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Huskernutz
01.21.2019 , 02:27 PM | #5
Attempted the boss again on VM since the initial version and now have some more concrete feedback to give, so here it goes.

Overall Impressions
  • As far as the aesthetic and feel of the encounter space and boss goes I will say that I very much enjoy the change thematically from GFTM's metallic and droid filled encounter spaces.
  • I will agree with Matt's previous statements about the encounter length and definitely like having a lair boss that doesn't take 9+ minutes like Monolith does.
  • The changes to the VFX on the eggs and the removal of their nameplates is a welcome change from it's original incarnation and made coordinating where we placed the pheromonic blast a lot easier.

Encounter Difficulty
The change to 252, while not too significant a change in my opinion, is something I am slightly concerned about as far as the PuG-ability of this fight is concerned. This is mainly in regards to the execution of mechanics and how failure of them in punished in VM, which comes down the Royal Guards

The Royal Guards
the adds themselves have two main issues in my opinion, that being their Focus on the Present buff and the cast of Concentrate.
  • For the former of the two, this buff as a tank is more of an annoyance than anything and makes it extremely hard to utilize them to destroy buffed eggs around the encounter space. I wouldn't outright say this buff needs to go away or be nerfed, rather I think that as tank you should have the ability in some way to gain extended aggro of the add through taunts or other means such that the add isn't constantly bouncing back to you're strongest burst classes. This would allow for tanks to have some control of what is going on during this phase and make the recoverability from lots of buffed eggs (especially during the second rallying call) much easier.

  • For Concentrate and Staggering Strike, my main concerns with this is the ability to counteract the mechanic itself. Currently as it stands the cast of Concentrate is very fast (somewhere between .5s and 1s) this on top of the alacrity buff that the adds have in VM makes counteracting this cast nearly impossible and essentially makes the only way to stop staggering strike be to stun lock the add to prevent the attack. Allowing the option to interrupt the cast by making the cast longer would, in my opinion, would offer a nice additional bit of mechanic execution for the raid while also keeping the jeopardy of Staggering Strike present. Additionally, offering the ability to interrupt lock the add rather than stun lock them would free up the tanks to more easily move them around the room and destroy buffed eggs.

Small note on the use of adds to destroy eggs
There is currently no indication from either the Royal Guards or Caustic Drones that their abilities can be used to destroy eggs and cause them to not spawn adds other than if you pay very good attention to the visuals of the attacks(our raid group didn't even notice this until one person pointed it out after almost 5 pulls). I would recommend adding some flavor text buff to both of them so that groups learning the fight on live don't need to look up a guide just to know that they can do this.

Tuning wise the encounter itself doesn't feel that hard from an output perspective even with the upped difficulty to 252, I don't foresee many groups have troubles with killings adds fast or not hitting enrage. Rather as I stated I am more concerned about how punishing the royal guards are mechanically and the ability of the raid to recover from lack of destroying buffed eggs in a timely fashion. I also think that the transition to the PMB phase is a little too sudden and causes that phase to become very hectic as the raid not only has to deal with 200% more AoE blasts but also has to deal with caustic drones very quickly after that. I would agree with Jerba's compromise for this mechanic and have it gradually move up to 3 blasts rather than starting at 3 blasts.

Overall the tuning of the encounter is fine from my perspective, however, I think small mechanic tweaks to make the encounter less punishing would help since I personally don't think that this is a boss that VM/MM raid groups should have to spend more than 2 nights progging to start farming as the expected number of re-kills required for MH/OHs is quite high. All in all, I'm really enjoying the encounter (even if a bit frustrating at times) and look forward to pulling it on live.
Galen, Purveyor of Pyro Shield Cheese