- Author: Pride
- Date: April 6, 2022
- Expansion: TBC Classic
The Illidari Council is the 8th and penultimate boss encounter of the Black Temple raid. They are located in the Chamber of Command, which is locked until players defeat Mother Shahraz.
Comprised of 4 separate raid bosses with a shared health pool, the Illidari Council is considered to be one of the most challenging boss fights in the entire raid. Players can die very easily and things can go wrong very quickly during this fight, so your raid will need very good coordination and communication, with everyone clearly understanding what they need to focus on doing during this fight. Thankfully, players have discovered some clever tactics, making this fight a little bit easier. However, it will still not be a cakewalk — so beware!
This guide will offer a detailed breakdown of what each boss does and how to handle it, so that you can dismiss the Council for good.
- The Council has a large aggro radius — don’t move close to them before they are pulled
- When the fight starts, quickly move to your designated spot and stay away from other players as much as possible
- There is heavy AoE damage coming out during this fight — stay focused and quickly move out of Flamestrike, Blizzard & Consecration
- Don’t hesitate to use your Master Healthstone if you drop below 50% HP — you can die very easily during this fight
- Watch out for Deadly Poison after Veras uses Vanish — use defensive cooldowns to survive it & the subsequent Envenom
- Use your personal DPS cooldowns during Heroism / Bloodlust for maximum DPS
- Attack Veras Darkshadow (the rogue) as much as possible, he has virtually 0 armor so you do huge damage to him
- When Veras uses Vanish, switch to Gathios (the paladin)
- Switch back to Veras when he becomes visible again, but give the tank a few seconds to establish threat first, as he resets threat
- Quickly follow the tank as he moves Gathios out of his Consecration
- Warriors: 1 Sunder Armor gets Veras to 0 armor, which will boost your raid’s damage significantly
- Retribution Paladins: Make sure Judgement of Wisdom stays up on Gathios at all times, use Crusader Strike on him when necessary
- Equip PvP gloves (f.e. Merciless Gladiator’s Leather Gloves) so you can interrupt Malande’s casts with Deadly Throw
- Rotate Deadly Throw and Kick to interrupt all of her casts
- You only need 1 Combo Point to interrupt with Deadly Throw
- If you don’t have PvP gloves, your interrupt priority will be: Divine Wrath > Circle of Healing > Empowered Smite
- Keep Mind-Numbing Poison III on Malande at all times to make interrupting her easier — use Shiv if necessary to apply it
- Call out on voice chat when she gets Blessing of Protection, so your Shamans can interrupt her instead
- It is vital that you understand how to initiate this fight with Misdirection — a mistake will wipe you
- A Hunter with the Hawk Eye talent needs to pull by attacking Zerevor (the mage) with a Misdirection on the Mage tanking him
- If none of you have the Hawk Eye talent, the Mage tank will need to initiate the pull by running in with a Blessing of Protection
- DO NOT USE Arcane Shot ON ZEREVOR — YOU WILL DISPEL HIS Dampen Magic AND WIPE YOUR RAID
- All of your remaining Hunters should now attack the other Council members with Misdirection on the respective tank
- You will be attacking the same target as melee DPS players, not casters, so check out the Melee DPS tab
- Use your personal DPS cooldowns during Heroism / Bloodlust for maximum DPS
- Your main DPS target will be Gathios (the paladin)
- If Gathios uses Chromatic Resistance Aura, switch your focus to Malande (the priest) until the aura fades (30 seconds)
- While attacking Malande, be careful of her Reflective Shield — use a Master Healthstone if you accidentally crit yourself for half your HP
- If Gathios uses Blessing of Spell Warding on Malande, switch your focus back to him
- Shadow Priests: Keep your Misery debuff up on Gathios, Veras and Malande as much as possible
- Warlocks: Make sure Gathios & Malande have all appropriate curses at all times
- Warlocks: If your raid doesn’t have a Rogue keeping Mind-Numbing Poison III up on Malande, keep Curse of Tongues on her at all times
- Remove your Greater Blessing of Salvation for this fight, so you can do as much threat as possible
- Wait for a Hunter with the Hawk Eye talent to pull with a Misdirection to you
- If your raid doesn’t have a Hunter with the Hawk Eye talent, you will need to initiate the pull by running in with a Blessing of Protection
- Spellsteal Zerevor’s Dampen Magic right away, else you are probably going to die and your raid will wipe
- After you have the Dampen Magic buff, use your personal cooldowns and nuke Zerevor — you want to have threat on him
- After you have dealt 30-40k threat on him, you will want to switch to the kite strategy
- Kite Zerevor around the room by running up the ramps in the back of the room, as shown in the diagram in the The Fight section
- You will need to Spellsteal Zerevor’s Dampen Magic multiple times, as it only lasts 2 minutes — make sure you renew it
- Call out on voice chat if you need healing as you’re running past the raid near the middle of the room
- Don’t hesitate to use your Master Healthstone if Zerevor hits you multiple times while you’re in the back of the room
- Call out on voice if Zerevor starts casting Flamestrike, to help your raid avoid it
- Gathios Tank healers: Gathios does a lot of damage, sometimes out of nowhere — do not lose focus, pump heals on the tank
- Veras Tank healer: Your tanks will spend long periods of time not taking damage, don’t lose focus because of that
- Raid Healers: Don’t panic and stop healing if you have to move out of AoE — keep using your instant cast healing spells!
- Raid Healers: Make sure the raid is topped off at all times — there’s a lot of stuff that can suddenly kill players in this fight
- Raid Healers: When Veras uses Vanish, quickly top off people targeted by Deadly Poison, or they will die to Envenom
- Raid Healers: If Malande manages to cast Divine Wrath, top off her target asap — it does a huge amount of damage
- Mage Tank healer: Top off your Mage every time he runs by the middle of the room while he’s kiting Zerevor
- Don’t hesitate to use survival cooldowns like Divine Shield or Desperate Prayer in order to avoid nasty AoE & Deadly Poison
- This fight can be pretty long, so make sure you’re using Super Mana Potions and Dark Runes to avoid running out of mana
- Gathios Tank: Quickly move Gathios to his assigned spot, you don’t want Consecration hitting the raid
- Gathios Tank: Move Gathios out of AoE, but be careful to not move towards or away from the raid, so you don’t outrange healers
- Gathios Tank: Use Spell Reflection when Gathios uses Judgement to reflect his Judgement of Command
- Gathios Tank: Gathios hits very hard — don’t hesitate to use cooldowns in order to survive if you’re not getting healed in time
- Veras Tank: You can DPS Gathios when Veras uses Vanish, but you’ll need to quickly pick him up afterwards, as his threat table is reset
- Malande Tank: Make sure Malande is not close enough to Gathios to benefit from his Chromatic Resistance Aura
Gathios the Shatterer (Paladin)
Veras Darkshadow (Rogue)
Lady Malande (Priest)
High Nethermancer Zerevor (Mage)
Raid Composition & Preparation
There is no trash in the Illidari Council’s room, so you can just go in and get ready for the fight. The one thing to watch out for though is that they have a pretty large aggro range, so stay close to the door until everyone’s fully buffed up and regenerated.
The pull is one of the most important parts of this fight, as a small accident while pulling will immediately wipe your raid.
You will need to rely on your Hunters and their trusty Misdirection to make the pull a bit more manageable. You’ll ideally want 4 Hunters for this, so each Council member gets 1 Misdirection each — if you have fewer than 4, then the priority for Misdirections will be Zerevor > Malande > Gathios > Veras. That is because Zerevor and Malande have ranged spells that they may start using right away, so if they did not have their attention misdirected immediately, they might cast them on a random player in the raid — likely a healer or tank — and possibly healing them.
IMPORTANT: The Council’s aggro range is higher than a Hunter‘s base range of 35 yards. Thus, you will need to have a Hunter with the Hawk Eye talent (Survival Hunters typically take this talent) initiate the pull by attacking Zerevor with a Misdirection on your Mage tank. This hunter should NOT use Arcane Shot while pulling, as it will dispel Zerevor’s Dampen Magic, causing the Mage to be unable to steal it and thus immediately die on the pull.
If you don’t have a Hunter with the Hawk Eye talent in your raid, then the next best option will be to have a Paladin use Blessing of Protection on your Mage tank, who then simply walks towards Zerevor, casting Spellsteal before starting to deal threat on him. If you are using this strategy, it will be very important that the other 3 Council members get a Misdirection to their respective tank immediately afterwards, as things will get ugly with them running all over the place.
After the pull, you will ideally want your raid to be positioned as follows:
An explanation for this positioning:
- Your raid spreads out in the middle of the room so as to avoid having multiple players get hit by Zerevor’s Flamestrike & Blizzard.
- Gathios & Veras are tanked next to each other on one side of the room, so that they can be cleaved by your physical DPS players. Veras has practically 0 armor so this will result in a huge DPS boost. Being away from the center means your ranged players don’t have to move to avoid Consecration.
- Malande is tanked on the opposite side from Gathios & Veras, at least 30 yards away from Gathios at all times. That way, your caster DPS players have a viable target to attack when Gathios uses Chromatic Resistance Aura & she will not be resisting your interrupts.
- A single Rogue (or another melee player with a low cooldown interrupt, but preferably Rogue) is behind Malande, assigned to interrupting her.
- Zerevor is kept while he is, with the Mage tank doing threat to him. This is only temporary, however, as explained in the The Fight section.
- Your healers spread out even more than other players. You ideally don’t want any 2 healers to be within ~10 yards of each other. That way, you minimize instances where multiple healers all have to move at once in order to avoid a single Flamestrike or Blizzard, and thus nobody is healing.
- Finally, 1 healer assigned to the Gathios tank (ideally a Holy Paladin) should move far away from everyone else. Gathios does very high and very consistent damage, so having this healer away from other players ensures he will practically never need to move, and can thus keep healing without interruption throughout the entire fight. This avoids situations where nobody is healing the Gathios tank, which will very often result in tank deaths and thus wipes.
If you handled the pull correctly and everyone is positioned as shown in the picture above, then one of the hardest parts of the fight is already done. After your tanks have had a few seconds to build some threat, your raid should use Heroism / Bloodlust along with personal DPS cooldowns right away. People can die at any point in this fight, mainly to Envenom, so you’ll want to use your cooldowns early to maximize DPS.
Your Mage tank should be spamming their highest damage / threat ability to get his threat up ASAP. After they have built up about ~30-40k threat, they should transition to the kiting strategy. Simply put, they Blink away from Zerevor, towards one of the ramps on each side of the room, on the opposite side of the entrance to the room.
They will then need to kite Zerevor around the room in the following pattern:
By running around the back of the room and then stopping out of Zerevor’s line of sight, Zerevor is forced to chase the Mage tank around the room, unable to cast spells consistently. While chasing the Mage, Zerevor cannot cast Flamestrike & Blizzard as often as he normally would, which makes this encounter significantly easier for everyone else as those are his most powerful spells. He will still be casting them occasionally — but if your Mage tank communicates when he starts casting on voice chat, dealing with those otherwise scary spells will be a lot easier.
Note that the Mage tank will still be getting hit by stray Arcane Bolts with every “lap” he does around the room, thus taking a small bit of damage. A single healer should thus be assigned to topping them off every time they run through the middle of the room (the skull in the picture above) so that they remain healthy — if the Mage tank dies, you will likely wipe. Furthermore, the Dampen Magic they stole from Zerevor only lasts 2 minutes, so they will need to Spellsteal it multiple times, preferably when they are near the middle of the room, so they can get healed before moving away again.
With Zerevor handled, the remaining fight is nowhere near as difficult.
The first thing you are probably going to notice in this fight is that Gathios hits very hard. It will thus be important that your tank pays attention to which Seal he is using, reflects Judgement of Command as much as possible, and uses defensive cooldowns reactively if necessary in order to survive a large damage spike. Your healers assigned to the Gathios tank meanwhile should remain focused throughout the entire fight and be ready to use their instant healing spells if necessary, particularly when they have to move to avoid AoE — that tank must always be receiving heals.
Your raid should initially be focusing Veras, the rogue. He has an extremely low amount of armor (~146) and thus will take the most damage out of any target — your physical DPS players in particular will love getting the chance to hit him while he’s around… which unfortunately won’t be often. Roughly 20 seconds into the fight, and then about every minute after that, Veras will cast Vanish, becoming untargetable for about 30 second periods. At this point, your raid should switch their focus to Gathios.
The periods of time where Veras is invisible will be one of the scariest parts of this fight. He will randomly target players and apply Deadly Poison on them, followed by Envenom when the Deadly Poison expires, for a total of ~9000 damage dealt to them over 4 seconds. Coupled with the very high AoE damage in this fight, this combination of spells can kill your players very easily, so your raid healers need to be alert at all times, ready to heal those players quickly.
Thankfully, after about 30 seconds, Veras will quit his little hiding game and stop being invisible. The tank assigned to him should quickly pick him up and move him back to Gathios — a task that can be pretty annoying as he will reappear anywhere within 20 yards of his original position and his threat table is cleared every time he reappears, meaning he’ll start running after a random player (like a healer) so your tank will need to be very quick with picking him up.
This will be most of the fight for your physical DPS players. Attack Veras, then switch to Gathios when he uses Vanish. Melee will need to constantly follow the Gathios tank around as he moves out of Consecration. When Veras reappears, give his tank a few moments to establish threat, then switch back to him — rinse and repeat. The only thing that can complicate things is having Flamestrike or Blizzard on the melee stack along with Consecration, but if your melee players are aware enough and move quickly, or if your healers are just good at their task, then you likely won’t have a problem.
Caster DPS players meanwhile don’t have a reason to focus down Veras, so they will instead attack Gathios, who will never Vanish thus complicated their DPS rotation. That is until he uses Chromatic Resistance Aura, at which point they will switch to Malande, the priest. The only thing that can make their life harder while following this strategy is if Gathios uses his Blessing of Spell Warding on Malande, forcing them to switch back to him temporarily, or if Malande uses her Reflective Shield, reflecting a large crit back to them. If they’re quick with using a Master Healthstones when that happens, and your healers are on top of their healing game, that will generally not be a major issue.
And speaking of Malande, she’s the only enemy you’ll really have to make sure you’re handling correctly if you’re kiting Zerevor.
You will want to have a Rogue on her at all times. Not only can they easily keep up their Mind-Numbing Poison III debuff on her at all times, making interrupting her casts a lot easier, but by using their PvP gloves (f.e. Merciless Gladiator’s Leather Gloves) in order to interrupt with Deadly Throw when their Kick is on cooldown, they can single-handedly prevent her from casting altogether. If you don’t have a Rogue with the PvP gloves, you will instead need to have 2 melee DPS players with low cooldown interrupts rotating interrupts on her, similar to the Reliquary of Souls boss fight’s phase 2.
Occasionally, Gathios will be a jerk and use Blessing of Protection on Malande, preventing your Rogue from interrupting her casts. At this point, you will need to have at least 1 Shaman dedicated to interrupting her casts, prioritizing Divine Wrath above other casts. Ideally, you’ll want 2 Shamans assigned to this task, rotating interrupts so you can easily interrupt her Circle of Healing as well, with Elemental Shamans being ideal at this task thanks to their range. However, if you don’t have an Elemental Shaman or multiple Shamans, just 1 focusing interrupting Divine Wrath until Blessing of Protection fades is fine.
And with that out of the way, you have seen all there is to see in this fight. Every player will generally follow the DPS strategy outlined above, changing targets as necessary. Your healers will need to stay focused in order to keep up the raid and particularly the Gathios tank up, while your Malande Rogue and Mage Zerevor tank handle their specific tasks throughout the entire fight. There’s a few key players that must be kept alive at all times, but even if you suffer a few casualties to one of the multiple AoE spells that’s coming out, you’ll generally be fine — just keep at it and don’t panic.
Congratulations on besting Illidan’s council of trusted advisors! With this, none other remain to threaten the Outland, bar the Betrayer himself! And so, only one question remains — are you prepared?!