Now that Kingslayers are becoming fairly common, it seems all the more appropriate for OutDPS! to address hunting ICC’s heroic modes. This post will go over the first wing, focusing on the changes in the heroic modes on the assumption that you have done the normal modes.
Common across all the heroic modes are larger amounts of damage. This makes not standing in green stuff, running from ghosts, minding your cooldowns, etc., more important than in normal modes. However, these general increases in damage don’t alter what we do nearly as much as the new mechanics in each fight.
This encounter is similar in appearance to the normal mode except that Bone Spikes continue to skewer players during Bone Storm. One workable response to this is having the raid stay clumped up in the middle during Bonestorm for rapid response to the spikes (and easier aoe healing), with the tanks running away to tempt Marrowgar to not whirlwind in the middle. For hunters, this strategy alters how and when we decide to Disengage and Deterrence during Bonestorm. We don’t want to Disengage out of a Bonestorm on the middle because we want to stay close to the melee dps in case we get spiked. We also need to be careful about Deterrence, because dpsing Bone Spikes is often more important than mitigating Bonestorm damage. Healing everyone through Bonestorm is fairly easy even on heroic mode, so dpsing the Bone Spikes remains a hunter’s top priority.
The two phases in this fight overlap more in heroic mode, with adds continuing to spawn in phase 2 and mind controls being cast in both phases (even in 10man). Your should alter your dps and CCs accordingly. Also, she is not tauntable in phase 2. This can put a lot of value on your Misdirects and Feigns, so use them wisely to keep threat on the tanks and off of you. Always MD at the beginning of phase two so that the boss is more likely to go for a tank instead of the dps that have been burning her.
Is it a heroic mode? There’s more damage and faster buffing among the enemies, but for hunters it is effectively the same fight.
Saurfang jr. is a peg up from the other bosses in his wing in heroic mode, just like he is in normal mode. There are some mechanical changes, but the biggest difference I found is that the things that should not happen in normal mode simply cannot happen in heroic mode. You cannot screw up on taunts. You cannot get hit by blood beasts. You cannot leave a mark unassigned. The 30% buff gives you some margin for error (say, if a blood beast hits a tank for a while), but Saurfang generates blood power too rapidly in heroic mode for your raid to be able to afford repeated mistakes.
The hunter’s job with Saurfang remains the same. Lay down frost traps and get back to range before the beasts spawn. Focus fire assigned beasts. Distracting Shot any beasts who are about to hit someone. In normal mode these behaviors are good practice, but in heroic mode they are required to keep the raid afloat. You need to have both range and snares between you and the beasts because kiting them becomes impossible after five seconds owing to a massive movement speed reduction that they place on all nearby players. You cannot get hit by the beasts because (1) they hit really hard and really fast, more than a healer can compensate for, and (2) their melee hits send a lot of blood power to Saurfang, increasing the rate at which he sends out marks. For the very same reasons it is important that you DS any beasts that are about to hit someone. Even if the beast is also close to you, a DS followed shortly by an FD will buy more time to burn the beast than your raid otherwise would have had.