Wednesday, December 31, 2008

1% at 80

Since my regular sources (i.e. wowwiki) have not been updated regarding the stats at 80, I figured I'd repost the important ones I listed a long time ago, back during beta:

33 Hit rating for 1% Hit
46 Crit rating for 1% Crit
83 Agility for 1% crit

(Rounded up)

Monday, December 29, 2008

Achievement Grinding

I'm still stuck with the family, which limits the WoW time. It's rough as all hell having to decline the 25-man invites, but the last thing I want to do is have to explain why I'm sitting at the computer until 1 AM. Not to mention my sleep schedule has returned to that of a normal person (falling asleep at midnight, waking up at 8ish, I never knew the morning could last so long...), so it's become a bit difficult to maintain my normal raiding schedule. We are returning to St. Louis tomorrow, where I can resume normal play.

The brief amount of time I've had to play, I've been working on my Loremaster achievement. Currently, I am 50 quests away for Kalimdor and 90 quests away for Eastern Kingdoms. I'm definitely in the rough part of it, particularly for Kalimdor. Here are some tips and tricks I have found while grinding it out:
  • Never assume that you have finished a quest hub unless you've verified no little yellow exclamations exist there. I assumed I was a good Tauren three years ago and did all the quests in the two starting towns. I was wrong - I missed a TON. If you have rolled several alts from the starting zones, it's easy to think that you did those quests on your main, when in reality, you can't remember what you did 3-4 years ago.
  • Definitely hit up Duskwallow Swamp for the new quests.
  • I'm not sure if it's bugged or not, but the majority of quests in Silverpine Forest count for both Kalimdor and Eastern Kingdoms. I was grinding it out, and when I check on my Kalimdor counter, it was around 30 higher than when I left the continent.
  • It's a pain in the ass, but check and double check all quest-givers. There are several that are repeat turn-ins, and they can throw you off, but you don't want to accidentally miss a legitimate quest. I haven't started on Booty Bay yet, but I have a feeling this issue will come up.
  • Leave some wiggle room as you near the end for each continent, just in case there are quest lines that send you back and forth. Typically quests count towards the continent where they began, but some have chains that continue on the ending continent.
  • There are quest mods to help you out, but I feel like that's cheating. Just fly every where with your Track Low Level Quests on, think back about places you don't recall doing on that toon, and you'll get them.
This is also a great way to get all your fraction rep up to Exalted. I managed to hit exalted with all but Silvermoon now, but that's nearing half-way through Revered. Tauren on Chocobow, here I come!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holidays from The Angry Butterfly!

Tonight was my last night raiding for the better part of the week, so we stacked a group and cleared Naxx-10. Nothing too wonderful dropped, though I finally bit the bullet and traded my last T6 for Hero's Cryptstalker Tunic. Yes, there is better out there, but my chest was the last to get upgraded, so I took it to finally hit Superior (although, I'm not that far off from Epic). Along the way we scored Arachnophobia and The Safety Dance, and we were good up until Patchwerk for The Undying, when one of our warriors decided to run in a little too early.

I'm off to Kansas City, then Wichita for my Christmas journey, so I'll most likely be AFK for several days. I wish everyone out in the Blogosphere and Azeroth a safe and happy week. I hope you get some great epics, maybe some upgrades too! If you are traveling (like me) be careful and mindful of the roads, and grin and bear the family cheer. It will be over soon enough, then it's back to the daily grind!

Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Gross Generalizations

I've been playing WoW for over three years, and strangely, I've found little has changed in regard keeping things neutral sex in regard to dealing with other players. I still get a lot of "Thanks, man" when responding to a profession need in Trade. And while it is true, an MMORPG is comprised mainly of male players, and nothing can be assumed about the sex of your character, but WoW is the most popular online game now, and that means more female players. Keeping things gender neutral is just polite.

However, what surprises me the most are the male players that assume that women playing WoW are "typical" females, when in reality, gamer girls rarely fit into that category. Sure, you get your stay-at-home domestic divas that play, and yes, they usually assume the girly-girl role, but the bulk of women players are not that. We're geeks, we're nerds, we have better spatial capabilities than most women. Do not assume that we like pink, musicals, and romantic-comedies. When I say that hearing about Legally Blonde: The Musical made me die a little more inside, I mean it.

And Twilight, the books and the movie, suck. Yes, I said it.

Monday, December 22, 2008

The Other Spec

In preparation for dual specs, I decided on this talent build. I call it my Farming-n-PvP build. I did away with the majority of pet-buffing and longterm talents in favor of short burst damage. I also put points back into my beloved Hawkseye (oh, those six yards, how I've missed you) for competitive farming.

Remember, there are no mobs you get to before a hunter, only mobs a hunter allows you to have.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Farming the BoP Leatherworking patterns in Icecrown

I've noticed I've been getting a lot of hits for Leatherworking in Wrath, and I'm sorry to say I've been lax about it. I'm currently 448 - those last 10 points are a doozy, but luckily, there is nothing currently in game that requires higher than 440, so those last 10 points are free to be leveled at leisure.

However, there are currently five (or six) BoP on drop patterns in Wrath - the embossing resist. Now, if you're a completionist, like me, you have to have these patterns, regardless of pressing need. I'm here to guide you through the farming.

First up is Fire Resist. This drops from the Skeletal Runesmiths in the south part of Malykriss: The Vile Hold (you may remember dealing with them for several quests, such as playing with your Lithe Stalker). It's easy to pull a lot of mobs here, so be prepared to deal with that. It took me all of three kills. Here's a SS for ya:

Next up is Shadow Resist. This drops from Cultist Shard Watchers on the second and top tiers of Corp'rethar, the Horror Gate. They are standing around in groups of four on either end of the second tier, and a big group of seven in the middle of the top tier. Careful you don't aggro the Gluth-like elites wandering around:

Once again, it's really easy to get two or three of you if you try to stay close, and their DoT is not pleasant, but being clothies, they are quick to die. It took me about a dozen kills before my success:

Frost and Nature Resists are found off of Damned Apothecaries and Cult Alchemists, respectively. They are found in the western circle of Aldur'thar, the Desolation Gate, the site of a daily. Not much to explain here, just farm 'em all until they drop, and might as well get your daily out of the way while you're doing it! These both took the longest to farm, not only because of competition, but just plain stubborn drop rate. The Frost dropped first for me:

Nature dropped last:

Don't bother trying to avoid the opposite mob once one pattern drops - they have such large aggro radii that they will typically come if you try to get the mob you want if it is nearby.

Finally, Arcane. This pattern drops from Frostbrood Spawn that are flying around Sindragosa's Fall (the site of the Wrath intro movie!), in the eastern part of the zone. This is by far the most difficult pattern to farm. You want to aggro the mobs on your mount, then fly to the nearest mountain or clear, mob-free ground to kill it. Careful though: You want to kill it on level ground, or at least have it fall someplace you can reach it. I lost several dragons when they fell and landed on the side of the cliff, totally unreachable to loot. If you are lucky (or suicidal) you can catch them as they spawn on the ground, but that can also mean dealing with 2+ Wyrm Reanimators at the same time. My tactic was to fly through the dragon, land someplace where it would come to me, sit on my mount, spam Serpent Sting to tag it, then pull it back to level ground using LoS or Silent Shot. I kept AotV on to make sure I didn't kill it too fast and it drop some place unreachable.

Now I've farmed a lot in this game, and while many people may think this is a pain, I found farming these mobs refreshing. It took new approaches to figure out how to get these mobs down in particular places, which is something one doesn't do during the typical grind.

Here is my success:

And maybe if you're lucky, High Thane Jorfus will spawn in the Western area for you while you're at it:

EDIT: As of 3.1ish, Arcane now drops from the Cult Researchers inside Aldur'thal. I suppose Blizzard realized the difficulty of farming them, but alas, I did enjoy the challenge.

Good luck, and happy farming!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Awww.. Let's be friends, Malygos! You kill all Mages, I take your loot, kk?

Having cleared Naxx 25 Wednesday, we went off in search of bigger prey last night, making our first step into Malygos 25. We made it to phase 3 multiple times, but not with enough time left in the end. I think we managed something like ~30% before the enrage, which is pretty damn decent for our first foray into the instance.

We really need to work on a middle ground for the sparks. I hear a lot of "kill them close so the melee can get it!" which we do, but then the range have no access to it, even at min-range.

About two-thirds of the way through, one of our feral druids shouted at me "Hey Neg, do you still have your Hunter blog?" He requested I post this, which he got from WoWhead:

I really hope I don't have to say this, but Feral AP does not apply to your pet's attack power. Please stop giving hunters a bad name >.<

The weapon in question, Staff of Trickery, will become hunter-friendly after the patch hits, as you can see on WoWhead. But that does not condone rolling need against a feral druid!

First Among Few

No surprise, in this game of tag, that among the few readers that post, it's the fellow stubborn MM hunter who gets the well-deserved linkage.

Pike tagged anyone who would participate in this encircling game of pointing out who was the first to ever comment on your blog (as begun by Cait @ One Among Many). Why, it's Rilgon, of course!

I had originally started The Butterfly as a combination WoW/RL blog - Facebook notes were not cutting it. I named it "The Angry Butterfly" in tribute to my budding epiphany that I wanted to study lepidoptera, under Neggles, short for Negathle and a minor pet name I had among friends that usually call me Neg (d'oh!). As time passed, it became more and more obvious that two-lives-one-blog wasn't going to work, so I cut my boring, scientist-to-be life and just wrote about the life and trials of a raiding MM Hunter in the Burning Crusade. And now it's obvious that to future Hunters that cross my path will think this is a BM hunter blog, but I assure you, The Butterfly began well before Moths could become tamable :3.

Anyway, I made a copy-n-paste post with Flintlocke's Guide to Azeroth about a world without Rogues (it's beautiful, I tell you!), and Rilgon commented: "Truest. Comic. Ever."

There you have it. I really have to thank all my readers, because you give me hope that my regular pounding of the keys isn't simply lost in the spiraling oblivion of the Internets. Special thanks to Rilgon, who not only took up the helm once Howitzer departed, but is also the best blogging buddy the Butterfly could ever ask for.


Thursday, December 18, 2008

Blogroll update

I do love rare race-class combination (except for gnome warriors - the plate hurts hooves when you punt them), so I'm happy to add Snake in the Grass to my blog roll, in long-standing tradition of linking those that link me.

The "I'm Too Pally" vid totally won me over.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Moth Macros

Removing Lick Your Wounds and Call of the Phoenix from my pet action bar freed up room for Serenity Dust again. I had forgotten that it was terribly bugged, such that it won't autocast unless the pet has been hit, and even then, it may not, as Bloodthirsty tends to hell the pet immediately.

I was fiddling with some macros today that would manually cast Serenity Dust, and I settled on two. Despite the fact that Kill Command is no longer a spam-able spell that it once was, I'm still in the habit of spamming the buttons that I had key bound to it. Making

/cast Kill Command
/cast Serenity Dust

pretty much assured that it would get hit. In addition, I made

/cast Steady Shot
/cast Serenity Dust

such that it is in the shot rotation now.

I took Serenity Dust off of autocast and tested on the target dummies in Org doing my regular shot rotation. The results: Serenity Dust is now going off, but its not guaranteed to go off the first time. It would eventually trigger, which is better than it not going off at all.

Looks like Rabid is bugged for moths as well, as it was not always going off automatically. I'll be keybinding it in a similiar manner.

Tinea pulled out 600 dps, underneath the other MM hunter's 800 DPS cat. About right, I should think.

Hunter and Pet 2-for-1 Talent Respec!

Last night I was musing over my talent tree, thinking about changing into a more Arcane based tree. I decided on this one: 8/56/7. The most obvious is simply the exchanging of points from Barrage to Imp. Arcane Shot, but then I realized, Hey! I have a point wandering about (that I refuse to put into Rapid Recuperation)! So into Imp. Revive Pet it goes.

I was defending my stance about having both Heart of the Phoenix and Call of the Wild in Rilgon's post the other day. I do believe that as MM my pet is a buff to me, not a major source of damage. I greatly value my pet for this (CotW, Focused Fire), so much that I'm willing to sacrifice its damage in favor of its survivability. Tinea's only putting out about 500 DPS on a pet-friendly fight (opposed to a BM hunter's cat, which was typically around 1K DPS, though I saw it spike to 1.2k), but I'm not that concerned. My damage is still competitive, and that's what matters. But anyway, since I do have a point into Imp. Revive Pet, that point in Phoenix is getting moved over to Rabid for this talent build, as I said I would. Tinea's DPS should improve now.

Pending Rilgon's tests on a sans-CE build (yes, I trust him with my life, it seems), there might be another respec in the future.

So about that new crossbow...

...evidently Patchwerk had other plans for me.

Shiney! And I love the name!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Red Dragon Gives You Wings

And finally Utgarde Keep was kind to me.

I look like Pella!

And I glow!

Time for the Winter Festival.

Pro-tips: Buy only what you cannot produce/farm yourself. If you are Horde, the Dragonhawks outside of Silvermoon have a 100% drop rate for eggs.

I just farmed The Abominable Greench for an hour. Stay on one side, at one spawn point. Get a group going, such that there are 1/5 less people waiting to tag him. My macro: /tar The Abom /cast Arcane Shot. I also kept an explosive trap down. Don't worry if you don't hear him yell for awhile - I'm almost positive you can't hear him if he spawns on the east side and you're on the west.

Happy Achievement farming!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Trading in the gears

Ran a good handful of heroics and raids last night with profitable results. Snagged new boots out of H-Violet Hold (along with snagging the gloves for future use), new ring out of H-Culling of Stratholme, and new pants from 10-man Archavon.

Angelista's Revenge can't be vendored, I discovered, and while I vendored my old boots from Teron, I felt a ping of nostalgia for my pants from Hyjal, so they got stashed away in the bank for now.

This leaves me with a ring, chest, bracers, and bow that still need upgrading. If I want to just fork over the gold, Band of Kirin Tor is a suitable upgrade (and who doesn't love an achievement).

I found the hard way that being having 193 hit is not good enough - I missed 1 Aimed, 1 Chimera, and 2 Autos in 25-man Archavon. These false tales of an 8%-hit cap got my hopes up! Speaking of which, I spoke with a game-designer for Blizzard (whom I won't name) about the supposed hit cap reduction. His response: I don't really work with bugs. So, yes, I'm going to interpret this how I want, and say this: It's just a bug, boys and girls, so continue stacking that hit.

Oh, and not having a repair vendor in Wintergrasp sucks. My bow was at 4 durability during the 25-man, so I went outside only to be ganked repeatedly by Alliance in my search for repairs. As a result, about 4/5 of the way through the 10-man I was running, my bow broke. Ironically, I was still top DPS by the end, but it was embarrassing as all hell for an officer to come to raid with their main weapon nearly broken. The little paper doll armor guy needs to show up earlier to remind me :(.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Back from AFK

It's been a long two days of finals, flights, and fiancé-cuddling. I went nearly 24-hours without internet - it was painful, I tell you! So I'm happy to be back.

Noticed an influx of traffic related to my last post, which, ironically, people are choosing to twist. How about some clarification, eh?

1. I support the equality of the specs. I want all three trees being in raid for their benefits: FI, TSA, and (once upon a time EW) Hunting Party in addition to each being competitive DPS. I greatly dislike the idea of one spec being used for one part of the game and one spec for another (i.e. PvP verses PvE). I was worried there for a bit that Blizzard was treading that path, but I'm glad they decided not to.

2. My hatred of BM stems only from the elitists who bitched at MM players all through BC. I have no opposition to the tree, or the players that love the tree. Admittedly, I never liked the band-aid fix that was Serpent Swiftness, namely because it took away the skill of the class in favor of button-spamming, but that bitterness faded into acceptance as auto-shot clipping was removed (which I accept only because I have no choice). I still say that the BM tree could've been better and more interesting if Blizzard hadn't settled for just an unbeatable pure haste talent, but oh, well.

3. I noticed that my emphasis on "insignificant difference in damage" was overlooked in favor of "why aren't you speccing the best DPS?!" I use insignificant in the statistical meaning of the word, that is, the only difference in damage is by pure chance. So, by this logic, there is no best spec for the highest DPS. Work with me here, people...

4. I mentioned a long time ago about a class doing the maximum amount of damage is irrelevant when you don't have the skill to deal with the rest of the encounter. Oh great, you can put out 5k DPS.. when you're standing there ignoring the spines, not casting Tranq shot, not running out of the AoE, not using healthstones/health pots/bandages to save yourself, not FDing, or not MDing. One-percent wipes happen regardless of your spec - I've wiped at 1% as BM, as MM, and as SV. If you're not conducive to a successful encounter because you think your only purpose is to pump out the most damage, then you are out of my raid. Every good raid leader knows you bring the player, not the spec. Fuck, I'd sooner bring a meleeing hunter that knows how to stay alive and take care of his fellow raiders than a self-absorbed ass that thinks the raid is all about his needs. And if your ego can't take not being the highest DPS, then grow up or reroll.

5. I come from a casual-high end raiding guild. We celebrate any server-first achievements, but we don't go out of our way to make them. We raid because we love to raid, and we bring in those that can account for themselves, regardless of their spec. Hell, we've had a demonology warlock in raid for over two years. Our mission statement is to see everything this game has to offer and still retain a human real life while doing it (and we have - it was up to the Four Horsemen in Vanilla WoW, up to Kalec in BC, up to Eradar Twins in the weeks after 3.0). If you want hardcore-see-everything-first hunter material, sorry that I can't supply.

Yes, I'm a little worried about the changes to Steady Shot, because they are class wide. I'm in concordance with Rilgon that 10% reduction is too much, but I'm hesitant to make any final judgement calls until after I've seen before and after results. Right now, I'm fairly ignorant because I've been busy with Real Life - hey, I'm sorry that Blizzard decided to release an expansion in the second half of a school quarter. The same goes for Arcane verses Aimed for a MM shot rotation - I've scanned over Nass' tests, but I haven't made any final decisions myself.

And now I'm off to grind Sons of Hodir rep!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

My question to the BM-loyal community

Will these nerfs really effect your playing? Are you thinking about respecing just because of them? If you really love having a cat/scorpid pet, will their damage reduction truly change your love for them?

If you answered a "Hell, yes" to any of these questions, then please, move along. I'm addressing those players who are debating leaving a tree they love and enjoy playing in favor of "the next best." I know plenty of people that change specs in interest of finding one that balances their current wants, and this is a post regarding the state of the BM tree after the nerf, so doesn't directly apply to players who change trees on a regular basis.

It's not like BM is getting thrown back to the Dark Ages of 1.0. These nerfs are not the end of the world. You still have one of the best raid buffs in the game, and you're still putting out high end DPS. Just because one spec out DPSes another by an insignificant margin doesn't mean that the spec is dead. Hell, if you were playing just to put out the most damage, then you sure as hell weren't playing a hunter.

Oh noes! Kittehs are now doing... the exact same damage as all other pets... Wow, now that's a killer. /end sarcasm Why is it wrong to celebrate the fall of one pet type such that all others can now be equal?

These changes are GOOD - to both BM and MM. Hunters were overpowered, it's as simple as that. If MM should become the next "DPS spec" then I hope we do get the nerf bat to put us back in line. It's just like Volley - it was fun as all hell, I won't lie about the pleasure I experienced using it, but it was OP and needed a nerf. The massive output of damge was fun and we enjoyed doing it, but rationally, we all knew hunters wouldn't last like that.

(Regarding SV - I really hope you guys get a buff to get you back up to par where you should be.)

The MM community is not being insensitive. We know that if you truly enjoy playing BM, then these changes will not affect that. We rejoice the normalization of the specs and the pets. We laugh at all those bastards that sat on their high-horse of Serpent Swiftness and mocked us from above come shinking down to our level. I know I could care less if BM still out-damaged MM by an insignificant margin, because it won't change my playing, and I'm sure others would agree; we are not celebrating the return of MM as the top DPS.

Spec what you love, and having fun playing it!

Hit issue solved!

It's amazing how much one item can solve so many problems! Yea for Grim Toll! This means I can ditch my not-so-Massive Spaulders of the Jormungar in favor of Pauldrons of Havoc. Woot.

Our first unofficial guild-only 25-Naxx run was tonight. We cleared both Spider and Plague wings, even pulling off an achievement that the top-end Horde guild hadn't pulled off yet in the process, just due to our lack of priests in the raid!

No raiding tomorrow. I have two finals on Thursday (back-to-back, ugh) that must be studied for, so my WoW time is limited to breaks.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Time for the BM-hunters-being-nerfed dance!

Sure, everyone has read GC's post by now, but I just have to add my excitement for changes that affect them and not me.

  • 3) Readiness – no longer affects the cooldown of Bestial Wrath.

HELL YEAH. Now there is no chance that they will take The Most Evil Talent Evar with The Best Talent Evar (copyright Rilgon)!

  • 6) Kindred Spirits – now only grants 3/6/9/12/15% pet damage.
  • 7) Serpent’s Swiftness – now only grants 2/4/6/8/10% bonus attack speed to pet.


  • 11) Rake and Scorpid Poison – slightly nerfed to bring them into line with other pet abilities.
In commemoration of this moment, I have taken the time to make a lolcat:

Take that, kittehs!

It will be very nice to use Kill Shot more than once in an encounter and to have my pet actually hold aggro for once. RIP Volley - it was fun as hell while it lasted.

Not sure I like what they did for Deterrence. My months as SV adjusted me well to this spell. I suppose it will work well enough for PvE's oh-shit-I'm-tanking-the-boss moments, but for PvP, this really sucks. I became quite responsive to hitting Deterrence as soon as a melee opponent came into range, and now I can't do this. That is annoying even for the scant amount of PvP I do.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Meet my new slime ball!

He's named after a guildee, my personal little slime bag :D

Hey guys! I found a use for Aspect of the Beast!

For the Horde!

After a great night clearing Naxx, wiping on Malygos at 93%, we decided that we needed a in-guild War Bear Army. Let's go 40-man raid the Alliance!

It was actually flawless: Tanks took the leaders - hunters and mages AoEed the doors so no guards or suicidal Alliance could interfere. It was make or break at Ironforge, where a wrong turn could screw the entire raid, and the first wipe is the last wipe. But it was perfectly executed at both Ironforge and Stormwind, so we went off to Darnassas and the Exodar.

Okay, water-walking with mounts is awesome.

Fear our War Bear army! Rawr!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Freezing Arrow, or This Is Not A Fair Trade For Camouflage

Today I ran a Heroic Utgarde Keep (no, the crossbow did not drop) in a five Tauren group: Two Boomkin, Bear tank, Shaman healer, and me. Yes, several cattle drive jokes were udder- sorry, uttered.

So, without a regular CC class (well, the shaman has Hex, but she seemed loathe to use it - more about this later), it was decreed that the CC of the evening would be me.

I saw this as a great opportunity to try out Freezing Arrow in the context of chain-trapping. And my conclusion: It sucks.

My typically chain-trapping strategy is as follows: Lay trap at feet, wait for the pull, snag target either by aggro then waiting for it to come into melee range or silencing/LoS it to prevent it from standing there casting spells at me, run away a considerable distance from trap, lay trap at feet, rinse and repeat.

This strategy was good, not only because it was fool-proof regardless if traps were on CD or not, since I was far away from the mob, it gave me the time for the trap to cooldown while the mob was running towards me. Typically, I could lay the trap down a good 5+ seconds before the pull even happened, so it was rare for the mob to even get a melee swing in.

Freezing Arrow changes that strategy considerably. My first attempts were very similar to a sheep-pull: Shoot the trap at the mob's feet, instant CC, tank takes the mobs' aggro off of me. But now I have a very ugly 10s where my trap is still on CD when the trap breaks, leaving me with at least 5 seconds to deal with the mob without traps. Obviously this is not ideal chain-trapping.

I figured this out quickly, so my next strategy was the land the trap a fair distance away from the mob, in the general area where I figured it would run through to get to the tank. This only bought me an extra second, maybe two. Like sheeping, the tank sees the firing of the arrow and the trap landing as a Green-Light-Go, so my trap CD has maybe a couple of extra seconds to tick off before the mob is trapped, leaving me in the same situation.

The obvious solution is to just lay the trap some where in the middle. The implications could be bad though, because once that trap is down, it can't be moved. So if the mob misses it, well, you only get one redo, and that can only help you once every five minutes, so that had better be left to a last resort regardless. There were several instances of where the tank pulled before I was ready, so I made a quick decision, fired off the Freezing Arrow, only to have the mob miss it and go bash on the healer instead. And since my trap CD was down, my option left was to kite it.

Final decision: Screw it, I'm going back to regular traps. It's not worth the extra time and effort, and it's definitely not worth the potentially bad judgement calls as the result of increased pressure and guick-draw tanks. I'm just going to do what has been a fundamental hunter skill since people figured out how to Feign Death and lay a trap in the middle of a pull. (Remember those days, before traps couldn't be laid in combat, and FD took you out of combat? Sigh... those were the days.) I can do it whenever I want, since tanks rarely see the trap at your feet anyway, so they won't pull as soon as the trap is down.

So, now I have a worthless level 80 spell. Seriously, I want my Camouflage (and my new dances, I distinctly remember that promise, Blizzard). None of this "Camo just felt to us like were giving hunters a rogue ability" when Tricks of the Trade and Hex exist. My first reaction when I saw a shaman turn a mob into a frog: OMG since when do shaman have sheep??? Wait a minute, they are crossing class-lines! Why again don't I have stealth?!

Nope, not cool. But hey, at least hunters are still disgustingly OP for damage, because I'm sure we won't be hit in the kidneys with the nerf bat at all.

Finally, free time

After a fairly miserable week of work, which climaxed with the all-nighter I pulled Thursday night writing a paper and the entirely of Friday that was spent in the computer lab working on a mathematical biology problem set, life is a bit calmer now. It only took two shots of jager and an immediate crash around 10 PM last night. Now I am wide awake, at 6 AM no less, and ready to waste the day. Yay!

Heroics and rep grinding, here I come!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

I call sexism!

Male Tauren can get through the first arch once you port to Wintergrasp from Dalaran, but can females? Nooooooooo.

Archavon was all too easy, but damn, you could feel the increased armor on the bastard. My DPS was considerably better with the two upgrades, though still in the middle range. It'll be interesting to see how close I come to the BM hunters once I get fully geared. Right now they are outstripping every class by at least 5%. Disgustingly OP.

My other major gripe is the fact that every BM hunter I've seen has a cat. With all the changes to pets, cats are still the greatest DPS output. We really need a change of scenery here, Blizzard.

Four Horsemen provided new shoulders, but I can't use them until I get more hit, as the shoulders they replace have a considerable chunk on them. That and I need to start grinding rep to get the enchants...

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

I <3 RAP!

Today instead of doing the problem set I really need to do, I enchanted my new gear.

When I linked Wraith Spear enchanted with Massacre, the first comment I got was "Can you get more AP on that thing?"

I dunno, could I? :P

(Note: Massacre, though it is supposed to be glowing red with dripping blood animation, instead appears quite hot pink at regular camera distance. This does not please the aesthetic side of me...)

Off to a good start!

Tonight before breaking off into 10-mans, we did our first Obsidian Sanctum run. We one-shotted Sartharion (unsurprisingly) with the drakes dead. My DPS was abysmal (also unsurprisingly) - I barely managed to stay above the rogues, if even that.

Breaking off into the 10-mans, my group decided to do Normal OS. We made two attempts at keeping Vesperon up (-25% HP), but soon decided that our DPS was simply too low to realistically pull it off, so killed off that drake before one-shotting Sartharion again.

Over to Naxx, where Spider Wing gifted me with my new gloves and polearm. I had to bail out after Nuth. I'll have to wait until tomorrow to enchant/gem them up.

This week is starting out well :).

Monday, December 1, 2008

This makes me cry for the state of the hunter community

A conversation was exchanged between myself and another hunter yesterday that resulted in the comment above. Let me first say that this guy is a BM-elitist and even once put me on ignore for suggesting that MM was raid viable at 70 (and just had to get the last word in about having Silent Shot before doing the ol' /ignore). It's also very obvious he is a BC-baby - he once asked if Priest's Spirit buff was learned from a random world drop. And now it's obvious he never ran MC/BWL/AQ 40 at 60.

I was debating between sticking with my Gronnstalker's Spaulders for the 4-piece, or switching into Massive Spaulders of the Jormungar for the AP and hit (abet, less crit). The decision maker? The fact that I missed an Aimed Shot on Four Horsemen. I literally saw that one miss on Recount and felt my heart ache. There is absolutely no reason to ever miss a shot. It doesn't matter if that shot is a Tranq shot that could wipe the raid, or a Serpent Sting, or a killing blow. Every missed shot is a waste of mana, a waste of time, and a waste of effort. As Cheeky has always enforced, your most important stat is hit, and it should always be your most innate.

It's been a constant battle to convince myself trade out my BT/MH/SW gear for heroic/Naxx gear. I knew what I had, where my stats were, and what I could expect. I'm finding it difficult to wrap my mind around the new stat caps and the bombardment of gear that is being thrown at me. What is best, and what will I upgrade soon? Should I enchant this, gem that? With that one missed shot in Naxx, my fear of letting go of my T6 vanished. You're no longer on top of things, Neg, and all the past months of raiding can't get you there, so get your act together and get where you should be.

The conversation with that hunter eventually died out, mainly because he's not one to accept the lecture I so wanted to give him about the importance of hit, so I never responded to him.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Something is very very wrong

Ran heroic Utgarde Keep and Pinnacle today. Neither the bow nor the belt dropped. The other DPS were a Affliction Lock and a Shadow Priest - both were better geared than I, but we managed to leap frog around each other for the most part (Volley tends to be my saving grace in the long run).

What I didn't like was the fact that I had to mana up after every two pulls, while the other four mana-users in the party rarely drank. I would be at near empty while everyone else would have 3/4 blue underneath their names. I was drinking while they were pulling, and that definitely did not help my overall damage. I tried my damnest to keep out of Viper while actually fighting, but it was tough.

MM is not mana efficient in the slightest, and Viper is not the solution.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Back in the saddle (again)

I jumped in with the Naxx run last night. As much as I enjoyed my two week break, it was nice raiding again as well. I felt slightly awkward jumping into a 3/4 cleared instance, and felt a bit guilty taking some gear (and by some, I mean Torment of the Banished off of Thaddius, which is a fair enough start for a DW set, I suppose - no one else wanted it).

Speaking of Thaddius, I hate the fact that people run him as "negative charge goes right and positive change goes left." SO BACKWARDS AND NOT INTUITIVE IN THE SLIGHTEST! Drives me nuts because I actually have to think about how to move.

One shot on both Thaddius and Razuvious, then we spent the rest of the night being raped by Gothik. Our set up was this:

Tanks: Two warriors, one well geared, one off-speccing for the fight, so not so well geared
Healers: Druid, pally, shaman
DPS: BM hunter, MM hunter, Destro lock, Boomkin, Frost mage

We tried so many different variations of players on the sides I couldn't begin to list them off. Because the two hunters tended to kill everything quickly, we were typically on dead side, but if we became overrun, we had no way to catch up, because if anything was in our melee range, we were screwed (I hate anything that doesn't slow). I discovered the utility of Disengage for such situations, but the CD was too long for the majority of instances. The offspec tank took responsibility for the night, since he is typically fury and hasn't really tanked since AQ40 back in the day. A pally tank would have been much easier, but he didn't show.

Overall, I was third in DPS, totally outstripped by the BM hunter in complete lvl 80 gear from heroics and Naxx, and the Destro warlock in majority lvl 80s gear. I beat the mage still in 70s gear (like me) and the boomkin in leveling gear, so I feel satisfied with how I did overall.

I really need to check what gear I should aim for in Naxx. Stupid RL taking up precious WoW time! :P

Friday, November 28, 2008

Oh, mages

I ran Violet Hold last night with a pair of guildees and a couple of puggers. The inguild mage said she had a goal: Keep up with me on DPS. Inwardly, I went, "Yeah, right." She was a 77 in leveling gear verses me in T6; I did twice the amount of damage as she did (roughly 50% vs 25%). About a third of the way through the instance, she went "Jesus Neg - there is no catching up with you at this point." Silly mage, I could have told you that before we even stepped foot into the instance. More amusing was a 73 Blood DK that came along. Most of us are still ignorant about DKs, but evidently as a tanking spec, you really suck for damage output. Either that or the guy is fairly incompetent... It did mean we were essentially four-manning the instance, and that did not make Zuramat the Obliterator very fun at all...

Leatherworking hit 421 - a lot of Jormungar Leg Armor and Packs of Endless Pockets were made. the nice thing about Violet Hold was the leather I got out of it, not to mention the precious, precious Icy Dragonscales... Not sure where to go from here - generally the orange recipes are rough as hell to make, while some yellows are still tolerable.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Icecrown: Can you rip of Tolkien any more, Blizzard?


And the infra-green? Isn't that what we would call.... yellow? Common, you do have intelligent people playing this game, Blizzard...

However, going into the Emerald Dream was cool, though I didn't expect it to be like this. I wanted an instance or portal version, but I suppose this suffices.

And is this what the game is like when you are high? Does it sparkle like this?

New favorite quest line!

Taking control of the lithe stalker was probably the most fun I've had leveling. The jumping aspect was exciting and made me particularly envious of loosing the ability to scale walls once I let the little guy go. And pushing off stone gargoyles was all too amusing.

New hated quest line: Crusader Bridenbrad.

Gotta save the guy from the Plague. Try the druids. Nope, the seeds from Remulos have no effect. Try Alexstrasza, the Dragon Aspect of all Life! Alas, no her life-bringing breath does nothing. Okay, our last-resort: Go to A'dal. Lo and behold, the avatar of the Light does the job, and our poor Crusader is taken off too a happy afterlife.

I see what you did there, Blizzard.

I'm a big fan of my RP games remaining secular as far as real religions go, and this toes the line. Both the magic of the druids and the great Aspect of Life herself could not save the life of this man, BUT the light can. The similarities to pagan-scorn vs. Christian-redemption is all too blanant for my tastes, and I was not impressed with this quest line.


Oh, yeah. I hit 80 last night.

New goals: Farm a ton of Nerubian Chiton, Icy Dragonscales, and Boreon Leather in general, to get past 412 on Leatherworking already.
Get Loremaster.
Dungeon crawl! Wooo!

This also leads me to the issue of The Last Talent Point. Currently I am 7/56/7 and fairly indecisive about where my last talent point will go. As tempting as always is Hawk Eye, but I'm also considering a point in Piercing Shots. No, I will not place into Rapid Recuperation, as much as my mana pool is in constant agony as I grind. Seriously, I hate Viper 3.0. I want two Vipers: A constant mp5 that doesn't stunt my damage by 50% while I'm farming, and a mana-returned-for-damage-done version for instances. This compromise sucks massively.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The raiding season has begun..

A week and a half after Wrath went live, my guild has over twenty 80s. The peer pressure to hit 80 and start running heroics and 10-mans is great, and, I admit, concerns about being left behind have crept into my thoughts. This is silly, of course. There are three officers who have not hit 80 yet - all three of us are undergrads with busy schedules. We want to raid as much as the next WoW-addict, but we are all too aware that we have to keep RL in order first.

So a large chunk of my guild ran Naxx tonight, and I hit 78 and started towards 79.

Along the way:

I love Titans, and any large, primeval woman wielding Lok'delar is a friend of mine.

I want a giant, portable aquarium...

I decided to polish off all the exploration achievements now that I can fly again, so I investigated all the nooks and crannies of Icecrown, Storm Peaks, Grizzly Hills, and Howling Fjord. All the discovery experience tallied up to a nice 3+ bars, as well.

I wonder who lives here?

I was completely blown away by the detail incorporated into the Storm Peaks. Blizzard definitely won me over for new graphics.

I made an attempt to look for the books in Dalaran that lead to the Higher Learning achievement, but evidently they were all on cooldown. Instead, I found a dated issue of Kin Tor Monthly and an example of their blatant elitism:

I can sorta sympathize with the Blue Dragonflight now...

My heart totally melted when I met the little furry Frenzyheart!

No, we don't like the dumb! They are such cute little pretentious bastards!

Awwww, look at him be all boss-like! I was completely pumped to start grinding rep for them, freaked out when I "accidentally" saved that ugly little Oracle and went to hated with the Frenzyheart, then became bummed to discover that I "need" to rep grind for both of them anyway. I really dislike the Oracles - they may be the next "evolution" of murlocs, but they look more like gremlins to me. Their toothy faces rather disturb me... /shudder. So I'll get their rep grind out of the way first, then switch back to the Frenzyheart.

Yes, I am surfing on the back of a crocodile.

For Rilgon:

Totally thought of you <3

Monday, November 24, 2008

The scientist in me couldn't resist...

A bottle? Huh, looks like a random assortment of left over potions... I wonder what happens when you drink it?

Help meeeeee..... Help MEEEEEEEEE....
/end falsetto

Okay, no, I would enjoy temporarily becoming a giant hymenoptera, though I'm sure it's nowhere as pleasant as being a giant lepidoptera :D.

For the Love of the Horde!

So, the Wrathgate questline? That Coolest Questline Ever? It rocks.

Life needs more cut scenes, and I've decided that when I grow up, I want to be a red dragon.

Not only are you undeniably sexy, but when you breathe fire, new plant life springs up!

Off I go to the strangely empty Org to find Thrall, and look! Jaina shows up!

Oooo let's go retake Undercity, and kick that bastard Varimathras (and his ugly new sideburns) in the testicles!

Now, what do you see wrong with this picture? Okay, it's sorta difficult to tell in this screenshot, but Sylvannas is meleeing.... Yes, the ranger-general is dual wielding and meleeing... However, something very pretty in this SS is my Volley DPS. Check out how shiney Chimera becomes:
Oh, I love Thrall/Sylvannas buffs :).

And now I can FLY AGAIN! Woooooo!

Only to promptly get dismounted over Wintergrasp...

Oops.. why, hello there PvP zone! How do I get out of you?





Sunday, November 23, 2008

Blogroll update

Bandet threw in the towel in disgust over SV's current state, so he's off to play Warhammer. We'll miss his snarky comments, but best of luck to the PVP-inclined.

I meant to add No Ammo Melee Time a long time ago when Thracyyus first posted and I noticed The Butterfly was on his bloglist, but things kept distracting me. Better late than never :P

Also adding Mend Pet to the list, mainly because I'm tired of going through SES to read it.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Say hello to my little friend!

Rawr. I approve of any quest that allows me to ride on the back of a god and squash things underfoot.

Meet my new Goddess. Sure, she's a bit Cthulhu-esque, but any Windserpent goddess is a goddess of mine. Too bad they just recycled the Hakkar model. As a guildee put it, "WotLK: The recycling bin of WoW." Now, where's the Moth God, eh?

Worst. Hole. Ever. To make matters even more ironic, this little hole here wouldn't have been an issue if I was 77 instead of 76...

Leatherworking hit 410, and I discovered the joy of Embossing. Ah, my pretty little Nerubian Leg Reinforcements! Fur Lining, where have you been all my life?

Speaking of professions, it appears that many guildees are dropping engineering in favor of more profitable means. This does not make the arrow-needing me happy.

I'm off to Sholazar Basin next, to work for *shudder* Hemet Nesingwary. I really hope I get a D.E.H.T.A. quest to kill the bastard. Not that WoW is an accurate respresentation of nature (what with respawn timers), but I never liked the Nesingwary quest lines - they just don't sit well with the biologist in me. Kill all the invasive species you want, but hunting native species and weaking the diversity of the ecosystem is pure stupidity. Meh, Blizzard is pretty terrible about their use of science in the game, so I've just resigned myself to ignore such things.

I can't wait to be able to fly again...

Friday, November 21, 2008

75? Okay, I'll take it.

After a little college crisis that resulted in two days of no play and an hour-long panic attack resolved only though the powers of Bailey's on the rocks, I finally managed to get some game time in. For an hour.

Meh, it was enough to get to 75, level up First Aid a bit, and skin a TON of Borean Leather. I wish I could have done Clipping Their Wings and Stocking the Shelves forever, as Trapdoor Crawlers and Zul'Drak have 100% drop rate for regular Borean Leather. With a ton of people doing them, I managed to get over three stacks, which soon became Heavy Borean Leather (and that only rewarded me a single skill point...).

Don't ask me how I'm leveling Leatherworking or what guide I'm using. I do it the old fashioned way: Get a lot of mats, make the most of the orange recipies I can, rinse and repeat. I'm at 403 right now, the Zone of Mats Besides Leather. Meh, I'll get to it. Not that it's not a priority - I just haven't had the spare time to put thought towards it.

Right now I'm more embarressed about my lack of dungeon experience at the moment - I've only done one run through the Nexus. I haven't upgraded a single peice of gear, though I've seen things that are close, they are usually peices that take away my precious hit. Supposedly I'll have to say good-bye to my baby, ol' Bristleblitz Striker soon. I hope it's not for a gun... I don't like guns... or crossbows.... I'll be hard pressed to upgrade from my bow.

I like the new Hakkar model:

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Gettin' personal

The reason I picked up WoW over three years ago was to play with my then boyfriend, now fiance, as something to do together, despite the thousand miles apart. We were both gamers, so it made sense. It sure as hell made daily conversations easier, and while I can't exactly credit WoW as the "savior" of our relationship, saying that it was just a shared hobby doesn't do it justice either. WoW gave us the means to figure each other out, to test each others limits, and to learn to rely on each other despite not being in physical presence. There are other ways of doing all of that in a long distance relationship, sure, but WoW made it simple.

We didn't really do anything together besides raid and instance running - we couldn't level together because we have different play and leveling styles - but we did grow through the game together, learning tactics and struggling on the bosses. So considering how little of the game we actually played together, it's kinda silly to think that WoW has lost its purpose now that he can't raid.

The boy got The First Real Job. He wasn't sure he could do the raiding to 1 AM when he first got the job offer, but he became certain when he found out his hours were 6:30 AM to 3:30 PM with two hours overtime "encouraged", six days a week. He'll probably still play casually, but raiding is essentially done.

This leaves me in a sort of a dilemma. The boy not being online pretty much defeats the greater purpose of WoW for me. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy playing, I love my friends online and mastering my class, but now I'm doing it alone, and strangely enough, that's a buzzkill. I'm not even 75 (five bubbles yet....) and I'm considering quiting the game. WTF am I supposed to think about that?

I'll wait it out, hit 80, see if it has any further appeal. I'm not going to lie: The "race to 80" was a turn off. I've been enjoying taking my time, leveling as I please. Not having a strict raiding schedule this past week has been rather nice. But peer-pressure to level quickly and start raiding again is rough. There is also some guild drama that I'm not exactly thrilled to deal with, but is expected as a raiding guild in a new expansion. We'll see. I've had this mid-life gamer's crisis before, it just takes time to determine the outcome.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Two Aspects for the Price of One

So, why do I even have Hawk and Monkey again?

Hellooooo Dragonhawk!

Woot, 74!

Finally, time for Dalaran!

It took me a bit to find it, but I must say "The Filthy Animal" sounds like the ideal hunter inn!

Too bad it's located directly next to The Worst Dead End Ever. It's going to confuse me for a long time, I can tell you now.

And I may or may not have spent the next 40+ minutes fishing for coins >.> (I got four gold!)

And in other news, I hate it when this happens:

Being reduced to a pair of antlers really must suck...