Patch 9.0.5 and the MDI

Patch 9.0.5 launched just a few days ago, and with it came a slew of long-awaited changes and updates. Valor upgrades, covenant changes, and class tuning abound! However, the timing of this particular patch and the fact that it affects a number of dungeons and classes, means it may end up having a substantial impact on this weekend’s fourth and final MDI Cup.

Every time a new MDI Cup rolls around, the affix combinations for each dungeon are changed. This keeps the competition fresh and exciting. As any competitor or fan of the esport can tell you, the affixes can make a significant impact on the routes and competitions that the teams employ. This can be pretty tough for the competitors as they only learn the affix combinations 48 hours before each Cup starts. To lessen the load on the players, Blizzard has adopted a policy of keeping the same affix combinations on the three dungeons that made up the Time Trials the week before. Teams can happily rely on the routes and comps they worked on during the Time Trial weekend for the following Cup.

Patch 9.0.5 might throw a wrench in that plan. The patch unfortunately falls on the reset directly between a Time Trial weekend and the last MDI Cup. The competition takes place on the Tournament Realms, but they are always a mirror of what is happening on Live servers. Therefore, our MDI teams are going into this weekend’s Cup with all of the Patch changes in play. Could this potentially impact any of the strategies and routes we’ve seen to date? Will the teams have to re-practice their Time Trial dungeons? We turn to Dratnos for some analysis on the Patch 9.0.5 changes that may affect this last MDI Cup of the Season.

On the new patch, this weekend's MDI Cup will likely feature some key differences from the previous ones. On the class-balance front, some top performing MDI specs like Vengeance, Marksmanship, Windwalker have seen nerfs - my suspicion is that Vengeance will continue to dominate but Windwalker and Marksmanship will see a diminished role. Other specs that were already doing well in the MDI have seen some buffs, such as Night Fae Priests!

Necrolords have largely been absent from the MDI, save in Theater of Pain and sometimes Plaguefall due to their covenant synergies in those dungeons. The re-work to the Fleshcraft ability certainly will enhance their standing on the live servers, but in a speedrun environment it's less likely to bring the covenant over the line for any specs.

In specific dungeons, some strategies may be adjusted. For instance, the Master Assassin legendary power that Rogues used to great effect in The Necrotic Wake has been changed to no longer function in that way. This may lead to a re-imagining of Necrotic Wake away from the massive pulls facilitated by double damage weapons wielded by Rogues, or it may just require those pulls to be executed even better as they'll live for longer.

Will the days of the Windwalker Monk in competition be gone? Are Marksmanship Hunters obsolete? Will The Necrotic Wake strategies require a complete overhaul? Make sure to tune in this weekend for the final MDI Cup of the Season to find out! Can't watch this weekend? You can always check out our live bracket, updated on-the-spot with all of the gear and covenant information for each player, and links to the video of each match!


About the Author

Hulahoops has been playing WoW since Vanilla. If she’s not leading her Mythic Progression guild TBD through raids, she’s probably practicing for the MDI with her team Angry Toast. Hulahoops is a Holy Paladin in every sense of the term: she moderates the Hammer of Wrath Paladin Class Discord, and she was a practicing Lawyer for the last 7 years. Judgment isn’t just a spell! Hulahoops recently decided to put the law books away and follow her passion for esports by joining the team at RaiderIO as the Events and Community Coordinator. She is also passionate about making Azeroth an inclusive, welcoming space for all gamers and is a proud co-founder of the Defias Sisterhood community.