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Shadowlands Pre-patch Week 4 DPS Raid Rankings and Analysis

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We have a new overall leader this week, as Arcane keeps pushing up in the Mythic Ny'alotha rankings! We're also going to be doing something a little different this week on the DPS analysis side of things (while still using Warcraft Logs data), as Blizzard have just announced class tuning that's already live on US servers and is coming tomorrow to EU. So we'll be going over the changes for the top and bottom classes to give you a better idea of what the standings might look like after they're implemented. Also, the usual disclaimer: some of the results may not be quite as they seem, due to under-representation, and you should check out our article on the reliability of the logs to get a better perspective on them and their relevance.

Let's get started with the 95th percentile as usual, where Affliction has overtaken Shadow by a hair, BM and Unholy dropped just a little, as Fire pushed past Frost Mage, Demo, Elemental and Unholy, but could be artificially pumped up due to low number of logs. Meanwhile Frost Mages fell quite a bit, and are getting some more nerfs today.

Data by Warcraft Logs .

In the overall rankings for all percentiles, Arcane caught up to Affliction and then pushed over the top to claim first place, just in this past day, actually. Shadow dropped just below BM for a while but bounced back on top, while Fire pushed up past Marksmanship, Balance, Frost Mage and Unholy.

Data by Warcraft Logs .

And finally the actual number of logs, with Wordup's note that anything significantly under 2,000 isn't necessarily exactly accurate, so Fire's big surge might just be a statistical anomaly, as Survival, Demonology, Assassination, Feral and Frost DKs  also really didn't get proper representation this week.

Data by Warcraft Logs .

And now let's take a look at the changes that will take effect over the next week of raiding and give us some different standings the next time we check in. You can check out the full details of the actual changes here, but we'll be estimating the actual loss to DPS below.

Starting at the top, Affliction and all Warlock specs are completely unchanged, as are Shadow Priests, and while Arcane Mages get an AoE nerf, with Arcane Explosion Arcane Explosion damage reduced by 8%, it won't actually affect raiding at all, as the ability isn't used, being much more significant in M+. Then we have Beast Mastery Hunters getting a 5% nerf to everything aside from Cobra Shot Cobra Shot and Barbed Shot Barbed Shot, bringing it closer to Marksmanship which got a buff, as Elemental Shamans, Unholy DKs and Fire Mages are safe and unchanged, but Frost Mage got substantial changes, which should result in a 5% single target loss and a 10% cleave loss.


The Ice Lance nerf is warranted, while the Splitting Ice nerf isn't. They needed to aim the nerf at the 5% Lance damage component. We're supposed to be 2 target specialists and we're the ONLY spec of that classification that has to talent into it, and suck at it in general.

- Kuni, Frost Mage guide writer

Looking at the lower end of the rankings, Windwalker Monks got a flat 5% bump, which doesn't seem to be even close to enough, according to top raider Justwait from Echo:

Feral got a slightly more significant 8% buff, and Fury Warriors received quite a few changes, with a 10% overall increase and a very slight decrease to cleave DPS. Retribution Paladins also got both an overall 4% and an AoE buff, so they should be going up in the world!


Week 3 DPS rankings for comparison.

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The ret paladin changes weren't a buff. The 4% damage is nice, but paladin damage is very low outside of our burst window and with the nerf to Execution Sentence initial damage and Final Reckoning our burst is going to suffer. Id rather do 1.2k dps and burst for 2.5k than do 1.5k dps and burst for 2k

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Why are people even talking about pre-patch numbers like this? They mean nothing... most classes unlock passives between 50 and 60 that influence their damage greatly, the legendary powers are going to affect each class differently, covenants affect each class differently...

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