House of Crom – Vile Nativity
Let’s start with some pictures of purple l00tz to motivate you :P
The Vile Nativity is the 6-person group part of the House of Crom. You can enter it either from the Threshold of Divinity (the social part of House of Crom), or from the entrance in the northwest of Eiglophian Mountains; but the latter becomes available only after you’ve done a quest for one of the NPCs inside the dungeon, so the first time you have to enter it from the Threshold of Divinity.
Sentinel of Defense
Occasionally he casts Counterattack Stance, which gives him a 10 sec buff with 75% hinder movement and big retributive damage; so stop DPS at that time and just kite him. Other than that it’s a tank and spank fight. Several adds will come alive, but don’t focus on DPSing them. When you kill the Sentinel of Defense, one of the adds (Master of Resurrection) will rez him; just kill him again and he will stay dead. Some of the other adds will be putting a heal and a damage shield on the boss occasionally, which unfortunately can’t be removed by a rogue’s TW and FH.
Then you should focus on the adds. Kill the Master of Resurrection first, otherwise he’ll just rez any other add that you kill. After that it’s a good idea to kill the healing add, then the protection add and finally the awakening add.
A loot box will spawn, which contains among other things four Artifacts, which play an important role in the next fight.
She initially lies on a bier; light the candles around the bier to wake her up and start the fight.
- Sunder Outsider – big holy ranged nuke (8-10k damage on a tank)
- Ritual Fog – unholy frontal cone aoe damage (3-4k on tanks, can be more on squishies)
- Vision from the Outer dark – fear on the aggro holder (if it’s a player)
- Shades of Misery – summons the Eerie Shade add
- Nowhere to Run – 75% hinder movement + dot on the aggro holder, for 8 sec, to make kiting difficult
- Blessing from the Outer Dark – +50% damage mitigation, +20% magic damage multiplier, +20% damage multiplies – buff that’s on her all the time
The Eerie Shade is an add, summoned occasionally by the boss. Initially the Shade has a buff called Ghostly Shroud (+99% damage mitigation), and it casts Haunted on a random player; this charms the player and oneshots him after 30 sec. Everyone should DPS the charmed player and when his health drops low enough (below 25% or so), he will get uncharmed, the Shade will lose its damage mitigation buff, its health will immediately also drop significantly, and it will get a debuff called Misery (-10% damage mitigation); at that point you can then focus on the Shade and kill it. Interestingly, the charmed player isn’t completely unable to act; if he’s a soldier, he can switch to frenzy stance (and should do so, so that others can DPS him faster).
In this fight, a friendly mob is also present, named Sentinel of Offense. You should use him to tank the boss for you. Someone should use the Artifact of Awakening soon after the start of the fight; this wakes up the Sentinel and causes him to aggro the boss and start fighting her. You can use the Artifact of Rejuvenation to heal him up (Atlantean Blessing: heals 1% every 3 sec, for 15.5 sec). Note that one of his melee attacks (Great Cleave) does pretty strong 360 degree AoE damage to players as well, so don’t stand too close to him if you’re low on health.
The Sentinel takes very heavy damage (more than half of his health) from the boss’s Sunder Outsider attack; so the player with the Artifact of Protection should watch the boss’s cast bar and when you see her casting Sunder Outsider, you should use the Artifact of Protection on the Sentinel (note: you must stand *very* close to him to use this Artifact). This gives him a 50% damage mitigation buff for 6 seconds. Between this and the healing from the Artifact of Rejuvenation, you can keep the Sentinel alive indefinitely. If he should happen to die anyway, you can rez him with the Artifact of Resurrection (meanwhile the tanks have to tank the boss).
The Artifact of Resurrection has a 45 sec cooldown, the Artifact of Rejuvenation has a 25 sec cooldown, the Artifact of Protection has a 30 sec cooldown.
The time between one Sunder Outsider and the next seems to be random in the 30-45 sec range.
There is a clickable pool of water behind the bier where the Queen was lying initially. All around the dungeon there are mushrooms that you can pick up (Frost Fungus), and if you then click the pool of water the mushroom turns into a Fortified Frost Fungus. Clicking this in your inventory gives you a 15-minute buff called Fortified Frost Fungus, but I don’t know what it’s used for. It seems that picking up a fungus removes your Miasma debuff, which you get as soon as you enter the dungeon (and which slightly decreases your natural mana/stamina regen).
All over the dungeon there are also clickable inscriptions, but you’ll need to consume a few Fragments of Atlantean from the the social part of House of Crom to learn to read them.
The Queen and the Sentinels before her are optional bosses; you can skip them and still proceed with the rest of the dungeon.
A somewhat rare drop from her is the following gorgeous social dress for female characters:
Several waves of adds (normal mobs) spawn at the start; it seems there are 5 waves of them and then you can click the boss again to start the main part of the fight.
The boss occasionally summons adds (Vanir Excavators); you can see him calling them in the cinematic text messages in the lower part of your screen.
Sometimes he calls for a healing salve, in which case one add comes and heals him up for about 10% of his health. This is not a heal-over-time and thus can’t be removed with Tainted Weapons. However, you can cc the add and DPS him. If you DPS the add down to 75%, he will give up and go away; or you can simply out-DPS these occasional heals.
Sometimes the boss calls for two adds, which bring explosive urns and start chasing two random players around the room. The boss meanwhile starts casting Ignition and when the cast is done, a trail of fire travels from the boss to the two adds and detonates their explosive urns. So nobody should be close to the adds when this happens, to avoid taking damage from the explosions. The fire trail also does a bit of damage, so don’t stand on the line between the boss and the adds. A good idea is to have everyone hug the boss (so the adds will be nearby), wait for him to start casting Ignition, then root the adds and run away.
At 75, 50 and 25% of his health, the boss does a big AoE knockback (Unshackled Fury) and then sends a trail of fire chasing each player. This fire does a lot of damage if it reaches you (most classes will get oneshotted from it); so everyone should run into the water in the foggy area in the back of the room.
The fire trail takes some time to fizzle out in the water, so don’t stand too close to the edge of the water, but wade further in. But be careful that you don’t stand in the water for too long; you will be taking damage while you’re in it (Ice Mist: -10% frost damage every 2 seconds), and after 10 seconds you actually get oneshotted. So stay outside the water until the fire trail comes close to you, then run into the water, wait until the fire goes out, and then hurry back out again. (After you come out of the water, check to see if the Ice Mist debuff is gone. Due to a bug it sometimes doesn’t get removed when you come out of the water, in which case you should quickly try removing it by going back into the fog and then out again. If you don’t get rid of the debuff in time, you will be oneshotted.)
After you come out of the fog, be careful as the boss’s aggro seems to reset around that time.
After 5 minutes, he enrages (Berserk: +40% movement multiplier, +20% scale, +500% damage multiplier, +500% magic damage multiplier).
Guardian of the Antechamber
At the entrance of the room, there are 5 circles of various colors on the walls; each player except a tank should click one of the circles and get a corresponding buff.
There are also 5 corresponding pads in the room; looking into the room from the entance, these are: water = far left; cold = near left; holy = near right; poison = far right; unholy = center.
Each player that got a buff from the circle should step onto the corresponding pad. (If you step on a pad that you don’t have the circle buff for, you take heavy damage, so be careful.) The tank that doesn’t have any of the circle buffs should then aggro the boss and kite him from pad to pad in the order given above. When the boss steps on a pad, he gets a buff as well (Water Essence, Frost Essence, Holy Essence, Poisonous Essence, Unholy Essence). The tank should avoid stepping on any pads during this as he lacks any circle buffs, so he would take heavy damage from the pads.
When the boss gets the buffs from all 5 pads, he moves away, stops being hostile and you can click him to get a buff, then click two braziers next to the door to open it. If you use the pads in the wrong order, the boss gets oneshotted and respawns.
Idols of Silence
This is a circular room with 4 pairs of statues (each pair consists of an Idol of Silence and an Idol of Secrets) along the walls. The Idols of Secrets are clickable; when you click one, its corresponding Idol of Silence wakes up and starts attacking it. Your goal is to kill the attacking statue before it manages to kill the one you clicked. After you do this for all 4 pairs (one pair at a time), a loot box spawns and the door leading further into the dungeon opens.
These statues seem to reset aggro often (or break away from their tank for whatever reason), so DPSers should be careful. DPSers should stand behind the statue.
The statue in the far left pair (looking from the point of view of entrance into the room) occasionally casts a heal (Light of Atlantis), which a rogue has to remove with TW, otherwise you won’t be able to DPS the statue quickly enough (the heals are too big to be easily out-DPSed, and if you try to increase your DPS that much, the tanks will probably be losing aggro and the boss will kill the squishies anyway). Other statues have other special abilities, which aren’t that important (for one of them, Light of Atlantis puts a 75% miss chance for 6 sec on its aggro holder; another one removes mage shields and blue heals by casting Negate; one has Molten Shield: 20% immunity, 400 armor for 30.5 sec, which can be removed with FH).
If you fail and one of the statues gets killed, it sometimes happens that they won’t respawn and you can’t reset the encounter and proceed further into the dungeon; you’d have to reform the group from the beginning in a new instance of the dungeon.
New in update 4.1: the near left statue (the one with Molten Shield) has an ability called Fall of Atlantis. This used to be a simple aoe hit with no particular importance, but now it targets a random player and spawns falling rocks on the spot where that player stood at the end of the cast. These rocks remain there for quite some time and do damage to nearby players — this is similar to Jade Dugout or the second boss in the Sepulcher of the Wrym. So the player that gets targeted during Fall of Atlantis should run away from others (and from the boss) before this cast is finished. I first noticed this after update 4.1; I guess this ability was always intended to work like this, but used to be bugged and now they finally got around to ninja-fixing it.
Initially he has a buff called Shield of the Lich, which gives him +200% damage mitigation, so don’t attack him when he has that shield or you will just heal him up.
At the start of the fight he spawns an add called Argo-satha’s Soul, which you have to kill; this removes the boss’s Shield of the Lich for 30 seconds, during which time you have to DPS him as much as possible. During those 30 sec the boss summons minions (Raised Husks). After 30 sec he gets his shield again and spawns a new Soul, so you have to go back to killing the Soul and the Wardens (see below) until he loses the shield again, etc.
The Soul has an ability called Horrifying Scream, which fears anyone in a cone in front of the boss. DPSers should be behind the Soul anyway, and the tank can walk out of the cone similar to the way you do with Frost Whip in the Palace of Yun Rau.
Don’t fight the Soul near the boss or the splash damage might heal him up (remember that he has his 200% mitigation shield up during that time).
While the Soul is up, the boss also spawns adds called Ravenous Wardens; they spawn in front of the fires along the outer edge of the room and each Warden keeps a player rooted, so you have to kill wardens as soon as possible. Before you kill the Soul, make sure that no Wardens are up. The Wardens spawn on a timer; if your DPS is really good, you’ll get just one Warden by the time the Soul is dead, otherwise you’ll probably get two.
Corpses of dead minions and wardens occasionally cause very heavy damage to players standing nearby (Banish Souls; seems to be like 1/3 of the player’s health) — you can see blue ray particles going from the boss to a corpse (but the damage only happens if you’re near the corpse, not elsewhere on the way from the boss to the corpse). So the main challenge is to avoid getting killed by the corpses while still doing enough DPS on the boss that he’ll die before he enrages (
the enrage timer is 10 minutes after the 7 Feb 2012 patch, the enrage timer is apparently longer; some said 13 minutes).
In particular, you probably don’t want to have dead minions close to the boss, otherwise melee DPS players won’t have any place to DPS the boss from. We used a ToS and guard with crossbow to pull the minions to the outer edge of the room and kill them there (after you kill a minion, you of course have to move away from the corpse as soon as possible). The problem here is that the minions are extremely squishy and it’s hard to avoid occasionally killing them near the boss. The players standing next to the boss should be careful not to use any kind of AoE damage (nor should the ToS use his Storm Crown). Preferably they should all stand on the same side of the boss, so that the minions will be more easily within reach of those pulling them away.
Be careful if you have lots of minions to you; they put a dot called Necrotic Pulse on you, which stacks up to 10x, at which point it does 10% unholy damage every 2 sec. Their melee hits aren’t that negligible either if you have several of them on you.
An alternative approach might be to stack a lot of ranged DPS classes in your group; then you don’t have to send anyone to DPS the boss from melee range, so you don’t have to care if there are any corpses there.
IME it definitely also helps if you set your gamma to max in your video settings; that way you can see the corpses on the ground much better.
Incidentally, corpses seem to despawn after a few minutes, not that it makes a huge difference.
There seems to be a hardmode on this boss. In the room just before the one where you fight Queen Cao-Polyphya, there is a clickable book which gives you a scroll called Curse of the Empowered Lich. Clicking this scroll during the Argo-satha fight gives him a buff called Empowered Lich, which causes him to put a -50% healing debuff (also called Curse of the Empowered Lich) on the target of his Spiraling Descent spell. According to a post on the AoC forums the boss also has more health and spawns more wardens in the hardmode; the drops apparently include just some potions and extra AA xp.
After you kill Argo-satha, you automatically get a quest to kill the next boss, the Little Prince, with a purple cloak as a quest reward (Cape of Atlantis: 68 con, 55 hit rating, 35 hate dec rating, 100 protection (cold)).
[Update: there is now a separate post about the Argo-satha hardmode.]
The Little Prince
If the sandworms of Dune mated with Cthulhu, this is what their offspring would look like. A door opens behind the foggy area where you fought the Overseer Olik, and this boss is a bit further down a corridor that starts there. A door that ports you into that corridor is also available from Argo-satha’s room once you kill Argo-satha. (It used to be possible to jump on an invisible wall and reach this door even without killing Argo-satha, but the 7 Feb 2012 patch fixed this.)
There are several group mobs in the corridor; don’t kill them, just run into the boss’s room. Keeping them alive will trigger the hardmode. The mobs will reset and a barrier will spring up when the fight begins.
- Corrupted Sputum: poison nuke on the aggro holder.
- Thundering Slam: 11-12k crushing damage, big aoe. Run to one side, e.g. the right side, to avoid it. When he starts casting the next one (which is immediately after the first one), run back in front of him again.
- Eldritch Ruin: a dot, 20% poison damage every 2 sec. This ruin appears between the 2 Thundering Slams (though you won’t see the boss casting it). First it appears on a random player and then, if it isn’t removed quickly by a priest, it spreads about a second later to other nearby playres. It will disappear when the boss reaches next 20%, but your priests should remove it much sooner already. IME the safest thing to do is to have people wait on the right side of the room (where they all fled from the first Thundering Slam) and stay huddled up in front of the priest until the ruin appears and the priest removes it; only after that should they go back to their original positions. An alternative is to have the priest remove the ruins after people return in front of the boss, but this is more risky: if the ruin has also spread to the person that’s taking the Poisonous Sputter, the priest won’t be able to remove it from him as he doesn’t stand with the rest of the group (another way to avoid this risk is to have two priests).
- Poisonous Sputter: from the stuff on the ground, gives +50% hinder movement for 3 sec. Lands on the person that is farthest from the boss. When he’s done casting it, move away quickly to avoid the snare. You should assign a person to stay farthest from the boss and keep the Sputter away from others — it’s the same idea as Blood Void in the Coppice.
When the boss is at 80%, 60% or 40% of health, he disappears for a while, and adds called Little Prince’s Tentacles will start spawning. When a Tentacle spawns, someone should go stand in front of it; he will get rooted and take a crushing dot (Grasp), but if some Tentacle doesn’t have anybody standing in front of it like that, it will affect everyone in the group by an even more annoying debuff (Machinations: +90% miss chance, +90% fizzle chance, 5% poison damage every 2 sec). DPS the Tentacles until they all disappear again. It’s a good idea to not let a healer get rooted by them, so that he can walk around and heal other people.
The boss gradually buffs himself up during the fight; in the 80-60% HP phase, he has a +10% damage buff (Pestering Wounds); in the 60-40% HP phase, he has a +20% damage buff (Burdening Wounds); below 40% HP he has a +30% damage buff (Infuriating Wounds), but he also gains a dot that causes him to lose HP quite fast (Bleeding Out: the tooltip says 164 points of damage every 3 sec, in the combat log it’s acutally 6058 points every 3 sec).
One of the following epic cloaks will drop in the hardmode:
- Vicious Cape of Ill Intent: 86 str, 50 hit rating, 60 crit dmg rating, 212 combat rating (cold)
- Bladekissed Cloak of the Final Goodnight: 90 dex, 50 hit rating, 60 crit dmg rating, 200 combat rating (cold)
- Mantle of Valka’s Wrath: 130 wis, 52 hit rating, 60 crit dmg rating
- Shroud of the Ghost Crows’ Spite: 130 int, 52 hit rating, 60 crit dmg rating
- Valka’s Illimitable Aegis: 172 armor, 78 con, 8.2 nat stam regen, 37 hate inc rating, 67 crit dmg rating
If you jump over the ledge where you fought the Little Prince, the following on-screen message appears when you die: “N’GHA….N’GHFT…SYHA’H…”.