…and not just any Beast Master, but Garxz, one of the top ranked Hunter PvP’ers in all of WoW. His 3v3 team is currently ranked just shy of 3k, and at the time of this post, Garxz is holding down the #3 slot on the ArenaJunkies hunter class leaderboard. Did I mention #3, as in #3 in the world…
Yeah, I know… pretty impressive.
For starters, I have to thank Kazador of Emberstorm for suggesting I contact Garxz. Kaz has been a regular here at The Lodge for the past few years, as well as a hunter PvP enthusiast and all-around devotee of the class. Kaz discovered Garxz when doing some online searches for the top hunters in the world.
Anyway… Kaz sent me an email a few weeks back…
I was looking up top hunters today, and stumbled across the top BM PVP hunter in the world, currently at just under 3K rating. This player must be your long lost twin. Hugely successful in BM PVP, and clearly has a thing for taming rares, especially spirit beasts. And named Gar. Weird.
Anyway, seems to be a very cool person, active on forums, etc. I’d strongly suggest you get a hold of this person, and interview them. BM macros, strategy, etc. I’d love to see you lead the community in a good discussion of BM PVP, with the best there is.
I hope you can tackle this project!
Well, tackle it I did!
I sent Garxz a message to his ArenaJunkies profile, asking if he’d be kind enough to share a bit of hunter PvP wisdom with all of the nice folks here at The Lodge. He quickly and most graciously replied, saying, “sure! I’m up for an interview”. 🙂
For convenience sake, I chose to throw together an email Q&A to which he could reply at his leisure. The interview consisted of questions that I compiled from your comments to this post, as well as a few questions of my own.
Here’s the interview…
Garwulf: How long have you been playing a hunter, and why do you think hunters are so much more fantastic than all of the other classes in World of Warcraft? 😉
Garxz: I have been playing hunter since classic, and I like how hunter is unique from all casters and melee classes, also being a pet class.
Garwulf: You’re known for being one of the top rated Beast Mastery hunters in the world. Is Beast Mastery your favorite spec for PvP?
Garxz: Yes it is. In season 8 I used to play MM when I first started PvPing at a high level, but when Cataclysm was released it felt so strange playing MM. I lvled as BM and ended up PvPing as BM as I didn’t like Survival or MM. Also, I played BM a lot in Classic, TBC and in WOTLK.
Garwulf: If another hunter asked you what it takes to be successful in arena, what would you tell them? I’m talking about the basics… i.e., team composition, knowledge of your class, talents, gear, communication with teammates, etc… Hunters are arguably the least ‘arena friendly’ class, so what things would you stress when trying to mentor other hunters who wish to try and succeed in arena?
Garxz: You need to take one step at a time and progress, find the right arena partners, and practice a lot. Making mistakes as a hunter is not very forgiving, and you need a decent combo and good partners to try and get a high rating.
Garwulf: Does your build, gear and play style for Rated Battlegrounds differ from what you typically run with in arena?
Garxz: No. I use the same build, gear and play style in arena.
Garwulf: What are your favorite PvP pets, and does your pet choice differ depending upon whether you’re competing in BG’s or arena?
Garxz: In arena and rated battlegrounds I use Spirit Beast, but if I can save our tank by using a Silithid for the crit immunity buff (i.e., Roar of Sacrifice) I will swap pet.
Garwulf: I have a lot of macros that I use for PvP and I know that you do as well. Would you mind sharing some of the macros that you find useful as a top arena hunter?
Garxz: From my post in the EU Forums. I posted my macros there earlier because everyone kept asking me about macros 😀
Garxz PvP Hunter Macros
#showtooltip Scatter Shot /cast [target=focus,exists][harm] Scatter Shot
#showtooltip Kill Shot /cancelaura Hand of Protection /cancelaura Deterrence /cast Kill Shot /use 10 /use Blood Fury
#showtooltip Feign Death /stopcasting /stopcasting /cast Feign Death
#showtooltip Flare /use !Flare
#showtooltip Cobra Shot /cast Focus Fire /cast Cobra Shot
#showtooltip Master's Call /use [@mouseover,help][@player] Master's Call /use 6
#showtooltip Master's Call /cast [target=Thehatex] Master's Call
#showtooltip Bestial Wrath /stopcasting /stopcasting /cast Bestial Wrath /cast Focus Fire /use Ruthless Gladiator's Badge of Conquest /cast Call of the Wild /cast Roar of Recovery /use Unsolvable Riddle
#showtooltip Roar of Sacrifice /cast Ancient Hysteria /use [@mouseover,help][@player] Spirit Mend /use [@mouseover,help][@player] Roar of Sacrifice
#showtooltip Freezing Trap /cast !Freezing Trap /cast [target=pettarget] Growl
#showtooltip Aspect of the Fox /cast !Aspect of the Fox
#showtooltip Aspect of the Hawk /cast !Aspect of the Hawk
#showtooltip Disengage /cast Disengage /use 15
#showtooltip Tranquilizing Shot /cast [target=focus] Tranquilizing Shot
/stopcasting /stopcasting /cast Deterrence /use item:58489 /use item:64361 /use item:64881 /use item:28788 /use item:44430 /use item:64383 /use item:64358 /use [target=Garxz] the heartbreaker /use item:64399 /use item:63359
Failed a bit on having Bestial Wrath and Focus Fire in same earlier but everyone makes mistakes ^^.
If you’re not sure what a macro is, please visit my hunter macros page. If you’re familiar with macros but have some questions concerning Garxz’s Hunter PvP Macros, then post them in the comments section below. Either Garxz or myself will try and assist you.
Garwulf: What specific addons do you use for PvP and why..?
- Gladius, allowing me to select focus and target my enemies.
- LoseControl displays the icon of CC effects on me, focus, and target.
- Icicle showing enemy cooldowns.
- SpellAlerter, showing important spells being cast. Mine isn’t working atm, but it isn’t that important for me — I have good control of what is going on without it.
Garwulf: Considering the fast pace of PvP and the need for split-second timing, I imagine you use a lot of keybindings for your various abilities. Can you give us an idea of how you have your keyboard (and perhaps mouse) set up? I’m not necessarily looking for a complete mapping of all your abilities (however, if you want to share all of your keybindings then that’d be awesome), but how do you have some of the more frequently used and important abilities assigned?
Garxz: Well I can share that my pinky finger isn’t in that good condition, so I do not tend to use shift a lot, except for my aspects (1-4) and a few more keybindings.
- I use F1-F6
- Ctrl – Q W E R A S D F G Tab |
- F V G |
Garwulf: As a general rule, do you bother applying Hunter’s Mark in arena? What about Serpent Sting?
Garxz: I use Serpent sting a lot in arena, however I mostly use Hunter’s Mark to cover traps from being dispelled, or unless I have extra time to apply it.
Garwulf: How much do you utilize Tranquilizing Shot, and what are the buffs you’re always sure to try and knock off? Do you use any sort of addon to monitor dispellable debuffs?
Garwulf: I noticed that you’ve talented both Focus Fire and Killing Streak – two talents that I ignore. I’ve gone into the reasons for that in this post (http://huntsmanslodge.com/9812/getting-battle-ready-as-a-beast-master-bm-pvp-talents-and-glyphs/). However, since you’re obviously more of an accomplished PvP’er than I am, I’d like to learn why these two talents are useful in PvP. Also, I am curious as to why you macro Focus Fire with Cobra Shot? Why not manually activate it when needed, or when it’s fully buffed at 5 stacks?
Garxz: Focus Fire allows me to get those Cobra Shots off more easily, and it helps a lot versus classes that slow my casting speed. Also, Focus Fire will most of the time be at 5 stacks, but also grants my pet focus. I find Killing Streak a lot more useful than having 10 more focus — it doesn’t give me anything to have 10 more focus if I’m always below 100 anyway.
Garwulf: I’m well aware that most of the top arena players ‘practice incessantly’ in order to learn how to counter other classes – you being no exception (over 5.5K duels, with a 4-1 win ratio). So now… The Million Dollar Question that everyone wants the answer to… What are some basic strategies – as a Beast Master – that you employ when dealing with various classes 1v1?
Garxz: You want distance or LoS. And you either need to outlast them, trade cd’s or burst them down.
Shadow Priests, if they Dispersion before you pop your cd’s you win, you can burst him down with everything. If he fears your pet you should Bestial Wrath, keep range and avoid letting him do damage, buying as much time as you can. I usually open with Scatter -> Ice Trap, and then a few Tranquilizing Shots to clean him.
Against good mages you need to Bestial Wrath before the Deep Freeze, to break pet CC, but that is rare, you should save it for Deep if you can. Keep range, and dispel in opener if you get the Scatter -> Ice trap. If he blocks you can Cobra Shot the pet for focus while getting more range. Avoid Shatters with Feign Death and Deterrence.
Garwulf: Considering the amount of discussion that’s taking place concerning ways to improve upon the hunter class (along with the other 9 support classes), what suggestions would you make to improve the class as a whole? And specifically, what could be done to make Beast Mastery a more viable PvP spec? I know that last question may sound a little facetious, given that you’ve nearly broken 3K rating as a Beast Master, but many players struggle to make the spec work in a PvP setting.
Garxz: I would like to see BM get an interrupt. They could also make Kill Command a bit less clunky.
Garwulf: Most Hunters agree that Survival is broken at the moment and not as viable a PvP spec as either BM or MM. What do you think Blizzard could do to make the spec competitive again?
Garxz: Tricky question, but we need some more reliable talents for Survival, and maybe some sort of dispel protection. The funny thing about Survival is that it doesn’t have any survival what so ever.
Garwulf: Alright… well I think I’ve hit you with enough questions for today, so I’m going to wrap this up. I truly appreciate you taking the time to share some of your PvP hunter wisdom with all of us here at HuntsmansLodge.com, especially those of us that love our big red pets.
In closing, is there anything else you’d like to add, e.g., YouTube channel plug, player shout outs, etc..?
Garxz: http://www.youtube.com/Neorxzz is my YouTube channel, sometimes I post new videos — mostly WoW related or random stuff that I get recorded.
And a big shout-out to one of the best hunters out there, Braindeadly. <3
So there ya have it folks… some hunter PvP insight from one of the best there is. 🙂
Now I know a few of you may be wanting more answers, further explanation, or a proper 1v1 strategy vs a Feral Druid, so I’ve asked Garxz to stop by and address some of the visitor comments, should he be so inclined.
I have a feeling he will, so ask away…