Mythic+ in Patch 9.1: Chains of Domination Highlights

Blizzard has started posting official previews for the changes to content and mechanics coming in Patch 9.1, so the release date can't be too far away. Here is an overview and analysis of everything that's been announced in regards to Mythic+.

Let's dive in!

Table of Contents

Official Mythic+ Rating System

The new in-game Mythic+ Rating system coming in Patch 9.1 was announced in April. While all of the calculations behind this rating system aren't transparent yet, we do have a lot of information from Blizzard and the many datamining posts by Wowhead:

  • Much like RaiderIO score, Blizzard's in-game score will be based primarily on the level of the key you timed, with small amounts of bonus points available for speed. You'll also earn points for doing the dungeon on both Tyrannical and Fortified weeks - adding whichever week you don't already have will increase your total score for that dungeon by around 33% if it's at the same keystone level.
  • You will need to run the same dungeon on both Fortified and Tyrannical for the best equivalent rating to Season 1 score for a specific keystone level, but you can also complete higher level keys in other dungeons to compensate for skipping (e.g. a Tyrannical Sanguine Depths +x).
  • Players will see the group leader's rating when applying via the Group Finder and the leader will see all applicants' ratings.
  • Rating is character-specific, not account-wide.

Valor, Keystone Master, and their Correlation to Mythic+ Rating

We went through this topic in detail recently, as Dratnos explained the benefits and inner-workings of the new in-game Mythic+ Rating system in relation to Keystone Master and Valor here. Here are the important notes:

  • Mythic+ Rating benchmarks are required to unlock three tiers of Valor upgrades.
    (Item level 229 = 750 Rating; ILvl 236 = 1500 Rating; Ilvl 242+ = 2000 Rating)
  • Mythic+ Rating 2000 is also required for the Shadowlands Keystone Master: Season 2 achievement, which rewards the Season 2 mount (a recolor of the Season 1 mount).
  • You will receive bonus Valor if any player in your group improves their Mythic+ rating after the completed run.

Mythic+ Affix Changes

Aside from the brand new, Anima power fueled, Awakened-like Season 2 affix, Tormented, there are also changes coming to other affixes in Patch 9.1:

  • Tormented features 4 Lieutenant mini-bosses to kill in each dungeon, each granting Anima power and strengthening the final boss if left alive.
  • Storming is being nerfed, giving melee hope when it's up (slower and more consistent movement, less damage, easier despawn).
  • Necrotic is being nerfed, as trash will now apply the debuff half as often.

You can read more about the Tormented affix, the minibosses, and our analysis in our recent Inside Look.

Gearing Changes

With the mid and late game PvP item efficiency lowered and the Shards of Domination gems only coming from the raid, general gearing will change significantly in 9.1. Gearing might require the most dedicated Mythic+ players to raid in order to get the best possible gear:

Patch 9.0 had an interesting gear optimization metagame, where arguably the easiest way to gear up was PvP through the easy-to-use Conquest vendor, though Raiders and Mythic+ players also earned very powerful gear from the Great Vault system. After a few months of the patch, players could be within a few percentage points of the most geared players even without engaging with every form of content or even any specific one, though 233 items eluded all but the most dedicated. 9.1 shifts this paradigm with nerfs to PvP gear such that they'll be more quickly replaced in PvE content, though still very strong and worthwhile for top-end players at the start of the patch.

Patch 9.1 also introduces Shards of Domination: powerful gems that only go in sockets in 5 specific gear slots based on your Armor Type. Notably, the gems and the Domination Socketed items only drop from the Sanctum of Domination raid, and most of their power functions outside of the raid (the "set bonus" effects only work within the Maw and the raid, however). Some of these effects will be very noticeable in dungeons, such as Portentous Shard of Cor, so the difference between a player who has access to Mythic Raid gear and a player who does not will likely be bigger this patch than it was last patch, where eventually you could catch up in item level through the Great Vault alone.

Class balance

According to Dratnos, we may be seeing some slight shifts in the Mythic+ class metas in Patch 9.1 due to a few notable changes:

Patch 9.1 comes with several moderately impactful balance changes that are mostly aimed at Raid and PvP balance, with some changes incidentally impacting Mythic+. There is only one change that appears clearly targeted at Mythic: a nerf to Fire Mage's Flamestrike and Flame Patch effects that will tone them down a bit, but is unlikely to remove them from the very top tier of DPS in dungeons. Holy Paladin's damage has gotten toned down as well, with their Venthyr Ashen Hallow ability being hit in addition to several class abilities. They'll still be the best healers at doing damage, but it'll be by a smaller margin and might allow other healers who lack Holy Paladins' weaknesses to shine as well. There's exciting potential for experimentation with a lot of small buffs to underperforming Raid specs that may trickle over into Mythic+, as well as introductions of several new Covenant legendary effects some of which have the potential to be quite strong in dungeons (though some, like the Necrolord Rogue effect, have already been nerfed into the ground during the PTR cycle).

Everything Else Related to Mythic+

  • You will be able to re-roll a Mythic+ keystone ONCE when you time a key that is at or below the keystone level you have in your inventory. Presumably this means once per week, but the wording on the matter is unclear.
  • Tazavesh, the megadungeon, will not be available as the Mythic+ level at launch. This is similar to Operation Mechagon from BFA and Karazhan in Legion, so it will most likely be split into two Mythic+ dungeons in Patch 9.2.
  • Tazavesh will award 226 base item level gear (Normal raid equivalent) and will not be upgradable through Valor.
  • Dungeon portals are acquired for each +20 dungeon cleared in time.

That's all the core changes for Mythic+ in Chains of Domination so far. While there's a lot more to be said, we hope our highlights help your Mythic+ preparations for Season 2.


About the Authors

Starym is an old-school raider with a wide history of World Firsts under his belt. He is a long-time news writer and interviewer for Icy Veins and formerly Manaflask. Having raided in the Race to World First (RWF) until the end of The Burning Crusade, he has been covering the events since Cataclysm and the RWF has become his greatest passion in WoW. A (Tauren, obviously) Warrior main at heart, when pushed, he will admit to loving Diablo more than WoW and, thus, should be punished.

Dratnos hosts the The Titanforge WoW Podcast. He’s also an Officer in the World 36th guild poptart corndoG, and a commentator for events such as the MDI and the Race to World First! He streams on Twitch, where he likes to review his friends’ logs.