Light & Leafy

Divine Illumination – Healing Your Way Through Kel’Thuzad

Posted on: October 22, 2009

What sparkles, shoots out swirly gobs of light, and keeps warlocks’ mana pools full? Divine Illumination of course! This installment finally finishes up the ghoulish halls of Naxxramas! So, hang on to your robes fellow healers (I can say that because even pallies have robes nowadays!)! Kel’Thuzad, your time has come!

The giant frost wyrm is yet again a pile of bones settled on the cold stone floor in the antechamber. A wall of ice, presumably created by the slain dragon’s magic, crumbles to reveal a narrow hallway. A hollow laugh breaks the silence as you walk down the empty corridor — he knows you’re coming. The lich Arthas has placed in charge of the plagued citadel, Kel’Thuzad, eagerly awaits your arrival.
After all, such a powerful servant of the Lich King surely has some tricks to deal with pesty adventurers such as yourselves…

Abilities
Phase One Adds:
Soldiers of the Frozen Wastes – suicidal skellies that will die upon touching a raid member, causing damage to the entire raid. Low health pool and slow moving.
Unstoppable Abomination – large abominations that will need to be tanked because of their high melee damage and the 10% reduced healing debuff which can stack on their targets. Normal speed and large health pool.
Soul Weaver – When near its primary aggro target, the weaver casts a knock back spell to three nearby players that additionally causes shadow damage. Slow moving with an average boss-add health pool, the weavers must be attacked only by ranged dps.
Phase Two and Three:
Frostbolt (single) – a 2 second cast that MUST Be interrupted. Deals large amounts of frost damage to the tank.
Frostbolt (raid) – an instant frostbolt volley to the raid. Deals easily healed damage, and slows all members for 4 seconds. Happens once every 20-30 seconds
Mana Detonation – Debuff applied to a random mana user. After 5 seconds, the player will explode, causing damage to all those around him or her based on his or her maximum mana pool (Mana using melee dps will not cause extreme damage to their raid mates, but others can cause damage exceeding 25,000 HP). The player himself is not injured, but looses around 2k mana.
Shadow Fissure – Targets a random raid member, creating a large red pool around their feet. Detonates after 5 seconds, killing anyone inside the pool.
Frost Blast – Will encase the target and anyone within 10 yards in a tomb of ice, doing damage equal to 104% of the victims’ health over the span of 4 seconds, requiring all to be healed at least marginally until the ice melts. In 10 man, this ability cannot target the main tank, though in 25 man it can happen (though it’s rare).
Chains of Kel’Thuzad (25 man only) – KT will mind control up to 3 people at a time. The mind control cannot be removed and lasts 20 seconds, requiring raids to crowd control the inflicted members.
Guardians of Icecrown – At 45% health, the guardians will appear, each with the same amount of health as KT, meaning they just have to be off-tanked for the remainder of the fight. They have a buff which will increase their size and their damage significantly for each stack, giving the raid for all intents and purposes an enrage timer. They gain a stack of this buff once every 15 seconds.

Breakdown

The beginning phase of this fight really should be a piece of cake. Feel free to smite/judge/moonfire/lightning bolt any skellies that are getting too close to impact. You don’t really want to have to worry about them exploding and hurting your entire group. Usually, by the end of phase one you’ll still have one or 2 of the weavers around, so just be sure to dodge them or you’ll be knocked back. Phase 2 is really where things become tricky, though I personally find this fight to be easier to heal than Sapphiron. Healers should remain spread out throughout the fight, with assignments for either tanks or raid members. For 25, the raid healers should be in formation so that one is on the left side, one on the middle left, one on the middle right and one on the right side. That way, there is always at least one raid healer in range of that particular side of the room. Healers who are healing the add tanks should be on the side of the room the tank plans to be on; it’s important not to have to run to their tank because of the frost tombs, detonate manas and fissures. Raid healing will be a little heavy because of the aoe frost bolts, so healers should really try to keep inefficient healing to a minimum. Detonate mana will usually hurt anyone near a healer, because our mana pools are among the largest. The safest bet is to run as far back towards the alcoves where the adds were hanging out in phase one. So long as no one’s in a 10 yard radius though, you’ll be safe to explode =) With the way healer’s mana works, the 2k depletion from the detonate shouldn’t make much difference, unless you’re really unlucky and it continues to be cast on you. Fissures are pretty easy to avoid, especially if you have your graphics even a tad higher than the minimum setting. It just requires you to pay attention to your surroundings, and make sure you keep calm during the fight so you don’t accidentally get killed by one (but if you do, just remember than most people have in the past =D). The frost tombs are the hardest part of this phase. I like using the /range command to bring up a little tool tip that shows me who’s in a 10 yard radius around me. This way I can try to avoid being too close to anyone in range who might get the frost tomb cast on them (and, consequently on me if I’m cuddling up against them). Healers really do need to focus on healing the people in tombs; if they don’t receive at least 4% of their max health within 5 seconds, they will die. And, as a healer, that’s not something you (usually) like to see. A flash heal, penance, regrowth, holy shock or lesser healing wave should be enough to keep them up until you have more time to cast a larger spell. If there are a group of  frost tombs, a couple of healers in the vicinity should be able to keep them alive, even if only by a margin. Once the guardians spawn, the guardian tank healer(s) should be near their assignment. It’s incredibly important to burn KT through this phase, as the guardian’s self-buff will gradually become too much to possible heal through.
So as a recap — heal the people in ice, stay off the red circles and away from the big dark mind control players, and don’t ignite your mana near others!

 Tricks
Keep heroism/bloodlust available until the last phase. This will allow you to speed through the last 45% of KT’s health, and get you through the last phase when your mana will probably be significantly depleted. You can also use the circle in Sapphiron’s room to position people before heading into KT’s chambers. Staggering the ranged players can also help prevent unnecessary ice tomb chains. The last thing to be aware of is that if for whatever reason one of the tanks die, the tank on KT can keep a hold on the guardians if absolutely necessary. If that’s the case, however, the healers assigned to the extra tank should move onto the main tank as he will be taking increasingly more damage.


You’ve done it!  Congratulations on clearing Naxxramas! Next time, we’ll start getting into Ulduar and Trial of the Crusader!

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