WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King guide - What is each race's best class?

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While there's no real wrong way to play WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King, here are the best picks per race (Image via Blizzard Entertainment)

With WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King’s arrival, the subject of race/class combinations will always come up. While there’s truly no wrong way to play in World of Warcraft, some combos of race and class might offer some small semblance of an advantage.

In other cases, only one race may have access to a class, making it the obvious pick. This feature will cover what each race is good at, and what class would be best for them. However, Death Knights are amazing, no matter what WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King faction or race you choose. Pick based on aesthetic, racial traits, or whatever suits you.

Note: This is the opinion of one writer, and there’s genuinely no wrong way to play World of Warcraft. All of the classes a race can select are perfectly fine. Do not let your guild or friends tell you otherwise.


What are the best WoW Classic classes for the Alliance in Lich King?

1) Draenei

Possible classes

  • Hunter
  • Mage
  • Paladin
  • Priest
  • Shaman
  • Warrior
  • Death Knight

The most recent addition to the Human Alliance by WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King, Draenei are exiles from Exodar. Draenei, meaning “Exiled Ones,” the Eredar have come to aid the Alliance in their struggles. Their ship, The Exodar, landed in the Azuremyst Isles and is incredibly out of the way, which is what keeps the faction relatively safe from invasion.

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Draenei perks

  • Gemcutting: Jewelcrafting skill increased by 5.
  • Gift of the Naaru: Heals a target over time. Lasts 15 seconds.
  • Heroic Presence (Hunters, Paladins, and Warriors only): Increases the chance to hit by 1% for you and all party members within 30 yards.
  • Inspiring Presence (Mage, Priest, and Shaman only): Increases the chance to hit with spells by 1% for you and all party members within 30 yards.
  • Shadow Resistance: Shadow Resistance increased by 10.

What class is best for Draenei in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King? Well, they’re the only class in the Alliance that have access to Shaman, so that’s the obvious choice right there. Their “Presence” passives mean that no matter what main class you go for, you’re covered.

Shaman can heal, as well as do ranged or melee DPS, making them an ideal pick. They’re a very flexible, powerful class in all situations.


2) Dwarf

Possible classes

  • Hunter
  • Paladin
  • Priest
  • Rogue
  • Warrior
  • Death Knight
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The stout people from Khaz Modan, WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King’s Dwarves still call Ironforge their home. Thankfully, it’s an easy trek from Ironforge to Stormwind, the human capital, so it’s easy to get around in this expansion.

Passives

  • Find Treasure: This allows you to sense nearby treasure, making it appear on the minimap.
  • Frost Resistance: This increases one's Frost Resistance by 10.
  • Gun Specialization: The Dwarf's natural guns skill is increased by 5.
  • Stoneform: An active skill, this grants immunity to Bleed, Poison, and Disease effects. Also, armor is increased by 10%. It only lasts 8 seconds, however.

Dwarves are amazing in PVP WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King, thanks to their Frost Resistance and Stoneform abilities. This makes them a real terror in many situations. When it comes to Dwarves, I’d have to give it to either Warrior or Hunter. The latter, in particular, also takes advantage of Gun Specialization.

They also make solid PVP healers, but if I’m going to play a Dwarf, it’s going to be something sturdy and ferocious when it comes to World of Warcraft.


3) Gnome

Possible classes

  • Mage
  • Rogue
  • Warlock
  • Warrior
  • Death Knight
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The gadget-using Gnomes have been pushed out of their home of Gnomeregan, which is, at this point in WoW: Classic: Wrath of the Lich King, a dungeon to tackle. Since they no longer have a capital city, they start near the Dwarves.

Passives

  • Arcane Resistance: This increases one's Arcane Resistance by 10.
  • Expansive Mind: The Gnome's innate intelligence is increased by 5.
  • Engineering Specialization: The Engineering profession is increased by 15.
  • Escape Artist: This allows you to escape the effects of any immobilization or movement speed reduction effect spells.

Gnome’s class choice in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King is very clear: Mage and Warlock. Escape Artist helps all classes, but Expansive Mind is an amazing way to get a few extra stat points for your spellcaster. Their passives are practically built to enhance spellcasting and they also enhance the profession of Engineering.


4) Human

Possible classes

  • Mage
  • Paladin
  • Priest
  • Rogue
  • Warlock
  • Warrior
  • Death Knight
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The Humans of Stormwind start in Elwynn Forest in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King, but quickly return to their castle home. It’s a great all-around, average pick for the Alliance, and really has no major downsides.

They have one of the most useful passives in the entire game as well with Diplomacy. It makes Reputation-grinding faster by 10%, which is nothing to sneeze at.

Perks

  • Diplomacy: Reputation gains are increased by 10% with reputation affecting how NPCs react to you as well as the prices of shop goods.
  • Mace Specialization: Mace and Two-Handed Mace skills are increased by 5.
  • Perception: Activate this skill and your ability to spot stealth creatures is dramatically increased for 20 seconds.
  • Sword Specialization: One's skill with Swords and Two-Handed Swords is increased by 5.
  • The Human Spirit: Humans benefit from a 5% increase in spirit which affects mana regeneration.

As to which class a Human is best at, they’re good at all of them, to be frank. However, they’re one of only two classes in the Alliance that can play a Paladin, so that may be the best choice. Priests are also great for the humans as well, thanks to The Human Spirit passive.

Paladin, Priest, or Rogue are never bad choices for a Human in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King.


5) Night Elf

Possible classes

  • Druid
  • Hunter
  • Priest
  • Rogue
  • Warrior
  • Death Knight
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The Night Elves of Darnassus start their adventure in the woods of Teldrassil and are one of the most well-known races in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King. They’re the only class in the Alliance at this point in the game that can be Druids.

Perks

  • Nature Resistance: Nature Resistance is increased by 10.
  • Wisp Spirit: Upon death, you transform into a wisp, thereby increasing your movement speed by 50%
  • Quickness: The chances of dodging are increased by 1%
  • Shadowmeld: Activate this skill, and you can slip into the shadows, reducing the chance of enemies spotting you. It lasts until you cancel it or upon moving.

The Druid is similar to a Paladin, in that it can do anything. The shapeshifting forms cover magical damage, healing, tanking, as well as physical melee DPS. In another instance of being good at most everything they lay their hands to, Night Elves are best at Priest and Druid.

Night Elf Priests can look forward to Starshards, which deals damage over six seconds, and a protection spell, Elune’s Grace.


Horde class options for WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King

1) Blood Elf

Possible classes

  • Hunter
  • Mage
  • Paladin
  • Priest
  • Rogue
  • Warlock
  • Death Knight
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During the events of Warcraft 3, the Blood Elves were pushed away from the Alliance and found themselves on the side of the Horde. They now call Silvermoon home in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King and are the only Horde class that can play a Paladin. They also feature one of the best passive abilities in the game, Arcane Torrent.

Perks

  • Arcane Affinity: Enchanting skill increased by 5.
  • Arcane Torrent: Silences all nearby opponents for 2 seconds. Also restores Mana and Energy (15).
  • Magic Resistance: All Resistances increased by 5.
  • Mana Tap: Reduces target's Mana by 50 and charges you with Arcane energy for 10min. This effect stacks up to 3 times.

Blood Elves are a great class, and though their starting area is off the beaten path, and a little lengthy, it’s worth a visit. No matter the class, Arcane Torrent is amazing as an AoE silence.

When it comes to Blood Elves in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King, the obvious choice is Paladin, though they do also make excellent Hunters.


2) Orc

Possible classes

  • Hunters
  • Rogue
  • Shaman
  • Warlock
  • Warrior
  • Death Knight
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The Orcs of Orgrimmar are hardy people, able to survive in the harshest of climates. They call a vast, empty waste their home, and defend it with pride and honor. Like the Humans, Orcs are very well-rounded, with passives that frankly, benefit a number of playstyles in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King.

Perks

  • Axe Specialization: Skill with Axes and Two-Handed Axes is increased by 5
  • Blood Fury: An active skill, this increases your base melee attack power by 25% for 15 seconds, while reducing your healing effects by 50% for 25 seconds
  • Command: Any damage dealt by Hunter or Warlock pets is increased by 5%
  • Hardiness: The chance of resisting a Stun effect is increased by 25%

The Orcs are fantastic Warriors in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King, thanks to Axe Specialization and Blood Fury, but are also surprisingly great Warlocks. With that in mind, I’d say if you’re going to pick Orc, consider Warrior or Warlock. They also make fantastic Death Knights, but so does every race.


3) Tauren

Possible classes

  • Druid
  • Hunter
  • Shaman
  • Warrior
  • Death Knight

Thunder Bluff’s large but peaceful race, the Tauren, are more than meets the eye in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King. They might simply look like large cows, but are capable of great wisdom and equally great violence. A race that, initially, did not even have a mount, the nomadic Tauren are also the only class in the Horde that can be a Druid.

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Perks

  • Cultivation: Herbalism profession skill is increased by 15.
  • Endurance: Total health is increased by 5 percent.
  • Nature Resistance: Nature Resistance is increased by 10.
  • War Stomp: An ability that stuns up to 5 enemies within 8 yards for 2 seconds.

It might feel like it takes forever to walk across the Tauren starting area, but if you’re going to play a Druid or a Shaman, it’s going to be worth it. They particularly excel at both, and are your only options for a Druid on this side of the game.


4) Troll

Possible classes

  • Hunter
  • Mage
  • Priest
  • Rogue
  • Shaman
  • Warrior
  • Death Knight

The Trolls in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King are the oldest race on Azeroth, and once dominated the entire planet. That’s why players see Trolls in virtually every climate on the map. It’s not lazy storytelling, the Trolls were simply here first. They also call Orgrimmary home, as members of the Darkspear Tribe.

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Perks

  • Beast Slaying: Damage dealt versus Beasts is increased by 5%
  • Berserking: This skill increases your casting and attack speed by 10% to 30% with the amount increasing by how low your health is. It lasts for 10 seconds.
  • Bow Specialization: Skill with a bow is increased by 5.
  • Regeneration: Health regeneration rate is increased by 10%.
  • Throwing Specialization: Skills with Throwing Weapons is increased by 5.

The far-and-away best class for a Troll in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King is Hunter, given that all of its perks benefit them directly, except perhaps Throwing Specialization. It’s unlikely a Troll is going to use that over a bow or a gun.

Troll Priests are also great when you consider Hex of Weakness, which reduces your target’s outgoing damage for two minutes. Additionally, Shadowguard is a viable option as well since it makes the target take damage anytime they strike you.


5) Undead

Possible classes

  • Mage
  • Priest
  • Rogue
  • Warlock
  • Warrior
  • Death Knight

One of the best races for PVP in the game, the Undead that now overrun the Ruins of Lordaeron is great at a number of things. Cannibalizing can be a great way to get health back, but Will of the Forsaken is what makes them a PvP darling. They have what is essentially a PvP trinket ability, without having to equip one.

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Perks

  • Cannibalize: Requiring you to be within 5 yards of Humanoid or Undead corpses, you can regenerate 7% of your total health every 2 seconds for 10 seconds.
  • Shadow Resistance: Shadow Resistance is increased by 10.
  • Underwater Breathing: Players can stay underwater for 300% longer than normal.
  • Will of the Forsaken: Immunity to Charm, Fear, and Sleep when activated. It lasts 5 seconds.

If you’re going to represent the Undead, the best picks are Warlock and Priest. Especially when soloing, the former is an incredibly powerful class - self-sufficient and deadly.

Undead Priests in WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King receive the exclusive Devouring Plague DOT and Touch of Weakness penalizes people who attack them by dealing Shadow damage for two minutes.


It cannot be overstated that there is no real wrong way to play WoW Classic: Wrath of the Lich King. Every race and class combination is good at something, and it’s important to play what feels right to you, the player. No matter what you choose, as long as you enjoy it, which is the most important thing.