Top 5 Best DPS Classes for Battle for Azeroth Raids
Picking a class in WoW can be a daunting task. There are many considerations to be had when choosing your main, such as raw damage numbers, raid and dungeon utility and how much you personally enjoy the rotation. And while no one can tell you which class you personally enjoy playing, what I can help you with are the raw damage numbers and how valuable your raid utility might be. With that in mind, I decided to rank the top 5 best DPS classes for Battle for Azeroth Raids. Before getting on to the list, I’d like to point out that I’m not a super hardcore raider but me and my guildies did manage to get the coveted Cutting Edge: Argus The Unmaker achievement, and I had a pretty decent mythic plus score in legion.
Warlock was the undisputed king of Legion and while it did saw some nerfs in BFA it still remains a very strong class for raiding. Currently affliction warlock is sitting pretty at the top end of the simulation charts both in low pre-raid ilvl and high ilvl. While these sim charts do not provide an accurate representation of a real boss fight, they do give an idea of what to expect from each class. And it’s pretty safe to say warlock has good damage numbers at least in single target.
But of course DPS isn’t everything, class utility also plays a major role when building a raid group and warlock offers some of the best raid utility. the first and most valuable utility warlock provides are healthstones. BFA changed the way healthstones and health potions work, they no longer share a cooldown and you can use both a healthstone and health pot in a fight. This change made healthstones from a nice gold save utility to an absolute must for progression.
Other than that, warlocks also offer Demonic Gateway which allows even the most immobile classes to maximize output and avoid mechanics. Demonic Gateway is pretty much required for some fights and some fights even require more than 1.
The Summon King
The last thing to note about warlock’s utility is the Ritual of Summoning ability which allows summoning raid members. This ability isn’t a combat utility and it may seem minor as you can just as easily use the summoning stone outside the raid. But keep in mind that azerite gear traits can’t be changed on the fly and the only way to respec them is to port back to your major city. This fact may lead to a situation where most of your raid will be asking for a summon between each boss to respec their traits. Having a warlock in the group will save a lot of down time between each boss.
When considering all of these together, we can safely say warlock is one of the best classes currently for BFA raid. I imagine every raid group will want to have at least 1 warlock in the raid, be it for the gateway, summoning portal, healthstones, or simply for the raw damage output.
The first thing to note about rogue and especially subtlety rogue is that their damage, both single target and AOE, is absolutely insane. currently subtlety rogue sits at the top of the high ilvl chart.
Other than the insane damage rogues provide, they also have the best personal utility and defensive cooldowns in the form of Feint, Cloak of Shadows, and Evasion or Riposte depending on the spec. I’ll try to breakdown these spells and explain what makes them so valuable. First we have Feint, which reduces all area of effect damage you take by 40% for 5 seconds. Feint allows a rogue to ignore some raid wide damaging mechanics while taking minimal damage. It also allows a rogue to sometimes soak a mechanic alone instead of 2-3 people it usually requires. This makes rogues crucial for some fights. For example, the Fallen Avatar fight in Tomb of Sargeras required 2-3 rogues on mythic difficulty. And while we can’t know if BFA bosses will require rogues, rogues will almost certainly be useful and shine and in some fights.
The second defensive is Cloak of Shadows, which grants you immunity to any magical effect and damage. This ability is pretty self explanatory. You can use it to completely ignore some mechanics or soak a mechanic with zero damage taken. Cloak of Shadows also removes any negative magical effects from you and can be used as an extra personal dispel.
To sum up, rogues have great damage potential both in single target and in AOE situations. Their personal defensives offer great solutions to difficult raid mechanics. Overall rogues are a valuable addition to any raid group and in some fights are mandatory. Choosing a rogue as your main will be a great choice if you want to kill bosses and dodge the fearsome bench!
Moving on to the next on our list, we have the almighty Retribution Paladin. Ret paladins were middle of the road in terms of damage numbers in Legion. But with BFA’s changes paladins now lead the way in the 2nd and 4th position on the simulation charts.
But, as I said before, damage isn’t everything and utility must be considered as well. Paladins offer some of the best raid utility and cooldowns in the form of Greater Blessing of Kings, Greater Blessing of Wisdom, Blessing of Protection, Divine Shield, and Lay on Hands.
The Buff Machine
Kings and Wisdom are your standard buffs which should be kept up at all times. Kings on either yourself or one of the tanks, and wisdom on one of your healers. These 2 buffs provide great damage absorption and mana regeneration.
Blessing of Protection, is an immunity to all physical damage and can be cast either on yourself or a raid member. BoP can be used in a variety of ways. You can use it on yourself to ignore some mechanics. Another use is to save a raid member that messed up. You can also use it to help out your healers when trying to heal a nasty physical damage DoT.
Divine shield is straight up the best immunity in the game. Allowing you to completely avoid all damage and keep attacking and moving normally. And last but certainly not least, Lay on Hands is more or less a full heal to any raid member, and a good ret paladin can save himself or a raid member easily.
Overall, even if we ignore the great damage output ret paladins currently have, you will want to have at least 1-2 ret paladins in your raid for most fights. Wisdom is crucial for mana intensive fights and BoP can be used to cheese so many mechanics it’s unreal. If you enjoy the role of playing a supportive melee role and still have great damage you should strongly consider rolling as a retribution paladin.
Next on our list, but not falling short of the previous entries, is the Windwalker Monk. Monks were at the top of the DPS charts during the final tier of Legion and it doesn’t seem like they want to give that title away anytime soon. Currently monk sits at the very top of the low ilvl chart, and 4th place on the high ilvl chart. Based on this alone I would recommend monk to anyone that enjoys a melee playstyle. But monk has more tricks other than raw damage.
One major utility monks bring to raids is Mystic Touch. Mystic Touch increases all physical damage the target takes by 5%. This ability essentially increases all of your physical damage dealers damage by 5%. This is huge.Five percent may seem small but it can make the difference between a wipe and a kill on some short enrage timer bosses.
Other than the damage and increased physical damage, monks also offer utility in the form of Ring of Peace and Leg Sweep. Ring of Peace forms a ring at a target location which prevents enemies from entering. This spell is amazing for some fights and on the verge of required. Placing a ring to stop adds from reaching a location even if they can’t be stunned or slowed is incredible. Leg Sweep shouldn’t be underestimated also. In BFA Blizzard took steps to reduce the number of AOE stuns available and having one is now a bit more rare. Having an AOE stun can be clutch for some add fights and is highly valuable.
Overall, Windwalker monks offer great damage and great utility. They also have great mobility which adds to the fun factor of the class. Monks were one of the strongest DPS classes at the end of Legion and they seem to be going strong into BFA.
Last on our list but certainly not least is the Mage. Mages always had a place in Legion, their reliable damage output, mobility, and strong defensive tools made mages a good option for almost any fight. BFA seems to be going in the same direction. Mage currently sits pretty at the number two slot on the low ilvl chart. And while mage data seems to be missing from the high ilvl chart, mages had good damage output in the beta for BFA. It’s a pretty safe bet to assume mages will have good damage at high item levels.
Other than the great damage, mages also offer some great raid utility in the form of Arcane Intellect and Ice Block. Arcane Intellect increases your raid Intellect by 10%. While Arcane Intellect won’t cause that guy to stop taking avoidable damage, it will increase all of your spellcasters damage output by a good chunk.
Me Am Smart, Me No Stand in Fire
Having Arcane Intellect is a good enough reason alone to have 1 mage in your raid. But on top of that you also get to have Ice Block which prevents all damage taken for 10 seconds. Having this immunity is a huge advantage for mages. You can use Ice Block in a wide variety of ways. Such as soaking a patch designed for 2-3 players, avoiding a mechanic to maximize your DPS, saving your life if your healers are struggling, covering up for a mistake you made earlier etc etc,
Overall, mages have great damage and great raid utility. It’s pretty safe to say that as a mage you will most likely have a spot in the raid. Having at least 1 mage in the group is pretty much required in BFA just for the Arcane Intellect. But even stacking mages is not a bad idea. Mages are strong, mobile and versatile and any raid should have one or more.
And with that, our list is done. Choosing any of these classes will be a good choice for BFA raiding. The last thing I’d like to say is that a good player can shine on any class and unless you are into hardcore raiding, you should play what you enjoy. Thanks for reading!