David Hollingsworth
David Hollingsworth
David has written for games media outlets for the last seven years. With his first major esports role being with Esports News UK covering mostly UK League of Legends. David is also a member of the British Esports Association and is an advisor to them on World of Warcraft Esports. More recently David has worked for Esports Insider and Red Bull as an esports journalist.

WoW: Shadowlands 9.1 DPS Raid Tier List

A World of Warcraft player rides a purple and white reindeer mount in a dark landscape with a massive chain tethering something to the ground.

With 9.1 out, it’s time to take a look at the tier list for raiding in the patch.

Patch 9.0 and its meta might have been one of the longest we’ve ever had in WoW. 9.1 is not actually likely to change a lot of the “ok” specs, as the focus is mostly on the over and underperforming. The most notable is that some top-performing specs are taking a hit, while a few of the worst are getting a bump. The biggest hits are to Affliction Lock and Fire Mage, while the buffs are only likely to bring the worst spec into the middle tier.

Note: This was made pre-9.1 release and pre-raid release. This list will update once we have more data from the live testing of the patch. Everything here is based on research across communities and testing, though as always, all classes are viable.

Shadowlands 9.1 DPS tier list for Raiding

S Tier:

  • Shadow Priest
  • Balance Druid

A Tier:

  • Destruction Warlock
  • Demonology Warlock
  • Fury Warrior
  • Havoc Demon Hunter
  • Elemental Shaman
  • Subtlety Rogue
  • Frost Mage
    Arcane Mage
  • Retribution Paladin
  • Windwalker Monk

B Tier:

  • Beast Mastery Hunter
  • Marksmanship Hunter
  • Survival Hunter
  • Feral Druid
  • Outlaw Rogue
  • Assassination Rogue
  • Arm Warrior
  • Frost Death Knight
  • Unholy Death Knight
  • Fire Mage
  • Enhancement Shaman
  • Affliction Warlock

A closer look

Shadow Priest and Balance Druid:

It looks like the months of moaning about their spec being bad has paid off for Balance Druid players. Somehow they’ve ended up as one of the two standout DPS classes. One of the problems is that Convoke the Spirits (NF Covenant) is just so much better than any other option, as a damage option and for an aesthetic purpose.

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For Shadow Priest players, they’ll be breathing a sigh of relief as they’ve somehow managed to escape the 9.1 nerf bat. Shadow started Castle Nathria as a top-spec but slipped down the ranking as time went on. However, in 9.1, despite some changes, Shadow Priest is going to be your best bet for pure sustained single target DPS.


While Affliction has taken a beating in 9.1, it looks like Destruction and Demonology are finally going to become the top Warlock specs in 9.1. Most players will go to Destruction over Demonology due to it being by far the more popular spec. But don’t sleep on Demonology. It’s one of the unique specs in the game, and with a damage profile to match it, we might just see Demo lock rise to the top.

Havoc Demon Hunter:

It’s your time to shine again, Havoc! With Vengeance dropping down the tanking charts, your one guaranteed raid spot is back up for grabs. Havoc DPS is still strong, and the class’s mobility is still one of its key strengths as we head into yet another melee unfriendly raid.

The Rae'shalare, Death's Whisper Hunter item in World of Warcraft Shadowlands.
Credit – Wowhead – Rae’shalare, Death’s Whisper: A Hunter’s new toy in 9.1.


This might not be the tier for the hunter, at least at first. With nothing really changing, it looks like MM and BM, at least, will be relying on the power of the new legendary bow drop from Sylvanas, with Blizzard unlikely to make any major balance changes until that item is in the hands of more hunters. As someone who’s decided to main Hunter this tier, it might be a long first month or two.

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It looks like Fire is gone, as Arcane and Frost look to take up the Mage DPS mantle for 9.1. With Arcane you’ll gain huge burst single target DPS via Arcane Power and your legendary, while Frost will be a more sustained DPS with Icy Veins use.

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