Tuesday, January 6, 2009

So Sartharion

Last night, I got a whisper from my old buddy Ferth of Heroes Inc who wanted to see if I was saved to the Sartharion raid. Sartharion is a single boss "Onyxia" type encounter.

I didn't want to get caught committed to Heroes group, and then have Mal Katai need me so I checked with Raistilan, who gave me the go ahead to run with Heroes.

Heroes group was a little heavy on tanks, so Ferth asked if I could go as Retribution. I thought that was actually a pretty good idea. It would be good to see the fight from any angle so I have a better understanding of it when I need to tank it.

Also, when dual specs come out I intend to run as a Prot / Ret Paladin and getting a little practice as Ret would be a good thing. Basically I can go Prot or Ret, just don't ask me to go Holy.
I was about to say don't ask me to heal, but I made a macro for Art of War. Art of War makes your Flash of Light instant, so it only costs you a global cooldown.

My macro targets the tank, casts Flash of Light and returned my target to Sartharion. Since I was having zero problems with mana, whenever I got an Art of War proc, I smash the macro and between that and Divine Storm I'd contribute a little healing.

What I didn't contribute was much in the way of actual DPS. I'll post my actual DPS at the end of this post.

I think Blizzard did a poor job in introducing you to Sartharion and the WHY behind you need to kill this Dragon. I realize some people need little more motivation than "He's got da phat epicz fo'shizzle", but I'd like a little more (and a little lore as well).

So I did a little digging. Turns out Sartharion works for none other than Deathwing The Destroyer. Deathwing is trying to create a new Dragonflight called the Twilight Dragons. The purpose of the Twilight Dragons is to destroy the other Dragonflights and basically rule the worlds. Sartharion is guarding a cache of Twilight Dragon eggs, and his 3 drakes are the first born of this new Dragon Flight.

I would have preferred a quest, given by Alexstrasa that explained that to the players, so we know why Sartharion is such a threat and why he must be stopped.
Now as to the actual encounter, it was quite fun. You start out fighting some basic trash. A four pack of dragonkin, and a 2 pack of large Dragonkin. The four pack spawns these balls of fiery death that you have to run away from or get cooked. The 2 pack are basically tank and spank. They hit pretty hard but really don't do anything weird.

We opted to kill the three drakes before we engaged Sartharion. The Drakes reminded me a little bit of Kalegos. After fighting the Drake, he opens a portal. Everyone except for a healer and a tank go inside and fight a Disciple (another Dragonkin) in there. Inside the portal, everyone takes shadow damage to the tune of about 1000 per second. You don't have long to kill the Disciple before the shadow damage will kill you. Once the Disciple is down, you are sent back to the 'real world' where you fight the Drake.

Then we get to Sartharion himself. First of all, he is a dragon, so you have to watch for the tail swipe. I had seen enough melee DPSers fighting Nightbane that at least I knew where to stand to avoid that.

Then from time to time, Sartharion creates a giant wall of fire. The wall has a small break in it. Stand there and you are safe, otherwise you get nailed. Our tank positioned Sartharion in such a way that the melee DPS didn't need to move if the wave came from one side, and only had to move a little bit if it came from the other.

Then Sartharion summons little fire elemental adds which where picked up and tanked by Ferth aka Ferthadin. When Sartharion gets low, he summons a whole mess of Fire Elementals. As a bonus, if the Fire Elementals get washed over by the giant wall of fire, they get big and red and start doing more damage. As a general rule, when a mob or Hordie gets Big and Red, it's normally a 'Bad Thing'.

Our main trouble seemed to be sudden tank death, but sense I was happily chopping away at Sartharion's flank, I can't comment much. It took a couple of attempts, but eventually we got Sartharion down. He dropped a DPS plate helm and a token for gloves that wasn't a Conqueror (Paladin, Priest, Warlock). In fact, only one person in the raid could use the token (a mage) but he already had them. DPS is my offspec, so I didn't roll against a couple of 'main' DPSers who were interested in the helm. I was happy enough just to have received an invite to the raid.

I'm a little hesitant to post this next screenshot, but I will anyway. It's a picture of my Recount DPS Meter after the successful attempt. I'm thinking it's just a gear thing at this point. I'm not sure if it's a gear thing, or skill/practice thing. I know my spec was ok because I copied it from Eye for Eye's guide. I'm still using about half of my Black Temple/Mount Hyjal gear.


Ken said...

My guild tried this a while back and could not take down the mini-bosses. I had just hit 80 when they asked me to offtank, and our main tank and healer were not well geared enough as they kept dying when the rest of the group went into the portal.

I think we might try it again in the near future. Grats on completing that!

Ragar said...

Oh, so there is a backstory for that fight. Thanks for posting that. After we fought him the first time, I tried looking for why there was a hostile dragon living under the big dragon temple, but all I could find was "here's how to fight him and here's what he drops".

Anonymous said...

This is an interesting and dynamic fight. So far I have dodged lava waves and tanked adds because I imagine I'm better with adds than a Warrior tank is.

It can also be a very quick instance - last night I threw together an OS 25 PUG consisting of anyone in Trade who wanted to go (plus whatever guildies wanted to go). I just wanted to not miss out on the opportunity to run it during last week's raid calendar - Emblems of Valor haven't been raining from the sky for me thus far.

Somehow the random group I ended up with had really, really fabulous DPS and we blew through the whole thing in less than 30 minutes - and I won the roll for my Valorous gloves, to boot. =D


Argent said...

I expect that the level 70 gear is probably holding you back a lot. Your priorities should be Strength, Hit and Crit, maybe in roughly that order. Some of your tank gear might have more strength than your old 70 epics -- I'm using a tanking neck and ring in my ret set because they have 50 str and 40str, respectively.

There are some rep blues (Sons of Hodir shoulders, Kirin Tor belt) that you can get, and there's a crafted PvP set (Savage Saronite?) that's probably around the same as your epics. The blacksmithing helm (Spiked Titansteel) and bracers (Vengeance Bindings) are also good starter pieces.

I'm usually prot, but I pull ret duty when we're short a DPS until I need to tank again.

Also, a good 2H weapon is important. Start off with the crafted Titansteel Destroyer if you can -- it's probably the best weapon you'll find before Naxx-25.

Honors Code said...


You do kind of have to question how smart it is for Deathwing to be hiding a new dragonflight under the Wrymrest Temple.

I wonder if Black Dragonflight emissary upstairs knows about it?

Orgauth said...

We did Sartharion-10 last night, as well. Pew-pew fire things in the trash pulls? Meh... I just healed through them. Bacon is tasty, and good for healing, too.

Though, I get to go back to tanking/ret this week. Yay for getting more healers in the guild!

Nuff said...

Your dps is definitely a gear issue. There's really not a single piece of level 70 gear you should be using at 80...there are crafted or heroic drops that are better in every slot.

Anonymous said...

probably the biggest thing over looked by people is the librams from doing the venture co. dailies in grizzly hills. The ret libram is better then the one from naxx, way better then the emblem libram for now, and slightl better hen thegreen quest one. basically it ups your crit by a lot after a DS, and you could easily get it about 20 minutes. If you do get it your rotation should be something like judge > DS > CS > cons

Anonymous said...

I haven't had the chance to do much Ret since I finished leveling (logging in = TANK HEROIX PLZ THX), but from what I've been reading using the AoW proc for a heal resets your swing timer. That may have contributed to your lower-than-expected dps.

Siha said...

Hey Honor, thanks for posting that backstory I've had similar comments from people in my guild.

Where did you find the details on the backstory?

wtfspaghetti said...

"I think Blizzard did a poor job in introducing you to Sartharion and the WHY behind you need to kill this Dragon. I realize some people need little more motivation than "He's got da phat epicz fo'shizzle", but I'd like a little more (and a little lore as well)."

I lol'd in real life at the motivation part lol.

You are completely right about the back story and how blizzard set this dragon up.

Blizzard stepped their game up in regards to questing in Wrath, but completely failed when it comes to any sort of lore with OS.

Good blog, I shall return =D

Anonymous said...

Good post and good read. You're right, your DPS was obviously very low. You said that you weren't sure if it was your skill or gear, and I can tell you that Ret paladins can easily pull 1500dps in greens at level 80 in heroic 5 mans. In a 25 man raid, with all raid buffs, 80 Pallies in all greens are over 2k dps easy.

Visit Elitist Jerks, check out what they say, make sure your spell rotation is optimal. Since you are used to tanking, your dps gear probably is weak, but since you did this with all the drakes already killed and stated that you barely had to move, you should have done a lot more than 1300 dps.

Gratz on the kill and good luck on your future encounters!