Mage Tower Tank Challenge | Kruul | The Highlord’s Return – Vengeance DH

After a truly embarrassing number of wipes (let’s just say it rivals the number of attempts I put into endgame bosses back when I was a competitive raider), I finally got this down. I’m not a particularly skilled player, but I am diligent. As long as you’re one of those things, you can do it too!

Despite the amount of sleep this robbed from me, I really enjoyed the challenge. I had to play around with a lot of different combinations and figure out what worked for me, a player with bad reactions and dps but a lot of patience. Everyone has a different strategy for these, but here’s what ended up working for me.


I won’t duplicate work by going over mechanics when these guides cover that already. There’s also handy stuff like macros in Munkky’s guide.


  • Razor Spikes: Dps is where I struggle the most, so I picked the most offensive build to compensate for my personal weaknesses. The goal is to finish Kruul before the 5th Annihilate, since you probably can’t survive it.
  • Fallout: For all those sweet Soul Fragments to explode for more aoe dps.
  • Flame Crash: AoE dps
  • Fracture: Single target dps
  • Quickened Sigils: The reduced cooldown and activation time are needed to control the adds and interrupt them at the right time.
  • Fel Devastation: Burst AoE
  • Last Resort: Needed to get past the fourth Annihilate. I’ll go into my cooldown rotation in a bit, but it depended on this talent.


Fragment of the Betrayer’s PrisonPrydaz, Xaveric’s Magnum Opus

I tried all my available options for this, ended up going with these two because they offered the right amount of defense for my offensive build. Fragment synergizes well with Razor Spikes and provided a huge amount of healing, especially in these heavy-aoe situations.

Prydaz is easy damage reduction. I kept dying at high debuff stacks, and an absorb is always useful.

I tried Sephuz’s, which a lot of people use successfully, but I would always proc it while running around and waste most of its haste effects. The run speed was really nice though.

I briefly tried Cloak of Fel Flames, but the damage reduction from that pales in comparison to the healing from Fragment or Prydaz.

I also have Cinidaria’s, which would be helpful for the initial burn on the first boss, but the main guy comes out at 33% health so it would be entirely useless against him and that’s where I really needed the extra dps.


Goblet of Nightmarish Ichor (885) + Royal Dagger Haft (900)

I tried many different combos here. I’m terrible at on-use trinkets and the fight is complicated enough on its own, and these two require no interaction. Goblet is a nice combo of dps and defense. Dagger procs before Last Resort, and I used it as insurance that Last Resort would stay available as long as possible. I was initially worried about the downside damage-over-time from Dagger, but with my self healing it was pretty easy to overcome. The crit is also nice for dps.

Other Gear

  • T19 4pc. There’s not much physical damage here, except for Annihilate, but since I was running with Razor Spikes and Fragment, uptime on Demon Spikes was appreciated.
  • Item level: 907
  • Artifact traits: 46


For every hour long string of attempts, I tried to gather these things:


Variss Opener:
  1. Potion when he crosses the green crack on the floor
  2. Shear a couple times
  3. Metamorphosis
  4. Right before spell lands, Empower Wards to get the dps boost
  5. Fiery Brand
  6. Immolation Aura
  7. Soul Carver
  8. Demon Spikes -> Fracture spam
  9. Around 8 stacks, leave the puddle and right before the cast finishes CC the boss with Imprison, go kill eyes or adds if they’re up
Reapeat until Variss dies:
  1. Kill adds right outside the circle to cleave, moving whenever an infernal gets near or casts its knockback, alternating Sigil of Silence and Fel Devastation/Sigil of Misery. Sigil of Misery is a last resort since at least for me it made adds immune to damage for a few seconds.
  2. When adds are dead and stacks are off,  hit the boss with more Demon Spikes -> Fracture spam
  3. Leave to clean up eyeballs around 4-5 stacks. I could take more, but I found that staying too long left an unmanageable number of eyes up after a while.
Kruul Opener

If Last Resort was still available, I popped Drums and Potion of the Old War and dived into Demon Spikes -> Fracture spam, trying to interrupt two Annihilates with Imprison and the orbs to get as clean a burn as possible. (If Last Resort has already procced, then it’s just an opportunity to practice, no point wasting expensive consumables.)


Delay as much as possible with Imprison and orbs (though be sure he’s out of puddles first).

  • Annihilate 1 – demon spikes
  • Annihilate 2 – fiery brand + demon spikes
  • Annihilate 3 – Meta + demon spikes
  • Annihilate 4 – last resort + demon spikes
Repeat Until Dead
  • Save Infernal Strike exclusively to get out of the boss’s pools. Without Abyssal Strike, I had to be very frugal about using it for dps alone in phase 2.
  • Sigil of Flame for adds, placing it right under Velen since they always go to him in phase 2.
  • It’s especially important to interrupt the channel from the adds, not the precast, since it’s unlikely that they’ll die as quickly as phase 1.
  • Kite backwards slowly to stay away from infernals. Kite away from Velen, sort of circling the orbs. You don’t want the adds to explode on Velen since that will kill him quickly, and you don’t want the boss to drop pools right on the orbs.