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The War Within > WoWJun 17, 2024 4:00 pm CT

Dungeon changes for The War Within add some strange new Affixes (but keep Sanguine)

World of Warcraft: The War Within gets the typical batch of new dungeons, but not too much will be changing in dungeons themselves — we’re doing the same old thing, just in new places. But there are some changes as Blizzard continues to work out how dungeons fit into the gameplay cycle, after changing their difficulty scaling during Dragonflight.

As in Dragonflight Season 4, dungeons above Normal are all more difficult: Heroic on par with a previous Mythic 0, Mythic 0 on par with a previous Mythic +10, and Mythic+ on par with a previous Mythic +11 and up. However, Heroic and Mythic 0 dungeons will also have access to the seasonal dungeon rotation, giving people playing at lower levels a chance to check out these dungeons and see the encounters before jumping into higher difficulties.

Update: Blizzard has completely redesigned Mythic+ Affixes for The War Within (again), so the information below is no longer up to date. Read about the new Xal’atath-themed Affixes now live in the beta.

That’s a pretty harmless change, but updates to Mythic+ Affixes have been making waves in the community.

Mythic+ Affixes in The War Within

There are a number of new Affixes in the expansion, which will be in Mythic +4 and higher. Blizzard calls these “passive” Affixes, and all of them affect dungeon trash.

Here are the new Affixes in The War Within:

  •  Reckless
    • Non-boss enemies without mana ignore 20% armor with their attacks, but their armor is reduced by 30% and they take 10% increased Arcane damage.
  • Thorned
    • Non-boss enemies without mana inflict Physical damage to their attackers when attacked, but take 10% increased Holy and Shadow damage.
  • Attuned
    • Non-boss enemies with mana inflict 20% increased magic damage, but take 10% increased Nature damage and 30% increased damage from Bleed effects.
  • Focused
    • Non-boss enemies with mana have 30% increased Haste, but take 10% increased Frost and Fire damage.

And some of the Affixes we’ve gotten used to are gone for good (or at least for now). These Affixes will be leaving the rotation:

  • Afflicted
  • Incorporeal
  • Entangling
  • Storming
  • Volcanic
  • Spiteful

But that still leaves some unpopular Affixes in the mix: Raging, Bolstering, Bursting, and Sanguine. These pre-existing Affixes will be in Mythic +7 and above.

Did you hear that? I just heard the sound of every tank reading this when they realized Sanguine made the cut somehow.

You’ll notice the new affixes are very different from the affixes Blizzard has added in the past. Instead of adding additional mechanics that players must mitigate while also juggling the standard dungeon mechanics, these take a more subtle approach.

WoW developer Stonekey explains the devs’ goals with these new Affixes:

Originally Posted by Stonekey (Official Post)

  • Shift the source of challenge to the dungeon itself by simplifying affix design and emphasizing creature abilities.
  • Reduce visual noise, nameplate clutter, and the cognitive load on players during trash combat.
  • Allow for varied and context-specific gameplay decisions depending on the dungeon they are applied to.

But the new Affixes seem likely to make it harder for some players to get into groups, because each makes trash take more damage of specific types — and only certain classes can deal those damage types. Just getting into a key can be hard enough as a DPS, and in this new system it may be much harder to find a group if your class doesn’t deal the right type of damage for the week. Some classes such as Demon Hunters and their Chaos damage might be held in high regard because Chaos spells benefit from every magic type. Some classes, such as Mages, might feel pressured into changing specializations to do the right damage type, while other specializations like Shadow Priest only really benefit from one week and may not get invited other weeks.

The DPS gained from the Affix probably won’t make or break your Mythic+ runs except at the highest level — especially considering each affix only modifies creatures with or without mana, never both. I want to applaud the effort, but there still seems to be the slight hint of a headache when thinking about the Pandora’s box that Blizzard set on the table.

Do you think the community will put too much stock into the damage bonuses or will they land somewhere in the middle? Putting the damage modifiers aside for a minute, do the Affix modifications to trash sound like they will at the very least be enjoyable to handle?

If you decide to give The War Within beta a try when the new Affixes are up, be sure to let us know your thoughts on them — and send your feedback to Blizzard as well. Remember, not all beta servers let you do end-game content, so here’s how to create a character on the end-game beta server that lets you jump right into the dungeon action.

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