GW2. A complete guide to the fifth Guild Wars 2 raid wing, Hall of Chains, which includes the bosses Soulless Horror, River of Souls, Statues of Grenth, and Dhuum.
Begin by opening Hall of Chains through the raid portal in the Lions Arch Aerodrome.
Soulless Horror (First Encounter)
Soulless Horror is a difficult encounter due to the amount of pressure that the fight puts on the squad constantly, causing them to make decisions based on where mechanics appear.
Condition damage is optimal for this boss because it is one long phase; and the boss attacks quickly, making Confusion even more effective. Also it makes positioning the Tormented Dead much easier to have residual conditions on them.
Condition Cleanse can reduce the pressure taken by the squad.
Cleave or Piercing damage will help to kill the Wurms and Tormented Dead.
- Renegade Shortbow
- Necromancer Utility
Knockbacks will help to clear up the platform because Tormented Dead leave a dangerous area on the ground.
- Ranger Longbow
- Guardian Hammer
CC will be necessary to break the defiance bar periodically.
Tanks – This fight requires two tanks. They must pick up the green and red rune on the ledge above the main platform to begin the fight which will give them an ability. Whoever tanks the boss gets a stacking debuff on them over time that increases their damage taken. Because each stack refreshes the duration of all stacks, the only way to remove the debuff is for it to wear off. Tanks must swap who has the boss attacking them using the special action key as soon as their debuff wears off.
Pusher – The Tormented Dead mechanic might get knocked all over the place if there is a lack in coordination, so it is simpler to assign one player to always knock the Tormented Dead out of the group or off the platform before it dies. Others can help sometimes, but letting one person take the lead will prevent miscommunication. Often this is a druid with the Marksmanship trait Lead the Wind and a longbow for as well as .
Timing is key to performing this role effectively. The Tormented Dead can’t be pushed out too early or it comes back to the group before it dies, and it can’t be pushed out too late or it dies immediately to cleave. Because this boss heavily favors condition damage already, it is safe to assume you will have conditions on the Tormented Dead which will eventually kill it after you push it out. If you are using a Necromancer with , try to coordinate with them. Push the mob out of the group with your first knockback to control how fast it dies, but wait to use a second knockback until after the mob has enough conditions to die. Then push it off the platform or to a safer area. See video below for a better idea how the flow of the kiter and DPS works.
Necrosis – Every 12 seconds, the boss will apply a debuff to the tank which increases their damage taken by 40%. Every stack will multiply that amount taken, making it impossible for tanks to survive after a while. Whoever is not currently tanking the boss should wait until all of their stacks have faded and then use the special action key to become the tank.
Corrupt the Living – Soulless Horror pressures the tanks with her damaging attacks more than any other boss, which deal even more damage the longer they have been fixated. There will be many orange circles which spawn in front of her, meaning everyone should stay behind the boss. She also spins, damaging those around her. These will give torment and poison, making it even harder to heal through her onslaught. Tanks should bring cleanses and plenty of blocks/evades.
Flesh Wurms – At the beginning of the encounter, the platform will be littered with these, and they will spit projectiles at random squad members. Simply move the boss around the platform at the start and clear these out. They do not respawn.
Vortex Slash – An orange circle will appear around the boss and deal moderate damage when fully filled. Afterwards, a second orange circle will appear starting further from the boss. Avoid the first and second by dodging inwards rather than dodging outwards and needing to dodge twice.
Death Bloom – Orange cones will appear out of the boss, dealing moderate damage to those who stand in them after a few seconds. Position in between them to avoid. After 66% the boss will begin creating Death Blooms with 8 cones which near the boss are too tight to stand between. Either dodge them at the right time or move away from the boss where there is enough room to stand between the cones.
There will also be a break bar attack after the 8 coned Death Bloom at 66% and every second Death Bloom after that point. If not broken, the boss will fear and wipe the entire party. Save CCs for this moment. Any walls currently on the platform will disappear when the break bar appears, so understanding this the party can choose to ignore positioning around a wall when the second Death Bloom is about to happen after 66%.
Spinning Scythes – Do not get hit by these slow moving scythes or you will be corrupted of all your boons. They do not change direction, so it is easy to predict their path.
The two main mechanics you will need to worry about due to their interaction and how they change the flow of the fight are:
Tormented Dead – After 90% every 20 seconds a Tormented Dead will spawn in the middle of the platform. These will attack the squad but when killed they will drop a large red circle on the ground that will pulse damage and corrupt all boons of players who stand in the circle. Making sure the Tormented Dead dies in a convenient location and positioning the boss around any poorly placed AoE is the difference between success and a wipe.
It is the job of the Pusher to decide where and when to knock the Tormented Dead out of the group. They can knock the Dead off of the platform where it will not create an Area of Effect, or if things do not go as planned they can stack them on top of previously affected areas or near the edge of the platform. Usually this is done by a Druid with a longbow and Glyph of the Tides, and should be timed when there are enough conditions on the Dead. The tank should kite the boss near the edge of the platform to make it easier to knock the Tormented Dead off.
Surging Souls – Orange Rectangles will cross the platform from the north, west, east, or south. Any player that touches this wall will be instantly killed. There is always a gap in the wall for the squad to squeeze through. As the fight progresses these walls will provide fewer gaps between them and the platform will become smaller.
Turn your camera constantly to see incoming walls and look at the minimap to see where walls are coming from. Their location and orientation is indicated by skulls. Any gap in the skulls will show where the safe spot is. If Tormented Dead are littering the floor with AoE it can be harder to position around these walls, but a wall is always worse than the floor AoE, so move through those quickly as a last resort.
At 90%, 66% and 33% the outer ring of the platform will fade away, leaving the squad less and less room to move around, making poorly placed Tormented Dead much more punishing. Also when reaching these thresholds the walls will become larger but reset the pace they appear.
High DPS through confusion and conditions will make this fight much easier because the timing of the walls is delayed by reaching certain health thresholds. However, a risky composition or strategy can be easily punished because if players die off during the later stages of the fight, it can become much more difficult to push through the hardest part. Knowing when the break bar will occur can also help save time moving around walls.
Start by tanking the boss on top of the Wurms so they can be cleaved down. Focus on keeping the boss still as long as possible because it will increase party DPS and walls are small enough to easily avoid at the start. Try to tank Soulless Horror near the edge of the platform but not too close that players can die from falling when the edges break off. This will allow the pusher to reliably place the Tormented Dead away from the center of the platform.
Players should also be mindful of their skills which can incidentally do CC. If the pusher is trying to move the Tormented Dead, it is possible to overwrite their knockbacks with other CC. The pusher should also gauge the party’s ability to cleave the Tormented Dead. If there are plenty of conditions on the Tormented Dead and it will die soon, it is a good time to push it out. Even if the pusher succeeds in knocking the Tormented Dead out, if it is too soon it can walk back into the party and drop its area on the group.
Every player should be aware of the Tormented Dead because in the case that it does not get pushed out, one or two players may adjust their build for some pushes to make up for mistakes. If it dies inside the raid, everyone needs to move, don’t wait for the tank to move the boss, get away immediately. Getting downed in the boon removing area is almost impossible to salvage, and you will die there. Stay together and be willing to follow the tank’s positioning when they decide where it is safe to stand to avoid walls. Splitting up is never necessary.
Soulless Horror Challenge Mode
Challenge mode will increase the rate that tanks obtain stacks of Necrosis, increasing the pressure they take. Wurms will respawn throughout the fight, increasing the pressure that the squad takes. The platform will start out smaller than normal, making the later stage of the fight even smaller and harder to handle the Tormented Dead mechanic. Because the main issue with this encounter on normal mode is following through and cleanly performing the mechanics, the challenge mode is the same thing but is more strict with your performance. Build a composition with high damage, sturdy tanks, and keep the Tormented Dead off the platform as cleanly as possible.
River of Souls (Second Encounter)
River of Souls is a short escort event where you must help Desmina reach the end of the path while protecting her and surviving. Minimal DPS is required so players should bring more support capabilities.
Aegis – Blocking attacks can help keep Desmina alive and will reset the ticking damage from being outside the safety bubble.
- Guardian Utility
- Chronomancer Utility
Healing – Staying together and healing will make things go much more smoothly.
Superspeed – will increase the speed that Desmina travels across the River of Souls. Usually scrappers can provide this.
Front Group – Because it clutters the area around Desmina, it is not only more efficient but also easier to only have a few players in the bubble with Desmina. The rest should push ahead and kill spirits while staying together and sharing aegis and heals to survive the pulsing damage.
Back Group – Only a couple healers should stay with Desmina because she will take damage, but will constantly move forward because the Front Group is taking out Enervators. They should try to aegis to block the explosions and provide heals to Desmina while surviving the mechanics. Targeted support abilities will prioritize players before Desmina, so no more than four in the back group is preferred.
Dying upon the River of Souls, so long as you do not fall off the path, will not result in complete death. Your soul will release from your body and you are free to move around and collect orbs. After collecting five orbs your body will be reunited with your soul but you will not be offered more than a second chance. Try to get the last orb near the safety bubble to prevent a second death.
Soul Siphon – While escorting Desmina there will be a protective bubble surrounding her. Standing on the River of Souls without the protection of Desmina’s bubble will cause increasing amounts of damage. This damage resets by going inside the bubble or blocking a tick of damage. Enervators will break Desmina’s bubble, removing any safety from the siphon.
Spatial Rifts – These rifts will pull nearby players towards them while they exist. Hitting them with 10 instances of damage (10 hits) will make them disappear. Use quick hitting attacks, damage does not make a difference. These can make it difficult to handle other mechanics and position inside the bubble. Having movement speed can counteract the strength of the pull.
Lightning – Players near Desmina will attract lightning strikes. An orange circle will appear underneath them. Once the circle is half filled it will detach from the player, and once it is fully filled it will deal damage and stun anyone in the circle. It is important for players with the lightning spawns on them to stand near the back of the safety bubble so that the lightning strikes after the bubble has passed the circle, leaving more space and preventing Desmina from being damaged. These lightning strikes can also be used to the party’s advantage by placing them on enemies to kill them. This is useful for clearing out the Spirit Hordes.
Enervators – These spirits stand at fixed locations on the pathway. They will weaken and halt Desmina, removing her protective bubble and forcing the party to take massive pressure from the Soul Siphon. Since they will remove the bubble anyway, the party can run ahead to the Enervators and take our their moderate health to keep Desmina progressing down the path.
Bombers – These spirits will appear at specific points on the path. When they get in range of Desmina they will gain a defiance bar and explode, dealing massive damage to the squad and Desmina if it is not broken. This damage can be blocked or stopped by breaking their defiance bar. Desmina can also block the attack if the party shares aegis to her.
Half way through the escort, walls and skeletons will start to appear, making it much more difficult to handle the Bombers and Enervators.
Surging Souls – Just like the Soulless Horror encounter, walls will travel across the path and instantly kill any who touch them. If Spatial Rifts are active and Lightnings are placed inside the bubble, it can be very difficult to avoid the walls. Staying out of the bubble to avoid them is fine for a few seconds.
Spirit Hordes – These skeletons will swarm and damage allies. While Desmina’s bubble is gone they can be very dangerous, but as long as the party is moving they are easily avoided and have low health to die to cleave.
Because the mechanics stack up later on and the Enervators can be taken out at any time, it is easier to send a squad ahead to take out Enervators early on. Desmina is also easier to heal when there are less players near her because the heals will prioritize players. For this reason a split strategy is preferred, but a single group strategy can also work if damage and CC is quick.
The front group should start mounted and run ahead while the back group talks to Desmina to start the encounter. Because the soul siphon will eventually pressure the front group with no protective bubble, they will want to share aegis and healing to each other. They should run across the path, taking out Enervators and sticking together. If one person falls behind, everyone should go back to help them. Time is not important, only survival, as the front group will finish long before the back group does. After finishing all the Enervators on the path, the DPS players can wait at the safe end of the path. Some healers can go back to ensure Desmina survives.
The back group will need to react to Bombers by either CCing them or sharing protection and aegis to Desmina. They will need to place Lightning away from Desmina, preferably on top of Spirit Hordes to clear them out. Also the back group needs to survive being pulled around by Spatial Rifts and also avoid walls while healing Desmina and giving her movement speed buffs. When there are many Spirit Hordes attacking Desmina, it can be difficult to block the Bomber explosions, timing on the aegis will be important, or clearing out the Hordes so they don’t remove the aegis.
Statues of Grenth (Third/Fourth/Fifth Encounter)
The Statues of Grenth is a series of three encounters but each can be completed independently of one another. Eliminating all of these will restore Grenth’s influence and allow you to approach the final boss, Dhuum, while also showing some of the mechanics you will use to defeat him.
Fly or glide from the Hall of Judgment to the north icy ledge. This fight is a balance between DPS and sustain. Rather than DPS making the mechanic of this fight easier, it makes it harder.
The Broken King will stand still in the middle of the ledge and attack the player with the most toughness. Their basic attack will deal massive damage to any in front of them, but since the boss will not move the tank can face them away from the group and then stand at range to not take hits. No one should ever stand in front of the boss, even to satisfy the Ice Orbs. The tank should face the boss away from the orbs so that players can stand in them safely.
Ice Orbs – Every 1% of the bosses health an Ice Orb will spawn and slowly fall towards the ground. If it touches the ground without a player standing in its Green Circle at that time, the entire party will take massive damage. However, they will get a stacking debuff when doing so. After the player gains three stacks of this debuff they cannot soak another orb or they will become an ice block and lose control of their character until they die to heavy damage pulses. Players who have been ice blocked can receive large amounts of healing from allies to be saved.
Each stack of this debuff wears off individually, so avoid standing in a Green with three stacks. If really needed you can die to prevent others from taking damage if no one else can make it to the Green. Ideally the party will slow down on DPS if Ice Orbs are spawning faster than they can be absorbed.
Icy Fissures – These cracks in the ice will heavily damage players who stand in them. Stay at maximum melee range or further to avoid standing in these. They will be shifted periodically so be aware.
Hailstorm – There will be orange triangles that deal decent damage to players standing there. Try to avoid these to minimize raid pressure. If you need to stand in a Green Circle, wait until the last second to do so. Do not take unnecessary damage standing in a Green Circle that just formed.
Tank the boss facing away from the squad and burst DPS at the start when the squad does not have stacks of the debuff. Slow down DPS later when players are starting to get 2 to 3 stacks. Use positioning to communicate which greens you will be going for, so stand near but not necessarily in the green you will take. The enrage timer is 3:30 minutes so players cannot play too safely or the boss will immediately wipe the party upon enrage, but going too fast will result in too many orbs and players dying off to ice blocks.
Eater of Souls
Fly or glide to the ledge to the south of the Hall of Judgment. This encounter requires a bit of coordination but is not very punishing due to no timer. Take your time if necessary to complete this, but performing the tasks perfectly will speed up the encounter significantly and staying out of the poison will prevent most of the pressure.
This encounter can be confusing as there are many mechanics that do not intuitively effect the encounter. There is a series of tasks that must be performed to recover enough spirit energy in order to defeat the Eater of Souls. Otherwise it will just regenerate when reaching 5%. Avoid standing in the acid that the boss will puke on the ground or any spider webs, and clear out any skeletons that can pressure the party. The tank is decided by toughness, and the tank should keep the boss away from the party when they are not damaging it or while standing on the green-lit tile.
A Twisted Spirit will spawn on the edge of the platform shortly after engaging the Eater of Souls. Killing this spider will release five golden orbs into the middle of the platform. Players must walk over these orbs and then use the special action key to throw the orb onto one of the tiles with five recesses in it which is glowing green. Walking over multiple orbs will overwrite them, delaying the encounter. Also if you fail to throw the orb directly onto the green-lit tile it will delay the encounter and another Twisted Spirit must be slain.
If five orbs have been thrown on the correct tile, all five of the recesses will be lit up. At this point damage the Eater of Souls to 5% health while on top of the filled tile which will then release spirit energy into the air. To recover the spirit energy, players must enter the green circle created when a Lost Spirit manifests on the platform every 50 seconds. It isn’t necessary to enter every Spirit, but if no one enters a Manifested Spirit it will create a shockwave that knocks back players for a long time, which should be jumped or dodged or you can be potentially knocked into the acid. One player cannot collect orbs through consecutive spirits because there is a debuff that will kill them if they attempt to go again.
After becoming a wisp, players must collect the spirit energy by moving up, down and bursting forwards using the new skills they obtain. They have 30 seconds to collect five orbs or their souls will be depleted and die. If there are not enough orbs to survive, players can leave the fight area by flying away from the platform which will only down them instead of kill them.
The Eater of Souls may gain a break bar during this time which will suck all players towards the boss, making it difficult to collect spirit energy. Players with plenty of CC should remain on the platform to break the defiance bar while the others should collect spirit energy. Also a player can allow the Eater of Souls to eat them which will end the break bar and allow the rest of the retrievers to move freely. They will only be downed by this.
Each time the boss spits orbs into the air there will be 10, and 20 are needed to fill the Spirit Energy bar. This means that two rotations of Twisted Soul > Golden Orbs > Damage Boss on Green Tile will create enough spirit energy in the air to finish the fight. Each player can collect 5 orbs so there are two different strategies you can employ.
22 – This strategy means that two players will go into the first spirit that appears after the first rotation of orbs are spit out and then another two players will go in the next time.
05 – This strategy means that five players will go into the spirit after two rotations of orbs are spit out. Only four are needed but the extra can account for any mistakes or to fly into the Eater of Souls to stop the break bar.
The 05 strategy is faster because it gets the orbs out faster, however, if one of the parts in that process goes wrong such as missing an orb toss or killing the boss off of the tile, the fight will be delayed anyway. The orbs also only last for a couple minutes in the air, so if too many delays occur you should revert to sending two into the spirit.
Continue this process until the Spirit Energy bar is full, and then kill the Eater of Souls.
Eye of Fate and Eye of Judgment
Enter the cave underneath the Hall of Judgment. There will be two eyes within labyrinths on each side of the middle platform and Light Orbs on top of the middle platform. The eyes must be defeated within 15 seconds of each other or they will regenerate back to 10%. However, they cannot be targeted or hit, only seen. The Light Orbs must be detonated with Skill #2 Flare near the eyes, which will stun them and expose them to attacks. Once the fight begins it is not easy to get up to the middle platform where the Light Orbs spawn since you can’t mount in combat.
There should be two players who stay on the middle platform and then two groups of four which split between the north and south side to attack both eyes simultaneously. The two players on the middle platform will need to throw orbs with Skill #1 Throw Light to each side. There are three orbs but two sides to split them evenly between. To make it easy to give each side equal amounts of orbs, the two orb throwers should each decide which of the end orbs they take and alternate who takes the middle orb. Try to throw the orbs where the eye moves to alert the party to its next location.
The two groups of four should also dedicate who will pick up and use the orbs on the eye. Giving Lieutenant permissions to this player so they can assign a squad marker to their eye to find its location is also useful. Classes with buffs and longer CC traits should pick up and detonate the orbs. Marksmanship Rangers who take the trait called Moment of Clarity, Elementalists with the Air trait Stormsoul, and Paralyzation Sigils allow longer duration stuns from the Light Orb. Using any CCs will overwrite the long stun from the Light Orb, so everyone should remove or avoid the CCs from their build. Try to use the Light Orb right before the Exposed debuff wears off to chain stun them, preventing them from porting away.
The eyes themselves will channel a beam that will deal massive damage over a short period of time. This attack can be obstructed by any of the walls. The eyes will also pulse global damage if they have not been flashed by light in the last 35 seconds after reaching 85% health. Eyes will periodically port to another random location in the labyrinth if they are not stunned which is why it is important to have a clean rotation of Light Orb chain CCs. At 70% they will spawn a Minotaur that will wander the labyrinth. If the eye is stunned while it passes this health threshold, the Minotaur does not spawn. The Minotaur can steal orbs and prevent healing while also attacking the party if it finds them. Detonate Light Orbs and kill the Minotaur if it engages the party
Light Thieves will try to take orbs from the squad. CC them to prevent them from picking up an orb before you can. If they pick up an orb they can be killed to drop it. Orbs will also expire 45 seconds after first being picked up, so they can’t be hoarded. Generally it is best to throw three orbs before beginning to detonate them on the eye to ensure a good burst opener. Later on when the orbs are coming in more slowly, your side may need to slow down or speed up according to how fast the other side is going. If necessary stop DPS but keep using orbs to prevent the eye from doing damage to the raid. If one of the eyes regenerates because both were not killed within 15 seconds, the squad should not panic and keep staggering each eye’s death. Stop and coordinate the final damage dealt to each eye.
There is a strategy which involves most of the party going for one eye at a time and using portals to move between each side. This is a very all-or-nothing strategy because if mistakes are made the party can run out of portals or the eye that has been neglected can start pulsing raid wide damage. It is necessary to have a high DPS composition and pristine coordination with no one accidentally CCing the eyes to pull this method off.
See the Achievements section below for strategies to complete the 5 minute achievement Statues of Limitation.
Dhuum (Final Encounter)
Dhuum is one of the hardest bosses in the game, with many punishing mechanics, plenty of individual responsibilities, and you’ll need all seven Reapers and several players to survive until the end or all is lost.
Support allies during key moments like the Greater Death Mark with Barrier/Cleansing/Healing to help them survive
- Tempest Elite
- Renegade Heal
Teleporting utilities can help players manage the mechanics that require splitting from the group quickly, and then return to the safety of their allies.
- Thief Utility
- Scourge Utility
Boon Removal is necessary when Dhuum steals boons.
Aegis can protect players from Dhuums Scythe attack which can easily down in one hit if the situation requires repositioning the boss. Outside of Desmina’s protective bubble during the final 10% phase, the ramping, pulsing damage can be reset or delayed with aegis.
Tank – Toughness decides who tanks Dhuum. Position the boss near the current greens so that players can fulfill their mechanic but also position around the other mechanics to protect the raid.
Kiter – Dhuum’s Messengers will appear periodically and cannot be killed, yet will easily kill anything they touch. They must be lured away from Reapers and the squad by a kiter who can survive on their own and move quickly. The kiter must also have a fast ranged weapon to tag the Messengers.
Reaper Greens – Three players must coordinate a schedule with the Reapers to become a spirit and then collect souls. If they miss their schedule the entire encounter fails. If they fail their task they will die and complicate the schedule.
Enforcers – The large red orbs floating around the outside of the room will spawn Enforcers, and players who do the Reaper mechanic can prevent extra enforcers from spawning by collecting the large red orbs. These skeletons will focus on killing Reapers. The main party will run around and kill these at the start. They are more susceptible to power damage than conditions, but they can be blinded, immobilized, and their attacks can be blocked by providing aegis to protect the Reapers.
Messengers – These golems cannot be killed and deal massive damage to anyone in their immediate proximity. They will attack the Reapers or the first player that attacks them.The kiter should tag them and then run for their life. While kiting the Messengers, the kiter can pick up the orbs in the middle of the room for superspeed. The Messengers will despawn after 15 seconds.
There are medium sized red orbs that the players doing Greens can collect to prevent Messenger spawns, but their locations are less reliable and cannot be expected.
Deathlings – These small spiders will spawn and attack Reapers. They can be easily killed and don’t do much damage to the Reapers, but if ignored they can eventually kill a Reaper. Everyone should contribute to clearing these out on nearby Reapers, but the western-most Reaper will often get the most Deathlings on it, so having someone periodically clear them out will be necessary.
Reapers – All seven Reapers must be kept alive or the encounter fails. They can be healed and protected, but Dhuum will attempt to grasp one of them every 30 seconds starting near Dhuum’s throne and rotating in a clockwise manner. A player must sacrifice their soul by standing inside the brief green area around the Reaper to save it. The players designated to do the Reaper mechanic will need to perform a schedule of going to the Reapers. Players receive a debuff for saving a Reaper. Reapers can also be stealthed to make Enforcers change target.
Fractured Spirit is gained whenever someone enter the Reaper green. If they attempt to fulfill the Reaper mechanic again while they have this debuff, they will save the Reaper but instantly die. The debuff wears off after a minute and a half. Because this mechanic happens every 30 seconds, at least three players must engage in the mechanic to have enough time in between for the debuff to wear off.
After saving the Reaper, the player must recover their soul by collecting five orbs. They should also collect a big orb to prevent an Enforcer from spawning which will always be clockwise to their current location. Stay out of the direct center area because this is the soul vacuum which will mean instant death if you go there as a spirit. Try to collect orbs near the middle at first, letting them come to you. After getting the big orb go towards the outside to collect freshly spawned orbs. Failing to collect five orbs will mean your death and someone must cover your role from then on.
For more detail on how to perform the Reaper Green mechanic, watch this video:
Time Bomb – Around every 16 seconds a player will get an affliction debuff. They gain a special action key skill to detonate their bomb. They should not use the special action key but rather move away from the group. Once the bomb goes off it will damage any other ally for how close they are to the location of the bomb. It is best to move far away to minimize the damage dealt to the party, and if the bomb goes off inside the group it will down everyone.
Because the next bomb will spawn 3 seconds after the last detonates, waiting without using the special action key can help to minimize travel times. Also try to be mindful of the kiter and Reaper players when deciding where to drop off the bomb. You may need to use it early, for example if you are a designated Reaper player but the Reaper is next to your squad and you need to do the Reaper but also don’t want to bomb your squad. In that case, move out quickly to bomb early and then go to the Reaper.
The party will rotate around the room clockwise, clearing Enforcers and avoiding Messengers as the Reapers are saved.
Dhuum will get off of his throne and start attacking the player with the highest toughness at 8:00 remaining in the fight. His basic attack will swipe in front of him and create marks in a wide area around him. The safest place to stand is right behind Dhuum, so the tank and the rest of the party should be relatively close with the party behind but inside Dhuum, and the tank in front of but inside Dhuum.
Out of all of Dhuum’s mechanics, the two that the party has to pay attention to the most are the Lesser Death Mark and Greater Death Mark. Dhuum will alternate between using one of these every 40 seconds.
Lesser Death Mark – Dhuum will disappear into the ground and then immediately appear on top of a random player and mark the ground with a large orange circle. Any player that stands in this area will be stripped of all their boons and lose their soul, but they will also most likely go down making it hard to revive them so they can retrieve their soul before they fully die. As soon as Dhuum disappears the party should already be relocating. Because it is random who Dhuum targets with this skill, it is possible for the kiter or one of the players moving bombs out or doing the Reapers to be targeted with it. For this reason it is important that no one stands on top of a Reaper unless it is time to do that mechanic. If a Lesser Death Mark is placed on top of a Reaper it can make it almost impossible to fulfill that mechanic.
Greater Death Mark – Instead of appearing on a random player, Dhuum will appear in the center of the room and release a blast that will knock every player backwards from the way they are facing, not from Dhuum. This will split them from their souls which they must reunite with in several seconds or they die. Then Dhuum will begin sucking every player in towards him where he will have a massive damaging area around him. Everyone except players currently doing the Reaper mechanic will lose 20% of their health, gain 6 stacks of torment, and Dhuum will steal all of the squad’s boons when the soul split happens.
Players should stack together with their backs to the nearest wall so that when they are pushed back they will not be far from their soul and so that everyone can cleanse and heal each other. Keep running away from the boss to avoid being sucked into the center while removing Dhuum’s boons. If he keeps quickness or swiftness it can really destroy your tank.
Time Bombs will also be removed when the soul split occurs. This means that if your Time Bomb will explode after the soul split you can ignore it entirely. However, if you misjudge the timing and the Bomb blows up too close to the squad before the soul split also nukes them, it can be an instant wipe. You don’t want to be alone when the soul split happens because you won’t get support, but you also don’t want to explode the Bomb too close to the group. Knowing that the Greater Death Mark/Soul Split occurs around 40 seconds after the Lesser Mark, you can generally understand when it will happen and players who get the Time Bomb can decide what to do based on a few things:
- If Greater Mark/Soul Split will happen before Time Bomb explodes, stay in the group.
- If Greater Mark/Soul Split will happen very shortly after your Time Bomb, move out quickly and use the special action key to detonate it early so you can regroup and healers can heal up the damage in time for the next mechanic.
- If Greater Mark/Soul Split will happen a decent time after your Time Bomb explodes, move out and wait for it to expire by itself.
Fissures – Dhuum will ocassionally turn towards the center of the room and slam his scythe on the floor, creating fissures that will glow green and then explode after a few seconds, dealing heavy damage and fearing players hit by them. These fissures become more elaborate and harder to avoid the lower Dhuum’s health is.
Shackles – After 60%, every 30 seconds the two players closest to Dhuum besides the tank will become shackled, dealing damage to each other the longer it takes them to break the shackles by moving 1200 range away from each other. The animation is hard to see if stacked tightly but there is a Bell/Chime-like sound notification, so players who get the shackles should first move away from Dhuum and then decide which direction both should go to remove the shackles fastest. If both players miscommunicate and run the same direction it can be disastrous. Be open to changing your direction.
Scythe Rake – at 30% Dhuum will create an orange cone shaped attack that will deal damage and steal boons from players in it. He will also pull players in towards the damaging area. Side step to avoid this.
At 10% all other mechanics will cease and the encounter timer will reset to 1:45 and every player will be turned into a spirit and must gather five orbs to be returned to their bodies. They have 30 seconds to do so before they die. Once returning to their body, players will be inside Desmina’s protective bubble and moving outside of it will result in pulsing damage. This damage can be mitigated by protection and aegis, so pre-buffing before going out helps.
There are seven seals out in the damaging area which must be activated to make Dhuum vulnerable to attack. The squad should coordinate who goes to which seal beforehand, or just indicate which one each player will go to by moving to that side of the protective bubble. When enough players have returned to their bodies and everyone is ready, everyone should go out towards their specific seal and interact with their seal and then head back to the protective bubble. You must interact by pressing the F key and stand still while channeling the seal for a few seconds, but quickness can speed up the channel. Use your healing skills and any mobility to survive long enough to activate your seal and to return to the center.
All seals must be activated within a short time of each other, so if you are too early or too late on your seal, it will require the entire party to go out again. With roughly one and a half minutes to do this phase, having to redo seals more than once can mean running out of time and wiping.
If all seven seals are activated correctly, Dhuum will become vulnerable to attack in the center of the protective bubble. There are no other mechanics so just focus on bursting Dhuum as fast as possible. After 20 seconds Dhuum will need to be sealed again to continue damaging. Conditions will continue to pulse, but he cannot be hit. The squad should quickly buff up quickness and protection and do the seals again to finish Dhuum.
Since Dhuum will grasp a Reaper at fixed times and perform the Death Marks at fixed times, these mechanics will often have the same interaction every attempt. The order in which greens are assigned can be optimized as such:
Green 1 – Highest DPS – They will have the most uptime on the boss because Dhuum gets off the throne right after the Green 1 finishes their second time. If they provide a bonus to the group they will be able to give it more often than the other greens and if they provide great damage that will also be useful.
Green 2 – Support – Lowest uptime and most awkward to perform because the second Green 2 happens right after Dhuum engages the squad. The kiter can do this one if the tank covers the first instance of it. Make sure that the buffs given by this player are not essential or have long cooldowns/durations so they can easily fit them in between their Green rotation.
Green 3 – Non-Essential or Tank – It occurs the least due to being last in the rotation. Otherwise there is nothing too pronounced about the timing of Green 3, so it can be a DPS player or even the tank. If the tank goes to do a Reaper mechanic, Dhuum will sit there and wait for them to come down or attack the next highest toughness player. This can be a bit awkward for boss positioning though.
Have the designated kiter talk to Desmina to start the encounter. The rest of the party should wait until the kiter tags the first Messenger to let loose on the Enforcers and Deathlings that spawn. After the first two Enforcers are down, the squad should head towards Dhuum’s throne where the first green will spawn as well as another Enforcer.
It is the Kiter’s job to keep the Dhuum’s Messengers off of the Reapers and the squad, but not always will there be Messengers to kite. During the pre-event is when most of the Messengers will spawn. The kiter should mainly focus on tagging them as soon as they spawn and then running around with the superspeed gained from the orbs in the center. You can see where the Messengers will spawn by watching the large red orbs that head toward the center of the room. Stay somewhat close to the group to give more room for the Time Bombs to move, but not close enough that your squad can’t move around Messengers. If doing Green 2, have the tank or someone else perform your green the first instance.
The pace of Messenger spawns slows down a lot once Dhuum gets off his throne. It is slow enough that the kiter can perform Greens or even stack on Dhuum to provide buffs to the party. Be mindful of the Reaper at the western Reaper as many of the times Deathlings and Messengers will be there. It is nice to be able to deal damage to clear out any Deathlings at the Reaper at Star or provide heals to any Reapers that have taken damage while you are kiting.
There are many possible locations that Dhuum can be tanked at, but the most reliable strategies involves tanking Dhuum in a location that is convenient for the Reaper mechanic, that avoids the Lesser Death Marks, but also moves the boss as little as possible after Greater Death Marks to maximize damage.
Enforcer Tanking Strategy
This is the most common tanking strategy for Dhuum. The tank will stand right on top of of the last enforcer spawn at Arrow when Dhuum spawns. Try to position Dhuum far enough that the party can cleave both Dhuum and the Enforcer while not standing in front of Dhuum. When the Lesser Death Mark occurs, move closer to the Green Reaper locations between Spiral and Triangle. Keep Dhuum facing away from but near the Green Reapers. The raid should always stand directly behind Dhuum but not directly on top of a Reaper so position Dhuum in a way that is safe and convenient for the rest of the squad.
When the first Greater Death Mark finishes, tank the boss in the center of the room. This allows minimal movement while also allowing the next Lesser Death Mark to be placed in the center of the room. Face the boss away from the path that the players going to the Reapers will take. After the Lesser Death Mark is placed in the center, move towards the other side of the room between the next reaper locations Circle and Heart.
Repeat this process of tanking the boss near the center of the room after a Greater Death Mark, and then moving in between the current Reaper rotation after a Lesser Death Mark. After the third Lesser Death Mark you will go between the Square and Star, and the fourth Lesser Death Mark go between Spiral and Triangle. Everyone else should stand behind Dhuum and only move away from the squad when Shackles or Time Bombs occur or doing a Reaper.
Throne Tanking Strategy
A more aggressive strategy tanks Dhuum right where he spawns at the throne. Stepping on the throne will kill you so caution is still required, but this strategy allows minimal movement and more damage especially from torment and confusion. This is achieved by:
- Controlling the final Enforcer’s path
- Baiting Lesser Death Marks.
Rather than moving Dhuum to the Enforcer, the Enforcer can be manipulated to move towards Dhuum. This is done by stealthing the Reaper that the Enforcer is headed towards. It starts going towards the Triangle Reaper at first. After the Reaper goes stealth it will retarget to the nearest Reaper at Arrow. Stealth the Arrow Reaper and then the Enforcer will head towards the Circle Reaper, passing right through Dhuum so that the raid can cleave both easily.
Stealth is often given to the reapers by a druid with a Smokescale using blast finishers in the smoke field that its F2 creates, or by taking the trait Celestial Shadow which will stealth nearby allies when leaving Celestial Avatar. They can do this while kiting Messengers, doing Green 2, and still making it back in time to lure the Lesser Death Mark.
Instead of moving away, the raid will try to bait the Lesser Death Mark onto the throne. When the Lesser Death Mark is placed, Dhuum will face towards the center of it, meaning he is closer to the backside edge of the mark where the raid can easily still hit him. After 7:10 on the timer, wait until Dhuum does one more auto attack and then everyone stacks on the tank right in front of Dhuum but not on the throne. They can adjust slightly behind Dhuum and the tank can pull Dhuum through the raid afterwards for minimal movement.
Because being knocked into the throne will be fatal, angle your back to the side when the Greater Death Mark occurs. After the Greater Death Mark, keep Dhuum in the center and only split for Reapers and Shackles. The next Lesser Mark happens after 5:50 so try to stack to bait it in the center and then move behind Dhuum again.
Dhuum Challenge Mode
On challenge mode, Dhuum gains 25% more health and the Reapers do not gain nearly as much healing as on normal mode, so much more attention is required for the Reapers. Not much else changes in the fight except for the addition of one new mechanic:
Ender’s Echo – A shadowy clone of Dhuum will charge around the room, picking up any players that touch it. When picked up, these players will be dragged across the room taking constant damage and potentially damage from other mechanics it runs through. Reaching zero health while picked up by the Ender’s Echo will result in instant death. Players can be freed if the rest of the party uses CC to break the Ender’s Echo’s break bar, but there will not always be a break bar. Downed players do not get picked up.
Once the Echo hits a wall it will change direction towards a random player and charge in that direction until it hits another wall. While it is random who is targeted by the Echo, you can still reliably manipulate the positioning of the Echo with where your raid stands. Stack together at maximum melee range before the Ender’s Echo hits a wall and then decide where is best to move to avoid the Echo once it chooses its path. Constantly reposition, expanding and spreading out before the Echo runs through, and stacking tightly afterwards. The tank may struggle to see much beyond Dhuums large model, so try not to bait the Echo towards them. The tank should not hesitate to move the boss frequently to help the raid position around the Echo.
The three most dangerous moments you can get picked up are when the Ender’s Echo changes direction which are:
- When the Echo hits a wall
- When the break bar is broken
- Greater Death Marks will reset the location of the Echo to Dhuum’s Throne
During the soul split after the Greater Death Mark, do not greedily go for your soul if the Ender’s Echo is headed towards you, wait until it passes since you have a decent amount of time to retrieve it. The tank may need to move the boss often, in which case Dhuum’s scythe sweep attack can be facing raid members much more often than in normal mode. Be aware not only of the Ender’s Echo but also of Dhuum’s animations because you can use the area in front of Dhuum to avoid the Echo so long as you dodge or block the scythe attack.
If you’ve made it this far without enabling the Free Camera option and maxing your Field of View, now is the time to do so. Play a build you are extremely comfortable with so you can auto pilot the build and pay full attention to your surroundings. You need to constantly move your camera to look around. Someone with Lieutenant or Squad Leader can put a raid marker on the Ender’s Echo so that you can know its position even when you can’t see it by looking at the mini-map. Every player has the responsibility to not get abducted by the Echo because it forces others to get them out and overall creates problems. In the transition between 10% and turning into a spirit to collect orbs, players can run into the Ender’s Echo to completely skip the orb collecting part.
Builds with blocks, evades, ranged damage, or damage that can be used while moving are great for this fight because the constant repositioning can often put you in dangerous positions. If really necessary, you can get hit by many other mechanics because you can be revived, However, if you get picked and can’t be free you won’t be revived.
Souled Out -10AP
Defeat The Soulless Horror
The Ferrywoman – 5AP
Complete the River of Souls event.
Icebreaker – 5AP
Defeat the Broken King in the Statue of Ice event.
Deathsaver – 5AP
Defeat the Eater of Souls in the Statue of Death event.
Sore Eyes – 5AP
Defeat the Eyes of Judgment and Fate in the Statue of Darkness event.
What’s Death May Never Die – 1MP – 10AP
Defeat the final boss, Dhuum.
You can obtain a as a novelty chair to sit in anywhere in the world. These drop very rarely from Dhuum and can be sold or bought on the Trading Post, or you can buy account bound versions from the raid vendor using 2,000 Gaeting Shards and 100 gold.
Necro Dancer 10AP
Defeat the Soulless Horror without being hit by Vortex Slash. A composition with many guardians sharing aegis, and strategic dodging can easily go the entire fight without being hit once by this attack.
Exile Executioner – 15AP
Defeat the Soulless Horror while the challenge mote is active.
Statues of Limitation – 10AP
Complete all three statue events within 5 minutes. The timer begins after completing the first statue event, and therefore it is better to do whichever event takes the longest first. I find the Eater of Souls event to be the longest because it is heavily time gated. The Eyes of Judgment/Fate event can be very short if performed perfectly, but if coordination issues arise, it can delay the fight. The Broken King is normally a reliable encounter, but when trying to do this achievement you are forced to DPS faster to meet the timer which can cause extra pressure to collect more Ice Orbs. Because many issues can occur with the Eye or Broken King event, the preferable order of events is Eater of Souls > Eyes/Broken King.
Also, you don’t have time to optimize your composition in between each Statue because swapping would cause downtime. You should optimize your composition for Eyes and Broken King because if you are doing Eater of Souls first you can take your time with a safe composition since the timer only starts when you finish not when you begin the event. You’ll want a solid composition that can split up for Eyes and have good burst damage, but also the ability to survive when split up for Broken King.
- Grenade Holosmiths and Dragonhunters are great DPS to take because they have the option to do burst damage for the Eyes, but also have great self sustain and ranged damage for Broken King.
- Scourges and Deadeyes also can offer a survivable DPS option for Broken King.
- Healing Tempest can be used as an Orb Thrower for the Eyes which doesn’t require a specific build and then it can be a powerful healer for Broken King which can prevent their team from dying. A Mirage can throw orbs on the Eyes and tank Broken King safely from range with a staff.
- Chronomancers are a good source of quickness for Eyes since they can be more useful at range or when split up on Broken King than a Scrapper or Firebrand.
There is also an out of combat strategy which ensures the highest success rate, but requires some coordination by splitting your squad and having them complete Eater of Souls and Broken King simultaneously then converging for the Eyes.
This can be done by having one player sit out of the Eater of Souls encounter while the other 9 progress it (at the Heart in the image below). Once the spirit energy is fully recovered, DO NOT kill the boss. Instead have another player with good damage but also good survivability solo the Eater of Souls while the other 8 squad members glide to the River of Souls where they will die. Have a DPS player sit at the River of Souls out of combat who can revive all 8 players of your squad while the single player kites the Eater of Souls. I suggest having a build that can survive without hitting anything because damaging the boss can prematurely kill it. The rest of the squad should play safely as well, the timer is not activated yet but if anyone dies on the Eater of Souls platform they will be unable to be revived.
Once everyone has been revived on the River of Souls, the squad minus the player left to solo the Eater of Souls can go and defeat the Broken King with 9 players. When Broken King is finished, the solo player can finish off the Eater of Souls. Since the timer does not start until the first Statue event is finished, all of this preparation is done before the timer starts, giving you around 5 minutes to do the Eyes. Make sure to coordinate who is tanking Broken King and who throws/uses the orbs for the Eyes beforehand.
Death Eater – 5AP
Defeat Dhuum while the challenge mote is active.
Silencer – 25AP – title: Voice in the Void
Complete all other achievements in the Hall of Chains category.
Special thanks to Vallun for writing up the initial draft of this guide and helping on the process. Check out his Youtube Channel for more of his content.