Enhancement Shaman DPS Spec, Builds, and Talents — Shadowlands Pre-Patch 9.0.1
On this page, you will find out the best talents for each tier for your Enhancement Shaman in World of Warcraft — Shadowlands Pre-Patch 9.0.1. We also have default talent lists for various types of content, such as raiding or Mythic+. If you play with Warmode on, we have your PvP talents covered as well.
If you were looking for WoW Classic content, please refer to our Classic Enhancement Shaman DPS talents.
Talent Choices for Enhancement Shaman
|15||✓ Lashing Flames||✓ Forceful Winds||✗ Elemental Blast|
|25||✓ Stormflurry||✗ Hot Hand||✗ Ice Strike|
|30||? Spirit Wolf||? Earth Shield||? Static Charge|
|35||✓ Elemental Assault||✓ Hailstorm||✗ Fire Nova|
|40||? Nature's Guardian||? Feral Lunge||? Wind Rush Totem|
|45||✗ Crashing Storm||? Stormkeeper||✓ Sundering|
|50||? Elemental Spirits||? Earthen Spike||✓ Ascendance|
Talents can be freely changed when out of combat and in a rested XP area (such as an inn or a capital city). Moreover, Tome of the Tranquil Mind and Codex of the Tranquil Mind can be used to temporarily allow players to change talents anywhere, as long as they are out of combat.
Enhancement Shaman Talent Cheat Sheet
This section aims to provide you with a quick and easy set of builds for different situations that lets you get the most out of your Enhancement Shaman. These often work well with each other, and so the builds are quite locked in for that reason. We go into detail about each individual talent in the section underneath.
Raid Encounter: Single Target Oriented
This build sacrifices AoE potential to deal the most single-target damage possible. That means that you should only really be picking this in situations where you only face one enemy for the majority of time, usually in raids.
- Level 15: Lashing Flames
- Level 25: Stormflurry
- Level 30: Player's Choice
- Level 35: Elemental Assault
- Level 40: Player's Choice
- Level 45: Sundering
- Level 50: Ascendance
Mythic+: AoE Oriented
This build focuses on the best AoE options, and is by far the most flexible. This will deal adequate single-target damage, but significantly higher AoE than the above option, so is generally recommended for content with multiple enemies.
- Level 15: Forceful Winds
- Level 25: Stormflurry
- Level 30: Player's Choice
- Level 35: Hailstorm
- Level 40: Player's Choice
- Level 45: Sundering
- Level 50: Ascendance
The above builds are more broad options, but do not account for specific boss-by-boss encounters. If you are looking for specific advice, you can check our dedicated raid page below.
Mythic+ can potentially require a mix of certain AoE and Single-Target talents, depending on affixes and other variables. If you want advice that is specific to Mythic+, you should check out our page below.
How To Use Enhancement Shaman Talents
A lot of the Enhancement talent choices add an additional ability or alter how you would play. We recommend you look at our rotation page linked below for more details on this.
Tier 1 (Level 15) Talents for Enhancement Shaman
|✔ Lashing Flames||✔ Forceful Winds||✘ Elemental Blast|
Tier 1 talents provide damage increases for different damage profiles.
- Lashing Flames causes your Lava Lash to leave a debuff on your target for 12 seconds, increasing the direct damage and DoT effect of your Flame Shock by 100%.
- Forceful Winds causes each successive Windfury Attack within 15 seconds to increase all Windfury damage by 50%. This effect does not refresh itself.
- Elemental Blast is an active ability with a 12-second cooldown and 40-yard range. This deals heavy Elemental damage, and increases your Haste or Critical Strike by 3%, or your Mastery by 6% for 10 seconds. This has a 2-second cast time, but damage can be increased and cast time reduced via Maelstrom Weapon.
For single-target situations, Lashing Flames reigns supreme at all times, due to it slotting into the rotation with no significant requirements, and providing a significant boost to your primary DoT effect in Flame Shock. This cannot really be leveraged for cleave however due to the cooldown Lava Lash has unless you take Hot Hand.
Forceful Winds is relatively weak but is propped up by some remaining Azerite effects such as Thunderaan's Fury, and has no impact on the rotation. Additional procs gained in AoE situations through Crash Lightning casts make it the more flexible option on multiple targets.
Elemental Blast disrupts the rotation significantly with low payoff currently, and does not have access to some of the big endgame Shadowlands systems that can make it strong, so is not currently recommended.
Tier 2 (Level 25) Talents for Enhancement Shaman
|✔ Stormflurry||✘ Hot Hand||✘ Ice Strike|
Tier 2 talents provide additional procs or active abilities that mix up the rotation.
- Stormflurry grants Stormstrike a 25% chance to strike your target an additional time for 40% damage. This effect can chain off itself and triggers all on-hit effects.
- Hot Hand grants your melee auto-attacks with Flametongue Weapon imbued a 5% chance to trigger an 8-second buff, reducing the cooldown of Lava Lash by 75% and increasing its damage by 100%.
- Ice Strike is an active ability with a 15-second cooldown (reduced by Haste). Deals moderate Frost damage, slows your target by 50% for 6 seconds and resets the cooldown of your Shock spells when cast.
In all situations in the Shadowlands pre-patch you will be taking Stormflurry. This slots into the rotation very easily because it causes no disruption, and we still have access to a lot of Stormstrike empowering effects via Azerite such as Roiling Storm. The additional hits also trigger the Crash Lightning AoE splash, making it useful in AoE. Note though that it does not trigger the guaranteed Maelstrom Weapon charge granted by the Elemental Assault talent.
Hot Hand can provide a small burst window that creates a one-two cycle of Lava Lash into filler spell, but is too inconsistent and lacks support from Shadowlands endgame systems to compete. It also does not scale up in AoE situations well at all right now, making it a bad pick.
Ice Strike is simply a bad pick in all pre-patch situations. The additional active ability and low payoff when cast makes it undesirable, coupled with it cluttering the rotation when compared to passive options.
Tier 3 (Level 30) Talents for Enhancement Shaman
|? Spirit Wolf||? Earth Shield||? Static Charge|
Tier 3 talents provide utility tools for different scenarios.
- Spirit Wolf causes Ghost Wolf to grant an additional 5% Movement Speed and 5% damage reduction each second while active, stacking up to 4 times. These stacks are lost when leaving Ghost Wolf.
- Earth Shield applies a shield to your target with 9 charges, increasing all healing you do to them by 10%. If the target takes damage, a charge will be consumed and heal them a small amount. This can only be active on one target at a time.
- Static Charge reduces the cooldown of your Capacitor Totem by 5 seconds per target hit, up to a maximum of 20 seconds.
Spirit Wolf provides the most flexible use here. It can be awkward to make use of and requires you to shift into Ghost Wolf more than you may want to, but flat damage reduction and movement speed can be very strong.
Unfortunately for Earth Shield, it is now exclusive with Lightning Shield which has been made baseline for Enhancement. The Maelstrom Weapon the latter provides means that the overall healing from Earth Shield tends to be weaker, and is exclusively defensive rather than flexible.
Static Charge is extremely niche for situations where you expect to be frequently stunning large numbers of enemies on cooldown, which even in Mythic+ is rare. Can be an extra crowd control option if necessary.
Tier 4 (Level 35) Talents for Enhancement Shaman
|✔ Elemental Assault||✔ Hailstorm||✘ Fire Nova|
Tier 4 talents offer big, but specialized damage increase choices.
- Elemental Assault increases the damage of your Stormstrike by 15%, and causes it to always generate one additional stack of Maelstrom Weapon.
- Hailstorm causes each stack of Maelstrom Weapon you spend (on spells such as Lightning Bolt) to trigger a buff, causing your next Frost Shock cast to deal 35% additional damage and hit 1 extra target per stack.
- Fire Nova is an active ability with a 15-second cooldown, causing each of your active Flame Shocks to erupt dealing low Fire damage to up to 6 targets around them.
Elemental Assault improves the damage of our primary damage tool in the pre-patch — Stormstrike (due to the leftover Azerite traits still buffing it). The additional guaranteed Maelstrom Weapon stacks also smooth out downtime that can happen without AoE effects to support our generation, so excels in these scenarios.
If any extra target is present however, Hailstorm is a mandatory pick. It does an enormous amount of damage and smooths out the AoE rotation significantly due to us lacking crucial passive effects only gained in Shadowlands. It can be flexibly pooled and still deals relevant damage in single-target, so will most often be your pick on this row.
Fire Nova is sadly far too difficult to execute in any realistic scenario. The damage it deals is too low, and the setup has too many issues in general gameplay that get in the way to recommend right now, especially compared to the talents it competes with.
Tier 5 (Level 40) Talents for Enhancement Shaman
|? Nature's Guardian||? Feral Lunge||? Wind Rush Totem|
Tier 5 talents provide additional movement and healing options.
- Nature's Guardian causes you to heal for 20% of your maximum health when you drop below 35% health. This effect has a 45-second cooldown.
- Feral Lunge is an 8-25 yard range charge that also does minor Physical damage. This is on a 30-second cooldown and a 0.5-second Global Cooldown.
- Wind Rush Totem summons a totem for 15 seconds that increases the speed of allies within 10 yards by 60% for 5 seconds. As long as allies remain in the area this will be refreshed. This has a 2-minute cooldown and can be placed up to 40 yards away.
In any situation where your group can capitalize upon Wind Rush Totem, it is the best choice by far. The refresh effect in the area is extremely powerful as it allows for unique benefits to the group to deal with mechanics. If this is not necessary, however, Feral Lunge provides a good amount of additional personal mobility and sticking power, so is a great choice in those circumstances.
Nature's Guardian, on the other hand, gives you a modest amount of additional self-sustain that will also automatically activate, keeping you healthy in situations where you are brought low. This is a solid choice for Raids and Dungeons, especially in the event that you are not in need of extra mobility.
Tier 6 (Level 45) Talents for Enhancement Shaman
|✘ Crashing Storm||? Stormkeeper||✔ Sundering|
Tier 6 talents focus on providing additional burst and AoE tools.
- Crashing Storm causes Crash Lightning to also leave an electrified zone on the ground for 6 seconds, dealing low Nature damage to any target within it each second.
- Stormkeeper is an active ability with a 1-minute cooldown that causes your next two Lightning Bolt or Chain Lightning casts to be instant and deal 150% increased damage. This has a 1.5-second cast, but can be made instant via Maelstrom Weapon.
- Sundering is an active ability with a 40-second cooldown that deals massive "FlameStrike" (Fire/Physical) damage in a line and incapacitates targets hit for 2 seconds.
Sundering provides a flexible choice in all situations, providing an extra burst AoE tool that Enhancement can sometimes be lacking in. It can also slot in to fill gaps in the single-target rotation as a high value cast without any cost.
Stormkeeper only really sees any value in pure single-target situations due to the low damage Chain Lightning deals directly. It can be paired with Earthen Spike, but has a much higher execution requirement than alternatives. Note that the damage dealt by each cast is increased by Maelstrom Weapon stacks present despite not actually consuming them. That means you want to make sure you pool back up to at least 5 stacks before spending any charges after priming it.
Crashing Storm can be used as a low impact option due to Crash Lightning now being part of the rotation at all times. It does suffer from situations where targets are moving, and without the passives gained on the way to level 60 in Shadowlands does not have the same value it could have. Not recommended unless you are struggling with making use of the active options on the row.
Tier 7 (Level 50) Talents for Enhancement Shaman
|? Elemental Spirits||? Earthen Spike||✔ Ascendance|
Tier 7 talents enhance existing burst windows, or grant new ones.
- Elemental Spirits reduces the cooldown of Feral Spirit
by 30 seconds, and and causes you to spawn two wolves in any combination from a
pool of 3 Elements that provide the following buffs to you for the 15-second
- Fire — Molten Weapon increases your Fire damage by 20% and causes Lava Lash to burn the target for an additional 35% of the damage dealt over 4 seconds. This effect accumulates much like Mastery: Ignite for Fire Mages.
- Frost — Icy Edge causes all of your attacks to deal a fixed amount of additional Frost damage and slow the target by 30% for 3 seconds.
- Lightning — Crackling Surge increases the damage of Stormstrike and Windfury Attack by 35%.
- Earthen Spike deals heavy Physical damage and increases the Physical and Nature damage you do to the affected target by 20% for 10 seconds. Has a 20-second cooldown.
- Ascendance deals massive Nature damage around you when cast. It provides a 15 second buff that for the duration converts Stormstrike to Windstrike with a 66% reduced cooldown, and your auto attacks into Windlash. These both ignore armour and a 30-yard range.
With Essences remaining in the pre-patch and the synergy they provide, Ascendance remains the best choice. The on-cast burst has even improved it in some situations to deal a huge amount of damage instantly, and the Azerite related to Stormstrike coupled with the addition of Stormflurry and Elemental Assault have made it more potent.
Elemental Spirits have lost a lot of their power due to our abilities now being more cooldown locked, and the shift in our damage profile that moves away from primary strikes that it affects. It still has some Essence synergy and due to its lower cooldown has more flexibility, but is unlikely to be a good pick and the RNG impact is worse than ever.
Earthen Spike is ideal for frequent priority damage requirements. It has the lowest burst of the 3 options, but can be paired well with Stormkeeper for a short burst of damage every minute. It does not have the same high impact Essence synergy that either other option has though, making it less desirable in the pre-patch.
PvP Talents (War Mode)
"War Mode" is an optional feature that enables open world PvP encounters that confers some benefits when active:
- Grants access to PvP talents in the open world.
- 10% increase in World Quest rewards at max level.
- 10% more experience gained while leveling.
- Earn Conquest Points which can reward gear every week.
With the benefits of War Mode for leveling and PvE content, it is recommended to enable the feature to maximize your leveling and rewards at maximum level. However, you will open yourself up to open world PvP, so be aware of hostile enemy players who could interfere with you, this is a risk you will have to decide on your own if you want take.
If you are interested in doing PvP as an Enhancement Shaman or want to look into how to deal with PvP encounters when playing it, please refer to our dedicated PvP guide.
PvP Talent from Conflict and Strife Essence
Conflict and Strife is an Azerite Essence that is unlocked by doing Rated PvP combat. This provides Enhancement with the Thundercharge PvP talent in all situations and content when equipped in the Major slot, and a stacking Versatility buff from the Minor effect. The Major has very niche uses in raid content due to its ability to enhance the strength of another player in the group, but is otherwise a poor option.
Enhancement Shaman War Mode Talents
Generally the selections are made to optimize your ability to kill enemies faster, increasing your pace when moving through content. In the Shadowlands update, the PvP crowd control reduction talents have been removed, and will be replaced by trinkets available at level 60
- Ride the Lightning provides the largest damage increase option, adding additional effects to each Stormstrike cast.
- Shamanism allows for more liberal Bloodlust / Heroism usage without having to worry about the 10-minute lockout. Great for solo and duo content.
- Skyfury Totem provides a moderate boost when staying in the same area, increasing your Critical Strike damage and Healing by 20% for 15-seconds, with a 40-second cooldown that is low enough to be used liberally, and boosting allies within its range on top of that.
- Counterstrike Totem replicates and reflects damage you take for 15 seconds, on a 45-second cooldown. This can be really strong when in dealing with lots of enemies to convert your health pool into damage.
Other options that are useful include Swelling Waves and Spectral Recovery as healing tools, increasing your sustain either while in combat or moving between encounters. Thundercharge can have some limited uses, increasing the recovery rate of your cooldowns between areas, but Enhancement does not have a lot of impactful tools to make use of this effect.
Ethereal Form, Purifying Waters, and Grounding Totem have very limited PvE uses, being more focused on in-combat control more suited to a PvP engagement, and as such are not really recommended for large groups of low health enemies.
- 13 Oct. 2020: Page updated for the Shadowlands pre-patch.
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