DPS Rankings

World of Warcraft 8.3 Visions of N'Zoth

1 Arcane 66,806 DPS 100.0%
2 Beast Mastery 64,085 DPS 95.9%
3 Marksmanship 62,214 DPS 93.1%
4 Unholy 61,918 DPS 92.7%
5 Enhancement 61,124 DPS 91.5%
6 Balance 60,077 DPS 89.9%
7 Survival 59,749 DPS 89.4%
8 Havoc 59,138 DPS 88.5%
9 Elemental 59,060 DPS 88.4%
10 Frost 58,390 DPS 87.4%
11 Fire 57,614 DPS 86.2%
12 Affliction 56,833 DPS 85.1%
13 Feral 56,626 DPS 84.8%
14 Assassination 55,634 DPS 83.3%
15 Destruction 55,415 DPS 83.0%
16 Retribution 55,072 DPS 82.4%
17 Frost 54,894 DPS 82.2%
18 Demonology 54,585 DPS 81.7%
19 Subtlety 54,395 DPS 81.4%
20 Windwalker 54,253 DPS 81.2%
21 Shadow 52,565 DPS 78.7%
22 Outlaw 52,164 DPS 78.1%
23 Fury 50,102 DPS 75.0%
24 Arms 49,165 DPS 73.6%

DPS Rankings Overview

These rankings are created using SimulationCraft, a program that is highly tested and trusted for simulating in-game encounters with characters.

We use SimulationCraft because simulators permit a high degree of control by allowing us to use specific talents, rotations, gear, possible boss mechanics, etc. to arrive at repeatable results that can be compared across specs and time. Also, simulators allow us to average out results from thousands of fights to get a feel for how a spec performs all of the time and not in one amazing fight.

If you are curious to learn about the simulation fight encounters of Max and Real, we recommend to read our past articles that describe them in Part I and Part II.

Common Questions

The damage meters for my boss fights look very different than these rankings. Why?

There are any number of reasons why in-game results will differ from simulated (or log based) results. A few common differences include the following.

  • Fight Length: Dungeons and LFR raids often have shorter fight durations which can result in much higher DPS as the value of DPS cooldowns is greatly increased in short fights.
  • Multiple Targets: The current DPS rankings offer strictly single-target and splash-AoE (1 main target+2). There are scenarios in-game where there are a lot more targets which can allow for much more aggressive AoE.
  • Player Variables: Skill, latency, gear, a lucky string of crits, etc. can all significantly impact in-game DPS. Rankings can help represent general trends, but they’ll rarely predict the outcome of a specific encounter with all its unique factors.

How do these rankings compare to other sources that use raid logs to show spec comparisons?

Raid log sites offer a perspective on how some of top players are performing with each spec. These rankings can be helpful to understand how specs are faring in the current raid tier and often reveal unexpected synergies between specific specs and boss encounters. However, log based sites are subject to their own data problems including players who artificially boost their DPS by employing technical or social exploits, changes in popularity of specs, uneven sample sizes, and generally unrepeatable or uncontrolled results.

While simulators allow us to get a feel for how a spec performs all of the time through averaging out thousands of fight results, it is important to note that simulators are generally weak when modeling specific fights in a raid tier, and additionally they rely on data that is as good as the theorycrafting community is able to produce.

Overall, no single DPS ranking is perfect and they should all be considered when evaluating specs. Simulators and log based solutions both offer value to the WoW community.