A WoW Monk Guide

The Monk is the newest class, introduced with the Mists of Pandaria expansion, to the World of Warcraft. Monks use their martial arts skills, fortified with various exotic brews, to make their way through the world, kicking butt and taking names (sometimes.)

Night Elf MonkMuch like Paladins, Monks can heal, damage, and tank and their resources are similar. THey can also hold their own with the other classes quite nicely.

Monks use Chi as their main resource, but also Energy, and Chi operates much like the Paladin’s Holy Power. You build it up with certain abilities and then use it to power other abilities.

Monk abilities that don’t use Chi, such as their basic strike Jab, will use Energy or Mana.

Everything that you do will be based around building and expending these resources.

This page is an overview of Monks in general. For more detail in specific areas you’ll want to hit one of the linked pages, just below the contents.


  1. Overview
  2. Race Choice
    1. Horde
    2. Alliance
  3. Stats
  4. General Monk Abilities
  5. Faster leveling

Other Monk Guides

  1. Monk Leveling – our leveling guide: everything you need to understand the class and charge ahead is here.
  2. Windwalkers for the Damage
  3. Windwalker PvP
  4. Mistweavers for the Heals
  5. Brewmaster tankage
  6. Brewmaster PvP


So What Are Monks Good For?

Good for? Kicking butt and taking names. Yeah, sometimes the name part is skipped. Monks are good in any aspect of the game: Questing, PvP, dungeons, and raids.

Wind Walkers are for the damage (DPS.) Able to deal with the various mobs and even elites and rares. They can also handle small groups just fine, thank you.

Brew Masters are the tanks and do a fine job of it. The brew helps. Really. Starting with the Keg Smash and continuing through various helpful brows and you won’t even be tipsy. Naturally with that well fortified breath you can breath fire. And your brew covered opponents, from your Keg Smash, will catch fire from that breath.

MistWeavers are the healers. Your heals, shield, and area effects will keep your team healthy and happy.


Racial Choices for Monks

Kul Tiran MonkStats change as new Expansion arrive: Hit & Expertise & Multistrike for example, used to exist and have value. Then things… changed.

Most races can be a Monk. Yes, even MechaGnomes, but no Goblins, Worgen, or Lightforged Draenei.

All of the races have one significant offensive or defensive ability.

Certain Allied races have appeared in the Legion and Battle for Azeroth (BFA) expansions. All of these races require an appropriate quest chain, exalted reputation  with that race, and another quest chain starting at the Stormwind or Orgrimmar embassies.

PvP? According to this site, updated 12/20/19, the top 4 races at 1800+ arena rating were, in order:

  1. Orc: Blood Fury and Stun Resistance
  2. Human: Escape and better secondary stats.
  3. Blood Elf: Arcane Torrent and slightly better Crit
  4. Night Elf: Shadowmeld, slightly better Crit or Haste, and Quickness.
  5. At higher ratings there are even more orcs.

Which race is “best?”  The one you like the look and feel of.


  • Can choose to join either the Horde or the Alliance upon earning the right to leave their starting area. You don’t have to join, you can play as a “neutral” for awhile, if you want to experiment.
  • Melee range stun has definite uses, even for Mistweavers, as it allows an escape from melee.
  • Inner Peace: Rested XP lasts longer for faster leveling.
  • Epicurean provides increased benefits from food buffs, which is generally a very nice ability.
  • Being “Bouncy” means you take less falling damage; it is just the thing if you’re into cliff jumping.
  • Their Gourmand ability provides a +15 cooking bonus.

Horde Races for Monks

Blood Elf

  • Arcane Torrent is a nice spell interrupt with some PvP utility, as it removes buffs. Pretty nice for Brews and Winds, and those Misty dudes who like to get up close when healing.
  • Well ok, Blood Elves look good. A truly devastating ability. Really.
  • Acuity adds +1% to your Crit rating, which is a good stat for all Monks.
  • Belves are good with Enchanting, via their affinity.
  • Belves take slightly less Arcane damage, via their Resistance.


  • Blood Fury increases melee and spell damage, which is perfect for Monks.
  • Hardiness allows a 20% decreased stun duration, which is pretty nice for PvP.
  • The slightly increased pet damage (command) isn’t interesting to Monks at all, being petless.


  • War Stomp: Stuns up to 5 enemies within 8 yds for 2 sec. And a stomp is sort of a kick. Really. A generally useful ability for any Monk.
  • Brawn: Critical strike bonus damage and healing increased by 2%. This is not crit rating, just extra damage.
  • Endurance: Increases your Stamina (and so your Health) by 197 (scales with level).
  • Nature Resistance: Reduces Nature damage taken by 1%.
  • Cultivation: Herbalism skill increased by 15 and you gather herbs faster than other herbalists.

Troll  – Taste me Voodoo, Mon!

  • Increased Haste when Berserk is very nice, esp. for Mistwalkers.
  • Shuffle reduces snare (slow) duration by 20%.
  • Your regeneration is increased, but it’s trivial.
  • More XP from beast slaying is very nice for leveling, but of no value otherwise.


  • Will of the Forsaken is a nice PvP skill (anything that breaks Fear, etc is a nice PvP skill.)
  • Underwater Breathing was gone (in Mists of Pandaria) and was replaced with a rather nice Drain Life ability, which will actually add a bit to your DPS numbers. This ability returned with Warlords and is now of indefinite duration. Useful when leveling and pretty nice for exploration, with occasional other uses.
  • Cannibalize is useful when you just have to rub it in to that other player you killed. Maybe that’s good enough reason to go Undead.
  • Minor Resistance (here)  to Shadow damage.

Nightbourne– Starts at level 20. 

  • You can do an Arcane Pulse , which damages all nearby enemies and reduces their speed for 12 seconds. Note that this will break most “crowd control” effects you might have on those enemies. 3 minute cooldown.
  • Can read your mail from anywhere, with your Cantrips ability. Get a note while you’re in the middle of nowhere? No problem.
  • Your love of lore and Ancient History give you +15 to your Inscription skill.
  • Your Arcane Resistance   allows you to take 1% less damage from Arcane energy and you also have a Magical Affinity which allows you to do 1% more magical damage.

Mag’har Orc – Starts at level 20.

  • Your Ancestral Call will boost a random secondary stat (crit, haste, versatility) for 12 seconds on a 2 minute cooldown. The boost scales with level and is comparable to the Orc’s “Blood Fury.”
  • Your love of the open skies increases your mounted speed by 10%.
  • Since you are extremely healthy your Savage Blood gives you get reduced duration of curses, poisons, and diseases (by 10%.)
  • If you were able to have a pet then it would receive a 10% health boost through your Sympathetic Vigor .

Vulpera – Starts at level 20. 

  • world of warcraft in-game guides Bag of Tricks : Cunning thing that you are you can use a trick on an enemy to damage them or on an ally to heal them. You can rummage your bag to change tricks. Your bag can also, eventuallys have a few additional Tricks:
  • Make Camp : Set your camp location outdoors and then you can use  Return to Camp , which teleports back to your camp location. Basically another hearthstone.
  • Nose For Trouble : Take a little less damage from the first strike inflicted by an enemy and due to your being wary around fire your Fire Resistance reduces fire damage taken by 1%.
  • Your  Alpaca Saddlebags  increase the total size of your backpack by 8 slots.

HighMountain Tauren– Starts at level 20. 

  • Bull Rush is a charge forward that knocks down any enemies in your path. It’s a fast move and a decently long charge. Can be used as a burst movement in addition to your rolls.
  • Being versatile they get +1% Versatility ( Mountaineer ) and they also take a bit less damage ( Rugged Tenacity .) Both are nice passives for anyone.
  • Your Pride of Ironhorn allows you to mine faster and adds 15% to your mining skill.
  • Having gone to survival school your philosophy is Waste Not, Want Not , so you have a chance to gather more meat and fish from appropriate situations.

Zandalari Troll– Starts at level 20. 

  • Zandalari Troll MonkYour Embrace of the Loa ability allows you to choose which Loa you are associated with. Has a 5 day cooldown. Each embrace also lasts through death.
    • Embrace of Akunda – Your healing abilities have a chance to heal their target for some extra points. Good for anyone with a ranged heal.
    • Embrace of Bwonsamdi  – Your damaging abilities have a chance to deal Shadow damage and heal you for 100% of the damage done. Pretty good general ability for tanks and damage dealers.
    • Embrace of Kimbul  – Your damaging abilities have a chance to cause the target to bleed over 6s. This effect stacks up to 3 times. More damage is always good.
    • Embrace of Krag’wa  – Taking damage has a chance to grant you additional Health and 66 Armor. Good tanking ability.
    • Embrace of Pa’ku – Your abilities have a chance to grant you +4% critical strike for 12 seconds. Live by the crit? This is for you. This is your default Loa.
    • Embrace of Gonk  – Increase movement speed by 5%.
  • Regeneratin’ – Regenerate 100% of your maximum health over 6 sec, interrupted by damage. 2.5 min cooldown.
  • Pterrordax Swoop – Slows your fall for two minutes. Time for some serious cliff jumpin’.
  • Your also have your City of Gold ability, making you the envy of Goblins, since it lets you loot an extra 2% gold from your targets.

Alliance Races for Monks



  • Stone Form is a nice PvP talent, and occasionally useful elsewhere. It washes away bleeds, various magical effects, and adds a 10% damage reduction for a few seconds.
  • Might adds 2% to your critical damage (not crit rating.)
  • Resistance allows a small reduction to incoming Frost damage.
  • Explorer – Dwarves are good with Archeology.


  • Escape artist is very nice for PvP, as is their small size, and they get an increased mana pool.
  • More – +5% more mana, which is nice for the Mistwalker crowd.
  • Nimble – +1% more Haste, which is a decent stat.
  • Resistance – Gnomes take a bit less arcane damage
  • Engineer – Gnomes are good with Engineering.


  • Human MonkThe Human escape ability is nice for PvP, as it breaks stuns, and allows the use of two DPS trinkets.
  • Bonus Stats adds +2% to all of your secondary stats (Haste, Crit, etc.)
  • The Human Diplomacy skill will allow for more rapid faction gain (very nice if you’re working towards any of the zillion faction in WoW)

Night Elf

  • Shadowmeld requires you to stay still. It drops aggro and can be used in combat. If you time ‘meld just right you can break incoming spells.
  • Quickness makes you slightly harder to hit and slightly increases your run speed.
  • Wisp Form: Get back to your body faster.
  • Resistance for 1% less Nature damage.
  • Touch of Elune: Increases your Haste by 1% during the night. Increases your Critical Strike by 1% during the day.  Quickness also makes you 2% faster.

Void Elf– Starts at level 20. 

  • Your abilities have a chance to empower you with the essence of the Void, Entropic Embrace , which increases your damage by 5% for 12 sec. It has a 33% proc chance with 60 seconds internal cooldown. Nothing like a bit of Void energy added to your attacks, right?
  • Spatial Rift : Tear a rift in space. Reactivate this ability to teleport through the rift. 30 yd range. 3 min cooldown. You can activate this, then change direction, hit it again, and be back to the original spot. Practice this to get a good idea of how it works. Use direction changes, cliff jumping, etc.

Dark Iron Dwarf – Starts at level 20.

  • Your Fireblood removes all poison, disease, curse, magic, and bleed effects, just like your Dwarven “brethren,” but your ability increases your primary stat (Strength, Agility, Intelligence) by 600(!) (scales with level) +200 for for each additional effect removed. Lasts 8 sec. with a 2 min cooldown. Pretty sweet ability for those moments.
  • You’re a tunnel dweller and Dungeon Delver and you’ve learned how to move 4% faster while indoors, plus your people have the  Mole Machine : While out doors you can summon a Mole Machine that tunnels through the earth and can pop you up in a variety of places.
  • Being tough you have your Forged in Flames ability, and take a bit less physical damage.
  • Having spent your life working in the forges you have a Mass Production skill , giving you +5 to your blacksmithing skill and letting you work 25% faster.

Kul Tiran– Starts at level 20. 

  • Wind up, then unleash your mighty Haymaker upon your foe. Doesn’t hurt much, but does stun then for 3 seconds and knocks them back substantially.  2.5 minute cooldown. Knock ’em back then attack.
  • Brush It Off – Increases Versatility by 1%. When you take damage you sometimes heal for 2% of that damage over 4 sec.
  • Your Child of the Sea ability lets you swim a bit faster and hold your breath longer than anyone who is not Undead.
  • You are a Jack of All Trades  which increases any of your Tradeskills by 5.
  • Many generations of seafaring experience have earned you the Rime of the Ancient Mariner ability, and so you take 1% less from Frost and Nature damage.

Mechagnome– Starts at level 20. 

  • Hyper Organic Light Originator summons a couple of images of you to distract your foes. Added damage or use it to give yourself a moment to set something up. See it in action here. You should be able to come with various uses for this.
  • And you get some Racial Passives:
    • Combat Analysis : You gather and analyze combat data every 5 sec, increasing your Agility or Int by 25, stacking up to 10 times. The data decays while out of combat.
    • Mastercraft : You function as a personal Blacksmithing Anvil, Cooking Fire, and Mining Forge. In addition, your limbs include every profession tool.
    • Emergency Failsafe : When you fall below 20% health, heal for 15% of your maximum health. This effect cannot occur more than once every 2.5 min.
    • Skeleton Pinkie : Allows opening of locked chests and doors at your current level x 5, so at level 100 you can unlock chests that require 500 skill.

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Stats and Notes

Stats change as expansions arrive. Things will change in Shadlowlands, but how much change is the question. As of BFA they look like this:

Generally the Item Level of your gear counts for more than anything.

  • Agility for Windwalkers and Brewmasters.
  • Intelligence for Mistweavers.

The value of the secondary stats depends on a variety of things. But generally…

  • Versatility adds to your damage and your heals. So 5% Vers. adds 5% to both. It adds half its value to your damage reduction. This is the best secondary stat for Windwalkers.
  • Critical strikes do double damage when they appear. This is the best stat for Mistweavers, even better than Int.
  • Mastery varies among the specialization, and is the best secondary stat for Brewmasters.
  • Haste is rather weak for Monks.
  • Various tertiary stats and gems slots have a random chance to appear on dropped or created gear (such as from gear tokens earned in your Garrison.) None will appear on vendored gear. These stats are Speed (move faster,) indestructible (item takes no damage,) Avoidance (like Dodge,) Leech (gain health,) and the gem slots.

See the links above to get to pages with far more detail on stats, rotations, talents, etc.

All Monks will wear leather armor and all monks will get a bonus at level 50 which adds +5% to your main stat if you are wearing all leather armor.

PvP Stats

PvP stats are only for older gear, and disappear after level 90. Once upon a time there were very important. These days? Not so much, and obviously not at all above 90.

  • Resilience adds to your defense by reducing incoming player damage. The Res on your gear will be good enough, so any gems or enchants you add should be for stats.
  • PvP Power adds damage/dealing towards players. As with Res. and gems or enchants should be towards stats.

See the main pages for gemming and enchanting detail:

  1. Windwalker PvP
  2. Brewmaster PvP



General Monk Abilities

These are the abilities that all Monks will learn as they level. For abilities specific to each specialization (spec) see these pages:

  1. Monk Leveling
  2. Windwalkers Damage Guide
  3. Windwalker PvP
  4. Mistweavers Healing
  5. Brewmaster tanking
  6. Brewmaster PvP
General Abilities
1 Tiger Palm: Your basic strike. Costs energy.
1 Zen flight: Move around on your spiffy personal cloud at normal speed.
3 Blackout Kick – Kick the enemy’s teeth in. Uses 3 Chi.
5 Roll – Quickly roll a short distance. A bit like a mage’s “blink.” Two uses every 20 seconds. Your first tier talents modify this ability.
13 Provoke – “Yo momma is so fat…” This is a taunt and the mob will run towards you.
14 Zen Pilgrimage – Teleports you to the Peak of Serenity, leaving a marker behind. Cast it again to return to the graveyard nearest your marker.
14 Resuscitate – restore a friendly target to life.
18 Crackling Jade Lightning – Cast lightning at the enemy causing damage over 6 seconds. Might generate a Chi point. Enemies affected by the lightning will be knocked back if they attack within melee range.
22 Detox – Remove poison and disease. The Misweaver version also removes magic effects.
25 Paralysis – Put your target to sleep for a while. Costs energy.
26 Mystic Touch is a passive that increases your physical damages against a target by 5%.
80 Transcendence: Split your body and spirit, leaving your spirit behind. Such as at the top of that cliff.
80 Transcendence: Transfer: Swap positions with your spirit, to get back to the top of that cliff, for example.



The Fast Monk Leveling Guide

Once upon a time, while leveling, you had to look up quest details on some website. There was no in-game help and you had to trundle along as best you could. That was when there were only 60 levels. Now we have thousands of quests and a bazillion mobs to kill. Whether or not you’re playing a Monk that’s a daunting task.

Here’s how to make it easy: Now you have a guide which sits in-game, in a small window, and shows you step-by-step where to go, what to do, and everything you need to know to make leveling easier. Dugi’s Guide shows you the best and fastest path to complete those quests and get yourself to the top levels ASAP.

Want to get a level, or several levels, in the dungeons or in PvP? No problem. Dugi’s will remember where you left off and then it will figure out where you should be at your new level and pick up from there.

Brand new to WoW? Decked head to toe in Heirlooms? Mixing up questing with PvP and/or dungeons? No problem, Dugi has your back all the way from level 1 to the level cap, or whichever level you start from.

Dugi’s in-game guide is always quickly updated for all patches and expansions, so it’s never obsolete. Grab yours here and get leveled fast. Who knows, you might be be able to match their Leveled 1 – cap in 3 days, 2 hours /played time. 

2 thoughts on “A WoW Monk Guide”

    1. Well, you could follow the links at the top of the page to pages with far more details on stats, and lots more info on the appropriate spec…

      Actually, this page IS due for some more generic Monk info, including basic stats and such.

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