About three weeks ago I was offered a tanking position on a ten man team on my new realm Frostmourne. After two solid nights over two weeks on Garrosh we finally downed him. It was an intense, albeit sloppy first kill. I would like to share what I found the fight really interesting and challenging about the fight from a tank perspective.
Phase 1 is all about add management and the phase I found the most challenging to co-ordinate. There are 6 adds with 3 coming from each side of the room. During our first sessions of attempts I had trouble rounding up all of the adds, not just because of the large distance between the spawn points, but the adds also apply a hamstring debuff. Fortunately there is a rogue and hunter in my raid. However, Stampeding Roar will remove the debuff and Wild Charge can also help. Skull Bash can also be used as a mini gap closer.
Incoming damage from the adds can be quite high due to the buff Garrosh gives them. I found that Barkskin plus Savage Defense (SD) was enough, but be prepared to use a Frenzied Regen (FR). The adds are taken care off by the Kor’kron Iron Star but they need to be positioned to do so. Typhoon is essential for positing the adds, knocking them into the Kor’kron Iron Star. I found it best to stand on an angle so I could see the Kor’kron Iron Star coming and remember to use it a bit early. The daze effect should be enough to keep them in place.
Stampeding Roar will also be up for all of these phases. I was using it as soon as I loaded into the area. On your way to Garrosh be sure to pick up a damage reduction buff to help reduce Annihilate damage. I found the Annihilate damage to be minimal, around 10-15% of my hp each time. I was generating more than enough rage to use a FR after each one to keep myself topped off.
This phase is quite simple, just a tank swap at 3 stacks of Gripping Dispair. I found that when not tanking I could sometimes help out with mind control interrupts if the timing was right in between tank swaps. When not tanking I could also move away during Whirling Corruption to reduce damage and sometimes get into a raid cool down like Power Word: Barrier.
This is where it all went sloppy. There still is the tank swap debuff from the previous phase. Our team decided to leave the adds up and try to zerg Garrosh. I ended up being the tank collecting adds and kiting them. With a combination of Typhoon + Ursol’s Vortex + Stampeding Roar, I was able to kite add but it was incredibly clunky. Damage was very high so maintaining SD was crucial. In the end our other tank died from the debuff at around 4 million hp left, I then grabbed Garrosh, blew all of the CD’s and we downed him.
- Tier 1 – I think either Wild Charge or Feline Swiftness is usable, just depends on your playstyle. I tried both, but found I preferred the passive movement speed increase from Feline Swiftness.
- Tier 2 – My default is Ysera’s Gift, but I think Renewal might be useful depending on your damage intake.
- Tier 3 – Unless your raid has another knock back or can position the adds for the Kor’kron Iron Star, Typhoon is the way to go.
- Tier 4 – Since Soul of the Forest was buffed in the patch I have been running with it and haven’t looked back. I prefer less spells to manage given the amount stuff I have to keep track of and look out for as a tank. But it wouldn’t be detrimental if you took Incarnation.
- Tier 5 – My default is Mighty Bash and good for the mind controlled people, however Ursol’s Vortex is good in phase 3 for kiting adds. I think it depends on your raid set up.
- Tier 6 – I run Nature’s Vigil as default for the extra damage and was using it for most of our attempts. I did change to Heart of the Wild because I wanted to see if I could break 1 million hp. But I only reached 990 k. Soon…..
- Glyph of Stampeding Roar – This glyph is a must. It sees a lot of usage in this raid and this fight. I’m disappointed that this glyph isn’t a part of the spell by default, but that is another topic.
- Glyph of Survival Instincts – With a 2 min CD you can use this spell fairly often. I found it most useful when tanking Garrosh during Whirling Corruption.
- Glyph of Maul – With the way gear is scaling, I’m finding that I’m generating more rage than I can use. Either SD is on cool down, or I’m at full health. So I have been making use of Maul and the Tooth and Claw proc. If I’m going to use Maul, why not squeeze out some cleave dps.
I first started using Bone Shield from a Death Knight for the extra defensive cool down. I then tried a Shaman for Lightning Shield and a Paladin for Consecrate to help me gather the adds in phase 1. I felt a little squishy in the later phases and switched back to Bone Shield for our kill. With Bone Shield + Barkskin + my engineering glove tinker I will always have at least 1, but usually 2 defensive CDs when tank swapping. I felt this was the best way to reduce my damage intake.
This fight is quite long with several challenges for tanks. I like that knock backs can be used as an integral part of the encounter and not just some PVP ability. In terms of an end of expansion boss I feel a little let down. It didn’t feel epic and I can’t really explain why. I think the location and the colour scheme may have something to do with it. In any case from a mechanics point of view, it is a great encounter and I really enjoyed tanking it. The heroic only phase is something that I really want to see now I have done it on normal.
What are you thoughts on the Garrosh encounter? Did you enjoy it? Is Garrosh a good end of expansion boss? Let me know what you think. You can leave a comment on the post, send me an email at email@example.com, follow me on twitter @Elamari_ or like and comment on the File Under Feral Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/FileUnderFeral.