If you get an error on your first visit to AMR after the pre-patch, don’t worry about it. If you reload your character from our in-game addon, the error will go away.
This goes for any character in your recent character list – you’ll need to get a fresh addon export string to reload it.
We hope to re-enable the armory/battle.net loading soon, but need to test it first. We highly encourage you to always use the in-game addon when you can though, it gets more information about your character and is more reliable.
When the Shadowlands pre-patch is released, we will have an updated version of the gear optimizer designed for this transitional period. It will have:
- Stat preference-based rankings for raiding and mythic+ for each spec
- Rough trinket rankings for all BfA trinkets and items
- General essence and azerite trait advice
Of note is that we will no longer do a full optimization of essences and azerite traits. (Corruption effects will be disabled in-game, so those won’t matter anymore.) Instead there will be some general advice that shows up right on the user interface for level 50 (or lower) characters who have the Heart of Azeroth equipped.
How “optimal” will this be?
Pre-patches are always an awkward time for the game. You have half of the old game mechanics (essences and azerite but no corruption), and half of the new game mechanics (level/item squish, new class design, but no covenants, soulbinds, conduits, or new legendaries). On top of that, you will no longer be max level.
The game is just not designed to be “balanced” in this setting. Furthermore, Blizzard always uses the pre-patch as extra time to fine-tune things before the official launch of Shadowlands. (And then they usually use the weeks leading up to the first raid to do another major tuning pass. And then they use the first few weeks of raiding to do another major tuning pass before Mythic opens.)
Therefore, our pre-patch gearing strategies should be treated as a general guideline, not a ‘perfect’ optimization.
Use these optimizations as a convenient starting point to play around with things in the pre-patch. Focus more on experimenting with all the new stuff than becoming exactly “optimal” for the few weeks of the pre-patch.
The Upgrade Finder will be disabled during the pre-patch. It is designed to do searches on max-level content, so it won’t be re-enabled until close to the Shadowlands release. The Shadowlands beta is not in a state yet where we could give meaningful gear rankings to all the new stuff – Blizzard is still implementing and balancing the new gear.
Best in Slot
Best in Slot will be disabled during the pre-patch – it is only designed for use with max-level characters, and nobody will be max level anymore! The Shadowlands beta is also not in a state yet where we could even give a meaningful optimization, as Blizzard is still implementing and balancing things.
Tank Toughness Threshold
For the pre-patch, the tank toughness threshold should work well enough, but it won’t be quite as fine-grained as with our normal strategies. You’ll probably get best use out of it by going all the way tough or all the way damage. With the release of Shadowlands, we’ll recalibrate the toughness threshold for max-level content (and also add a similar slider for healers!)
BfA Things No Longer Supported
Some BfA-specific things are no longer supported as of the pre-patch:
- logic loop+bit band combos
Essences and Azerite in Shadowlands
You will still be able to use essences and azerite when doing Battle for Azeroth content in Shadowlands, as part of the leveling experience. As long as you are level 50 or lower and have the Heart of Azeroth equipped, we will still show essence and azerite advice even after Shadowlands goes live.
Shadowlands Gear Ranking
The pre-patch strategies will not have ranking data for Shadowlands gear, legendaries, soulbind abilities, or conduits. All of that will be added when Shadowlands officially launches, and significantly refined leading up to the start of the first raid.
That said, you will be able to simulate all of the new Shadowlands mechanics throughout the pre-patch (and can already do so for many specs on our beta website).