Front Kiting in vAS – Healplar Guide (Scalebreaker Updated)
Welcome to this new guide ! It will be a bit peculiar because it will be solely focused on how to front kite in vAS – that is, in front of Saint Olms, behind the main tank – as a templar. I will discuss several setups you can use, but more importantly, how to kite properly in vAS hm, and how to avoid dying.
This guide will be organized as follows:
For each setup, I will discuss food and attributes, as they vary with the gear used. Make sure to hover your mouse pointer over the underlined sets and skills to see the tooltips :)!
In order to make the rest of the guide clearer, let’s start by reminding the name of the bosses and abilities that will interest us as a front kiter.
- Saint Olms is the main boss (that looks like a big mechanical dragon). He will cast regularly Exhaustive Charges, big lightning AoEs that go on the person(s) the furthest away from him, in front of him. Not only they do a lot of damage, but they drain heavily your magicka everytime you take a tick inside. You will also have to avoid his Scalding Roar, that is the steam breath cone he does in front of him. Of course, you will also have to kite the Storm of the heaven.
- Saint Felms is the melee mini-boss. He will use Teleport Strikes every ~20s, jumping three (or two as we will see later) times on the furthest away player. These AoEs do a bit of damage, apply a nasty bleed that you must purge, and Minor Maim (which is why they should not go on the dds).
- Saint Llothis is the ranged mini-boss. Regularly, he will do a poison cone on a random player called Defiling Blast that does a lot of damage and applies a healing debuff.
As a front kiter in vAS (or even nAS), you will have several missions !
- Kiting the Exhaustive Charges, ensuring that these AoEs don’t go on your main tank.
- In case you’re doing vAS+1 or +2 with Saint Felms, kiting Saint Felms’ Teleport Strikes.
- Keeping yourself up because it will be a huge pain to res you in your kiting position :D.
- Keeping the main tank up by providing him with healing and synergies !
- Debuffing everything you can to make the entire trial easier.
- As much as possible, buffing and healing the dds – that is when they are close enough to you.
With any of the setups below, you want to use tristats potions because you will be needing that stamina back during the fight!
Light armor setup : Infallible Aether + Jorvuld’s Guidance
Attributes, consumables and mundus
On the following setup, we are using 5 pieces of Light armor. While this makes us less tanky than a heavy armor setup, it enables us to use a damage shield. With any of these setups, we will be using Max Magicka, Max Health food (such as the Arteum Pickled Fish Bowl).
For our attributes, we put 48 points into Health and 16 points into Magicka, as to have an health pool of about 27k hp and as much Max Magicka as possible. If you are not comfortable with the trial, feel free to put all your attributes into health.
As a mundus stone, we use the Steed to get some extra speed. This increases our survivability and also enables us to spend more time with our group.
Gear and stats
We use Infallible Mage (or Infallible Aether) set on jewels and body pieces: it will be really helpful for your group as you will get really high minor vulnerability uptimes.
As a second set, we use Jorvuld’s Guidance to boost your warhorns on body pieces and restoration staff. On my back bar, I prefer to use a Lightning staff of Willpower. Indeed, I’d rather have the extra stats than Jorvuld active on this bar. Other options of sets include Z’en’s or Torug’s, but this will depend on your group and how comfortable you are with the trial.
We are also using Symphony of Blades as a monster set: it helps out a lot you and your group’s sustain.
|Head||Symphony of Blades||Light||Divines||Health|
|Shoulders||Symphony of Blades||Medium||Divines||Magicka|
|Necklace||Infallible Aether||Arcane||Spell damage|
|Ring 1||Infallible Aether||Swift||Magicka Recovery|
|Ring 2||Infallible Aether||Swift||Magicka Recovery|
|Main bar weapon||Jorvuld's restoration staff||Infused||Berserker enchant|
|Off bar weapon||Lightning staff of Willpower||Infused||Weakening enchant|
Jorvuld’s Guidance will make your major force from horns last longer. It is, in my opinion, a better boost for the group than using Shalk, as Shalk would get you more horns, but shorter. As using horn as front kiter is not that easy, I prefer giving less horns that last longer. 🙂 I use two spell damage glyphs on the jewels as Jorvuld’s gives already a lot of regen.
- Sanguine altar is, in my opinion, a very good skill to have in Asylum and best used on the front kiter. It gives our group a constant HoT as well as a burst heal synergy. I prefer this morph as it can be refreshed less often.
- Breath of Life and Radiating Regeneration are there for our own survivability as well as your main tank’s. I do not use illustrious healing anymore as I found that the strong heal from Radiating Regeneration was more beneficial.
- Blazing spear is great to have to make sure our main tank have a synergy available at all time. I prefer this morph as my tank usually do not need the other resource return from luminous shards, and this provides a bit more damage.
- Your Extended Ritual is extremely important in this fight as it will be our purge. Make sure to keep it on your main tank as much as possible to provide them for an extra synergy.
- ULTIMATE: Aggressive Horn should be used as much as possible. Be aware that you need to get close to the group before using it – see kiting best practices.
- Harness magicka needs to be used preemptively to protect you from suffering heavy damage – see kiting best practices. I prefer this morph to dampen magic, as, with my health and magicka pools, the extra shield strength from dampen magic is completely useless.
- Channeled Focus is there to buff your resistances and your magicka regen.
- Energy orbs are to be used on your main tank and your dds for resources. I prefer them to shards for this setup because we do have enough sustain to spam them and have one up on the main tank pretty much nonstop, and the healing they provide is really nice.
- I use Power of the Light to proc my dawn’s wrath passives (Prism and Illuminate) as well as to provide a valuable armor debuff to the main boss. If you are not comfortable with kiting, you can use either Purifying Light or Reflective Light to proc those passive and save your stamina.
- Finally, Elemental Drain needs to be applied to Saint Felms, and to the mini bosses and ordinated protectors when they are in range.
- ULTIMATE: Replenishing Barrier is here only to provide for some extra magicka regen. If you are still learning the trial, feel free to use Light’s Champion here.
IMPORTANT NOTE : about traits
- For body pieces, if you have trouble managing your stamina, you may consider using some well-fitted pieces. The sprinting and roll-dodging cost reduction will help! I prefer running full divines as I have no stamina problem.
- For jewels, with the Summerset patch, we have access to a new, really interesting trait: swift, increasing our movement speed by 6% (for a gold jewel). I have been experimenting with it a bit, and found that using two swift jewels was really comfortable without being a huge sacrifice of resources, so I’d recommend to try out and see if you enjoy it !:)
While my blue CPs are the same as in my “standard” healing setup, I change my green and red CPs when I’m going in AS.
Green tree :
Shadow Ward 40
In AS, you (almost) never have to break free so points in Warlord are kinda useless. I put a significant amount of point in Sprinter as I usually sprint to go out of AoEs – see kiting best practices.
Red tree :
Iron Clad 72
Spell Shield 75
Thick Skinned 23
Elemental Defender 64
Almost all your incoming damage is counted as direct, magical damage, the exception behind the bleed from Felms which is a physical DoT (and the jumps from Olms), which is why we keep a teeny tiny bit in hardy and thick skinned.
Blue tree :
Spell erosion 22
Elemental expert 32
Staff expert 14
Going out of AoEs
Try to learn to sprint to go out of the AoEs (Exhaustive Charges by Olms or Teleport Strikes by Felms) rather than dodging. It has a lower stamina cost, and if you time it properly you won’t take a damage tick. When I say “time it properly”, that means you shouldn’t start sprinting too soon as the AoE will follow you, so train to get a feel of when to move. 🙂 Note : When Felms is enraged, in order to avoid taking damage from his AoE, I roll-dodge as soon as I hear the sound of raidnotifier. Most of the time, I don’t take a single tick of damage.
You should try to “stack” the AoEs as much as possible: of course, you can’t really stack Exhaustive Charges (going back inside would probably kill you :D), but you can try to keep them as close as possible. If you get a Teleport Strike and then another AoE, try to shield, go back inside the Teleport Strike, take the other AoE and run out. This way, the AoEs will be as stacked as possible.
Keeping your main tank and yourself alive
Try to keep rapid regen up on you and on as many group members as possible at all time, and keep some springs up on your main tank when he is taking damage. Of course, if you are taking heavy damage, use breath of life. Use Light’s Champion as a life saver if you find yourself in a bad situation : it’s a really huge boost to your survivability.
Use your damage shield preemptively: I always make sure to have my shield up during Storms of the Heaven, because unexpected damage can be dangerous in those phases, and I cast it when I see that Felms just teleported on the back kiter, because I know he will jump on me next. Then, block whatever damage you can block, mainly the defiling blast from Llothis.
Make sure to purge (using ritual) when needed ! Mainly, whenever I take a Teleport Strike, I go out and use ritual asap. I also purge the fire dot from the shalks as it can hurt you quite a bit, and of course, you should purge “Trial by Fire”, the huge fire AoE, during execute.
I recommend using the awesome Asylum Tracker. Tracking mechanics on your entire group is especially important as you’ll be able to act preemptively. For example, Llothis poison cone on your main tank can almost one hit you if you’re at the end of the cone and you didn’t block/shield. Seeing the teleport strikes alert on your back kiter will help you improve your positioning.
Positining is key
Position yourself properly: this will be the difference between life and death. In particular, a mistake I was making very often when starting out was, when I was reaching the “end” of my kiting area (position 3 on the pictures below), I would cross immediately to go back to the middle (right of position 1 on the pictures below) and get caught by the steam breath of Olms (first picture).
Don’t get roasted
In order to avoid that, I recommend two things. First, try to avoid getting yourself in that situation by re-positioning yourself properly during the storm phases – that is, you want to try to start a new “kiting phase” with as much room as possible (second picture). Second, if you still get that situation, once you get your last AoE (number 3 on the pictures below), don’t cross immediately but rather get closer to the tank (purple dot, third picture) and wait. Olms will probably do a few light attacks, and then, two things can happen: either he will do his steam breath, in which case you can wait safely till it’s over, then cross, or he will do an exhaustive charge, in which case you should sprint as fast as possible to the middle.
If you ever see a steam cone forming behind you, you should always roll dodge rather than sprint, because the roll dodge will save you from the potentially deadly first tick.
Gust of Steam
During Olms’ big jumps (Gust of Steam), you want to hug the walls of your area. If you can, position yourself near the exit or the entrance to cast a few springs on the dds there when it’s safe (that is, when Olms is jumping on the other side), but be aware that it is not always possible. If you are doing a +1 or +2 with Felms, and if he is about to use Teleport Strikes, you should be in position in the back of the room.
Debuffing as much as you can
As front kiter, you have several debuffs to apply.
- Keep elemental drain up on Olms, and on all the mini-bosses and the ordinated protector that are close to you. Do not worry about the protectors that are too far away : the back kiter should take care of them.
- If you have IA slotted, keep minor vulnerability up as much as possible on Olms, and on the minis and protectors when you can reach them. Applying the minor vulnerability debuff on the mini bosses when they are stacked is quite important to make sure they die in AoEs as fast as possible :).
- Proc your weakening enchant as much as possible on Olms. It is not necessary to keep it up 100%, but make sure to apply it when large damage is incoming for your group: during the storms, and during the fire phase in execute. It makes a really big difference for your damage dealers that aren’t as tanky as you !
- Keep Power of the light up as much as possible, without running out of stamina.
Buffing and healing your group as much as possible
That’s kind of the obvious healing role. As a front kiter, you are not able to do so everytime, unfortunately. When you are close to your group, try to spam a bit rapid regen to hit a few dds, as the HoT will help them a lot.
As you get more comfortable with kiting, you should aim at using Light’s Champion only as a last resort, and use Aggressive Horn the rest of the time to buff your group. Be aware that the range of your horn is only 20m : you don’t want to use it in your “normal” kiting position, otherwise you’ll hit only your main tank and yourself most of the time.
That means you should come towards the group to use horn, and that must not be done at any time. Indeed, you must make sure that : a) Felms is not about to use Teleport Strikes, b) Olms is not about to use Exhaustive Charge, c) A storm is not about to start (and of course d) no one else is about to use his horn … :D). When these three (four) conditions are met, you can sprint toward you group, past the main tank, and use your horn. Make sure to also ask your dds not to stay needlessly away from Olms so that they get as much uptime as possible.
I want to stress again that the most important thing you have to do is staying alive. It can be insanely hard to res a front kiter. Make sure to speak with your teammates beforehand, and decide who will come to res you if shit happens. You don’t want 4 dds to come and drop like flies because they do not position themselves properly and stack exhaustive charges all over (it’s fun to see, but it’s not fun if you want to complete the trial :D).
Ideally, you want one dd to come and kite as close as possible to the wall, while another dd comes and try to stay a bit closer to the tank to res you (make sure to tell him not to stay in Scalding Roar too, again, fun to see but really not helpful). Of course, that depends where you died. You can also have one dd alone do the res: between each exhaustive charges, there is enough time to do one res. Make sure not to res too fast in an AoE: if you see that it’s not safe, ask your savior to stay and kite a bit to make sure AoEs don’t go on your main tank.
Here is a video of me front kiting, so you can see the game play a bit more
I hope this has been helpful, if you have questions make sure to let me know :)! With practices, you can have really nice uptimes to help your group there !