Guide Type: Dungeons
1. General Information
Type: Heroic 5-man Dungeon
Number of bosses: 6
Loot: item level 353, epic
2. Overview of the Dungeon
Zul’Aman is a heroic 5-man dungeon, containing a number of 6 bosses. The design of the instance is such that you can engage the first 4 bosses in any order, but you can only engage the 5th and final bosses once the first 4 are defeated.
This guide will focus on teaching you how to defeat each of the 6 bosses and will not tackle the dungeon layout in any extensive manner. These issues will be touched upon briefly in a subsequent section, but we do not feel that they require particular attention.
3. Dungeon Layout and Trash
The map below illustrates the locations of each of the bosses present in the dungeon, as well as the path your group must take to reach them.
Some of the trash packs present in the dungeon do have a relatively high degree of difficulty attached to them, and as such will most likely require crowd control and coordination from your group, but they should not be too problematic.
The trash on the way to Akil’Zon is a gauntlet event, and your tank should be aware that he will need to pick up mobs attacking both from behind the group as well as ahead of it, and you should aim to make your way to the boss as quickly as possible through the gauntlet.
Amani Guardians are present in a few trash packs, and they have the ability to dispel crowd control such as Polymorph from other mobs. Because of this reason, they should be pulled a good distance away from any crowd controlled mobs.
There are several Scouts located on the path between Nalorakk andJan’alai; they are mobs with very low health (19,000) which will attempt to run and call for reinforcements when they are engaged. As such, they should be killed right away. Some of them do patrol, so be careful!
Several trash packs contain Medicine Men. These mobs place two kinds of totems: one which heals the Medicine Man and other mobs in the pack, and one which renders all the mobs immune. Your group can opt to either kill the Medicine Men first, and any totems that they may cast before they die, or to use crowd control on them and leave them for the end.
There are also several packs of stealthed lynxes on the way to Halazzi, which your tank should be prepared to aggro immediately so that they do not kill any other party members.
There are quests that you can complete inside Zul’Aman, two of which will reward you with a selection of epic quality, item level 353 items.
We will treat Akil’Zon as the first encounter of this dungeon, although, as mentioned, the first 4 bosses can be attempted in any order.
Akil’Zon is a healing intensive encounter which will test your group’s positioning more than anything else.
5.1. Abilities and Strategy
Throughout the fight, your group will face two types of flying adds: Soaring Eagles and Amani Kidnappers. The eagles deal moderate amounts of damage to players through Eagle Swoop and respawn if killed, so your group will ideally ignore them and heal through the damage. The Kidnappers pick up random party members and need to be killed in order for the party member to be released. Party members who are kidnapped suffer from Plucked, which deals damage over time.
In addition to this, Akil’Zon will cast Static Disruption on random party members which damages nearby players as well, so your group should stay spread out.
Akil’Zon’s final and most deadly ability is his Electrical Storm. The boss will pick up a random party member and lift them in the air, channeling a nature damage attack that covers the entire platform, except for the small area under the targeted party member.
In order to avoid the damage from this ability, everyone should move to the location exactly under the party member, marked with a black area on the ground.
Because timing is crucial, it is important that no two party members are too far away from each other, so that everyone can reach the designated location quickly.
Alternatively, to maximise uptime on the boss and make it easier for positioning, you can stack up close to the boss immediately before an Electrical Storm is cast, which will make it very easy for everyone to reach it in time.
6.1. Abilities and Strategy
Nalorakk’s main ability is a charge, called Surge, which he will perform regularly throughout the encounter. He will target the player farthest away from him and charge that player. The charge adds a debuff to the target, increasing damage taken by 500% for 20 seconds.
In addition to this, Nalorakk will occassionally shapeshift into Bear Form and use a few Bear specific abilities on the tank, though these are of little consequence.
The strategy promoted by the encounter mechanics is that your group rotates the player who is “farthest away from Nalorakk” so that a player already debuffed by his charge does not get hit (and killed) by it. If your group only has one ranged player, melee DPS should also enter into the rotation.
Jan’alai is an encounter which will test your group’s ability to control adds and generally avoid damaging ground effects. It is a step up in difficulty from Nalorakk and mistakes here can and will wipe your group.
In addition to facing Jan’alai, during this encounter your group will also have to deal with a large number of adds called Amani Dragonhawk Hatchling.
These hatchlings will spawn from eggs located on either side of the platform. The strategy section will provide more details.
Jan’alai has four abilities of importance:
- Flame Breath: Jan’alai faces a random direction and casts a fire breath attack in that direction which also leaves a fire trail on the ground.
- Fire Bombs: Jan’alai will go to the center of his platform and place a large amount of small fire bombs on the ground, which will explode after a short while, dealing massive amounts of damage to anyone being hit.
- Summon Amani’shi Hatcher: Jan’alai will summon two adds which will immediately run to one side of the platform each and begin to hatch the eggs located there. If they are allowed to do this, the eggs will spawn Amani Dragonhawk Hatchlings.
- The Amani Dragonhawk Hatchlings apply Flame Buffet, a stacking debuff.
Flame Breath and Fire Bombs are abilities that your group will have to simply avoid damage from through correct positioning. All that is required is to make sure you are not standing in the fire trail, or on any of the bombs, and these abilities are practically irrelevant.
The biggest challenge your group will face is in dealing with the Amani’shi Hatchers and the Amani Dragonhawk Hatchlings. For this reason, we will explain the mechanics in more detail.
The boss will summon two hatchers, repeatedly throughout the fight. Each of these hatchers will head for one of the two sides of the platform and begin hatching the eggs present there. Each time eggs are hatched, Dragonhawk Hatchlings spawn from them and swarm the raid. If the hatcher is allowed to continue hatching (meaning if he is not killed), he will do so until no eggs remain, after which he will run to the other side and hatch those eggs as well.
When the boss reaches 20% health, any unhatched eggs will spawn hatchlings. Thus, it is the aim of your group to control the hatching of the eggs in such a way that you are not overwhelmed by the adds and can deal with them appropriately.
We propose the following strategy:
On the first wave of hatchers, kill the hatcher on the right side and allow the hatcher on the left to hatch all the eggs. Have your tank pick up all the resulting hatchlings and AoE them down. Kill the hatcher before he has a chance to run over to the right side and hatch the eggs there.
The second wave of hatchers will both head for the right side, as the left side has no more eggs available. You should kill one of the two hatchers (it makes no difference which) in order to slow down the hatching process and prevent your tank from being overwhelmed. Once the eggs are hatched, simply AoE the hatchlings and kill the hatcher.
If done correctly, by the time the boss reaches 20%, no eggs will be left and your group will be able to focus on finishing off the boss.
The Halazzi encounter is a rather long and drawn-out fight, which requires your raid to deal with adds and totems, however it is essentially an easy fight.
8.1. Abilities and Strategy
8.1.1. Normal Phase
During the fight, Halazzi will summon Refreshing Water Totems fairly regularly. These totems place a green circle around them, which heals anyone standing inside the circle (both the party and the boss) and grants a large amount of mana regeneration.
The totems last a fairly long time, and there should always be at least one active at a time.
8.1.2. Lynx Phase
In addition to the totems, Halazzi will cast Transfigure twice during the fight, entering his Lynx Phase. When this happens, the boss’ health will go down to roughly 2,000,000 and he will be healed to full, and a lynx add will join the fight. The lynx will randomly charge players and is generally hard to tank. The phase ends when either the lynx or Halazzi himself is killed.
If your party chooses to kill Halazzi, when reaching 0% health he will not die, but he will revert to his normal form and be healed to the same amount of health he had before entering the Lynx Phase.
During the Lynx Phase, Halazzi will also cast several Corrupted Lightning Totems, which your group should aim to kill quickly.
Lastly, Halazzi will cast Flame Shock on random party members during both phases, and this should be dispelled immediately as it does a lot of damage.
Your tank should be quick to move the boss out of the healing areas of Refreshing Water Totems, so that the healing he receives is minimal, while your party should position themselves inside the green zones to benefit from the healing and mana regeneration. In this way, your tank will be the only person requiring any amount of healing.
During the Lynx Phase, your party can opt to either kill the lynx, or burn down the boss. We recommend killing the boss as DPS uptime on the lynx is rather poor due to his constant charging.
Because of the mana regeneration offered by the Refreshing Water Totems, this boss can be engaged even if your healer is completely out of mana, which will save your group some time if you are attempting a timed run or just trying to free the captured scout.
9. Hex Lord Malacrass
During this encounter, you will face Hex Lord Malacrass as well as two guardian adds. The two adds you will meet are randomly chosen from a pool of 8:
- A Blood Elf caster, who heals the boss.
- An Ogre who will regularly break out of crowd control and melee players.
- An Imp which casts fireballs and does not present any real threat.
- An Elemental which does a fairly weak AoE nature damage attack.
- An Undead which casts a knockback and curses party members.
- An Undead wraith which casts an AoE fear.
- A Dragonkin which has a flame breath and a thunderclap.
- A snake which has a Poison Bolt Volley.
9.1. Abilities and Strategy
Regardless of which combination of adds your party encounters, your strategy should involve either crowd controlling them through the most efficient means, or simply focusing them down and killing them. The only exception to this is the Ogre, which should be killed rather than crowd controlled.
Once the adds are dealt with, your group can focus on killing Hex Lord Malacrass. His only ability of consequence is Siphon Soul. This will target a random party member and imbue Malacrass with the characteristics of that player’s class. As a result, the boss will cast a handful of class specific abilities on your party before choosing another player.
Overall, despite initially appearing complicated, this fight is quite simple in both tactics and execution, due in large part to the low amounts of damaged caused by all abilities.
The Daakara encounter is the final encounter of the dungeon, and consists of three phases. During the first phase you will face Daakara by himself, while in the subsequent two phases he will take on the aspect of two of the four spirits you faced earlier in the dungeon:
- Dragonhawk: causes AoE fire damage as well as a breath attack and fire trail similar to Jan’alai’s.
- Eagle: summons totems and torandos.
- Bear: charges the farthest away party member, dealing damage and increasing damage taken by 500% for the next 20 seconds (much like Nalorakk).
- Lynx: summons two smaller lynxes, charges all party members, and focuses on a random party member dealing extreme amounts of damage to that person.
10.1. Abilities and Strategy
During the first phase of the encounter, Daakara will cast Whirlwind, causing moderate damage to anyone around him. Aside from this, he will cast Grevious Throw on random party members and simply melee the tank.
Whoever is affected by Grevious Throw must be healed to full, otherwise the damage that they take will ramp up to considerable amounts (especially over multiple party members) causing a lot of problems later on in the fight.
When his health reaches 80%, Daakara will absorb the essence of one of the four spirits mentioned previously and go into the second phase. At 40% health, the boss will absorb one of the remaining three spirits, and enter the third phase, which lasts until the boss is dead.
As you can notice from the list above, the different phases’ mechanics are not complex and they should present no real difficulty for your party, but we will give you a few tips for each of them.
When Daakara absorbs the Dragonhawk spirit, your group should avoid standing in the fire on the ground at all costs, because its damage is very high and it will kill even a tank in mere seconds. In addition to this, your healer should be prepared to heal the entire party.
During the Eagle phase, a number of tornados will be moving around the platform slowly. Coming in contact with these will inflict a significant amount of damage to players, so they should be avoided. Additionally, your group should kill any totems present.
Each time a healer or caster casts a spell while in the close proximity of a tornado, they receive a 10,000 Nature damage backlash. While this is not generally problematic and can be amply covered by the healer, it should be kept in mind when at low health.
During the Bear phase, the boss will act almost identically to Nalorakk, and your group is advised to make use of the same general strategy. You want to rotate the player who is farthest away from him after he gets charged, so that no player gets charged twice in a row. Aside from this, the boss is quite uneventful.
As the Lynx phase begins, Daakara will summon two smaller lynxes with approximately 450,000 health each. These should be killed by your party with priority. Daakara himself will charge random party members, inflicting damage and affecting them with Lynx Rush. He will also target a random party member and go into a Claw Rage, which will cause that target to take an extreme amount of damage. Do not hesitate to use any means available to help the target survive.
The tank can taunt Daakara’s lynx form when he targets a player with Claw Rage, thus causing him to stop attacking that person, lessening the damage greatly.
11. Captive Scouts
Each of the first 4 bosses of the instance has a trapped scout, which he keeps captive in a cage near to himself. Defeating the boss before the timer present at the top of the screen expires will allow your group to free the scout. Doing so will enable you to loot a small reward chest, containing items (sometimes of epic quality) which your group will then roll on.
12. Timed Event (Bear Mount Run)
On entering the dungeon, you will notice a 15 minute timer appearing at the top of your screen, and counting down. If your group manages to defeat all of the first 4 bosses and free their respective captive scouts before the time runs out, you will be awarded a Amani Battle Bear mount which one of your party members will win following a roll. The mount will be granted to you by the final scout which you free.
In addition to the 15 minutes you get to start with, killing Akil’Zon and Nalorakk will award your group another 5 minutes each, giving you a grand total of 25 minutes to kill the first 4 bosses.
We will not go into specific tips and tricks to speed up your run, because we could never cover all of them, but we will provide you with the optimal boss order which will give you the highest chance of completing the run in time:
In current gear levels, the timer is quite strict, and your group will require excellent coordination and efficiency in all three aspects: tanking, healing and DPSing. Any down-time will almost surely result in failing to reach the final boss in time.
Fortunately, due to the nature of the Dungeon Finder Tool, by queueing for a Random Zandalari Heroic, you may get the chance to attempt the run several times during the same day.