Sunday, December 27, 2009

A Resto Druid's Guide: Deathbringer Saurfang

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HAHAHA! A new guide!! I'm somewhat embarrased that my Ulduar guide is still on the sidebar (er... and it's not even finished. Damn you Vezax!)

There are a bajillion guides out there, but I'm feeling sassy and classy, so here's another one! Also note that I thought Saurfang was a dragon until this little horde orc came running out.

Presenting: SAURFANG, the bringer of DEATH.


I love this fight so so much. It's the first fight in a long time where my heart actually starts racing and adrenaline gets rolling at the end. There's so much healing you have to pour out on the tanks and the Marked ones, it's just.... holy crap nuts.

The set up: You want tanks to swap back and forth, because of Rune of Blood. If this debuff is on the tank, it not only means that he's taking tons of damage, but he's ALSO healing Saurfang. Bad! Hence, swapping tanks.

Positioning: You want people to spread the hell out. Saurfang will throw out a Blood Nova on a random target. This chains to people around the target (12 yards). Use the /range function to make sure you're preferably in range of no one, or if possible, in range of only one other person (it's a small platform for 25s).

The platform is a horseshoe shape, so I would recommend having healers spread out on the outside edge, with ranged slightly further in (still in a horseshoe shape), with melee and tanks on the inside.

VERY IMPORTANT: If the fight lasts longer than it should, or if Saurfang gains Blood Power too quickly, Marks will start to get out on different players, and if there are more than, say, 3, it can be hard to keep track.

Therefore, I highly highly recommend adding these two debuffs onto your Grid, or Healbot, or Power Auras, or whatever you use:

Mark of the Fallen Champion
Boiling Blood

(and keep in mind that at least on Grid, capitalization is necessary).

The mechanics of these debuffs:

1. Boiling Blood: This is just a random debuff that does tick damage. It's not too terrifying. Just put a couple hots on the target and all will be fine. Typically a few people will get it at once, every 30 seconds or so.

2. Mark of the Fallen Champion: Saurfang will only cast this debuff on someone IF he gains a full bar of Blood Power. Once he casts it, the one person will have the debuff until the fight is over. Note that is someone dies with this debuff, and you brez them, they'll STILL have the debuff. Therefore, you don't want to rez them! If you rez them, they'll rez at low health (unless you have the glyph), and immediately die, hence, healing Saurfang by 5%. Bad news bears.

Let me reiterate: keeping people who have the Mark alive is VERY important, because every time someone who has the Mark dies, Saurfang gains 5% of his health.

But now you're asking, "But Averna, you say he only casts the Mark on someone if he has 100% Blood Power! Let's just keep him from gaining Blood Power!"

Indeed, good friends, indeed. Let's look at the various ways Saurfang gains Blood Power:

1. Each tick of Boiling Blood will cause him to gain BP. This can't be dispelled, but priests' PW: Shield can keep him from gaining BP.

2. Remember Blood Nova? The reasons we're staying 12 yards apart? That's because for each person to whom the Blood Nova debuff splashes, he gains BP.

3. Blood beasts!!* Every 45 seconds or so, Saurfang will summon a few blood beasts. Every time these beasts hit someone, Fangboy gains blood power. Therefore, they must be kited! Hunters' Frost Traps (or is it freezing? I forget. The one with the big patch of white), shammies Earthbind Totem, and roots and such will really help to slow these down. We've had hunters and shammies both kite them on different raids, and both times it worked great.
*check out in the comments to see exactly how our guild deals with the blood beasts - our raid leader posted a more in-depth strat!

4. Each melee attack that Saurfang does will increase his BP. Honestly, every time I type BP I think it's his blood pressure that's skyrocketing, not his blood power. Anyway, each melee attack will increase his blood power, and unless your tank has 100% avoidance against raid bosses, you can't prevent it. And get this - for each person that has the Mark on them, he gains n +1 blood power. So the more people have the Mark, the more BP he gains. Soon enough, his heart is gonna explode the raid will wipe, due to him gaining blood power so quickly. Saurfang also gets really pissed at 30% and increases his melee attack speed by 30%. Which means more melee hits, which means more BP gained, which means more Marks cast, and it also means more damage will go out on those who are already marked (the damage they take is correlated to his melee hits).

SO. As a healer, what do you do?

First of all, keep in mind that the first half of this fight is easy peasy. You heal the appropriate tank, heal people who get Blood Boil (the tick damage) or Blood Nova (straight damage), and stay away from any Blood Beasts that come your way.

Once the marks start being put on people, it gets interesting.

You'll basically need a dedicated healer for each person who get the mark. The last time I did this with my guild, we didn't parse that out as definitively, and instead just had three healers on tanks and three healers on the marked ones. Once 4+ people were marked, it became ridiculous - everyone was taking SO much damage towards the end, and we just didn't have enough heals to go around. We got him to 2% and then we just couldn't hold out anymore - one of the marked ones (sorry, Theine) died. He healed, shit hit the fan, we wiped. Boo.

So what I think might be a good idea is to assign a dedicated to healer to each marked one. Healer 1 takes the first marked one, healer 2 takes the second one who's marked, etc. Still throw a hot or two on the tank, but focus on your marked target (unless you're assigned to tank healing exclusively). Alternatively, your raid may have the first and/or second marked one(s) die, which does heal Saurfang, but also cuts down on the number of marked ones (so long as your dps can burn through the extra 5/10%), making the fight considerably less heal intensive.

Keep in mind that YOUR job becomes considerably easier if the rest of the raid does THEIR job: i.e, switching tanks when needed, kiting the Blood Beasts perfectly, staying 12 yards range from each other, etc. If you all prevent him from gaining blood power, he'll cast less marks, which will make your attempt less fail!

[Sidenote: if any hordies out there wanna know what the alliance version is like, here it is (taken from Wowwiki, because I don't take the time to transcribe dialogue from WoW):

Deathbringer Saurfang yells: For every Horde soldier that you killed, for every Alliance dog that fell, the Lich King's armies grew. Even now the Valkyr work to raise your fallen... As Scourge. Things are about to get much worse. Come, taste the power that the Lich King has bestowed upon me!

Muradin Bronzebeard yells: A lone orc, against the might of the Alliance? Charge!

Deathbringer Saurfang yells: Hahahaha! Dwarves.

LOLFACE, DWARVES.]

Phat lewtz 4 droodz:

10 man:
[Mag'hari Chieftain's Staff]

[Leggings of Unrelenting Blood]
[Soulcleave Pendant]

25 man:
[Greatcloak of the Turned Champion]

Note that this is loot from the regular mode versions, not the heroic mode.

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10 remarks:

Alaron said...

Letting the first and second Marked targets die (assuming it's not a tank) makes this fight MUCH simpler in terms of healing requirements, if you have good DPS who can handle the extra 5-10%.

Möwe said...

So, how do you heal the marked targets best?
I assume rolling Reju + Regrowth, but what about timing Lifeblooms?

coil said...

@Alaron: On our first successful kill, we did exactly that: our first two Marks were allowed to die, so we went into the Frenzy with only one marked player.

Also, just because I'm the RL and want to make sure info about our strats is accurate (<3 Av!), here's what we did with Blood Beasts:

1) Call out "5sec till Blood Beasts" so melee have time to stop any AOE.

2) A mage with Imp. Blizzard threw it down to get initial aggro on the Blood Beasts (they'd also target healers). The end result of these two things is that Blood Beasts would head *out* of melee and towards ranged players.

3) At that point, melee were welcome to toss any stuns/snares they wished.

4) Ranged DPS burned down the blood beasts, allowing them to choose their targets and kiting as necessary to avoid taking melee damage. Frost Traps and Earthbind were super helpful, but it's worth noting that you should *not* use the "chance to root" trap/totem talents - a rooted mob will strike out at the nearest player in melee range instead of being kited, and that's bad.

I think we killed him with 5 marks total (including the two dead ones)... the following week in our 10 man, the same strat resulted in a 0-mark kill.

Perso said...

In 10's its ofc much simpler fight but still the basics are the same. As a resto drood myself, I'm assigned to raid healing. On first phase I just keep hots on tanks and position myself near center of the platform. This way I can root the blood beasts which makes dps' job much easier.

There's not that much going on damagewise anyways in the first phase as said above. Mouseover macro (/cast [target=mouseover] Entangling Root's) helps keeping basically both Beasts rooted until dead.

When Marks appear I just let dps handle their beasts on their own and roll full set of hots on the marked one. Rj,Rg,3xLb rolling is enough to keep them up indefinitely. You can keep those on 3 targets (if dps is slacking) and still manage to throw a hot on Blood Nova'd.. Very mana consuming yes, but nicely timed innervate will help as usual.

Just my 2 cents :)

Euqsarrat-Zul'jin said...

It is important to remember that everytime he gets high on blood power the damage on the marked people increases substantially.

The sacrifice strategy is great on 10 man but very dps dependant. Even without sacrificing my feeling is that this fight is definetely a gear check to enter wing 2.

Any 10 man raid with less than 25-26k overall dps will likely not kill him before enrage.

My 10 man killed him at 7:52 with that kind of dps and he enrages at 8 minutes...

Dan said...

Pretty much like Coil said, we do tend to let the first two marks die on 25-man.

On 10-man, the fight is pretty under-tuned (and doesn't require letting any marks die). Both of the times I've done it recently, his blood gain has been so slow in 10-man that he was putting up his first Mark about 5 seconds before he died. I imagine by the next time we do it, he won't even get that far.

Azryu said...

No frost pvp spec'd mage love? We kite blood beasts too! Only kidding.

But yes, I got into a united strength 10man pug and got to see this fight, and it was actually fairing amusing to kite these guys around. The only thing that was a cause for alarm was when my initial frostbolts proc'd frostbite, which froze them in place, right next to the melee.

Bad news bears indeed.

Beck said...

On 10 man, my guild has taken to two healing this fight (with a priest and a tree)... the idea being the extra ranged dps will burn down the boss and beasts faster than BP can be generated.

With so little healing going on for the first 70% or so hp, we each heal a tank and share raid until the first mark comes out. After the first mark, I (the tree) switch to healing the marked toon plus raid while the priest heals the two tanks.

The second, and final, mark comes out when Saurfang is roughly at 7% health, at which point I prioritize which marked toon to save and let the other toon dps their little heart out until ticking HoTs just can't keep he/she alive.

The result is Saurfang at 10%, a full compliment of dps (minus the 'extra man') only one toon with the mark to keep an eye on, and an empty BP bar for the bad guy.

Darsonsind said...

@Coil: our guild did the almost same as you stated. for the beast popped, our hunters will set slow trap around and other range dps will burn them all.
Simple fight on 25 man.

10 man is even a joke that we do not have anyone dying on mark.
our set up were prot war, pro pally, holy priest, tree(me), a kitty, ele sham, a hunters, a Spriest and 2 mages. with plent of room to spreading out, our range burned all beast while sham and hunter CC beast on each side.

Anonymous said...

Actually theres very little dmg on this fight... So much so we normal 1 heal on 10 man and 2 or 3 heal on 25. Even after the changes its still very easy to control the dmg.