This is the 8th fight in the instance and things are getting really serious. It is a mainly single target fight with some slight cleave and burst requirements and a lot of movement. Windwalker shines at this luckily!
The main mechanic in the fight is Matrix Empowerment. The boss will get chargd by pillars very quickly and once he reaches 100 energy, he will transition into phase two, breaking the floor and taking you to a second platform with a pretty short enrage timer. You’ll want to delay this the most to get him as low as possible before this happens.
The way to achieve this is to drag the tank add, Maiden of valor, between the boss and the energy pillars. Once she gets 100 energy from this, she will start casting Cleansing Protocol. She will shield herself and start a cast which will kill everyone if the shield isn’t broken before the end. Otherwise, she will instantly lose 25% of her health.
This is important: you ideally want her to cast the shield 4 times, so you never want to take 25% of her health off outside of shields before that 4th cast, otherwise she will die prior to it and energy will leak into Avatar earlier. Because of that, be careful with abilities cleaving onto her.
Damage wise, you’ll want to be aware of the timings on Cleansing Protocol. During this cast, not only do you want to burst the shield, but damage on both the maiden and Fallen avatar himself is relevant. This is a prime occasion to use your offensive cooldowns, in particular serenity which has a strong cleave/AoE component naturally.
Cleansing Protocol should happen at 1:05 minutes in, 2:12 minutes in, 3:30 minutes in and 4:42 minutes in on Heroic difficulty for instance. It will last up to 20 seconds which means you can allways fit in a serenity in this window. On mythic timers are slightly different, check the section covering this.
Touch of Sargeras is the main phase 1 mechanic: the boss will periodically spawn green circles on the floor. If no one stands in them when they expire, the raid experiences lethal damage. You must stand in it with ideally 2 other players or topped with Diffuse magic to survive the damage soak.
Dark Mark is the phase 2 soak mechanic, replacing touch. Periodically the boss will brand 3 players with Dark Mark debuffs of different durations. When they expire, everyone in a circle around the branded player shares a huge amount of damage and gets knocked up and away from the brand. You can use transcendence to completely cancel the knockback and movement, and get instantly back to a safe spot. Once again, 3 people look like the amount required to soak it, however with all your defensives up you should be able to take it solo if you’re topped.
Talent Recommendations: Diffuse magic
As usual, transcendence is your best friend here. Set it up next to the boss (his aggro range is VERY small) before the pull, you don’t need to go back too close to be in range of the boss. He has a huge hitbox.
This will give you a get ouf of jail for free card for every mechanic in this encounter, allow you to get back to the boss quickly. If you’re assigned to one side of the room, set it up in that area to be able to go back more consistently.
Unbound Chaos will be your greatest threat. Once the boss starts casting this, wait a second after your screen gets veiled in green. Once the first green/yellow AoE spawns below you, start moving towards an area where no one is and keep moving untill the spell is over. If several people are on top of you, instantly pop strong defensive/health potions. If it looks bad, good old transcendence is here to save the day or give you another chance.
Shadowy Blades will target players and fixate on them. After a few seconds, they will shoot, hurting badly anyone in their path and leaving puddles that slow a lot on their positions. Getting hit by two or being near someone who also gets hit can easily result in lethal damage. When you’re focused, refresh transcendence if it’s not up in a valid position, roll to the edges or corners, drop the blade then transcendence out to get out of the dangerous position.
These two abilities only happen phase 1.
Rupture Realities happens throughout the whole fight. After a long channel, the boss will deal enormous damage, reduced based on your distance from him. You can use Flying serpent kick or other spells to get out of range quickly, then transcend back into action instantly. This is one of the big reasons not to put your transcendence too close to the boss: if it’s a bit further, you can reactivate it from further away when dealing with this. In phase 2, this works as the soft enrage as the boss quickly rips apart the platform. Ideally you place it in advance where the boss will be next to get out of Rupture Realities easily, but mostly the teleport is better used to soak marks.
Lastly, Black Winds are large tornadoes in last phase which put a heavy dot on you, you should avoid ever getting one stack of that dot.
This boss is definitely where things get really serious in tomb of sargeras mythic.
I won’t go in details over how to deal with the mechanic added in mythic of the two extra pilons; these are being soaked by a large amount of players (12-14, with potential back ups). This mechanic goes way beyond being about monks only. On the other hand, I’ll go over the specific tips about this fight.
First let’s look at the important timers:
Phase one shields on Maiden of valor:
First shield 1:11 in (around second serenity)
Second shield 2:32 (requires delay)
Third shield 3:52 (lines up decently if you delayed previous one)
Fourth shield around 5:11 (this shield is usually ignored and when you’ll want to transition the boss).
With that in mind, you’ll transition into phase 2 around 5:30 and it will last untill around 8 minutes and a few seconds (you’ll have a very hard time being alive after that as a monk.) Because of that, it is unlikely you will be able to fit Touch of Death at 0, 2:00, 4:00 (mid supression protocole), 6:00 and right before enrage. As a result of that, you have a LOT of breathing room on your touch of death cooldown and can be extremely liberal with it’s use throughout the fight. This is why it is considered fine to use touch of death only 4 times in total.
What about serenity? Serenity gets a lot of cleave value, which is quite wasted if it is only used to get Maiden’s health lower. However, matching serenity with supression protocol gives you a LOT of priority damage and cleave damage on the boss for free at the same time. Remember, the faster you get that shield broken, the quicker everyone can get back to the boss. If you break that shield very well, your team might allow some players who have a tough time target switching to stick on the boss, making it easier to have everyone in their correct positions for soaking etc.
As a result of that, lining up serenity with supression protocol is a VERY good idea. This is also what prevents monks from being too easily benched; you can easily top dps on every shield and oftentimes do twice as much as the next one during this phase, making windwalker’s burst a crazy good asset.
As a result of this, here is what your cooldown useage will look like:
0:00 Fists of Fury -> Touch of death -> Regular serenity blood lust opener on boss
1:10 Fists of Fury on boss + maiden with suppression protocol -> serenity on maiden cleaving as much as possible on boss
2:00 start hoarding your cooldowns
2:28 boss casts touch of sargeras, you want fists of fury to expire roughly a second after touch of sargeras. You’ll then proceed to touch of death maiden and follow it up with serenity on her shield, cleaving onto the boss.
3:40 delay this serenity by a few seconds, fists of fury then serenity on the shield coming up at 3:52
4:32 touch of death comes off cooldown, you’ll only get two more, so hold onto this one for now
5:05 you get another serenity here; use it on boss with touch of death
6:15 you have a serenity coming up here, but you will most likely delay it untill after rupture realities.
7:05 touch of death comes off cooldown, and boss dies in one minute exactly – check your next serenity timer and potentially line these up together.
Throughout the fight, transcendence is as crazy as ever. Use it in combination with the rest of your mobility to deal with most mechanics. Phase one it’s use is not very different from heroic use; I refresh it as soon as I get a chance next to the boss, quite centric, as a means of getting out of any sticky situation.
In last phase this is particularly good: as you come down, one of your first action should be to place transcendance on the first “safe spot” where your raid will stack in the middle of the room. This will make sense as you start progressing it. When the boss is placed for first rupture realities, you can soak the dark marks in a way that will knock you towards that mark, and you teleport mid air to your raid group, healing up in the process. Afterwards whenever the boss is casting rupture realities, take your time to refresh transcendence duing the downtime, preferably in a safe spot. This will come in handy for the whole phase, trust me!
Second potion can be used during phase 1 or 2. During phase 2, the boss casts rupture every 30 seconds and it’s a bigger downtime (allmost 15 seconds for melees) so you can’t get much better than 45 seconds out of a prolonged power. However, you will get extra health pool, which is highly relevant to surviving this phase. Using it phase one, for instance around the 2:30 minutes mark, will overall give you more damage since this is when your big cleave serenities are happening.
As for legendaries: the legendary belt would probably be the best combination with legendary wrists for overall damage if it affected the first maiden shield. However, despite her being above 90% health, damage absorbe doesn’t benefit from Cinidaria, which is a shame. Because of that, belt remains really solid but not as overwhelmingly as it would be otherwise. It is still my pick as it fits nicely with my gear but I would understand other non tier pieces like legendary boots, rings, trinket.