Saturday, January 29, 2011

Managing Aspects

Hey guys, today I want to talk about managing your aspects.  Nowadays there are plenty of times where you need to switch aspects on the fly, such as the phase transitions against Argaloth or Atramedes where you would need to keep moving and have aspect of the fox goin'.  Even when you are just running back and want an easy way to put up aspect of the pack without having to keybind it or even have it use up slots in you UI.  If no one has noticed from my screenshots, I don't have aspects on my bars at all.  What I use, and what I suggest you guys use, is this addon called Opie.

What Opie does is allow you to make custom rings that you fill with your spells.  You key bind this ring so when you hold the key bind your ring pops up.  Then all you do is move your mouse in the direction of the spell and let go of the key bind and that said spell will be cast.  You should notice that inside the ring is a small circle with an arrow around it.  The arrow will be pointing the direction your mouse is and will glow the color of the skill (or if you made a custom ring, it will glow the color you set it to).

What makes this superior to normal keybinding is that you can attach a ton of skills to 1 button.  Once you get used to where each aspect is located on your ring, all you have to do is just press you key bind while having your mouse in the right direction to cast your aspect.  I personally bind my aspects ring to middle mouse click, so all I do is swing my mouse in the right direction and click middle mouse button for whichever aspect I want.
Mouse In Center of Screen
Mouse Pulled Up Towards Top of Screen
All The Different Custom Rings
My Misdirection Custom Ring
Another neat thing about Opie is that it comes with many preset rings.  They are all set to default key binds, but you can easily change them.  I personally only use the aspects ring, but I have made my own custom ring, which I put my misdirection macros into.  I have one for each of my 3 tanks I have in raids, and 1 for my cat.  Since you can even use macros on the rings, I have 4 /cast Misdirection macros with different [@"target"] names according to the tanks and my pet. I'm sure there are even more useful ways to use this addon.  If anyone thinks of a neat way to use the custom rings leave me a comment about it :D

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Useful Resource: Hunter DPS Spreadsheet

Today I am going to talk about a VERY useful tool for figuring out all sorts of things about your hunter.  It's called Zeherah's Hunter DPS Analyzer.  This website helps me make all sorts of decisions, like gear selections, gemming, enchanting, reforging, etc.

The first thing you do when you go to the website is to upload your hunter's information.  Normally this would be a pain in the ass because you would have to manually input all the information about your hunter, which is quite a lot.  Luckily this spreadsheet can draw everything about your hunter from the WoW Armory.  To do this, click on the "Armory Import" box:

Fill out your information as shown above, then click "Load From Armory".  At this point the spreadsheet pulls all your hunter's information from the WoW Armory and automatically inputs it into the spreadsheet.  From here you can change anything about your hunter that you want to see the DPS change reflected in.  The first thing you should do before making any changes is to find out your base DPS.  Since I mainly use this for raiding, I turn on the best possible raid buffs for my character.  To do that, all you have to do is go to the "Buffs/Debuffs" section and click "Enable Best Raid Buffs" and "Enable Best Raid Debuffs".

Now after setting your buffs and debuffs, now you can get your baseline DPS for your hunter in it's current state.  Go down to the bottom of the page and click "Update DPS".  This will calculate your hunter's theoretical DPS.  After your DPS is calculated, all sorts of information is displayed.

The first thing you notice is your total DPS.  Next to that is your stat weights, as in, the list of your DPS stats organized by priority.  As you can see, the best possible stat increase for my hunter (and probably everyone elses) is Ranged Attack Speed.  So that means if I had to choose between getting a 0.1 increase in my ranged attack speed, or any other 1 stat, I would want the increased speed.  Next to the stat weights is the gear comparison section.  I don't really use that section, but the top part lists possible problems with your gear.  Like for my hunter, it says I have too much hit, which is correct because I just recently got new bracers that had hit on them.  It will list all sorts of things that would be problems, such as if you aren't taking advantage of your professions' DPS bonuses, or if you don't have all your talent points allocated.

Under that is your Final Stats.  These are literally the stats your hunter has with all the setting you have set.

Now is when you would make any changes to your hunter to see how it would affect your DPS.  For example, as you can see, I have way too much hit, so I am going to try to change my enchants, gemming, or reforging to try to change my hit into other more beneficial stats.  I would scroll up and click on the "Gear" section.  Since my gems are specific colors to meet the set bonuses while simultaneously making my meta gem work, I'll leave my gems alone for now.  I have a lot of haste turned into hit via reforging, so I'll just revert some of my gear that is reforged back to its original form, thus turning the hit I gained from reforging back into the haste that was there.  Haste > Hit when you are hit capped because the leftover hit is useless.  So I would make the changes and hit "Update DPS" again.

As you can see, an extra box appeared under the DPS section, this shows what the last configuration's DPS was, and the change in DPS between your last configuration and your current one.  Also as you can see, I no longer am over the hit cap.

With a little bit of fine tuning, you can pull out quite a bit of extra DPS out of your hunter, and Zeherah's Hunter DPS Analyzer is a great way to do this.  If you are interested in raiding seriously, these changes and attention to stats can mean the difference in raiding with a really good guild, or with a bad guild.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Me and my guild have finally killer 25 man Al'akir.  You may now refer to me as Oodama, Defender of a Shattered World :D.  Time for heroics...

It's 3:01am...

...and I've spent the last 2 and a half hours tryin' to go to sleep.  Yet here I am, awake, coughing uncontrollably, and feeling like crap.  But... you guys don't care about that do ya? You want some hunter news I bet.  4.0.6 is unfortunately still on the PTR, so we have to wait a bit still until we get some of the awesome changes (such as Auto Shot being usable while moving) and some of the not so awesome changes (like the all around Survival nerf).  These are the changes as of January 24, 2011:

  • Aimed Shot weapon damage has been increased to 200%, up from 150%. In addition, the base cast time has been reduced to 2.4 seconds, down from 3.
  • Arcane Shot damage has been increased by 15%.
  • Aspect of the Wild, Aspect of the Hawk, and Aspect of the Fox can now be cast while mounted.
  • Hunters can now use Auto Shot while moving.
  • Casting Trap Launcher, Distracting Shot, and Scare Beast now cancel Auto Shot when cast. This is to make it easier to crowd control creatures with Auto Shot while moving enabled.
  • Concussive Shot duration has been increased to 6 seconds, up from 4.
  • Deterrence now provides 100% chance for melee attacks to miss instead of 100% parry chance. This means that attacks that cannot be parried, notably some rogue abilities, can now be prevented by Deterrence, and the hunter will gain the benefit of Deterrence even if disarmed.
  • Dust Cloud's cooldown and duration have been modified to make it closer aligned with Tailspin (same effect, different pet).
  • Freezing Trap now has a PvP duration of 8 seconds.
  • Kill Command's damage has been increased by 20%.
  • Kill Shot's attack power scaling has been increased by 50%.
  • Master's Call now has a 35-second cooldown, down from 1 minute, and its range has been increased to 40 yards, up from 25. In addition, the visual effect is more obvious.
  • Wing Clip now has a PvP duration of 8 seconds.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Beast Mastery
      • Animal Handler now provides a passive 25% bonus to attack power, up from 15%.
    • Marksmanship
      • Chimera Shot's overall damage has been increased by roughly 50%.
      • Wild Quiver (Mastery): Chance for this to trigger per mastery has been increased by approximately 17%.
    • Survival
      • Black Arrow damage has been reduced by 15%.
      • Explosive Shot damage has been reduced by 15%.
      • Hunter vs. Wild has been increased to 5/10/15% Stamina, up from 4/8/12%.
      • Into the Wilderness (passive) has been reduced to a 10% Agility increase, down from 15%.
  • Pets
    • Pets now have 70% of the master's armor, rather than a different value based on which type of pet they are.
    • Shale Spiders now correctly have a special ability (Web Wrap).
    • Bad Manner (monkey) now properly breaks from damage.
  • Glyphs
    • Glyph of Concussive Shot redesigned. It now limits the maximum run speed of the target while Concussive Shot is active.
  • Bug Fixes
    • Cobra Shot now properly increases the duration of the Serpent Spread Serpent Sting

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Up and Running

Alrighty! My blog is finally up and running.  It may look a little scarce now, but in the coming days, I will hopefully have some useful information up.  If you couldn't tell from the description, this blog is about the World of Warcraft (which from now on I will refer to it as WoW).  But more specifically, about the Hunter class.  I will mainly be talking about about Player vs. Environment content (PvE) but I may at times mention Player vs. Player (PvP) news.

For today, I guess I'll talk about myself.  I am Oodama, or should I say, my hunter's name is Oodama.  I play on the PvE server "Eonar" on the U.S. realms.  Here is my Armory link:  I currently raid with the second best guild on the server by the name of Systemic.  I have been raiding since the beginning of the first WoW expansion "The Burning Crusade".  I fully cleared all BC content too.  When Wrath of the Lich King hit, back in my old guild, we achieved the server first Naxxramus clear, awarding me with my only server first raid achievement.  That guild shortly later fell apart and I went on to different guilds, and ended up clearing 25 man ulduar with some hard modes, cleared Trial of the Crusader on 25 man (also got "A Tribute to Insanity" in 10 man), and eventually got 11/12 heroic bosses down in Icecrown Citadel.

That basically wraps up my previous raiding experience.  Currently, me and my guild are 11/12 Cataclysm bosses down, with only Al'akir standing in between us and heroics.  I will tend to post my guild's progression as we kill more things just to let people know (I doubt anyone would care right away, in fact, if anyone even reads this first post, I would be astounded lol.) 

That's all for today (or until I decide to post more...)