For The Horde Is About To Get A Whole Lot More Hybridy
Recent Goings On
Yes, the blog has been a bit vacant as of late. I have to admit work has been getting extremely busy for me and I know school is taking up almost all of Sy’s time, so we’ve been a bit lax in posting. I’m hoping to be able to put out content more frequently over the next few weeks however.
In game I’ve managed to hit 70 with both my Warlock and Shaman (dual boxing them) which brings the total count of 70s up to 5 (Mage, Hunter, Druid, Warlock, Shaman). I know that Fim from TNB has also been running a Shamlock combo and I’m not sure how he’s finding it, but I can say that from my experience, this duo was amazing. With the lock spec’d Demo and the Shaman spec’d Enhance I had so many abilities to utterly devastate mobs that I could literally chain pull mobs without stopping.
At level 65 I purchased two stacks of food and two stacks of water for each toon and I think I used a total of 10 food and 10 water between the two in the last five levels. The locks ability to life tap and the Shaman’s heals kept me going indefinately. And even spec’d enhance, it was enough. When the heals pulled aggro it was a simple matter of using Spirit Wolves, or after 66 and 68 my Fire or Earth Elementals. All the while the Lock had no problem taking down everything else. And if I aggro’d too many? Well lets just say that with Metamorphosis, I could literally kill up to 10 mobs at the same time, between Immolation Aura, Cleave and Hellfire, while keeping the Warlock alive with the Shaman.
It was truly something to behold. Now, I’m not sure if I could take more than 10 at once, since that’s the largest number that I managed to aggro at once, but I wouldn’t doubt if more would go down as well. And elites? No prob. Send in the Fel Guard, dot em up, heal the pet with the Shaman, refresh dots, soulshatter, heal some more. If anyone is considering a pair to take, this one is win, IMO.
Winds of Change
Everything changes. It’s a normal process of the World… (of Warcraf). 3.0.2 changed just aboot everything we knew aboot the game. 3.0.3 brought changes as well, albeit much smaller in scope and scale. Nov 13 brings another whopper of a change.
I’ve decided that the reset that comes with the expansion is a great time for me to get around to changing things for myself as well. When I first started playing, I was a Mage. I switched to a Druid (Resto) main for a while, then back to the Mage for a few weeks before settling on the Hunter for the remainder of BC. I’ve previously announced my intention to give the Shaman a whirl and see where it goes. My primary spec for him is planned to be Enhancement, but I have no quams aboot trying oot the other two. So much so that I’m considering leveling a few other Shaman to 80 so that I can have one specializing in each spec and not have to worry aboot massive amounts of gear + respec costs. That would also allow me to use the planned 2-Spec thingy for a pvp v pve spec.
Now, what I haven’t really announced yet, is that I’m planning on bringing the Druid off the shelf. It seemed appropriate to do it this fall, since he too will be shedding his leaves and taking on a new role: Bearfacetanking. That is right. Our guild may be short on tanks for Wrath raids and tanking is something that I’ve wanted to try for a while, and with this reset, it’ll give me the opportunity to get oot there and do it.
I’ve been doing pvp on the Shaman over the last two days (since ding’ing 70) and while I loathe having only 6k health, no resilience and still no pvp trinket, its not entirely a wash. Enhance is so fun in so many ways and I do have some pretty awesome abilities. AV has been better the last couple days. The Horde in my battlegroup are finally realizing that playing smart is much better than ‘lets smash stuff and hope for the best’. I’ve seen two successful strategies used a few times that are just doing what we used to in order to win.
The first was defending the choke point. Choke points are just that and if done properly (keeping people from bleeding past and capturing graveyards behind us), they utterly devastate an offense. Especially in the first few minutes of the game when graveyards are being turned but haven’t yet converted. Offense gets sent all the way back to the start of the map and have to make their way all the way back. This buys you much needed time, protects the Relief Hut and your towers and sends the Alliance in disarray. Invariably when this strategy is used, the coordinated zerg turns into a slow steady streams of ones or twos that are easily focused fired and sent back yet again.
The second strategy that worked is a two-pronged approach. Offense zergs right to the Aid Station. The key to this plan is under no circumstances capturing Stormpike graveyard at the bridge. Getting behind their defense is critical. The second prong to this is an enforced defense of our own for anyone that died on offense. This allows the zerg to get through and the defense that does make it back needs to kill the Crusader Aura’d cockroaches before their reinforcements show up. This buys time for more players to get to defense and for the offense to get the Aid Station and all of the towers capped.
The first strategy resulted in a prolonged battle that seesawed back and forth between Stonehearth graveyard and Stormpike graveyard, but netted a ton of honor kills. We were also able to defend all of our towers and capture two of theirs. The second strategy saw us defeat Van while having capped all of their towers and defending two of ours. Both work and in the grand scheme it didn’t really matter to me, I had fun in both. But its nice to see the Horde beginning to do a little better again after what seems like months of endless losses in AV.
As far as the honor and marks go, I’m not sure that I’m going to spend any before Wrath hits. I’d love to pick up some new melee weapons, as mine are abysmal at this point, but I know I’ll find upgrades in Wrath, so why bother. I’d probably be much better served saving up what I get for level 80 rewards, but we’ll see what happens.
Luckily for me, Druids got a second talent reset in 3.0.3. Since I had spec’d Boomkin after the initial reset, paid to respec to Resto, paid to respec back to Boomkin and then again back to Resto, this was a godsend. (Um, well, ya, my name is Fikkle after all. I can never make up my mind aboot anything). So Anteaus got a free respec and is now ready to get oot there and Butt it up. The only problem is, I have no idea what I’m doing. I haven’t ever tanked with the Druid before. I have read B^3 religiously over the last year and a bit, so I have an inkling, but I have no idea what the changes from the latest patch have meant for the Druid (or the Shaman for that matter). So there is going to be a lot of learning going on between now and level 80.
I’m hoping to get the chance to get oot there and start tanking some level 70 content before Wrath hits in 8 days, but that isn’t really enough time to truly learn stuff. I also have some pvp goals I wanted to accomplish for the Druid as well, but I’m not sure if I’ll get a chance to do that. Either way, I pulled all of his feral gear out of his bank (I think I actually had enough for two full sets) and figured out which were the best. At this point, I’m still a little unsure as to what stats I should be focusing on. I was looking at the tooltips for stuff and I got pretty confused last night. When I mouse over Agility (in Bear form) it makes no mention of how it modifies your dodge rating. Yet I noted a change in my dodge rating when I put an agility enchant on my cloak. So it looks like it does affect it, but I’m still unclear as to how.
Because I never really focused all that much on the Druid after he hit 70, I never did some of the ‘required’ grinds for great gear that many other Ferals can say they did. To that end, my reputation with the Cenarion Expedition is only Honored. So no Earthwarden for me. I doubt eight days is going to be enough to get up to exalted. I’ve looked at the S2 Two-Handed Mace as an alternative, but like I said, I don’t really know what is best for a feral tank now, or a kitty (for leveling) for that matter. What I did find, however, was that in rawrkitty, I had 2k AP and was able to do some pretty sweet damage in the BGs. I’m not sure if this is a lot for someone in all greens, but it seemed to be working. Kitty spent a lot of time in AV at the choke point pouncing on mounted allies who were trying to ride through and giving the rest of the Hordies a chance to destroy them. Its amazing that someone can die so fast while stunned.
We’re planning on doing two more Kara-clears as a guild, attendance permitting, the first this week and the second on Tues/Wed before Wrath. If theres enough tanks present, I’ll likely bring the Shaman in the hopes of getting one or two drops that will make leveling in Wrath a tad easier. If we’re short a tank, I may bring the Bear for facetanking in order to make the run happen. I’m worried his stats are a bit low, and I doubt he’d be able to survive the new Scourge boss as MT, but we’ll see what happens.
The expansion is almost here and within a few months people will have all kinds of new content at the new endgame to go over and while Sy will most likely continue to have MQoSRSurvival and SneakyMcStabsalot, I thinks he’s also planning to get a bit more holyier-than-thou with his up’n'coming priest. But from the fickle-perspective, things are aboot to get a whole lot more hybridy.
May the Horde be with you.