Two Bosses Enter: Jan'alai vs. Zanzil

Mathew McCurley
M. McCurley|10.04.11

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Two Bosses Enter: Jan'alai vs. Zanzil
In Two Bosses Enter, WoW Insider's series of fantasy death matches, the bosses of World of Warcraft face off in the squared circle. Your vote determines who wins and claims the season title.

It's a rumble in the jungle where two big names in the Zul'circle face off in WoW Insider's ring. Jan'alai, avatar of the dragonhawk, faces off against potion master Zanzil and his crazy concoctions. I think that this could be one of the more interesting fights in this season of Two Bosses Enter. Troll versus Troll, Zul'Aman versus Zul'Gurub. Choose your empire!

Last week's fight went as predicted. Vanessa VanCleef, mistress of poisons and daughter of the late, great Edwin VanCleef, beat out Daakara by just shy of a thousand votes. Wow. You guys sure do love Vanessa. I love her, too -- but come on lady, put on some pants. Azerothian winters are going to be cold this year.


The rules of the ring
  • The WoW Insider Ring is considered neutral territory, where both combatants are able to access their usual encounter mechanics and abilities. If you can't visualize it inside the squared circle, visualize it someplace else -- but you must take into consideration all of each bosses' abilities and mechanics.
  • Assume that each opponent is intelligent and capable of strategic thinking.
  • All of the competitors' abilities, including crowd control and other effects to which bosses are usually immune, work on their opponents (with apologies to considerations of lore on this point).
  • Assume that the opponents share similar levels, health pools, and comparative overall damage output.
  • Don't get caught up in gameplay mechanics and what actual players might do in each encounter.
  • Don't neglect style, story, and scale. Everything is a factor; seeking balance is your goal as a spectator and judge.
In Corner One: Jan'alai

Jan'alai doesn't mess around. Even though he beat Corborus by only four votes, Jan'alai is no lightweight. With his loyal hatchlings and potent fire attacks, Jan'alai calls upon the fires of the dragonhawk to ignite his foes. This avatar feels more primal than his opponent Zanzil, having a real connection with the wilds and his avatar animal. If anyone is going to put up a good fight against the cauldron master himself, Jan'alai has a pretty good shot. Plus, everyone knows that the gods of Zul'Aman watch over their avatars with care.

Jan'alai's abilities include: Check out Jan'alai's page on Wowhead for more information.

In Corner Two: Zanzil

Zanzil, Zanzil, Zanzil. You are truly a fan favorite, even though you are a Troll. Easily defeating Beauty and her pups, Zanzil and his potent potions move on to face Jan'alai and his many dragonhawk allies. Zanzil's master work with potions and their subsequent abilities was the crux of his last fight, but will the same hold true against another like-minded Troll? Zanzil is representing Zul'Gurub, and he won't let anyone sully the great city's pride.

Zanzil's abilities include: Read all about Zanzil's backstory and history on Wowpedia.

Last Week's Winner: Vanessa VanCleef

Shocker of shockers, Vanessa VanCleef beat out Zul'Aman CEO Daakara by just under 1,000 votes. Vanessa VanCleef was at the center of the Cardboard Assassin controversy in the last season of Two Bosses Enter, and some players just won't forget it. Commenters were quick to back Daakara, going the logical and pragmatic route. Daakara is, after all, the leader of the Amani tribe and took over after one of the most powerful trolls in the history of Trolls: Zul'jin. Vanessa, while a prodigy and powerful force to be reckoned with, just would not have the tool set to deal with the ever-changing and unpredictable Daakara. Alas, Vanessa VanCleef is this week's winner.

Reader mibu.work1 had a great analysis of the fight that really set the perspective that I tried to achieve when thinking about this matchup:
I can honestly say that this is a matchup where, logically, there is no contest. Remember Daakara's title 'the invincible'. This is the guy that fought to the top spot left by ZUL'JIN and gained the support of the four high priests of the amani gods, not to mention their Hex-Lord. He had to have fought his way to the top, and was the leader before the Zalandari came back. Not only that, but he has shown the ability to channel four animal gods, something only Zul'jin has done before, and to command them with near the same level of efficiancy as those who devoted their lives to those gods, I.E. the high priests. We may honestly be looking at the most spiritually attuned and physically powerful troll ever seen in game, short of Zul'jin or Vol'jin. Think about that.

Now we've assessed Daakara's abilities, I'm just going to say that despite his opponent being a 16-year-old girl with high talent as a rogue, and nothing more, I'm gonna say that sadly, vanessa is going to win because she is popular as hell. Never mind the fact that her deterrance works simmilarly to a hunter's and that hunter's detterance does jacksh*t against the Lynx form, never mind that lightning totems will build up and tear through her and her adds, never mind that one lynx add can shred half a dozen of hers before being brought down by focus-fire, never mind that she only utilizes her poisons outside of battle and never during, never mind that she has no counter against paralysis, charges, claw-frenzies, and her erratic shadowstepping is going to bite her when there are firebreaths and tornadoes flying, she is going to win because she is popular. Why is she popular? Because she has nice thighs and covers her face.
Come to think of it, Zul'jin had both those going for him, hmmmm....
Darky, like most of us, loves an underdog:
Is it wrong that I voted for daakara just because I knew he wouldn't be voted for? Plus Who doesn't love da troll mon?
Bellajtok's account of the fight was a concise version of the way the fight played out in my head:
Unfortunately true. But I don't think she'd win this one without being crazy prepared to the point of having a poison specifically designed to overcome Daakara's shape-shifting metabolism and form, plus a way to heal and get rid of the bleed, and a a way to avoid surge. Basically, not going to happen.

Here's how I imagine the fight going: Daakara strikes Vanessa for a bleed. She poisons him. He shapeshifts into bear, rendering the poison less effective as the bear spirit fortifies his mind and strengthens his body. He uses Surge, which Vanessa can't avoid. She's now taking 500% increased physical damage- which includes bleeds. Daakara then switches to Lynx, and with his adds, bleeds, and rush attacks, deals some massively increased physical damage. If she's not dead from that before the surge debuff expires, he switches back to bear to reapply it, and then back to Lynx again to finish her off. When she starts to trying to use her explosives, he turns into a dragonhawk and flies away, letting her die from her bleeds and explosions.

My prose is not so magnificent as Fizzyl's, but I think you get the idea.
And finally, I agree with James:
If there was justice in this competition the Cardboard Assassin would cost Vanessa "I've got a fan base therefore I always win" Vancleef the victory in this match up. Turnabout being fair play and all.

The battle begins!

Remember, Two Bosses Enter matchups are all about substance and style, not gameplay, mechanics, and numbers. Don't base your strategies on player tactics, which opponent has been easiest or most difficult for you personally, or the difficulty of each opponent relative to instance progression. Vote for the spirit of the battle as set forth above. Set aside differences in opponents' health pools, game level, and actual damage output. Absolutely no game mechanics nitpicking!

Set aside the world order -- let the WoW Insider Ring determine who's the champion! Your votes determine the outcome in WoW Insider's series of fantasy deathmatches, Two Bosses Enter, One Boss Leaves.
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