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Asphyxiate is a Magic threshold ability, requiring level 2 magic to use. When activated, the player telekinetically strangles the target, dealing 4 hits of 37.6-188% ability damage each. The ability deals one hit every 1.2 seconds and the entire channel lasts for 4.2 seconds. Each successful hit momentarily stuns the target.

Asphyxiate is noteworthy for being one of the most powerful threshold abilities in the game, as each individual attack has a chance of dealing a high amount of damage (up to about 4,000). A player with high level gear and stats could potentially deal over 10000 damage in one use of Asphyxiate, particularly if wielding a staff or dual wielding.

The first hit is guaranteed to stun the target (similar to Destroy), even if it splashes. This makes it a very potent ability against bosses that are not immune to stuns, and in PvP.

Cancelling Asphyxiate[edit | edit source]

Cancelling Asphyxiate can help increase damage output, because the final hit is applied before the ability is done channeling. By activating another ability when the Asphyxiate icon has 2 seconds remaining, when the final hit and sound effect occur, players avoid losing out on Asphyxiate's damage and waste no time in using their next ability. The timing of this move is the same as when cancelling Destroy or using Snipe. If done correctly, the next ability will land the tick after the fourth and final Asphyxiate hit.

A good way to practice timing this move is by cancelling Asphyxiate with Dragon Breath or another ability at the Lumbridge dummies. Turning the sound up and timing using Asphyxiate's sound effects can help players struggling to execute this move consistently.

DPS comparison and Sunshine DPS rotation[edit | edit source]

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  1. Wild Magic is by far the best pure damage magic ability. It should be used on cooldown, if adrenaline is not needed for Sunshine.  
  2. Asphyxiate should be the second ability following Wild Magic. Channeled. 
  3. Deep Impact when used with the Flanking 3 perk, third. 
  4. Smoke Tendrils is the fourth best magic DPS threshold. Channeled. 
Ability AADPT
Wild Magic 97.2%
Asphyxiate 71.3%
Flanking 3 + Deep Impact 60.2%
Smoke Tendrils 54.4%

Although Flanking 3 + Deep Impact has less AADPT than a perfectly cancelled Asphyxiate, Flanking 3 + Deep Impact only takes one global cooldown (3 game ticks) to cast, while Asphyxiate is channelled. This is an opportunity cost of the damage of a potential basic (Sonic Wave/Dragon Breath/Flanking 3 Impact), with a potential 8% adrenaline gain. You must stand still to Asphyxiate, and it can be cancelled if the target freedoms, you get stunned, or you have to move.

Thus, priority in terms of pure damage: Wild magic > Asphyxiate > Flanking 3 Deep Impact > Tendrils.

An ideal Sunshine threshold rotation, assuming normally perked armour (Biting 3, Impatient 3, Crackling 3, Enhanced Devoted 3):

Planted Feet + Vigour + Sunshine, Enhanced replenishment potion, 2H auto attack, Wild Magic, Asphyxiate, Flanking 3 + Deep Impact, Wild Magic, Asphyxiate, Flanking 3 Deep Impact. Make sure to cancel the Asphyxiates correctly or you may not fit the second Flanking 3 Deep Impact into Sunshine.

Comparison to Rapid Fire and Destroy[edit | edit source]

Rapid Fire and Destroy/Assault are the ranged and melee counterparts of Asphyxiate, respectively.

Advantages[edit | edit source]

  • 20 seconds cooldown compared to Assault's 30 seconds
  • Available for F2P players

Neutral[edit | edit source]

  • Similar total damage
  • Similar length

Disadvantages[edit | edit source]

Tactics[edit | edit source]

  • As one of the most powerful Magic abilities, use it wisely. Tend to use this ability when your target's Freedom is not ready.
  • Use Anticipation before using this ability to avoid getting stunned while hitting your target.
  • Use Wild Magic right after Asphyxiate ends to finish off your opponent.
  • If combined with Metamorphosis or Sunshine, the damage output will be higher than most other abilities.

Countertactics[edit | edit source]

  • Stunning your target can counter this ability.
  • Reflect could both halve your damage received and damage your opponent, leaving them in a dangerous state.
  • It is possible to use Freedom then run outside the range of your opponent, canceling the remaining duration of the ability.

Update history[edit | edit source]

The update history project is a work-in-progress – not all updates to this topic may be covered below. See here for how to help out!
  • patch 14 December 2015 (Update):
    • The Hurricane ability will no longer put Asphyxiate on cooldown incorrectly.

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • The Asphyxiate ability could be a reference to the Force Choke power from the Star Wars universe, popularized in the films by Darth Vader.
  • Destroy is the melee equivalent of this ability, however destroy requires the player to dual wield, whereas asphyxiate does not.
  • Asphyxiate was known as choke in the test servers for the Evolution of Combat.