Shadowlands DPS Performance and Representation in Mythic+ Season One
19/01/2021 à 00:58
As we enter the ninth week of the Shadowlands expansion, we're taking a look at the DPS classes and specs in Season One Mythic+ keystone dungeons. We've gone through data gathered by
, while also speaking to several of our writers and community class experts to get impressions on the state of DPS in Mythic+, how the Prideful affix has shaped the meta, and which classes may be better than you think!
Mythic+ Statistics on Warcraft Logs
Class Representation in Mythic+
Performance in Mythic+ is trickier to rank than raids, due to how greatly individual performance, strategy, and group composition impacts everyone involved in that run, but it still boils down to the same basic ideas - the most successful players of any group tend to be those performing at the top of their class, using strategies which favor their strengths, and in groups which are clearing the fastest. What is interesting however is that representation does not necessarily reflect value, and that representation varies greatly depending on what level of keys we look at - either below 10 where virtually anything can be successful or above +15 keys, where more stringent requirements reinforce more strict metas.
For example, Arms Warriors have more than double the representation of Fury (largely due to being a better raid spec), but Fury has been demonstrably stronger in Mythic+ since even before their recent round of buffs. Meanwhile, Warriors, Paladins, and Demon Hunters all have higher representation between Mythic +10-14 keystones than Monks, but as key levels push higher those classes become virtually non-existent while Windwalker Monks make up 8% of all DPS in +20 and up - a perfect example of shifting metas in higher keys.
The question raised is whether the fact that Rogues, Hunters, Mages, Monks, and Druids make up 88% of 20+ keys means they're the only good DPS for Mythic+, and the answer is
of course not
. Truth is, the vast majority of players will never enter a 20+ key, most of them won't even do a weekly +14 (much less 10 of them) to maximize their Great Vault, and many classes which are underrepresented at the highest levels perform extremely well in lower level keys - often as well or better than those considered above them. Part of this is due to different strengths, as lower keys tend to value raw throughput, while higher ones place a greater emphasis on cooldown timing. Another part of it is due to personal survivability and group utility, as the highest keystones begin to place an even greater emphasis on that than damage itself. Shadowland's first seasonal affix plays into this as well.
The Influence of Prideful
Burst cooldowns have always been valuable for M+, and Season One's
affix accentuates that to an greater degree, especially as you look at increasingly higher level keystones. Routes and strategy are impacted greaty, as cooldowns are used to both quickly deal with the
Manifestation de l'orgueil
itself as well as combined with the resulting
buff to burst down packs and bosses, leading to an increased emphasis on specializations with bursty cooldowns such as Balance Druids Celestial Alignment Convoke, or Fire Mage Combustion. While Fury Warriors may do very competitive overall damage by the end of the run, they lack the raw burst needed to be the dedicated Manifestation of Pride slayer or to use the prideful buff to handle an entire pack with just their cooldowns alone, and don't offer the same level of control that other classes bring. In contrast, Windwalker Monk is a spec which is also quite competitive in terms of overall damage, but does so through stronger cooldowns and a better damage profile, while also providing extremely strong utility such as
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Archimtiros & Max of BDGG
Despite a general community stigmatism against Warriors early in the expansion, Fury has been performing very well in Mythic+ for quite some time and even more so since their recent buff, subsisting on good sustained damage and using
Chevalière des rois tourmentés
for more frequent cooldowns rather than obscenely strong ones. While pug groups may not have caught on yet, well played Fury Warriors are easily keeping up with the strongest specs in overall damage, all the way up through +15 keys. There is still some concern however, in that despite high overall damage and frequent cooldowns, they lack the raw burst potential found in other top specs such as Fire Mage, Balance Druid, or Windwalker Monk, which limits their competitiveness in high level push groups that relay on spacing out individual cooldowns to handle packs or Prideful mobs. Likewise, while they have some useful tools in
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Cri de ralliement
, they lack of the overall utility or personal survivability of other "meta" classes, making Fury Warriors very good for pugs and weekly vault groups farming +14 keys, but underrepresented in competitive 20+ push groups.
Hpo of BDGG
Moonkin in its current state in mythic plus is extremely strong, The Night Fae covenant ability
Convoquer les esprits
and the legendary
Équilibre de toutes choses
on top of the seasonal affix brings the highest single target burst damage in the game by a mile. Starfall's uncapped AoE, and the general utility tactics such as taunting with
Force de la nature
, Soothe, Entangling Roots, Typhoon, Disorienting Roar, and Ursol's Vortex makes Druids extremely versatile in any group or dungeon. The general shift to Resto Shaman as the meta healer also makes Balance Druid's battle res more important, as it removes the need for an engineer in the party, and innervate continues to provide a small but useful utility boon not provided by other classes. Overall Balance Druid is a top tier Mythic+ spec, with little to no downside, a massive amounts of utility, and an extremely strong damage profile.
Marksmanship Hunters are one of the best DPS specs Mythic+ and have the highest representation of any class, keeping up with Balance Druids, Fire Mages, Windwalker Monks and Outlaw Rogues. The incredible burst AoE damage provided by
is frequent enough to trivialize many packs, while still maintaining decent damage in between, due to the sheer number of minor cooldowns Marksmanship has to rotate through. Unlike Fire Mages and Balance Druids, Marksmanship's damage is all target capped, causing the spec to fall slightly behind in larger pulls such as the Ardenweald section of De Other Side, but the raw burst makes up for it and few classes keep up in overall damage. Hunters are aslo able to bring Binding Shot, Misdirection, Bursting Shot, Freezing Trap, and Bloodlust, contributing a great deal of utility which has helped solidify their current dominance in Mythic+.
With their huge presence in high key pushing, I expect to see many featured as one of the staple DPS in the upcoming MDI.
Similar to Raiding and PvP, Windwalker Monks are extremely dominant in Mythic+. With strong 2 minute burst damage potential and high sustained AoE damage much in part, because of the
conduit. Additionally WW Monk has an incredibly versatile and somewhat unique suite of utility options available to them such as
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which push them further ahead of other melee DPS. One of the primary concerns with Windwalker in higher keys in BfA was their personal survivability which has been somewhat alleviated in SL with the addition of Expel Harm and Fortifying Brew. Overall WW Monk plays somewhat similarly to what it did in BfA only now its great utility and high damage especially early in the expansion compared to the other struggling melee specs are causing it to take over the melee spot in +20 push groups.
For more information on classes in Shadowlands Season 1, check out our Class Guides!
Blood DKFrost DKUnholy DK
Havoc DHVengeance DH
Guardian DruidFeral DruidBalance DruidRestoration Druid
Devastation EvokerPreservation Evoker
BM HunterMM HunterSurvival Hunter
Arcane MageFire MageFrost Mage
Brewmaster MonkMistweaver MonkWindwalker Monk
Holy PaladinProtection PaladinRetribution Paladin
Discipline PriestHoly PriestShadow Priest
Assassination RogueOutlaw RogueSubtlety Rogue
Elemental ShamanEnhancement ShamanRestoration Shaman
Affliction WarlockDemonology WarlockDestruction Warlock
Arms WarriorFury WarriorProtection Warrior
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