Archives For cataclysm

Cataclysm Retrospective

Morynne —  August 10, 2012 — Leave a comment

The Cataclysm happened on December 7th, 2010.

It’s hard to believe that we’ve been working toward killing Deathwing for nearly 2 years.  Some have killed him on Heroic mode, more have killed him on normal, and I’m not sure that I know a level 85 that hasn’t killed him in Looking for Raid.

That guy had it coming, though he did bring us some good stories, and changed the way we view Azeroth forever. Continue Reading…

Morynne, Savior of Azeroth

Morynne —  July 18, 2012 — 2 Comments

I know it’s been awhile.  It’s not you, it’s me.

For the last number of weeks my interest in WoW went on a serious decline largely due to my raid team smashing their faces into Heroic Spine of Deathwing. There are so many bloods, and the timing is all funky now that we are looking at the progressive nerfs that are coming out. (Something most of the strategies out there don’t tell you) Continue Reading…

Now you really get to punch Deathwing in the face.  This time it sticks.

  • Name: Madness of Deathwing
  • Raid: Dragon Soul
  • Tanks: 2
  • Phases: 1-ish
  • Trick: Platform order matters.
  • This guide is for the normal encounter. Continue Reading…

Call to… disaster?

Morynne —  April 7, 2011 — 8 Comments

The Dungeon Finder: Call to Arms will now identify which class role is currently the least represented in the queue, and offer them additional rewards for entering the Dungeon Finder queue and completing a random level-85 Heroic dungeon.

  • The least represented class icon will show within the Dungeon Finder to indicate the role that is eligible to earn the bonus reward.
  • Players must queue solo with the currently indicated least represented class (by the system) and complete the dungeon up to and including the final boss in order to be eligible for the bonus reward.
  • The bonus reward will be displayed to eligible (system identified as least represented) classes within the UI.
  • Once the dungeon is completed the eligible player will receive a goodie bag with various potential rewards including: gold, rare gems, non-combat pets, and (very rare) mounts.

4.1 is bringing this change, if you hadn’t heard, it’s a serious topic of discussion for the blogging community today.  I’m not going to re-hash what others have said, but maybe shed some new light.

First off, I want to applaud Blizzard for deciding to fix a ridiculous problem.  Kudos, really.  Do I think this solution will cause some problems? Sure, what change doesn’t?

I share many others sentiments that this will cause a rash of newbie tanks and healers — who are under geared, or not skilled at all.  Who doesn’t want free gold, pets, mounts, and gems?  I think it will cause people to end up with extra long dungeon deserter times, as well as longer lead times for those who are quick to kick people out.  But what about people that are the polar opposite?  What about people who notoriously don’t kick, and don’t leave the dungeon before it’s finished? Why aren’t those DPS being rewarded too?

I’m one of those people, most of the time.  I can honestly say I haven’t kicked someone out of a random dungeon more than I can count on one hand.  I’m a trooper, I stick it out.

With the influx of these new tanks and healers, more patience will be needed than ever.  Sure, it might cause dungeons to take longer.  But don’t you remember when you were just learning to tank or heal?  Wasn’t easy, right?  How long did it take you to learn to do it well?

So that being said, I agree with others’ sentiments that this change makes pure DPS classes feel like second class citizens — we don’t even have the option of getting these bonuses, but they’re just vanity items, really.  I’m not to the point of muppet panic yet, but I do think some extra consideration should be paid to those that stick it out.

Why not reward those who want to see the random dungeon runners get better at their roles?

I need your help!

Morynne —  January 27, 2011 — 4 Comments

I need your help in deciding which raid strategies to work on first!

I’ve cleared everything up to Nefarian and Cho’gall, so I can speak from experience for all of that content.

What do you want to see while we're waiting for MoP?

  • Finish your Dragon Soul strategies! (46%, 11 Votes)
  • Share your UI (and maybe make it downloadable) (42%, 10 Votes)
  • MoP Information ALL THE THINGS! (38%, 9 Votes)
  • Update your Power Auras! (29%, 7 Votes)
  • Spotlight on Pet Battles (once they're implemented) (13%, 3 Votes)

Total Voters: 24

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Throne of the Tides can be found at the bottom of the giant whirlpool in Vashj’ir.

Here’s the particulars:

  • Location: Bottom of the giant toilet bowl in Vashj’ir.
  • Level: 82-84 on normal, 85 for heroic.
  • Bosses: 4

Lady Naz’jar

Strategy:

  • Avoid Fungal Spores and Geyser Naz’jar will throw a players. Both have a visible ground texture.
  • Interrupt Shock Blast.
  • When Naz’jar runs to the middle and casts Waterspout, try to CC as many of the incoming naga as you can, dealing with them one by one. Avoid the water tornadoes she will shoot at random directions.

What does a hunter need to know?

Interrupt the Shock Blast with a silencing shot if you’re a Marksman, otherwise trap when you can and DPS the boss.

On heroic?

Same deal, just more damage going out from the Shock Blast.

Commander Ulthok

Strategy:

  • Ulthok will hit people in front of him with Dark Fissure.  Everyone should avoid that.  They also leave void zones on the ground which will grow if you’re doing the encounter on heroic.
  • Curse of Fatigue will debuff random people, making it harder to avoid the Dark Fissures.
  • Enrage can be removed by Hunters and Rogues to make the healer’s job easier.
  • Squeeze will be used on random people, grabbing them, and swinging them around, possibly dropping them inside a Dark Fissure. Just heal through.

What does a hunter need to know?

Stay out of the stuff on the ground, just like any other boss encounter. On this, make sure you’re using Tranq shot on the boss when Enrage goes up to make healing easier.

On heroic?

The void zones on the ground grow, so be mindful of your feet.

Erunak Stonespeaker and Mindbender Ghur’sha

This is a 2-part fight, and contains a lot of raid damage.  Phase 1 is a tank and spank strategy, where phase 2 is a little bit more complicated.  Phase 2 the Mindbender will periodically leap onto the head of a party member and charm them.  These charmed group members have increased health, damage, and healing as long as they’re chamed, and lasts 30 seconds or until the victim reaches 50% health, so CC these individuals so they don’t do catastrophic damage to the remainder of the group, or DPS them to 50 so they get released.

What does a hunter need to know?

For a hunter, it’s a pretty straightforward DPS fight, just stay on task, and be mindful if someone around you gets charmed, and if you’re able to, trap them, and depending on the strategy for your group, DPS them down to get them released.

On heroic?

Effectively the same fight, just be aware that you will have charms to deal with in phase 2, and getting those people dealt with is critical to this fight.

Ozumat

The Ozumat encounter is 3-phases, and is started by talking to Neptulon.

Phase 1: Damage control.  Keep the little adds in check, and if able, take down the bigger adds.

Phase 2: Kiting phase.  Beasts and sappers spawn, of which the beasts need to be kited.  They’re pretty slow.  Just work on DPSing the sappers and staying out of void zones on the ground.

Phase 3: Once the sappers are down, you’ll go to phase 3, which is where you’ll get a ridiculous size boost, massive health and DPS buffs, just DPS the squid on your tank.  Provided everyone is DPSing, This phase is super easy.

What does a hunter need to know?

Phase 1, keep the adds in check, drop slowing traps to keep the murlocs more closely grouped. Phase 2, save your healers.  If they get a sapper coming near them, or a beast, use a quick distracting shot to save them.  Stay out of void zones.  Phase 3, DPS your heart out to the squid on the tank. /win.

On heroic?

Just make sure to be extra mindful of what adds are up in phase 2.  Without those sappers going down, you will not be able to progress to phase 3.

Hunter Loot from Throne of the Tides:

Good luck!

With Cataclysm being a couple weeks behind us, and plenty of people weighing in on what spec is better, I think it really comes down to what you’re working on at the time.

Survival has come up on top of the three Hunter specs — by leaps and bounds.  Survival is better at AOE damage, better at crowd control, and better single-target DPS with less DPS loss during a movement dependent fight — at least for a 329 ilvl rating.  There’s a lot of talk that Marksman and Beastmastery are going to be more gear dependent — which is a good possibility.  We saw that in Wrath with Marksmanship, especially with the focus going to Armor Penetration.  With the gear progression and stats improvement being more linear (and not exponential like ArP was) it’s also a good possibility to continue to see Survival on top of the DPS meters.

That being said, I have spec’d Survival (1/9/31) for heroics and instancing.  Why?

Crowd Control in heroics has become very important.  There are countless pulls that you can no longer just AOE down like we used to in Wrath, and frankly the Survival ability to trap for 20% longer time makes a big difference as you’re taking out the bigger packs.  The trap target no longer has to be the first one downed — it can be closer to the end.

AOE damage has become insane with Survial hunters — so for those occasions when you have to AOE, Multishot (Serpent Spread) now applies Serpent Sting for 6 seconds per target.  It really is crazy.  Be aware when you’re using it, you’re likely to get aggro.  Make sure your healer knows.

The rotation is the easiest of the specs right now, and requires a lot less decision making at certain percentages of the fight.

Basic Survival Shot rotation:

  1. Hunters Mark
  2. Serpent Sting
  3. Explosive Shot
  4. Kill Shot (if available)
  5. Black Arrow
  6. Arcane Shot
  7. Cobra Shot

Lock n’ Load Procs

  1. Explosive Shot
  2. Cobra Shot (or Kill Command depending on focus)
  3. Explosive Shot
  4. Cobra Shot
  5. Explosive Shot

So now you know how Survival is better for instancing and heroics.  Marksmanship still has its merits.  I find it much easier to solo as Marksman.  Why? I’m less likely to pull threat off my pet as I’m soloing.  The hits from my shots aren’t as hard it seems, but the mobs die pretty quick.  I can use a physical DPS pet (like a cat or a tenacity pet) because I don’t see the DPS boost from my wind serpent. (They increase the target’s magic damage taken by 8%, which is most of what Survival damage comes from).  I’ve been using my cat more frequently when soloing because the Agility boost seems to make a difference, but I could see the plus side to using a Fox or a Tallstrider that cause the target to slow attacks, but ultimately pet choice is up to you — we all have our preferences… especially now that everyone isn’t running around with a Wolf just because it gives the best dps gains.

Still want to be a Marksman during raids? I don’t blame you.  I’ll go over Marksman raid information in depth over the next few weeks.

Looking for more Survival information? Warcraft Hunters Union has much more detail!

Strategy: Blackrock Caverns

Morynne —  December 13, 2010 — Leave a comment

Cataclysm brought us a whole mess of new dungeons, which is kicked off with Blackrock Caverns.

Here’s the particulars:

  • Location: Blackrock Mountain, accessable through Hyjal.
  • Level: 80-81 on regular, 85 for heroic.
  • Bosses: 5

Rom’ogg Bonecrusher

  • Call for Help – Rom’ogg calls for nearby minions to assist him.
  • Quake – Inflicts 3,000 Physical damage every second to all players within 40 yards of Rom’ogg. Lasts 3 seconds.
  • Wounding Strike – Inflicts 125% weapon damage to the current target and reduces healing done by 25% for 8 seconds.
  • Chains of Woe – Summons Chains of Woe around all players, rendering them unable to move for 20 seconds or until the Chains are destroyed. Starts casting The Skullcracker immediately after.
    • The Skullcracker – Inflicts ~100,000 Shadow damage to all players within 10-15 yards of Rom’ogg. Begins casting immediately after Chains of Woe. Has 12 seconds cast time.

What does a hunter need to know?

DPS the boss and kill the chains as quickly as possible.

On heroic?

No real difference, just more HP, hits a bit harder.

Corla, Herald of Twilight

  • Aura of Acceleration – Increases the movement speed by 50% and attack speed by 20% of all Twilight Cultists within 50 yards of Corla.
  • Dark Command – Inflicts 5,000 Shadow damage every second to a random player, and causes them to flee in terror. Lasts 3 seconds.
  • Death Grip – Draws a random player to Corla.
  • Drain Essence – Corla channels nether energies in a beam from the nether dragon’s corpse by the ceiling to the three Twilight Zealots. The beams stack Evolution on their target every second.
    • Evolution – The target (player or Zealot) of the nether beams gains a stack of Evolution every second they stay in the beam. When Evolution reaches 100 stacks, players are affected by Twilight Evolution, and Zealots become Evolved Twilight Zealots.
    • Twilight Evolution – Brings a player under Corla’s control, increasing their health by 600%. Lasts 5 minutes.
    • Evolved Twilight Zealot – Twilight Zealots with 100 stacks of Evolution become Evolved. Evolved Zealots have Force BlastGravity StrikeGrievous Whirl, and Shadow Strike (which has a 3-second cast and should be interrupted).

What does a hunter need to know?

DPS the boss.  You may get tasked to interrupt one of the energy beams.  If so, just watch your count and avoid getting to 100 stacks.  This is kind of like Netherspite in Karazhan.

On heroic?

The Aura of Acceleration Increases the movement speed by 50% and attack speed by 100% of all Twilight Cultists.  Dark Command deals 7,500 damage on heroic.  Otherwise, the mechanics are the same.

Karsh Steelbender

  • Quicksilver Armor – Reduces all damage taken by 99%.
    • Superheated Quicksilver Armor – Increases damage taken by 5% per stack. Melee attacks inflict 1,000 Fire damage per stack to everyone in the room. Lasts 12 seconds, refreshed with new applications. Stacks every second Karsh remains in the central pillar of molten metal.
  • Cleave – Inflicts 110% weapon damage to players in front of Karsh.

What does a hunter need to know?

This guy will get kited around a little bit, so stay out of the cleave.  Basically your tank has to move him in and out of the center column of flame.  (You’ll see it)  Other than that, DPS your heart out.

On heroic?

More group damage for the Quicksilver armor, but that’s about it.  The fight stays the same otherwise.

Beauty

  • This is an optional boss.
  • Berserker Charge – Charges a random player, inflicting ~8,500 Physical damage and knocking them back.
  • Flamebreak – Inflicts ~5,500 Fire damage to all players within 10 yards, knocking them back.
  • Magma Spit – Inflicts ~4,000 Fire damage to a random target, as well as another 4,000 every 3 seconds for 9 seconds. Explodes when removed.
  • Terrifying Roar – Causes all players to flee in fear for 4 sec.

What does a hunter need to know?

Don’t take unnecessary damage and DPS.  This is a tank n’ spank fight.

On heroic?

More damage being doled out, but no change to fight mechanics.

Ascendant Lord Obsidius

  • Stone Blow – Inflicts 150% melee damage and knocks the target down.
  • Thunderclap – Inflicts ~12,000 Physical damage to all players around Obsidius. Also reduces movement speed of the affected targets by 50% for 8 seconds.
  • Twilight Corruption – Inflicts 4,000 Shadow damage every 2 seconds for 12 seconds. Magic debuff.

What does a hunter need to know?

This boss is similar to Princes in ICC.  The boss switches “bodies” so make sure you’re switching to the appropriate target as quickly as possible since the “shadows” take hardly any damage.  Watch your threat, as when this boss switches bodies so does his aggro table.

On heroic?

More damage being dealt with Twilight Corruption, otherwise the mechanics stay the same.

Hunter Loot from Blackrock Caverns:

Good luck!

Hunting Party Podcast

Morynne —  December 8, 2010 — Leave a comment

Guess what!  It’s podcast time again!

This Saturday I will be recording the Hunting Party Podcast with Euripides from OutDPS and WoW Insider, Frostheim from WoW Insider and Warcraft Hunter’s Union, and Darkbrew from The Brew Hall (but he’s going on vacation).

  • When? Saturday December 11th, 2010. We record at 6pm EST.
  • Where? Here!

This is going to be the first post-Cataclysm show, so I’m sure there’s going to be a lot of great conversation around the leveling, new zones and other fun stuff.  If you have anything you’d like me to bring up, drop it in the comments!

Cataclysm: Day 1 Impressions

Morynne —  December 8, 2010 — 5 Comments

24 hours down.

What’s been accomplished?

  1. I’ve been Worgenized.
  2. I can now fly in Azeroth.
  3. I have completed all the quests in Hyjal.
  4. I am now level 82
  5. I have trained all of my professions for Illustrious Grand Master.
  6. I have learned Archaeology.
  7. I am parked in Deepholm while I’m at work today.

What have I learned?

  • PvP servers are great for any other time than expansion release time.  I can’t even count how many times I was killed for minding my own business.  I also ended up with several rez timers.
  • Only about the first half of any zone is crowded.  After that I guess people get bored or move on.

More reflections tomorrow!