Dragons of Karazhan: Nightbane and Netherspite
Greta is starting Karazhan, and Pike recently wrote up a nice summary of most of the fights as relevant to hunters. However, it was missing the two dragon fights. Since I’ve had the privilege of seeing both fights, including the disasters, I’ll try to supplement Pike’s post.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at these fearsome (and large) dragons hanging around in the Tower of Medivh. (Sorry Pike, stealing your format :P)
This cannot be! I’m burning from… within!
Nightbane was originally considered as the “last” boss of Karazhan. I’m not sure how it was in the early days of Burning Crusade, but WoWWiki says the fight used to be harder. However, due to the complexity of Prince Malchezaar’s fight now (with the hotfixed-no-safe-spot), their difficulties are now comparable. A [Blackened Urn] is needed by a raid member to summon Nightbane.
Quick movement and precision timing is key during the Nightbane fight. He has two phases: ground phase and air phase. Your positioning on the Master’s Terrace is also critical during this fight. I will explain why later. A hunter is also critical in this fight due to your ability to Misdirect.
When Nightbane is summoned, he will come from the air. I won’t go into much detail since I’m only focusing on hunters, but the basic positioning is that Nightbane should be tanked at the center of the terrace. All ranged DPS should be located on one side at maximum range to avoid his Fear ability. Do not get up close to him because he will Cleave you.
The first phase is the air phase, when Nightbane is first summoned. He will not do anything in this first phase except come to land. Immediately before Nightbane lands, a hunter needs to Misdirect onto the tank. The tank cannot lose aggro, so watch your threat meters. This starts the second phase. Give a second or two, then start with your most threat-generating shot to be misdirected onto the tank. Continue your DPS on Nightbane.
He will periodically fear, but watch out that you don’t get too close to Nightbane, or his Cleave ability will surely kill you. Also watch out for his Charred Earth ability. If this appears under your feet, move! Get closer to Nightbane so that you don’t get out of range, but stay out of his melee area.
At 75%, 50%, and 25%, Nightbane has an air phase. Stop all DPS on him and stack onto the main tank or another assigned player. Nightbane will start his Fireball Barrage and Rain of Bones abilities. Do not move away from your pile, or you will die from the fireballs. As soon as the barrage is over and Rain of Bones starts (spawning 5 skeletons), quickly DPS them from reasonable range, but make sure you don’t get out of the pile too early. You can even shoot from up close since there is no more dead zone for hunters.
Nightbane will start his descent again at some point when you’re fighting skeletons. Hunters, pay attention as you will need to Misdirect onto the tank again. Move to your original positions and continue the DPS. Finish off any remaining skeletons that’s still “alive”. Remember to move during Charred Earth and watch for Fear. At 50% (and 25%), he will go back to the air phase. Repeat until Nightbane is down.
Note: Because your pet tends to go towards the back of mobs now, s/he may not survive this fight due to Nightbane’s tail swipe.
Fighting Netherspite may seem complicated at first, but once coordination is achieved, it is not a difficult fight. It’s a perseverance fight, so watch your mana pool. If Netherspite is not dead in 9 minutes, he will Enrage, and your group is pretty much done. :(
The first phase is the portal phase. Netherspite should be tanked in the rectangular portion of the room. Hunters, ignore the beams. Sorry, they’re pretty and colorful the first time I saw them too, but they’re not for us. Also, don’t stand in the path of the beams either as that will interrupt them. Watch for Void Zones on the floor. If you’ve fought Zereketh the Unbound in Arcatraz, you know what I’m talking about. As soon as a black circle appears below you, move away.
When the banish phase starts, quickly move to the far end of the semicircular part of the room. You will not be pursued. Netherspite will cast Netherbreath, so stay 60 yards away or you will die. Bandage up and heal. Aspect of the Cheetah (or Pack) may be useful if you don’t have enough time to run that far, but remember to cancel them afterwards. (Raid groups may do this phase a bit differently as a few strategies work, so check with them what they want to do.)
Do not attack after the banish phase until after your tank has established aggro on Netherspite.
Afterwards, don’t worry about threat as long as your tank is standing in the red beam. Repeat the phases. He can be taken down slowly, as long as it’s within the 9-minute Enrage timer.
Netherspite does not tail swipe, so use your pet freely. Just keep Mend Pet up to counter the Shadow DoT. Take your pet with you when you run from Netherbreath!
I hope that was useful! Good luck to the brave heroes entering Karazhan!