Patch 6.1 — Hunter

I’m on the patch right now.
Where it releases small dosages of approval until I no longer crave it, and then I’m gonna rip it off.
Ellen DeGeneres

Patch 6.1 comes out on February 24; Tuesday after some down time on the servers. Five days from now, just enough time to gather my five Secrets of Draenor in Engineering. These will be used to buy the upgrade to my gun!

I really do want to have all my pre-set items in place for patch day. I have my savage blood, gearspring parts and sorcerous earth. I have plenty of fish for the cooking upgrade as well. But I have one concern …

The Patch Notes read as follows:

New Garrison Visitors

  • One of five new visitors may visit each day offering a quest to anyone that visits players with a Tier 3 Garrison.
    • Defeat a dungeon boss: Awards a bag with a chance to contain a level 630, 645, or 655 item token.
    • Defeat a raid boss (weekly quest): Awards a bag with a chance to contain a level 645, or 655 item token.
    • Bounty (intended for 3 or more players): Defeat a named elite NPC for a bag containing Apexis Crystals, and a chance to contain a level 645, or 655 item token.
    • Relic: Complete a series of quests to recover a relic for a bag containing Apexis Crystals, and a chance to contain a level 645, or 655 item token. Completing a relic mission unlocks it as a potential mission for your followers. Completing all 6 relic missions will unlock Harrison Jones as a follower!
    • Profession: Turn-in tradeskill reagents for Primal Spirits and work order tradeskill reagents.

So, will my Profession visitor be there? Or will it be some lame visitor like the Relic one? I’m biting my nails over this. What is his name? Where will I find him? Will he have his own little kiosk with a spinny blue light on top?

My log in plans on Patch Day are as follows:

  1. Update addons
  2. Log into my Hunter
  3. Check the new colorblind UI feature.
  4. Change my A Murder of Crows talent to Stampede on my Survival and Beast Master specs
  5. Upgrade my gun!
  6. Visit Pat Nagel for my fishing chair (I don’t know why they do this).
  7. Get my bonus roll token from my bunker
  8. Get two more in Stormshield
  9. Ready to Raid

There are several changes to hunters in 6.1. Stampede is covered on the wonderful Eyes of the Beast blog.

My intention is to swap between specs depending on the boss. In High Maul I went Survival for all except Tectus. Essentially, if it is a single target fight; I’ll go Survival. If it is a ton of adds, I’ll use Beast Mastery with Blink Strikes.

C’moooon 6.1!


A Very Big Bear Butt

“Brevity is the soul of lingerie”
Dorothy Parker

The Big Bear Butt blog is gone. It shut down a couple of days ago, the author is done. The site is gone too so I can’t go back and look at the why. But, he’s done.

I first started reading him during The Wrath of the Lich King. Blogs were new and the World of Warcraft community was thriving, exciting and fun. I found the Big Bear Butt from a link from BRK (Big Red Kitty) who was a hero in so many ways.

I followed the Big Bear Butt on his blog for a long time. He posted on tanking as a druid, which I was not. Still, his writing was compelling and he wrote with authority without claiming to be an expert.

He also shared day-to-day stuff like “how to blog.” How to keep it brief, how to make a point and you could feel his vital interest in the blog tools went as deep as his interests in talents, stats, gear and the dungeon encounters. I think he must be a very interesting man.

He talked about the fun of riding dragons and how it connected with his joy in reading the Dragon Riders of Pern stories by Anne McCaffery. I’d read those books too and also loved to ride my Albino Drake.

It’s been years of writing for him. I think he got better at it. I drifted away but would pop back in to see what he was doing. But, honestly, I’d stopped reading his stuff on a steady basis.

I’m sorry I wasn’t faithful.

I’m new to blogging but much of the foundation of writing in blogs; I saw it from what he was doing. He had an impact on a community. I’m glad he’s stopped because he’s moved on — twitter and all that stuff. Good for him but I really did appreciate his work over the many years.

Thanks Big Bear Butt!

Fun Garrison Hearthstone Macro — WoW

“What fresh hell is this?” — Dorothy Parker

First of all, I am very excited to see the new Everlasting Alliance Firework in the holiday. The Lunar Festival sells this toy for 25 Elder Coins which I happened to already have in my bags from last year on a lowbie alt.

The Everlasting Alliance Firework (they added the Horde version automatically, so only buy one) has a three minute cooldown! Really good news there, we can weave this toy into our macros. I see on the tooltip that it has a level requirement of 60. No, you don’t need engineering.

Everlasting Alliance Firework
Item Level 60

Binds when picked up

Use: Shoots a firework that bursts into the Alliance symbol. (3 Min Cooldown)

Sell Price: 40

So, onto our Garrison Hearthstone macro. Instead of opening your bags to use your stone, this will sit on your action bar; probably on the side bar.

#showtooltip Garrison Hearthstone
/use Bubble Wand
/use Garrison Hearthstone

So far so good, how about a little more flavor? A sparkly juicy macro with the new toy?

#showtooltip Garrison Hearthstone
/use Everlasting Alliance Firework
/use Bubble Wand
/use Garrison Hearthstone

Now … the absurd!

#showtooltip Garrison Hearthstone
/use Everlasting Alliance Firework
/use Bubble Wand
/use Hozen Beach Ball
/use Pretty Draenor Pearl
/use Garrison Hearthstone

Well, that one is pretty silly but hard to resist. The Hozen Beach Ball is a shapeshift toy and perfect for a hearth macro; you are going to the beach!
Sometimes when you copy and paste, a single space is added in front of the forward slash, I don’t know why.

Preparing for 6.1

“Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.”
Sun Tzu, The Art of War

Today is February 15th on the year of our Lord 2014. Only Blizzard knows when the patch will drop; it could be Tuesday, it could be in March. The patch brings a lot of quality of life changes, achievements, new toys, pets and no new content. What happened to the Iron Docks quest area?


While we don’t know when it will drop, we can prepare. For me it is two things that I want to jump on the day that it drops. We can now upgrade our crafted gear to 4/4 and we’ll have new cooking recipes that give a better buff than the Savage Feast.

As you can see from the above image, I’ll need 200 Gearspring Parts, 40 Sorcerous Earth and 30 Savage Blood to upgrade my gun. I’ll need about the same for my crafted neck piece. For the upgrades to be valuable to me, I want to do this before the same pieces drop in my raids.

I’ve read that there will be a “daily” vendor that will convert our ore, herbs, hides, dust and fur into the “next level up” mats like truesteel ingots, gearspring parts, taladite or Primal Spirits. I’ll love unloading my ore for Primals but it’s still a long road to 60 Savage Bloods — so, I prepare today.

The other change; the buff food — I’ll paste from information I copied from MMO Champions. I’m glad I’ve stockpiled my fish, I knew it’d pay off!

Buttered Sturgeon (New)
Cooking. 2 sec cast. Reagents: Blind Lake Sturgeon Flesh (12), Crescent Saberfish Flesh (6).

Jumbo Sea Dog (New)
Cooking. 2 sec cast. Reagents: Jawless Skulker Flesh (12), Crescent Saberfish Flesh (6).

Pickled Eel (New)
Cooking. 2 sec cast. Reagents: Abyssal Gulper Eel Flesh (12), Crescent Saberfish Flesh (6).

Salty Squid Roll (New)
Cooking. 2 sec cast. Reagents: Fire Ammonite Tentacle (12), Crescent Saberfish Flesh (6).

Sleeper Sushi (New)
Cooking. 2 sec cast. Reagents: Fat Sleeper Flesh (12), Crescent Saberfish Flesh (6).
Whiptail Fillet (New)
Cooking. 2 sec cast. Reagents: Blackwater Whiptail Flesh (12), Crescent Saberfish Flesh (6).

Finally some speculation. I think the price on the fish and savage bloods will sky-rocket when the patch drops and then settle back down to normal in two weeks. Keep an eye on the Auction House to make a little pocket change.

Power Pet Leveling in our World of Warcraft

I decided to go for the Celestial Pet Tournament. I looked at the list on Wowhead of suggested pets needed at level 25 and realized I needed a strong strat for pet leveling.

It worked so well, I decided to share it with you.

Locale: Stoneplow Flight Path up hill to the Singing Marshes in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms.
Pets to Battle: All level 25 pets for max xp, critter and aquatic.
My toon: I took my level 30 mage in full heirloom gear and a Safari Hat. Note that I set my hearth in the Shrine but got my rested xp in the Inn at Stoneplow. I also leveled mining to break the monotony.
NB: Only go uphill from the Flight Path, to the west and to the east are baddies but they are far away; you will be safe.

Strategy: The main strategy is continuous pet battling, non-stop.

My Pet Line Up:
Slot One: Darkmoon Zep at 25 with Missile, Bombing Run and Decoy
Slot Two: Your pet to level, starting at level one
Slot Three: Chrominius at 25 with Bite, Ancient Blessing, Ravage

Open with Bombing Run and then Decoy. Swap to Pet-to-Level for one turn, Decoy will protect. Swap to Chominius and watch the bomb drop, Ravage to kill first mob and get a heal. Use Chrominius to kill the next three pets, using Blessing for a heal but pay attention to use Ravage as a finisher, which is a heal too.

Rinse and Repeat over and over.

I have bandages but rarely use them, every 8 minutes you get a free Revive Pet, mostly for the Zep who takes one hit per pet battle.
The XP you get for your toon, my mage, is about 80% of a full quest. At three battles per eight minutes; this comes to turning in about 20 quests per hour.

You make zero gold, this is purely for leveling pets with a bonus of leveling a toon.

I hope you take a trip out to Stoneplow with a lowbie toon. The pets are numerous and even little Bandicoon families so you don’t even have to move. You’ll get into the groove pretty quickly and, I feel, the best place and strategy for leveling up a lot of pets!

Draenor Pet Brawler — the Ultimate Grind

Draenor Pet Brawler Win 2000 pet battles in Draenor.

Yep, 2000 pet battles. The daily in the Pet Menagerie doesn’t count. Let’s face it, if you are going for this achievement (which rewards a monument in your garrison) then you are in for a grind. I don’t recommend it; go run a raid with some friends instead.

However, if you must (I must, I must) here are my strategies for getting through a grind that will take hours and hours to finish. I am currently at 1534 pet battles and I’ve had some time to think about it.

First of all, combine all the positives that you can. I am leveling my Profession Alts by getting XP from the pet battles. I am leveling pets at the same time. I also have reduced it to the most mindless activity that I can create — so I can watch a movie on television while grinding.

When I first started out, I thought I’d level a character from 91 to 100 and get the achievement. Not so! I am on my third character and I have a ways to go. My first crack at it, I used two fliers, two mechanicals and two magic pets to counter the aquatic, beast and fliers. It works but you have to pay attention.

Here is the strategy that I use.

  • Go to the Moonlit Shore in Shadowmoon Valley. It is on the coast just north of the Temple of  Karabor.
  • See all the battle pets. They will only be aquatic, beast and flier. Opening with the aquatic.
  • Open with (one turn only) two pets you want to level. If you can find one that does a stun, even better; use that one first.
  • I like the Emerald Whelpling with: Emerald Bite, Emerald Presence and Tranquility. This guy can best the three opponents over and over again.

The plus for this strategy is that it is totally mindless. Keep up Tranq and Presence and use Bite as often as you can. The Bite is extra strong against a flier which is in the line up.

So … watch a movie or the Disney channel; both are my favorite past times. And level your characters, pets and go for the nastiest grindiest achievement in Draenor!

Blizzard Should Hire Me

One of the first stories you learn when you attend design school is about the architect who designed a college campus. He left out the sidewalks. When the construction guys asked him where to put the sidewalks, he simply said “wait a while.”

Once a few months had passed after the campus opened, it was clear where the students were walking from class to class to dorm. Then they knew where to put the sidewalks.

Moonflower Now that we are playing in Warlords of Draenor, it is clear that the informal gathering spot is outside of our garrisons. Rogues open lockboxes, engineers drop their bling5s and I see people just standing around right by the Big Rock or on the path.

  • I think “stuff” should be right outside of our garrisons.
  • I’d like to see a small faux arena for dueling with the winner announced like they do in Dalaran.
  • I’d like warm light in this mini-zone in Shadowmoon Valley as a visual relief and a place to check out my transmogs.
  • I’d like goblins taking bets on duelers. I’d bet one gold on my friend who is in the arena.
  • I’d like a stable master and some vendors.
  • I’d like (for a fee) rockets that would shoot me to the other zones.

In Azeroth, all the players were split into the major cities. In Draenor, we are all stacked in one place: our garrisons. I think we need a little area to run out to and gather in and “be seen” in. As Freckleface of the Hearthcast podcast says, “the first thing we want in WoW is to show off.”