As at the current patch (18.104.22.168942), there are three major world bosses in Diablo 4:
- Ashava the Pestilent: Ashava looks like a dragon but deals mostly poison based damage. She most commonly spawns at Caen Adar in Scosglen. Stay out of the spin attack!
- Wandering Death: This skeletal monster will usually spawn in the Crucible in Fractured Peaks. He is a ranged attacker who uses a variety of bone-based attacks to weaken his foes. Stay out the green waves/beams!
- Avarice the Gold Cursed: Avarice is an ugly demon who uses heavy melee attacks. He will normally found in Saraan Caldera in Dry Steppes. Watch out for charge and for sweep attacks with his hammer and chained loot box. This boss drops the most loot, in my experience.
Although these bosses have their preferred location, any of them can spawn at any of the following places: Caen Adar in Scosglen, the Crucible in Fractured Peaks, Saraan Caldera in Dry Steppes, Seared Basin in Kehjistan, and Fields of Desecration in Hawezar.
If you have completed the campaign and are in game, you will get a notification with a 30 minute countdown alerting you when a world boss is about to spawn. If you have not completed the campaign, you can still fight them, but you won’t get the alert or see them on the map.
You can defeat world bosses as a solo player. The bosses scale according to the number of players and their level. The only disadvantage is that if you solo, you won’t get any respite from attack – the boss’s attention will always be on you. Playing with at least two other players will make the fight much easier. You will almost always find ten or more players lined up and ready at the spawn site anyway.
As with most other gear, you can share loot you win with your other characters by placing it in your store. I have won gear with my tier 3 Necromancer, for example, which was little use to him, but provided a good boost for my tier 2 Sorcerer.
World bosses do not appear at specific times, but spawn at intervals of between five and seven hours. The Twitter account @DiabloParagon tweets alerts whenever a boss is about to spawn, giving the real world spawn time in various time zones including AEST.
You might find it helpful to re-spec to single target abilities for these boss fights. Changing gems may also give a boost, for example socketing anti-poison gems (Emeralds) in jewellery when fighting Ashava. Using elixirs appropriate for each boss can also give you an edge, perhaps Iron Barb for Avarice, and Precision for the other two.
Once you begin to play on tier 3 (Nighmare), Helltide will occur every couple of hours, and last for one hour. This means Helltide is taking place somewhere in Sanctuary about half the time.
Helltide appears in red on the map of Sanctuary. There will be a higher than normal number of demons. Other enemies may also be more powerful, and they drop slightly better loot.
Helltide can occur in any of the following locations:
- Fractured Peaks
- Dry Steppes
The purpose of fighting in Helltide zones is to accumulate Aberrant Cinders. You do this by killing enemies, though they will sometimes drop from ore deposits. The random red barrel-like chests that appear in Helltide zones may also contain Cinders. Always open these if you see them.
Aberrant Cinders must be spent before that session of Helltide expires. They cannot be accumulated. You spend them by opening chests to obtain Tortured Gifts. These chests appear at various locations within the Helltide Zone.
If a world boss spawns in a Helltide zone, and you have time to complete the boss before Helltide expires, do it. Bosses drop larger numbers of Aberrant Cinders. There will usually be one or two chests in the boss area, so if time is running short at the end, you will still be able to spend your Cinders.
Chests may contain:
- Tortured Gift of Protection. These are armour; boots, chest, helm, gloves, or pants. These chests require 75 Cinders to open.
- Tortured Gift of Jewellery (125 Cinders)
- Tortured Gift of Weaponry (150 Cinders)
- Tortured Gift of Mysteries (175 Cinders)
Each chest can only be opened once by each player during each session. Chests containing Tortured Mysteries are hardest to find, but may contain very powerful unique items. Icy Veins has an interactive map showing their location.
Helltide zones also contain the rare herb Fiend Rose, essential to some high level gear crafting.