Saturday, July 5, 2008

[ Healing Strategy ] :: Beneath the Branches of Zul'Aman

Had some time, so a friend decided to kidnap me to Zul'Aman.
Some back-history on the place:
It had once been a vast forest land. Troll land. The Amani trolls ruled over the a large portion of Lordaeron, and their empire was called Zul'Aman. What currently is called by name used to be their version of a capital. Centuries ago, the high elves of Quel'Thalas and the humans of (guess where?) Lordaeron banded together to defeat the empire. They were partially successful; the two groups drove the forest trolls into a small corner of northeastern Lordaeron. They have always controlled one part of the land, however: the sprawling forest. That forest has taken on the name of the empire, for it is the remnant of what was once a vast civilization.

Ever since the downfall of Quel'Thalas and Lordaeron, the troll seek to regain their former glory. The decimation of the trolls bred hate for their attackers: they will stop at nothing to protect the remains their land from those who are neither their kind, or those that wander the forest naturally. They are not the only thing travelers should fear, however: the Scourge can also be found in the woods, hunting the elven refugees.

Zul'Aman is a heavily wooded area. Warlord Jin'zakk, his witch doctors and shamans are in charge of the land, and their magic permeate the climate. Ziggurats dot the land... the trolls are seeking what was once theirs.

Beware, travelers... Beware.

Boss Overview (Roughly. What I deemed important, at any rate, which could mean absolutely nothing!):
  • -Nalorakk (ze' bear boss -- right): HoTs are delicious! Keep them up. All the time. (Why in Elune's name you wouldn't keep HoTs up as a tree is beside me, but do it!) His silence is nasty, and without your lovely HoTs during those two seconds may just be the difference between phat lewts for the raid, or another repair bill. Two tanks on this one, folks. Bear form and troll form. One tank for each form. Be sure to see exactly who is tanking which form (and, if you forget, target the boss himself and see who he is looking at) so you know who to start stacking heals on!
  • -Akil'zon (eagle boss): Everyone stand UNDER whoever has become the cynosure for the Electric Storm. He's an umbrella that will save you from the deadly lightning -- how that works, I'm not quite sure. Don't umbrellas attract lightning?
  • -Halazzi (lynx -- below): If you're a tank, and on the lynx spirit, actually catch it. Stray lynx running around usually mean they crave healers for dinner. And you actually need your healers. I know the floor may look awfully tasty, but... it's not time for napping. Oh, and totems are bad. Get rid of them.
  • -Jen'alai (dragonhawk): If you've got a lovely tin can with shiny golden spells tanking your adds (meaning, a paladin), keep them up. I know the shiny orbs that appear every so often are shiny and makes you want to touch them and stand in their pretty light, but don't. [Fire bombs.] They'll kill you, and you'll be watching the fight from the floor, instead of making a dent in the damage meters (but don't pay too much attention to those, or you'll have aggro issues!). Oh, and fiery walls? They hurt. Summary: Fire hurts. Don't touch it. Or stand in it. Or do anything near it.
  • -Hex Lord Malacrass [right]: It's another group of five mobs. Aren't you starting to hate these? Gruul's, Moroes, Magister's Terrance, and Kael too, and now here? Gross. But, hey. You can CC these! There's one for every CC: sleep, banish, sheep (or sap, but... well... don't sap. Doesn't turn out well), and shackle. If you're CCing, recast your CC before and after each Spirit Bolt. One add per Spirit Bolt interval. Shadow resistance is nice. Soul Drain! He'll take on the aspect of someone in the raid, and gain some of their abilities. For the proper reactions to said abilities, check a tactics site. [Hood of the Third Eye], dropped for me there. Not as good as the druid version ([Helm of Natural Regeneration]), but hey. Who am I to whine?)
  • -Zul'jin [below]: So... think the other bosses were hard? Wait until you get to this one. Zul'jin is not a piece of cake (okay, maybe it is for people like Matt, but... hey. We're not Matt. Oh, hey. That reminds me. Your armory link for Mallet is broken, you know). There's five phase to it -- every phase appears at ever twenty-percent (20%). Between every phase, there's an aggro drop, so watch your aggro in those first few moments! Anyway! First phase is the Troll phase. He whirlwinds (which melee should run like hell out of), and he Grievous Throws. Whoever that debuff is on really needs to be healed to full. No matter how hard it is to do as a tree. One will get raid aggro otherwise. -sigh-
  • Phase two -- bear. Remember Midnight and Attumen? Almost like that. Stand behind him (okay, under his bum, but hey...), and priests should be mass dispelling the Creeping Paralysis (if not everyone, at least the tank, healers, and themselves. If they don't, one becomes Paralysis -- being stunned for four seconds could, again, be fatal).
  • Phase three, eagle, with the tornadoes, brought around my death. All three times. No HoTs during this this phase -- Healing Touch only (Regrowth is all right too, I suppose). Therefore, you should be out of tree. And it ought to make dodging the tornadoes easier. Try not to be paralyzed during the beginning of this phase (like me. Tornado came and smacked me around right after, before I had time to do anything). Good time to wand up though -- he just stands around and hopes that you run into the Feather Vortex (tornadoes) and get chucked back... behind the fiery walls where you are useless.
  • Phase four, a lynx. Behind him, again. He will cast Claw Rage every so often, meaning that he'll hit one person really rather hard consecutively, and said person needs to be healed. A lot. Or, if one has a paladin, and the subject to this abuse is a healer, BoP them. You really want them to be alive. He goes Hunting every so often -- it's his form of an AoE. Nine times he will lash at at different people, dealing damage and leaving a rather nasty DoT behind. Don't need to say to heal them, do I? And, last but not least, his dragonhawk form -- "a DPS check. A test to see if you survive the other phases". Heeeey, remember me saying that fire is bad? Yeah. Columns of fire will spring up underneath you. Move out of them. They're ugly. Flame Breath -- similar to a mage's Dragon's Breath, from what I understand. Cone of fire in front of them. Melee DPS, beware. Spread out if you can. Burn him down quickly, or Flame Whirl -- a short fiery whirlwind which will add a debuff to everyone in the raid, increasing fire damage taken by fifty-percent (50%) will get you, and his other flame abilities will scorch you.
  • -Aaaaaaaaaaaaand.... well. You're done. Phat lewts all around. (Don't forget the chests of lewt that appear if you do the timed event (the first four bosses) within forty-five minutes! Twenty minutes to start, killing bear will give you fifteen, and killing the eagle will give you ten. Forty-five. Each boss is holding a hostage prisoner (would that be just too redundant? -shrug-). After the timed run (and I highly suggest you don't actually free the prisoners after every boss -- it takes too long! Thus the after), go back and officially free them. They'll be so grateful, they'll give you a chest of something purple and shiny! (And if you get all four in time, you'll get a swing at the famous [Amani War Bear] (that'd be nifty now, wouldn't it?)!).) [Lotsa parenthesis there!]

Things I learned:
  • -Competing with a shaman on healing meters as a tree that is a lot less geared than said shaman is useless. Note: brain heal is a cheat. Second note: Not knowing the raid situation and, therefore, dying a lot, doesn't help too much either.
  • -Seeing through trees just doesn't happen. Make sure you can see your character running, otherwise, the path you thought you were supposed to be going may just be filled with creeps your raid decided not to kill.
  • -Bell was right. We are indeed plotted plants -- thus, cause of a death. (Didn't actually catch onto the "follow the raid" part when they were sneaking past a mob with Soothe Animal on it. Might have been okay if I wasn't creeping along and tripping over my roots. Oops! At least I knew to commit suicide rather than to cause a wipe... -coughs-)
Maybe I should hop on more. I seem to go to exciting places when I do.

Credit to Cilan of Rising Nova [guild] and Matticus of World of Mattius for allowing me to pick apart their brains so that I could do most of this justice. Oh, and WoWWiki, as always, for the tiny details I'd never know about...

Side note: for those of you watching this post through RSS feed, I'm sorry about all of the changes. I really need that "Before Publishing" check-list from Matt... It's the one thing that is never on my mind: what happens to the RSS feed if I keep changing stuff. Oh, and Matt? Kudos to you for putting up with me picking on you. And for reading over this post and putting a bit more detail into it.

1 comment:

moonchicken said...

Hey, I just got linked here from Frost it the New Black and I think your style is really nice, adding in the stories and the good descriptions you had of ZA. I play a Moonkin, but I love Resto too (the Trees emotes are admittedly the best in the game, even the dance is comparable to the Moonkin's).

I have a Druid blog too if you wanna check it out. Great blog (yours that is =p)

http://moonchicken.wordpress.com/