Saturday, July 5, 2008

PVP as a feral druid, stop laughing!

It took me some time to work out how to pvp on Jezrael, what abilities to bring into play, how to perform a role appropriate to the abilities of the hunter class. I'm pretty confident when I pvp now on my huntress although I'm by no means uber. With Sephiroh I'm experiencing that learning curve once again. A combination of sucktastic gear (for pvp anyway) and uncertainty about what I can best bring to the fray leaves me feeling pretty much next to useless a lot of the time.

After some fairly intensive bouts in various BGs I'm starting to get it together though and tonight I was able to pick up my first piece of PVP gear: the Merciless Gladiator's Kodohide Legguards.

But wait, you're thinking, you're feral aren't you? Yes, yes I am and I'm going to confess that I don't respec for bgs and hope and pray that Megan doesn't appear and smite me for bad form.

What I have discovered so far is that feral and BGs are not a grand love affair - unless of course tanking Drek or Galv in AV is on the cards. Therefore whilst in PVE land I'm having good times tanking or off tanking around the place I am getting my healy kicks in BGs. After playing a hunter for so long I get a kick out of buffing everyone as well as keeping people alive. Even though I'm feral I'm also in possession of a pretty decent healy set and am sitting at just under 14k healing with around 10k mana. I guess that's one good side of druids being such a gear dependent class - I can be feral and still push out some decent heals. The most annoying thing currently is that I'm just too squishy in mostly PVE gear - but that will change as I get more honour and thus more gear. Naturally the first thing I grabbed was my trinket with the 2min cd.

I've found different BGs require different behaviours but consistent to all of them is me running around healing people, entangling warriors and rogues and throwing cyclones on casters and especially healers. One thing that I'm needing to finesse is making sure I don't throw a cyclone on a player who is actually just about to get smacked down and instead making sure I am taking care of the ones who aren't receiving any special *love* from my colleagues.

I've found WSG to be the hardest BG for me by far to date. I'm not confident (or geared) enough to run the flag and am finding it challenging to work out what I'm most useful doing.

Some of my favourite moments in BGs on Seph so far:

In AV jumping from healer to tanky gear and tanking Drek, love that flexibility. Also healing a rogue consistently as we pushed the RH and having him be very grateful and trading me a stack of mage food as thanks.

In WSG, keeping the flag carrier alive so that we could cap and on the other hand being a sneaky kitty and keeping a horde FC pounced and maimed long enough for back up to arrive. Lucky it arrived quickly cos stun locking ain't a kitty ability.

In AB: sneaky node capping and also keeping the melee alive defending nodes.

All said and done in BGs the flexibity of the druid class really gets to shine. As I get better gear and am harder to kill I look forward to being more and more useful. Maybe I'll even give arena a shot. Maybe.


7a said...

Hey, is kitty form at all viable for PVP?


Jezrael said...

In my experience.. not really. I mean Kitty form in PVE is also pretty gimped compared to a rogue and the same holds true for PVP as far as I can tell. That said, the ability to go into kitty form and stealth is very useful but I never spend the whole BG as kitty. If I can pounce/maim an FC then that's good or keep hidden and then pop out to heal that's another useful thing. On the whole though, no, I don't think kitty is viable in PVP except as an added trick up your sleeve.

Anonymous said...

Mmm I cringe every time I spy a kitty out of the corner of my eye.. or worse when it drops out of stealth behind me. Maybe it isn't viable, but it still sends shivers down my spine.

Anonymous said...

I'm in no way PvP-experienced. But at least I managed to get me a Merciless Gladiator's Maul in about 2 weeks doing casual BGs with no other PvP-gear whatsoever (fresh 70 with mostly blue) and in catform 95% of the time. I like sneaking up, get 3 combopoints, use them, switch to bear, stun, howl, switch back to cat ... rinse and repeat.

Anonymous said...

I've had a really good experience at 66 with my feral druid, pounce, faerie fire, mangle, shred shred rip. The key to sucessful pvp is learning how to move behind your opponent, this can only be done reliably if you use your mouse to move instead of your keyboard (which means all your abilities MUST be keybound), run in figure eights around (and through) your opponent, switch to bear and charge if you get distance between you. people who use their keyboard to move WILL always lose to you if you can master this.

Anonymous said...

i disagree that cat druids are gimped. im in pve gear, just starting t5, and i have 43% crit chance and over 3700 ap unbuffed. i raid as a kitty. when pvp is done right, and the other person is in pve gear, you almost cant lose

Jezrael said...

Thank you for your comments everyone! Some good tips here for me to try out in BGs :) As regards the last comment. As I understand it, the issue with kitty DPS in raids is that after a certain point it just doesn't scale as well with gear. I believe the sweet spot is supposed to be T4-T5 but after that the scalability decreases. This is based on the reading I did so I would love to hear this is not so, I do very much enjoy kitty, although I'm needed as OT for my current raid on my druid.

Anonymous said...

I am by no means a pvp-guru of any kind but pvp is my focus. I also have to say that while cat form is much less survivable than rogue, it's really the way to go in BGs. With the exception of warriors I spend almost all my time in cat form.

Even though bear has FC and bash, I find the low CD on maim to be the best way to interrupt a spell as well as keep someone from moving around (giving me time for some shredding).

If you're into feral pvp, check out videos by Kerberus, Chrille, Azoth and (my favorite) Deep. They are very skilled and can teach us all a thing or two.

William said...

For PvE cat form is viable. It provides DPS equal or at least comparable to most rogues, not to mention the LOTP aura is great too.

But in the long run a Druids true strength is the ability to adjust. Especially a Feral or Feral/hybrid druid. Be it PvE; you jump out of cat form and taunt a mob off of a friend in bear form. Or PvP a quick maim in cat form followed by a feral charge+cyclone to shut down their healer. Druids have a lot of control, if you are ready take it.

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