There’s a new spirit beast to tame in patch 7.1.5! Lightning Paw is the first spirit beast fox and he has a unique lightning effect not seen on any other beasts. It’s hard to see this in screenshots, so check out the short video clip embedded below. Somehow, we all missed him on the PTR (too busy bickering over class mechanics I think), but someone discovered him by chance and posted in the Wowhead comments earlier today.
Blizzard finally put out the official 6.1 notes and we got some buffs in the talent department. Check these out.
Developer Commentary: A primary focus for class changes in Patch 6.1 is improving overall talent balance. Not every talent needs to be useful in every situation; and in fact it’s often better if they have strengths and weaknesses. But we do try to have each talent be useful in some situations, and make them close enough in value that if you really enjoy the gameplay of a talent you don’t feel like you’re dragging your group down by using it.
For these changes we focused primarily on tuning (tweaking numbers), and nearly all changes are buffs to underperforming talents. The goal is to reach more variety of viable builds, without bringing down the existing popular choices.
- Barrage damage has been increased by 21%.
- Exhilaration now instantly heals for 30% of max health (up from 22%).
- Glaive Toss damage has been increased by 25%.
- Powershot damage has been increased by 62%.
- Stampede now lasts 40 seconds (up from 20 seconds).
Here is the main thing I take away from this: Blizzard desperately wants us to use Powershot. 😆 If it’s as good as it sounds, Powershot may become the new single target DPS talent of choice because it’s not like it was that far behind before this. This is all good news though, because in some cases (like with Survival) there was almost no benefit from using a level 90 talent for single target damage. This will obviously change now, and Barrage just got 21% more awesome for AoE if that was even possible.
The more shocking one is that Stampede now lasts for 40 seconds (whoa!). Yes, A Murder of Crows was that good to justify this. I feel like this could push Stampede to be the best on many single target fights, especially when the cooldowns line up nicely with fight duration (i.e. Stampede would kill it on a 6 minute fight). AMoC still has the benefit of being able to reset the cooldown if used smartly on multi-target fights. I love the sound of it as a BM hunter, so I’m hoping it’s as good as it sounds and that there’s no strings attached (like reduced damage on the Stampede pets).
The Exhilaration buff was desperately needed. It’s not much, but it’s better than nothing.
None of these changes except the Barrage buff appear to be live on the PTR yet so I can’t test much. I’m sure Simulation Craft will be updated within the next day or two and then I can start playing around with that at least.
I’m still holding out hope for a Kill Command buff to give a small kick to BM single target DPS.
I kept putting it off, but I finally did it with patch 6.0 only a few days away. I made room in my pet stable for some new pets in Warlords.
From 55 pets to 35 pets, and here’s the proof…
abandoned sent 20 pets out to pasture. I went through all of the new pets coming in 6.0 and decided I wanted to tame 20 of them for my collection. “Only” 20. The good news is, most of the pets I deleted gently released weren’t rares, or if they were then I made sure they weren’t difficult to find ones. I have all the spirit beasts and didn’t send any of them to the farm. Same deal with the ultra rare ones like King Krush or Aotona, or my pair of oil-stained wolves (one of them is a backup if I ever lose the oil coat).
A couple of nights ago, a bunch of hunters banded together on Twitter and the Petopia forums to try to solve the Gara mystery on the beta. Those I recognized from the forums or Twitter were right beside me in game trying to figure out the same problems, coming up with crazy theories, and just having fun. After a massive group effort and a little bit of luck, Gara has finally been solved.
Just how do we tame her? It turns out that it’s become more complicated than any of us ever imagined. Thanks to some clever datamining of some spell IDs by someone on the Petopia forums, we received enough clues to get past our 4-day rut of no progress beyond the Shadowberries step.
Taming Gara takes you across all of Draenor, and to me it’s basically a mini class quest without actually calling itself a quest. It’s not on the same level as say the warlock green fire quest, but make no mistake, a good deal of effort went into creating this event for hunters!
- Level 90+
- Horde or Alliance
- Beast Mastery spec
What follows contains spoilers, so stop here if you want to discover everything for yourself (and good luck with that!).
The talent changes mentioned earlier in the official patch notes all seem to be active in this beta build. I’ll go over those again, but first there is some news on Gara the Spirit Beast. You can read up on Gara here, but the TL;DR is that it’s a new spirit beast with some kind of quest/event/challenge required in order to tame. According to Muffinus, it has been fully implemented as of this build.
@BendakWoW Fully implemented, good luck 🙂
— Jeremy Feasel (@Muffinus) September 3, 2014
If you want to avoid anything Gara related and discover it for yourself, you’ll want to skip down until the talent changes section.
The picture above shows a group of us hunters searching for clues, trying to find out what the next step was after scratching her behind the ears. We… haven’t made much progress yet. There’s been one new dialogue option with the wolf, but that’s all I’ve discovered so far. When you have a Shadowberry in your inventory it gives you an option, but nothing seems to happen other than another hint. The image below shows the progression in dialogue.
Update on Gara: For the latest info on Gara, see this new post. Most of the speculation below has been ruled out.
Editor’s Note: I’d like to welcome Shoot from Nightmare Asylum as another guest writer on Eyes of the Beast. Shoot has many world first hunter solo achievements under his belt. He is also one of the raid leaders of Team Hunter, the all-hunter raid group currently tearing its way through heroic MoP raids.
Hello, my name is Shoot and I’m a hunter raider and soloist in the WoW community.
Many WoW players in the community are enjoying the Warlords of Draenor beta raid testing and leveling, but a lot of people are curious what soloing is like and how the item squish affects it. Let’s start off by taking a look at older content on the live servers and compare it to beta servers from a hunter perspective.
Soloing on Live
- Tier 10 and lower: Bosses are fairly easy to solo and do not require a high amount of gear or damage.
- Tiers 11 – 13 (Cataclysm): Bosses are soloable; some bosses require mechanics that must be followed, but some bosses are still an all out damagefest and do not require much awareness or gear. Any boss in 25H is generally very difficult and requires a high amount of gear and special tactics.
- Tiers 14 – 16 (MoP): Most bosses are impossible to solo as a hunter. Currently there have only been two Mists of Pandaria raid bosses that were soloed by a hunter in 10 normal. You can watch those videos below.
Hunter @Miacoda discovered this sad and lonely spirit wolf, Gara, apparently keeping vigil at its master’s grave in Shadowmoon Valley for Elune knows how long. The interesting thing about Gara is that you can only interact with her if you are in beast mastery spec. Nothing happens yet, but this is a pretty big hint at something.
Update on Gara: For the latest info on Gara, see this new post.
Most people think that Loque’nahak is the most difficult spirit beast to tame, but I’d argue that honor goes to Arcturis. At least Loque has multiple spawn points, so you could always get lucky and find him at one of the spawns where no one is currently camping. Arcturis, on the other hand, spawns at a single location and almost always has at least 1-2 hunters camping that spawn point.
One of the problems with this is hunters will fight over the spawn and Arcturis ends up dead in the process. If you’re taking the camping approach, it might be best to befriend any other hunters who are camping. Perhaps you can come to some sort of agreement where neither of you will be jerks and kill the bear after someone starts taming it. If that doesn’t work, you might need to become a little more dedicated.
Ban’thalos is one of the many challenge tames added back in patch 4.2. This level 85 spirit beast can be found in Hyjal, circling high above the Sanctuary of Malorne (around 28,62). The challenge to this tame is the sheer height Ban’thalos spawns at. You need to be able to get aggro and land on solid ground without killing yourself.
There are a couple of ways to pull off the tame, but first you need to have progressed the Hyjal quest lines up until you’ve unlocked the Molten Front daily quest area. If you haven’t yet, this quest will be available on your city’s “call to arms” board. Ban’thalos will be outside of your phase until you do this, along with Magria and Ankha who are also nearby.