PVP Unholy Death Knight Guide, WoW WotLK 3.3.5a

Unholy Death Knight

Welcome to my Unholy Death Knight PVP guide for World of Warcraft WotLK 3.3.5a. This will be a short guide for Arena and Battleground players, describing what Talents, Glyphs, Gems, Enchants and Team Compositions you might use.

Talent Tree

Corpse Explosion is taken for that extra burst. It has to be timed properly and can sacrifice your pet so be careful with it.

PVP Unholy Death Knight Talent Tree, Duel, Battleground, BG, spec WoW WotLK 3.3.5a

Wandering Plague is mostly taken for Battlegrounds because it just works better with multiple targets. Still a viable choice.

PVP Unholy Death Knight Talent Tree, Arena, spec WoW WotLK 3.3.5a


Major Glyphs:
Glyph of Dark Death
Glyph of the Ghoul
Glyph of Anti-Magic Shell

They first two are mandatory, where the third glyph can be replaced with one of these.
Glyph of Disease or Glyph of Icy Touch

Small Glyphs:

Glyph of Pestilence
Glyph of Raise Dead
Glyph of Death's Embrace


Gems are used to get your stat caps depending on what you lack, so it is situational.

Meta: Chaotic Skyflare Diamond
Blue: x4 Stormy Majestic Zircon
Yellow: Mystic King's Amber
Orange: Resplendent Ametrine or Bold Cardinal Ruby


Head – Arcanum of Triumph
Shoulder – Inscription of Triumph
Cloak – Spell Piercing
Chest – Exceptional Resilience
Bracers – Greater Assault
Gloves – Crusher
Waist – Eternal Belt Buckle
Legs – Earthen Leg Armor
Boots – Greater Assault
Weapon – Rune of the Fallen Crusader

Gameplay & Rotations

Stat priority:

5% Hit Rating → 135 Spell Penetration → Strength → Crit → Haste → 1000+ Resilience


Diseases are always on the target. Use Chains of Ice and Plague Strike

Scourge Strike for dealing damage or Death Strike for healing

Spread diseases with Pestilence or use Blood Strike if no other enemies nearby

Death Coil when you have unused runic power

Use Frost presence when you need to tank damage, otherwise use Unholy presence, it's your main presence.

Spells and Tips:

Summon Gargoyle – Your Gargoyle scales from your stats when summoned, so be sure to summon it when fully buffed and with procs. Gargoyle attacks the same target as Ghoul. If the Ghoul is dead then you can't control it.

Anti-Magic Shell – Can be used defensive and offensive. You can start the fight against casters with it, just use Horn of Winter, Death and Decay 2 seconds before the fight.

Anti-Magic Zone – Shields your party for 75% of the magic damage. Use this in situations when you are about to get bursted down.

Horn of Winter – Gives 155 Agility and Strenght. Grants additional 10 Runic power. This has to be up all the time.

Bone Shield – 20% Damage reduction for 3 strikes.

Lichborne – Break out of Fear, Charm, Sap, Polymorph. Keep in mind, you have to use it before the crowd-control, as it is not usable when you are already, feared for example. Also, you might want to cancel the effect sometimes, because paladins will be able to use fear on you, as you will be considered as undead.

Empower Rune Weapon – Re-activates all runes and grants 25 Runic power. Use this after your first rotation, and afterwards you can use Gargoyle to start bursting.

When you see a spell cast – you have 4 options to interrupt it:

Mind Freeze – This is good against healers as it prevents 4 seconds of that school from being cast.

Death Grip – Keep in mind, that this spell can be used to save your teammate from a bad situation where he is focused.


Gnaw – your pets stun.

Team Complications

Viable 2v2 partners:

Holy Paladin – Paladins are one of the best supports you could have. This is not the easiest duo to play, but it's a really powerful one.

Shadow Priest – Probably best double dps comp for a DK. Has tons of shadow damage

Any other healer – Some are better than others. For example: Shamans Heroism/Bloodlust will drastically increase the damage of your Gargoyle, not to mention yourself.

Viable 3v3 partners:

Arms Warrior + Holy Paladin

MM Hunter + Holy Paladin

Frost Mage + Discipline Priest

Retribution Paladin / Rogue + Any healer

Affliction Warlock / Shadow Priest + Resto Druid / Shaman

PVP Unholy Death Knight Guide, WoW WotLK 3.3.5a
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