Vanilla WoW Wiki
Chaos Bolt
Ability warlock chaosbolt.png
  • Chaos Bolt
  • 30 yds.  range
  • 12 seconds cooldown
  • 7% of base mana
  • 2.5 seconds cast
  • Sends a bolt of chaotic fire at the enemy, dealing X Fire damage. Chaos Bolt cannot be resisted, and pierces through all absorption effects.
Usable by
Cooldown12 seconds
Cataclysm, Bane, Aftermath, Devastation, Intensity, Destructive Reach, Ruin, Soul Leech, Shadow and Flame
Other information

Chaos Bolt is a Warlock spell that deals direct damage to the target. It has a shorter cast time than either Incinerate or Shadow Bolt, and a higher spell power coefficient. In PvE, this spell should always be on cooldown.

Rank table

Rank Level Damage Cost
1 60 837 - 1061 Talent
2 70 1077 - 1367 25s
3 75 1217 - 1545 80s
4 80 1429 - 1813 80s



Bane will lower the cast time of Chaos Bolt by up to .5 seconds at max rank.

Shadow and Flame will increase the amount of fire spell damage that applies to the spell by 20% at max rank.

Destructive Reach extends the range of Chaos Bolt to 36 yards and reduces generated threat by 20% at max rank.

Fire and Brimstone increases damage of Chaos Bolt to targets affected by Immolate by 10% at max rank.

Chaos Bolt is a Destruction spell, and thus gains the benefit of the talents Cataclysm, Devastation, Intensity, Destructive Reach, Ruin, and Soul Leech.


Glyph of Chaos Bolt

Tips and tactics

  • Chaos Bolt pierces through Fire resistance
  • Chaos Bolt pierces through Absorption effects (i.e. Mana Shield, Anti-Magic Shell).
  • Chaos Bolt pierces through resist effects (i.e. Cloak of Shadows)
  • Chaos Bolt damage is reduced normally by Damage reduction effects (i.e. Pain Suppression. Something to note here is that Cheat Death describes the talent as a damage reduction but the actual game mechanic it's an absorption thus Chaos Bolt pierces through Cheat Death.
  • Chaos Bolt does NOT penetrate full immunities (Divine Shield and Ice Block). It is NOT deflected by Deterrence.
  • Fire Ward is a particularly interesting case. It cannot absorb Chaos Bolt damage however if talented with Molten Shields, as a Fire spell, the mage can reflect Chaos Bolt before it even touches him.
  • Chaos Bolt does 10% additional damage to targets that are afflicted with Immolate if you have taken the talent Fire and Brimstone, so this spell should always be cast on your opponent before Chaos Bolt. Following up with Conflagrate deals massive burst damage. Even better, pick talent Backdraft and use the Glyph of Conflagrate. Cast Immolate, Conflagrate (proccing Backdraft) and Chaos Bolt (now with 30% reduced cast time). This sequence is sure to reduce most non-elite mobs to a smoking pile of ash! Works well in PvP too.
  • Curse of the Elements increases magic damage done to a target by 13% and should also be applied prior to casting Chaos Bolt in fights of sustained damage.
  • Before patch 3.1.3, Chaos Bolt was one of the most mana-efficient spells in the warlock's arsenal, along with Soul Fire. It truly shone in PvP because of its short cast time and the fact that it even ignored damage reduction effects like Pain Suppression.
  • This spell is particular fun in Karazhan where the mana-shielded mobs in the Curator-boss is a major nusiance - bring a Destro-lock and one-shot them with Chaos Bolt.

The resilience myth

It appears as if the whole resilience thing was just a myth. Ghostcrawler said that the developers could not find anything that affected resilience and Chaos Bolt has never bypassed it.

Re: Chaos Bolt change depressing lore-wise | 2009-05-27 06:44 | Ghostcrawler
EDIT: As it turns out, Chaos Bolt does NOT ignore resilience. When the developers went to make this change, they found out that the resilience bypassing was just a myth. They still thought making the change to have CB not bypass other damage reduction affects was an appropriate change. I try to stay on top of all of the changes my team makes, but it's a big game and we typically make a lot of changes every day. The mistake was mine, and I do apologize for any confusion. TLDR: The 3.1.3 change remains, but resilience is not (and never has been) affected.

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Patch changes

  • Template:Patch 3.1.3
  • Template:Patch 3.0.2

External links