Ursoc Strategy/Tactics for Normal/Heroic
Table of Contents
- ×Normal/Heroic Strategy/Tactics
- +Mythic Strategy
On this page, you will find a working strategy to defeat Ursoc 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 Ursoc guide can be accessed from the table of contents on the right.
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Ursoc is a quite straightforward fight. Your raid will have to deal with a handful of abilities in order to defeat him. The fight is slightly different in Heroic mode, due to the presence of Nightmare Images and their mechanics ( Miasma and Nightmarish Cacophony).
Positioning against Ursoc is dictated by Focused Gaze, which requires the targeted player to be able to put a group of players between him and the boss, in order to increase the number of players hit by Momentum and decrease the damage of Barreling Impact. Doing so, the targeted player will also put some distance between him and Ursoc, reducing the damage taken from Trampling Slam.
Focused Gaze being cast every 40 seconds and the debuff from Momentum lasting 50 seconds, you need to set up two soaking groups that will alternate getting hit by Momentum. While the soaking group remains loosely stacked in a line going out from the boss, the other group is free to spread loosely on the same side of the boss, as shown in the picture below.
When a player is targeted by Focused Gaze, all they need to do is run behind the loosely stacked group. Once this is done, both groups exchange role for the next cast of Focused Gaze, reposition, and resume the encounter normally.
It is worth noting that being onto Ursoc's model counts as being in his path when he charges. This is important to keep in mind for soaking (or avoiding to soak) Momentum.
Roaring Cacophony has a bit of an impact on positioning, because it requires players to be within 25 yards of Ursoc to share the damage. If the raid is positioned properly for Focused Gaze, this should not be a problem, though. Note that towards the beginning of the fight, you do not need ranged players to soak Roaring Cacophony (it allows ranged DPS to do more DPS and the damage is low enough that the tanks and melee DPS can handle it). Later on, as damage ramps up, ranged players need to start soaking as well. Eventually the damage becomes too high and everyone needs to soak to avoid wiping the raid.
In Heroic Mode
In Heroic Mode, with the added mechanics of the Nightmare Images, the boss can no longer be tanked in the middle of the room. You need to keep him close to the edge of the room and move around, to keep him away from the Miasma void zones. This is not a problem regarding positioning though, because after Roaring Cacophony is cast, you simply need to move Ursoc towards the side where the raid is located and have the raid move accordingly.
Positioning for Focused Gaze is harder in Heroic mode. The delay between Focused Gaze and Roaring Cacophony is still 20 seconds, but in Heroic mode, Roaring Cacophony is cast twice in a row, but a few seconds between each cast. With the casts lasting 3 seconds each, you only have about 8 between the second cast of Roaring Cacophony and the beginning of Focused Gaze. Even if Focused Gaze gives the targeted player 6 seconds to position himself behind the Momentum-soaking group, it is better to be ready beforehand, so that this player knows immediately where to go.
The fight being mostly about positioning for Focused Gaze, there is very little else to say, except some healer and tank-specific recommendations.
A tank swap is necessary to handle the combination of Overwhelm and Rend Flesh. Because of the timing on Overwhelm and Rend Flesh, the optimal strategy is to tank swap after every cast or Overwhelm or Rend Flesh. We will explain why in the next few paragraphs.
What you want is that the tank who gets hit by Rend Flesh have no stack of Overwhelm and do not receive any for 12 seconds afterwards (so that none of the damage from Rend Flesh is buffed by Overwhelm). By tank swapping after every cast of Rend Flesh or Overwhelm, you achieve exactly that, as illustrated by the timeline below (using the ability timings presented in the abilities section). XX:YY means XX minutes and YY seconds into the fight.
- 00:10 — Tank A gains a stack of Overwhelm;
- 00:11 — Tank B taunts Ursoc;
- 00:17 — Tank B is hit by Rend Flesh (after a 2-second cast that starts at 0:15);
- 00:18 — Tank A taunts Ursoc;
- 00:20 — Tank A gains a second stack of Overwhelm;
- 00:25 — Tank B taunts Ursoc;
- 00:29 — Rend Flesh drops from Tank B;
- 00:30 — Tank B gains a stack of Overwhelm;
- 00:32 — Overwhelm drops from Tank A;
- 00:33 — Tank A taunts Ursoc;
- 00:37 — Tank A is hit by Rend Flesh;
- 00:38 — Tank B taunts Ursoc;
- 00:40 — Tank B gains a second stack of Overwhelm;
- 00:45 — Tank A taunts Ursoc;
- 00:49 — Rend Flesh drops from Tank A;
- 00:50 — Tank A gains a stack of Overwhelm;
- 00:52 — Overwhelm drops from Tank B:
So, the two tanks have to follow this 40-second cycle until the end of the fight. There are variations of this pattern. For example, you can have a tank build up stacks of Overwhelm until 4 while the other tank handles two successive Rend Flesh, before they swap role.
The hardest part of the fight is after Ursoc soft-enrages with Blood Frenzy. You need to make sure you have your healing cooldowns available past that point.
When to Use Cooldowns
The soft-enrage phase is probably going to last between 80 and 120 seconds, so you have some freedom with when exactly you will use the DPS cooldowns, and delaying Bloodlust/Heroism will allow your healers to more efficiently heal through the increasing damage. That said, if you wait too long and your DPS start dying, then you will lose out on DPS. So, there is a balance to strike and that you will have to find.
- 21 Sep. 2016: Made it more obvious that the optimal tank swapping strategy can easily be summed up as swap after every Rend Flesh or Overwhelm.
- 16 Sep. 2016: Added more details following pottm's review.
- ×Normal/Heroic Strategy/Tactics
- +Mythic Strategy
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