Hello and welcome to Epic Education – a show of tips and tactics for surviving epic content. I’m your guide Shamgar and this is Episode 17 “Plane of Night revisited” alternatively titled “Velah goes to birthing school.”
This week I will be discussing the recent changes to the Plane of Night. With updates 11 and 12 Velah got a make over. In update 11 Velah was given a very large boost in hit points and fortification drastically increasing the time it took to kill her. The rest of the raid stayed the same.
The intention of this change was to have players experience more of the dynamics of the end fight with Velah. However, because Velah was very one dimensional the increase in hit points only succeeded in making the fight longer, more boring, and more resource dependent.
This was addressed in update 12. Again the bases were not changed, they are still as they were pre-update 11. This time Velah’s hps were reduced slightly and she was given a new ability: she now is able to spawn several fire eggs.
The beginning of the fight with Velah is much the same as it used to be. The melee should engage the dragon just in front of her head and swing for the fence. However, now it is advisable to save some of your boosts and spell points until the latter half of the fight. Velah will change her tactics and incorporate her new ability later in the fight and at that point it is important to finish her off quickly. To that end dps should save some of their limited use abilities. Keep 2-3 action boosts for that short term dps boost. Paladins should use a smite whenever they are at their maximum, but save the majority for later. Abilities like manyshot that recharge over time but are otherwise limitless in their use should still be used whenever available. The goal here is to slightly backload our dps.
Otherwise, When Velah prepares to breathe fire (which is indicated by smoke and flames from her nostrils) retreat behind one of the two large rocks for safety as before. This will happen every 20-30 seconds.
The red named fire reavers now spawn less frequently. While it is certainly still possible for casters to kite or kill them, it is now more advisable to kite them until in between rounds during a fire breath. At this point try and bring the reavers to the rock with the dps. During the time that Velah is breathing they should be able to kill at least 1 of them. Repeat this process as long as there are still reavers alive. Casters can kill them, but it is advisable to save some spell points until Velah switches to her new tactics in the same way the dps should keep some of their limited use abilities. SLAs are a great way to continually add cheap dps for a caster.
After some time, Velah’s tactics will change. You will know this because the time in between her breaths will drastically increase – at least most of the time. Some very high dps groups may kill her before this happens or they may not see the longer round before the change. In either case, Velah will unleash her new ability immediately after using her fire breath attack.
Once her second fire sweep is done several fire eggs will spawn around the battlefield. After a short period of time any eggs that have not been destroyed will hatch and unleash fire elementals. While these elementals can be insta-killed or controlled, it is preferable that you don’t have a dozen fire elementals to suddenly deal with. Additionally, once this starts happening you will continually get a new batch of eggs after each fire breath.
The best way to deal with the eggs is to destroy them. They don’t have very many hit points plus each time you strike them they give you spell points back. Because Velah still demands attention we will assign one person to be the main tank during this period and 1 of the healers should focus their heals on this person while the rest should stay with the group. Ideally the main tank is easy to heal and have a lot of hit points, but not necessarily your biggest melee DPS. They only need to occupy Velah so she doesnt throw comet falls everywhere, they dont need to kill her single handedly. The rest of the party should go either clockwise or counterclockwise and quickly destroy all of the eggs before they hatch – this is where we need the DPS. Those with spell points can get some back by standing close to the eggs as they are being destroyed, but be wary, they also do fire damage when struck. Casters should feel free to nuke eggs, particularly if they are proficient with getting spell points back.
If any eggs are not destroyed the party will need to deal with the resulting fire elementals. Ideally the casters and bard will deal with them using some combination of crowd control, insta-kill, and damage spells, but if you wish you can have some or all of your dps kill elementals. The dilemma is that any time doing this is time they dps could be working on Velah and we need to make progress in killing her each round lest we become entangled in a continuous cycle of eggs and fire elementals.
If they aren’t needed the dps should join the main tank once the eggs either hatch or are destroyed. At this point there’s no reason to hold back. The reason we saved our limited use abilities was to help shorten the time Velah has to hatch eggs as part of her attack sequence. The rounds between fires will continue to be much longer than the start giving the party time to get some good dps in. Casters should also at this time really start unloading their dps on the dragon, especially if they are proficient with getting spell points back from the eggs. They should however keep enough spell points to deal with the next round of eggs and fire elleys so long as it appears the dps will need another round to slay the dragon.
These changes make the dragon raid far more enjoyable and with simple tactics and coordination they are not only easy to overcome, but they take some of the load off the healers who can now get some free spell points. Great changes devs.
That will end this week’s Epic Education. If you have any questions, comments, or corrections you can email me at DDOEpicEducation@gmail.com or visit myDDO blog at my.ddo.com/pjstechie. Join me next time I begin discussing the Tower of Despair. Thanks for listening.