Dragon Soul Tanking – 10M Hagara the Stormbinder
Hagara, one of the first students of arcane magic under the Forsaken, showed surprising potential for one who had started learning so late in life. But in her undisciplined attempts to bind elementals into servitude, she was ensnared and twisted by the Windlord, Al’Akir. Now fiercely loyal to the Twilight’s Hammer, Hagara binds others for her elemental masters to torment. ~Dungeon Journal
Hagara is another solo tank fight in Dragon Soul. If your raid team is REALLY bored (or lacking in DPS), the first 4 fights of the raid can be solo tanked (but that’s another post).
Hargara has roughly 3 phases: Ice, Lightning, and her “primary” phase. Each phase lasts 50 seconds (minus the first primary phase you start in, which is 30 seconds in length). The phase you start with depends on the weapon imbue she has when she spawns, but each ice and lightning phase has a “normal” phase between them. So let’s look at phases!
Generally a more aware tank and spank, the notable things a raid should be looking out for are as follows:
- Focused Assault (Tank) Physical – The only thing a tank will need to worry about during the primary phase. Focused Assault is cast every 15 seconds (twice when you start the fight and then roughly 3 times for every other primary phase you enter) and simply requires the tank to run through Hagara, strafe, or step backwards. Hagara will not move when casting Focused Assault, so it is very easy to avoid. She deals 50% of her melee damage every half a second for 5 seconds.
- Ice Lance (Ranged/Healers) Frost – Ice lance is cast twice per phase and the ranged DPS and healers need to be on the lookout for beams. The spell will focus on 3 random players and will cast once a second for 15 seconds, dealing 15K damage to the recipient and any other player within a 3-yard radius. The spell also applies an attack speed debuff of 25% but not a casting speed debuff. Due to the close positioning of melee with a tank, the splash damage can escalate (and all the melee want their attack speed to remain the same), but the 3 beams of ice can be interrupted by any ranged DPS or healer. If you have an ability to reduce your damage taken while “soaking” the ice lance, use it to help out your healers.
- Ice Tomb (DPS/Healers) Frost – Just thinking of this spell gives me flashbacks back to Wrath! The plus side of this attack is that it doesn’t chain–but that’s about the only plus side. Ice tomb is cast once per phase and will “freeze” 2 players in ice blocks that need to be DPS’d down to free the players. The entombed party members will be unable to receive healing and take 7K damage each second from the spell. The faster they can be broken out, the better. Targets are identified with a small blue arrow over their heads (looks exactly like the arrow that bounces over a tank’s head on Madness for the impale) and it is recommended that they stack on an assigned side of Hagara to be AoE’d down. Affected raiders have 7 seconds to get into position before they are frozen. It is worth noting that the ice tombs create an LoS issue for healers so try to position them on the opposite side of Hagara from your ranged team. Anyone can be entombed, except for the tank, and there is a distinct possibility that 2 healers can be frozen at once. Plan accordingly.
- Shattered Ice (All) Frost – A large spike of damage that deals 78K damage to a single random target in the raid. Movement is also slowed for 4 seconds. According to Icy Veins the spell is cast right before or right after Focused Assault.
Based on Hagara’s weapon imbue, you’ll either be given the Lightning Phase or the Ice Phase 30 seconds after the fight starts. Neither are hard to deal with and your phase order will always go as follows: Primary Phase (30 sec) > Lightning/Ice (until you beat mechanic) > Primary (50 sec) > Lightning/Ice (until you beat the mechanic) > Primary (50 sec) > etc., etc., etc.
When Hagara transitions, she will put up a shield that makes her immune to damage. The shield will drop as soon as you complete the objective set forth in the Ice or Lightning phase!
Unlike 25M, where the Bound Lightning Elemental spawns right next to one of the Crystal Conductors, the add is slightly North(east?) on the map. The add will always spawn in the same location, so there should be no issues for your team finding the add.
The tank needs to pick up the add (be forewarned that Army of the Dead will able to taunt this add, which can sometimes make positioning difficult) and drag it over to one of the nearby Crystal Conductors. Kill the add and chain the resulting lightning to the 3 other Conductors to end this phase.
Lightning Storm is cast every 2-3 seconds and will target 3-4 random players in the raid with 15K damage. Each time they are hit by Lightning Storm, they gain a stacking debuff that increase the Nature damage they take by 5%. Any resistance buffs that can be run should be popped during this phase (meaning, unlike what you’ve seen in LFR, hunters should run Aspect of the Wild instead of that joyous Aspect of the Daze).
Once you complete the objective of the Lightning phase (activating all 4 conductors), Hagara’s shield drops and she becomes stunned (thanks to Feedback) and takes 100% increased damage for 15 seconds. This is usually a great point to pop Bloodlust (timing is totally dependent on your raid leader and which phase you choose to burst her down in). Once the stun falls off, you are put back into the Primary phase.
The ice phase is a great moment to determine which of your raid team is prone to herp derp. I am guilty of totally doing stupid crap during this phase and dying like a fail. More fun (as pictured on the right), is when all 3 healers bite it and then the tanks zone out (I pulled with little to no warning to my co-tank and he didn’t have time to spec swap) and die together as well. I’d like to point out that all the DPS is alive and they managed to finish the fight without half the team >.> I may have also died last night while healing along with my co-tank again! Moral of the story is: watch out for the ice! –Miri
Just like the Lightning phase, there are 4 pillars that need to be dealt with–in this case they are Frozen Binding Crystals.
When the phase starts, Hargara generates another shield to protect herself with, but this one comes with a deadly debuff: Watery Entrenchment. The debuff drops a player’s health by 15% every second and slows their movement speed by 50%. It is wise to have the raid in motion towards the outer edges before this phase officially starts.
When the transition occurs, the 4 crystals drop into place and can be immediately DPS’d by the raid team. Once these 4 crystals are brought down, the phase ends.
Between each crystal spawn point (slice the platform into 4 wedges, spin the pie 45° and do another 4 wedges. The first 4 are your crystals, the second 4 are your ice waves), an Ice Wave will spawn. Ice waves result in an instant 200K damage and will usually 1-shot every player that they touch. If the wave manages to not kill you, touching it will result in a 50% increase in frost damage taken for the next 2.5 seconds. The best way to handle movement with the Ice Waves is to remain as close to the bubble as you can, without touching it, to make sure you have enough time to move from the wave: The further out on the circle you are, the more time it takes you to move versus a person who is running on the inside of the platform.
While DPSing Crystals and dodging Ice Waves, you’re also on the lookout of Icicles. If you’ve run The Deadmines, during the first dream sequence in the Foundry, there are circles that spawn on the ground before ice falls. Exact same concept on this fight: the circle will spawn on the ground, make sure you remember where it was and move accordingly, as the circle will vanish after 4 seconds before the ice lands 1 second later. Icy Veins notes that anyone within a 7-yard radius will be damaged for 100K.
Avoid the circles, outrun the waves, and kill the crystals to push your team back into the the Primary phase. Rinse and repeat until Hagara dies!
- If you usually derp on Focused Assaults, it might be worth popping a CD right before one lands so you don’t eat the damage. It’s worth noting that I have timed movement just right on this fight and managed to cancel out a Focused Assault that she only cast for a split second. It took some really good timing and some fast movement, but it can be done!
- Pop Mirror of Broken Images when you’re running for the Lightning phase.
- Another option is to use Divine Protection (should still have this glyphed) while running the Lightning phase when Mirror drops off.
These are my picks, YMMV.
Final option is a bit flexible, depending on your gearing and raid. My thoughts:
- Crusader Strike: Valid for fact that fight is a single mob fight. Increased crit results in more damage and a slightly faster boss death.
- Judgement: Totally dependent on if you have the 2pc T13 bonus which grants you an absorb shield each time you judge. Basically you get a larger absorb, which helps to reduce healing required, but I haven’t looked to see how much of a bonus you get. Probably not worth it in the long run, but every little bit helps.
Pick whichever one you feel most comfortable with! I typically glyph for threat over survivability, but it’s personal preference.
My logic: Focused Shield because it’s a single mob fight. Lay on Hands for the shorter duration (survivability again, but there’s really nothing stopping you from having a shorter CD on this “save your ass” spell). Divine Protection for the magic damage reduction.