TBC Classic Elemental Shaman Guide
Welcome to our Elemental Shaman guide for TBC Classic, tailored for PvE content. Here, you will learn how all you need to know to play Elemental Shaman proficiently. Click the links below to navigate the guide or read this page for a short introduction.
Elemental Shamans are the best support caster class in TBC Classic, and also have good ranged DPS on their own, which starts off strong due to the abundance of spell hit and Critical Strike they can get from talents alone.
They are a source of Bloodlust or Heroism and provide the unique Totem of Wrath, which can be combined with Wrath of Air Totem, for a massive spell damage buff for the Shaman's party.
TBC introduces Shamans to the Alliance side through the new Draenei race, which can be leveled from the pre-patch onwards.
If you would like to see where Elemenal Shamans fall in the overall rankings among DPS specs for both PvE and PvP in TBC Classic, we have created pages dedicated to explaining what classes and specializations are the best of the best through multiple factors. However, ultimately, you should not let these lists dissuade you from playing what you enjoy.
Strengths and Weaknesses
- Excellent DPS at low gear levels.
- Able to burst on demand with Elemental Mastery.
- Best support caster in the game with Totem of Wrath, Wrath of Air Totem and Bloodlust / Heroism.
- Low mobility and survivability.
- Poor scaling with gear when compared to other casters.
- Struggles with sustaining Mana in longer fights, especially when at low crit levels.
Elemental Shaman Changes in TBC
Elemental Focus is changed in TBCC and now lowers the Mana cost of your two next damaging spells by 40% after you cause a damaging Spell Critical Strike. You can easily fish for these procs with lower rank shocks and Lightning Bolt if needed, and should also look to use the expensive Chain Lightning when you have a proc, if Mana will be an issue in your current encounter.
Call of Thunder now grants 5% Spell Critical Strike at maximum rank, rather than the 6% it provided in WoW Classic.
Lightning Mastery now reduces Lightning Bolt's and Chain Lightning's cast times by up to 0,5 seconds, rather than WoW Classic's 1-second reduction.
To compensate for the previous change, Lightning Bolt and Chain Lightning have a baseline cast time 0,5 seconds faster than they used to. Overall, this results in a reduction in their spell coefficient, while having the same cast time as they did in WoW Classic after Lightning Mastery is taken into account.
Totem of Wrath is a new talent which creates a Fire Totem that increases the Spell Hit and Spell Critical Strike chance of nearby allies by 3%. This is a major DPS increase for any caster, and the main reason to place an Elemental Shaman in caster parties.
Water Shield is a new baseline spell that creates a shield on yourself which provides passive Mana regeneration and extra bursts of Mana whenever you are hit. This is great in all types of content, but especially so if you are being consistently hit for the extra Mana returns, so expect to get a ton of Mana back while soloing and leveling!
Bloodlust / Heroism are new meta-defining spells, which grant a huge amount of Haste for 40 seconds to the Shaman's party. By rotating Shamans into your DPS parties for this cast, you can ensure near-permanent uptime on the buff in any given fight, drastically increasing raid DPS.
Wrath of Air Totem is a new support totem that increases spell power for the Shaman's party, making it a must-have in any caster party.
Totemic Call is a new spell that allows you to destroy your current totems in order to recover 25% of their Mana cost. You can use this to avoid pulling patrols with your totems, to recover some Mana when moving to a new place and even just to recover some Mana for free when your totems are about to expire!
Earth Elemental Totem creates an Earth Elemental that taunts and generates threat on nearby enemies. Due to its relatively high health, it can serve as an emergency tank for you and your group.
Fire Elemental Totem creates a Fire Elemental that deals significant single and area of effect damage, making it great for contributing damage to your group or while soloing.
The overall result of all of these changes and additions is a much stronger Elemental Shaman, mostly courtesy of Totem of Wrath, Wrath of Air Totem and Bloodlust.
Best Races for Alliance Elemental Shamans
Draenei is the only race available. While it is not one of the most impactful Shaman races, it does provide useful benefits, especially to caster parties with its 1% Spell Hit aura effect!
Draenei Elemental Shamans
- Gemcutting increases your Jewelcrafting skill by 5.
- Gift of the Naaru is a short cast with a 3-minute cooldown that heals over time. Because it is free, it can be occasionally useful, and being on the Holy school allows you to cast it in PvP even while Nature-locked.
- Inspiring Presence increases your party's chance to hit with spells by 1%.
- Shadow Resistance increases your Shadow Resistance by 10.
Best Races for Horde Elemental Shamans
Troll is the best race for PvE, Orc is the best race for PvP and second best for PvE and Tauren is a close second for PvP.
Troll Elemental Shamans
- Beast Slaying gives a 5% damage bonus against Beasts.
- Berserking is a 3-minute cooldown that gives you between 10-30% increased attack and casting speed depending on your health, with the effect being greater the more hurt you are.
- Bow Specialization increases your Critical Strike chance by 1% when using a Bow.
- Throwing Specialization increases your Critical Strike chance by 1% when using a thrown weapon.
- Regeneration gives +10% passive health regeneration and allows you to regenerate 10% of your total health regeneration during combat.
Trolls are the best PvE choice if your goal is to maximize your throughput, due to Berserking, which quickens your attacks and casts, especially if activated at low health. Beast slaying can also be useful against beast-type enemies.
Orc Elemental Shamans
- Axe Specialization increases your expertise by 5 while wielding an Axe.
- Blood Fury is a 2-minute cooldown that increases your Attack Power by 282 (at level 70) for 15 seconds, but also reduces healing effects on you by 50% during that time.
- Command increases your pet damage dealt by 5%.
- Hardiness increases your chance to resist stuns by 15%.
Orc is the go-to PvP race, due to Hardiness, which allows you to occasionally resist stun effects. This is especially useful against Rogues. They also have Blood Fury, which is a powerful throughput cooldown, but does come with a significant penalty which leads to it not being usable in every situation.
Tauren Elemental Shamans
- Cultivation increases your Herbalism skill by 15.
- Endurance increases your total health by 5%.
- Nature Resistance increases your Nature Resistance by 10.
- War Stomp is a 2-minute cooldown that stuns up to 5 enemies within 8 yards for 2 seconds, with a 0.5 second cast time.
War Stomp is quite reliable in PvP, often allowing for an emergency Lesser Healing Wave or Chain Lightning cast, but has few PvE uses. The 5% increased health from Endurance is minor. Finally, Taurens have a larger hitbox (especially males), which grants them a slightly increased casting range, but also makes them more likely to be hit by enemy abilities.
Best Professions for Elemental Shamans
While all professions have their unique benefits, we would recommend PvE focused players to level Leatherworking, for the Windhawk Armor set, which doubles as a very strong Restoration Shaman set. You will also get Drums of Battle, which are an important consumable only brought by Leatherworkers.
Enchanting also has significant personal benefits due to exclusive ring enchants which will increase your throughput for all of TBC. Alternatively, Engineering has many explosives that will drastically increase your area of effect damage, such as the new Super Sapper Charge.
Tailoring is not recommended, as it only provides a set bonus for the Spellstrike Infusion set, which is not comparable to the benefits of the other previously listed professions. If you do take it, make sure to make some gold with its periodic cloth transmutes.
Finally, Alchemy is a good passive goldmaking profession due to the transmute recipes and the new elixir, potion and transmute masteries, making it a strong profession on an alt that you do not want to min-max your throughput on.
If you would like to learn more about how your profession of choice can be used to supplement your goldmaking, along with a variety of other means to bolster your income, see our full goldmaking guide linked below:
Best Shaman Macros and Addons
Using macros and addons makes your life significantly easier when playing TBC Classic, and they can improve your experience a lot, depending on how skilled you are at customizing them.
If you are interested in learning more about addons and macros suited to Restoration Shamans, check out our guides below:
- 09 Sep. 2021 (pre-raid gear page): Added new Phase 2 gear options.
- 18 Aug. 2021 (gear page): Page added.
- 16 Aug. 2021 (stats page): Added a note on how sitting increases Spirit-based regeneration.
- 14 Jun. 2021 (pre-raid gear page): Added more Helmet options.
- 14 Jun. 2021 (enchants page): Clarified that CSD is the only meta to use.
- 31 May 2021 (this page): Added links to the Shaman Macros and Addons guides.
- 30 May 2021 (enchants page): Guide added.
- 30 May 2021 (stats page): Guide added.
- 30 May 2021 (rotation page): Guide added.
- 30 May 2021 (talents page): Guide added.
- 30 May 2021 (spells page): Guide added.
- 30 May 2021 (this page): Guide added.
- 30 May 2021 (pre-raid gear page): Guide added.
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