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Posts with tag raid-bosses

The hardest boss of WoW

hogger
We've done analyses and retrospectives on various boss fights for years here at WoW Insider, and as a new raid looms large in patch 5.4, I started thinking about which boss might be considered the most difficult to ever grace World of Warcraft. It's not a simple question to answer, because of the diversity of fights we've seen in WoW over the years, as well as the way the game itself has evolved. I turned to the rest of the WoW Insider team for some opinions on this, and they quickly weighed in with typically interesting and thoughtful opinions. As can be expected with such a subjective topic and a good-sized group of people as the WoW Insider staff, opinions varied on which might be the hardest boss of all. Yet, four names in particular kept popping up.

1. C'Thun
Matt Rossi: If we're talking "hardest for people in the best gear available to do at the time", then C'thun. They HAD to nerf C'thun before anyone (and I mean anyone) could kill him without exploiting. For a group of level 60's in BWL/AQ gear, pre-Naxx, C'thun was the hardest fight. Not even Naxx fights compared. There has never been a fight tuned that high again.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding

The best fight from classic WoW

Vaelastrasz
This is a topic I know will get me into trouble. Classic WoW is known as "classic" for a reason, after all. Being the opening foray into the MMO that has since become the standard for the entire industry, WoW's first incarnation is filled with memorable encounters. The raid bosses we battled back then are the yardsticks by which we have judged pretty much everything that has followed.

I know it's tempting to say something like Ragnaros or Onyxia or C'Thun, because those are the big bad end boss fights that remain etched in WoW players' collective consciousness. I've always tried to stay away from the obvious answers, though, because, well, they're obvious. I don't think there's anything particularly interesting I could write about Ragnaros or Onyxia that hasn't already be said better by someone else. When I sat down to brainstorm about this topic, I ran through many of the classic bosses, testing my memories of them, and after a while I hit upon what I knew would be my personal answer to this question: Vaelastrasz the Corrupt.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding

Patch 5.2 hotfixes for April 22

Twin Consorts
Some hotfixes went live today after the server restart. The big one that has my guildmates jumping up and down with glee is the change to the cost of Mogu Runes of Fate - they now cost 50 Lesser Charms of Good Fortune, down from 90 previously. Now, I do lots of dailies, so I couldn't get rid of my Lesser Charms fast enough even before the price nerf, but this is a great quality of life change that will give people more Runes of Fate to spend on chances for gear.

In addition, players picked from different realms will now be able to get loot and bonus rolls off of Oondasta and Nalak, and there are some minor nerfs to the Twin Consorts fight in Throne of Thunder. The Sinister Primal Diamond has also had some tweaks to its activation rate, particularly for fire mages. The full blue text is below the cut.

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Filed under: News items, Hotfixes

Bashiok clarifies changes to Durumu

Durumu the Forgotten
Last night, Blizzard released some hotfixes that mostly focused on the Durumu encounter in Throne of Thunder. Today on the general forums, community manager Bashiok has responded to a few player questions and clarified some of the rationale behind the changes, as well as announcing that another small hotfix to the encounter will be deployed later today. This newest change will see the death-beam during the maze phase dissipating slightly sooner than before, to balance against the fact that it now moves faster than it did prior to the hotfixes. The sum of these changes should help out those players who were struggling with the fight due to graphics and visuals.

Just wanted to follow up with some additional information, as we've seen a few questions since the changes.

In a hotfix yesterday, we changed two elements of the Durumu Eye Sore mechanic, or the "maze" as it's more commonly known. First off, we applied a small client patch to increase the visual fidelity of the fill graphic itself, giving the effect less vertical height and hopefully making it easier to see the safe spots as they appear. Feedback on this change has generally been positive. Separately, at the same time we made some adjustments to the logic of how the maze is drawn with respect to the movement of the Disintegration Beam. One of the less intuitive aspects of the original maze mechanic was how it would begin drawing behind you, and how the right thing to do was actually to turn around and back up, towards the approaching death beam, in order to safely enter the forming maze. Why would any sane person want to move closer to a death beam?!

We generally are extremely cautious about making gameplay adjustments to encounters once players have already learned them, but in this case the opening of the Halls of Flesh-Shaping LFR wing highlighted the fact that the mechanic was a particular source of confusion to many players, and the longer we waited to make any adjustment, the more disorienting it would be if we did change anything. So what we did was make the maze immediately begin drawing in front of the player as the beam activates, so that you never need to turn around and run towards the beam. This also effectively gives players a slight head-start on the beam as it begins to move. To maintain the same sense of urgency, the beam does move slightly more quickly now, so that it will, over the course of the phase, catch up to players and negate that head start. But the player movement required once you're actually running the maze should be unchanged. We have noted, however, that at the very end of the maze sequence, it can now feel like the fast-approaching death ray is going to reach you, making it feel like you're stuck between a rock and a hard place. To address that concern, we are making another adjustment today, which will cause the death ray to dissipate a few seconds earlier at the end of the maze.

Filed under: News items, Hotfixes, Mists of Pandaria

Interview with Lead Encounter Designer Ion Hazzikostas

At the Mists of Pandaria launch event in Irvine last week, I had the opportunity to talk to Ion Hazzikostas, lead encounter designer for World of Warcraft, about Mists of Pandaria's raids and dungeons, lessons learned from Cataclysm and beyond, and the road ahead.

WoW Insider: State your name and position!

Ion Hazzikostas: My name is Ion Hazzikostas and I am the lead encounter designer for World of Warcraft.

What does that job entail?

I'm the lead on the encounter team, which is self-explanatory; we make the dungeon and raid content, primarily. We're specialists in multiplayer PVE combat. On top of the dungeons and raids, we also help with outdoor raid bosses, scenario bosses, things like that.

What would you say that your biggest goal going into Mists of Pandaria was?

Particularly on the dungeon and raid front, to provide content for everybody, for all kinds of players. And we recognize that there's a massive spectrum of millions of people who are playing and enjoying World of Warcraft - a huge range of skill, frankly, and time commitment, the whole casual-hardcore spectrum people always talk about. And one of the things that we've been doing over the evolution of the game is to add additional difficulties, additional ways of consuming that content. So, you know, we now have LFR, normal, and heroic raids, and now we've introduced challenge modes, a sort of new tier of actually legitimately difficult five-player content. It's one of the biggest differences from Cataclysm at launch; one of the things we heard from people who were in guilds with friends and they'd say "these dungeons are awesome, we're having a lot of fun" ... but the people who queued up in Dungeon Finder would have a miserable time.

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Filed under: Mists of Pandaria

A cautionary tale of lockouts and low-pop realms

A cautionary tale of lockouts and lowpop realms ANY
Imagine if you will that you are in a raid guild that has enjoyed some small amount of success. You've quietly managed to successfully raid your way through each tier of content, and you've managed to snag every realm-first kill of an end boss along the way. Now imagine you are working on a realm-first kill of a boss, wiping endlessly and working on individual performance and tightening up the execution of the fight. Suddenly, another guild grabs that realm-first kill before you do. Frustrating? Yes -- but it's all part of progression raiding.

Only this time, it's different. This time, the realm first was taken by a guild that wasn't really a raiding guild at all. The guild that nabbed the golden ring used a method that skipped all progression fights and instead plopped them at the feet of the final boss, the only one whose death counted for that realm first achievement. How would that make you feel? How would that make your guild feel?

This isn't a far-fetched situation at all. It's already happened. And it spells a bleak future for low-pop realms and the raiders that diligently work at content -- only to have a realm first taken away due to the cross-realm raiding feature.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding

Patch 4.2 PTR raid testing continues tonight

The testing for patch 4.2's Firelands raid content has been moving along at a steady clip, save for Friday's testing period, which got derailed due to server issues. But never fear! The 25-player modes for flamewaker hunter Shannox, spider queen Beth'tilac, and cranky (almost Rossi-like) elemental Lord Rhyolith are up for testing tonight to make up for Friday's lost time.

Make sure to check out our impressions of three of the new bosses: Alysrazor, Lord Rhyolith, and Beth'tilac.

We're going to retry Friday's schedule, today!

Monday, June 6
2:30 PM PDT – Shannox (25 Player)
4:00 PM PDT – Beth'tilac (25 Player)
5:30 PM PDT – Lord Rhyolith (25 Player)

As always, the schedule can change at a moment's notice due to issues with the build, server, encounter, or the mercurial nature of designers. The encounters are all a work in progress; there will be bugs and tuning is not final.




The news is 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: Raiding

Easily share boss strategies with Boss Blueprint

We're always on the lookout for awesome web tools and utilities that can help raiding groups with everything from determining raid buffs to the strength of your raid group itself. Now, you can plan strategies and easily share them with Boss Blueprint!

The interface is simple, and it has preset room images for each and every raid boss in Bastion of Twilight, Throne of the Four Winds, and Blackwing Descent. You can add any raid markers, directional arrows to indicate movement, and raid roles onto the map to show where people should stand. Boss Blueprint could make a really great tool when you're explaining a fight to your raid and need a visual aid.

Blizzard has come a long way with its own raid interface with the new raid markers, new tools for raiders like role checks, and beefed-up raid unit frames that look more and more like those of a lot of addons out there. Boss Blueprint looks like it could be a great corollary to the built-in tools, as the images you create are easily sharable just by clicking the generated link.

Check out Boss Blueprint at its website here.

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm has destroyed Azeroth as we know it; nothing is the same! In WoW Insider's Guide to Cataclysm, you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion, from leveling up a new goblin or worgen to breaking news and strategies on endgame play.

Filed under: Guilds, Raiding

Breakfast Topic: Who could be a new world boss in Cataclysm?

One thing that was missing from the Wrath expansion, conspicuously or not, was a world boss on par with those such as Kazzak and the Emerald Dragons. For better or for worse, Blizzard completely removed them from the game, reserving the massive figures towering over the landscape for instanced quests or dungeons.

Blizzard touched a bit on why they've not used world bosses in Wrath in the recent Twitter developer chat. They observed that there are issues with the bosses that have prevented them from feeling comfortable making more world bosses, such as issues with groups racing to bosses, or the ability of people outside raid groups to deliberately mess up boss attempts. On the other side of the coin, though, they did imply that they like world bosses, and will probably implement more in Cataclysm if and when they can find a satisfactory work-around for the problems.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Breakfast Topics

Breakfast Topic: What's your favorite raid boss?

Here's a good question from the official forums: What's your favorite raid boss, and why? The original poster chose C'thun, from classic WoW's second-hardest raid, AQ40; Bornakk agrees. I haven't actually seen C'thun, but from what I hear it was both incredibly frustrating and incredibly awesome. Crygil picks Doomwalker, but he might be a little biased.

As for me, picking out of the fights I've done, I'm going to say Hodir. I don't remember classic raiding very clearly, and I only got through Karazhan and most of Zul'aman in BC. Ulduar is probably my favorite raid instance out of all the ones I've done, and the Hodir fight is really fun and demands a good amount of coordination from your group. What's your pick?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Raiding, Bosses

Top five toughest and easiest raid bosses

Jinzuku over on Hyjal has a fun idea: list your top five toughest and easiest raid bosses. C'thun, M'uru, Kil'jaeden and Sarth 3D are appearing on most of the lists -- the old Four Horsemen and even C'thun's trash are also getting called out by Bornakk. Personally, I haven't raided much of the hardest content, but on the hard side, I'd have to say that General Rajaxx gave my guild a rough time, Ragnaros didn't go down easy, and Twin Emps didn't play well with us (or a lot of other guilds, either).

Easiest? Chess (duh), I always found Baron Geddon to be pretty easy (though no less fun), Attumen the Huntsman, and Venoxis was a knockover, too. But as you can see from the thread, people are all over the place -- some of the hardest bosses in the game for some were simple for others. And while some guilds fly through content, others can bump their heads on bosses for quite a while. I wouldn't put him on the hard list, but I know a few guilds I've run with had quite a bit of trouble with Moroes while they were first starting out.

And it's no surprise that most of the hardest bosses in the game came near the end of expansion cycles -- AQ40, Naxx, and Sunwell. A few people in the thread predict that we'll eventually see the Lich King on these lists, and given that Blizzard goes tough when you get a couple content patches into an expansion, that wouldn't be a surprise at all.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Bosses, Forums

GameSpy speaks with Jeff Kaplan about Wrath of the Lich King

In addition to all the other info dropping today (apparently Blizzard held an event this last week at their HQ to show off some new Wrath information), GameSpy got to chat with Jeff Kaplan, WoW's Lead Designer, about Death Knights and what they're going to be for in the next expansion.
  • Apparently Kaplan says Blizzard has designed "zero" raid bosses for the next expansion yet, so he isn't sure where they'll fit among Pallies, Druids, and Warriors as tanks.
  • DKs will have a disease-based DoT, as well as the creature and ghoul summons we've posted about previously
  • As we heard before, Death Knights will serve as a "Fury Warrior" type of tank -- damage based rather than protection based.
  • Blizzard hasn't determined exactly whether there will be faction differences in the epic class quests, but they won't be too different for races or factions, just because the stories, he says, should be the same
  • Finally, Kaplan clarifies again that Death Knights will be available to all races, and that Arthas himself became not Undead, but Scourge
In case, maybe, Arthas wants to come back? We'll let you read the rest into what Kaplan said -- he unfortunately didn't tell us too much new information, but he did clarify a few points we already knew about Death Knights. And the news about Blizzard's nonaction on raid bosses so far is interesting -- has Blizzard really not made any raid bosses yet, or are they just not ready to tell us about them?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Interviews, Death Knight

Breakfast Topic: Favorite Boss quotes

Many times we find ourselves too busy as rush through dungeons and raids to truly appreciate the creativity that goes into them. I get a kick out of the amusing, over dramatic, and downright egotistical things that bosses say when facing their demise. Balthazaar of Etrigg began a thread in the official forums on favorite boss quotes.

The original poster mentioned that simply the word, "Die," as articulated by Gruul [in Gruul's Lair] as being a chilling statement. Nobor of Kel'Thuzad added "Anything Prince Malchezaar [in Karazhan] says. Because he's got the smoothest, sexiest voice in the game." There were several other notables.

Ok, so the last one takes a little artistic license. My favorite is Keli'dan the Breaker of Blood Furnace when he says, "Closer! Come closer... and burn!" What's your favorite boss quote?

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Filed under: Fan stuff, Breakfast Topics, Instances, Bosses, Forums

WoW Moviewatch: Stormforge

Thorvall from the Stormforge guild on the Blackhand realm created this piece. Set to on unlisted hard rockin' song, it combines in-game raid footage, Blizzard cinematics and psychedelic guitar work. I'm not sure what the intent of the video is, but for me, it's a nice look at raid encounters I'll never see.

Previously on Moviewatch...

Filed under: Raiding, WoW Moviewatch

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