ToL missions - pet tanking

Discussion in 'The Veterans' Lounge' started by Morrae, Aug 10, 2022.

  1. Morrae Born 31 January 2004, 17h57, Neriak, Norrath.

    Hey all

    After several research on the forum and elsewhere as well as in-game tests, I’ve got a question regarding missions.

    We are two friends boxing a full 120 group : Mage-Mage-Bard & Necro-Ranger, with the help of a healer merc. We have all spells rk. II, between 35 and 45k AA, full AA merc equipped with vigilant stuff. We are all equipped with ToL T1 and few pieces of T2/crafted with augs on all slots between 100 and 120. We use mage’s air pet as tank.

    The group works pretty fine on hunting and questing partisan/mercenary, but we got our first desillusion while trying the ToL missions, namely Shei Vinitras.

    Inded we got our kicked right away at the beginning of the fight, as the pet tank couldn’t keep aggro. We thought at first it was a question of misplacement during the fight but we read later on the forums that there’s a mechanic with missions’ nameds which make them ignore more or less any pet aggro and focusing on PC, therefore the asskicking on our cloth wearing characters.

    So it’s less a question than a confirmation about this situation. And if there’s any kind of tactic or anything else we could do to complete at least this mission with our group. Or should we reroll one of our char to a proper plated tank if we want to succeed ? Maybe we are doing something completely wrong.

    Thanks a lot for any help !


    PS : subsidiary question, while we may not be able to do ToL missions, is there a way to bypass the flag for Bloodfalls ? Like does it require only one flagged member of the group to enter the zone or everyone ?
  2. Rizzin Elder

    My group was not able to make a pet tank work. I didn't try a steady stream of skeleton armies (or Mage equivalent) though. They hold agro pretty well, but I only use them for off tank adds, so I'm not sure if Shei will focus on those or not (especially if the group is burning).

    A Tank Merc might work with a player healer (I don't think a merc healer could keep up) or grab a real tank. Maybe the Ranger could keep agro if you could keep it alive (maybe with maxed AAs at 120 but some how I doubt it).

    You can get a Druid to port you to Bloodfalls and bind.
  3. Ashigaru Augur

    I'm not aware of a way of doing it using pet tanking - I only box mages, and tank with SK.

    However, that's not much help to you! So, if you ping me (I'm on AB), I'm happy to come tank the missions for you, and bring whatever box support is needed
    Stymie likes this.
  4. Sancus Augur

    In most missions, pets cannot hold aggro over player characters in melee range. If a player character is not in melee range, pet aggro will function just like it does vs other NPCs.
    Koshk likes this.
  5. Alnitak Augur

    She Vinitras mission has another destructive mechanic not related to pet tanking: spawned adds and Shei's curse.
    Alien looking adds spawn at Shei during fight at every 25% treshold + some timed triggers. They just stand there stunned for a duration around 10 seconds and then become really destructive, literally. They melee extremely hard and explode in a few seconds for some 270K+ AE.
    They way to deal with them it to root/mezz them while they are stunned (basically - within 8 seconds after the trigger message). Once mezzed/rooted they instantly despawn.

    Second nasty obstacle - Shei curses a random player with some 18 second curse/poison/desease . If not cured before it expires the curse hits that player with DT for 2 billion damage (literally). It must be properly cured. And it's random in resist.

    Counting on those 2 problems (and not even mentioning other type of adds, which spawn every 90 seconds and heal Shei for 10% of its health - 32 million HP to be exact) I don't think your group can actually win Shei mission. You are missing a class with cure/remove curse. Even if your bard/ranger can mezz/root in time.

    Otehrwise - Shei is not that hard, about as an average T2 named in ToL. Your pets can tank it and you can range-fight it.

    The mission you can really do - Aten Ha Ra. It lands itself for pet tanking and range fight. Your characters can win it with all the achievement without a single point of damage received.

    Basilica is trickier - last named fight is very difficult for pet tanking due to adds spawn mechanics. You have to be in a very close proximity to the final boss or you get overwhelmed.

    Bloodfalls - relatively easy to do with pet tanking if actual players play, and somewhat difficult for a boxed crew - positioning and repositioning is frequent in there. Mobs tend to go after players agressively on a pull.

    And when I wrote pet tanking, I meant petS tanking, plural. 3-4 mobs at once is happening often in those missions.
  6. MacDubh TABLES!!!

    Assuming a pet can hold aggro, and assuming the healer merc can keep up you can just out DPS the mission and avoid the death touch mechanic. Not saying for a second this group is capable of it, I have never tried without a real tank and real healer.

    Edit: Just re-read the OP, definitely not possible to out DPS it without further character development.
  7. strongbus Augur

    if pets can hold aggro over melee in normal zones there are 0 reason why they shouldn't in non raid. instances. it was a bad idea when they did it and still is.

    this also counts for powar normal zone as well
    Vumad and Kaenneth like this.
  8. Alnitak Augur

    Well, I have tried Shei mission without a tank. Both ways - DPS burn and long and steady.

    Initially, I've tried to burn Shei down with my Zlandicar group: BST, BRD, ZRK, ZRK plust 2 mercs.
    BST was tanking, with Bloodlust for Lifedraw h2h weapons and bard burning with 2 Remote Healing hammers the beastlord was immortal for 42 seconds. The group typically dishes out 5-7 million DPS on Zlandicar, so it seemed to may be enough for Shei (it has initial 320 mllion HP).
    Well, it was not that simple.
    In about 15-17 seconds of burn Shei was down to 75 % and the first alien add spawned. 10 seconds later it went aggro on the tanking beastlord. Still no problem, heals covered it. At the second number 26 it went BOOM for 270K AE. 2 Healer mercs kinda covered it for the group.
    Then at second 30'th mark, when Shei went below 50% the second add spawned. 10 seconds later it went aggro on the beastlord. The problem - it was only 2-3 seconds left on the Bloodlust discipline.
    At about second 45, when Shei was at about 30% the second add went Kaboom, and the beastlord died. Zerkers were still burning, so in about 3-5 more seconds, when Shei went below 25% it was all over with the third add spawned. In fact - it was over even before the third explosion.
    Some may say, that 6 mil dps is not enough. Perhaps. But higher dps would mean faster alien spawn rate. They do spawn at 75,50,25% and some more below that. I am doubtful that Shei can be just burned down without a tank (i.e. by ignoring adds and just dps-ing).
    These results were consistent in a few attempts.

    Now, I thought I can trick Shei into dieing by a death of a thousand cuts. I have brough my paladin alt with me. It's a really sucky paladin, was not meant to tank, just stand nearby and root adds with shackle root and cure the group with splash etc.
    Beastlord's warder tanked, mage, second beastlord, bard helped with range dps. Paladin dealt with the mechanics and healer merc healed the warder successfully.

    All went good for about 80% of Shei's health and then the cycle broke - Shei started cursing frequently, adds spawned in a few second inteval. Paladin missed a cast or two and the group lost the fight. And then 2 more times more.
    It's a doable plan, with a paladin or a shaman for sure. But it was a busy fight, it was very difficult for me to box 3 busy characters at once. The loss is on me. But the paladin was a key. And not because of tanking, pets tanked Shei fine.

    I have done that mission in a guild group with that paladin healing/rooting/curing. All was good. But we had a real plated tank - SK and there were 4 real players playing. In my boxed group I am yet to beat it.
  9. Petalonyx Augur

    Shei should be doable. Stay ranged. You might have to start with ranger/bard on deftdance/ weaponshield, but pets with taunt on should be able to catch the mob and allow you to back up, all the way out of melee range.

    I'd perhaps have the mage/mage/bard focus solely on Shei, and ask the ranger/necro to be responsible for rooting datiar. Make a hockey with /tar a_datiar and a root activation. After keeping your pet tank alive, getting the roots on datiars is the most important key to winning. Miss a dating root and you will likely wipe.

    You can ignore the healing dator. I'd especially ignore them as you learn the mission on a box team.

    Finally the Shei curse with DT. Worst case 1 or 2 will die to this and you can still probably win. I don't know ranger/bard well enough to know if they can cure it. If they can, this is something you should attempt to do.

    You may have to have the mages run the pet heal spell to supplement the healer merc at times. Make sure you adequately prebuff with theft of essence, pet runes, etc.

    If you can manage the datiar roots and pull off 1-2 cures, Shei isn't bad. As others mentioned, Aten Ha Ra is also not bad for pet tanking. On that mission, u will want to burn at start to ensure a max of 2 mobs at once.
  10. Zunnoab Augur

    Bards can cure all four counters with a very potent single target cure.
  11. Alnitak Augur

    I got it - you are just cruel and merciless dark overlord. You HAD to wait for eternity to tell me THAT!

    And as I was saying - thank you very very VERY MUCH! My bard went to Shard's Landing, turned in minor dreadmote and got Song of Absolution Rk 2, and it WORKED !
    I've made 2 hotbutton macros: "/stopsong" + "/target a_datiar" + "/melody 6 7" where 6 and 7 are 2 mezz songs. And another macro "/stopsong" + "/melody 13 13 13", where 13 is Aria of Absolution.
    Started the mission, sent pets in, occasionally sent swarm pets and casted "Chill" and "Composite" by beastlords, and focused my attetion on bard's window, pushing hotbuttons on cues.
    In about 900 seconds Shei was dead. No issues tanking it with pets, a protective warder tanked the whole time.
    One thing to note - Shei is massively resistant to spell cast from outside his pad. Only beastlords' Chill spells landed occasionally. I managed to slow Shei at the beginning by moving my beastlord to a melee range and casting it, but the beastlord took massive damage from Shei's melee, not realistic to stay in there, so I've stopped trying.
    Basically my toons (BST, BST, MAG) were sending pets and casted adps spells. Permanent pets and swarm pets did about 60-80 K dps x 6. Next time I'll gear them up for dps instead of tanking (this time 2 warders were protective with aggro weapons + air pet, next time 1 warder will be offensive + water pet)
    Also, all 3 achievements were earned, so my 2 alt druids got them outside.

    Bottom line - just did Shei mission with pets tanking. It's doable.
    Zunnoab likes this.
  12. Petalonyx Augur

    You can use The Lady's Entreaty to tash, then malo, then most things should land okay. She is pretty resistant.
  13. Silu Elder

    You can technically pet tank all 4 missions, but the anti-pet tank mechanics mentioned above (mob will prioritize based on player > pet if a player is in melee ranger, regardless of pet agro lead) mean you have to really watch where you are standing and the paths you take when running around. For Shei, this means positioning on the "wings" of the top platform, as her melee range covers the entire top platform area. For Basilica, this means eating the purple ring AE when the white ring is very small, and generally standing so your group is not between the doorway and the boss, so you have time to get pets on the adds to avoid the proximity issue.

    You can use enchanter, necro, bard, rogue (mez trap) (others?) for the mez mechanics on Aten Ha Ra, and those or any root class for the root/mez/charm mechanics for the datiar on Shei. I've not noticed the resistances you mentioned - are the casters using focus of arcanum or the equivalent resist reducer when burning on Shei? When doing this with all casters and no curer, we either accept a single death or get it down before that happens.

    Shei health locks at 2% until all adds are cleared, so that is critical.
  14. Zunnoab Augur

    Also bard AE mezz is on separate lockout timers. It means in current content you can stagger two AE mezz songs for lower level mobs.

    For Shei, the bane doesn't require the spell actually land though, letting you go to town with bard AE mezz.

    That said, ranger AE root is much easier than that.

    For any reading that did not know that though, do not use low level mezz on raid Shei. You will put everything into summon mode.
  15. Alnitak Augur

    I do Aten Ha Ra mission without attempting to mezz akheva's, blobs or AHR. I bring a bard for aDPS and mezzing gargoyles for the achievement when needed, but sometimes I do the mission without any mezzer. 2 difficult moments to watch for: initially 1 akheva activates, shortly (in 30-45 secs or so) the second joins the fight, then in about a minute or so AHR activates and it comes with the third akhevan. If dps is too slow or delayed it's apossibility to have 4 mobs to deal with at once. Typically, in my group I have 3 pet classes: BST+BST+MAG or BST+MAG+MAG , which is an easy play against 3 pets. So I only have to quickly kill just the first akheva, which is usually not a problem because the entire group is killing it at the beginning, dps is not distributed.
    Then the second akhevan gets killed, then the third, while MAG earth pet tanks AHR all by itself.
    At that time the full group dps back on AHR. At 50 % it goes inactive and 2 blobs spawn. Usually there is enough time for my warder get on the first blob, while the earth pet holds the second blob.
    Again, no specific timer running, so the group steadily kills the first blob, then the second. And the blobs do not merge, because those are tanked at spawn point by pets the whole time.
    Now, after the blobs are dead AHR activates again after a message and a few seconds delay. This is actually the second challenging point - aggro list of AHR. Sometimes by players are on the list due to a residiual dot/debuff aggro. And AHR summont the top target. If she summons , say a mage, it's not really a plesant experience even if the mage survives - the golems may be up at that moment, or any aura lands. If purple aura hits then bye-bye the Unstomped achievement.
    If a pet is still a top aggro when AHR activates then it's an easy fight. And this is an opportunity for the bard (if present) to mezz gargoyle guardians for the Calm the Stones achievement.
    So, the entire mission is done easily even without a mezzer if the first akhevan is killed quick enough. If not - some warder has to tank 2 mobs for a minute or two. Enter the Fortify Companion.

    Mage's fire-based DD, magic-based DD, Malo AA, Staff of Viral Flux, Beastlord's Cold DD, Poison DD, Disease DoT, Poison DoT, spell and AA slow, warder's Dire Bite - all resisted when cast from outside the pad and She's melee range (as you wrote - wings). Only BST multi-resist Chill landed occasionally. Once beastlord came into the melee range - almost everything landed. But Shei's melee is brutal to a leather wearer, so I had to back out to wings.
    Perhaps, Shei is infamous "belly caster" ? I don't know. I'll try something different next time I do the mission.

    And I was not burning Shei, just a steady dps, pets did the bulk of the damage. I need to practice a bit more with the bard to handle faster add respawns. So far it was challenging to me to push right buttons on time. I am alt-boxing 3 toons - it's an orchestra of keypresses in there. AHR is a much slower-paced fight, although it lasts about the same time.

    I dunno about that - I had to cure Shei's Touch about 10 times during 900 second fight. I can't just ignore it the way my group fights. Although, when I did this mission with guildies with a tank we did burn Shei and sometimes it went down without a Touch casted. But I am not burning with my group, so I have to have a Touch-curer.
  16. MacDubh TABLES!!!

    900 seconds on Shei is pretty amazing, kudos on that marathon haha.

    Right now my group gets Shei in around 80s, I am convinced you can't do it much faster as he seems to lock at 2% even with no adds are up. It seems like there is a set amount of adds that have to spawn before you can win the event.
  17. Alnitak Augur

    I have missed the sarcasm. AHR mission typically lasts for me between 12 and 18 minutes. 15 minutes for Shei is right in the middle.
    Considering the healing adds addidng 10% to Shei's HP it metered about 430 million damage done to Shei. 90+% was done by pets. My mage, bard and 2 beastlords basically did nothing besides adps and swarm pet summons. Pets and healer mercs killed Shei. Their dps is not really spectacular.

    As I wrote above - my initial plan to burn Shei down didn't work: BST, BRD, ZRK, ZRK got whiped under a minute. Time and time again. Their 6mil+ dps is enough to whack Zlandicar under 40 seconds, but not good enough to kill Shei. So I took a slow road.

    It seems DPG took a stance to block "burn-to-the-ground" tactics on missions. Many different stop-and-go mechanics have been introduced in last 3 expansions. I do not like it, but I have to adapt.
  18. MacDubh TABLES!!!

    No sarcasm, typically the longer the mission goes the more difficult it is.
    Zunnoab likes this.
  19. Zunnoab Augur

    I'm not sure the 2% lock is meant to slow burns so much as it's either a certain amount of adds (as was suggested in the topic) or if the script just periodically checks and if you hit 2% at the wrong time you have to wait for the next check.
  20. Silu Elder

    I think the only reason for that is that you were allowing the Datiar to go live and kill your toons. If you hit burns with everyone, then swap to the bard and just mez the Datiar as they spawn, you should win easily before the heal mobs cause problems for you. You can get ahead and Shei will lock at 2% while the adds keep spawning until the script catches up. With all that melee DPS / aDPS, you should be able to do it around 100 seconds, considering 350MM hitpoints on Shei.