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Shadow Priest DPS Guide (Legion 7.1.5)

Last updated Yesterday at 20:28 by Furty 149 comments

Table of Contents

General Information

Welcome to our Shadow Priest DPS guide for World of Warcraft Legion 7.1.5. Here, you will learn everything you need to know about playing a Shadow Priest in a raid environment and in Mythic+ dungeons.

About Our Author and Reviewer

This guide has been written by Furty, who has an illustrious history in the World of Warcraft raiding scene and race for World First. He has been a member of guilds such as Serenity, Midwinter, and many more, and is currently raiding in Myst. He plays most classes at the highest level. You can follow him on Twitter and watch him play on Twitch.

This guide has been reviewed by Juzu, a Shadow Priest who plays in Method. You can watch his stream on Twitch.

1. Class Overview

The Shadow specialization is currently able to deal high single-target damage and high sustained multi-DoT damage. It presents players with a complex rotation that is very challenging but also very rewarding.

The Shadow Priest playstyle is very reliant on DoTs, and this means that they also do very well in situations where they can multi-DoT several targets.

2. Significant Legion Changes

The Shadow specialisation has undergone a considerable number of changes from Warlords of Draenor. The core mechanics of the class have been completely redesigned. Here are the most notable changes.

  • Shadow Orbs and Devouring Plague have been removed.
  • Mastery has been changed from the old Mental Anguish to Mastery: Madness Icon Mastery: Madness (which is a simple increase to the damage of some of your abilities).
  • A new resource has been added called Insanity, which is used alongside Mana. Insanity is generated by a number of abilities, and is used on the very important Void Eruption Icon Void Eruption ability (see below).
  • When reaching a certain amount of Insanity, you can temporarily enter a powerful Voidform Icon Voidform (similar, at least cosmetically, to the old Shadowform), until you run out of Insanity. The Shadow playstyle now revolves entirely around generating Insanity, activating Voidform, and staying in Voidform for as long as possible.

3. Patch 7.1.5 Changes

  • Large buffs to most of the baseline DPS abilities and DoTs.
  • Masochism Icon Masochism has been improved. Now when you cast Shadow Mend on yourself, its damage over time effect heals you instead, and reduces all damage you take by 10%.
  • The insanity generated by Auspicious Spirits Icon Auspicious Spirits has been reduced to 3, down from 4.
  • Legacy of the Void Icon Legacy of the Void allows Void Eruption Icon Void Eruption to be used with 65 Insanity, down from 70 and increases your Shadow damage by an additional 5%.
  • Mind Bomb Icon Mind Bomb has been buffed to a 4 second stun.
  • Mind Spike has been removed and replaced with Shadow Crash Icon Shadow Crash.
  • Misery Icon Misery has replaced Shadow Crash Icon Shadow Crash as a Tier 6 talent.
  • Lingering Insanity Icon Lingering Insanity is no longer passive. The Void Lord talent has been renamed to Lingering Insanity Icon Lingering Insanity.
  • Surrender to Madness Icon Surrender to Madness has been nerfed to now only generate 100% extra Insanity, down from 150%.
  • Shadow Word: Void Icon Shadow Word: Void has been buffed to a 20-second recharge, down from 30 seconds.
  • Mind Flay Icon Mind Flay Insanity generation has been increased, and if the target is afflicted with Shadow Word: Pain Icon Shadow Word: Pain you will also deal splash damage to nearby targets.
  • Mind Sear has been removed; it is now a passive within Mind Flay, causing Mind Flay Icon Mind Flay ticks made against targets with Shadow Word: Pain Icon Shadow Word: Pain to splash additional damage to nearby targets.
  • Shadow Word: Death Icon Shadow Word: Death generates 15 Insanity, up from 10, and 30 Insanity if the target dies.
  • Mind Blast Icon Mind Blast generates 15 Insanity, up from 12.
  • Shadow Word: Pain Icon Shadow Word: Pain and Vampiric Touch Icon Vampiric Touch last longer, deal more damage, and generate more Insanity.
  • Void Bolt Icon Void Bolt no longer extends DoTs back to their maximum duration; instead, it now adds 3.0 seconds to their current duration. This effect can extend beyond the DoTs maximum duration.
  • Mania Icon Mania has been buffed to 1% movement speed per 3 Insanity, down from 5 Insanity.

4. Strengths

  • Very strong single-target and multi-target damage
  • Handles spread cleave exceptionally well

5. Weaknesses

  • Weak AoE
  • Low burst damage

6. Viability in the Current Patch

Shadow is currently one of the strongest ranged DPS in Patch 7.1.5. It occupies the spread cleave niche, a role it fills better than any other class or specialization. It also boasts impressive sustained single-target damage.

7. Contents

To make it easy to navigate the guide, we have split it into 9 pages:

8. ChangeLog

  • 14 Jan. 2017 (gear page): Added new legendary items.
  • 14 Jan. 2017 (talents page): Added a Surrender cheat sheet and time stamps for the end tier talents.
  • 14 Jan. 2017 (enchants page): Updated for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 14 Jan. 2017 (addons page): Added a Mind Flay macro.
  • 10 Jan. 2017 (this page): Revamped intro. Added Patch 7.1.5 changes section, added strengths/weaknesses section, and added Viability section.
  • 10 Jan. 2017 (gear page): Updated legendary priority. Made note of Sephuz potency in M+.
  • 10 Jan. 2017 (stats page): Updated stats for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 10 Jan. 2017 (rotation page): Full overhaul. Revised formatting, updated for 7.1.5, and added additional information.
  • 10 Jan. 2017 (easy mode page): Small update to easy mode talents for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 10 Jan. 2017 (artifact page): Updated relic priority for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 10 Jan. 2017 (talents page): Revamped talent section. Added cheat sheet talent builds and updated talents for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 10 Jan. 2017 (spells page): Patch 7.1.5 update.
  • 09 Dec. 2016 (easy mode page): Added easy mode for Shadow Priest.
  • 16 Nov. 2016 (talents page): Updated the Body and Soul description to account for its current movement speed bonus and duration.
  • 31 Oct. 2016 (rotation page): Slightly improved the Shadowform mention at the start of the guide.
  • 31 Oct. 2016 (this page): Removed mention of Shadowform always being on, since this was changed in patch 7.1.
  • 31 Oct. 2016 (artifact page): Added a mention of how having Mangaza's Madness can affect relic choice and also added a clarification of how to account for item level differences provided by different relics.
  • 25 Oct. 2016 (rotation page): Added a mention of Shadowform (you should always have it active).
  • 10 Oct. 2016 (artifact page): Updated the relic priority.
  • 10 Oct. 2016 (talents page): Updated Void Ray description, moved Power Infusion to being the recommended choice, and removed a mention about Mangaza's Madness influencing talent choice.
  • 10 Oct. 2016 (gear page): Updated some mentions about legendary items.
  • 10 Oct. 2016 (rotation page): Made various updates and improvements to account for the repeated changes to Dispersion and Void Torrent.
  • 10 Oct. 2016 (enchants page): Updated the page to reflect that Haste gems should be taken in all slots.
  • 25 Sep. 2016 (rotation page): Updated the page to account for the fact that you no longer gain Voidform stacks while Dispersion and Void Torrent are active.
  • 19 Sep. 2016 (enchants page): Updated neck enchants to Mark of the Hidden Satyr.
  • 15 Sep. 2016 (stats page): Updated the stat priorities.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (this page): Updated for Legion's launch.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (enchants page): Updated for Legion's launch.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (artifact page): Added.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (rotation page): Updated for Legion's launch.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (gear page): Updated for Legion's launch.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (stats page): Updated for Legion's launch.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (talents page): Updated for Legion's launch.
  • 30 Jul. 2016 (gear page): Updated trinket and set bonus recommendations.
  • 19 Jul. 2016 (rotation page): Corrected the duration of Vampiric Touch from 24 to 18 seconds, which was a change that came in a recent hotfix.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (stats page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (addons page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (enchants page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (this page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (talents page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (rotation page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (gear page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
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