Sunday, January 6, 2013

Tyrk: Helping Each Other Out

So much has changed with our little Nation over months that I didn't blog much.  Mostly it's related to Mists' release.  I'm the only one of us that levelled to 90.

But we've been joined by a couple more Night Elves.  One is a Monk, a Brewmaster I guess, called Oldmanbadger.  Seems to really enjoy tanking.  He's also taken on being our Exodar server inscriptionist.  We're starting to fill up on that server, so anticipating that Oom is likely to retire eventually, Badger is going to be our alchemist, too.

Problem is, that Tabbykath will have to level up herbalism to feed him mats.  Which means her spending time levelling from mid 60s to, well, to 90, I guess would be easiest.  So she can fly around Pandaria.

Fortunately, being a leatherworker, I'm able to keep her pretty well geared up with hunter stuff for items she hasn't been able to find in dungeons while levelling.  Sometimes I wonder if it's worth it, though.  The time I spent in Zul'Gurub farming deepsea scales for a level 83 chestpiece . . . she could probably have reached level 85 and started collecting Panadaren gear.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Ironmanjack: Saving Teldrassil



The Teldrassil starter zone quest chain introduced with Cataclysm is incredible, man.  Did you realize we finally got the Aspects' blessing?  It has forced whatever taint was in Teldrassil to surface and we get to fight it.  We get an audience with Tyrande and Malfurion when its all over.  It really feels epic, you know?

Friday, January 4, 2013

Ironmanjack: Gearing up

 
 

 
 
 
Aw yeah, white vendor gear.
 
I've been itching to try the Ironman Challenge for a while.  Getting to level 7 was gravy.  And with guns like these, how much harder can 90 be?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Tyrk: Theramore


I hardly know where to start.  I mean, I've got nothing against the fight.  I understand the rush, the thrill.  That's what Feral is, man.  I get it.

And yet, I would rather . . .

Well, there was a time when I would rather have kicked back and relaxed with anyone ... Night Elf, Tauren, Alliance, Horde, anyone.  Have a few drinks, tell some stories, dance.  Revel in the joys of life, man.  Feral is that too.  Maybe it's just that, you know, back when we were immortal war was one of the few ways we ever left this world.  Averting war was important.  That may seem like an absurd statement if you read the history books, but it's just . . . well, peaceful times are the tranquil woodlands.  As you walk through your own neck of the woods you don't see someone else's forest in the distance.  But the wars?  Those are the mountains jutting out above the trees.  Those are easy to see.  There really is something majestic about the mountains, but I'd rather hang out in the woods, man.  Sing with the birds, dance with the bears, you know?

Maybe that's why we've been so reticent to react to Orcish incursions in Ashenvale.  In spite of Silverwind Refuge, Raynewood Retreat, Astranaar, Maestra's Post.  We fight there, but are reluctant to expand the fight beyond simple defense.  As if we're hoping the Horde will just give up and leave.

Theramore dispells that delusion.

We need to push every last Horde out of Ashenvale, take the fight to the very walls of Orgrimmar and pull them down around Hellscream's ears.  Leave him dead under the rubble.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Tyrk: Catting Around


A guildmate in The Crimson Dragon recently picked up Feral Druidism and was disappointed in her dps.  Mostly, it was probably related to having relatively new level 85 gear, but the topic in guild chat for a bit was how to Cat.  Some things also have recently changed related to what Cats do, but the chatbox doesn't lend itself well to a strategy guide.  So I've come here to pass on some tips I've picked up.

First, the old Simplified Cat DPS chart is still a good guide.  It's not totally accurate anymore . . . but at the very least it feels right.  That's the mindset, or instincts anyway, that you want to internalize.

Beyond that, though, the key to cat DPS now is 100% uptime on Savage Roar.  Get the glyph, primarily so that you can enter combat with the buff, but also for those times when it drops off and you don't have any combo points to burn.

Opening Move
Your opening move should usually be a Ravage.  You can Savage Roar without breaking stealth and you should if the buff isn't still up from the last fight. +30% damage on the opening Ravage is a big deal.

Basic Priorities
(1) Keep up Savage Roar
(2) Keep a bleed effect, any bleed effect, on your target
(3) Shred

Combo Points
The most important use of combo points is to keep up Savage Roar for as long as you'll be in combat.  If Savage Roar is good when you hit 5 combo points you want to decide between Rip and Ferocious Bite.  The default answer is to Rip and only Ferocious Bite if Rip and Savage Roar are both good.  I'll come back to that.

Groups
Thrash, Swipe, Swipe, Swipe until things die.  Again, always with Savage Roar up.  Keep auto attacking while swiping.  It will proc Omen of Clarity, which means a free swipe.

Tiger's Fury
Use it whenever it's off cooldown with one caveat.  Deplete your energy first to the point that you can't Mangle.  After you hit Tiger's Fury, hit Berserk if it's off cooldown.  That caveat is especially important when fighting groups.

Stats
Get Hit capped. Gem and Enchant for Agility and Crit. Reforge for Crit primarily. Beyond that, I don't think it matters much. The impact of Haste on energy regen is minimal enough that I've been focusing on Mastery after Crit, but I think as long as you just focus on one or the other, you'll be good.

Those are the basics.  Do that and you'll have respectable dps.

Advanced Catting
Bleeds are good.  We even have a combat stat (Mastery) that is all about making them better.  However, the best thing about bleeds is that they increase Shred & Bite damage.  Always have a bleed up on your target.  Once you've Ripped them, you don't need to Rake every time the Rake bleed falls off.  I still do.  It's a cheap way to generate a combo point or two on targets that will be alive for all the Rake tics.  Plus, any single bleed may be sufficient, but having two bleeds provides redundancy in case one falls off.

Once a target is dead, bleeds don't matter.  Even though the default priority at 5 combo points is Rip, sometimes a Ferocious Bite will finish your target off, so do that.  If he's under 25% health, you always want to Bite.  It refreshes your Rip.

Sometimes when you hit 5 combo points, you really want to Ferocious Bite or Rip, but your Savage Roar buff only has a few seconds left.  Go ahead and Bite/Rip.  You can Roar with only a couple combo points (and again, glyph is awesome here) and sometimes that's enough to finish combat.  It takes practice to figure out how to gauge.  There's probably a way to accurately calculate the optimal timing of how many combo points to spend on a Roar, but don't do the math in the middle of a fight.  In fact, don't ever do the math.  The variables involved are just going to change anyway as gear improves, the fights get tougher and class abilities are fine tuned over several patches.  Just fight a lot, you'll get the feel for it.

Inevitably things die with combo points on them.  Savage Roar to use those points.

Mangle is mostly useless.  You always want to get behind your target and Shred.  However, sometimes combat is chaotic.  Lots of adds, a kangaroo tank, maybe you pull aggro.  Who knows.  If you can't reliably stay behind your target, then spam Mangle and switch back to Shred when you can.  Some damage > no damage.

Oh, and if you do pull aggro, switch to a new target close to the tank.  You probably want to Savage Roar to make use of whatever combo points are on the old target.  And hit Barkskin or Survival Instincts.

The natural instinct is to hit an ability as soon as it's available, right?  You want to suppress that instinct when it's time to Ferocious Bite.  After putting 5 combo points on your target, wait until your energy hits 25, then bite.  Unless your target is going to die before you hit 25 energy.  You'll figure out how to guage it with practice.

Omen of Clarity sometimes procs when you want to refresh Savage Roar, Rip or Rake.  Those are inefficient uses of a free attack.  If Omen procs you're at 5 combo points with Roar and a Bleed up, lucky you.  Ferocious Bite.  Otherwise, use the proc on a Shred.

I know I said to use Berserk (in conjunction with Tiger's Fury) whenever it's off cooldown.  I'm going to modify that a little bit.  I have found I most need the energy when I'm fighting a group.  Swipe spam is just that energy intensive.  So if I know a large group pull is coming in the next couple minutes, I'll hold off Berserk until then.  Tigers Fury, though, is on a fast enough cooldown that you should just use it whenever you can.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Oldmanjack: Kiss my Axe



21 Vrykul archeology projects.  But I finally got it.   Given that it's been a while since Northrend was the cool place to be, let me tell you how cool it is to equip an ilvl 226 weapon at level 71.  ilvl 200 was entry level raid gear.  Level 80 raid gear.

I tell you man, it was tempting to search up a second.  But not tempting enough to actually spend that much more time searching through Vrykul towns.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Tabbykat: Playing as a Family


I am kind of sad that my teenage sons don't play WoW much anymore. I mean, they occasionally log on. They are kind of excited to play Mists and are logging on more as hype builds. Mostly, though, we no longer have the kind of "listen to the cool shiz I'm up to" dinner table discussions that used to drive my wife bonkers.

At our height, my 9 year old son was healing instance runs with his guildmates. And doing awesome. My 11 year old was assembling random groups in trade (back before LFG) and tanking runs. Tanking on his DK at least as well as I could back when I was DK & warrior tanking. We'd watch each other play and I'd give them advice:

"Your healing is going to pull aggro. If something runs at you, go stand on the tank."

"DKs are so lucky to have death grip. You never have to worry about casters pounding your healer."

I will agree that mostly they had great experiences with groups. Mostly. I still watched. There was that one time a group of asshats kicked my son from the group he had formed. That was tough to deal with. But it's true that kids don't mature in a bubble.

Man, this post on Big Bear Butt brings back the memories.


Now my four year old daughter is playing. Kind of. She uses it as an electronic doll. An electronic doll with a spear and the ability to pull lighting from the sky to kill spiders.  Plus she's learning to type & spell.  She's learned her way around a keyboard even with the letters worn totally off the w, s, a, d keys.


She loves the barber shop and has been able to get herself from the Night Elf starting zone to barber in Stormwind since before Cataclysm. She was so proud of herself for finding a clothing seller in Stormwind and buying a shirt she liked. For finding the toy vendor and buying some dolls.

She wanted a horse, so I got her Night Elf exalted with Stormwind. She wanted bird form, so I leveled her druid to get bird form. We bought the Celestial Steed because, well, what kind of Dad wouldn't buy his little girl a sparkly pony? And eventually . . . eventually . . . I will fish up a seahorse for her at darkmoon fair.

It is so awesome to have an activity to share with your kids that you all enjoy.