Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Conclave of Wind: 'Lock Cliffnotes

On Monday our guild took its first hesitant steps into Cataclysm raiding. We decided to tackle Throne of the Four Winds first because, well, we just did. It seems to me like everyone else is doing the Magmaw thing, so maybe we're rebels. Or just dumb. I really haven't done my research yet.

We didn't win. Oh hell no we didn't win. This is not your Wrath's Naxx. That probably should be expected in Cataclysm, but still, remember how easy it was to start in Naxx? Ah, those were the days. Wait, wait. No they weren't. We hated that place. So perhaps this is a good thing.

In any case, I'm going to pass along my cliffnotes from a very 'lockcentric point of view. I'll try to give you a pulled back overview of the fight as well as what I was specifically doing. This is by no means what to read if you're looking for in depth tanking maneuvers.

The Conclave consists of a trio of bosses that surround a large dude in the center. The large dude is for the second fight and not a part of the initial Conclave encounter. I know we got several questions: "What's up with that big guy?" Forget about him for now. He's just hanging out, shootin' the breeze (h'yuck). Here are the three of import:
  • Anshal - Referred to as the "Nature guy." His attacks are nature based, he has a green swirly skirt and is to your left when you enter the arena.
  • Nezir - Referred to as the "Ice guy." He's way in the back and you can't really see him when you enter. He may or may not be responsible for the current storm slamming into my house.
  • Rohash - Referred to as the "Wind guy" or "Hash pipe" or "that frackin' dude that just blew me off the ledge". He's to your right and is the delicious color of poop.
The group make up for this fight needs to include three healers, two tanks, and the rest DPS. The three healer requirement kinda sucks, but our third healer was a shadow priest that just healed as needed. We found for this fight that the Affliction Warlock self-heals pair well with a Shadow Priest, so they sent the two of us off to the right to face the wind guy. Healing was never a problem. Staying out of the tornadoes and not getting blasted off was. More on that in a moment though.

There are two key things to keep in mind on this fight. First, there must be a person on each of these dudes' platforms at all times, or the raid will be wiped by an unpreventable ability (varies on the guy, but all are catastrophic). Second, there is a global energy bar that these guys share that will fill up for a mega attack, lovingly referred to as the ULTIMATE. Wahoo, right?

The basic flow of the fight goes like this. You send two ranged lambs to the right to occupy wind man, a tank/healer combo goes to the back for ice guy, and the rest feel the call of nature. It's important to note that you can and should travel to each of the platforms before engaging the bosses. Make sure your groups are in position so you can avoid starting out in the grips of a wiping effect.

On each platform, different things will be happening but basically you're trying to live, do damage, and avoid the bad. Nature dude has adds to deal with, but otherwise it's a game of avoid the bad and DPS as much as possible. When the energy gauge gets to about 80%, you'll get a DBM warning and need to congregate on the Ice guy's platform. The tank combos will swap to reset a stacking debuff, and one poor bastard will remain alone with the wind guy (thus keeping up our person per platform requirement). Everyone else should be whacking the ice guy.

When the ultimate finishes after like 10 second, all the DPS gets back to where they were before. Rinse repeat as needed. The tank combos alternate bosses every ultimate. We left our healer alone with the wind guy as he just basically throws you up in the air, allowing you to still heal somewhat, but it does a decent amount of damage on top of falling damage. Your mileage may vary.

As a Warlock, I was sent with our S-priest to Mr. Wind. My job was to try to keep his attention and just DPS the piss out of him. Our priest kept me alive if needed and DPS'ed when not needed. The wind guy has two major abilities to watch out for: Crazy Tornadoes and Big Wall o' Wind (Wind Gust). If your default DBM is like mine, you'll want to go in and check the button for "Wind Gust" warning, otherwise you won't get the memo.

The tornadoes are obvious, just avoid them. I'm still trying to figure out this Wind Gust though. He appears to just do it in a random direct and then just spins clockwise. If you get hit by it, you'll be thrown off the platform. Sometimes you get to rejoin, other times you just plummet to death. Best of luck. What we've found works best is if we each stand directly in line with the air jumps so that if we get blown off, we're blown directly into one of those and usually live. We don't want to stay apart so that one of us at least remains on the platform.

The real danger is if he randomly ends up facing you when he starts. I've think I've gotten better at anticipating this, but it can be hard to see until... whoops, off the platform. Hence standing in front of the wind-veyor. Otherwise, just don't let him sweep into you. Being closer will help, and there's no downside to being near him.

He only does one wind gust per "ultimate" so after you survive the one, you're good until you've swapped to ice and back. Occasionally, he'll do one just as Ultimate ends. It sucks if you conveyor back into it, but such is life. If he does that, he's still got another up his sleeve, so don't slack off. Otherwise, you just gotta keep on your toes, DPS your heart out, and hope that lady RNG doesn't take a crap on you (sometimes it seemed the three giant tornadoes called up the wall o' death and pre-planned on how to corner me).

Your 'lock portal can be useful if you find yourself in the Ultimate (to avoid falling damage), but you get blown off too fast to make use of it otherwise. Though, maybe if you have quicker fingers than me, it might work. When you're on the ice guy, avoid the patches on the ground too. Duh. Also, make sure you give yourself plenty of time to use the air-veyors; they disappear during the Ultimate and if you're in the air... splatola.

Once you get one of the three to kick the bucket, you have a minute to finish off the rest, so you'll want to keep your DPS reasonably balanced. You can always order a DPS to shuffle around if you're way unbalanced after a couple rounds. We've yet to survive past around 50% though, so I don't have much other advice to offer about it.

Maybe these were less of cliffnotes and more of a rambly wall. Sorry. To make up for it, I'll stick a graphic in here. This is poached from the WoWWiki entry, but I think it's helpful. Fwiw, I was the teal box (despite how they've labeled it for their strat).


  1. You got my sympathies. I did Conclave last night for my 1st Cata raid and I was the healer (pally) assigned for the Ice tank. We did things a bit differently as we had 1 melee on Wind Boy. During Ultimates, I went to the Wind platform to heal the rogue while the Ice tank switched off with Nature. Most of the fight was a blur so I can't really get too much into specific make-ups.