tonight my guild finally downed Amber shaper, but it was our last pull of the evening so didnt have time to check out Empress. Is there anything you guys can suggest for a guild thats going to be having their first attempt tomorrow night (and most likely spending the whole evening on it!)
Our setup is as follows:
Brewmaster Monk (me)
BM / SV Hunter
SMF Fury Warrior
You need precise timing for the sonic discharges and raidcooldowns for them. The Mobs that spawn after the Retreat will fuck your tanks up very badly. They need their tank-CDs and one Windblade out of each Group has to die asap. They take a while to fixate somebody and get the healers some rest. Mark one windblade that you don't kill so your healers can reg at the end of the phase. Don't run around like an idiot when you are fixated by the Windblades, in our first trys they sometimes fuck up the Ambertraps.
Phase 2 comes as a rude awakening for most of the folks I've talked to. We had some luck with a hunter kiting one of the windblades from one side, and our DK popping Army of the Dead just as the boss sounds retreat. Our hunter also turned Growl on on his stable pets and used Stampede, that works nicely to split aggro for those crucual few seconds as well. Have a druid root a Windblade further away, have your mage spec into Ring of Frost, or even use frost nova-blink.
It's also pretty critical not to have to deal with phase 2 more than once, so if you're doing less than 35% of her health in damage during phase 1, consider popping bloodlust during the second phase 1 so that you don't have adds going in to phase 3.
A tip for your Mistweaver Monk is he can be in Melee Range and be eminence healing and he will not be targetted with the debuff the Ranged DPS normally get afflicted with. Also, it'll allow them to generate consistent Mana Tea Charges if he's careful with his mana and give him enough mana for the Add's phase
Besides the standard tactics (taunt at 4 stacks etc) these are some tips that should help:
1) See where you stand with dps. Highly recommend lusting at start, tell your disco to pre-pot as well and everyone blow all big cooldowns. Phase 3 starts at 30% hp, if you can get her to 60-ish% here you will only have 1 add-phase. Lust isn't really needed in last phase in my experience.
2) Get a plan for the add-phase. What we do is we let our warrior take the 2 big adds, and me (brewmaster) takes the 6 small ones. Just go spin into either side, let your hunter MD the other side, and your dk can grip and taunt the 2 big ones. Make sure you've built up 15 stacks of elusive brew on shek'zeer herself and idealy have 25ish seconds of shuffle when they are incoming. Pop elusive brew and fortifying brew just before you start hitting them with SCK, and ask for a pain supression (they really DO hurt, even with 80% avoidance). I tank them for roughly 15 seconds, then finish with a leg sweep and keg smash and just roll away and kite them with dizzying haze and it works really well. Just make sure to time your haze correctly since it has a travel time, they'll be permaslowed that way. Remember though: if you opt to go for the kiting strategy, you can NOT just try and go in again to try and tank them (unless there's really few of them left) since you don't have shuffle/guard or anything up; you'll get globaled.
3) Make sure to mark 1 small add so that the dps do NOT kill him. The add-phase stops when you killed all the small adds or on a forced timer (think it's 2 minutes). You need a small add up anyway to make the traps.
4) Tell your melee to watch out at start of add-phase. The 2 big ones don't really need to be dps'ed so they'll go for the 6 small ones, however, these fixate after a bit on a raid member. If they fixate on the melee, they get globaled. They may not like it but they need to be out of melee range when the first fixate timer goes off. When someone gets fixated, melee dps can safely go onto that small add.
5) Maybe most important: try to NOT bring her sub 31% with fields up. This will just cause it to become messy quickly and if timers allign badly your raid will get destroyed unless you have spirit shell on everyone or something. What we do is at 36% or so we stop dps on boss and deplete the fields, tanks should have couple percentage to keep active mitigation rolling and deal reasonable damage anyway. Just before she would retreat the 2nd time, you'll have 10-15 seconds to push her over to phase her. Phase 3 seemed to be a joke, you got mass dispell and tremor even; first time we reached phase 3 with no fields left we killed her easy.
I would also recommend watching tactics for first 3 bosses in terrace, since if you can kill garalon and ambershaper I doubt shek'zeer will give much issues.