Old Lion's Court Challenge Mode Guide

Published Sep 30, 2023 Updated Jan 24, 2024
Aly writer

Take a last stand against the Watchknight Triumvirate and battle for Lion's Arch.

  • 13 minutes to complete the encounter.
  • Instance is set to Tyria time at opening.
  • Three main phases with Breakbar puzzle at 100%, 60%, 20%
  • Proximity Fixate lasts through end of phase, unless entering downed state.
  • CC inverts attack patterns.
  • Close proximity between Watchknight Prototypes can link them causing problematic mechanics.
  • Except Prototype Vermillion, edge of screen borders indicate Boiling Aether mechanics, which should be placed near the wall and persist to end of phase.
  • Move opposite direction to push and pull mechanics to lessen damage. Evade or Block damage.
  • Failing active Watchknight special mechanics applies Empowered and inflicts Exposed on players.
  • Prototype Indigo cannot move, Boiling Aether should be dropped away from location it arrives into phase.
Significant UI element usage in this instance/Accessibility:
  • Edge of Screen Borders: Yes
  • Squad UI borders: Limited
  • Audio Cues: Yes
  • Vocal Lines: No
  • Chat Lines: No
  • Special Action Key: No
  • Environment Zone Intensity (setting): check on screen, density changes pattern left has more contrasting motions, right overall tends to move one direction (down).
  • Hide Ally Visual Effects (setting): Any

As the community generally calls mechanics by boss colour name, this encounter can be challenging for colour blind players to learn, but all major mechanics have unique visual indicators and sound effects that help with accessibility.

Watchknight Triumvirate
Watchknight Triumvirate

When first setting up a squad to fight the Watchknight Triumvirate, you'll need to consider the following:

  • Put extra CC in builds. Aim for over 3000 squad break damage possible every 30 seconds.
  • Two dedicated Fixates are required: one for Prototype Vermillion (Red) and one for Prototype Arsenite (Green). Typically, the healers with some toughness. A movement skill can be helpful.
  • Prototype Vermillion fixate benefits bringing at least one channelled block/damage immunity skill of around 2 seconds.
  • A ranged DPS should bait Prototype Arsenite's Boiling Aether attack. A teleport and block/Evade are helpful. If in a title run, be in the opposite subsquad to the Prototype Vermillion fixate.
  • If going for a title run, the player with the strongest CC should fixate Prototype Indigo.
  • Barrier and Revenant Rite of the Great Dwarf can be helpful to reduce damage during the push and pull phases; condition removal is not required.
  • If using suggested markers and squad movement: use the direction of last board outside the cobbled area, to the right of the start circle, to get a reference line across. Put a marker for Green on the first intersection with the inner circle, Red on the far side intersection. Put a marker in the north.
Marker Placement
Marker Placement
Unique Breakbar Behaviour

The Breakbar in this strike behaves differently to the majority of encounters. A successful break will invert the aerial support attack patterns of the bosses and applies Malfunctioning Ley-Woven Shielding, which will apply Stunned and Exposed for a few seconds the next time their Ley-Woven Shielding drops, so it is important to use or hold skills at the correct time.

More general info on breakbars here

Phase One

100% to 60%

The encounter starts by introducing the Watchknights and their unique aerial support attack patterns with the first Breakbar puzzle. Prototype Vermillion (Red), Prototype Arsenite (Green) and Prototype Indigo (Blue), will always arrive in the same order through all the fight phases.

After the puzzle concludes, fight each boss in turn to 60% HP while every 30 seconds a second Watchknight with Ley-Woven Shielding assists with aerial attacks, susceptible to Breakbar only.

Breakbar Puzzle

Key Mechanic

The bosses drop in set RGB order with Ley-Woven Shielding briefly showing their aerial attack patterns.

You may only break the bar of one of the Watchknights, then must stand in the safe zone highlighted under another. There is around 18 to 20 seconds depending on the phase to complete this. A background ominous tone will pitch up slightly half way through the time.

There are multiple ways to assess the patterns to solve this, but it should be known before Prototype Indigo drops. Each pattern will occur once per encounter.

CC Prototype Arsenite (Green), stand under Prototype Vermillion (Red) CC Arsenite Puzzle

  • Prototype Vermillion (Red) is not looking into the centre
  • They make an almost equilateral triangle around the centre
  • Prototype Vermillion (Red) and Prototype Arsenite (Green) are looking in opposite directions.

CC Prototype Vermillion (Red), stand under Prototype Indigo (Blue) CC Vermillion puzzle

  • Prototype Arsenite (Green) is in the centre
  • Prototype Vermillion (Red) and Prototype Indigo (Blue) are looking at Prototype Arsenite (Green)

CC Prototype Indigo (Blue), stand under Prototype Vermillion (Red) CC Indigo Puzzle

  • Prototype Vermillion (Red) and Prototype Arsenite (Green) make a line looking the same direction.
  • Prototype Arsenite's (Green) field bisects Prototype Vermillion (Red).


Key Mechanic

Exhaust Plume: Exhaust Plume This is an instant defeat mechanic for anyone inside as the Watchknights descend to the field. Wait until the indicator vanishes and the target drops before stepping under a Watchknight. There is a small delay after this before they Fixate.

Fixate Mechanics: Fixate examples

Each Watchknight will fixate on the closest player not already fixated by another Watchknight after descent and will Reveal their fixates. If the fixated player enters down state, a new player will be fixated. Current fixates will only gain a second fixate if all other non-fixated players are in downstate or defeated.

Players will have a Fixate icon on their bar and a coloured diamond matching their boss overhead. It may be hard to see as it scales to character size as above.

Prototype Vermillion and Prototype Arsenite will travel the shortest path to reach their fixate and will copy Swiftness and Superspeed from their fixates.

Prototype Vermillion (Red) 100% to 60%

with Prototype Arsenite Aerial

Positioning of Boiling Aether drops and tanking positions does not strictly have to follow this pattern, but it is easier to have it consistently the same through all phases to save confusion.

If there are more than 3 Boiling Aether drops before Prototype Vermillion leaves the field in this phase the group likely doesn't have enough damage to complete the strike within the allotted time.

The dedicated tank should be closest to the drop down point, in the centre of the arena, outside the Exhaust Plume AOE. The rest of the squad should start behind them closer to the X marker.
After the tank has Fixated Prototype Vermillion:

  • if in the puzzle phase CCed Prototype Vermillion, move close to the boss to maximise damage from Malfunctioning Ley-Woven Shielding and stay in the circle for Dual Horizon before moving towards the X marker.
  • if in the puzzle any other Watchknight was CCed, go toward the X marker straight away.

The squad should postion with backs to the centre of the arena, on the opposite side of the boss to the Fixate. This keeps the main squad clear of expanding Boiling Aether fields and it is a shorter distance to CC Prototype Arsenite.

DPS Prototype Vermillion down to 60%HP while following the white arrows on every Dual Horizon. Prototype Arsenite will drop down for an aerial attack every 30 seconds. Always resolve Dual Horizon before moving to CC Prototype Arsenite if required for space. Prototype Vermillion's Fixate should call if a break is required.

Use judgment if you can DPS to phase rather than using CC to invert the pattern close to phase as the mechanic will disappear. If the fight phases before the attack resolves it will not invalidate a title run.

Fear Not This Knight/Defender of Lion's Court title run: one subsquad can go inside, one subsquad outside on the first Dual Horizon. This enables half the squad to CC every breakbar if it overlaps with Dual Horizon.

Prototype Vermillion - Dual Horizon (Donut, in/out) Dual Horizon

On the first occurrence of Dual Horizon Tidal Torment will be applied to those inside the circle or Ergo Shear will be applied to those outside the circle. They will alternate for the duration of the fight on each successful iteration. The arrows on the icons indicate which direction is required for the next instance of the attack. After the first Dual Horizon, client-side white arrows on the floor will direct players into or out of the circle.

Standing on the incorrect side, or on the orange, counts as a failed mechanic, sending out a damaging unblockable shockwave for each incorrect player position and may push or pull the players - which can flip the expected direction of the next Dual Horizon. This applies 1 stack of Exposed to the player and the boss gets a stack of Empowered increasing damage dealt by 5% per stack.

As Prototype Arsenite & Prototype Indigo Fixates are not required to do this mechanic, they will only see the orange ring and no white indicator arrows.

Prototype Vermillion - Boiling Aether (Puddle) Vermillion Aether As the last of the auto-attack chain strikes at the fixate, Boiling Aether drops centred under Prototype Vermillion. This has squad-wide audio cue, shared with other boiling aether mechanic targets, similar to a low choral/organ note and a pillar of red light appears in the centre of the expanding circle.

Boiling Aether

Key Mechanic

Each active Watchknight has an attack that will cause a Boiling Aether AOE field, commonly called puddle, to form. They expand until maximum size, then the damage increases significantly. In CM these fields will not dissipate until the end of phase.

Dedicated players will bait as many of these as possible, but Prototype Indigo may put this on any non-fixated player.

If entering the fields to stack another Boiling Aether use a channelled block, Evade twice or use Distortion. In later phases anyone with Boiling Aether mechanics should prioritise placing them safely at the instance edge rather than stacking them as more dedicated roles attempt.

The maximum size of the field matches the outside ring size of Prototype Vermillion's Dual Horizon.

Expand for Vermillion (Red) Fixate

The responsibility of the Prototype Vermillion Fixate is to try and minimise the space the puddles take up on the ground to maximise the floor space for later in the phase. The Watchknight will only follow close enough to attack, so sometimes extra movement like a sidestep along the arena wall is required to force it hard to the edge.

Keep track of the attacks from the boss and if you have players that need to position inside the next Dual Horizon - always give them a safe place to stand. It is a repeating sequence of 6 after the first Dual Horizon.

  • Mass Driver, Kinetic Impact, Gravity Hammer with Boiling Aether.
  • Mass Driver, Kinetic Impact, Gravity Hammer with Dual Horizon.

If Prototype Vermillion was the CC target during puzzle phase, it will be Stunned and Exposed until the first Dual Horizon. As soon as the animation of the attack finishes, or if not broken when fixate is chosen, pull directly north to the wall near the X marker. A shadowstep or teleport is a reliable way to get it there while slowing the attack chain.

Movement Diagrams Details
Vermillion phase 1 With your camera facing the centre to watch for Prototype Arsenite dropping in, start a rhythym of placing a puddle, moving to give the squad space for resolving the in/out mechanic then moving back to stack the next puddle moving generally anti-clockwise as you make a puddle trail. It isn't important to maintain this in this phase, but if each phase goes the same direction it makes it more predictable and will have a helpful clear space in the more dangerous later phases. Depending on your ping, as the second swing in the auto-attack chain animation shows, hit your block and step into the last puddle so the boss will follow you in to place the next in a stack. As soon as the orange indicator for Gravity Hammer appears on the ground the boss is animation locked and you can move out of danger. With experience you can overlap but not completely stack the fields so melee DPS players can continue to damage while at the edge of the last puddle.

Note in the Boiling Aether image the puddle drop is under the boss, not on the fixate location.

Most PUG groups will not call for a break in this phase, but ideally if the pattern from Prototype Arsenite is not easy to step out of, call for a CC. This can also make phasing into Prototype Arsenite being active easier as it will return with Malfunctioning Ley-Woven Shielding. If the puddle has just dropped when the call for break is made, you can pull the boss closer to the squad for the next Dual Horizon, then pull it back to the wall for the next Boiling Aether.

Prototype Arsenite (Green) 100% to 60%

with Prototype Indigo Aerial

The Prototype Arsenite Fixate should move to be closest to the drop down point, in the centre of the arena, outside the Exhaust Plume AOE. The rest of the squad should stand behind the fixate.

  • if in the puzzle phase or during Prototype Vermillion's phase Prototype Arsenite was CCed it will return with Malfunctioning Ley-Woven Shielding for a short damage window before performing Pernicious Vortex (Pull).
  • if not it will open with Pernicious Vortex (Pull).

Plan to handle the first Pernicious Vortex in the centre of the arena to enable a CC of Prototype Indigo if neccessary. Avoid using any CC skills if not called and accidentally inverting the field as the bosses will be very close if Prototype Indigo dropped in early in the phase.

Follow the fixate to the chosen tanking location, stacking tightly behind Prototype Arsenite to make baiting Noxious Vaporblade easier - which should always be dropped at the edge.

Watch for the animation lock on the sixth attack in the chain to run away from the pulling attack before the damage kicks in.

DPS Prototype Arsenite down to 60%HP where it will leave the field, but any Noxious Vaporblade in progress may instantly drop on the field.

Prototype Arsenite - Pernicious Vortex (Pull)

Pernicious Vortex (normal mode example)

This attack has 10 ticks of damage, the closer the player to the boss the more damage they take. It is possible to channel block and Evade the damage if needed. Supports prioritise covering this with Protection, barrier and damage mitigation. It is important to move in the same direction as the rest of the squad to be in heal range.

Entering the thin red circle under Prototype Arsenite counts as a failed mechanic applying 1 stack of Exposed to the player and the boss gets a stack of Empowered. The main visuals for the attack will vanish before it concludes - damage will continue ticking until the forced movement stops.

There is a winding up warble as the attack begins and the sound of wind until it ends.

Prototype Arsenite - Noxious Vaporblade/Boiling Aether (Boomerang)

Noxious Vaporblade (normal mode example)

This targets the furthest non-fixate player from Prototype Arsenite. The Boiling Aether audio cue plays for the target only and their screen edge will go green. This will appear over any shroud visual.

A green tether appears between the target and the boss - this remains until the entire attack resolves, not just the puddle drop.

Noxious Vaporblade is a rolling attack will track the target until it reaches them, which will place Boiling Aether at that location. It then follows an arrow on the ground directly back to Prototype Arsenite.

Expand for Arsenite (Green) detailed instructions

For more experienced groups, grab the Prototype Arsenite Fixate and generally hold the boss somewhere near the inner cobblestone ring for this phase. Bait should be about half way between Prototype Arsenite and the wall and move out to drop the puddle then return to the DPS stack. This location has some risk of an accidental Breakbar flip if the group is not paying attention, so less experienced groups may find the pattern below easier as it will be the same used in the next phase.

The Fixate and bait need to keep track of the attacks, a repeating sequence of 6 after the first Pernicious Vortex (Pull).

  • Toxic Slice, Relapse, Rupture with Noxious Vapor Blade/Noxious Return
  • Toxic Slice, Relapse, Rupture into Pernicious Vortex (Pull)

Prototype Arsenite animation locks with a small AOE on Rupture and into Pernicious Vortex, so Fixate can move to join the group to push out as soon as the indicator appears.

The suggested movement/positioning is for consistency between phases, which makes the 60% phase easier.

Movement Diagrams Details
Arsenite Phase 1.1 If Prototype Arsenite had the Breakbar broken in the last round, stay in place until the Pernicious Vortex (Pull) starts. Reposition toward the wall about 45 to 90 degrees from the last puddle drop during the attack. Be aware of the need to move or CC Prototype Indigo when it drops in. When learning, break the bar if the safe area is not close to where you want the next boiling aether drops to go.
Arsenite Phase 1.2 As pull ends, Fixate positions near the wall with the main DPS group closer to the middle (pink circle) bait (star) should be furthest from Prototype Arsenite toward where the boiling aether is going to be dropped by the time the third attack swings.
Arsenite Phase 1.3 Where possible bait should stack the puddles, but if not overlap them as much as possible. If in any doubt of Evade or block timing, do not stack more than two puddles. As soon as the circle appears under foot move back towards the group for boons and heals. Do not wait for the border to vanish before moving.
Arsenite Phase 1.4 The whole squad should stay close together pushing away from Pernicious Vortex. Be aware of where the puddle drops are and push closer to the centre to enable easier CC of Prototype Indigo if needed. Use Evade as needed to lessen the damage.
Arsenite Phase 1.5 During the last ticks of damage Fixate can use the pull to get to Prototype Arsenite before it breaks animation lock then move anti-clockwise as needed to give the bait space to work with. DPS should restack quickly as the bait repositions.
Arsenite Phase 1.6 Repeat the pattern along the wall until 60% then move closer to the centre for Prototype Indigo.

Prototype Indigo (Blue) 100% to 60%

with Prototype Vermillion Aerial

Prototype Indigo drops in with a lethal Exhaust Plume and Fixates on the closest player. This does not need to be assigned this round, but healers should avoid it to improve the odds of DPS not needing to leave the group and slowing the phase.

Stack tightly under Prototype Indigo to lessen the damage from Crackling Wind (Push).

Continue to drop Boiling Aether away from the group. Pivot into the safe zone of Prototype Vermillion when it arrives for the aerial attack, being careful of Breakbar skills. Correct puddle placement with the previous Watchknights should enable a safe area to work with. If Tribocharge is assigned at the beginning of the aerial support attack it is safe to drop the Boiling Aether out in the soon to be lethal area. If the timing is uncertain, drop the puddle as close to the wall as possible at the back of the safe zone behind Prototype Vermillion.

DPSPrototype Indigo down to 60%HP where it will leave the field and the Boiling Aether fields will clear.

Prototype Indigo - Crackling Wind (Push)

Crackling Wind (normal mode example)

Opposite of Prototype Arsenite, this attack has 8 ticks of damage, the farther the player from the boss the more damage they take. It is possible to channel block and Evade the damage if needed. This is generally easy for the main squad to handle stacking tightly underneath Prototype Indigo to take minimal damage.

Entering the darkest segment, distant to Prototype Indigo, counts as a failed mechanic applying 1 stack of Exposed to the player and the boss gets a stack of Empowered. The main visuals for the attack will vanish before it concludes - damage will continue ticking until the forced movement stops.

The audio cue for this beginning is a thunderclap with wind sounds until the push ends.

Prototype Indigo - Volatile Static

Volatile Static

The chain lightning auto attack of Prototype Indigo jumps to the Fixate then through players. The further it travels each jump after the fixate the more damage that target takes.

The Fixate should try and stay with the majority of the group.

Tri-bolt to  Tribocharge visuals
Tri-bolt to Tribocharge visuals

Prototype Indigo - Tri-bolt & Tribocharge (tether)

Tri-bolt will target 3 non-fixated players with a bright blue edge of screen border, a blue orb overhead and a filling orange circle underfoot that will deal damage to anyone in them. This can be Evaded or otherwise mitigated. Prioritise maintaining a good position for a potential tether point, such as on the correct side of an aerial attack pattern, with support players focused on group survival.

Alternating instances of Tri-bolt will choose one of the 3 previous targets for Tribocharge. A pylon with a visual tether will spawn at their current location, the screen border will change to dark blue and spiky, the Boiling Aether audio cue plays for the target and an orange circle appears underfoot with a targeting symbol overhead subtly filling the edge with red as a timer. When the time runs out Boiling Aether (puddle) drops and the player teleports back to the pylon.

This doesn't change the player directed camera direction during the teleport, which can be helpful to know if exiting in a dangerous position.

In Prototype Indigo active phases Tribocharge will not overlap with Crackling Wind, so if the push mechanic isn't due Tri-bolt will lead into Tribocharge.

Phase Two

60% to 20%

The Watchknights return with the second round of the Breakbar puzzle.

After the puzzle concludes fight each boss in turn to 20% HP while a second with Ley-Woven Shielding assists on the field and every 30 seconds the third with Ley-Woven Shielding drops in with aerial attacks, susceptible to Breakbar only.

Only the unshielded Watchknight will perform its special attack (Dual Horizon, Pernicious Vortex, Crackling Wind) unless the active and shielded Watchknights get close enough to Power Transfer. This is indicated with a warning of a dark orange tether between them that will turn electric white/blue when active. Fixates need to be aware of each other to stop this happening.

If positioning is convenient, it can be advantageous to break the Breakbar on each Watchknight at least once to take advantage of Malfunctioning Ley-Woven Shielding and the Stunned behaviour on their return to the active foe. This gives time on transitioning targets before the bosses open with their special attacks.

As before, fields should be dropped at the outside edge. Prototype Vermillion returns in the east near the end of phase, which ideally should be clear of fields to make the Fixate's job easier.

Prototype Vermillion (Red) 60% to 20% with Prototype Arsenite

with Prototype Indigo Aerial

Prototype Vermillion and Prototype Arsenite with Ley-Woven Shielding return to the field with lethal exhaust as before. Fixates wait for them to enter the field in the east and west respectively near the suggested matching colour markers. The rest of the squad should be closer to the wall where Prototype Vermillion will be primarily fought. Be aware of group positioning for Prototype Arsenite's Noxious Vaporblade as the player baiting the attack will spend most of the time close to, or behind, Prototype Vermillion's Fixate at a wall. Stay slightly closer to Prototype Arsenite to avoid the mechanic.

  • if in the puzzle phase CCed Prototype Vermillion, main squad moves close to the boss after Fixating to maximise damage from Malfunctioning Ley-Woven Shielding before moving towards the X marker. Fixate should move immediately instead of staying to DPS to not trap Prototype Arsenite's bait off the wall and needing to go into Dual Horizon.
  • if in the puzzle any other Watchknight was CCed, go toward the X marker straight away.

Continue the strategy of the previous phase of dropping all fields at the edge of the arena while maintaining safe locations during Dual Horizon and the aerial attacks. Always resolve Dual Horizon before moving out of an aerial pattern or to CC.

Prototype Indigo with Ley-Woven Shielding and a Breakbar will drop in with its aerial support attack pattern every 30 seconds after the first occurrence

Prototype Arsenite's Fixate can move in to CC Prototype Indigo if needed, but they must be aware of the possibilty of Prototype Vermillion being brought closer to the centre if players need to go into the circle for Dual Horizon imminently. It is possible to lessen the number of puddles dropped by forcing Prototype Arsenite into movement and slow the attack chain, but be aware of where the bait is to not switch it wildly and watch for the impending 20% HP phase change, as the switch to Prototype Arsenite going active in a bad position can result in Power Transfer happening immediately.

At 20% HP Prototype Vermillion leaves the field.

Expand for Vermillion & Arsenite detailed instructions

Follow the general tanking from the previous Prototype Vermillion phase. Minimising the space taken by Boiling Aether is important as the later phases are more chaotic and can use the extra space. Prototype Arsenite's bait should be tracking the Noxious Vaporblade and drop it close to the wall or on the previous stacks, but always respect Dual Horizon. It is the job of Prototype Vermillion Fixate to give you safe space to work with.

Movement Diagrams Details
Vermillion Phase 2.1 Fixates pull their respective Watchknights to the north wall near X marker after any Stunned behaviour wears off. Through the phase a comfortable distance for most to not Power Transfer is roughly a quarter circle, but watch for the warning tether line if they must get closer. If lacking safe wall space, Prototype Arsenite can be taken to Prototype Indigo in the centre for the aerial attack pattern without Power Transfer linking to Prototype Vermillion at the wall.
Vermillion Phase 2.2 DPS players maintain a similar relative position with Prototype Vermillion to last round in the magenta circle. The bait player, star, needs to maintain the furthest distance to Prototype Arsenite. DPS being closer to the centre instead of following Prototype Vermillion keeps toes out of Boiling Aether and is less distance to travel to CC Prototype Indigo if needed. Prototype Arsenite will be attacking with the basic rotation skipping Pernicious Vortex (Pull) while shielded.
Vermillion Phase 2.3 Both puddles should drop at similar time, but adapt with Prototype Vermillion Fixate making extra space as needed to not trap the bait player. If Prototype Arsenite's field dropped first, Prototype Vermillion can be held in the field before it hits maximum size to stack the next Boiling Aether.
Vermillion Phase 2.4 Shuffle across enough to execute Dual Horizon with Prototype Arsenite's bait tucked hard against the last Boiling Aether field. Prototype Vermillion Fixate needs to leave space to not box them in the wrong side of the mechanic. Prototype Arsenite's Fixate should anticipate rotating to maintain distance.
Vermillion Phase 2.5 If possible stack the Boiling Aether, but otherwise overlap as much as possible then repeat the last step moving counter clockwise. Everyone should be aware of the approaching transition at 20% HP. Any aerial attack started should cancel if the HP check is hit before the attack concludes.
Vermillion Phase 2.6 Prototype Arsenite's Fixate gets hard to the wall about a quarter circle away from Prototype Vermillion before the HP transition as it will be locked in place. Bad positioning closer to the centre can cause a wipe with overlapping Pernicious Vortex (Pull) and Power Transfer Crackling Wind as Prototype Indigo returns in the centre. Prototype Vermillion's Fixate needs to avoid accidentally fixating Prototype Indigo.

Prototype Arsenite (Green) 60% to 20% with Prototype Indigo

with Prototype Vermillion Aerial

Prototype Arsenite's Ley-Woven Shielding drops as it becomes the current target.

  • If Malfunctioning Ley-Woven Shielding is applied from a previous Breakbar Prototype Arsenite will be momentarily Stunned.
  • If not, it will open with Pernicious Vortex (Pull)

Prototype Indigo with Ley-Woven Shielding drops back into the centre with a lethal Exhaust Plume and Fixates on closest valid player.

Prototype Vermillion with Ley-Woven Shielding and Breakbar will drop in with its aerial support attack pattern every 30 seconds after the first.

Positioning of the entire squad is extremely important as this is the hardest part of the encounter and Boiling Aether fields placed badly will scupper a run.

DPS Prototype Arsenite to 20% HP where it will leave the field. Any Noxious Vaporblade in progress may instantly drop on the field, so maintain good positioning until the end.

Expand for Arsenite & Indigo detailed instructions

This is the point most runs will fall apart if players don't pay attention. Stay aware throughout the phase of where you should drop a Boiling Aether mechanic if you get one. Dropping a bad field on the Fixate is always better than dropping it on Prototype Indigo.

When Pernicious Vortex starts stay as a group for heals and push slightly towards centre, towards the Boiling Aether stacks as indicated last Prototype Arsenite phase. This allows good positioning for mechanic overlaps - any Tribocharge puddles from Prototype Indigo tether in a safe place and are a short distance to drop to the ideal wall.

If Prototype Indigo'sFixate enters downstate it is possible that Prototype Vermillion's can be assigned it. If this happens Prototype Arsenite's Fixate should be prepared to take that role as the phase changes.

The timing of mechanics will not exactly match any guide, so learn and adapt each run.

Movement Diagrams Details
Arsenite Phase 2.1 Start the phase with the same basic positioning of Fixate, DPS stack and bait as the previous Prototype Arsenite round. Prototype Arsenite's bait handles Noxious Vaporblade, keeping track of DPS with Tri-bolt that may need to take Tribocharge to a wall and become more distant. Bait can also be chosen for Tri-bolt/Tribocharge which can be difficult to handle depending on the application order/timing. Get them to a wall and Evade as needed. Messy at a wall is better than dead. The fixate can adjust spacing afterward.
Arsenite Phase 2.2 As three players are chosen for Tri-bolt, they should step back, or sideways to the wall, if needed so any tether for Tribocharge is not inside Prototype Arsenite's hit box. The aim is to not get teleported back into the red under Prototype Arsenite during pull and getting Exposed and giving Prototype Arsenite Empowered stacks.
Arsenite Phase 2.3 Drop any Boiling Aether from Prototype Indigo's attacks at the puddle line. Be aware that this may put you far enough to be chosen for Noxious Vaporblade if the bait cannot maintain a more distant position, so stay away from the arena centre at all costs. Stacking puddles is less important then their position at the wall at this point.
Arsenite Phase 2.4 Scenario 1, Prototype Vermillion returns for an aerial attack and there are options depending on the location, which will always be somewhere along the inner ring. This one on the far side will require quick movement and CC.
Arsenite Phase 2.5 Prototype Arsenite's Fixate holds it at the wall, only leaving to CC during Pernicious Vortex (Pull) if there is time to return to place before Prototype Arsenite follows and Power Transfers to Prototype Indigo. Prototype Arsenite's bait maintains furthest position. Do not step into Prototype Vermillion's pattern to melee CC if you have the blue border of Tri-bolt, wait for it to resolve to be clear of Tribocharge. Tethering the return of Tribocharge into the wrong side of the pattern is near certain death.
Arsenite Phase 2.6 Have planned drop points in mind, Prototype Arsenite's bait can look to stack with an invuln, or go more distant if needed for a less damaging location. Prototype Indigo's Tribocharge should go to the wall and wait out the teleport return.
Arsenite Phase 2.7 Fixate moves along to make space for more Boiling Aether, and DPS without mechanics follow back to DPS stack spot. The Tribocharge target teleports back then returns to the stack, Prototype Arsenite's bait follows back along the puddle stack and then drops off the next one or repositions for baiting it.
Arsenite Phase 2.8 Scenario 2, Prototype Vermillion returns for a close aerial attack. If the bait or another player cannot return, CC and the squad should join them on that side for the pull. The Fixate can pull Prototype Arsenite further away behind Prototype Vermillion to lessen the damage of Pernicious Vortex to the squad before rejoining them squad after the boss animation locks.
Arsenite Phase 2.9 If everyone can return into safety to skip the CC, stack along the safe edge close to the wall. Prototype Arsenite Fixate must remember that it takes the shortest path to follow and go along the wall and then in to safety somewhere away from Prototype Indigo and the risk of Power Transfer.
Arsenite Phase 2.10 Ideally, the pull won't overlap with Boiling Aether drops, but plan for it to happen. At this location drop the puddles on the wall if there is time, or on the Fixate if not. The fields won't be damaging enough before the aerial attack concludes and everyone can move. If chosen for Tri-bolt take a step back toward Prototype Indigo to tether a little off Prototype Arsenite's hitbox in case of pull, then step into the hitbox to drop it as close to the wall as possible.

Prototype Indigo (Blue) 60% to 20% with Prototype Vermillion

with Prototype Arsenite Aerial

Prototype Indigo's Ley-Woven Shielding drops as it becomes the current target.

  • If Malfunctioning Ley-Woven Shielding is applied from a previous Breakbar Prototype Indigo will be momentarily Stunned.
  • If not, it will open with Crackling Wind (Push)

Prototype Vermillion's Fixate moves to Heart where Prototype Vermillion with Ley-Woven Shielding drops back in with a lethal Exhaust Plume and Fixates on closest valid player.

Puddle Placement at start of Indigo with Vermillion dropping in.
Puddle Placement at start of Indigo with Vermillion dropping in.

Prototype Vermillion's Fixate pulls it to the wall before it can Power Transfer from Prototype Indigo. Maintain enough distance to not link the bosses and use any movement skill, remembering the straight path to follow, to move into safe zones from Prototype Arsenite's pattern.

The rest of the squad stacks and damages it down to 20% HP, switching sides for safety from Prototype Arsenite's aerial attack as needed and dropping any Boiling Aether near a wall as in previous active phases.

Prototype Vermillion's Fixate should use Evade and block skills during Crackling Wind as holding position near the wall will be taking near maximum damage. Be careful not to be pushed into taking Exposed stacks. The cobblestone pattern can be used to judge the edge of the zone after the visuals fade out.

At 20% HP Prototype Indigo will leave the field and the Boiling Aether fields will clear.

Crackling Wind indicator over outer cobblestone ring
Crackling Wind indicator over outer cobblestone ring

Phase Three

20% to 0%

The Watchknights return with the last round of the Breakbar puzzle.

After the puzzle concludes fight each boss in turn to 0% HP while the other Watchknights with Ley-Woven Shielding assist on the field.

All the Watchknights drop into the field with lethal Exhaust Plume, Fixating on the closest player.

  • Prototype Vermillion drops north near X marker
  • Prototype Arsenite drops west near Arrow
  • Prototype Indigo east near Heart

Prototype Vermillion and Prototype Arsenite Fixates should collect their bosses, then take them to the wall behind their respective drop zones. The main group follows Prototype Vermillion's Fixate. Any other player can take Prototype Indigo's Fixate and stay in the main group.

Focus on staying on the correct side of Dual Horizon, while dropping any Boiling Aether near a wall in a safe place. This can include being inside Dual Horizon or on the Prototype Vermillion Fixate who can adjust position easily to keep players safe. Tri-bolt targets need to be careful that if tethered for Tribocharge they will be in the correct side of Dual Horizon. Most groups can stay relatively stacked here.

When Prototype Vermillion hits 0% HP Prototype Arsenite will either immediately open with Pernicious Vortex (Pull), or do so after any Stun expires. Handle mechanics as for previous phases, keeping all Boiling Aether clear of Prototype Indigo. As HP approaches 0%, cheat towards Prototype Indigo in preparation for the Crackling Wind (Push).

While phasing to Prototype Indigo going active use damage mitigation, dodges and movement skills to close the gap as needed. Be careful not to drop any Boiling Aether on the boss during the transition. These can now be put anywhere except directly under Prototype Indigo. Burn it to 0% HP to end the fight.

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