Heroic mode refers to a dungeon difficulty (Bc icon & Wrath-Logo-Small) and raid size (Wrath-Logo-Small) setting. This setting is accessed from the party or raid leader's portrait menu; currently the only other difficulty setting is normal mode (the default setting). Depending on expansion and dungeon type (5-man or raid), the setting has different effects and requirements. For all heroic mode dungeons mobs and bosses have more HP, hit harder, and have additional or more potent skills. Heroic-mode bosses drop better quality equipment than their normal-mode counterparts as well as currency tokens used to purchase epic equipment from vendors.

Heroic mode dungeons are on a lockout timer much like raids, and can only be run once a day per character. Each dungeon is on an independent timer, however, so a character could run as many as 15 heroic mode instances per day. Heroic timers are reset daily at 11:00 A.M. server time for US servers, and 08:00 A.M. server time for European servers.

The Burning Crusade Edit

Bc icon This section concerns content exclusive to The Burning Crusade.

Each of the 5-man dungeons introduced in the World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade expansion pack may be run on heroic mode if every member of the party has obtained the appropriate key. These keys are purchased from the faction quartermaster of the faction corresponding to the instance once reaching honored. At introduction the keys required revered, but this was reduced in later patches to allow easier access to the heroic modes. Magister's Terrace, which was introduced later with patch 2.4, did not use a purchased key. To obtain this key players needed to simply complete a quest which involved killing the final boss of the instance in normal mode.

Some heroic mode instances share loot with their normal-mode counterparts, while some do not. For example, items that drop in a level 70 normal instance like Shattered Halls will also drop in the heroic mode. However a lower-level instance like Hellfire Ramparts will have completely different items in normal and heroic mode. For the instance where loot is shared there are also additional items that only drop in the heroic mode. These items are of higher quality than the other items. Each boss in a heroic dungeon may drop an epic gem. The last boss always drops one epic item in addition to a Badge of Justice.

Wrath of the Lich King Edit

Wrath-Logo-Small This section concerns content exclusive to Wrath of the Lich King.

With the second expansion, heroic mode was extended to raids. The key requirements were not included on instances, instead heroic mode is available to all players at 80. The token system used in TBC heroics was considered successful, new tokens were added for the various "tiers" of wrath heroics and raids. For example, the same tokens drop in heroic 5-mans and the first-tier 10-man raids, while a different token drops in the first tier 25-man raids and second-tier 10-man raids. A third token drops in second-tier 25-man raids, and will presumably drop in the third-tier 10-man raids when implemented.

Heroic mode raids, unlike their instance counterparts, don't dictate difficulty. Instead 10-man raids are considered "normal" mode, and 25-man raids to be "heroic". Heroic raids are not intended to be "harder" than the 10-man version of the same raid, instead simply tuned for the larger number of players. Heroic raids do still drop higher quality equipment than the normal-mode counterparts, however. The currency tokens dropped in each mode can be used to buy items of similar quality to the boss-dropped items.

Patch 3.2.0 is doing away with this setting, other than showing up in achievements, in favor of the following:

Dungeon difficulty:
5-player heroic mode for the Heroic mode instances.
Raid difficulty:
10-player heroic mode for the Heroic mode (10-man raid).
25-player heroic mode for the Heroic mode (25-man raid).

Common requirementsEdit

In heroic mode, all instances get a lot harder, and most mobs have their damage increased and bosses often having their damage and health increased.

Many of the following are stats commonly accepted by PUG heroics (guild heroics may be higher/ lower depending on the nature of the guild.)

  • Tank

For Bc icon, a tank should have at least 10k (10,000) health un-buffed and 490 Defense rating[citation needed] (combination resilience, in which case defense is still preferred for mitigation). In Wrath-Logo-Small, a tank should have 21k health un-buffed and 535 Defense. Wrath heroics are noticeably more difficult in boss encounters as well as the requirements for crowd control and group coordination.

Tanks should have enough dodge/block/parry and life combined to be healed efficiently, but not constantly. Note that 5-man-heroics healing is based upon healing the entire group, unlike 10- or 25-man-raid healing where tanks may often have a dedicated (or 2-3) healer topping them off.

  • Healer

On average, a healer should have between 1,000 and 1,300 spell power to heal effectively in heroics.

However, Healer gear/stats are often greatly dependent on the tank. If your tank has 21k health and your healer has a low spell power, or low 5k mana, your healer will not be able to heal the tank quick enough, or for long enough. But if the healer has 1,500 spell power and 12k mana, but your tank has < 21k health, or is below 535 Defense it's not going to matter, because the tank will die too fast.

A good healer has more than 8k mana: this is necessary for boss fights, and for efficient running (most people geared for heroic aren't willing to wait after every mob for a mana break).

Perhaps more important in the secondary healer classes, Mana Per 5 Seconds (MP5) is a useful addition. Try to aim for about 200+ mana regen when out of combat, and at least 100+ whilst casting; this aids with efficient running.

Though less important than the above, health is also a vital factor, especially on low-armor healers, especially priests, who can be hit for 8k (non-crit) damage in some heroics. Strive for 10k+ health; and for paladins and shamans, a shield, which really aids with survivability.

  • Crowd control

In Wrath-Logo-Small, most heroics do not need any form of crowd control. Tanks can generate enough threat to hold the attention of multiple mobs, and the damage is low enough to be relatively easily healed.

If crowd control is requested, Mages are the most effective, because of the usefulness of Polymorph. Rogues and Retribution paladins are the next best CC, with hunters' Ice Traps and the Shaman Hex being last. If played correctly, all are viable forms of CC, and depending on the DPS output of your group, you many only need to incapacitate the mob for 10secs, making traps as efficient as Polymorph.

  • DPS

All classes have a strong DPS spec and with Dual Talent Specialization, even players who normally heal or are tanks can have a second spec just for DPS.

Caster DPS Wrath-Logo-Small, should aim to have 1,000+ spell power (absolute minimum); and Melee/Ranged DPS, 2.5k attack power.

Most classes should keep their health above 8k to avoid being one-shotted; and casters should aim to have mana above 8k as well, so sustained DPS can be used on mobs and bosses.

Daily questsEdit

Patch 2.3.0 introduced daily quests for heroic dungeons. These daily quests, referred to as "daily heroics", involve killing the final boss in a dungeon on heroic mode, and give additional Badges of Justice in Bc icon or Emblems of Heroism in Wrath-Logo-Small and money as a reward.

Relative dungeon difficultyEdit

In Wrath-Logo-Small, heroic mode dungeons have the following relative difficulty.

Instance Approximate Relative Difficulty
Ahn'kahet IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
Azjol-Nerub IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
Culling of Stratholme IconSmall RaidStar
Drak'Tharon Keep IconSmall RaidStar
Gundrak IconSmall RaidStar
Halls of Lightning IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
Halls of Stone IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
Nexus IconSmall RaidStar
Oculus IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
Utgarde Keep (instance) IconSmall RaidStar
Utgarde Pinnacle IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
Violet Hold IconSmall RaidStar

Source: Poll Results For: "What Heroic Dungeon is the Most Challenging?"

Reputation requirementsEdit

Each key requires honored reputation with the respective faction. (Lowered from revered in patch 2.3.)

Instances Faction Key Instances to grind at 70 Approximate Difficulty
Hellfire Citadel Horde 15Thrallmar/Alliance 15Honor Hold [Flamewrought Key]

Hellfire Ramparts (~633 rep, heroic ~2500 rep)
Blood Furnace (~700 rep)
The Shattered Halls (~1650 rep, heroic ~2700 rep)

IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar

Auchindoun Lower City [Auchenai Key]

Mana-Tombs (consortium reputation: ~1200 rep, heroic ~2400 rep)
Auchenai Crypts (~750 rep)
Sethekk Halls (~1250 rep, heroic ~2100 rep)
Shadow Labyrinth (~2000 rep, heroic ~2700 rep)

IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar

Coilfang Reservoir Cenarion Expedition [Reservoir Key]

Slave Pens (~650 rep, heroic ~1800 rep)
Underbog (~1000 rep, heroic ~2500 rep)
The Steamvault (~1600 rep, heroic ~1800 rep)

IconSmall RaidStar
IconSmall RaidStar
IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar

Tempest Keep The Sha'tar [Warpforged Key]

The Botanica (~2200 rep, heroic ~3100 rep)
The Arcatraz (~1800 rep, heroic ~2600 rep)
The Mechanar (~1500 rep, heroic ~2100 rep)

IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
IconSmall RaidStar

Caverns of Time Keepers of Time [Key of Time]

Opening the Dark Portal (~1100 rep)
Escape from Durnholde Keep (~900 rep, heroic ~2300 rep)

IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar
IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar

Isle of Quel'Danas Shattered Sun Offensive Neutral 15 [70D] Hard to Kill

Magisters' Terrace (~1450 rep)

IconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStarIconSmall RaidStar

Note that the heroic dungeons introduced in Wrath-Logo-Small don't require an attunement, but do require all characters in the group to be level 80.

Patch changes Edit

Patch 3.2.0 (2009-08-04): Changed the setting to 5 Player Heroic under the interface setting Dungeon difficulty.
Patch 3.2.0 (2009-08-04): Changed the setting to 10 Player Heroic and 25 Player Heroic under the interface setting Raid difficulty.

See also Edit

Dungeon & Raid difficulty

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.