Frost Death Knight DPS Guide - Battle For Azeroth 8.3 1
by Aether in
Death Knight Guides

Last Updated on October 18, 2020 by Aether

Welcome to our Frost Death Knight guide for DPS players – updated for Battle For Azeroth (BFA) 8.3. This is a work in progress, and will be updated accordingly for Shadowlands. We will cover everything you need to know in order to play a Frost Death Knight in raids and Mythic+ dungeons. You will learn how to optimise your stats for damage, as well as what to look out for in order to min-max your character to its fullest.

Quick Overview

A Frost Death Knight relies on its icey-themed abilities to do great single and AoE damage. It’s a relatively easy class to learn, but there’s still scope to rise above the average Death Knight, in terms of skill ceiling. Managing runes, procs, and runic power, will be your main focus. You will be able to freely press most abilities, but if you do spam press whatever you like, you’ll run into situations where you can’t press anything for a short amount of time.

Frost Death Knights are roughly on par with their Unholy counterparts, excluding specific encounters that may, or may not, favour a specific one.

Frost DK Pros

  • Easy single target and AoE rotation
  • Strong AoE burst
  • Good survivability
  • Fantastic cleave damage

Frost DK Cons

  • Worst mobility of all classes
  • Sometimes have to deal with deciding which proc to focus on, if many proc at once
  • Self-healing bonus from Death Strike does not take into account environmental damage

Best Races For Frost Death Knights

From a PvE standpoint, the best races are Blood Elf, Human, and Night Elf. Blood Elves and Humans provide the most raw DPS, but Night Elves are very useful in Mythic+ dungeons due to Shadowmeld.

For PvP, please check out our PvP guides.

Frost Death Knight Stat Priority

The following stat priority will increase your effectiveness in dealing damage in PvE content, without having to run min-max sims. However, we do recommend running simulations with your exact stats if you want to be 100% efficient; especially useful for those who are in cutting edge guilds.

Stat priority

Crit = Mastery > Haste > Versatility > Strength

Stat summaries

Stamina increases your health pool.

Strength increases your attack power and damage from abilities.

Versatility increases damage, healing, as well as decreasing damage received.

Haste increases attack speed, reduces GCD, and increases rune regeneration speed.

Critical Strike increases the chance of attacks to hit for additional damage or healing.

Mastery increases the damage of frost abilities, which is why mastery is so favoured.

Frost Death Knight Enchants, Gems & Consumables

Based off of the stat priority above, below we have listed the best enchants, gems and consumables that Frost Death Knights should utilise. These recommendations should be used for those who are not creating personalised sims for their specific character, as their results may vary. However, for the general population of Frost DKs, these recommendations should be more than adequate.

Weapon Enchants

Rune of Razorice (Mainhand)

Rune of the Fallen Crusader (Offhand)

Ring Enchants

Enchant Ring – Accord of Critical Strike

Enchant Ring – Accord of Mastery


Leviathan’s Eye of Strength (Jewelcrafting profession only)

Masterful Sea Currant

Deadly Lava Lazuli


Greater Flask of the Undertow


Potion of Unbridled Fury

Superior Battle Potion of Strength


Famine Evaluator And Snack Table

Sanguinated Feast

Boralus Blood Sausage


Battle-Scarred Augment Rune

Frost Death Knight Talents & Build

Inexorable Assault Icy TalonsCold Heart
Runic AttenuationMurderous EfficiencyHorn of Winter 
Death’s ReachAsphyxiate Blinding Sleet
AvalancheFrozen PulseFrostscythe
Permafrost Wraith WalkDeath Pact
 Gathering StormGlacial AdvanceFrostwyrm’s Fury
 IcecapObliterationBreath of Sindragosa

The above setup is ideal for both raiding and mythic+ dungeons.

Frozen Pulse is best for single target fights, whereas Frostscythe is more useful for AoE encounters and mythic+ dungeons.

Frost Death Knight Rotation & Cooldowns

World of Warcraft has moved away from strict rotations, and now instead relies on a priority order to efficiently play your class. The below guide should help to give you a good understanding on what abilities to focus on, as well as how to combine them in specific situations. It’s important to note that dungeons and raids never go 100% smooth every time, so you’ll have to adapt constantly to work out which ability should be used, and when. Therefore, don’t worry too much about following the priority order strictly.

Single Target DPS Rotation Priority list

  1. Remorseless Winter
  2. Howling Blast (If Rime proc)
  3. Obliterate (If you have at least 4 Runes)
  4. Frost Strike (To stop Runic Power capping)
  5. Obliterate (If Killing Machine proc)
  6. Frost Strike (If you have at least 70 Runic Power)
  7. Obliterate
  8. Frost Strike

AoE DPS Rotation Priority List

  1. Howling Blast (If Rime proc)
  2. Frost Strike (To stop Runic Power capping)
  3. Frostscythe (If Killing Machine proc)
  4. Remorseless Winter
  5. Frostscythe 
  6. Frost Strike (If you have at least 70 Runic Power)

DPS Cooldowns

Pillar of Frost – Use on cooldown.

Empower Rune Weapon – Use on cooldown and make sure to take advantage of the additional runes generated.

Aether has been playing World of Warcraft since 2006. In his youth he raided 7 days a week, but now just plays with friends doing Mythic dungeons and Arena. He swaps his main more often than he should.
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