Friday, May 29, 2009

MC Trivia: What's Wrong With This Photo?

It's a bit hard to make out. It was also hard to figure out when it happened. Give up? Check the comments.

The New DPS Quest

I'm not sure how I'm going to manage it. But my new goal is to get every raiding hunter in my guild one of the new gorgeously powerful weapons. Armory doesn't show it but wowhead has it since the update. These puppies are quite buff now. Kel', Razorscale, Kolo, and Tiger-lady. Compare that to my wimpy Arrowsong.

Until we do some 25man Ulduar (perhaps if it drops 40 degrees outside!) I'll be urging us to try hardmode on the deconstructor for the pictured fine drop.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Rapid Fire

As a Survival hunter I try to use Rapid Fire at least once in a boss fight. It depends on the fight where I use it. I might wait and pop it if I think I'll need to hop into Viper Aspect, so I can regen quickly. Or if it's a fight with a lot of movement, but a few times you can plant your feet, I'll pop it when I'm stationary and getting the sniper buff.

I have a Markman friend and want to tell her how to maximize her Rapid Fire. She of course has two levels of Rapid Killing and Readiness. Yet, she doesn't use Rapid Fire on each boss. This is of course a shame. But what's the ideal situation?

It seems like she could pop it after the MT has a good threat built up, fire joyously for 15 seconds, let loose on everything else and then pop Readiness and do it all again. That takes us out to at most 60 seconds into a boss fight. But then because of two levels of Rapid Killing, the cooldown on Rapid Fire is 3 minutes. That's the same cooldown as Readiness. So at minute four she can go nuts two more times.

So four rapid fires in a five minute fight, right? Can you tell I haven't played a Marksman since they put Readiness into that tree?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Patch 3.1.3

  • Hunter's Mark: The ranged attack power bonus from this ability has been increased from 300 to 500.
  • Master Marksman: This talent now also decreases the cost of Aimed Shot and Chimera Shot by 5/10/15/20/25%.
The former is a nice cross-the-board buff for all the hunters out there. The second seems like it may be a nice buff for MM hunters. Previously it increased crit and reduced mana on Steady Shot, which of course was nice. However, MM hunters are always complaining about being /oom and flipping to viper. And Steady Shot isn't meat and potatoes for MM hunters. It's about the least prioritized shot they have.

So, in addition to the T8 set bonus, MM is looking prettier and prettier.

Friday, May 22, 2009

The Off Night

I login. Tons of afk-outs for the raid. Okay so a night off.

I do all my dailies. Like okay only 15 dailies, but that's tons when I'm not doing any ones for reputation anymore. Did my food daily. Did all the tournement dailies.

I'm in LFG for an Ulduar run as I'm not locked and not likely to do a raid until next Tuesday. I get an invite from someone I know. Turns out it's for Naxx. They're on Thaddius and rebuilding a raid. People that join PUGs often see that. Thaddius is where people just coasting end up tearing down a raid. Endlessly. Well, there were a couple guildies there too and we one-shotted him. Even with TWO people not grouped up at all and healing from the upper terrace that you jump from. It turns out they only have one wing left to clear. We march down to Razuvious get him to 30% health and the priests can't manage to MC. No +hit I'm thinking. They also don't seem to put up the armor buff before taunting. Well, then the raid folds. So one boss. Okay.

Port back to Dalaran. See an OS-25 in /General. Okay. Sure. Bing bang boom. Done. No, still no trinket for me. 'sawlright.

Wintergrasp starts in 30 seconds after OS-25. Fly over and parachute in on their walls. Sniper a few victims and take out two guns. Stay inside fighting with Beast Aspect on to at least not draw in hunters to me. Scurried over to the RPGs. Grab one of theirs and then hop in the back inside operator room of the Goblin tank shop. Fire off 5 RPG rounds. It seemed to maybe sorta have an effect. The most noticable effect was three guys piled in and nuked me. Rez, get a tank and roll on in. Bing-bang-boom.

Get in on a successful WG-25 run. Nice. Emulon down. Hurray. No, no loot. Okay. Everyone is running out. Hearth. Say thanks. Drop group. Get a whisper from a healer. "Umm. Archivon?" "Doh!" Whisper raid leader. Let raid beat me up. /Humble. Brain-fart. Get lock summoned back right before the pull. Get the 3rd damage spot with zero raid buffs.

Hit up some PvP when I run (/sigh) out of the Vault. The daily is EotS. I give it a shot. I haven't been there in a while. Oh-noes! At the start it's 5 alliance vs 13 horde. I have Leader. I get killing blows on three guys trying to take mage tower. More alliance join. We have good call-outs. Good covers. Good movement. We keep two towers, threaten their two towers and consistently capture the flag. I was pretty happy and screenshotted the final tally. Bing-bang-boom. Turn it in for a reward. Hmm. Looking it over, it appears the Warlock below me on the list got more honor than me because he health funneled his pet. Am I reading that right?

Hmm. Back at Wintergrasp's vault. Join LFG for 10-man. Hop in a Strand BG. Try out the tank scaling with gear deal. My tank gets up to 81.6k or maybe it's 816k. I'm off by a factor of ten, but the basic I had seen before was 80 (err 800). So that's neat. I did tweak my gear using a new Outfitter set auto-optimized for high iLevel. Decent. I'll need to tweak it so it's always the PvP versions though.

Get a whisper for what my dps is. Ah! The LFG channel. "10 man?" "Around 3.5k." Score. "How many people in, as I can't see raidframes while in my BG." Neat, still have five open slots so I get to finish up.

Hit AH for some more raid consumables. Get summoned to Wintergrasp again. One wipe on Emulon. And then the add tank gets it. Boss down. No T8 love. I almost brain-fart and leave again. Almost. Managed to remember. Didn't ask for it, but got a downgrade Hateful chest master-lootered to me. Mmkay thanks. Loot! Wheee. /DESTROY

Overall, not a bad time at all. Would have loved to see a Ulduar boss though. I did feel a little like a mercenary. I guess that's why "loot" was an important evaluation criteria of each run. o.0

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Hunter Weapons

It appears GC sorta kinda heard. Sadly, my guild is in decline at the moment. 25mans just aren't happening. We lost one core player and then another. What should have been a self-healing function of a strong guild also met the nice weather AFKs of real life. So the following news probably doesn't do me much good at all. Unless we start doing some 10man hard-modes.

Blue Poster
# 0 - Improving hunter dps through ranged weapons - May 19, 2009, 9:25 am
The developers believe hunter dps is too low, so today we are implementing a change to ranged weapon damage to improve dps across the board.

Bows, crossbows and guns of item level 226 or higher (which means weapons from Kel'Thuzad, Ulduar and the Furious Gladiator pieces) will do around 30 more dps. This should translate to a hunter damage increase of a few percent.

We don't think this will be quite sufficient in boosting hunter dps to where we think it needs to be and we have another buff that we plan to get in sometime over the next couple of weeks. We'll announce that change when it gets closer. (We have some plans for other classes as well, but we ask that you please keep this thread on the topic of hunters and the ranged weapon changes.)

As hunters may recall, we had an ambitious plan to change the way ammo worked for 3.1 that ended up being overly ambitious, causing us to scale back. However as part of that change, we stopped itemizing bullets and arrows. Since hunters could not upgrade from the ammo available at the launch of Lich King, their damage had started and would continue to fall behind as other classes upgraded their gear. This change basically incorporates the ammo damage into the weapons -- as you get better ranged weapons, it's as if you got better ammo to go along with them. This is likely to be a design we continue for the next few tiers of content until we have the opportunity to overhaul ammo completely.


Lead Systems Designer

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Cosmetic Pets

How cute. It's almost a motivator.

Which reminds me of a bit from Davlin, over at Epic Dwarven Blogger, I'm reprinting in copy-paste-able form a nice random pet companion summoner macro:

/run CallCompanion("CRITTER", random(GetNumCompanions("CRITTER")))


Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Snipers Nest

I was in the vicinity of Wintergrasp and wanted to check out the vendor. So I flew over. On the way, I decided I wanted to see some of the rooftops. This is the goblin garage. You can get up into the middle of the roof pretty easily.

While I was checking out the vendor, I came across a horde warlock doing something evil; sniping people looking at the vendor's wares. So a friend and I killed him. Unfortunately, his warlock transporter helped him get back to his sniper spot easily. So I got a priest to levitate me so I could get to where the warlock was.

It's a truly evil spot and, from my perspective, it seems to really abuse what warlocks can do with that transporter thing they have. Essentially, they can put the transport location up high and then jump down to a lower wall, kill some people, and then transport back up and bandage/drink. You have to camp both the transport destination and where they are. Plus the damn transporter destination stays around for them even after they are dead.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Monday, May 11, 2009


I was a groomsman in a wedding last week. It was my first uber-geeky event of the sort.

I was rather amazed how long the wedding lasted and how we didn't get griefed [too much].

The couple met through WoW and have .. grouped together for over three years. The IRL side is lagging behind the in-game side because one is in Australia and one is in Virginia. However this appears to be changing this summer. They are both quite sweet folks.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Phat Hunter Loots Night

The other night, our guild went into the Wintergrasp Vault. I hadn't attempted the new 25man since he came out. When he first came out the adds were very tough to get down in time. Now it appears that it's pretty easy as long as dps pays attention and can target the right minion quickly enough. Outcome: Conqueror's Scourgestalker Handguards for a fellow hunter.

Then we went back into Ulduar. We're in a mini-rebuilding mode for raiding. (For at least three raids, we struggled to put together 25. We're looking pretty good now.) We wiped a bunch but finally came together and downed the lazerpewpew bridge guy,
Kologarn. Outcome: Giant's Bane for a fellow hunter.

Side note: Last Thursday we had a pretty nice Ulduar-10 run and one-shotted a whole bunch of bosses. It really is amazing how much easier 10-man is over 25-man. 25man is really cramped and close quarters for a few fights.

So anyway, after Kologarn it was not too late, but a little late to hit our heads on another boss. A bunch of raiders were tired so some people logged and a few of us went in on ten-man mode and downed FL and XT-002. Outcome: Gloves of Taut Grip and Pyrite Infuser for the only hunter in the raid.

Friday, May 8, 2009

PvP Trinkets

Wintergrasp has a slew of nice new iLevel 213 trinkets. Half of them have +resilience and nice Use: abilities. The other half have a nice PvE stat plus the "get back in control of your character" Use: function. All of them are available for only 25 Wintergrasp tokens. No honor. That's between 9 and 25 Wintergrasp battles.

I picked up the Platnium Disks of Battle Wednesday night. I'm now at 700 resilience, which isn't too bad given that I'm not nerfing my dps very much.

I was considering going for something like this to replace my Grim Toll and give me a constant trinket-out-of-Cc. But I probably don't want to use it in PvE much -- certainly not more than the proc of Grim Toll. And I would have been replacing my medallion with the shared CD and not picking up more resilience.

I incorporated the use of the new item directly into my every-day Steady Shot macro. Works like a charm whether I have it equipped or not and whether it is available for use or not:

#showtooltip Steady Shot
/console Sound_EnableSFX 0
/use Platnium Disks of Battle
/cast [target=pettarget,exists] Kill Command
/console Sound_EnableSFX 1
/cast !Auto Shot
/cast Steady Shot
/script UIErrorsFrame:Clear()

No, I don't use my Steady Shot too much. I could and probably should make a similar macro of Explosive Shot.

Thursday, May 7, 2009


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Monday, May 4, 2009

Tools for PUGs

The following are a few tools at your disposal for reviewing players and/or putting together a raid:

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Patch 3.1.2

I said when Ulduar came out:
It would be kinda cool if they carried the iLevel concept back into PvP for vehicles. I like having a buff vehicle.
My suggestion looks like it may be coming true:
  • Vehicle health and damage output in Strand of the Ancients and Lake Wintergrasp now scale with the item level of the operator’s gear. Power scaling is now 1% damage and 1% health per average item level.
I used to trap-dance. I could reliably get LnLs frequently. Now with traps nerfed and Black Arrow, Lock and Loads are few and far between. Well, I guess someone thought they were too frequent somehow. In my honest opinion, this is ridiculous.
  • Lock and Load now has a 2/4/6% (Down from 3/7/10%) chance to proc from periodic damage.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Hunting for Wild Hunt

So my new wolf pet dinged 80. Nice, right? So he gets his last and final pet talent. All my calculations with the spreadsheets say it should go into Wild Hunt for the dps. As a bonus, it should increase some survivability since it adds a chunk of stamina.

So I was curious if it really worked. I took screenshots along the way. The first is before I've actually clicked the commit button on the pet talent. Notice the pet health.

So, I've learned one rank of Wild Hunt. It's clear in the screenshot. What's also clear is that the health of the pet didn't move one bit.

Following this, I tried mounting and unmounting. No pet health change. Then I tried dismissing and recalling. No pet health change. Pretty bogus. I unfortunately did not check my pet's Attack Power. So I don't know if that was also un-effected.

Wolf Pet and a Headache

So, I finally got my brown-eyed Old World wolf up to level 80. I grinded a lot of mobs getting him up there. Once he dinged 80 he got his new name, Aranroth. That's derived from Tolkien's Sindarin meaning "king" and "wolf". Unlike those scraggly Northrend howlers, he is a good looking beast.

Earlier in the evening, we did some 10man stuff in Ulduar. Got some nice achievements and kills. I hadn't experienced some of them. Neat stuff. I'm eager to try out my new wolf pet in raids.

Ulduar Triva: Notice anything wrong?