Monday, July 7, 2008

Patch 2.4 Hunter Mana Issues

Or OOM and Drinkin' Like a Fish.
Lowbie Hunters OOM.
Patch 2.4 introduced an unannounced, or unintended change to the Hunter Class' ability to regenerate Mana. In a nutshell they reduced it's efficiency so maintaining adequate Mana while grinding became more difficult.

On Viktel, my level 70 hunter, I simply switched over to Aspect of the Viper and didn't give it a second thought.

However as time passed and I listened to podcasts and read my favorite blogs I discovered more and more people complaining about
being out of mana. I finally had the chance to break out my Orc hunter Lassiter and check the situation out for myself.

The Old Attack Pattern
There are two big challenges of being a Beast Master Hunter in solo play. First is not to pull aggro away from your pet while it is tanking for you. Second is to avoid running out of Mana. All of a hunter's special shots use Mana, and so does our all important Mend Pet spell.

This lead to a commonly used attack pattern that would slowly build your threat, and save mana.

Here is that pattern, it is assumed that you have Growl turned on and it is spamming.
  1. Cast Hunter's Mark and send in your pet via the pet attack macro*
  2. Let 2 Growls go by. This allows your pet to get a good head start on building aggro.
  3. In the event that you are attacking a Mob that is elite, or several levels above you cast Mend Pet which is a heal-over-time spell. This will help mitigate the damage your pet is taking. You can skip this step against Mobs that are easy for your pet to handle.
  4. Your opening shot should be Serpent Sting, and this will trigger your Auto Shot
  5. At about 5 - 7 seconds after you use Serpent Sting let off a single Arcane Shot.
  6. Repeat from step three if the fight is a long one and your sting wears off.
Being level 42 Lassiter is grinding experience, and I left him resting in Stonard. I mounted up, and found a few Crockolisks just north of the Orc encampment.

Sure enough I was sittin' on my @ss in the Swamp of Sorrows after killing a mere three Crockolisks thinking to myself; "Self, this stinks. There has got to be a solution."

*The Send Pet Hunter's Mark Macro:
/cast Hunter's Mark

How I Got Around It.
Reflecting on my endgame hunter, it stands to reason we might just need to tack on a little Mana regeneration. For our endgame hunters it is pretty simple, just pop into Aspect of the Viper and forget about it.

So what we need is something that acts like the afore mentioned aspect. A quick check at the Auction House for some Lesser Mana Oil met with some success. One application of this on my 2 handed axe did the trick nicely. I played for two hours without having much difficulty at all.

The old attack pattern still works fine.
The Mana Oil lasts for a full hour and since it is applied to our weapon it will last through death. Each bottle of oil has 5 applications each.

So for now Lesser Mana Oil solves the problem. Later on when Lass reaches Outlands I will probably upgrade to Superior Mana Oil until I get Aspect of the Viper at level 64. Its a bit of a bummer that I will be spending gold to maintain a grind, but in the long run its not that big of a deal.

Have a great day.

Edit: I did notice some OOM issues while working on leveling up my second pet, Patches. I found that I had to slow way down on both the stings and the arcane shots. I am attributing this to the fact that his DPS is much lower than my Lion who is always within one level of myself.

The little guy holds aggro fine, he just can't kill the Mobs as fast as his bigger brother.


Pike said...

I am sooooooo going to go looking for Mana Oil on my poor lowbie hunters now.

Thank you for the idea!

Viktel said...

It does help.

I have noticed that I still have some problems if I try to move too fast.

I'm going to try some mana buff food as well.

Its a good excuse to get the cooking skills up.