Sunday, June 7, 2009

A Resto Druid's Guide: Hodir


Hodir puts out a LOT of damage, and also requires quite a bit of situational awareness. It also requires a lot of thinking ahead on our part, because we need to make sure raiders are hotted up at the right times. Reacting *after* damage starts to pour in usually will result in wipes. >.< However! The very first thing you want to do is make sure Projected Textures is on.

1. Hit Esc.
2. Go to Video.
3. Go to Effects.
4. Make sure projected textures is ON (note that this image has it NOT checked off. That is bad).

If you don't do this, you won't be able to see the marks on the ground which indicate where icicles will fall. This option is NOT checked off by default, so you do have to go on in and turn it on.

Split up your healers evenly throughout the room. There will be one tank on Hodir, and make sure you prehot him before the pull goes live. Get into position, and keep your heals on the tank. At this point, you will have to get ready for a few different abilities:

1. Biting Cold. This is a similar mechanic to Keristrasza, the last boss in the Nexus. She's the blue dragon who yells in that annoying voice, "Preserve? Why? There's no TRUTH in it!" You can just *tell* she's a total diva. Ok, I'm getting off topic. The point is, she does that debuff where if you don't move, it'll stack up and eventually you'll be frozen. If you got up to 3 or 4 stacks, you could just move a bit and BAM the stack would fall off. Hodir is similar, but also different. If you have 3 or 4 stacks with Hodir, you have to move around for 3 or 4 seconds to get all the stacks off. Movement will only take away one stack per second. So make sure you keep moving! Hell, I *usually* run around like a chicken with my head cut off on any given fight anyway, so it's not like I really have to do anything differently. >.>

2. Icicles: If you have projected textures turned on, you'll notice small rune-type circles glowing on the ground. Don't stand in them! Move! These runey things mean that icicles are about to drop on your head, and that is baaaad. They do a lot of damage, and knock you back. Stop whatever you're casting, and move on out. These are usually what make me swear the most on this fight. I'll be starting to cast a Regrowth, and BAM, icicle runey thing underneath me. God, the words that come out of my mouth. It's a good thing I actually have to push a button for people to hear me on vent.

3. Bigger, more complicated icicles: When you see a *bigger* rune on the ground - it's probably about 3x bigger, maybe more - you want to run towards it. Stand around the edge of it, outside it - NOT on it. Wait for the icicles to drop. If you're in the rune when the icicles drop, they do a lot of damage, and knock you back even more than the other smaller icicle runes. Once these icicles drop, a circular snow drift will form.

Remember when you were a kid in elementary school, and the hallway had those multicolored tiles? And you played the Lava game with your buddies, where you can only step on the white tiles, because the brown ones were lava? And then your teacher was like, Stop goofing around! but you and your friends still tried to play the game really nonchalantly, like she wouldn't notice?

Ok. So the snowdrift is the white tile. Everything else is the brown tile. Except it's not lava this time, it's the ice cold ground, which will freeze you into an ice block if you're on it. At which point the DPS will have to switch over to YOU, rather than the boss, to break you out. This makes the DPS angry. It wastes their resources, and most likely you'll die before they can get you out *anyway*, because you'll have been staying still and Biting Cold will be stacking up, and their efforts will be in vain. Plus: it's totally preventable. You shouldn't EVER get frozen! Just hop up onto that snowdrift and you'll be a-ok. As soon as the floor returns to normal again (it will get all white and frozen when it's NOT safe, which will fade when it IS safe), you can run off it and resume your chicken-with-no-head running around again.

4. Frozen Blows: This is where healers really have to be on their toes. In an ideal world, you want to have as many people as possible rejuved before this goes off. He'll cast frozen blows about once a minute. This will deal a total of 40,000 damage to each raid member over 20 seconds. It also adds 40,000 frost damage per attack on the tank. Some of this will be resisted (hopefully you'll all have a frost resist aura), thank goodness, but it is still a LOT of damage.
If you're tank healing: Put all four hots on the tank, spam Nourish, get ready to Swiftmend, and pray to the healing gods. Watch your LB when it's about to bloom - if the tank isn't low on health, you'll want to refresh it. If the tank IS low, let it bloom and restack right away.
If you're raid healing: Make sure you've prehotted everyone you possibly can (you want to start prehotting a good 10+ seconds before Frozen blows) and then hit WG immediately as Frozen Blows start. Use Barkskin here, too, so you don't have to worry as much about yourself. Start Nourishing anyone who doesn't have a Rejuv on them (but make sure you're moving in between casts), and hit WG one more time when it's up.

Now, while ALL of this is going on, you also should keep an eye out for the NPCs who are running around trying to help you. "There are NPCS?!" Yuppers. Remember those ice blocks at the start of the fight? There were NPCs frozen in there. Your fellow DPSers will break them out at the beginning of the encounter. These NPCs give you some awesome buffs, too, if you keep your eyes out for them.

Toasty Fire: The mages, Sissy and Missy Flamecuffs (Alliance) or Amira and Veesha Blazeweaver (Horde), will put down a Toasty Fire, which does two things. One, it prevents Biting Cold, which means you can stand still and cast away. Two, it gives ranged players a Singed buff which increases magic damage done to Hodir. Only a handful of players can benefit from a Toasty Fire. If you're near one, and no one else is using it, then sure, stick around there with the buff. Otherwise, let other raiders have it - we're masters at healing on the run, and shouldn't necessarily need this buff.

Storm Cloud: The shaman, Elementalists Avuun and Mahfuun (Alliance) or Spiritwalkers Yona and Tara (Horde), will put a Storm Cloud on a friendly player. If you have the storm cloud buff, do your best to run into the melee! You want to give the buff to as many people as possible, and seeing as how melee will almost always be bunched up around the boss, and can all definitely benefit from it, it's your best bet to run over there. Besides, +135% crit?! Hot DAYUM. The melee will love you. However, if you see a group of ranged DPSers or paladin healers bunched up somewhere, there's a good bet too. Basically just try to get near a group of raiders as best you can. Note: Najtrok made mention in the comments section that this only buffs your crit DAMAGE. So paladin healers actually don't benefit from it, which is a shame. This also means that if any healers have the Storm Cloud, it's even more imperative to get near some DPSers - because the buff isn't doing *anyone* any good if just you has it.

Starlight: Yay, druid NPCs! Ellie Brightfeather and Ellie Nightfeather (Alliance) or Tor Greycload and Kar Greycloud (Horde), all boomkins, will put down starlight, which intuitively looks like a beam of light coming down from the sky. Stand in it to get a 100% haste buff. That's right - 100%. Keep in mind two things, though - remember that you still have to move! If you're in starlight, jump up and down. Also, keep an eye on your mana. With that much haste, it's easy to spam a 1 sec. Regrowth and then realize that you're completely oom.

Do I need frost resist gear for this?

No, I don't think so. If everyone in your 25 man guild is coming in with Naxx-10 gear, then maybe you'd want some just to survive a bit longer and see the fight more, for practice purposes. But if you're nerfing your other stats for the sake of frost resist, it'll be really hard to beat the 8 minute enrage timer.


The token for [Conqueror's Nightsong Robe], and that's about it.


7 remarks:

Najtrok said...

Just one note: The buff is wasted on paladin healers, since it only helps with dmg. At least thats what the tooltip says and what I experienced

Averna said...

Ah, good catch! Updated the post.

Delad├Čel said...

ive done this fight a few times and i have to say also as a resto druid that useing the belt and boots for the frost resist is not much of a downgrade if socketed correctly

My whole guild use's 2 peices for each person other than tanks and 3 on the tanks and have almost beated then hard mode timer we may change it up alittle bit but the key to this fight is buffs if everyone is in the buffs at the right time then the enrage timer is not an issue

marcelpolie said...

I notice you said we should try to pre-hot everyone preferably 10 secs before Frozen Blows land. I'm using DBM, but I do not get a warning that Frozen Blows is about to be cast. In fact, from my experience it's totally random. I was under the impression that it's usually cast after a Flash Freeze, so I was surprised that on our second try he gained Frozen Blows even before the first Flash Freeze. So I'm wondering, is there a way/mod to show you when Frozen Blows is about to be cast? Or should I just Rejuv erveryone during the entire encounter?

* I'm talking about the 10 men version btw.

Averna said...

@Marcel: Good point. You're right, DBM does not seem to match up with Frozen Blows. I too, have been taken off guard when he casts it before Flash Freeze - I usually unleash a torrent of swear words and frantically mash buttons. =P I thought at the time that it was because I had an outdated version of DBM or something, but I've noticed that it is pretty random - so yes, I've taken to pretty much rejuving everyone at all times. It's a huge mana drain, but it IS possible.

Last night I did a 10 man Hodir, and I'd wait til about 20 seconds into the fight, and then I'd start to rejuv everyone. Keep these refreshed if you can until frozen blows, during which you'll heal the MT (or if you're specifically on raid healing, you'll throw around some LBs and WGs) and then you can let them drop off for a little bit. About 10 seconds AFTER frozen blows are done, I start to re-rejuv everyone again.

April said...

Great post, thanks!

Just a tiny little comment: I think the dragon in Nexus is red. It's the one in VH/EoE/Occ that are blue. :)

Droodjerky said...

What about Staff of endless winter and Icecore Staff as Resto-Druid items off of Hodir? Or do you only mention non-hard mode items?