into a better attack position
You can use it to separate a target from a group for CC
It’s great to use in combinations with other spells – use your imagination!
What about you? What creative and clever ways are you using Mortal Coil? I’d love to hear about them and if there’s anything I’ve forgotten to mention, please let me know!