Archive for the 'Siege of Ulduar' Category

15
May
09

Friday Strats – XT-002 Deconstructor

For a robot, this guy's kind of a baby

For a robot, this guy's kind of a baby

So with steam tanks brushed aside, dragons grounded and furnaces extinguished, we come to the final baddie of the first area of Ulduar.  XT’s fight is a fairly straightforward one that will test raider awareness and prove healer’s mettle.  There is occasional, unavoidable raid wide damage mixed in with the random AoE damage centered on individual players.  Everyone will need to be quick on their toes and bring their A-game, but once you understand the fight, he becomes surprisingly easy.  So let’s take a look, shall we?

The Prep

You’ll want to split up your healers evenly on the east and west side of the room then split up the dps as well.  It doesn’t matter how you set them up, it’s more a case of wanting to spread everyone out, but making sure they’re covered by heals.  Once you have them separated, you’ll need to assign one MT for the boss and two OTs in order to pick up adds during the heart phases.  All melee will need to rush up the middle and try to stay a little spread out behind the boss who will have a well sized hit box.  Players on the sides should also make sure to spread out and not clump up, aiming to spread out about 10 yards from each other.  Once everyone is sure of their positions, simply buff up and go.

The Fight

The tank will want to engage him in about the center of the room and bring him close to the stairs, facing him away from the entrance to the room.  The first part of the fight is pretty much a straightforward tank and spank except for the occasional bomb that XT will throw out.  He has two types, which he’ll toss out randomly.  One is a Light Bomb which deals 3,500 damage a second to both the target and anyone in an 8 yard radius around them.  He also has a Gravit bomb, which will explode for around 15,000 damage on the target and in a radius around them as well.  It will also yank anyone in a 20 yard radius to the point of the explosion, interrupting casting and dealing damage if you’re too close.

These bombs are the reason why you have to be quick and alert, making sure not to deal damage to anyone around you.  If you’re ranged, you need to move a little closer to the wall, but don’t take off running too far or you’ll range the healers.  The melee should simply pull off a little ways back down the middle which should be clear.  Again, don’t move too far for light bombs, the range isn’t huge and they only last for a few seconds.  After about a minute and every minute after that, he will also cast Tympanic Tantrum, which is where your healers will really need to shine.  While he’s casting that, everyone in the raid will take 10% damage every second for 8 seconds.  All enemies will be dazed though so you can focus on keeping everyone up, but you have to be quick and use your most powerful heals.  I’ll usually pop Divine Hymn during one of these.

At 75%, 50% and 25% health, he’ll enter his heart phase for exactly 20 seconds, wherein he’ll stop attacking and his mechanical heart will pop out of his chest, allowing you to dps it.  All people should open up and go crazy, dealing as much damage as they can.  However, you do not want to kill the heart (which isn’t a simple task for 25 man anyways), as doing so will cause the fight to enter hard mode, which you must definitely be ready for before attempting.  The way this phase works is that however much percentage of total health you deal to the heart is returned to the boss’ next 25% of health when it’s retracted.  However, you don’t want to deal too much damage or you risk the heart going from one heart phase to the next very quickly.  This is bad because while in heart phase, he begins to summon adds.

He’ll summon three different types of adds: XS-013 Scrapbots, XE-321 Boombots, and XM-024 Pummelers.  The most important ones are the Scrapbots and the Boombots, the Pummelers can simply be picked up and off tanked until the end of the fight with minimal damage to the tank himself.  The Scrapbots will need to be AoE’d down as quickly as possible in order to keep them from reaching the boss.  Every Scrapbot that reaches him will heal him by 60,000 damage and they will not stop running for him, so you have to be on the ball.  The Boombots will explode for 16,000 fire damage when they reach 50% life, so you need to have range blow them up before they get too close to the raid.  They hit NPCs with the explosion as well, so if you can get them to explode in a group of scrapbots, good on ya.

Try to focus dps on him during the heart phase, even having the healers help out where they can, but don’t let Scrapbots get too close to him either.  So make sure to call out when they appear in order to give dps a chance to find them and focus on them.  Same deal with Boombots because you don’t want them to get too close and blow up in the middle of the melee dps.  As for healing, it won’t be too difficult except for the Lightbombed and occasional Gravity Bomb explosions.  However, you’ll need to be ready for raid wide burst damage during tantrum and watch for anyone too close to a Boombot explosion.  This fight shouldn’t stress a decently geared healing team.

The Loot

I’ve decided that I’m simply going to keep the 10 man and 25 man loot analyses even though the strats are for 25 man.  The fights are so similar that you can still get the idea of how to do it from these strats and, at the moment especially, 10 man Ulduar loot is definitely viable for it’s 25 man counterpart.

10 Man

Conductive Cord – This is almost as good as the BiS pre 3.1, Leash of Heedless Magic.  The high stats make this good for all three specs.

Plasma Foil – This is something that is so very rare, a sweet healing dagger.  There are better one hander choices for disc and shadow, but holy might want to take a look at this bad boy coupled with Igniter Rod from Ignis for a very nice 1-2 punch.

25 Man

Mantle of Wavering Calm – This is an awesome shadow choice but somewhat meh for disc and holy unless you are of the haste>crit philosophy (which I am not).  If you are a haste hound though, these are the shoulders for you.

Sandles of Rash Temperament – These are extremely sweet shadow boots.  The hit makes them useless for healers unless you desperately need the upgrade.

Quartz Crystal Wand – This has shadow priest written all over it.  Healers should definitely leave it alone.

Charm of Meticulous Timing – Drops from hard mode, this is almost definitely going to be BiS for Disc and a very attractive upgrade for Shadow.  There is a better spirit necklace out there for holy, but it’s also a hard mode drop, so go for this if you have a chance.

Grasps of Reason – Definite contender if not winner for new BiS, pick these guys up if you ever see them, which may not be too often as this is hard mode loot.

So there you go, next week we’ll move further in and begin the fight for the Antechamber of Ulduar.

-Dueg

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08
May
09

Friday Strats – Flame Leviathan

All I wanna do is to thank you, even though I don't know who you are...

All I wanna do is to thank you, even though I don't know who you are...

So I know we cheated a little bit here and decided to do Razorscale and Ignis before I did this fight, but don’t be fooled, Flame Leviathan is the first boss of Ulduar and must be downed before you can advance.  When word initially got out that this fight would be another vehicle fight there were a lot of raiders up in arms and angry over this.  You see, the idea of a vehicle fight had been tainted by the fact that phase 3 of the Malygos fight had a tendency to truly break raids.  However, this fight is a far cry from that dog’s breakfast of a fight, to be sure and is actually quite fun.  So let’s get right to it since this post promises to be a long one!

The Prep

When you first enter Ulduar, you’ll be in a small concourse at the entrance that has vehicles parked all along the walls of it.  There are going to be three different types of vehicles you can choose from: A motorcycle (Salvaged Chopper), a mobile catapult (Salvaged Demolisher) and a tank (Salvaged Siege Engine).  In order to prepare for the fight, you’ll need everyone to don their highest ilevel gear since the vehicle’s health is based off of that total.  Choppers are generally going to be your weakest vehicles in terms of health, so you’ll want your highest ilevel geared people in those vehicles and then demolishers and then siege engines in order to give a higher chance of survival.  Each vehicle can have one driver and one passenger, but you’ll want the choppers to begin with only a driver.

Each driver and passenger will have their own unique set of abilities depending on what vehicle they’re in.  The Chopper has Sonic Horn, which deals about 3,500 damage in a frontal cone in front of it, Tar, which places a 10 yard slick of flammable tar down which slows all enemies by 75% and Speed Boost, which is a 5 second 100% speed increase.  When the chopper has a passenger in it, there should also be an option to heal the passenger up to full health.  Next up is the Demolisher, wherein the driver has Hurl Boulder, which launches a boulder that deals up to 16,500 damage, Hurl Pyrite Barrel, which deals up to 30,000 damage and will ignite any tar slicks, and Ram which deals up to 9,500 damage and knocks enemies back.  The Hurl Pyrite ability uses 5 of the vehicle’s ammo, but the passenger can refresh your reserves when needed.  Finally, they’ll have a Launch Passenger option which only becomes available when a passenger loads themselves.

 The passenger of the Demolisher will have Anti-Air Rockets, which can be fired into the air and deal AoE damage.  This ability can also be rapid fired at the ground, dealing splash machine gun like splash damage in a small radius and will also ignite tar slicks.  Passengers also have Cannon, which can deal up to 120,000 damage on mobs if accurate, or as little as 5,000 if you mostly miss.  There are three other abilities as well, Grab Crate, which allows you to pick up Pyrite barrels that must be shot down out of the air with rockets.  You must target the crates in order to pick them up.  There will also be a speed boost that the passenger can initiate and an option to load themselves into the catapult part of the Demolisher.  You’ll want ranged dps (preferably a mage or warlock) as the passengers and a survivable healer (such as a shaman or tree) to go with them.

Finally you’ll have the siege Engine, which is the tank vehicle of the three.  The driver will have a Ram ability, which deals up to 6,500 damage and knocks enemies back, Electroshock, which is a 25 yard conal ability that interrupts spells and school locks the target for 4 seconds, and Steam Rush, which is a quick speed burst ability that will do a little bit of damage to anything you hit or run over while moving.  The passenger of the Siege Engine will have Anti-Air Rockets and Cannon as well, which are exactly the same as the Demolisher’s abilities.  In addition to that, they also have a shield ability which pops a Physical, Frost, Fire and Arcane damage absorption shield on the Siege Engine.

Once you’ve assigned vehicles, you’ll need to speak with one of two NPCs in order to begin the encounter.  If you wish to simply begin on easy mode, speak with Brann Bronzebeard and he’ll lower the shield protecting their base camp and you can begin the gauntlet.  If you wish to try hard mode, speak with the Lore Keeper of Norgannon, who will also lower the shield, however, the encounter will automatically begin in hard mode.  Hard mode involves four separate towers set at different parts of the gauntlet that you can choose to destroy.  If left active, each tower adds 50% health to the Leviathan and adds an extra ability to the fight.

The Tower of Storms adds 25% to FL’s damage and drops a ball that deals 15,000 damage to all nearby enemies with Stormstrike.  The Tower of Flames will add 50% to FL’s fire damage and periodically a ball of flame will fall from the sky dealing 15,000 fire damage to nearby enemies and slowly move in a circle , leaving a trail of damaging flames behind it.   The Tower of Frost causes occasional balls of ice to fall from the sky, dealing 15,000 frost damage to nearby enemies and decreases vehicle and player speed by 20%.  If a vehicle is struck by the frost damage, they will become frozen in ice and must be broken out by other players.  Finally, the Tower of Life also drops a ball dealing 15,000 nature damage to nearby enemies and will summon adds to assist FL while lowering it’s damage received by 10%.

You can destroy any number of towers you want, but you won’t receive extra loot unless you leave at least three up.  We tried this fight once with two towers up and it becomes crazy complicated so I can only imagine how difficult it must be with all four up.  Once you’ve chosen your mode, you must run the gauntlet which involves a boatload of mobs beating up on your vehicle.  There will be a number of pillars that spawn these mobs, so you’ll want to destroy them to stop the constant stream of iron dwarves running for you.  If you chose to start on automatic easy mode, you can simply move straight through the gauntlet.  If you chose to start with the towers active, you’ll have to take detours to destroy any towers you don’t want active during the fight.  

Right before you enter the final area where you’ll actually fight the Leviathan, you’ll see two huge glowing circles on the ground.  If you roll over them, you can regain full health and ammo before you begin the fight.  Once you kill the final mobs at the end of the concourse, the doors leading further in will smash open and the Flame Leviathan will appear, beginning the actual boss encounter.

The Fight

Once the Leviathan shows up, the first thing it’ll do is randomly target a vehicle, usually a Siege Engine, never a Chopper unless they’re all that’s left, and begin to chase them.  It’ll also be continually firing rockets in all directions, continually damaging vehicles and players by 700 damage every 1 or 2 seconds.  While it’s chasing vehicles, it’ll begin to stack a buff called Gathering Speed which will increase it’s movement speed by 5% per buff until it reaches 20 stacks or 100% speed boost.  It will also occasionally begin channeling spell called Flame Vents which deals 2,000 damage every second to everyone surrounding the boss.  It is extremely important that Siege Engines interrupt this channel as it will tear your Choppers apart fairly quickly.

After you kill the final mobs, but before the Leviathan shows up, you’ll want at least 3 to 4 of the passengers in the demolishers load themselves into the catapult.  Once it actually bursts into the concourse, have the drivers fire their passengers onto the Leviathan where they’ll have to target and destroy four turrets.  It is important that the drivers aim by pointing their vehicles at the Leviathan.  If they don’t aim, the passengers will simply be flung onto the ground.  Remember, you want at least one healer to go with them as they’ll be taking damage while up there and you don’t want your dps to die before they finish the job.  Once all four turrets are destroyed, the passengers will be flung off the Leviathan and it will enter System Overload, causing it to become stunned while it repairs itself, taking 50% extra damage and losing all speed buffs.  All dps vehicles need to start wailing on it as much as possible in order to take advantage of this.  You’ll need a Chopper to run around while this is going on and pick up the passengers, heal them and drop them off by their vehicle.

If the Leviathan catches up to it’s target, it will begin using an ability called Battering Ram which hits for a truckload, knocks the target back and adds a debuff that increases damage taken by 100%.  In order to help slow the Leviathan, Choppers will need to drop tar slicks in front of it and it is highly recommended that people light them up in order to deal the extra damage while it’s slogging through it.  Siege Engines should be targeted more often than Demolishers, so the drivers will want to save their speed boost for when they need to turn around and book it.  Though there’s a lot going on and the fight seems complicated, it’s actually fairly easy and becomes a rinse and repeat sort of thing once you’ve mastered your vehicle’s different abilities. 

The Loot

10 Man

Combustion Bracers – This is actually a very sweet wrist slot item for a 10 man drop.  I definitely recommend this for Shadow Priests if you’re not sporting something nicer already.

Energy Siphon – A rather lackluster trinket (a running theme for casters in Ulduar), this one is better left for those crazy mp5 loving shamans.

Lifespark Visage – This is a fantastic head slot item, however, with the lower spirit totals and haste rating, it has more of a dps feel to it.  Don’t be afraid to pick it up for whatever spec you are though, as it’s still extremely good either way.

Petrified Ivy Sprig – Drops from hard mode, this is definitely one of if not the best hit gear wand in the game.

Shimmering Seal – Also from hard mode, this is a solid upgrade for shadow priests, pick it up if you get the chance.

25 Man

Freya’s Choker of Warding – a great little piece of disc or shadow gear, I’d recommend holy spec to wait till you can get something with spirit on it.

Embrace of the Leviathan – Pick this bad boy up if you get a chance, though disc may want something with less spirit on it in order to boost other stats.

Constructor’s Handwraps – Like the previous gear, this is a great upgrade for most people, but disc might want something less spirit heavy.

Leviathan Fueling Manual – If you’re shadow, pick this up.  BiS for off hand hit gear.

Glowing Ring of Reclamation – Possibly one of the BiS for holy spec and hit capped shadow priests, there are better options for disc priests out there.

Boots of Fiery Resolution – Hard mode loot, I have a feeling that this will be BiS for all three specs if you don’t mind the haste bonus.

Pendant of Fiery Havoc – Another hard mode item, this one is probably going to have dps drooling into their robes.  I believe this is currently BiS for hit gear.

And there you go, this mob drops a lot of caster items, so you definitely want to get on the gravy train here.  Next week we’ll be moving to the final boss before advancing past the Siege of Ulduar and into the Antechamber.  So come on back and we’ll take a look at XT-002 Deconstructor.

-Dueg

01
May
09

Friday Strats – Ignis the Furnace Master

I burn people!  With my crotch!

I burn people! With my crotch!

Ah, Ignis, I feel like I hardly know you.  When Ulduar first hit, this guy was truly a monster boss.  He hit regularly for 35k, if you stood in his AoE damage for longer than 2 seconds, you were toast, he was bugged and would randomly one shot members of the raid, just an all around unpleasant encounter.  Even his trash wiped us twice.  However, thanks to recent nerfs, he’s quickly fallen into line and has become much much easier to deal with, though certainly not easy by any stretch of the imagination.  So let’s have a little look-see, shall we?

The Prep

For this fight you’ll need three tanks, one for Ignis and two to pick up adds that will spawn on the north and south side of the room from those columns of statues.  There are a couple of different strategies out there for positioning, but we found one that we prefer, so that’s the one that I’ll be covering.  Basically you want the entire raid to stack up in the middle of the giant room Ignis is in once you’ve cleared out his trash.  You’ll want at least two healers dedicated to the tank and though Ignis doesn’t hit hard anymore, he does hit faster and will start to gain damage buffs, so they need to be prepared for quick, occasional spike damage on the tank.  You’ll also need at least one healer dedicated to the off tanks as well and one on “pot duty” (you’ll find out).  Once you have assignments ready to go, just buff up and pull.  Ignis has a very small aggro radius so you’ll want a misdirect pull or a range ability to pull him.

The Fight

Ignis has three main abilities that you must be prepared for.  The one that tanks need to be aware of is called Scorch wherein Ignis will burn everyone in front of him with a cone of fire damage that deals up to 4,250 damage and leaves behind an AoE fire effect.  Because of this, tanks will have to face Ignis away from the raid.  What we usually did was have the tank pull him just SW of the raid group to start, pointed away from everyone.  When Ignis hit with Scorch, the tank would then move him to just NW of the raid, then NE, then SE, rinse, repeat.  This clockwise placement of the scorches allowed the ranged to pretty much stand still while the tanks and melee do all the legwork.  My kind of fight.

His other main ability is called Flame Jets which he’ll cast randomly, so be on the lookout for it.  Basically what this ability does is throw the entire raid in the air, dealing up to 9,500 fire damage initially and leave behind a DoT doing 2,000 fire damage every second for 8 seconds.  The catch here is that if you are casting when he finishes casting Flame Jets, you’ll be locked out of your spell school.  this used to be an 8 second silence, but they reduced the duration and I’m not sure what the new total length is.  Either way, this can spell disaster if you’re a healer, so make sure to look for that.  I recommend only casting instants after the warning (which is on the default UI) goes up to ensure you don’t get silenced.  This effect is resistible.

His final ability is the Slag Pot, or, as it’s come to be affectionately known as, The Vibrating Crotch Pot.  You see that load he’s carrying in his britches up there in the pic?  Well, that is not a friendly pot of goodies, my friend, oh no.  What happens is that he’ll grab a random raid member and toss him in the ol’ pain pocket there which will then burn whomever is in the pot for 7,500 fire damage per second for ten seconds.  While you’re in the slag pot you can still do everything except move, so healers can heal themselves and others and other people can sue defensive cooldowns.  When that’s done, the person will drop straight out and will then gain a 150% haste for 10 seconds.  With proper fire resist buffs, this damage shouldn’t be too severe, but you will need someone on pot duty (told you).

Now another thing that people must be aware of is that he will also occasionally summon an add from one of the statues lining the north and south sides of the room.  When this happens, one of the off tanks will have to pick it up as quickly as possible and drag it over to an AoE Scorch, holding it in the fire until it gathers ten stacks of a fire debuff, causing it to become molten.  Any help from the raid is useful such as a root or the ice chains that DKs use which will allow the tank to gather other constructs if necessary while the one in the flames takes debuff stacks.  

Once the mob becomes molten, the tank needs to drag it over to one of the pools of water in the centered on the north and south walls of the room.  When the mob is molten, it does AoE damage, so the tank must be careful what route they take to the water.  After they hit the water, they will gain a debuff called brittle which will cause them to die if they take a single shot of 5k or higher.  We usually assigned our doomkin to do this damage.  Keep in mind that while each of these mobs are alive, Ignis gets a stacking damage buff for each one that raises his output by 15%.  If they take too long to die and too many of them show up, eventually Ignis will overwhelm the MT and your raid will wipe, so they must be dealt with quickly.

That’s the strategy pretty much.  Keep in mind that this will cause Ignis to occasionally walk through the group when you’re transitioning from west to east or vice versa, so the ranged need to slightly adjust every once in a while.  However, you can pretty much be goosing him and you’ll be fine, the main idea is that as a ranged you want to avoid the scorch damage as much as possible, so don’t stand anywhere near to in front of him.  Other than that, it’s a pretty easy fight with the most pressure being on the tanks who have to be quick on their feet.  They will occasionally range the assigned healer when picking up new mobs, but they shouldn’t be oor for too long, so don’t panic.

The Vid

An officer in our guild made a strats vid of our 10 man Ignis from last week, so I’ll post it here to give you all a better idea of the positioning I’m talking about in this post:

If you want to download the original avi which is a much better quality, you can do so from filefront right here.  It’s a .rar file.

The Loot

Still including 10 man loot here.

10 Man

Igniter Rod – Pretty much the only caster item he drops in ten man, this is a worthwhile off hand for both Holy and Shadow Priests.  Disc priests have a few better options, but don’t be afraid to pick this puppy up.

25 Man

Soot-Covered Mantle – This is a fantastic piece of hit gear for Shadow Priests who I suspect will have stiff competition for them.

Pyrelight Circle – Possibly one of the BiS for a Discipline Priest, even as Holy, I would be tempted to pick this one up, though with no mp5 or spirit, it is slightly sketchy.  Shadow priests should be all over this.

Intensity – One of the better hit bonus staves in the game, Shadow should definitely try to pick this up if it drops.

Scepter of Creation – This is one of the best wands in the game for a Holy Priest and I imagine in the top three for Shadow.  Disc can find better options without spirit on it.  Dueg approved.

And there you go.  The fight is pretty simple and straightforward as long as your raid force is alert and can counteract the occasional incoming spike damage, but due to the recent nerfs this guy is something of a pussycat.  Come back next week when we’ll take a look at the Loo-, er, Flame Leviathan!

-Dueg

24
Apr
09

Friday Strats – Razorscale

Welcome to Ulduar!  Hopefully by now most people have gotten to fight at least the four bosses of the siege area, with some of you probably advancing to the antechamber area.  I myself have been able to go through the siege and antechamber twice on 10 man these last couple of weeks and we were able to get the siege area bosses down in one night this week on 25.  Yes, Ulduar is effin awesome and yes, shit just got real.  

So what I’m trying to say is that we won’t be returning to Naxx anytime soon, but don’t worry, I do intend to finish it.  For the time being though, it’s all Ulduar all the time.  I decided to skip over Flame Leviathan for the moment because there’s not enough info out there to really put together a strat on his hard modes.  On easy mode he is rather easy, so I think people can handle it without my sage advice for the time being.  I’ll probably do it the week after next since it’ll be such an involved post.  So for the first Ulduar strats, I’ll skip to the second boss we usually do, ladies and gentlemen, Razorscale:

...and I will name him George, and pet him, and feed him, and...

More like RazorFAIL, BAM!

The Prep

You will be fighting Razorscale on a large platform overseeing a huge cliff.  There will be a set of four harpoons (two on ten man) on the west side which is where you enter and it will be open all along the eastern half of the platform.  During the fight you will have adds spawning all along the eastern edge of the platform that will need to be corralled by tanks.  We usually set up two groups on the northern and southern side of the circle with one group floating back and forth to help.  Make sure you split your healers evenly as there will be a lot of incoming raid damage.  Healers may also want to set their focus to Razorscale before you begin (I’ll explain later).  Once you have your sides split, simply buff up and speak with an npc standing by the harpoons to begin the encounter.

The Fight

Razorscale begins the encounter flying above the platform, targetable but out of range.  The dwarves you spoke to begin to repair the harpoons one at a time.  We assigned a ranged dps, usually a hunter or mage to make sure to fire those once three were ready then stand by the fourth and fire it once it was ready to go.  While you’re waiting for them to repair though, big drills will start to come up from the ground and deposit iron dwarves onto the platform.  There will be three different mobs, Dark Rune Sentinels, Dark Rune Watchers and Dark Rune Guardians, which you’ll want to kill in that order.

The Dark Rune Sentinels have a whirlwind ability that can land up to 40,000 damage on your cloth wearers so you’ll want to pull them from the rest of the raid when they come up.  Melee should be on their toes and ready to run when the whirlwind hits.  The Dark Rune Watcher is not a hard melee hitter, but he casts chain lightning, which deals increasing damage on up to 5 people in your raid, up to 11,000 on the final target, so they should be a priority target after Sentinels.  They will also cast a single target lightning spell on random people for up to 12,000 damage.  The Dark Rune Guardians are just your typical melee mobs.  They occasionally do a double weapon strike for about 10,000 damage, but other than that, just hold off on them till the other targets are down.

While your raid is fighting the mobs and the dwarves are finishing up repairs on the harpoon, Razorscale will be spitting fire at random people throughout the raid.  She’ll cast two types, a regular, orange Fireball spell that deals up to 12,000 damage and then a blue one called Devouring Flame which hits initially for about 10,000 damage then can tic up to that same amount every second for six seconds to anyone standing within 6 yards of the landing spot.  

Players have to be mobile and ready to move as this effect will kill a clothie in three seconds and it’s a waste of healer’s mana to have to heal someone through this type of avoidable damage.  If you have Razorscale focused, she targets the person she’s going to hit with fire and has a cast time on the ability, so you can throw some pre-emptive heals on someone about to get hit with fire.  I usually throw a HoT combined with shield on someone I see is about to take incoming damage.

Once all four harpoons have been fired, Razorscale becomes grounded and is stunned for several seconds.  As soon as she lands, all dps should stack up behind her and hit her with everything they have.  Blow cooldowns, use bloodlust, try to burn her as fast as possible.  Once she breaks stun, she’ll shoot a Flame Breath in front of her, which is her main breath weapon, dealing up to 22,000 damage in a cone in front of her.  Before she takes off again she’ll also cast a Wing Buffet ability which will knock everyone within a 35 yard radius around her backwards in the air.  The ability itself doesn’t hurt, but everyone knocked back will take fall damage, so be ready with heals when they land.  She’ll then return to her position and adds will start spawning again until the harpoons have been repaired again.

When you get Razorscale to 50% she’ll become permanently grounded and you’ll be able to begin phase 2.  Ideally you’ll want to permanently ground her the second time she lands, cause if it takes till the third you’ll be cutting the enrage timer awful close and after that you’ll never dps her enough before she goes berserk.  Once you’ve got her down and a tank has picked her up, she’ll begin casting her breath weapon fairly often.  She also begins to cast Flame Buffet every few seconds (I think it was close to every ten) which is a stacking debuff that raises your fire damage by 1500.  This hits the entire raid and makes phase 2 a dps race.

She’ll begin stacking a debuff on the tank called Fuse Armor which drops his armor, attack and movement speed by 20% for each stack and lasts 20 seconds.  You’ll need to trade off tanks to allow this effect to wear off.  We usually did the trade at two stacks.  While you’re fighting her she’ll also begin to drop a circle of flames on the spot where she’s standing so the tank will have to occasionally walk backwards to move her out of that.  Melee needs to be aware in this phase.  There won’t be too much raid damage flying around, but the tanks will need a lot of healing, so healers should try and focus on whoever has the boss taunted with an occasional eye for minor raid damage.

This fight has a lot of raid damage flying around with the mobs occasionally aggroing on the wrong people when they spawn and Razorscale spitting flames all over the place, so healers must be quick on their feet.  A good rule of thumb here is that when you first enter the platform there’s a huge red circle painted on the floor in the center of the area.  When she’s spitting the flaming fireballs, she seems to most often target the person closest or farthest from the center circle.  I don’t know if this is intended or a bug, but it really seems to work that way.

Update:  Jov was kind enough to point out in the comments that this is intended for Devouring Flame.  What she’s doing is targeting the person closest to her which before the first time you ground her is in the center of the platform.  After she takes off again, she will be flying around the outside of the circle and targeting whoever is closest to her.  Jov recommends having a healer and dedicated sentinel tank in the center before the first grounding then after the second, ranged dps follow her around while the rest of the raid bunches in the middle in order to keep AoE damage out of the raid.  This sounds like a very solid strategy and I will be recommending it to my guild the next time we hit up Ulduar.  Thanks Jov!

Healers should be aware of where they are in relationship to the raid and the edge of that circle at all times in order to try and avoid being targeted, but don’t rely on it, still be ready to move.  Also, the circle roughly maps out the radius of her wing buffet ability when she takes off again during phase one, so make sure to stand outside of it.  You must also be mobile in phase 2 as the tanks will be doing a lot of moving to avoid burning in the fire pool she drops, so be prepared to keep up with them.  Of course the rule of “don’t stand near the pointy end” still applies here, but make sure you don’t lose range on them at an inopportune time.

The Loot

I’m going to break from tradition here and loot both 10 and 25 man loot since both are viable right now, we’ll start with 10 man

Binding of the Dragon Matriarch – This is an awesome crit piece for your waist slot.  The low intellect might make it less attractive for a disc, but shadow or holy who need a bigger dose of critage should jump on this.

Eye of the Broodmother – I think this is one of the sexiest new trinkets in the game.  During longer fights this trinket basically gives you 87 crit and 250 spellpower.  I would definitely try to grab this if you don’t have a better trinket with a similar stacking effect.

25 man

Shackles of the Odalisque – This is a very nice healery wrist slot with comparable stats to Unsullied Cuffs, but I’d probably pick these up for all that sexy crit on them.

Collar of the Wyrmhunter – This would be a super sexy shadow item if they don’t mind the loss of spirit.

Guiding Star – Slightly better than the KT mace, this would serve any type of priest well as a main hand weapon, though I would say that there are better staff options for holy priests later in the instance.

Living Flame – This is a solid hit trinket for shadow priests with the ability for 20 seconds of burst damage to boot.

You are now locked to this instance.  Next week, we’ll be looking at Ignis and then we’ll return tot he Flame Leviathan before XT.  Till then, if anyone has any ways to improve the strats or tricks that have worked for your guild, please feel free to post them.

-Dueg




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