Champions of Azeroth, I hope you do well! Today we are discussing the high-level impact of the upcoming ICC 30% Buff in WOTLK Classic.
Here I want to cover a few things like changes to Raid Composition, changes to the economy, community reaction to buffs, and which alts you should re-roll to. So let’s get started.
ICC Buff Explained
First, let’s talk about our understanding of this buff. ICC Buff will appear by default on December 5th and will be enabled by default for any ICC Raid.
If you’re worried about being forced to do a simpler version of Raid, you don’t have to worry at all. You can turn off the buff yourself at the entrance to Tirion Fordring.
ICC Buff will initially provide a 5% buff to health, healing, and damage, and will increase by 5% every two weeks thereafter. This means we will get a 10% gain on December 19th. Then the 15% gain will come on January 2nd, 20% on the 16th, 25% on January 30th, and the final gain of 30% will come on February 13th, 2024.
Here, we will take a comprehensive and in-depth look at what this buff will bring.
How Does Buff Change Raid Composition?
So you’ve learned about the buff. Now let’s talk about how it changes everything, like your Raid Composition.
The first normal Raid adjustment will be to stack more damage than before. The goal will be to drive faster clearing times and higher parse. Instead of running five healers in Heroic mode, guilds will run four, and sometimes even three, depending on the battle.
The first healers to leave will be Restoration Druid or Holy Priest, and then the next healer will probably be Restoration Shaman. Generally speaking, this will cause the demand for healing and tanking to decrease, while the demand for DPS will increase at the same time.
Another Raid Composition adjustment some guilds will make is to make tough battles easier. An example would be to run eight healers on Sindragosa so that your damage will be quite high enough that you can afford it.
You could even run six healers like in Heroic Lich King, but that’s nearly impossible with the current DPS checks.
The final Raid Composition adjustment that guilds will make is farming bosses like Heroic Lich King. Currently, less than 500 guilds have completed Heroic Lich King. I predict that number will increase fivefold over the next two months due to changes in Raid Composition.
How To Buff Affects Alts?
If you’re playing a poorly scaled class or healer, one of the best ways to prepare for the new ICC Buff is to play more alts.
In most cases, buffing level damage will give an advantage to a class that’s already at the top. This is great for your Fire Mage, Survival Hunter, and Feral Druid. The ones heading in the wrong direction are your Warlock, Boomkin Druid, and Death Knight. If you don’t have a decent Warrior alt yet, they’ve been dropping from raids recently, so don’t miss it.
It’s worth noting that Warrior and Shadow Priest performed very well in some group raids. And with new buffs, equipping your new gear will also be much easier.
Since normal mode will be very easy, my plan is to skip Gamma mode and spend WOTLK Classic Gold to equip my Mage with BoE gear to go straight into ICC 10-man raid.
Shifting Group Meta
When we talk about the new ICC raids, we have to discuss the changes to the group meta.
As I just said, the barrier to entry for the normal mode group is much lower. I’ve also seen a lot of players worry that raids will be too easy. It has to be said that these concerns are definitely justified.
I’m hoping to get into the groove with a gear score of 5,300 for the first time on the more intense side of the game.
We also have speedrunning. No one could speedrun before without clearing Heroic Lich King. But now it’s back on the table for the first time, as speedrunning becomes a more widespread and accessible activity. However, running it again can severely weaken the healer.
On the other hand, for high-level classes like Fire Mage and Shadow Priest, GDKPs will be more common, with only a few thousand players able to get Heroic Lich King equipment. This means those true BiS weapons will be worth a fortune. Even Invincible’s Reins may eventually start selling and be worth hundreds of thousands in WOTLK Classic Gold.
If you want to take part in GDKPs and make a lot of money for Cataclysm, then you should get ready now.
The Buff Also Changes The Economy
So let’s talk about the impact of this ICC Buff on WOTLK Classic’s economy. Having a buff means increased player demand for BoE gear, especially rare items like Battered Hilt.
I’m keeping a close eye on items like Wodin’s Lucky Necklace. Whenever I find them for cheap at auction, I absolutely grab it in a heartbeat.
While BoE is the best way to level up new characters, veteran players will want to consider opting for the cheaper Shadowmourne.
We know that the number of regular ICC groups will skyrocket and prices will only go down. As we get closer to Cataclysm, you’ll earn bonus items that cost over 50,000 WOTLK Classic Gold, such as Sylvanas’ Music Box. So this is a lot cheaper than it looks.
As for how the community reacted to this buff. There are definitely two camps. On one hand, people are pushing for the development of Heroic Lich King and they hope to achieve their goals. On the other hand. There are a lot of players looking to get involved in ICC and they are happy that Raid will make it easier to do so.
I’m curious which camp you fall into and please let me know what your strategy is. With all these tips, you should be able to face the Lich King like never before!