Mythic+ Tank Rankings: A Tier List for Shadowlands (Patch 9.2. / Season 3)

Last updated on Apr 12, 2022 at 00:00 by Petko 38 comments

From the strongest to the weakest class and specialization, each provide unique character distinction and add value toward shaping the Season 3 "meta" of Mythic+. The Tank specialization rankings provided for Shadowlands's third and final Season of Mythic+ are based on pure tanking strength and group-added-value such as utility, survivability, mobility, and self-sustain.

This list will be updated as new tuning and class changes come out over the course of the season.

1.

About the Tier List

This tier list is NOT FINAL; it will change and will be updated as often as necessary prior and during Season 3 (Patch 9.2.) of Mythic+ in Shadowlands. There are often moments of Covenant, class tuning, and secondary stat scaling that will impact the placing of the specs.

I am Petko, a competitive Mythic+ player, known to be pushing the boundaries of High Mythic+ with several World first and Europe rankings among the seasons on multiple classes. I have worked hard on preparing for Season 3 of Shadowlands, spending numerous hours per day examining each and every class and spec in a dungeon environment. This Tier list will continue to be updated as much as it requires over the course of Shadowlands and it will also focus on what the "meta" will look like as it stabilizes. Along the way, this Tier list will also be supported by various professional Mythic+ players with high credibility in the community.

To begin with, this Tier list will primarily focus on the third Season of Mythic+ in Shadowlands. At the beginning, there will be also no Warcraft Logs rankings added nor simulation data for the majority of the classes and specs. As a result, this Tier list will be solely based on empirical evidence of the current state of the classes' performance in Mythic+ from my own point of view and the point of view of the group of players testing those classes who are among the best representative of the class in the community. Moreover, this Tier list will take into consideration every impactful class change and Covenant tuning.

This tier list is entirely based on several factors such as tank durability, group composition synergy, mobility, and both personal and external party-wide cooldowns.

1.1.

A Final Warning

It is important to understand that this Tier list is NOT permanent and it will be due to change with upcoming changes and tunings over the course of the expansion. I have always advocated to the "bring the player, not the class" motto, meaning: value the player skill more than the class itself. This Tier list should NOT discourage you to play whatever you enjoy the most, as I have always been playing "off-meta" classes and happened to have really good results in an actual Mythic+ environment. The list will be updated as much as it requires and if something is under-performing now, it could become meta due to a hotfix as well as the opposite.

2.

Important Note for Season 3/Patch 9.2

This tier-list is assuming you have two Legendaries equipped and both 2-piece and 4-piece tier set bonuses active. This means at the very beginning of the season we are likely to see similar classes or specs being popular from Season 2, but quickly after obtaining your second legendary, this is what the tier-list should look like. Finally, always check the tier list after every major update; there are always changes toward the tier-list, which I will account for as fast as possible.

3.

Tanks Tier List for Shadowlands Season 3 of Mythic+

Below you can find the full rankings for Tank specializations in Shadowlands' Mythic+. We encourage you to further read and understand why some classes are placed lower or higher than expected, with several factors taken into consideration.

Work in progress Last update on Apr 12, 2022

  1. Protection Paladin (S-Tier)
  2. Blood Death Knight (S-Tier)
  3. Brewmaster Monk (A-Tier)
  4. Vengeance Demon Hunter (A-Tier)
  5. Guardian Druid (B-Tier)
  6. Protection Warrior (C-Tier)

I have also created a video to complement the rankings presented here, which you can watch below if you would rather not read instead.

3.1.

DPS and Healer Class Rankings

If you are interested in our other rankings for Mythic+ in Shadowlands, please click the links below.

4.

Full Tank Class Rankings

4.1.

S-Tier

4.1.1.

Protection Paladin

February 16, Patch 9.2 update: Protection Paladin received no further changes going into the next season. Their current presence in the meta will further get bolstered by the amazing tier set they are going to receive known as Glorious Purpose. The Glorious Purpose Icon Protection Paladin 2-Piece bonus of that set will make Shield of the Righteous Icon Shield of the Righteous increase their Block chance by 4% for 15 seconds, stacking up 3 times. The Glorious Purpose Icon Protection Paladin 4-Piece bonus, meanwhile, gives you a chance equal to your Block chance to cast Judgment Icon Judgment at your attacker whenever you take damage. This will make them both more "tanky" due to the 2-piece set and also do more damage thanks to the 4-piece bonus, which will also help them with aggro generation — though they did not need it anyway. I predict we will continue see Protection Paladin as one of the best tanks, if not the best tank, for the entirety of Season 3 unless it is nerfed, which only time can tell.

Protection Paladins also have an amazing defensive and offensive toolkit, with tons of cooldowns to fill in the gaps. However, these cooldowns are also Protection Paladin's main weakness, as their survivability can be at risk if they have no active mitigation up. Maintaining Shield of the Righteous Icon Shield of the Righteous will be the main focus if you want to stay alive, and if you have hard time kiting, due to limited mobility from Divine Steed Icon Divine Steed. Moreover, Protection Paladin has great interrupt power with Avenger's Shield Icon Avenger's Shield and Rebuke Icon Rebuke, which is especially useful if you are running a range-orientated comp since most of the ranged specializations' kicks have longer cooldown compared to the melee kicks. Protection Paladin is the only tank specialization that has an immunity with Divine Shield Icon Divine Shield, and passive party-wide damage-reduction from Devotion Aura Icon Devotion Aura. Finally, your off-heals can save lives with Word of Glory Icon Word of Glory, something not to underestimate especially against HPS-heavy encounters. Overall, Protection Paladin is a amazing tank option with tons of unique Class interactions that can ultimately fit within any group's composition.

The only disadvantage I will consider is having limited mobility, outside Divine Steed Icon Divine Steed; if that is ever addressed, I do not think we will see them out of the meta anytime soon.

4.1.2.

Blood Death Knight

April 12, Patch 9.2 update: Good news for Blood Death Knights; they are entering Season 3 much better than what they were during the past 2 seasons of Shadowlands in Mythic+. Their Endless Rune Waltz Icon Blood DK 2-Piece bonus causes Heart Strike Icon Heart Strike to extend the duration of Dancing Rune Weapon Icon Dancing Rune Weapon by 0.5 seconds while it is active and increases your Strength by 1%. This bonus persists for 10 seconds after Dancing Rune Weapon ends. Their Endless Rune Waltz Icon Blood DK 4-Piece bonus (Endless Rune Waltz), meanwhile, gives you a chance equal to your Parry chance to Heart Strike your attacker when you take damage, and allows Dancing Rune Weapon to now summon 2 Rune Weapons. Blood Death Knight are likely the "tankiest" tank option in the current Season, with not only having great survivability, but their overall damage profile has increased significantly compared to the last two previous season, especially if they can get their hands on Gavel of the First Arbiter Icon Gavel of the First Arbiter that drops from the last boss of in the Sepulcher of the First OnesThe Jailer.

Blood Death Knight is the tank with the highest self-sustain in the game. Their unique defensive toolkit makes them very useful against Magical damage and slightly more vulnerable against Physical. In addition, the spec provides Anti-Magic Zone Icon Anti-Magic Zone to the whole party, as well as a combat resurrection in the form of Raise Ally Icon Raise Ally. Moreover, the spec is known for its ability to "Mass-grip" an uncapped amount of mobs with Gorefiend's Grasp Icon Gorefiend's Grasp; it also has a single-target grip with Death Grip Icon Death Grip which can make certain pulls easier to form into a cluster.

Blood Death Knight's biggest disadvantage is being less mobile compared to the rest of the tank specializations and being very "spiky" when it comes down to healing. That, however, has been compensated by the crazy-good survivability of the spec, combined with amazing damage output.

4.2.

A-Tier

4.2.1.

Brewmaster Monk

February 16, Patch 9.2 update: Brewmaster Monk has been one of the best tanks during Season 2, and they will continue to be great going into the last season of Mythic+. They also received one of the best tier set bonuses for tanks, not only making them more durable, but also increasing their self-sustain and damage output. The Breath of the Cosmos Icon Brewmaster Monk 2-Piece bonus (Breath of the Cosmos) causes targets ignited by Breath of Fire Icon Breath of Fire to deal an additional 4% less damage to them. Their Keg of the Heavens Icon Brewmaster Monk 4-Piece bonus (Keg of the Heavens) will increase the damage done from Keg Smash Icon Keg Smash by 50%, healing you for 66% of the damage dealt, and granting you 66% of the damage dealt as maximum health for 10 seconds. It is arguably the most "overpowered" 4-piece set bonus among all tanks; once obtained, expect to gain a massive DPS and HPS spike. Their already good single-target damage will continue to be one of the highest, if not the highest among all tank specializations. Paired with great utility and mobility, Brewmaster Monks can fit really well with heavy Physical-oriented compositions due to Mystic Touch Icon Mystic Touch being present. They are, overall, placed under A-tier for now.

Brewmaster Monk is one of the highest damage profile tanks in the current meta of Season 3 in Mythic+. Outside of this, the spec provides great group utility with Leg Sweep Icon Leg Sweep, Tiger's Lust Icon Tiger's Lust Ring of Peace Icon Ring of Peace, and Mystic Touch Icon Mystic Touch. Brewmaster Monks are one of the best against heavy Physical damage because of Stagger Icon Stagger. Its self-sustain is great due to their 4-piece bonus, which makes it much better compared to the last season. The spec does have great mobility with Roll Icon Roll, making it easier to kite enemies. One of the biggest disadvantages of Brewmaster Monks is their vulnerability to magical damage, unlike other tanks.

As predicted, with slight damage adjustments, we can see Brewmaster shine, and since they got them in a form of a tier bonus, we expect Brewmaster to be one of the best tanks for Season 3, with the only disadvantage really being high-magical damage vulnerability.

4.2.2.

Vengeance Demon Hunter

February 16, Patch 9.2 update: Once again, Vengeance Demon Hunter is entering yet another Season in really good shape. As always, their damage and group-wide utility is one of the best, which will be further enhance by their newly-introduced tier set. Their Burning Hunger Icon Vengeance DH 2-Piece bonus (Burning Hunger) will cause any damage dealt by Immolation Aura Icon Immolation Aura to have a 10% chance to generate a Lesser Soul Fragment (Shattered Souls Icon Shattered Souls). In addition, their Rapacious Hunger Icon Vengeance DH 4-Piece bonus (Rapacious Hunger) will make consuming a Lesser Soul Fragment reduce the remaining cooldown of Immolation Aura Icon Immolation Aura or Fel Devastation Icon Fel Devastation by 1 second. Their tier set will only increase their damage profile, specifically their AoE, and therefore their stability in the current meta. If you are looking for a high-damage, high-mobility tank, Vengeance Demon Hunter is definitely your choice!

Vengeance Demon Hunters will remain a great tank choice going forward to the third Season of Shadowlands in Mythic+. They have some of the highest self-sustain and damage output among tanks. Their passive mitigation from Demonic Wards Icon Demonic Wards and high mobility as a tank make it easy to navigate while staying in a healthy state. Moreover, they are currently one of only two tanks with a cheat death passive from the Last Resort Icon Last Resort talent, helping them survive otherwise-fatal damage. Furthermore, Vengeance Demon Hunters have one of the best toolkits as a tank with spells such as Sigil of Silence Icon Sigil of Silence, Sigil of Misery Icon Sigil of Misery, and Sigil of Chains Icon Sigil of Chains, if talented. It is also important to note that the spec provides Chaos Brand Icon Chaos Brand, which synergizes well with the spellcasters in the party by increasing all magical damage done by 5%.

4.3.

B-Tier

4.3.1.

Vengeance Demon Hunter

February 16, Patch 9.2 update: Once again, Vengeance Demon Hunter is entering yet another Season in really good shape. As always, their damage and group-wide utility is one of the best, which will be further enhance by their newly-introduced tier set. Their Burning Hunger Icon Vengeance DH 2-Piece bonus (Burning Hunger) will cause any damage dealt by Immolation Aura Icon Immolation Aura to have a 10% chance to generate a Lesser Soul Fragment (Shattered Souls Icon Shattered Souls). In addition, their Rapacious Hunger Icon Vengeance DH 4-Piece bonus (Rapacious Hunger) will make consuming a Lesser Soul Fragment reduce the remaining cooldown of Immolation Aura Icon Immolation Aura or Fel Devastation Icon Fel Devastation by 1 second. Their tier set will only increase their damage profile, specifically their AoE, and therefore their stability in the current meta. If you are looking for a high-damage, high-mobility tank, Vengeance Demon Hunter is definitely your choice!

Vengeance Demon Hunters will remain a great tank choice going forward to the third Season of Shadowlands in Mythic+. They have some of the highest self-sustain and damage output among tanks. Their passive mitigation from Demonic Wards Icon Demonic Wards and high mobility as a tank make it easy to navigate while staying in a healthy state. Moreover, they are currently one of only two tanks with a cheat death passive from the Last Resort Icon Last Resort talent, helping them survive otherwise-fatal damage. Furthermore, Vengeance Demon Hunters have one of the best toolkits as a tank with spells such as Sigil of Silence Icon Sigil of Silence, Sigil of Misery Icon Sigil of Misery, and Sigil of Chains Icon Sigil of Chains, if talented. It is also important to note that the spec provides Chaos Brand Icon Chaos Brand, which synergizes well with the spellcasters in the party by increasing all magical damage done by 5%.

4.3.2.

Guardian Druid

April 12, Patch 9.2 update: Guardian Druid entered this season as one of the best tanks in Mythic+. Overall, Guardian remains a solid choice for any group composition, with the only flaw being poor single-target damage compared to most of the other tanks, due in part to the recent nerfs to their Architect's Aligner Icon Guardian Druid 4-Piece tier-set bonus by 35%. Finally, I believe if you play around the spec (more specifically around Incarnation: Guardian of Ursoc Icon Incarnation: Guardian of Ursoc), you can get the most out of it, and potentially going higher than its current standing. Also, the fact that the barrier of entry is relatively low for the spec means it is quite beginner-friendly which is always a desirable detail.

Guardian Druid is a versatile tank that provides great utility in the Shadowlands Mythic+ environment. Their self-sustain and damage output are great. They still have one of the strongest personal defensive cooldowns in the game, Survival Instincts Icon Survival Instincts, but still with quite a high cooldown. To compensate that, they have a second, shorter defensive cooldown with Barkskin Icon Barkskin. In addition, Guardian Druids are one of two tanks that have Combat Resurrection (CR) in the form of Rebirth Icon Rebirth. Guardian is one of most mobile tank specializations that can fit within any group composition — melee cleave, spell cleave, or hybrid — which makes it great for uncoordinated groups (PUGs). Finally, Guardian Druid's AoE damage output is one of the highest among all the tanks, which can make up some time if you can really get the best out of the spec based on your routes (pull big while having Incarnation: Guardian of Ursoc Icon Incarnation: Guardian of Ursoc up and pull small while it is on cooldown).

The biggest disadvantage, as already mentioned, is Guardian's quite low single-target damage and being vulnerable without their major cooldown – Incarnation: Guardian of Ursoc Icon Incarnation: Guardian of Ursoc, which ultimately drags the spec down some rankings. If this spec remained unchanged, it would have been one of the best, but the recent 2 nerfs to their tier-set will definitely reflect on their current placement of B-tier.

4.4.

C-Tier

4.4.1.

Protection Warrior

April 12, Patch 9.2 update: Protection Warrior received major buffs recently, with the most noticeable being that Ignore Pain Icon Ignore Pain now ignores 55% of damage received (previously 50%) and its Rage cost was reduced from 40 to 35, Demoralizing Shout Icon Demoralizing Shout now reduces the damage enemies deal to you by 25% (was previously 20%), Spell Reflection Icon Spell Reflection cooldown reduced to 20seconds (was previously 25 seconds), and last but not least, Vanguard Icon Vanguard reduces all damage taken by 15% (was previously 10%). This spec is the typical case of not being in the worst state, but the rest of the tanks just being better in most any aspect. While their Physical mitigation remains their strongest asset, Protection Warriors are far from being placed among the best tanks in the list, but certainly are still a viable choice.

Protection Warriors have a very strong Physical damage mitigation toolkit but are rather weak to Magical damage outside of their Spell Reflection Icon Spell Reflection. Furthermore, the specialization's self-sustain is mediocre. To compensate, they are quite mobile with Heroic Leap Icon Heroic Leap and Intervene Icon Intervene which allows them to escape dangerous situations. The spec also has a great defensive external in the form of Rallying Cry Icon Rallying Cry which be useful in many cases. In addition, Warriors are the only class that provides Battle Shout Icon Battle Shout, meaning they can be very useful in groups that are heavily Physical-damage-oriented.

Threat generation is still an ongoing issue for Protection Warriors, ever since Season 1 of Shadowlands, especially on the bigger pulls. I believe with slight number adjustments and more survivability, Protection Warrior has the capabilities to become a really strong pick, especially if you plan to have a fully Physical damage composition which can benefit the most from their Battle Shout Icon Battle Shout. For now, it will remain under the C-tier.

5.

Mythic+ Dungeon Difficulty Rankings

For a full ranking of the relative difficulty of the different Mythic+ dungeons based on the current week's Mythic+ affixes, please check out our guide below.

6.

Changelog

  • 12 Apr. 2022: Major changes based on the most recent Patch notes.
  • 16 Feb. 2022: New round of spell and specialization tuning based on the upcoming 9.2. patch.
  • 28 Oct. 2021: New round of spell and specialization tuning based on the upcoming 9.1.5 patch.
  • 25 Jun. 2021: Guide updated based on internal feedback.
  • 15 Jun. 2021: Tier list updated based on the 38872 PTR build for Patch 9.1.
  • 19 Mar. 2021: Guide updated based on the latest patch notes (9.0.5.)
  • 31 Jan. 2021: Guide requires no changes after recent tuning changes based on the most recent Build (37176).
  • 13 Jan. 2021: Blood Death Knight buffs.
  • 15 Dec. 2020: New round of class and spell changes.
  • 07 Dec. 2020: Updated guide after Protection Paladin conduit changes.
  • 16 Nov. 2020: New round of class and spell changes.
  • 09 Nov. 2020: New round of class and spell changes based on the most recent Beta Build (36512).
  • 30 Oct. 2020: New round of class, spell and conduit changes based on the most recent Beta Build (36401).
  • 24 Oct. 2020: New round of class, spell and conduit changes based on the most recent Beta Build (36294).
  • 12 Oct. 2020: Second round of changes based on continued Discord feedback and latest balance changes.
  • 08 Oct. 2020: First round of updates based on 36165 Beta Build.
  • 08 Oct. 2020: Guardian Druid and Blood Death Knight and Brewmaster Monk recent spell changes.
  • 07 Oct. 2020: Guide added.
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