Dungeons for Dummies: A Legion Guide for Ranged DPS Newbies & Late Starters (Part 1)

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Legion Dungeon Essentials for Ranged DPS

Hi! I’m a new content writer for PWNcast. I started playing WoW on my own during WOLK, so I learned most of the early stuff the hard way. I thought Teldrassil was an enormous world where I fought with terrifying creatures. I was kicked from my first dungeon cuz I thought the little dice were cute and said so. I thought tanks were joking when they yelled, “Whose pet pulled?!!!??” I met my first merry band and learned a lot, though now I realize they were as noobie as I was, then felt sad when most of my Guild went their separate ways. Now I sometimes feel real nostalgia in-game especially since getting to do some real raiding with some of the best players in Pandaria.

In Legion, I have found myself behind the curve on getting geared up. I am often “too busy” to read detailed dungeon guides with all the spell names and complicated instructions, so I tend to wing it in new dungeons with my awesome Destro Lock and figure things out as I go. Not advised. But I really wanted a shortcut guide – something between the great WoWHead guides (lots of good info! Can give you a headache..) and Quick Dungeon (wait..they didn’t tell me about the deadly blue eyeball ray!). It’s really so much more fun to know the mechanics, and your team/party is much happier for it to. Another reason for this guide is there are a lot of new players around since the WoW movie came out – so we’re hoping it will be useful to them to. That’s why many of the terms we all know so well may be spelled out here.

So, if you’re looking for less hardcore guidance, give these guides a chance as we learn how be excellent at the basics.

The guide will be split into articles, each covering one dungeon from the ranged dps POV. What the guide will do: cover the basics, the mechanics, and what you should be doing both to ensure max damage on the right targets, and how to help your tank and healer (by not being stupid) while you’re at it. What the guide doesn’t do: go into deep detail on anything, including specifics for classes or specs.

Dungeon 1: Darkheart Thicket (98-110) Located in Val’sharah, Broken Isles.

This first dungeon is not tough or tricky. It usually takes between 10 to 15 minutes max. And, as a bonus, the last boss here is Xavius – whose wretched heart you should be hungering to rip from his quivering evil chest by this point in the quest line! OK, he’s the “Shade” of Xavius, and it’s not full gratification, but I still found it pretty satisfying. So wet your whistle before pulling him and relish every moment you have to burn/blast/zap/stick or flay this monster – at least this go-around.

To start this dungeon, your group will head down the inside of a massive tree root with several small mobs of trash to clear. While casting/shooting from a distance just be sure you, or your pet/minion (if you have one) doesn’t accidentally pull anything the tank hasn’t already pulled. It’s not impossible to overwhelm a healer here with too many mobs.


  • All stuff on the ground is BAD NEWS – including pink swirls, roots, and other weird stuff. Watch your feet! Get out of any of it, and kill roots that entangle you or others.
    A couple of bosses have a cone of bad breath or other bad stuff in front of them (more detail below), so just remember to stay to the side or back of these bosses, or any other bad dudes for this dungeon in general.

First Boss : Archdruid Glaidalus

  • He is the easiest boss in the dungeon.
  • He shapeshifts from bear to cat
  • Bloodlust/hero/time warp should be used at the beginning of the fight, so it’s wise to pop your potions/cds right before or right after the fight begins.
  • Stay out of any red circles on the ground. Stay out of them. Period. Oh, they’re called “Nightfall” if you are curious, and they will hurt you.
  • Stay away from the front of this dude. He has a spell that damages all in front of him in a cone shape (called “Primal Rampage”). Stay to the side, or behind him. The tank will point him away from the group if he/she is good, but it is best to be situationally aware.
  • This Boss also pounces on players from time to time and leaves a damage-over-time (dot) spell on them (called Grievous Tear). Once healed (past 90%), the dot will disappear.

Second Boss: Oakheart

The trash gets a little tougher between the first and second bosses. Keep a look out for the treasure in a house along the way. Stay out of ground swirls, and make sure you don’t accidentally pull anything along the way.


  • A fairly easy boss.
  • He’ll occasionally pick up a player and throw them. Anyone nearby will sustain damage.
  • Avoid being trapped by roots when they appear. Move out of them. If trapped, kill the roots and/or help anyone else that gets trapped by them.
  • This guy’s got a frontal cone of bad breath that deals damage to anyone in it, so stay to his side or back.

Third Boss: Dresaron (this is a “skippable” boss, so some groups may go directly to Xavius)

The trash mobs again become more challenging on the way to the third boss. These mobs are worth a brief discussion on tactics.

  • Purple Circles are the Curse of Isolation, and you need to move away from others or you’ll damage them. Dispellers need to dispel this debuff.
  • Orange circles come from the Dreadfire Imps and are Dread Infernos. Again, move away from other players. Interruptors should interrupt these as their highest priority.
  • The path is also now laden with eggs along the side..stay out of them or they will crack open and spawn a whelpling. You don’t need more trash to kill along this path, so just be sure not to step on them.


  • This dragon has a more serious frontal cone of damage, called “Breath of Destruction” which you should stay clear of. Stay to the side of the dragon to avoid this. He has a tail-whip movement that makes staying directly behind him unwise.
  • Avoid cracks or cave-ins on the ground.
  • Avoid the rain of stuff that come down around him from time to time.
  • Dresaron will occasionally cause a “Down Draft” which is a strong wind that will push you (and everyone) backward. You can continue to cast/shoot while the wind is pushing you back. Be sure to place yourself where you won’t be pushed back into anything bad – such as those pesky dragon eggs that are still around.
  • Yes, more dragon eggs here, that spawn whelplings, so just stay away from them.

Fourth Boss: Shade of Xavius (Final Boss in dungeon)

Not a hard boss, but there are a few tricks up his sleeve you need to be ready for.

  • Heroism/Bloodlust/Time Warp should be used at the beginning of the fight, so pot up/prepare accordingly.
  • Xavius will dot players with “Festering Rip” which healers (or you if you have time and ability) must dispel.
  • If you are hit with “Growing Paranoia” and have a red dot or what looks like a smattering of red under your feet, move away from other players. Growing Paranoia causes a damage-dealing fear spell to affect any player entering the circle.
  • The pinkish-red swirls can be killers if you’re already in trouble, and there’s a lot of them. Called “Apocolyptic Fires” stay out of them!
  • Random non-tanks will be hit with “Feed on the Weak” – if you get this one be ready to use your emergency stay-alive measures.

If you want more details on the trash mobs, or the gear that drops from these bosses, one of the best can be found here: http://www.wowhead.com/darkheart-thicket-dungeon-strategy-guide. 

Full credit for foundation material goes to WowHead, Sin3estra, WorldofMoudi, and the Quick Dungeon guide.


Competitive but fun-loving WoW player since the end of BC. I don't geeze about Vanilla, but I do fondly reminisce about my NELF hunter running out of ammo mid-boss fight. Once the 8th best geared Lock on my server, I am just a little more casual now and so love a more fun and helpful approach to the game. I understand theorycrafting and stats, but prefer to let others do the heavy lifting in that area. I just help report the most reliable results :-)

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