Image of Magmaw
Race Lava worm (Beast)
Level ?? Boss
Reaction Alliance Horde
Location Magmaw's Fissure, Blackwing Descent
Status Killable


Magmaw is the first boss in Blackwing Descent, though he could be done second, after Omnotron Defense System.


Adventure Guide

Magmaw is a colossal lava worm summoned from the Firelands centuries ago by Ragnaros' Dark Iron servitors. Nefarian largely considered Magmaw a worrisome pest, but has grown fond of feeding the beast his failed experiments... and servants.


  • Spell shaman lavaburst.png  Magma Spit — Inflicts 39375 to 50625 Fire damage to random enemy targets.
  • Ability mage firestarter.png  Pillar of Flame Important — Hurls a burst of boiling magma at an enemy, blasting them for 24375 to 25625 damage and sundering the ground. After a brief pause, deals 115625 to 134375 Fire damage and a knockback to enemies near the sundered ground and summons numerous Lava Parasites.
    • Lava Parasite — These slow moving creatures will burrow into the warm flesh of players when they attack, infecting their new host.
      • Ability hunter pet worm.png  Parasitic Infection — Deals 12025 to 13975 damage every 2 seconds. Infectious lava parasites burrow inside of you and multiply in the cool linings of your entrails. Triggers Infectious Vomit after 10 seconds.
  • Spell shaman lavaburst.png  Lava Spew — Deals 31450 to 36550 Fire damage per second for three seconds to all players within 60 yards.
  • Ability warrior rampage.png  Molten Tantrum — With nobody nearby to attack, Magmaw goes into a frenzy. Increases Fire damage dealt by 100%. Stacks 10 times.
  • Ability racial cannibalize.png  Mangle Tank Alert — Deals 110464 to 128377 damage every 5 seconds. Target will be mangled lifeless after 30 sec. Used on current tank. Completely wipes the tank's aggro.
    • Spell fire incinerate.png  Sweltering Armor Tank Alert — Magmaw's fiery jaws melt the armor of the player targeted by Mangle, reducing the player's armor by 50% for 1 min.
  • Ability shockwave.png  Massive Crash — Magmaw brings his entire body smashing down on one half of the room, inflicting 81400 to 94600 damage and stuns all players caught beneath him for 3 sec. The Massive Crash also briefly stuns Magmaw, allowing two players to leap onto his pincers.
  • Lava Worm Wrangling Important — Immediately after Magmaw performs Massive Crash, a window of opportunity exists where two players can leap onto his pincers. From that location they can attach chains to the spike protruding from the ground in front of the worm, and then reel Magmaw onto the spike.
  • Inv misc hook 01.png  Launch Hook Important — The players hanging onto Magmaw's pincers can launch a hook at the spike in front of the worm. If the hook connects, it chains Magmaw to the spike for 3 sec. Magmaw will break free from a single connecting chain, but if a player connects a second chain to the spike then the players reel the chains in and impale Magmaw on the spike.
  • Ability hunter mastermarksman.png  Point of Vulnerability Damage Dealer Alert — The tender backside of Magmaw's head is exposed! Damage dealt to this area is increased 100%. Health is shared between head and body.
  • Lord Victor Nefarius Heroic Difficulty — On Heroic Difficulty Lord Nefarius arrives to observe the adventurers contend with his pet and thwart their efforts.
    • Spell fire burnout.png  Blazing Inferno Heroic Difficulty Deadly — Lord Nefarius calls down a meteor of bone and fire at the ground beneath a random player. The meteor inflicts 23125 to 26875 Fire damage to players in a 4 yard radius and knocks them down. The explosion creates a Blazing Bone Construct, and sparks the Ignition of fast-moving flames in a spiral around the point of impact.
      • Blazing Bone Construct Heroic Difficulty — Lord Nefarius's Blazing Inferno creates a single flaming skeletal construct.
        • Inv ammo firetar.png  Ignition Heroic Difficulty — The Blazing Inferno creates moving patches of flame that swirl around the point of impact, inflicting 23125 to 26875 Fire damage every 1 sec to all players within 2 yards of them. The Ignition flames dissipate after 1 min.
        • Ability warrior cleave.png  Fiery Slash Heroic Difficulty — The construct slashes at an enemy with its fiery claws, dealing 75% of normal melee damage as Fire damage.
        • Spell fire selfdestruct.png  Armageddon Heroic Difficulty Deadly Damage Dealer Alert — When a Blazing Bone Construct reaches 20% remaining health, it prepares to self-destruct. The Blazing Bone Construct then explodes in an Armageddon, inflicting 118750 to 131250 Fire damage to all players.
    • Ability warlock shadowflame.png  Shadow Breath Heroic Difficulty — When Magmaw reaches 30% remaining health, Lord Nefarius begins to directly attack the players. He launches volleys of shadowy flame at random players. The Shadow Breath inflicts 15750 to 20250 Shadow damage to all players within 5 yards of his target.


At all times keep the ranged & healers in one tight bunch, at distance from the boss

Designate two ranged/healer spots that will be used alternately as needed throughout P1. Far enough apart to give you room to deal with worms, but not needlessly far because of time lost running. 20ish yards apart should do it.

Phase 1

  • Move the raid from one spot to another when Pillar of Flame is casting
  • Worms will spawn from the Pillar of Flame location. It is a good idea to have traps in place to slow them right from the start.
  • Kite worms around the raid and kill them. Misdirecting to a tank doing the kiting is useful. Using knockbacks is useful. The kiter should keep 8+ yards away from everyone else since being reached by a worm causes AoE damage (will show up as friendly fire). You can Also assign 2 spots in the room for the range to run back and forth between after a pillar of flame and drop traps and AoE slows on the worms as you switch spots and AoE them down as the all head towards the raid in a easy to kill clumped up group.

This phase is more about surviving and killing worms than anything else. You do not want to have worms alive in P2.

P1->P2 Transition

  • Magmaw covers half the room in fire (Ignition). Don't stand in it. The firey area is also where he will slump down shortly, stunning and damaging people straggling behind.
  • The tank will be picked up and be Mangled until the head is pinned down. Cooldowns can be used while Mangled, and Blessing of Protection does negate the damage.
  • Heal the tank being mangled.
  • The off tank should taunt Magmaw as soon as the main tank gets Mangled. This will prevent Magmaw from meleeing healers or DPS while the main tank is in his mouth.
  • When "Magmaw slumps forward, exposing his pincers!", have melee players pin the head down (using chains) quickly. To do this, right-click Magmaw as if entering a vehicle. One action will be available, which causes a targeting circle to appear on the ground below the cursor. Target the spike in the middle of the floor to attach the chain to the spike and pull Magmaw down onto it.
  • When the head is pinned down, you see "Magmaw becomes impaled on the spike, exposing his head!" and Phase 2 begins.

The tank will receive the armor debuff a after being freed, so a new tank is needed for the next P1.

Phase 2

This phase is about DPS for dpsers, and regenerating mana for healers.

Magmaw will take double damage.

  • DPS hard
  • Healers regenerate mana

P2->P1 transition

  • Aggro resets completely, watch it.
  • Remember to use a different tank from the previous P1 as that tank will be debuffed.

Single Tank tactics

It is possible to single-tank this fight, provided your healers are sufficiently geared and your tank knows what to do:

  • Aggro reset is only on the tank when he is mangled, and the 2/3 people who do the chains.
  • The tank MUST taunt during mangle and perform as many high threat ranged attacks during mangle as possible (as well as using damage mitigation CDs - particularly on the 2nd and any subsequent mangles as you will be 50% armour reduction debuffed during latter mangles)
  • If the tank fails to taunt during mangle, healers and melee will be single shotted during the P2->P1 transition, leading to a wipe.

Heroic tactics

Magmaw uses everything from normal mode (and hurts more, of course), with the following additions:

  • Meteors are summoned that spawn fire that tracks the nearest person.
  • The meteors also spawn Constructs that need to be tanked and killed. At 20% health, they start casting an explosion spell that hurts a lot. They need to be killed before the cast finishes.

You probably want to deal with all of this by putting the majority of the raid in melee range, and leaving a tank + a healer + maybe one more ranged dps out on the floor, so that they get targetted by Flame Pillar and the meteors. The tank spends the majority of his time kiting parasites.

The Constructs also need to be tanked. You can either use a fourth tank for this, or the currently-inactive (debuffed) tank, but of course that hurts a bit more.

There is also a final "burn phase" that starts at 30% health. Nefarian starts casting splash damage spells at the raid so you need to spread out to avoid instant death.


Item Type
 [Akirus the Worm-Breaker] (H) Strength two-handed mace
 [Breastplate of Avenging Flame] (H) Caster plate chest
 [Crown of Burning Waters] (H) Healer cloth helm
 [Flame Pillar Leggings] (H) Healer cloth leggings
 [Incineratus] (H) Caster dagger
 [Lava Spine] (H) Strength one-handed sword
 [Leggings of Lethal Force] (H) Agility mail leggings
 [Lifecycle Waistguard] (H) Healer mail belt
 [Molten Tantrum Boots] (H) Tank plate boots
 [Parasitic Bands] (H) Agility leather bracers
 [Scorched Wormling Vest] (H) Healer leather chest
 [Symbiotic Worm] (H) Tank trinket
 [Gauntlets of the Forlorn Conqueror] (Heroic only) Tier 11 armor token
 [Gauntlets of the Forlorn Protector] (Heroic only) Tier 11 armor token
 [Gauntlets of the Forlorn Vanquisher] (Heroic only) Tier 11 armor token

Related achievements


Nefarian yells: I found this fascinating specimen in the lava underneath this very room. Magmaw should provide an adequate challenge for your pathetic little band.
Blazing Inferno
Nefarian yells: On second thought, what fun is an "adequate" challenge?
Low health
Nefarian yells: Inconceivable! You may actually defeat my lava worm! Perhaps I can help... tip the scales.
Death on normal difficulty
Lord Victor Nefarius yells: Finally someone to deal with that unsightly pest! You have my thanks, "heroes."
Death on heroic difficulty
Nefarian yells: You won? How... disappointing. I could have easily watched you all continue to stand in the fire.


10-man Heroic

10-man Normal

25-man Heroic

25-man Normal


World first heroic kill on 25-man achieved 29.12.2010 by Method of Xavius Europe.

Patch changes

  • Cataclysm Patch 4.2.0 (2011-06-28):
    • Damage and hit points have been reduced by 20%.
    • Lava Parasites have been diminished.
    • Lava Spew damage, Magma Spit damage, Massive Crash damage, and Infectious Vomit damage have all been been reduced.
    • Mangled Lifeless no longer instantly kills, and its damage has been reduced.
    • Parasitic Infection has been decreased.
  • Cataclysm Patch 4.1.0 (2011-04-26): Magmaw now triggers a raid emote when summoning Lava Parasites.
  • Cataclysm Hotfix (2011-03-16): Magmaw overall damage and health was a little too high on all difficulties and has been reduced slightly. In addition, on Heroic difficulty, Nefarian will now prefer ranged targets when spawning Blazing Bone Constructs.
  • Cataclysm Hotfix (2010-12-21): Chimaeron will not cast Caustic Slime on Feral tanks in Bear Form unless there aren't enough non-tank specialized targets available. This fix applies to Magmaw's targeting functionality as well.
  • Cataclysm Hotfix (2010-12-21):
    • Magmaw's Pillar of Flame now prefers targets further than 15 yards away for Lava Parasites and will not be cast more than once per 30 seconds.
    • Lava Parasites now only apply their melee attack proc to players who are targeted. Lava Parasites are functioning normally and cannot infest a player with more than 3 Parasite debuffs active. Snared Lava Parasites will function like other creatures and switch to a nearby target if it becomes available, making them a viable target for Infestation.
  • Cataclysm Patch 4.0.3a (2010-11-23): Added.

External links