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Patch 4.2 PTR Firelands Impressions: Lord Rhyolith

Do you like driving? Have a thing for coordinating DPS? Then you'll want to raid lead this bus of a boss. This oversized, flaming rock guy is a fairly unique encounter that involves much driving. If you can navigate through those driving cones on a track, then you should be able to master this guy in a timely fashion. On the other hand, it feels like a 10-legged potato sack race. Some tight and precise control will be needed here for coordination. If even one person deviates and isn't listening properly, everyone dies.

Again, spoiler warning on this one. If you don't want to know what's hot, just moooooove on.

Lord Rhyolith appears to be an elemental. Even though he starts with about 15 million health in 10-man, he's no pushover. For a raid composition, we went with one tank, three healers and six DPSers.

The big gimmick with Lord Rhyolith is that he doesn't technically have a threat table right away. He lumbers along in a straight line. You need to attack his legs in order to move him. The best way to go about is to use melee players for this task. They'll discover quickly that despite the size of the legs, the actual hit box is quite small (which I'm sure will be addressed in a future patch).

There is a new UI element in place that lets you see how tight of a turn Lord Rhyolith is making. The harder the DPS, the harder the turn. The green bar at the top is a customized version of it. The default version looks different.

Lord Rhyolith won't be alone, either.

Phase 1: Stone Form Rhyolith and friends

Fragment of Rhyolith If not taken down in 30 seconds, they'll explode and deal damage based on the amount of health they have remaining. There are about five of these that spawn. They'll die really quickly. Use your ranged guys for these.

Spark of Rhyolith Deals pulsing fire damage to players within 12 yards. Your tank needs to grab them and yank them to the side. Make sure these are a priority as well, due to their Infernal Rage.

The mobs of Rhyolith are summoned in an alternate fashion.

Do not allow Rhyolith to hit the edge of the platform. If he does, he's going to Drink Magma. That's 35,000 damage to all players every second. It's certainly possible to live through it, but you'll need all sorts of defensive cooldowns to have a chance.

Rhyolith's Obsidian Armor reduces incoming damage by 80%. If he steps on an active volcano, his armor gets reduced. Your players need to drive him around the map and have him step on erupting volcanos. Every once in a while, he'll cause lava to stream from a crater. They're really bright orange and extremely obvious to see. Avoid them, as they cut about 70,000+ damage out of players. Volcanoes are formed whenever he Concussive Stomps.

Phase 2: Fire form

When Rhyolith's health drops to around 25% health, his armor falls off. He won't ignore the raid anymore, so your tank needs to drop everything and start gaining threat. This final phase is the burn phase. This is where your raid has to pop cooldowns and your healers need to stand on their heads. He'll deal pulsing fire damage to everyone in the raid until he's down for the count.

This was one of the more frustrating encounters for me. We didn't have the luxury of the Encounter Journal yet to really get a feel for all of the abilities and mechanics. I also didn't have any melee players at all other than the tank. I think I'd have had an easier time if I were in a position to DPS; that's probably more of a psychological aspect to make me feel more in control, though. Sometimes we would DPS too hard, and Lord Rhyolith would overcommit. There were other times when the DPS calls to switch came too late and his momentum would cause him to careen into the magma around the platform. After about 10 wipes, we started getting the hang of how to really maneuver the boss around.

The news is already rolling out for the upcoming WoW Patch 4.2! Preview the new Firelands raid, marvel at the new legendary staff, and get the inside scoop on new quest hubs -- plus new Tier 12 armor!

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding

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