Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Three Princes

So last night we gathered up the crew and headed into ICC. We grabbed a Hunter who I think normally runs with Perp's group. The two raid groups seem to be very good about sharing members between them. Most everyone in the two raid groups have multiple 80s at this point. I’m about to ding on my fourth Level 80 toon, and I level slower than virtually anyone else in our guild.
We cleared the lower spire pretty easily. Those fights are down pat by now. Our swing man, Lakini (Boomkin/RestoD), couldn't make it. He's our DPS/3rd healer when needed. He predicted that since he couldn't make it we'd finally see some drops he could use. First boss we get Leather Spell Power boots. It's like the Boss knew. It reminds me of the one night I missed Ulduar and we borrowed Grimadin (Prot Paladin) from the other group. Of course that's the night Flame Leviathan's bracers drop. It was the only time we'd see them drop.
We decided to go give a look at the new wing. Much like Naxxrammus, you can do the wings in any order, so we skipped Plague and went over to Blood. I've now figured out that Ice Crown Citadel is built around the Death Knight trees. Death Knights have a Blood tree, Frost tree and Unholy (Plague) tree. The Plagueworks is the Unholy/Plague wing. The Crimson Halls is the Blood wing and the Frostwing Halls is the Frost wing.
We had some fun with the trash. They put a nasty bleed on the tank and we would periodically get something called Blood Sap which would basically stun us. They also threw us all over the place with some sort of Mark McGwire charge. It was like a knockback on steroids. But we managed to clear the trash without wiping. Not bad considering we didn't have a clue what they did. I loved how the team looked at the mob names, and models to try to guess at their abilities.
As we approached the Blood Princes Council fight I kept thinking of the song "Two Princes" by Spin Doctors (
One, two, princes kneel before you
(that's what I said, now)
Princes, princes who adore you
(just go ahead, now)
You can thank me later when that song is stuck in your head. Does their lead singer remind anyone else of Shaggy from Scooby-Doo?
Only there were three Princes instead of two. The Princes are Taldaram, Valanar and Keleseth.
This is another 'Council' type fight like Illidari Council in Black Temple, Hex Lord Malacrass in Zul'Aman or High King Maulgar in Gruul’s Lair. I know those are all Burning Crusade fights but I can't think of a 'Council' type fight in Wrath before this one.
We only knew the abilities from MMO champion and we weren't really sure what abilities were 25 man, 10 man, or Hard Mode.
Our first attempt, Boston (Blood DK) grabbed Keleseth and I tried to tank Taldaram and Valanar. This was a bad idea. Taldaram was meleeing me for 20k and Valanar for 10k. I went squish, …like grape.
So we changed things up. Keleseth was 'tanked' by Neo (Destro Lock). Boston took Taldaram and I had Valanar. First pull I pulled Keleseth off of Neo when my Avenger's Shield hit him. One of the challenges of Council type fights is always the pull. So next pull, we had Neo pull and Boston and I taunted our respective targets. Neo was getting rocked pretty hard, as were both Boston and I.
We were trying to two heal it, but the damage, both raid and three tanks was too severe.
This is the first time in ICC that I've felt like the Tanks were the failure point. I checked TankTotals (great addon, btw) and I saw that 100% of the damage I was taking was Physical. It was all melee hits. I started looking longingly at all the +armor gear I've previously been sort of lukewarm about. The Glyph of Indomitability started looking much prettier than the Onyxia trinket I was sporting. I was going with an Avoidance/Stam combo with Onyxia and the Key. It looks like full on traditional EH gear will be the way to go for Blood Council.
Blackhaus (Disc/Holy) is our healing lead and makes the call on how many healers we need and what the assignments are. He felt like we would need 3 healers for Blood Princes. Our normal 3rd, Lakini, wasn't available so we tabled our attempts on Blood Princes. The thinking was that by today, and certainly by Thursday, Maintankadin, Tankspot, stratfu and other sites would have more information on fight and we'd be better prepared.
The lack of a 3rd healer also meant that Festergut was a no go, so we cleared over to Rotface and one shot the big ugly. It's amazing to me how this fight went from 'how in the world are we ever going to beat this' to 'meh, one shot'. Boston does such a fantastic job kiting Oozes. I have no idea how a Druid/Warrior tank does that job. DKs must have a good set of tools as do Paladins with Avenger's Shield and Judgment.
I managed to pick up the Tanking bracers off Saurfang since Boston already had them.
We're going to try to go back on Thursday if we get enough people on to try it.


The Renaissance Man said...

Three healers is pretty much mandatory in the Crimson Halls. Blood Queen is much more healing intensive than anything else in Icecrown. We had 3 healers all over 6k HPS each, with no one over 27% overhealing, and we still barely rode it out.

As for the princes, I've got a few tips that I found helpful.

The setup for tanking is One tank on Taldaram, one tank on Valanar, and one ranged DPS tanking Keleseth. We used a hunter for that. I tanked Valanar, and kept him on the dais, while my co-tank took Taldaram off to the right. The hunter spammed Kill shot for a few rotations to build some threat, and then went to grab orbs.

The first shift seems to take place at 85% health. We kept DPS slow in order to ensure the ranged tank had three orbs on him before the switch. If Keleseth got empowered with fewer than three orbs on the hunter, we wiped.

We kept the dais clear when Valanar wasn't empowered, in order to make the kiting of Taldaram's flames easier.

The other aspect that the tank can help out with is the kinetic bombs. A kinetic bomb on the dais while Valanar is not empowered can wreak havoc on the positioning when the juggler goes to hit it. However, the ball can be bounced by consecrate, avenger's shield, and HotR. So if one spawns on the dais, which will be evident by a light spot on the floor, the Valanar tank can tank Valanar in that position and keep the bomb aloft via incidental cleaves.

Beyond that, the fight is about control, not DPS. The tanks will get their teeth kicked in, and the healers need to be prepared, but ultimately, it's a coordination check, much like Rotface was, as opposed to the gear check of Blood Queen or Festergut.

Nick said...

I have a question about your UI. I loved your UI guide and especially spartanUI however, on your screenshots it shows your stance bar and bag bars as uncovered. Is this a setting you have found or just a function of taking a screenshot because I would love to be able to see the stance bar all the time without having to mouse over.

Honors Code said...

I believe the command is /sui popup all

Shayzani said...

You sir are the devil for planting that Spin Doctors song in my head.

Adgamorix said...

Like TRM said, the Blood wing really needs three healers at this point in gear level. Maybe if you're rocking all the 25 man ToGC and 25ICC gear available you could do with 2 - but we had to use 3 - even though we 2 healed everything up to that point.

We use a druid tank to kite the big ooze on Rotface, and haven't had any issues with threat. I'll pop a HoF on him if he goes through too much slime, but that's about it.