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Cataclysm Leak: Deathwing {WoW}

May 4th 2010 2:23PM Let me just put the naysayers to rest:

- The 3d model can be scaled effortlessly. See Malygos in Coldarra vs. Malygos in EoE.
- Deathwing is the same species of dragon as the other aspects. There’s no lore reason he should have a different skeletal structure (and thus, animation/stance) than Malygos or Alexstrasza.
- This is indeed a 3d model produced by Blizzard. To appear in game, it must be present in the MPQ archives as an MDX file, which is Blizzard’s custom file format based on .3ds. This is difficult to forge from another dragon model at this quality – someone would have had to extrude many faces to create the unique head design, which means modifying the UVW map of the texture file. In other words, this is no simple photoshop of a texture file, or a few cheap transformations to various parts of the model.
- The water is the kind shown in the latest cataclysm screenshots and others have pointed out different architecture in the background.
- It is not ‘hidden in the game files’ of present-day WoW. MMOC and every other fan site would have discovered it by now, as they literally create digests of changes to the file contents of the MPQs with every single PTR build and patch. If you want to browse them yourself, you can with WoW Model Viewer.

The Queue: Son of Q {WoW}

Feb 23rd 2010 4:34PM You may be referring to the period just after the release of cross-server instances, when whispering was not implemented between players accross servers. Recount uses behinds the scenes chat channels and whispers to synchronize information, which was failing. This was fixed when they allowed players to whisper each other.

There was also a time in the distant past (TBC) where combat logs had a finite range, which could only be expanded by setting a cvar. Since then, the range has expanded widely to either include the entire instance, or a broad enough range (internally) to cover any practical fight.

As for Recount's incorrectness... the burden of proof is on you. You're just making claims without offering an argument.

The Queue: Son of Q {WoW}

Feb 23rd 2010 4:04PM Recount isn't simply the e-peen ruler some people make it out to be. It's a complete, real-time combat log analysis tool.

Recount records deaths and events preceding them. Want to know the ability that killed someone? Or whether it was a crit or even mitigated? How many or whose heals they did or did not get before they died? Was an ability cast that should have been interrupted? It can report great info for tanks, raid leaders, healers and anyone else.

Want to know if one of your players is ignoring their assignment? It can show dispels. It can display damage done/damage taken for enemy targets broken down by target - so you can see how much damage people did to Snobolds or Mistresses of Pain or Val'kyr. The same is true for healers - were they precasting greater heals on the tank or healing someone's pet when the tank died?

Anyway, recount isn’t ruining the game for anyone. If you’re attracting the wrong kind of attention because of your numbers – the fact that someone is using a tool to report those numbers isn’t the problem.

The Queue: I want a siege tank IRL {WoW}

Feb 18th 2010 3:50PM Ah, the scroll wheel! The memories of Beast Mastery raiding for all of T6 and Sunwell...

Scattered Shots: Can Beast Mastery raid? {WoW}

Feb 11th 2010 4:01PM I’m surprised to see so many angry BM Hunters in the comments. In my experience, a good player can play any way they want, a bad player refuses to play any way but the way they want.

I’m experimenting with BM as an off-spec, raiding primarily as SV. I’m pretty comfortable with encounters and know where BM would make sense. Lack of buffs hurts BM in 10-man too much (you’re buffing for two, now) but in 25s, it helped a lot. Of the fights I’ve done, the only two fights where I actually saw BM truly shine were 25m Marrowgar & Rotface, mostly due to the high degree of movement. With practice, I’m sure a few more fights will emerge as good scenarios for BM. There are good parses for the curious out there.

BM has good stuff going on right now:

- Both T10 bonuses are huge for BM. BM’s innate attack speed, quick shots and the high degree of haste on our gear all improve the uptime of 2pc with the pet component being more valuable. The 4xT10 has pretty bad uptime, but it scales AP, BM’s most valuable stat (aside from ArP at high gear levels) which scales pet DPS. The uptime can be improved by having SrS ticking on multiple targets.

- Dodge/parry were completely removed from the pet attack table with hit translating correctly to pet expertise. A gear-hit-capped Hunter’s pet will never miss.

- Cunning and Ferocity pets’ AoE damage reduction talent was changed to a 3% damage buff proc for both the Hunter and the Pet.

- Pet survivability greatly improved: The AoE damage reduction for pets was rolled into the game mechanics. Also, many knockback effects no longer effect pets. Cower was changed to a damage reduction cooldown and Devilsaurs have been fixed! Smaller hit box, model scaling was reduced, and no more stomping. The hit box in particular was getting Devilsaurs killed.

- For players who like to dual-spec BM, Call Stabled Pet was reduced from 30m to 5m, which means if you change your mind, you don’t have to port back to Dalaran for your non-exotic pet.

Scattered Shots: The misunderstood hunter abilities {WoW}

Jan 25th 2010 11:20AM #showtooltip Tranquilizing Shot
/cast [target=mouseover,exists,harm][target,harm] Tranquilizing Shot

Tranq is big in ToC

1) Someone said this earlier, but every time Icehowl charges, be ready to hit this immediately. Most tanks can survive one enraged attack, but not two: fractions of a second reaction time on this can save tanks and, by extension, a wipe.
2) On faction champs, use it on the kill target, especially on Heroic. It doesn't show up on the meter, but the healing you prevented is greater than any amount of damage you could deal in one GCD.
3) On Anub'arak Heroic, tranq shot enraged scarabs. It buffs their damage and attack speed, greatly increasing the rate their nature dot stacks, which can be deadly in P3.

Scattered Shots: It's all hunter loot in ICC, part 1 {WoW}

Jan 7th 2010 12:41PM You can certainly sting multiple targets. Also, the amount of damage SrS does over its full duration beats anything but Explosive Shot and Kill Shot or Volley on AoE packs. So whenever you can cast it to its full effect, it is a damage gain.

Scattered Shots: It's all hunter loot in ICC, part 1 {WoW}

Jan 7th 2010 12:13PM Doing the math on all of the T10 combos available with my frost emblems, it was definitely beneficial for an SV Hunter to try to pick up a 2xT10 with 2xT9, to the tune of 500 DPS in SimC and ~400 in Shandara’s Spreadsheet. It certainly depends on your other gear, and I’d recommend using either of those tools to figure out your best option. I spent some time at the dummy last night and while the 2xT10 proc doesn’t have a very high uptime, the bonus is HUGE when it’s up and it has no ICD, so good RNG can have an impact. It’s the best available set bonus combination available until we see more resets.

DoTs retain % modifiers (crit, damage) even after the buff falls off, but AP modifiers are gained/lost in real time. It’s same with SP for casters. Applying a fresh sting at the end of the 2xT10 proc would guarantee the 15% bonus for the full duration of the DoT.

Since ToC and T9+ gear levels for Survival Hunters, I’ve watched both SimC and Shandara’s Spreadsheet value ArP over Crit per point, though never above Agility. However, they’re close enough that you don’t really need to pick one stat to “maximize” over another. After you get to a certain amount of ArP, you’ll gain more by swapping to MM spec and maximizing around it than by re-gearing for ArP as Survival.

Haste is something you should never focus on gearing for, but that doesn’t mean you want to minimize it: with a Moonkin or Ret Pally providing 3% haste, you only need 200 haste rating on gear to get SS under 1.6s, which is an acceptable cast time. Without either, you’ll need ~300 haste for the same effect. Either way – you’ll be hard pressed to gear down haste without losing overall damage.

Breakfast Topic: What class mechanics have you had to learn to deal with? {WoW}

Dec 22nd 2009 3:28PM My biggest problem in the random dungeons is tanks who go extremely slow. This is the worst. A dungeon that can take 15 minutes somehow drags on to 30 minutes or more. I can’t rationalize it except to assume one of the following:
- They are entirely unfamiliar with the instance
- They are fixed on some kind of “pull rotation” thus waiting for one of those abilities to come off cooldown
- They have undeservingly low faith in the rest of the players
- They’re control freaks and need to set up every pull – and they can’t deal with the boss dying a different way than they’ve been going about it since last December
- They think that 3rd AFK DPS is necessary to clear trash up to the next boss
- They’re on vent with the other player from their realm who has to afk for smoke and doesn’t want to move along without him.
- They can’t pull until everyone has full health and mana

Tanks: If you routinely have problems with other people who have problems with your tanking – don’t get offended and finger-pointy; get angry and aggressive and violent all over everything within a rolling 40 yard radius. Tanking 5-man heroic dungeons is not about strategy, timing, planning or care. It’s about unleashing everything in your arsenal all over anything hostile as quickly and as hard as possible. If you think of your party as a bunch of drooling mouth-breathers, GOOD – expect the worst of them and be READY to compensate for that behavior.

I do empathize with tanks; I even geared out an alt prot warrior just enough to run heroics for a few weeks and understand their play style. But honestly, the best thing you can do as a tank in 5-man faceroll content is:
- Pull before anyone else can and chain pull until your healer begs for mercy
- Be careful of your HP, break-aways, your healer’s range, your healer’s mana
- Only stop when a bad DPS dies or the healer needs to drink.

You won’t need to worry about threat if your group isn’t tapping their feet between pulls waiting for you to get all ‘Sun Tzu’ on a 3-mob trash pack. This advice does NOT extend to raids, only emblem farming.

About the Hunter comments: All Hunters should be misdirecting and feigning death – our ability to get around threat is why we are able to burst DPS from start to finish – it has nothing to do with the tank’s threat, it has everything to do with us doing the best possible DPS (which is why we’re there). If you see the Hunter Volley the instance the tank is noticed by mobs, it’s probably because the next 4 seconds of Volley ticks are solid AoE threat for the tank.

Finally, some advice to everyone: don’t obsess over minutia in 5-man faceroll content. You and your pet don’t need buffs at all. A group of half-geared random classes could rock any heroic without a single party buff, content is just that easy.

Officers' Quarters: Policy and practice {WoW}

Dec 15th 2009 10:47AM Talk to the other players. I didn't read anything that indicated you had tried to communicate the issue. Open a 'gear discussion' thread amongst your fellow melee DPSers. Make a Best-in-Slot list on your boards and try to assign a numeric value to each of the upgrades available in the content you're farming. Keep it up to date when new gear comes out, or new versions of the spreadsheet/gear thread/rawr, etc comes out. If you can boil it down to a number for each accessible upgrade, a couple of things may happen.

The other players realize that an upgrade for them is 3x the upgrade for you. They may not even be the slightest bit aware that they're doing this to you.

If you're suffering bad performance from lack of gear, it will show to people who may be justifying you not getting that gear because of that performance that you are acutely aware of it, unable to fix it on your own and have the knowledge to use that gear when you get it.