what m+ garbage do i have to deal with this week?

what garbage affixes do i have to deal with this week?

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Season 4!

Next week

Week after next

Probably...

Changelog

A small changelog of what's been updated recently.

Affixes

Legend: easy difficulty | medium difficulty | hard difficulty

What is an "affix"?

An affix is a modifier applied to a mythic keystone at set levels. Different combinations occur every week, with the combinations eventually repeating on a set schedule.


Level 2 affixes
(these occur on all keystones, alternating weekly)

  • Fortified

    Non-bosses have more health and deal 30% more damage.

    Note: interrupting and dodging any/all trash mob abilities becomes an absolute priority with this affix. Most of the time spent in the dungeon will be fighting beefy trash, don't be afraid to use CDs.

  • Tyrannical

    Bosses have 30% more health and deal 15% more damage.

    Note: Boss abilities are no longer trivial. Boss mechanics need to be done or people will die. Some fights become endurance tests because they last so long.

Level 4 affixes
(one affix will occur at +4 per week)

  • Bolstering

    Non-boss enemies buff nearby allies on death, increasing maximum health by 15% and damage by 20%. This effect stacks.

    Note: it's important to kill all the trash in a pull as closely together as possible with this affix as mobs effectively heal as they gain max health (percent translation). Adds spawned from a trash mob or boss ability do not trigger bolster. Bolstering falls off after 20 seconds.

  • Bursting

    Non-boss enemies explode on death, causing all players to suffer flat damage that scales with keystone level. This effect stacks.

    Note: This effect stacks, so it is safest to let the stacks drop before killing multiple enemies. Now dispellable!

  • Inspiring

    Some non-boss enemies will have an aura that makes their nearby allies immune to crowd control effects.

    Note: The Inspiring Presence buff makes mobs immune to crowd control. The mobs that have this buff appear to be fixed (as in they will always be the same every time), and do not apply this buff to themselves.

  • Raging

    Non-boss enemies at 30% health, dealing 75% increased damage until killed.

    Note: mobs with high damage targeted abilities or high damage AoE abilities become deadly with this affix. Be sure to focus fire mobs down so there aren't multiple enraged mobs at once. Soothe effects remove the enrage!

  • Sanguine

    Non-boss enemies will leave a pool of blood on the ground on death. This pool heals enemies and damages players for a % of their maximum health.

    Note: The pool's radius is 8 yds. Pools last 20 seconds.

  • Spiteful

    Spirits rise from the corpses of non-boss enemies and chase down random players, dealing HEAVY melee damage.

    Note: Whenever a mob dies, it spawns a Spiteful Shade that will fixate on a random player. Their health and damage scales with keystone level. They lose 8% of their HP every second and can be crowd controlled.

Level 7 affixes
(one affix will occur at +7 per week)

  • Explosive

    Creatures have a chance to summon an Explosive Orb nearby that will explode after six seconds, inflicting damage 40% of the player’s maximum health as damage.

    Note: The explosive orb will spawn and begin casting a six second cast. If the cast goes off, the entire party will take 40% of their max hp in damage. They are AOE immune so you can't cleave them down! They can also spawn during boss fights.

  • Grievous

    While below 90% health, players are afflicted with Grievous Wound.

    Note: You bleed until you are healed above 90%. Does flat damage that scales with keystone level. Direct heals remove one stack of Grievous Wound.

  • Necrotic

    Enemy melee attacks apply a stacking debuff that deals damage and reduces healing received. Debuff lasts 5 seconds and is dispelled when exiting combat.

    Note: Strong AoE CC or slows are great for this affix to allow for kiting mobs while the tank's Necrotic stacks fall off. Bosses only apply necrotic on every other melee hit.",

  • Quaking

    Players will periodically Quake, interrupting spell casts of the player. Nearby allies take 40% of their maximum health as damage

    Note: spread out when you get a circle on you.

  • Storming

    Tornadoes spawn around enemy creatures while in combat.

    Note: Grey swirlies appear on the floor indicating where a tornado will spawn. If you get hit by the tornado, you take damage and get knocked back and the tornado disappears.

  • Volcanic

    Enemies cause eruptions of flame near distant players. Additional volcanoes may appear near existing volcanoes.

    Note: Keep an eye out for the volcano animation under your feet or near you. Sometimes you may not have to move! Knocks you high in to the air in addition to doing damage scaled to the keystone level.

Seasonal affixes (+10)
(these occur on all keystones throughout the season at keystone level 10 and do not rotate weekly for the duration of the season)

  • Prideful (Season 1)

    Killing enemies fills a progress bar. Every 20% on the bar spawns a Manifestation of Pride. Killing the Manifestation of Pride provides players with a buff.

    The buff you get from killing the Manifestation of Pride is pretty good, as it increases Mana Regeneration by 5% per second, damage dealt by 30%, and Movement Speed by 60% for a minute. The Manifestation of Pride has somewhere around 30% of the health of a dungeon boss and does heavy AoE damage every 2 seconds of the fight. You'll probably want to position this enemy to be near a boss or difficult trash pull so you can make the most use of the buff.

  • Tormented (Season 2)

    Servants of the Jailer can be found throughout the dungeon and grant powerful boons when defeated. If a servant is not dealt with, they empower the final boss.

    Four Lieutenants are available to kill in the dungeon. When you kill a lieutenant, each party member gets an Anima Power. For every lieutenant still up when the final boss is pulled, it will apply an aura that will make the final boss harder.

  • Encrypted (Season 3)

    Enemies throughout the dungeon possess relics of the First Ones. Destroy the relics to summon the First Ones' Automa and gain powerful bonuses, based on the order in which they were destroyed.

    Note: The first relic you destroy in a pack determines the buff you're going to get. A miniboss appears after one of the relics has been destroyed. After the miniboss is defeated, you get a buff from the miniboss you fought. Lots more info here.

  • Shrouded (Season 4)

    Some enemies in the dungeon will reveal themselves to be dreadlords. Defeating them grants you a stack of a buff that provides you secondary stats of your choosing and restore health and mana.

    Note: A broker appears at the start of the keystone, asking you to choose a bounty. The bounty you choose determines the secondary stat you will receive after defeating a dreadlord. One of the dreadlords will be a miniboss with special abilities. More to come on that after I run some keys.

Weekly schedule for affixes

The following table shows the expected affix schedule for the entirety of the current season.

Baseline 2 (+4) 3 (+7) Seasonal (+10)
Fortified Bursting Storming Shrouded
Tyrannical Raging Volcanic Shrouded
Fortified Inspiring Grievous Shrouded
Tyrannical Spiteful Necrotic Shrouded
Fortified Bolstering Quaking Shrouded
Tyrannical Sanguine Storming Shrouded
Fortified Raging Explosive Shrouded
Tyrannical Bursting Volcanic Shrouded
Fortified Spiteful Necrotic Shrouded
Tyrannical Inspiring Quaking Shrouded
Fortified Sanguine Grievous Shrouded
Tyrannical Bolstering Explosive Shrouded

Group Considerations

Group makeup barely matters at low keystone levels. There is little reason to sweat your group composition on keys below 15. Bring the player, not the class.

That being said, your group composition will always be one tank, one healer, and three DPS. Multi-tank strategies are not viable, no matter how much you think they should be.

It's important to build a group that is well rounded in order increase your chances of completing a keystone within the timer. This means bringing consumables to make up for gaps in your group composition.

When considering your group composition, it is important to consider what each class can bring to the table. Does your group have:

  1. ways to dispel buffs on enemies?
  2. ways to dispel debuffs on allies?
  3. multiple interrupts or other CC to stop enemy casting?
  4. strong CC for difficult trash pulls?

Selecting your group carefully matters mostly for higher level keys where the difficulty of the run is often very high. For lower level keystone runs, group makeup is not as important. Just saying. Do what you want.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Consumables

Mandatory (at least above keystone level 10)

  1. Current food
  2. Current flasks
  3. Current potions
  4. Repair mount/Auto-Hammer/Jeeves/Reeves

"Missing a class" consumables

  1. Drums (any tier is fine, they all give 15% haste [source]): sorta makes up for no Bloodlust/Heroism/Time Warp/Hysteria, but the nerf from 25% haste to 15% really hurts the value of drums.

Optional/niche/high key consumables

  1. Invisibility potions (used for skipping troubling trash packs at high key levels)
  2. Augment runes

Keystones

Time penalty for deaths

Five seconds are subtracted from the timer any time a player dies in a keystone run. While this may seem inconsequential at first, the time lost to death will add up quickly if players die to mechanics frequently. This can easily result in missing the timer.

Instance Timer and Requirements for "Level Jumps"

The following table shows the amount of time you have to complete a keystone run and upgrade your key. The +2 and +3 columns show how much time you have to complete a keystone run in order to +2 or +3 a key.

Name Par time +2 keystone levels +3 keystone levels
Return to Karazhan: Lower 42:00 33:36 (8:24 left on the timer) 25:12 (16:48 left on the timer)
Return to Karazhan: Upper 35:00 28:00 (7:00 left on the timer) 21:00 (14:00 left on the timer)
Operation Mechagon: Junkyard 38:00 30:24 (7:36 left on the timer) 22:38 (15:12 left on the timer)
Operation Mechagon: Workshop 32:00 25:36 (6:24 left on the timer) 19:12 (12:48 left on the timer)
Tazavesh: Streets of Wonder 39:00 31:12 (7:48 left on the timer) 23:24 (15:36 left on the timer)
Tazavesh: So'Leah's Gambit 30:00 24:00 (6:00 left on the timer) 18:00 (12:00 left on the timer)
Iron Docks 32:00 25:36 (6:24 left on the timer) 19:12 (12:48 left on the timer)
Grimrail Depot 30:00 24:00 (6:00 left on the timer) 18:00 (12:00 left on the timer)

The Great Vault and You

The Great Vault is the Shadowlands replacement for the weekly chest from BFA, but more confusing.

Every week at reset you are eligible to choose ONE PIECE of gear from The Great Vault based on your accomplishments from the previous week. Completing more milestones does not get you more gear, but expands your choices for the ONE PIECE of gear that you can claim.


Remember that you only get to choose one piece of gear from The Great Vault no matter how many activities you do.


There are three paths to expand your gear choices: mythic plus, raiding, and PVP.

To reduce confusion, let's just assume that you only play mythic plus and don't raid or PVP.

To get the most choices at gear by doing only mythic plus, you must complete 8 mythic keystone runs a week. Completing 8 runs a week will present you with three pieces of gear to choose from at reset.

That's the short version - to be able to choose from three pieces of loot from the Great Vault, you gotta do 8 mythic keystone runs. Now let's do the long version where we talk about how keystone level affects the item level of gear you can choose from.


wait, how many gear choices do I get if I do X number of keystone runs?


If you do at least one, but less than 4 keystone runs: you get one piece of loot to choose from in The Great Vault. Its item level will be based on the highest level keystone run you completed. (Look at the table below to see what the item level will be.)

If you do between 4 and 7 keystone runs: you get two pieces of loot to choose from in The Great Vault. The first item's level will be based on the highest level keystone run you completed. The second item's level will be based on the FOURTH HIGHEST keystone run you completed.

If you do 8 or more keystone runs: you get three pieces of loot to choose from in The Great Vault. The first item's level will be based on the highest level keystone run you completed. The second item's level will be based on the FOURTH HIGHEST keystone run you completed. The third item's level will be based on the EIGHTH HIGHEST keystone run you completed.


One thing that I want to make clear now that you've read this: it doesn't matter in which order you complete your keystone dungeons, but it does matter how many high level keys you do. The game makes a list of all the keystone runs you completed and sorts them from highest level to lowest level, then selects the first, fourth, and eighth highest completed keystone levels. This means you can continue to do keystone runs past the 8 required for your weekly milestones to give you more options at higher level gear. You can NEVER LOWER the item level of the gear you're going to get since the list is sorted from highest to lowest.


Example: You've been busy this week! You completed ten total keystone dungeons! Wow! The game has built a list of all the keystone levels you completed and sorted them from highest to lowest to determine what you're going to get for gear choices. Here's an example list:

+15, +15, +15, +15, +13, +12, +10, +10, +10, +9

The bolded numbers are the first, fourth, and eighth highest runs you completed. The item level of the gear you'll be able to choose from will be listed in The Great Vault's UI.

Let's say you want to raise the item level of one of your choices of gear, so you go out and complete some +12 runs. Using the example above, the +12s are injected into the list and cause your eighth highest run to become a +12. Here's what the new list would look like:

+15, +15, +15, +15, +13, +12, +12, +12, +10, +10, +10, +10, +10, +9

Loot

Level Loot at the end Great Vault
2 262 278
3 265 278
4 268 278
5 272 281
6 275 281
7 275 285
8 278 288
9 278 288
10 281 294
11 281 294
12 285 298
13 285 298
14 288 301
15 288 304

The chest at the end of the run guarantees the GROUP two pieces of loot from the dungeon loot table, even if you don't beat the timer. One piece of loot will be at the item level that corresponds to the level of keystone you completed and one will be at a lower item level.


If you beat the timer, the group will be awarded two pieces of loot at the item level that corresponds to the level of the keystone you completed.

Example: Your group times a +15, two pieces of 262 loot drop in the end of run chest. Later, your group fails to time a +15. One piece of loot drops at 262 and one drops at 259 item level.

At reset, the Great Vault will have a keystone based on the highest level keystone run you completed the week before. However, the keystone will degrade if you do not continue to complete keystones at higher or equal levels to what you previously completed.

Example: You timed a +16 last week. This week at reset you get a +16 keystone from your chest. This week you don't time anything higher than a +16. Next week at reset you get a +15 key from the vault.

Gear that drops from keystone runs and from the Great Vault can be upgraded to a maximum item level of 272 using Valor. More info about Valor below.

It is best to complete a +15 every week to get the highest gear value from your weekly chest.


Mythic+ score

Mythic+ score is an indicator of a player's mythic+ experience.

Your rating increases as a result of the following:

  • each time you run a dungeon you haven't completed before
  • complete a dungeon at a higher keystone level than your previous best
  • beat your best time in a dungeon you've already completed.
Completing a key provides a rating based on three factors:
  • the level of the key
  • the Affixes on the key
  • the amount of time it took to finish the run
Mythic+ rating isn't just a number. Valor (discussed below) upgrades are tied to your character's Mythic+ rating. Like Conquest and other similar systems, your Mythic+ Rating will be reset at the start of a new season.

In order to maximize your score, you must complete every dungeon on both Fortified and Tyrannical weeks, as they are scored separately. Whichever of the two versions yields your higher rating for each dungeon will provide full points, and the other will provide 1/3rd of the points. Check the example below for more information.


Example: Let's say you've achieved the following ratings in Plaguefall: Fortified - 100, Tyrannical - 90

Your rating for Plaguefall would then be: (higher rating) + (1/3)*(lower rating) = (100) + (1/3)*(90) = 130

Your overall Mythic+ Rating is simply the sum of your ratings for all dungeons.


Getting Shadowlands Keystone Master: Season 4 and your seasonal mount

Keystone Master: Season 4 unlocks when you hit 2000 Mythic+ score. You can achieve this score by getting 250+ score per dungeon, which roughly equates to doing every dungeon at +15 on both the Tyrannical and Fortified affix.

Valor

Completing mythic dungeons, callings, and keystone runs will now award you with Valor. Valor is a currency that allows you to upgrade gear earned via mythic dungeons. The amount of Valor you get from mythic keystone runs is STATIC. It does not scale with the difficulty of the keystone completed. This means you can run low keys to farm Valor. Valor does not have a traditional weekly cap, but a season cap (like Conquest). Thus, there's no REAL penalty if you don't cap Valor in a week as you can always catch up. There is no limit to the amount of Valor you can hold besides the current season cap. The seasonal cap has been removed for patch 9.2.5.
If any player's mythic plus score goes up as a result of completing the run, the group is awarded an 65 extra Valor. This means a total of 200 Valor can be earned from a successful run.

Gear acquired from the end of run chest and Great Vault can be upgraded to a maximum item level of 298.

Upgrading gear requires reaching mythic plus score thresholds:

  1. To upgrade an item to 278 item level, you do not need any Mythic+ score.
  2. To upgrade an item to 281 item level, you need to have 600 Mythic+ score.
  3. To upgrade an item to 285 item level, you need to have 1000+ Mythic+ score.
  4. To upgrade an item to 288 item level, you need to have 1200+ Mythic+ score.
  5. To upgrade an item to 291 item level, you need to have 1400+ Mythic+ score.
  6. To upgrade an item to 294 item level, you need to have 1700+ Mythic+ score.
  7. To upgrade an item to 298 item level, you need to have 2000+ Mythic+ score.

Rating is NOT ACCOUNT WIDE, which means you must earn score on alts to be able to upgrade their gear. This is a terrible decision by Blizzard, in my opinion.

The cost to upgrade gear is static, meaning the cost does not change no matter the item level. Here's a table that shows how much it costs to level up a piece of gear:

Gear slot Valor points per upgrade
Rings, cloak, wrists, necklace, off-hand 250
Shoulders, gloves, trinkets, boots, belts 400
Helm, legs, chest 475
One-handed agility weapon, one-handed strength weapon, shield 500
One-handed intellect weapon 750
Two-handed weapon 1000

Useful stuff

Addons


Addon Managers

A brief message about addon managers

As someone who values their privacy online, I feel like it's important that I mention the Overwolf client is BAD and all of its privacy options are OPT-OUT by default, instead of OPT-IN. I encourage you to use an open source addon manager like wowup.io or instawow. Just my two cents.

Timers

  • Angry Keystones - Another take on the keystone/mythic+ timer. Displays affix rotation schedule and current affixes as well as providing chest timers and kill count % ingame.
  • iP Mythic Timer - A combo timer with a great deal of customization. Shows timer for +2 and +3, % per mob, total percent pulled, and more!

Keystone and group information

  • Mythic Dungeon Tools - Plan out routes, then use a shareable interactive map to make sure your group is on the same page.
  • Raider.io Addon - Hover over players in the world, guild, etc and get their raider.io score. The addon comes with an updater client to automatically get people's scores from raider.io!
  • Astral Keys - Shows keys for guild mates, Battle Net friends and alts. It also shows if your friends/guildies have done a 15+ or not!

Weakauras


Mechanical WeakAuras

  • Shadowlands Dungeons - Comprehensive alerts for trash and boss abilities. Covers things bossmods do not. Optionally offers simple verbal queues such as "stack, spread, dance, etc." Absolutely invaluable.
  • Mists Maze Solver - Assists with solving the Mists maze. Click on the icons matching what you see, it reports the solution to party chat.
  • [WA RM+] Required M+ percent to switch areas - Shows how much % is still needed before you have to change areas in dungeons like Necrotic Wake or Plaguefall.
  • M+ Explosive [Plater] - Applys several animations when the explosion orb cast starts.
  • Automark Infested + Explosive Orbs - Automatically marks infested and Explosive Orbs. NOTE: Works based off of enemy nameplates.

General Information & Utility WeakAuras

  • Dungeon RIO and Classes - Shows LFG group leader's raider.io score in group title, class icons under roles, and applicant raider.io score before their names.
  • Effective Health - Magic and Physical - It shows you how much physical and magic damage you can take. Based on current health, absorbs, and defensive cooldowns from yourself and others.
  • Great Vault on Weekly Chest Frame - Allows you to click the Great Vault icon in either the 'Mythic Keystone' or 'PvP' dungeon finder window in order to show you your vault.

Stats, tools, and guides

  • raider.io - Raider.io has all kinds of tools including character specific M+ tracking, successful run comp tracking, and ranks for m+ dungeons. Their addon is probably the most useful group building/vetting addon you'll find as it uses their scoring system to show you how experienced players are.
  • Keystone Heroes - Analyze your logged keystone runs to see where you can improve.
  • Questionably Epic - Easy-to-digest dungeon guides and an addon that provides tips and strategy reminders throughout dungeons. Especially useful if you play druid or monk.
  • M+ Subcreation - Analyzes raider.io to determine the difficulty of dungeons with certain affix combos, as well as other statistics.

Discords

  • Mythic+ Friends Discord - The largest M+ Discord server aimed at helping players form groups and teaching new players about mythic plus.
  • RU MythicKeys - Russian group finding and key pushing server.

Patreon Hero Shrine

A dedication to everyone who gave to the Patreon over the years.

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