Posts Tagged ‘ dps ’

I Don’t Need To L2P, I Need To L2Target Dummy

I was finally able to sink my teeth into some PTR goodness over the weekend!

I’d logged Tigerfeet over to Broxigar (the PvE server) and romped around for a while in cat and bear form. The Orgrimmar barber shop was teeming with druids and there was much fun to be had in /s while we gamboled about with new forms.

During this time I gallantly answered a plea for guildies and found myself in a decently-sized guild with decently competent people.

I say decently competent because our 10-man foray to the new Vault boss didn’t go too well. Grouping problems aside (I’m now immensely grateful for well-organized guilds) we tried to 9-man the guy with no luck.

Long story short, there’s fire everywhere and we didn’t have enough people sticking it out to actually start to LEARN the encounter to actually be able to… well… learn the encounter.

The vast majority of the people were, in fact, pre-made characters. Now, pre-made characters come equipped with the best of the best from Tier 8 content. Over by the Argent Tournament there’s tier 9 available for purchase for about 50g apice. It looks goofy as all get-out (go go placeholder graphics!) but the stats aren’t anything to sneeze at.

So, we get into vault and start whomping on things and I find myself in a curious position. Me, in my Tier7 BIS with the odd T8 upgrade, am sitting comfortably at the top of the DPS meter. The closest contender was a pre-made rogue who was only 2-300dps behind me. Barely keeping ahead of the tank were a mage, a hunter, a warlock, and an arms warrior.

They were all fighting to keep 3k dps.

I was rolling comfortably in the mid to low 5k range.

On live, for a 10-man encounter, I usually see numbers in the upper 5k range, so my damage was right where I expected it to be considering the feral nerfs.

Well, as can be expected, a hue and cry arose about my dps. What’s wrong! I was cheating! No way should a live-transferred character in Tier7 be out-dpsing pre-made characters wearing BiS Tier8 gear with Tier9 upgrades!

Hax Hax Hax!

So, I knew I wasn’t cheating, but is what they say true? Was there a bug that prevents premades from doing their proper damage, or was there a bug that kept the nerfs from affecting live-transfers?

To the Target Dummies I went!

I was able to steadily break 4k on live, but just barely. You know, just me and the target dummy, no mangle bot, no nuthin’.

On my live-transfer I was doing 3.5k. It’s a sad drop, but much more difficult to tell considering the amount of use the target dummies are getting. (on another note, I got the ‘track others’ debuffs’ to work with RPB!)

Then I tested it out on a pre-made druid. I kitted her out with all armor-pen gems (naturally her crit was about 53% in full tier 8), got her glyphs (I started testing without them and was wondering what was wrong) and set to work.

The result? 3.8k with spikes up to 4k.

I’d made a preliminary post on the PTR forums about the seeming discrepancy between live-transfer characters and pre-made characters. The general consensus was that people playing pre-mades are generally terribad and suggestions to me to check my buffs and make sure they’re consistent.

I think a little of both were responsible. Many people take the option of pre-made characters to test out the playstyles of a new class without the drudgery of leveling (I myself have a max-level shaman waiting to be transferred). The high-useage of the target dummies on the PTR goes a long way to making testing difficult.

The feral cat rotation is subtly different when a mangle-bot is present as opposed to when you have to apply your own D@mn mangle. When there’s randomly a mangle bot for maybe 20 seconds out of a 5-minute test period, it can just throw the rotation into complete chaos.

Needless to say, testing’s a little difficult, and I’m not very scientific about it at all. I’m sad to see my DPS down, but I know it had to happen.

On another note – I downloaded and installed Feral By Night. I spent some quality time on live with it and a target dummy.

The result? I did everything the addon said, pushed every button exactly how I should have, etc, etc.

I did on average 3.5k dps with spikes up to 3.8k.

Remember? I’d clocked myself on live as rolling in at a solid 4k dps.

So, with a program telling me what buttons to push I did LESS dps than I’m able to do when I’m driving!

Why don’t you stick THAT in your pipe and smoke it?

(PS – smoking’s bad, k?)

Less QQ, More Mew Mew

If you were to believe all the caterwauling on the Druid forums, you’d think the sky was falling. You’d think cats were being nerfed hard into the ground and that ferals were about to wink out of existence.

The fact is, nothing could be farther from the truth.

Here’s a bit of history:

In Naxxramas and even Heroics, cats were topping charts quite easily. We were out-dpsing those who were higher level than us and those that were even higher-geared than us.

In Ulduar the gap has been narrowing, allowing other dpsers to shine on fights (Think Hodir, Freya, Iron Council – do not think XT, or Vezax)

Now, I know the cat rotation is hard (I noticed myself this weekend I was pulling 3k on a target dummy with a sloppy rotation, then actually buckled down and paid attention and managed 4k), and that because of its challenge (I think most of us relish the challenge) we should rightfully see big numbers.

And we do.

And even after these nerfs we STILL WILL.

Because scaling remains unchanged, lesser-geared druids will notice a larger drop in dps than higher-geared druids, but it shouldn’t be enough to drop us to the bottoms of the charts. As long as you’re alloting your stats correctly and executing your rotation well, you should still enjoy robust numbers.

Have you ever heard the love-sick yowls of a lady-cat in heat?

After reading the patch notes I hopped on over to the Druid official forums and….

yeah…

It’s kinda like that.

Chill, everybody, we’ll be fine.

I’d go into more detail, but better and faster minds have already done it for me. 🙂

And Little Did I Know…

That beneath his peaceful, unassuming bark…

was a raging feral feline just waiting to be unleashed!

picture-1

This is a copy of the WWS from last night. I’ve focused on our kill for 25-man XT-002 Deconstructor.

(Yes we killed him! and 10 seconds before the enrage too! /confetti)

Top five DpS, we have a Combat Rogue, a Retribution Paladin, TWO(!) feral felines, and a Destruction Warlock.

Beyond our success last night, beyond this new feeling of synergy I have with the other officers, beyond all of that, I think I’m most excited about seeing one of our members (who had struggled in the past) finally find his niche.

He’d been running as a healer before and, quite frankly, had the raid awareness of a can of beans. He was particularly suceptible to healer tunnel-vision, and the source of much frustration during our Sartharion 3D attempts. He wasn’t a bad healer, but when he was put in a situation where he needed to pay critical attention to something other than health bars his skill began to falter.

We in Unemployed have found ourselves fortunate enough to have a slight (SLIGHT!) over-abundance of healers. Enough definitely so that we could safely rotate one or two in and out of DpS slots as needed. So, to our newly-furred friend, I popped the question yesterday before the raid: “Would you like to forsake your branchey roots and devote yourself full-time to the fine art of ripping face?”

The answer was yes.

My hopes weren’t particularly high, however. I suggested Rogue Power Bars to him, and I pointed him at Feral by Night and Face Mauler, thinking the best I might be able to hope for was to set him up with something that told him what to do and when so that at least he wouldn’t be an embarrassment.

What did I get for my under-estimation?

I got freaking blown away.

I asked him after the fact which addons he’d installed and was using. The answer? Just Rogue Power Bars. He hadn’t bothered with the skill-eliminating addons I’d so derided in my post last week. It was all him.

I am so freaking proud! I feel a little ridiculous that I feel so strongly about this, I feel like I took a wobbling, unsure little chick and have finally helped it find its eagle’s wings.

PS?

BEST KILL-SHOT EVER

You Ought To Be Ashamed

One of my very favorite feral blogs, and one of the first I turn to when I have questions (Of Teeth And Claws) wrote an article about rotation advisor addons. In his post he talked briefly about two of the up-and-coming more popular programs, and ruminated at length* over weather or not they constituted ‘cheating’.

His tentative opinion was that yes, using a rotation advisor goes a long way to removing skill from the game.

I agree completely! Blizzard is already removing skill from the game (360 swipe). Personally, I find it shameful to have an addon that tells you what button to press. In my experience, there’s quite a bit of joy to be had in topping the damage meters, especialy if you know you’ve done it yourself!

A number of his readers tried to defend the use of rotation advisors by saying their main job is tanking. It’s implied that tanking is so harrowing that they just can’t be bothered to learn about and maintain a viable dps rotation.

It’s not, there’s no excuse! I’m a main tank, and tanking is my main job, if I want kitty loot I have to wait until I can either get it on offset or invade someone else’s raid. I’m still rocking a (very bad) blue trinket and NONE of my gear is BiS.

Yet yesterday, I raided 25-man Naxx with my husband. I finally got to clock my DpS on Patchwerk (last week healing was fail, a tank went down, and I ate a hateful very early in the fight). While this week I still ended up eating a hateful strike, it wasn’t until Patches was at 1%.

I clocked at almost exactly 5k dps, and I topped the damage meter. I topped Grobbulous too, and Sapphiron. I did 5.5k on Loatheb WITHOUT the benefit of spores. My AP was 7.5k and my crit was 47%. I was using Karthis’s cat spec and using his advice and my own brainmeats for a rotation. Keep all buffs and debuffs up at all times, shred for damage and combo-points. I used Ferocious Bite when everything was up (which was very often with the 2pc T7 bonus and the Shred glyph)

The only addons I use to aid with DpS is rogue power bars. Last night I was only using mangle every once in a great while. I was one of two kitties and there was a bear besides, so I knew mangle would be up.

The point I’m trying to make is that you don’t NEED a cruch like that. Sure you could use it, but when you’re watching a little window, waiting for it to tell you what button to push where does your raid awareness go? If a patch comes out and your addon breaks will your dps tank? Without my RPB my job gets a good deal more difficult, but I’m still perfectly capable of watching my own buffs and the boss’s debuffs for the information I need.

My first exposure to an addon like this was when I downloaded and installed Shock and Awe for my shaman to help me track maelstrom stacks. It had a priority window. I used it for about five minutes and then turned it off in disgust. I still use the tracking timers, but the priority window is gone.

My advice to any aspiring kitties out there is to give these addons a try, but turn off the rotation advisor window. You all chose to roll druid, and your wisdom with choosing such a fine class is apparent. Trust your feral instincts and say no to the part of the addon that wants to turn you into a clockwork chimp.

We are feral cats!

*For an elf, he ruminates quite well, in my humble bovine opinion.

In Which Tiger Proves She Knows What She’s Talking About

I finally got to put all my hard brain-work to the test.

On Sunday I participated in a 5-hour mega-raid that spanned the entirety of Naxxramas, the Eye of Eternity, and wrapped up with the Obsidian Sanctum (1D).

First of all, raiding for five hours is rough. Second of all cats can DPS. Like mad we can DPS (4k worth of dps if you were curious). Third of all, with the new Shred glyph, our rotation has a lot more wiggle-room.

But yes, the entire five runs I got to run around in my pure, unadulterated kitty-ish glory. I also realised that I doubt I could lead raids from a DPSing role. Whilst DPSing my attention was focused intently on my timers and my own position (I’m notoriously poor at getting out of whirlwinds), leaving little to no attention to spare for the actual raid.

It was a very good thing that I wasn’t leading at this point, so it wasn’t an issue.

Back to the ‘rotation’. With the refreshing on Rip (and the longer Rip through another glyph) I found myself with extra combo points to burn. Burn on what? Ferocious Bite of course!

In the past I would probably be able to FB once every other boss or so. I just wouldn’t ever usually find myself in that perfect zone where Savage Roar had enough time, Rip had been recently refreshed, I had five Combo Points, and Tiger’s Fury was off (or nearly) Cool-Down. Now however with the extra super awesome long Rip I’ve found myself in that situation two, three, sometimes four times during a single boss encounter!

With practice I think I could do even better.

Haste, is AWESOME now. The very first thing I noticed when I started to dps was now I have flashing paws of kitty fury! Pa-pa-pa-POW!

/bat

/batbatbatbatbatbat

Lots and lots of fun!

As it’s Monday, I’ll leave you with a little Moosik. 😉 Rolled up just for me, to you, from Pandora. The Killers, All The Things I’ve Done. (Maer, you should enjoy this)

I Killed A Dragon, And Learned Something New

So, you’re runnin’ around in ful feral glory, rocking a bearcat spec, dpsing in the best kitty gear you’ve been able to get your hands on. The 3.1 patch is still somewhere over the horizon and thanks to your abysmal gold-making abilities you’ve barely got enough for regular raiding, so constant re-specs are unheard of.

You’re nowhere near the top of the damage meters and, while leagues ahead of your DK and Warrior tank-offtank counterparts, you still wish you could eke out more DPS.

I made one change in my rotation last night that netted me approximately 300 extra damage per second.

I switched from casting Savage roar on five combo points to casting it on three.

My previous combo point rotation was:

5 cp – Savage Roar
2-3 cp – OOE – Tiger’s Fury
finish up to 5 cp – Rip
5 cp – Savage Roar
5 cp – WAY OOE – Rip falls off, Rip

OOE is out of energy. I’ll end up using Tiger’s Fury, depending on crits, somewhere either before my first Rip of shortly after. That helps get me up to 5 CP again to refresh Savage Roar (which is only about halfway ticked down, but if I don’t refresh it then it’ll fall off entirely)

Then, by the time my Rip is ticking down dangerously low I’m OOE again and have been for quite some time. It’s all I can do to keep Rake and Mangle up with the energy available, let alone squeeze in Shreds. Inevitably, by the time I make it to 5 combo points again Rip has fallen off and my DPS has taken a hit as a result.

Last night I switched things up a bit.

3 cp – Savage Roar
5 cp – Rip
3 cp – Savage Roar
OOE – Tiger’s Fury
5 cp – Rip
3 cp – Savage Roar
5 cp – OOE – Rip
3 cp – Savage Roar
Still OOE – Tiger’s Fury

During the build-up of Combo Points for the third Rip I found myself going OOE again, but since I had cast Savage Roar on 3 cp before instead of 5 I had a cushion of time to wait for my energy to regen and by the time I had 5 combo points I was in plenty of time to refresh Rip without it falling off.

If I get a chance I’d like to try to test these two variations in the rotation against a dummy. I’m thinking 3 minutes of DPS-time for each test, self-buffed, and without using Berserk.