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Posts with tag hunters

All the World's a Stage: Cataclysm's new race/class combinations


All the World's a Stage, and all the orcs and humans merely players. They have their stories and their characters; and one player in his time plays many roles.

As you know, the new race and class combinations coming up in the Cataclysm will open a whole new set of doors to people who want an alternative character choice that goes against the grain of their typical racial customs, to one degree or another. With the exception of a couple combinations that feel as though they should have been there from the beginning (such as blood elf warriors, which need no discussion here), each new possibility presents roleplayers with an opportunity to play an outcast of sorts, a character who has made a significant break from the traditions his or her race usually represent.

The lore behind each combination is not yet fully clear. We know tauren paladins will probably worship the sun and call themselves "Sunwalkers" for instance, but not much more than that. Some things are clear, though, and there's a lot to get the imagination going for those roleplayers who yearn to play something a little different.

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Filed under: Night Elves, Dwarves, Gnomes, Tauren, Undead, Trolls, Druid, Hunter, Paladin, Priest, Analysis / Opinion, RP, Classes, Alts, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying), Cataclysm

Scattered Shots: Hunter Q&A Part 1

Good day folks and welcome to Scattered Shots. The column that takes a good look at what it takes to be a Hunter in the World of Warcraft. I am Eddie "Brigwyn" Carrington from the Hunting Lodge. This week we'll be reviewing the recently released Hunter Q&A.

The Hunter Q&A was like the other Class Q&As, a mixed bag of frustration, tease, and interesting concepts. It shouldn't be a surprise that we didn't get the details we wanted. Nor should it be a complete shock to you that some Hunters would feel disconnected between what players want versus what the Developers are concentrating on. Given all that, I still felt that this Q&A was overall pretty decent.

There is so much to review and discuss I've decided to break the Q&A out into 2 parts. Here's a quick highlight of the main things discussed in Part 1:

  • Developers feel Survival Hunter spec is currently performing within normal operating parameters.
  • Crowd Control still needs work.
  • PvP has a big influence on PvE Class Balance
  • Ammo remains a consumable because of technical difficulties.
  • Ammo is a focus point on Hunter damage progression.
  • Blizzard is hoping to cut the cost of Ammo to address the cost burden for Hunters.
  • The Hunter "No Fire" zone will remain in effect.
  • Development considers enhancing Hunter melee attacks.
All that is just in Part 1! So let's see what Ghostcrawler had to say.

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Filed under: Hunter, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Interviews, Forums, (Hunter) Scattered Shots

Speculating on a new resource system for Hunters

As we said on the podcast this weekend, one of the most interesting things to come out of the Hunter Q&A last week was that vague about "long-term plans" to "[remove] the need for hunters to rely on a different resource system then mana." That one kind of came out of nowhere, and the answer was even more vague: basically, they promised to talk about it at BlizzCon. Of course, that's what our attracted our attention: is Blizzard planning on getting Hunters off of their mana system completely?

That would be quite a change -- since the beginning of the game, Hunters have relied on mana as their "resource" -- Warriors have Rage and Rogues have Energy, but Hunters somehow got looped in with the other DPSers as mana users. That doesn't make much sense -- not only does it depend on Intelligence (a stat which Hunters don't really have a reason to go after anyway), but it's lead to the problem of keeping Hunters powered up. Hunters are almost continually out of mana, and Blizzard has made some wacky mechanic tweaks (with both AotV and Replenishment) to try and keep them up and running.

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Filed under: Hunter, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Classes, BlizzCon

Hunter Q&A released


Eyonix posted the initial version of the Hunter Q&A today.

Please note that there will be another version of this coming out later today. We'll bring you both versions, as well as the differences.

Some of the highlights of the Hunter Q&A:
  • Ammo removal is still on the table. More details brought to light as to why it can't be implemented just yet.
  • "Dead Zone" in its current form is not going away completely.
  • Auto-Shoot should not work while moving, moving is a penalty.
  • Possibly an announcement at BlizzCon concerning Hunter's reliance on mana. A new system, removing the need for mana? Pay attention at BlizzCon!
  • Hunters are too cooldown limited.
  • Blizzard is not happy with the current solutions to keeping pets alive. Avoidance mechanics "just don't work well."
  • Available number of pet action bar slots will be expanded.
  • No plans to expand the use of Tranquilizing Shot. Magmadar is scared! Oh noes!
The full Q&A after the break.

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Filed under: Hunter

Tamed Worgen have become Winterskorn Worgs

And here lies the final chapter in the Taming of the Worgen saga: Mania reports that, just a little while after the troublesome Worgen Garwal was hotfixed to be untameable, Blizzard has magically changed all of the already-tamed Worgen to level 68 (or Hunter's level minus five) wolves. Why level 68? Because, Mania says, they've all been turned into Winterskorn Worgs, a level 63-69 NPC that wanders around the Howling Fah-jord.

So that's the end of that. Obviously, no one really expected to keep those pets as their own, and especially with all of the Worgen-as-playable-race speculation flying around, it wouldn't do for Hunters to have one of those humanoids at their beck and call. Some Hunters who went to the trouble of taming probably won't be too happy. But the good news is that the new white wolf in your stable is completely fixed -- it has all of the normal talent trees and abilities that wolves are supposed to have. Guess you and your pet Garwal were just never meant to be.

Filed under: Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard, NPCs, Cataclysm

The dying Hunter?

The folks over at Ten Ton Hammer have a post with some anecdotal data about Hunters -- they claim that Azeroth's ranged DPS pet class is on a decline lately, and they've got only some guild application numbers to back the theory up. Mem over there says that there are a few diehard Hunters still floating around, and lots of alts, but that as a class, it's fallen off in terms of popularity for sure.

Is he right? Fortunately, there's a site that tracks numbers (as reliably as you'll find for public information, anyway -- certainly Blizzard has access to much more information) on exactly that. WarcraftRealms' list of classes over time does prop the "declining Hunter" theory up -- as you can see (from both Alliance and Horde totals), Death Knights took a nice bite out of all the classes for a little while, and Hunters have been on a pretty steady slope down since mid-January, when patch 3.0.8 hit the realms. That, of course, was the harsh Beastmaster nerf, and ever since then, Hunters have had some real trouble recovering (not to mention that all class playtime is declining in general -- despite their slope downwards, Hunters are still in the top three classes played anyway).

Is this the end of Hunters? Not at all -- Blizzard has already said that they are cyclical about balancing classes, and a heavy set of nerfs on one side of the cycle is usually accompanied by a burst of buffs on the other. Not to mention that the most interesting Hunter changes, the ammo revamp, hasn't yet found its way to the game. Reworking of ammo (in addition to some likely buffs there), will probably bring lots of Hunters back to the stables, so to speak. But it's true, Hunters are on a downward turn lately.

[via WoW LJ]

Filed under: Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Classes, Talents, Buffs

Mend Pet sponsors an SPCA charity donation drive

Brajana at Mend Pet has kicked off a month-long donation drive and giveaway to support the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. She says that since Blizzard has decided to finally give out some more stable slots to Hunters back in patch 3.0.2, what better way to celebrate than by helping some real-life animals. She has a link on her blog for you to give as little or as much as you'd like to support the SPCA and their cause, and if you choose to put the donation "in honor of" Mend Pet (just follow the instructions on her post), she'll enter you in a drawing to win some prizes. What prizes, you ask? Apparently those are still being worked out, but we're sure they'll be great. And it's a great cause anyway -- do you really need prizes to show some pet shelter love?

If you do, just hang on -- the donation drive lasts through the 31st of this month, so Brajana has some time to get everything together, and even if you donate now, you'll still be entered for sure. It's always awesome to see the WoW community put its size and power to good use, and this is definitely a worthy cause to support.

Filed under: Fan stuff, Contests, Making money

Hunters discover "new" Worgen pet

As the holiday weekend rolled around, we started to get a number of tips that Hunters were successfully training themselves a...Worgen pet? Worgen?!? How was this level of cool allowed into the game without anyone knowing about it until now?

Well, it turns out that the Worgen pet is in fact a very clever use of game mechanics somewhat akin to those used by Hunters in order to tame the (now sadly vanished) Grimtotem Spirit Guide. Garwal, a warg NPC in northern Howling Fjord who can turn into a Worgen as part of a questline (the link is the Horde version, but it's the same for both Horde and Alliance) can actually be tamed and kept in Worgen form if the timing is right. Mania's Arcania has a look at the process used here, which involves a little math, a little guesswork, and the strategic use of Wyvern Sting.

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Filed under: Hunter, Cheats, News items, Humor

Multiboxing.tv lets you watch multiboxing as it happens

Our old friend Tim Sullivan, who worked at Wowhead way back in the day, just sent along a note that he's working on a brand new web video series all about something in World of Warcraft that's been gaining a lot of ground lately: multiboxing. Thanks to recruit-a-friend and all of the bonuses that come along with sponsoring a second account, quite a few people have shown an interest in running more than one character in the game, and Tim's series, called Multiboxing.tv, shows live feeds from his gameplay (all five screens of it, four Hunters and one Priest) while people can chat and learn live about multiboxing and how it all works. He's also leveling the group up -- they're currently around level 40, and he says he's headed to 80 eventually.

You can check out his front page to see when he'll be streaming next (and someone told us he was streaming for something like fourteen hours the other day -- take care of yourself, Tim!), and if you're interested in how you might get started multiboxing, he and his chat channel are probably more than happy to help you figure out how to do it. He did say he'd be streaming every night this weekend, so if you're around then, you should be able to catch him. Personally (as you probably already know), I'm a big fan of the standard one character gameplay -- I have enough trouble figuring out one toon, much less five. But Turpster, as you've probably heard on our podcast, has dived into this kind of stuff headfirst and loves it, so if you're interested in seeing how it works, tune in to Tim's channel and find out.

Update: Apparently while this was presented to us (and appears to be) just a guy streaming his multiboxing, Tim may have some less generous motives -- he's apparently trying to sell multiboxing software, and you can see the comments below for some other shady moves that have been made. Watch at your own risk, and keep in mind that while the stream appeared legit to us, it may be an advertisement for software you certainly don't need to multibox.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard

Insider Trader: Patch 3.2 profession change analysis


Insider Trader is your inside line on making, selling, buying and using player-made products.

Over the past few days, some upcoming professions changes for Patch 3.2 have been announced, and although they are not as detailed as they could be, several of the changes will have quite an impact.

First and foremost, every profession-specific buff is being upgraded. This includes an Enchanter's ability to enhance their own rings, a Leatherworker's bracer enchants, and more. For a complete list of the current profession bonuses, check out Insider Trader's guide to Profession-Specific Buffs, parts one through three.

These buffs also answer some of the concerns surrounding the upcoming Jewelcrafting nerf that epic gems might be introduced without a buff to the Dragon's Eyes, which, in combination with the fact that these gems will no longer be prismatic, would effectively squash the Jewelcrafting bonus.

Jewelcrafters will also do well to note that they will be able to acquire epic gems by prospecting Titanium. Combined with a Blacksmith's two extra prismatic sockets, this powerful duo is one of the most popular profession combinations.

In addition, Engineers will be seeing some welcome changes to their profession that may make it more appealing. Unfortunately, some of the details have not been made public, so the competitiveness of their self buffs, for example, remains to be seen.

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Filed under: Fishing, Alchemy, Blacksmithing, Cooking, Engineering, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Jewelcrafting, Features, Insider Trader (Professions)

More on Black Arrow and Lock and Load

The Hunter's Mark examined what's going on behind the Hunter talent Lock and Load a little while ago, and last week Atkallen did a follow up post getting down into the nitty gritty of the numbers a little further. Essentially, he charges that you're looking at an LnL proc for about 2-4% uptime during a four hour raid -- that is, for about 4% of the time, you've got Lock and Load giving you free Explosive Shots with no cooldown and no mana cost. And as he says, that's the "applied" time -- since LnL disappears as you use it, odds are that the real time you have it available will be much less.

He also tracks that time from 3.1 to 3.1.2, and says he's found data that confirms his previous theory: that it was more than the tooltip that needed changing during the last patch. Before the patch, he was looking at 11% uptime during three Ulduar fights, and after the patch, that's dropped down to 6%. Blizzard said they were only changing the tooltip, but that doesn't seem to be the case.

Finally, he stands by a notion that a lot of our commenters debated last time: that LnL is proccing more after 3.1, even though the mechanics claim that it shouldn't be. I haven't had a lot of personal playtime with it post-patch, but there are two different conclusions to take away here. First: LnL, in conjunction with Black Arrow and Resourcefulness, is a definite force for DPS in the Survival spec no matter how often it's proccing. And second: there still may be something else going on here behind the scenes -- the removal of the cooldown is almost definitely a factor, and Blizzard may be playing around with the RNG more than they're letting on.

Filed under: Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Classes, Talents

Scattered Shots: Where to find Hunter information

Dwarf HunterWoW.com decided it was time to bring back some Hunter luvin'. It was that or they just needed a new Dwarf to pick on. So now you got me Eddie "Brigwyn" Carrington from The Hunting Lodge. Make sure to drop by here every Thursday as we explore what it takes to play a Hunter.

Have you ever caught yourself wondering, "Hmm... where I should go for my next upgrade?" Or how about "I wonder what pet I should get for raiding?" Another favorite of mine is "What spec should I use for raiding?" (This is always a trap. Even if you give a solid spec, someone will always find a something wrong with it.) For these types of questions, I feel it's always better to follow the maxim "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime."

What's my point? Well, it seems that many Hunters don't know that there is a wealth of information out there. I would bet that there is probably a resource that can help answer all of your questions. You just need to know where to look.

For solid information, we all know about Elitist Jerks. But sometimes finding you can't help but say to yourself, "There has to be an easier way." Believe it or not, there is. There are many other resources and sites out there.

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Filed under: Hunter, Items, Analysis / Opinion, How-tos, Raiding, Guides, Classes, Talents, Buffs, Enchants, (Hunter) Scattered Shots

All the World's a Stage: So you want to be a Leatherworker

This installment of All the World's a Stage is the thirty-fourth in a series of roleplaying guides in which we find out all the background information you need to roleplay a particular race or class (or profession!) well, without embarrassing yourself.

At the outset of this series on how to roleplay one's professions, Leatherworking struck me as the most difficult profession to write about, even more than skinning, herbalism, or mining. This was in spite of (and in fact maybe because of) the fact that it was the first profession I ever chose in WoW. My very first character, who was a druid, wanted to choose leatherworking in order in order to make her own armor as well as prevent the dead bodies of all those animals she had to kill during her quests from going to waste.

At that time I didn't know a whole lot about roleplaying, or how to play the game, and I knew even less about the background lore behind everything I was seeing. I originally roleplayed with my friends that my night elf had been born in Darnassus, only later to find out that would have made her about 3 years old -- a fact none of us had known, because WoW was our first exposure to the lore of Azeroth. This was actually my inspiration for writing these articles, so that our readers wouldn't have to go read pages and pages of books and websites or play old and (to me anyway) less enjoyable games.

As I played the game more and more, the leatherworking armor seemed less and less useful and seemed more and more difficult to make. I also started imagining what skinning all those animals and then stitching together parts of their dead bodies would actually feel like, and suddenly I felt more like a kind of Dr. Frankenstein than a peaceful druid. It turns out, however, that I knew as little about leatherworking back then as I did about the game itself.

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Rogue, Shaman, Leatherworking, Lore, Guides, RP, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying)

High-level ranged weapons getting buffed

Well-geared hunters, rejoice: you're getting buffed. According to Ghostcrawler, hunter DPS is too low at the moment, so the damage of all ranged weapons with ilvl 226 or higher is being increased by about 30 DPS. This includes drops from Kel'Thuzad-25 and Ulduar-25, as well as Furious Gladiator gear and Ulduar-10 hard modes. This is estimated to result in an overall DPS increase for the hunter of "a few percent."

The reason this change ended up needing to be made has to do with what they wanted to do with ammo in patch 3.1. They had grand plans for an ammo revamp (which I don't think they've ever quite revealed), and as a result they stopped designing new tiers of ammo, so raiding hunters now are stuck with the same bullets they were using at the start of Wrath. This change rolls the DPS from non-existent higher tiers of ammo into the weapons.

Ghostcrawler also mentions that they think hunter DPS will need more improvement, and that there is another buff that they're trying to roll out "sometime in the next couple of weeks." We will, as ever, keep you posted if we hear anything.

Filed under: Hunter, Items, Raiding

QuickArmory's Stats tool lets you browse and inspect popular talent builds

We've been covering quite a few different ways to see what players are up to in terms of talents after dual specs have been released (both 3D Armory and TalentChic have good information if you're looking for it), and here's another: Erorus at QuickArmory sent us some info on how to pull some talent demographics out of his site as well. He's created a Talent stats page that needs a little explanation, but is actually full of great info on what kinds of builds players are choosing. First, choose a class at the top, and then you'll be taken to a screen where you can see, in percentage points, the given percentage of players of that class who took those points on the tree. In other words, if you look at the Mage page, 62% (as of this writing) of Mages surveyed by the application took at least one point in Inceneration (and 61% took all the points), but only 1% of Mages put any points in Blazing Speed (probably because it sucks -- oh snap!). You can also see the percentage points by spec (by clicking the tabs at the top) and even some general distribution statistics on how people chose to spec within the dual spec system. And the main page for each class includes some percentages on glyph choices as well.

But it gets wilder -- you can even compare populations by clicking on the talents, so you can look at, for example, all the Warlocks who specced Felguard (they're using Glyph of Felguard, duh), or all of the Hunters who specced both Explosive Shot and Aimed Shot.

Very impressive. Of course, keep in mind the population here: these are only level 80 characters already in the QuickArmory system (about 12k as of this writing), so it's far from a representative sample of the entire WoW population. But then again, they're also self-selecting -- people who have put themselves into QuickArmory are likely to be more on top of good talent and glyph choices anyway. At any rate, even with the small selection, there are lots of fascinating ways to look at this talent data.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Talents

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