TBC Classic Shadow Priest Guide
Welcome to our Shadow Priest guide for TBC Classic, tailored for PvE content. Here, you will learn how all you need to know to play Shadow Priest proficiently. Click the links below to navigate the guide or read this page for a short introduction.
Priests are invokers of both the light and dark spirits. They remain devout in their faith above all others, putting the needs of the people and the greater good above all else.
Shadow Priests choose to support their allies by hindering the minds of their foes. These Priests choose to assault their enemies directly, rather than mend the wounds of their allies. This spec returns a portion of its damage dealt as Mana and health to their party, making it extremely strong in raids.
If you would like to see where Shadow Priests 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
- Brings multiple buffs to the raid.
- Debuffs the target, increasing Magic and Shadow damage taken.
- Returns a portion of damage dealt as Mana to party, which is great for healers and Mana-dependent DPS.
- Returns a portion of damage dealt as health to the party, which adds a ton of additional healing to a group.
- Has no AoE spells.
- Deals very high threat, especially when returning health and Mana.
- Considered a support DPS, so raid spots may be limited.
Best Races for Shadow Priests
Here we will recommend the best race for both factions, as well as show you the benefits that Shadow Priests get from each individual race. Similar to WoW Classic, Priests get two abilities that are unique to the race chosen. While some of these abilities are nearly useless and some are focused on the PvP side of things, a few of these racial spells are very strong in a PvE environment.
Races for Alliance Shadow Priests
Draenei make great Shadow Priests, offering your party 1% increased Spell Hit chance, as well as returning more Mana to your party through Symbol of Hope. Night Elf is also a great choice, offering higher personal DPS through Starshards.
Added to the game with TBC Classic, Draenei make for very strong Shadow Priests, offering Spell Hit rating to themselves and their entire party through Inspiring Presence. Symbol of Hope has a long cooldown but grants your party 1,000 Mana at Level 70, making this a great option as your primary focus is to restore your party's Mana!
Starshards is a nice damage increase, especially on the move. It is worth noting that it deals Arcane damage, thus it does not increase your Mana returned to the party from Vampiric Touch. Elune's Grace has some very niche uses, but may come in handy during certain fights.
Humans are a great, well-rounded choice for Priests, increasing your total Spirit by 10%. The increased reputation gain from Diplomacy helps immensely with the early-game reputation farming, but falls off later as it has no benefit other than that.
Races for Horde Shadow Priests
Both Troll and Undead are about equal in terms of Shadow Priest benefits. Both races offer a damage increase as well as some form of utility. If you are focusing on PvE purely, especially with a healing off-spec, Troll is the recommended race. If you are an avid PvP player, Undead will be the recommended spec as it performs well in both environments.
Troll has a few beneficial racials available for Priests. However, most of these have little to no practical uses. Berserking is the main reason to consider Troll, offering 10 seconds of greatly-increased spell casting speeds. Shadowguard and Hex of Weakness are very unlikely to be used in PvE, but may have a few niche uses. Beast Slaying is a great passive damage increase, but unfortunately there are a very limited amount of Beast-type bosses in TBC Classic.
Undead is a strong choice, offering a new DoT spell through Devouring Plague. As it deals Shadow damage, it will increase the Mana you return to your party if Vampiric Touch is applied to the same target. Will of the Forsaken has a few niche PvE uses, but for the most part is not that useful in PvE environments.
Best Professions for Shadow Priests
Tailoring is a must-have profession as a Shadow Priest that offers you some massive gear, some of which is your second-best-in-slot in the entire game! Frozen Shadoweave Shoulders and Frozen Shadoweave Boots are examples that last for the majority of the content to be found in TBC Classic.
Enchanting will be your next-best profession, giving +24 Spell Damage total. Spell Damage being a Shadow Priest's favored stat makes this a fairly nice stat boost.
Leatherworking can be a good option if there are no other players with drums in your group during raids.
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:
- 06 May 2022 (pre-raid gear page): Updated for Phase 5.
- 02 May 2022 (Phase 3 gear page): Guide moved.
- 02 May 2022 (gear page): Updated for Phase 5.
- 02 May 2022 (enchants page): Added Phase 5 content.
- 21 Mar. 2022 (gear page): Page updated for Phase 4.
- 16 Jan. 2022 (enchants page): Added Phase 3 Gems.
- 09 Jan. 2022 (Phase 2 gear page): Guide moved.
- 09 Jan. 2022 (gear page): Updated for Phase 3; separated previous Phase 2 list into a new page.
- 19 Sep. 2021 (Phase 1 gear page): Page restored.
- 14 Aug. 2021 (gear page): Page added.
- 04 Jun. 2021 (stats page): Added Mana Per 5 to Stat Priority and further elaborated on its value.
- 30 May 2021 (pre-raid gear page): Guide added.
- 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.
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