Mogu'shan Vaults: The Stone Guard
Gear acquisition: I went in with a little over 7000 spirit. My item level was 462. I'm still trying to replace my cloak. But keep running heroics. If necessary, hard queue specifically for the instances that you need. I've compiled a list of heroic drops for healers and where they come from which you can use as a reference.
Augments: Helm enchants aren't in the game. Scribes are the go-to profession for shoulder enchants. Speaking of enchanting, the mats required for enchants are incredibly forgiving and you can destroy certain types of enchanting raw mats to create new ones.
For healers, I recommend these enchants
If you're curious, I went into this raid with around 7500 spirit as a holy priest. My item level was around 462.
The Stone Guard is undoubtedly the first real raiding challenge for guilds.
What's that? What about the Sha of Anger? The difficulty of that boss varies by server size and faction population. On my server, there have been engagements where the Horde fields 2 - 3 raid groups: 1 to engage the Sha, the other groups to fend off the Alliance.
Mogu'shan Vaults first boss will test your raid's abilities on endurance, game sense, and reactions. There is a slight variation between 10 man and 25 man versions. On 10, you take on one less statue leading to one less set of abilities.
If you're just starting out on the Stone Guard, bring in 7 healers (or 3 on 10 man). Your raid's DPS will no doubt be all over the place with various spreads from first to last. While DPS is important, you being able to live long enough to
DPS is even more important. We ended up using 4 tank healers: 3 on each tank and the 4th on the tank with 2 statues. The rest of the healers were on the raid. I imagine that you'll be able to scale back the healers required within 2 weeks as your raid gains additional gear and experience.
Here's the four most threatening abilities in the raid:
Jasper Chains - You and a player are linked. If both of you are over 10 yards apart, the chains deal 20000 fire damage which increase by 10% each second. Break these when the Jasper Guardian is attempting to petrify the raid.
Jade Shards - This is unavoidable. Your raid will take damage from these shards no matter what.
Amethyst Pool - Giant purple pools on the ground which are easily seen and avoidable.
Cobalt Mines - Cobalt shards get launched at player's location. The shards then arm after 3 seconds and players within the 7 yards will trigger damage and root players. Break these when Cobalt Guardian is attempting to petrify the raid.
Of those 4 abilities, Jasper Chains is the most dangerous. Do not attempt to break these until Jasper statue is up. Have a player stay stationary while the other player weaves in and out in order to gradually weaken the chain.
If your raid has trouble with this mechanic, designate a safe zone in the center of the chamber. Have them stay there and set your healing team to drop AoE heals in that cluster as needed.
Be aggressive with mana cooldowns. You'll need it. Healers will feel the pain in this first tier much like they did in early Cataclysm
. I caught myself using big expensive spells early on and hitting empty halfway through. Stagger those expensive spells as you have to drag your mana out. It's unnecessary to heal everyone to full. Use your strong spells to bring players back up to 75% and use your neutral heals (Heal
, Healing Wave
, etc) to get them back to 100%.
Your talent selection should reflect the boss you're working on. An ability like Divine Star
isn't going to be helpful if most players aren't stacking up to take advantage of it's properties. You're better off with Cascade
as both abilities are bound to hit more players. Keep that in mind when you're deciding which tools to use.
Good luck! Next week, we'll check out Feng and Gara'jal the Spiritbinder (second and third bosses, respectively).
Need advice on working with the healers in your guild? Raid Rx has you covered. Send your questions about raid healing to firstname.lastname@example.org. For less healer-centric raiding advice, visit Ready Check for advanced tactics and advice for the endgame raider.