Friday, July 22, 2011


Frostheim recently started an amazing hunter community site, the WoW Hunter's Hall.  He put out a call for folks to blog there in addition to curating all of the amazing resources on the web.  I decided to answer that call, and my first post is up!  If you like what you've read here, please check out the new site.  I'm not sure what will become of this blog, but for now I'm at the Hunter's Hall.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Forcing my hand!

I may have to make my second spec Marksman.  That's right, the guy who made a blog dedicated to SV and hasn't had a non-SV spec in almost three years is thinking of going MM.  Why?  It seems Blizz is forcing me, at least in order to do the content I'm interested in.

The first reason I may have to go MM actually isn't that big a deal.  I want a few of the taming challenge pets.  Really I want Karkin, the bad ass crab.  I wouldn't mind the cat that shares a spawn with him either, but how many rare cat skins does one need?  I just got Shadowclaw a few weeks ago!  Anyway, every successful tame I've read of Karkin involves interrupting his cast, either with Silencing Shot or another player's help.  My guild is awesome, and I bet I could get help with the tame, but I'd rather do it myself.  That seems to be the real challenge.  I may still try to find a way to tame him as SV, cuz that would really be something to brag/blog about.

The main reason I feel forced to have an MM spec is Shannox.  We finally downed the giant melee hunter, and I was SV for it, but I wasn't able to be very helpful on Rageface.  I was damaging him plenty, but until he got to 20% and Kill Shot activated I couldn't get a single 30k shot on him (since Explosive Shot is a really short dot).  So now I feel compelled to go MM for my raid team.  I love my Nagas and I want to get that Kujo off of their grills as fast as possible.  But I don't want to play MM and I worry my DPS will drop in the short run while I'm learning the crazy MM rotation.  What to do?

SV seems to lack a bit of the identity the other specs have.  BM has exotic pets and is probably still the best for solo stuff, especially during leveling.  MM seems to be where Blizzard wants raiders to be.  They have our only interrupt and the highest boss DPS.  They also benefit the most from ranged weapon damage.  What is SV?  Many would say AoE.  That seems weak to me.  A skilled and geared MM hunter can come close enough to us in AoE DPS.  We do some nice AoE, but we're not mages.  Even if we were, is that enough of an identity for an entire spec?  It's not as if the other specs don't have Multi Shot or Explosive Trap!  Some may say SV's identity is that we do magical damage.  Relative to the other two hunter specs, we do a lot of magical damage.  But roughly 40% (I should actually check some parses on this) of my DPS is still physical.  Auto Shot is a lot of damage!  And even if 100% of our damage were magical, that is not an identity.

The other specs have things they can do that Survival hunters just cannot do at all.  I can't think of anything we can do that the other specs can't.  Between interrupts, other boss mechanics, and taming challenges, I have come to two conclusions:  Blizzard, for some reason, wants raiders to all be MM.  Second, our class is out of balance.  Not in terms of DPS, but in terms of skills.  Either SV should be able to do some of what the other kids can do, or we need an exclusive skill ourselves.  I'd prefer to just be able to raid any boss in SV.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

One Week Into 4.2

Wow, I need to get better about posting.  The good news is I've been too busy to post because I've been raiding for the first time in well over a year.  After three nights in The Firelands I thought I'd give my impressions and share what I'm trying to do in there.
First-off, we haven't downed a boss yet.  I have gotten pretty lucky with trash drops.  I have the two hander and the bracers, and a LW pattern I won't be able to craft for weeks, if ever.  If you can't be the only hunter in the raid, make sure the other one already has everything:)
We're close on Shannox and we tried the big spider lady a few times last night as well.  Shannox really feels like getting a taste of one's own medicine for a hunter.  He tries to trap us and his dog eats our faces.  He's a good hunter.  I'm still trying to get DBM to announce when I'm suddenly on a trap, and that will help a lot.  So far my job has been to DPS Rageface, and I've been trying to hit Riplimb with a Concussive Shot when he's retrieving the spear.  Sometimes he's immune to Concussive due to a buff he has up.  My question:  Can I drop that buff with Tranq Shot?  And if so, is there enough time to hit him with both so he gets slowed?  The fight makes sense, and I like our strat, but as a group we are struggling to stay out of the traps.  Once we can do that, he's gonna fall over.
I don't have much to say about the spider queen yet, but there is a lot going-on in that one.  My job last night was to use distracting shot on the spinners, and then help with the baby spiders.  The babies are a great place to use our trap and AoE skills.
Like most new raids, we're all taking a lot of damage.  I'm trying really hard to find places to use hunter tricks.  While I haven't been able to prove it yet, I think there are some opportunities in these fights to use the Glyph of Raptor Strike.  When Rageface  come to me to do his thing, I'm hitting him with a Raptor Strike.  Any reduction to that damage is a great thing, especially when we don't even have to move-in to hit the target.  Help your healers!  And while I've only seen the spider's phase 2 once, we're going to be stacking-up behind her and there is a TON of damage there.  I'm theorizing that that phase will be another great place to hit a Raptor just for the 20% damage mitigation.
What do you think?  Any hunter tips for me?  Have you had luck with the Glyph of Raptor Strike?  Any great times to use Deterrance to avoid raid damage?  Can we Tranq that buff off of Riplimb?