Season 4 has been released for over a few weeks now and we can take a look at early statistics of Mythic Plus to see Class Balance in Season 4, and the effect of Awakened, Season 4 Seasonal affix. These statistics might change a lot until the end of Battle For Azeroth, and release of Shadowlands, but we can have a peek to see what’s coming.
Effect of Awakened
In the previous article, we spoke about how Awakened will make Rogues shine less due to Awakened acting as Shroud. Let’s see how much truth was in that. It should be noted it has only been a few weeks since the release of Season 4, so the statistics might be biased towards the specific affixes of those weeks.
Shroud and Awakened
Awakened is now acting as Rogues shroud in keystones that have Awakened Affix (+10 and higher), but did it impact Rogues’ presence in Mythic Plus?
According to the statistics available from Raider.io (they are taken from Blizzard Official Mythic+ Leaderboard), Rogues are appearing ~7% less than Season 3 (6.5% total appearance, down from 7%). Outlaw is appearing even more compared to season 3. however, Assassinations are appearing 20% less (2.8% total appearance down from 3.5%).
It seems Awakened did not have a huge impact on Rogues, and it didn’t eliminate the need for Shroud. Shroud is still used often in dungeons, just a little bit less than Season 3.
has Awakened effected Rogues or did it just reduce Assassinations in Mythic Plus?
Assassination Rogue in Season 4
The reason that Assassination is used less often than Season 4 is not directly related to Awakened, nor any changes to the spec. Assassination had no changes in Patch 8.3 and Season 4.
The reason for this “decline” in Assassination is related to the complexity of this spec, and the time required to get good gears and gear up.
Assassination is a little more complex than Outlaw and requires more time to get the gears required to be good at Mythic+. And most of the time it is not as good as Outlaw in AoE situations. These reasons make Assassination a spec that is generally preferred in Raids.
Outlaw is now even more popular (although it might change over time). This spec has good burst damage and with the addition of Corruption, Outlaw is making use of Blade Flurry even more. Twisted Appendage works well for Rogues in AoE situation as it can trigger from Blade Flurry attacks.
Overall, Rogues stayed unaffected in this Season and they are still the go-to DPS for most Mythic+ groups.
Class Balance in Season 4
It is very hard to say what classes are balanced and what classes are behind or ahead based on the statistics available. Mainly because it’s only near a month that Season 4 was started, and statistics are not always accurate, to have a saying about Class Balance. Only Blizzard has accurate statistics and we can only estimate based on the portion available (Mythic+ Leaderboard). Some classes stayed unaffected in the new season, so we only go through those classes that were affected.
Brewmaster received huge nerfs in the new Season.
- Stamina bonus reduced to 30% (was 35%).
- Stagger percentage reduced to 90% of Agility (was 105%).
- High Tolerance now increases effectiveness of Stagger by 5% (was 8%).
- Developers’ note: Brewmaster’s extremely high effective health against Physical damage meant that they are rarely in danger against spike damage that threatens other tanks. This should still be a strength of Brewmaster, but not by such a wide margin.
It was believed that Brewmasters will lose popularity in Mythic+ with these changes. but the early looks shows that they are used a little more often in Mythic+ 15 and above compared to season 3. The third minor slot and their strength in facing the Tankbuster ability, Spirit Breaker, can be the main reason why Brewmaster is still used, even more than Warriors in high keys.
Brewmaster Monks are not as much popular as they were for Keys between 10-14. The nerfs to their Stagger and Stamina are the main reasons, as it reduced Brewmaster monk’s overall survivability.
Windwalker received some buff but it did not change its overall presence in Mythic+ but helped Windwalker be more valuable in solo target fights.
Restoration Druids dominated Mythic+ from the start of this expansion. In patch 8.3 and the start of Season 4 Restoration received some nerfs to its mastery and High Noon trait. This trait allowed Druids to not only be good at healing but good at dealing damage.
- Mastery: Harmony healing bonus reduced by 9%.
- High Noon (Azerite Trait) damage reduced by 34%.
- Developers’ note: Restoration Druid has an overall package of healing, damage, and utility that is very hard to compete with in solo-healed content. Two things that stand out in particular are the efficiency of focused healing on a single target with high Mastery, and the ease of contributing DPS with every little GCD usage of Sunfire.
Despite the nerfs, Restoration Druid is still dominating the scene and is the most participated Healer.
Shadow Priests received a few nerfs in 8.3 which caused their participation in Mythic plus to be reduced by ~20%.
- Auspicious Spirits damage bonus reduced to 25% (was 50%).
- Fixed a bug causing Spiteful Apparitions (Azerite Trait) to be increased by 75% if you do not have Auspicious Spirits talented.
- Developers’ notes: The multiplicative interaction between Auspicious Spirits, Spiteful Apparitions, and Chorus of Insanity has specifically been a big part of Shadow’s damage scaling somewhat out of control at high target counts.
- Chorus of Insanity critical strike bonus reduced by 25%.
- Shadow Word: Pain damage reduced by 8%.
- Vampiric Touch damage reduced by 8%.
Discipline also got some nerfs in 8.3. The nerfs reduced Discipline participation in Mythic+, like Shadow Priest. They are now seen 27% less in Mythic Plus.
Despite the buffs to Affliction, this spec is still among the least used specs (with Survival Hunter and Subtlety Rogue).
- Deathbolt now deals 20% of the total remaining damage of the Warlock‘s damage over time effects on the target (was 30%).
- Drain Soul damage increased by 50%.
- Nightfall now increases the damage of Shadow Bolt by 50% (was 25%), and now activates 33% more often.
Affliction Warlock’s presence in Mythic+ reduced by ~10% in Season 4, which might go back to how it was in Season 3.
Both Demonology and Destruction remained the same.
Demon hunter received no changes in Patch 8.3 and Havoc still remains the most frequent spec in Mythic+.
Demon Hunters have an excellent toolkit for Mythic+ and good DPS. Darkness and AoE Stun are among the best toolkits in M+, and Demon Hunter’s mobility adds much more value to it.
Other specs and classes are largely the same as they were in Season 3. Arcane Mages despite receiving no direct changes are now more frequent in Mythic+ Season 4. Hunters, like Arcane Mage, are more seen in this Season.
Overall it seems the class balance in Season 4 has not changed a lot since season 3. Top used DPS specs like Havoc, Outlaw, Beastmaster are still the same while some specs that were behind are now a little more frequent. The statistics are not complete and things might change a lot until the end of Season, but for now, it seems the unbalance’s of Season 3 are still here to stay.
The statistics are available thanks to Raider.io and Blizzard Official Mythic Plus Leaderboard.