January 15, 2008

Vashj Phase 2 Tips (From a DPS Perspective)

Last night my raid went back to Serpentshrine Cavern to get Vashj's vial for a few more raiders. It took us one wipe to get back into the swing of things, which got me thinking about all the complexity involved in learning the Vashj fight. I thought I'd share a few tips and one handy map that helped convert SSC to farm status for my raid.

Vashj's second phase is really the worst, because you've got to have people handling enchanted elementals and tainted elemental spawns, tanks picking up elite naga, dpsers kiting coilfang striders, and healers healing everyone through all that chaos plus Vashj's forked lightning.

You can cut down on the initial chaos by making sure everyone in your raid doesn't just know strats (you have read the strategies on Bosskillers and MMO-Champion already, right?), but has also taken a look at a map or video of the fight and knows where they should be standing in phase 2.

Work out your positioning ahead of time, especially for the elemental dpsers. There are a lot of labeled maps for phase 2 out there, but most of them are pretty vague and just divide the elemental sides into four areas.

Our favorite map is the one below, by Starslayer of the guild Stack and Die. It not only labels the north, south, east and west sides of Vashj's platform, but it also shows every spawn point for the elementals. This lets you assign your elemental dps to specific spawn points (ie, South side, spawns B & C) instead of just a vague area. Be sure to assign less mana-dependent dpsers (hunters are great for this) to cover areas that have an additional elemental spawn.

Once you have your positioning worked out, it's also worthwhile to remind everyone that healing becomes even more complex than usual in the Vashj fight since the healers will also be the go-to people for tossing tainted cores to eliminate Vashj's four shield generators. This is one of those fights where it's critical that everyone make not dying their number one priority - it's a dps race, and it's unlikely you're going to have the druid mana for more than one or two rebirths.

Everyone needs to do their utmost not to die here: squishy folk should use pots, healthstones, and above all stay out of the way of striders and naga. Be aware that naga cleave and sometimes take a few seconds to get picked up, and avoid standing at the very edge of the outer ring where a newly-spawned naga could one-shot you into oblivion.

Once you've looted the fourth tainted core (and tossed it to the final receiver using your tainted core macro*), hold off on dropping the fourth generator for a second and assess your situation.

How are you looking on striders? One or more coilfang striders up at the start of phase three can really undermine your transition. If you can, finish off any remaining striders below half-health, switch your dps to any existing nagas, and use your timers to deactivate the final generator right before any more adds spawn. This way, you'll be spending most of your time in phase three killing Vashj, and not dealing leftover adds.

Of course, if you've got that kind of coordination going on at the very end of phase two, you're well on your way to beating Vashj anyway. Good luck!
*You do have a macro for tossing tainted cores, don't you? The usual one is:
/use tainted core /y <-------TAINTED CORE TO %T /ra <------ TAINTED CORE TO %T /script SendChatMessage("YOU HAVE THE CORE!!!", "WHISPER", "common", UnitName("target"));


Shalkis said...

As a frost mage on elemental duty, I've found Vashj to be one of the least mana-intensive encounters out there. You burn a bit of mana at P1, but regain it in P2 since there's not that much to do. The elemental spawn dies in seconds even if I have to use Fireballs and most of the time there's no other targets available for DPSing. Most of the time I'm at full mana when P3 starts.

lilxs said...

Hi GMW, we beat Vashj on Sunday. About 3x2 hours training, I'm very proud of everyone. :D :D :D

Dunno if we're overgeared somehow (haven't killed Al'ar let alone KT), but we had two dead at 98%. Rebirthed one and made it to the end with surprising ease. A big PFTHHBT to those who say one death = wipe.

Thanks for the map, I hope it'll help us repeat the feat next week.

Girl Meets WoW said...

shalkis - I hear it really is pretty easy on mana if you're a frost mage, but trying to do it as an arcane mage was rough, as was trying to hold down 3 and a half spawn points as a fire mage.

lilxs, congrats on downing Vashj for the first time! We've rebirthed people in Phase 1 without much problem now and again too, but it just always seems like a bad omen. Rebirthing in P2 can be rough though. Good luck in TK!

bbr said...

Horde can use "orcish" instead of "common" for the macro.

Meltfacer said...

Nice post, especially since my guild threw down our first ever Vashj attempts 2 nights ago. I was pleased, on our first nights of attempts we were getting 3 generators down before being overrun by striders.

Our dps setup was 4 groups of 2dpsers/1healer on elementals - 2 ppl + everyone elses dots on the striders and whatever was left on the nagas.

I am not the raid leader, I would have put less dps on elementals and more on striders / nagas I think

What is your breakdown as far as dpers on Elementals / nagas / striders??

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Logan said...


What is the actual distribution of classes and locations your guild uses to down Vashj. For example, how many melee total are at the bottom of the stairs, how many ranged and healers are at the top of the stairs, how many ranged are in the middle of the circle, and how many healers do you take? I know this would be a lot to post but I'd really appreciate the help as my guild just started working on Vashj and our setup definitely could use some tweaking.

Thx. :)

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