Monday, November 26, 2007

Kiting Basics (from a Kiting Noob)

I have a confession to make. My hunter wasn't 60 before Burning Crusades came out. As such, I don't think he's ever been inside Upper Blackrock Spire which you may know is the primary instance in which hunters learn to kite. Since I spent exactly zero time kiting Drakkasith, I'm usually pretty ill-equipped to kite when it comes up now that I'm 70. So, the caveat here is that everything I say may be dead wrong. It's just things that I do that seem to help in my meager attempts at performing a key hunter skill.

First off, I've very rarely been asked to or suggested kiting in non-heroic instances. Most of the non-heroics allow other methods of crowd controlling the mobs in question where a kite isn't necessary. And since I'm not an expert, I don't try kiting unless there's no other method of dealing with whatever pull makes it necessary.

So, here's the things I do:

  1. Turn on Aspect of the Monkey if the mob is melee based. If the mob is slower than you can run with Aspect of the Cheetah, use that instead. Just make darned sure you don't get hit.
  2. Put a Frost Trap in the mob's path. There isn't much chance that a heroic dungeon mob will be affected, but it can't hurt.
  3. Park your pet as far away as you can and use misdirection to put the mob on your pet. This is almost surely going to result in a dead pet. But, it will buy the rest of the group time. Hopefully enough time to dispatch whatever else is there to necessitate the kite.
  4. Use concussive shot. Again, like the Frost Trap, probably ineffectual, but if it does slow the mob down, all the better.
  5. Use geography. The pathing algorithm for mobs will generally make them follow a real "path" instead of following your daring leap.
  6. If Frost Traps or Concussive shots are slowing the mob at all, use them whenever they become available.
  7. Know where you're running to. Especially on heroics, parties like to skip mobs because the risk is too high from engaging things you don't need to. We all know that heroic mobs hit hard. If you don't need to kill a group of 3, you don't. However, when it comes time to kite, you may need to run through where that group is or find an alternate route. Kiting is a last-ditch attempt for me, so if there are mobs in your kiting path, make your group clear them first. The last thing you want to do is make the last-ditch situation worse by adding 3 or more uncontrolled mobs to an already dicey pull.
  8. Know when you are going to pull aggro off from your misdirected pet. If you park the pet far enough away, it won't take long.
  9. Be ready to care for yourself. Take a potion if you get hit a few times.
  10. Be aware when the kite is over. Be ready to feign death and get the mob back on the party.
  11. Be aware of the path the mob will take. If for some reason you've kited him around another uncleared group, he's probably going to bee-line for your group once you feign. If he goes through the previously navigated uncleared group, he's going to bring them all back to your unsuspecting party.
So there's a list of things I do before a kite. I thought it might also be useful to point out the places I've been asked to kite mobs and how I've found to do it.

Place One: Steamvaults (Heroic or Normal)
The first boss in Steamvaults comes with two elemental adds. They are immune to all forms of crowd control except banishing. Since you can't have a warlock with you in every group, there are a few options. Have the tank get all three mobs and burn down the elemental adds in a pre-determined order or kite the boss. In heroic tanking all three mobs is probably a precursor to a party wipe. Directly out the boss' room is a rock (often with a mineral node on it) with a path on the other side. I park my pet down there near the water, then stand up beside the rock so I can see my pet. Cast misdirect and boogie over to the boss and fire. I get another couple shots in and then run back toward the chamber that leads to the second and third bosses. And hug the wall back towards the entrance of the instance--that's generally the direction we've cleared in. Take special stock in point 11 above. If you haven't cleared on the way in, she may run back through the mobs in the anteroom.

Place Two: Slave Pens (Heroic)
The two naga directly before the hallway leading to the first boss are not controllable. Two mobs hitting a tank in heroic is certain death. Luckily there's a large pump directly off to the right of those mobs (as you look at them). You can park your pet back there and misdirect away. I believe both of those mobs are slowable by frost trap and concussive shot.

Place Three: Underbog (Heroic)
The two guards directly before the first boss again aren't controllable and cannot be separately pulled. Luckily they are up on a platform with a long winding trail leading up (or down). The mobs will follow the path, but are quite quick. Pull (or misdirect) to pet and jump down.

That's all I've been asked to kite and all I know on the subject. Good luck out there.


You wake it, you tank it. said...

Awww, I posted a comment here. Where did it go?!

Anywho, in SP I tend to stun one with my Righteous Hammer and it buys me about seconds and enough time for DPS to really lay in.

In underbog, you basically have to pray the priest has his serious pants on today.

pelides said...

Hopefully these might be of some interest to ya.

Brehm said...

Heh. I stole the idea after I read your post on kiting. I thought you wrote authoritatively. I wrote like a complete noob. But. You know flattery and all.