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Xavius Strategy/Tactics for Normal/Heroic

Last updated on Sep 22, 2016 at 20:17 by Damien 6 comments

Table of Contents

General Information

On this page, you will find a working strategy to defeat Xavius in The Emerald Nightmare for both Normal and Heroic modes, which usually only differ by the tuning of the boss.

Here, we assume that you have read our descriptions of the abilities for this encounter.

The other pages of our Xavius guide can be accessed from the table of contents on the right.

About our Reviewer

This guide has been reviewed and approved by Pottm from Serenity.

1. Overview

The fight against Xavius is made up of 2 phases during which you learn the fight and the abilities before having to burst down Xavius in the last phase, where he uses a mix of his Phase One and Phase Two abilities.

The key to the fight is Corruption management, which requires players in the dream (with the Dream Simulacrum Icon Dream Simulacrum debuff) to try and be the ones who receive the Corruption that cannot be avoided. Since this is the most important aspect of the fight, this is what we will start with. Remember to never let your Corruption reach 100, even if you are in the dream).

Then, we will speak a bit about positioning and what the different roles have to do. We will not split the explanations according to each phase. We will not split the strategy in Phase One, Phase Two, and Phase Three sections as these are too similar to one another.

2. Managing Corruption

The one thing to keep in mind is that not all of Xavius' abilities give Corruption. Many do not and most players (DPS players in particular) should reach Phase Three with very little Corruption, especially with the chance of resetting it when you exit the dream (so when you die with Dream Simulacrum Icon Dream Simulacrum or when you let that debuff expire).

Since it is so crucial that players within the dream (with the Dream Simulacrum Icon Dream Simulacrum debuff) be the ones handling abilities that increase Corruption, we feel that it is important to remind you of what these abilities are and who exactly gets Corruption from them.

  • Phase One
    • The healer dispelling Darkening Soul Icon Darkening Soul gains 25 Corruption (happens every 30 seconds if the raid decides to dispel at 3 stacks).
    • The tank picking up the Corruption Horror takes 5 Corruption for every cast of Corrupting Nova Icon Corrupting Nova (every 20 seconds) and for every cast of Tormenting Swipe Icon Tormenting Swipe (every 10 seconds).
    • the player intercepting the Lurking Terror takes 20 Corruption in Normal mode and 30 Corruption in Heroic mode (happens every 20 seconds).
  • Phase Two
    • The healer dispelling Blackening Soul Icon Blackening Soul gains 25 Corruption (happens every 30 seconds if the raid decides to dispel at 3 stacks).
    • Soaking Corruption Meteor Icon Corruption Meteor gives 40 Corruption divided by the number of players soaking, every 30 seconds.
    • Nightmare Infusion Icon Nightmare Infusion gives 30 Corruption to the tank (6 times 5 Corruption).
    • Dark Ruination Icon Dark Ruination gives 1 Corruption per second to every raid member, but it should never be allowed to be applied on Xavius.
    • Soaking Tainted Discharge Icon Tainted Discharge gives about 10 Corruption and needs to be repeated between 15 and 30 times, depending on raid size and time spent in Phase Two.
  • Phase Three
  • All Phases: Once you are above 66 Corruption, you will likely reach 100 pretty quickly, because you will have to avoid all of the Corruption: Unfathomable Reality Icon Corruption: Unfathomable Reality in addition to everything else the encounter throws at you.

Simply listing the sources of Corruption gives a pretty good overview of the important tasks: killing the Corruption Horrors and Inconceivable Horrors very quickly, dispelling Darkening Soul Icon Darkening Soul and Blackening Soul Icon Blackening Soul, properly soaking Meteor Icon Meteor, and choosing the right people to soak Tainted Discharge Icon Tainted Discharge pools.

3. Positioning

In Phase One, you want the raid to be loosely spread out 6 yards for Lurking Eruption Icon Lurking Eruption. It should be much more than this, because you want the tanks to be able to easily move out for the dispel of their Darkening Soul Icon Darkening Soul. For Nightmare Blades Icon Nightmare Blades, we suggest to leave a line between the melee and ranged groups where the debuffed players can go. Finally, melee players should avoid coming close to the Corruption Horrors.

In Phase Two, Lurking Eruption Icon Lurking Eruption and Nightmare Blades Icon Nightmare Blades disappear, so the entire raid can loosely stack behind the boss. This helps with dealing with Corruption Meteor Icon Corruption Meteor and Bonds of Terror Icon Bonds of Terror, but can make it harder to notice Corruption: Crushing Shadows Icon Corruption: Crushing Shadows and Corruption: Unfathomable Reality Icon Corruption: Unfathomable Reality.

In Phase Three, Nightmare Blades Icon Nightmare Blades makes a return, so you can reuse the empty line positioning.

4. Tanks

Tanks need to alternate being debuffed with Darkening Soul Icon Darkening Soul in Phase One and Blackening Soul Icon Blackening Soul in Phase Two and Three. We found that dispelling at 3 stacks works well, acting as a good compromise between taking increasing damage from the increased stacks and not dispelling too often. Also, in Phase Two, 30 seconds allows for Blackened Icon Blackened to drop before re-tanking the boss. It is important the tank move out of range of raid members before getting the debuff dispelled.

When a Corruption Horror spawns in Phase One, it should be picked up by the tank in the dream, preferably. This add needs to be tanked away from the raid and it must not be facing anyone else but its tank.

When Xavius buffs himself with Nightmare Infusion Icon Nightmare Infusion in Phase Two and Three, it is preferable that he be tanked by the tank in the dream (although there may no longer be a tank in the dream by Phase Three).

5. Healers

Healers in the dream, preferably, need to dispel Darkening Soul Icon Darkening Soul and Blackening Soul Icon Blackening Soul from the tanks. It is important to wait for the tank to be out of range of the raid members before dispelling and to make sure they have at least 3 stacks.

Beware of failed Corruption Meteor Icon Corruption Meteors (not enough people stacking), Dark Ruination Icon Dark Ruination (when the DPS do not kill the Inconceivable Horrors fast enough), and Nightmare Blades Icon Nightmare Blades (blades in the raid).

6. DPS

DPS down Corruption Horrors (Phase One) and Inconceivable Horrors (Phase Two) as fast as possible.

DPS in the dream (preferably) need to intercept Lurking Terrors (Phase One) and soak Tainted Discharge Icon Tainted Discharge pools of corruption (Phase Two).

In Phase Three, nuking the boss or the Nightmare Tentacles will be at the discretion of the raid leaders, as mentioned a few sections below.

7. Everyone

8. Phase Three Burn

The raid should keep potions and DPS/healing cooldowns for Phase Three and proceed in one of two ways, depending on encounter tuning.

  1. Nuke the boss, in which case, DPS cooldowns are activated right away.
  2. DPS the Nightmare Tentacles and direct spare DPS towards the boss. DPS Cooldowns can be used at the beginning of the phase or later up, if it becomes hard to keep up with the tentacles.

We currently do not know which way is the best. On beta, nuking the boss was definitely the way to go on Normal mode. Phase Three in Heroic mode was seen by very few people (if any), so it is hard to conjecture.

9. ChangeLog

  • 22 Sep. 2016: Added a few mentions, following pottm's review.
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