The Magmaw fight is all about 1 thing: Parasite control. The rest of the fight is straight forward and can be boiled down to don’t stand in stuff, jump on worm and heal tank.
So far we have used 2 methods to kill Magmaw; using a pillar soaker and having all but the melee out in a group. We have found by far the easier method is to have a pillar soaker. This strategy will go through that method and why we find it easier.
The pull is simple. We have everyone bar a single ranged (we usually use a mage) and the tank over on the left of the room. The single ranged and the tank are off to the right:
To initiate the pull, the tank runs in and grabs Magmaw, and tanks him on the right hand side of his area. The single ranged stays out at max range around the middle of the room whilst the rest of the raid stands within the minimum 15 yard requirement on the left hand side of Magmaw’s area (note: it is important that no member of this group stray more than 15 yards from Magmaw to prevent them being selected as a flame pillar target).
This results in the following raid arrangement once engaged:
What does Magmaw do? And how to we handle it
Magmaw has a limited set of abilities making this fight easy to learn (check wowwiki for a complete list of abilities). In general order of appearance, he does the following abilities that are especially noteworthy:
Pillar of Flame:
Magmaw targets a random person who is more than 15 yards away and casts a Pillar of Flame at their location which will punt anyone caught in it into the air and deal moderate damage. A number of Lava Parasites will also spawn after 4 seconds at the cast location.
How we deal with it:
We use a pillar soaker. What this means is that we have a ranged standing out at max range to be the target of the pillar every single time. The benefits of this are two-fold. Firstly, the pillar cast location will be known every time and if the ranged is raid-aware enough, can be negotiated with no damage. Secondly, there is only 1 person that can screw it up (i.e. you don’t need to rely on the entire group moving at the same time or getting infected).
From here, our Frost DK and the ranged in the main group immediately switch to the parasites and burn them asap. Usually the ranged acting as the pillar soaker is a mage in our case, meaning they can throw down a frost nova or blast wave or anything they have to stun/slow the parasites from the start. The rest of the ranged are doing the same (frost trap, etc). The Frost DK (usually me) comes out to howling blast (HB) their heart out and act as the kiter. HB generates sufficient agro to enable effective kiting and if glyphed and specced provides an additional slow.
Tank gets eaten by Magmaw taking high damage and has armour reduced for 30 seconds.
How we deal with it:
Heal the tank… lots. Much easier if this is called over vent.
Magmaw covers half the room in steam dealing moderate damage per second to anyone caught in it.
How we deal with it:
Simple, the main group shifts to the tank’s spot or back to the original spot. Once you see the steam you have a little bit of time to get out of it before you begin taking damage. So just move to the other side and stack.
The single ranged should be approximately on the centre line of the room and so can avoid this with ease.
Make sure that someone is within 15 yards at all times. If you don’t, he goes ballistic and enrages. This will be a wipe. There will be some raid wide AOE coming out, make sure you stay on top of it.
The Chains and the Head
When Magmaw slumps forward onto the ground its time to jump on and chain him to the spike. There are a couple of things to note here. Sometimes this can bug out and only allow only one person at a time to jump or not let you jump at all. Call this on vent so someone else can try. In any event just try and get both chains on the spike as soon as possible. You can get a pillar if you are not fast enough, which is irritating as you lose valuable dps time on Magmaw’s head.
Don’t stand under him; when he hits the ground anyone caught under him takes a chunk of damage.
If you are a designated jumper, there is only one ability when you get up there. Just press 1 and move the yellow reticule over the spike and click. Easy enough.
Then everyone go to town on his head. Save your cooldowns for this phase as Magmaw takes 100% more damage whilst his head is exposed.
Some final notes
- Hunters can stand in the main raid group. I have a hunter alt and can assure you it’s doable. Just be at minimum range and no further.
- Don’t let the parasites get into the group. They infect people who then start spawning more parasites. Makes it hard on the healers, so don’t let it happen.
- The real trick to this fight is managing the pillars and the parasites. Get those under control and the fight becomes trivial.
- You only need 1 tank if using this strat.
To round things out, here is a video from the main tank’s point of view of the above strategy being executed:
Good luck and have fun!