When you write a World of Warcraft Guide on Shamans you could easily do it by merging a world of warcraft guide for warriors, mages or any healer class. Or you might even make the mistake of thinking that Shamans are Druids, for the simple reason that just like Druids, Shamans are a hybrid class capable of healing, tanking and casting. But you will be told that they don't perform these abilities as well as the classes that are specilized in them.
That might be the case to an extent but when you consider that the Druid is able to heal while in the form of a tree or can tank if in the form of a bear, and give damage when turning into a cat, the Shamans is able to do all of those - at once! It is here that lies their power as a solo class and indispensability in a group. The one feature that make Shamans stand out is their use of totems which when planted on the ground give them, and members of their group, various benefits such as additional fire power and healing when combating It's the use of totems and how to use them effectively which is what makes playing a Shaman a challenging experience. There are four types of totems: Earth, Fire, Water and Air and each require split second decision and sound judgement when used in tricky combat situation or group play. They can also resurrect themselves with the Reincarnation spell, as well as other members in their group, every hour of played time; this can also be reduced to forty minutes as more talents are assigned to that ability. This adds to the list of abilities that make them an asset in a group and great to have if you go solo Thanks to the Burning Crusade expansion Shamans is no longer restricted as being a Horde only class.
Now the new Alliance race the Draenei, can also play as Shaman which, of all the classes that they have at their disposa,l is one of the best for them to pick thanks to attributes that are unique to this race which makes this class an ideal choice for them. Upon reaching level 70, you can specialize your Shammy as either an Elemental, Enhancement or Restoration Shaman. Each of these trees has their own unique abilities. For Elemental s, the focus is on high damage casting abilities and this makes it the best choice for power levelling fast while Restoration Shamans have higher healing abilities and later in the game are useful healers and back up casters. This condensed world of warcraft guide on shamans only touches the surface. This is indeed a multi talented and complex class to master.
It's the very fact that they are jack of all trades and master of none that makes the Shamans a class to consider because as you play you will will be able to gauge whether you like to cast, tank or heal without having to start three new characters. And make no mistake, Shamans can indeed master of all of these abilities just as proficiently as any of the classes that are more specialized in them, making them expert of all of these abilities and definitely the jack of none. You will find out at your peril if you underestimate this class and pass it up for another.
Shane Febham is a currently active world of warcraft player and guides buff as well as webmaster of the World of Warcraft Guides site.