Patch 4.2: Ragnaros 10-man Preview and Strategy
We got a chance to check out Ragnaros yesterday on 10-man normal mode. Seeing a final boss for an instance on the PTR is a rare treat; Blizzard usually doesn't give away the end of the instance so easily and it was surprisingly polished except for a minor glitch with visuals on the platform.
As you might remember from
the dungeon journal entry
, Ragnaros is a three phase fight in normal mode. There's an additional fourth phase in heroic. We were able to get him down into phase three and close to a kill. He seemed a little undertuned, even if it was 10-man normal mode and it is PTR. It was just too easy to get down quickly. This was largely because few abilities were punishing--it was only in phase three and during intermissions which served as phase transition that you could wipe from a single mistake.
We made a quick video to show you the footage of our progress (special thanks to my guild
Out of Line
for being awesome and helping). This video is a rough guide and hopefully will give you a better overview of the fight's general progression. Of course, if you prefer text, there's also a write-up after the break.
In phase one, Ragnaros has two primary abilities. The first one is
. He targets the ground with his hammer and lava begins to boil on the ground; a few seconds later, he slams the hammer down. This impact causes
to radiate out from the blast. They're easy to avoid, but when we did get hit, they were pretty minimal damage. They put a debuff that can be dispelled that causes periodic damage. It's likely in heroic it would hit for too much or be unremovable as a way to make the mechanic more punishing.
The second ability he uses are
s. He summons one on a random player in the raid. They function a lot like the
mechanic from heroic Lich King, except they don't remove you from the platform. This makes them relatively harmless. Unlike the heroic Lich King ones, they also don't despawn during phase transitions. We ended up clearing them with our priests--they would purposely set them off, take the initial damage, then use
to avoid taking fall damage right before they came back down.
Other than these two abilities, it was fairly simple.
is casted every once in a while and it's a lot like
encounter. Casters just shouldn't stand in melee to avoid it. Ragnaros also casts
on a random player so players should be careful to not be in front of
so they aren't punted back into one. One thing that isn't covered in the video are the tanks. We used two because there was a debuff and we found it easier if the tanks taunted off each other to reset it; we found out later you could one tank it if you wanted to, but this probably isn't working as intended.
Phase two starts at 70%. Ragnaros spawns his Sons of Flame after throwing down Sulfuras. They speed towards the hammer and if they get close to it, they explode. They can't be slowed, but they can be stunned. We had ranged burst them down and melee get ones that were coming closer. They have a buff called
which increases their speed if their HP is above 50%, so our melee just switched to ones that were high then switched off after and allowed ranged to finish them off.
After you clean up the Sons, Ragnaros comes back up and throws down a
at every member of the raid. When they come down, we switched sides to the other end of the platform. After ten seconds, they spawn adds that can't be tanked. Luckily they don't hit for very much, either. We just gathered up and AoE'd them down then switched back to Ragnaros.
Other than that, it was a fairly simple phase. He also casts
on the platform to make certain areas obscured, this doesn't become much of an issue until phase three, but should still be watched out for.
The final phase starts out at 40% with another intermission similar to the last except for the addition of two
. These two mobs can be tanked and are fairly harmless except for the fact that they heal Sons of Flame who stand in their wake. We just made sure they were tanked off to the side to avoid this.
Phase three's whole mechanic relies on
s. Ragnaros will summon on down from the sky and it will fixate on a random raid member. You can alter its path slightly by DPSing it--every time it's hit, it rolls away. However, if you're in the meteor's landing path or within a couple yards of it (regardless of whether it's following you or not), it will kill you. Thus only ranged DPS can alter its path. These meteors can't be killed and more of them continue to spawn, effectively making this last phase an intense burn one. The raid must run back and forth to avoid the meteors while finishing the Lava Scions that were left up from the intermission and also damaging Ragnaros.
is still being cast on one third of the platform, making the meteor kiting even trickier.
After this phase, Ragnaros dies--since we only got about two hours of testing in and it was our first time killing him, we didn't kill him. We got pretty close, though, so it was a fairly easy fight to learn and adjust to. The mechanics were a mixture of old and new with some cool ideas thrown in. Phase three was by far the most hectic and satisfying of the phases. It'd be cooler if more phases were like that as kiting the meteors took more execution and felt much more complex than the previous phases' special abilities.
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