Monks were introduced into World of Warcraft back in the Mists of Pandaria and they’re one of the most interesting hybrid classes in the game. With a Healer spec, a DPS spec, and a Tank spec, there’s a Monk specialization to suit every area of the game.
It can be quite hard to know which specialization to pick up, though, as they all have their own advantages and disadvantages. It’s worth trying them all out at some point, especially if you’ve never played a Monk before.
To help you choose, here’s a complete guide on how to pick the best Monk spec in World of Warcraft: Dragonflight.
Best Monk Spec for Solo Leveling
The Windwalker spec stands out as the best leveling choice for Monk players mainly due to the variety of moves and abilities that it has. It’s a truly varied spec, with great damage, good self-heals and survivability, and plenty of mobility, too.
The mobility options from the Windwalker talent tree include abilities like Flying Serpent Kick, which is a physical ability that works both for mobility and for dealing damage. Outside of battle, it’s a great way to speed up your journey in-between quests.
Windwalker is also a very self-sufficient specialization as it has access to heals and damage mitigation abilities from both the spec talent tree and the standard Monk talent tree.
Being able to keep yourself in good condition is important when you’re leveling up alone, and it can be handy to have off-heals available when doing Dungeons as well.
There’s a great variety of damage output options on offer in the Windwalker talent tree as well. Windwalker Monks can pull off solid single-target damage, multi-target and cleave, and AOE as well. This makes them incredibly adaptable and useful during the questing process.
It is possible to level up with Mistweaver or Brewmaster too, but these specs can take more time to get the hang of. Windwalker is the most reliable option for this purpose.
Strongest Monk Spec for Arenas
Windwalker will be getting a lot of love in this article, and with good reason. It’s currently one of the most popular specs in the PVP scene, and it’s a solid choice for Arenas.
The Windwalker spec can be found in comps like WW DK, WW Boomkin, and WW Destro, but it plays decently in other comps as well.
It’s a flexible spec that doesn’t have any issues jumping from target to target when taking on a team, and it works well alongside a wide variety of different classes and other specializations.
One of the main reasons why Windwalker is so great in Arenas is the vast selection of damage buffs and boosts that the spec has. For example, Flashing Fists is a talent that boosts the damage of Fists of Fury by 20% and it can make a huge difference in battle.
Windwalker also has some incredible burst damage options, which means that it’s a solid spec if you like explosive, threatening openings in Arena match-ups.
The rotation can struggle with other elements like immunities but, in general, it’s a strong pick if you want a spec that fits into a wide variety of comps nicely.
Best Monk Specialization for Battlegrounds
Following the theme, Windwalker is the best spec to take into Battlegrounds as well. It’s fast-paced and flexible, and can be incredibly useful in team fights.
Something exceptional about Windwalkers is their damage mitigation abilities.
They can come in very handy in Battlegrounds. One of the best examples is Touch of Karma which absorbs all of the damage you take for 10 seconds along with 50% of your maximum health, then spits 70% of this amount back out as Nature damage onto your opponent.
The mobility options that Windwalker Monks have make them very useful in Battlegrounds. Being able to use moves like Flying Serpent Kick in a fight can be handy, but it’s also very handy to get away from a large group of enemies or out of a tricky battle.
The heals that Windwalker has access to can be useful for off-healing in a pinch, too. Windwalker is a decent Healer when it comes to it, despite it not being a heal-oriented specialization.
Best Monk Solo Shuffle Spec
As mentioned, Windwalker is one of the most popular specs in the PVP community right now. It’s a great pick for Solo Shuffle queues.
Windwalker Monks are quick on their feet, adaptable, and very self-reliant. They work well in a number of different comps, which is ideal for Solo Shuffle, and they’ve got brilliant burst damage which makes them great openers.
If you’re a fan of healing specs, Mistweaver is also an incredibly viable option for Solo Shuffle. It’s a durable, mobile Healer that can fit into a number of useful PVP comps. The spec is somewhat tricky to pick up, mainly in terms of mana management, but it’s very rewarding.
The Mistweaver spec has some incredibly potent abilities that blend damage with healing. For example, Zen Pulse envelops an ally with a Zen Pulse that deals damage to nearby enemies then heals the ally target for the damage done.
There are also some talents that you can pick up to make Zen Pulse even more effective, like Echoing Reverberation and Accumulating Mist.
While mana management is a tricky aspect of the Mistweaver spec, there are some spells in the toolkit that can help with it. For example, Mana Tea can be a great way to cut down on how much mana you’re spending in a battle.
Strongest PVE Monk Spec
Brewmaster is the most viable Monk spec for PVE right now. It’s not the hardest-hitting Tank by any means, but it’s got a great toolkit that can be useful in both Raids and Mythic+ settings.
One of the best things about Brewmaster Monks is that they’ve got amazing self-healing requirements. This isn’t always the case for Tanks, and it’s refreshing to see a spec that’s so great at mitigating damage and easing up pressure on their Healer.
Brewmaster Monks are also very forgiving and decent to run with after some practice.
Stagger is an obscenely powerful damage mitigation ability that staggers when physical damage hits you, making it happen over 10 seconds instead of all at once. It’s based on your Agility stat and it also affects Magic attacks at a level of 45% effectiveness.
That’s not to say that Brewmaster Monks are easy to pick up, though. It is a complex spec with a very specific rotation, and it will take some getting used to. It’s incredibly rewarding, though, and it’s well worth the effort.
Brewmaster Tanks are generally versatile and very adaptable.
You’ll struggle to find a PVE battle where Brewmasters are outmatched or unable to pull off mechanics. They have plenty of damage output styles too, ranging from single-target and multi-target to AOE abilities, making them suitable for a lot of different boss fights.
Best Monk Spec for Soloing Old Content
If you’re willing to put the time in to learn the Brewmaster rotation, it’s one of the best specs to use if you want to burn through old content for transmog, Battle Pets, and mounts.
One of the reasons that Brewmaster is so effective for soloing old content is that it’s incredibly durable. As mentioned, there’s plenty of self-healing abilities in the Brewmaster toolkit, and it’s incredibly effective at mitigating damage, too.
In fact, Brewmaster Monks can tackle Raid and Dungeon content from more recent expansions without much difficulty.
Brewmaster Monks are also incredibly mobile, which makes running through old Raids much more enjoyable and time efficient. If you’re trying to run a Dungeon repeatedly to try and get a mount with a low drop chance, being able to use tools like Roll and Transcendence: Transfer makes it much better.
It is possible to run old world Raids and Dungeons with Mistweaver and Windwalker Monks too, but Brewmaster is the most efficient choice. It’s durable and heavy-hitting, but still has plenty of mobility options as well.
How to Learn A New Specialization
Once you’ve picked your Monk spec, you’ll need to pick out a solid leveling route so you can check out the endgame Monk experience. Leveling is decently speedy in Dragonflight if you pick the right route and queue up for Battlegrounds or Dungeons on the way.
Speaking of Battlegrounds, if you’re a PVP fan it’s worth reading up on the different classes and specs that often feature in comps with Monks. These include:
While you don’t need to memorize everything about these other specs, it’s good to have an understanding of how they function and what their playstyle is like so that you can time your attacks more efficiently.
If you enjoy PVE content, it’s good to learn more about the character roles that you don’t often play. If you’re purely a DPS player, for example, spend some time looking into how Healing and Tanking works. This can help you understand core Raid mechanics much more effectively.