Disc Healing the Onyxia Fight
We took the 10-man team to Onyxia’s layer last night and after a few wipes learning the fight, we downed the old broad.
Our raid line-up was as follows:
Tanks: Paladin MT, Death Knight OT
Healers: Disc Priest, Resto Shaman
DPS: 2 Death Knights, 3 Mages, 1 Shadow Priest
Wow.com has a nice overview of the fight for those not already familiar with the encounter.
Healing the fight as Disc was mildly challenging. Phase 1 was just about keeping the tank up and avoiding the dreaded tail swipe and cleave as the tank gets her into position. I found that it was a good time to use my shadowfiend when we had her to about 70% health, or slightly before she goes into the air for phase 2. (She will walk across the room before she takes off, so there is some margin of error on timing the fiend, as it will just follow her while she walks if you pop it a little late.)
In phase 2, there are an asston of whelps that come at the start, so you really want your aoe dps bitches bubbled. I kept them together in the second raid group, so I could find them quickly for bubbles in the lull between the start of phase 2 and the arrival of the whelps, and so that I could drop a Prayer of Healing on them while they were aoeing. If the dps grab aggro, and they did even with a Pally Consecrate and a DK Death and Decay under them, it is very tough to single target heal them through it. More than one dps may need fast heals, and I found chaining a few aoe heals to work best. (If they are grouped up, you may be able to get away with a few Holy Novas, but you may grab aggro, and the healing may not be enough without it being glyphed.)
The flame dragon adds need to be downed pretty quickly in phase 2, else they do an aoe fire blast that will wreck any non plate wearers. This has a 10 yard range, so you can easily avoid getting killed by staying back, although your dps should be killing it before it gets the spell off. We found it best to put our melee dps on them, while our ranged dps stayed on Onyxia. Whelps will be running around, so keep Fade handy, or kite them to the Consecrate if the flame add isn’t about to assplode.
Having the tank pick up the flame adds as they come down the ramp helped me keep track of the tank, and not get ranged during phase 2. Since the ranged dps are staying on the boss, have them call out the flame breaths that Onyxia does, and then get the hell out of there. The breath will not normally kill a topped off tank, but it will one shot a cloth wearer.
I popped Hymn of Hope during a lull in phase 2 to help the casters who were low on mana from dpsing Onyxia during this phase.
Once Onyxia is down for phase 3, it’s just a tank and spank with lots of fear bombs going off. Get fear ward up on the tank, or yourself, whichever method you prefer, and toss out Pain Suppression if your tank’s health gets low before a fear. We put our Resto Shaman in group 1 with me and the 2 tanks so that Tremor Totem would minimize the time lost running around.
Tank damage is not that bad in phase 3, but mana is probably going to be an issue. I am firmly in the ‘stack MP5’ camp of Disc Priests (look at my regen numbers if you think I am kidding), and was still OOM at the end of the fight. You definitly want a Flask of Pure Mojo going, and I used the MP5 food (Spiced Fried Herring, I think) instead of the fish feast for this one. (The Resto Shaman and two of the Mages borrowed MP5 food from me as well for the attempt that we finally downed her.)
As always, bubble as much as you can, and PoM whenver it comes off cooldown. Keeping your dps alive is critical, although a ToC 25 geared group can probably get through it even if 1 dps bites the dust. I threw out a lot of bubble on dps, and sent a bunch of PoMs there way as well.