TSW Nightmare Darkness War Guide
Hey everyone, Nightmare Darkness War is the last dungeon in the Nightmare series (until the July 31 update). This dungeon on Nightmare mode is all about add control as adds not killed quick enough will turn into bombs with a large explosion radius.
- August 1: Wayeb-Xul in Patch 1.1 now have a much longer phase 1. His Concuss ability in phase 1 and in phase 2 once Varangian disappears will port people around.
- Adds: Adds will typically come from two directions: one of the bush near the entrance and the far side (opposite from the entrance). Generally you will want to stay away from the far side as the adds near that side of the room tends to be turned into bombs. If you have adds on you (especially healers), run them into the tank so that he/she can pick them up. Having good AoE DPS that can make short work of adds and alert ranged DPS that can take down any adds turned into bombs will make this fight a lot easier. Failure to kill the adds fast enough usually allows the boss to turn the adds near him into bombs, which is harder to spot and can blow up to wipe out half of your party.
- Bombs: Watch for the beam from the boss, if you see the boss start casting Sacrificial Ceremony, track down the red beam and kill the add before it has a chance to move closer to the group. This boss is a good practice for the 5th boss, where you have to dodge bombs from the boss and adds at the same time.
- Dodge/Avoid: Sometimes this can be hard to spot if you have a group of adds piled on top of the boss but you need to dodge his AoE Blood Boils which is usually casted under his feet.
- Adds: This add phase is a bit tricky mostly because there isn’t an option to turn off autoattack on target switch so ranged DPS sometimes will pull a pack unknowingly simply because they pressed their attack abilities when the last pack of mobs they were on was killed. Ranged DPS therefore will need to pay extra attention to their button pressing when mobs are about dead so they don’t accidently pull the next pack. You want to pull aggressively but at the same time avoid getting two packs at a time if possible.
- The pattern we use for the 5 add packs before the boss is as follows.
- Usually we don’t have an issue with killing smaller Balam Bloodletters before they get sacrificed to the boss but in pack 3, 4, and 5 you will start getting the bigger Nacom Warcallers which have more HP and therefore may not be killed fast enough. That is entirely ok, if you just focus on getting the Balam Bloodletters down the boss should only have 20ish stacks which is very easy to heal through. For packs 4/5 we usually wait and see which pack is getting sacrificed first before pulling them (the pack on the left hit a bit harder as it has two Nacom Warcallers). Note that sometimes the boss can be activated with the last pack of mobs. That is something the tanks need to be aware and grab aggro right away before the boss goes for the healer (see video)
- Aggro dump: Whenever the boss casts Concuss, make sure to taunt immediately afterwards if you can’t interrupt it. It will wipe his threat.
- Tank Survival: Seething Stench is the ability from the boss which does a lot of damage, and even more so if the boss has a lot of stacks. It is also a relatively fast cast that the boss can chain multiple times in a row. If the healer is having issues keeping the tank up, consider kite the boss around to LOS his attacks if possible.
- Stuff to avoid/dodge or impair if you are lazy: Blood Boils, a ground AoE from the boss and Underworld Miasma are things that should be dodged (the last ability only relevant for tanks) or interrupted. Concuss (blinds you) from the boss can be an issue sometimes if casted immediately after Underworld Miasma
- Interrupt/Purge: Itzama’s Wrath is a buff that the boss casts on himself that increases ranged, melee and magic damage by 150%. You can either interrupt this or purge it. This buff lasts for 30 seconds but can be ignored if your tank/healer combo is decently geared.
- Adds: 2-3 adds will pop out of the ground when the boss does his Blood In (moving away from the boss). The adds don’t hit hard and can be killed quickly but what you need to watch out for is the circle on the ground indicating where they will spawn from. Standing on top of the circle will knock you back and deal a fairly large amount of damage.
- New mechanic: Other than going in and out when the boss does his circles and moving away from the boss’s Ceremonial lines, there is an additional mechanic that is present the Nightmare version of the fight that makes it slightly challenging. That ability is Sanguine Omen and unlike the ones you are probably used to, this circle actually move around the boss. What makes it interesting is that this circle often appear when you need to gather in for the Blood Out mechanic, which make it a tad challenging as you now need to 1) stay away from the lines inside the circle 2) avoid the smaller circles 3) not move out of the enclosed area. If you are vigilant, you may be able to watch for when the boss casts this ability and interrupt it.
- Adds: Proper add management is a key, just like in normal or elite versions. We typically dump the first batch of adds on the far side of the room, where the exit is. This way their blood pools won’t bother us for the rest of the fight. For the second batch we typically dump them near the entrance and for subsequent batches just pick a corner and jump them in. You want the leave the middle of the room free of blood pools so that people can move around when the boss burrows. Kill the adds ASAP when the boss burrows in so you don’t have to deal with them once the boss is back on the surface.
- Tank survival: This boss’s regular attack hits hard and there isn’t much you can do about it other than heal through it. You could try stack debilitate but when the boss burrows, all the stacks gets wiped out so you will never really reach 10 stacks for 30% damage reduction. Since there is nothing to impair, tanks can equip some defensive cooldowns to help the healer out if necessary.
- Stuff to dodge: What kills a lot of people (myself included) is when the boss burrows out. You need to keep a close eye on the boss when he goes underground and ensure that you are never near the direction he is heading towards to. What you are looking for is the white glowy thing protruding the ground. If you see it headed your way, move far away from it as possible. It will one shot most DPS/healers and take a large chuck out of a tank’s HP.
- In addition to the burrowing, you need to keep an eye out for the boss’s Dash attack. It is easy to avoid and most people don’t have an issue avoiding it unless they got trapped in a corner.
- Carpet Bomb pattern: This boss get a lot of first timers to Nightmare because the carpet bomb pattern is different. Whatever you did to survive the carpet bombs in normal and elite may not necessarily work here. Luckily, there is a very easy way you can avoid the carpet bombs. Keep in mind that there are two kinds of carpet bombs. The first one is when the boss teleports to a side and then just carpet bomb that side of the room he is standing in. That one is very easy to avoid. The hard one to avoid is when he teleports up to the rocks and then just carpet bomb the entire room. Here is the pattern for that.
- The pattern as you can see is left, right, middle. The best way to avoid these 3 waves of bombs is to stand in the middle when he teleports up. He will bomb the left side (entrance side) first and then the right side (exit side). You can either stand in the middle and move immediately to entrance side once the bomb in that region passes or you can wait for him to bomb the right side of the room and then move immediately after the bombs have exploded to the right side. By the time he bombs the middle region, you will be either at the left or the right side, well away from the bombs. After the boss done with carpet bombing, he will teleport back to the middle of the room. Typically, for the first half of the fight, I move near the exit to avoid the bombs but for the later half of the fight when there are a lot of walking add bombs, I move to the entrance to avoid the carpet bombs and the add bombs.
- Add bombs (or dude bombs): The carpet bomb is easy to master but what wipes a lot of experienced groups is their inability to kill the adds fast enough, before they get turned into bombs. In the first half of the fight, the adds you get are singles, or at most a pack of 3 but during the second half, you start to get more waves of adds, and then a giant wave of adds near the end. It is crucial that you use your cooldowns and whatever you need to kill the adds before the boss teleports away and turn them into bombs. Having to dodge add bombs and carpet bomb from the boss at the same time is not fun and get people killed. If you can’t kill them all, make sure the adds are clumped together. Spreading them out and have them turned into bombs will get people blown up. Once the adds are turned into bombs, it is no brainer than you should kill them ASAP before they reaches the party.
- Purge: Like the 3rd boss, Itzama’s Wrath is the buff you may want to purge as it increases the boss’s damage by 150%.
- Phases: To make things easier, phase 1 denote the start of the fight all the way until Wayeb takes off. Phase 2 covers the part of the fight when Wayeb flies off and you are left to deal with the reanimated adds. Phase 3 covers the last big portion of the fight when Wayeb lands again and turn adds into bombs.
- Adds (first phase): We usually drop down at the right side of the room and go to the little corner/half circle marking and stand there. The adds will aggro and come to us. Tank will usually want to stand just a bit ahead to stop all the adds coming for the healer. The adds that you want to kill ASAP are the Chilam Psychopomps. They do a ground AoE that you need to either 1) interrupt 2) AoE purge 3) kill him before he can cast it. It is a buff to all nearby adds that make them do 150% damage. As a healer, I get a significant amount of aggro during this phase so I have at least one HP talisman as I will need to heal myself quite a bit during this phase.
- You will want all the adds clumped together here for two reasons 1) it is easier to grab them when Wayeb-Xul reanimates them 2) once the adds turn into bombs, you have them at max distance from the boss for the DPS to burn them down.
- Tanks may need to run off during the last add wave to grab Wayeb as he lands and let the DPS finish off the adds.
- Keep in mind that as of patch 1.1, phase 1 is much longer and Concuss will teleport people around during this phase. One of the teleport spots is right next to the cliff and those not careful can fall to their death.
- Adds (second phase): During the second add phase, when Wayeb reanimates them and takes off, tank can simply run over and park himself to grab the adds as soon as they spawn. Once the Norse Varangian spawns (we call him Norse Jesus), adds die much faster. Beware that when Wayeb flies up and put this cone thingie on Varangian, you have 1 more add phase before the tank need to go run in and grab Wayeb.
- Adds (third phase): We typically have two ranged DPS on full time add duty and one DPS on Wayeb during this phase. The two DPS on add duty need to kill the bomb adds before they can get near the rest of the group located on the left side of the room. The bombs have a very large explosion radius so the two DPS need to kill them off from far away as possible. If you have voice communication the tank can call out when the bombs spawn (when Wayeb casts Sacrificial Ceremony) such that the two DPS can switch to Wayeb when the adds are not spawning.
- Aggro wipe: When the boss casts Concuss, tank need to taunt immediately afterwards as it is an aggro wipe.
- Teleport: Concuss will teleport people around in phase 1 and in phase 2 once Varangian dies. Try to maximize your DPS get through phase 1 ASAP to minimize the amount of teleports.
- Impair: In the 3rd phase of the fight, it is absolutely crucial that tank impairs/interrupt every Exhale the Void. The reason you will want to do this is because Wayeb will pull people into him on this phase and if this conal attack is not interrupted, people have a chance to get pulled into it and die.
- Stuff to dodge out: As mentioned above, Wayeb will pull people to him and casts Open the Rift. It is fairly easy to run out of this but if the tank missed a prior Exhale the Void, people can get pulled into it and die instantly. This ability occurs in both phase 1 and phase 3.
- Tank damage: Tank damage can be a bit intense during phase 1 as Wayeb doesn’t do much and just whack the tank. Once you made it past this phase, Wayeb is much easier to heal in phase 3 as he have to cast Sacrificial Ceremony and Exhale the Void and have very little chance to hit the tank.
- DPS check: This fight has a certain DPS check to it as Varangian only lasts for a short duration and once he dies, you lose the damage buff. In addition, Waybe has an enrage timer where if you take too long to kill him, he put dots on everyone and kills them.