WoW Thoughts

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Ruby Sanctum 10-man Normal Strategy

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So, after doing a bit of searching around the internet I realized something which is new to me: because our guild has actually caught up with progression, there’s actually some people out there still looking for Ruby Sanctum advice. Weird.

The mini bosses were hell for us; I won’t pretend that I know why or how to fix it, so I’ll skip that in hopes that I can actually explain that for people who are still fighting with them in the future. Some brief notes:

For Saviana, not having an enrage dispel *hurts*; get one if you can. (Have your rogue do the anesthetic poison on a third weapon trick. Yes, it sucks. Sorry.)

For Baltharus: Picking up the add without it killing people may be hard. When it spawns, have anyone it is near stop/run away. Blade Flurry is painful. Tank the add away from the MT, and don’t bother killing it; just keep the tank up. (And have him use cooldowns during Blade Flurry.) It *is* possible to single tank both adds if your second tank goes down, but your DPS better kick it way way up and knock him out quick; any double blade flurry requires cooldowns cooldowns cooldowns.

For the General: Hibernate/sleep one of the adds, if you can, then have the OT grab the one that’s not sleeping. If you don’t have dragon CC, you can just have the MT grab the second one; having two doesn’t hurt that much. (Having 3 might; managing three would probably be the difficult part.) Do have DPS switch to adds when they come up.


Now, for the main event.

Three phase fight. Typical raid comp setup for new progression content — 3 healers, 5 DPS, two tanks. There is probably no combination of classes that works particularly more or less well for this, but you will find phase 2/3 much easier if you have some melee.

Phase 1 is pretty simple, light healing, etc. The dragon is a typical dragon — breathes fire, hits things with tail, etc. Occasionally, Halion will mark someone with Fiery Combustion. Fiery Combustion will deal damage, and is a bit like Rotface’s slimes: You want the person to get out to the edge of the arena, then get dispelled. The debuff is dispellable by both Curse dispels and Magic dispels — so every healing class can dispel it. (This becomes more important later on.) When dispelled, will drop a fire puddle that will knock back anyone standing too close — hence the reason to drop it at the edge.

Additionally, Halion will call down a meteor strike: big fiery glowing area. Don’t stand in it. Once the meteor his the ground, it will explode fire in 4 directions. (I would say ‘random’, but the pattern of the fire is always the same; however, the orientation rotates, so it is basically random from what I can tell.) Don’t stand in the fire. It doesn’t hurt a *ton* — at least, in p1 where you have 3 healers to help take care of it — but it’s still not very pretty. Once the fire lands, be aware of it, especially if you’re melee — you want to not run through it with Fiery Combustion if it’s easy to avoid.

We had the tank pull the head pointing to the raid’s left as we pulled, and had everyone stay on the dragon’s left side. Melee were in close, ranged were a bit further out, but not *too* far, because you want melee to run past for Fiery Combustion quickly. Basically, this phase is just a matter of learning the Combustion mechanic; like normal mode LK phase 1, after the first couple attempts, you’ll sleep through phase 1.

Phase 2

Now it starts to get hard.

Phase 2, everyone enters the shadow realm, tank first. As soon as Halion transitions, toss HOTs on the tank (and a shield if you have a disc priest), since he’ll take the first hit or two before you can join him. (You only have to give him long enough to spawn + taunt.) Once the tank is through, hop through the portal and have all of your DPS stack up on his left side again.

In the Shadow Realm, there is the new favorite of every meter busting disc priest: a ticking damage aura.

Combustion is now Soul Consumption; almost the same mechanic, but instead of pushing out, it pulls people in. (In heroic, people in the void zone also get snared.)

The most important new behavior, though, is the Twilight Cutters. These shadowy orbs of death (2 on normal; 4 on heroic) will spin around the edge of the room. Every 20 seconds, they will ‘activate’, connecting the dots to form a shadowy lance of death through anyone in the way. This ain’t your daddy’s “Rotate in a circle” fight. Those beams Hurt. Anyone standing in them when they turn on will be dead in .5s. (This is typically below reaction time, and well below instant heal time; if people die to cutters, it is not the healer’s fault.) What this means is that your Shadow tank has a hard job: he must keep Halion rotated such that cutters are unlikely to kill people.

There are a couple ways to handle this, but the way that worked best for us (and I’ve seen it mentioned in other places): Basically, if you can time it right, you should be able to rotate Halion only when the beams are on. The rotation time means that shortly (~2-3s) before each rotation, the beams should be back in about the same place, and the tank can wiggle the dragon slightly to line it up so that (assuming the Dragon’s head is noon) the beams run from 1-7 o’clock on a clock dial. Minimizing movement in the shadow realm is a key component of success in encounter. Doing this right gives ranged DPS more time to keep DPSing without moving, less likelihood of someone running ahead into flame breaths, less need to manage space for Consumption, etc.

The entire raid needs to rotate forward with the dragon when the beams are on. Anyone getting the debuff should run clockwise with it, rather than counterclockwise, because if beams come on, you don’t want to get trapped by them. Remember not to get *too* far forward — when the Dragon is about the flame breath, she will stop rotating, and rear up; Run Away from that head!

At 50%, you enter phase 3. Transition can be rough; the Shadow Dragon doesn’t disappear, so don’t run into a Shadow Lance while running to the portal. Have all your healers hot up your physical tank before they run out.

Phase 3

Phase 3 is the combination of Phase 2 and Phase 1; half your raid (including approximately half your DPS) need to go out, and half your raid stay in. We managed this with a disc priest out, and a resto druid/resto shaman in. (The ticking debuff favors raid healing; bubble spam will not keep your raid alive.) A disc priest can handle the healing outside reasonably well: you won’t need to bubble most of the raid, just concentrate on the tank and shield / spot-heal / dispel the combustion. I would assume almost any healing class could take the outside reasonably well; if your tank gets behind on heals, due to dispel or whatever, use a cooldown to catch up.

The mechanics of each realm are approximately the same, just with fewer people to help with them.

However, there is a new mechanic: Corporeality. The reason I said to split the DPS evenly is because you essentially want to have even DPS in both realms; no mean feat to balance considering the movement in the shadow realm. (Physical DPS will do much better in the shadow realm, and ranged in physical, due to the movement in Shadow.) Essentially, whichever realm is doing more damage to the boss will ‘push’ him further into the other realm — increasing the damage he does in that realm, possibly significantly. You really want to keep this corporeality even.

Since this is hard to balance, what we did was have our lock near the portal as much as possible, and when the dragon went further in one direction, he’d hop through and push her in the other direction. This was a potentially dangerous path to take — he reported being ‘constantly scared’ of dropping into a twilight cutter — but it worked out well for us.

People still need to get the hell out if they have Consumption/Combustion, avoid fire, avoid cutters, etc. Line the dragon up with the orbs/beams, and don’t dispel too quick.

Phase 3 is all about survival; we had no enrage problems on any of our attempts. Keep it together, and you can pull it off.

For our group, over the course of 2ish hours, it took about 10 attempts before we finally dragged her down. This fight is definitely a challenge even for a group which has killed the LK on normal; an interesting/exciting raid encounter, especially for healers, that requires a lot of self-management, and everyone to put forward their best, to snag it. Losing the 25% raid buff feels like a slap in the face, and you will want to make sure that you’re prepared for that; your numbers will be lower, your tanks will have less health, and there is overall a lot less margin for error.

Good luck!


Written by wowthoughts

July 9, 2010 at 11:22 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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