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Retro WoW Guide to Naxxramas - Boss Strats and Known Exploits
As you begin to progress through the PVE content available on Retro WoW, you'll eventually reach Naxxramas. Some of the fights here have slightly different mechanics than the original retail version and, as with all WoW servers (private or otherwise) players eventually find ways to exploit terrain, LOS, NPC AI and other mechanics to trivialize fights for easy loot.  As the server's popularity has grown with the recent shutdown of Nostalrius, the need for proper documentation of META (most effective tactics available) and known punishable exploits has become clear and after speaking with one of the server's GMs we decided that this was the best way to move forward to encourage fair play.

First things first, I'd like to thank those who have contributed to this guide:



When you teleport into the zone you'll be placed at the center of the attached map with the 4 wings around you.  Each wing contains 3 bosses (except for construct, which has 4) with a 5th zone available via teleporter (above where you zone in from).  Once all 13 of the available bosses have been killed the teleporter will become active and this is where you'll find Sapphiron and, the final boss, Kel Thuzad.

How to Get Tier 3 Gear
-Farm Stratholme or solo grind mobs north of Light's Hope Chapel to get a minimum of honored with Argent Dawn and complete quest "The Dread Citadel - Naxxramas".
-Kill Naxxramas trash mobs to complete "Echoes of War" (this unlocks the Tier 3 gear quests).
-Kill Naxxramas bosses to get a chance at looting a class specific desecrated gear token.
-Turn in the desecrated gear token with the required materials (wartorn scraps, nexus crystals, arcanite bars, ect..) to complete the Tier 3 gear quests for the last piece of gear you'll ever need in that slot!

Full Version -
Tier 3 gear is acquired by completing a chain of quests over at the Light's Hope Chapel in Eastern Plaguelands:
Take the Raid Teleporter in Hyjal to Naxxramas and head east.  There are a large number of quests there that will give you Argent Dawn reputation and your goal is to get to at least honored with them.  Archmage Angela Dosantos will give you a quest titled The Dread Citadel - Naxxramas, which is the original attunement quest to get into the instance.  On this server, there are no requirements for attunement but, it is still part of the quest chain to get your Tier 3 so you'll have to complete that.  The higher your reputation is with Argent Dawn, the fewer mats are required to complete this quest with exalted requiring no mats at all.

After this is completed you'll get an infamous quest called Echoes of War.  This quest requires that you go kill Naxxramas trash mobs and, upon completion, it will unlock the actual quests to turn in the desecrated gear tokens and mats for Tier 3 gear.  Naxx trash is capable of dropping very good epic gear and also drops some of the materials required to complete the Tier 3 gear quests.  As summarized above, once you have killed the required mobs for Echoes of War and completed the quest, all that's left is actually killing Naxxramas bosses and turning in the required materials specified in the quests.

Note: the gear requirements for killing Naxx trash are SUBSTANTIALLY lower than the actual bosses.

Below are the tactics that I have used to clear many of the Naxxramas bosses.  The last boss in each wing tends to be the most difficult.  If you get stuck, try another wing!  The raid lockouts only last 48 hours so the most important part is just to down as many bosses as you can.  Don't kill yourself trying to beat Thaddius' enrage timer when your party doesn't have the DPS for it.  Unlike retail, The Arachnid Quarter appears to be regarded as the hardest of the four so I do not advise starting there.

A couple bosses worth noting: Thaddius, is a "hard" gear check for dps.  Maexxna, is a "hard" gear check for the healer.

The ideal group composition is generally considered to be: Holy Paladin, Protection Warrior, Combat Swords Rogue, Warlock, Fire Mage.

The Military Quarter

Instructor Razuvious
There are no mind control mechanics implemented as it was on retail.  For this fight, there are 4 humanoid adds that can be CC'd and killed.  After they are dead, it is a tank and spank.

Noteworthy mechanics: Razuvious will periodically burn all of the mana of all party members in line of sight.  Because of this, he should be tanked at the edge of his pit with the healer out of line of sight of the tank and all mana-using DPS classes periodically dodging out of LOS to avoid losing all of their mana.

Gothik the Harvester
Phase 1: Start the fight with all members on the undead side and kill the adds as they spawn from the 1st 3 skull piles.

Phase 2: Gothik will periodically teleport in and out of your area applying a stacking debuff to the entire party that reduces all stats by 10%.  Its a DPS race to kill him before being rendered useless by a high stack count and 1 shot by his shadowbolt spam.

The Four Horsemen
All 4 bosses are tanked together and killed 1 by 1.  All 4 bosses apply a stacking debuff that increases the amount of damage that all party members take from that boss.  Again, a dps race but the fight gets progressively easier as the bosses are killed.  Generally quite easy as long as the tank can maintain aggro on all 4.

The Plague Quarter

Noth the Plaguebringer
Periodically adds will spawn that need to be tanked and killed (with a pally healer to tank, rogues are great for picking them off).  He will also cast a curse on your entire raid that, if not dispelled in time, will deal massive damage to party members.  The boss also will periodically teleport and reset aggro.  Noth will blink the direction he is facing so make sure he is pointed away from any clothies who would be at risk of getting 1 shot should the tank fail to taunt quickly enough.

Heigan the Unclean
Phase A: Tank and Spank.  In this phase, Heigan has a ranged mana-burning mechanic that periodically burns a large percentage of a mana users mana within ~20-25 yards.  This also applies a disease debuff that reduces all stats by 50% (whether you have mana or not, don't dispel it from the tank/melee).  To deal with this, he must be tanked on the front corner of his platform with all mana users on the back corner of his platform diagonal from him.

Phase B: Dance!  Just like in retail, there will be a boss emote signifying the transition where your party must all get off the platform.  The floor is broken up into 4 zones.  Sequentially, all but 1 zone will erupt in fire.  After the dance, return to Phase A.

Very easy and straight-forward fight.  Tank pulls the boss into the corner of the room and the healer stands right next to the gate.  This is done to ensure the healer is never within LOS of the boss as he puts a 2 minute silence on your healer which cannot be dispelled (even by bubble).  Other than that, just tank+spank and kill the weak adds that pop up.

The Construct Quarter

Similar to retail, tank and spank DPS race.  If you have trouble beating Patchwerk's enrage then you'll want to skip Thaddius as you won't have enough party dps.

The adds do not need to be killed in his room as the fight is rather stationary.  Unlike retail, Grobbulus is tanked in place and will periodically inject someone with a disease that must be dispelled.  When it is dispelled, all party members within ~15 yards take damage.  The damage is healable but it makes the fight easier if you can spread out into 3 groups (melee+tank and separate the casters) so that your healer doesn't have to heal more than 2 people at a time from it.

He will also periodically spawn an add that needs to be killed (by a rogue/furry ideally).  This fight is somewhat challenging to heal for those with entry level healing gear so use mana potions liberally.

Gluth is one of the hardest bosses in the raid (along with Maex and KT).  As such, he requires a very specific group composition and is typically skipped because of this (usually groups will clear Patch and Grob and then run around the outside ring to get to Thaddius from one of the adjacent bosses).

Group required is:
1 tank (4/9 set bonus), 1 fury (4/9 set bonus), 1 healer, 1 gluth-orientated dps, 1 add handler dps.
Tank Gluth close to the door.  Healer stands where Gluth stood. Gluth-orientated dps nukes boss 24/7. Fury taunts boss when stacks of "Reduced Healing" need to get reset, such as Kurinaxx/Fankriss mechanic, add-orientated dps focuses on killing adds and keeping them away from Gluth so he does not heal. Adds have 1k hp or so. Gluth does a fear every now and then but doesn't really matter tbh since healer stands out of range of this fear.

Sub-bosses: As you enter Thaddius' chamber you'll have to fight a pair of mini-bosses.  Pick one of the platforms to fight on.  The entire party will engage the boss on that platform and the other boss will agro to you once the fight starts.  Just like retail, both of them must die at the same time.  They also have a periodic AOE knockback so position yourself against the wall if you're not melee.

Once they are dead, you can jump to Thaddius' platform (use noggenfogger elixir for slowfall if you have trouble making the jump).  You will be stuck in combat but you can wait to start the fight until the party has had a chance to heal up and regenerate mana.

Thaddius: There are no charges or polarity implemented.  Thaddius is simply a gear-check DPS race.  You have 6 minutes to kill him, after which he enrages and starts hitting the tank for 5k and 1 shotting everyone else.  Raid group requires 2000dps combined to be a successful kill. (without enrage)

The Arachnid Quarter

Anub'Rekhan starts the fight with two adds and spawns more throughout the fight.  He is tanked roughly where he stands and the two adds are usually tanked by a melee dps.  They don't hit hard but do enrage and should be CC'd during that burst dps to ease the healers stress.  After the adds die a bunch of tiny adds will spawn a little while later that need to be AOE'd down.  Eventually Anub'Rekhan will unleash an insect swarm which is a massive AOE DOT and silence that does about 2,000 dps.  Don't stand in it.  The tank will have to break away before he starts to cast this and kite him around the outside ring of the room so make sure the group (standing in the middle) are not hit by it.  These 3 events cycle throughout the fight: Kill big adds, dps boss, kill little adds, dps boss, kite boss around ring, repeat.  When the boss is being tanked and not casting anything he also hits the entire raid with a knockup periodically that does a decent chunk of damage if you eat both the damage and the fall damage so make sure that everyone, except rogues, have noggenfogger elixir on for the slowfall.  You'll need to reapply it throughout the fight so make sure you're stocked up.

Grand Widow Faerlina
The boss and all of the adds are all tanked together.  CC them the best you can and kill the adds 1 by 1 and avoid the rain of fire (if you have frozen runes, make sure everyone has them on).  There is some burst dps the boss does, but not all too difficult if you've been in Naxx for a while.  Make sure the tank disarms her during the enrage.

This is one of the other hardest bosses on Retro WoW and is a gear-check for your healer (only druids and pallies can do this fight).  Maexxna has two noteworthy abilities that, when combined, create the enormous difficulty.  She spawns spiders and she stuns the entire party for 10 seconds.  Every 3rd wave of spiders, she does this AT THE SAME TIME.  In preparation for this fight, your healer (a paladin) should be fully buffed and flasked with titans (using a shield of course).  Just before she stuns the party, the pally drops a rank 1 consecrate so that all of the mobs target him when they spawned.  Then... you just sit, stunned, watching your health get eaten away by spiders and hoping that you live through it.  There is no way to not get stunned.  If you pre-bubble, they will just target your party members (and kill them while you're stunned).  She also puts a -90% healing poison debuff on the tank which will need to be cleansed ASAP.  You should only have to deal with this twice though if you have properly geared dps.

Frostwyrm Lair

Very simple and easy fight.  Tank and spank except when he takes off, just LOS him behind a pillar until he casts his AOE by the entrance and resume.  GZ on the loot!  If two Sapphirons spawn, you are allowed to kill both if you fight them at the same time but any glitching to fight them separately is considered an exploit.


Known Exploits
The underlying philosophy behind whether something is an exploit or a tactic is that you shouldn't be doing anything that prevents a bosses mechanics from functioning as intended.  Below are a list of known exploits that GM staff are watching for and taking administrative action against, including but not limited to: banning.  Before realizing the severity of using these exploits, I've been instantly killed during illegitimate boss attempts by GMs and even ported out of the instance and spoken to about the exploits.  These exploits have been going on for some time but they are cracking down.  The fights aren't that hard so you may as well learn to do them the right way.

-Wall jumping through Gluth's door to skip him and fight Thaddius.
-Using LOS to pull Heigan out of his room, skipping the "dance" and avoiding his mana burn mechanic.
-Hiding behind Gothik's dividing wall's edge to glitch mob spawning during phase 1 and allow debuff stacks to reset during phase 2.
-Vanish-pulling Instructor Razuvious to glitch adds.
-Pulling Anub'Rekhan's adds to the door to kill them separately from the boss.

Final Thoughts
If you've raided Naxxramas and know of better ways to do these fights or have other feedback, please take a few minutes to write a post and help progress the community!

Thats cool, thanks a ton for this!
Mage decursing everyone on noth fight is really important to mention
(05-18-2016, 05:11 AM)It! Wrote: Thats cool, thanks a ton for this!

You're very welcome!

(05-18-2016, 08:08 AM)popsis Wrote: Mage decursing everyone on noth fight is really important to mention

Ah! I forgot about that. Added. Thank you!

Some Extra's

Noth: Noth's "aggro-resetting" mechanic is after he blinks, all threat on him is dropped.

Loatheb: Tank pulls boss from the left gate if you've just entered Loatheb's room. Pull boss to the left gate then tank him where healer can LoS the debuff. Then Nuke. Adds spawn but healer (if not filthy casual) can tank up to 5-10 of them then just kill them and repeat.

Patchwerk: Great boss to determine if the raid group has dps needed for Thaddius.

Grobbulus: Tank can pick up the adds then simply kill after Grobbulus is dead.

Gluth: 1 tank, 1 fury, 1 healer, 1 gluth-orientated dps, 1 add handler dps.
Tank simply tanks gluth close to the door. Healer stands where gluth stood and heals. Gluth-orientated dps nukes boss 24/7. Fury taunts boss when stacks of "Reduced Healing" need to get reset, such as Kurinaxx/Fankriss mechanic, add-orientated dps focuses on killing adds and keeping them away from Gluth so he does not heal. Adds have 1k hp or so. Gluth does a fear every now and then but doesn't really matter tbh since healer stands out of range of this fear.

Thaddius: Raid group requires 2000dps combined to be a successful kill. (without enrage)

- Cryo
Thank you Cryo; updated a number of sections including the ones you've suggested.
(09-08-2016, 09:18 PM)Phocus26 Wrote: Thank you Cryo; updated a number of sections including the ones you've suggested.

Lots of changes for people that don't know much about certain bosses atm with the new changes.

Anub'Rekhan is exactly the same, but instead of tanking on a L shape u must strafe it. The aoe does 2k each dmg, per second. It stacks up to 5 times (basically dead after that)

Its buggy, BigWigs or CCwatch or NatureCastEnemyBar is really recomended for this fight so u know when the swarm will be off cd. 


Phase 1: Stand in the middle, range dps players on Ghost Weavers, got to kill them very fast before they come near you, which they will expode and do 5k dmg to everyone, and knocks you into packs of mobs which will (99.9%) be a wipe.

Melee dps will have to kill the mini patchwerks and skeletons. (Rogues are good for this for Blade flurry aoe)

Phase 2: Spread out, for casters, stay far away from each other so when mana burn happens, it does not explode near others, it will take 90% of their hp away and make them lose mana too.

(Rogues, fury warriors) You can max range kt, enough to hit him, and far enough away to avoid Frost Blasts. Frost Blasts will freeze everyone close to KT (always the tank) and it would be really bad if the melee dps is frozen, because they need to focus on the Kick's/Pummel's

Phase 3: 47% KT will spawn in 2 add's, basically anub version but small and no aoe lol. They have 25 million hp and are basically unkillable, healer will have to bubble (way me and my group does it) and the tank tanks both of them, and rogue will be focused on kicks all the time on kt while he goes on. 

GL HF, wall of text, 

What I recommend is a macro that tells u when you kicked

/Cast Kick
/Say "I kicked, you are next"

and same with the tank, and NatureCastEnemyBar will show when KT will do the big Gohan Ultimate Starfire shot. aka the big frostbolt, tank should kick first when kt comes out of phase 1 while the rogue builds the 5 dot expose armor
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In depth tanking guides for the trickier bosses.

Tanking Anub'Rekhan:

The hardest mechanic to learn in naxx for a tank is the anub kiting tactic. Basically because the timers are wrong, and the encounter is buggy-as well as it getting a little hard to get used to. Also, many rogues/warlocks don't help out by slowing the cast speed of insect swarm when they really should.

The tank kites this boss around the outer ring in the room, that is the ring that you can jump over the slime to get to. This fight is buggy and sometimes aggro can reset when the tank jumps on the outer ring to kite. However, a non buggy kiting spot is near the entrance of the room. When you come into Anub's room, on the right near the door. This is where you tank him and start your kiting when insect swarm is cast. To kite properly, you should stand 1-2metres away from the start of the ring and jump onto it across the slime to get a headstart, so anub has to walk around a bit to get onto the ring. (don't go so far so that your jump misses and you hit the slime) You should also turn around just before insect swarm is going to cast so you can jump immediately.

If you have a rogue or warlock in your group, make sure they put curse of tongues or mind numbing poison on the boss before insect swarm is cast. It is extremely important that the rogue/warlock do this. This will give the tank a massive headstart and make it much easier to kite. If the tank is still new to this encounter, and they might make a mistake, they can always carry a swiftness potion on them to make to recover if they mess up the kite.

The tank should spam noggenfogger while they are kiting because they are doing nothing but running at this point. The tank should also be ready to take noggenfogger off if they get spikes within 5 seconds of an incoming insect swarm

The timer for this encounter works in the following way. For the 1st insect swarm if the timer shows, it is correct. However, for the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th... insect swarms, the timer is 10 seconds off. Insect swarm actually happens 10 seconds after the timer says its going to happen. Look at the timer and once it reaches the end, count to 8 seconds in your head, then turn around and start kiting. There is no harm in starting to run a few seconds early in this encounter. If you do this, either the boss will bug out on the ring and not cast insect swarm and just melee you, or it will cast it, and since your already running you will kite it easily and avoid any stacks altogether.

minor bootspeed enchant can help in this fight.

A strategy i've never tried but probably works is if you have a hunter, they could stand a bit in front of you when insect swarm is cast and put aspect of the pack on 1-2 seconds after insect swarm is cast. Put this one for 1-2 seconds and you will be fine

Tanking KT:

Gear requirements:

your tank should try to get 235 frost resist unbuffed for this fight. A frost resist totem or aura will give you 60, and MOTW will give you another 20. 235+80=315, which is the FR cap. You can also farm for chillwind juju's in winterspring to get a nice FR resist buff if you really want. Even with FR cap, there is a tiny chance your tank can get hit for 6k frost bolts.

Phase 1: Ghost Weavers, abominations, and skeletons come at you in phase 1. Ghost weavers will basically kill half the raid if you let them touch you. range dps take them out, and ideally if you have 2 healers one of them should use fear/shackle/stun on them to help the range dps. The number one priority for tanking in phase 1 is to not let your melee dps get aggro from an abomination, since your melee dps can get 2-3 shot by these. save your concussion blow for when this happens in case taunt resists. open with a sheild slam or revenge on the abominations as that is the highest threat spell for warriors. picking up aggro on the skeletons is secondary priority as they do not hit hard. i usually tap as many as i can with a sunder each while saving my shield slam and revenge for the abominations.

There are 3 frost attacks that KT does:
Frost bolt(single), which one shots anyone but the tank and is chain casted at random times. melee need to interupt most of these.
Frost bolt (mass), which hits anyone in los, and does small damage. about 700.
Frost blast, which freezes the main aggro target and anyone that is close to them.

Make sure when phase 2 begins that you are closest to KT.
Drag KT over to one of those rooms that adds walked in from during phase 1. Tank so that KT is on the edge of that room, and you are a couple meters from the edge. So that the healer(s) can stand in a room next to it and line of sight the mass frost bolts and mana bombs. KT casts an ability called frost blast that freezes the tank and everyone next to them. If your melee dps is standing on the other side of KT they surely won't get hit. (they can be a little closer than this even). You want to tank in a way so that when your melee dps wants to come out for heals, they can avoid frost blast.

KT casts a spell that puts a shadowy circle underneath someone. After 5 seconds it will do 50k+ damage to them if they are still standing on it. It's easy to dodge. There is a rare chance that the tank gets hit by frost blast and this thing at the same time, in which case its a wipe. To decreases the probability of this happening, the tank should move immediately away from the shadow when they see it.

If you have a rogue, they should use mind numbing poison to increase frost bolt cast time. The single target frost bolt can hit between 1.3k-6k on a tank with 315 frost resist. So the tank and rogue should rotate interrupts on the boss. The boss can also be silenced through counterspells and it might be wise to do this when the tank gets Frost blasted and frostbolted at the same time during phase 3.

phase 3: when adds are summoned, use shield wall and aoe taunt if you have to. You may get unlucky and frozen the same time as the adds come in. If you don't pick up those adds and tank them quickly, they will destroy the group. you want to tab sunders on the adds while your sheild bash is on cooldown. So that you are rotating sheild slam on boss, sheild bash on boss, sunder on add, sunder on add. and keep demo shout up at all times. Do not slack on the sheild blocks here. This is easy to do in phase 3 since there is a lot more to focus on. If you have a priest this phase will be a lot easier, as one add will be shackled.

Small note on Thaddius:

It is easy to heal the tank on thaddius. For this reason, the tank should switch to battle stance when Thaddius is at 20%hp and spam execute until 3%, then switch back for sheild wall. (if the fight is close) My record dps on Thaddius as a prot warrior is 436.

Small note on Maexxna:

The tank can use oil of immolation to pick up the spider adds during every 3rd stun.
Havn't tested it but target dummy may also be useful for putting down before every 3rd stun if you are an engineer.
If you have a priest healer, first aid/ purify pots can be used by people to cleanse the poison.

For maexxna there will typically be two stuns during her enrage. clearly you should use last stand for one and sheild wall for the other to survive both stuns.
ty for this, I plan to go oom on patchwerk kek
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(01-01-2017, 05:41 PM)Stroggos Wrote: Small note on Thaddius:

It is easy to heal the tank on thaddius. For this reason, the tank should switch to battle stance when Thaddius is at 20%hp and spam execute until 3%, then switch back for sheild wall. (if the fight is close) My record dps on Thaddius as a prot warrior is 436.

Zerker stance or bust

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