Saturday, May 17, 2008


I love Shamans.

Raid buffs + Grace of Air Totem? Mmm, mmm good. Too bad the feral druid was in the other group; my crit woulda been near-35%.

I've got something else in mind to discuss for today's post, however: trap resists. They happen, and there's not much we can do about them. As far as I am aware, the only way to lessen the chances of your trap getting resisted other than survival talents is through spell hit gear, and, well, I would not recommend that any hunter gear for that.

Trap resists can really mess up your chain trapping because if you are deep into a trapping cycle and fighting the cooldown time, there is not a whole lot you can do about it.

Yesterday in Karazhan we took three tries to down Moroes... which is more than usual. The first two times I was asked to chain-trap a mob for quite some time-- aka, we would kill some other mobs and Moroes before getting to my trap. Okay, I said, not a big issue. I'm pretty good with my traps, I've got my Beast Lord set bonus, and the Moroes room is nice and big and great for trapping.

Yet both those times, after the fifth or sixth consecutive trap or so, the mob resisted the trap, I still had a cooldown of 10 or 15 seconds or so to go, and because we had no other reliable way to crowd control that particular mob, it caused a wipe.

The third time we ended up picking up my trap and taking him out after just a couple chain traps from me, so we wouldn't have to deal with it again. This strategy was quite successful. I have to admit I felt rather embarrassed that my traps were not playing nice and being reliable... but on the other hand, trap resists are pretty much beyond your control. If your trap is resisted, it is not your fault.

So what can you do about it? Not a whole lot without spec'ing Survival, but there are ways to perhaps slightly lesson the hurt:


Lay down your trap far in advance of when the pull is going to begin-- but not so far in advance that it's going to disappear right when the pull is starting. If you have to, lay down your trap, wait for the cooldown to tell you you've got another one ready, and then tell the tank you're ready for the pull. If he starts pulling while your cooldown is still up, don't hesitate to tell him to wait a couple more seconds. If they are going to be relying on your traps, they should be willing to wait a few extra seconds for you to be fully prepared. Waiting to start the pull until your next trap is ready will give you all sorts of extra time and also means that-- for the first few traps anyway-- you will pretty much have another trap ready or almost ready should one resist.

(Note: If your first trap resists, and you have another one ready and use it, be sure you tell your group that you will not have your next trap ready in time.)

When the Trap Resists:

So the mob runs over your next trap and the big words you are dreading to see pop up on your screen: "Trap Resisted". First thing's first: announce it to the rest of the party. If you are on a voice chat program, that is your best bet. Otherwise, hopefully you have some sort of macro that you can pound that will say "TRAP RESISTED" in party chat without you having to type it out. Be sure that everyone is made aware of the situation first in case they have some ideas on what to do.

Now... what you do here is really dependent on your situation. If you have a trap that will be ready shortly, you can Wing Clip/Concussive Shot kite the guy until your next one is up. You can also throw an Intimidate and Mend Pet on your pet and send him in to tank the mob until you have another trap ready, at which point you can run up and lay the trap down at his feet. (I would use a Distracting Shot afterwards to be sure you rise above your pet's threat. But be sure you don't break your trap with the Auto Shot that will start afterwards! A Pull Shot macro is great for this.)

If there is still a gigantic amount of time before your next trap is ready, and you are not comfortable with kiting or pet-tanking for that amount of time (raid mobs, for example, can hit hard and your pet will not be up for long without dedicated heals), then there are not a lot of options other than running to the tank and Feigning Death. You should probably make sure the tank knows you are going to do it so he or she knows to pick up aggro on it before it runs to a healer or something.

In the heat of battle with everyone doing their job, it can be hard to remember your tricks and keep your cool. But learning to do so-- even if you don't realize it until after the fact-- will make you a better hunter and allow you to do your job more effectively.

The Aftermath:

So they had an offtank or some other form of crowd control pick up on your lost mob and you sort of feel sheepish. Don't worry, you can still be of some help! Extra traps just in case another mob gets loose can make or break a pull. Going back to yesterday's Moroes fight: after they'd decided to pick up on trap early, to prevent any unforeseen issues, I assigned myself to keeping a trap up right next to the priest, who was on dual healing/shackling duty. This was in case the shackle broke and ran towards the healer, who would probably be one-shotted. Sure enough, a couple minutes later, I noticed the shackled mob-- no longer shackled, but safely encased in my trap. Had my trap not been there, the priest would have gone down, and that would not have been a good situation.

As someone who majored in filmmaking, I have come to sort of feel that playing a hunter is a lot like the art of editing. Editing is an invisible art, so to speak-- if people don't notice your editing, then you know you have succeeded. It is the editor's job to make things appear seamless and misdirect (yes, they actually do use the term "misdirect" in my textbook) your attention to where they want it to go.

A lot of hunters who can successfully chain trap will get a lot of praise for their traps right off the bat because trapping hunters seem to be few and far between, but as time goes on you will find that people learn you are good with your traps and then simply expect them to be flawless. If your trapping is so good that nobody notices it (and the tank perhaps forgets about your mob and moves on to the next pull)-- then you have succeeded. If you have problems with your trap but manage to handle it in a timely and effective fashion with little outside help, then you have succeeded. And even if you don't have a dedicated something that you are trapping, if you have a backup trap ready in case of emergencies and it eventually gets put to good use, then you have succeeded.

And that's all for today! In other news... [Garona's Signet Ring]. It is delicious. I am really tempted to go buy [Angelista's Revenge] now (I have something like 167 badges, but can't quite bring myself to spend them yet) and walk away all nicely ring'd up. We shall see.


Kestrel said...

I guess I'm a bit surprised that the raid would want you trapping > 3 times on the same mob, given your spec. (No reflection on you: BM's, as I am sure you know even better than I, aren't the monarchs of trapping.)

With the likelihood of a resist rising each time you trap (Law of Averages, to put it simply), coupled with the diminishing returns on trap holding, the chances you can maintain your traps effectively through 4 or 5 cycles are miniscule, it seems.

I'm curious if even having the trapping talents from the SV tree would be of much help in this situation.

The good thing is, after two wipes, the raid went with a different strategy that was successful.

Pike said...

@ Kestrel -

A full Survival hunter would likely have a variety of things to help in this situation; aside from the decreased resist chance-- they also usually spec for shorter trap cooldowns, traps that last longer, and sometimes Readiness as a panic button. The last time we did this boss we had three shackles and a Survival Hunter and we downed him in probably two minutes or less; the CC was just ridiculous.

As for me doing so much trapping-- yes, I am aware of the fact that my guild relies on my trapping much more than most guilds rely on hunter traps. I chalk this up to a few different things: firstly, there are no high-level mages to be had anywhere in our guild. At all. I don't know why... they just avoid us. Polymorph is a basically a foreign concept to us. So we have always relied on my traps as a primary form of crowd control in basically any instance or raid, because the ideal form of CC-- Polymorph-- has never been there for us.

Secondly, I usually am able to trap something indefinitely given enough space and perhaps a little bit of kiting. The resists truly surprised me because I usually do not get them very often; it was just bad luck... however, it's true, the chance is still there and I am basically playing with the dice each time I try to chain trap.

I honestly don't mind that I end up being "main CC". I love trapping, I know that I am good at it, and I feel great pride in knowing that my guild trusts me enough to be in charge of it. There are times though, when it will severely gimp my DPS output-- that was another reason we wound up deciding to take out trap right away on our third try, because we realized we needed to get the boss down quicker.

Pike said...

Also-- correct me if I am mistaken, but as far as I am aware, the diminishing returns only affect traps in PvP and not in PvE.

Anonymous said...

Just for comparison, when they have me trapping on Moroes (I also am a BM hunter) we have found that it is best to pick the trap up on the second or the third trap (depending on how well DPS is going that night) to avoid just what you were talking about. Otherwise, it just takes that resist to wipe and no one likes the run back. Nice post on it!
Gunsnbutter Excelsior/Uther

Sade said...

Choco Bow.

You know you want it.

It is calling to 150 of those badges.

Choco Bow.

Choco Booooow.

Itsnoteasy said...

I'm going to write a post about (or at least mentioning) these beauties: Frost Grenades.

I've started using these in instances, and they're just so awesome it defies description. If something breaks when I don't have a trap for it, I can root it in place for 5 seconds (not including the usual conc. shot and wing clip tricks.) That's usually enough time to get another trap down and pull it in.

Sadly, that's not much help for you, seeing as how you're an alchemist and all... :D

Karl said...

167 badges?.. badge crossbow!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Gratz on the ring. I've been wanting that one for a while but I keep losing out on the roll for it when it has dropped.

While I can do chain trapping it is preferred that I not have to do it more then 4 times in a row. If that is the case we need to really look over our Strategy because so far it isn't a good one.

And you are right in PvE there isn't diminishing returns for CC. Though along with Kestrel's thought is that the longer you have to CC something the more likely it is to resist or break out early as its bound to be successful at it eventually.

Maevet said...

grab Zhunter,

automatic trap resiste reports
and reports what your arcane shot dispelled.....

as 0/41/20 chain trapping is a snap, with 2pc BL I'm godly. Scatter shot makes a buku diff in keeping things locked & relocking on resist.

41/20/0 I love the damage but christ trapping is an arse pain

Bastiaan said...

Yeah, basically what Kestrel said is true - the chance of one resist increases the more consecutive trappings you perform. I've never tried concussive shot-kiting on Moroes as my guild picks up blue square after three traps, so I don't know whether the adds on Moroes can be concussed. But another possibility, albeit painful, is to sacrifice your pet. As you say in your post, this is a valid possibility in instances. Here it is as well: send in your pet, activate growl, tap Intimidation and Mend pet. Your pet will die but at that point the CD for your next trap should be up again. It will severely drop your dps (I doubt whether you have time to revive your pet while still trapping) but it IS another panic button.

Axeminster said...

Awesome post! The part about the tank forgetting about your mob and moving on to the next pull especially resonated as it happens pretty frequently for me. Generally the tank appologizes profusely and I just tell him that I take it as a compliment. :-)

Timothy said...

If you place backup traps for priests shackling or mages sheeping it can help to use a distracting shot or two on the shackled or sheeped target.
If you make sure only the distracting shot hits the target and no auto shot it doesn't break the cc but you still gain the distracting shots aggro.

Drop the backup trap where you think it's best and position yourself accordingly.

Helps alot as it can help recover from a cc-break by consecration or other nasty aoe stuff that would otherwise prevent cc.