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Guide on Ancient Threat, the new Yavin 4 world boss

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Flashpoints, Operations, and Heroic Missions
Guide on Ancient Threat, the new Yavin 4 world boss

Jerba's Avatar


Jerba
01.14.2015 , 10:58 AM | #1
Since no one has written a guide about it yet, I decided to write one myself, based on everything I've seen in the handful tries we've had on this boss.

Ancient Threat
For information on how to call this boss and where to find it, refer to Dulfy's guide.
Health: 15 million HP
Enrage: only soft enrage with stacking debuffs
Loot: 4x Trophy: The Ancient Threat, 1x purple Yavin 4 reputation trophy for everyone
Achievements: Ancient Threat No More and Master of the Beyond
World First kill: Seven Stuck @ T3-M4 on January 18th 2015, 15:44 GMT

Relevant buffs and debuffs:
The boss has the following buffs:
  • Ancient Defenses: Absorbs all damage without the knowledge to bypass.
  • Boss Immunity: Immune to incapacitating and movement-impairing effects.
  • Steadfast: Immune to physics and knockdowns.
  • Terrifying: Only true heroes can fight this enemy.

Players can receive the following debuffs throughout the fight:
  • Silenced (6 seconds): Unable to use abilities.
  • Force Whisper (15 seconds): Healing received reduced. (stackable, cleansable)
  • Force Leech (no duration): Area of effect damage increased. (stackable, cleansable)
Debuff icons: http://i.imgur.com/xrXqcQF.jpg
(from left to right: Silenced, Force Whisper, Force Leech)

Abilities:
All of the boss' abilities are instant, which means you can't see him casting or channeling them.
  • Explosive Force (2 sec CD): raidwide attack, dealing ~3k damage
  • Force Silence (6 sec CD): main target receives a stack of "Force Whisper"
  • Force Lightning (6 sec CD): a random player takes ~2k damage
  • Force Bolt (6 sec CD): a random players takes ~5k damage, split into three attacks
  • Force Leech (10 sec CD): 4 players closest to the boss receive a stack of the "Force Leech" debuff and take ~100 damage
  • Force Storm (15 sec CD): creates a red circle under the 8 players closest to the boss. Players standing in the circles take ~6k damage every second

Force Whisper mechanic:
Most of the mechanics are straightforward, except for the two debuffs. The Force Whisper debuff looks like a grey body and is applied every 6 seconds to the main target and lasts for 15 seconds.
Every time this debuff is lost, all group members in range will receive the Silenced debuff for 6 seconds. While they are silenced, they cannot use any ability, not even stun breakers, but they can still move and jump out of red circles.
There are multiple ways on how the Force Whisper debuff can be lost:
  • When the player hits Evasion, Force Shroud, Force Barrier or any other self-cleansing ability
  • When the player stealthes out
  • When the player dies
  • When the debuff falls off before being renewed, e.g. because the player lost aggro
  • When a healer cleanses the debuff
When the Force Whisper debuff expires, it does not fall off completely, it is just reduced by one stack. For example, if a tank has 7 stacks and they run out, the tank will now have 6 stacks and they run out again. I have yet to confirm if the "counting down" of one stack will silence the group as well, or if only losing the final stack will silence the group.

Force Leech mechanic:
The Force Leech debuff looks like a purple orb and is applied every 10 seconds to the 4 players closest to the boss, so mostly mDPS and tanks. So basically, the longer the fight goes on, the more stacks are on the group: After 10 seconds you have 4 stacks, after 20 seconds you have 8 stacks, after a 3 minutes you have 72 stacks, spread over several players. Each stack increases damage taken, especially from the Explosive Force attack which comes in every 2 seconds.
While this debuff can be cleansed, it does not remove the stacks in your group: Every time a player is cleansed, those stacks plus one additional stacks will get applied to random group members. For example, if a mDPS with 10 stacks is cleansed, now 11 stacks will be applied to random players, which means via cleansing also rDPS and healers will receive the stacks, but it is better for the whole group to have 2 to 3 stacks, than a mDPS with 30 stacks.
The Force Leech debuff can be lost the same way as the Force Whisper debuff: via self-cleansing, via dying, via stealthing-out and via cleansign from a healer. The difference is that the Force Leech debuff cannot fall off because it has no duration but stays on the whole time.

Tactic:
Due to the mechanic, a Force Whisper debuff may not fall off while that player is in range of the group. Therefore, it is important that only tanks receive the Force Whisper debuff, because they can ensure via taunts that they keep the aggro and will always renew their debuff. Right at the beginning of the fight, (within 1-2 seconds of the boss spawning) the tanks need to get the aggro before the clicker gets the first Force Whisper debuff, and ensure he builds enough threat to prevent losing the aggro. Ideally, you'd do a damage stop at the beginning until the tank has built up enough threat.
Currently, the recommended tactic is to use two ShadowAssassin tanks because they can self-cleanse and have high mobility via Phase Walk and Force Speed, allowing them to quickly get away from the group before their debuff falls off. At the beginning of the fight, the first tank keeps the boss until he has around 7 stacks of Force Whisper, which equals to around 50% reduced healing. You then do a tank swap and first tank runs away from the group, loses his stacks, while the second tank starts building up stacks. Once the second tank is at 7 stacks, you once again do a tank swap and rinse and repeat. With Force Cloak having a 60 second cooldown, you can do a tank swap every 30 seconds approximately when you have two tanks.
With more knowledge of the Force Whisper mechanic, it may also be possible to lose stacks without running away from the group. Cleansing the Force Whisper stacks while inside the group is not recommended, there is just too much damage coming in during the six seconds while the group is silenced and no healing can be done.

Regarding the second debuff, Force Leech: The longer the fight goes on and the more you cleanse, the more stacks the group has. Therefore, I'd recommend to only cleanse as late as possible, e.g. at 20-30 stacks, and not when players only have a handful of stacks.
Similar to the Force Whisper debuff, it may also be possible to have a mDPS with many stacks run away from the group and get cleansed there. For example, you can have a backup healer standing back there whose only job is to cleanse players. While you need to have a group with high raid awareness to do this, when you are able to execute this perfectly, you will be able to get around the soft enrage, and carry on the fight indefinitely, even with low DPS.

Currently, I'd recommend to take a full house of 24 players, with at least 2 tanks, and 6 to 10 strong healers. You can have additional players in a backup group, but keep in mind that the boss fight will get more laggy. If you have too many players, the Force Storm voids are displayed delayed and players will drop very low before they notice they have to run out of them.
Since Explosive Force comes in every 2 seconds, every player in the group constantly needs to receive healing. Therefore, make sure that the players receive as many HoTs as possible. Also, you can build a range camp and lay down AoE heals, provided you have enough mDPS and keep the boss away from the range camp, to ensure that no Force Storm is put inside the range camp.
I'd recommend that you have every player unbind any cleanse abilities, or put them in a different quickslot. A single accidental cleanse or stealth-out can lead to a wipe, so it is important that healers don't hit a cleanse out of habit, but only when it is really necessary to cleanse. Tanks should never be cleansed at all; only when they are away from the group.

Videos:
I recorded our attempts on the boss. Since we didn't know the mechanics yet, we always wiped after one minute, but you'll still be able to see all debuffs and the red circles he puts out.
For each video, I explained what caused the wipe, so make sure to read the description under the videos as well.
Videos by Seven Stuck:
Good luck with this boss, and please let me know of any comments and suggestions!

mickguyvert's Avatar


mickguyvert
01.14.2015 , 12:11 PM | #2
Thanks, i'll check later to do it with my guild, I'll follow your topic.

I don't know yet when we'll try it. But any info, I'll let you know (if no one did it already).

AshlaBoga's Avatar


AshlaBoga
01.14.2015 , 05:15 PM | #3
Quote:
In the 48-man run I organized
But if you use two Ops groups, only 1 will get any credit

I sincerely hope it's doable with just 24 people in 192 as otherwise I'll have to wait until we have 24 people in 198 (which will probably be like April).
The dark is generous, and it is patient, and it always wins.
It always wins because it is everywhere.
The brightest light casts the darkest shadow.
Click my Referral Code for free goodies!

MeNaCe-NZ's Avatar


MeNaCe-NZ
01.14.2015 , 06:37 PM | #4
I would think there is a missing mechanics or item to it if even 48 people can barely dent it.

I guess it will be a mystery in progress until someone finds that magic missing aspect ( and it could be quite obscure ).

Jerba's Avatar


Jerba
01.14.2015 , 06:49 PM | #5
Lol no, I didn't mean to say you need 48 players for it, I was just trying out various strats. I'm sure there are groups that can kill it with 16 players if the tanks do their job correctly without 198 gear.
I was so occupied to organize such a large group and constantly refarming the buffs that I did not have much time to pay attention to mechanics. Now that I watched the recording, I know what to do and the next time I organize a run, I hope we will have more success.
That said, the damage taken is very high. In our tries, Explosive Force got to 2.5k to 3k damage, and I did not see the damage increasing with more stacks, but I've read players write that they took like 12k damage from Explosive Force. They must have had like 10 or even 20 stacks then, no idea. In any case, you are going to need many healers for this fight.

Quote: Originally Posted by AshlaBoga View Post
But if you use two Ops groups, only 1 will get any credit
The plan was to kill the boss twice, once for each group. But that was before we got stomped by the boss...

MeNaCe-NZ's Avatar


MeNaCe-NZ
01.14.2015 , 07:30 PM | #6
Curious on that as I can't view the video at the moment but how long did the runs go for and how much damage did you manage to do to the boss?

Just thinking that if survivability went on for quite some time and damage done was minor that there may be another aspect to this beyond just the fight mechanics in terms of dealing damage. also any sign of an enrage timer or anything?

Jerba's Avatar


Jerba
01.14.2015 , 11:12 PM | #7
Quote: Originally Posted by MeNaCe-NZ View Post
Curious on that as I can't view the video at the moment but how long did the runs go for and how much damage did you manage to do to the boss?

Just thinking that if survivability went on for quite some time and damage done was minor that there may be another aspect to this beyond just the fight mechanics in terms of dealing damage. also any sign of an enrage timer or anything?
We always wiped after a minute because the tanks either lost aggro, stealthed out or died, and then the healers were stunned and we died because the group did not receive enough healing. On our best tries, the boss was at like 97%. I hear that a guild on another server got the boss down to 90%.
And yes, there is the soft enrage mechanic: the Force Whisper and the Force Leech debuffs. Both increase their stacks throughout the fight, with more healing required as the time goes on.
However, it might be that the maximum stack limit is not very high. For example, for Dreadful Entity, the max stack limit is 20 stacks, and the damage is still healable on the tank then, so even though there is a soft enrage, it should not cause a wipe.

Azurestone's Avatar


Azurestone
01.14.2015 , 11:21 PM | #8
Anyone knows what special loot it drops yet? This sounds like the sequel to dreadful/hateful entities loot-wise

MasterFeign's Avatar


MasterFeign
01.15.2015 , 02:18 AM | #9
I think 3 tanks is definitely the best route.

I think there might be another debuff or item needed into being able to kill him "better".

We tried, and managed to get him down to 95%.

Levram's Avatar


Levram
01.15.2015 , 03:26 AM | #10
Was Force Leech not cleansable?

Also, there was no pull mechanic in the fight, where random players would be pulled to the boss, like in the Hateful Entity encounter?
Acuzel (Assassin DPS/Tank) Ivs (Operative Healer) Praeco (Powertech Tank)
The Imperial Order
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