Welp.  Post-moving, we’re still playing catch-up with the bills.  A gigantic phone bill was settled at the expense of cable and internet. It’ll be back on in a couple of weeks, and things should be better from there on out.

mifiStill, I’ve got network of a sort, via a nifty personal hotspot device. And while 4G may be fast enough to play, I fear that would eat up our bandwidth allotment, and I need that for job hunting and snarky blog posts.

Oh, yes, there’s snark, of a huntery sort for once.

This little gem posted on MMO-C provides an exemplary example of hunter tears and forum logic. And Ghostcrawler … well, he answered.  I find there to be snarkable material on both sides of this argument.

I want to be up front about something – I’m not attacking the individual that posted this thing.  I am attacking the common mindset that generates such posts.  It’s a further illustration of how forums disease the mind.

So let’s go.

sarcasmWith the recent 5.3 “adjustment” to stampede1, you have removed any kind of utility from the talent2. Simulating my character with the “normal” settings (all buffs on, 5 min fight, 93 target, yada yada) I would lose 1229.7 (-0.52%) DPS in Beast Mastery spec and 2077.93 (-0.93%) DPS in Survival spec.

That’s “interesting”3. Choosing to sim in a 5-man configuration?  As a PvE-er concerned with raid encounters (see below, “Silencing Shot”), HONEST results can only be gained from simulating a raid encounter 4 . This stinks of chicanery and fitting the data to match a theory or preselected opinion. Meesa no approve.

Either way, Stampede now gives us ZERO utility (micro-managing your pets in order to provide buffs your raid did not have during stampede or giving out minor healing through spirit beasts, etc).

  1. Real hunters micro-manage their pets, period5.
  2. Assuming you did bring the spirit beast, I have one word: “macros”.
  3. Regardless of the snark, Spirit Beast is actually simming as a high DPS, so if other buffs are covered, and if you’re BM, look into it.

It is, quite simply, a button we press every five minutes in order to do 0.5-1% more DPS.

A button. Talk about impersonal.

You tell us that you want to deal with hunter’s bars being bloated by too many abilities […]

too many buttonsActually, they didn’t.  We did, and they said, “maybe, maybe not. We think you’re having trouble counting that high.”  Well maybe not that last part.  But it would have been funny as hell.

In point of fact6 I think we need fewer buttons, too. But I don’t recall anyone saying they’d do me a solid on that.


[…] – yet you take one of our DPS cd’s, make it pretty much worthless, and call it a day. We don’t even gain anything from making sure we use Stampede during haste buffs anymore, because the pets do not use their specials (energy) attacks anymore. It’s a mindless, and completly unnessecary button.

Fascinating.  Having five pets out at once doing DPS of their own – insta-cast, by the way – is considered a net loss to this bloke.  I’m no min/maxxer, but even I know that part of a DPS increase is better than no DPS increase at all.  It’s math!

1.0 > 0

0.1 > 0

See?

GhostCrawler had a thought on this:

Stampede was never intended to provide utility. It’s a DPS cooldown.

But the thing is, I remember distinctly how the Blizz team (including GC) trumpeted the fact that Stampede would *add* the special abilities from the pets as part of the action’s effect.  In my mind, they should say instead:

We screwed up. We went overboard. Sorry.

so sorryThat’s what you’re supposed to do when you’re wrong and trying to fix it.

But also, this.

You may recall that I have complained in the past that making pets into portable buff machines was a bad idea, something that de-characterized the pet and diminished the Hunter class. Read the above with that in mind, and you begin to see the ultimate trajectory of that change to pets.  In WotLK we chose pets based off which did the greatest damage. In Cata and later, the buffs were the thing.  Then they added the five-slot stable so that we didn’t even have to make hard decisions on which pet we brought to a raid.

It’s a very sad end result, really.

ghostcrawlerAnd here’s the stinger.  Crab Man and his ilk comment over and over again how they want to make it so you choose a pet based on how “cool” it is, how it fits in with your idiom and personality.  Read between the lines and reflect on past changes, and the ultimate outcome may be this: pets will have no special abilities, and all do the same DPS, no matter what.  I hope not, but it’s starting to appear that way.


Moving on.

Silencing Shot

In 5.4, we no longer have an interrupt, unless we go Marksmanship – the “weakest” of all 3 specs, from a PvE point of view. For a hunter in a guild like myself, the choise between BM and Survival is currently a 4% difference, and if there is not something that makes Surv better on a specific encounter (pet dying to AOE dmg is one – I’ll get to it in a moment), […]

Let me stop you right there.

You let your pet die?  And you have the nerve to complain?  Get with the program first!  Your pet is your responsibility.  If the raid’s healer is too busy elsewhere, it’s your job to keep the pet up.  If you can’t heal it, get it out of there. “Micro managing” again.  It’s what leet hunters do.

[…] I will be BM for that increase. Currently, MM is 6% behind survival – a full 10% difference between MM and BM. There’s just no way I’d go MM, even if we needed an interrupt. Taking in any other player would be better, as (and once again, I’ll get to it!) hunters are far from the “top dog” damage wise.

Given what I read, I wonder who IS “top DPS” since so far, every DPS class has had that exact same complaint. What, is it ret pallis and they’re just being quiet about it?

Currently, five of the twelve revealed (out of 14) encounters has interrupts incorporated in them somehow. Is it really fair that hunters will not have an interrupt for this?

You can DPS or you can interrupt.  Pick one.  The role of the Hunter, as BRK once defined it, is to deliver Massive Quantities of Ranged DPS. Period.  You MUST accept that anything else will diminish that.  And a true team member will accept that gladly, if it helps the team out.

brkI remember a vid that I constantly tried to live up to: BRK using Hobbes as a tank on the Moroes fight.  I actually got to try that, and it’s not as easy as it looks.  That’s giving up the DPS in order to be a team player. That’s what it’s about. Not “I must have moar DPS than the other members”.

Back when I was raiding with the Effers, we had a new mage DPS come in to test with us on Dragon Soul. We were on Blackhorn, and still working on getting the strat down – which requires that DPS switch off to alternate targets during the first phase.  For some reason, his assigned targets weren’t dropping, yet his DPS was high. Eventually we figured out it was because he wasn’t handling his targets, and he resented that we insisted that he do so.  Had he not quit the guild because “he just didn’t feel comfortable”, he’d’ve probably been kicked – if not that first night, the following time he failed to pull his weight.

But that’s the thing. They’re not always Patchwerk fights. Sometimes you take the hit.

If you really don’t want to give hunters a silence, atleast give us a PvE interrupt – no silence effect, just an instant interrupt. Spec MM, get the silence? Either way, hunters being the only DPS-class to not have a baseline interrupt is just absurd.

“Just absurd” is not checking up on what other classes have.  Hunters are not alone in this. But guess what? With, say, six DPS and two tanks, you have quite a few interrupts that can be brought to bear. 25-mans even more so.

Ghostcrawler responds.

Silencing Shot is tough. As a talent, it will always get chosen. But hunters don’t need more CC so we don’t want to bake it in.

Somebody will have to explain to me how “[Kil’Jaden’s Cunning] will always get chosen, so it must be nerfed” squares with the above tweet.  Using the same reasoning to get to two different conclusions for two different classes must make more sense when you have a PhD in Oceanography.

Pets – Survivability

From a high end PvE point of view7, you have to realise that a hunter see his or her pet as a singletarget DoT with a travel time. In some cases, the pet provides a valueable buff for the raiding team.

Speak for yourself.  I can assure you that’s not how “most hunters” see their pets.  Though it might be a convenient way to conceptualize the damage a pet does, to a certain extent, it’s an oversimplification that doesn’t take into account pet management, situational awareness, or hunter skill8.

This makes it so much more annoying that our “DoT”, as one of the very few, has the ability to die, making us spend precious time ressurecting it. Losing out on the valueable buff at the same time, is a kick in the groin.

Here speaks a bloke that has seemingly never played a DoT class.  I imagine any dedicated DoT class player would gladly exchange a need to “maintain” a DoT rather than constantly refresh one.  Or maybe that’s the same thing. Either way, the proper way to deal with this “traveling DoT” is to heal it, or keep it out of trouble. It’s easier to cast Mend Pet periodically than it is to cast Revive Pet. Hell, if you want to burn focus, macro it.

Pet survivability we can look at, but pets aren’t supposed to be free DPS with no management either.

This time me and the Crab are skoshe. Other classes have to manage their DoTs, and so do we. Our management is just a bit different than others.  It’s a “DoT” that’s maintained by some other spell.  Oh, wait.

If you’re in a scenario with constantly spawning adds, using Beast Cleave as an AOE is sure to get your pet killed, quickly.

You don't say

The AOE-damage it does on mobs is simply IMMENSE, and if the tank does not instantly smash everything in the face, HARD, then the pet will get hit instead. Especially in random dungeons is this a common occurence. We can’t control our pet’s aggro – and frankly, I don’t think we should have to when we’re AOE’ing. Controlling the pets position is enough of a task already.

Pet control is a core feature of being a Hunter. This guy has no grasp on what it is to be a Hunter.  To him, it’s a box. With his epic ego as in input, and epic epeen as a result. I swear to Mammon. This is the difference between leet DPS and leet Hunters.

Blink Strikes now makes our pets instantly blink behind the target if they’re close enough – this is great!

What is NOT great, is the fact that when I say instant, I mean freaking INSTANT. They teleport to the boss, get a 200K special-attack and a melee swing in, all before my first auto shot has even HIT the boss. If I lead in with a Kill Command, you can add another 150-200K threat hit to THAT (which does not get transferred by MD). Simply put, even if I were to misdirect the tank and spam arcane shot for the first 4 seconds of the fight, my pet would STILL jump to the target and hit it quicker than anything could react, and my MD won’t do jack !@#$ to fix it.

I guess nobody remembers the old days when you WAITED FOR THE TANK TO GET AGGRO FIRST AUGH /haet

Oh, wait.

THAT STILL BLOODY APPLIES, YOU GIT.

Jaina FacepalmThen here are some tweets

Please don’t buff hunter’s focus dump. PTR + T16 2pc will reduce value of special shots and homogenize specs.

Can you explain why it homogenizes specs?

It MEANS: “I haven’t got time to provide numbers, so I’m just gonna use words.  Geez!”

Seriously, the term generally implies that one spec is indistinguishable from another.  I don’t really see that, though. Each spec has a different “feel” to it – BM being lightest on its feet, MM being a bit more deliberate and ponderous.

This doesn’t really explain how the T16 2-piece will make the three specs operate the same, though.

Does it mean that one spec is better than the other? I suspect just the opposite. I think this guy’s pissed that he can’t find a perfect cookie cutter spec that lets him pwn the meterz. And I suspect that GC would call that Mission Accomplished.

Then there’s this guy, that REALLY gets what Hunter is all about:

Would you ever consider bringing back the arrows/bullets for hunters with an extra quiver just for hunters to store them in?

I love it!  I absolutely HATED managing ammo and quivers, but I LOVE that there’s someone out there saying, “I think it made Hunters more Huntery.” Light bless you, sir, Light bless you!

We’d like to do a quiver just for the visuals. Ammo returning is unlikely. There wasn’t much depth to that system.

This is Engineer-ish for “JESUS H CHRIST ON A POGO STICK WHERE WOULD I FIND THE MEMORY FOR THAT??!?!?111

I was really gob smacked by this though:

Readiness should do more defensive stuff. Masters call and traps and so forth.

Master’s Call, maybe. Traps were one of the big things we wanted to eliminate.

spit take/wipes off monitor

SAY WHAT??!?!?

I think it’s time to get the Crab off of the Hunter project.  ELIMINATING TRAPS????? That is one of the most … unhuntery … things I can think of.  Traps are a signature attribute of our class.

I swear to the Titans … I will reroll as a Monk ….

that escelated quicklyOkay, let me wrap up.

As you can see, there is intense tension between what it really means to be a Hunter … and what it means to “play the hunter class”, aka just a DPS that happens to be a hunter.

I would like to say that the epeeners and min/maxxers are making vain noises as usual and that the good folks at Blizz are holding the line, but it is patently clear that they are not holding.  The possibility that traps are even being CONSIDERED for elimination indicates that there is something terribly wrong with the designers of our class.  The continued decharacterization of our pets has lead to the mindset that “pets are a DoT”. This is not right.

It is possible, that there is a paradigm shift about to take place.   There were a couple before9, and maybe we’re due another in 6.0 or even earlier.  But what I am hearing is not true to the core of what it means to play a hunter.

Hunters are more than what we bring to a raid. It’s a way of life. Ask a hardcore warlock, you’ll see we’re not alone in this mindset. There is, for lack of a better word, a lifestyle that goes with the class.  That lifestyle will, however, be ejected if you substitute raiding or PvP in place of all else.

It should never be that Warlock = Hunter = Mage = Ranged DPS.  They should not be interchangeable. The whole stated reason for the rework in Cata was to make tweaking the classes easier. So, tweak. Don’t redesign.

We are gamers. We adapt, we overcome. But sometime our patience is tested.


  1. I “Love” how this guy thinks using quotes makes the word “adjustment” seem “snarky and sarcastic”. []
  2. What he is referring to is that pets summoned with Stampede no longer auto-cast their special buffs. They only do damage on auto-cast. []
  3. Ha! I can do that too! []
  4. Options / Target Level / Raid Boss. []
  5. Trufax: BigRedKitty, in Cataclysm, actually had a stable of all of the same pet, each specced to a different task, such as tanking, healing, pure DPS. That was before our current brain-dead pet talent “tree” implementation, but it hints at what a true master of the craft was capable of given the options before him.  We miss you, Daniel. []
  6. I promised my grandmother I’d never use that asinine old phrase.  Now I have to go do penance. []
  7. “Which is why I simmed five-man, durr!” []
  8. “Micro-managing”, again.  I got a surplus box of those words. []
  9. Exchanging mana for focus, making pets more homogenous than before.  And by Homogenous, I mean I have a chart you can suck on if you really wanna see it. NUMBERS, bishes! []
3 Responses to “Just because I can’t play doesn’t mean I don’t have an opinion”
  1. This is possibly THE BEST POST I have read for ages. Thank you for making me smile, and making some damn fine points to boot :D

  2. Yngwe says:

    As a hunter at heart, I give a big +1 to this entire post. I thank you for your staunch defense of everything huntery.

  3.