Two Weeks In…

So as most of you know WoW released Patch 3.1 two weeks ago(April 14, 2009).  With the release of that patch came a whole new raid instance, Ulduar, and some changes to feral druids.  My guild has currently downed eight out of the fourteen bosses.  Hodir was our most recent 25 man kill.  Our 10 man teams have seen up to Mimiron and I was lucky enough to be in on those attempts.

As most any feral can tell you feral dps is amazing right now for mostly every boss in Ulduar.   This is not to say pre-3.1 we were the worst, but in 3.1 we have improved to be one of the premiere dpsing specs.  This is due in part to the abundance of many bosses that are more or less stationary with little or no movement.   I have to say I am enjoying dpsing and topping the charts many a time.  Here is my current feral dps spec and gear.  Is it BiS from pre-3.1 (Best in Slot)?  Mostly no because I was trying more or less to gear my bear tank set for much of Naxx, OS3D, and Malygos.

My Feral DPS Spec: 0/53/18

Balance 0 Points Spent

There’s nothing here of real worth to a feral in the first place.  Brambles is in the third tier and would be out of the reach of any decent feral spec.

Feral– 53 points

It’s kind of obvious if you’re going to call yourself a feral druid most of your points will be spent in this tree.

5/5 Ferocity– If you are a feral and not maxed on this talent I want some of whatever you are drinking or smoking.

5/5 Feral Aggression – I take this for various reasons.  It allows me to spend points earlier in later tiers and increases the damage done of my FB by 15%.   I attempt to sneak in a 5-CP FB some where in every boss fight and normally that’s more than one.

2/2 Savage Fury–  Reread the Ferocity comment.

3/3 Sharpened Claws– A 6% crit strike chance increase, duh.  Opens up Primal Precision and Primal Fury.

2/2 Shredding Attacks –  Shred is main, high damage attack in cat form lowering the cost by 18 energy is an obvious choice.

3/3 Predatory Strikes–  Melee Attack Power in forms increased by 150% of my current level and 20% of any weapon I equip.   Another obvious choice that also leads to Heart of the Wild for expansion in the tree.

2/2 Primal Fury– I can’t pass 100% chance to add a CP when I critically strike in cat form.

2/2 Primal Precision– This is talent is a must for any dpsing druid.  If I miss on a finishing move I automatically get 80% of the energy I wasted returned.  This also allows for  you to not be so worried about being hit capped.  The 10 Expertise is also nice.

1/1 Feral Charge– The ability to automatically get behind your target with one move is always a plus.  This means if I get knocked back or have to run out for any reason(eg. XT-002 Deconstructor) I can immediately return to behind the boss without blowing my Dash cooldown.

5/5 Heart of the Wild– Ferals are already at a disadvantage in Wrath due to the of intellect and spirit on gear for mana so this talent boosts my current intellect by 20%.    The main reason for this talent is the 10% attack power increase.

3/3 Survival of the Fittest– Increases ALL attributes by 6%.  Need I say anymore?

1/1 Leader of the Pack– 5% Ranged and Melee Crit Aura.   A part of any and every feral build.  Otherwise I doubt you’d be a raiding feral.

2/2 Improved Leader of the Pack– This is the most questionable of all my talent choices.  I believe any small amount of healing can help raid healers.  The mana return upon being healed is also great for fights such as Hodir where you most likely will have to shift out of cat or powershift to get out of being trapped.

3/3 Protector of the Pack–  I off tank from time to time while dpsing raids so this talent certainly helps.  I may be considering moving it to Infected Wounds, but as of right now I have not.  Thanks Sounder for pointing that out to me!

3/3 Predatory Instincts– Obvious feral dps talent is obvious.  Increase my crit damage while decreasing the amount of damage from AoE attacks.

3/3 King of the Jungle– Another must as a feral dpsing without it Tiger’s Fury is worthless in our “rotation”.   This makes TG an automatic use every time it is up and I am below 40 energy.

1/1 Mangle– I currently rarely if ever have to use this ability in a raid situation because my raid normally contains a Trauma spec’ed warrior.  Normally this is obvious because it increase the amount of bleed damage taken by a target.  For a boss such as Kologarn where I cannot Shred I am currently either dealing with it or equipping old T6 and spamming Mangle.

5/5 Rend and Tear– How can I spec for full dps and not take this?  20% Shred damage increase on a bleeding target and 25% increase of the critical strike chance of a FB on a bleeding target.  It also opens up what is currently the driving force behind feral dps and the agility gemming in 3.1, Primal Gore.

1/1 Primal Gore– This allows Rip, the current top finishing move, to crit.  No feral dps is complete without this talent.

1/1 Berserk– 15 secs of pure bliss as a cat.  I use this right after using TG or when Heroism is used.  It decreases the cost of all cat form abilities by 50%, but at the cost of not being able to use TG for the duration of it.

Restoration– 18 point spent

2/2 Improved Mark of the Wild–  Repeat with me.  2% increase of all your attributes all the time.   Also I can now help out the resto druids in my raid with buffing.  Although I normally don’t have to because my guidl’s rock and do it!

5/5 Furor– I automatically start with 100 energy when I shift into cat form.  This can mean powershifting or just the fact that if I have shift out of cat I don’t have to sit there and wait for my energy to build back up.

5/5 Naturalist– This increases my physical damage by 10% and is a must for any build.

3/3 Natural Shapeshifter–  This is more of a means to an end as it opens up Master Shapeshifter.    NS also helps conserve mana on fights where you need to shift out of cat often.

1/1 Omen of Clarity–  FREE ATTACK!!!!!!!!!  But this means I must use it wisely.  It is never logical to waste a OoC proc on a FB or Rip or SR.   I am currently annoyed at how this always procs when I cast buffs(eg. Thorns).  Rather see that in combat.

2/2 Master Shapeshifter–  A 4% crit chance increase.  I’ve seen many builds without it, but I believe it to be a must in any of my feral dps builds.

My Current Glyphs

Majors- Glyph of Rip, Glyph of Shred, and Glyph of Savage Roar

I consider this the best setup for any dpsing druid.  I continuously have a Trauma spec’ed warrior raiding with me so I see no need for the Mangle glyph.

Minor Glyphs- Glyph of Dash, Glyph of Unburdened Rebirth, and Glyph of the Wild

These glyphs are near interchangeable except for Unburdened Rebirth.  Glyph of the Wild is great when I’m dpsing 10 mans and 5 mans without another druid.  Dash, I feel is a must for a raiding druid because it helpus us cover ground we may have lost or while Prowled to get behind the boss quicker.  I’d sometimes rather not Feral Charge the boss by accident before the tank pulls and cause a wipe.

My DPS Current Gear

Helm- Valorous Dreamwalker Headguard

Currently it is gemmed with Relentless Earthsiege Diamond and Deadly Monarch Topaz with the Arcanum of Torment.   Waiting on Ulduar upgrade, but it helps complete my 2 T7 set bonus.  The Deadly Monarch Topaz is there to fulfill the meta requirements.

Necklace- Favor of the Dragon Queen

Arguably the BiS necklace from what I have seen.   I have gemmed it with a Delicate Scarlet Ruby.

Shoulders- Valorous Dreamwaltker Shoulderpads

This completes my 2 T7 set bonus and is gemmed with a Delicate Scarlet Ruby and currently has Greater Inscription of the Axe from the Sons of Hodir at exalted.  T8 helm will most likely what I upgrade to here since we are working on Thorim currently.

Cloak- Aged Winter Cloak

This is currently enchanted with 22 agility.  Kel’thuzad has been very friendly with dropping his cloak, but I have yet to be win it(or when we were raiding it; high enough on our loot reel).  I have seen the drops from Ulduar and will definitely be trying for those as well.

Chest- Chestguard of the Recluse

Gemmed with a Delicate Scarlet Ruby and enchanted with +10 to stats.    Hodir dropped both Winter’s Icy Embrace and the T8 token when we first downed him.   I was not so lucky in my position on my guild’s loot reel and lost my attempt at both, but I will grabbing both of these as soon as I can.

Bracers- Cuffs of Dark Shadows

Enchanted with +50 AP.  I’m debating whether or not to upgrade these with Sinner’s Bindings, but the armor pen is nice.

Hands- Frosted Adroit Handguards

Enchanted with +44 AP.  Not much to say here because some loot lists rank these as BiS(w/o having seen much of the Ulduar upgrades of course).   I’m thinking I’ll switch these to T8 some time.

Waist- Belt of the Tortured

Added a blacksmithing socket to it and tossed in a Shifting Twilight Opal.  These belt doubles in my tanking set and I hope to maybe see an upgrade in the future.  The gem was to fulfill the meta gem requirement.

Legs- Leggings of the Honored

Gemmed with two Delicate Scarlet Rubies and with the Icescale Leg Armor.   I am tossing the idea of getting an old Naxx pair of pants instead, but right now these work fine.

Feet- Dawnwalkers

Currently enchanted with 12 Hit Rating/12 Crit Strike Rating.    I am going to switch the enchant to AP when I get the mats, but I really have liked these boots.

Ring 1- Ring of Invincibility

Enchanted with 32 AP.  I had a shot at the Cindershard Ring when my guild first dropped Ignis, but I held out for another drop.  I think overall it’s a great ring and even better with the enchanter’s only enchant.

Ring 2- Strong-Handed Ring

Enchanted with 32 AP.  I feel this to be the weaker of my two rings and hope to upgrade it soon.

Trinket 1- Shard of Contempt

I can see the expressions on some other ferals’ faces.  “WTF are you still using a level 70 heroic drop at level 80 in 25 man Ulduar???”  Well I will be upgrading this very shortly to Darkmoon Card: Greatness.  Agility is king so I am taking the agility deck over the strength.  Plus it will go well in my tanking set as well.  I just obtained the Nobles Deck a day or so ago and the fair won’t be back in town until Monday.

Trinket 2- Mirror of Truth

I love this trinket that is all I can say about it.

Idol- Idol of the Ravenous Beast and Idol of the Worship

I mainly use Worshiper and only switch to Ravenous Beast for trash and when using Berserk.

Main Hand- Twisted Visage

Enchanted with Beserking.  This is why I did not go in on the Cindershard Ring and it has paid off.  I’m far over the hit cap at 334,  Do I care?  No.  I could careless if I’m capped or not because ferals aren’t as bound to hit cap as other dps.

Thanks to www.wowhead.com and www.wowarmory.com for the item and talent links.

Would I say there is room for improvement?  Sure and I will make sure to do so.  Feel free to offer criticism and feedback.  Be warned I may debate you on some ideas as we all have our own opinions.

So that’s me.   What about you?  Hearing from other ferals is always helpful.

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~ by aleanathem on April 28, 2009.

5 Responses to “Two Weeks In…”

  1. >3/3 Protector of the Pack- Increase my AP by another 6%. Hard to pass up.

    Are you aware that PotP only increases AP in Bear? “Requires Bear Form, Dire Bear Form”

  2. One other thought. Ferals don’t need to care that we’re *under* the hit cap, since +hit is not as good as Agi on the item budget. But you should certainly care that you’re *over* the hit cap, because it means there is wasted item budget on your gear. If you find ways of lowering your +hit by swapping in equally DPS-valuable items with no +hit, your DPS will go up.

  3. Both very true, but I do end up tanking trash from time to time so I keep it more or less for that. Infected Wounds isn’t the best debuff and I could switch the three points from PotP to there, but I don’t think it would help in the end.
    And about the hit cap I certainly know I am over it. I was under it with Journey’s End, but since I’ve picked up Twisted Visage I am well over it. Currently working on some Naxx upgrades on off nights and hoping for good drops out of Ulduar. Thanks for the comments. =)

  4. I was responding to “I’m far over the hit cap at 334, Do I care? No. I could careless if I’m capped or not because ferals aren’t as bound to hit cap as other dps.”

    That sounded like you’d misunderstood not ferals needing to care about being too far under the hit cap as meaning we don’t need to care about being over it.

    • When it’s on your gear there’s not much you can do about it, but wait for gear to drop that either has better or equal stats. There’s no misunderstanding. Too many stress the need of being hit capped. I only take what hit comes on gear. I’ve seen many ferals gemming and enchanting for hit cap. Rarely does a feral not have enough hit on their gear to get around 200+ hit cap. If you are 200 or above normally you are okay. You can add and get to 240/250 if you like, but it’s not a requirement.
      I’m at 334 hit cap due to picking up Twisted Visage. Could I have waited on the polearms later? Yes, but we aren’t even on General or Yogg yet so why pass a chance to upgrade early? I currently have no gear to replace some of the gear I have to lower the hit rating and raise crit, ap, etc. The only pieces I have at the moment to swap around with are old Tier 6 that I am regemming for Kologarn. That would be an obvious downgrade outside of that one fight. So I stick with what I have until I obtain some better/equal drops to lower my hit rating.

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