Hey folks. This installment is going up a bit late due to connection issues that left me offline for most of last week, for which I sincerely apologize. We'll have Gluth today, Thaddius tomorrow, and Sapphiron/Kel'thuzad on Saturday, which should finish off all of Naxx for us. But first, let's run with the Big Dog.
Gluth is one of the tougher bosses to execute, mostly because your raid's attention is going to be divided between Gluth himself and the annoying (but amusingly-named) Zombie Chows. I think this bears the distinction of being the only boss fight in WoW where you not only fight the boss, but you also fight his dinner.
- Melee: He hits like a pansy. 'Nuff said.
- Mortal Wound: You'll need two tanks to deal with this. Mortal Wound is a stacking debuff reducing healing received by 10%, so you'll want to pass him off before you're sitting on too many stacks and receiving angry tells from the heal team. Because Gluth is tauntable and doesn't hit very hard, you have some wiggle room on when you'll want to have your offtank taunt. Some guilds rotate taunts at 2-3 stacks; others wait for as much as 5 stacks (it's usually not advisable to wait much beyond that). This is mostly a function of tank and healer gear; do whatever works best for your raid. The debuff itself lasts only 15 seconds so tanks don't have to wait long before they're ready to taunt off their colleague.
- Enrage: Enrage increases his melee haste and damage for 8 seconds. Again, he doesn't hit all that hard to begin with, but an Enrage coupled with a few stacks of Mortal Wound on the tank can get a little hairy for the healers. Hunters can use Tranquilizing Shot and Rogues can use Anesthetic Poison to dispel this, however.
- Decimate: This is his truly ugly ability, instantly reducing everyone's HP to 5% of their maximum health. The tank currently on Gluth will need to be healed quickly.
- Devour Zombie: Any Zombie Chow that gets close to him will be eaten, restoring 5% of Gluth's HP. In an ideal world, this never happens.
Adds, adds, adds:
- Zombie Chows: Shortly after the fight begins, Zombie Chows will begin spawning on the grate every 10 seconds. With each melee hit they apply a debuff called Infected Wound, which increases the amount of melee damage taken by the target by 100 and stacks up to 99 times. Because the Zombie Chows are vulnerable to snares and because the Infected Wound debuff stacks so quickly, they should be kited. DPS Warriors are particularly good at this as Hamstring can be spammed and they won't take much damage if a Zombie Chow gets close, but additional snares (particularly on 25-man, where 2 zombies spawn at a time rather than one) will help a great deal. Earthbind Totem, Frost Nova, Crippling Poison, Frost Trap, etc. all work just fine. Before Gluth uses Decimate, do not bother trying to DPS the Chows (see below for why this is); just keep snaring and kiting them.
DPS: DPS has the hardest job on this fight, mostly because success depends on an experienced kiter or kiters on the zombies and your ability to kill the adds quickly within a short window of time. You'll need to determine who's on Zombie Chow kite duty before the fight starts. On 25-man you'll probably need 2-3 people, possibly even 4 depending on their spec and cooldowns. On 10-man, 1 or 2 people should be sufficient. Either way, these people won't be doing anything else but kiting and then killing zombies.
DPS not occupied with kiting should stay on Gluth until Decimate, at which point the Chows will drop aggro and make a beeline for him. Decimate also reduces their HP to 5% (50,000 on 25-man, 25,000 on 10-man) so they can be killed easily, especially if you have decent AoE. Raiding mods should alert you when Gluth is within 10 seconds of doing a Decimate, so DPS should be prepared to switch to them immediately a few seconds before Decimate actually occurs. Nothing else matters but killing the Zombie Chows before they reach Gluth, or the fight gets long and ugly. Depending on the snare effects already on the Chows, you'll have at most 5-8 seconds before they'll get within gobbling range of Gluth.
Because Decimate doesn't occur very often (and with good DPS you'll kill Gluth after only one or two Decimates) the kite job essentially lasts for the length of the fight itself.
Healers: Tank damage on this fight is generally pretty light unless your Gluth tanks zone out and forget to rotate taunts. The first indication that this has happened will typically be when your critical-strike Holy Light hits the tank for 200. Otherwise, this is a very straightforward fight. You'll need to devote some attention to the people kiting Zombie Chows, however, as odds are very good (especially if it's a melee player doing the kiting) that they will be hit at one point or another.
There are no achievements associated with Gluth.
10-MAN vs 25-MAN
Less health and damage on Gluth's part, and fewer Zombie Chows spawn on the 10-man version (it's 2 every 10 seconds on 25-man, 1 every 10 seconds on 10-man). Otherwise, the fight's the same.