5v5 Arena Composition Tier List / Guide for TBC Classic

Last updated on May 06, 2021 at 00:21 by Seksixeny 1 comment

With TBC comes the introduction of the Arena, inside which 2v2, 3v3 and 5v5 matches occur. Doing well in the arena will increase your team's rating, and the higher you go, the more points will be gained upon the weekly reset. These points can then be used to buy arena gear, which mirrors PvE gear in item level but with some item budget allocated to Resilience and PvP-oriented set bonuses.

We will be listing and ranking some of the best arena compositions for the 5v5 arena bracket in this guide. These compositions rely on having a synergistic combination of abilities that can put pressure on opponents and deflect incoming aggression successfully, and we will be offering a brief explanation on each.

Feel free to also consult the 2v2 bracket and 3v3 bracket tier lists, as well as our PvP DPS and PvP Healer rankings in order to learn more about the advantages and disadvantages of each class and specialization when individually assessed.



In this guide, we will be presenting the compositions that form "the meta" of TBC Arena in the 5v5 bracket.

The meta changes over time, but it will naturally change less and more slowly in a game as well understood as TBC Classic, with most of the changes coming in the form of better gear for classes that scale well as we progress in tiers. In the 5v5 meta specifically, the amount of burst brought by Elemental Shamans and the defenses provided by Holy Paladins will be a constant throughout the whole expansion, but other classes may fluctuate in value as gear improves.

Also, while we will present some of the most recognizable arena compositions, the sheer amount of combinations possible is well beyond the scope of this guide, and replacements can easily be made in most teams without massively compromising the end result. Also, note that within each tier the compositions are not listed in order of power.


TBC 5v5 Arena Tier List

5v5 is a rather unbalanced bracket, owing to the crazy amount of burst damage available, which leads most matches to be decided within the first minute. Melee classes tend to have a hard time staying alive, as they often need to put themselves into the middle of the enemy team in order to deal damage.


Best TBC Arena Compositions for 5v5

Contrary to the other Arena brackets, crowd control (CC) is of limited usefulness in the 5v5 bracket as it is likely to be interrupted, dispelled, or simply arrive too late to have an impact on the fast paced matches.

Thus, the best 5v5 team compositions rely on burst damage, mostly of the ranged and cooldown-bound sort, and the strong defensive cooldowns and bubble of a Holy Paladin to score a kill quickly before the other team can do the same.

Overall, many compositions can work, but casters are generally favored as are classes with powerful cooldowns due to the short nature of most matches.

This list will be adjusted over time as teams match against each other in TBC Classic.

Composition Strengths Weaknesses
  • Aimed Shot IconAimed Shot is deadly when combined with Elemental Shaman and Destruction Warlock burst;
  • Everyone is ranged, making swaps easier and enabling kiting;
  • Multiple offensive and defensive dispels.
  • Casts are required for damage, allowing line-of-sight and interrupts to be a strong counter;
  • No curse dispel leaves most of the team vulnerable to Curse of Tongues IconCurse of Tongues.
  • Mortal Strike IconMortal Strike is deadly when combined with Elemental Shaman burst;
  • High sustained damage and Curse of Tongues IconCurse of Tongues allows for a long game backup plan;
  • Multiple offensive and defensive dispels.
  • The solo Warrior is a huge target for most enemy teams;
  • No curse dispel leaves the Shaman and Paladin very vulnerable to Curse of Tongues IconCurse of Tongues.
  • Mortal Strike IconMortal Strike is deadly when combined with Shaman and Mage burst;
  • Multiple offensive and defensive dispels.
  • The solo Warrior is a huge target for most enemy teams;
  • Cooldown and Mana dependent, weak in long games.
  • Multiple Elemental cooldowns popped at the same time virtually guarantees one-shots;
  • Enough Bloodlust IconBloodlusts to last the whole match and a lot of potential off-healing;
  • The amount of totems that can be produced are virtually impossible to all be destroyed.
  • Assembling this many Elemental Shamans is unlikely to be viable for most teams;
  • If the opening fails, most teams can crowd control very effectively against this setup.
Shadowplay Plus:
  • Huge amount of non-DR CC available;
  • High damage potential, both burst and sustained;
  • Multiple offensive and defensive dispels.
  • Strong opener potential with multiple CC options to follow up;
  • High burst potential and Wound Poison IconWound Poison;
  • High heal-over-time healing, which is difficult to disrupt with interrupts.
  • Heal-over-time effects are vulnerable to offensive dispels;
  • Multiple squishy targets for the opposing team;
  • No Bloodlust IconBloodlust puts the team at a disadvantage early on.
TriHealer: Alternative healers:
  • Low damage output forces defensive play for an extended period;
  • A Mana win condition requires the enemy team to rely on Mana to begin with, making melee cleaves a hard counter.
Cleave: Alternative healers:
  • Very high burst damage potential with high Windfury Totem IconWindfury Totem synergy;
  • Mortal Strike IconMortal Strike and plenty of tools to keep allies mobile and enemies pinned;
  • No naturally squishy targets.
  • Melee range requirements can easily take your team out of position and line-of-sight healers;
  • Area-of-effect attacks and CC are especially effective against heavy melee teams.


No matter what class or specialization you play, there is always a strong team composition you can utilize. Every team has a weakness and it is important to know them. Teams and their weaknesses can change frequently throughout a season. If there is a team comp that is missing, please let us know in the comments so we can add it to the list.

Feel free to check out our 2v2 and 3v3 arena tier list / comp guides as well if you are interested in those brackets:



  • 06 May 2022: Reviewed for Phase 5.
  • 14 Sep. 2021: Guide added.
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