Diamonds and Rust

January 31, 2008 at 7:49 pm (Arena, Dee Pee Ess, General Hunter Knowledge, Survival)

Gotta love that Baez factor, even if I do like the Priest version better.

Anyways, today’s topic – Gems. Jewels. Baubles. The shiny. Bling. If you’ve got sockets, you want those positively gleaming with the best gems you can find.

But what gems are right for YOU?

Well, let’s work that out.

Generally, you want to stack your sockets with the gems that’ll do the most. Every now and then, it helps to go for socket bonuses, but if you’d benefit more from getting a ton of agility vs., say, stamina and a +3 stamina boost, then you’ve answered your own question. Go for Agility, no arguments.

For example, if you are a Hunter, and you have a Stalker’s Helm of Second Sight, that bad boy should be loaded up with Agility gems. It should be redder than a bunch of drunken Commies at Chinese New Year.

But say, you’re like me, and you opted to get yo’ self some welfare epics, and you find yourself sitting on a nice, shiny Gladiator’s Chain Helm.

It has officially become trickier, as you now have a Red gem slot, and a Meta gem slot.

Hmm… What to put there?

Track recommends the following :

For PVE – don’t care what kind of hunter you are –

Relentless Earthstorm Diamond

Thundering Skyfire Diamond

For PVP – Once again, don’t care what kind of hunter you are –

Powerful Earthstorm Diamond

Enigmatic Skyfire Diamond

Relentless Earthstorm, as you can see, is not only a major boost to your Agility, but gives you the benefit of a +3% Critical Damage bonus. Apparently, this is calculated AFTER your talents and critical damage; so really, it’s just gravy. You can more than make up the difference of a lost point in Mortal Shots with this puppy.

Thundering Skyfire is great for anybody with a high attack speed and looking to maximize their DPS with +haste.

A good example would be a Troll Hunter, who can toss up Bloodlust every now and then, on top of Rapid Fire, and The Hourglass of the Unraveller (if you happen to be so lucky).

To maximize on that, you’d have to be Beastmastery, for the 20% speed increase from Cobra Reflexes. You’d be an arrow-shooting gatling gun. Kind of like this, but with arrows.

Keep in mind two things.

One, there’s a 40 second cooldown on the proc. You basically get a 3% chance on hit, which, according to ElitistJerks, works out to about one proc a minute. Not too shabby, but not constant.

The second thing?

Your shot rotation will be borked. You’ll be getting off Auto Shots faster than the global cooldown (which is one and a half seconds, that’s 1.5 for those of you who think A&S graduates stop using numbers after college) can reset. So to maximize the benefits, you’ve got to shoot nothing but normal, un-special bullets.

The Powerful Earthstorm is a sizeable +18 stamina, but the real benefit lies in the 5% Stun Resist. Any chance to resist Stuns automatically puts you a cut above the competition, and gives you a chance to avoid using that PVP insignia to put that rogue in their place.

Enigmatic Skyfire, combined with a Surefooted boot enchant and the Survival skill of the same name, is ridiculous. RI-DICULOUS.

You can max out around 25% resist to traps and snares.
Allow me to re-state that. TWENTY-FIVE PERCENT.

That means one out of every four Hunter traps, one out of every four Druid roots, one out of every four Frost Novas, one out of every four other things that could snap you up, will be null and void.

Pretty effing sweet, eh?

But these amazing bonuses, much like late-night telemarketing selling exercise tapes and the most technologically advanced hokum on the planet, have a cost that is not directly apparent if you are new to them, and drawn in simply by the allure of all things shiny and orderable over the phone.

That is, you must fulfill the requirements of the gem before you get its powers.

Captain Planet-style.

For example, I spent a good five minutes pestering guild chat with questions as to why I didn’t immediately get 12 agility for my head gear.

Not a moment later did I get the response, “Track, what does it say right below the gem’s bonuses?”

“Two Red Gems required. I’ve got the red gems, got more than enough, why the hell ain’t it working?”

“Track, there’s some grayed out stuff too, isn’t there?”

“Ayep, two yellow and two blue gems…. Wait, I need those too, don’t I.”


So, research the requirements. If you need to fill a “More X than Y” requirement, FYI, it’s a required difference of 2 gems. And don’t be afraid to use purple, green, or orange gems. Those little babies are socket savers, let me tell YOU; but the best part is, they count towards both totals.

Basically, here’s the deal – don’t waste your time on regular +4’s you can get off the NPC vendors. +6 stat gems are readily available on the cheep-cheep from Auction House-trolling jewelcrafters, and most of the desirable ones are easy to find.

Also, if you want to save some ducats, buy the ore the particular cut is farmed from and ask a jeweler to do the cut for you. Tip in proportion to cost; 20% is usually a good tip, if it’s a hard-to-find cut (like any of the Earthstorm or Skyfire cuts), tip a little higher.

+8’s gets you into pricey territory, as they’re uncommon / rare, so just go for mid-level gems and you should be OK to start with before you get into raiding / PVP/ ERP.Also, grind that Consortium rep. There’s a good +Agility dagger to be had, and the higher rank you are, the bigger tithe you get paid as a member at the beginning of each month, and they send you some pretty nice jewels.

But, on the whole, you know what kind of sockets you have, and you now know what kind of gems you’ll need to fill them. It’s up to you to do a little homework of your own.

(What kind of teacher would I be if I didn’t let you learn by doing?)

-Track doesn’t have a grill, but he DID ice out his horns.


1 Comment

  1. Pike said,


    I’ve been wondering what sort of gems to put in that helmet >.>

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