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#7783946 May 06, 2013 at 06:15 AM
52 Posts
I am working toward becoming a more competent Warlock in raids/dungeons and I need to find out how to target the enemies more easily.
It seems in battles that the hordes of enemies and the guildies clump together and I can't sort them out to tell who the tanks are focused on. Should I just be dealing with adds until the big bosses? Those pauses greatly decrease my DPS and effectiveness. Does anyone have any advice to help me out?
Also, on short battles is it better to just DoT the enemies or to skip that and just use Haunt and Malefic Grasp? BTW, I'm an Affliction warlock.
Thanks for the help!
One of the most powerful ideas in Lord of the Rings was how its hero defied expectations of scale; even though Frodo was small and unassuming compared to his flashier, taller companions, those qualities didn’t disqualify him from being a hero – they made him the hero. He inspired us because he never needed to pretend to be any bigger than he was.
The same could be said of Gnomes.
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#7784133 May 06, 2013 at 07:03 AM
Ensign
426 Posts
Well, the single best thing you can do to answer your question is to simply ask the raid leader if you have any questions about the fight. They (or someone) should be able to tell you what you should be targeting at any given point in the fight.

But, some tips:

1. Prior to the fight, target the tank. Then right click their picture icon and select "set focus." This will bring up a 2nd icon on your screen of the tank. Then, during the fight, you can simply click on that icon (You'll be targeting the tank at this point), then hit the "F" key on your keyboard. Assuming you have the default keybinds set up, you will now be targeting the tank's target.

2. Another simple trick is once your current target dies, hit the tab button. Again, assuming you have the default keybinds, you will switch to a new target. This is generally known as "tab targeting."

Either of these techniques are pretty useful, especially since many raid bosses now are so large that their hit box is pretty big, keeping you from easily "clicking" a new target.
"You win again gravity!" -Futurama
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#7784242 May 06, 2013 at 07:30 AM
980 Posts
Basically what Fixton said however you should be aware that with Tab Targetting you will occasionally target a mob that hasn't yet been aggroo'd. So you can pull packs of mobs into the group by accident.
"What is this world twisted?" ~LVG
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#7784687 May 06, 2013 at 09:10 AM
10 Posts
I do something similar as Fixton. But I have my focus configured to also show the target of the focus underneath it. I simply have the main tank focused and then I can easily click on whatever target he is targeting all the time.
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#7784718 May 06, 2013 at 09:17 AM
52 Posts
How do you set that up, Potnoodle? I'd like to try it.
One of the reasons I asked this question is that I've gotten in to trouble before by tab targeting. So, I wanted a better way to accurately select the tank's target.
Thanks for these tips! I am anxious to try them.
One of the most powerful ideas in Lord of the Rings was how its hero defied expectations of scale; even though Frodo was small and unassuming compared to his flashier, taller companions, those qualities didn’t disqualify him from being a hero – they made him the hero. He inspired us because he never needed to pretend to be any bigger than he was.
The same could be said of Gnomes.
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#7786469 May 06, 2013 at 03:14 PM
Commanding O...
2103 Posts
I agree Trixie, Tab-Targeting can be dangerous, but used appropriately it has its place in your toolbox. Generally speaking, if you have nothing targeted Tabbing will bring up the closest enemy in your forward arc, then the next closest enemy etc. This can be useful.

Other ways include having Healthbars showing (V key by default) and clicking on the healthbar you want to target.

If you want to make sure youre hitting the Tank's target, right click the Tank's portrait/raid frame, and choose "Set Focus". Then you can easily pick him out in the scrum, and see what his target is and click on it or press your "Assist" key.

But here we start getting into tactics. Now there are certain times where you always want to be targeting the Tank's target. Other times however its not as important, or even counter productive to do so. As a good DPS, you'll want to learn which is which.

For example:
In single target/Boss fights obviously its a no-brainer, youre targeting the the Tank's target unless you need to switch to adds. In which case, make sure you have the Boss "DOT'ed up" and then focus the adds down using either your AOE or single target rotation, whichever makes the most sense.

Now in "cleave fights" where you have 2-3 targets, the Tank's target will be your primary target, and the other one or two will be your secondary targets. Generally its best for warlocks like us to "DOT up" the secondary targets first at the start of the fight, and then lay into the primary target with our single target rotation.

You need to be CAREFUL here though! Because you can easily pull the secondary targets if you have a Fail-Tank who forgets he needs to maintain threat on the other targets too. If you DO accidentally pull off the Tank, let the mob get close and then use your Soul Shatter ability to reduce your aggro, and hopefully he'll turn around. Switch to your secondary targets periodically during the fight to refresh your DOTs. As your primary target falls, choose a new one based on who your tank is currently beating on.
NOTE: Some tanks will obstinately refuse to target anything on non-boss pulls, and just spam their AOE abilities. In situations like this you have to be careful not to pull off the tank with your single target rotation. If you get a high threat warning switch your primary target.

Multi-Target pulls (4+) are challenging for us because our DOT's take time to ramp up and generally the melee cleave down trash pulls like this before we can do any significant damage, and make us look bad. Dont worry about it. Remember: as a warlock, youre a boss-killer, not a trash collector. Burn a Soulshard if you can and use Seed of Corruption, and follow it up with Rain of Fire. Thats about the best you can do.

Hope this helps!

- Forbs
"For Gnomeregan!"
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#7786514 May 06, 2013 at 03:25 PM
10 Posts
There is an option when you rightclick the focus - to move it, etc, to also show target of target.
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#7787188 May 06, 2013 at 06:23 PM
Lieutenant
955 Posts
Generally speaking, if you have nothing targeted Tabbing will bring up the closest enemy in your forward arc, then the next closest enemy etc.


Results may vary. I've had times where I tab target something *in front of me* and it ends up on a mob way over there. Lesson? If you're not sure it's the right target, look at your spells. If the target is out of range, it should show up on your spell buttons. Keep tabbing.

One thing I'd like people to consider: As Raid Leader, I prioritize fun first. I want us to have a good time in any raid. So does 'Dyna (RRN Lead), and Fixton (Co-RL). Having nice dps is, of course, a good thing in any raid. But, don't ever feel pressed to top the charts. Another thing to consider is that's it's not always about having the best dps. It's also about moving - either into something good or out of something bad. It can be easy to get focussed on your rotation and not notice you're standing in the fire. I know, I've done it. =D If a 'good' dps is dead on the floor because they didn't see the bad stuff they were standing in, then they're not that good a dps. Dead dps is no dps.

It seems in battles that the hordes of enemies and the guildies clump together and I can't sort them out to tell who the tanks are focused on. Should I just be dealing with adds until the big bosses? Those pauses greatly decrease my DPS and effectiveness.


The first thing you should ask yourself is: How much do I outlevel the nasty people? If you're a 90 going into say Sunwell, you're going to outlevel the mobs. For that, use your AoE abilities on the trash. Bosses will likely require most of your rotation. Once you get into places that are closer to your level, like Firelands, you'll want to be a bit more picky about what you want to fight with. A good tank will round up all the adds, but might forget to mark a kill order. So, who do you want to kill? Any mob will die if you smack it enough times, but the same mob with a healer takes a bit more to kill because it has it's own healer. So, kill it's healer, then the mob. There are 2 ways to identify which mobs are healers: They have a mana bar, and their name is usually a give-away (it will be something based on healing). So, when that little hellion Jinky goes charging into a mess of mobs without marking a kill order, the best thing for you to do would be Soulburn a Seed of Corruption, then Rain of Fire. While that's happening, mouse over all the mobs to find one that has a mana bar and a healing kind of name. Alternately, click on Jinky's portrait in the ui and then click on her target. Yet another thing you could do if we happen to be in vent is ask for a kill order to be marked.

Also, on short battles is it better to just DoT the enemies or to skip that and just use Haunt and Malefic Grasp?


We're Gnomes, Trixie. All our battles are short (gnome joke). =) What I do in short battles is some AoE and Drain Life. If things get more complicated in a fight, then start selecting a likely candidate to play with.

~ Brix
Make a sincere complement on a really nice mustache, and all of a sudden, she's not your friend anymore. - Marty Feldman.
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#7789032 May 07, 2013 at 05:58 AM
1098 Posts
I do something similar to what Fixton suggested. On all my toons, I pull up the keybindings menu and scroll down til I see 'assist target'. I forget if that is the default one, I want to say no. I then set it to T, which is generally start to attack. What it does for me, is switch from my primary target to what it is targeting. There's been some cases where I've managed to cycle through 3-4 targets, friendly and baddie, before getting to the proper one.

You can set it so that you only see enemy nameplates, that's helped me quite a bit. If you don't mind mods, there's a few that will even spread them out a bit so you can have an easier time selecting then. There's also a mod I use that shows who is targeting what upon mouse over. They're tidyplates and tinytooltip (I think).

And lastly, something I haven't seen anyone else mention, you can use macros. I do this on my healer. You have these possibilities (not complete)

@target, @targettarget, @focus, @focustarget, @mouseover

So lets say, for example, that you're targeting done adds, but you need to refit the boss, and you know the tank is still on it. Tank is the focus target.

/cast [@focustarget, harm] [] corruption

There's lots more options and conditioning you can play with.
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#7789394 May 07, 2013 at 07:21 AM
52 Posts
Lots of great information. I'm copying these replies so I can refer to them more easily.
I'm not good at macros with the exception of very easy things i.e., /whistle, etc. That's something I'll have to look into further.
I can certainly see I haven't used the drop down menus while in raids, but then my experience is very limited.
I appreciate the focus on fun in the dungeons and raids. Most people I've been with consider high DPS the Holy Grail of WoW. So, I have felt very frustrated in trying to learn and cranking out high numbers.
I'll be look into Tidy Plates and see if that helps in sorting targets too.
Forbs, I don't believe I've ever heard of Warlocks as Boss killers and not trash collectors. :D I was doing the DoTing backwards because I did the Boss first then the adds. Shard management is a bit hard for me sometimes as Haunt is listed as our big gun to keep up and on the target. DoT, Haunt, Malefic grasp as filler are the main things (among others as situations change) as I understood it and these are shard users big time unless I manually apply the DoTs.
Lots to learn! I appreciate your time in sharing these pearls of wisdom everyone.
One of the most powerful ideas in Lord of the Rings was how its hero defied expectations of scale; even though Frodo was small and unassuming compared to his flashier, taller companions, those qualities didn’t disqualify him from being a hero – they made him the hero. He inspired us because he never needed to pretend to be any bigger than he was.
The same could be said of Gnomes.
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#7790592 May 07, 2013 at 11:20 AM · Edited 9 years ago
Commanding O...
2103 Posts
Forbs, I don't believe I've ever heard of Warlocks as Boss killers and not trash collectors. I was doing the DoTing backwards because I did the Boss first then the adds.

Well there is no *airquotes* Wrong Way. But the advantage to DOTing up the secondary targets first and then laying into your primary target (the Tank's target) last, is it gives the Tank a few seconds to get a couple of Sunders in and generate a Threat lead on you, so you can unload with your best stuff and not worry about pulling off the Tank.

Shard management is a bit hard for me sometimes as Haunt is listed as our big gun to keep up and on the target. DoT, Haunt, Malefic grasp as filler are the main things (among others as situations change) as I understood it and these are shard users big time unless I manually apply the DoTs.

You need to get into the habit of using Drain Soul when your primary target is below 20% health. It can be difficult sometimes because targets below 20% die VERY quickly. But you need to think of Drain Soul as your "Execute" spell.

When you see that health bar get to 19% you should hear that Mortal Kombat voice in your head commanding you to "FINISH HIM!!" Thats when you reach for your Drain Soul button. At 19% Drain Soul will do double damage as well as make all your DOTs instantly tick for 100%. But more importantly for your Shard management, you'll gain a Shard after it ticks twice, and you'll gain THREE Shards if the target dies while youre draining it.

Using Drain Soul every time your main target is about to die will keep you topped off on Shards, so you can always use your high octane Shard burning spells on the next target.

Lots to learn! I appreciate your time in sharing these pearls of wisdom everyone.

Warlock is a very interesting class, and despite Ghostcrawler's ham-fisted attempts to dumb it down, still has some challenge to it. Sure you can push some buttons, kill some things, and have fun with it.

But if you really want to see what the class is capable of doing, then you have to develop that Warlock mindset. Youre a ruthless spellcaster who wields power so dark and dangerous, that even Arch-Mages dare not touch it! You juggle great white sharks and chainsaws for fun! Someday your perfect concentration and timing will slip, and it will be the end of you, and people will shake their heads and say "I told her so..." But until then, mere mortals will look upon you and tremble!

- Forbs
"For Gnomeregan!"
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#7790656 May 07, 2013 at 11:31 AM
211 Posts
Everyone's got great info for you here, and I highly recommend Tidyplates to help you keep track of mobs, and whether your dots need refreshing.

Brixee's advice on healers is good too; if the mob is constantly getting healed up then it can feel like you're not making much progress. Not to mention using up your mana, and by extension your health, and by extension your own healer's mana. The addon I love for this is Healers Have to Die (or something like that). A lot of people use it for PvP but it works great for PvE too. It puts a big red cross over any healing mob, very easy to see and focus down. It also warns you if a friendly healer is being attacked, so that's kinda cool too.

Obviously guildies aren't going to care whether you're topping the charts, and as Brixee points out, big deeps is not even the most important thing to worry about. But sometimes PUGs will try to pressure you to either perform at uber-leet levels or go home. Don't let them. The most important thing is to have fun, and if other players are sooo worried about someone else's numbers, then they've lost sight of that fact. They need gnomehugs, and possibly to be set to ignore.
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#7791014 May 07, 2013 at 12:50 PM
1098 Posts
There's nothing wrong with wanting to be more efficient, but as others have said, don't let that get in the way of fun.

I really hate the phrase "dumbing down", as there's nothing dumb about warlocks. They were so convoluted, that the only direction they could go was to become more concise. However, if anything, affliction has done a complete revamp of what their playstyle use to be. It's more akin to shadowpriests than, well, even sps are today. Anyway, some tricks to keep in mind.

Use your soul burn: soul swap to dot targets up quickly. That will greatly cut the revamp time considerably. Also, haunt had become a powerful buff, but one that is costly. Instead of trying to keep it on all the time, only cast it when you get certain buffs, like trinkets, encounter buffs, etc. you'll want to keep 1-2 shards on reserve, in case you need some extra burst (haunt), or adds (SB:seed or SB:swap), or any other utility you may suddenly find yourself needing. And lastly, don't be afraid of casting drain soul in the middle of an encounter, if you know you're going to need shards quicker than hoping for a nightfall proc.

Lastly, again if you're fine with Addons, not everyone is, take a look at 'need to know', or any other highly recommended dot tracker. Keeping track of dots is an extremely important aspect of playing a dot class. The easier it is to see when they're going to drop, the more you'll find your dps goes up as their uptime goes up.

Really though, the best thing to do is practice. The more you're familiar with what the class does, the more you'll realize that you can pay attention to more outside events while keeping your damage up.
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#7791720 May 07, 2013 at 03:30 PM
Ensign
426 Posts
If your main goal is to up your DPS, then I would suggest (if you haven't already) go to icy veins, elitist jerks, or one of the myriad of other sites and read their guides/articles/posts about various specs. They will tell you everything from the best talents to choose, the best glyphs, the best gems/enchants, the generally accepted "best" rotation, etc. Then go to wowreforge or ask mr. robot to find out the most efficient way to maximize your reforge for your current spec. (These things do change from time to time...various specs will change their stat priorities from one patch to the next sometimes, or it could be personal preference like with arcane mages more haste vs. more crit or mastery)

If you've done all that, my main tip would be to hit up a practice dummy (single target) until you know your rotation cold. Then use multiple dummies (most places where dummies are at have two or three) and practice a multi-target rotation. Then practice using your CDs, or adding in on-use trinkets, or simulate a burn phase or "execute" rotation (if it's different). Once you know your rotation(s) cold, then you can throw in variant simulations like standing in a fire pool or something like that. You'll find that you will generally be able to pick up right where you left off in your rotation.

I've found that one's situational awareness is greatly increased when "basic" things (like a rotation) are relatively automatic. Then, the fights go much smoother. If you look at some of the best raid progression guilds, they don't go into a new raid, faceroll, and one-shot everything. They have many, many wipefests. But, it's not for a lack of dps/heals/tanking, they know that stuff cold. They are working strategy, getting to know the environment and the encounter. If you're trying to do both at the same time, it can be quite frustrating.

I know when they changed around the warlock rotations in the pre-MOP release, I honestly didn't play my lock much. The stuff I looked at seemed overly complicated to me (I play demonology). But, then I finally practiced it and got it down. And, like it better than the previous rotation we had (even simplified it where we didn't need to soul burn and pet swap mid-fight).

And, if dummies sounds kind of boring, just get in a dungeon group with some friends and have fun, which is what a game is for.
"You win again gravity!" -Futurama
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#7802211 May 09, 2013 at 06:34 PM
52 Posts
OK. I've added some addons made some macros and noted more info that has been given. I'm going to go work out on the target dummies some too.
I do think I know my rotation pretty well, but it's the targeting and sensory overload aspect of being in a new raid environment that's more my problem I think.
I agree things die very fast especially in retro raid so shard management is harder. I can't wait to see how using these techniques in a regular dungeon or raid is going to work.
Thanks again for underscoring the fun aspect. I really don't want to just be a DPS meter junkie, but that's been where eliteist jerks (they give me such a headache and anxiety attacks :)) and other guilds previous to this one have led me.
It's why I'm so raid/dungeon phobic. But, I believe things are getting better thanks to so many supportive guildmates in G4. I just love this guild!! You are all the best.
One of the most powerful ideas in Lord of the Rings was how its hero defied expectations of scale; even though Frodo was small and unassuming compared to his flashier, taller companions, those qualities didn’t disqualify him from being a hero – they made him the hero. He inspired us because he never needed to pretend to be any bigger than he was.
The same could be said of Gnomes.
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#7802346 May 09, 2013 at 07:17 PM
980 Posts
For me the only DPS meter that matters is this

Did the boss die? and if so Did I stay alive?

"What is this world twisted?" ~LVG
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