Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Tam's Syphilis Post

So your topic is tales from your levelling days that epitomise playing a hunter for you.

There are a couple of stories...

First off, Trick-or-treating. Garetia was level 22 or so, and this was before you could get mounts at that level. I got it into my head that I wanted to trick or treat the entire Eastern Kingdoms for the achievement. So I grabbed my trusty cat Llofios (since released into the wild), hit Aspect of the Cheetah, and started running. I had no idea where most things were and spent quite a bit of time alt-tabbing out to figure out where to go and how to get there. Now, aspect of the cheetah may make you run faster, but you also get dazed if you get hit, so running away becomes a bit challenging. I have these vivid memories of frantically running through Alterac, aggroing something, and leaving my pet to defend me (and die) while I continued to run away. I actually managed to get all of them but the plaguelands done without a ghost run, but getting to Light's Hope was just impossible. I ended up researching how to do a ghost run (check Jan's archives for an explanation) and while I was up there I picked up a dragonhawk.

Second, while I was leveling, and for a while afterwards, I had to be special. The dragonhawk pet was unique for a long time (as in I didn't see another Alliance with one), but by level 50ish or so, I'd decided to go for a rare spawn pet. I did my research (thank you petopia) and decided on the white wind serpent in Feralis. I wandered around for quite a while before I got him, and was insanely proud. I did eventually release him back into the wild (wtb more stable slots plz Blizz), but I do have very fond memories of wandering around looking for him.

I find it kind of amusing that my hunter experience is so wrapped up in pets, since I started a hunter thinking they would be like the LotRO hunters, who have traps and use bows, but have no pets. I was rather happy when I did finally learn I could have a pet, mostly because till that point I was dying a lot. So much, in fact, that for a short while last fall, my now much-neglected mage was my main. That's right, the mage who I find frustrating because she dies frequently was actually less death-prone than my hunter. Of course, once I got a pet (a cat from the Exodar, not an owl from Teldrassil like I had originally wanted and kinda still want), my hunter became my much-loved main. Now that I'm in the process of switching mains, I find I miss having that pet padding along besides me, ready to protect me if I go afk and ready to take the blows for me.


This thing on?

I have big big news. Monumental news. News that will shake the fabric of your world!

Okay, maybe not the last one.

Lyllea, with a gearscore of 1898 (which puts her in the healing Naxx 25 and Eye 10 category) healed Ulduar 25! Okay, so it was just XT, I basically shielded the crap out of everyone, and I ran out of mana 3/4 of the way through, but I RAID HEALED! And I topped the charts on absorbs. I was shaking the entire time, and getting thrown into the deep end is probably not the best way to start my healing career in raiding, but I DID IT!

Now back to running dungeons for shiny emblems, and possibly actually getting Merrymaker done. Or not. I'm not sure if I want to bother or not.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

I can now tell you what dungeon I am about to enter by the loading screen...

That should tell you just how many dungeons I've run in the past 2 days. I've gotten some upgrades, lost out on some upgrades (grumble mage with lucky dice winning all my healy gear), and can now queue for heroic POS. And every time I see POS, I think piece of shit, which I don't think it deserves. I rather like it, mostly because ooh, shiny purples in normal!

I've even gotten to dps as shadow, and managed to break 1k. With no to hit at all, and completely in disc gear, I figure that isn't bad.

The next couple of days will probably be a combination of pugging till my brain melts, then rep grinding and holiday stuff. I don't have any toons exalted with Hodir, but Garetia's pretty close so I'll finish the grind on her. Lyllea's new i245 shoulders need a shiny enchant to go with their shiny epic gem, after all. I've gotten criticized for not having all my gear enchanted, which seems silly to me. I enchant stuff when I think I'm going to keep it for a while. Otherwise, I'll stick gems in it (since gems don't really cost me anything) and call it a day.

Currently my gearing philosophy is... does it have more int? (if yes, then MINE!) does it have more spellpower? (if I'm not losing int, then MINE!) does it have to hit? (if yes, then not mine unless no other clothies, then oooh, offpsec). I'm using ratingbuster and Pawn (I have strings for shadow above hit cap, shadow below hit cap, disc throughput and disc mana pool). Since I don't know which role I'll be taking in a raid (though I'm guessing damage mitigation and extra raid heals), I don't really know which one to prioritize.

As I understand it, tank healing focuses on throughput (powerful heals=good) and damage mitigation focuses on mana pools (since you're throwing many more spells and shields). I could have that wrong, just to warn you, since running all these dungeons has kinda made my brain melt.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

I do have a topic from Tam, of the ever-entertaining Righteous Orbs, but that needs some polishing, so instead you get my usual ramble.

Lyllea is now 77. I finally managed to complete Escape from Silverbrook, a quest that has thwarted my ambitions of getting the Grizzly Hills quest achievement for many months now. Of course, I got it on Lyllea, not Garetia, but the amount of lore that quest unlocks is really interesting, and it's nice to do something I haven't before. I need to get her cooking up to 350 (mostly so I can learn the recipes sitting in my bank) but she's got the cooking achievement for Winter's Veil done, so no rush. I also hit WG in an attempt to get the pvp aspect done, and well, let's just say that I go squish quickly.

It did occur to me that I want Merrymaker on both Garetia and Lyllea. Garetia because, well, Winter's Veil, Lunar Festival, the Valentine's day one, and Orphan's week and she's got the drake, and Lyllea more or less just because. Lyllea will probably end up with both the patient title and the pug, which kinda makes me sad for Garetia. But on the other hand, the idea of pugging that much would likely drive me insane, so I'll think I'll just try to be happy with one toon having the nifty dog.

I did dualspec Adowa, the pally, and she is now next on the list to level, once I get her professions up to Outlands. I also should probably learn to heal, and I'm considering going prot/holy and just leveling through instances. Or even, and this is likely over-ambitious, leveling Adowa through dungeons and leveling Monera (the druid) through questing and switching back and forth as I get tired of one or the other. I do have enough heirlooms for both (though I need to get the plate shoulders), but there's no rush to level. I think Lyllea will be taking most of my time for quite a while to come.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The State of Things a Week after 3.3

I've been loving the new LFG tool, even though I haven't gotten much of a chance to play since 3.3 hit. It's really helping me improve my healing skills, and let's face it, healing a tank your own level through stuff is quite a bit different than healing a lvl 80 geared tank. It's giving me loads of practice in the "oh shit" category.

I have yet to set foot in the new instances, mostly because well, I'll be farming the heck out of them on the priest, and don't want to bore myself. Also, for what my guild is currently doing, Garetia's gear is adequate, and since I will be switching mains, it doesn't make any sense to gear her further. I've already let the other hunter in guild know that he gets first dibs on drops, but I must remember to let the guild leadership know as well.

I did get bored at an event over the weekend and checked the priest's gear score. It's not bad, I think (I'm not sure what a level 75's gear score should be), and I found it interesting that it placed Violet Hold in the challenging section. Since I've now successfully healed it, go me!

And last but not least, a bit of luck that made me happy. The night of the patch, I picked up an Enchanted Broom for 1000g in the AH. After seeing another toon with it, I decided to resell it (didn't like the look of it). I made 1000g profit off it, yay! I'm not a big AH player (mostly just sell what I've farmed), but I do keep an eye on certain things, like the pet market, the uncut epic gem market, and the market for certain glyphs.

Speaking of certain glyphs, there is apparently a new glyph that makes the mage's water elemental a real pet. I will have to go get this for my mage as soon as humanly possible. Maybe having a pet will make her easier to level.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Putting the Ammo Thing in perspective for non-hunters

I got pointed to this thread on hunters and I noticed that many of the non-hunters posting didn't really understand the complaints. Now, I am not hugely upset about the ammo thing, just kinda annoyed, but I thought that maybe this might help some non-hunters understand why so much QQ.

Imagine, if you will, that to cast a spell, any spell, you need Pixie Dust. And to hit someone with a weapon, you need Weapon Polish. Every time you cast a spell or hit someone you use up one Pixie Dust or Weapon Polish. Once you run out, you can't cast spells or hit things till you get more. The basic stuff comes from vendors, but to get the dps/spellpower a raiding guild expects, you have to get an enchanter or a blacksmith to make special dust or polish for you. Oh, and each kind of weapon requires its own kind of polish, and healing and damage spells need different kinds of dust as well.

Now, originally you got special bags to store this stuff and it stacked in hundreds. Then one magical day, the developers told you that soon you wouldn't need it anymore, that they'd be getting rid of it entirely. Then, a bit later, they said that the code was very complicated and it'd take longer to get rid of it, but in the meantime they'd make it stack in thousands so you wouldn't need that special bag anymore.

Now, in 3.3, they announce new dust and polish. But wait, there's a couple of hitches. First off, your friendly BS must have the right specialization for the kind of polish you need. And so must your enchanter friend for the kind of dust you need (okay, enchanters don't have specializations, but work with me here). Second, they have to be Honored with a new faction just to get the pattern. So, that handy alt whose BS you leveled so you didn't have to hit the AH just to hit things, well, they're not useful anymore. Oh, and the awesome enchanting guildie, well, you'd better hope they're either the right spec or willing to switch for you. And at a cost of 150g, that respec does not come cheap.

Of course, you can always go back to using the vendor-crafted stuff, but that would make your spells and hits less powerful. Some guilds and raid leaders will likely be okay with that, and some won't. Oh, and if you get a shiny new weapons upgrade, you'd better hope that it's the same kind of weapon, cause you can't use all that axe polish you have on a sword.

So there you go. Thats why hunters bitch so much about ammo.

As far as the pet scaling thing goes, well, 10% to 40% of our dps does not scale. (A pet is about 10% of a marksman's damage, and about 40% of a beast master's damage). I think you can understand why some might be miffed about that.
Well, 3.3 is here, and I for one welcome our new overlords. Or something. I did have a nice ooh, nifty things in patch notes list, but well, there was eating by blogger and then there was WoW cannot install this patch (and now there is repairing and cursing) , so instead I give you the random things I'm thinking about on this, the last content patch before Cat.

1. What addons do I really really need? A major patch is always a good time to try new addons, get rid of ones I'm not using, and generally winnow things down.

2. When will the stupid repair utility be done, and will it fix my problem?

3. Will I have to reset all 3rd party things (and what a nightmare that will be)?

4. Do I know both a goblin and a gnome engineer? (My pally's goblin, but she is 60 so not much help there)

5. Will I actually bother with the new ammo? (Okay, probably not. After all, I haven't been bothering to pick up the crafted in quite a while)

6. Do I have the stamina to PUG enough groups to get the pug pet?

7. Does this mean I don't have to go back to TOC? (For the love of God, please let it be so. I don't mind the 5 man so much, but 10 man is BLEGH)

8. Does this new PUG thing mean I can get to 80 by dungeon running and only dungeon running? Probably not. If nothing else, there are factions I need to unlock.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Nope, the Alt Project is not dead, just hibernating

The Alt Project has been more or less sidetracked by the need for healers in guild, but I do occasionally wander onto one of them to take a break from healing or shadow.

The warlock's now 30, and I hope to get back to her eventually. I love seeing all the Horde quests. I kinda want an Alliance warlock now, since my Alliance toons get played more, have a built-in support system, and heirlooms, but I think that'll wait till Cata and I'll roll a worgen.

Shammy hit 21, and I tried to do the next totem quest. Got my arse handed to me repeatedly, then gave up. I need to sit down and figure out what spec I should be using and what rotation and all that jazz, and quite frankly I have enough to figure out with the shadow rotation/gear vs disc rotation/gear on Lyllea. Two gear sets with different goals confuse me. I even reinstalled Pawn in an effort to help me keep it straight (since apparently Shadow may want other stuff besides int, spellpower, and crit).

The mage, warrior, and rogue continue to languish. I know 3.3's supposed to bring some nice changes for leveling rogues, and I'm hoping that'll make her more fun. If nothing else, I'll try WSG with her. I have a LOOONG history of hating WSG, but maybe it'll be more fun on a rogue at 19 than on a priest or hunter.

If nothing else, I have come to some conclusions about my prefered playstyles. I tend to like ranged dps, hate fragile toons (at high levels a priest is surprisingly hard to kill), will put up with slow kills for more survivability, and am not a huge fan of melee or anything that requires precise positioning.