Hunter's Raiding Guide to Dragon Soul: Warmaster Blackhorn


The Wyrmrest Temple is safe and sound and the Dragon Aspects, along with Thrall, have powered up the Dragon Soul, thanks to you and your raid's valiant efforts in fending off elementals, minions of the Old Gods, and the strongest Twilight Dragon according to Deathwing. Now it's time for the raid to take it to the skies and pursue the Aspect of Death himself as we close down the curtains for World of Warcraft: Cataclysm.
 
But wait, just before you hop directly onto Deathwing and ruin his End of the World party, there's one tiny detail you need to take care of first. See, you're not gonna face DW without facing the remnants of his forces powerful enough to crush you guys, and they are the Twilight Drake Riders led by Warmaster Blackhorn.
 
Overall, this fight for the Hunters can be pretty movement and target-switching intensive. Plus there's a mechanic where, should the Hunter or any ranged DPS miss, the raid get screwed. Don't worry though, as long as you keep an eagle eye out, this fight is a cinch! Now onwards to battle!
 
Before we get to strat, let's talk about abilities (many thanks for wowpedia.org)
 
Stage One: Dragonriders, Attack!
Goriona
Twilight Onslaught  — Goriona unleashes a massive blast of dark energy at a random location on the deck of the Skyfire. Twilight Onslaught deals 800000 Shadow damage, divided evenly among all players within its 10 yard radius and the Skyfire. If the attack strikes the deck of the Skyfire without hitting any player, the gunship suffers the full damage.
 
Broadside  — Goriona periodically unleashes a vicious barrage of fireballs that slam into the side of the Skyfire, causing the ship to suffer damage equal to 20% of its remaining structural integrity.
 
Twilight Assault Drake 
Twilight Barrage — The twilight drakes launch bursts of dark energy at a random location on the deck of the Skyfire. Twilight Barrage deals 200000 Shadow damage, divided evenly among all players within its 5 yard radius and the Skyfire. If the attack strikes the deck of the Skyfire without hitting any player, the gunship itself suffers the full damage instead.
 
Twilight Elite Dreadblade
Blade Rush — The Dreadblade charges at the location of a random distant player, inflicting 100000 Physical damage to all players in its path.
Degeneration  — The Dreadblade carves a swath of destruction with its dark sword. The sword inflicts 40000 Shadow damage to enemies in a frontal cone, and 3000 Shadow damage every 2 sec for 1 min. This effect stacks.
 
Twilight Elite Slayer
Blade Rush — The Elite Slayer charges at the location of a random distant player, inflicting 100000 Physical damage to all players in its path.
Brutal Strike  — The Slayer strikes a vicious blow with its jagged sword. The strike inflicts 150 Physical damage, and 3000 Physical damage every 2 sec for 1 min. This effect stacks.
 
Twilight Sapper 
Detonate  — Upon reaching the Skyfire's bridge, the Sapper detonates his explosives The blast inflicts 250000 Fire damage to players within 8 yards, damages the Skyfire for 20% of its total durability, and kills the Sapper.
 
Stage Two: Looks Like I'm Doing This Myself
Warmaster Blackhorn
Devastate — Blackhorn sunders his current target's armor, inflicting 120% weapon damage and reducing the player's armor by 20% for 30 sec. This effect stacks.
Disrupting Roar — Warmaster Blackhorn screams fiercely, inflicting 50000 Physical damage to all enemies on the gunship. The shout also interrupts spellcasting for players within 10 yards for 8 sec.
Shockwave — Blackhorn strikes the ground, unleashing a wave of force that inflicts 100000 Physical damage to enemies in a 80 yard frontal cone and stuns them for 4 sec.
Vengeance — As Warmaster Blackhorn takes damage during the course of the fight, he inflicts 1% more damage for each percentage of his missing health.
Siphon Vitality  — When severely injured, Warmaster Blackhorn drains health directly from Goriona. The health drain inflicts damage equal to 20% of Goriona's remaining health, and heals Blackhorn accordingly.
 
Goriona 
Twilight Flames — Goriona launches a blast of dark energy at the location of a random player, inflicting 40000 Shadow damage on impact to players in a 8 yard radius. Twilight Flames lingers on the deck of the Skyfire, inflicting 30000 Shadow damage to players within 7 yards every 1 sec for 30 sec.
Twilight Breath  — Goriona unleashes a torrent of dark flame, inflicting 85000 Shadow damage in a 45 yard cone in front of the caster.
Consuming Shroud — Goriona envelops an enemy target in twilight energy, absorbing the next 100000 healing received. When Consuming Shroud absorbs incoming healing, unleashed energy will deal damage equal to the healing absorbed to all allies. Dying while afflicted by Consuming Shroud will release all remaining energy at once.
 
Alright, that's a heck of a lot of abilities we got there! Luckily, us Hunters won't be dealing with all of them as some of them are completely avoidable. But to the three most devastating abilities, we pretty much have to face them head-on since the fight depends on it.
 
The battle takes place in the Skyfire ship, and pretty much like the Battleship encounter in Ice Crown Citadel, the raid must defend the ship at all costs or else, the fight is over. On top of that, you need to face the hordes of adds and dragons that's crashing on your way, and of course, Warmaster Blackhorn himself.
 
As you may have noticed, there are two phases in the fight. In the first phase, the raid will be facing Goriona, a couple of Twilight Drakes, some Twilight Sapper, and mainly the Twilight Elites. In this phase, as a ranged DPS your main target for damage are the Twilight Drakes. However, you won't be able to hit them unless they're pulled down by the harpoons which are manned by NPCs.
 
So while you wait for the Twilight Drakes to be reeled in, your concern is the Twilight Elites. When DPSing the Twilight Elites, make sure you are away from them as far as possible. The Twilight Elites give a nasty debuff that will deal either shadow of physical damage. Once the Twilight Drakes are pulled on the ship, switch DPS and burn the drakes down.
 
During this phase, Twilight Sappers will drop by. They're nasty little goblins who will implant bombs on the ship's bridge, giving 20% damage on the ship, which apparently, isn't a good thing to happen. What's more, these Sappers often conceal themselves in a smokescreen once they land; fortunately this is only momentarily. Once you see the Twilight Sappers, kill them immediately. You can also plant Frost Traps and Concussive Shots around to slow them down.
 
With all that going on, you'd be surprise that those aren't the things that are really going to kill the raid. During this phase, Goriona uses Twilight Onslaught, a freakishly strong ability which causes huge damage on the Skyfire. Should the raid ignore this ability and simply evades the attack, Skyfire will take the damage and eventually it will be destroyed. The only way to avoid it is to let the entire raid (except the tanks) to soak on the damage by standing on the huge twirling purple cloud that will spawn once Goriona's about to use it. It will hurt, but the healers should be ready for it.
 
During this phase, the Twilight Drakes will also cast their own version of Twilight Onslaught called Twilight Barrage. It's significantly lower than Goriona's Twilight Onslaught, but nevertheless can break Skyfire should it be ignored. For this one though, only a few can soak up the damage. So make sure you know when to go and be the one to receive the damage.
 
Once three waves of Twilight Elites have been defeated, the Warmaster himself will jump into the fray and Phase two begins. At the start of the second phase, ranged DPS should burn Goriona down quickly. Why?  Because Goriona will launch Twilight Flames and Twilight Breath often. Twilight Flames not only deal damage, they also leave a void which causes immense damage overtime. So once you see them, get away from them ASAP. Twilight Breath on the other hand has a frontal cone range, so try to DPS her from behind.
 
Once Goriona's down, time to deal with the Warmaster. This one's practically easy since it's more of a burning-down-the-boss-quickly-before-the-tanks-die-because-of-debuff thing. Just give it everything you've got and hopefully, you'll make it through.
 
Now that you've downed the Warmaster, congratulations. It's now time to face Deathwing himself!

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