It is important to make sure you hold Z’Maja so that it never faces the group. The boss does a Mind Blast attack which hits everyone within the bosses 180 degree view and it will cause a lot of damage to the group so make sure that the boss always faces away. This is essentially the bosses Light Attack and it doesn’t need to be blocked 100% of the time, if you are with decent healers and utilising your own healing, healing over time and damage shield you should be able to take some of these attacks comfortably without blocking. It’s good to get into the habit of not blocking every hit because some other mechanic may require you to move quickly which means you’ll need to drop block so it’s good to get used to dealing with that damage so it’s not overwhelming later on.
Z’Maja does a Heavy Attack which is charged up over the course of a few seconds and can be seen by the growing Orb that the boss is holding and pointing at you. You can effectively just block this, but if you are taking other damage at the same time, doing that can be fatal. You ideally would use a skill to absorb or reduce some of the damage from this attack: on a DK you would use Protective Plate, Warden Shimmering Shield, Sorcerer Bound Aegis, Templar Radiant Ward and other classes Absorb Missile.
The boss will very frequently move around the room, after a period of time in one location the boss will go under the ground and move to a new location. You need to get to the boss as fast as possible when this happens. As the boss is about to go into the ground, refresh your taunt and always just start moving instantly towards the middle of the room, look around the room for a circle of rocks with a pool inside as this is where the boss will appear from. You can get to it fast enough if you react quickly when the boss begins to move and you look around for the new location and get there ready for when the boss reappears and then taunt and turn away from your group to prevent the Mind Blast.
The next thing is the Darkness AoE that beams from the bosses head and follows your movements, you should not stand inside of this. You can kite it backwards by walking in a circle away from the boss and back towards it again. The boss does other mechanics even while the darkness mechanic is happening so sometimes, moving really fast and far away from the darkness to kite it away can help you for situations where you might have a heavy attack charging on you and you can safely block it without the darkness catching you and causing extra damage to you at the same time.
Other mechanics during this fight include the interrupt on Z’Maja. Each location the boss goes to when it moves it will always do this once, where it begins to wave its hands around and if you don’t interrupt it within 3 seconds, it will start to throw you or your group members up in the air which will often kill them. Interrupt this quickly, even if you are kiting the darkness you have enough time to roll dodge or sprint away from the darkness and close the gap to get back to the boss to hit the interrupt.
Another mechanic you will have to deal with is the AoE cone. When the
portal opens, you will start to get an AoE cone appear in random places around the room. You absolutely need to avoid this at all costs as it will pull you into the portal if you stand inside of it. The hardest part for the Tank is that the cone starts at the middle of the room and increases in size the further back it goes. As the Tank you’ll be holding the boss at the edges of the room where the cone is at its largest point.
When dealing with Z’Maja the general way to get out of the cone is to make sure that you just sprint out of it, don’t ever be standing still during this fight, if you are always moving and on your toes then you’ll have no trouble just stepping out of it. It is possible to also Roll Dodge inside of the cone to avoid being pulled down, this can be more difficult to do because you have to time your roll dodge so that you do it as the cone is about to end and the time when it would have pulled you into the portal.
Fairly frequently you will get a situation where you have both the Heavy Attack charging on you at the same time as the cone appears. If you are a Warden Tank then this is easy to deal with because you can Shimmering Shield and sprint/roll dodge and you don’t need to block, but for other classes this is the most difficult part of the whole fight.
Always play whichever mechanic happens first. It’s unlikely that both mechanics will begin exactly at the same time, so if the cone appears and then you see the Heavy Attack charging, sprint out of the cone and instantly block. If the Heavy Attack is channelling first then the cone appears, block the heavy attack and then instantly roll dodge. If both mechanics happen at exactly the same time, sprint out of the cone and block. Sometimes you can simply block and walk out of the cone if you are being proactive and moving about regularly and not standing still on the boss, you will often find yourself close enough to the edge of the cone to block-walk out of it.
As you become more experienced, this will just become more and more easy to deal with but can be very difficult for Tanks who are new to this environment.
Other things to be aware of are the Orbs and the Orb DoT. Be careful not to walk into the Orbs as they explode and can stun you, if someone else walks into an Orb it sends AoEs across the ground in various directions that are guaranteed to move towards your general direction and they can stun you also. Just try to stay alert and side step these if you see them early enough. It can be fatal if you get hit by them especially during other mechanics such as the Heavy Attack.
Orbs also apply a Damage over Time effect to random people, this is extremely noticeable if you begin to take huge amounts of damage suddenly, this is when you will probably need to block the Mind Blast because when combined with the Orb DoT it can potentially kill you very quickly so be prepared to heal yourself when that happens.
Creapers start to appear when Z’Maja hits 40%. These usually cause very little issues for the Main Tank, you won’t usually get rooted by them unless you don’t have taunt of Z’Maja- if you do get rooted then you need to instantly break free or else you get silenced and won’t be able to use any Magicka based skills.
Once the boss reaches 5% the Execute phase begins. The Shade of Z’Maja from the portal will appear in the centre of the room. You need to taunt it and point it away from the group again.
There are 2 ways you can deal with the execute phase, you can solo tank it or tank swap. I would suggest learning to solo Tank as soon as you can, as it’s much more efficient for preventing extra damage to the group and maintaining buffs and debuffs.
All of the previous mechanics still exist but there will be no portal or portal cone.
There is a new mechanic now called Baneful Mark. This is a big attack and debuff applied to you, you’ll lose basically all of your health, your ultimate cost will increase and also be inflicted by a huge health debuff meaning you receive less healing and do less healing, the only way to overcome the Baneful Mark is to be healed back to 100% health. This mechanic is quite daunting for Tanks new to this environment but as long as you stay calm and use a certain skill rotation you will be able to survive this easily without swapping taunt of the boss between tanks. As the Tank with Z’Maja taunted, you are guaranteed to get the Baneful Mark every single time that it happens.
You should be set up with 3 Harmony Jewellery if you are taking Z’Maja for the execute phase solo. You also want to have the smallest amount of health possible where you are still able to survive. And having high Health recovery at this stage is really helpful. A lot of people will switch food as the execute phase starts, and use food that does not have a Health buff, the lower your health the easier it is to heal back you full. Consider dropping the “ CP and using “ instead – Baneful Mark debuffs your healing but Health a recovery is not classes as healing so you’ll still get the max ticks from Health a recovery every 2 seconds.
When you get the Darkness in execute you should kite it really far back from the boss, the reason why is because when you get hit with Baneful Mark, you can then run to the boss and the healers can heal and you can stand still inside the heals for as long as possible. If you don’t kite the darkness away then if you get hit by Baneful Mark and the darkness is chasing you then you won’t be able to get healed as easily because you’ll need to get out of the darkness and away from it.
In Execute the healers should put their AoE HoTs on top of the boss and the group should be stacked on Z’Maja feet. This way the heals will cover the whole group but also, when you stand really close to Z’Maja you will be inside all of the healing also. Someone also needs to use overflowing alter for you in execute so you can perform your rotation to heal up to full.
If you’ve done everything right up to this point now the only thing left is to make sure when you are inflicted with the Darkness, you perform your rotation to heal back to full quickly.
DK: Igneous Shield – Green Dragon Blood – Altar Synergy
Warden: Leeching Vines – Polar Wind – Altar Synergy
Sorcerer: Restraining Prison – Clannfear – Altar Synergy
Templar: Place Extended Ritual and Restoring Focus – Altar Synergy
The Baneful Mark happens around every 20 seconds which works well because this means you can proc your Monster Set and Blood Altar Synergy every time on the cool down.
If you are doing +1, 2 or 3 you have to also be aware of more mechanics that might happen to you from the mini bosses.
Siroria – Things to look out for
Talons – This boss might occasionally reach you with its Talons which immobilise you for a few seconds. You do not need to break free out of this unless you need to.
Fire AoE – The boss will occasionally leave a huge AoE on the ground, typically the Off Tank will place this so that it doesn’t effect you but mostly just be careful when kiting the Darkness or transitioning across the room that you don’t walk into it.
Fire Breath – The Off Tank should not be pointing this Mini boss in your direction, if it is though you will need to just watch out for the cone Fire Breath attack the boss does, especially don’t get hit by this unblocked.
Group Fire Stack mechanic [Main Siroria Mechanic]- When this boss is in the room, your group will usually maintain position on the tail of Z’Maja. This is because of the group stacking mechanics, someone randomly will be assigned a Fire that grows at their feet, you need to stack with your group to spread the damage of the fire, if you don’t then you will die. As the Main Tank you will not get this when you have Taunt of Z’Maja, however if you lose taunt or at times when you switch taunt with another Tank so you can do the portal you will often be assigned this attack and you need to make sure you stack on your group. Always be careful when entering the portal – dont rush, make sure when you go into the portal you don’t have the fire growing at your feet, if you do then tell your group and stack up and go into the portal after the explosion.
Relequen – Things to look out for
AoE cone – Relequen will focus on a group member and point its cone at them, if you are inside the cone and don’t block it knocks you onto your back. If you don’t block it you get staggered. If your group is killing this boss in the middle of the room rather than stacking it next to Z’Maja then this makes your job a lot harder. Since your group will be stacked on Z’Maja tail, this means you’ll potentially have the cone aimed at you almost every time. You can simply just block while standing in this cone however, if you block the cone and get hit by Z’Maja Heavy Attack also, you die as the stagger from the cone causes you to drop block. You also need to be really aware because you might have both the Portal Cone and Relequen Cone appear at the same time and you need to move out of the Portal Cone.
Lightning AoEs – These are bolts of lightning that move along the floor, if they hit you then you will get stunned by them so they need to be avoided. When the Mini boss is held in the middle of the room it’s quite easy to avoid them as they have a long distance to travel and you can watch them and side step them, when the boss is stacked with Z’Maja it can be more difficult as the AoEs will travel through the boss so it can be hard to see, the Off Tank should call “Heavy Attack” when Relequen does this and you should take a step back from Z’Maja and pay close attention to not get hit.
Lightning Bar Swap [Main Relequen Mechanic] – You’ll have a pulsing lightning around your character for a few second and then a large blue beam appears above your head and a huge AoE around your feet. This is the bar swap mechanic and you need to move onto your other bar for 10 seconds until it’s gone. If you don’t swap bar you’ll take a lot of damage and kill your group members. It’s important to really watch out for this mechanic, if you see it early enough you can switch to your back bar, force the mechanic to be on your back bar and then stick on your main front bar for 10s. This doesn’t always work out as planned, sometimes it’s hard to see and other times you won’t be able to react because if someone dies with the Lightning Bar Swap it just switches to someone else. It can be helpful to make sure you have at least 1 defensive skill on your back bar in case you get stuck there so you don’t die.
Galenwe – Things to look out for
Interrupt – Galenwe curls up and starts to create Frost Spikes that shoot up from the ground and hit people. He needs to be interrupted to stop this.
Ice [Galenwe Main Attack] – There is a circle Ice AoE that your group members need to take it in turns to pick up and drop. If no one picks it up it shoots damage at people. Often this can be dropped on your or in your path as you are about to move across the room. Try your best to avoid it, try to make sure your group always drop it consistently on the same side of the room and that makes it easier for you to not accidentally pick it up. If you do pick it up then carry it to the position you need to be with Z’Maja and just drop it anywhere, as soon as possible and your group will have to come and collect it.
All of the Boss Main Attacks are mechanics that you will have to deal with no matter what even if the Mini Bosses have not appeared or are dead, those mechanic still exist. These mechanics will also happen even in execute.
Side Bosses – Gryphon Tanking
When Tanking the Gryphons – it’s advised to use my build setup or something similar. Your intention here is to keep hold of the Gryphon, avoid getting hit by it and when it’s in the air, kite it away from your group.
If you are hit by the Light Attacks from the gryphon they apply a stacking bleed damage, so the more stacks you have the more damage you’ll receive every second. You should do your best to avoid getting hit because you do not want to have to stack in your group when the Gryphon flies in the air.
Basically turn the Gryphon away from your group and roll dodge every hit. You don’t need to block, you should be using Well-Fitted Medium Armor and just roll dodge every hit. When the gryphon stands on its back legs, use this time to quickly heavy attack to get back stamina and then go back to roll dodging the light attacks. The light attacks hit every 2 seconds to you can roll dodge count 1,2 then roll again.
When the Gryphon is preparing to fly in the air it will firstly create an AoE at its feet on the ground, if you are stood inside it throws you backwards.
While the gryphon is in the air, you should stand on the opposite side of the room, away from your group. If you stand near your group, the gryphon will throw a big AoE at your group that stuns everyone and also applies a stack of the dot damage to them. So stand away and force the gryphon to shoot the AoE at you away from the group and quite often the gryphon when it flies across the room it will go towards you rather than your group meaning they don’t get the little stun AoEs either or at lease they have more time to react to them rather than them being dropped straight on the group.
When the boss lands, rinse and repeat.
Side Bosses – Mini Bosses
Mini Bosses are quite basic to Tank. You basically have to pull them away to the opposite side of the room to the gryphons. And you just need to avoid their damage. Step out of the AoEs, roll dodge the heavy attacks if you want to be more efficient. Make sure you have Crushing Shock slotted for Galenwe as he teleports away and may need interrupting at the other side of the room.