Friday, June 6, 2008

[ Unveiling Druids ] :: The Hurricane Pull

The Hurricane Pull

Another option for three and more tank targets (such as the pull at the top of the ramp in Ramparts) is a Hurricane pull.

Yes, I did say Hurricane pulling. It's a spell I dearly adore, and I am always quite shocked when I hear that some druids don't even know what that spell is! (I've had to explain that spell and where to find it to a druid before.)
Whether you do know or don't know (and just can't be bothered with hovering over the link), here's what Hurricane does:
Creates a violent storm in the target area causing 206 Nature damage to enemies every 1 sec, and increasing the time between attacks by 25%. Lasts 10 sec. Druid must channel to maintain the spell.
Now, yes, it does cost almost 2K mana (being 1905), but hey. You're a bear. You don't really need all of that mana anyway. Most bears average about 5.3K mana, depending on gear. (I can assure you that most of you, if not all of you, can afford to use this spell and switch back into bear form without mana issues.)

Why Hurricane Pulling?
You are standing in front of a group of mobs. The party's CC either doesn't work on them, the ratio of mobs to CC is greater, or it's just an AoE pull. Whatever the reason, don't panic. You -have- an AoE, and one that will help you get aggro in a snap and help you hold it for a while before (situation depending) your AoEers enjoy themselves a little too much.

Example pulls: The mana worms in both the Curator's room (though I really don't suggest you stand around for more than one blast especially if it's one of the later pulls in the room) and the ones in front of Vexallus (the second boss in Magister's Terrance). The pull at the top of the ramp in Ramparts. Pulls in Shattered Halls. Any situation with lots of mobs. Take your pick.

How to Hurricane Pull
Before I cover this pull, there are some notes I would like to remind one.
One: Mark the targets. Even if it's an AoE group, there are classes that can't AoE, and would like to know what to kill first. (Along with marking them, making sure that everyone knows the kill order.)
Two: Let your healer(s) know that you will be AoE pulling, so they can be ready to pull off some bigger heals to start with in case you don't manage to make it into bear form in time. And your CC, too, so they won't be insulted if they do their jobs right away and it breaks due to your cast.
Three: If there are casters in the group, the pull works a lot better if you stand right next to a spot of LoS, cast it, and then move around the spot of LoS afterwards. Beats having them cast at you until they run out of mana / everyone, including you, finishes killing all of the melee mobs and going to them. This way, you can swipe at them when they get to you, or it'll pull the mobs closer to make it easier for CC such as sheeps/sleeps/banishes/and even seduce to do their work.
Four: Have your main target selected. It's just easier for you to start tanking right away if you have them selected before you pull, rather than trying to find them as they're running for you/standing in front of you hitting you.

Now, none of these are necessary, but it's rather nice and makes it easier for pulling and for your group.

Step One: Test Out Your Template
Because Hurricane is an AoE (similar to Blizzard for a mage), there is a template given when you hit the button. It will rain chaos on those certain points -- try to position the template in a place where the mobs will be hit at least twice (I, personally, like to mark my off-tanking mobs closest to me, and have them in my template. When I pull, they will run through the template, being hit two or three times before leaving, and everyone else will come through it as well). If you have CC up (such as Sap), be careful to position the Hurricane *away* from it. It'll make your rogue thankful. (This is made easier by having the sap target (which, for me, would be a star) at the edge of the group, away from where you are positioning your template.)

Step Two: Cast Barkskin
This really can be step one as long as you feel no need to eye out the template -- I put step one where it is due to the fact that there's a time limit and a cooldown on it. I personally like to do this after eying it out as to not burn the twelve seconds all the way through while positioning.
The druid's skin becomes as tough as bark. All damage taken is reduced by 20%. While protected, damaging attacks will not cause spellcasting delays. This spell is usable while stunned, frozen, incapacitated, feared or asleep. Lasts 12 sec.

Using this is always nice, due to the damage reduction on it (which makes the healers happy, for sure), and... well. If one of the bad guys gets to you before everyone else gets at least hit by the hurricane, you can stand a hit or two.

Step Three: Hurricane Away!
Again, watch the pre-existing CC. (Other CC may be applied after you drop into bear form/the CC target has passed the hurricane so that you have initial aggro on it when it breaks.) Put the template where you had positioned it and let it go.

Four: Go Bear Before They Hurt You Too Much
Hard to elaborate on this one. As you're tanking three or more mobs, common instinct should tell you to drop into bear before all of them starts hitting on you seriously (and no, not in a good way either -- this way is painful, the other might just be embarrassing for them). You've only got so much health, and you're a lot harder of a target to hit (how, with a massive rear, I don't know... but I suppose it's better than a shiny shield) while in bear, so get into it!

There you have it. The basic hurricane pull. It's not at all difficult, and it will allow you to get initial aggro on many things so that, even if you aren't on top of your game, you don't have to worry nearly as much about that mob (or few) deciding that it likes your healer more because you haven't hit it enough.

Good luck tanking!

[[ Picture provided by Tiggerman, who is utterly amazing and who I am a fan of. here.]]

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