Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Barely raid tanking Maloriak

After Magmaw and Ods in Blackwing Descent have been defeated, the deadly lift boss opens up and once you defeat it (hint don't jump while it is going down), 3 further bosses are available. We tackled Maloriak next, so here are my thoughts on Bear tanking the encounter.

The bungling henchman of Nefarian, Maloriak is a 2 phase fight with 3 repeating subphases in phase 1, when he uses various potions which have a differing effect.

2 tanks are needed, one for Mal and one on add tanking duty. I usually manage to persuade the raid that I should be on Mal thanks to the perception of poor bear AOE threat, although I'm sure I could take the adds. Maybe. Dependings if those sneaky warlocks try to pad the damage meters by cursing some of the adds.

During phase 1 Maloriak is tanked next to his cauldron - he will throw either a blue, red or green flask into it, and while he does this, you can move close to where he stands and tank him there. The adds tank usually takes the adds to close to the door, away from Maloriak.

During the whole phase 1 Maloriak casts two abilities, Arcane Storm must be interrupted so a DPS gets this job, but in 4.1 with unmissable interrupts, you might get the interrupt duty. Release aberrations is a 1.5 sec cast, if successful, he will release 3 adds. Now he has a total of 18 adds, but he will release any left at the beginning of phase 2, so the trick is to release 9, kill them, repeat so in phase 2 none are left to release and kill the raid. Sometimes a DPS will be on duty to interrupt this, but sometimes I get to do it, I coordinate with the adds tank on vent to know when he wants more adds and when he has 9. More than 9 and he can't take the damage. The adds get a protection from damage so aren't damaged during most of phase 1. Further more, there are 4 or 5 casts of this during one "sub phase", so you have to let some through and interrupt some. I find a good way is letting the first through, interrupting the second, letting the third and fourth through. That way if the second one is not interrupted (due to a miss), I can try to interrupt the third. The best approach is to get some hit capped DPS to do this, but in 10 man it's not always an option.

When Maloriak throws a potion into the cauldron he gets abilities based on the colour of the potion. He alternates blue and red and after a few blue or red pots, will use a green one. Ideally you want the last set of adds to be released just before the Green sub-phase.

Red means Maloriak gets fire spells, mainly a cone AOE fire attack, the damage of which is split across everyone who takes it. So the raid will collapse in behind you and you need to keep Maloriak facing the wall on the right of the room (as you enter), but definitely away from the adds tank! You don't want the adds tank to get the fire damage on top of the pounding they are taking from the adds.

Someone will get a Consuming Flames debuff which causes increased fire damage, if it is you, you really can't run behind the boss like the rest of the raid will do, so you just have to stand there and take the fire damage. Popping Mirror of Broken Images when he does the fire AOE is ideal. What do you mean, you don't have it?

Blue potion means he does frost damage, will entomb someone and also put a Biting Chill debuff on you. This just does more damage so don't worry, the raid will spread out but you can stay still and still tank him by the cauldron.

On green he will cast the Debilitating Slime spell where everyone takes double damage, but also makes the adds take damage. You will also take double damage. He will also knock you back - after he throws the green pot into the cauldron, I try to line myself up so I am in line with him and the adds tank, hoping to be knocked back into the adds.You can also just run to the adds tank when you see him using the green vial maybe with Stampeding Roar. But a flying bear is just a whole lot more fun.

After his knock back the raid will AOE the adds, hopefully 9 of them. The adds tank will hold them in place. The MT role is to drag Maloriak into the adds so he gets some of the AOE damage the DPS are doing, but I also have to keep his summon adds spell interrupted, otherwise you get more adds which will cause chaos. A ranged dps will help here maybe to assist with the interrupts, but they will likely be busy interrupting Arcane Storm. So keep the Release aberrations spell interrupted during this sub-phase.

Dragging Mal into the adds is tricky - you may be knocked away from him, but feral charge will close the gap. He stops moving to cast arcane storm and summon adds, so you need to wait for the interrupt before moving further away from him.

During this sub-phase you take increased damage, so popping Barkskin or Survivial Instincts will help the healers out.

Once the adds are dead, you can draw Maloriak back to his cauldron and he will next use a blue or red pot. Then you repeat releasing some adds, doing blue or red pots then green, until he hits 25% health and phase 2.

Phase 2
The first warning of phase 2 is he casts release all minions which is not interruptible. By this point all the aberrations are dead, but he does release two big ones called Prime Subjects which will fixate a player and become un-tauntable for 10 seconds. The adds tank now just tanks these two, taunting them back off a player once the fixate is over, the player should be trying to get out of the way, but slows are useful like infected wounds.

Meanwhile Maloriak does more damage with Acid Nova, pop cool-downs here, and the MT kites him around the room while the DPS burn him down. This phase is generally when Bloodlust happens, and is a good time to pop berserk.

As the MT, in phase 2 you have to face him away from the raid, and toward somewhere no one is. This is because he casts Magma Jets toward where he is facing, which leaves a line of fire on the ground and will hurt if you get hit. When Jets is announced, strafe away a bit and he will stay still and cast where he was facing, then he will run to you. At this point he will be facing away from the wall (having just run toward you), so face him back to the wall and wait for the next Magma Jets. Because the jets leave fire on the ground, the raid will run out of space at some point so this phase is a DPS race.

I tend to face him to the back wall of the cauldron, then move him behind the cauldron and then along the left hand wall (as you enter the room). The smaller the movement you make to avoid Magma Jets, the closer together the flames are laid, so the more room you get to kite.

During phase 2 he also puts blue circles of swirly stuff on the ground which knock back, get out of those quickly as they will ruin your strafing! For this reason it's worth keeping yourself a slight distance from the wall, so you can back up toward it if you get a circle. If you strafe to the side to avoid a circle, he will point his Magma Jets at an angle and the flames on the ground will chew up a load of room!

Maloriak drops Aberration's Leggings and Cloak of Biting Chill.

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