Posted tagged ‘Halls of Lightning’

WotLK: Halls of Lightning

December 9, 2008

This is one in a series of posts covering a WotLK 5-mans – from a Tank’s Point of View

Halls of Lightning is one of the four level 80 instances. All these instances seem to be tuned around a reasonably balanced, reasonably geared group of level 80s. If your group is above that baseline, then you may be able to venture in before hitting the level cap – but you will likely notice a large number of misses late in the instance.

Like all of the level 80 instances, you will get reputation for this run – so be sure to bring the tabard of your preferred faction.

Halls of Lightning is located in northern Storm Peaks. While there you can complete two quests that come from the Storm Peaks spanning Son’s of Hodir storyline: Diametrically Opposedand Whatever it Takes! These are the end of a very long questline, but are worth doing since they are ultimately tied to your Son’s of Hodir reputation.

General Bjarngrin

Upon entering you will quickly make your way to the first of 5 platforms, all interconnected with bridges. From the start you should be able to see the first boss – General Bjarngrin. Bjarngrin patrols 4 of the platforms, and as he moves between them will gain a visible electrical charge. The charge makes him far more difficult to deal with, so you want to pull him when it is down.

I prefer to start clearing around to the left – this way you only need to clear 3 platforms total, as opposed to 4 going right. I generally like to pull him when he is on the bridge connecting the furthest two platforms from the start, but you can pull anytime that he is not carrying the charge.

When engaging him, first take down his adds. They will heal him and really stretch the fight out, so deal with them early. The General will spend the fight swapping between the three warrior stances: Berserker, Battle and Defensive.

  • In Berserker stance he while Whirlwind – this is a killer, so avoid it at all costs.
  • In Battle stance he’ll use Mortal Strike – make sure your healer is ready for this, because they will get behind otherwise. I like to save trinkets/cooldowns for this.
  • In Defensive stance.. well, there isn’t anything dangerous that I’ve noticed.

His burst potential is very high, and if you pull him while he is charged up it is even higher. I can be done either way, but spontaneous tank death is likely a possibility.

He maydrop the Hewn Sparring Quarterstaff a high-stamina staff for Ferals.


Next, you move towards a room filled with Slags. These Elementals respawn very quickly – so quickly that I prefer to simply run through ahead of the group laying down AoE to pick them up. I drag them to the bottom the stairs (on the far side) and then we AoE them down. I suppose you could take them half at a time, if you moved fast, but this method works on normal.

Next, you need to clear up one set of stairs (pick a side), and then clear out the top platform before engaging Volkhan. These groups have an obnoxious knockback, so watch your positioning, and keep an eye on the duo patrolling around the middle of the platform.

Volkhan hangs out on the back of the platform next to his anvil. Once engaged he will ocassionally run back there and create a pair of Molten Golemns. The Golemns will turn to statues once DPS’d down, and I’ve found them to be resistant to being tanked. On normal mode I prefer to have dps nuke them down quickly, and then get back to the boss. Late in the fight Volkhan will shatter the Golemns, doing a lot of damage to anyone near one – so everyone must find a safe place to stand.

He does drop the Eternally Folded Blade – the best pre-heroic tanking sword for Warriors and Paladins. It is so good that Death Knights struggling to get crit immune may want to consider dual wielding this with another +defense weapon.


With Volkhan down, you can continue to a hallway filled with statues. Three times as you move through several of them will ‘wake up’ and attack. I suggest gathering them up, and pulling back towards the entrance as they have an AoE fear which may cause someone to run ahead and trigger the next pack. Single groups of these are quite manageable – multiples are quite a lot more trouble.

Once through the hallway, you have a group of elementals to deal with, and then a double pull up a flight of stairs on the right. Behind them stands Ionar.

Ionar is a reasonable simple fight for a mobile group. This is an alternating phase fight. At the start, simply tank him – he will cast Static Overload on players causing them to nuke anyone near them, but this can be easily dealt with by spreading out. There is some other damage to the party, but it is reasonably light.

Three times during the fight he will ‘disperse’ into a number of Sparks. These are slow moving, and immune to damage. They are also easy to avoid, so simply run from them. Make sure that they healer and tank (at a minimum) are quick to get back to Ionar when he ‘reforms’, but otherwise this is an entertaining, but simple fight.

A simple fight with a potentially very nice piece of threat shoulders as a reward: Pauldrons of the Lightning Revenant


The trash on the clear to Loken are a step up in difficulty – at least until you get used to them. Specifically the Runeshapers have a brutal whirlwind, I prefer to take them out first simply to minimize the trouble they can cause.

After this final trash clear is complete, you will come to Loken. He has a number of abilities that make the fight interesting. If your group gets separated, then you start taking damage – so everyone needs to stay together. However, he casts a high damage Lightning Nova with a 20 yard radius, so you need to run away from that. As a group. Or you die.

It is maddeningly simple: stand on tank, and run with tank when the nova cast starts. Repeat until dead. Bonus points for using the glowing white line as ‘path’.

Loken can be managed quickly and efficiently. However – it often doesn’t work out that way. If your group is a bit slow to react, or are playing with lag, or your healer doesn’t have enough group heals.. well.. this fight can be brutal.

Loken can be taken down efficiently, but he can just as efficiently dismantle your group.

In slow motion. One wipe (and maddening long runback) at a time.

Don’t feel too bad if he takes you out, but do try to evaluate what went wrong. People moving too slow? Not enough healing? Not enough dps? If you cleared through the zone, then you can see Loken down – but some groups will have to experiment a few times to get the feel of the fight.

Got him down? Great! (Don’t ruin the moment by thinking about Heroic Loken.. seriously.. just don’t do it!) Many tanks should be looking for the Seal of the Pantheon to drop. This is the highest plus defense trinket available outside of Naxxramus, along with a very nice +armor on use ability.