A new meta is evolving in the World of Warcraf Dragonflight Mythic+ scene. In recent days, high-level teams have begun to abandon traditional Mythic+ compositions in favor of team comps featuring four DPS players and one tank. This new wave in the meta leaves behind the Healer role and focuses on completing dungeons even faster than usual by pummeling bosses and trash packs with more damage than before.
While only certain dungeons in this season’s Mythic+ rotation are compatible with this four-DPS strategy, pro WoW players are proving that Healers might not be as mandatory for Mythic+ runs as was previously thought.
The four-DPS strategy was first brought to public attention during this season’s Mythic Dungeon International, and was popularized this weekend when pro WoW teams Echo and Cheese went head-to-head in the Court of Stars, with both teams running four DPS and one tank in their team composition. Cheese would go on to win the map, completing the run in 13 minutes and 136 seconds (13:26 after accounting for death timer penalties).
Which classes are viable in a 4 DPS Mythic+ team comp?
So far, MDI teams have only run certain DPS classes as part of their four-DPS strategy, with Devastation Evoker, Unholy Death Knight, and Feral Druid being mainstays in the compositions. Shadow Priest, Havoc Demon Hunter, and Enhancement Shaman were also used by MDI teams in healerless comps.
Something all of these classes have in common is an abundance of self-healing, as well as some group healing throughput that can keep allies alive at a moderate rate. High-throughput single-target heals are rare in compositions that feature four DPS, as are traditional Healer cooldowns, but those abilities are willingly sacrificed in favor of classes who can mend moderate wounds, so long as players can play at a sufficiently skilled level.
A major contributing factor to the four-DPS strategy is the skill level of your group. If players are unable to dodge abilities or are consistently standing in “swirlies,” there are going to be obvious issues with compositions that don’t feature a dedicated healer to compensate for mistakes. So far, these types of comps have only been viable at high levels, with moderately skilled players still opting for a traditional 1-1-3 composition.
In the professional scene, one dungeon has emerged as the go-to testing ground for this composition: the Court of Stars. Most of the damage you’ll be taking in Court of Stars is completely avoidable, making the need for a Healer lessened compared to other heavy-hitting instances where “mandatory damage” is present. Bosses like Patrol Captain Gerdo and Talixae Flamewreath feature avoidable damaging abilities, while the damage from Advisor Melandrus’ Slicing Maelstrom (one of the few non-avoidable boss mechanics in the dungeon) can be negated with a defensive.
While the only dungeon to feature a viable four-DPS strategy in the professional scene so far is the Court of Stars, players have begun testing the strategy’s viability in other instances, as well. WoW streamer Nerf and his teammates in the guild Twitch Primeates have run high Mythic+ keys in the Halls of Valor and the Temple of the Jade Serpent without a Healer.
It’s unclear at this time if Blizzard has any plans to give all Healers a flat buff to make them more intriguing to pro players, although it’s more likely that a nerf to certain DPS classes’ ability to heal is more necessary. When a fourth DPS can effectively keep players topped off just as well as a dedicated healer can, an obvious problem is present, as no Healer should have to feel like their place on a team is in jeopardy.