Project-Carry Blog
Major Class Changes coming in 9.1
May 24, 2021
Major Class Changes coming in 9.1
Category: General

Over the past week, more information has been released about the upcoming Chains of Domination patch. Blizzard has proposed many class changes for 9.1 in hopes to shift the current meta.

PVE Class Changes for 9.1

Many of the upcoming changes are aimed at pve content. However, as a result, many of these class changes will inadvertently buff both pve and pvp for some specs.

Death Knight

  • Blood
    • All spells and abilities have their damage increased by 6%.

  • Anti-Magic Zone’s cooldown has been increased to 3 minutes and the duration is reduced to 10 seconds. Additionally, the barrier will now fade after absorbing a certain amount. The amount of damage absorbed scales off max health and versatility.

This amz nerf is huge for dk’s and is likely one of the more meta shaping class changes in 9.1. With this change, dps spec death knights will have a tougher time fighting for a raid spot with their utility being hit heavily. However, blood death knights should find an easier time meshing with raid teams since the barrier scales with health alongside their damage buffs.

Additionally, abilities that increase max health will also buff the absorb from anti magic zone. This means having a priest for stam buff, a warrior for rally, and even any kyrian running mentorship will benefit the death knight. The only downside is the amount of extra coordination required to pull this off well.

Demon Hunter

  • Havoc
    • Demon’s Bite damage has been increased by 15%.
    • Demon Blades damage has been increased by 15%.
    • Chaos Strike damage has been increased by 15%.
    • Annihilation damage has been increased by 15%.
    • Unbound Chaos now increases the damage of your next Fel Rush by 500%, down from 600%
    • The Unnatural Malice conduit now increases the Hunt’s damage over time effect rather than the initial damage.

Because of Vengeance’s insane mobility, survivability, and versatility as well as already providing the magic debuff they have overshadowed their dps counterpart. Havoc demon hunters have maintained their middle of the pack dps status for most of 9.0. With these changes coming in 9.1, it will hopefully push them back towards finding a comfortable spot among raid teams.


  • Balance
    • New moon now has a 20 second recharge time, down from 25 seconds.
    • New Moon and Half Moon have had their damage increased by 33%.
    • Solstice now causes Shooting Stars to fall 250% more often, down from 300%.
    • Stellar Drift has been redesigned with patch 9.1. Starfall damage has been increased by 50% and allows casting while moving when active. Additionally, the cooldown has also been decreased to 12 seconds from 15.
    • The free starfall granted by Oneth’s Clear Vision ignores the aforementioned cooldown from Stellar Drift.

The Balance of All Things legendary has also been adjusted for patch 9.1. It now only grants 24% increased critical strike change, down from 40%. However, it only decreases by 3% every second instead of 8% every second. Despite this resulting in a slight damage nerf, the uptime is increased to offset this.

Balance druids have reigned throughout Castle Nathria as dps kings. They have been leaps and bounds better than almost all of their competition. Because of this, it was only a matter of time before they were brought more in line with other specs. Hopefully these adjustments to lesser taken talents open up new single target playstyles. Additionally, the nerf to their current best legendary might also lead them towards other options.


  • Survial
    • Raptor Strike damage has been increased by 15%.
    • Kill Command damage has been increased by 15%.
    • Mongoose Bite damage has been increased by 15%.
    • Flanking Strike damage has been increased by 15%.
  • Pets
    • Pterrordax Family
      • New Ability: Updraft. This new ability grants the hunter slow fall for 30 seconds.
    • Mammoth Family
      • Trample is now instant cast rather than a 6 second channel.
    • Pterrordax and python pets are now larger in size.

Survival has struggled to find its niche in almost every raid team. They are a melee spec with lackluster damage on top of bringing no raid-wide utility. Unfortunately, there is currently no reason to bring them over a marksman or beast master hunter. Their damage has been bottom of the barrel for the entire tier. However, while these buffs are a small step in the right direction, they don’t address the elephant in the room;  their lack of raid utility or buffs. 


  • Fire
    • Flamestrike damage has been reduced by 10%.
    • Flame Patch damage has been reduced by 10%.
    • Kindling cooldown reduction for combustion has been reduced to 1 second from 1.5 seconds.
    • The Infernal Cascade conduit’s fire damage bonus has been reduced by 20%.

Fire Mages are the other dps kings in both raiding and dungeon content. Because of their insane damage output, they are practically mandatory for all high end mythic plus. Additionally, they also provide insane utility while raiding alongside their big damage. Most of these damage nerfs are aimed at their aoe output. Hopefully, this shifts the meta in a good direction while maintaining viability but not making them mandatory.


  • Mistweaver
    • Tiger Palm damage has been increased by 10%.
    • Blackout Kick damage has been increased by 10%.
    • Rising Sun Kick damage has been increased by 10%.
    • Spinning Crane Kick damage has been increased by 20%.
    • Enveloping Mist’s mana cost has been reduced to 5.6% base mana, down from 6%.
    • Revival rank 2 is now learned at 56 and causes revival to proc Gust of Mists on each target.
    • Revival healing has been reduced by 10%.

Mistweaver monks have struggled immensely throughout 9.0. They are the weakest throughput healer on top of lacking in both damage and utility. The mistweavers still playing the spec were hopeful the class changes in 9.1 would alleviate some of these issues. The damage buffs are nice and do benefit the ancient teachings play style however, this is only a start. Revival is our only recovery tool and raid cooldown. Because of this, having it proc our mastery is a huge step in the right direction. Additionally, you can get it to proc twice if you essence font prior. The problem stems from reducing the overall healing because of the power put towards our worst stat. The numbers count it as a large nerf to those not playing kyrian. Kyrian can safely rely on Weapons of Order for strong revivals while other covenants can't. Hopefully more adjustments are in the works.


  • Blessing of Winter from Blessing of Seasons can now be applied to multiple targets at once.
  • Holy
    • Flash of Light healing has been increased by 20%.
    • Infusion of Light consumed by Holy Light now causes Holy Light to generate 1 Holy Power instead of doing increased healing.
    • Inflorescence of the Sunwell now gives Holy Light a 30% chance to generate 2 Holy Power when it consumes Infusion of Light.
    • Damage of all abilities has been reduced by 8%.
    • Ashen Hallow has had it’s damage reduced by an additional 10%.
    • Judgement damage has been reduced by an additional 10%.
    • Crusader Strike mana cost has been increased to 11% from 9%.
    • Crusader’s Might now only reduces the cooldown of Holy Shock by 1 second, rather than 1.5.

Holy Paladins are the biggest problem with the current healer meta. Their throughput is amazing, their damage is high, they bring a lot of utility, and use hardly any mana to do so. They are so incredibly strong to bring to your raid or dungeon group. They are so good and because of this, the debate between kyrian and venthyr is almost negligible. Both options can hold up well in all types of content, however, venthyr offers more damage. These class changes coming in 9.1 look to be an attempt to push holy paladins away from the ‘never cast anything’ playstyle while taking a substantial hit to their damage output.


  • The Clear Mind conduit’s effectiveness has been reduced by 25%.
  • Discipline
    • Spirit Shell cooldown has been increased to 90 seconds from 60 seconds.
  • Holy
    • Symbol of Hope has been redesigned for 9.1. Instead of regenerating 12% of missing mana of allies within 40 yards, it now grants other benefits. Each ally will recover 60 seconds of cooldown on a major defensive ability as well as regain 18% of their missing mana.
  • Shadow
    • Shadow Word: Pain damage has been increased by 25%.
    • Vampiric Touch damage has been increased by 25%
    • Devouring Plague damage has been reduced by 18%.
    • The Dissonant Echoes conduit now only grants 20% increased Void Bolt damage, down from 35%.
    • Shadowflame Prism’s Shadowflame Rift damage has been reduced by 16%.
    • Talbadar’s Strategem’s Mind Blast damage increase has been reduced by 8%.

Discipline Priests have overshadowed Holy purely because of spirit shell and their ability to fully negate raid mechanics with it. Both specs bring a multitude of utility spells and hopefully these changes bring both more in line with each other.

Shadow is its own beast. It has been performing quite well in raid situations especially with the recent shift towards Night Fae. However, the damage being granted was too deeply rooted within borrowed power systems like legendaries. These adjustments should help to alleviate those problems.


  • The shield from the Cloaked in Shadows conduit is now 50% larger, lasts for 4 seconds and no longer decays while the rogue is out of stealth.
  • Feint’s duration has been increased to 6 seconds from 5 seconds.
  • Subtlety
    • Shuriken Storm now also increased Shuriken Storm’s chance to critically strike by 15%.
    • Black Powder’s damage per combo point increased by 33%.
    • Black Powder now causes targets with Find Weakness to suffer an additional 40% damage as Shadow, was previously 50%.
    • Shadow Techniques now triggers more frequently.
    • Backstab damage increased by 20%.
    • Gloomblade’s damage has been increased by 20%.

Rogues have been in a bit of a weird spot as this current tier has progressed. Subtlety started out insanely strong but has been shifted all the way to the bottom. Additionally, the class wide adjustments should keep the other two specs viable and the sub buffs should bring them up a little.


  • Dark Pact’s additional absorb shield has been increased by 316%.
  • Affliction
    • Malefic Rapture’s damage has been reduced by 18%.
    • Agony’s damage has been increased by 20%.
    • Corruption’s damage has been increased by 15%.
    • Seed of Corruption's damage has been increased by 25%.
    • Dark Caller is no longer a talent and is now baseline at level 58.
    • Shadow Embrace is no longer learned at level 58 and is now a talent on the level 45 tier.
    • Haunt and Shadow Embrace now also increase the damage of pets and guardians.
    • New Conduit: Withering Bolt - Shadow Bolt deals 10% (or Drain soul deals 5%) more damage per dot effect active on your target.
    • The Focused Malignancy conduit has had its effectiveness reduced by 53%.
    • The Cold Embrace conduit has been removed.
    • Sacrolash’s Dark Strike has been redesigned for patch 9.1. Corruption’s damage is increased by 25% (up from 15%), and each time it deals damage, it extends the duration of all curses active on the target by 2 seconds.
  • Demonology
    • From the Shadows talent now increases your pet’s Shadowflame damage.
  • Destruction
    • Chaos Bolt damage has been increased by 10%.
    • Eradication now also increases the damage of pets and guardians.
    • Shadowburn damage has been increased by 23% and now refreshes a charge if the target dies within 5 seconds.

Warlocks have remained in a pretty good spot for all of the current tier. All 3 of their specs are viable to play which can’t be said for many classes. However, affliction is grossly ahead in some areas. With this, these changes look to bring them even closer together.


  • Arms
    • Mortal Strike damage has been increased by 10% in PvE.
    • Deep Wounds damage has been increased by 10% in PvE.
    • Overpower damage has been increased by 10%.
    • Execute damage has been increased by 10% however this does not carry over to Condemn.
  • Protection
    • Execute damage has been increased by 10% but again, this does not apply to Condemn.

Warriors probably drew the short stick as far as class changes in 9.1 go. There's not a lot of major game breaking changes to look at here however this means builds won’t be changing much. A lot of warriors have been making the shift towards the night fae covenant and because of this, those execute buffs look nice for raiding.

All of these class changes for 9.1 are tentative and subject to change at any time between now and the patch release. However, many of them seem to alleviate a lot of the glaring meta issue for raid teams. Death knights won’t be as mandatory for the dps role which opens up options for other classes like rogues. Similarly, the buffs to havoc demon hunters may shift the meta for tanks. Additionally, the nerfs to holy paladin might finally be enough to dethrone them and allow other healers to shine.

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