: Blackwind Trace (from now on Julia) is currently the hardest boss in the game (not considering pre-nerf Scion's Keep)
The Basic Patterns are rather easy but the Tank Mechanics and Add Phases are quite annoying to deal with because there is a HP Regen Pattern.
Most of the DMG will be done by the Ranged Classes, so if your team has many powerful ranged dealers you can actually skip Scion's Keep and go to Julia, but not recommended because Scion's Keep is nerfed hard and rather easily clearable
The Timetable will go like this
100%~71%: Phase 1
70%: Add Phase 1
70%~41%: Phase 2
40%: Add Phase 2
40%~0%: Phase 3
Phase 1 and 2 are identical, and Add Phase 1 and 2 are too.
Phase 3 has unique patterns which the normal phase and add phase are mixed up.
At the First Engage, it dashes to the tank and gives 180 degree Indignity Debuff area,which will be instructed later.
After doing this, it creates a instant-death area that rotates clockwise, starting from 12~1 o'clock.
Also, if the Instakill area hits the boss, the team will be wiped
SO, the tank will engage at about 10~11 o'clock. About this will be introduced later on.
Also, the Center Area gives a Massive Attack Buff that has max 10 Stacks to max 6 People, so 6 Ranged Classes will do damage inside the area.
The Basic Pattern Cycle goes,
3 Front Sweeps-2 Hit Knockback Pulse-3 Front Sweeps-Tank Phantom Grip (CCable)
▲3 Front Sweeps: Doesn't do any CCs and only the tank will get hit.
▲Knockback Pulse: This is the Pattern everyone MUST be aware of.
For Melees, if you get hit you have a chance to go into the Buff Area, which will interrupt the Buff for the Ranged.
For Ranged, if you get hit you will probably die in the instant-death area.
It has about 13.8 meter (a little less than 14 is fine) range so for FMs that don't have a block skill staying out of range is fine.
Using BD/BM/SUM/SIN's Party iframe for this pattern is very good, But each can be only once per 2 cycles, so each party should make ends meet about this.
▲Phantom Grip: It MUST be CC'd or the Tank will instantly die.
If you Stun it, like above it will just Stay there and Start the Basic Cycle again.
▲If you KnockDown: it will rise up which does Knockback at a 6 meter range.
After this is the most important thing for the tank mech.
After Each KnockDown, the Pattern goes like this:
Rise up (6 meter KnockBack)-Dash to the tank/opposite (KnockBack)-180 degree Indignity towards the tank's side-Front to back indignity towards the targeted person-Plant Bug Bomb
▲After the Rising, the boss will say either one of these messages:
"If you want to live, move fast." (Left Picture): It Dashes to the Tank's Direction
"Annoying." (Right Picture): It Dashes to the Opposite from the Tank's Direction.
So, about the Boss Rotating, as said above the Instakill area rotates clockwise.
This is why the Tank Starts at 11 o'clock, so we have more time to do damage without dmg loss by stunning instead knocking it down.
After about 3 Stuns, the Instakill area will be quite close to the boss, forcing you to knock it down and make the boss also move clockwise so the Instakill area doesn't reach the boss.
so the Tank MUST get control of moving the Boss as he wants. This is a mechanic learned by practice, not just controlling the direction but thinking about the distance from the center and also the distance from the Add during the 41%~ Phase.
▲180 Degree Indignity Debuff Area
▲This is the Indignity Debuff, it is Stackable and does continuous damage for 60 Secs, so you must try to avoid getting it.
Stacking these throughout the fight will make you unable to survive.
So if you're in the area, you will get one stack of Indignity. You cannot resist this one either.
▲2 Indignity Blows: Before this Pattern, one Melee dealer will get a "Target" buff.
So these 2 Blows will aim the targeted person.
One thing about this is, that if the Targeted Person dies before the boss does this pattern, it will wipe the team so must be careful about that (you don't wanna die anyways)
▲So, the positions will look like this.
This pattern, unlike the 180 degree pattern, is resistable so if you have a hard time positioning just resist it and you'll be fine.
Puts Bug time bomb to the center 6 People.
This is the most hardest part during this boss fight, and will be explained in the next section.
Also, if the boss reaches 70%, 40% DURING this whole knockdown phase (knockdown~bug bomb plant), it will also be a wipe so you MUST stop doing dmg if the boss is like 71% or 41% during the knockdown phase.
(the best idea is to just stun instead of knockdown when it's right before the add phase)
There are a few things about the center area
1. Max 6 People can be in the area with the buff
▲The buff refreshes like above
If more than 6, one person will not get the buff or steal one's buff and makes him go into aftermath state, where he can't get the buff for 30 seconds.
▲The Aftermath debuff, making you not able to get the center buff for 30 secs.
Aftermath happens if you fail to refresh the buff tick, either by getting knocked out of the buff field or somebody else stealing it (especially by melees getting knocked in the field).
and also rarely just happens on it's own
2. the Bug Bomb
As mentioned above, after each knockdown the boss plants bug bomb(s) to the 6 people in the center area.
The Bomb has like 10 meter (not exact) radius and instakills everyone except the bomb owner.
The boss gives more bombs as the phase proceeds (1 bomb at 100~71%, 2 bombs at 71%~41%, 3 bombs after 41%)
▲The People within the Bug Bomb Area will get a strange effect on the character as a warning sign before it explodes.
Now, how do you find who's the bug?
▲Like above, the person with the bug will have aggro light on the party info, telling you he's the one carrying the bug.
▲After figuring the person with the bug, that person will go away from the whole team and let it explode
BUT THE PROBLEM IS, FM's Fire Orb system having a damage reflection messes up this aggro, making the bug move among people in the center.
Because of it, the bomb usually lands on FMs. Also, at the phases with 2 or more bombs, it is possible for one to carry more than one bomb, so must be careful not to rejoin the crew too soon cuz you might have one more bomb to explode.
So basically everyone in the center must be aware of the bug changing mechanics and get used to it in order to clear this boss.
3. Sustaining 6 people
the 6 people in the center do most of the damage needed, and also if there are less than 6 people in the center the bug bomb is able to go to the next most-far person.
SO, it is very important that 6 people keep staying in the area, refilling it when 1 person goes out either from the bug bomb or whatever reason.
USUALLY, after doing the knockdown the center crew just stays there whether or not they get aftermath
This is a team thing so all I can say is your team should figure it out and by orders and rules, get the hang of it.
This DOES TAKE TIME, and requires some practice.
using the fact that the FM usually gets the bug bomb can be useful, which is possible if you understood the mechanics written above.
#71%, 41% Add Phase
:71% and 41% Add Phases are identical, just that the locations are 60 degrees rotated.
#The Pattern of the boss
: After it goes up, it has to patterns
1. Throwing AoEs at people (just use FM/BD/BM's iframe for that)
2. Throws 3 Jump-Avoidable Indignity Bombs
▲You must get used to avoiding these by jumping
The locations of the bombs are fixed, so there is a way you will find out to avoid them easily.
Now about the Bugs. there are 3 Big bugs and near the Big ones, many Small Bugs are scattered.
The Small bugs recover the Big bug's HP and the Big bugs recover the Boss's HP.
▲The Red Circles are the Big Adds, and the Green places are where the Small Adds are scattered.
Now, the objective is to pull and push the small bugs to the Big Bug, and then killing the Small bugs and making them explode to kill the Big bug.
Each bug should have at least 1 party, having more than 2 pulling skills with a WL or SF.
▲Step 1: using 1 pulling skill, make the scattered small bugs in to one group
After the 12 man update, only one pulling skill is needed
Thus, almost every pulling skill can do it and only requires one.
FM's #4 can also do it too.
▲Step 2: using push/pull skills, move the small bugs towards the big bug.
If there are missed bugs, using Phantom Grip or Grab or even the SIN switching place skill is possible so don't panic.
Also, while the Small bugs don't really do anything, the Big bug has it's own pattern.
▲The Big bug recovers the boss's HP after each 4 Attacks.
Thus, it is necessary for one person to take the Big bugs's aggro and root the Big bug until it dies.
Rooting it is basically the same as the Raven boss at Skybreak Spire, so will not mention about it. Also it must be facing away from the boss too.
▲If done well, the small bugs explode and give immense dmg to the Big bug, making it easy to kill.
Also, Melees must be careful to not stay in the exploding area, cuz it might kill them.
Have caution not to cc the small bugs, because there is a bug that the small bugs don't explode when they are in cc.
#Final Phase, 41%~0%
:It Starts off same as the other phases, but after 3 (or 2) Stuns, you will infinitely do knockdowns and the Adds will appear DURING the normal phase.
The Basic Pattern is the same as the other phases, the only thing that changes is that
At each knockdown Pattern, after the bug planting, it throws a Indignity bomb to the most-far person that is avoidable by jumping.
▲Throws the Bomb like this.
Because of this pattern, it delays enough time so SUM's party iframe CD is refreshed and should be used used every knockback pulse pattern. So SUMs must be aware of it and use it properly.
#Getting rid of the Adds
: Approximately each 60 seconds, one Big bug and multiple Small bugs appear
▲The Bugs Appear near the Instakill field like above.
The way you kill it is the same, so you will dispatch 2 Pulling Classes (Usually DES/BD/KFM), and 1 WL (For the Soulburn), and 1 SUM (For the Root, and taking care of the Indignity Bomb so it doesn't affect the other team)
When the Small bugs are ready to be killed, the center people can kill them easily because of the Buff.
Just have caution that the Add's aggro can make you confused about the Bug Bomb, which might fuck you up hard.
Everything Else is basically the same. But though this phase seems not too hard compared to the other phases, it is very frustrating and complicated if you actually do it.
One Thing to also be careful is that the Boss and the Add can be overlapped, which you don't really want to happen cause the exploding small bugs can kill the melees.
Also, using some pulling skills (ex: BM trying to get draw stance by using Z skill) will affect the small bugs which can fuck the whole team up. So everyone must have caution, and the Tank must constantly think what angle moving the boss will be best.
Keep knockdown the boss and Kill the Bugs and Stay alive and it's done.
1. Buffs (Soulburn/Fighting Spirit): Fighting Spirit doesn't really matter, but SB should be kept intact before the Add Phases, so you can pull the small bugs easily. Every other timing, just use it every cooldown.
Syncing with the soul could be good, but because of the Add Phase it will get messed up so if it does just use it every cooldown.
2. About Being Knockbacked: Classic focus issues during the raid, basically the same as the Red Lord, where Melees die out of the Laser shit, everyone must focus not to be knockbacked.
Because if you do, there is a high risk of being thrown to the instakill area or the center buff area which you might steal the ranged's buff and make him go into Aftermath.
3. Indignity Stacks after Add Phase: If you have too much Indignity stacked during the Add Phase, just move fast to the 9 o'clock area, and die there so people can revive you without any risk.
4. Ordering CC: Basically, each phase's CC will go 3(or 2) Stuns first and infinite Knockdown after.
But if the phases is ending soon (like 72%, 42%, etc.) and seems like the phase will end before the Instakill area hits the boss, just stun the boss instead of knocking it down.
Doing these kind of orders should be decided quickly by the leaders, which can be done easily after practice.
This is our Team's First time Clear clip so this will be the most closest thing to you'll do.