While we’re just getting to this fight on 25-man, we did something that worked very easily for us in 10-man (changed our strategy and dropped him in 2 attempts). So here’s the general outline of what we did! Remember: this is for 10-man, but I have a feeling that your strategy for 25 will only really affect your healers (3 and 3 rotation, possibly). But we’ll see on Monday…
General Vezax has 8.3 million HP. He will melee for 15 to 20k on a plate wearer. He is also immune to taunt.
- Vezax does a Shadow Crash that does around 12k shadow damage (can be mitigated), knocks you back a good amount of distance, and leaves an energy field (bubbling black goodness for caster DPS) that increases your magical damage dealt by 100%, increases your casting speed by 100%, and reduces the mana cost by 70%. However, this amazing caster DPS heaven is not great for healers, which it reduces your healing done by 75%. As a reminder, this is unnecessary raid damage.
- He will also cast a Searing Flames that must be interrupted. If it gets through, the raid will take around 14 to 16k damage and reducing armor by 75%. Call that a wipe if you want, but tanks will need to blow cool downs to possibly survive and you may want to save those for healers gathering mana. It can’t be said enough, but this is all preventable raid damage.
- Then there’s the “don’t stand on this” mechanic that we know and love, this time named Mark of the Faceless. The person who gets this needs to haul ass because whoever is near this marked target will lose 5000 heal per second and this will heal Vezax. This is unnecessary damage.
- The last mechanic (mostly for tanks, but interrupters need to be wary that he can cast Searing Flames while doing this) is the Surge of Darkness. The tank must get out of there, preferably doing some sort of strategy requiring a “left to right” and “right to left” when facing him as you come into the room (this is what we did and it worked). This buff that he puts on himself will increase physical damage by 100% and reduce movement speed by 55%. No reason for you to take any damage here, tanks!
The Gimmick and Healer Discussion:
The major gimmick of this fight is arguably the Saronite Vapor mechanic. In order to get any mana as a healer (hunters, protection paladins, retribution paladins, enhancement shaman all have abilities to get mana back that do work) or a DPS caster (although you do have the benefit of a Shadow Crash aura), you need to sit in the vapor clouds that are left behind when an aptly named Saronite Vapor is killed— these have low health.
Something may happen while you jump into a Saronite Vapor that is unrelated to the health to mana conversion. Be prepared for…
- A person in your cloud, ranged or yourself, may be targetted by Shadow Crash. Get out of there. Return to the cloud if possible, but if both healers have low mana and need it… could have an issue, not to mention the healing debuff. This is a good time for tank cool downs and if you have it, priest related ones.
- A person in your cloud, ranged or yourself, may be targetted with Mark of the Faceless. Whoever has it needs to get out of there, IMMEDIATELY. The amount of health Vezax could get back can easily be debilitating. If you or another healer is targetted… prepare to break another cloud, call out for tank cool downs, or just try to heal the tank with mimimal mana.
As you gain mana, you take damage. There is a 2:1 ratio of health lost to mana gained. For the most part, you will want to look for patterns like…
- 1 Stack: 100 Mana – 200 Damage
- 2 Stacks: 200 Mana – 400 Damage
- 3 Stacks: 400 Mana – 800 Damage
- 4 Stacks: 800 Mana – 1,600 Damage
- 5 Stacks: 1,600 Mana – 3,200 Damage
- 6 Stacks: 3,200 Mana – 6,400 Damage
- 7 Stacks: 6,400 Mana – 12,800 Damage
- 8 Stacks: 12,800 Mana – 25,600 Damage
This means, if you have decent gear… you’ll want to get out of there around 6 to 7 stacks. Otherwise, you may face the risk of death at the 8th stack.
This also means that you must do either one of two things when you handle a cloud:
- You have about 30-40% mana when you call out for a cloud. You keep healing on the tank while standing in it.
- You have no mana when you call out for a cloud. You keep some heals on yourself while standing in it while another healer takes care of the tank.
Here’s what we did.
- We had 3 healers: Discipline priest, Restoration shaman (Kaydin), and Holy paladin (Hardway – alternative spec).
- We assigned myself and Hardway to keep heals on Saverem (our MT) while Kaydin sat back and kept up Riptide and Earth Shield, thus reducing her mana costs.
- All DPS were told to use bandages if needed. As healers, we can’t afford to heal them. Your raiders should have bandages regardless!
- When I got low on mana, I called out on Ventrilo I needed mana. A ranged DPS found me, killed the cloud closest to the kiting path/center of the room, and I sat in it and kept up Power Word: Shield, Prayer of Mending, and Renew. Kaydin switched to focusing on Saverem.
- Kaydin would call out for mana. I focused on Saverem. Hardway was low on mana, and he also went in.
- Rinse and repeat until dead.
There are, of course, several variables to what happened. There were times where a Saronite Vapor was close enough so the tank could get healed while we gained mana. While we were using up mana, we were keeping him alive— the highest priority in this fight.
Truth is, as long as there is minimal raid damage to heal, and that the vapors are dropped when asked for (thus ensuring open communication as a priority), this fight is a snap.
The Saronite Vapor Bug?
Last night, we encountered an issue with the placement of our vapors. When it was killed over a small crack in the ground (small dips, whatnot) we couldn’t get the debuff to stack. If this happens, you will need to move quickly to fix this. You may want to experiment more in-depth, but that was the trend of our trials. Priest bubbles don’t prevent mana restoration, to clarify; the idea of that you have to take damage in order to get mana is incorrect.
It’s good to figure out how you’re going to kite him. As stated earlier, if you face Vezax, you can go left to right and right to left with no problem. Just remember that you need to get out of there as soon as Surge of Darkness hits. You shouldn’t need any kind of movement buff to do it, from what I understand…
And that’s it. This is more or less correct, and it’s always better to learn a fight through just trying and wiping. I can’t guarantee an immediate win. Your group comp may vary. I’ll make sure to edit it if there are mistakes… because hey, it happens. But I hope this helps someone!