MDI Time Trials Analysis & Cup Preview: AMER Division #1

Since the release of this article, team One Last Chance have dropped out of the event, and team Angry Toast have therefore qualified.

Last weekend, the top teams from the EU & Asia Region competed in the first cup of the 2020 Mythic Dungeon International (MDI). If you missed it, you can catch up on the action from Day 1 and Day 2 of that cup on YouTube. You can also check out the interactive Cup bracket (spoilers!) with comp and gear details for each game. This weekend, the Americas and Oceania will be doing battle after a harrowing gauntlet of Time Trial dungeons narrowed the field down to eight teams. Be warned, there are some minor spoilers about last weekend’s tournament in this article!

The Teams

Unsurprisingly, the First Seed was earned by Blizzcon Runners-up Method NA. This is a powerhouse team that has added Lipp to their roster for this season, with Lightee moving to tank in place of Nerftank. With three of their players also raiding in the World First guild, Complexity Limit, this is a scary team with a level of multiclassing ability, raw skill, and commitment that consistently yields results.

The Second Seed, less than two minutes behind Method NA, are goosy bad, a team of vodka raiders who were until recently the world first uncapitalized guild. This team includes veterans of MDIs dating back to the beginning of the tournament, and their times suggest that they’re in great shape for this weekend too.

In Third, Ethical is a team made up, unsurprisingly, of raiders from Ethical, the region’s 4th ranked guild in Ny’alotha. They’re an Oceanic guild, so will have to brave some early starts this weekend, but they’re the most competitive team of Alliance mains in this year’s MDI so they’ll be at home in this very Alliance-dominated tournament.

Our Fourth Seed is Complexity Limit, a team of five World First raiders who will be trying to dethrone their guildies in Method NA. Though this team contains many players with MDI experience, it’s a new configuration of players whose potential is unknown - though with a strong set of time trials out of the gates, and the tremendous individual skill and dedication of each member of this team, the sky could well be the limit.

All of the top four seeds were separated by only a few minutes, but there’s a fairly large gulf between the Fourth and Fifth seeds - we’ll have to see if any of the lower ranked teams will be able to overcome this as their European counterparts did last weekend.

Honestly is the Fifth Seed, another team joining the majority of team’s from this region in consisting primarily of raiders from the same guild - in this case, the Oceanic guild Honestly which narrowly defeated Ethical to claim rank 3 in the region in Ny’alotha.

Sixth place goes to One Last Chance, who were only a few seconds behind Honestly.

In the Seventh Seed, Fly Me Out returns after competing last MDI with some fairly off-meta class choices. Fortunately, the metagame has shifted in their favor, as they have players who are particularly skilled at specs like Fire Mage and Holy Paladin.

Big Dumb Gaming rounds out our top 8, representing the region’s 2nd ranked guild, which means all of the top four guilds in the region have a team participating in this weekend’s cup!

The Time Trial Dungeons

These are the dungeons that were played during the Time Trials:

Each team got unlimited practice runs and five official attempts for each dungeon over a period of five days. Awakened was active in every dungeon (and, presumably, will be for the rest of the tournament). Keystones were set to level 19 and will be during the cup, though notably the Grand Finals match will be played at level 20!

The first dungeon was Mechagon Workshop, with Grievous, Explosive, and Tyrannical active. To the surprise of none, Protection Warriors and Mistweaver Monks were dominant, though two Holy Paladins also showed up in the top 8. DPS compositions featured six Fire Mages - which may come as a surprise after the spec performed somewhat poorly in the cup last weekend. The explanation lies in a combination of factors - this region has a few players who are uniquely skilled at Mage, and Tyrannical Workshop offers some very favorable cooldown timings for the spec, along with very few opportunities to perform massive pulls in a time frame shorter than a Mage’s Combustion cooldown.

Method NA, who put up the top time in Workshop, however, didn’t use a Mage. They instead opted for a double Beast Mastery Hunter composition and a Havoc Demon Hunter. These specs made up the majority of DPS from other groups as well, with a couple of Outlaw Rogues rounding out the times from some lower-seeded teams.

The second Time Trial Dungeon was Fortified, Raging, and Bursting Waycrest Manor. Here, the Unholy Death Knights that were absent from Workshop show up in force. Most teams played two of them, with the other specs being the usual mix of DH, Hunter, and Rogue.

The final dungeon was Atal’dazar with Fortified, Teeming, and Quaking active. Here again we saw a lot of double DK, with most teams also sporting a Rogue. Rogues work well in this dungeon as there are several excellent shroud skips and Tricks of the Trade works very well to facilitate “snapping,” a very common strategy in this dungeon. However, Method NA once again defied the trend and played a Hunter instead, putting up another first place time with an impressive run.

That’s it for this article - let’s see what happens this weekend when the teams meet head-to-head on these and many other maps!

About the Author

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.