- For the first four bosses you need two tanks, three healers, and five dps. More on this later, but for Anub having two healers and six dps makes the fight a lot easier.
- Blood lust is not required, but it makes encounters a lot smoother. Fights have major dps components to them and if you can’t generate the raid dps needed to surpass them, you won’t be able to kill the bosses.
- You only have ten folks, so try to spread out the classes to maximize buffs and utility.
- A Mortal Strike effect (Aimed Shot, Wound Poison, Mortal Strike, etc.) is necessary for Anub.
- Get a reliable purger/dispeller for Jaraxxus.
Here are the logs from the raid we did last night. I forgot to start recording until after Beasts, so unfortunately you can’t see what we did for that fight, but generally we did about 28k raid dps.
Do you have enough hp? I was at 50k hp buffed last night, and wasn’t particularly worried during any tight spots. I think I had more than enough health to cover every fight. Keep this number in mind when considering certain things, such as how many stacks to hold Gormok for, one-tanking Jaraxxus, etc.
Lastly, please note I’m writing this with the assumption you know the strategies and tactics of the normal-mode version of this dungeon.
Beasts of Northrend
Phase 1: Gormok
Gormok comes out of the gate and I pick him up first. I hold him to 4 stacks of the debuff, then call for a taunt and Divine Shield+Divine Sacrifice. This drops my stack and gives Demogar (the other tank) a faux Pain Suppression to ease his damage intake. By the time we do the first tank switch, Gormok is under 50% health. From this point on, we switch at 3 stacks.
Healers call out in vent if they have snobolds on them, and ranged pick them off.
At 10% health, dps switches too and kills any snobolds that are up, and then burn down the boss. When Gormok dies I cast Hand of Protection on Demogar to drop his stacks.
Phase 2: Not one, but two Jormungar
This is the phase where you can easily gain or lose a huge chunk of time on the Icehowl’s entrance depending on how you handle the worms. Dreadscale will come out of the gate first, and Demogar picks him up and tanks him along the wall by the gate. I grab Acidmaw, who is rooted, and tank him with my back to the wall. Melee and all dps burn down Acidmaw first.
Acidmaw will do a paralyzing poison spray on all the melee, though Demo is very close by with Dreadscale so we can just run 10-20 yards over to remove out debuffs. We all keep the wall to our backs so the Sweep that the rooted worm does doesn’t knock us far away from Demo.
Eventually both worms will submerge. Acidmaw will pop up above ground near the entrance to the Coliseum, while Dreadscale will pop up rooted near the middle of the room. I Hand of Reckoning Dreadscale to grab his attention and run through the rotation a little to build a decent threat lead. Then I run over with the melee and other dps and help them burn down Acidmaw. We use Bloodlust to kill Acidmaw before he can burrow again.
When Acidmaw dies, Dreadscale soft enrages. While this sounds deadly, it’s really not. I run back over with everyone and put some dps into Dreadscale before he submerges. He’ll pop up again above ground, and Demogar grabs him. We all finish him off, taking care not to cross in front of his hit box. Dreadscale does a very painful cone attack that will kill any non-tank standing in front of him. Once Dreadscale drops, Demo runs over to the gate to pick up Icehowl.
Phase 3: Icehowl
Please note: There is NO RUN SPEED BONUS after a Massive Crash. Reiterate this fact a thousand times to your raiders if need be, because one dope not getting out of the way fast enough will probably spell a wipe. Said dope will get one shot, and then Icehowl will enrage and probably kill a tank–maybe more.
Otherwise this phase is very easy. Healers need to spread out equally around Icehowl so all three don’t get frozen at a time. Tanks should try to be on opposite sides of Icehowl as well.
If you’re off tanking like I usually do for this part of the fight, be sure to make use of abilities with Divine Sacrifice and Hand of Sacrifice to ease out any rough patches (like two healers frozen).
Just avoid the crashes and assuming you didn’t spend too much time on worms you should have no issue beating the enrage.
- He’ll cast Legion Flames on a random person, who will then drop fires under where they stand for a few seconds. If a melee gets this they need to immediately run away from the boss so they don’t kill the other melee dps.
- Portals and Volcanoes need to be dpsed to close them. If you get more than one Mistress of Pain or more than three Infernals your dps is slacking and you will probably be overrun.
- When Jaraxxus gets a 5 stack of his Nether Power he will eventually zap and likely one-shot a random person if that buff if not purged/dispelled/stolen. It’s a huge dps boost for Mages though, if you have one to steal it.
- Non-tanks will not last long standing next to a rooted, hell-firing Infernal. They need to be fast on their feet in moving if they have one roll right next to them. Likewise, you need to be prepared to high tail it if an Infernal rolls into melee.
One tank! Demo switches to arms spec and I tank Jaraxxus and adds that come up. The only difficult part is picking up all the Infernals, though the easiest way to manage it is Hand of Reck the first one, shield toss the second, then Hand of Reck the third. The extra dps Demo brings is very helpful for getting portals and volcanoes down.
This fight is all about staying on your toes. When portals or volcanoes appear, dps needs to be ready to immediately get over there and burst them down, asap. The raid also needs to be ready to move away if they are standing in, or dropping, something dangerous.
This fight is easily one-shottable as long as everyone is paying attention.
The healers are easily controllable (park rogues or prot warriors on them), so burn down the dps as soon as possible.
In terms of kill priority, based on deadliness (especially to clothies), I would recommend the following:
- Baelnor Lightbearer (Ret Pally)
- Shocuul (Warrior)
- Shaabad (Enh. Shaman)
- Tyrius Duskblade (DK)
- Irieth Shadowstep (Rogue)
- Alyssia Moonstalker (Hunter)
- Serissa Grimdabbler (Warlock)
- Noozle Whizzlestick (Mage)
- Kavina Grovesong (Boomkin)
- Brienna Nightfell (Spriest)
- Anthar Forgemender (Holy Priest)
- Shaamul (Resto Shaman)
- Melador Valestrider (Resto Druid)
- Velanaa (Holy Pally)
Stay tank! You can’t taunt the champions, but that doesn’t invalidate going tank spec. You have several tools at your disposal that can be invaluable, such as Avenger’s Shield, 40 second HoJ, Hand of Sacrifice, Divine Sacrifice, etc. Be careful not to use Divine Shield+Divine Sacrifice until all the priests and warriors or dead, or else your bubble will likely get shattered/dispelled and you’ll take damage from the DivSac.
Also, cleansing is very important in this fight. Take some of the burden off the healers so they don’t have to expend GCDs on that.
Use Seal of Justice for some free, occasional stuns. HotR is awesome for this, as it will spread the seal to two other people in a nice cleave.
Also, don’t let the shaman totems stay up. The Windfury can be deadly if the melee champs are still running around, and a Healing Stream Totem makes it nearly impossible to kill anything.
Positioning is everything! Tank the Twins in between the back Light/Dark wells in by the gate (where the red X is). Keep them right next to each other so splash damage from one group’s target hits the other.
During a Vortex, obviously, people need to switch to the proper color, or they will die. During a Twin’s Pact do not have your dps change essences, just have them switch target. The time saved not running to a well will more than make up for the damage loss of not switching colors.
Flying orbs can kill people, so your dps and healers need to pay attention to their surroundings. Encourage folks to grab any nearby orbs that will eventually give them the Empowered Light/Dark buff.
This fight is all about awareness of raid damage and dpsing the correct target.
The big enchilada, Anub will provide the biggest challenge to you in here, and rightfully so. It took us three nights of solid attempts before we hammered out a winning strategy. Here’s what we discovered works for us:
First and foremost, use two healers and six dps for this fight. It makes a world of difference. The fight is infinitely easier when restricted to only one burrow phase, which having six dps will allow.
When the fight starts, Demo pulls Anub to the blue circle with the “!!”. A permafrost is brought down there, and when the first pair of Burrowers emerges (I’ve written about tanking these, and especially how to deal with Shadow Strikes, in this post) I grab them–Reck one, shield toss the other–and drag them to that spot. An add is marked, dps burns it down, then the other one. Demo then moves Anub off the ice and towards the back middle of the room (red arrow).
The second set of Burrowers eventually appears; I grab both and take them to the “!!” ice patch. I hold them and dps does not assist, they focus on Anub.
When Anub burrows we typically have him at 50% or so, but your mileage may vary. Everyone except me runs south as soon as Anub burrows, in case he targets one of them. I find that as long a I hold aggro on a Burrower, I am not targeted for spikes.
Whoever is targeted follows the path of the green arrow and kites the spikes to that ice patch, breaking it. Everyone aside from me should be in the bottom half of the room at this point. A new person is targeted and then run north as the yellow arrow indicates.
After that point Anub will be close to reemerging. The third-targeted person runs kites the spikes to the southwest permafrost patch.
Keep in mind that whoever is being chased SHOULD NOT use any aggro dropping moves (Vanish, Divine Shield, Iceblock, Fade, etc.) as that will make the spikes change targets and shoot across the room to kill someone.
Hand of Protection is great, however, for buying someone some extra time to get to a permafrost. They won’t take any spike damage while BoP’d, and they’ll hold aggro to boot.
When Anub emerges, so two will two Burrowers. Same deal as before, pick up both and drag them to a permafrost patch that will be dropped near Anub. DPS burns down the marked add, then the other, and switches back to Anub. At this point the dps goes hog-wild to get Anub to 30% health and start phase 3.
At this point you need to decide (based on the speed of your dps) if you’re going to kill the next set of adds that come up. Unless you are supertank, you can’t hold four Burrowers at once (especially with two healers) so preventing a second group of Burrowers is key. If you’re lucky, they will emerge just as Anub hits 30%, giving you enough time to kill him before the next set appears. If you’re not confident that you can kill Anub before you have four adds, burn down the two you have then push Anub over to p3.
When in phase 3, tank adds off of a permafrost and allow them to submerge. Also, it gets hectic, so pay extra-close attention to Shadow Strikes!
Bloodlust if you have it, make sure an MS effect is up, and go crazy. This part of the fight goes incredibly fast (especially once you hit execute range) so just try not to get caught unawares by anything nasty.
Once Anub goes down, be sure to thank your healers, who are probably stressed out of their minds at this point.
Ultimately, the five fights of H ToC are great tests of awareness, coordination, skill, and gear. As long as you have a well-rounded, intelligent group of folks you should have no problem. I hope this guide helped a little, and please let me know if you have anything to add or correct in the comments.