Countdown to Cataclysm: The Deadmines dungeon guide

This article is part of our Countdown to Cataclysm series, preparing you for Cataclysm launch one day at a time.

The Deadmines has been a classic staple dungeon for any leveling player. In patch 4.0.3, the instance received a complete facelift. Players will no longer be taking down Edwin VanCleef, as the game has progressed forward in time and has been updated to reflect the events that have occurred in the game. The Defias stronghold appears to be housing the next generation of Defias forces. They're being led by Vanessa Vancleef, Edwin's daughter.

At a glance:

  • five boss encounters

  • level 15 - 21

  • Alliance and Horde players both have access to this dungeon via dungeon finder

Quests to do

There are a number of quests available to both Horde and Alliance players. You can pick them up when you enter the instance.




Glubtok is this fairly large ogre fellow who's part of a two-stage encounter. Phase 1 is no sweat. All he does is enchant his fists so that they're really hot or really cold. If his Fists of Flame are active, his melee attacks do fire damage and can potentially knock players back. If his Fists of Frost are on, then his melee strikes dish out frost damage and can slow down enemies.

Once you get to phase 2, things start to ... heat up. Glubtok bolts to the middle and then floats up. Yes, even though he is floating, you can still damage him as a melee player. If you see any runes on the ground, stay away from them. He'll launch a variety of fire or frost spells at them. Also watch for the wall of fire that revolves around Glubtok. Veterans of Halion should have no problem with this.

Don't take this encounter lightly on heroic mode. I chanced the fire wall on my priest and died instantly. So yeah, that fire is serious business.

Loot drops

Buzzer Blade (heroic)
Gold-Flecked Gloves
Miner's Cape
*Vest of the Curious Visitor (heroic)
*Defias Brotherhood Vest (heroic)
*Missing Diplomat's Pauldrons (heroic)
*Shadow of the Past (heroic)

* heroic only

Helix Gearbreaker

This goblin boss, the second boss in the instance, was once a part of the Bilgewater Cartel. Like the boss before him, he has two phases. In the first phase, he is riding on the back of a giant Oaf. Keep an eye on the ground, as he will toss out bombs that will stick to the ground before exploding. He has a random ability in which he picks up a player and then charges into the opposite wall with them (and yeah, that is rather painful).

After the Oaf gets taken down, Helix leaps onto a random party member's face. He still throws sticky bombs, but the person who is affected by Helix just needs to keep moving. Pretty easy, otherwise, on both normal and heroic.

Loot drops

Cruel Barb (heroic)
Smelting Pants
Gold-Plated Buckler
Impaling Harpoon
*Gearbreaker's Bindings (heroic)
*Gear-Marked Gauntlets (heroic)
*Old Friend's Gloves (heroic)
*Cloak of Thredd (heroic)

* heroic only

Foe Reaper 5000

This boss is one of the first challenges for your party. You can't exactly remain careless; the Foe Reaper has a number of AoE abilities that need to be avoided. Be careful of Overdrive, as it'll strike anyone near it (but it is a 3-second cast time). Harvest is another ability that focuses on a player's location and move toward it at the same time, dealing damage to anyone in the way. Once it reaches the location, it'll start using Harvest Sweep. Get away from the path. At 30 percent health, it'll disable Safety Restrictions, which increases the amount of damage it deals. This is where you want to bust cooldowns.

On heroic, things get much more interesting. There is a Prototype Reaper that a member of your group will need to step into and commandeer. That player needs to stay at the bottom of the ramp and control any adds that spawn, as well using the Reaper abilities to keep himself alive. On the kill, we pulled the boss to the top of the room up the ramp while the Prototype was busy down below. We didn't have to worry about adds as much, but there wasn't much room to maneuver.

Loot drops

Emberstone Staff (heroic)
Foe Reaper (heroic)
Buzz Saw (heroic)

Admiral Ripsnarl

One of the first worgen bosses your party will encounter is Admiral Ripsnarl. You'll find him on the ship. Watch where you're standing, as he'll Swipe. He has a tiny soft enrage mechanic called Thirst for Blood. It gives him a boost to his attack speed and movement speed per stack (going up to 20 times). The stack gets applied whenever he lands a melee strike. Every 25 percent health, he disappears, and the area becomes foggy. Vapor adds appear, and your party needs to take them down. The Admiral reappears after a certain amount of time has passed or if all the Vapors get taken down. When he does show up, he jumps at a random player and uses Go For the Throat, a damage and knockdown ability.

When he gets to the final 25 percent, he'll use his Go For the Throat ability when the Vapors have all appeared. Your group needs to deal with the Admiral and with the Vapors at the same time.

Loot drops

Lavishly Jeweled Ring (heroic)
Rockslicer (heroic)
Smite's Reaver (heroic)

Captain Cookie

When Admiral Ripsnarl is killed by your party, Cookie will appear inside a hut. It looks like someone received a promotion! As you approach him, though, he'll dash away from you and jump inside a cooking pot that spawns. You're about to enter a good, old-fashioned food fight.

Cookie throws food at players randomly and creates food on the floor. There is both rotten food and normal food. Your group wants to avoid the rotten food, as it emits a fairly nasty aura. If a player eats it, his movement and attack speed gets reduced by 30 percent and he takes damage over time. Eat the right normal food, and your party will gain a stacking buff that increases movement and attack speed.

Loot drops

Cape of the Brotherhood (heroic)
Cookie's Stirring Rod (heroic)
Thief's Blade (heroic)
Corsair's Overshirt (heroic)
Cookie's Tenderizer (heroic)

Vanessa VanCleef (heroic only)

Vanessa VanCleef
is a pretty epic encounter for a 5-man. She is available only on heroic mode. It seems if you wipe on her, you won't be able to challenge her again (and I'm not sure if this has changed since beta). She injects you with a poison that triggers these nightmarish sequences.

It's a multi-stage encounter that begins as a gauntlet. Players need to use the steam pressure vents to escape the trap they're in before they get thrown into the lava. Run down the ramp, avoiding the fires, before engaging Glubtok (see above). Burn him quickly, and there is time to drink and heal up.

After Glubtok comes Helix's nightmare. That part will activate when you come close to the exit. Then watch as the millions and millions of spiders appear. Turns out the goblin really hates spiders. You can AoE the spiders if you like, but you should focus on Helix; once he goes down, they all despawn anyway.

You're on to the mechanical night after that. There are electric sparks that float and have a beam emitting on two sides. These sparks float and rotate, so there is a chance the beams will hit you. You need to time your movement so you don't get hit by beams of the sparks. Get to the end, and take down the Foe Reaper.

Admiral Ripsnarl's nightmare is a tragic one, as you need to help him save his family from being consumed by the worgen. It is possible for healers to keep his family members alive long enough to fend off their attackers.

Whew! And only now do we get a chance to engage Vanessa! As you begin engaging her, she'll get help in the form of adds. Control and kill them as necessary. When her health reaches 50 percent, she'll disengage and trigger the self-destruct charges on the boat. You need to chase after her and head to the front (or bow) of the ship. Use the ropes and climb onto the gate. Burn down the rest of her health quickly before she can activate the charges on the wall. With 1 percent health remaining, she'll decide to jump and commit suicide rather than allowing the party to kill her.

Yup. That is one epic encounter, for sure.

Loot drops

Armbands of Exiled Architects
Bracers fo Some Consequence
Cowl of Rebellion
Record of the Brotherhood's End
VanCleef's Boots
Daughter's Hands
Shackles of the Betrayed
Stonemason's Helm
Book of the Well Sung Song

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