Classic Enhancement Shaman DPS Stat Priority
On this page, you will find out the optimal PvE stat priority for your Enhancement Shaman DPS in WoW Classic. We first present the stat priority, before delving into more complex explanations.
If you were looking for TBC Classic content, please refer to our TBC Classic Enhancement Shaman stat priority.
The Basics of Stats for Enhancement Shamans
Before we begin, it should be said that gear in WoW Classic tends to be very unique, and as such, you will often be chasing very specific items, rather than simply following a stat priority list. Still, a more detailed explanation on each of a Shaman's relevant stats will help you understand why those pieces are so sought after.
The stat priority for Enhancement Shamans is as follows:
Damage-based Stat Priority
- Weapon stats (DPS and Speed);
- Extra Weapon Skill (great benefit until 308 skill is hit, minor afterwards);
- Hit Chance (about 6% is the soft cap against bosses, if you have at least 305 weapon skill, otherwise you need 9% for capping, which is when your special attacks always hit. Hit loses value after hitting this point);
- Critical Strike (200% damage when it occurs);
- Strength and Attack Power (1 Strength = 2 Attack Power for Warriors, 14 Attack Power = 1 Weapon DPS gain).
- Agility (grants critical strike);
- Mana every 5 seconds (for Mana regeneration while you are casting);
- Intellect (grants spell critical strike and increases your maximum Mana);
Priority of Other Stats
- Stamina (more health per point);
- Resistance (strongly reduces Magic damage taken of a specific element);
- Spirit (health regeneration outside combat);
- Agility (dodge);
- Armor (less physical damage taken).
Getting a Better Understanding of the Stats for Enhancement Shamans
Your weapon is by far the largest contributor to your damage, and you should always aim to upgrade it first, if possible. There are two types of stats you are mainly looking for in a weapon: its DPS or damage and its speed. Higher DPS will make your average sustained damage higher, while slower speed weapons have bigger damage ranges, making Stormstrike and Windfury Weapon procs hit harder.
Weapon Skill allows you to hit enemies more often and, more importantly, for a lot more damage when you land a glancing blow. Glancing blows are regular hits that deal reduced damage. Against your typical Level 63 boss, a full 40% of your attacks will be glancing blows, which deal 35% reduced damage if you only have 300 weapon skill.
|Level Difference||Chance to Occur||Base Damage Penalty|
However, by increasing your weapon skill, up to a maximum of 308 for this purpose, you can increase your glancing blow damage up to a cap of roughly 95% of a normal hit, making glancing blows hit for close to normal hits.
|Defense / Weapon Skill Difference||Glancing Penalty||Miss Chance||Hit Cap|
|10 (Human / Orc)||15%||6%||6%|
|8 ( Edgemaster's Handguards)||7%||5.8%||5.8%|
Increasing your weapon skill also significantly increases your chance to hit the target, as seen in the table above, making it one of the most powerful melee damage stats.
Hit allows your melee attacks to land more often, directly leading to more DPS and more chances at activating your important Annihilator / Nightfall debuffs.
Spell Hit allows your spells to land more often, which is a decent DPS increase, but keep in mind that you will always have at least a 1% chance to miss with spells. Depending on the level of your enemy, you might need more, or less Spell Hit to reach this 1% cap:
- For an enemy of the same level as you, 3% Spell Hit is needed to cap.
- For an enemy 1 level higher than you, 4% Spell Hit is needed to cap.
- For an enemy 2 levels higher than you, 5% Spell Hit is needed to cap.
- For an enemy 3 levels higher than you, which is the case of raid bosses, 16% Spell Hit is needed to cap.
The boss spell hit cap is too high for Enhancement Shamans to hit, and Spell Hit gear does not usually have the other stats we are looking for, so expect to see quite a few resists on your shocks as you go.
Critical Strike allows you to have higher uptime on Flurry, as well as higher burst potential in PvP, and as such is a highly valuable stat. Take note that, due to Critical Strike aura suppression, you have a reduced Critical Strike chance gain from gear against bosses.
When you swing your weapon, it has a chance to miss, be parried or dodged by the target, among other outcomes. Only hits have the potential to critical strike, but hits only represent roughly 30% of the potential outcomes for a white (auto attack) swing. This is what is known as a crit cap since any critical strike chance above that roughly 30% mark cannot result in a critical strike.
Further in depth, the calculation priority on a white swing goes as follows: misses, dodges, parries, blocks, glancing hits, white crits and hits. Because glancing blows by themselves are always 40% of your hits against boss level enemies, it is possible to gain enough extra critical strike chance to make all normal hits critical strike, thus hitting the crit cap.
This cap increases along with your hit chance and weapon skill, because those reduce your chance to miss, get dodged, parried, or blocked (does not affect glancing blows, though). As an example, if you are dual wielding and have no extra hit chance on your gear, as well as 300 weapon skill, you will have 100% (baseline) - 28% (miss with dual wield) - 5.6% (dodge chance) - 0% (parry from behind) - 0% (block from behind) - 40% (glancing) = 26.4% chance to land a white crit or hit against boss level enemies, while attacking from behind.
Since yellow or special hits cannot be glancing hits, you will be able to increase your critical strike chance with them well above the white hit critical strike cap mentioned above. Also, the white critical strike cap will usually be higher while using a two-hand weapon due to their lower miss chance.
As a Shaman, Agility increases your dodge, your armor and your critical chance. Since Enhancement Shamans care about having as much critical chance as possible, Agility is a good stat to get along the way.
Mana every 5 seconds
Mana every 5 seconds, or simply Mp5, is a common stat found on healing gear. This is the best stat for getting more Mana during a fight because it works constantly, even if you cast something in the last 5 seconds (contrary to Spirit) and should thus be taken whenever possible, until you feel comfortable with your Mana sustainability.
Intellect is a good stat for Enhancement Shamans, as it increases total Mana pool and spell critical strike. The Mana pool gain is very significant during leveling and while AoE grinding, but not so significant during raids, where Mana regeneration and Mana consumables will typically play a bigger part in your sustainability.
Stamina is the only stat that will help you survive all types of attacks, and as such, should always be valued.
Resistance, while inherently niche due to different bosses dealing different magical damage types, can be very useful while progressing specific bosses. Wearing resistance gear of a type makes you take less damage or even completely avoid damage when hit by that type of magical damage.
For Enhancement Shamans, Spirit provides Mana regeneration, but only when you are not casting for 5 seconds or more, which will rarely the case outside of leveling / soloing.
- 30 Aug. 2020: Increased Strength's priority for damage dealing.
- 07 May 2020: Reworked some outdated sections.
- 19 Mar. 2020: Corrected some minor typos in the critical strike section.
- 19 Aug. 2019: Page added.
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