While the Diablo announcement at BlizzCon left me confused, angry and upset, World of Warcraft kept me from a complete meltdown with the announcement of upcoming content. While the latest content released in 7.1 was well known prior to BlizzCon, the additional content announced for 7.1.5 and 7.2 ( as well as future updates) was something to be extremely excited about.
Two weeks ago we were treated to the Return to Karazhan mega-dungeon (12 infuriating bosses), yesterday the Trials of Valor opened up, and it’s no walk in the park. You’d think a raid with three bosses would be cake? Think again… The first raid instance, Emerald Nightmare, was not that hard. I initially assumed the race for world first on mythic difficulty would take a week or two, but a Russian Guild cleared it in three days. Blizzard took a good, hard look at that and now they’re making Trials of Valor extremely hard. In essence, we’re preparing ourselves for Nighthold where we will hopefully be rid of Gul’Dan, but first we need to defeat Helya.
What are we doing?
Luckily, Chris Metzen is back at the reins of World of Warcraft Lore, and that’s a good thing. Defeating Helya in the Trials of Valor will finally release Odyn who has been trapped there while Helya claims the souls of his valajar. You head into Helmheim to face Helya, but believe me, it’s incredibly difficult. The boss fight itself seems extremely fun, but I fear guilds are going to struggle on Mythic Difficulty.
The first boss is Odyn himself where he gives you your final test in the Trial of Valor. You first take on Hymdall and Hyrja before facing Odyn himself. This is in essence preparation for taking on Helya as the final boss, but first you need to get through her trusty three headed guard dog – Guarm. Once you defeate Guarm you face Helya, where you punish her for he betrayal and break Stormheim from her grasp.
The True Trial
Trials of Valor is an extreme test of will. Each boss fight involves crucial tactics which need to be followed in order to survive. Most World of Warcraft raids include tactics, but these are a bit tricky.
When facing Odyn last night, the fight begins as a bit of a bore. You’re defeating both Hymdall and Hyrja at the same time, making sure they both drop to 25% health simultaneously. Once you defeat them, your Trial of Odyn begins. The fight continues to be a bit a snooze fest until everything descends into chaos. All of a sudden you’re in full panic running around the hall, dropping lightning on raid members, killing off your tanks, all while dodging consecrated ground. The final phase is when the fight really kicks in and becomes exciting. Once you drop Odyn to roughly 10%, he yields and your final trial is done – you’re ready to head down into Hellheim and face Helya.
Once you descend down to Stormheim, you face the gauntlet into Hellheim. Kill the mobs on either side, focus the ones that resurrect the other mobs and run through the portal. Here you’ll see the three-headed hound (dragon?) Guarm. Guarm is a real damage check with four minute enrage timer which is heavily focused on tactics. The fight has no phases, instead Guarm performs a number of abilities which require you to react fast, and not die. My guild gave up on Guarm last night, so a few of us decided to join a public group to get the kill.
We managed to stay alive long enough, and after one wipe we down the hound and in true World of Warcraft fashion the group disbanded.
Unforunately, I haven’t had the pleasure of facing Helya in the Trials of Valor yet, but from the videos I’ve watched the fight looks like utter chaos. It’s a three phase fight with phase three combining both phase one and two for extra panic. Again, this fight is heavily tactical and requires a ton of kiting, mob control, and brain power. As a melee player (monk) I’m not entirely excited to face this encounter, but luckily Monks have a ton of mobility. Just know, if you’re a melee player – it’s going to suck.
While my initial assumption of how long it would take guilds to kill Xavius was horribly incorrect, I’m going with a safe bet here that Helya is going to be a lot harder on Mythic difficulty. I’m going to give this one a good week or two before she’s finally downed, and who will win the race? Probably Serenity.
Last Updated: November 10, 2016