Raiding Review: The Siege of Orgrimmar Normal (Part 2)

Earlier on this week I started my review for the Siege of Orgrimmar normal modes, with my views on how bosses Immerseus through to Galakras. Continuing on the trend this week we will be looking at bosses Iron Juggernaut through to Spoils of Pandaria, and as mentioned in the previous article, Friday’s article will contain the final four boss encounters of this expansion.
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Iron Juggernaut

Why is it there?

This mechanical terror, designed nearly as much for intimidation as destruction, is the centerpiece of Garrosh’s siege weaponry. Crafted in the image of the mighty Kor’kron war scorpion, the Iron Juggernaut guards the gates of Orgrimmar, crushing any who would rise up to challenge Garrosh’s True Horde.

This is probably the first “filler” boss that has no real reason to be there, in my opinion. Created by Siegecrafter Blackfuse as General Nazgrim’s ultimate siege weapon, the Iron Juggernaut will be the final line of defense before raiders get inside Orgrimmar itself. From Blizzard’s perspective, this is the boss that the artists were allowed to go wild on, in terms of a mechanical construct. Instead of a siege tank that was expected, we received this monstrosity, that also serves as the heroic-only mount from Garrosh. Personally, I would have extended the Galakras encounter to start at the beach head, and then WE move up slowly as the encounter progresses, then we end up shooting Galakras down where Iron Juggernaut is now, and just get rid of him – but hey! More bosses are more bosses.

Fight Overview

From a “squishy” ranged DPS perspective, there really isn’t an awful lot to this fight – simply keep out of bad and single-target the boss – keep your butt to the wall for phase 2’s knockbacks, or if you find yourself unprepared be ready with a Displacer Beast to stop you flying to Eastern Kingdoms. The Crawler Mines are best left to sturdier raiders (though it is possible to soak one with Bear Form), and half the time the Borer Drill won’t even hit you, despite being underneath you.

This build is a decent enough build for Iron Juggernaut – using Displacer Beast as mentioned earlier to fix any positional errors you may have made in phase 2. Either Ysera’s Gift or Cenarion Ward is beneficial for this fight – CW can be useful on raiders soaking Mines if your healers are struggling. The single target spec of trees and HotW comes into play again, as there’s no need to double dot, and our CC options aren’t going to be used this fight. Symbiosis targes for Moonkins are: Rogue (Cloak immunises most things from phase 2, especially the knockback)>Death Knight>Warlock>Rest.

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Kor’kron Dark Shaman

Why are they there?

Haromm and Kardris trained thousands of shaman to whisper reverently to the elements to requisition their aid. The army of Garrosh, however, does not ask – they take what they desire in the name of the True Horde. Dark Shamanism forces the elements into servitude, twisting them into burned-out ash, corrupted waters, and toxic air.

Garrosh abhors all kind of demonic magic, yet Blizzard wanted to create a “dark caster” for his True Horde. So using toxic winds, molten rock, stagnant and poisonous water and smouldering fires, the Dark Shaman were created. After the Cataclysm, surviving Twilight’s Hammer members within the Horde created a new base of operations in Ragefire Chasm. When Garrosh started building beneath Orgrimmar, and the Twilight threat was dealt with, many of the remnants swore allegiance to Garrosh, and began teaching Kor’kron the ways of Dark Shamanism – forcing elementals into servitude, instead of the more traditional asking for their aid.

Fight Overview

So there’s two different tactics for this fight: One which is hectic and full of death and destruction, especially for melee; and one which is nice and calm, if not fairly boring for some. For once, I actually prefer the boring option, because the former just becomes complete and utter mayhem as you’re scrambling to try and kill them before they kill you. It’s nice for heroics, but for normals at the mid-section of the raid – where the heroic tactic doesn’t even touch the former tactic of two tanks keeping them together – it’s much simpler and quick to just use three tanks and taunt Haromm between two far away from the rest of the raid, with Kardris staying with the majority of the group.

As such, seeing as it turns the fight that would normally be multi-dotting with Inc/DoC, we’re going to see a single-target spec best used in a fashion the same as the last fight for most effectiveness. Although the first few seconds of the fight until the dogs go down would be best for Incarnation and DoC, we’re going to be spending most of the fight on just Kardris. Symbiosis priorities change slightly however, to being DK>Rogue>Warlock>Warrior>Rest.

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General Nazgrim

Why is he there?

Once a grunt in service of the former warchief, Thrall, General Nazgrim rose quickly through the ranks after overwhelming victories in Grizzly Hills and sunken city of Vashj’ir. Fiercely loyal to the Horde and bound by a rigorous code of honor and duty, Nazgrim will hold the line for his warchief until his dying breath.

I’m kind of sad to see this guy go. I can see WHY he’s there, and I can see why we end up killing him instead of seeing him join us against his Warchief. But he’s had such a history with players (at least on Hordeside) that even Warlocks might have gotten some kind of feels when they found out about his demise. For those that have no idea who he is, Nazgrim was first introduced to WoW as Sergeant Nazgrim in Wrath of the Lich King. After players did his work for him, he was promoted to Legionnaire Nazgrim during Cataclysm, and once again players saved his ass in Vashj’ir. Fast-forwarding to MoP, he got another promotion to General Nazgrim, and Horde players help him out yet again in the Pandaria campaign through Jade Forest and Kun-Lai Summit.

It is Nazgrim’s duty to the Warchief of the Horde that serves him as a raid boss for us in Siege of Orgrimmar. It is his loyalty to whoever has the mantle of Warchief that requires him to defend Orgrimmar against the Darkspear Revolution and the Alliance. As a result, he has the death any orc could ask – much like Klingons in Star Trek, orcs seek for an honourable death in battle, and that is exactly what he gets in the Siege. Lok’tar Ogar General Nazgrim, “Victory or death”.

Fight Overview

Any fight with a mechanic that makes me hold back on DPS makes me sad, but it’s certainly a good change of tempo to make sure that people are on their toes with what’s going on in the fight, instead of just standing out of bad and killing the thing that wants to eat your tanks. The different sets of adds that appear are also good, if they were actually random ones that came out (including having the chance to double up on them… Apart from Shamans – everyone hates Shamans), but they add a good layer to the fight that requires people to think what they have to do in reaction to each set.

For Moonkin perspective, Symbiosis actually changes from the standard top 3 priorities, to Paladins for their stun. With so little predictable magical damage going out, Cloak and AMS just won’t cut it as much, and the hard CC on the adds is extremely valuable. With that in mind, we’re looking at Symbi priorities of: Paladin>Warlock>Rogue>DK>Monk>Mage>Warrior>Rest.

Your talent build isn’t going to change too much from the previous fight, as the adds die too quickly to make a multi-dotting spec work effectively – plus, Force of Nature can be used on the boss during Defensive Stance, without fear of adding any additional rage. Mighty Bash makes an appearance, especially if you don’t have a Paladin for Symbiosis, to stun every other wave of adds, as UV doesn’t bring the utility that MB can provide. Typhoon can help uncover Assassins, as does Mushrooms, and Ysera’s Gift is much better for the gradual damage of Bonecracker, in comparison to any high damage you should be standing out of anyway elsewhere (or predictable damage that healers are prepared for.

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Malkorok

Why is he there?

Malkorok has been Garrosh’s most loyal and trusted lieutenant throughout the Pandaria campaign. When the Warchief needed a volunteer to infuse with the power of Y’Shaarj, it was only natural that Malkorok would offer without hesitation.

Malkorok first appeared in the Tides of War novel, so chances are most people haven’t really seen what he’s presented as in Warcraft. For those that do not know, Malkorok is an orc of the Blackrock clan, and used to serve under Rend Blackhand. He is pretty much as radical as Garrosh, so he quickly rose to being the leader of the Kor’kron, and became Garrosh’s personal bodyguard and chief advisor. In this encounter, we see what happens for the first time what happens when an orc absorbs the power of Y’Shaarj, and DOESN’T end up succumbing to the fallen Old God’s will and become Sha.

Fight Overview

And the resultant fight in normal mode involves one-shot cones, actually standing in bad, and a copy of Fandral Staghelm’s mechanics. As a Moonkin, it is quite an enjoyable fight, and healers certainly enjoy seeing just how much they can push in raw throughput for building up shield a la Tortos heroic. It’s certainly an interesting mechanic for healers at least, seeing people on full life and still having to judge and call on who actually needs the healing – especially if people are already damaged through screw-ups previously in the fight, as I know when I’ve healed the fight, I automatically chuck a Rejuv and Swiftmend on them, only realising a moment later they have a full shield and aren’t healing up any more in any case…

Once again, this is a single target fight, so your talent build will look similar to this. Heart of the Wild and Force of Nature again are the DPS talents of choice again, being the stronger options for single target – a HotW-Tranq can also be useful in phase 2 if you have no danger of needing to move. In normal mode, the CC talents aren’t important, as nothing can be affected by them, so we’re keeping them the same as the last boss. We’re switching to Cenarion Ward for the healing tier, as Ysera’s Gift will always attempt to heal whoever is on lower health, not whoever has the lowest shield – so being able to stick a Cenarion Ward on someone who’s about to soak a pool will be excellent in building the shield back up again after soaking. Displacer Beast is fantastic for emergency soaks as well, and can be used to quickly get back to the platform after being shot up into the air. I’d really recommend Rebirth glyph for this fight, in case you do need to res someone, they can be at 100% health when they do resurrect. Stampeding Roar glyphs are great to hit the majority of the room for bad Breaths of Y’Shaarj, or getting everyone in the middle quickly for phase switch. Symbiosis targets for Moonkins are preferably: DK>Rogue>Warlock>Rest.

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Spoils of Pandaria

Why is it there?

When Garrosh gazed across Pandaria, he saw untapped power. During the course of his campaign, Garrosh has plundered weapons, treasures, and artifacts of the pandaren, the mogu, and the mantid. They are kept in a warehouse deep within his underground base, guarded by a mysterious security system that appears to be of Titan origins.

Unfortunately, I’m at two minds of this encounter. For one – it’s a fantastically unique fight in that there is no real “boss” to kill, it is essentially a gauntlet that you get decent loot from at the end… But on the other end of the spectrum, I don’t know WHY it’s a boss fight. Blizzard’s vision was to create a wing that included loot that Garrosh took from the Pandaria campaign, and honestly I thought that it would have just been trash to kill on the way to another boss. I love what they’ve done and how they’ve turned it into a boss fight, but as I said there’s no real reason for it to be one, apart from being the key to unlock either Siegecrafter Blackfuse or Thok the Bloodthirsty, who are in opposite directions. Plus, there’s the whole accidentally setting up a bomb and trying to deactivate it kind of thing, but details…

Fight Overview

The fight itself, as I’ve already mentioned, is quite an interesting one in that it is a gauntlet style boss (when was the last time we had one of those?) – so having an encounter that the tanks set the pace for instead of the encounter mechanics setting the pace for healers and DPS is most definitely one that Blizzard hasn’t used for a very long time. As such, with lots of adds that don’t last a very long time… It’s not an excellent fight for Moonkins – Hurricane/Astral Storm is pointless as mobs are taken out of them too quickly, Mushrooms as always are bleh, and multi-dotting is going to be mediocre at best, with how long the smaller crates last. The Pandaren crates offer a mediocre buff to the fight, that randomises each time you do it, but overall I don’t see too much point in them – the benefit they give is substantial, yes – but why not just tune things a tiny bit lower and just go for the actual artifacts? The artificial raid splitting is also done very nicely,

As a Moonkin, we’re switching up the talents from the previous fight to turn back into our multi-dotting build again. At the end of the day, despite dots not being as effective as they could be on a true multi-dotting fight, DoC and Incarnation are still going to be much better talents than HotW and Force of Nature for Spoils. Incarnation can be up for each mini-boss too, so you still have the opportunity to use your 3mins effectively, and there’s enough random damage going out for Healing Touches to be effective for setting up your next eclipse. I personally prefer Wild Charge for this fight, though any of the t1 talents will work just fine for this fight, whichever you’re more comfortable with. You’re going to be spending a lot of time already casting spells, so wasting GCDs on Cenarion Ward isn’t going to help yourself which is why I’ve suggested Ysera’s passive effect. T3/5 talents are again personal preference – everything can be CCed, it’s just a matter of what your raid setup is to if you prefer the hard CCs to the soft ones, or if the knockbacks are required, etc. Symbiosis targets can be prioritised as: Rogue (Set to Blow can be Cloaked to immune the damage – just remember to not be near anyone)>DK>Warlock>Paladin>Monk>Mage>Rest.

 

And that concludes part 2 of this week’s venture into the Siege of Orgrimmar. Next time, we’ll be taking a look at the final four bosses in normal mode – Thok, Siegecrafter, Paragons and Garrosh himself, of which none I would say are filler bosses! Have a good mid-week, and I’ll see you guys on Friday!

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