The hunter “big deal” and what it means to priests

It’s a WoW blog, I suppose I ought to throw in a WoW post. (grin)

Over in hunter land there’s been much talk of an almost minor change in spell process that’s having a HUGE effect on shot rotation macros. And I think that the change matters to priests, too.

Let’s start with the minor change and its effect on hunters before we go to priest work. Once auto-shot is started, casting a “command” shot won’t interrupt it. AND, during that last half-second of cast time, any button pressed will start immediately after the auto-shot starts. If you pressed many buttons during that half-second, the last one pressed is the one that takes.

Now how this works for hunters is that it beats the crap out of clipping, and encourages button-spamming. First, you set up a macro, of which the critical line goes something like:

/castsequence !Auto Shot, Steady Shot

Now there are many permutations and improvements, but that’s the basic deal. What it says is “Alternate between toggling Auto shot on and casting steady shot.” A couple of peculiarities in that exclamation point make a useful digression. First, since auto shot is a toggle (press it’s on, press it’s off) it’d be frustrating to keep starting and stopping it. The ! says, “if it’s on, leave it on,” no turning it off. It also, due to the odd way macros work, means the macro skips that if it’s already on. (“Can’t do that” in a macro automatically moves to “do the next thing.”)

So the hunter starts pummeling this macro – two or three times per second, even. And what happens is that autoshot goes and doesn’t get clipped, but the steady shot goes off as soon as it can with no particular delay. Lag is practically eliminated. Yeah, wow. Hunters using this sort of thing are seeing significant boosts in DPS.

But I said this matters to priests, not just my hunter alt. So… huh?

Let’s start with interrupt casting – a classic healpriest skill. You’ve probably already noticed it just Doesn’t Seem to Work. You need a /stopcasting line. Something like:

/stopcasting
/cast Greater Heal

OK, that’s pretty simple and probably obvious. But… I’ve run across a couple of other situations. There are a couple of boss battles where, if you’re the tank’s main healer, you want back-to-back heals. Even an instant of lag is potentially fatal. So… yeah, you can see where this is going. I’m recommending button mashing. Not one click and hope. Start fast-tapping while the cast is going. And if you’re planning to do something in the middle – say, a frisbee in the midst of chained greater heals – just start mashing the appropriate button, and jump right back when it goes.

I’ve not respecced to test this with mindflay. My guess is that you can still interrupt it, but I don’t know. It makes a difference, so if there’s a spriest who’s tried and wants to mention, I’d appreciate it. But for the non-channeling spells, this has the potential to be VERY useful, as it goes a long way to negating lag.

Go have fun.

~ by Kirk on June 4, 2008.

3 Responses to “The hunter “big deal” and what it means to priests”

  1. wow… the things one learns. And here I thought I knew it all, lol.
    Thanks for sharing!

  2. Are you saying to do something like:
    /castsequence !mindflay, mindflay

  3. No. and no.

    Macro first. BAD macro. Bad, bad macro. (grin)

    The exclamation point only applies to toggles. things like shadowform, for example. !shadowform is a fast way of saying, “If shadowform is off, cast, otherwise ignore and go on.”

    No, I’m not saying set up a repeat macro. What I’m saying is that it’s (almost) impossible to clip.

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