Saturday, 25 April 2009

Can we get some adds with a little less whirlwind

Rounding up and AoEing trash in instances and raids isn't a massive problem for rogues these days, no cooldown on Fan of Knives and a couple of slow daggers means we can easily keep up with mages and warlocks.

However there is a certain ability that warriors are fond of in PvP that several trash mobs are also keen to use. I'm talking about Whirlwind, something that will kill me 9 times out of 10, and quite frankly it's getting on my nerves.

I'm not talking about remove the ability, that would be unnecessary, but can we stop giving it to trash mobs that the tank expects to round up and be burned down at the same time.

Reasons are this:
  1. When doing single target dps, Quartz will show me when whirlwind is being cast and I can run the heck away.
  2. When mobs are being tanked away from each other, a mob spinning around is a good indication that it's performing whirlwind.
Problem when 4 mobs are grouped up on top of each other, and the marked skull doesn't whirlwind chances are the rogue is going to die.

This came to light the other night when we were attacking the military wing in Naxx. Our melee DPS included me and 2 death knights and unless I got lucky with evasion or the healers were on the ball I died on nearly every trash pull compared to the plate wearers who laughed it off. This slows the raid while I'm rezzed and buff up and quite frankly annoys the bejesus out of me. In the end I resorted to try and train ranged skills and this isn't fun.

I mention this now because of the Razorscale fight in Ulduar which has Iron Dwarf adds during the air phase and the highest priority one to kill does a, guess what, whirlwind attack. At least this one we should be able to run away from, but that still limits dps on a fight that relies on killing things quickly.

This is probably a personal moan, and I expect QQ comments should anyone choose to do so. But when raid trash is designed to be rounded up and killed en mass it seems slightly unfair that classes with low armor that need to stand in the middle (I'm including Arcane mages in this) can be killed very quickly because one guy decides to spin around with his big sword.

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Patch 3.1 Fallout

The big patch has landed (and was quickly followed up by a smaller one) which has brought many changes and additions to the game. Here's a quick run down of the major ones that have affected me and my thoughts.

Fishing dailies
Having leveled fishing up to 450 trying to catch the rat and fishing up all the coins in the fountain it's quite nice to have something else to fish for with random rewards. There's only been three of the five quests offered so far but I've received the jeweled fishing pole, the weather beaten fishing hat, a new fishing line and some vendor trash which has netted a tidy sum.

Dual Specs
I've purchased this for Crash so far, which does provide a slightly pricey achievement. I've stuck with an assassination spec for raiding and have a subtlety one for mucking about in PvP and soloing. Personally it's just a nice thing to have, but for classes which can do more than one thing it does add an extra dimension to putting groups together and changing group makeup once you're in the raid.

Assassination Spec
The two big changes I've noticed are the Hunger for Blood change, which is a blessing given how much I hated having to try and remember to refresh the buff within 30seconds. Now once a bleed is there I can put the buff up and given Rupture up almost constantly it's less of a problem to refresh it when I have spare energy. Secondly the changes to poisons to proc based on weapon speed rather than a flat figure means it's possible to use a 1.8 speed dagger in the main hand again rather than trying to find the fastest available, and not necessarily finding them in the raids we're hitting as a guild.

Subtlety Spec
I hadn't played subtlety since TBC when I spec'd for a blast at the battlegrounds to grind honor for the season weapons when they were the best available to the 10 man raider. However now for soloing and hitting battlegrounds or WinterGrasp it feels really good. Premiditation, Ambush, Eviscerate is generally enough to reduce most mobs to tears if not kill them outright.

Our guild is clearing Naxx fairly regularly now and so far we've had one night to have a play around in this new instance. The Flame Leviathan fight is an interesting diversion and we've managed to down Razorscale. However the lack of spawns in the air phase of that fight means I don't think we've done it properly, but at least know what not to stand in and the tanks know what to do during the landed phase. This appears to be a tougher raid than Naxx which means hopefully the challenge will remain for longer. Plus there's always the hard modes to beat once we've killed the bosses on normal.

Argent Tournament
I loved the Isle of Quel'Danas when it opened, especially considering the Blood Elf lore surrounding it, and worked hard to get to exalted with the Shattered Sun Offensive in order to purchase the title once our server unlocked phase 4.

The new tournament appears to be more of the same and I'm eagerly working my way through the quests. So far I've managed to become the exalted champion of Silvermoon and am currently working on Thunder Bluff as I need the most rep with them. Once I've become a champion with them I'll move onto the Trolls which should then net me the Ambassador title while I work my way to the Crusader title that I really want for when we face Arthas.

Non-combat Pets
Finally the Horde have a way of getting hold of some pets that were only available to the Alliance. The Westfall chicken is obtained by buying the seed from the farmer in Brill and then spamming a /chicken emote at a nearby chicken until the quest becomes available. The Sprite Darter Hatchling is another kill grind through Feralas. This was a lot quicker and easier than any of the dragon whelps, twenty minutes of running around and the egg dropped.

I'm planning to write some more posts about my experiences on the bosses in the new raid as and when we hit them.