Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Hunter Tips: Using recount to get better then #1 on DPS.

Recount is a wonderful thing when used correctly.  The sad truth however is that most people do not know how to look at it.  They see themselves as top DPS (or near the top) and they think they did a wonderful job or they see themselves as the most damage done over all and think that they are doing everything right.  Wrong!
You need to actually look into what recount has to say to see what your damage is hitting and what you are using the do that damage.  Just seeing those big numbers does not mean you are doing a good job. Just seeing yourself at the top of the DPS charts is nothing. 

Sure, to some people that is enough, but to a good raid leader he can tell the difference between an hunter doing 9K DPS and doing nothing but volley and one doing 8K DPS but focus firing at the primary target that you need to burn down.  Lets even say for a moment that you are both doing 9K DPS.  A good raid leader is going to see which one is hitting the targets that need to be hit and which is just AoEing like a mad man.  Which one would you take if you were a raid leader?

I guess being a raid leader myself I notice things that others might not even notice but truth be told, you do not need to be a raid leader to take notice of these things yourself.  I learned to notice them because I wanted to see what others where doing to see how I could get better myself.

Case and point.  I was in a ICC 25 run a few weeks back and there was a hunter that was doing more DPS then me.  I am not one of those epeen people that go crazy when someone beats me on DPS but being I am usually #1 or at the very least the #1 hunter I had to take a closer look at how he was doing it.  Perhaps I could learn something from him.

First things first.  I look at his gear. He has better gear then me.  See, that is the problem, most people would stop there and think, "well that is why he is out DPSing me, he has better gear."  Thing is, my gear sucks compared to many people I run with.  I am usually the lowest geared person or damn close to it on most runs.  Doesn't stop me from leading the pew pew on the DPS meters.

Second things second.  After looking at his gear I look at his DPS breakdown.  He is leading on DPS, leading on total damage done and he is only using one shot really.  Volley.  Every pack we run into he is volley followed by volley, followed by volley and of course he finishes up with volley.  He is doing 800 more DPS then me in much better gear doing the absolute least he needs to do.  He is thinking that his #1 spot on the DPS charts means no one will notice that he really brings nothing to the table.  Most people probably just thought of him as a kick ass hunter with uber DPS for the run.  I thought of him as a one trick pony that I would never bring into my PuG if I was serious about getting some bosses down.

You ask why is that a problem if things where dying and people weren't.  Well, things would have died quicker if he did the right thing and people like me would not have to be shooting off freezing arrows to save the healers from runners and using MD every time it was up to bring lose packs back to the tank.  And that is just me.  I imagine that many others in the PuG were doing whatever they could to be catching runners from bringing the smack down on a healer.

When all you do is volley, and volley again you are doing total AoE and things are not going down fast, they are all going down together.  When you are trying to take all those skeletons down together where they explode when they die you are going to get a lot of people killed.  AoE rocks for effectiveness and it rocks for DPS but like anything else it has it's time and place.  If he was burning as well as AoEing then some creatures would have died sooner and that would have meant less runners for everyone else to handle.

That was a selfish hunter.  He wanted to be #1 on the charts.  I feel even at 800 less and #2 on the charts that I did a good job.  I never let a healer die, I never AoEed 5 into dying at the same time and taking every non plate wearer to an early grave that happened to be near them.  Do not be a selfish hunter, do not think DPS and DPS only, be a good hunter and check your epeen at the door when you enter a raid.  Trust me, any raid leader worth running with will notice the difference.

Now, the other side of the story.  Another story of a volley-a-holic but with this one it was totally different.  While he toasted me on the DPS leaving me at #2 once again I learned a hell of a lot from this guy.  You see, he did not just go volley crazy, he went volley crazy with a rotation.  Yes I know, we hunters do not have a rotation, he have a priority system.  But looking at the recount I saw that his priority system was basically a rotation.

He would single target the main target at the get go, land a few shots with his MD going and then drop the volley down.  After that he did not just volley over and over like many hunters fall into the habit of doing.  He mixed it up.  Volley ended and he fired a multi shot, then chimera shot to keep his sting running and then volley again. 

He kept this rotation up and from viewing the recount I could see that he did this on every trash pack of 3 or more.  Sure he had better gear but he was making the most of what he had.  Even if I matched him move for move I would never get to his level of DPS but that is where you have to check that epeen again.  You do not need to be the top DPS to help the team but you do need to do the best you can. 

I could have been content being #2 on the charts and let is be but I took that chance to learn.  Now when I run anything I use his pattern of dropping the sting and chimera on the main target mixing in a multi and volley while waiting on the chimera to come off CD.

See where I learned from the recount?  In one example I learned what type of hunter I would not want to run with by seeing all he did was volley and in the other example I figured out how to get my rotation to give me more results by looking at the recount.

I could have just chalked it up to gear.  I could have just chalked it up to them being more skilled.  I could have nerd raged because I was beat on the DPS charts or I could have let my epeen swing with pride that I was #2 so close behind people that out geared me.  I did none of that, I looked to the recount to learn from it.  In future runs, with no gear changes at all, I upped my DPS by nearly 1K just by starting to mix in the chimera and multi.  That makes me better then the first guy was being I was still focusing on the main target and that makes me on par with the second guy because I was doing the best I could with the tools I had.

Do not get all warm and fuzzy with seeing yourself on top of the charts.  There are ways to be better then #1 on the DPS chart and that is to be #1 and do the right thing at the same time.  Look at recount and learn from it.  Your raid will love you for it.

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