Thursday, July 15, 2010

How to! Warrior Tank - Level 80 - Instances


Today I thought I'd go through the final instances. And they aint few. I won't mention gear this time though since I'll make a special post about that instead. For once there is much to say about gear so it deserves some special attention.
We did Halls of Stone and Gundrak last time, so that means we have seven (EDIT: eight) instances to finish off today, to round it all up! Better get started right away.

Culling of Stratholme
Like I mentioned last time, CoS used to be the suckiest instance you could get before they finally got around and changed it. Nowadays it is pretty straightforward and easy, although people still usually don't like it since it's difficult to speed things up in any instance where you have to fight waves of things (like Violet Hold and Halls of Reflection also). But even so you'll get it done fairly fast and it gives a nice amount of emblems (which is nice, if that's what you're after), a max of 5 (plus 2 for the instance).
- If you're badly geared you might want to keep an eye out for the poison debuff that some of the Nerubar mobs do (called Hemotoxin). Although it deals 15% of max health every 2 seconds, and therefore is as dangerous to a well geared tank as a badly geared tank, you'll usually be in more trouble having this on you if you have bad gear because of all the other damage you'll take.
- The only place that might be slightly tricky is probably the gauntlet towards the end. Don't mind the little zombies, anyone (even the healer) can handle those. Using an addon that helps you find the elites among all the non-elites is very good here (something like Tidy Plates, but I'll get into that too in another post).
- There is an extra boss in the end just before the final boss, which you can get to if you make the time limit. With any kind of group that hasn't got sawdust instead of brains, that shouldn't be a problem. It will give you an extra emblem and a flying mount, yay.
- The final boss does a frontal cone effect, so the first thing you should do is make him face away from the rest of the group.

No, this has nothing to do with CoS or Oculus

Oculus

Oculus, oh Oculus. I've already made an entire post on whether or not Oculus sucks really bad, so I probably don't have to tell you again what I feel about it. By reading that post you'll also get a general idea about what to think about, but I'll say it again just in case.
- Rather kill too many dragons than too few! Trying to kill them while dismounted isn't going to be easy as they have alot of hp and are... well up in the air.
- Make sure whoever picks the green dragon know what the heck he is doing. I've been in one group too many where that guy alone made the entire group wipe. "Heal, what is that?"


Halls of Lightning
Although Halls of Lightning is rather long, I still actually enjoy it alot. It has a nice diversity in mobs and offers at least some difficulty when tanking.
- If your gear sucks, try not to get the first boss when he is charged. A good healer could probably still keep you up, but getting him without the charge is easy. And if you like you can skip that boss alltogether actually.
- The Slags just after the first boss just keep respawning so you have to simply run through to the other side. When you've collected all make sure you don't run too far up the stairs, because that will make you pull an extra group (make sure no one else in your party does this mistake either). The Slags explode on death, so if yet again, if you have bad gear you'll probably want to pop some cooldown to survive it.
- In the room with the colonnade of Ymirjars along the wall, you will have to do some advanced pick up tanking (for once). The Ymirjars will release from different directions, and you'll have to use all and any skill you can to make sure they run to you. Taunt one, Heroic Throw another and clap the rest. They fear too, so keep Berserker Rage under your finger.
- The room after the third boss (Ionar) is probably among the trickier in all heroics. If you're careful, the pulls don't have to be a problem. The mobs have some nasty tricks up their sleeves though, so look out for sleeps, whirlwinds, charges and poisons that could overwhelm the healer. Cooldowns could be necessary. And yet again, careful with the pulling.


Forge of Souls
The first of the three ICC instances, it's short and neat. All the ICC instances are more difficult than the "old" heroics, but hopefully the LFG-tool won't throw you into them until your gear is ready for it (although I did get into FoS the other day with less than 3500 gs). The first time you do the ICC instances they have to be done in a special order, starting with FoS. That means you can't get PoS or HoR until you've done FoS at least once. You get a quest by Sylvanas who stands at the entrance of FoS. Take it as it gives some extra frost emblems, and will lead you on to other quests in the other ICC instances.
- The mobs in FoS are nasty! The adepts are ranged, so try to collect the rest of the mob-group by them or bash the adepts into getting to you (or Heroic Throw something in their face). Some groups have several casters which make tanking them rather tricky. Like mentioned, make full use of Bash and Heroic Throw and for the love of the Spagettimonster, don't forget your Spell Reflect. If you charge in and use it immediately, you might even reflect several spells (as they are cast smultaneously by the mobs).
- If the dps in your group sucks, you might need to kite the first boss when he does his Corrupt Soul. If the Corrupt Soul reaches him, he receives 240k health (heroic).
- The final boss, Devourer of Souls, does a Phantom Blast. As a warrior you can both Bash it and Spell Reflect it which means you should be able to avoid all of his casts. And that is good as they do alot of damage (approx 12k damage).

Pit of Saron
The second ICC instance is also the largest ICC instance. One usually goes the right way, but you can do it from any direction. PoS is, just as the other ICC instances, a rather tricky place. Especially when compared to the old heroics. You'll have to look where you go so you don't accidentally pull something, as it is very easily done in this instance.
- Just after the second boss, if you take the normal route (Ick), you will run up a slope with some really nasty mob groups. First out are two packs of undead Ymirjars. Three of five in each group are casters, so yet again you have to make full use of your bashes, spell reflects and heroics throws. And these really hurt, but that's the healers problem, innit ;) After those groups are two groups of skeletons, with two casters in each. Those casters will do a Freezing Circle which you should get out of asap.
- The final boss, Scourgelord Tyrannus, will go into berserker mode for a few seconds every once in a while. If you tank him with your back against an ice patch (not on the ice patch though), he will knock you over it just before going apeshit. When running after you he will have to cross the icepatch and thus be slowed, and allow you to kite him for the short duration needed. This is good since he hits quite hard when he is enraged.

Halls of Reflection
Ah this part is easy since I've already made a post about it!

So that's all the instances we had left (bet I've forgotten about one...). Next time I thought we'd look into what gear to collect as a newly dinged 80!

EDIT (16/7): Hah, I did forget about one! ToC of course.
Trial of the Champion
ToC is nice since just like the raid Trial of the Champion (which is played in the same environment), there are no trash mobs. I think this was an experiment on Blizzards behalf, seeing what we'd like about an instance/raid completely without trash, since trash has been something player have been whining about for years. This is still the only instance without trash however, so whatever results Blizzard got, they weren't all good. It's an interesting idea, but I think making too many instances this way would make WoW feel even more of the loot-piñata that it already is.
- The Jousting part is fairly easy, even if you've never done jousting before (I hadn't the first time I did ToC). Just remember to keep track of your pets hp (whether it be a dog or horse) and switch before it dies. Being dismounted while jousting usually results in death.
- The first three bosses are a random pick of five possible. A hunter, a shaman healer, a mage, a rogue and a warrior. Out of these, the rogue and the warrior are by far the most annoying. I'd even say the shaman healer is the least annoying. People usually prefer to kill him first, because he is a healer, but I like to kill the warrior/rogue first if I've got any of them.
- For the second boss you can either get Eidric (paladin) or Paletress (priest). When killing the mob packs before engaging the boss, don't pull too many. The Argent Priestess mind controls, so if you're engaged in battle to many of them, many in your party might be mc'd. And since rule #1 of tanking is to never assume people in your party know what to do, only take on as many as you think you can interrupt yourself.
- The final boss is mostly a problem for the healer to handle. He summons a ghoul in the first phase which you should tank, and alot of smaller ghouls in the second phase which you can try to tank.

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