First and foremost, the AoEs that Zhaitan shoots now more reliably actually hit the ship, and they actually do damage. Still often land away from the cannons and generally are not very formidable.
It also now has what one could call a second phase (of sorts). It began for us when Zhaitan had around 15% HP remaining, and was marked by Zhaitan beginning to struggle as though it was trying to get off the tower and fly away.
In that phase, it now spawns a type of add that did spawn previously, but very rarely. They are tentacles that look like the ones in its mouth. They do minor attacks but alas, due to the fact that they spawn randomly and often nowhere near the turrets (where everyone will be), coupled with their (understandable) inability to move, they usually end up being a very minor threat - if that. One standard risen undead also spawned around the area where Zoija initially charged her LIT cannon.
A few other miscellaneous changes I noticed (some of these are related to the rest of Arah story mode):
*Some bosses that previously failed to spawn loot now spawn a loot chest.
*There seem to now be less 'dead zones' where melee attacks inexplicably miss around the Orrian towers.
*Seems like music now plays more reliably during the dual dragon champion encounter, however it still failed to play for me during the Zhaitan fight and it also failed to play during the first dragon champion encounter.
*The final cutscene before Zhaitan retreats to the tower now only plays once all adds have been cleared, where before it always played a few seconds after the previous one, regardless of whether or not the adds were still up.
The dungeon is still in a fairly poor state, though - at least near the end, as before. Music completely stopped for me after the fight with the two dragon champions at once, and there are still no sound effects for for the sequence where Zhaitan is caught by those lasers (before retreating to the tower).
Overall, I am still of the opinion that the Arah dungeon is in a work-in-progress state and the Zhaitan fight, in particular, is still unfinished.
However, the changes that have been made to the encounter make me feel somewhat less bitter. At least it shows that ArenaNet did not intend for the encounter to be in the state it launched in, and it makes me hopeful that the fight will be improved further in the future. And even if not, at least they have resolved the most basic complaint I had about the fight, which was the fact that once Zhaitan retreats to the tower practically nothing happens.
Disclaimer: All the things I listed are based upon what I previously experienced in Arah on the two runs I did before this patch. It is possible that nothing about Arah has changed, but instead some freak bug caused these things not to occur on either run before. I cannot verify this without working for ArenaNet, I am afraid. I also tried to verify this stuff by watching various YouTube videos of the encounter.
So... anyone else have any experiences to share about Arah and the latest patch?
Edited by Lasur Arkinshade, 18 September 2012 - 10:21 PM.