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Posts with tag survival

Top 3.1 specs so far from 3D Armory

Not to be outdone by TalentChic, the folks at 3D Armory also sent us their lists of what the most popular builds are in the game after patch 3.1, and since everybody seems to be build-hungry lately (and why not -- we each get two!), here they all are.

Warrior: Fury 18/53/0.
Paladin: 0/0/0, which means you need to log in, Paladins! Also 51/5/15 for Holy.
Hunter: 0/0/0 wins here, too, but Survival (6/14/51) comes in next.
Rogue: Combat 15/51/5.
Priest: 14/57/0 for Holy.
Death Knight: 17/0/54 Unholy.
Shaman: Elemental 57/14/0.
Mage: 0/53/18 Fire.
Warlock: 0/41/30 Destruction.
Druid: 14/0/57 Restoration, which surprised me.

Keep in mind that these are from only a small sample of the game, so they're not the most popular specs in the game, just the most popular among those surveyed by the 3D Armory. And unfortunately, unlike TalentChic, it doesn't look like there's any way to see where the points are going, just the distribution of points among the trees (though that reminds us that Blizzard probably has some amazing point-by-point stats on how popular talents are).

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Blizzard, Raiding, Classes, Talents, Wrath of the Lich King

Scattered Shots: Dual specs mean double the fun for hunters



Scattered Shots is your weekly guide to improving your Hunter skills, brought to you by Jessica "Lassirra" Klein of The Hunter's Mark, covering a variety of Huntery topics. Today, we'll be diving into what hunters will have to look forward to from the world of dual specs.

So far the uproar about the dual spec feature coming to us in patch 3.1 has been predominantly from classes that are able to fill multiple roles in a raid environment, giving them more flexibility to swap between tanking, healing and dealing damage based on the needs of their group at the time. The 1000g price tag on this feature may seem a bit daunting to some, but the benefits of being able to swap between tanking and healing at a moment's notice without costly respec fees or inconvenient trips to the nearest not-so-nearby trainer are obvious. This all begs the question, though: what's in it for us pure DPS folks?

The easy answer to that is being able to swap seamlessly from a PvP build to your raid build when invites start going out for the night. And lets not forget that Survival Hunters are the new Shadow Priest, right? If you're missing one of your friendly neighborhood mana batteries one night, you can swap into a spec for that at the drop of a hat. There are also plenty of opportunities for enterprising young Hunters looking to farm old world raid bosses solo, and there's a spec for that, too. There's plenty of fun to be had for us Hunters, and this new dual spec feature will make the transition from conquering the wilds of our world as a lone tracker to wiping the floor with the deadliest of raid bosses that much easier.

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Filed under: Hunter, Tips, Talents, (Hunter) Scattered Shots

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

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

The Hunter is probably the oldest class in World of Warcraft. Before anyone in Azeroth took up an axe or sword, or learned anything of how to cast spells -- even before they learned to write -- they had to hunt for food. If they were like early Earth societies, the people of many nomadic groups would have relied on their hunters to bring in the meat they needed, as well as to protect the community from enemies. Back then, there would have been no such thing as fancy armor or complicated magical weapons. The relationship of a fighter to nature was just as important as the weapons he carried, if not more so.

Modern hunters in World of Warcraft come from the ancient tradition of those who learned to keep themselves and their families alive by living in harmony with nature. They learned the essential mysteries of survival in the wilderness, killing animals with stealth and primitive weapons, trapping them, and eventually turning predators and prey alike into friends and servants.

As time went by, those fighters who took up the path of the druid would learn to become nature itself; shamans would learn to call upon it; warriors and rogues would make battle their art, each in their own way. But hunters remained at that pivotal point between sentient races and the natural world -- they are connected to nature, but not manifestations of it; they work together with nature, but they do not worship it or call upon its spirits; they fight their enemies with the utmost passion, but they do it with the tools that hearken back to the dawn of civilization.

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Filed under: Hunter, Engineering, Lore, Guides, RP, Classes, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying)

Big changes for Hunters in patch 3.1

Not quite as unique as it was before.No more quivers, no more pouches, no more bullets to make us slouches. Ok, so I'm terrible at poetry, but you get the picture. This has been on a lot of Hunters' wish lists for a long time, but it's finally here. No more ammo.

Or rather, ammo will be an item more like a relic or a wand that modifies our ranged weapon damage without being consumed. Engineers, that means you better make hay while the sun shines. Soon, we'll be buying our last crate of Mammoth Cutters ever.

This is far from the only changed announced tonight -- or this morning, depending on where you are. Let's look at them all one by one.

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Filed under: Hunter, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Instances, Raiding, Bosses, Talents, Buffs, Wrath of the Lich King

GC answers Hunter questions

Hunters, do you have questions about your class? Well, Ghostcrawler's got some answers. Not all of them, of course, but Big Red Kitty can probably handle the rest. Our favorite crab has been chatting a bit about the Hunter class on the official forums. Let's take a look at what he's been saying.

  • As far as DPS numbers, Blizzard balances in terms of absolutes, not relatives. This means Blizzards wants people with X quality gear to be doing Y DPS on fight Z, so things like "I got 5th on the meters" aren't as relevant - they're looking at specifically how much DPS you do. (source for this and the next three points)

  • Pets are balanced using "a trade-off between damage and utility." Some pets, like wasps, bring bonuses that your 5- or 10-man groups may be missing, and thus it is justified that they do less DPS. That said, "more parity among pets is something [the devs] want to pursue."

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Filed under: Hunter, Patches

Replenishment: What are the odds?

There was a recent flurry of interest surrounding the Replenishment mechanic due to Ghostcrawler's statement that "we assume that you have Replenishment available to your raid." He said that it doesn't mean raids will be undoable without it, but that they're tuned assuming you have it, and if you don't, you'll need to out-gear or out-skill the raid, or else you'll have problems.

In this post, I'd like to look at just how easy it is to get Replenishment in your raid. There are three Replenishment specs: Retribution Paladin, Shadow Priest, and Survival Hunter. As you can see, they're all DPS specs. Historically speaking, these specs were probably selected because they had been viewed as suboptimal for raiding (in the case of Survival and Ret), or because they had been valued for their mana regeneration (in the case of Shadow), although at the moment all three of these specs have competitive DPS and don't really need group utility to prop them up.

Unfortunately, GC never clarified whether he was talking about 10- or 25-person raiding, so I'll examine both. I will make the simplifying assumption that the 30 specs are equally distributed in the raiding population: any given character is 1/30 likely to be of any given spec. Put another way, each spec enjoys a 3.3% share of the character base. I know this is not actually true, but it's a very helpful simplification and I don't think it will distort my numbers too much. Edit: Yes, I'm also assuming every Survival, Shadow, and Retribution raider has the relevant Replenishment talents. I think this is a pretty safe assumption.

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Filed under: Hunter, Paladin, Priest, Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Classes

Replenishment is mandatory and other buff discussion from Ghostcrawler

One of the major overhauls heading from Burning Crusade into Wrath of the Lich King was the consolidation of buffs and debuffs. In an attempt to keep raid groups from thinking they had to bring one specific class to get one specific buff or debuff, Blizzard switched some spells up, gave buffs to more classes, and made them unstackable, the result being that one can take one of a certain handful of class and specs to get the buff or debuff they desire, in theory giving a raid more choice about who they bring.

Still, the buffs and debuffs remain, and Ghostcrawler has been having some pretty interesting discussions about them in the past few days. To start with, he came out and said it pretty plainly: Replenishment is Mandatory. Blizzard will balance fights under the assumption you have Replenishment much as they do under the assumption you have a tank. In the short term, this means your raid is probably going to want to find a Shadow Priest, Retribution Paladin, or Survival Hunter if they haven't already.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Instances, Raiding, Bosses, Classes, Buffs, Wrath of the Lich King

Ghostcrawler: Sorry BM Hunters, our bad

Well, well, well. As a guy who currently plays a BM Hunter, I'll try not to gloat too much (to tell the truth, I agreed that BM Hunters needed a nerf before 3.0.8, though I did think we got hit a little too hard afterwards), but Ghostcrawler has something to say to all of you Beast Mastery Hunters out there: We're sorry. On the forums, he says that Blizzard has had a long talk about it, and they've determined that yes, they nerfed Beast Mastery Hunters too much. He says Marksman is in a good spot, and Survival might be a little too high, but they're still looking at all three specs.

Gloat if you want (BRK is probably very happy), but Ghostcrawler specifically says that they're fessing up to this partially in the hopes that it builds the devs' credibility in the community -- when they mess up, they'll let you know. And with that attitude, we can't really blame him. He was wrong -- let's move on.

So where next? He says BM is due for buffs "before Ulduar." Steady Shot is likely staying where it is, but Kindred Spirits and Serpent's Swiftness will probably be improved a little bit. I wouldn't look for us to go back to where we were pre-3.0.8 (Volley will not be re-buffed, I can tell you that), but BM will definitely be a little stronger than it is now. Oh, and I hate to keep harping on this one, but can we get that Cower bug fixed now? Please?

Thanks, Tribadala!

Filed under: Hunter, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Forums

Wrath of the Lich King class changes roundup

Over the last two days, the WoW Insider team has been busy reviewing and gathering all of the still-current class information to bring you up to speed for your first steps into Northrend. You've probably had a chance to get a handle on your class since most of the changes were pushed through in patch 3.0.2, but you have an extra ten levels ahead of you, an extra ten talent points, and a whole bunch of new skills and abilities you're going to need to learn. Don't know what to expect? We're here for you. If you do know what to expect? Well, I guess you can keep reading if you want. We'll let it slide just this once.
  • Death Knight - Being the new class on the block, there's certainly been a lot to talk about in the recent months. Daniel Whitcomb points you toward much of it, including leveling builds, in-depth looks at their core abilities and mechanics, as well as some sage advice from Allison Robert.
  • Druid - Speaking of Allison Robert, she'll be your guide today if you're looking for more on the Druid class. Talent builds, a glimpse at raid healing as Restoration, the rise of the Moonkin and much more can be found within.

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Mage, Paladin, Priest, Rogue, Shaman, Warlock, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King

BigRedKitty: 3.0.2 Hunter talent trees

Daniel Howell contributes BigRedKitty, a column with strategies, tips and tricks for and about the Hunter class, sprinkled with a healthy dose of completely improper, sometimes libelous, personal commentary.

We didn't make 80.

Nope, we were much more focused on obtaining a Spirit Beast for a hunter-guide movie. We failed.

But we spent hours patrolling in Sholazar Basin, playing with Gorilladin, making leatherworking gear, and trying out all the hunter talent trees while not leveling as fast as we could have. Actually, we leveled from 77 to 78 without doing any quests at all.

We also haven't run any dungeons or raids. OK, we did one Utgard Keep, but it didn't count. The entire party, except the healer, was was way over-geared for the place.

We also haven't done DPS-testing with Recount or Training Dummies in sufficient quantities to provide factual evidence of one hunter-tree's superiority over another.

We also haven't done hours of arena, battlegrounds, or PvP-zones. We've done a little, killed and been killed, but nothing that would give us a serious insight into the solutions that Blizzard has come up with to make our class more amenable to PvP.

But!

We have played all three trees, full 51-points each, for at least one entire level. We have tried just about every tree/pet-class combination at least once. Except Spirit Beast, natch.

And we've cranked our leatherworking to 432! /win!

So when we discuss the new hunter talent trees, keep in mind that your opinion of our opinion my vary. We may have some seriously beta-PvP-experienced hunters who disagree with some of our assessments of the new talents. We may have some Naxx-raiding hunters who disagree with some of our conclusions.

But that's OK! The major purpose of this column is to give you, the WoW Insider reader, a point of reference. You know our writing, you know our play-style. You should know our limitations and the areas at which we're not too shabby.

Read, absorb, analyze, and prepare to test to it all yourself on Tuesday.

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Filed under: Hunter, Patches, Talents, (Hunter) Big Red Kitty

Jay Mohr and Patton Oswalt to headline BlizzCon

WoW Insider has learned that funny men Jay Mohr and Patton Oswalt will be performing various shticks at BlizzCon this year. Oswalt is a new face this year at BlizzCon, while Mohr has participated in the event before.

Both comedians will be part of the many activities and events going on at this year's sold out convention, to be held next week in Anaheim, C.A. Blizzard has posted a new page with various activities that will be going on at the con that you can check out for more information. An exact schedule of panels and other events has yet to be released.

Also updated on the official Blizzard site is a handy BlizzCon Survival Guide. Perhaps the most important advice given in the guide is to get the BlizzCon badges early. According to the guide, the badges can pick them up as early as Thursday between 4 and 10 p.m.

For those that were unable to get tickets, the entire convention will be broadcast live on DirecTV. WoW Insider and the Joystiq network will be out at BlizzCon this year in force, covering everything that happens. We hope to see you there!

Filed under: News items, BlizzCon

Wrath Hunter Talent Analysis, Part I: Marksmanship

Hunter talents are out, and there's definitely a lot to say about them, both good and bad. While we have discussed some of the changes to the lower Survival tree, what we haven't touched on is all the new talents and the talent changes in other trees. If I was to sum it all up in one sentence, I'd say this: The 51 point talents look lackluster, but most of the rest is downright drool inducing.

Marksmanship's early tiers are now full of easily obtainable goodies for any Hunter, Survival's gained even more group and raid buff utility, and Beastmastery has even more amazing pet synergy.

There's a lot to cover, so we'll tackle it one tree at a time. First, we'll look at Marksmanship, which was once premiere Hunter tree, but has fallen a bit to Beastmastery in Burning Crusade. It's certainly seen some marked improvement for Wrath so far, and even if you don't plan to spec Marksmanship, you'll at least want to know about the first few tier talents, as you'll probably want to grab many of them anyway.

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Filed under: Hunter, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Talents, Wrath of the Lich King

Wrath Beta Patch Notes: Hunter

By now, I am sure you've heard that the Wrath of the Lich King Beta is going live and the patch notes are up. There's a rather extensive section devoted to Hunters on this iteration. We have a few more insights into the pet talent trees that were announced at the Worldwide Invitational, as well as a few changes to existing talents and a nice Steady Shot buff.

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Filed under: Hunter, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Expansions, Talents, Wrath of the Lich King

Scattered Shots: Hunter problems and predictions

Scattered Shots is for hunters. 'Nuff said on that topic. The Freezing Trap David was stuck in last week also wore off a little bit, thanks to Daniel, permitting him to write once more without his fingers snapping off from the cold.

In the wake of the recent confusion regarding Scare Beast, once again some hunters have gotten to complaining a lot about the state of their class. While on one hand, there are certainly problematic issues hunters are having, it's really not fair to say that the class is broken. It isn't -- being a hunter is more fun than its ever been, and it looks like this class will only get better in the future.

Nonetheless, looking at the problems we do have might give us a clearer sense of where we're going in the future. With more and more information coming out about Wrath of the Lich King, and especially since Blizzard started asking for feedback from hunters, it's worthwhile to have a look at what holes do exist for our class, and how future changes might seek to plug them up.

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Filed under: Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Expansions, Wrath of the Lich King, (Hunter) Scattered Shots

2.4 leaves hunters low on mana

Since patch 2.4, hunters have been having some problems. Aside from the outrage over the fact that our traps are now announced, we seem to be having issues with mana.

On the forums, hunters are not seeing much love from the non-hunter crowd, but I suppose that is to be expected. It is important to note however, that our mana efficiency is an intended attribute of our class. We are useful, not solely, but arguably primarily, because we can provide sustainable, long-term DPS. No, we don't crit like mages. In a boss fight though, we can keep going after mages short out.

Why are hunters all of a sudden having issues with mana? There are a few theories floating around, but we have yet to be graced with a blue response. Take the jump to learn more about why this might be happening.

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Filed under: Hunter, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Bugs, Enchants, Forums

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