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It didn’t take long to get from Thunder Bluff to the Echo Isles – Ankona took advantage of a wyvern so she could think and plan before getting to her destination. She had information to confirm with the spirits – was Gromnor dead? Was he really in the northern part of the Eastern Kingdoms, somewhere […]

filed under Healing, Raiding, Shaman
Resto Shaman vs. Gruul’s Lair – A Healing Guide
comment 5 Written by on May 20, 2008 – 8:55 am

This is one in a series of posts covering resto-shaman-specific information for tier4 and tier5 boss fights. It will NOT be a boss kill strategy, rather a list of tips and tricks for your friendly neighborhood shaman to make these fights run a little more smoothly.

You can see other Tuesday Guides (including all of Serpentshrine Cavern) here.

notebook2 by woodsy

Most likely, if you’re looking into the cave of The Dragonkiller, this will be your first foray into 25 man raiding content. You’ve likely healed a lot of Karazhan, and possibly even a few Zul’Aman raids. Welcome to the craziness that is 25 people in one cave!

Entering Gruul’s Lair is a relatively simple task, with no attunement and very little trash. Be wary of the trash though, as Lair Brutes charge (stand right next to them) and Gronn-Priests heal (earthshock them). This trash is on a 1 hour respawn timer.

And then you’ll be up against High King Maulgar!


Maulgar Basics:

  • Maulgar has four buddies.
    • Krosh Firehand – a mage, tanked by a mage using spellsteal. do not get ANYWHERE near this guy, or he’ll blast wave you into small shaman ashes. If the mage tank dies and Krosh is not very nearly dead, he will likely wipe the raid.
    • Olm the Summoner – a warlock, tanked by a tank and any felhounds he summons (enslaved by other warlocks). The tank on Olm will get deathcoiled, repeatedly, for a fair amount of damage.
    • Kiggler the Crazed – a shaman with a polymorph spell, usually tanked by a moonkin or two hunters (since he is ranged-tankable). Boomkin and/or hunters will take periodic damage, and he may come smack you around if one of the hunters gets polymorphed and you have a lot of healing aggro, so be careful.
    • Blindeye the Seer – a priest, complete with prayer of healing and a bubble. Tanked by someone, but he doesn’t hit particularly hard. Anyone with an interrupt should be using it to interrupt his heals.
  • Maulgar himself has a few abilites, other than hitting the tank pretty hard. He cleaves (don’t stand in front of him), he knockbacks, and he whirlwinds. Also, at 50%, he does an AOE fear and will charge random raid members. If the Maulgar tank dies, and Maulgar is not very nearly dead, he will likely wipe the raid.

What you need to know as a Resto Shaman:

  • The key to this fight is the pull – and it will take awhile to get the nitty gritty details down pat. Usually we pull with a set of misdirects and a paladin bubble. Misdirects cast, paladin runs in – and as soon as Maulgar and Friends start moving, the hunters start shooting.
  • Be very *very* careful about heal aggro at the beginning.
  • The kill strategy is usually Blindeye, Olm, Kiggler, Krosh, and then Maulgar. This may change from raid to raid. Ideally, you will be healing the Blindeye, Olm, or Kiggler tanks, in order to allow your chainheals to help bounce around the melee once you’re no longer keeping a tank alive by yourself.
  • Blindeye’s tank won’t need too much healing. Olm’s tank will.
  • Earthshield the tank – Maulgar hits *hard*
  • Once Maulgar gets to 50%, drop a tremor totem. Getting feared is bad.
  • Save Heroism/Bloodlust for the last 30% on Maulgar.

So! Now that you’ve gotten phat lewtz from Maulgar, you’ll kill another 3-4 pulls of Ogres, the last one being the toughest (three at the same time). And then – Gruul!


Gruul the Dragonkiller Basics:

  • If you’re not inside his room when Gruul is pulled, you will get stuck behind the gate. Don’t get stuck behind the gate.
  • Gruul only hits moderately hard at the beginning. This, unfortunately, is short lived.
  • Every 30 seconds, Gruul buffs himself with Growth, which increases his damage by 15%. This is not dispellable, and acts as something of a soft enrage timer. After a certain amount of Grows (usually between 12 and 15) your tank will get oneshot.
  • Hurtful Strikes hit the second highest aggro target within melee range. This is an ideal spot for a bear tank, since Hurtful Strikes cannot crit or crush, so the tank needs only a lot of armor and HP.
  • Every 30-45 seconds, Gruul will Reverberate the cave, silencing everyone inside for 4 seconds.
  • Cave Ins – THE SKY IS FALLING! Don’t stand in it – the graphic is pretty noticeable (rock chunks falling from the ceiling). Cave ins do around 3000 damage every 3 seconds within a specific area.
  • And the trademark Shatters – a 4 step process
    • Step 1: Slam – everyone gets bounced up in the air
    • Step 2: Grasp – slows you down and makes it very hard to move
    • Step 3: Stoned – you are stunned
    • Step 4: Shatter – you explode, doing damage to anyone around you. The more people there are, the more damage you do. Also, the closer you are, the more damage you do. At just within range, you’ll do around 1100 damage. At very close, you can explode for nearly 9K.

What you need to know as a Resto Shaman:

  • Earthshield MUST be on the tank, especially as Reverberation approaches.
  • Healing will be rather free until about Grow 7, at which point all healing should be on the two tanks, since Gruul will start to hit *very* hard.
  • Don’t stand in the cave-in.
  • To avoid getting thrown around too much by Ground Slam, head to the rocks on the western side of the cave (there’s a log on the ground there that’s a good place to stick your totems as well).
  • When you get slammed – You Must Run Away From EVERYONE. A mod like BigWigs or Deadly Boss Mods will give you a proximity meter, or you can hit shift-V and display friendly health bars (if you can see someone’s health bar, you are too close).
  • Mana Spring and Water Shield are critical for this fight, which can last upwards of 7 minutes and is quite healing intensive, particularly near the end.
  • Save Heroism/Bloodlust for the last 25% or so, and give your group a warning, especially if you’re buffing a DPS group, so they know to save trinkets/wipe aggro before you send them into a frenzy.
  • If a wipe is called, try to run as close to as many people as possible, so you can blow each other to tiny bits with shatter, and wipe faster.
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5 Responses to “Resto Shaman vs. Gruul’s Lair – A Healing Guide”

  1. My guild and another have been running this damn place for 3 weeks now. The first week we took him down no problem, the last two have been a little frustrating. In a raid of 6 to 7 healers what are your thoughts to having 1 if not 2 resto shamans focusing on the raid before the 7th grow to keep the DPS up as long as possible after the shatters. Once growth 7 hits depending to the healing makeup keep the shaman on raid heals until grow 9. It seems that half way through or a little later the tanks are still solid but we lost the dps to finish him off.

    By jagerbombz on May 22, 2008 | Reply
  2. That could work, if the majority of your deaths are melee/cave-in related. If they’re ranged, Chain Heal is going to be a frustrating exercise in not-bouncing, because people should be spread out. That said, having a healer or two to HOT/etc the raid early on is alright, especially if your tank is doing fine up until grow 7ish. Hopping off the tank to hit the melee with a chain heal because of a badly placed cave-in is definitely doable.

    It sounds like people are dying to shatters, and if that’s the case, you need more people paying attention/running a bossmod or shift-v/not killing each other with shatter damage. Are you running a WWS/damage meter that can show what kind of damage people are taking when they die?

    By Anna on May 22, 2008 | Reply
  3. No mod, but I can tell after shatter…bam 50% to 75% loose prcious HPs. It seems that a handful of peeps either get unlucky or don’t know to move…even though we tell them to. Hopefully we can over come this like we did with cave ins. That is no longer a big issue. I just sort of feel helpless focusing on the tank while he is safe with all the other healers and watching those around me fall like flies. I know that not everyone can live but I feel compeled to keep some of the DPS alive. I guess that feeling comes from being a rogue for all these years.

    By jagerbombz on May 22, 2008 | Reply
  4. Are they all bringing pots/bandages?

    THere’s nothing wrong with tossing a heal to a DPSer who is in range and in danger of taking a dirtnap (especially at the beginning before things get nuts) – but you don’t want to encourage bad habits with good healing, if that makes sense? Getting over the shatter damage is part of learning how to do the Gruul fight, and people are going to *have* to learn how not to blow each other up.

    Especially since that aspect of Gruul is something that preps a raid for later fights.

    Healer guilt is something we all deal with (I heal hunter’s pets if I have the time and mana >.>), but in this situation, you’re doing the right thing by keeping your focus on the tanks and not the raid. The vast majority of shatter damage is avoidable (yeah, sometimes you get unlucky or someone lags), and everyone in the raid is responsible for minimizing that.

    By Anna on May 22, 2008 | Reply
  5. One thing about healing on the Gruul fight is that the damage on your tanks will change radically as Gruul grows.

    For the first 5 (or so, depending on gear) growths, minimal healing is needed, so it’s beneficial for the raid to let the aggro-to-tank heals (i.e. Earth Shield, Prayer of Mending, Lifebloom, etc.) to heal the tank rather than chain-heals. Gruul is a very threat-limited fight, and the tanks need all the threat they can get. Feel free to throw around a bit of DPS during this part, assuming

    Once you hit growth 10 its ZOMG HEALZ! time. Spam the tank like it’s 1999.

    If your healing team feels confident, it’s actually best to use boss-damage increasing abilities (such as Curse of Recklessness for Warlocks) for the first couple growths. Do -not- use mitigation abilities (thunderclap, Curse of weakness, etc) until growth 5. The more damage your tanks receive, the more rage/mana they will have.

    By Mithral on Jun 2, 2008 | Reply

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