Guide from Icey Veins.
Phase One top
Phase One starts when you pull Garrosh, and lasts until he reaches 10% health.
5.1.1. Garrosh only uses two abilities during this phase.
Desecrate Icon Desecrate targets a random ranged raid member (even if the ranged raid member is in melee range at the time), dealing damage in a 15-yard radius and creating a Desecrated Weapon at that location. Garrosh casts Desecrate roughly every 40 seconds.
The Desecrated Weapon is a hostile NPC that is surrounded by a large damaging void zone. The Desecrated Weapon is stationary, and it does not attack or perform any other actions (and therefore it does not need to be tanked). The Desecrated Weapon can be damaged and killed, and the size of the void zone around it is directly proportional to its health (the less health the Weapon has, the smaller the void zone is). When the Desecrated Weapon is killed, the void zone disappears.
Hellscream's Warsong Icon Hellscream's Warsong is a buff that Garrosh casts on any adds present, roughly every 30 seconds. It increases the targets' damage done and health by 150%.
There are three types of adds present in this phase of the fight, but we only discuss two in this section, because the third type does not attack your raid directly, and is instead linked to a fight mechanic that is best explained on its own.
Kor'kron Warbringers spawn in groups of 6 (two packs of 3 adds coming in from either side of the room), roughly every 40 seconds. These adds have a single ability, Hamstring Icon Hamstring.
Hamstring Icon Hamstring deals a high amount of Physical damage to the Warbringer's current tank, reducing their movement speed by 50% for 10 seconds.
Farseer Wolf Riders spawn one at a time, roughly every 40 seconds. They spawn alternatively from either side of the room. These adds have three abilities.
Ancestral Fury Icon Ancestral Fury is a buff that causes the Farseer Wolf Rider to gain 25% increased casting speed each time one of their spell casts is interrupted. The increased casting speed stacks.
Ancestral Chain Heal Icon Ancestral Chain Heal is a standard, interruptible chain heal that the Wolf Rider casts on its allies (other adds and Garrosh).
Chain Lightning Icon Chain Lightning is a standard, interruptible chain lightning that deals high Nature damage.
5.1.3. Siege Engineers and Iron Stars
Siege Engineers are adds with very low health, who spawn, two at a time, roughly every 45 seconds. These adds do not spawn in the fighting area, but rather above it, one on either side of the room, on small ledges. They do not cast any abilities against your raid, but they play a very important role.
Next to each add spawns a very large spiked wheel. For 15 seconds, the Siege Engineers will channel an uninterruptible spell into the wheel, trying to activate it. If they complete their casts, then the wheels roll down into the fighting area, sweeping across it lengthwise and crashing into the opposite wall. The wheels, which are called Iron Stars (and which will henceforth be referred to as such), take up one half of the width of the room each, and they have two damaging effects attached to them.
Any players or enemies who come in contact with an Iron Star that is rolling through the room take massive damage and are knocked back. Raid members unavoidably die from this damage, while the adds simply take a lot of damage.
When the Iron Star reaches the end of the room, it smashes into the wall, dealing a massive amount of Fire damage to all raid members, but the damage is lower the farther away players are from the explosion. The wheel is destroyed in the process.
Your raid can prevent the Siege Engineers from activating their Iron Stars by killing them before they complete their casts (ranged raid members can attack the Engineers). After the Iron Stars are activated, the Engineers disappear.
Regarding the movement of the Iron Stars through the room, we would like to clarify that each Iron Star only takes up one half of the width of the room, and that they travel in opposite directions. This means that not only is it possible to avoid being hit by an Iron Star by moving out of its path, it is even possible to avoid being hit by either of them by strafing in and out of their path properly.
This phase is quite difficult, but the strategy for it is not too complicated. There are several aspects to keep in mind. We will summarise the strategy before going into further details.
Have one tank tank Garrosh in the center of the room, while the other picks up the Kor'kron Warbringers and Farseer Wolf Riders as they spawn.
AoE down the Warbringers, and single-target the Wolf Riders. Make sure to interrupt the Wolf Riders' Ancestral Chain Heal Icon Ancestral Chain Heals, but do not interrupt their Chain Lightning Icon Chain Lightning casts.
Make sure ranged raid members stay at range, so as not to cause Desecrated Weapons to be created in melee range. Kill these weapons.
Have one ranged DPS player assigned to killing one of the two Siege Engineers, and allow the other one to activate his Iron Star.
Make sure to get out of the path of the Iron Star, and attempt to use any knock-backs at your disposal to knock the adds back into the path of the Iron Star.
5.2.1. Handling Desecrated Weapon
The first issue your raid will be confronted with is the Desecrate Icon Desecrate casts. Since this spell targets ranged raid members, and since it targets them based on their role and not on their position, it is important to make sure that the potential targets stand well out of melee range, so as not to cause void zones to spawn on top of the boss and the melee group.
As soon as a Desecrated Weapon is created, everyone should move out of the void zone, and your ranged DPS players should kill it. Killing the Desecrated Weapons is not a high priority, so they can be killed just by keeping DoTs up on them.
5.2.2. Warbringers and Wolf Riders
The Kor'kron Warbringers are not very problematic on their own, so you do not need to prioritise killing them over damaging Garrosh. That said, you must be careful not to get overwhelmed by the number of adds, and you must also avoid having any of the adds buffed by more than one cast of Hellscream's Warsong Icon Hellscream's Warsong.
The Farseer Wolf Riders, however, are a top priority. Their Ancestral Fury Icon Ancestral Fury buff makes them increasingly dangerous the longer they are alive. Basically, you cannot really afford to have these adds get off even one successful Ancestral Chain Heal Icon Ancestral Chain Heal cast, meaning that all such casts must be interrupted. By doing so, however, you are causing the Wolf Rider to gain increased casting speed, which means that eventually they will become uninterruptible. For this reason, your raid must be fairly quick in killing them. Also for this reason, you cannot afford to interrupt any of their Chain Lightning Icon Chain Lightning casts, since avoiding the damage those casts do is not worth granting the Wolf Riders a stack of Ancestral Fury.
You will have to stress the importance of not interrupting Chain Lightning, and you must have a solid and efficient interrupter rotation in place.
5.2.3. Iron Stars
While it is possible to have both Siege Engineers killed before they manage to activate their Iron Stars, this is not optimal. Your raid can benefit greatly from having an Iron Star damage all the adds currently alive, since this will help out with the DPS requirements (naturally, the benefit of such a tactic depends on the tuning of the fight on live servers).
Therefore, we advise your raid to always allow one of the Siege Engineers to finish their cast, while killing the other one. Make sure that no one in the raid is standing in the half of the room through which the Iron Star will pass, and have your tank position the adds as close as possible to the path of the Iron Star (without being it themselves since they would be killed). Then, just as the Iron Star is about to pass by the adds, have someone in the raid with a knock-back (a Druid or an Elemental Shaman) knock the adds back into the path of the Iron Star.
If you do not have anyone in the raid with a knock-back, then you may be better off simply killing both Siege Engineers.
Finally, if you are allowing an Iron Star to be activated, you should make sure that everyone in the raid is quite far from the wall against which it smashes, in order to minimise the damage from this event. It is not necessary to be all the way on the other side of the room, but you will want to be at least half-way there.
6. Transition Phase↑top
When Garrosh reaches 10% health, he heals up to full health and transports himself and your raid into the realm of Y'Shaarj. This phase lasts for 1 minute.
As soon as the phase starts, your raid will be teleported into a new area, chosen at random between phased-out versions of The Terrace of Endless Spring, The Temple of the Jade Serpent, and The Temple of the Red Crane. Depending on which area you are sent to, your raid will have to defeat one of three types of adds.
Embodied Fears are located in The Terrace of Endless Spring, and when they die, they buff any raid members in a small radius with a buff that reduces their damage taken by 50%, called Consumed Courage Icon Consumed Courage. There is a very large number of these adds, but their health is low.
Embodied Doubts are located in The Temple of the Jade Serpent, and when they die, they buff any raid members in a small radius with a buff that reduces their damage taken by 50%, called Consumed Faith Icon Consumed Faith. These adds are grouped up in packs.
Embodied Despairs are located in The Temple of the Red Crane, and when they die, they buff any raid members in a small radius with a buff that reduces their damage taken by 50%, called Consumed Hope Icon Consumed Hope. There are two Embodied Despairs in each Temple of the Red Crane transition.
The buffs granted by the deaths of these adds last until the end of the Transition Phase.
While any of the adds in your raid's realm are still alive, Garrosh (who is located behind the adds, further into the realm) is immune to damage, and he is "absorbing energy from the Heart of Y'Shaarj". Killing all the adds removes Garrosh's immunity, and attacking him stops him from further draining energy from the heart. This energy-draining is not relevant during this phase, but it plays an important role during Phase Two. For now, all you need to know is that the less energy Garrosh has a chance to gain, the better it is for your raid.
Once Garrosh is engaged by your raid, he will spam Annihilate Icon Annihilate. This is a frontal cone attack that Garrosh spams in random directions. It deals lethal damage to anyone in front of him, and very high Physical damage to everyone else.
One minute after the start of this phase, Phase Two will start. Your be sent back to the room where Phase One was fought, and you will have to face Garrosh there. Garrosh will have healed to full health, and his maximum health will be about 2.5 times higher than it was during Phase One. Any damage you have done to him in the Transition Phase will be carried over into Phase Two.
The strategy for this phase is exceedingly simple. In short, you must kill the adds as quickly as possible, and then deal as much damage as possible to Garrosh without dying to his frontal cone attacks.
As soon as your raid is transported to the realm of Y'Shaarj, you should engage any adds present there and kill them. In the Temple of the Jade Serpent and The Temple of the Red Crane, your raid will have to split up into two groups, since the path to Garrosh splits up as well and adds have to be handled in different areas. This does not take long, and your raid will meet up again at Garrosh. In The Terrace of Endless Spring, this is not an issue.
While killing the adds, you should attempt to be essentially on top of them, in order to benefit from the damage-reduction buffs that they give out when they die.
Regarding Garrosh himself, your entire raid should stack up inside his hitbox, and always move slightly behind where he is facing. This allows your raid to stay stacked together (benefiting from AoE and ground-based heals), while also avoiding his Annihilate Icon Annihilate attacks with relative ease.
7. Phase Two↑top
Phase Two starts as soon as the Transition Phase ends. Garrosh will be at full health, minus whatever damage your raid did to him during the Transition Phase.
During this phase, Garrosh has an energy bar (to be accurate, he had the energy bar throughout Phase One as well, although it played absolutely no role there). Garrosh gains energy during the Transition Phase (in the time from the start of the Transition Phase until your raid engages him), and he gains some energy at various moments throughout Phase Two, as we will see below. Garrosh's energy bar determines the state of his abilities. Specifically, Garrosh has 4 abilities in this phase, and each one of those abilities becomes empowered when Garrosh reaches a certain amount of energy. The empowered ability replaces the non-empowered one, and it is essentially a more dangerous version of it.
Whirling Corruption Icon Whirling Corruption is a whirlwind attack that Garrosh channels for 6 seconds. During this time, he deals moderate Shadow damage every second to all raid members, with the damage being lower the farther away players are from Garrosh.
At 25 energy, Whirling Corruption becomes Empowered Whirling Corruption Icon Empowered Whirling Corruption. In addition to Whirling Corruption's effects, this spell also shoots a missile at a random raid member, dealing a high amount of Shadow damage to all players in an 8-yard radius, and summoning an add called Minion of Y'Shaarj. These adds have no abilities, but when they die, they heal other nearby Minions of Y'Shaarj to full health and grant them 200% increased maximum health and damage. This buff stacks.
Touch of Y'Shaarj Icon Touch of Y'Shaarj is a mind control that Garrosh casts on several random raid members. While mind-controlled, these players attempt to cast Touch of Y'Shaarj on other raid members, which, if successful, also mind controls these players. Mind-controlled players' Touch of Y'Shaarj can be interrupted, and the mind control is broken when these players reach 20% health.
At 50 energy, Touch of Y'Shaarj becomes Empowered Touch of Y'Shaarj Icon Empowered Touch of Y'Shaarj. This works like Touch of Y'Shaarj, except that the mind-controlled players are now turned into Sha, being immune to loss of control effects and having their health increased.
Desecrate Icon Desecrate works exactly like it does in Phase One of the fight.
At 75 energy, Desecrate becomes Empowered Desecrate Icon Empowered Desecrate. The difference here is that the Desecrated Weapons cannot be killed, and they regenerate health over time. Do note that they can be damaged, and that just like with the normal Desecrated Weapons, lowering their health reduces the size of the void zones they create.
Gripping Despair Icon Gripping Despair is a stacking DoT that deals Shadow damage, which Garrosh applies to his current tank. This ability requires a tank switch.
At 100 energy, Gripping Despair becomes Empowered Gripping Despair Icon Empowered Gripping Despair. In addition to Gripping Despair's effects, Empowered Gripping Despair causes Explosive Despair Icon Explosive Despair each time Empowered Gripping Despair wears off or is otherwise removed (such as through immunities, since the DoT cannot be simply dispelled). Explosive Despair deals damage to the affected player, and stacks a debuff on them. The damage done is equal to the current value of Gripping Despair on the target (depending on the number of stacks), and the debuff causes the player to take 10% increased damage from Explosive Despair per each stack of Empowered Gripping Despair. This debuff continues to build up on the player from successive Explosive Despairs, and it has a 2-minute duration, which means that it will not have time to drop off.
At regular intervals throughout Phase Two, apparently roughly every 2 and a half minutes, Garrosh will take everyone into the realm of Y'Shaarj, where your raid will have to practically repeat the Transition Phase.
The strategy for this phase is highly reliant on proper positioning and movement. The adds and the Iron Stars from Phase One are gone, so your raid is free to make use of the large fight area.
We will summarise the strategy before going into more details.
Have your tanks perform a tank switch on Garrosh to deal with the Gripping Despair Icon Gripping Despair ability.
Have your ranged raid members stack together, and start in one corner of the room. With each new Desecrated Weapons that spawns on them, have them move slightly, so as to have each new weapon placed next to the old ones, conserving space. Do not bother killing the weapons. When Garrosh begins using Empowered Desecrate Icon Empowered Desecrate, nothing changes and you should continue to ignore the weapons.
Make sure players do not stand close to Garrosh when he casts Whirling Corruption Icon Whirling Corruption.
When Garrosh begins using Empowered Whirling Corruption Icon Empowered Whirling Corruption, kill the Minions of Y'Shaarj away from other Minions of Y'Shaarj.
Make sure players affected by Touch of Y'Shaarj Icon Touch of Y'Shaarj are always interrupted, and have them brought to 20% health quickly in order to break their mind control.
Whenever you are sent up into the realm of Y'Shaarj, try to reach Garrosh as quickly as possible in order to minimise the amount of energy that he gains.
7.2.1. Tanking and Positioning
At this point of the fight, due to Gripping Despair Icon Gripping Despair, you will need to start performing a tank switch on Garrosh. Your two tanks should taunt off each other once the DoT has about 8-10 stacks. Incidentally, this same number of stacks remains ideal even if Garrosh unlocks his Empowered Gripping Despair Icon Empowered Gripping Despair, with the only difference here being that the tank who is not tanking Garrosh will sustain high damage from Explosive Despair Icon Explosive Despair.
Regarding positioning, we advise you to tank Garrosh in the center of the room. Your ranged raid members should stack together in an initial position (such as a corner), and then move slightly whenever a new Desecrated Weapon is cast. The idea is to conserve as much space as possible.
7.2.2. Desecrated Weapon
You must aim to end this phase as quickly as possible, so we advise you to ignore all the Desecrated Weapons and just DPS Garrosh, following the positioning we suggested above.
7.2.3. Touch of Y'Shaarj
Players affected by Touch of Y'Shaarj Icon Touch of Y'Shaarj should simply be interrupted, stunned, and damaged until they reach 20% health. If your raid is stacked up, as we advise, then you will be able to hit multiple players with stuns and AoE attacks, making the whole process easier.
When Garrosh begins casting Empowered Touch of Y'Shaarj Icon Empowered Touch of Y'Shaarj, stunning players will no longer be possible, so you will have to DPS them quite quickly, to make sure that no further casts of Touch of Y'Shaarj go through.
7.2.4. Whirling Corruption
Dealing with Whirling Corruption Icon Whirling Corruption is a simple matter of staying away from Garrosh when he casts it. He can still be moved while he is channeling this spell, so the tanks can drag him a bit away from the raid to make things easier.
When he starts casting Empowered Whirling Corruption Icon Empowered Whirling Corruption, your raid will have to simply kill the resulting Minion of Y'Shaarj, and in case several Minions are up, you must make sure not to kill one next to any others, since they would be buffed. The best way to do this is for each ranged DPS player to pick a Minion and attack it, pulling it away from other raid members. Since there will not be very much time between when Whirling Corruption is cast and when the next Desecrate Icon Desecrate is cast, you will have to make sure that, while spread out, no one ends up in a position where a Desecrated Weapon spawning on them would cause problems).
7.2.5. Realm of Y'Shaarj
Periodically, your entire raid will be sent up to the realm of Y'Shaarj. Here, everything happens exactly in the same way as during the Transition Phase, and your raid must act accordingly. Reaching Garrosh in time is essential to ensure that his energy stays low throughout the phase, and that he does not gain access to too many empowered abilities.
8. Phase Three↑top
When Garrosh is brought to 10% health at the end of Phase Two, he will heal up to 25% health and Phase Three will begin. This phase lasts until Garrosh is killed.
Throughout this phase, Garrosh uses only the 4 empowered abilities from Phase Two, namely Empowered Whirling Corruption Icon Empowered Whirling Corruption, Empowered Touch of Y'Shaarj Icon Empowered Touch of Y'Shaarj, Empowered Desecrate Icon Empowered Desecrate, and Empowered Gripping Despair Icon Empowered Gripping Despair.
The strategy for this phase is essentially identical to the strategy for Phase Two, the only difference being that you will have to deal with the stronger versions of all abilities right from the start.
This is a rather brutal burn phase, because you need to kill Garrosh as quickly as possible. While you may run into issues with Desecrated Weapons taking up too much space (remember, the ones from Phase Two will still be up), the biggest problem will be the Minions of Y'Shaarj, which will be more and more difficult to handle the less room you have to maneuver.
9. When to Use Heroism/Bloodlust/Time Warp↑top
We recommend using Heroism Icon Heroism/Bloodlust Icon Bloodlust/Time Warp Icon Time Warp during Phase Three, in order to kill Garrosh before your raid runs out of room, and before your tanks become unable to survive the damage caused by Empowered Gripping Despair Icon Empowered Gripping Despair.
10. Summing Things Up↑top
In this section, we will very briefly summarise what the players belonging to each of the three roles have to do during this fight.
In Phase One, one tank should take Garrosh and the other should take the adds.
In Phases Two and Three, perform a tank switch on Garrosh and pick up any Minions of Y'Shaarj.
In Phase One, beware of the raid damage from Iron Star explosions.
In the realm of Y'Shaarj, beware of the very high raid-wide damage caused by Annihilate Icon Annihilate.
In Phases Two and Three, beware of the high tank damage caused by Empowered Gripping Despair Icon Empowered Gripping Despair, and of the high raid-wide damage caused by Whirling Corruption Icon Whirling Corruption.
Kill the Farseer Wolf Riders as soon as they appear.
DoT and kill the Desecrated Weapons in Phase One.
DPS mind-controlled players.
Kill Minions of Y'Shaarj away from other Minions of Y'Shaarj.
In Phase One, do not interrupt the Farseer Wolf Riders' Chain Lightning Icon Chain Lightning and make sure not to get hit by the Iron Stars.
In the realm of Y'Shaarj, be close to the adds when they die, and make sure not to get hit by Annihilate Icon Annihilate.
11. Learning the Fight↑top
The encounter against Garrosh is structured in such a way that you do not have many options in how to experience the various stages of the fight other than in the way that they are presented to you. Each phase, with the exception of the Transition Phase, requires your raid to perform excellently in order to get through it.
As such, we cannot really give you any tips for easing the learning process of this fight other than to take it one step at a time and make sure that all raid members master each mechanic as they have to face it.