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Onyxia, Healer Guide

Updated 1 year, 6 months ago for patch 1.13.6 and Season of Mastery by Preston. View the change log.

Onyxia Dungeon Journal ModelThis page covers a healer-focused strategy for Onyxia in Onyxia's Lair. While it's tailored for healers, other roles may also find the information useful. If you have any suggestions or feedback, you can leave a comment below or tweet @PrestonDvorak.

This guide has been updated and maintained based on my own experiences with the encounter, logs information, and Dungeon Journal information. I'll continue to update it as-needed.

General Mechanics and Abilities

To enter the raid, each player will need a Drakefire Amulet which is acquired from the quest line that begins with Warlord's Command (H) \ Dragonkin Menace (A).

This is a multi-stage encounter during which players will be fighting against Onyxia and her brood.

All Stages

  • Avoid the two hallways of eggs on either side of the room. Entering the hallway will cause several Onyxian Whelps to spawn that must be killed.

Stage One - Onyxia

This stage begins the encounter and ends when Onyxia reaches 65% health.

Stage Two - Airborne

This stage begins when Onyxia reaches 65% health and ends when Onyxia reaches 40% health.

  • At the beginning of this stage, Onyxia walks to the center of the room and flies into the air.
  • While in the air, Onyxia moves between set positions on the edge of the room (north, northeast, east, southeast, south, southwest, west, northwest).
  • When Breath is cast, move to avoid the path in front of her that will extend straight across the entire room to avoid the fatal damage when the cast finishes.
  • Stay at least 8-yards away from other players to avoid extra damage from Fireball.

Stage Three - Grounded

This stage begins when Onyxia reaches 40% health and ends when Onyxia is killed.

  • At the beginning of this stage, Onyxia will land in the center of the room.
  • Flame Breath, Wing Buffet, and Tail Sweep continue from stage one.
  • Fears all players using Bellowing Roar.
  • Periodically spawns Onyxian Whelps from the side hallways.
  • The cracks in the ground will spew lava, damaging nearby players.

Season of Mastery Differences

All Stages

  • Accompanied by two Onyxian Drakes.
    • Onyxian Drake
      • The tanks will be dealing with the light damage over time from Vicious Rend.
      • Don't stand in front to avoid Flame Breath.

Stage Two - Airborne

  • Stay at least 5-yards away from other players to avoid chaining the light damage over time and disorient effect from Engulfing Flames.
  • Two Onyxian Warders spawn at the beginning of the stage.
    • Onyxian Warder
      • Dispel Flame Lash (magic) to remove the reduced Fire Resistance effect.
      • Don't stand in front to avoid Cleave.

Stage Three - Grounded

  • Onyxian Warders continue to spawn every ~60-seconds.

Resistance Levels

  • All players should have as much Fire Resistance as possible without sacrificing their other stats.
  • Tanks may need to add Fire Resistance as necessary to make Flame Breath manageable.

Healing Notes

The notes below mostly pertain to progression difficulty, meaning if you out-gear the difficulty you're on or use extra healers they may not apply.

  • Healing this encounter is likely to start out relatively easy and get more difficult through each stage.
  • Try to avoid healing right when Onyxia lands in stage three to avoid getting aggro before a tank has a chance to. 
  • If you get aggro on any Onyxian Whelps, be ready to run to the off-tank.

Debuffs to Track


Healer DBM Settings for Onyxia Thumbnail
Healer DBM Settings for Onyxia


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Changelog - View the last ten changes. - +

November 10, 2021 - 6:04 pm (Onyxia) - Added Season of Mastery differences.

October 04, 2019 - 6:51 pm (Onyxia) - Added DBM settings.

October 04, 2019 - 6:30 pm (Onyxia) - Added guide.