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Ulduar - Hodir Strategy

Updated Tue, Mar 02, 2010 by Messiah

Ulduar is the current end game raid instance in the World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King. As players work their way through the raid they come to the Halls of Winter and find Hodir. Hodir is a giant Titan that once resided in the Temple of Winter.  Players may be familiar with him already from the various references to him in the game, specifically in the long quest chain for the Sons of Hodir in the Storm Peaks.  In Ulduar players are able to engage and fight Hodir, but the encounter ends just before he dies.

Hodir is a giant guardian found in Ulduar.  Players may be familiar with him already from the various references to him in the game, specifically in the long quest chain for the Sons of Hodir in the Storm Peaks.  In Ulduar players are able to engage and fight Hodir, but the encounter ends just before he dies.

Health

10 Person Raid: 8,400,000 health
25 Person Raid: 32,500,000 health

Abilities

Biting Cold – Once engaged, Hodir will stack this DOT effect on all players in the room that do not continuously move.  The damage starts off being light with just one stack, but quickly becomes substantial. Luckily to remove a stack of this DOT all you need to do is move. 

Freeze – Hodir will randomly target players and freeze them in place.  The freeze lasts roughly 10 seconds and affects Hodir’s target and anyone within 10 yards of them.

Flash Freeze – At intervals throughout the fight, Hodir will call for the “Winds of the North consume you.”  At this point he starts to cast the spell and two zones will appear on the ground.  Players need to get near these zones but not in them.  Roughly 10 seconds after the zones appear, snow and ice will fall from the ceiling and create mounds in the zones which are now safe zones and all players must get into them quickly.  If players are in them when the snow and ice falls, they are flung out of the zone and suffer roughly 10,000 damage.  In addition, if you are not in the zone quickly after they become snow mounts you will be frozen and locked in an ice block.  The ice blocks are the same as those that encased the NPCs at the start of the fight and have roughly 90,000 health (40,000 in 10 player raids).

Frozen Blows – This is a buff that Thorim casts on himself that lasts 20 seconds.  While buffed he does AoE damage to everyone in the room at the raid of about 4,000 damage (3,000 in 10 player raids) every 2 seconds.  Also, while buffed his melee damage drops by roughly 75% but he gains about 35,000 frost damage to all his physical attacks.

Icicles – Throughout the fight small zones are marked on the ground.  Shortly after being marked ice will fall from the roof damaging anyone underneath them.

Non-Player Characters in the Fight (NPCs)

Unlike most fights that involve additional creatures in it, these fight along side you as allies.  When you enter Hodir’s lair you will see 8 NPCs (4 in 10 player raids) trapped in ice around the room.  Once Hodir has been engaged, the ice can be shattered and the NPCs will become allies and help you against Hodir.  In addition to their attacks against Hodir, they provide some very nice buffs for players as well.  There are 4 different types of NPCs and while their names or titles vary from Alliance to Horde they have the same abilities.

Priest - Field Medic / Battle Priest – These are essentially Priests that have the ability to cast Dispell, Heal, and Smite.  The important one here is the dispell ability, since they will randomly use it to remove the freeze effect from raid members.

Mage – Flamecuffs . Blazeweaver – These mages conjure fires to warm yourself around, throw fireballs and can remove freeze debuffs.  While around a fire you will not be effected by biting cold (to a maximum number of players affected) and spell casters will gain the singe ability.  Singe inflicts fire damage and applies a stacking debuff that increases damage taken from spells.

Druid – The druids cast starlight which is a beam of light that falls from the ceiling and illuminates a small space on the floor.  Anyone that stands in that space will have their attack and / or casting speed increased while they remain there.  The starlight remains in place for one minute.

Shaman – The shamans randomly buff a player with the Storm Power ability, which increases their critical strike damage by 135% for 30 seconds.  This also boosts the critical strike damage of those around you.

Strategy

Due to many of Hodir’s attacks catsing frost damage, the raid needs to have some frost resistance buffs active.  In addition, since Hodir’s damage is boosted significantly through the frost damage he can cause, the tank must equip as much frost resistance gear as possible.  Also be aware that you only have 8 minutes to defeat Hodir after you engage him or he will enrage and wipe the raid.

The strategy in this fight revolves around constantly moving to avoid getting the biting cold debuff, the falling icicles and the flash freeze, all while freeing as many of the NPCs as possible (ideally all of them), and DPSing Hodir.  Sound difficult?  Don’t worry, it really isn’t. The fight gets relatively easy once you learn the following simple steps.

Keep Moving! Avoiding the area’s damage is pretty easy, just keep moving.  The tank can help with this by forcing players to move by dragging Hodir around the room in a slow circle. While it is tempting to plant in a single spot and let DPS really let loose, it is generally harder to deal with.  By dragging Hodir around it forces players to move, ensuring they will not stack the biting cold debuff, will be out of the falling icicles way before they hit the ground, and stay relatively free flowing and spread out.

Secondly, players need to pay attention to the big effects that Hodir has.  When he calls out to start casting a flash freeze, everyone, and I do mean EVERYONE - tank and healers included, need to look for and run towards the large marked circles on the ground.  Once snow falls into them and forms a mound, everyone needs to get onto them.   If this is done, no player should ever be frozen.  Also, when Hodir casts Frozen Blows healers need to immediately start watching both the tank and the raid closely.  The damage against the tank will step up significantly, as will overall raid damage.

Lastly, everyone needs to really focus on freeing the NPCs (and any player foolish enough to get trapped) from the ice blocks after a flash freeze.  All of the NPCs provide buffs for the group and really need to be freed.  However, the most important NPC to free is the mage, since they will place down fires that prevent you from getting the stacking biting cold debuff, and allow ranged DPS players to plant in one spot and let loose. Any spell caster near the fire also gains a stacking buff that can end up increasing their damage output by up to 50%.  If your raid is a melee heavy group the Shaman should be set free quickly as well, since he can cast Storm Cloud which buffs a melee player’s damage and everyone around them.

Once the group gets into the rhythm the fight moves quickly between its components: free NPCs, avoid damage while DPSing, avoid being flash frozen, rinse and repeat.

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