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This guide is intended to provide a comprehensive description of the encounter with Beth'tilac in Firelands. It is mostly targeted to DPS who desire to have a short but detailed overview of what is expected of them during that fight.
This guide applies to patch 4.3 of World of Warcraft.
The Beth'tilac encounter, within the Firelands, presents several types of adds which DPS players need to kill, each with their own specific mechanics. In addition to this, some DPS players will have to perform a rather unique task.
1. Overview of the Fight↑top
Beth'tilac is a fiery spider which uses a variety of adds to attack your raid. The encounter is split into two phases, henceforth referred to as Phase One and Phase Two. The area where you fight Beth'tilac is divided into two levels by a web which forms the ceiling of the room.
During Phase One, the boss will be stationary on top of her web (the "Beth'tilac level"), where a few of your raid members will need to climb up to and deal damage to her. In the meantime, down below (the "ground level"), the rest of your raid will have to defeat three types of adds: Cinderweb Drones, Cinderweb Spinners and Cinderweb Spiderlings.
After Beth'tilac uses Smoldering Devastation (an ability which will be explained below) three times, she will enter Phase Two, lowering herself to the ground level where your entire raid can engage her. This phase is essentially a burn phase where you raid will have to contend with a soft enrage mechanic.
2. Phase One↑top
Before starting the encounter, you will notice Beth'tilac dangling from a web that acts as a ceiling to the room. Upon attacking her, she will quickly retreat up onto her web, while Cinderweb Spinners will lower themselves to your raid by use of web filaments. In addition to this, your raid will be faced with two other types of adds: Cinderweb Drones and Cinderweb Spiderlings, which enter the fight from the edges of the encounter area, on the ground level.
Your goal during this phase is to send a small contingent of players to damage Beth'tilac atop her web, while the rest of your raid handles the adds.
In order for your raid members to reach Beth'tilac, you will need to make use of the web filaments left behind after Cinderweb Spinners are killed. These can be mounted like any vehicle, and will each transport one player to Beth'tilac's level.
Some DPS players will be assigned to traveling to Beth'tilac's level to damage the boss there, while others will have to remain at the ground level and deal with various types of adds. We have provided a separate section for each of these two assignments.
2.1. Beth'tilac's Level DPS
Around 2 DPS players in 10-man difficulty and 5-6 in 25-man difficulty will be assigned to travel up to Beth'tilac's level. To do this, you will need to right click one of the web filaments left behind after the death of a Cinderweb Spinner.
Note that each filament has only one use, and that you should only proceed to Beth'tilac's level after the tank and healer have done so themselves, otherwise you risk being killed by the boss.
Simply start the ground phase by DPSing some of the Cinderweb Spinners which are dangling down from the webs, until such a time that the Beth'tilac level tank and healer have gone up. After that, use a web filament and climb up yourself. On Beth'tilac's level you will receive moderate amounts of unavoidable damage.
In addition to this damage, you will also notice several ground effects, indicating locations where meteors will fall. Move away from these locations so as to avoid the damage.
While on Beth'tilac's level, simply DPS the boss. Beth'tilac has a Fire Energy bar, which decreases slowly over time, until it becomes depleted. When this happens, she will begin an 8 second cast of Smoldering Devastation, an ability which will one shot anyone still on her web. You will need to make your way down from the web to avoid this damage. Do so by jumping through the hole in the web, located in the center.
You will have to repeat this process three times (alternating between brief stays at the ground level and prolonged stays at Beth'tilac's level) until the third Smoldering Devastation has been cast. This marks the end of Phase One.
Before discussing the specific strategy for the ground and Beth'tilac levels, an important mention should be made regarding the pull. Beth'tilac will climb up to her web and be unattackable from the ground as soon the first attack reaches her. For this reason, we advise that a Destruction Warlock pulls the boss using Bane of Havoc, and then remains on the ground level for the rest of Phase One. This will provide your raid with a large DPS increase, as 15% of all the damage done by the Warlock will be done to Beth'tilac.
2.2. Ground Level DPS
For DPS players assigned to the ground level, this phase consists entirely of attacking three types of adds. Below, we list the relevant details regarding each of them.
2.2.1. Cinderweb Spinners
These adds lower themselves into the fight from Beth'tilac's web, above the raid. They climb down on strings, and stop mid-way from the ground. If taunted, they will lower themselves altogether (and be in range of melee DPS).
Your raid's general aim is to kill these adds in order to lower raid damage and so that raid members assigned to climb up to Beth'tilac's level can do so by use of the web filaments left behind by the Spinners.
2.2.2. Cinderweb Spiderling
Cinderweb Spiderlings' only ability is Seeping Venom, which they will use on any targets within 6 yards of them. The Cinderweb Spiderling will latch onto the respective raid member and deal Fire damage to them over 10 seconds.
The Spiderlings are small adds which spawn in packs. They skitter along the floor and do not have aggro tables. They will always head for Cinderweb Drones. If they reach the Drones, they will heal and buff them, which is not advised. This is detailed below.
Your raid's general aim is to slow and kill these adds before they reach a Cinderweb Drone, without being in their melee range.
You should use slows, stuns and knockbacks to prevent these adds from reaching Cinderweb Drones. Melee DPS players will generally want to stay away from the Spiderlings.
Be mindful that, if any Spiderlings come within range of Beth'tilac when she descends from her web, at the end of Phase One, she will consume them and heal herself for 10% for each Spiderling. It is, therefore, imperative that all Spiderlings be killed before the boss is about the enter Phase Two.
2.2.3. Cinderweb Drone
Cinderweb Drones are large adds which will spawn, one at a time, at roughly one minute intervals throughout Phase One. The very first spawn will occur about 40 seconds into the fight. Like Beth'tilac herself, Drones also have Fire Energy bars.
Drones should be killed before their Fire Energy Bar reaches 0. Otherwise, they will climb up to Beth'tilac and drain her energy bar, shortening the length of time until the next Smoldering Devastation (the third cast of which marks the end of Phase One). This will speed up Phase One, considerably lessening the amount of DPS you can do to the boss. Doing so will cause the boss to enter Phase Two with too much health, resulting in a wipe to the soft enrage mechanic.
As a DPS player, whether ranged or melee, there are only two things of note regarding Cinderweb Drones:
2.2.4. Ground Level Recap
It is hard to set a strict priority among the three types of adds, for ground level DPS players. Use your common sense, and what ever fits your current raid, but follow the guidelines below.
3. Phase Two↑top
It is crucial, both for DPS players who were assigned to the Beth'tilac level and those who were assigned to the ground level, to understand that no Cinderweb Spiderlings can be left alive by the time Beth'tilac descends from her web. Indeed, it is of utmost importance that Spiderlings be killed before Phase Two begins.
Phase Two constitutes a nuking phase with a soft enrage mechanic. The entire raid, with the exception of the tanks, will be stacked behind Beth'tilac, and that is where you should also be. Simply use all your DPS cooldowns to nuke Beth'tilac before the soft enrage wipes your raid.
4. Heroic Mode↑top
The heroic mode of Beth'tilac is a true test of both your raid's ability as well as gear. It provides very tough challenges for DPS players and will require excellent execution to defeat.
4.1. Differences from Normal Mode
Before delving into the actual changes, it should be noted that all abilities deal more damage in heroic mode, and Beth'tilac as well as all of her adds have increased health. This will prove to be a brutal gear check for your healers, as well as for your DPS who will find it very hard to kill the boss before the soft enrage wipes the raid.
The changes from normal mode are:
4.2. Strategy Changes
From a strategy point of view, DPS players will find that not much is different from normal mode. Cinderweb Spinners, Cinderweb Drones and Cinderweb Spiderlings are all dealt with in the same way as normal mode, for the most part.
There are a few new things which DPS players must be aware of, and deal with accordingly. When a Cinderweb Drone fixates on a DPS player, it is the job of that player to face the Drone away from the raid, and to pay attention not to bring the Drone in contact with any Spiderlings (by kiting it away if necessary). Note that Hunters can instantly get rid of the Fixate by using Feign Death.
One (in 10-man) or more (in 25-man) DPS players should be assigned to detonating Engorged Broodlings, by running into them while they are still away from the raid. Players doing so should make sure that they have enough health to survive the explosion (approximately 42,500) and that they detonate the Broodlings in such a way that the resulting Volatile Poison puddles do not inconvenience the raid.
Note that the Broodlings and the Spiderlings spawn from 3 predefined locations (the dark cave-looking areas at the side). In 10-man difficulty, they only spawn from one place at a time, as opposed to 25-man difficulty, where they spawn from all 3 locations at the same time.
We advise that Marksmanship Hunters be used for this role, as they have many advantages in the task. While doing this, they can also, single-handedly slow and kill all of the Spiderlings spawning from their assigned task. In order to maximise their performance, we advise using the following this talent build.
Spinners are a top priority for killing, as the raid damage that they generate, together with Fiery Web Spin (which should be interrupted whenever it occurs) will cause a myriad of problems.
Finally, it is important that, before Beth'tilac descends, every single Spiderling has been killed, to prevent her from healing up.
Phase Two remains unchanged, but will require considerably more damage output from your raid in order to defeat, and is a true check of gear and ability.