Final Thoughts on Yogg-Saron Including Healing Tips!   8 comments

11:23 PM

Monolith pulls Yogg-Saron. 

Frankly, I’m tired of this Vykrul bitch that has been yelling at me for weeks on end.  I’m tired of her damn clouds, I’m tired of her grabby tentacles (not to mention that I’m fairly certain they are trying to feel up my branches when they grab me).  We have a less than perfect raid make up, which includes 4 people playing in their off-spec…

Phase One ends with no adds up.  Our shadow priest eloquently advises us that this is a sign from God…”don’t fuck it up!”.

Phase Two ends with 3 corrupter tentacles up.  The melee decimate two of them as they pop out of the brain.

11:38 PM

With less than 10 seconds left on the enrage timer, Monolith has finally silenced this Old God.  We did it with a less than perfect raid composition.  We did it with less than perfect DPS.

And here is how:

Group Composition:

  • Two tanks – Any flavor will do (we had a DK and a Warrior for our Kill).
  • Five healers – We run with 7 healers for the rest of the zone.  We have a number of healers that have picked up an off-spec, and we have them DPS for this fight.  The only time healing is every truly challenging for the fight is in Phase 3.
  • 7-9 Melee DPS – Two of our healers have melee off-specs, all of our tanks have melee DPS off-specs.
  • 9-11 Ranged DPS – Two of our healers have Ranged off-specs.

Phase 1

  • Having a clean phase one is probably the most important part of the fight.  Everything else in the encounter will hinge on how well you do in this phase.
    • Stress to everyone that their number one priority is to avoid the clouds.  They are large, they are green, you can’t miss them!  STAY OUT OF THEM!
    • We used a strategy with the melee in the middle with the tanks, and the ranged loosely following the cloud in the third orbit.  This does mean that the range has to move with some frequency, but it makes it very easy to dodge the clouds.  This strategy also means that, unless a ranged has pulled agro, every guardian damages Sara.  This is very important.
      • Melee need to be veryaware of their debuffs.  Specifically, Sara’s Fervor, which will increase damage taken by 100%.  If melee have Sara’s Fervor on them, they should take a few steps from the mob when it is at 20% life to avoid taking damage from the explosion.  Taking damage from an explosion has the potential to one shot them.
      • Everyone should make the following macro:  /cancelaura Flash Freeze.  This will remove Hodir’s buff from you that “saves” you if you are about to die.  This is very important for phase 1 for the melee because the clouds in the first two orbits are very tight.  If you stay frozen in one place for too long, you will spawn an extra add.
    • Everyone should set a focus target for Sara.  This lets the entire raid see where her life is.  When she is at 13% life, one more guardian will kill her.
  • Healing Tips:
    • Healers need to make sure that they can see the following debuffs on their unit frames:
      • Sara’s Fervor – As stated above this debuff causes an increase in damage taken by 100%.  While this isn’t an issue for the range or the healers, it can be brutal on the melee and the tanks.
        • This can be added to Grid…just make sure it’s spelled correctly!  And for the record, I am not the only one that confused this.  Deadly Boss Mods reports this debuff as Sara’s Favor!
      • Sara’s Blessing – This debuff places a DoT on the target that will tick for ~20,000 damage.  It is easily enough healed through, however should it hit a melee or a tank, you will want to make sure they get a little extra love, as they will also be taking the explosions.
        • Resto Druid Tip! – For anyone that if affected by Sara’s Blessing, I have found it very effective to toss a regrowth and a rejuv on them.  This is enough healing so that I do not need to think about it anymore unless they get hit by a shadow volley or explosion.
    • Melee will always take damage when the Guardians explode.  It will hit them for roughly half of their life pool and they need to be topped up quickly so that they can survive the next explosion.  All healing classes have great tools to accomplish this: Priests can CoH/PoH, Paladins can use glyphed Holy Light and holy shock, Shaman can Chain Heal, and Druids can WG/Swiftmend.
      • Resto Druid Tip! – I have found it very effective to keep a rejuv up on all the melee, as possible, and WG right after an explosion.  If anyone is particularly low on life, I can also swiftmend them.  I do surprisingly little actual healing to our tanks, other than the occasional HoT.

Phase 2

There are two components to phase 2.  I will refer to them as the Brain Group (this is the group the goes into the brain!) and the Tentacle Group.

Your success in Phase 2 will be largely dependant upon how well your brain group does.  The faster your brain group gets to Yogg and freezes everything, the better control your DPS up top will have over the tentacles, largely because fewer tentacles will spawn.  Your Brain Team should reach the brain in 15-25 seconds.  Any more than that and you will fast become overwhelmed by tentacle spawns.

Brain Group Composition– One healer, 9 DPS.  We use a resto shaman as our healer since they can cleanse 3 of the four maladies that are present from the corrupter tentacles…and they have totems!  Your 9 DPS should include all of your melee DPS.  If you do not have 9 melee DPS in your raid, you want to send down classes with strong burst damage that can be effective at point blank range.  We have found mages to be a very effective alternative, with a strong preference for arcane mages.

  • The Brain! – As I do not go down into the brain, I do not have first hand experience here, but will tell you what worked well.
    • Familiarity with the three boards that can be present in the brain room.  This is really important.  The more familiar that you are with the brain boards, the faster you can move through them!
      • Early on, even when we knew phase two was going to be a wipe, we would keep going as long as we could, just to get everyone more comfortable with the three layouts in the brain.
    • Give specific assignments for the Brain, and maximize your group make up.
      • There are three different boards that can occur when you enter the brain: Stormwind, Dragon, Ice Crown.  Each of these are different.  The stormwind and the dragon maps have two choices in direction to travel, the Ice Crown map has three.
        • We arrange and split our groups up for the Stormwind and Dragon maps by group.  Group one will go left and group two will go right.  We try to make sure that we have some synergy in the groups (i.e. our Unholy DK will always be with a caster if we have a caster going into the brain).  If we have two ret paladins in the raid, we split them up so that each side has someone that can cleanse Apathy.
        • We arrange our groups for Ice Crown somewhat differently.  We usually send 3 people left, 3 people right, and three people up the center.  We try to send people with a run speed increase (such as unholy aura, pursuit of justice or the feral druid cat speed increase) up the center because the tentacles are deeper in, and those players can get to them faster.  Our healer in the brain just goes to the middle of the room here and heals everyone.
      • A small note here, all melee classes have an ability to generate some health for themselves.  If you send casters into the brain, they will need more healing love than the melee.
    • Those big purple beams?  Yea…keep you back to them!  You should be able to navigate the brain phase with only about 20-30 sanity lost.  Ideally, you should not need to hit up a sanity well after every brain phase.  This is important, because any extra DPS the melee can assist with on the corrupters in between brain phases is crucial.
    • You have 60 seconds in the brain before Yogg casts insanity.  On our first portal we bloodlust 15 seconds into the portal both in the brain room and up top.  This allows maximum bloodlust time for both parties, and allows you to bloodlust again in the last minute of the fight if you need to do so.
    • We provide a 15 second warning, a 10 second warning and a call to get out of the brain at 8 seconds before Yogg casts insanity.  It is VERY important that your brain group get out of the brain while everything is still frozen up top.  This prevents them from getting insta-gibbed by a crusher tentacle that may be at Yogg’s mouth when they are spit out.
      • If there is a crusher at Yogg’s mouth, we also advise the melee and let them know they need to run away immediately.
    • You will have 10 portals that form a circle around Yogg.  It is very important that all 10 people get in their portals.  We found it effective to have all of our portal group spread out 10 seconds before the spawn so that they can get into the portals immediately.
    • Paladins should save Blessing of Protection for those in the brain group that get snatched up by a constrictor tentacle right before a portal spawn.
      • As a side note, we found a very nasty bug last night where a person would click on the portal, and be immediately spit out of the portal by Yogg.  This caused them to go insane…even though they were at 100 sanity.  We noticed this happening if they clicked on a portal and simultaneously had a contstrictor pick them up.  But it also appeared to happen for no good reason.  If this happens they have a small amount of time before they go insane.  We countered this bug by having them go hug a crusher tentacle and kill themselves before they went insane.  This way they could be rezzed and continue on in the fight.
  • The Tentacle Group!
    • This will consist of the rest of your raid.
    • The most important thing is to keep on top of the crusher tentacles.  The faster you can get these suckers down the better, this gives you more time to keep control of the other tentacles in between crusher spawns.
    • Assign a couple of people to break people free from constrictor tentalces.  We found hunters work well at this, but we have also used mages and warlocks.
    • Everyone should group up in the “pool” by Yogg.  This ensures that everyone will be in range of cleanses and heals.  It also means that you have to move the shortest distance to the next tentacle.
    • On the same note…if you have a red beam on your head, RUN TOWARDS IT, until it goes gold.
    • Assign a direction to move after the crusher is dead.  We will always go clockwise, unless there is a corrupter tentacle right behind us.  This keeps the raid together, and means that you are always working on the same target.
    • Neverrun past a tentacle without throwing up a DoT on it, no matter who you are!
    • When the brain group reaches the brain and it freezes everything up top, everyoneshould be DPSing the tentacles.  That is right!  Fear my resto moonfire/wrath spam!
    • Ideally, you want to enter phase 3 with fewer than 3 corrupter tentacles alive, so strong DPS on the crusher is important so that you have some time to work down corrupters.
      • If we have two corrupters that are right next to each other and we do not have time to get them both down, at 10 seconds left on insanity we have everyone switch to the other tentacle and fully DoT the sucker up.  The melee can quickly and easily finish these up if they are low on life.
    • Be sure to pick “smart” times to fill your sanity.  That is to say, don’t do it during a stun phase when you need to be burning down, hit up the well in between portal phases if you can.
      • Tanks should make sure their sanity is good long before you are about to enter phase 3.  This should prevent them from needed to fill their sanity in phase 3.
    • Tanks should “joust” the crushers until their debuff grows to large, and they will take too much damage to prevent them from casting their debuff on the entire raid.  In between this, tanks can DPS anything and everything.  Ours work people out of constrictors, or beat on corruptors.
      • All of the casts from the corruptors are channeled and can be interrupted.  Free tanks are great for trying to keep this under control.
    • Lastly, if at all possible, avoid hitting phase three with a crusher up.  It may be unavoidable, but usually the melee can time when the brain is going to hit 30%.
  • Healing Phase Two
    • Your healers must stay on top of cleanses.  There is really very little healing to be done in this phase, save those people in constrictor tentacles.  You number one priority is cleansing.
    • Make sure that your raid frames show you the squeeze debuff.  This is someone that is stuck in a tentacle and needs extra heals while the tentacle is being killed.
    • DPS during brain phases!  Everything drops, there is nothing else to do!  Pew Pew!

Phase Three

Going into phase three, your ranged want to knock out as many of the corruptor tentacles as possible before the melee hit 30% and the first of the Immortals spawn!  The fewer of these tentacles that you have up, the better.  If there is time, the melee can also knock out the ones that they run past getting to the rest of the raid.

We make it to phase 3 in three portal phases very consistently.  We usually have just over 7 minutes to finish Yogg off.

  • Positioning
    • We always make sure that our melee have access to Yogg’s bum.  So we position phase three on one of his sides, or his rear.
      • If the raid is already positioned in a good spot, we do not move.  If we are at this mouth, we all go 90 degrees to the right.
    • We found it effective to have our healers all piled up on each other, and away from the raid.  We had them stand about 3/4 of the way between a sanity well and Yogg (so that they were closer to the sanity well).  This gave the tanks more time to pick up the mobs, and they knew right where mobs would be headed.
    • We had our tanks tank the immortals up a bit from Yogg, so that the range could stand on Yogg without being bounced out of him.
    • Our ranged stood together with their backs to Yogg, and worked down the immortals.
    • Our melee stood together on Yogg’s rear at max range and worked on Yogg.
  • The Immortals – Phase 3 is all about the immortals.  No, really.  We kept getting owned in phase 3 and it took us a bit to figure out why.  This phase is really more about the immortals than it is about Yogg!
    • DPS on the immortals needs to be spot on.  It is important to assign someone to assist for the immortals so that DPS doesn’t split.
      • We found it helpful to promote someone to have them mark targets, and set them up as a tank target in oRA2, so that everyone can see what target to attack, even if they can’t see the mark.
    • Leave 1-2 finishers on the immortals until they are dead.  We found this helpful, as this ensured that even if they got a tick of health or two back, Thorim would still kill them.
    • Have adequate DPS on the immortals, I cannot stress this enough.  For our kill, in addition to all of the ranged, we moved a DPS warrior to the immortals full time, and a ret paladin was on them almost full time.  This meant that we only had 7 DPS on Yogg full time…and we still killed him!  (Recall I said that we had a less than perfect raid composition, AND 4 people playing in their off-spec.  We were not setting any DPS records).
      • As a side note, all DPS with an instant cast DoT kept it on Yogg full time, in between Immortals.
      • Mage Tip!  Mana Gems draw agro!  Our mages found it helpful to move to the healers before popping one, so that if they did draw agro from an immortal, the immortal was already moving to where the tank was looking.
    • If you start to fall behind on the Immortals, it is OK to pull some people from Yogg to help you get caught back up.  This is very important during Empowering Shadows.  You will quickly wipe if your immortals get out of control, so it is important to recognize when you are falling behind.
      • We had our immortal assist call out if we needed them.  That is to say, if we were falling from our “one up, one down” pace.
    • Tanks needs to be on top of Immortal pick ups.  They spawn very quickly and will one-shot anyone other than a tank.  They favor healers, and you will quickly lose healers if you are not fast enough on the pick up.
  • Yogg DPS
    • Anyone that is facing Yogg needs to make sure that you turn as soon as he starts casting those purple beams at you.
    • There are not many people on Yogg.  As I said a few bullets up, phase 3 is really more about the immortals than it is about Yogg!  That being said, those people on Yogg need to really push it to get that 30% cranked out in the 7 minutes you have before the enrage.
    • Synergize as much as possible.  We had all of our melee on Yogg.  It can also be done with all of the casters on Yogg.  Whichever you opt for, try not to mix and match too much.  You want to make sure that you play your synergizes well.
  • Sanity Check! – This is pretty self-explanatory, but in the excitement of everything sometimes people need a reminder.  Every 30 seconds or so, it is helpful to just remind everyone to do a Sanity Check!
  • Healing Tips:
    • We use only 5 healers for this fight.  2 Paladins, 1 Disc Priest, 1 Resto Shaman, 1 Resto Druid.  The immortals will hit a well geared tank for roughly 32,000 damage when they are at full health.  I cannot stress enough how important it is that the tanks remain topped of 100% of the time.
    • We assign two direct target healers per tank, and then have our resto druid keep both tanks in full HoTs.
    • Healers must be in position for phase 3 before it starts.  An immortal will spawn almost immediately at the start of the phase, and you can’t have your healers running into position as the tank is getting hit.
    • It is likely that there will still be a corrupter or two active.  I am usually able to handle the poisons and curses, groups with shaman should easily be able to handle the diseases and poisons with ease.  I assign one of our off-spec priests to help with the rest of the cleansing, as they are generally lower DPS than our main spec DPS priests, and removing those debuffs is important.  The other healers can’t really afford the loss of the GCD to do it. 
    • Paladins are fantastic healers for this phase, as they are almost like having an extra healer per paladin.  Beacon of Light REALLY shines here.
      • Feral druids should keep an eye out for healer mana, and toss our their innervates where needed.  We often handed them out to our paladins.
    • Discipline priests are also fantastic here, as the damage mitigation they offer is quite helpful.
      • As a side note, casting Pennance causes the priest to physically turn around.  I comment on this, because if you are casting pennance during the purple beams, you will suffer sanity loss, so it will be important that disc priests keep an eye on their sanity.
    • Resto Druid Tips!
      • I keep full HoTs on the two tanks, and in between my HoT timers, I cleanse.
      • I only keep a 1 or 2 stack of lifebloom on each tank, and I always let it bloom.
      • Swiftmend is your best friend.
      • Nourish is a good spell here in between hots, for a zippy 10k+ heal.
      • The melee may take minor damage due to the purple beams.  A quick WG is usually sufficient to cover the damage.
      • I do a lotof healing in this phase, and I do use my innervate and a mana potion…and I am still stressing my mana by the end of the fight.  I suspect as we get more comfortable with the fight I will not have this problem.

These are the lessons that we learned throughout the fight.  I hope that some of them are helpful!  If you have any other suggestions, please let me know!  I am always looking for more efficient ways to do things =)


8 responses to “Final Thoughts on Yogg-Saron Including Healing Tips!

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  1. Congratulations, Monolith!! Beru, thanks so much for this guide and all of the tips on the strat. Hopefully I can put them to good use and see him dead myself, soon!

    “This can be added to Grid…just make sure it’s spelled correctly! ” – I lol’d

  2. Grats Beru! I know how hard you’ve worked to get Yogg!

  3. Congrats! My guild spent 2 resets working on that annoying, nasty frog >:l I was getting rather tired of him too, but then we finally got him!

    I’ve been thinking of writing up a Yoggy-guide as well; doesn’t seem many have gotten to him yet, and all of the guides are from a DPS perspective

    Awesome walkthrough and grats again!

  4. Thanks Kae!

    The screenshot up on our website basically sums up the fight for me “I laughed. I cried. I yelled. . .a lot.”

    It’s a really fun fight when everything falls together! I wish you luck this week! *crosses fingers*

    edit: I also just added a tip about everyone making the following macro: /cancelaura Flash Freeze. I thought you might find this helpful also =) This cancels Hodir’s buff that “saves” you when you are almost dead. This will be very beneficial to your melee during phase one, as a melee frozen next to sara will invariably hit a cloud while frozen. It is also helpful in phase 3 for tanks and healers who might have taken more than anticipated damage from an immortal.

  5. @Keredira, thanks so much!

    @Corgii, congrats on your kill as well! You are absolutely right about there not being very many resources for him yet. I’ve probably read everything about him like…100 times! You should do a write up! I am positive that people will find it helpful =)

  6. Great guide! Thank you and congrats!

  7. Thanks, Beruthiel! Our guild just got the General down so this is going to be extremely helpful! You have a lot of really specific tips here that I’m sure we’ll work into our strats, such as the macro for removing Hodir’s Flash Freeze. Much appreciated!

  8. Hi Atris! I am glad you found it helpful =)

    Keep in mind with the recent changes, you will no longer spawn an add if you are incased in the Flash Freeze and get hit by a cloud. However, the macro is still quite useful!

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