Dol Guldur instance cluster: difficulty tier differences

When you have to scale an instance from a single level and single difficulty tier to multiple levels and multiple difficulty tiers, there are going to be some changes, not just to the loot and enemies, but to the instance mechanics as well. If you were familiar at all with the pre-Update 9 Barad Guldur instances, you likely noticed a huge difference walking into them after the Update 9 changes. And if you haven’t yet tried them, they’re worth doing if only for the quick and easy deeds.

Overall, you can expect mobs to have more Morale and Power on tier II and they hit much harder. Some of the trash mobs may use certain attacks on a certain tier, but I haven’t researched this extensively. But don’t worry, knockbacks are still alive and plentiful on both tiers of Sammath Gûl.

Loot is marginally better and at level 85 on tier II, challenges open up as well as the chance for better loot if you can complete them.

As a rule of thumb, a decently geared PUG can complete these instances on tier I, but tier II is meant to stretch your skills to the limit. Only the well-prepared ought try these challenges. Part of that preparation includes accepting that you might not get the loot you’re looking for in one try.

Sword-hall of Dol Guldur

  • Tier I: You fight just the three bosses one after the other. Carchrien the Morroval still spawns loads of bats, though.
  • Tier II: You fight two groups of mobs, then a boss, two more groups, another boss, then the last set. The spawns are timed so if you don’t defeat a wave fast enough, you’ll quickly become overwhelmed. This version is most similar to the pre-Update 9 instance.
  • Tier II challenge, level 85 only: Fight all the mobs at the same time (including bosses)

Warg-pens of Dol Guldur

  • Tier I: Wargs won’t eat the steroid-infused meat and become supercharged.

Dungeons of Dol Guldur

  • Tier I: The Guldur Keepers and Sentinels are missing from the corridors, only the patrolling Guldur Thugs, the Elf prisoners and the broken prisoners are left making this walk in the park.
  • Tier I: You can get caught by Guldur Thugs as many times as you want without them closing the wings. Not until you free a prisoner will they close a wing.
  • On both tiers in addition to the Warden at the end, you have to face three Guldur Thugs which often pummel your rescued prisoners into submission if you can’t aggro them quick enough.

Sammath Gûl

  • Tier I: Fewer trash mobs (e.g., the last pull before Gorothúl has three mobs instead of five)
  • Tier I: Fewer bone piles to trip over that activate Guldur Spirits
  • Tier I: No challenge, so no access to the final boss, Demafaer
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