You have learned a new spell: Aspect of the Dragonhawk (Rank 1).
Wait, what? Did my attack power bonus seriously just go up by 75 from Aspect of the Hawk (Rank 8)?
This new spell essentially make Aspect of the Hawk obsolete beginning level 74. Any enhancement to this spell will apply to Aspect of the Dragonhawk.
To better display this boost in attack power bonus, I’ve provided this graphical analysis:
You will notice the linear increase during each expansion, but with each expansion, the linear progression increases by more than two-fold. This has been somewhat reflective of the combat rating system when you take a look at the stats for Wrath of the Lich King. (296 is the new hit cap? What!)
But what’s the impact of this?
At level 73, I am upwards of more than 2800 RAP when Aspect of the Hawk and Trueshot Aura are on. Now, at level 74, I’m reaching that 3000 mark. I honestly will not be surprised if end-game hunters in Wrath can see 4000 RAP fully buffed.
This kind of progression can become detrimental. As the curve becomes steeper and steeper, the combat rating system becomes too cumbersome to maintain. It becomes a true inflation, and gear in future expansions will provide ungodly high numbers for Agility, Stamina, etc. The statistical gap between levels, say, 89 and 90 will be so large that players may not be able to keep up.
Leveling actually becomes more difficult because the difference in future ranks of the Aspect matters, and the wait to train the new rank will be a hindrance.
So what’s the takeaway of this?
Aspect of the Dragonhawk and its 230/300 attack power bonus are surely something to see, but if you’re ever caught without it on, the penalty to your DPS output can be very high. Players will have to be more aware of what Aspect they have active (Dragonhawk or Viper).
It’s been one week since Wrath was released, and I have devised a plan for level 80. This 11/55/5 build is what I am currently aiming for. At level 73, I’ve currently finished building the Marksmanship branch of the tree.
- 5/5 Improved Aspect of the Hawk
- 1/5 Endurance Training
- 2/2 Focused Fire
- 2/2 Improved Revive Pet
- 1/1 Aspect Mastery
- 5/5 Lethal Shots
- 3/3 Careful Aim
- 3/3 Improved Hunter’s Mark
- 5/5 Mortal Shots
- 2/2 Go for the Throat
- 3/3 Improved Arcane Shot
(Replace with 3/3 Focused Aim for raiding)
- 1/1 Aimed Shot
- 5/5 Efficiency
- 1/1 Readiness
- 3/3 Barrage
- 5/5 Ranged Weapon Specialization
- 1/1 Trueshot Aura
- 3/3 Improved Barrage
- 5/5 Master Marksman
- 1/1 Silencing Shot
- 3/3 Improved Steady Shot
- 5/5 Marked for Death
- 1/1 Chimera Shot
- 5/5 Improved Tracking
What build are you looking at?
As we start out in the new zones of Northrend, questing and exploring bring back many of the fundamentals in playing a hunter. Stuff away all the knowledge about hunter raiding for now until you’re level 80. We’re going to rebuild it from the ground up.
- Your pet is a tank. Tenacity pets are there for a reason, and their viability should not be ignored even by Marksmanship hunters. Their talent trees were designed for tanking, and it would be a loss for us not to utilize it. I advocate the use of a gorilla or a bear for multiple mob tanking because of the current respawn rate. You never know how long ago a mob was killed by someone else and may respawn on top of you.
- Pet on defensive. Many might argue with me on this point, but I stand my ground. Having a pet on defensive lets your pet get that initial aggro if you get ambushed. While you are still trying to adjust to that ambush, your pet will already be on their way to defend you.
- Hunters are utilitarian. Use your abilities and traps. Unfortunately, Marksmanship hunters no longer have Scatter Shot, but we can still trap, and Deterrence is a good enough substitute for those emergency situations. Always use Misdirection on your pet. It will save you from having to melee.
- Tracking is underrated. Quest with tracking on and it will save you a lot of time looking for a mob. Ride around in your mount and look for your target. Because tracking also goes underground, it will let you see if a mob you’re looking for has to be reached another way.
- Your shots matter. Combine some of the knowledge from above. The ideal way to quest is to kill mobs in the fastest way possible with the least amount of mana. If you’re trying to get massive damage up front, always use Misdirection. (Marksmanship: use Serpent Sting and Chimera Shot.) Don’t shoot with everything you have. A Steady Shot rotation is still one of the most mana efficient methods.
One of the things I’ve come to enjoy is to quest without the help of Wowhead. Although it’s hard to be able to quest without it completely, I can say I’ve limited myself to using the resource less than 5% of the time. Most of this is to check if a quest is buggy. [I've Got a Flying Machine!] is definitely bugged. (The flying machine grappling hook will not hook.) [Seeds of the Blacksouled Keepers] is partially bugged. (Most spores were evade-bugged. I was able to find one that wasn’t and just camped that one spore.) But aside from those cases, I enjoy questing without having to Alt-Tab and having the sense of accomplishment that I solved the quest myself.
Tuesday was Veterans’ Day in the United States. It’s a bit late, but I dedicate this entry to the veterans, not just in the military, but to those who have fought in the battlefields of Azeroth.
They are more than just ornaments for your armor.
At the end of Burning Crusade, the Shattered Sun Offensive tabard became widely popular. Some people like wearing it for the design. But for me, wearing that tabard meant something more. It was a sign that the races of Azeroth banded into one front against Kael’thas and Kil’jaeden to prevent the Burning Legion from returning to the world.
Suddenly, the importance of the guild tabard paled in comparison to the new cause we were fighting for. It was a sign that that I participated and lived to tell the tale of how Alliance and Horde worked together to build the Shattered Sun Offensive into a formidable fighting force.
The Shattered Sun tabards became somewhat of a symbol for those who were able to progress far enough to have contributed to the Offensive’s efforts. Remember when Patch 2.4 rolled around and transformed Shattrath into a staging ground for a full-scale assault? It is no more different that Patch 3.0.2 transforming the capital cities into staging grounds for Northrend.
Together, we ended the Burning Crusade.
Now, as I wait patiently for the next boat to carry me to the icy continent, I proudly wear the Argent Dawn tabard. It is in remembrance of the Scourge attacks on our cities and our people. It was a reward for helping the Argent Dawn rebuild its forces in preparation for an expedition to Northrend.
It is a promise and a commitment to fight for the good of all Azeroth and confront the Lich King and his forces in Northrend. We will take the Argent Crusade to the heart of Icecrown.
Arthas, we are coming for you.
This is my World of Warcraft folder before installation for Wrath:
This is my World of Warcraft folder after installation for Wrath:
Now if you’re like me, then you’re playing on a 3.5-year-old computer (laptop or desktop) that doesn’t have enough space to run Wrath of the Lich King from your internal hard drive. Luckily, Blizzard games are always kind enough for their folders to be played around with. If you want to play from your external hard drive, you can.
- Copy your “World of Warcraft” folder into your external hard drive (wherever). (Don’t cut, in case something happens during the installation process.)
- Run your launcher from that location in your external before beginning installation. (If you don’t do this step, the installer will refer to the location from where you last started your launcher, which would be in your internal hard drive. It will tell you that you don’t have enough hard drive space.)
- Insert the Wrath of the Lich King DVD, begin your installation and let the updaters do their job.
Your game should now be ready to play. If any shortcuts to your old internal “World of Warcraft” folder remain, purge it just in case. Start up the game from the files in your external hard drive. If things go well, you should be able to just delete the folders in your internal hard drive and free up that 10 GB of space.
Chapter 3 of Warcraft Retrospective, a documentary series on the development of the world of Warcraft, was released two days ago, in time for the release of the second World of Warcraft expansion, Wrath of the Lich King. This chapter catches up the series to the current progress of World of Warcraft.
As we wait in lines to purchase our copies of Wrath of the Lich King, wait for that installation to complete, and wait for the servers to stop becoming overloaded, take some time to consider how Warcraft has changed since Orcs and Humans. Players from the golden age of classic World of Warcraft can attest to the ever-changing environment of the game. The original game, when released in 2004, brought new mechanics to the MMORPGs. New content were downloadable instead of required purchase as an expansion. This meant the game has been changing since day 1.
Even coming as a Burning Crusade
baby veteran, sometimes you forget how many patch Tuesdays (minor and major) have gone by to this day. But with every change comes an improvement. Every patch tweaks the game a bit more to the ever-changing needs of the players. World of Warcraft achieved something other games hadn’t been able to do: adaptability. The constant downloadable patched made the game evolve along with the players themselves.
The complexity of the game has outlived Burning Crusade. It needs Wrath of the Lich King. With all the anticipation for the complexity of this expansion, it’s difficult to see how these features can be outlived. But many new features in Burning Crusade were also breakthrough ideas at the time that we now take for granted.
Look back at how we, the players (not the developers), have changed the game. More importantly, look forward to how we can help continue to improve the game that 11 million have come to love.
While many of us will (or already are) undoubtedly in line for tonight’s release of Wrath of the Lich King, there are many of us who will not, including myself.
I asked the Twitterati what would be a good thing to do tonight if you are not attending a midnight release event? Drotara responded with some ideas:
- Abandon/finish old quests.
- Stock up on bandages.
- Empty bags of unneeded stuff (which is a hard thing to do for me, you know).
- Tame a tanking pet and power-level it to 70 at Legion Hold.
What are your ideas for things to do in the comfort of your office chair while others are out in the cold in long lines?
Aimed Shot: Added to Barrage and Improved Barrage talent.
That’s the latest word on Patch 3.0.3. This is interesting because if we pick up both talents (and we did), it may bring Aimed Shot to its pre-3.0.2 damage values. This is on top of the fact that Aimed Shot is now an instant-cast ability.
Lassirra briefly covered her idea on using [Glyph of Multi-Shot] (which I have picked up along with [Glyph of Hunter's Mark]) and [Glyph of Aimed Shot], primarily for PvP. However, I feel like Multi-Shot and Aimed Shot should no longer be looked at primarily as PvP abilities. I believe making abilities have PvE viability is one of the reasons there are so many changes across the board.
These changes are essentially throwing Aimed Shot into the family of heavy damage abilities. Of course, there is no way we can tell how each ability will scale at level 80 and if they would be worth looking into for shot rotations. I am currently under the impression that if both Barrage talents are picked up, both glyphs are worth picking up. This means as soon as our third major glyph slot opens up, we will be picking up the Aimed Shot glyph.
This new addition would improve the wide variety of damage-dealing abilities on top of the Serpent Sting/Chimera Shot combination. It would certainly help with leveling in Northrend.
It’s been a while since we did some updates and site management.
Awlbiste and Gretadelle have retired from the game. Both of them wrote blogs with posts that were wonderful to read and provided good insight, so we’re sad to let them go from our blogroll. We wish them the best in future endeavors! Ihlos and Nassira make their debuts in our blogroll as we see an abundance in up-and-coming blogs that provide a variety of insight into the changing hunter class.
We replaced the Guides section in our sidebar with a Popular Reads section, listing some of the most popular articles here at 35 Yards Out. Some of the information may be outdated come Wrath, but they were written to address general topics not specific to an expansion.
Over the next few days, we will be updating the static pages, including the introduction and adding a new member to our hunting party! Don’t forget to vote in our new poll in the sidebar.
And as always, feel free to contact us by e-mail at 35yards (at) gmail (dot) com if you have any questions, comments, or if you have something random to say.
On Saturday night, I was sitting around in Shattrath bored after doing my cooking and fishing dailies when I saw in trade: “LFM Kara, have good tank”. I thought to myself, I haven’t run Karazhan in months. It’d be nice to back in there again, and I’d be able to kill Tenris Mirkblood.
So I decided to hop on the group. After about 15 minutes of grabbing the DPS and healers, we all started heading out to Deadwind Pass. The buffs and mana biscuits were given out, and we were on our way. Of course, the conversations on Vent were pretty much active with how we used to have to do this and that but now we can do this and that. And of course, raid leader joked that if anyone did not actually know how to kill Attumen, he would promptly give the boot.
- Attumen himself was quite a joke, as we didn’t even care that we were all spread apart, and he was charging everyone.
- Tenris Mirkblood didn’t take too long either, but I died because I had not fought him before and didn’t stay away from red spheres. (Note to self: stay away from glowing red things.) [Arcanite Ripper] drops, but I lost the roll.
- Moroes’ additional mobs were not tanked and were taken down by AoE.
- Maiden of Virtue died in 55 seconds.
- Romulo and Julianne died at the same time while the warrior tank and a rogue was on Julianne, and the rest of the raid was on Romulo.
- Nightbane became a tank and spank while staying away from Charred Earth.
- Curator could have been killed before the first Evocation, but raid leader decided to hold back on DPS because he wanted us to reach Evocate just for fun.
- Shade of Aran was dead immediately after one Arcane Explosion.
- Illhoof only made two Sacrifices.
- We stayed through Netherspite’s first banish phase, and he was dead at the end of it.
- Chess Event was our most troublesome part, sadly. During our first attempt, I couldn’t move my controlled footman, and neither can King Llane, so he stayed and died in the flame. During our second attempt, I could only move my footman once. When my footman died, I could not move from the platform in the room, and neither could our druid. He logged out and in but still could not move and had to hearthstone out and be summoned. I had to close WoW and get back on to get unstuck.
- Prince Malchezaar was dead after two infernals.
Never have I used Volley and Explosive Trap so many times before. After this run, I have come to the conclusion that I will never see [Legacy] drop, nor will I ever see another [Sunfury Bow of the Phoenix] drop (after the one I got on my first Karazhan run back in March).
Lesson of the night: Never assume the impossible. We joked that we would wipe on Chess, and we actually did.