Destruction Warlockdestruction iconvselemental iconElemental Shaman

Debating whether to play a Elemental Shaman or Destruction Warlock? Knowing which currently performs better DPS in PvE might help make a decision.

This page analyzes multiple simulations for both Elemental Shamans and Destruction Warlocks using profiles and settings intended to achieve their maximum DPS. Multiple sim environments are used to test how they perform in various conditions. Is one the AoE king? Does one scale better with gear upgrades? Is one more bursty, and more reliant on big cooldowns? Below analyzes the data to find the strengths of each.

Simulation results were created with SimulationCraft
Using game data from Patch 10.0 WoW Dragonflight Pre-patch

  • Destruction Warlockdestruction icon
  • Best boss DPS (in perfect settings)Destruction Warlock achieved 32.55% more maximum boss DPS than Elemental Shaman when there was no movement or lag.
  • Best boss DPS (in realistic settings)Destruction Warlock achieved 32.54% more maximum boss DPS than Elemental Shaman when dealing with occasional movement, lag and crowd-control.
  • Best gear scalingDestruction Warlock scaled better with increased item-levels, single-target DPS benefited 47.99% more from 282 ilvl to 308 compared to Elemental Shamans.
  • Simplest GameplayDestruction Warlock has fewer damaging abilities which could indicate a simpler rotation.
  • DPS less dependant on big cooldownsDestruction Warlock’s DPS is less bursty, meaning it had more consistent damage. With 82.67% less difference in lowest and peak DPS during a fight when compared to Elemental Shamans.
  • elemental iconElemental Shaman
  • Best AoE DPS (in perfect settings)Elemental Shaman achieved 63.79% more AoE DPS than Destruction Warlock when there was no movement or lag.
  • Least affected by movement (single-target)Elemental Shaman’s single-target DPS was -32.9% less affected by increased movement compared to Destruction Warlocks.

While the above highlights the DPS advantages between Destruction Warlock and Elemental Shamans, the DPS potential should not be the only factor in your decision. Ultimately, you should also consider the playstyle that you enjoy most while crushing it in Mythics+ and Raids!


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