Frost Deathknight talents guide

Patch 10.0.5 Last Updated: 4th Jan, 2023
Kwepp Frost Deathknight Author
Kwepp

Class Talents

Dragonflight brings a brand new overhaul to the talent system, which gives us a wide range of different talents and abilities to choose and form builds with. In this section I will go over different Talent builds for Raiding and Mythic Plus, as well as giving a general overview of each talent and its strengths/synergies with other talents.

I will say now that there are areas in these talent builds which can be altered depending on your scenario, this can include utility as well as some throughput choices, depending on the scenario.

Class Talent Tree Setup Examples:

Here are a couple examples of class talent trees that you can use. Talent trees are in depth and have a lot of different pathing choices, after these examples I will discuss the pathing options, which talents are essential, and which ones are more flexible/optional.

General Single Target Example:

Frost DK Single Target Talents

General AOE Example:

Frost DK General AOE

Death Knight Class Tree Discussion:

The Death Knight Class Talent Tree has a fair few options, and most of the throughput options are at the bottom of the tree, so I will be discussing the Class tree in two different sections, the first section will be about the ‘Upper Tree’, where I will be going over important/essential talents, as well as some optional/utility options.

Then in the second section I will go over the ‘Lower Tree’ at the bottom of the tree, which consists of very throughput heavy talent options.

Upper Tree:

Frost DK Upper Tree

Important/Essential ‘Upper’ Talents (Red)

Chains of Ice: This is a mandatory talent which you need to take to start progressing down the left side of the tree. Generally you will use this to slow down targets, but it can also be used to deal damage with the talent Cold Heart.

Mind Freeze: The next step from Chains of Ice is Mind Freeze. It is an important spell that you can use to interrupt casts. This is particularly useful in Mythic Plus and raid encounters with interruptible casts.

Icebound Fortitude: This is one of your main defensives, it is important to take as it gives you a 30% damage mitigation effect when used, and also makes you immune to stun effects which can be very handy in scenarios where you can be stunned.

Merciless Strikes: A small crit buff that links further down the left side of the tree.

Runic Attenuation: One of Frost’s primary resources is Runic Power, so Runic Attenuation is a very important talent as it provides additional Runic Power, which results in you having more Runic Power to funnel into Breath of Sindragosa, and Frost Strikes.

Death Strike: We need to take this talent not only because it opens a link to Veteran of the Third War, but also because it is the primary way that Death Knights can self heal/sustain themselves, making this talent crucial.

Anti-Magic Shell: Another essential talent for Unholy Death Knight, Anti-Magic Shell is a very important tool which Death Knight’s can use to not only mitigate magic damage, but also become immune to magic aura applications. This can be incredibly valuable in certain encounters and is what makes DK able to “cheese” a lot of aura application mechanics.

Veteran of the Third War: This talent offers incredible value for 2 talent points, increased 20% health is too good to not pick up.

Raise Dead: You will want to pick up Raise Dead as Frost so you can get to the Brittle talent. It provides some extra damage during your Pillar of Frost windows, and can give you some potential damage mitigation with the talent Enfeeble.

Cleaving Strikes: In order to reach the talent Brittle, we have to take this talent, even in scenarios where we will not be using Death and Decay at all. However it isn’t useless once you are fighting more enemies. For Frost this talent makes your Obliterate hit an additional nearby target, so this talent is also really nice for two target cleave.

Brittle: This is a very basic talent that you want to always have, just because it is a throughput increase. It is based on your diseases, so as long as you keep good uptime on Frost Fever then you will get some good throughput value out of this talent.

Might of Thassarian: Another basic throughput increase, nothing special but still a nice 2% strength buff for 1 point.

Stepstone choices (Magenta)

Blinding Sleet: If you are in a scenario where you need to disable/interrupt a group of enemies at the same time, you can take Blinding Sleet to blind them all. This only works on enemies that are susceptible to crowd control effects. This talent is useful in Mythic Plus as well as boss encounters that require add control.

Coldthirst: This is a good talent to pick if you are in a scenario where you are using Mind Freeze a lot. It gives you a bit of Runic Power (which is a nice throughput bonus and can really help with keeping Breath of Sindragosa uptime) and it also makes your Mind Freeze a 12 second cooldown instead of 14, which can be really strong depending on how frequent an enemy casts an important ability.

Permafrost: This is just a passive shield you gain when auto attacking, it’s not super strong for the Obliteration build as your attack speed with 2H weapons is slower, but with Dual Wield 1H weapons the shield ramps up a lot faster. Either way, it’s still a nice shield to have if the other two options aren’t needed/useful.

Gloom Ward: You take Gloom Ward in most situations for the extra absorb value (effects spells such as Anti-Magic Shell), but on 2 target cleave fights it is more valuable to take Proliferating Chill in conjunction with Cold Heart.

Proliferating Chill: When playing with the talent Cold Heart, this talent can be a strong throughput increase for 2 target scenarios. Cold Heart does a decent amount of damage, so hitting 2 targets with it is an obvious choice if you are going to be fighting 2 targets. You will want to pick this over Gloom Ward when you can make use of it.

Enfeeble: Your ghoul will have a chance to apply a 15% damage reduction effect onto your target, and this affects bosses so this is a really strong talent to take mitigation wise. It does lose some value on Frost as you won’t always have your Ghoul active, but it’s still a really nice talent to have.

Sacrificial Pact: If you need an extra heal then Sacrificial Pact can be worth taking, however it also has a 2 minute cooldown, whereas Enfeeble can be effective many times during an encounter, so I would recommend taking Enfeeble over Sacrificial Pact.

Death’s Reach / Grip of the Dead: This is another add control/utility option. Death’s Reach gives your Death Grip some extra range which can be very useful for certain encounters, and also resets the cooldown on Death Grip if you get the last hit on an enemy. Grip of the Dead is mainly used to slow a large number of enemies in your Death and Decay, I would use this to help tanks kite, or stop fixate adds from reaching your raid team.

Unholy EnduranceLichborne is typically not very useful outside of immuning fear, sleep and charm effects, however this talent makes Lichborne a small personal defensive cooldown you can use in combination with another defensive like Anti-Magic Shell. It’s generally nice to have if you don’t need Death’s Reach / Grip of the Dead.

Unholy Ground: You mainly take this talent so that you have a link to Death’s Echo if you choose to go with the Blood Draw + Death’s Echo combination. It is also a nice haste buff for AOE, helping you get some extra casts during your Death and Decay windows.

Asphyxiate: Just like Blinding Sleet, this is mostly used when you need to crowd control an enemy, however it only affects one target but the stun lasts for 5 seconds and does not break on damage (like the Blind effect from Blinding Sleet does). This is worth taking if you need additional crowd control.

Death Pact: While this can save your life if you are out of Healthstones, Health pots and are not in range to Death Strike, it is generally not worthwhile because it also applies a healing absorb effect afterwards. I recommend taking this talent specifically if you are in an encounter where you need to be at max health before a big hit frequently, then this could be a worthwhile talent choice.

Wraith Walk: This talent is very useful for getting out of root effects, as well as being a nice movement ability if you need it. Although this talent is a bit out of the way and requires you taking Death Pact, Assimilation or Asphyxiate to reach, so it’s quite a commitment that will mean you will have to give up other forms of utility/defensives.

Utility options with 2 spare points (Cyan)

March of Darkness: Similar to the conduit in Shadowlands, March of Darkness gives your Death’s Advance an additional burst of movement speed at the start, which is quite useful on heavy movement encounters.

Improved Death Strike: As stated above, Death Strike is very important for Death Knights to sustain themselves through heavy damage intake. However, when playing Breath of Sindragosa, you won’t be able to use Death Strike much without cutting your Breath of Sindragosa window short, so you will probably want to skip this talent and use a talent like Assimilation instead.

Blood Scent: Gives 3% leech, not really very useful in comparison to the other options on this tree.

Suppression: Avoidance is definitely a valuable stat for mitigation, but there are much better mitigation options on this tree so this is not really worth using.

Acclimation: This makes your Icebound Fortitude a 2 minute cooldown. Most of the time you will not use this, however if there is a scenario where you take a big hit of damage every 2 minutes, then this talent could be a good option.

Anti-Magic Barrier: As mentioned earlier, Anti-Magic Shell is an incredibly strong ability for multiple reasons, so increasing its duration, reducing its cooldown and increasing the absorb amount is useful.

Clenching Grasp: Generally this is more of a PvP talent, but it can be useful in very specific situations (let's say you need to grip an add away from a boss, the slow is a nice addition to this to keep the add away from the boss for longer), but generally not a very useful talent.

Control Undead: This is an incredibly niche talent, therefore I would not recommend taking this unless you are doing some very specific “cheese” strat in content such as Mythic Plus.

Anti-Magic Zone: Most of the time you will want to take this talent as it is a raid cooldown, while it is not very strong for Frost, it is still a useful raid cooldown which can be utilized by your Raid or Mythic Plus team for magic damage encounters. If you are in a situation where no Magic damage mitigation is needed, then you can save yourself a point and pick something else.

Assimilation: When using Anti-Magic Zone you do give up a potential offensive spell cast, so gaining some additional Runic Power from Anti-Magic Zone is a nice bonus. However a lot of the time this might lead you to overcapping on Runic Power, so it does lose some value there. Could be a worthwhile option but most of the time you are better off looking at other talents instead.

Lower Tree:

Frost DK Lower Tree

In the lower tree you have two “routes” that you can go down to reach the essential talents. One is more utility based with Death’s Echo and a weak defensive in Blood Draw, and the other is more defensive based with Will of the Necropolis (a much stronger defensive) and Insidious Chill which isn’t that good if you are playing with Warlocks, or Rogues with Numbing Poison (essentially it’s a wasted talent point if you are playing with a Warlock as they have Curse of Weakness baseline, and Rogues can talent into Numbing Poison).

Important/Essential ‘Lower’ Talents (Red)

Icy Talons: Attack speed benefits Frost greatly due to increased attack speed which will help to proc Killing Machine, as well as more Runic Power generation from Runic Attenuation, and this talent also leads to Empower Rune Weapon, so it’s mandatory.

Rune Mastery: Another throughput talent that you will want to have, it gives you 6% strength which is a solid buff, as well as having relatively decent uptime. It is also important to create a link to Abomination Limb for AOE.

Unholy Bond: This is a very solid talent. Runeforges are still very strong and are better than any enchant that is offered in Dragonflight. For Frost you will want to use Rune of the Fallen Crusader, which gives you 15% strength when it procs. However with Unholy Bond, it will increase the buff by 20%, giving you an additional 3% strength to your Rune of the Fallen Crusader proc, making it 18%. If you are playing dual wield (with Breath of Sindragosa) then you will want to use Rune of Hysteria as well, which is also buffed by Unholy Bond.

Empower Rune Weapon: Frost values a lot of resource generation (Runes and Runic Power), so naturally Empower Rune Weapon is going to be a very strong talent to use alongside your other cooldowns. It’s also essential for Breath of Sindragosa, without it you will not be able to keep it going for very long. For Obliteration you want the haste from Empower Rune Weapon, as well as the additional runes so you can keep pumping out more Obliterates. You will want to use this talent in all scenarios and damage profiles.

Abomination Limb: This is going to be the default choice you always pick for Frost. Mainly due to the fact the Soul Reaper does not scale very well with Frost, so Abomination Limb is better on single target. It also gives you a steady flow of Rime procs which are great for ramping up your Razorice stacks from Rime casts (when using Avalanche talent). It’s also great for gathering enemies together for you and your group to cleave down which is almost invaluable utility in some encounters.

Utility Route (Orange)

Blood Draw: This is a relatively weak defensive as it has a 3 minute cooldown, as well as not healing you much if you do not have a lot of enemies around you. However this is a compromise to be able to use Death’s Echo, and still pick up all of your essential throughput talents.

Death’s Echo: You get a lot of value from this talent as you gain 2 charges of Death’s Advance (which greatly helps with mobility), 2 charges of Death Grip (which is super nice for gripping adds into place) and 2 charges of Death and Decay which works really well in AOE as you can use Death and Decay back to back, for 20 seconds of Obliterate cleave.

Defensive Route (Purple)

Insidious Chill: While this can be useful for tanks, it is generally not really a valuable use of a talent point, the main reason being is that Warlock has the ability to apply this effect to a boss without having to spend any talent points at all. Also if you have any additional Rogues in your group, they can also take Numbing Poison which is also the same. It also applies on auto attacks, which makes it hard to apply to multiple targets for your tank in Mythic Plus. It has its use in Mythic Plus, but not so much in a raid.

Will of the Necropolis: This is a good defensive talent which is much better than Blood Draw, but of course you need to take Insidious Chill instead of Death’s Echo for it so that you don’t lose any of the essential talents further down the tree.

Spec Talents

In this section I will be discussing each of the talents in the spec tree, where you would want to use them and how they synergise with other talents. This should add some context to the choices in the builds above.

Frost Strike: A simple ability that will be a way for you to spend Runic Power to generate Runes. It is also used to proc Killing Machine during Obliteration windows and to consume Razorice stacks when playing the talent Shattering Blade. However if you are playing with Breath of Sindragosa, then you will not use this ability during Breath of Sindragosa windows.

Obliterate: This ability will be your primary Rune spender and Runic Power generator. You will be using this ability a lot, and it will be one of your main sources of damage, especially when playing with Obliteration.

Howling Blast: Another simple ability which is used to apply Frost Fever to enemies as well as Razorice stacks with the talent Avalanche. Most of the time you will not want to use this unless you have a Rime proc, as the ability on its own is not worth spending a Rune on.

Killing Machine: This talent is what makes Obliterate casts hit very hard and will be a very important proc that you will play around. You will always want to make sure you are spending Killing Machine procs as soon as possible so you do not miss out on any procs.

Rime: As mentioned in the Howling Blast section, this talent makes Howling Blast worth casting. You will only want to use Howling Blast when you have a proc from this talent. It is also important to note that Rime procs which are consumed by Howling Blast, will still count as spending a rune on Howling Blast, even though it is free. So using Rime procs will also give you a stack of strength during Pillar of Frost.

Unleashed Frenzy: Quite a simple talent, but a nice throughput gain that you will always want to have. Mainly because it leads to other strong talents. You will want to make sure you keep as much uptime on this as possible. The duration of this buff is the same as Icy Talons, so as long as you are maintaining Icy Talons, you will also maintain Unleashed Frenzy. You can refresh this buff by either using Frost Strike, Glacial Advance or by having Breath of Sindragosa active.

Improved Frost Strike: This talent simply buffs your Frost Strikes. The choice here is either Improved Frost Strike or Runic Command to get to Pillar of Frost (a very important cooldown). This is typically going to be your cookie cutter choice because generally it will be very hard to keep constant uptime on Breath of Sindragosa, so you will be using a fair few Frost Strikes. However you are sometimes able to have very good uptime on Breath of Sindragosa depending on the encounter and the amount of targets you are fighting (which affects your Runic Power generation with things like Frost Fever crits) so in that case I would drop Improved Frost Strike for Runic Command. If you are playing Obliteration then you will always want Improved Frost Strike.

Runic Command: As mentioned before this talent is mainly used instead of Improved Frost Strike when you are able to keep a high uptime on Breath of Sindragosa. This is harder to pull off in Single Target, but can be possible depending on the scenario. In that case I recommend using Runic Command because you won’t be using Frost Strike very much so you’re not really getting value from Improved Frost Strike. If you are playing Obliteration, then this talent is not worth picking.

Remorseless Winter: Another important talent you will want to pick up is Remorseless Winter as it does a decent portion of your damage, especially in AoE.This talent is also a stepping stone to other important talents on the right side of the talent tree, which makes it mandatory.

Improved Obliterate: Earlier I stated that Obliterate is going to be a big portion of your damage, so Improved Obliterate is another obvious choice which is also a stepping stone to more important talents on the left side of the talent tree.

Glacial Advance: This is one of the first optional talents that you will come across, and it is mainly used as a substitute for Frost Strike in cleave scenarios when playing with Obliteration. It applies Razorice to enemies it hits so it is a very good way to spread Razorice stacks across multiple enemies. You will not want to use this when playing with Breath of Sindragosa, as just like Frost Strike, you will want your Runic Power to be spent on Breath of Sindragosa, not this ability.

Pillar of Frost: One of your primary cooldowns is Pillar of Frost and is a major throughput increase, so you will always want to use this talent in all situations. It has a pretty short cooldown as well, especially when using the talent Icecap. All of your abilities will be doing their best during Pillar of Frost, so make sure to use as many of your cooldowns in conjunction with Pillar of Frost as possible.

Frostscythe: Generally this talent will be used with Obliteration, mainly because it does not generate enough Runic Power to sustain Breath of Sindragosa. It does give Icecap a lot of value in AoE though, because it reduces the cooldown of Pillar of Frost for every enemy that Frostscythe crits against, but generally I only recommend using this talent if you need an AoE Rune spender when playing Obliteration.

Improved Rime: As mentioned earlier, Rime procs are what make your Howling Blast worth using, so this talent is naturally a solid choice and one which you will want to use in most if not all builds.

Frigid Executioner / Rage of the Frozen Champion: These talents have their uses and are both solid talents. However they do differ, and some play better into different builds. Frigid Executioner favors Obliteration due to the increased Obliterate damage. It can also be solid for Breath of Sindragosa, but you will be using Abomination Limb alongside Breath of Sindragosa, the Rime procs from Abomination Limb give Rage of the Frozen Champion a lot of value and grant a solid stream of Runic Power generation for Breath of Sindragosa.

Rage of the Frozen Champion is mainly used for Breath of Sindragosa, as you do not really need the additional Runic Power from Rime procs when playing with Obliteration (and also just because Frigid Execution is just better for that build throughput wise).

Cold Heart: This is a single target oriented talent, but can be enhanced with Proliferating Chill which makes it hit an additional target, turning it into a 2 target cleave ability. There are multiple conditions on when to consume Cold Heart stacks, and those will be explained in the Cooldowns & When to Use Them section of this guide.

Frostreaper: Before I spoke about how Obliterate is a good portion of your damage, and can be enhanced by multiple talents. It is a physical damage ability, so it is mitigated by boss armor. Using Frostreaper makes it Frost damage when you consume a Killing Machine proc with it, this not only makes it scale with Mastery: Frozen Heart, but it also makes it bypass boss armor, so this talent is super important to have.

Enduring Strength: Pillar of Frost has a low cooldown and is used pretty frequently, so Enduring Strength can be a very strong talent that gives you a nice strength boost after Pillar of Frost has ended. This is especially good with Breath of Sindragosa because you will still be in your Breath of Sindragosa window after Pillar of Frost, so it’s going to continue to have a solid strength buff afterwards. Additionally, its value increases with Obliteration and the 4 Set Bonus from the Season 1 Tier Set, due to them both increasing the amount of Obliterate casts that critical strike.

Frostwhelp’s Aid: This is a talent which is primarily AoE focused. You don’t get a lot of value from this talent if you are only fighting one target, and this talent starts to pick up when hitting 4 or more targets. The Mastery gain from this talent is very strong, but only when you can build at least 4+ stacks, otherwise you are probably better off spending your talent points elsewhere.

Horn of Winter: Solid option if you need additional Runic Power and Runes with a relatively low cooldown. It can be good for getting a top-up of Runes before an Obliteration window, but also really good for extending Breath of Sindragosa. This talent also leads to Empower Rune Weapon, which is another solid choice for having extended Breath of Sindragosa windows by having 2 charges of Empower Rune Weapon.

Biting Cold: As Remorseless Winter will be one of your main damage sources, Biting Cold is a talent that is definitely worth picking up in most scenarios. It really thrives in AoE scenarios, and gives you a Rime proc when hitting 3 or more targets, which is a nice bonus and a good way to get a Razorice stack on a group of enemies immediately when using Avalanche.

Chill Streak: It is nice to see this ability usable in PvE once again, and it is very strong in multi-target scenarios. You will always want to make sure that you are able to keep your targets in range of each other long enough for it to bounce its maximum number of 9 times. When used in conjunction with Pillar of Frost, it does a tonne of damage and is definitely very strong for 1 talent point.

Murderous Efficiency:  Rune generation is a very key component to Frost, so this talent is very good across multiple builds. Its value is also increased when using Obliteration and also the Tier Set Bonuses in a similar fashion to Enduring Strength.

Inexorable Assault: This is a pretty passive talent that doesn’t really interact much with your toolkit, it just gives you Obliterates some extra damage here and there. Choosing this talent or not basically just comes down to tuning as it doesn’t really impact anything else.

Icecap: Generally this talent is a super solid pick, because it reduces the cooldown on your Pillar of Frost everytime you crit with Obliterate, Frostscythe and Frost Strike. As Frost is a very crit oriented spec, this means that you will often get a lot of value from Icecap. It can be a bit odd to play with sometimes because your Pillar of Frost may not align with your other cooldowns, but even then it’s still worth using. It also has an interesting Interaction with Cold Heart. It makes it so you do not need to preemptively consume your Cold Heart stacks (typically around 10 stacks) to make your next Cold Heart 20 stack line up with the end of your next Pillar of Frost window. Instead you can just let Cold Heart stack up and your Pillar of Frost should naturally align really well with Cold Heart (lack of uptime may change this though).

Empower Rune Weapon: You will mainly want to use this talent when you are in need of a second charge of Empower Rune Weapon. This second charge can be utilized in two ways; to either extend your Breath of Sindragosa or to have a 1 minute rotation of Empower Rune Weapons for Obliteration (although this doesn’t align as well when you use Icecap). If you use it for Breath of Sindragosa then you will only have one Breath of Sindragosa window that is extended by a double use of Empower Rune Weapon. This is because Empower Rune Weapon has the same cooldown as Breath of Sindragosa, so your first charge should always align around the same time as Breath of Sindragosa (depending on when you use it), and the other charge will still be recharging for another 2 minutes. This means that it is only possible to have one Breath of Sindragosa window extended by two uses of Empower Rune Weapon (unless there is a boss encounter that has a very long period of downtime to allow your second charge to catch up). In longer boss encounters this talent will lose value, because the burst from your double Empower Rune Weapon Breath of Sindragosa will diminish over time, and in that case it’s better to take a different talent instead such as Innoxerable Assault/Cold Heart for single target, or Everfrost/Frostwyrm’s Fury for cleave/AoE.

Gathering Storm: This talent is very good in general and leads to your Remorseless Winter doing a lot more damage if you can maintain your Gathering Storm stacks. It is a lot easier to do this with Breath of Sindragosa and Empower Rune Weapon, due to Breath of Sindragosa constantly spending Runic Power (which can then proc Runic Empowerment) and Empower Rune Weapon giving you a rune every 5 seconds. While it is not as easy to maintain when playing with Obliteration, it is still a worthwhile talent, especially in AoE or Cleave scenarios.

Piercing Chill / Enduring Chill: Both of these talents are quite simple really, they are both dps gains for Chill Streak, however Enduring Chill is typically stronger, because Piercing Chill is at its best when fighting 2 targets, and will only be a 90% in total, so even just one proc of Enduring Chill is better than getting the maximum value out of Piercing Chill with current tuning.

Might of the Frozen Wastes: This will mostly only be used when playing with Obliteration and with a 2H weapon. It plays well into Obliteration because when it is used in combination with other talents that buff Obliterate such as Frigid Executioner, it makes your Obliterates hit really hard.

Bonegrinder: As Frost is very Crit oriented, this talent can be pretty good. However, it’s not as easy to proc when playing with Breath of Sindragosa and you will find a lot more uptime with Obliteration. You will always use this talent with Obliteration because you need to talent into Bonegrinder to reach Obliteration anyway. The additional Frost damage it provides is really nice and scales especially well in cleave/aoe scenarios. However as stated before, it is much harder to proc with Breath of Sindragosa because Killing Machine procs are not as common as they are with Obliteration, so it loses value. The crit buff has a relatively short duration and you need to keep consuming Killing Machine procs in order to keep the stacks up, nevermind getting enough stacks to get the Frost damage buff. The 4 Set Bonus does help with this, but it’s still not enough to make it reliable for Breath of Sindragosa.

Shattering Blade: This is a rather unique talent that only really works with Obliteration. It requires you to have dual wield weapons instead of 2H, because you need Rune of Razorice in order to reliably reapply Razorice stacks, and Rune of the Fallen Crusader is just too strong to not have. Ideally you would also play Avalanche with this so you can generate Razorice stacks with Rime procs as well. It’s purely a single target talent that you will create a build around, and it loses a lot of value when you do not have high melee uptime on the boss, so keep that in mind when speccing into Shattering Blade

Avalanche: Personally I am really happy with this talent in Dragonflight, it pretty much allows Frost Death Knight to use a different Enchant/Runeforge instead of Rune of Razorice, which opens up a lot of possibilities (including Rune of Hysteria for longer Breath of Sindragosa windows). It also makes Obliteration a lot more of a viable option, because you can have both Rune of the Fallen Crusader on your weapon, and still benefit from Razorice stacks on your targets. It also applies a stack of Razorice to all targets that Howling Blast hits, so it’s really strong for spreading Razorice stacks as well. Overall it’s a solid talent that I recommend using for most if not all builds.

Icebreaker: As you will be using your Rime procs very often, Icebreaker gives your Howling Blasts some extra damage which is a nice bonus. You will need to put points into this talent anyway in order to get to Breath of Sindragosa. You may also spec a point or two into Icebreaker for Obliteration as well, as it is a relatively good throughput increase when compared to other options in the talent tree. Also as it is affecting Howling Blast, it scales better in AoE.

Everfrost: Earlier I mentioned that Remorseless Winter is one of your primary sources of damage, and Everfrost is an excellent talent and buff to it. When playing with this talent you will want to make sure to extend your Remorseless Winter for as long as you can with Gathering Storm so you can maintain 10 stacks of Everfrost on the enemies you’re fighting.

Cold-Blooded Rage: Quite a simple talent leading up to Obliteration, and it only really works with Obliteration as it is oriented around Frost Strike. It works well with Icecap as well because of the increased rate at which you get Killing Machine procs, which then obviously leads to more crits.

Frostwyrm’s Fury: This ability gives you a lot of burst AoE damage and was a baseline ability for Frost Death Knight in the past, however it is a talent in Dragonflight and it is sadly quite far out of reach, meaning it will only really used for when you need very big AoE burst in a short window of time. You will ideally use this at the end of your Pillar of Frost so you have the most strength possible for it.

Invigorating Freeze: Similarly to Cold-Blooded Rage, you will be picking this talent anyway leading into Breath of Sindragosa, and it only really plays well into Breath of Sindragosa anyway as that build is very Runic Power focused, whereas Obliteration is not. Alongside Runic Attenuation, Frost Fever crits can provide some Runic Power gains throughout an encounter and this talent simply increases the probability of your Frost Fever crits giving you Runic Power.

Obliteration: I have mentioned this talent a fair few times in a lot of the talents above and this talent is build defining. Its strengths are mostly in single target & 2 target cleave and it’s oriented around really hard hitting Obliterate casts which can be cleaved to an additional target when using the talent Cleaving Strikes in the Death Knight Class talent tree. It works very well with the tier set bonus because it further increases the damage of your Obliterates and also gives you more chances to get a proc of your 4 Set Bonus effect. When playing with this build you will be weaving Frost Strikes / Rime procs in between Obliterates during Pillar of Frost in order to get a guaranteed proc of Killing Machine for each Obliterate. So this makes Obliterate have a strong single target burst every 30-60 seconds (depending on how much you crit, and whether you are using Icecap or not). Runic Power is not very valuable when running this build, as you generally have a lot of Runic Power to play with anyway and not much to spend it on except Frost Strike and Glacial Advance (if talented), so your priority when playing Obliteration will be Rune management so you are able to Obliterate as much as possible, especially during Pillar of Frost. Overall it is a simpler playstyle but it does feel great seeing massive Obliterate hits, I will say that it doesn’t scale as well in AoE scenarios as Breath of Sindragosa does, but it definitely has its place in single target & 2 target cleave encounters.

Absolute Zero: As mentioned earlier in the Frostwyrm’s Fury talent discussion, you will only ever take that talent if you are in a scenario where you need front loaded burst AoE. This talent basically just makes it up more often so it can be good for Mythic Plus situations where you will want to have front loaded AoE burst frequently throughout the dungeon. However it is even further out of the way so you will need to give up some other valuable talents in order to get this one. It also has a stun component which is nice for some PvE scenarios, but is not really the primary reason why you would choose this talent.

Breath of Sindragosa: In complete contrast to Obliteration, Breath of Sindragosa is a talent that focuses around Runic Power that scales a lot better in AoE scenarios. The playstyle however can be quite punishing, because if you lose uptime and stop generating Runic Power then your Breath of Sindragosa will be cut off prematurely and you will need to wait until it is off cooldown again (which is really bad, because if you build around Breath of Sindragosa you don’t really do any significant damage outside of your Breath of Sindragosa windows). You will notice that a lot of the talents that are used with Breath of Sindragosa (such as Horn of Winter, x2 Empower Rune Weapon, Rage of the Frozen Champion etc) are ways to generate Runic Power which is what Breath of Sindragosa revolves around. It is also good to use Icecap with this build, because you can often fit in 2-3 Pillar of Frost casts during Breath of Sindragosa, so that’s a nice bonus and will ramp up your damage during Breath of Sindragosa every 30-40 seconds (depending on crits). While the tier set bonuses do not directly interact with Breath of Sindragosa, it is still really important to get more Killing Machine procs because that can then proc Murderous Efficiency, which gives you more Runes to spend so that you can generate more Runic Power to sustain Breath of Sindragosa. In conclusion, it’s a very strong talent/build that really does shine in multiple scenarios, as well as being a fun playstyle that rewards well planned movement, Rune management and Runic Power management.

Talent Builds

Breath of Sindragosa Raiding Build (Single Target & Cleave)

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Additional Notes: You can take a point out of Biting Cold/ and spec into Frostwyrm’s Fury if you want large AoE burst in very short segments (mainly for padding:))

Weapons: x2 1H with Rune of Hysteria & Rune of the Fallen Crusader

Mythic Plus

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