Player Perspectives: The Great Push

One week ago, six of the top Mythic+ teams in the world battled it out in the MDI: The Great Push tournament. To take a look back at the successes or shortcomings of this brand new tournament format from Blizzard, we reached out to each of the competing teams to gain insights on their experiences. Today, we have 1-2 responses from 5 of the teams to share. Will we see another Great Push tournament in the future? The players certainly hope so, and so do the fans!

Table of Contents

“I haven’t played in previous Mythic+ tournaments just because they end up being too far away from what I enjoy about WoW. However, The Great Push was everything I wanted and more.”

Q: Since many of you have been interviewed before, let’s dive right in and talk about The Great Push. How did you like the format of this tournament? How did TGP compare to other WoW tournaments you’ve participated in?

Yeluo (小红手叶落) - Skyline: The first few days of The Great Push were great, but the last day was tremendously bad, and you know what has turned this official, global tournament into a farce.


Asuna - Ambition: I liked how the tournament was more of a free-for-all rather than 1v1’s to the top. Also, the amount of time to practice was a lot more manageable than in the MDI.

Ellesmere - Ambition: I think The Great Push format was a huge success and a massive step in the right direction for WoW Esports in general. The time commitment required to be competitive was brought way down compared to the MDI, players were allowed to stream the tournament, there was basically 0 down time, and it was more relatable for the average viewer. That’s just naming a few of the improvements. As a first try at this format, I think Blizzard knocked it out of the park and I’m very excited to see the next iteration of The Great Push.

Wildi - SHEEESH: I have never participated in MDI, but I like the general format of the Great Push. It was nice to be able to repeat high keys on the Tournament Realm instead of having keys reroll to different dungeons in live keys.

I also loved that we could stream our personal POVs. Having players be able to stream made the tournament feel a lot more like a competitive live key push week than a tournament. It also helps that people can stream their practice and not have to go offline for a week, since it gives their communities something to watch. This brings the tournament more attention overall, and that could lead into more prizes and more tournaments in the future.

We personally didn’t choose to stream our practice, but not because we didn’t want to. We didn’t stream because our team was formed only 3 weeks before the tournament and we felt that streaming would be a disadvantage due to our group being so new to playing together in a tournament setting.

Dorki - does the bear stream?: The Great Push was my first official WoW tournament, but it was an absolute blast. At first, I was a bit apprehensive about how Blizzard would handle this new format considering there was so little information on how it would work, but after playing through it, I must say it was almost as good as it could have been for a new tournament format. Even though I haven’t played in the MDI before, I could tell from a lot of the competitors and viewers that TGP was much more successful than MDI.

Yumy - does the bear stream?: I liked the idea originally, but I was a little skeptical that they would execute the format in a way that would be good for the players since it wasn’t revealed all at once. They completely nailed it though. Nearly every detail down to the affix selection was great. I haven’t played in previous Mythic+ tournaments just because they end up being too far away from what I enjoy about WoW. However, The Great Push was everything I wanted and more.

Rads - YEP: I personally enjoyed the short timespan of the tournament, as we didn’t have to commit to months worth of practice/tournament play, unlike the MDI. However, it definitely felt harder to get into this tournament, as only 6 teams could qualify, and that’s on a global stage too.

Q: What were the best parts of this tournament for you and your team? Are there any highlights or cool plays of your team (or another team) that you’d like to share?

Yeluo (小红手叶落) - Skyline: The tournament’s schedule is relatively short, and affixes are not announced in advance, so our team needed to have our own understanding and planning of affixes in a shorter preparation. For highlights and cool plays, Team Ambition got the fastest 26 Theater of Pain, and Team SHEEESH executed the 26 De Other Side perfectly. Also, the AMAZING work of Echo’s Hunter in 28 Plaguefall.

冲层赛赛程比较短,而词缀没有提前公布,需要我们队伍临时对词缀有自己的理解和规划。两眼操作的话比如 Ambition战队的26伤势剧场最快用时,SHEEESH战队的26彼界完美发挥,以及Echo战队28凋魂视角中猎人的的“亮眼”操作。

Asuna - Ambition: Learning from mistakes and getting better. It definitely feels like you become stronger as a player and team from the weeks of practicing.

Ellesmere - Ambition: If I had to pick one single highlight from the tournament, it has to be the +26 De Other Side that SHEEESH did. That entire dungeon was absolutely phenomenal gameplay and gave them a huge edge that they knew was so difficult, no other team would even try to match. Massive props to them for that!

Wildi - SHEEESH: When we did 26 De Other Side, that was for sure the highlight. It’s definitely one of the harder dungeons to pull off, so I’m proud that we were able to do such a clean run.

Dorki - does the bear stream?: Honestly the entire tournament was fun, but there were a few silly moments. We never really got to do any particularly super sick pulls or dungeon runs, but here is a tragic moment :)

Yumy - does the bear stream?: The part that really blew me away was our day 2 of the tournament. We spent half the day chain-depleting Mists of Tirna Scithe and fell pretty far behind. We were rightfully a bit shook, but we still finished it and then proceeded to one-shot Theater of Pain 26, De Other Side 24 & 25, and Halls of Atonement 26 to end the night only one key behind. I think those were some of the best keys we’ve ever played as a team.

Rads - YEP: Nothing I can think of beats all the Plagueborer shenanigans, or the Amarth snap from does the bear stream? in The Necrotic Wake. Something I was very impressed by is the 26 De Other Side run from SHEEESH, combined with the fact they didn’t use a Balance Druid for that run (I believe?) - very impressive!

Q: What were some things you’d like to see changed for future Great Push tournaments?

Yeluo (小红手叶落) - Skyline: The tournament would be more intense if we could choose the level of keys in the final. For live dungeons, I hope that the maze in Mists of Tirna Scithe can be fixed because there is a gap in the times of different routes just based on RNG.


Asuna - Ambition: I don’t actually know how to fix this besides fixing dungeon balance. SHEEESH’s 26 De Other Side was so impressive, so I feel the amount of “points” it gave in the competition did not reflect the accomplishment. It might just be a problem with The Necrotic Wake and Plaguefall balance. These dungeons are really important.

Ellesmere - Ambition: I think the biggest change I’d like to see is the removal of The Necrotic Wake and Plaguefall from the tournament as not only are they both keys that rely almost exclusively on the dungeon playing for you, but they also have the heaviest weight on tournament results due to being able to push them to higher key levels then any other dungeons. I also think the maze in Mists needs to be a predetermined path in tournament play because the time difference between paths is way too extreme. Ultimately, the tournament did feel a bit rushed for the competitors and it would be nice to have a little extra time each day to really push these keys to the levels we know they can be done at. Regardless, I’m very happy with how this format turned out overall.

Wildi - SHEEESH: Make the maze in Mists of Tirna Scithe a set path regardless of how bad that path is. Otherwise, some maybe irrational suggestions would be to remove The Necrotic Wake and Plaguefall from the map pool or allow teams to ban certain maps.

Dorki - does the bear stream?: It’s hard to say what I would like to see changed because there are a lot of conflicting opinions. I really liked that we weren’t told the affixes until the day of the matches since this allowed for the tournament to be so much more interesting. A huge issue with the MDI was the amount of practice required, how scripted the runs felt, and how frequent the Cups were. All of this led to huge burnout for the teams and for the viewers of MDI. With the way TGP worked where we were thrown into a sudden 5 hours of affix and dungeon combinations, it felt way more authentic. Being able to stream our POVs was amazing. If there was one thing I’d change, it would be having these tournaments more often or having it stretched across more days (maybe 5 days instead of 3 days). The only other real complaints I have are The Necrotic Wake and Plaguefall being awful dungeons for a competitive format, but that's more of a game issue rather than a tournament issue. It really sucks that a 28 Necrotic Wake/Plaguefall would reward more than a 26 Sanguine Depths or De Other Side when the 26 Sanguine Depths/De Other Side are way more impressive and challenging dungeons than a 28 Necrotic Wake/Plaguefall.

Yumy - does the bear stream?: For sure we need broadcasted coverage of the qualifiers. It's very competitive and exciting. It also gives the opportunity for screen time on some of the teams just out-of-reach of the finals who are awesome players and do some cool stuff. I’m always a big fan of in-game rewards as well and I think giving some sort of special mount/transmog/title to the winning team, the other teams who made the finals, and then any teams who showed up to qualifiers and completed keys would be a step in the right direction. I think practice time for the event was slightly too long, but it sort of had to be. There were other teams that had tournament realm access for other events like the old MDI/Keystone Masters and were using it to practice for TGP. Ideally, I’d like it streamlined so there is only one-week max before the event for teams to practice.

Rads - YEP: It felt like the practice time was definitely limiting, as I’m sure people would manage to push higher keys if given more time. However, I can understand how that’s part of the appeal of the tournament as well. I’m sure most, if not all, players who participated in the tournament absolutely loved the fact we could stream our personal POVs!

“This tournament goes to show how different strats and comps are when put into a realm with any character/racial combination and being able to repeat keys at any level.”

Q: How did The Great Push compare to a push week on live servers?

Yeluo (小红手叶落) - Skyline: Keys on live server are more precious, so we always need to seize the opportunity when we get a good key. In addition to competing for levels and times in The Great Push, the tournament is also about strategy - not only with dungeon strategy, but also time management.


Asuna - Ambition: Pretty much just keystone RNG. It felt good to be able to practice over and over.

Ellesmere - Ambition: I think live keys and tournament keys are very different. Tournament play is much more about strategy, time management, group comp optimization (using specs that otherwise wouldn’t see as much play on live due to players not wanting to maintain multiple specs) and working around difficult affix combinations. Pushing live keys is more about capitalizing on good keys and making 0 mistakes as you’re punished much more heavily for failing a live key than failing a key in the tournament.

Wildi - SHEEESH: Nothing alike. I felt way more on edge during the entirety of The Great Push. Live keys are much more chill, as the only real “reward” is io score.

Dorki - does the bear stream?: Completely different. We had all sorts of affixes making it much harder than playing every dungeon on the easiest affixes. Having to adapt quickly to the affixes/comps/strats is probably the hardest part of TGP compared to live keys. This tournament goes to show how different strats and comps are when put into a realm with any character/racial combination and being able to repeat keys at any level. We got to see a lot more bear tanks, Elemental Shamans, Shadow Priest, and crazy pulls/strategies that would never be attempted on live.

Yumy - does the bear stream?: It was short and sweet. Generally a push week involves “key till morning” and staying up for 12+ hour sessions to try to grind out the keys we need. That stuff is fun too, but it was a huge relief to be able to call it a day at 5pm and enjoy the rest of my night. I feel like that ended up making the quality of gameplay much higher than the average push week. I’m a bit worried that some of the high key scene is going to be spoiled by infinite retries and perfect gear for any character.

Rads - YEP: I’ve been pushing live keys since the beginning of BFA and this tournament has been the highlight of High Mythic+ for me. Even though we didn’t perform up to par, it was still very exciting and felt much more rewarding than high keys on live ever were. I would absolutely love to see more of this!

Q: If you could use a gif or meme to describe your team, what would it be?

Asuna - Ambition:

Ellesmere - Ambition:

Wildi - SHEEESH:

Dorki - does the bear stream?:

Yumy - does the bear stream?:

Rads - YEP:

“Everyone played their hearts out and crushed it. Every team should be proud to be honest. This was a highly competitive tournament and every player brought their A game.”

Q: What do you think about the final results of the tournament? Is there anything you would have done differently now that you’ve competed in The Great Push?

Yeluo (小红手叶落) - Skyline: I’m very happy with the performance of my team. We put enough effort and concentration into this tournament.


Asuna - Ambition: I liked how close all of the teams were until the very end. The only thing I would have changed is to simply focus up and play better.

Ellesmere - Ambition: I’m thrilled with how we performed as a team. Everyone played their hearts out and crushed it. Every team should be proud to be honest. This was a highly competitive tournament and every player brought their A game.

Wildi - SHEEESH: The results were fine. I felt that we had enough practice time and certainly used it. If there’s one thing we could have done differently, it would have been to practice more in The Necrotic Wake and Plaguefall, but there was no way we could have played any more than what we did since our sanity was already close to zero.

Dorki - does the bear stream?: I’m really happy with how our team performed. It was crazy how close every team was. Until the last hour of the finals, any team could’ve won. It’s kinda unfortunate that we only placed 5th because I feel like without Plaguefall, the top 5 would’ve been way more competitive. If there was one thing we would’ve done differently, it would be to spend more time in the cheese dungeons (Necrotic Wake/Plaguefall) because finding something to break those dungeons rewards way more points/chances to win at the moment than being good at everything else.

Yumy - does the bear stream?: Overall, I’m very happy with our performance. We should definitely have spent more time in Plaguefall like some of the other teams. I was definitely guilty of telling our team I was bored of Plaguefall and didn’t want to practice. ince there is so much cheese potential with that dungeon, in hindsight, it was 100% necessary to have a crazy strategy going into the finals because we knew it would be there. Once we saw Echo’s Plagueborer snapping, we knew we had 0 chance of winning the event unless we could somehow replicate what they were doing to match it. We could have just played our normal stuff and tried to place a bit higher, but we were going for the win so we spent most of the day figuring it out.

Rads - YEP: I wish I ended up calling more cardboards.

“I hope to see The Great Push make a return in the future. The community and the participants loved it, and it’s more of what you would see in your live keys compared to the MDI.

Q: Is there anything else you’d like to say?

Asuna - Ambition: I hope you guys enjoyed it, I did. :]

Ellesmere - Ambition: Remove Conduit Energy, remove target cap, buff Mistweaver, and add rank 1 rewards for new Mythic+ scoring system to incentivize huge push competitions on live.

Wildi - SHEEESH: I don't really have much else to say. I think it's a mix of losing motivation and having very little interest in the game right now. We pushed really hard to win, so losing is disappointing. However, with the next RWF coming up soon, I'm sure I'll swing back to normal in no time!

Dorki - does the bear stream?: Buff Blood Death Knight, remove target cap.

Growl - does the bear stream?: I was watching the YouTube videos to see some of the other teams and I noticed how many toxic comments there are from morons who don't even play the game. If you enjoyed the event and want to see more and support your favorite Mythic+ streamers, please leave positive comments/tweets/whatever and drown out the idiots. Don’t let the vocal minority allow the event to be remembered for anything other than how amazing it was.

Rads - YEP: I hope to see The Great Push make a return in the future. The community and the participants loved it, and it’s more of what you would see in your live keys compared to the MDI.


About the Authors

Vitaminpee specializes in tanking classes in WoW and other MMORPGs and loves doing competitive Mythic+. She is the Editor and Assistant Producer of Raider.IO and is currently pursuing her Masters of Business Administration. She is a partnered Twitch streamer and Discord Partner. Feel free to message her via Twitter for any business-related inquiries.

Neo, Aka Soulawaken is a Chinese World of Warcraft streamer that streams on DouYu, and Neo is also the Raider.IO Chinese Community Liaison. Neo has been working with Raider.IO for more than 4 years to synchronize data from CN WoW servers with other servers around the world. Neo has long hoped that one day Netease will re-enable the player armory API so that players in China will have free and easy access to Raider.IO and other World of Warcraft third-party sites. He plays Warriors in World of Warcraft for 5 years and has mastered a unique technique known in Chinese as "整蛊". His favorite catch phrase is “真对啊哥”, which is "that's so true" in English.