Game Technology

What Does DoT Mean in World of Warcraft? Here’s Everything We Know

What Does DoT Mean in World of Warcraft? Here’s Everything We Know

With a deep-rooted history inside and outside of World of Warcraft, DoTs have continued to intrigue players. But what exactly are they and how do they truly work?

For the past 20 years, the 12 classes in World of Warcraft have changed a lot. Every time a new expansion pack is installed, the classes are adjusted to reflect different ways to play, or sometimes new classes are introduced, like the Death Knight, Monk, and Demon Hunter. But there is one thing that has stayed the same in almost every instance: DoTs (Damage Over Time).

DoTs have been around for a long time, but World of Warcraft has a special connection to them. As one of the oldest and most successful RPG games, it is often where people first learn about different game mechanics. For example, there are memes from Onyxia’s Lair in Vanilla WoW that feature DoTs. Even though this may be confusing for newer players, with some patience they can learn what DoTs are and how they work.

What is DoT in World of Warcraft?

Damage over Time (DoT) is a type of effect that deals damage gradually, as opposed to all at once (also known as Direct Damage or DD). This concept is often referred to in World of Warcraft as “periodic damage”. Examples of DoT include poisons, bleeding wounds, curses, and burns which are commonly seen in many games today.

In World of Warcraft, the term “DoT” usually refers to a debuff that is applied periodically and causes damage over time. However, standing in damaging areas or being submerged in water can also be considered DoTs as well as channeled abilities that inflict multiple times with each cast. On average, most DoT effects deal more damage than their direct counterparts but spread it out evenly throughout its duration.

What Does DoT Mean in World of Warcraft? Here’s Everything We Know

How DoTs Work in World of Warcraft

Damage over Time effects, or DoTs, may seem complicated at first. But they are actually easy to understand. By default, player DoT impacts cause damage about every three seconds. But if you have a high Haste stat, the ticks will happen much more quickly. Every tick from a Damage over Time effect could be a critical hit, just like with Direct Damage spells and abilities. And the damage from DoTs will scale up or down based on other spells and abilities too.

When Damage over Time effects are allowed to reach full term, they start to shine. On the other hand, quick fights or weaker monsters do not afford a great opportunity for DoTs and should be avoided. When it comes to bosses and strong monsters, however, classes with high-DoT potential shine! Multidotting is frequently used in World of Warcraft encounters as it allows players to maintain multiple DoTs on different targets simultaneously resulting in an impressive DPS boost.

World of Warcraft has taken steps to make it easier for players to reapply DoTs or damage over time effects. In the past, gamers could make mistakes and miss out on damage that would reduce their DPS or damage per second. Now, when you reapply a DoT, the timer won’t reset and you’ll get an extra benefit from the Pandemic effect.

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More about DoTs in World of Warcraft

When you reapply a DoT, you can borrow up to 30% of its remaining duration and add it to the full length. This is beneficial because it means that you won’t lose any DPS if you reapply at a low-duration point. For example, if your DoT has 15 seconds left and you apply it after 5 seconds have already gone by, then an additional 15 seconds will be added on with no intervening gap in damage output.

In World of Warcraft PvP, the DoT classes are very good at causing a lot of damage over time. They might not have the same kind of damage as other classes, but they make up for it with sustained damage that is applied over time. This can be very helpful when combined with crowd control effects like Fear. 

There are abilities that can be used to make DoT effects not work. Healer classes have a lot of these abilities, and some tanks and DPS might also be able to remove certain debuffs from themselves.

About the author

Steven Ly

Steven Ly is the Startup Program and Events Manager at TheNextHint Inc. She recruits rockstar startups for all TC events including Disrupt, meetups, Sessions, and more both domestically and internationally. Previously, she helped produce Dreamforce with Salesforce and Next '17 with Google. Prior to that, she was on the advertising teams at both Facebook and AdRoll, helping support advertisers in North America and helped grow those brands globally. Outside of work, Steven enjoys Flywheel, tacos, the 49ers, and adventuring around the globe.

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