Just a quick reference guide to the AoE attack patterns that one might face in phase 2 of the Twisted Marionette Boss fight.
(Disclaimer: Diagrams are not 100% accurate, but hopefully illustrates the idea.)
They should hopefully give an idea of where the danger zones and safe spots are, and help with your situational decisions per fight.
Chain 1 – The Warden With the Big Arrow Pointing To Whoever Has Aggro
Marionette will stomp in sequence from first platform to the last, producing each orange circle in sequence.
Keep an eye out for her leg stomping on other platforms to predict when she’ll step on yours and prepare to dodge.
Suggested strategy: Dodge if/when the orange circle appears over you. Person with aggro faces mob away from the others. Others attack from the back.
In case of stubborn pets pinning the warden against the edge, check if the sides can be hit still.
Chain 2 – Mine-Laying Warden
Marionette will attack a small rectangular strip that is almost dead center, but slightly nearer one side of the platform.
Suggested strategy: Kite warden into mines. (ie. Keep a mine between you and the warden.) Attack when it is stunned by mines and vulnerable. Stay in safe areas or dodge when the strip appears and you happen to be in it.
Chain 3 – Bomb Throwing Warden
Update: You can thank a failed overflow for this one. And my great platform who rezzed each other and finished the kill fast, plus the platform that didn’t – prolonging the fight long enough for me to document a hint of a pattern.
Marionette will start from the last platform and strike each platform one by one with an outstretched hand throwing green lightning as circular patches of AoE.
Use that like the leg in chain 1 to predict when the AoE will reach your platform. (Which is still easier said than done when there’s close-range bombs to watch for, but yeah…)
The placement of circular AoEs still seems a little different for each circuit of the arm, and since you can’t predict which platform you’ll turn up on, assume it to be random for now.
Another layout in the sample screenshot below:
See image at the top of the guide for yet one more layout.
Twisted warden produces bombs that do not have an AoE marker.
Bombs go boom after a few seconds. Stay away from the bombs.
Suggested strategy: Ranged DPS and stay mobile. Have good reaction time on dodges. Melee only if you’re pro.
Much easier said than done, I know. Plenty of room for unlucky things to happen in this fight, including loadscreening into bombs.
Rez downed teammates wherever possible. Having a rez skill slotted might help.
Chain 4 – Cone Shriek Warden With Lots of AoEs
Marionette will do a sweeping sword attack that arcs around all the platforms, covering a good part of each arena.
The warden has three kinds of attacks:
It will do a cone shriek towards the player with aggro. Dodge away or receive stacks of confusion. Auto-attacking with confusion is bad. (Click away from any valid targets to detarget / turn off autoattack / holster weapon are all ways to stop attacking when confused.)
Note the shriek does not reach the edges of the platform.
Warden produces a patch of circular AoEs in the center. (Diagram is approximate, I didn’t -actually- count how many AoEs there are.)
When the warning marker disappears, they leave behind a black patch that causes torment. Moving with torment causes double damage. Be able to condition clear.
Warden will produce a circular ring of AoEs on the outermost perimeter of the platform, leaving behind the same black patches that cause torment.
There is a small safe zone in between the two AoEs, approximately 3/4 of the way from the center, nearer to the edge.
Suggested strategy: Ranged dps. Keep near the edges of the platform, moving and dodging as required to avoid AoEs and the cone shriek. Melee only if you’re pro.
Have condition clears. Don’t run around wildly with torment on or attack blindly with confusion on to avoid taking extra damage.
For achievement, what worked for me was staying in the safe spot at the power generator and ranged dps’ing. The cone shriek should not be able to reach you. You avoid the center aoe and only have to worry about the outer aoe (or just eat the torment and stay still.)
Chain 5 – Multiplying Warden
Marionette produces patches of small circular AoEs that will essentially cover the above areas of the platform, with gaps in between. The area near the power generator appears to be safe.
Suggested strategy: Stack on the power generator and DPS down the multiplying warden(s) with melee cleaves/AoEs.
Not really, but I couldn’t resist the pun. I’ve been having the time of my life in this zone.
(Some spoilers are going to follow, so you know what to do. Hell, stop reading TSW posts if you don’t want to be spoiled, because there’s no way to talk about this stuff without describing it.)
In no particular order:
Visited a half-built casino pyramid thing, and discovered it was full of red-con monsters that is probably either a lair or meant for group killing. Hung around the scaffolding being very careful not to aggro anything, and watched a Templar try his lone luck on them. Didn’t work. If I ever get around to meeting people in this game, it might be fun to try them together some day.
Found two world bosses and a rare, the latter I killed, the former I gave a wide wide berth.
Little tip: All of them showed up as a yellow crown with a star. LOOK at their health bar before you try taking them on.
The average mob in Blue Mountain has anywhere from 5000-7000 hp, going up to 10k for the elite, champion-y, but still soloable types.
Encountered a mob named Sallowskin, iirc, that was a really good fight and challenge. He kept spewing these gobs of green poison. The first time I fought him with my usual melee tactics, didn’t see any white outlines and kept getting caught by the poison effect as I dodged out, and melted so fast I couldn’t believe it. The second time I dodged and kited a bit more, but was still having some trouble, because I was doing it by the rocks and water. It’s hard to see the poison radius in water, and the final killer was me accidentally dropping into deep water (no skills!) while he offed me. Bastard.
Finally, I came back, looked carefully at my surroundings and said to myself, why the hell am I fighting him where I am? Cleared the beach area of two zombies for a proper kiting venue and pulled him onto ground and kept a big distance from him. From range, it was suddenly crystal clear that his big ability was an AoE poison patch centered on himself, not targeted at me as I had feared. Kited with Anima Shot and Fire in the Hole. Took longer, but was in dramatically less danger. Suddenly, he was ridiculousy easy. Revenge was sweet.
The main adventure of the day was dying 5-6 times in the Moon Bog, while stubbornly returning with various build and strategies until I figured out how to kill every damn thing in there. Which was exceedingly satisfactory.
I could have just skirted the edges of the Bog and killed the easy mobs only. Or come back later overgeared. But the real point I was after was to understand the place and learn the challenge of it as I was.
It turns out that mastering the Moon Bog is all about positioning. (For me, at any rate. Your mileage may vary. You may be a lot more pro than me.)
First things first, the bog is full of pools of filth, leaving only thin strips of safe land and a couple valuable islands. Stepping in the filth applies a DoT to the final tune of 300hp and probably a debuff to rub salt in the wound. Staying in the filth allows the effect to stack. Not fun.
The weakest type of mob in there are the Infected Contaminators, Violent Infected, and other such mostly melee zombie variants.
Standard tactics work for these guys. Just pull, they run to you, you kill them. The only special trick they have is that they’re Filth-infected, so after death, step back from them, rather than rush up to gleefully check your loot. Else they explode the filth debuff on you, which is annoyingly inconvenient and delays your health regen a bit longer.
The Shades are more annoying. The first thing they attempt to do is Pull you to where they are, which is in the pools of filth with said debuff , and it’s a right pain to struggle out while getting attacked. They may also try to move out of melee range, though it is quite possible to slowly whittle them down with Anima Shot/Fire in the Hole. But that’s no fun, we want to chop them up with sharp edges!
Eventually, I ended up using City of Heroes tank-pulling tricks on them (it’s probably the same in other MMOs, mob AI is somewhat predictable.) Turns out they only drag once, they Pull at the very moment they get aggroed. So we use the line of sight (LOS) counter-pull.
2. Hide Behind Tree
3. Swim, Shade, Swim!
One thing I’d say for The Secret World’s mob AI, it’s pretty immersive-real. They do try to adjust now and then, but two can keep playing the LOS game, and they want to shoot you as much as you want them to step onto dry land.
Jump-shooting and landing out of LOS also works in this game, just like in City of Heroes. Me happy.
There’s an Ender Thing that walks around in the swamp on a circular patrol route. Looks a bit like a mutated nightmare of a stitchglass weaver from Neil Gaiman’s Sandman, makes a sound on dying that is reminiscent of Minecraft’s Endermen.
Its hp is nothing special. It throws a couple attacks, also not too big a deal, one is a targeted-on-you filth AoE and another is a cone attack of some sort, I think, dodging should be instinct by now. The main challenge is to keep the area that you’re going to be attacking the Ender Thing clear of all the other weaker mobs, so that they don’t also aggro while you’re busy kiting and dodging from it. Then wait for it to patrol back around to you. Hope nothing respawns in the meantime.
Mud Golems. Now, these guys, I was having some trouble with. And one of them was in the way of a side quest, which made me doubly interested in figuring out how to solo them.
They’ve 10k hp, throw up a big hard-to-dodge-out-of mud slick that hinders/slows you (centered around themselves, though, this is key), and once hindered, they get to slap you around silly and impair you seemingly every five seconds or so.
After some experimentation and death, I eventually figured that kiting was the way to go with these guys. Difficult as it is, in the bog. Prepare by clearing the weaker surroundings mobs to prevent excess aggro later. Make sure one has enough space to run around because there’s going to be lots of circular mud slicks on the ground later.
I ended up swapping out my blade elite Spiral that does impairment, and putting in the AR grenade Slow the Advance which Hinders, very helpful to keep these guys slow. I also threw out my regular AoE Fire at Will (who the hell wants to AoE stuff in here?) to put in the CC break/immune for 7 seconds utility skill, which is helpful to clear stacks if accidentally slowed or inadverdently stepped into bog filth and DoT’ed.
Then shoot and pull golem, Hinder as often as possible, and basically run around circle strafing it until it splashes its mud slick, and pull it to another clear spot on land and rinse and repeat.
Executed well, it can die with nary a scratch to yourself. Okay, so there were a lot of half health battle struggles before I got the combination just right, but sometimes these games surprise me in just how well their RNG seem to read your mind. This very first successful kill dropped a blue Resilient tank bracer. Subsequent attempts didn’t yield much beyond whites and the odd green.
But I leave happy, and unafraid of the Moon Bog.
Unlike Ms Mortal Hypochondriac here.
What can I say? Too bad you don’t live in Paragon City where all the civilians never die. Not being a superhero in the Secret World is tough.
The other bit of excitement was dying, oh, I dunno, 15 or so times to the Jilted Bride in a side quest that is related to the Moon Bog. I’d previously encountered her in another side quest, where she basically chases you all the way to the manor, and she wasn’t at all a problem then. The only mention of her is in a Secret World forums post that suggests she’d been nerfed since beta… perhaps the developers missed a pass on this incarnation.
This particular incarnation was posing quite a problem, mainly thanks to the “Abandonment” DoT affliction she liked to throw up. It takes about 1-2 seconds for her to cast, so the interrupt window is very very short, and it subsequently slows you, impairs and deactivates all your skills, then slowly ticks down 250-300 magical damage per tick, to the tune of a good chunk of my 3300hp. One Abandonment from her leaves me at 1700ish. Not good at all. And she really liked to use it, with nearly as much frequency as an Ak’ab likes to Dash. She also leech heals or heals over time or something, which usually isn’t too much of an issue because I just unload more damage, but quite impossible when you’re melting at an alarming rate.
Now her, I’d suggest that she’s a touch… OP. I cheerfully contributed to the data metrics that will hopefully highlight abnormal death frequencies in a particular area, while I tried various means of defeating her.
I have a hunch that perhaps healing or barrier skills might help to mitigate the affliction, but as I confessed before, I’m not a very good healer – I didn’t feel like practising a whole set of new skills just for her, and a brief glance of the inner ring skills didn’t show anything that dispels affliction or DoTs (though I might be blind and have missed something.)
Instead, I tried consumable heals, consumable barriers and even went as far as to throw on all the tank gear I had, in the hope that the extra hp reservoir and the magic protection on a couple talismans might help to mitigate it.
Not really, though the 4800hp reservoir was helping the most, but my damage was promptly sucking as she kept healing it back up.
I tried to use LOS whenever the Abandonment spellcast came up, worked once, then didn’t work so well as the irritating spectre got stuck halfway in a wall that left her perfectly able to hurt me, but me unable to target her. Grrr.
Tried running down the stairs and leaping out of the second story window to break aggro for a bit – hilariously, this let me heal up for about 2000hp before she navigated her way out of the house and came for me in the garden. Unfortunately, the moment she got within range, she flung Abandonment, with foreseen tragic results.
I eventually ended up swapping out my assault rifle to use the recommended pistols to stack 10x corrupted debuff on her (which reduces the efficiency of her healing), and wearing tank gear to the tune of 4300hp or so, and got lucky in impairing and interrupting her first Abandonment, and managed to unload sufficient damage to kill her then. (I cannot remember if I used a consumable heal/barrier, I may have been cleaned out by this point.)
Her, I do not wish to repeat.
I’ve no illusions that I can manage a consistent kill on her. Not until I get a lot more AP and SP and gear. (I could have left her for later, but I was just feeling like being stubborn and testing beyond the limits of my current build.)