Blizzard has left us with few options for a PvE gun this tier. It gave us a crafted gun at ilvl 365, but at raid-quality item levels it ultimately decided that the Firelands needed a second crossbow more than a single gun. This leaves us with one ilvl 378 gun in the game, the resilience-clad Ruthless Gladiator’s Rifle (there’s also an ilvl 391 version available to skilled pvpers). Dwarves (whose gun racial outweighs the stat loss to resilience) and those who just prefer the aesthetics of a gun have reason to be interested in this PvP weapon. How might a hunter go about getting it?
The first constraint on acquiring this gun is that it it is purchased with 3400 Conquest Points (CP), a currency that can only be earned in via rated Battlegrounds wins, Arena match wins, Valor conversions and daily unrated BG wins. The second constraint is that, as a weapon, it requires the buyer to earn 7800 Conquest Points via rated BGs or Arena matches in the current season before the item is eligible for sale. Valor conversions count toward the maximum number of CP that you can earn in a week but (as far as I can tell) they do not count toward the 7800 CP threshhold for buying ilvl 378 pvp weapons. Daily BG wins only net 25 CP per win. This effectively leaves us with two primary avenues for getting the gun: Arenas and rated BGs.
The table below should give you a sense of how long it will take to reach 7800 CP. Note that the starting weekly cap for earning CP is 1650 and that all sources of CP count toward this weekly cap. Arenas have a sub-cap at 1350, meaning that only 1350 CP can be earned per week through arenas and that arena hunters desiring to reach the allowed weekly maximum of 1650 will have to turn to other sources of CP. Think of it like the new Valor system for daily random dungeons: random heroics only take you to 490 Valor, necessitating doing raids or troll heroics to get to the weekly max of 980. Winning at least one rated BG is the only way to hit 1650 CP by means that count toward the season total because daily random BG wins max out at 175 per week owing to there only being seven days in the week. Pugging a successful rated BGs is not exactly easy (well, that’s been my experience at least), so you may prefer either committing to a devoted rated BG team or just using the daily randoms to get as close as you can to 1650.
|Counts Toward||CP Per Win||CP per Week||Weeks til 7800|
|Rated BGs||rated BG cap||400||1650||5|
|Daily BG||rated BG cap||25||175||45|
Do keep in mind that if you’re good enough to achieve higher ratings in either rated BGs or Arenas, the amount of CP that you can earn in those formats per week may increase, which in turn might decrease the number of weeks required to get the gun. Arena Junkies has a chart of how rated BG and Arena ratings increase their respective CP caps.
The ilvl 391 gun can be bought if the player meets some stricter requirements. They must have a 2200 rating in 3s, 5s or rated BGs and they must have earned 15700 CP in the current season.
So, we know we need Conquest Points and we know we need a lot of them, farmed over a long stretch of weeks. If you want to give up in despair here, I don’t blame you. But if you’re a stubborn and are not deterred by Blizzard’s intent that you not have a decent gun by anything other than weeks of pain, well, we next might wonder what’s involved in going about getting into the two venues that will get us our CP: rated BGs and Arenas. Euripides and I both wrote about getting into rated PvP last season (here and here, respectively), but a refresher won’t hurt.
Before You Start
Check out some resources on hunter pvp if you’re not very experienced with it.
- Arena Junkies forums’ beginner guide to hunter pvp: Does not include patch 4.2 changes, but, given the near dearth of other resources out there, it’s still one of the best guides.
- WHU pvp guides: Written for season 9 but still worth checking out.
- WoW PvP rankings: You can use this as a gateway to the armories of the highest-performing hunters in the current season.
- Hunters love to write about their class, and the near dearth of resources out there for hunter pvpers says something about the state of hunter pvp.
Get some resilience gear. Without resilience, you die fast. To ensure that you live long enough to learn and get better I would recommend shooting for 3k resilience. You can get resilience gear quickly these days from two primary sources:
- Honor Farming: Honor is surprisingly easy to farm. Its rate of acquisition was literally doubled from the start of the expansion, making it quite easy to obtain even if your faction is on a losing streak. Make sure to take advantage of daily BG wins and weekly Tol Barad wins for the big Honor bonuses. At a bare minimum (and probably as a start), you’ll want buy a PVP trinket with the Honor you gain.
- Crafted PvP Gear: ilvl 358 Bloodthirsty gear is now craftable. It no longer has gem sockets and only has the +400 res set bonus, but it’s still worth considering, especially when it comes to the offset pieces.
Get some of the tools you’ll want. You’ll want to be in Vent or some other form of verbal communication with your team (there’s no time to type in rated PvP). You’ll also want to peruse various pvp addons to get means for viewing dispellable buffs, enemy arena frames, personal debuffs, and cooldown timers. You’ll also want a PvP pet, like a spider or a crab.
When you’re looking for people to PvP with, make sure to find players who want the same things you do. If all you want is to farm CP up to the weekly cap, make sure your partners do too. If you want to have a casual rather than hardcore atmosphere to your team, make sure your teammates do too.
Remember that hunters tend to do better the more players there are. While it’s certainly possible for hunters to win 2s arena matches, you aren’t very likely to reach the highest levels of achievement in that format. Hunters generally tend to do better in 5s and rated BGs.
Get in the right mindset. It’s okay to lose; just try to learn from the experience. Be ready to get nothing material (so to speak) for losing because CP only goes to match winners. Rated PvP is a different game. It’s challenging, it’s intense, and it’ll ask you to use every tool at your disposal (PvP builds character!). As such, it’ll be useful for PvE skills even if you don’t care about PvP directly.
Arenas are surprisingly friendly to casual play and CP farming. I know that sounds wrong, but it’s true. They’re friendly to casuals for a few reasons:
- You can earn CP with only one other player. This makes coordinating your CP farming relatively easy.
- After the system gets a sense for your skill level, it will match you with other teams at your level. So, if you really stink, it’ll start matching you with other teams that also really stink after a while. This almost guarantees some wins for you.
- You can play as many matches as you want.
To start an Arena team, open your pvp window, select the Arena tab and right click on the penant that corresponds to the team size you want (2, 3 or 5 players). In the window that opens you can modify your team colors, name the team, etc. That done, you can start adding players to the team. Once they are both in the team and in a group with you, you can queue for an Arena match under the Conquest tab of the PvP window.
The goal in Arenas is to have all of your opponents die before all of your team dies. All other priorities are subordinate to this one.
Rated BGs are somewhat less friendly to strictly casual play since they require more people. There are also increased chances that you’ll encounter opposing teams outside your skill level (higher or lower) since the number of different opposing teams is smaller than in Arena play. Rated BG teams are arguably easier to set up, though. All you have to do is form a raid of the right size and queue under the Conquest tab; no team creation is required.
The goal of a rated BG is determined by the goal of the BG itself. Killing your opponents is less important than the BG zone objectives, which are roughly the same as in their unrated versions. Note that this means that healers are much more important in rated BGs than in, say, 2s teams.
Questions? Concerns? Please leave a comment below. QQing unconstructively about hunter pvp is discouraged.