Rez of the Week – Tagra

It has always amazed me at how things can fall into place at the right time.  We had an amazing hunter who was raiding with us at one point named Nosler but due to the IRL Mummy he quit the game.  Less than a week later a hunter by the name of Tagra asked about getting slotted with us.  I thought, perfect timing, now let’s just hope she’s good.  And she was.  Tagra is not only a ton of fun to be around she’s also amazing at her class (as is evident by the amount of information she shared with us during this interview).  I present to you, an amazing hunter and her kitty, Ragnar.

Tagra bigcat

Name: Tagra
Class: Hunter

Where are you from:
Really northern British Columbia Canada, where there are northern lights and sunsets at 11:30PM.  Also nothing better to do than play WoW, especially in the winter when it’s -40, your door is frozen shut and your goddamn car won’t start anyway.

Would you consider yourself… hardcore:
…probably. When there is a tangible goal, I’m working nonstop to defeat it, but I find it really hard to just log in and dick around if there isn’t something I’m working toward. I read EJ and see these people who calculate DPS to the 0.01 and set up gear sets to swap between pulls because THIS piece of gear is more efficient than THIS piece of gear for that particular fight… That is my definition of hardcore and I’m not like that at all.

I get sentimentally attached to my pixels and have stuff like the same pet I tamed at level 10 (please don’t nerf cats) and prefer to use certain types of gear if it looks cooler (or was easier to get :P), as long as it’s reasonably close in value to the stuff that’s BIS. However, I’m one of those cases where I play a lot – like no really, a lot – and I am an obsessive perfectionist who is compelled to seek out and destroy any and all goals in the game.

Even though I may use my cat that I tamed at level 10, I am aware when the EJ catasses decide that another pet is better than him. It would have to be a really significant difference in DPS for me to stable Ragnar though.  I watch the values of my gear like any hardcore raider does, I know what is considered to be better than what I have and how much better it is considered to be, but I typically don’t worry over an upgrade unless it’s a really big jump, wheras a hardcore EJ poster would sweat over every point on the spreadsheet.  But I do think that the fact that I pay attention to all this shit puts me a step ahead of your typical “casual” player.

I also think people who raid 40 hours a week on multiple characters are crazy (*cough*Xeo*cough).
(Editor’s Note:  I don’t raid 40 hrs a week, its more like… it might be near 40hrs =p)

Main Raid Spec / Dual Spec:
Survival and … uh Survival.  >.>

What do you use your offspec for:
My offspec is currently the *exact same spec*, but with three points shifted to Hawk Eye for extra range.  I really only use it on Freya (those !@#$ trees are ALWAYS one step out of range of the mushroom I’m standing under otherwise) and Yogg-Saron (for Cloud Dodging.  I forgot to swap for the first attempt last week and it was seriously awful).  The damage difference between the specs really doesn’t seem to be a big deal though, so after 3.2 I’m probably going to be switching the non-range spec to either Marks to try it out, or a PvP oriented spec.

How long have you been playing:
Since beta.

What about WoW keeps you coming back:
I haven’t finished everything in the game yet!  But seriously, I really enjoy beating content… whether it be raiding (which is amazingly well done by Blizzard) to get that rush from downing a new boss and ticking another thing off the achievement list, or beating a heroic achievement with three people because our guild is really small and we prefer to bash our heads against it alone just to *see if we can*. I get really frustrated with people who are all “no we can’t do it” without even trying first, or who give half-assed attempts because they assume we will fail (which means we WILL fail because they’re giving half-assed attempts…).

WoW has a really good mix of stuff I can work on solo and stuff we can work on in groups, so it encourages people to log in and do solo things and then they’re around to work on group things too. The challenge levels are all tuned enough that you don’t instantly beat everything and then have nothing to do, but you rarely feel like you’re completely outmatched by something, so you’re compelled to keep working on it.  Getting 25 people (who don’t suck and don’t have shitty attitudes) together to work on things is a bit frustrating too though.

Has WoW taught you anything you’ve applied to IRL:
Surprisingly yes.  I credit 4 years of being a Hunter class lead with my success in leading workshops at the University.  I gained a ton of leadership ability and learned a lot about how to present information to people in ways that they can easily digest it and remember it when it counts.  Yes that is right, my experience in writing guides and coordinating 40 people for fucking *Molten Core* taught me how to teach.

My workshop group last semester had an average close to 90% (they totally one-shotted that final >.>).  What’s shocking about this though, is that I used to be a very low confidence, low self esteem person. MMOs get a really bad rap for having players which have no social skills or social life… but I learned a lot about how to interact with people, how to get respect from people just by doing your best instead of having to be perfect, how to make mistakes and learn from them without getting apathetic about your performance, and how there will be some people who hate you no matter what you do.

If you had to reroll…
Would you choose the same thing:
Yes.  With the possible exception of rolling a dwarf instead because dwarves are awesome.
Why:  I roll the archer class in every game when it’s available.  I’m an archer in real life (or used to be anyway.  Stupid living in a city) so even when they suck ass, I always have at least one archer character.  This is also why I prefer bows over guns in game.  Guns are not archery goddammit!

Best Raid Moment:
Uhh.  All of them.  I really don’t think I could narrow it down because every first kill is a new high.  Nefarian is way up there though just because people were saying we couldn’t do it, and then we did.

Favorite Raid Mod:
Probably Recount, because I love information.  All my mods give me information, but Recount is really the only one that gives me information I can’t easily access in the default interface because the combat log has a hilariously short buffer.  Second place is Bigwigs because its consistent nagging probably keeps us from wiping more than we already do, and recently TellMeWhen because I have too many goddamn abilities to watch while running away from fire and tentacles and clouds and shit.

Favorite Boss Encounter:
Oh god I don’t know.  All of them.  When comparing WoW to previous games like EQ or DAoC or whatever, the boss encounters are light years away. Each one is unique and interesting and requires strategy.  If I had to pick least favorite ones maybe I could come up with some of the more boring tank and spank ones for you.

What Food / Flasks do you use:
Blackened Dragonfin and Endless Rage.  Or more likely Fish Feast because fishing really sucks so I hoard my dragonfins for special occasions.

/cast [modifier].  It does not matter what spell or ability you’re macroing. This lets you cast two abilities on one key by holding shift or whatever to cast the second one. I have so many abilities as a hunter that I run out of keys without doubling up some like this.  You can go crazy with [modifier:alt] and [modifier:ctrl] or whatever but I can’t remember what I’ve bound to what when I do that, so I just smack the keyboard and hope I’m holding one of them down.

How many paragraphs do I get for this section?  Actually Hunter rotations don’t suck as much as they used to, but Survival is still a little ridiculous.  It goes something like this:

If at any point Kill Shot is up, use it. Watch the timer like a hawk and use it the minute it comes up, even if you have to wait a second so you’re not on GCD when it does.  While it’s on cooldown, do the rotation as normal below:

If you’re Misdirecting a pull, use Aimed Shot first because Explosive shot only transfers the first tick and then you pull aggro on the next two and die horribly.

Explosive Shot > all.  Watch the cooldown and hit it the instant it’s ready, even if you have to pause so you’re not on GCD.

Keep Black Arrow up for the chance of Lock n Load, which, at least for now, is no longer pathetically low thanks to 3.2.  Aimed when ES is on cooldown.  Keep Serpent Sting up at all times.

If Lock n Load procs, ES, pause (fire off anything else you have if they’re not on cooldown while pausing), then ES, pause, ES… continue as normal.  If you fire off ES too quickly you cut off the DOT portion of it and waste all the damage.

When all of that stuff up there is on cooldown, use Steady Shot, but the instant one of the others is off cooldown, interrupt it and use that instead.

Every time Kill Command comes up, use it.  Also make sure your pet is alive and attacking the target and not standing in shit that will kill it instantly.  It’s *always* standing in shit that will kill it instantly.  You CAN selectively choose when to use Rapid Fire, but I tend to just use it as soon as it comes up because it’s a short cooldown and haste is really negligable to a hunter anyway.  I have too many other things to think about to worry about popping RF at an ideal time, fuck it.

If no one bothered to put Hunter’s Mark up, put that up first, but if Troll is in the raid don’t do it because he’ll yell at you 😦
(Editor’s Note: I now refuse to raid with my hunter… ever.)

What resources do you use to stay current on your class:
Elitist Jerks, their spreadsheet, and MMO-Champion.

Any tips for playing your class:
Get a mouse with side buttons so you have more keys to bind all this shit to. Bind the mouse wheel up and mouse wheel down to hotkeys for extra room (map the camera controls to + and – on the keypad.  You’ll only ever be at max camera range anyway.  Also use the script command to extend the camera range and move it out even more). Proceed to wear out the right mouse button on it because you’re holding it down 100% of the time for strafing so you can shoot while moving and launch instant shots behind you.

If you could be any mythical creature, What would it be:
A phoenix
Why: Because I’d be on fucking fire and it would be awesome.  Also I could fly, and if I died I could just come back anyway.  Fuck yeah.


8 thoughts on “Rez of the Week – Tagra

  1. Shiningstar says:

    After reading the stuff about rotations, I realize why my hunter is only 72 and I refuse to play her (or worse, put her in a group).

    On a side note, more love for the Fish Feasts. I love you all, I really do. You justify my fruitless efforts for a turtle.

  2. daemia says:

    I’m absolutely terrified of grouping with my hunter. Maybe once I digest all this info I’ll give it a very timid go.

  3. This is why I’m lvling my mage instead of my hunter. I KNOW I don’t like taking her in instances, so I’ll just keep her as my solo-grind farming bitch. 😀

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