Tuesday, 5 January 2010

A Retadin in ICC Part 1

Having pugged my way into suitable gear for the Icecrown Citadel raid I got into one of our guilds raids which merrily cut a swathe through the enemy. So here are my impressions of the fights and if you're taking your retribution paladin in there what you should expect.

Yes, trash is back, and frankly I'm slightly pleased. There's nothing like a few short fights to dust off any cobwebs and allow a group to gel. Our guild doesn't have a standard raiding team so potential there will be different tanks, different healers and different buffs each run meaning a few kills to get used to everyone's threat generation should mean a lot fewer slip ups on the boss fights.

The mobs have a lot of health so Seal of Corruption/Vengeance is the order of the day, though if you have very high raid dps it may be worth switching to Corruption. The only caveat to this is the reintroduction of crowd control which means you need to add some extra care to where you're slinging that holy damage. Be sure you're clear before using Divine Storm or Consecrate though hopefully your tanks should be pulling their mobs clear allowing you to do what's required. If their not, then a polite word may be required.

Lord Marrowgar
A fairly straightforward tank and spank boss, with some of that annoying target switching. More than ever you'll want to stay away from the front of the boss as there is one attack which splits the damage between everyone in front of him. Normally this will be just the tanks but as plate wearing DPS you might be called upon to stand there as well.

Make sure you stand within his hit box as this will mean he can't target you with his Cold Flame ability, and hopefully the ranged will group up there as well which will make his next ability a bit easier to deal with. Bone graveyard will impale a random member and needs to be dps'd down to release them. If everyone switches then they should die quickly meaning you can get back on the boss before any of those tasty debuffs wear off.

Finally he does a whirlwind (yeah another whirlwind mob) which hits everyone in the raid for varying damage depending on how close you are to him. He'll also spawn 4 cold flames so during this phase you need to stay out of the fire and away from the boss. There's no point trying to damage him so use Flash of Light where possible to help out the healers and get ready to run back in when he's stopped. When running back remember not to get in front of him for fear of taking those nasty hits.

Rinse and repeat until he's dead and you're ready to move onto the next boss.

Lady Deathwhisper
A boss with adds, oh joy that means running about. So having cleared the trash you'll spot this Lichess who when attacked puts up a massive mana shield which absorbs all damage done but drains her mana when it absorbs damage.

During this time there will be regular add spawns from the alcoves on each side. On 10 man we only get one side at a time, but there will be three and these need to be taken down as quickly as possible. It's possible that the boss will buff one of them which will make them either 99% immune to physical or magical damage. If it's the physical one then you can run back and smack the mana shield a bit, if it's the magical one then make sure your raid leader knows you're not going to be bringing as much hurt given that seals, judgements etc. will be doing a tiny fraction of the normal damage. You'll also need to watch out for Death and Decay being put on the floor, get out of the nasty yellow stuff.

Once the mana shield goes down no more adds spawn and it turns into a fairly standard tank and spank fight. You'll still need to get out of the nasty stuff on the ground and there will be non-attackable ghosts which explode for damage you need to keep an eye on. If you find yourself below half health it will probably be worth helping your healers out with a potion or healing spell. Otherwise you might be hoping for a battle rez while you stare up from the floor at the rest of the raid.

Gunship Battle
The Chess event of this expansion, by which I mean a very straightforward event with some nice loot available at the end. As melee you're likely to be stopping on your own ship and using the cannons, however this doesn't mean you shouldn't grab one of the rocket shirts and have a jump about.

The cannons are another use of the vehicle mechanic but they also have a resource to be aware of. There are two types of shot, the first which does a set amount of damage and generates an amount of heat and the second which consumes all this heat in a flaming ball of death. You want to make sure that the amount of heat in your gun never reaches 100 otherwise you'll be unable to fire for a few seconds while it cools down. Your tactic here is to spam the '1' key still you get to 80-90 heat and then hit '2', rinse and repeat. You'll be aiming at the opposing cannons mostly but also keep a lookout for the rocketeers at the back and chuck a few shots that way.

Periodically the opposition will be boarding your ship through portals, so a tank will be round them up and a mage will appear on the opposition ship and freeze your cannon in a block of ice. While the boarding party take down the mage you can take down the invaders. Be aware of rocket strikes while doing so though, if you're stood in a target on the ground, don't be and you'll be fine.

Deathbringer Saurfang
Time to face off against the latest deathknight in the Scourge army. For melee this is very straightforward as all you have to do is stand there and hit him. However you do need to keep an eye on the other abilities he does. Throughout the fight he'll be gaining blood power based on the abilities he does, when it reaches 100 he'll cast a Mark on a random player which does damage and helps him gain blood power faster.

The biggest concern for the raid is the blood beasts that spawn. These should be nuked down by the ranged and kited/rooted away from you. Being hit by these is a big no no as this will cause an increase in blood power, so having them hitting you will cause problems. This means that you want to avoid dropping consecration 10 seconds before they spawn and not hit Divine Storm just beforehand. If you do accidentally pull aggro then run away and wait for the ranged guys to grab it off you.

That's the first four bosses done, and the second wing is now available with 3 new bosses to have a bosh at. So once I've had a go with the guild at them I'll add a part 2 with some impressions on those.

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