Shadowmoon Valley had a wider variety of tameable pets than Frostfire Ridge did (a lot of the ones in Frostfire weren’t yet flagged as tameable on the alpha). Some of the ones in Shadowmoon still can’t be tamed, but that’ll be fixed in time.
Is your stable full? You might want to make room for some of these guys, and this is only the stuff from a single zone… nevermind any rare spawns we haven’t even seen yet.
I’ve been playing a lot of alpha lately. Between the server instability, the crashes, and the constant bug report submissions it’s taken me quite a while to finish most of the quests in Shadowmoon Valley. Then there’s all the new pets to tame, killing rares, working on the Garrison…
I have some more hunter-specific stuff in the pipe for over the weekend, but for now I just wanted to do a quick dump of some of my favorite screenshots from the last day or so. The screens are all 2560×1440 and there might be some good wallpaper material in here. 🙂
The Tanaan ones are from the Warlords intro/starting experience, and the Shadowmoon Valley ones were taken throughout my questing experience. As a bonus, I’ve included some screenshots taken in Blasted Lands from the pre-Warlords 6.0 patch stuff where the Iron Horde begin invading through the Dark Portal.
These lumbering beasts wander the shallows of the Nightmarsh in Shadowmoon Valley. Hydras are one of the 3 new hunter pet families being added in Warlords of Draenor, the others being Rylaks and Riverbeasts, which I’ll feature shortly. Hydras bring the Keen Senses (mastery) buff.
There’s a little bit of a bug with these guys in the alpha right now. Instead of playing their run animation when they move around, they instead play their walking animation at superfast speeds. Oh, and they’re very stompy. Even more stompy than a regular hydra. For the sake of hunter ears everywhere, let’s hope they tone those noises down just a smidge. 😉
The vast majority of hunter changes in this build are tooltip changes for clearer wording, or to merge two abilities into one to reduce spellbook clutter. Piercing Shots is still listed in this build even though it’s supposedly getting removed, but I would wager that it’s just an oversight. The Enhanced Piercing Shots perk for marksmanship, which would have added Piercing Shots to Multi-Shot, has been changed to Improved Chimera Shot. Before we get started, keep in mind that some of these set bonuses could still change.
Beast Mastery T17 Set Bonuses
- 2-piece: Kill Command has a 25% chance to increase the size and damage of your pet by 10% for 8 seconds.
- 4-piece: While Bestial Wrath is active, one additional pet is summoned to fight with you.
These are much nicer than the old temporary ones. The 2-piece bonus lasts just long enough so you can apply its bonus to your next Kill Command.
The 4-piece sounds like it might just be an extra Dire Beast summon that pops during Bestial Wrath, which means probably only melee attacks and no specials. I hope I’m wrong and it pulls another one of your active pets with all its abilities intact (or at least claw/bite/smack). That would be very nice.
Shadowmoon Valley was open briefly on the alpha realms today. I got maybe 20 minutes of actual gameplay amongst the constant disconnections, but I was screenshotting constantly because it’s an amazing looking zone. In terms of visuals, Frostfire Ridge isn’t in the same league, if you ask me. These shots were only taken from a very small area of the zone. Unfortunately, the alpha is offline until Monday because of all the issues. I thought I’d share these screens in the meantime.
I recently spent some time outside Draenor to get my hands on a few exotic pets to test their new abilities. Today we’ll be looking at the new Quilen, Rhino, Devilsaur, and Core Hound abilities. Exotic pets in Warlords can have up to 3 special abilities or buffs. For example the Core Hound has a 5% multistrike buff, Ancient Hysteria, and the new Molten Hide. Exotics which only have 1 special ability bring double buffs instead
Stone Armor: When falling below 40% health, the Quilen’s skin will change to stone, causing it to take 30% less damage and regenerate 3% of its maximum health every 1 sec for 8 sec. This effect can only occur once every 120 sec.
This has a similar visual to the turtle’s shell shield, only its automatic whenever the pet’s health gets low. The turtle’s shell is arguably better since it’s 50% reduced damage for 12 seconds on a 1 min cooldown, but the benefit of this one is its passive nature and the healing. The Quilen also comes with its crit buff and the battle rez compared to the turtle which has zero buffs.
I’ve spent some time with all 3 specs recently. Ran the dungeon at least twice with each, and did a little bit of testing (what little I could without a damage meter). Yesterday, I shared some more general impressions of the alpha as a whole. Today, I’m keeping it short and to the point. I’m sure opinions will change as I play it more, but for now this is what stood out to me after my extremely limited experience in a single zone and a single dungeon over the course of a couple of days.
I had Improved Arcane Shot and Enhanced Basic Attacks for perks.
- Hardly anything has changed vs. BM on live servers apart from the lack of Serpent Sting. I don’t miss Serpent Sting for BM at all.
- Kill Shot is nice. It hits harder and the cooldown reset when it doesn’t kill the target is much faster. Oh, and the 15% heal ain’t bad either.
- Pet damage is a little low at the moment, but a numbers tuning pass hasn’t been done yet.
- Blink Strikes is too mandatory to give up. Seems weird I’ll seemingly never have a desire to use Stampede as a beast mastery hunter.
- This applies to all specs, but I like that pet buffs are permanent auras now.
I’ve been in betas before, but never in something as early as a F&F alpha. I’m used to betas basically being finished products, minus some balancing or minor issues. This is a lot different from what I’m used to. A good deal of my time is filling in bug reports or crash reports it seems, but I’m happy to do it as it’ll help make the final product better. There’s still lots of fun to be had too.
The alpha starts you right after the Dark Portal intro event. Your 90-91 XP bar is half filled, which presumably will be where it’s at once you’ve completed that intro event. I was basically thrown right into my garrison, and the vast majority of the questing in Frostfire Ridge is tied into setting up your garrison and gathering followers.
I’ve safely landed in Draenor! Lots of huntery alpha coverage will be coming soon. I didn’t get things setup until very late tonight, but I did do a few quests and tamed my first two new pets (a savager ravager and one of the new boars) before I had to force myself to go to sleep. Stay tuned for more. 🙂
Updated: If you read this post earlier, there were some more hunter changes added to the notes. Updates are in red.
Blizzard just updated the alpha patch notes with a handful of hunter changes and an explanation of their philosophy on adding the new secondary stat attunements which were discovered in the previous build.
Originally Posted by Blizzard
A new concept that we’re introducing is each specialization having an attunement to a particular secondary stat. These take the form of a passive ability that grants a 5% increase to the amount of a specific secondary stat gained. This provides a good starting point for where to focus your secondary stats. Usually, it will be your highest throughput stat (not counting Spirit for Healers, and Bonus Armor for Tanks, which is an optimal secondary stat in most cases). There are exceptions, and raw throughput may not even be the biggest concern in some situations. Treat this as a guideline, not a rule, about which secondary stat to favor.