Author Archives: Tinuviel

WHU Guild Event screenshots

This evening, I had great fun taking part in the WHU (Warcraft Hunter’s Union) Guild Event run by Frostheim of Wow.Com and Warcrafthuntersunion.com.  I want to give a shout out to him and to Minibella and the other officers and helpers for making a fun and awesome event, and for their patience in herding 250+ level 10 cats (oops I mean dwarves).  Unfortunately, I had to leave before the very end of the event, although I did get to die heroically killing a world dragon, but here are my screenshots of a million screaming baby dwarves invading Icecrown Server.  Btw my little baby dwarf is a level 10 female with black pigtails by the name of Soupdragon :)

1.  The dwarf army in Kharanos

2.  People went to huge lengths to train rare pets – there were northrend birds, blood elf dragonhawks,  rares from Mulgore galore.  The rule of the event was also not to level above level 10 – therefore once people got to level 10 they turned off their xp (to do this there is a rogue in sw cathedral to whom you pay 10G for the privilege of ninjaring your xp bar) and then went about twinking their level 10 hunters.  I heard of some people getting upwards of 350 agility on a level 10!  (To put it into perspective, my non twinked hunter has about 30).

3.  There was a long queue for beer in the tavern with all those dwarves.

4.  We mobbed a NightElf after someone said he was Taylor Lautner in disguise (but he refused to take his pink mageweave shirt off :( )

5.  We killed a few horde guards at Splintertree Post because they didn’t know who Taylor Lautner was.

6.  Then we went to kill a world dragon.

7….. then I died, and left my ghost to jump servers and go raid ICC.  Hope you all had a good time, sure that dragon was cat fud and  glue by the end of it.

Cataclysms Hunter Changes Class Preview

This morning Nethaera posted the proposed Hunter changes in Cataclysm see blue post here for source.

The changes and my initial thoughts are as follows (blizzards announcement is in blue – my comments in black text):

With the upcoming World of Warcraft: Cataclysm many game elements will be changing, and each class will be receiving a number of tweaks. Here, we will explore the changes that are being made to the gun-wielding, pet-training hunter. The information you’re about to read is certainly not complete, and is only meant to act as a preview of some of the exciting new things to come. Without further ado, let’s take a look at the new hunter abilities!

New Hunter Abilities

Cobra Shot (level 81): A new shot that deals Nature damage instead of Physical damage. This ability will share a cooldown with Steady Shot. This will give hunters an alternative to Steady Shot on heavily-armored targets, and we will have talent incentives in the Beast Mastery tree to make this a signature shot.

>>  Seems to be an attempt to boost the damage of BM, as well as giving hunters versatility on either heavily armored or physical damage immune targets, although as most bosses armor has up till now been normalised I’m not sure how useful this will prove in pve and opposed to pvp.

Trap Launcher (level 83): When used, the next trap can be shot to a location within 40 yards. This provides the current Freezing Arrow treatment to all traps and, as a result, we will be removing the current ability Freezing Arrow. 1-minute cooldown. No global cooldown.

>>  I’ve wondered why they haven’t done this for a long time, a good change.  Survival hunters are going to see a jump in damage, particularly, being able to shoot traps onto a boss whilst standing still.  Also useful in pvp and arenas as well as having synergy with the camouflage skill.  There are a number of fights where I, as an MM hunter, would utilize traps more if it didn’t mean running in to melee range and then out again, and there are a couple of fights where I do, to the detriment of my damage (currently this will help a lot on Saurfang shooting slowing traps for the blood beasts, and on Lady Paletress in TOC 5man – who hates snake traps [if you have ever hand trouble with her, try snake traps, she smites the snakes instead of your healer]).  [EDIT:  Err I missed that little sentence which said 1minute cooldown – I minute cooldown??  Why a lesser cooldown that traps and the current freezing arrow, scrub what I said for increasing damage and use in arena, will help some, but not as much as it could have if it had the same cooldown timer as traps.

Camouflage (level 85): The hunter enters an obscured state that prevents him or her from taking ranged damage. The character would still be subject to melee or area-of-effect attacks, and dealing or taking damage will break the Camouflage effect. The hunter can move and set traps when under Camouflage, and will receive a damage bonus when attacking while under Camouflage (which will then break the effect).

>>  They talked about this before but never implemented it.  Sounds like a rogues stealth, how far it will work like stealth is to be seen (i.e. will other players be able to detect you in your ‘obscured state’ and will your movement be slowed).  Like a rogue can be broken by aoe, so is not going to save you from raid splash damage.  Maybe useful in executing difficult pulls (if your tank ever realizing that your class can pull easier than Taylor Lautner without his shirt on.), in arenas and pvp, and as an opening move (with the extra damage when attacking from camouflage).

OVERALL:  Interesting changes, but nothing to saw oh wow – now I might actually be able to beat the hybrid melee DPS classes on recount  (yeah, yeah I know all classes are being rebalanced, but still was hoping for something that looked more like pure DPS utility than this.)

Resource Mechanic Change

Here we come to the meat of the upcoming hunter changes.

  • Hunters will no longer use mana; instead the class will use Focus. Focus generates much like Energy, by building up. It will not be affected by Intellect at all. Haste will improve its generation. Hunters will generate roughly 6 Focus per second, slightly less than rogues’ Energy generation rate of around 10 Energy per second. Below, we have listed some examples of how we intend Focus costs to operate:
    • Steady Shot/Cobra Shot: No cost. Generates 9 Focus per shot (or 12 per second instead of 6).
    • Arcane Shot/Chimera Shot /Explosive Shot: 45 Focus.
    • Aimed Shot/Multi-Shot: 60 Focus.
    • Concussive Shot/Tranquilizing Shot: 35 Focus.
    • Rapid Fire/Master’s Call/Disengage: 30 Focus.

>>  It makes sense to remove mana and equally to replace it with Focus.  But until we see it on the PTR and get to play with it, we will be unable to tell whether they have the balance right or not, and how this will affect our rotations and play-style.  I hope they are aiming for something that does not make a hunter radically different to play,  and certainly something that does not gimp my DPS and burst damage.  Oh and DISENGAGE 30 FOCUS – no no and no.  Similarly rapid fire – yeah right, take away my focus before I use the ability I pop when I am about to unload a lot of burst damage or attempt to regen focus.

Changes to Abilities and Mechanics

In addition to the resource change and new abilities listed above, we intend to make adjustments to some of the other abilities and mechanics you already know well. This list and the summary of talent changes below it are by no means comprehensive, but they should give you a good sense of what we’re going for with each spec.

  • A major change coming for the hunter is the removal of ammunition. Guns, bows, and crossbows will now do damage without consuming ammunition at all. There will be no more ammo slot on the hunter’s character display. Any ammunition that a hunter has at the time of the change will become gray sellable items. Existing quivers will be converted into large bags — though each hunter can only have one and non-hunters will not benefit from this change — and we will not be making any additional quivers.

>>  Finally, they are removing consumable ammo…and replacing it with…err, nothing.  In the past they and bloggers have discussed non-consummable ammo acting as buff sticks or as items which add particular effects, say flaming arrows adding fire damage.  They have obviously decided that this is too complicated or imbalanced, so have just done away with it all together.  RPrs and realists may not like the change, or the change of the quiver animation (I know hunters who still carry a quiver, just because they like to see it on their back and the animation of their hunter reaching for an arrow when they fire), but I for one am happy not to have to stuff my bags with arrows or give my cash to engineers who have to right rep (a bug bear – I leveled an engineer alt to 450 to make bullets/arrows, just before they added the new ammo requiring exalted Ashen Verdict rep, which I don’t yet even have on my main, and will never get on my alt who doesn’t raid.)

  • Pet management will also change. Hunters will now have two types of attainable pets: active pets and stored pets. Hunters will be able to have up to three active pets (perhaps five for Beast Mastery specialized players) and will have the ability to switch among these pets any time they are out of combat, without going to town. They will also be able to have a large number of pets in storage at the stables. In order to swap a pet from active to passive, a hunter will still need to visit their local Stable Master. However, this should afford ample storage for the many Spirit Beasts wandering the lands of Azeroth.

>>  WOOT!!!!!! And WOO HOO!!!!!!!  Oh now if only I could go to a pet trainer and get back all those wonder beloved and rare pets I released back into the wild because I didn’t have enough stable slots.   Mania better start setting up warcrafthunterpets.com for all those avid hunter pet collectors out there.

  • Additionally, hunters will now start with a race-appropriate pet at level 1 and will be able to tame a different pet at level 10. We are also changing many pet family abilities to provide important buffs and debuffs. The intention is to allow the hunter to be able to swap pets and fill a position if a certain role is missing from the group. The goal is to have all pets provide a damage increase that is very similar and no greater than any other pet. Some examples of the changes we are making to the pet families are listed below:
    • Wind Serpents: Will provide a debuff that increases the amount of spell damage taken by an enemy (similar to a weaker version of the warlock ability Curse of Elements).
    • Ravagers: Will provide a debuff that will increase an enemy’s Physical damage vulnerability (similar to a weaker version of the warrior ability Rampage).
    • Hyenas: Will provide bleed damage (similar to a weaker version of the druid ability Mangle).

>>  Another  couple of  WOOTS!  I have just leveled a new hunter to level 10 as part of the WHU guild for tonights event (/wave from Soupdragon).  It so alien to level a hunter form 1-10 without a pet (I even tried to send my penguin non-combat pet in to attack with my pet attack macro hot key out of habit).  Yes, it refreshed my shoot and scoot kiting, but that’s about all, and for someone coming new to the class its a slog and doesn’t give them a feel for the class or whether they will enjoy it until they get their precious pet at level 10.  So giving hunters a level 1 pet is long overdue imo.  I wonder what the race appropriate pets will be? (my guess Night Elf – Night Saber or owl; Dwarf – Bear; Draenai – Ravager; Human – boar maybe?: Worgen – wolf obviously; Orc – scoprion; Troll – raptor; Tauren – plainstrider or maybe swoop; bloodelf – dragonhawk; undead – bat or scarred wolf; goblin – hyena.)

>>  I love wolves, I alway have.  But I also love cats and hyenas and a couple of other families, so it will be nice to see some variety in raids, and to have to think about which pet you bring to best support your raid or your role.

  • Stings and other periodic effects will now benefit from haste and critical strike ratings. Hasted damage-over-time abilities do not lose duration, but instead add additional damage ticks.

>>  A buff here like the great T9 armor buff.

  • Viper Sting will now restore 9 Focus every 3 seconds.

>>  How much focus will I have and how fast will this restore it?  Doesn’t sound very quick – and extra 3 focus per sec when I already generate 6 per sec – doesn’t sound worth it.

  • We are reinforcing hunters as a ranged class. To this end, the class will now start with ranged abilities at level 1, and we will be removing some melee abilities, such as Mongoose Bite.

>>  I’m fine with this – as long as I have enough focus to disengage :P

New Talents and Talent Changes

  • Beast Mastery hunters will have a new talent called Careful Aim, which increases the damage of the next Steady Shot or Cobra Shot, but also increases the cast time of these abilities. The intention is to make the combination of spells into a decent damage opener, especially in conjunction with the new ability Camouflage.

>>  This and another couple of abilities seem to be buffing BM and making their rotations more varied and interesting.  Nice to see.

  • Beast Mastery hunters will also have talents that make Cobra Shot superior to Steady Shot, such as Longevity reducing the cast time of Cobra Shot to 1.5 seconds.

>>  Spamming Cobra Shot instead of Steady Shot?   But maybe with a couple of long cobra shots (working they way an opening aimed shot used to in the days when aimed shot had a cast time?)

  • Rapid Recuperation will cause Rapid Fire to give 20/40/60 Focus immediately and will cause Rapid Killing to generate 3 Focus per second.
  • Efficiency will reduce the Focus cost of Chimera Shot, Aimed Shot, and Arcane Shot.
  • Thrill of the Hunt grants Focus when you land a critical strike.
  • Hunter vs. Wild increases the hunter’s Focus generation when his or her pet is snared, stunned, or rooted.

>>  Changing mana regen talents for focus regen talents.

Mastery Passive Talent Tree Bonuses

Beast Mastery

  • Ranged Damage
  • Haste
  • Pet Damage


Pet Damage: Many of the passive benefits to pet damage will no longer be available in the Beast Mastery talent tree. However, these will be provided through the new Mastery mechanic.

>>  Predicable Mastery talent bonuses for BM, always the tree with more haste and pet damage.

Marksmanship

  • Ranged Damage
  • Armor Penetration
  • Double Shot

>> Looks like ArmorPen may still be important for MM hunters.
Double Shot: The hunter will have a chance to launch a free attack off of the global cooldown for 50% damage.

Survival

  • Ranged Damage
  • Ranged Critical Damage
  • Elemental Damage


Elemental Damage: Hunter abilities such as traps, Black Arrow, and Explosive Shot will do elemental damage of the following types: Arcane, Fire, Frost, Nature, and Shadow.

>>  Seem to be buffing the spell damage of Surv hunters.  MM about more physical damage, Surv about more spell damage – with the comment about cobra shot might there be a reason to switch between physical and magic damage for bosses who are immune to one type in the future?

We hope you enjoyed this preview, and ask that you provide your initial thoughts and feedback on what was presented here. Please keep in mind that what you’ve just reviewed is a work in progress and as we move closer to the Cataclysm beta, you’ll see these planned changes as well as others continue to develop in response to feedback and testing.

So that’s the changes, and my initial thoughts – what are your’s?  Please leave your comments below.

Hunter Power Auras 3.3

The Power Auras addon is a highly customizable addon which allows you to set up alerts showing things like buffs, debuffs, and when cooldowns are available.  Please see my original post on Power Auras here, for an explaination.  That post also contains some of my survival hunter power auras, which still work in 3.3.

Below are the current Power Auras I use, which are actually useful for all specs of hunters (especially raiders with a ferocity pet).  Copy the text, open Power Auras in game /powa and press the Import button, paste the copied text into the box that pops up and press OK.  You may have to close the Power Auras dialogue box and reopen it to see your new Power Aura.  Hope this help, please feel free to post your own Power Auras or links to other good descriptions in the comments.

I used to use Power Auras to shows when my spells were available for my rotation.  I no longer do that.  What I mostly use it for it to manage my high DPS cooldowns, i.e. rapid fire, berserking racial, furious howl, rabid etc.  I use it to make sure I am getting the maximum use out of these cooldowns, and stacking them where possible.  I have a macro that will fire them all off at once (as well as hotkeying them seperately):

#showtooltip Rapid Fire
/cast Berserking
/cast Kill command
/cast Rapid Fire
/cast rabid
/cast call of the wild
/cast furious howl
/use 13
/use 14
/cast Bestial Wrath
(where use 13 and use 14 refers to you trinkets in case you use trinkets which have on use procs.  I added Bestial Wrath as I have a BM off spec.)

#showtooltip Rapid Fire/cast Berserking/cast Kill command/cast Rapid Fire/cast rabid/cast call of the wild/cast furious howl/use 13/use 14/cast Bestial Wrath

Aspect of the Dragonhawk – shows when Aspect of the Dragonhawk is active

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Serpent Sting – Shows when Serpent Sting is on the target

Version:st3.0.0E; gcd:bofalse; b:nu0.87843137254902; anim1:nu1; g:nu0.87843137254902; optunitn:bofalse; ignoremaj:botrue; stacksLower:nu0; target:botrue; icon:stInterface\Icons\Ability_Hunter_Quickshot; size:nu0.11999998986721; torsion:nu1; r:nu0.87843137254902; y:nu-25; x:nu180; customname:st; groupany:bofalse; isAlive:botrue; timerduration:nu0; unitn:stOnly for raid/group.; bufftype:nu2; stacks:nu0; focus:bofalse; raid:bofalse; texture:nu1; alpha:nu1; aurastext:st; symetrie:nu0; owntex:botrue; isResting:nu0; duration:nu0; mine:botrue; multiids:st; inVehicle:bofalse; speed:nu1; anim2:nu0; stacksOperator:st=; realaura:nu1; spec2:botrue; threshold:nu50; exact:botrue; InactiveDueToState:botrue; textaura:bofalse; sound:nu0; wowtex:bofalse; groupOrSelf:bofalse; customsound:st; combat:nu0; id:nu2; inParty:nu0; HideRequest:bofalse; Active:bofalse; aurastextfont:nu1; buffname:stSerpent Sting; inRaid:nu0; tooltipCheck:st; customtex:bofalse; stance:nu10; isSecondary:bofalse; thresholdinvert:bofalse; spec1:botrue; Debug:bofalse; beginSpin:bofalse; Showing:bofalse; UseOldAnimations:bofalse; begin:nu0; off:bofalse; party:bofalse; texmode:nu2; inverse:botrue; ismounted:bofalse; targetfriend:bofalse; randomcolor:bofalse; finish:nu1

Aspect of the Viper – Shows when Aspect of the Viper is active

Version:st3.0.0E; gcd:bofalse; b:nu0.89019607843137; anim1:nu4; g:nu0.45098039215686; optunitn:bofalse; ignoremaj:botrue; stacksLower:nu0; target:bofalse; icon:stInterface\Icons\Ability_Hunter_AspectoftheViper; size:nu0.34000000357628; torsion:nu1; r:nu1; y:nu55; x:nu0; customname:st; groupany:bofalse; isAlive:botrue; timerduration:nu0; unitn:stOnly for raid/group.; bufftype:nu1; stacks:nu0; focus:bofalse; raid:bofalse; texture:nu34; alpha:nu1; aurastext:st; symetrie:nu0; owntex:bofalse; isResting:nu0; duration:nu0; mine:bofalse; multiids:st; inVehicle:bofalse; speed:nu1; anim2:nu0; stacksOperator:st=; realaura:nu1; spec2:botrue; InactiveDueToState:bofalse; threshold:nu50; exact:bofalse; textaura:bofalse; sound:nu0; wowtex:botrue; groupOrSelf:bofalse; customsound:st; combat:nu0; id:nu3; inParty:nu0; HideRequest:bofalse; Active:bofalse; aurastextfont:nu1; buffname:stAspect of the Viper; inRaid:nu0; tooltipCheck:st; customtex:bofalse; stance:nu10; isSecondary:bofalse; thresholdinvert:bofalse; spec1:botrue; Debug:bofalse; beginSpin:bofalse; Showing:bofalse; UseOldAnimations:bofalse; begin:nu0; off:bofalse; party:bofalse; texmode:nu1; inverse:bofalse; ismounted:bofalse; targetfriend:bofalse; randomcolor:bofalse; finish:nu1

Aspect of the Pack – Shows when Aspect of the Pack is active (when cast by yourself or others)

Version:st3.0.0E; gcd:bofalse; b:nu0.03921568627451; anim1:nu4; g:nu0.070588235294118; optunitn:bofalse; ignoremaj:botrue; stacksLower:nu0; target:bofalse; icon:stInterface\Icons\Ability_Mount_WhiteTiger; size:nu0.34000000357628; torsion:nu1; r:nu1; y:nu-201; x:nu4; customname:st; groupany:bofalse; isAlive:botrue; timerduration:nu0; unitn:stOnly for raid/group.; bufftype:nu1; stacks:nu0; focus:bofalse; raid:bofalse; texture:nu35; alpha:nu1; aurastext:st; symetrie:nu0; owntex:bofalse; isResting:nu0; duration:nu0; mine:bofalse; multiids:st; inVehicle:bofalse; speed:nu1; anim2:nu0; stacksOperator:st=; realaura:nu1; spec2:botrue; InactiveDueToState:bofalse; threshold:nu50; exact:bofalse; textaura:bofalse; sound:nu0; wowtex:botrue; groupOrSelf:bofalse; customsound:st; combat:nu0; id:nu4; inParty:nu0; HideRequest:bofalse; Active:bofalse; aurastextfont:nu1; buffname:stAspect of the Pack; inRaid:nu0; tooltipCheck:st; customtex:bofalse; stance:nu10; isSecondary:bofalse; thresholdinvert:bofalse; spec1:botrue; Debug:bofalse; beginSpin:bofalse; Showing:bofalse; UseOldAnimations:bofalse; begin:nu0; off:bofalse; party:bofalse; texmode:nu1; inverse:bofalse; ismounted:bofalse; targetfriend:bofalse; randomcolor:bofalse; finish:nu1

Aspect of the Cheetah- Shows when Aspect of the Cheetah is active (when cast by yourself)

Version:st3.0.0E; gcd:bofalse; b:nu0.38823529411765; anim1:nu4; g:nu0.69411764705882; optunitn:bofalse; ignoremaj:botrue; stacksLower:nu0; target:bofalse; icon:stInterface\Icons\Ability_Mount_JungleTiger; size:nu0.34000000357628; torsion:nu1; r:nu1; y:nu-201; x:nu4; customname:st; groupany:bofalse; isAlive:botrue; timerduration:nu0; unitn:stOnly for raid/group.; bufftype:nu1; stacks:nu0; focus:bofalse; raid:bofalse; texture:nu35; alpha:nu1; aurastext:st; symetrie:nu0; owntex:bofalse; isResting:nu0; duration:nu0; mine:bofalse; multiids:st; inVehicle:bofalse; speed:nu1; anim2:nu0; stacksOperator:st=; realaura:nu1; spec2:botrue; InactiveDueToState:bofalse; threshold:nu50; exact:bofalse; textaura:bofalse; sound:nu0; wowtex:botrue; groupOrSelf:bofalse; customsound:st; combat:nu0; id:nu12; inParty:nu0; HideRequest:bofalse; Active:bofalse; aurastextfont:nu1; buffname:stAspect of the Cheetah; inRaid:nu0; tooltipCheck:st; customtex:bofalse; stance:nu10; isSecondary:bofalse; thresholdinvert:bofalse; spec1:botrue; Debug:bofalse; beginSpin:bofalse; Showing:bofalse; UseOldAnimations:bofalse; begin:nu0; off:bofalse; party:bofalse; texmode:nu1; inverse:bofalse; ismounted:bofalse; targetfriend:bofalse; randomcolor:bofalse; finish:nu1

Kill Command – Shows when Kill Command is off cooldown and available for use

Version:st3.0.0E; gcd:bofalse; b:nu1; anim1:nu1; g:nu1; optunitn:bofalse; ignoremaj:botrue; stacksLower:nu0; target:bofalse; icon:stInterface\Icons\Ability_Hunter_KillCommand; size:nu0.19999998807907; torsion:nu1; r:nu1; y:nu-131; x:nu-94; customname:st; groupany:bofalse; isAlive:nu0; timerduration:nu0; unitn:stOnly for raid/group.; bufftype:nu7; stacks:nu0; focus:bofalse; raid:bofalse; texture:nu1; slot:nu84; alpha:nu0.75000005960464; aurastext:st; symetrie:nu0; owntex:botrue; isResting:nu0; duration:nu0; mine:botrue; multiids:st; inVehicle:bofalse; speed:nu1; anim2:nu0; stacksOperator:st=; realaura:nu1; spec2:botrue; threshold:nu50; exact:botrue; InactiveDueToState:botrue; textaura:bofalse; sound:nu0; wowtex:bofalse; groupOrSelf:bofalse; customsound:st; combat:nu0; id:nu5; inParty:botrue; HideRequest:bofalse; Active:bofalse; aurastextfont:nu1; buffname:stKill Command; inRaid:botrue; tooltipCheck:st; customtex:bofalse; stance:nu10; isSecondary:bofalse; thresholdinvert:bofalse; spec1:botrue; Debug:bofalse; beginSpin:bofalse; Showing:bofalse; UseOldAnimations:bofalse; begin:nu0; off:bofalse; party:bofalse; texmode:nu2; inverse:bofalse; ismounted:bofalse; targetfriend:bofalse; randomcolor:bofalse; finish:nu2

Furious Howl – Shows when Furious Howl (wolf pet) is off cooldown and available for use

Version:st3.0.0E; gcd:bofalse; b:nu1; anim1:nu1; g:nu1; optunitn:bofalse; ignoremaj:bofalse; stacksLower:nu0; target:bofalse; icon:stInterface\Icons\Ability_Hunter_Pet_Wolf; size:nu0.19999998807907; torsion:nu1; r:nu1; y:nu-131; x:nu-31; customname:st; groupany:bofalse; isAlive:nu0; timerduration:nu0; unitn:stOnly for raid/group.; bufftype:nu7; stacks:nu0; focus:bofalse; raid:bofalse; texture:nu1; slot:nu86; alpha:nu0.75000005960464; aurastext:st; symetrie:nu0; owntex:botrue; isResting:nu0; duration:nu0; mine:botrue; multiids:st; inVehicle:bofalse; speed:nu1; anim2:nu0; stacksOperator:st=; realaura:nu1; spec2:botrue; threshold:nu50; exact:botrue; InactiveDueToState:botrue; textaura:bofalse; sound:nu0; wowtex:bofalse; groupOrSelf:bofalse; customsound:st; combat:nu0; id:nu13; inParty:botrue; HideRequest:bofalse; Active:bofalse; aurastextfont:nu1; buffname:stFurious Howl; inRaid:botrue; tooltipCheck:st; customtex:bofalse; stance:nu10; isSecondary:bofalse; thresholdinvert:bofalse; spec1:botrue; Debug:bofalse; beginSpin:bofalse; Showing:bofalse; UseOldAnimations:bofalse; begin:nu0; off:bofalse; party:bofalse; texmode:nu2; inverse:bofalse; ismounted:bofalse; targetfriend:bofalse; randomcolor:bofalse; finish:nu0

Rapid Fire – Shows when Rapid Fire is off cooldown and available for use

Version:st3.0.0E; gcd:bofalse; b:nu1; anim1:nu1; g:nu1; optunitn:bofalse; ignoremaj:bofalse; stacksLower:nu0; target:bofalse; icon:stInterface\Icons\Ability_Creature_Cursed_04; size:nu0.19999998807907; torsion:nu1; r:nu1; y:nu-131; x:nu165; customname:st; groupany:bofalse; isAlive:nu0; timerduration:nu0; unitn:stOnly for raid/group.; bufftype:nu7; stacks:nu0; focus:bofalse; raid:bofalse; texture:nu1; slot:nu22; alpha:nu0.75000005960464; aurastext:st; symetrie:nu0; owntex:botrue; isResting:nu0; duration:nu0; mine:botrue; multiids:st; inVehicle:bofalse; speed:nu1; anim2:nu0; stacksOperator:st=; realaura:nu1; spec2:botrue; threshold:nu50; exact:bofalse; InactiveDueToState:botrue; textaura:bofalse; sound:nu0; wowtex:bofalse; groupOrSelf:bofalse; customsound:st; combat:nu0; id:nu14; inParty:botrue; HideRequest:bofalse; Active:bofalse; aurastextfont:nu1; buffname:stRapid Fire; inRaid:botrue; tooltipCheck:st; customtex:bofalse; stance:nu10; isSecondary:bofalse; thresholdinvert:bofalse; spec1:botrue; Debug:bofalse; beginSpin:bofalse; Showing:bofalse; UseOldAnimations:bofalse; begin:nu0; off:bofalse; party:bofalse; texmode:nu2; inverse:bofalse; ismounted:bofalse; targetfriend:bofalse; randomcolor:bofalse; finish:nu2

Rapid Fire 2 – shows when Rapid Fire is active

Version:st3.0.0E; gcd:bofalse; b:nu1; anim1:nu1; g:nu1; optunitn:bofalse; ignoremaj:botrue; stacksLower:nu0; target:bofalse; icon:stInterface\Icons\Ability_Hunter_RunningShot; size:nu0.19999998807907; torsion:nu1; r:nu1; y:nu-157; x:nu0; customname:st; groupany:bofalse; isAlive:nu0; timerduration:nu0; unitn:stOnly for raid/group.; bufftype:nu1; stacks:nu0; focus:bofalse; raid:bofalse; texture:nu1; alpha:nu0.80000001192093; aurastext:st; symetrie:nu0; owntex:botrue; isResting:nu0; duration:nu0; mine:botrue; multiids:st; inVehicle:bofalse; speed:nu1; anim2:nu0; stacksOperator:st=; realaura:nu1; spec2:botrue; InactiveDueToState:botrue; threshold:nu50; exact:bofalse; textaura:bofalse; sound:nu0; wowtex:bofalse; groupOrSelf:bofalse; customsound:st; combat:nu0; id:nu20; inParty:botrue; HideRequest:bofalse; Active:bofalse; aurastextfont:nu1; buffname:stRapid Fire; inRaid:botrue; tooltipCheck:st; customtex:bofalse; stance:nu10; isSecondary:bofalse; thresholdinvert:bofalse; spec1:botrue; Debug:bofalse; beginSpin:bofalse; Showing:bofalse; UseOldAnimations:bofalse; begin:nu0; off:bofalse; party:bofalse; texmode:nu2; inverse:bofalse; ismounted:bofalse; targetfriend:bofalse; randomcolor:bofalse; finish:nu2

Call of the Wild – shows when Call of the Wild (ferocity pet talent skill) is available and ready for use (remember to switch off autocast if you want to control this manually)

Version:st3.0.0E; gcd:bofalse; b:nu0.94901960784314; anim1:nu1; g:nu0.9921568627451; optunitn:bofalse; ignoremaj:botrue; stacksLower:nu0; target:bofalse; icon:stInterface\Icons\ABILITY_DRUID_DEMORALIZINGROAR; size:nu0.20999999344349; torsion:nu1; r:nu1; y:nu-130; x:nu97; customname:st; groupany:bofalse; isAlive:nu0; timerduration:nu0; unitn:stOnly for raid/group.; bufftype:nu7; stacks:nu0; focus:bofalse; raid:bofalse; texture:nu4; slot:nu88; alpha:nu0.75000005960464; aurastext:st; symetrie:nu0; owntex:botrue; isResting:nu0; duration:nu0; mine:botrue; multiids:st; inVehicle:bofalse; speed:nu0.5; anim2:nu0; stacksOperator:st=; realaura:nu1; spec2:botrue; threshold:nu50; exact:bofalse; InactiveDueToState:botrue; textaura:bofalse; sound:nu0; wowtex:bofalse; groupOrSelf:bofalse; customsound:stjaguar.wav; combat:nu0; id:nu18; inParty:botrue; HideRequest:bofalse; Active:bofalse; aurastextfont:nu1; buffname:stCall of the Wild; inRaid:botrue; tooltipCheck:st; customtex:bofalse; stance:nu10; isSecondary:bofalse; thresholdinvert:bofalse; spec1:botrue; Debug:bofalse; beginSpin:bofalse; Showing:bofalse; UseOldAnimations:bofalse; begin:nu0; off:bofalse; party:bofalse; texmode:nu2; inverse:bofalse; ismounted:bofalse; targetfriend:bofalse; randomcolor:bofalse; finish:nu2

Rabid – shows when Rabid (ferocity pet talent skill) is available and ready for use (remember to switch off autocast if you want to control this manually)

Version:st3.0.0E; gcd:bofalse; b:nu0.94901960784314; anim1:nu1; g:nu0.9921568627451; optunitn:bofalse; ignoremaj:botrue; stacksLower:nu0; target:bofalse; icon:stInterface\Icons\Ability_Druid_Berserk; size:nu0.20999999344349; torsion:nu1; r:nu1; y:nu-130; x:nu36; customname:st; groupany:bofalse; isAlive:nu0; timerduration:nu0; unitn:stOnly for raid/group.; bufftype:nu7; stacks:nu0; focus:bofalse; raid:bofalse; texture:nu51; slot:nu87; alpha:nu0.75000005960464; aurastext:st; symetrie:nu0; owntex:botrue; isResting:nu0; duration:nu0; mine:botrue; multiids:st; inVehicle:bofalse; speed:nu0.5; anim2:nu0; stacksOperator:st=; realaura:nu1; spec2:botrue; threshold:nu50; exact:bofalse; InactiveDueToState:botrue; textaura:bofalse; sound:nu0; wowtex:bofalse; groupOrSelf:bofalse; customsound:stjaguar.wav; combat:nu0; id:nu19; inParty:botrue; HideRequest:bofalse; Active:bofalse; aurastextfont:nu1; buffname:stRabid; inRaid:botrue; tooltipCheck:st; customtex:bofalse; stance:nu10; isSecondary:bofalse; thresholdinvert:bofalse; spec1:botrue; Debug:bofalse; beginSpin:bofalse; Showing:bofalse; UseOldAnimations:bofalse; begin:nu0; off:bofalse; party:bofalse; texmode:nu2; inverse:bofalse; ismounted:bofalse; targetfriend:bofalse; randomcolor:bofalse; finish:nu2

Beserking – Shows when Berserking (Troll racial ability giving haste) is off cooldown and ready for use.

Version:st3.0.0E; gcd:bofalse; b:nu1; anim1:nu1; g:nu1; optunitn:bofalse; ignoremaj:bofalse; stacksLower:nu0; target:bofalse; icon:stInterface\Icons\Racial_Troll_Berserk; size:nu0.19999998807907; torsion:nu1; r:nu1; y:nu-131; x:nu-159; customname:st; groupany:bofalse; isAlive:nu0; timerduration:nu0; unitn:stOnly for raid/group.; bufftype:nu7; stacks:nu0; focus:bofalse; raid:bofalse; texture:nu1; slot:nu40; alpha:nu0.75000005960464; aurastext:st; symetrie:nu0; owntex:botrue; isResting:nu0; duration:nu0; mine:botrue; multiids:st; inVehicle:bofalse; speed:nu1; anim2:nu0; stacksOperator:st=; realaura:nu1; spec2:botrue; threshold:nu50; exact:botrue; InactiveDueToState:botrue; textaura:bofalse; sound:nu0; wowtex:bofalse; groupOrSelf:bofalse; customsound:st; combat:nu0; id:nu21; inParty:botrue; HideRequest:bofalse; Active:bofalse; aurastextfont:nu1; buffname:stBerserking; inRaid:botrue; tooltipCheck:st; customtex:bofalse; stance:nu10; isSecondary:bofalse; thresholdinvert:bofalse; spec1:botrue; Debug:bofalse; beginSpin:bofalse; Showing:bofalse; UseOldAnimations:bofalse; begin:nu0; off:bofalse; party:bofalse; texmode:nu2; inverse:bofalse; ismounted:bofalse; targetfriend:bofalse; randomcolor:bofalse; finish:nu2

Addons for a 3.3 raiding hunter

My UI

My UI – I play on a laptop, so have a fairly small screen.  Therefore, I go for utility rather than looks when it comes to set up, as pretty docking bars across the bottom of the screen take up too much space.  The large action bar to the left is my pvp, oh sh*t click buttons, and buttons I change around a lot.  The heartstone isn’t usually there, but I was in the Exodar last night getting the old warbear :)

I use a number of different addons.  From time to time I try to cut down, but they slowly creep back in again.  There are some, though, that I would find it very hard to do without, and which definitely add to my DPS and ability to raid.  I also have a couple of  favorite non-raid addons.

Remember, always download addons from a reputable site like Curse Gaming.  Click load out of date addons in your loading screen.  I am using all of these in 3.3.2 (I have noted the version they have been updated for at the time of writing, all say they are compatible with 3.3.0 at least).   I have had the occasional error pop up, and a couple have not been specially updated for 3.3, but for the most part they work fine.  The links take you directly to the Curse Gaming Site link for each addon.

Favorite raid addons

1. Deadly Boss Mods – (3.3.0) most raiders wouldn’t run without this or a major alternative like Big Wigs, and many groups won’t let you.

2.  Omen3 threat meter – (3.3.0) not as essential as it once was, with ingame threat meters and changes to threat and aggro, but still useful in certain circumstances.

3.  Recount damage meter – (3.3.3) well you want to be able to brag when you have the highest dps on a freak aoe trash pull, right?  Seriously, use it as a tool to improve your DPS, analyze your shot rotations, compare yourself to others of the same class, their rotations, their dot uptime etc.

4.  OmniCC -(3.3.0)  cooldown timers – shows a number on each of you spells on your action bar, counting down the seconds until it is off cooldown, helps you plan your shot rotation.  Very useful and simple addon.

5.  Power Auras Classic – (3.3.0) one of my favorite addons.  Can be fiddly to set up, but hugely programmable.  Allows you to set up alerts for buffs, debuffs, cooldowns, rotations, all sorts of things.  I already have an older post about this, and will write a separate updated post about this one shortly.

6.  Bartender 4 – (3.3.0) replaces the standard action bars with configurable bars.  I play on a laptop with a small screen, I find the standard bars take up too much space.  I can have more buttons with bartender while still taking up less screen room.

7.  Atlas – (3.3.0) dungeon maps – why aren’t these properly in the game as a standard part of the UI?  Weird.

8.  Quartz – (3.3.0) a cast bar timer – I only use the minimum capability of this addon, just to show any lag on my casting and when I can stack up the next shot to cast.

9.  Grid – (3.3.0) unit frame showing members of the raid.  Useful in fights like the blood queen when you need to target someone quickly to bite them.  Alternatively you can just drag and drop the raid groups out of the raid window onto your screen, but that takes up more screen room.

10.  MikScrollingBattleText - (3.3.0) replaces the text that scrolls about your head showing damage done etc.  Editable, and shows some useful extras.

11.  Gearscore – (3.3.0) love it or loathe it, it is an interesting and useful addon in the right hands, don’t dismiss it because some idiots misuse it.

You will notice I don’t use a Unit Frame Addons like XPerl or PitBull.  I’ve tried them but found they don’t do much for me.  I do sometimes use MoveIt, to locate my character icon and target icon at the bottom of my screen so I can look at health bars and action bars easily at the same time, but this seems to be a bit buggy as of 3.3.

Minimum:  If I had to choose I would go with DBM and OmniCC, followed by bartender and PowerAuras, then recount.  Others are more optional.

Non-raiding utility addons

1.  LoadIT – (3.3.0) allows you to easily switch addons on and off ingame without having to log off and on.   Note this is a great addon, but has not been updated recently.  A couple of the commenters on Curse think it’s causing them problems.  It doesn’t seem to have caused me any problems.

2.  Mapster – (3.3.0) replaces some of the features of cartographer with the new ingame map system.  E.g.  you can see the complete maps for zones, and color fog for unvisited places if going for the explorer achievement.

3.  SilverDragon – a personal favorite addon (I almost don’t want to tell you about this, it’s so good, it feels like cheating) – it sends you an alert if there is a silver elite nearby.  I’ve killed a lot more silver elites since getting it, and tamed my spirit beast.  It is a bit buggy though, and can throw up lua error messages, or false positives.

4.  HandyNotes - (3.3.0) works with mapster and silver dragons to show up the places silver elites spawn on you map so you can hunt them.

5.  Titan Panel - (3.3.0) needs no explanation – I use the minimal panel for money and durability.

6.  AuctionLite - (3.3.3) I prefer this to auctioneer.  Try it you might like it, plus its less resource hungry.

7.  Collect Me – (3.3.0) as a mount and minipet collector, I use this one from time to time when hunting for pets.  It also adds a button to summon a random minipet.

8.  Ackis Recipe List – (3.3.0) tells you which trade recipes you are missing and where to find them.

Minimum:  None are essential but I don’t like to be without LoadIT and SilverDragons.  When raiding I often turn off some or all of these if I experience any lag.

An update from your friends at Steady Shot

Last time I wrote, I left Tinuviel sleeping in Dalaran, I think Anelf was off doing the tree dance in some dodgy area of the Underbelly.  We decided to stop blogging as we were playing very casually, but left the blog open in case things changed.  Well, recently we’ve started raiding again, so I thought I would post a quick update on the blog, and maybe update a couple of the posts on macros and PowerAuras.  I don’t intend to come back to blogging regularly, but I might add some information that I think is useful from time-to-time.

So what have we been up to?  We had fun leveling Horde characters on our server Antonidas (I’ve secretly always preferred the horde :) ).  Anelf rerolled a Tauren druid, Pamplona, and I leveled a warlock.  But once we got to 80 and thought about doing heroics and raiding again, I realized I was still a hunter at heart, so Anelf paid for a character transfer, for Tinuviel, as a valentine’s pressie (lol).  Tinuviel is now the awesome troll hunter, Petrel.  Much better valentine’s pressie than a bunch of roses :D

LMAO – btw I was posting this on 1st Apr – went to the wow armory to link Pamplona and Petrel – if you didn’t see it this morning, they changed all the characters to look like tuskarr, you primary professions have been changed to fishing and fishing, and all your achieves say things like “ninjaed [Zod's Reapeating Longbow] vendored” – very funny.

Having run a lot of bgs and quite a few heroics to gear up, Pamplona and Petrel joined the raiding guild Fatal a few weeks ago.  Since then we have been raiding ICC 10 and some 25man, VOA, weeklies, and a couple of other raids.  It’s great to finally be in a guild doing real end game content.  The last two nights I have been incredibly lucky (as well has having run with some great guildies – Bubbette and Gettacow shout-outs to you especially) – I won Njordnar Bone Bow from Lady Deathwhisper in 10man ICC on Monday night and then upgraded it too Zod’s Repeating Longbow from Lady Deathwhisper in 25man ICC last night!  Not only is it an awesome bow, but it’s even more awesome given my trolly racial bonus with bows :)

So that’s where we are at the moment.  I’d like to give a shout out and /wave to any of our old friends and regular readers who chance on this post.  Missed you all, hope life and WOW is treating you well.  I’d also like to give a /salute to Brian “Frostheim” Wood who has been keeping me up-to-date with hunter goodness over on WOW.Com and warcrafthuntersunion.com.  Great posts Brian, keep ‘em coming.

As for my posts, I will throw up the occasional thing I think is interesting or informational.  For now I am going to update the macro and poweraura posts in the next few days as those are the ones I often find myself looking for on other sites.  Keep on hunting and FOR THE HORDE!!!!

Good Night and Good Luck

As you may have noticed we’ve not been posting much recently.  We’re still playing WOW, but with the collapse of Soldiers of Fortune guild and the short life of the little guild we formed afterwards, we’ve changed our play-style significantly.  We’re not currently raiding; and I don’t feel on the cutting edge of hunter news to pass it on to you.

We’re enjoying our new casual play (mostly on the horde :) ).  But with casual play, comes being more casual about blogging too.  Therefore, we’ve decided to stop posting here for the foreseeable future.  We will keep the site open so that you can access the old information pieces.  And who knows, maybe we will want to blog again in future, perhaps when Cataclysm gets imminent.  But for now, we’d like to thank all our loyal readers and casual surfers.  We hope you found something interesting and/or useful here, and we hope you continue to enjoy your WOW playing, as we are.

So it all that is left for me to say is,  “Good Night and Good Luck.”

Good Night and Good Luck!

Good Night and Good Luck!

Patch 3.2.2 Volley love

From a joke pre-wrath, to OP at the beginning of Wrath, to almost a joke again recently, following stealth nerf after stealth nerf, volley got a little stealth buff in the recent patch.

The AP coefficient of Volley has been increased from 0.0586 to 0.0837. Base points did not change. This probably did not make the patch notes. (Source)

Hopefully, this will balance it and make it competitive with other classes’ AOE.  But seeing the note on MMO Champion got a little, ‘yeay!’ from me in any case :)

Brewmaster Tinvuiel: Insulting Coren Direbrew and disturbing the peace

ScreenShot_092408_225601Today is the start of my favorite festival of the year – beer, oom-pah music, hairy legged dwarves in lederhosen – what’s not to love?!  And today I achieved the meta-achievement for Brewfest, and scored myself the title of Brewmaster :)

Now, you won’t be able to do it all in one day, unless you had completed some of the achievements last year and still had some of the regalia.  I already had two pieces of brewfest clothes sitting in my bank, and so needed 1 more piece, or 100 tokens, to complete the set and some of the achievements.  You can earn at least 147 tokens on the first day.  I also had my Great Brewfest Kodo from last year and was in the Brew of the Month Club, so a couple of the achievements were already filled in.

Here is your guide to completing the achievement over the course of the festival:

Coren Direbrew (provides 40 tokens per day)

Killing Coren Direbrew last year, doesn’t count, you will have to repeat it again this year.  You must be level 75+ to be able to pick up the quest, as Direbrew has been upped to a level 80 elite.  Lower levels can take part in a group, as the fight takes part in BRD with a low instance restriction. But unless friends are running you through, most people are going to want everyone in their group to be 75+ and have the quest, so that the group can kill him 5 times and have 5 lootings of the corpse.  As with last year, he is pretty easy, and is a loot piñata.  Our group 4-manned him easily, and could have three or possibly 2-manned him as geared 80s.

If you haven’t done this before, you may be able to pick up a quest – Save Brewfest! - from Darna Honeybock (a female dwarf) near the barrel thrower for the ram racers in Kharanos (Alliance) or Slurpo Fizzykeg in Durotar (Horde).  Darna didn’t have the quest for Tin, so I headed straight over to Black Rock Depths.  There is a spy in the Grim Guzzler (the neutral tavern part of the intance) who will give you the daily quest – Insult Coren Direbrew.  If like Tin, you have your Direbrew’s Remote (dropped by Direbrew last year) you can teleport you and your party straight there. (Otherwise, use the transporters to your right just after you’ve entered the instance).

The fight is the same as last year, except Coren and the two barmaids are level 80 elites, and the little adds are 80 non-elites.  Coren starts with 3 non-elite adds, you start the quest and you tank aggros all of them.  Other non-elite adds will spawn behind/within the ranged party through mole machines.  Part way through the fight the two barmaids will spawn.  Its an easy tank and spank, just make sure your healer isn’t overwhelmed by the adds and watch for two other things.  First, keep your backpack open and the first space free. Beer gets thrown at you – drink it as soon as it appears, or you get stunned when a second brew is thrown at you. Second, someone (usually the tank) gets a barrel on their head.  This will incapacitate them for a few seconds.  If this happens, make sure the squishies stay away from Direbrew.

The loot hasn’t been updated yet on Wowhead (Direbrew) – but I can confirm that he drops level 80 (ilevel 200) trinkets, equivalent to those purchasable for 25 Emblems of Heroism.  I guess he still drops the mounts at the same low drop rate, plus some updated shankers and his remote, but we only saw trinkets on our first days runs.   They don’t share cooldowns with the emblem trinkets, so both can be equipped at once and can proc at once.

Loot (someone helpfully listed these on wowhead – we saw the first three drop today):

Mithril Pocketwatch

Coren’s Chromium Coaster

Ancient Pickled Egg

Brawler’s Souvenir

Bubbling Brightbrew Charm

Bitter Balebrew Charm

Direbrew’s Shanker 2.0

Great Brewfeast Kodo

Swift Brewfest Ram

Direbrew’s Remote

Down with the Darkiron

The Dark Iron Dwarves will attack brewfest, appearing in the mole machines and trying to steal the three large beer kegs.  To stop them, drink the beer samples on the tables next to the kegs, and hurl them at the dwarves.  If the dwarves are successfully repelled, a cog is left on the ground, which anyone can click on to get the daily quest (and the achievement, the first time you do it).  You don’t have to have taken part in the battle, so look out for the cog with a blue exclamation mark over it each time you are at brewfest.

Strange Brew

Drink all the brews listed for the Strange Brew achievement.  All are available from the vendors at brewfest.  I particularly liked the Mudder’s Milk – a reference to Firefly, one of my all time favorite TV Shows.

The brewfest diet

Eat all the Brewfest diet food listed.  These can all be bought from the vendors.

Brew of the Month (requires 200 tokens)

If you joined last year, you should already have this achievement.  Otherwise, you need to save 200 tokens and purchase the Brew of the Month Club Membership and complete the quest.

Disturbing the peace (requires 250 tokens)

Wear 3 pieces of brewfest regalia and /dance while drunk in Dalaran.  You need to purchase a brewfest hat; shoes or boots; and dress or regalia.  It will cost you 250 tokens in all.  Go to the inn in Dal, buy 4-5 alcoholic drinks, drink until you get the emote you are smashed, then slash dance and try not to fall over.

Drunken Stupor

This is the same as the old Going Down? achievement, accept you need to be drunk when you do it.  I jumped off the tower to the side of the elevator tower of the scryer terrace in Shattrath.  Even if you’re Aldor the robots don’t bother you there.

Does your Wolpertinger linger?

If you don’t have the pet from last year, just do the quest to get one.  Tip:  speak to the quest guy, who will give you some glasses you can use to do this and the pink elekk quest (do this one too – its not an achievement but awards 40 tokens).  The glasses make you drunk, without having to bother drinking, lol.  And even better, when you take them off you are instantly sober.

Have Keg, Will Travel (requires 2 tokens)

You no longer need one of the permanent brewfest mounts to achievement this one.  I was lucky enough to get a Kodo last year, so I’m all set.  But if you don’t have one, you can use either fresh or preserved hops to transform your mount into a kodo to get the achievement. 20 fresh hops cost 2 tokens.

Ram racing

This is not an achievement – but you need to do the ram racing to get the tokens.  There are a couple of training quests before you are let lose on the daily barrel run.  For this you need to ferry barrels, back and forth along a course in kharanos or outside Orgrimmar.  You get 2 tokens per barrel.  The trick is to keep your ram at a gallop the whole time, and never let him get exhausted, plus to also take the shortest route possible.  To do this you need to ride close to at least two of the four barrels of apples along the route.  These give the ram more energy.  You see two buffs, a circle (green = trot; gold = canter; red = gallop) and a ram with a number – if the number gets to 100 you get an exhausted ram for several seconds.  Hot key the ram reign to a button, smash it for all you are worth, and race up and down, taking your ram close to at least 2 barrels as you go.

Barking

They’ve changed this slightly from last year. Its now easier, as you only have to get around the flags in the time, not back to the vendor.  Once you get to the last flag, the quest is complete, and you can dismount from your ram and hand in later.  Pick up the Barking quest from any of the three vendors.  He gives you a ram, you need to race around Ironforge/Orgrimmar on it, past the flags at 4 locations.  In IF they are in each of the quarters.  I found if I kept my ram at a canter the enter time, he didn’t get exhausted and I did the quest in the time.  There are no apple barrels for refueling for this one.

Besides the achievement you might also want to collect tokens for other items.  Pet collectors will get excited by the new non-combat pet Pink Sized Pink Elekk, which costs 100 brewfest tokens.

And there you have it – your guide to Brewfest!  Have fun becoming Brewmasters.

tin2And why was I so interested in doing Brewfest so quickly?  Well…  for me it was the last part of the meta-mata-achievement What A Long Strange Trip It’s Been.  So after killing Coren Direbrew there was a very nice reward sitting in my mail…. a violet proto-drake :)  I’m one happy Brewmaster today – cheers!

The Adventures of Piratejoe (Part 3): Soloing Onyxia

pjonyxiaUntil recently, I had never ventured into Onyxia’s lair.  Being a BC baby, I’d missed out on many of the Azeroth raids.  I wanted to be able to see Onyxia before Patch 3.2 came out, and the old Onyxia became no more, being revamped as a level 80 10 and 25 man raid.  I had read that she was soloable by a level 80 (and even by epic level 70s who really knew their stuff), so I thought I would give it a go.

There is no attunement to get into Onyxia’s lair.  The nearest flight path is Mudsprocket in Dustwallow marsh, and from there just ride on to the cave and go through the iron jaw like gate.  You will of course, need to be a raid group (min level 55) to do this, although the other raid member does not need to be with you, or even in the same zone.  In fact, I got Anelf to create a horde Death Knight, just so he could join a raid with me, so I could solo Onyxia.

There are only a couple of trash mobs before Onyxia.  Clear them all, including the one standing near the door, that you can actually bypass, as if you don’t there is a chance they will add during the second phase of the fight.

The Onyxia fight has 3 phases.  It too me 3 attempts to work out phase 2.  Phases 1 and 3 were really easy.  My successful attempt took about 25 minutes, as a Prot Pally, though I think I should be able to do it in less next time.

Phase 1 100% health – 66% health

A fairly simple tank and spank.  She had a knock back, so try to tank her with you back to the wall, and not too close to the whelp eggs that are located to the left and right of the entrance.  If you get knocked into the eggs, whelps will spawn and you will need to deal with them too.  As an AOE Prot Pally, this is not all bad, you can use the whelps to regen mana/health if you need to, although for part 1, I didn’t find either a problem.  Most of the damage is fire damage, so I used fire resistance aura, blessing of sanctuary, and judgement of wisdom.

Phase 2 66% health-40%health

At 66% health Onyxia becomes airborne and summons whelps.  You need to continue to DPS Onyxia down, reducing her health to 40% to get her to ground again and enter phase 3.  This was by far the hardest stage for a melee class.  She does quite a lot of damage during this phase (mostly from fire balls), but she also moves around.  I found it hard to stay in range for all my main DPS skills, and often when I did hit something, I would get an error message saying that I was facing the wrong way.  Not continually DPSing also meant that I was not regenerating health and mana as fast as I normally would, so I was having to heal myself a lot.  I found a good tactic, was to switch to targeting the whelps and AOE them down, before turning back to Onyxia, every time I got very low on mana/health since this helped me regen mana/health quicker than when I was targeting Onyxia who keep moving out of target range or behind me.  Just persevere, use your bubbles, lay on hands, and potion if you need to during this phase,  and DPS her down as quickly and effectively as you can.  I don’t feel the expert yet, and would like some better tips if anyone has any, but feel confident I could do it again, and much better next time.

Phase 3 40% health to dead

After Phase 2, Phase 3 is cake.  She is on the ground during this phase, and doesn’t summon adds, unless you get feared into them.  She doesn’t have a knock back, but does have a regular fear.  Took a little while, but once I got to this phase, I was always going to win.

pjonyxiaheadGreat fun, and epic battle.  You get a feat of strength achievement, plus about 57G, several blues and purples, Onyxia’s head, which starts a quest, and an 18 slot bag.  Once you are done, click on Onyxia’s head to start a quest, and take it off to Orgrimmar or Stormwind.  You get your head placed on a spike at the gate – it makes you feel so proud :D

The Adventures of Piratejoe (Part 2): Faction Change

factionchangeYou have probably all seen Blizzard’s Faction Change Service by now, for $30 you can change your character from alliance to horde or vice-versa.  Your $30 also includes customizing your character, so if you wish you can change your name and sex too.  You will of course be changing your race and physical features.  If you want to change more than one character, you must pay $30 per toon.

The Faction Change service does not include a class change.  If you are currently an alliance paladin you will convert to a horde paladin.  You can select any race that is open to your class.  In the case of the Paladin (prior to the Cataclysm expansion anyway) you have limited options on the horde side.  As a Dwarf Paladin I had to become a Blood Elf Paladin.  However, if I were transferring from a Blood Elf Paladin to the alliance I could have chosen between a Human, Dwarf or Draenai.  Similarly, as a warrior making a faction change from alliance to horde I could have chosen any race but the Blood Elves; and from Horde to alliance I could have chosen any race, as all can be warriors.

To start the faction change click on the advert on the WOW logon page or go to the official website.  Your character must not have any mail in his or her mail box (or on the way to his or her mail box), and must have been logged out for at least 20 minutes.  It is a one-way switch only.  You can only make the character switch every 60 days.  If you decide you made a mistake and want to change back, you must wait 60 days and then pay another $30.

Your character must be over level 10.  I thought this was strange.  Who would want to pay $30 to transfer a character under level 10, except for a very involved role play scenario maybe?  It only takes a couple of hours to get to level 10.  With the speed of leveling now, I wouldn’t consider this for a character under level 60 or 70.

Because the service is so popular at the moment, I got a lot of “Server Busy” messages when trying to do my transfer and had to keep trying.  You obviously need a credit card, but the process on the website is quite simple.  Error messages may occur for things like mail in the characters mail box.  If this happens you have to log back on to the character, clear it up and then wait at least 20 minutes before trying again.

It says the service takes several hours (although there is a note when going through the transfer to say it will currently take several days).  It took just over a day to transfer my character.  I’d read elsewhere that you could play the character during that time, but in the transfer information it stated that you could not.  I didn’t try as I didn’t want to disrupt the process.  When the transfer is complete you get an email, and an icon appears next to the character on the log in screen.  This little square has the red/blue horde/alliance logos.  You click it to complete the selection of your new race and customization.

Tips – things to do before you transfer:

  • Make sure you character does not have anything in their bags or bank that you want to stay with another toon in your current faction.  E.g.  I had some cloth I mailed to my tailor.  I also had some bind on account shoulders, I have no idea what would have happened to them if I had tried to take them across, so I decided to leave them with my main faction.
  • Make sure you give your character anything you do want them to carry across with them.  This includes money, supplies from your other trade skills you won’t have access to anymore, and maybe stuff for new alts on your new faction.  I sent Hollie with some bags, and a couple of blue items for the hunter alt I might create over there.  I also gave her some potions from my alchemist, and food from my chef.  I made sure her armor was enchanted.
  • Think about taking some extra faction stuff with you that you won’t have access to on the other side.  This may be for yourself, or to sell on the AH for a profit.  Things like cooking recipes, non-combat pets, etc.  I didn’t do this, and wish I had.
  • If you are into achievements make sure you have the achievements for completing Stockades or Ragefire Chasm before you transfer.  Both are required for the classic dungeon master achievement.  I forgot to do this, so Piratejoe will have to try and get into Stormwind if he wants the achievement.
  • Similarly, catch a fish in Stormwind or Orgrimmar if you don’t want the hassle/excitement of running into an enemy city just to fish for an achievement.

Can you think of any others?

Transfer Complete – things to note

When your character is transferred many things will stay the same, you won’t lose the items in your bags, bank or money for instance, or most of your achievements or titles.  But a few faction-specific items/achievements will change.

  • Any faction specific mounts will change.  On the official site it shows how they have mapped factions – Stormwind –> Orgrimmar etc.  My goats changed into chicken mounts (yes, I know they have a proper name).
  • All my non-combat pets stayed the same except for my argent tournament squire who changed into a gruntling.
  • Important!  Your Argent Tournament achievements and rankings get completely reset and you have to do it all again from scratch.  Hollie was exalted with one faction and working on her second, but had to start from the beginning.  She lost her “Of Ironforge” title and didn’t get an equivalent horde title until I had worked through the dailies.  However, I kept my squire/gruntling pet, my axe (although it got converted to the horde equivalent), and any spare currency I had.  This latter item was useful, I had some of each type of tournament seal, meaning it was quicker for me to work my way through the ranks again.
  • I power leveled Hollie pretty quickly to 80, so she didn’t have masses of achievements, a couple that I did have around the fire festivals switched from the alliance to the horde equivalents.
  • The FAQs on the official site tell you about some of the other stuff like flight paths (depending on your level it calculated how many you should have and gives you the appropriate ones for your new faction).
  • If you are a real achievement/questing junkie, you will be pleased that you get to do all the quests for your new faction from the beginning.

Conclusion:

All in all the process was pretty smooth, and I’m glad I went ahead and did it.  The only negative, was the resetting of my argent tournament ranking, which I didn’t realize would happen at the time.  Some people may think it a bit expensive, and maybe it is, but for me it has opened up new aspect of the game, now that my chosen play-style has changed for a while.  You may have many reasons why you want to change, as long as you are sure about it, go for it and have fun :) .