Sapphiron Strategy Guide – Naxxramas (25)

wotlk classic naxxramas sapphiron featured image

An ancient blue dragon, slain by and reanimated by Arthas Menethil prior to becoming the Lich King. Sapphiron guards the Frostwyrm’s Lair in Naxxramas, being the final challenge between the forces of Azeroth and the lich Kel’Thuzad.

“Once a noble blue dragon within the mountains of Northrend, Sapphiron was slain by Arthas during his campaign through the frozen north. Resurrected to serve him, Sapphiron guards Kel’Thuzad’s lair eternally, awaiting those who would dare trespass upon his master.”Commander Eligor Dawnbringer

This guide will offer a detailed, step-by-step tutorial on how to deal with Sapphiron’s glacial barrages and biting frost aura.

Role Summaries

Phase 1

  • Stay away from Sapphiron’s head and tail.
  • Keep an eye out for Chill, moving away from it to stay safe.
  • Try to minimize damage taken using defensive cooldowns and self-healing.
  • Stay stacked as much as possible to optimize healing.

Phase 2

  • Always be aware of where your nearest safe spot is so that you can quickly get to it when the time comes.

Phase 2

  • You can still DPS Sapphiron while he is in the air, but you may have to jump in order to hit.
  • Make sure you are always close to an ice block, even if it means you cannot hit Sapphiron.

Phase 2

  • Don’t position yourself too far away from the raid, in case you are hit by Icebolt.
  • Try to DPS for as long as you can before hiding in the safe spot.

Phase 1

  • Healing-over-time is very valuable as everyone will always be taking damage.
  • Focus on healing stacked players to hit as many targets as possible.

Phase 2

  • Pay attention to line-of-sight so that you don’t get caught unable to heal a dying player.

Phase 1

  • Face the boss away from the entrance.
  • Avoid moving the boss as much as possible.


Phase 1

The first Phase of Sapphiron is a fairly standard Dragon fight, with players avoiding the tail and head. Blizzards from Chill float around the room, forcing players out of their positions and potentially even out of combat range if they are unlucky. Life Drain will be placed on players at random, cursing them and dealing damage, alongside constant Frost damage from Frost Aura.

Phase 1 lasts for 45-seconds before Phase 2 begins, and restarts when Sapphiron lands again.


Sapphiron is a regular dragon, so standing in front means you get cleaved, and standing behind means you get hit by the tail. The standard solution to all dragon-related problems in World of Warcraft is to stand on the side!

Every 2-seconds everyone in the fight will be hit for 1600 Frost damage. This is simply a fact of life during this fight and something that will have to be constantly healed through.

Every 24-seconds Sapphiron will curse 5 random players, dealing 4500 to 5500 Shadow damage to them and healing Sapphiron for 9000 to 11000 health every 3-seconds for 12-seconds. This needs to be decursed immediately to avoid both raid members dying and Sapphiron getting too much health back.

This spell is a Blizzard that floats around the room for the entire fight, often more than one at a time. Being hit by these deals 5550 to 6450 Frost damage every 2-seconds and slows the target by 50% for 10-seconds. This has a clear visual and should always be dodged, even if it means you have to stop hitting the boss.

Phase 2

Phase 2 begins after 45-seconds, with Sapphiron flying up into the air and shooting Ice Bolts at 3 players. This Phase is the most important mechanically as well as potentially requiring the most AoE healing.


During Phase 2 Sapphiron will hit 3 players with this, turning them into blocks of ice. This deals 6300 to 7700 Frost damage to them and everyone within 10-yards of them. Players hit by this will be frozen for the rest of Phase 2, and are used to hide behind to dodge Frost Breath. Because of the damage dealt by this, it is important to keep everyone at high health when Phase 2 starts so they don’t simply die instead of being frozen.

When all 3 Ice Bolts have been cast, Sapphiron will take a deep breath and cast Frost Breath for 7-seconds. After 7-seconds, everyone within line of sight to Sapphiron will be hit for 112500 to 187500 Frost damage, effectively guaranteeing a one-shot. To avoid this damage, hide behind your frozen allies.

Raid Composition & Preparation

This fight has no specific class or spec requirements, and as long as your group can out heal the damage you should be able to pull through.

You will need to bring classes capable of decursing, for example, Mages for MageDecurse, Druids for DruidDecurse, or Shamans for ShamanDecurse. Having more doesn’t hurt, but you can also get away with only 2 players actively decursing.

You will want between 5-7 Healers for this fight, with area-of-effect healers like Druids being very high value.

There are no strict requirements for DPS classes or specs here, you simply want a combination of good raid buffs and debuffs, as well as the best players you can muster.

You will only need one tank for this fight, ideally with some Frost Resistance gear.

The Pull

The first time you try to engage Sapphiron, he will be in pieces around the room. When someone first enters Sapphiron’s chamber, the bones will swirl together and form Sapphiron. This first-time animation gives your raid a decent bit of time to pre-position, allowing everyone to be where they should be before the boss is even attackable.

Subsequent attempts will have Sapphiron in the middle of the room, ready to go. This means that the tank will have to reposition him towards the center of the room, and everyone will have to be extra mindful of Tail Swipes and Cleaves!

A lot of people opt to use Frost Resistance gear for this fight, just like they would in the Classic version. Generally, this isn’t necessary for WotLK Classic, but you may need to bring an extra healer or two if your raid is skipping Frost Resistance. Even if you aren’t gearing for Frost Resistance though, there is still a lot that can be done. Things like Frost Resistance Aura or Totem are fantastic tools here and should definitely not be overlooked. If your raid happens to have an abundance of Paladins, you can even try rotating Aura Mastery to maximize Frost Resistance Aura‘s effect!

The Fight

sapphiron phase 1 positioning

Phase 1

Sapphiron is generally tanked facing the direction opposite the entrance, with his tail towards the teleporter you came from. DPS and healers should stand on Sapphiron’s right-hand side, ideally close together to maximize the effect of area-of-effect healing like Circle of Healing. Frost Aura will constantly deal damage to everyone in the raid and will require healers to be constantly healing everyone to avoid getting overwhelmed later.

Every 24-seconds, Sapphiron will curse 5 targets with Life Drain, draining their health and healing the boss. Decurse this with MageDecurse, DruidDecurse, or ShamanDecurse as soon as possible! The faster this is dealt with, the easier life will be for your healers.

Chill is the main obstacle during Phase 1. Blizzards constantly float around the room that need to be dodged. These are fairly easy to handle, simply keep an eye on them and make sure you are never too close to them. Players that are hit will take massive Frost damage every 2-seconds and be slowed. The slow makes it very difficult to get out of Chill, but a lot of classes can get around this. HoF, Shapeshifting, Intervene on a teammate, and Disengage are good examples of ways to quickly get out of Chill.

Every 45-seconds, Sapphiron will fly up and begin Phase 2.

Phase 2

Sapphiron will fire Ice Bolt at 3 random players in the raid. The players hit will be frozen in place with a model very similar to Ice Block. After 3 Ice Bolts have gone out, Sapphiron will cast Frost Breath on the middle of the room, marked with “Sapphiron takes a deep breath.” in the chat. This reaches everywhere in the room, so the only way to avoid it is to either be damage-immune with spells such as Divine Shield or Ice Block, or to be behind one of the players frozen by Ice Bolt.

Sapphiron can be hit while flying, but frozen players will block your line of sight so be careful! Melee players may struggle to hit him in the air, inconsistently needing to jump.

When Frost Breath is over, Sapphiron will land and begin Phase 1 again.

Here are some of the main things that can typically go wrong in this fight:

  • Healers are overwhelmed by area-of-effect damage and end up falling too far behind on healing.
  • Multiple people get stuck in Chill, adding a significant amount of damage to the raid and potentially killing them if they can’t escape.
  • Players end up either in front of or behind Sapphiron while the tank repositions on pull.
  • Decurses are too slow, overwhelming the raid and healing Sapphiron significantly.
  • DPS try to keep dealing damage too far into Phase 2 and cannot get to safety in time.

Congratulations on defeating Sapphiron! Make your way through the Frostwyrm’s Lair and into the inner sanctum and the final fight of the dread citadel.


About the Author


I love MMOs of all shades, especially the nitty gritty numbers parts of them. You might recognize me from the Shadow Priest discord, otherwise I play a little bit of everything, especially games with support roles available.
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