This is the first post in a series I cooked up at work in a quiet moment. Karazhan is old business for most people, but still the most-run instance out there every week. Everyone who has dreams of raiding will have to start with Karazhan, if just for badges alone. It’s a big step-up from normal and heroics, and it’s…fun! When I started Karazhan last November, there were tons of guides out there on how to kill bosses, lots of kill videos, but nothing really prepares you until you’ve killed a boss or wiped at the boss for the first time. There was no guide specifically targeting tanks, what traps to avoid, what skills to apply, or how to pull the trash. This series goes out to newer tanks, be they fresh mains or newly leveled alts who are ready to venture into Medivh’s sinister tower.
We begin with the pushover of all Karazhan bosses, the gear check to see if all raid members have done their homework and are all in blue gear at least.
Attumen & Midnight
Attumen trash has a respawn timer of 25 minutes. For lesser geared raids, that is a big gear and skill check right away. One wipe is manageable on trash, two wipes mean you’re probably facing respawns when you pull Midnight. Pulling Midnight means he invites all horse-buddies along, so you really want to clear to him well under the 25 minute mark.
All trash here can be shackled and freeze-trapped, so assign targets accordingly. You begin with a one-mob pull, and on the last pull you’ll deal with 5 mobs. Chargers fear, so pull them back, aggro range of the stable trash is very high. It is very easy to do some unintentional body-pulls in here while marking. Watch for the separators between stable sections, you don’t want to have your healers lose Line of Sight too much.
After the last big pull, there’s just one lone fiery horsey in the stables. As Midnight is neutral, you can all position yourself nicely before starting the show.
We usually begin the fight by having the off-tank run to Midnight in the center and give him a good smacking. The off-tank role is nice and easy here. Tank and spank Midnight until he’s at 25%, then DPS Attumen for the rest of the fight. As warrior off-tank this means hopping into Berserker Stance and providing lolprot DPS, but also keeping debuffs up for the main tank. Demoralizing Shout and Thunderclap should always be up, especially if the off-tank can also supply the Improved version. Druid off-tanks have it easier, they shift to cat and poke Attumen from behind. Paladin off-tanks do…whatever protection paladins do to provide some DPS and might try to keep Judgment of Light or Judgment of Wisdom up. Color me mostly ignorant. I be warrior, rawr!
The Main Tank has a little bit more work to do here, and things can go wrong. Excellent exercise. As MT, you should start the fight by auto-attacking Midnight some once the OT has started the fight. Full rage bar = good stuff. Be ready for the big moment by either watching mob health of Midnight or wisely using a boss mod such as BigWigs. At 95% Attumen will show up, all pissed that someone is kicking the crap out of his trusty horse. Now you have to respond quickly as MT. As warrior, Thunderclap the moment he spawns, even if you haven’t managed to target him quickly, he should aggro on you. Your healers can help by holding all heals until you give the okay that you have him, after delivering one Shield Slam. Similar aggro strategies to grab him could be a Demoralizing Roar of a feral druid + Mangle or Consecrate + Judgment of Righteousness of a protection paladin.
Once the MT has him, I usually recommend pulling him far away from Midnight, to your lone tanking corner, where you and Attumen can have a cozy moment while the rest of the raid tries to kill Midnight. The reasoning behind this is that he’ll be well away from the rest of the raid, so that you alone will eat his Shadow Cleave. For extra special protection warrior only fun, Disarm him. Outside of heroics, I rarely get to use this skill, so it’s good times to be able to use it and get an extra shoutout from him claiming that he doesn’t need weapons to beat you. Right, Attumen, dream on. He also uses a curse that will drastically reduce hit chance. This you can spell reflect as warrior though the timing can be tricky. Ask for a decurse if your decursers aren’t on the ball (if you have a druid or mage).
Once Midnight reaches 25% health, Attumen will mount up on Midnight and you get to apply the same tricks you had to use to grab aggro than when he first showed up. Give your healers and DPS plenty of warning before Midnight is down to 25%, to make things easier. This is often where things go wrong, where Attumen manages to eat a healer or trigger happy DPS. Once you have established aggro again, bring him back to the wall, have his back to the rest of the raid, and advise everyone to stay within an 8 yard range, so he won’t charge through the raid. Tank and spank, loot a badge, and some of the nice things he can drop at times.
Summary: Tank and spank boss, with the only real difficulty being the two transition periods. Impress men and women alike by being a super-awesome protection warrior who can disarm with a mere smile and reflect curses back at the caster. If this is your first ever raid boss as tank, remember to keep Shield Block up, Attumen crushes can hurt.