This page covers strategies and information for the Artifact Challenge that all healer specs except Discipline Priests are given, it starts with the quest End of the Risen Threat at the Mage Tower on the Broken Shore. If you have any suggestions or feedback, you can leave a comment below or tweet @PrestonDvorak.
The Challenge Dungeon consists of seven stages, during which you're asked to both heal friendly NPCs and DPS enemy NPCs on your own while also avoiding harmful mechanics.
Artifact Challenge Clear Video
During Stage 1, you will be fighting against waves of enemies with three friendly NPCs. Commander Jarod Shadowsong is the tank, Granny is a ranged DPS, and Callie is a melee DPS.
The first wave consists of a single Corrupted Risen Arbalest.
- The Arbalest deals small bursts of damage to either you or a random friendly NPC, so be ready to heal them quickly.
- It will periodically jump to a random location in the room and use Mana Sting.
- This places a small, blue arrow on your head and points a large, blue arrow from the Arbalest to you.
- To avoid the heavy damage and the mana drain, position yourself so one of the friendly NPCs is between you and the Arbalest.
- You can stun or knockback the Arbalest to stop the cast, but I don't recommend relying on this as you'll need these for other things later on.
- You can help DPS during this wave to make it go by faster, especially if you have any DPS spells that don't cost mana.
The second wave consists of a Corrupted Risen Mage and another Corrupted Risen Arbalest.
- The Arbalest continues to function the same as before.
- The Mage will continually cast Arcane Blitz.
- Each cast increases its damage done.
- I recommend interrupting the Mage after he has cast three to four times to allow the buff to fall off. He is susceptible to interrupts, stuns, and knockbacks.
The third wave consists of a Corrupted Risen Soldier and another Corrupted Risen Mage.
- The Mage continues to function the same as before.
- The Soldier likes to reset aggro and attack random targets until Jarod can taunt it back, because of healing aggro this will likely be you.
- It will periodically Fixate on either you or a random friendly NPC and be affected by Frenzied Assault.
- You'll have to decide if you can stand and tank the damage yourself or if you have to kite or stun the Soldier.
- It will also use Knife Dance, dealing moderate damage to you and the friendly NPCs.
- This can be interrupted with knockback or stun effects, although it's not really worth using one just on this ability. If you can interrupt it along with the Mage, that's the best option.
The fourth wave consists of another Corrupted Risen Mage and two Corrupted Risen Soldiers.
- The enemies continue to function the same as before.
- If you have a knockback effect or an AoE stun, I recommend using it when the Soldiers start channeling Knife Dance while the Mage is also casting Arcane Blitz. This stops a lot of incoming damage at once.
- Be prepared to use a group-healing cooldown the second time the two Soldiers start using Knife Dance if you can't interrupt them again.
The fifth wave consists of a Corrupted Risen Arbalest, a Corrupted Risen Mage, and a Corrupted Risen Soldier.
- The enemies continue to function the same as before.
- Once again, if you have a knockback effect or AoE stun, use it when the Solder is casting Knife Dance and the Mage is casting Arcane Blitz.
- Keep an eye out for Mana Sting, it's easy to miss it and sometimes hard to keep track of the friendly NPCs locations.
- I recommend having some kind of healing cooldown to use by the time the Soldier is casting Knife Dance for the second time. From then on, the damage to the group will be high and sporadic.
Stage 2 is just a "filler" stage where you run ahead to the next room. You should use this time to drink and regain mana.
During this stage, your friendly NPCs are captured and you must rescue them. To do this, you'll be DPSing various enemies while avoiding harmful mechanics and keeping yourself alive. For the sake or organization, I'll divide things into "waves" again, just note that the enemies don't come to you this time, instead you'll move through the hallways as quickly as possible.
You have five minutes to complete this Stage, so high, efficient DPS is required.
The first wave contains six Flickering Eyes.
- These constantly pulse light damage while alive, and heavy damage if you get near them.
- When killed, they explode for a heavy amount of damage.
- I recommend killing one Eye at a time while applying any damage over time effects you have to the next eye you're going to kill.
- If you have strong defensive cooldowns, you may be able to kill two or more Eyes at once.
Moving ahead to the next hallway, you'll be contending with two Unstable Fel Orbs, three Fel Bat Pups, and one Felspite Dominator.
- The Unstable Fel Orbs can be "killed" in one hit, which deactivates them and makes it safe to pass by for a short period of time.
- Getting near an active Orb applies a moderate damage over time effect and slows your movement speed considerably.
- You can completely ignore the two Orbs for now by pulling the other enemies into the circular room where you fought the Flickering Eyes.
- Fel Bat Pups deal moderate amounts of damage and will enrage, causing them to deal heavy damage.
- I recommend killing all of the Bats first as they have relatively little health but deal a significant amount of damage.
- If you have reliable damage over time effects, you should apply them to all of the Bats.
- The Felspite Dominator doesn't have any special abilities and simply deals a moderate amount of damage.
When moving ahead, remember to damage the two Unstable Fel Orbs to deactivate them. You will then go to the left and have to open a gate. I recommend standing to the far-right corner of the gate so you can open it before the Orbs reach you.
Once the gate is opened, you're presented with three friendly Damaged Souls, a Panicked Soul, and a Corrupted Risen Arbalest.
- The Damaged Souls need to be healed as quickly as possible.
- I recommend using a cooldown that buffs your healing throughput to heal them faster.
- You can safely stand at the bottom of the stairs to heal them without worrying about Unstable Fel Orbs or the Panicked Soul running up and down the stairs.
- Once the Damaged Souls are healed, you can pull the Arbalest from the bottom of the stairs.
- The Arbalest functions the same as in Stage 1, except now when it uses Mana Sting you need to put a Damaged Soul between you to block it.
- This is made complicated by the Panicked Soul running up and down the stairs. Touching the ring around it will fear you for 5-seconds.
- Standing right against the wall while on the stairs allows you to avoid the fear ring in all cases that I've seen.
The fourth wave begins with another gate. I again recommend standing near the far-right corner of the gate to avoid the Panicked Soul.
Once the gate is opened, you're presented with a gauntlet of a dozen Unstable Fel Orbs. Damage these to deactivate them quickly as you make your way up the stairs.
The fifth wave begins with yet another gate, which you can open safely from the far-right corner again.
Once the gate is open, you'll face a Dread Corruptor and three Flickering Eyes.
- The Flickering Eyes function the same as before.
- I recommend killing these first as you don't want one accidentally dying when you don't expect it. They also have very little health.
- The Dread Corruptor casts Mind Spike on you, dealing relatively light damage.
- It also periodically places three to four eyes on the ground (they look very similar to the Flickering Eyes), which shoot out short beams and rotate. You should avoid these beams, however, they didn't seem to be particularly fatal.
This is another filler stage. You can drink and regain mana if you need to and even wait for your cooldowns to come up, then open the gate when you're ready to proceed.
During this stage, you're once again healing your friendly NPCs and Damaged Souls.
- Your friendly NPCs are corrupted and turn against each other, so you must keep them alive while they fight.
- It seems one of the NPCs ends up being targeted by the other two, and will be taking the bulk of the damage.
- You're also required to heal a total of eight Damaged Souls. These appear in sets of three and pre-set locations around the room.
- Every Soul you don't heal that reaches Erdris will spawn as an enemy add in Stage 6.
- I recommend using a throughput boosting cooldown and healing as many adds as you can in the first three to four sets.
- I was able to heal three Souls on the first set, two Souls on the second and third sets, and one Soul on the fourth set before any of them reached Erdris. This meant I had two adds to face in Stage 6.
During this stage, you'll be fighting against a number of enemies which is determined by how many Damaged Souls you didn't heal in the previous stage. The enemies are the same types from Stage 1 and should be handled as such.
Stage 7 (Final Stage)
During this stage, you'll finally be fighting against Erdris.
- Erdris will randomly jump to your location and leave behind a fel pool, don't stand in these except as-noted below.
- Try to position these as close to each other as possible, you will run out of space in the room if you aren't careful.
- When you're affected by Ignite Soul, stand in a fel pool or otherwise damage yourself as low as safely possible to mitigate the damage you do to the friendly NPCs when it expires.
- If you have around 3.5 million health, plan on damaging yourself to at least half-health to be safe.
- After this goes off, plan on using a group-healing cooldown to bring all the NPCs back to full health.
- I recommend helping DPS as much as possible in this stage. The faster Erdris dies, the less Ignite Souls you need to deal with and the less likely the room fills up with fel pools.
That's it! Good luck on your artifact challenge!