Utgarde Keep is the first dungeon that most players will do upon reaching Northrend's shores, and is the first of two dungeons that take place in the vrykul fortress of Utgarde in the Howling Fjord. It's a simple, linear dungeon that will do a pretty good job teaching newer players the ropes. The boss encounts, while simple, are still varied enough to keep the attention of veteran players.
While reading through this guide, keep in mind that this is its current state in the Wrath beta. It's mostly finished, but little tweaks will likely happen before retail. For those of you in the beta, I hope this guide will be useful to you on your adventures in Utgarde!
You might notice that some of the models in Utgarde look a little rough. Don't worry, they're not finished! Beta push 8771 introduced many new hairstyles for the vrykul, but seems to have reverted to an older model of the vrykul, which was likely an error. To see their newer model, check out the picture of them in our Howling Fjord gallery.
Your first pull is straightforward. Two Dragonflayer Ironhelms. They're pretty simple melee mobs, you likely don't even need to CC them. They have an interrupt they use in melee range, but if you're casting spells with a cast time in melee range, you really shouldn't be doing that.
Beyond that, you'll have a few pulls of Dragonflayer Metalworkers and Weaponsmiths. Before the furnace room, there are 2-3 pulls, but the patrols can make pulling a bit dicey if you're in a group that can't just AOE tank them all and call it a day. If you need to, watch the patrols for a little bit so you can identify who goes where. These mobs aren't terribly dangerous however, so don't fret too much.
Dragonflayer Weaponsmiths are the more dangerous mobs in this trash, though they still don't do much to a good tank. Melee DPS should watch out for their Cleave, and the tank will be getting stunned via Concussion Blow, and will need to watch out for Disarm.
Dragonflayer Metalworkers are low damage melee mobs, though they have an Enrage ability at low health. Besides that, their only ability is Sunder Armor.
The Forge has three faces spewing flames that divide the room into three sections, since you cannot pass through the fire. There are three Forge Masters in the room keeping the flames going. Once you kill the Forge Master, they can no longer work the flame and the next section of the room is opened up. You technically only need to kill two Forge Masters to open up the next hallway, but killing the third will shorten your corpse run a little if you have any wipes.
The Forge is more of the same besides the Forge Masters. Simple trash pulls. The pulls come with 2-3 mobs, sometimes you can get a fourth if there is a patrol hanging around, but not usually. CC if you need to, most anything that works on Humanoids will work here. The Forge Masters are immune to things like Mind Control however.
Dragonflayer Forge Masters are the key to progressing through the Forge, kill them and shut down the flames. Forge Masters deal Fire damage via the ability Burning Brand.
The Dragon Pens has two types of mobs: Proto-Drake Handlers and Enslaved Proto-Drakes. You'll want to tank these guys with your back to a wall.
Enslaved Proto-Drakes have two abilities you need to watch out for: A frontal cone Flame Breath and Knock Away. If you don't have your back to a wall, at least point your butt away from other groups of mobs. You can get tossed right into them if you're not careful.
Right after the parade of Drakes and their Handlers comes a fun pull. You might want to CC at least one of the three vrykul in the next pull, and if you have a Dispel or Purge in your party, keep an eye on the Runecaster. The Strategist is kind of a pain too, but the Runecaster is worse.
Dragonflayer Runecasters have a variety of Rune spells they can cast on their allies. Their durations are short, but their effects are pretty strong. The two most bothersome ones are Njord's Rune of Protection and Bolthorn's Rune of Flame. The first one absorbs 50,000 damage. It only lasts 8 seconds, but you're essentially entirely locked down for 8 seconds unless it's purged. The other Rune basically turns a vrykul into a mobile Fire Totem. Every 2 seconds they deal heavy Fire damage to players around them. You can heal through it, but it's way easier to just dispel the Rune.
Priests, this is a pretty good one to Mind Control if your group is using that as Crowd Control.
Dragonflayer Strategists don't put out a lot of damage, but their abilities are quite a bother at times. The most bothersome is Whirling Trip. They spin in a circle, and knock everyone in melee range down to the ground and stunning them for 2 seconds. They have a few other abilities, but the only one to worry about other than the stun is Blind, which will crowd control a party member for awhile.
After that pull of three, it's time to meet the first boss, Prince Keleseth. When you enter the room, you'll notice there are four Vrykul standing around a war map, with the Prince pacing in the back. Yes, Keleseth is tied to these guys, but the Prince won't come until after you've killed the four.
The four are going to be some combination of Ironhelms, Strategists, and Runecasters. I recommend using some Crowd Control here if you're not overgeared for the dungeon, probably CCing the Runecasters first. However, that choice is up to you. Go with whatever worked best for your group on the pulls earlier in the dungeon. Don't panic just because there's a boss waiting.
Once those four are down, Prince Keleseth will immediately start pelting you all with Shadowbolts. Make sure the tank picks him up fairly quickly, those bolts can hurt! Beyond the Shadowbolts, he has a few other fun abilities.
-Skeletons: At the beginning of this encounter, he'll summon a handful of skeletons. They have very low HP, and you should kill them. Throughout the battle, he'll rez them or heal them. My groups always killed them, because getting them out of the way with a little focus fire was less work than fighting Keleseth around them. Just make sure you do something with them, they can gib a healer pretty quick.
-Frost Tomb: This is a fun one. He'll encase someone in a block of ice every now and then, and the ice block lasts quite awhile. The rest of the party needs to break the frozen person out of the ice. You do this by targeting the ice block, NOT the player that is frozen, and DPSing it down. Again, it has low HP, it shouldn't take much. If you're having trouble visualizing how this would work, imagine the block of ice is a mob, and it is standing directly on top of your party member. If you have trouble targeting it, turn on nameplates with your V key.
This fight tends to run a little long the first time you do it, just because there's an unusual amount of action going on for a 5-man boss at this level. Don't worry, though. Once you've seen his abilities in action, it becomes more of an organized chaos, rather than the "what the heck just happened" kind of chaos.
Prince Keleseth drops Keleseth's Blade of Evocation, Vrykul Shackles, Reinforced Velvet Helm, or Dragon Stabler's Gauntlets.
He wasn't too hard, huh? Alright, onto the next hallway. This one is full of a few different types of mobs: Dragonflayer Overseers, Tunneling Ghouls, and Frenzied Geists.
The Overseers are the only ones in this hallway with a significant amount of HP. They Charge around and slap a party member sometimes, but they're not terribly dangerous. They also have a Battle Shout and a Demoralizing Shout, but they're not very threatening either.
The Ghouls are non-elite and can be AOE'd down easily.
The Geists are actually the most threatening things in this hallway, because they patrol and zip around annoyingly, so they have a bad habit of becoming adds. Plus, they have an ability called Fixate, which makes them focus on a party member and ignore threat. This can lead to healer gibs if you don't kill them quickly. Luckily, they do NOT ignore Taunts.
A few Ironhelm and Geist patrols later, you'll come across a pull of four. Nothing you haven't seen before. CC if you need to and tear them apart. After that, you'll go through another tunnel of Geists, Ghouls and Overseers, until you come across...
Dalronn the Controller and Skarvald the Constructor, the second boss encounter. They both have their own threat list. You can choose to either burn one down quickly, then burn the other down, or you can bring them both down to low HP and kill them together.
No matter which way you do it, you have to deal with them both throughout the entire fight. They're Necromancers, so when one dies, the other brings them back as a ghost with infinite health. Once you've killed them both in their 'living' form, the ghosts go away and you win. As I said, use any strategy you want, but you deal with them both until they very end.
Click the Next button to get details on their abilities individually, but since we're here we'll take a look at their loot list: Chestplate of the Northern Lights, Skarvald's Dragonskin Habergeon, and Arm Blade of Augelmir.
While Dalronn the Controller does have a threat list for his melee auto-attack, his spells are randomly targeted. The most the tank really needs to do here is make sure Dalronn doesn't run around the room. He casts Shadow Bolt which is a bolt of shadow, fancy that. He also casts Debilitate, which is a small, 8 second Shadow DoT that also reduces melee, casting, ranged and movement speed by 50%.
Skarvald the Constructor can be tanked and doesn't hit very hard. He has a Charge which will target someone random and stun them for a couple of seconds, and then he'll go right back to the tank. He also has an ability called Stone Strike which is a melee hit with a small knockback attached.
Congratulations on your sweet blues! Let's move on, eh? After those two you're going to start seeing a few Dragonflayer Spiritualists. Spiritualists, and some Bonecrushers. Spiritualists are basically simplified Shaman. A healing spell, a Shock and Lightning Bolts. The Bonecrusher is a heavy melee type.
You'll start running into Dragonflayer Heartsplitters, too. They're ranged mobs, so get into melee range with them and they loose their umph. If the Bonecrusher stuns your tank, though, they'll rush off out of melee range again. You might want to CC these guys just so they don't run all over the place trying to keep range.
A few trash pulls later, you'll find yourself up against the final boss of Utgarde Keep, Ingvar the Plunderer. I very, very strongly recommend turning enemy castbars on, whether that be in the default UI or whatever UI mod you may be using.
Another thing to note is that Ingvar has a ton of armor. If you're a melee class, do whatever you can to bring that down. If you're a Rogue without a Warrior to Sunder Armor, go ahead and use some combo points for Expose Armor, it'll be worth it.
He has a couple of abilities you'll need to watch for:
-Smash: This is a strong attack with a decently long cast time. Ingvar doesn't hit very hard, but this ability hits like a truck. He is immobile while he casts it, and it's a frontal cone ability. When this starts casting, the tank should use their mouse (not their keyboard!) to turn around, then run directly away from him. After it has cast, you can go back to tanking.
-Staggering Roar: This is another ability with a cast time. It's AOE Physical damage, completely unavoidable. If you're casting a spell when he starts casting this, STOP! When Staggering Roar goes off, it acts as an interrupt and will lock you out of casting for awhile.
Bring his HP to 0, and you win! Wait, no, I lied. You didn't win. Sit back and watch the awesome event which I won't spoil, and now you get to deal with Ingvar after he's Hulked out. He has roughly the same abilities, except they've been doing steroids.
-Dark Smash: Hopefully you did a good job dodging Smash from his first form. If not, you're in trouble. This ability works roughly the same. Long cast time, 10 yard range frontal cone. When it starts casting, turn and run. If you get caught in it, you just took roughly 20,000 Shadow damage and you're probably dead. Even if you don't get hit by this, it has an AOE knockdown effect that you can't do much about.
-Woe Strike: Woe strike is a melee ability that applies a Curse debuff on the tank. When the tank receives any direct healing, the healer will be hit with roughly 1500 Shadow damage. Decurse it, or just heal through it. Annoying, but not deadly.
-Dreadful Roar: Like Staggering Roar above, this has an interrupt component. It now also applies a stacking debuff that increases how much Shadow damage you take. It buffs Dark Smash's damage, but mostly acts as a pacing mechanic. If you're not putting out enough damage, Ingvar will eventually 1-shot your entire party with this ability.
You might wipe here once or twice learning the timing on Dark Smash, but it isn't too terrible. If you've done Murmur in Shadow Labyrinth, it's roughly the same thing, except the cast time is shorter and you don't need to run as far. Overall, it isn't a difficult fight besides the Dark Smash. There's a few different things going on, but it's more or less a tank and spank with a twist. Watch his cast bar, be careful about getting hit with his interrupts, and you'll be just fine.
Once you've killed Ingvar for the second time, you get to roll around in his loot! So far, he drops: Ingvar's Monolithic Cleaver, Holistic Patchwork Breeches, and Overlaid Chain Spaulders.
Run straight back the way you came and you'll see a freshly opened door. Jump down the seemingly endless pit for your shortcut outta here! Hope you enjoyed the dungeon!