I really hate this fight. Someone will probably die if you (or someone else) second guesses soaking puddles, and the adds need to be positioned precisely but they have such tiny hit boxes that it’s often hard to do so. Oh well, you have to get it over with sometime. It’s a big step up in difficulty from the previous bosses in 10 man.
Finally, a fight that actually require the tank to do some heavy lifting. As usual, this is not intended to be a complete guide, but rather a supplement for tanks who are working on the heroic mode. I expect you to know the basic mechanics of this fight.
I’m not going to do a narrated video this time because my experience during this particular kill will be vastly different than your own. This fight is has so many avenues of variation that it’s difficult to cover all possibilities.
As usual, this isn’t meant to be a complete guide. I assume you already know the basic mechanics of this fight. Everything here is mostly geared toward tanks, though since this fight is primarily a test of healer skill, I will add what I know for other roles as well. I only have experience in the 10 man version of the encounter, so all advice in this article is catered to that raid size.
At the moment, we don’t have very much concrete information. There is a lot we have to assume by looking at other classes (namely, warriors) and piecing together the little hints Blizzard has dropped us. Keep in mind that the current MoP talent calculators are pre-alpha, and the information will change significantly by launch.
Now that that’s out of the way, let’s take a look at how active mitigation for Guardian druids looks at the moment.
According to MMO-Champion, patch 4.3 is coming this Tuesday. We don’t have any major changes coming our way, but here’s what to look out for.
Changes to Bears
Bear Form now provides a Stamina bonus of 20%, up from 10%.
This is a change to help us remain competitive among block-capping Paladins and Warriors. This increases stamina’s value to bears, though it is still not more valuable than agility for damage mitigation. In most cases, you should still gem agility, though Shifting Demonseyes will be even more attractive for those blue slots.
Blizzard released the most up to date talent calculator last night. I plan on writing up a complete analysis later, but for now I wanted to list the spells and passive abilities that we lose or what will be changed. If I missed something, please let me know in the comments. It’s nearly 2am and I went over this pretty quickly.
I’m very excited about the new talent system. Not only will you be able to respec any time you want (as long as you’re out of combat), but most tiers actually do add an element of choice. I especially love the nature vibe emanating from most of these talents, which adds more potential flavor to bears. I believe they still need some polish, and likely many of these talents will change before Mists of Pandaria goes live, but let’s have a look at them before all of that happens.
I’m going to assume everyone is caught up with all of the recent Blizzcon news. If not, read up on it at MMO-Champion.
The biggest event for us bear druids was the separation of the traditional feral spec. Melee dps druids will continue to be called “feral combat,” and tanking druids will become “guardian”. I will miss referring to myself as feral, but guardian has a nice ring to it.