Originally Posted by DarksendWelcome back to the Ulduar raid guide. My name is Darksend, an author at TankSpot.com and in this video I will cover the 10 man strategy for the hard mode only boss, Algalon the Observer.
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The first thing you will notice is the timer at the top of the screen. From the time you first engage him you only have 1 hour before he despawns for the rest of the raid lockout. Note this timer starts when you first engage him not when you open the door so take some time to study the room and to make sure everyone knows what do to before pulling the first time. If you are in combat with him when the timer ends he will wipe the raid by casting an ability called Ascend to the Heavens and despawn. Ascend to the Heavens is an ability he does both when his timer expires and he despawns but also if no one gets hit by or survives big bang. If it is triggered by the second cause he will not despawn, but it hits everyone for 700 thousand including people in black holes.
What makes this encounter challenging is the amount of damage going out, both the melee damage being done to the tank and the various sources of raid damage.
Approximately15-20 seconds into the encounter algalon will spawn 4 collapsing stars. These stars have no aggro and float slowly but randomly around the room. They deal 1% of their health to themselves every second. When they die they do an explosion for 15-20K shadow damage to everyone in the raid. It can be partially resisted so make sure to have a paladin or priest for shadow protection. A ranged DPS needs to be assigned to kill these. That person needs to time it so that the explosion is staggered with cosmic smash. This allows the healer maximum time to top everyone up. That person must also communicate to the raid when a star is about to die. They must also make sure to call out if anyone will be near the star when it explodes so that person can move away. This is because the stars leave a void zone also known as a black hole on the ground when they die. This void zone is a portal into the dark matter realm.
Running through the void zone is the only way to avoid Big Bang. Entering this realm is a complete threat drop on algalon. You cannot enter this realm with any kind of immunity such as AMS or Divine Shield and using either of those abilities as well as Cloak of shadows while inside will port you out immediately. While in this realm you suffer 1-2K arcane damage a second. This realm is also populated by adds called dark matter which will melee you while inside so make sure to kite them as best you can. This port lasts 10 seconds before you are returned to the normal plane.
In addition to collapsing stars, algalon also spawns constellations. They start spawning about the same time the first tank gets his fourth stack of phase punch. They have agro in the sense they will follow the highest person on threat but the person they follow is not neccessarily the person they cast on. Instead they cast arcane barage on random raid members. Whichever tank is not currently tanking should be taunting these and dragging them over black holes. By doing so both the constellation and the black hole despawn. you must be smart about which ones you close though as you do not want people to get hit by big bang because they had too run to far to the black holes that are still up
Every 90 seconds Algalon will cast Big Bang. It deals between 70-90K damage. as mentioned earlier someone must stay out and soak big bang to prevent him from ascending. there are several ways of doing this. This person does not have to be the top agro they simply have to be outside when the cast finishes. One way of doing it is tank cooldowns, but this prevents tanks from using cooldowns while tanking algalon himself and could result in tank deaths from normal melee damage. Another way to do this is shadow priest with dispersion. Yet another way to do this is external cooldowns on the tank such as GS or PS. GS is the most effective as it keeps you at full health since it is guaranteed to proc. When big bang is finished casting you get ported out immediately regardless of how long you should have left being phased so make sure that you position yourself to not be on top of a black hole again when you come out or you will be phased again right away.
The final source of raid damage is cosmic smash. Every 25 seconds a random raid member will have a red fissure placed under them. This can target the tank as well so be prepared to move the boss if it happens to you. You have 4-5 seconds to move away from it before it explodes. Smash deals fire damage based off how far away from it you are. Additionally, if it is directly under you at the time of the explosion you will be shot up into the air and most likely be killed by fall damage. Make sure to have a paladin or shaman for either Fire resist aura or totem as it is resistible.
Algalon has two melee abilities, the first is called Quantum strike. This ability is just a normal physical abilty that he does on the tank every few seconds, dealing approximately the same damage as an offhand swing. His second melee ability is called phase punch. Phase punch is on a 15 second cooldown and inflicts a moderate amount of arcane damage. It also applies a 45 second duration stacking debuff to the tank. When this debuff reaches 5 the tank is automatically ported as if they had gone into a black hole. The advantage to this is it also removes the debuff completely but they are then stuck in the dark matter realm for 10 seconds. Phase punch cannot be dodged, parried, or missed.
At 20% phase 2 starts. All black holes will despawn and 4 new ones will spawn at the 4 corners of the room, NW NE SW SE, about 1/2 way between the outer edge and the center of the room. do not be standing in those spots come the transition. He will still cast big bang in this phase and those portals still will phase you to the other realm but they now periodically summon an add, now called unleashed dark matter. The offtank needs to pick them up while the DPS all burn algalon. Stars no longer spawn but Cosmic smashes and phase punches still happen so make sure the tank does not get a 5 stack and get ported in accidentally. This is the ideal time to use heroism or bloodlust if you did not use it off the pull. His enrage timer is 6 minutes, this lands just before the 4th and final big bang.
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