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Diminishing returns

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Diminishing returns means that certain spells and abilities become less effective against a target if used frequently within a short period of time. While diminishing returns mostly applies to player characters, some abilities also have diminishing returns in PvE. The table below contains a list of abilities that are affected by DR, and under what circumstances. In addition, DR categories are listed. Effects within the same category share diminishing returns.

When an ability with diminishing returns is used against a target in PvP, the first effect has full PvP duration. If the same category of effect (e.g. root) is used on that target within 15 seconds, that effect's duration is reduced by 50%. On the third use, the duration is reduced by 75%. After this, the target is immune from all effects in that category for the next 15 seconds. Note that when used against another player, effects will only last for their PvP duration, often far shorter than the duration stated in the ability's tooltip. The maximum PvP duration is 8 seconds.

Spells must be used on the same target within 15 seconds of the *end* of the duration in order to be diminished. In other words, if a target hasn't had a root spell active on them for more than 15 seconds, this category of diminishing returns will be reset on the target, and the next rooting spell will have full effect.

Contents

Table

The table below has been sorted out into diminishing returns categories. Each ability shares diminishing returns with the other abilities it has been listed with, and no others.

Category Class Source Ability PvP Duration PvE Duration
Root Death knight Talent [Chilblains] > [Chains of Ice] 3 sec 3 sec
Druid All [Entangling Roots] 8 sec 30 sec
Druid Talent [Mass Entanglement] 8 sec 20 sec
Hunter Tenacity/Ferocity pet [Charge] 1 sec 1 sec
Hunter Talent [Narrow Escape] 8 sec 8 sec
Hunter Crab pet [Pin] 4 sec 4 sec
Hunter Dog pet [Lock Jaw] 4 sec 4 sec
Hunter Spider pet [Web] 5 sec 5 sec
Hunter Silithid pet Web Spray 5 sec 5 sec
Mage Water elemental Freeze 8 sec 8 sec
Mage All [Frost Nova] 8 sec 8 sec
Monk All [Disable] 3 sec 8 sec
Priest Shadow  [Glyph of Mind Blast] > [Mind Blast] 4 sec 4 sec
Priest Talent [Void Tendrils] 8 sec 20 sec
Rogue Talent [Paralytic Poison] > [Shiv] 4 sec 4 sec
Shaman Talent [Frozen Power] > [Frost Shock] 5 sec 5 sec
Warrior Talent [Staggering Shout] 5 sec 5 sec
Warrior Talent [Warbringer] > [Charge] 4 sec 4 sec
Root (short) Hunter Survival [Entrapment] 4 sec 4 sec
Mage Talent [Ice Ward] 5 sec 5 sec
Monk Windwalker [Spinning Fire Blossom] 2 sec 2 sec
Shaman Talent [Earthgrab Totem] 5 sec 5 sec
Stun Death Knight Talent [Asphyxiate] 5 sec 5 sec
Death Knight Unholy Ghoul [Gnaw] 3 sec 3 sec
Death Knight Unholy Ghoul Monstrous Blow 4 sec 4 sec
Death Knight Talent [Remorseless Winter] 6 sec 6 sec
Druid Guardian [Bear Hug] 3 sec 3 sec
Druid Cat form [Maim] 1-5 sec 1-5 sec
Druid Talent [Mighty Bash] 5 sec 5 sec
Druid Cat form [Pounce] 4 sec 4 sec
Hunter Talent [Binding Shot] 3 sec 5 sec
Hunter Talent [Intimidation] 3 sec 3 sec
Hunter Monkey pet [Bad Manner] 4 sec 4 sec
Hunter Crane pet [Lullaby] 4 sec 4 sec
Hunter Basilisk pet [Petrifying Gaze] 3 sec 3 sec
Hunter Porcupine pet [Paralyzing Quill] 2 sec 2 sec
Hunter Wasp pet [Sting] 2 sec 2 sec
Hunter Bat pet [Sonic Blast] 2 sec 2 sec
Hunter Shale spider pet [Web Wrap] 3 sec 3 sec
Mage Fire [Combustion] 3 sec 3 sec
Mage All [Deep Freeze] 5 sec 5 sec
Monk Talent [Charging Ox Wave] 3 sec 3 sec
Monk Brewmaster [Clash] 4 sec 4 sec
Monk Windwalker [Fists of Fury] 4 sec 4 sec
Monk Talent [Leg Sweep] 5 sec 5 sec
Paladin All  [Glyph of Blinding Light] > [Blinding Light] 3 sec 3 sec
Paladin All [Hammer of Justice] 6 sec 6 sec
Paladin Talent [Fist of Justice] 6 sec 6 sec
Paladin Protection [Holy Wrath] 3 sec 3 sec
Rogue All [Cheap Shot] 4 sec 4 sec
Rogue All [Kidney Shot] 2-6 sec 2-6 sec
Shaman Primal earth elemental [Pulverize] 4 sec 4 sec
Shaman All [Capacitor Totem] 5 sec 5 sec
Warlock Felguard [Axe Toss] 4 sec 4 sec
Warlock Wrathguard [Axe Toss] 4 sec 4 sec
Warlock Talent [Shadowfury] 3 sec 3 sec
Warlock All [Summon Infernal] 2 sec 2 sec
Warrior Talent [Shockwave] 4 sec 4 sec
Warrior Talent [Storm Bolt] 4 sec 4 sec
All Tauren racial [War Stomp] 4 sec 4 sec
Stun (short) Rogue Talent [Paralytic Poison] 4 sec 4 sec
Shaman Elemental [Earthquake] 2 sec 2 sec
Warrior All [Charge] 1.5 sec 1.5 sec
Warrior Talent [Dragon Roar] 0.5 sec 0.5 sec
Mesmerize Druid All [Hibernate] 8 sec 8 sec
Hunter All [Freezing Trap] 8 sec 60 sec
Hunter Talent [Wyvern Sting] 6 sec 30 sec
Mage All [Polymorph] 8 sec 8 sec
Mage Talent [Ring of Frost] 8 sec 8 sec
Monk All [Paralysis] 4 sec 40/60 sec
Paladin Talent [Repentance] 8 sec 60 sec
Rogue All [Gouge] 4 sec 4 sec
Rouge All [Sap] 8 sec 60 sec
Shaman All [Bind Elemental] 8 sec 50 sec
Shaman All [Hex] 8 sec 50 sec
Warlock All [Banish] 8 sec 30 sec
All Pandaren racial [Quaking Palm] 4 sec 4 sec
Mesmerize (short) Druid Talent [Disorienting Roar] 3 sec 3 sec
Hunter All [Scatter Shot] 4 sec 4 sec
Mage Fire [Dragon's Breath] 4 sec 4 sec
Monk Brewmaster  [Glyph of Breath of Fire] > [Breath of Fire] 3 sec 3 sec
Priest Holy [Holy Word: Chastise] 3 sec 3 sec
Fear Druid Symbiosis [Intimidating Roar] 8 sec 8 sec
Hunter All [Scare Beast] 8 sec 20 sec
Paladin All [Blinding Light] 6 sec 6 sec
Paladin All [Turn Evil] 8 sec 40 sec
Priest All [Psychic Scream] 8 sec 8 sec
Priest Talent [Psyfiend] > Psychic Terror 8 sec 30 sec
Rogue All [Blind] 8 sec 60 sec
Warlock All [Fear] 8 sec 20 sec
Warlock All [Howl of Terror] 8 sec 20 sec
Warlock Shivarra [Mesmerize] 8 sec 30 sec
Warlock Succubus [Seduction] 8 sec 30 sec
Warrior All [Intimidating Shout] 8 sec 8 sec
Horror Priest Shadow [Psychic Horror] (horror portion) 1-3 sec 1-3 sec
Warlock Talent [Blood Horror] 4 sec 4 sec
Warlock Talent [Mortal Coil] 3 sec 3 sec
Silence Death Knight Talent [Asphyxiate] (stun immune) 5 sec 5 sec
Death Knight All [Strangulate] 5 sec 5 sec
Druid Bear form  [Glyph of Fae Silence] > [Faerie Fire] 3 sec 3 sec
Hunter Marksmanship [Silencing Shot] 3 sec 3 sec
Mage Talent [Frostjaw] 4 sec 8 sec
Mage All [Improved Counterspell] > [Counterspell] 4 sec 4 sec
Monk Talent [Ring of Peace] (silence portion) 4 sec 4 sec
Monk All [Spear Hand Strike] 2 sec 2 sec
Paladin Protection [Avenger's Shield] 3 sec 3 sec
Priest Shadow [Silence] 5 sec 5 sec
Rogue All [Garrote] 3-4 sec 3-4 sec
Warlock Felhunter [Spell Lock] 3 sec 3 sec
Warlock Observer [Optical Blast] 3 sec 3 sec
All Blood elf racial [Arcane Torrent] 2 sec 2 sec
Disarm Hunter Scorpid pet [Clench] 8 sec 8 sec
Hunter Bird of prey pet [Snatch] 8 sec 8 sec
Monk All [Grapple Weapon] 8 sec 8 sec
Monk Talent [Ring of Peace] (disarm portion) 4 sec 4 sec
Priest Shadow [Psychic Horror] (disarm portion) 8 sec 8 sec
Rogue All [Dismantle] 8 sec 8 sec
Warlock Voidwalker [Disarm] 8 sec 8 sec
Warlock Voidlord [Disarm] 8 sec 8 sec
Warrior All [Disarm] 8 sec 8 sec
Knockback Death Knight Talent [Gorefiend's Grasp] N/A N/A
Druid Talent [Typhoon] N/A N/A
Druid Talent [Ursol's Vortex] N/A N/A
Hunter All [Explosive Trap] N/A N/A
Shaman Elemental [Thunderstorm] N/A N/A
Warlock Shivarra [Fellash] N/A N/A
Warlock Succubus [Whiplash] N/A N/A
Cyclone Druid All [Cyclone] 6 sec 6 sec
Charm Priest Talent [Dominate Mind] 8 sec 30 sec

In PvE

Many types of crowd control also suffer from diminishing returns versus NPCs, usually stuns. Diminishing returns do not count per player but per creature; every creature has its own diminishing return for each group of CC and all players in your party / raid will be affected by that diminishing return.

Warlords of Draneor

Warlords of Draenor will see dramatic adjustments to existing diminishing returns categories.

  • All Roots now share the same DR category.
    • Exception: Roots on ' [Charge]' types of abilities have no DR category, but have a very short duration instead.
  • All Stuns now share the same DR category.
  • All Incapacitate effects now share the same DR category, and have been merged with the Horror DR category.
  • The Fear DR category has been merged with the Disorient DR category.
  • Numerous abilities have been moved to different DR categories.

6 diminishing returns categories remain:

Abilities list

Roots

  • Death knight
    • Chains of Ice (with Chilblains)
  • Druid
    • Entangling Roots
    • Mass Entanglement
  • Hunter
    • Charge (Tenacity pet)
    • Entrapment
    • Narrow Escape
  • Mage
    • Freeze Water Elemental
    • Frost Nova
    • Ice Ward
  • Monk
    • Disable
  • Priest
    • Glyph of Mind Blast
    • Void Tendrils
  • Shaman
    • Earthgrab Totem
    • Frost Shock (with Frozen Power)

Stuns

  • Death knight
    • Asphyxiate
    • Gnaw (Ghoul)
    • Monstrous Blow (Ghoul w/ Dark Transformation active)
    • Remorseless Winter
  • Druid
    • Maim
    • Mighty Bash
    • Rake
  • Hunter
    • Binding Shot
    • Intimidation
  • Mage
    • Deep Freeze
  • Monk
    • Charging Ox Wave
    • Fists of Fury
    • Leg Sweep
  • Paladin
    • Fist of Justice
    • Hammer of Justice
    • Holy Wrath
  • Rogue
    • Cheap Shot
    • Kidney Shot
  • Shaman
    • Pulverize (Primal Earth Elemental)
    • Static Charge (Capacitor Totem)
  • Warlock
    • Axe Toss (Felguard)
    • Shadowfury
    • Summon Infernal
  • Warrior
    • Shockwave
    • Storm Bolt
  • Racial
    • War Stomp

Incapacitates

  • Druid
    • Incapacitating Roar
  • Hunter
    • Freezing Trap
    • Wyvern Sting
  • Mage
    • Dragon's Breath
    • Polymorph
    • Ring of Frost
  • Monk
    • Glyph of Breath of Fire
    • Paralysis
    • Ring of Peace
  • Paladin
    • Repentance
  • Priest
    • Dominate Mind
    • Holy Word: Chastise
    • Psychic Horror
  • Rogue
    • Gouge
    • Sap
  • Shaman
    • Hex
  • Warlock
    • Banish
    • Blood Horror
    • Mortal Coil
  • Racial
    • Quaking Palm

Disorients

  • Druid
    • Cyclone
  • Paladin
    • Turn Evil
  • Priest
    • Psychic Scream
  • Rogue
    • Blind
  • Warlock
    • Fear
    • Howl of Terror
    • Mesmerize (Shivarra pet)
    • Seduction (Succubus pet)
  • Warrior
    • Intimidating Shout

Silences

  • Death knight
    • Strangulate
  • Druid
    • Glyph of Fae Silence
  • Mage
    • Frostjaw
  • Paladin
    • Avenger's Shield
  • Priest
    • Silence
  • Rogue
    • Garrote
  • Racial
    • Arcane Torrent

AoE knockbacks

  • Death knight
    • Gorefiend's Grasp
  • Druid
    • Typhoon
    • Ursol's Vortex
  • Hunter
    • Glyph of Explosive Trap
  • Shaman
    • Thunderstorm
  • Warlock
    • Fellash
    • Whiplash

Patch changes

  • MoP Patch 5.4.0 (2013-09-10):
    • There are now diminishing returns on Vengeance gains while tanking multiple targets. Each additional target grants progressively less Vengeance.
    • Area knockback effects now all share a diminishing return category. After a player has been moved by one of these spells, the player will be immune for 10 seconds. This new category applies to: [Fellash], [Gorefiend's Grasp],  [Glyph of Explosive Trap], [Thunderstorm], [Typhoon], [Ursol's Vortex], and [Whiplash].
    • [Divine Star]'s healing is no longer affecting by diminishing returns when used on multiple targets.
    • [Halo]'s healing is no longer affecting by diminishing returns when used on multiple targets.
  • Hotfix (2013-10-11): "We've seen some confusion recently about exactly which crowd control effects share diminishing returns. To hopefully clear that up, we're providing the following, categorized lists of all of the CC effects in the game. [...]"
  • MoP Patch 5.3.0 (2013-05-21): [Ring of Peace] had been redesigned. The ability forms an 8-yard sanctuary around a friendly target for 8 seconds, instantly disarming and silencing enemies within the area-of-effect for 3 seconds. Enemies that use abilities other than auto-attacks or cast spells on allies within the Ring of Peace will be disarmed and silenced for 3 seconds. Disarm and silence effects are subject to diminishing returns.
  • MoP Patch 5.2.0 (2013-03-05): [Warbringer] now reduces the target's movement by 50% for 15 seconds (8 seconds in PvP), in addition to its other effects. The 3-second stun/knockdown is now in the diminishing returns category for stuns (same as [Shockwave] and [Storm Bolt]), and not the proc stun diminishing returns category.
  • MoP Patch 5.1.0 (2012-11-27): The [Growl] pet ability will no longer cause diminishing returns against bosses that are immune to its effect.
  • Cataclysm Patch 4.2.0 (2011-06-28):
  • Cataclysm Patch 4.1.0 (2011-04-26):
  • Cataclysm Patch 4.0.6 (2011-02-08):
    • Hunter Pet Fix: Ravage no longer counts toward stun diminishing returns.
    • [Charge] now shares diminishing returns with stun effects.
    • [Charge]'s stun continues to not trigger diminishing returns for Protection warriors who have the [Warbringer] talent.
  • Cataclysm Patch 4.0.3a (2010-11-23): [Improved Polymorph] now correctly shares diminishing returns with controlled stuns.
  • WotLK Patch 3.3.0 (2009-12-08): Taunt Diminishing Returns: We've revised the system for diminishing returns on Taunt so that creatures do not become immune to Taunt until after 5 Taunts have landed. The duration of the Taunt effect will be reduced by 35% instead of 50% for each taunt landed. In addition, most creatures in the world will not be affected by Taunt diminishing returns at all. Creatures will only have Taunt diminishing returns if they have been specifically flagged for that behavior based on the design of a given encounter.
  • Hotfix (2009-09-09): "We just deployed a hotfix to modify [Holy Wrath] so this spell has the same diminishing return mechanics that other player stun spells and abilities currently have. This will prevent Undead creatures that we wish to be susceptible to stun from being permanently stunned if you include enough Paladins in your raid who then rotate their Holy Wrath casts.

    This will affect the difficulty of Combat Anub'arak, but we didn't want the "right way" to defeat this fight to involve bringing five Paladins who used  [Glyph of Holy Wrath] on their Holy Wrath spell.
    "
  • WotLK Patch 3.0.8 (2009-01-20): All Silence spells now have diminishing returns. This includes: [Arcane Torrent], [Garrote] silence effect, [Improved Counterspell] effect, [Improved Kick] effect, [Silence], [Gag Order], [Silencing Shot], [Spell Lock], and [Strangulate].
  • WotLK Patch 3.0.2 (2008-10-14): Melee mitigation stats also have diminishing returns.
  • TBC Patch 2.3.0 (2007-11-13):
    • [Blind] is now a physical (no longer a poison) attack. Reagent requirement removed. Now shares the same diminish category as [Cyclone] and is now diminished in PvE as well as PvP.
    • [Riposte] is now subject to diminishing returns in PvP.
    • [Frost Shock] is no longer subject to diminishing returns.
    • [Unstable Affliction]: The silence from this ability is now subject to diminishing returns.
    • [Disarm] is now subject to diminishing returns in PvP.
  • TBC Patch 2.1.0 (2007-05-22):
    • [Entrapment] (Survival): Effect duration reduced to 4 seconds and is now subject to diminishing returns in PvP.
    •  [Frostbite] effect is now subject to diminishing returns in PvP.
    • [Death Coil] is now is now subject to diminishing returns in the Horror category.
    • Reputation: Players will experience diminished gains in reputation from killing outdoor mobs while in raids larger than five players.
  • WoW Icon 16x16.png Patch 1.9.0 (2006-01-03): The stun effect's duration no longer diminishes or is diminished by controlled stun abilities and spells:
  • WoW Icon 16x16.png Patch 1.4.0 (2005-05-05): A handful of spells were added to the list of spells subject to diminishing returns in PvP. It is our goal to set as few spells as possible to be diminished. We've identified this short list of spells as having durations and cooldowns sufficient to almost permanently slow or immobilize targets but without adequate controls or other limiting factors. When a spell with diminishing returns is used against a target in PvP, the first effect has full duration. On the second use of the same category of spell (e.g. slowing), that spell's duration is reduced by 50%. On the third use, the duration is reduced by 75%. On the fourth attempt, the target becomes immune to the spell. Spells must be used on the same target within 15 seconds of the *end* of the duration in order to be diminished. In other words, if a target hasn't had a slowing spell active on them for more than 15 seconds, the next slowing spell will have full effect. The list of affected spells is: