WoW Ulduar Raid Boss Guide - Hodir
Learn the strategy for fighting and defeating Hodir, the frosty corrupted Watcher found in the new raid instance, Ulduar! Learn how to use the frozen NPCs in conjunction with your own raiding skills to bring this big guy down before his 9 minute enrage timer.
Hodir is one of the 14 new boss encounters found in the brand new raid instance, Ulduar. Released in World of Warcraft patch 3.1, Secrets of Ulduar, the raid instance ties in a plethora of storylines found particularly in the Storm Peaks and also Scholozar Basin. It also delves deeply into classic Warcraft lore, as Ulduar is a Titan structure that we find out is actually a prison of the Old God Yogg-Saron. The Titan's guardians, called Watchers, were betrayed by one of their own, Lokem, corrupted and are now bosses inside Ulduar. Hodir is just one of these.
The frost giants that consider themselves to be the progeny of Hodir, the Sons of Hodir, venerate their assumed-deceased "father" in a variety of ways at their home in the Storm Peaks.
Upon defeating Hodir he is freed from the influence of Yogg-Saron and teleports away.
Upon approaching Hodir's room where the fight takes place, you will notice several NPCs encased in ice blocks. These NPCs are friendly to you, and can greatly assist in the battle. Before you can use their help, however, you must free them from their frozen cages. There are four types of NPCs that you can break out to assist you:
Battlepriest - Casts Smite, Greater Heal, and Dispell Magic. Helps to remove Frost Nova-like debuff.
Moonkin - DPSs with Wrath and casts Starlight, a spotlight-style buff that grants significant haste when stood in.
Shaman - DPSs in melee and casts Stormcloud on a random player. A buff that increases critical strike damage dealt significantly to the target player and anyone he comes in contact with for the duration of the buff.
Mage - DPSs with Fireball and casts Conjure Toasty Fire. The toasty fire removes the stacking cold debuff and allows players to remain stationary.
If you are considering leaving NPCs frozen in order to increase DPS time on the boss, don't. The NPCs increase the overall DPS of the raid substantially, and should be broken out of the ice blocks initially. Unfortunately the NPCs aren't very intelligent, and won't move to safe spots to avoid Flash Freeze. You will need to break them out of ice blocks after every Flash Freeze.
The Hodir battle begins when the tank engages. Hodir has a small aggro range. He should be tanked in roughly the center of the room, though being precise isn't really necessary. Melee attacks are fairly light. Healers should definitely keep HoTs on the tank and throw an occasional heal, but the majority of damage is the result of one of his special abilities. The tank and melee DPS need to be mobile. Part of the fight mechanics is a Keristrasza-esque stacking freeze called Biting Cold that is only mitigated by movement. It doesn't stack very quickly so it isn't too intense, but the tank should move a couple yards every 6 seconds or so.
The whole raid needs to be on the lookout for falling snow, as this precedes Icicles. A section of the cieling where it was "snowing" will fall and deal considerable damage to anyone who didn't move out of the way. When at all possible, players need to stand near Toasty Fires to mitigate Biting Cold and stand in Starlight to gain a powerful haste buff.
Every so often, the Flash Freeze sequence will begin. If caught in Flash Freeze players will be frozen in blocks and will need to be broken out. This seriously cuts into DPS, and if the wrong person is frozen can actually result in a wipe. To avoid Flash Freeze, you must stand on a snowdrift under an open section of cieling, where the light essentially protects you from the cold. These snowdrifts start to fall prior to the Flash Freeze and blue rune circles cover the ground where they are going to fall. Do not stand in the circle, but stay near it. Once the drift falls, jump onto the snowdrift until Flash Freeze passes. Then, break out the frozen NPCs once again. There is a known bug where a person who runs onto the snowdrift will sometimes be hit with Flash Freeze. This happens because the game registers them as running into the drift instead of onto it. To avoid this, jump onto the drift.
The last notable ability Hodir uses is called Frozen Blows. This ability decreases the physical damage his attacks deal, but adds a significant hit as frost damage. During this time, the tank will need dedicated heals as well as to use cooldowns to mitigate some of the damage. In addition to the tank being hit, it will also deal splash damage to the entire raid - around 3k per blow. As an alternative to the tank and healers using cooldowns to get through this phase, two tanks can be used. One to tank normal blows and another in frost resist and stamina gear to taunt and tank during Frozen Blows. Alternatively, a geared tank can wear some frost resist, use a Paladin's frost resist aura, and do alright.
Hodir has a hard 9-minute enrage timer on both 10- and 25-man modes. If you defeat him in under 6 minutes you gain an extra loot chest.