March 12, 2015

Pet Focus: Bone Serpent
I got this pet yesterday and tried to use it as a more powerful, healthier Macabre Marionette. It worked out okay, but I don’t feel that I got 15k gold worth of fun out of. I was hesitant to use the darkness build because, well, I hate darkness teams because of the misses. I realized that a partial solution to this is to always run with an elemental or to use an accuracy increasing move. Before I get into these teams let’s look at the available moves for the Bone Serpent.

Slot 1: Bone Barrage or Consume
Even if I wasn’t planning on using the Bone Serpent for a darkness team I would still choose Bone Barrage over Consume. The main reason why is because it will take down that pesky Decoy.

Slot 2: Call Darkness or Death and Decay
I love Death and Decay. Nine rounds of a field effect that has synergy with Wild Magic, Black Claw, Foreboding Curse, Touch Of The Animus, Plagued Blood, etc. However, today I’m trying to branch out and use Call Darkness.

Slot 3: Lift-Off or Nocturnal Strike
It just seems silly to not take Nocturnal Strike (which has its accuracy increased in darkness). I will really miss Lift-Off, though. About three weeks or a month ago I started facing a lot of Pandaren Water Spirit/ Howl Bomb teams. These make me laugh and want to shout “this isn’t PvE”, unless I don’t have any avoidance.

Available Breeds:
H/H 1644/309/227
P/S 1319/338/257
S/S 1319/309/292
B/B 1400/325/244

I’m going to use the H/H for the security of the extra health, plus 309 power isn’t too shabby. I think that all breeds (even the B/B) could be useful, with the P/S being the most powerful. I got the P/S from the bag but I chose to spend the gold on the H/H so apparently I feel strongly about it. Come to think of it, that was because I had a TOTA team in mind; later I’ll try out the P/S with Call Darkness. Most folks say that speed is useless on an undead pet but if you can take out an enemy pet before it forces your immortal round then it isn’t so useless. That’s a very specific situation though, so I understand why you would want your stats somewhere else besides speed, thus making the S/S less appealing.

As I mentioned above I’m going to use many elementals since they will ignore the accuracy debuff from darkness. I may try a few Nimbus teams as well to give my team an accuracy buff.

Team 1: Bloodstains
H/H Bone Serpent (Bone Barrage, Call Darkness, Nocturnal Strike)
P/S Ominous Flame (Spiritfire Bolt, Nimbus, Foreboding Curse)
P/S Spectral Tiger Cub (Rend, Spectral Strike, Leap)

Nimbus always seems like a good idea, but frankly it has a clunky feeling to it. After what I said earlier about avoidance I’m tempted to take Evanescence instead of Spectral Strike. That might also fake some people out since on a darkness team one would expect Spectral Strike. I… just… can’t …resist. The big damage, that is.

Battle 1
vs. Anubisath Idol, Pandaren Monk, Unborn Val’kyr
031215ADamn I barely won this. Idols have been brought down a notch in WoD but the smelly dog face is still a super villain to me. Spectral Strike worked out well, it did most of the damage against the idol, with two connecting for a total of 1300 damage. One was in darkness and the other one was a 70% (50% + 20% from Nimbus) risk that I had to take. Overall this team doesn’t seem too great, let me try again.

Team 2: Speed Kills
H/H Bone Serpent (Bone Barrage, Call Darkness, Nocturnal Strike)
H/S Ashwing Moth (Alpha Strike, Nimbus, Most Dust)
S/S Nightshade Sproutling (Lash, Call Darkness, Blinding Poison)

/Jedi hand wave “I’m totally not using Most Dust”. Crap, that doesn’t work over the internet. I chose the moth for Nimbus then chose Moth Dust because the alternative Moth Balls didn’t seem like a good choice. If Moth Dust gives me a win I will admit my noobiness.

Battle 2
vs. Tranquil Mechanical Yeti, Darkmoon Tonk, Voodoo Figurine
031215BDamn you moth! This was another close victory for me, but only because the Nightshade Hatchling countered the mechs so well. The stupid moth was worthless. I forgot that when moths don’t hit the sleep they aren’t that good. The Nimbus may or may not have helped the favorable outcome. I think I’m done with Nimbus for now. I’ll stick with an elemental to make sure I have one pet that won’t miss. You know, I mentioned that I didn’t want Moth Balls but it may have been useful after my moth lost the flying racial. It could help the moth stay faster and get in the extra hit from Alpha Strike. Maybe next time.

Oh, speaking of the Voodoo Figurine, the other day while people were making mom jokes in trade I joined in with: “Your mom is so bad at pet battles that she can’t beat Ashiel with a Voodoo Figurine”. Crickets.

Team 3: Fast Cars
H/H Bone Serpent (Bone Barrage, Call Darkness, Nocturnal Strike)
H/S Spectral Porcupette (Powerball, Spectral Strike, Illusionary Barrier)
S/S Nightshade Sproutling (Lash, Call Darkness, Blinding Poison)

My favorite thing about this team is the fact that Bone Barrage will take down my own Illusionary Barrier. What? I normally hate Illusionary Barrier because it stays up forever if you let it. If it isn’t beneficial for either battler sometimes a stalemate ensues, with both people passing repeatedly. Not this way; if Bone Barrage is up then I can cast Illusionary Barrier to block the incoming attack from my opponent, then the barrage takes it down.

Battle 3
vs. Emerald Turtle, Dragonbone Hatchling, Ash Lizard
031215DThis reminds me of the first MMORPG I ever played, a Korean game called ROSE online. There was only one crafting class, called a dealer. By choosing crafting skills you lost out on offensive skills. Whenever I went into the PvP area (maybe it was called training grounds?) with my dealer my guildies would always comment “you got a lot of guts coming in here”. That’s sort of how I felt when I saw this team. The P/P Dragonbone Hatchling is a legit PvP pet, but not the other two. It takes a lot of guts to queue with an Ash Lizard. Okay, that analogy sucked worse than my mom joke. The truth is it was a boring battle with not much to report. The Shell Shield blocked my Bone Barrage, that’s about all that went well for my opponent.

Team 4: Cheap Thrills
H/H Bone Serpent (Bone Barrage, Call Darkness, Nocturnal Strike)
P/S Swamplight Firefly (Alpha Strike, Lift-Off, Nimbus)
S/S Nightshade Sproutling (Lash, Call Darkness, Blinding Poison)

Nimbus again? I thought I was over that. I am really tempted to use Poison Lash and Puncture wound on the elemental and flyer, respectively, but that seems too complicated. Sometimes simple is better.

Battle 4
vs. Emerald Turtle, Nexus Whelpling, Panther Cub
031215EThe Nightshade Sproutling ended up saving the day by taking out both the Nexus Whelpling and the Panther Cub at the end of the battle. I did have to swap the firefly in to eat the buffed attack from Prowl. Nocturnal Strike put a hurt on that turtle. You know, I have tried the Emerald Turtle before because that 1969 health looks so damn impressive. Unfortunately, I never got it to work out. If I’m feeling masochistic maybe it’ll be the next POTM. Why would I do that to myself?

Team 5: Rich Girls
H/H Bone Serpent (Bone Barrage, Call Darkness, Nocturnal Strike)
P/P Junglebeak (Peck, Rain Dance, Nocturnal Strike)
S/S Nightshade Sproutling (Lash, Call Darkness, Blinding Poison)

If I’m going to use a bird then I might as well go for the top of the line. Plus, I’m always a sucker for triple pure breed team. It just looks so balanced.

Battle 5
vs. Wretched Servant, Corefire Imp, Fiendish Imp
031215FThose falling bones destroyed this triple humanoid team. As if that wasn’t bad enough I kept my Junglebeak in when I knew that a Nether Gate was coming… miss. Imp rage! Oh yeah, one of the Rain Dance buffed Nocturnal Strikes crit for 1059 damage. Although this is only the first battle I think this team has the potential to be good in the long term. Hmm, I didn’t want to get locked into a duo with the Nightshade Sproutling so I think I’ll go away from it, even though it’s doing so well.

Team 6: Fine Wine
H/H Bone Serpent (Bone Barrage, Call Darkness, Nocturnal Strike)
P/P Junglebeak (Peck, Rain Dance, Nocturnal Strike)
S/S Frostfur Rat (Flurry, Crouch, Call Darkness)

No elemental. I’m scared of missing with Flurry.

Battle 6
vs. Crazy Carrot, Scourged Whelping, Spawn Of G’Nathus
031215GThe bad news was that the Spawn Of G’Nathus rooted my Bone Serpent so that it was going to be skill locked (everything was on CD) and it couldn’t swap. The good news was before that happened the aquatic stayed in for the Nocturnal Strike. It died. The rat did indeed miss a Flurry. More good news, because Flurry is a special type of multi-attack (it’s coded differently) it missed the first attack but hit the next two against the Crazy Carrot towards the end of the battle. I almost made the mistake of casting Nocturnal Strike as the kill shot against the elemental, but an alarm went off that told me not to, phew. I cast Rain Dance instead and won the battle. I think that means it’s time to quit.

I don’t know if anyone has noticed but I’ve been winning a lot more than I was at the beginning of WoD. Part of the reason is that AoE teams have pretty much disappeared from my meta, which makes me think that there was some sort of shift in the meta again. It’s all anecdotal theory of course, it’s always possible that those AoE spamming players quit after 1000 wins or that I just don’t run into them anymore. It sure seems like a different meta. I’ll happily keep up my high win rate.

4 Responses to March 12, 2015

  1. Liwei says:

    Your comment about the moth made me wonder why Moth Balls is such a spotty move. Would it really be that bad to allow accuracy boosting moves to work on all of the shots instead of just the first one, I wonder?

    • Larkspur says:

      I’m pretty sure that’s why it was nerfed–because adding an accuracy boost made it do obscene damage.

  2. Michael says:

    I’ve put together a team of 2 S/S crows and an H/H bone serpent… Ok fun to play and hits like a truck :-)

  3. Noel says:

    So I made a team with a P/P Nightshade Sproutling as I don’t have an S/S…called it “Not so rich girls” :) Pretty fun! Had to change Lash to Poison Lash because of speed but all in all good team!

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