Due to Aran the Shade being are main target this week I looked around for a good tactic.
Here it is, please read it fully.
The Shade of Aran is the sixth/seventh boss event in Karazhan and is one of the harder bosses of the instance. The fight requires communication, teamwork, and much fine tuning.Overview and Preparation
The encounter requires much DPS as Aran's HP should always be below his mana. He is a spell caster and will very rarely ever melee, hits for very little damage when he does. He has no controllable aggro list and his attacks are completely random. He has a wide variety of spells and they do hit for a large amount of damage. There are a number of potions that would be a huge help in this fight. Major Arcane, Fire, and Frost Protection Potions would all be very helpful (remember to use them before the fight so you do not have a potion cooldown when the encounter begins) for the fight. Any quick boost damage potions such as Heroic, Haste, and Destruction Potions would also be helpful for this fight if his mana begins to get lower than his health, along with Health and Mana Potions and if you can afford it, any Flasks that will aid your DPS. Flask of the Titans and Fortification will not be very useful in this fight as his attacks are random. It is also very important to keep Aran in the middle of the room to help with Blizzard and the Arcane Explosion. While Aran rarely melees, he will occasionally do so to the closest member of the raid. If Aran is not in the middle of the room, melee should run to the middle and everybody else should make sure that they are not closer to Aran than the melee are.
As previously stated, this fight is very dependant upon DPS. It is vital to have people who can stop his spells from casting, such as rugues, mages, or even properly spec'ed hunters. While a Counterspell will not silence him, it will cause his spells from that magic school to have a cooldown, the same goes for hunters with Silencing Shot. The ability to stop his spells is crucial. Without multiple people to be able to do this the fight will be beyond hard if
not impossible. Tanks are not required for this fight as his attacks are random and magical. Abilities"Arcane Missiles"
Aran will periodically cast Arcane Missiles at a random target dealing around 1300-1600 damage per missile and three to four missiles per cast. Arcane Missiles can be kicked, however since he has already used his mana for the spell once it begins casting, it is suggested that if you are having trouble keeping his spells from casting you do not kick this spell and focus on kicking his Fireballs and Frostbolts since they do not use his mana until they are finished casting and his mana should be above his health at all times. "Fireball"
Aran will periodically cast Fireball at a random target which will deal around 4,000 damage. It can be stopped from casting via Silencing Shot, Counterspell, Silence, Kick, Pummel, etc. "Frostbolt"
Aran will periodically cast Frostbolt at a random target which will deal around 3,000 damage. It can be stopped from casting via Silencing Shot, Counterspell, Silence, Kick, Pummel, etc. "Blizzard"
One of Aran's special attacks, Blizzard will be cast throughout the fight randomly starting around the room and moving in a clockwise direction. It's radius will continue to get larger as it gets closer to ending. Blizzard will hit for about 1300-1500 per tick while standing in the Blizzard. Blizzard has a slowing effect that will afflict anyone who is near the Blizzard. Remember that you will get the slowing effect by the Blizzard even if you are not actually getting hit by the Blizzard. Before Blizzard casts, a single icicle will fall down on the ground which will show where Blizzard will be cast, Blizzard
will cast about three seconds after the icicle falls. It is vital to call out where the icicle landed if you see it, as if someone gets caught in Blizzard is it very hard to get out before dying due to the slowing effect. If it also important for any melee DPS on Aran to pay careful attention as many times they will be focused on killing him and then get caught in the Blizzard which could easily result in death. The best way to get out of Blizzard if you do happen to get caught in it is to run through the middle of the room as Blizzard moves around the edges of the room. Blizzard is not a channelled spell for Aran and he will be casting his Fireballs, Frostbolts, and Arcane Missiles while it is going on."Ice Chains"
While Blizzard is occurring Aran will occasionally cast Ice Chains on a random player, rooting them in place. It is a magic effect and can be dispelled; and should be as it is often results in a death from the Blizzard otherwise. "Arcane Explosion"
Arcane Explosion is another of Aran's special abilities and while it potentially the deadliest, it is easily avoided. Aran will pull all members of the raid towards him and cast a slowing effect on the entire raid shortly after. The very moment that he pulls the raid in to him, everyone must run to the walls of the room to avoid the explosion. The slowing effect is a magic effect and can be dispelled. However this is not necessary as everyone will have ample time to get to the walls if they act quickly even with the slowing effect on them. If you do not get to the walls you will be hit with the Arcane Explosion for about 10,000 damage. It is possible to avoid being
hit via Ice Block, Divine Shield, and Cloak of Shadows, however since it is quite easy to get out of the Arcane Explosion's radius, it is best to save these cooldowns for other times during the fight as they can be very useful. "Slow"
Slow is the slowing effect that was previously mentioned in the Arcane Explosion overview. It is a magical effect and can be dispelled; however it does not need to be. Aran should cast this spell before he begins his Arcane Explosion spell."Flame Wreath"
Flame Wreath is Aran's special fire ability and is the cause of many wipes. When Aran casts this ability, about three to four people with receive a debuff called "Flame Wreath" and those people must not move under any circumstances. The people with the debuff can cast spells, however if they move in any direction or even turn in place they will activate the debuff, dealing about 4,000 damage to all nearby allies. The moment Aran begins to cast this spell it is important for all players to stop moving. After the spell casts any players who do not have the debuff are free to move. However, anyone who has it can not move under any circumstances whatsoever. It will help if any melee who are interrupting his spells stay near him when
he's casting Flame Wreath so they can sill interrupt him if they are afflicted with the debuff. However, it is important that all members of the raid stop moving before the spell finishes casting. After Aran finishes casting Flame Wreath he will go back to casting his normal spells even though the debuff remains on people. It is also extremely important that no one removes the debuff via Divine Shield, Cloak of Shadows, Ice Block etc. as it will remove the debuff causing the flames to activate dealing the damage to all nearby allies."Dragon's Breath"
(sometimes called 'Conflagration') Aran will cast this spell shortly after the "Flame Wreath" debuff wares off. It should only hit one player within melee range of Aran and it is important to heal that person as, besides the immediate damage they will take, they will receive a debuff which will deal large amounts of fire damage very quickly. It can be removed via Divine Shield, Ice Block, and Cloak of Shadows."Counterspell"
Aran will continually cast an AoE counterspell on anyone in his melee range."Mass Polymorph"
If Aran runs out of mana, he will cast Mass Polymorph on the entire raid, healing them for 325 damage per second. At this time he will conjure water, drink, and then begin to slowly kill each member of the raid one by one. He also gains the ability to cast Pyroblast. Aran's HP must stay below his mana so that he does not cast this spell as it will most likely result in a wipe."Pyroblast"
Aran gains the ability to cast this spell after he casts Mass Polymorph. It will hit for about 6,000 fire damage and is a very short cast."Conjure Water"
Aran conjures water and drinks to renew his mana after he casts Mass Polymorph on the raid. "Conjure Water Elementals"
At 40% HP Aran will summon four elite water elementals. They can be Banished, feared, etc. After 90 seconds, they will despawn. They will hit for about 1800-2100 damage each, casting at a fairly quick pace. They tend to all attack the same target unless someone gets aggro on them."Enrage"
If you manage to last 15 minutes without either killing Shade of Aran or him killing you (something that is unlikely to happen), then his room will explode with multiple casts of all his spells, some even coming out of the walls, which will quickly obliterate your raid.
Aran's special abilities (Arcane Explosion, Flame Wreath, and Blizzard) can not be interrupted by any means.
After the raid has been buffed and everyone is ready to pull, open the door and walk into the room. Do not go far in or you will pull Aran and anyone who is still outside of his room is liable to be locked out. Once everyone is in the room and is ready to pull, run into the room and begin to DPS. The first person that Aran gets into combat with will be the target of his first spell. If a priest is available, put a shield and Prayer of Mending on this person to negate the majority of it. Before you pull you should also work out a rotation to interrupt his spells and remember everything mentioned above about his abilities.
Hunter and warlock pets can be used in the fight however, when Flame Wreath is being cast stop them from moving at all costs. If they move while you have Flame Wreath on they can possibly activate it. The same goes for the "Woeful Healers" summoned by the book "Redemption of the Fallen" that you may have picked up while clearing the trash in the library to Aran. Hunter and Warlock pets can be helpful as they can be the targets of Aran's spells and will take a hit that a player would have otherwise.
Paladins should buff with whatever buffs will help to bring Aran down fastest and, since there is no real aggro list on Aran, Blessing of Salvation's only use in this fight would be to help keep aggro off the healers when Aran summons his water elementals. If you feel it neccasary, you may cast this on your healers right before Aran reaches 40% and summons them, however it is not entirely vital since you should have a tank picking up the elementals. Paladins should use Frost or Fire resistance Aura depending on whichever you may think is best, however, it is best to use Frost Aura since Aran's Fireball only hits for about 1,000 more damage than his Frostbolt and, whereas if someone is caught in Blizzard it is possible to get out and survive, if they activate Flame Wreath it will most likely result in a wipe. Also, when Aran summons his Water Elementals the Frost Resistance Aura will be a major help. Shamans should use any Resistance Totems they feel best and anything to help whatever DPS class is in their group as, again, DPS is the key to this fight.
Healers should be cautious of casting slow heals on targets who take damage from Aran as, while they may do the job, it is dangerous if Aran happens to cast two spells on the same target in a row. Continue countering his spells and using the tactics mentioned above when he casts his special abilities and get his HP to 40% at which point he will summon his water elementals.
There are multiple strategies that can be used to overcome the elementals. I would suggest to have a tank stop attacking Aran and go pick up the adds (preferably a druid if there is a feral one on DPS since they will be in feral gear anyway, but a warrior works fine too). If there are any warlocks, they should Banish and fear one each. Burn all fears on these adds while the tank picks up any of them that are not being crowd controlled. All DPS besides the one tank that will be picking up the water elementals should remain on Aran and kill him quickly since the summon water elementals ability costs quite a bit of his mana, and he can not run out of mana or your raid will most likely wipe.
Remember that Aran's health should always be below his mana. If his health begins to go above his mana or is even almost equal to it, you should pop any of your quick DPS potions that were mentioned earlier if they are not on a cooldown already.
Once you learn how to handle the special abilities, the focus of this fight becomes delaying Polymorph as long as possible. Learning to time your Kick/Shield Bash/Earth Shock at the end
of the cast rather than the beginning can add as much as a minute to the time you have before Polymorph. The extra time Aran spends casting is essentially free time; all you have to do is take advantage of it. Class Tips
Watch everyone's HP during this fight and be quick to heal anyone who takes damage in case Aran happens to cast two of his spells in a row on the same target. Stay at ranged from Aran at all times to avoid his Counterspell. Mages -
Stand at range from Aran to avoid his Counterspell and be ready to Counterspell him. Continue to DPS him down.Hunters -
Stay at range from Aran and DPS him down. Be prepared to use Silencing Shot on him.Rogues -
Be ready to kick Aran and DPS him down.Warriors -
Be prepared to Pummel Aran while continuing DPS on him.Warlocks -
DPS Aran down. Be ready to Banish and fear Aran's water elementals when he reaches 40% HP.