Heroic Council of Elders up, lots of length to this one.
Hi there, this is your Pal Pallie and welcome back to Git R Raid. This is tier 15 Heroic Throne of Thunder and next up is Council of Elders. This encounter is one of the tougher heroic bosses in the tier that requires pretty solid execution from your raid team. It does require 2 tanks, any mix of dps and 2 to 3 healers on 10 man. Your choice to 2 or 3 heal it will probably dictate the strategies you employ and of course will be dependent on your gear level.
The fight's basic premise is that you have to deal with the normal mechanics of the bosses but each have a twist. So lets go through each of those twists and then talk about how to deal with them.
The biggest twist that will give your raid group fits is the first one, the Frost King. He still sends out frostbite, and you still can group up to spread the damage around, EXCEPT, as soon as you start soaking the damage for your fellow raider, you get a debuff called "Body Heat." After 8 seconds that debuff turns into "Chilled to the Bone" and you are unable to soak any more damage from Frostbite for 8 seconds.
So why is that so bad? Well Frostbite hits a lot harder on heroic as it ticks for 300k plus per second. Raids have dealt with this in a few ways. The strategy in this video revolves around creating groups of stackers for the frostbite victim to rotate around in. Other groups simply outheal the damage of it by spamming heals on that person and rotating external CDs. This is why I mentioned that your choice of 2 heals versus 3 would probably dictate your strategy. Its likely that 3 healing it would allow you to ignore stacking and just have the huge focus of the healers be on that one person. With 2 healing, its probably best to try some sort of stacked group approach.
One side note is that some classes can completely bypass this mechanic if they are quick enough. Paladin's with Divine Shield, Mage's with Ice Block, and Druids with Symbiosis of Ice Block can watch for the frostbite arrow to come over their head and if they are quick to hit their immunity, they will prevent it from being applied. Sadly in the 80 plus pulls on this encounter, I'm pretty sure that hunter's deterrance does not prevent Frostbite from being applied. It certainly cuts down on the damage to the hunter, but it doesn't give them immunity from the mechanic.
So figure out what strategy works best for you getting through this phase. In the footage here, we have two ranged groups, 1 group consisting of the tanks, and finally another group with the 2 melee. Since frostbite only targets ranged and heals, we could be pre-stacked in our ranged group, then once there was 2 seconds left before the stack group was chilled to the bone, we could move to the tank group, then the melee and so on until Frostbite was done. Personal CDs are obviously popped as much as possible for the Frostbite victim and they really just need to focus on surviving most of all.
Moving on to the Priestess, her twist is..well Twisted. Namely Twisted Fate. She will pick one melee and one person who is furthest from her and will spawn an add from them. Those adds will walk together causing pulsing raid damage. The closer together those adds are, the more raid damage they do. And if one dies before the other, it will pulse out even bigger raid damage. These adds can be stunned, rooted and snared and you'll want to do D all of the above if you have it available.
The goal for the twisted fate adds is to split your dps and make sure they stay as far away as possible while being dpsed down evenly. Make liberal use of those roots, stuns, pushbacks and snares to keep them apart and the raid damage is pretty minimal. But of course, make sure you have someone as far away from her as possible or else she will spawn the adds pretty close together. This mechanic isn't too bad to deal with as long as the adds don't move very much and die pretty close to the same time.
Next up, Kazrajin's empowerment. He goes from reflecting 25% of your individual damage back at you to reflecting 10% of all of his damage taken back to the whole raid. This can get tricky of course if you have high dps. If I shoot a 100k Arcane shot to his dome, I have to realize that I just hit my entire raid for 10k. Multiply that out by 5 to 6 dpsers and you can see how quickly this can turn ugly.
The lesson here is to rotate raid CDs and to do steady dps. If you are a dps class, try to save your big hitting abilities for when he's actually rolling and not when he's doing overcharged. Obviously though, you have to break his empowerment so you can't slack at dps either. Find a balance. If Sul is dead at this point, you can also have the raid stack on Kazrajin in order to do some effective raid healing.
Lastly, I'll only briefly mention Sul's empowerment. It was more of an issue when people weren't as geared but nowadays most strategies involve killing off Sul before he gets empowered so you may never see it. The theory is that if he gets empowered and there is a sand trap touching or overlapping another sand trap, he'll spawn a super add that will destroy your raid in quick fashion. So the way to deal with it was to make sure that no sand traps ever overlapped during the whole fight. This made your positioning during the entire fight supremely important. But like I said, very few raids will ever see this empowerment as the strategies don't ever call for taking it.
So with that, lets move into some overall strategy tips and tricks. As I just mentioned, you want to burn and kill Sul as fast as possible. You don't want to deal with his empowerment plus the sand bolts he casts hurt a ton. Lusting on the pull and going all out on him is the recommended strategy. After the first Blessed Loa Spirit add spawns, you need to figure out a decent split of your dps in order to keep killing Sul but also breaking subsequent empowerments.
We left our melee on Sul pretty much until he died. This also helped with interrupts. The only exception was that we had our warrior switch off during the priestess' empowerment to stun and kill the melee Twisted Fate add before returning to Sul. That left our 4 ranged to break empowerments. One note is that it isn't too terrible to take some Dark Power ticks from these bosses. The damage ramps up slowly so even being in Dark Power for 5 to 7 seconds isn't bad if you are accomplishing other goals like killing off Sul. Just figure out what the dps split is and then make sure people are switching targets appropriately.
We also preferred to get the priestess as the 2nd empowerment. Remember too that she needs to be away from the other bosses when she is unempowered due to her healing spirit but when she is empowered, you can interrupt her casts and stack her up with the others to get some cleave going. Once she is positioned, you just have to ensure you have someone out at max range to get the Twisted Fate adds. Kill them off evenly and you win.
For us, Sul died during the 2nd empowerment which then allowed melee to help finish off breaking the priestess' empowerment. Remember to interrupt the priestess and get her away from the other bosses once she is done being empowered.
With Sul dead, the only possible choice for empowerment will be Kazrajin. As mentioned, try to stack up and do steady dps. One note here is that Frost King will still throw out biting cold, so unstack before it comes out and then let the person who has it stand out there while everyone else stacks back up. You don't want any more unnecessary raid damage at this point. This is definitely the time for raid CDs so rotate through them.
After this point, you'll be rotating through the bosses. Whichever one has the highest health will get empowered. Its likely you'll get one more frost king empowerment before he's dead but you'll also only likely get one frostbite going out. If you have the luxury of still having your brez and frostbite goes out on someone who can't immune it, just let them die and burn your battle rez. Our poor warlock was that sacrificial lamb here but it really does help out not having to worry about your stack groups or straining the healers to keep that person alive.
You will likely kill off Frost King 2nd and have Kazrajin at 50% health and the priest at 30% or so. Be very careful during Kazrajin's final empowerments. I know we wiped at least a few times at this point because we all got excited that we were close to downing it so we slammed our dps buttons hard. Don't do it! Just go through it nice and steady and keep it under control.
Lastly there is one more twist to the entire fight that I haven't mentioned yet. It is called Soul Fragment. Every other time that you break an empowerment, a debuff goes out to a random player. It inflicts 55k shadow damage every 5 seconds. Thats not too bad you say? Well every time it ticks, it gives you another stacking debuff called Shadowed Soul that increases your damage taken by 3% throughout the rest of the fight. Once you get Soul Fragment, you'll notice you get an extra action button. You are able to pass Soul Fragment by targeting one of your fellow raid members and then clicking on this button. Your stacks of Shadowed Soul will remain but you'll no longer be taking damage from Soul Fragment of course.
In general, the strategy for dealing with this mechanic is to stack it on your melee most of all but share it around to everyone as you can. Having 5 stacks of it on all your ranged and heals is nothing big. Your melee take very little other damage in the fight, so they can go up to 10 before passing it along. Early on in the fight, avoid giving it to tanks. But once Sul and Frost King are dead, there is no reason that a tank can't take 20-30 stacks. You'll have 3 Soul Fragments to pass around by the end so make sure 2 of them are on tanks at that point and go from there. Try also to avoid putting soul fragment on someone who is taking frostbite or biting cold. It hurts enough already. Just try to communicate and ask who can take stacks or work out a rotation ahead of time.
And thats pretty much all there is to this fight. So work out how you are going to handle frostbite, remember all the twists in this encounter, and you'll have yourself a kill soon enough. Thanks for watching and please subscribe, comment and or like this video if you found it helpful. Have a good one!