Upper Blackrock Spire Guide
Deep in the heard of Blackrock Mountain lies one of the most challenging and rewarding dungeons for fresh max level players. Upper Blackrock Spire is a 10-man dungeon where you can delve through the waves of powerful Blackrock Orcs and make your way through their stronghold to find Warchief Rend Blackhand and General Drakkisath. This dungeon is integral both for getting some of the best pre-raid gear in the game and for getting attuned for Onyxia's Lair.
Quests in Upper Blackrock Spire
There are not tons of dungeon quests to pick up, but the ones available involving UBRS are extremely important, so it is worth making sure you keep up with when you might want to do them.
The quests are all outlined in our separate dungeon quest guide for this instance.
Upper Blackrock Spire is actually a dungeon within a dungeon. The entrance is inside the entrance to Lower Blackrock Spire, which can be found inside Blackrock Mountain. Once you enter Lower Blackrock Spire, the first door on your left is the entrance to Upper Blackrock Spire. The door is locked by default however, and at least one person in your group will need to have the Seal of Ascension to open it.
Seal of Ascension
At least one person in your group will need the Seal of Ascension to open the door of the dungeon. To acquire the seal, you first will need to get a Unadorned Seal of Ascension from the trash mobs in Lower Blackrock Spire. Once you have it, find Vaelan inside LBRS. Once you have his quest, you will need to pick up three gemstones from killing three bosses in the dungeon.
- Gemstone of Spirestone from Highlord Omokk
- Gemstone of Smolderthorn from War Master Voone
- Gemstone of Bloodaxe from Overlord Wyrmthalak
Once you have all three stones, you can turn in the quest to Vaelan. He will give you a chest containing some items that you will need for the next quest. You then will need to go to Dustwallow Marsh and find Emberstrife in his cave. You will need to fight him, so bring along a group to help you. Fight Emberstrife, and once he is at 25% health you will use your Unforged Seal of Ascension. At 10% health, stop attacking and use your Orb of Draconic Energy. This will mind control Emberstrife. Once you have him under control, use his Flames of the Black Flight spell to forge the seal. Now that you have the seal, you can enter UBRS.
Recommended Classes for Upper Blackrock Spire
If you are going in underleveled, Rogues and Mages are excellent choices due to their CC abilities against the many humanoid Orcs present in the dungeon. You can Sap / Polymorph one or more enemies in almost every single pull. This is primarily meant to be a level 60 instance, but 58+ is viable.
Upper Blackrock Spire is designed to be a 10-man instance. For your 10, you will want 2 tanks, 3 healers, and 5 DPS. Depending on how geared and confident you are, you can +1/-1 to those numbers as needed. At minimum you will want 1 tank and 2 healers, but 2 and 3 is a safer setup.
Once of the more important things to consider is gear. UBRS drops several high value items that many people will farm for. Specifically, Rogues and Warriors are after the Dal'Rend's Sacred Charge and Dal'Rend's Tribal Guardian combo while casters are all after the Briarwood Reed from the rare spawn Jed Runewatcher. If you are after one of these high value items, check with your group to make sure they are not reserved, or make your own group if you want to reserve one.
Layout of Upper Blackrock Spire
Upper Blackrock Spire has a relatively linear path. However, there are a few parts that are not intuitive. In the first room of the instance, you will need to clear out all of the trash before the next door will open. In the hatchery with all the eggs, you will want to run to the back right of the room from the door you came in to climb the debris up to the second floor. On that second floor, go around to the doorway, and clear out the trash that is necessary. Through that door, you will want to hug the right wall all the way to the big pit that Warchief Rend Blackhand is standing in front of. Jump into that pit to start the event that leads to the next boss fight.
Notable Trash in upper Blackrock Spire
The trash in UBRS can be overwhelming if you are not careful. Most of the trash consists of groups of orcs, meaning they are susceptible to spells like Sap and Polymorph. If your group is newer and less geared, use more control spells to fight less of each pack at a time. UBRS also has lots of pats and groups that are quite close to each other within rooms, so always pull back and be very careful about where and how you are pulling groups.
In particular, you should watch out for the first pulls that you do leading to the next room after the hatchery. Several of the melee orcs that you will pull can charge and knock back, so make sure that ranged are positioned well to not get knocked back into the hatchery below. If you do, you might break some of the eggs and pull extra mobs, which could result in a wipe.
Lastly, watch out for the Blackhand Summoners in the first room of UBRS. Interrupt their summons so that they do not summon additional enemies.
Bosses in Upper Blackrock Spire
There are 7 main bosses in Upper Blackrock Spire, all of which have a high chance to drop a blue item once killed. There is also a very valuable rare boss that occasionally spawns, Jed Runewatcher. Due to some items from specific bosses being quite valuable, groups occasionally will form to target specific bosses, such as casters only wanting Jed Runewatcher or melee only wanting Warchief Rend Blackhand.
Pyroguard Emberseer will spawn at the end of the encounter. To start the encounter, several players will need to click and channel the Altar in the room. The even starts with several enemies spawning and running towards you, but these can be easily AoE'ed down without much trouble. After they all are dead, Pyroguard Emberseer will spawn. Pyroguard himself is quite easy, and just needs to be tanked where he spawns facing away from the group. The melee can hit him from behind while the ranged and healers stand away from the platform.
Loot from Pyroguard Emberseer
|Truestrike Shoulders||56||Leather Shoulders|
|Gauntlets of Elements||54||Mail Gloves|
Solakar Flamewreath is also part of a longer encounter. To start the encounter, have your group hug the far wall upon entering the hatchery and run to the left. Clear out all of the dragons that are there to start, but do not bother breaking the eggs since they will just respawn. Once the adds are dead, start the event by clicking on Father Flame and looting the item from it. The event consists of multiple waves of adds that will come at you before the boss eventually spawns. The key to surviving the waves is to not break eggs and to kill Rookery Hatchers since they will break eggs themselves. Besides that, just kill the enemies as they come, making sure to AoE the weaker whelplings if they spawn. After making it through the waves, Solakar Flamewreath will spawn. He just needs to be tanked away from the group so that everyone can avoid his stomp while the group finishes killing adds before killing him.
It is worth noting that many groups choose to skip this boss since it is one of the harder encounters in LBRS and does not have many valuable gear drops.
Loot from Solakar Flamewreath
|Crystallized Girdle||56||Leather Belt|
|Dustfeather Sash||56||Cloth Belt|
|Polychromatic Visionwrap||56||Cloth Chest|
|Devout Mantle||55||Cloth Shoulders|
Goraluk Anvilcrack can be found at the western end of the room that you enter after the hatchery. As long as you clear out the trash before engaging him, it should be a simple fight. Just tank him facing away from the group and burn him.
Loot from Goraluk Anvilcrack
|Handcrafted Mastersmith Leggings||55||Plate Leggings|
|Handcrafted Mastersmith Girdle||58||Plate Waist|
|Flame Walkers||57||Mail Feet|
|Mastersmith's Hammer||55||Main Hand Mace|
Jed Runewatcher can be found at the east end of the same room as Goraluk Anvilcrack, but is a rare spawn, meaning he will only be there sometimes. Jed is a very easy fight, and as long as you kill all the surrounding trash first, should pose no threat.
Loot from Jed Runewatcher
|Starfire Tiara||55||Cloth Helmet|
Warchief Rend Blackhand
Warchief Rend Blackhand will appear riding his dragon Gyth after the event. To start the event, your group just needs to jump down into the pit that Rend is standing in front of.
The event itself is quite easy. Just kill the enemies as they spawn and you should be fine. If you feel like you are getting overwhelmed at any point, you can always control some of the orcs out of each wave, but you most likely will not need to. The only thing to look out for is to make sure you focus Rage Talon Fire Tongues when they spawn since they can cast a large fire nova.
After killing several waves, Rend will fly down on his dragon. The dragon Gyth needs to be faced away from the raid to avoid his breath, and he should be focused down first. Rend will ride on Gyth's back until 20% health, when he will hop off and fight himself. Kill Gyth first before switching to Rend. Rend casts a whirlwind occasionally, so melee need to make sure to look out for it. If you have cooldowns, Warchief Rend is a great boss to use them on.
Loot from Gyth
|Gyth's Skull||55||Plate Helmet|
|Dragoneye Coif||55||Mail Helmet|
|Tribal War Feathers||55||Leather Helmet|
|Pauldrons of Elements||55||Mail Shoulders|
|Dragonskin Cowl||55||Cloth Helm|
Loot from Warchief Rend Blackhand
|Dal'Rend's Sacred Charge||58||MH Sword|
|Dal'Rend's Tribal Guardian||58||OH Sword|
|Eye of Rend||58||Leather Helmet|
|Warmaster Legguards||58||Plate Leggings|
|Dragonrider Boots||58||Cloth Boots|
|Band of Rumination||58||Ring|
|Battleborn Armbraces||58||Plate Bracers|
|Spaulders of Valor||55||Plate Shoulders|
|Feralsurge Girdle||58||Mail Belt|
|Faith Healer's Boots||58||Cloth Boots|
The Beast has more mechanics than most other bosses in the instance, which makes it more difficult. The main things to watch out for are the charge and fear. The Beast will sometimes charge a random target before returning to attack the tank again, and will also sometimes fear nearby players. Ranged and healers just need to be spread out at max range away from the boss to avoid getting feared as much as possible. He also will use a fire nova that knocks back, so the tank should tank with their back against a wall to avoid the knock back.
Loot from The Beast
|Blademaster Leggings||58||Leather Leggings|
|Tristam Legguards||58||Mail Leggings|
|Spiritshroud Leggings||58||Cloth Leggings|
|Blackmist Armguards||58||Leather Bracers|
|Seeping Willow||58||2H Mace|
|Lightforge Spaulders||55||Plate Shoulders|
|Ironweave Boots||56||Cloth Boots|
General Drakkisath is by far the most difficult fight in the instance. General Drakkisath starts with two Chromatic Elite Guards, which are hard hitting elite mobs. There are two main strategies used for this encounter. The easiest strategy requires a Hunter, and is the kiting strategy. You start the pull by having your Hunter attack General Drakkisath, kiting him out of the room and back through the instance. The Hunter can keep Aspect of the Cheetah up, tagging General Drakkisath with Arcane Shot on cooldown to make sure he does not reset. While the Hunter is kiting, the rest of the group just kills the two adds with each tank picking up a separate add. Once they are dead, the Hunter uses Feign Death to drop aggro, and Drakkisath will return to the room where the group can kill him. Once the General is back, just tank him facing away from the raid and burn him down.
The other option without a Hunter is to just kill everything together. You can tank everything together, cleaving down the guards, and blowing all of your cooldowns at the start of the fight. If needed you can have a Warlock use Fear on one of the guards while the group kills the remaining guard and Drakkisath. This is doable, but much more dangerous than the kiting strategy. If you choose to do this, make sure to focus and kill the adds before killing Drakkisath.
Loot from General Drakkisath
|Tooth of Gnarr||58||Neck|
|Brigam Girdle||58||Plate Belt|
|Blackblade of Shahram||58||2H Sword|
|Spellweaver's Turban||60||Cloth Helm|
|Shadow Prowler's Cloak||58||Cloak|
|Draconic Infused Emblem||58||Trinket|
|Tome of the Lost||58||Off-hand|
Additionally, General Drakkisath can drop all of the Tier 0 chest pieces.
- 26 Jul. 2020: Updated with Phase 5 drops.
- 30 Jan. 2020: Guide added.
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