When I roll a character I have a vision. Before I have chosen the perfect nose ring accessory, before I have adjusted my hair for the last and final time, before my character enters Azeroth, I already know what she is going to specialize in for the rest of her days. My characters always start their careers with a very stable self-image, including their talents.
While hunters aren’t hybrids, hybrid classes used to go on raids because they brought cool buffs that made up for their dps lackage. With the standardization of buffs, hybrids no longer have that additional utility and for the most part, do less dps than their pure cousins. Does that mean all the elemental shamans, shadow priests, retribution paladins–I could go on and on–sit on the sideline? Nope.
Even high-end guilds take a wide swatch of players including classes or specs known to be sitting poorly in the current WoW cycle. You wanna know why? It’s because specs and classes tend to ride the seas of buffage and nerfage, yet the player is worth hanging on to.
Let’s face it, I can’t be the only player who refuses to respec my tree unless Blizzard refunds my talent points… can I? I know it’s technically possible to pop over to my trainer and change my spec from retribution to holy, but frankly… it feels funny.
The best way to know a character is to play one. Respeccing at 80 has always been difficult for me because I feel overwhelmed by the multitudes of new buttons across my screen. I invariably am forced to rely on clicking manually on spells again. I haven’t had the experience of testing my limits while soloing, so I tend to be even worse about using specialized abilities that may prove life-savers in a raid.
I’m sure you’re wondering what this has to do with Frostheim’s post.
The title was the first clue that I wasn’t going to enjoy this article. Can Beast Mastery Raid?
You betcha they can. Well, some of them can and some of them are huntards. But there are huntard Survival and MM specs too. Everyone, including the lol tri-tree DK can raid… it’s whether or not they should.
Frostheim is obviously comfortable changing his character around to fit his raiding needs.
I’m not! Never have been, never will be. I’m sure plenty of people are like Frost, and just as many are like me, with some in between. You know what? I will never, ever, ever play a Survival hunter. They’re perfectly viable right now, strong tree and all that, but I just don’t like them. However, this did tell me that Frost thinks it is normal for players to respec every time the WoW favor-sea rises or falls. Obviously, he is not like me with a firm outline of his character and how that matches his talents–Frost is purely about being a dps machine.
Frostheim makes it very clear that you feel BM is easiest to play in terms of rotation, movement forgiveness and latency issues.
So my hunter is going to raid–I’ve turned off all my add-ons, cleaned out my cache, and generally tried to get the best out of my old system. I’m still running with red latency (stupid ping!) and my fps is complete crap. On a good day, I see myself start to move by the time I need to stop. So, wouldn’t it be reasonable for me, as a dps character, to talent for the best possible dps for my current situation? If I go to a less forgiving talent tree, chances are my dps will be worse than my current spec… which means I’m just switching back… only now I’m being ridiculed daily because WoW.com said BM was bad =(
Frost blows off the idea that a player might need to be in a sub-optimal spec to achieve their greatest dps and suggests that those players just need to l2play (loosely paraphrased… see, no quotation marks!). To me, this is a sidestep of a legitimate concern that may impact a player’s decision to be specced into beast mastery. Blaming the player isn’t cool!
Silly recount–that’s not for analysis. WoM though, now that’s real data.
Really? How big was the sampling? Shouldn’t you have realistically looked at top 20, 20 from mid-pile, and 20 from the end? Let’s face it, how often do the top 20 people change?
I understand you were going on the assumption that the top 20 players are the best, and therefore, the data for each talent tree would be more controlled. However, most people aren’t the top 20. Most of us aren’t even close–therefore, it would have made more sense to have a wider sampling to see if the variations were as pronounced for hunters of every skill level.
Everyone likes proof, but without more information, it isn’t data, it’s just numbers.
Raiding is a Team Sport
Ya know, I could have survived the rest of the post until we got to this section. Raiding is a term sport, and raiders are generally quite capable of making the correct decision with little or no harassment from their officer core. However, until someone’s spec is making them consistently low on the content, people should be able to talent as they wish.
This might be the type of guilds I choose to run with, but there always seems to be the poor kid in the back who keeps losing his spell components and spends the fight searching between everyone’s legs for his bat guanoˆ. By the time he has found it, he only has time for a couple of fireballs, and then it’s all over. He’s 23rd of 25 on the dps meter and cheering over our great victory.
Most raiding guilds I’ve been in expected that 2 or 3 of their regular raiders were really enthusiastic about raiding, and frankly, really bad at it. Frostheim really gets under my skin when he claims that some all BM hunters are worse than the mage* I just described because they are choosing failure.
Apparently he didn’t think his ‘Bob argument’ was quite fair, because he tells us this immediately prior:
Without question a very good and very geared BM hunter can pull their weight in raids. The best BM hunters out there are pulling over 9k DPS on Festergut. They are not just pulling their own weight but they’re able to carry lower DPSers as well. With good enough gear and enough skill, a BM hunter can pass any metric required of normal ICC.
So… I should only take good BM’s, right?
The only time I would expect anyone to change their spec is if their performance is noticeably lagging in a raid setting. I have talked frosty mages into giving arcane a try, and holy priests into disc-o, but only when I saw that they were struggling in comparison to the rest of the guild.
This article sent out highly mixed messages, and I think it would have been served better with a title of: Why I Don’t Want Beast Masters in My Raid. That way, myself and others in the hunting community could have been prepared for this obviously highly editorial piece.
ˆFor those who might have missed the reference, bat guano is a spell component (in conjunction with sulfur) needed to cast fireball in Dungeons and Dragons.
*Frostheim’s analogy compared a BM hunter to “Bob,” a role-player°, who wears green quality gems, no pants, and refuses flasks or food (he’s obviously fasting).
°Just in case role-players weren’t vilified enough by non role-players.