Elemental Shaman DPS Spec, Builds, Talents, and Glyphs (WoD 6.0.3)

41 comments
Elemental Shaman Art Image
General Information

On this page, we present the viable talent and glyph choices for Elemental Shamans in World of Warcraft WoD 6.0.3. We detail what each of the talents and glyphs do and in which situations they should be taken.

The other pages of our Elemental Shaman guide can be accessed from the table of contents on the right.

About Our Reviewer

This guide has been reviewed and approved by Purge, a prominent Shaman theorycrafter, who often contributes to the Elemental Shaman section of Totem Spot.

6.0.2 Transition Guide

If you want to read all about the Patch 6.0.2 changes and learn how they affect your character, make sure to read our Shaman Transition Guide!

1. Talent Choices↑top

Level Choices
15 Nature's Guardian Stone Bulwark Totem Astral Shift
30 Frozen Power Earthgrab Totem Windwalk Totem
45 Call of the Elements Totemic Persistence Totemic Projection
60 Elemental Mastery Ancestral Swiftness Echo of the Elements
75 Rushing Streams Ancestral Guidance Conductivity
90 Unleashed Fury Primal Elementalist Elemental Blast
100 Elemental Fusion Storm Elemental Totem Liquid Magma
+ show color blind markers - hide color blind markers
  • Performance-enhancing
  • Survival
  • Crowd Control
  • Movement
  • Utility
  • Situational

Talents can easily be changed, thanks to Tome of the Clear Mind Icon Tomes of the Clear Mind. You will frequently find yourself changing talents and glyphs between encounters, in order to adapt your play style to different mechanics. Therefore, it is important to understand what each of your talents does and how they affect your play style.

2. Tier 1 Talents↑top

Tier 1 talents have been designed with your own survival in mind.

  • Nature's Guardian Icon Nature's Guardian procs when you receive a damaging attack that brings you below 30% health (although it cannot proc more often than every 30 seconds). When Nature's Guardian procs, it immediately reduces your threat towards your attacker and increases your maximum health by 25% for 10 seconds (when the effect ends, your health percentage is preserved).
  • Stone Bulwark Totem Icon Stone Bulwark Totem is an Earth totem on a 1-minute cooldown that remains on the ground for 30 seconds. When you summon it, it grants you a 10-second shield that absorbs some damage. After that 10-second period is over, it casts a smaller shield on your every 5 seconds (overriding the previous shield, even the large, initial one, if it is still active). This smaller shield absorbs exactly 4 times less damage than the first shield and lasts for 10 seconds.
  • Astral Shift Icon Astral Shift reduces damage taken by 40% for 6 seconds. It has a 90-second cooldown.

Nature's Guardian Icon Nature's Guardian is the default talent here. Choose Astral Shift Icon Astral Shift for fights where you know that there will be large damage spikes to absorb. Stone Bulwark Totem Icon Stone Bulwark Totem seems a bit undertuned at the moment and the initial shield's damage absorption is only about 8% of the player's total health.

3. Tier 2 Talents↑top

Tier 2 talents have been designed with crowd control and utility in mind.

  • Frozen Power Icon Frozen Power causes your Frost Shock Icon Frost Shock to also root the target for 5 seconds.
  • Earthgrab Totem Icon Earthgrab Totem summons a totem that remains in place for 20 seconds, rooting every enemy within 10 yards for 5 seconds, after which time their movement speed is reduced by 50% (for as long as the totem is up and the enemies are within 10 yards). Earthgrab Totem replaces Earthbind Totem Icon Earthbind Totem.
  • Windwalk Totem Icon Windwalk Totem grants immunity to movement-impairing effects to all party and raid members within 40 yards. The effect lasts 6 seconds. Note that it also removes movement-impairing effects that are already applied on players.

Earthgrab Totem Icon Earthgrab Totem and Windwalk Totem Icon Windwalk Totem are the best choices, depending on which one will be the most useful to your raid. Windwalk Totem Icon Windwalk Totem is basically a raid-wide version of Hand of Freedom Icon Hand of Freedom and can be useful on many encounters. There often are other classes that can do a better job than Earthgrab Totem Icon Earthgrab Totem, so the opportunities to use it are rather limited.

Frozen Power Icon Frozen Power suffers from only being useful on a single target, but in that particular case (rooting a single enemy) the short cooldown of Frost Shock Icon Frost Shock makes Frozen Power better than Earthgrab Totem. That said, in a lot of raid encounters, the enemies are immune to Frozen Power's rooting effect.

4. Tier 3 Talents↑top

Tier 3 talents have been designed with totem cooldown and mobility in mind.

  • Call of the Elements Icon Call of the Elements, which does not trigger the global cooldown, resets the cooldown of your totems that have a base cooldown shorter than 3 minutes:
  • Totemic Persistence Icon Totemic Persistence allows you to summon a second totem of the same kind, without destroying the first. It does not work with Fire totems and you can only have the effect active on a single kind of totem at a time. This means, that you cannot have, at the same time, two Earth totems and two Water totems.
  • Totemic Projection Icon Totemic Projection enables you to relocate your totems to a new location. Casting this spell does not trigger the global cooldown.

Call of the Elements Icon Call of the Elements should be chosen when neither of the two other talents can apply, although it will not work on totems that have a 3-minute cooldown.

Totemic Projection Icon Totemic Projection will be useful for moving your totems (mostly Searing Totem Icon Searing Totem) to a new location without spending a global cooldown for it. This talent is primarily meant for encounters with a lot of movement, although you can use it with great success to keep relocating your crowd-control totems (Capacitor Totem Icon Capacitor Totem, Earthbind Totem Icon Earthbind Totem, or Earthgrab Totem Icon Earthgrab Totem) as the enemies you are targeting are moving out of the area of effect.

Totemic Persistence Icon Totemic Persistence may be situationally useful, for example when you want to use Stone Bulwark Totem Icon Stone Bulwark Totem without sacrificing your Earth Totem slot for utility.

5. Tier 4 Talents↑top

Tier 4 talents have been designed to improve your performance.

Ancestral Swiftness Icon Ancestral Swiftness and Elemental Mastery Icon Elemental Mastery are your talents of choice here. Ancestral Swiftness is very easy to use and you should make a a macro to use its active component with Lightning Bolt Icon Lightning Bolt (your spell with the longest cast time). Elemental Mastery shines in fights where you need burst damage.

Echo of the Elements Icon Echo of the Elements is the best talent for AoE damage where your targets are not moving much (so that Earthquake Icon Earthquake can deal as much damage as possible). In other situations, however, it does not come close to the other two talents.

6. Tier 5 Talents↑top

Tier 5 talents give you a new healing cooldown or a new healing mechanics.

Ancestral Guidance Icon Ancestral Guidance should be your default choice here. It particularly shines when the encounter requires burst healing support from you.

Conductivity Icon Conductivity can be useful, but only if the raid is stacked and is constantly taking high raid damage.

Rushing Streams Icon Rushing Streams is not a good choice and should be avoided.

7. Tier 6 Talents↑top

Tier 6 talents have been designed to improve your performance.

  • Unleashed Fury Icon Unleashed Fury empowers your Unleash Flame Icon Unleash Flame, causing it to also increase your damage done with Lightning Bolt Icon Lightning Bolt by 30% and with Lava Burst Icon Lava Burst by 10% for 10 seconds.
  • Primal Elementalist Icon Primal Elementalist causes your Earth Elemental Totem Icon Earth Elemental Totem and Fire Elemental Totem Icon Fire Elemental Totem to deal 80% more damage. They become regular pets (although they are not permanent) with abilities.
    • The Earth Elemental automatically casts Angered Earth Icon Angered Earth, Pulverize Icon Pulverize, and Harden Skin Icon Harden Skin. If you instruct it to, it will channel Reinforce Icon Reinforce on you, which will decrease the damage you take by 20% and increase the healing you do by 10%.
    • The Fire Elemental automatically casts Fire Blast Icon Fire Blast, Fire Nova Icon Fire Nova, and Immolate Icon Immolate. If you instruct it to, it will channel Empower Icon Empower on you, which will increase the damage you deal by 5% and increase the healing you do by 10%.
  • Elemental Blast Icon Elemental Blast is on a 12-second cooldown and will enable you to maintain a 66% uptime on a buff that changes randomly each time you refresh it: +128 Critical Strike, +128 Haste, +128 Mastery, or +128 Multistrike. The ability also deals a bit of damage every time you use it.

All talents are very well balanced for single-target DPS, so you can choose any of them.

If the encounter requires you to move a lot, or if you often have to AoE down adds with Chain Lightning Icon Chain Lightning, or you need a heavy damage burst, then you will go with Primal Elementalist Icon Primal Elementalist.

Note that when using Primal Elementalist Icon Primal Elementalist, it is usually not worth using Empower Icon Empower from your Fire Elemental (more on that in the rotation page).

8. Tier 7 Talents↑top

Tier 7 talents have been designed to improve your performance.

  • Elemental Fusion Icon Elemental Fusion causes Lava Burst Icon Lava Burst to grant you a buff that increases the damage of your next Shock spell by 40%. This buff stacks twice.
  • Storm Elemental Totem Icon Storm Elemental Totem summons a totem that lasts for 60 seconds, during which time it damages nearby enemies and heals allies within 15 yards for 100% of the damage dealt.
  • Liquid Magma Icon Liquid Magma empowers your current Fire Totem to cause damage to multiple targets through globs of liquid magma erupting from it and going towards random enemies, dealing damage in their path.

Elemental Fusion Icon Elemental Fusion is the best talent for sustained, single-target DPS. Storm Elemental Totem Icon Storm Elemental Totem is not far behind and adds burst damage and healing, so you should take this talent if you need burst damage and/or healing. Liquid Magma Icon Liquid Magma is slightly behind the other two talents for single-target situations, but it offers better AoE damage.

9. Major Glyphs↑top

Below, you will find glyphs that can improve your DPS, in specific situations.

Finally, there are major glyphs that bring more utility to your spells.

  • Glyph of Capacitor Totem Icon Glyph of Capacitor Totem reduces the charging time of your Capacitor Totem Icon Capacitor Totem by 2 seconds. This means that it will stun all enemies within 8 yards after 3 seconds (instead of 5 seconds, without the glyph). This can be useful if a pack of enemies needs to be controlled rapidly, for example the adds in Phase One and in the Temple of the Jade Serpent during the Heroic version of the Garrosh Hellscream encounter. It is worth mentioning that with this glyph, Capacitor Totem works exceptionally well in conjunction with Totemic Projection Icon Totemic Projection.
  • Glyph of Flame Shock Icon Glyph of Flame Shock causes Flame Shock Icon Flame Shock to heal you for 45% of the damage it deals.
  • Glyph of Ghost Wolf Icon Glyph of Ghost Wolf makes you less susceptible to movement-hindering effects while in Ghost Wolf Icon Ghost Wolf form. This glyph can be useful in fights where you have to travel through areas that slow your movement speed.
  • Glyph of Healing Stream Totem Icon Glyph of Healing Stream Totem adds a damage reduction component to your Healing Stream Totem Icon Healing Stream Totem spell, which can be useful if your raid will be taking Fire, Frost, or Nature damage when you need to use Healing Stream Totem. The damage reduction component is not given to both targets when you take Rushing Streams Icon Rushing Streams.
  • Glyph of Hex Icon Glyph of Hex reduces the cooldown of Hex Icon Hex by 10 seconds, which can be useful if you are assigned to crowd-controlling adds.
  • Glyph of Lightning Shield Icon Glyph of Lightning Shield causes you to take 10% less damage for 6 seconds every time your Lightning Shield Icon Lightning Shield is triggered. This glyph is mutually with Glyph of Reactive Shielding Icon Glyph of Reactive Shielding.
  • Glyph of Purge Icon Glyph of Purge causes your Purge Icon Purge spell to remove 1 additional Magic effect from an enemy target, but adds a 6-second cooldown. It can come in handy if your raid ever needs to simultaneously remove 2 Magic effects from a boss. Note that in most cases, it may be better to just let Mages Spellsteal Icon Spellsteal the effects.
  • Glyph of Shamanistic Rage Icon Glyph of Shamanistic Rage causes your Shamanistic Rage Icon Shamanistic Rage ability to also cleanse you from all dispellable harmful Magic effects. There will no doubt be encounters where this will come in handy. This glyph is mutually exclusive with Glyph of Shamanistic Resolve Icon Glyph of Shamanistic Resolve.
  • Glyph of Shamanistic Resolve Icon Glyph of Shamanistic Resolve reduces damage taken during Shamanistic Rage Icon Shamanistic Rage by a further 30%, but increases the cooldown on that ability by 60 seconds. This is very useful if you need a very strong damage reduction ability. This glyph is mutually exclusive with Glyph of Shamanistic Rage Icon Glyph of Shamanistic Rage.
  • Glyph of Shocks Icon Glyph of Shocks increases the range of your Shock spells and Wind Shear Icon Wind Shear by 5 yards, which can be very situationally be useful.
  • Glyph of Unstable Earth Icon Glyph of Unstable Earth causes your Earthquake Icon Earthquake to also reduce the movement speed of enemies by 40% for 3 seconds (in addition to knocking them down).
  • Glyph of Wind Shear Icon Glyph of Wind Shear increases the cooldown of Wind Shear Icon Wind Shear by 3 seconds, but increases the school lockout duration it causes on the target. This glyph can be useful if having a 15-second cooldown on Wind Shear will not hinder your interrupting duties.

10. Minor Glyphs↑top

Minor glyphs are mostly cosmetic, although there are two of them that might be situationally useful.

11. Changelog↑top

  • 19 Nov. 2014: Updated for Level 100.
  • 18 Oct. 2014: Echo of the Elements is now viable and should be taken for AoE damage on targets that do not move much. This is due to yesterday's hotfix that resolved an issue where the first Earthquake would stop dealing damage when a second Earthquake was triggered by Echo of the Elements.