The weekly M+ cache will now contain up to three items
. This is an important change for M+ because Azerite pieces cannot drop from the dungeon chests -- you can only get them from your weekly cache. Limiting the cache to one item per week would’ve made RNG potentially extremely crippling for those that are relying exclusively on M+ for gearing up. I’ve had a lot of people asking if I think that raiding is still “necessary” for pushing high keys in BFA. This change to the weekly cache makes an only-M+ approach to the game more viable, and it will be a great source for high ilvl gear even if you do still raid.
Raiding and M+ have had an awkward coexistence because the base ilvl on mythic raid loot has been 20 ilvls higher than the highest base ilvl loot you can get from M+ dungeons (960 vs 940) presumably because you can run an unlimited number of M+ each week and get loot each time. Thus M+ became essentially a lottery system where gear was worthless unless it titanforged like crazy. Despite running hundreds of 25+ keys in the last couple months, I can probably count on one hand the number of upgrades I’ve gotten from dungeon chests. At a certain point, the weekly M+ cache became the only realistic chance I had at getting an upgrade from M+.
Unfortunately the potential for three items in your cache still appears to be small, so you can expect RNG to be a heavy factor early in the expansion (but what else is new). If someone gets lucky with their weekly cache a few weeks in a row, they could potentially have two months of M+ loot over someone getting a single item. This would be a sizeable advantage, and you can expect to see a lot of highly upvoted pictures on Reddit of people’s insane cache hauls each week.
While it’s a little frustrating that you only get one shot a week at Azerite gear from M+, there is a silver lining: no more non-tier armor drops that are instantly unuseable. One of the unfortunate side effects of the tier system was that (for most classes) tier was so good that virtually no amount of raw ilvl would compensate, so it wasn’t uncommon for people to get 980 shoulders and immediately put them in the bank. Since all helms/shoulders/chests are now Azerite, those slots are effectively removed from the pool of items you can get from the dungeon chests, meaning all the loot you CAN get won’t be competing with set bonuses. This means there will be a much higher chance that you will get loot you can use.