Kiting with lag

17 10 2008
Babantes basic black look.

Babantes basic black look.

Babaente and Tireen were back at NW Mine in Lush Fields this past Thursday evening and had a very productive kiting session.  Babaente is learning a few new things about kiting she would like to pass along.  If you have ever tried kiting, you know that kiting success is highly dependent on two things, staying ahead of the kite and being able to kill the kite in the fastest way possible, without running out of nano.  Another potential problem is kite stragglers or dropouts that remain in the area.

If you have ever dual logged, you know that the relative positions of your character and any mobs in the vicinity is not always perfectly up to date.    You may have also noticed that the more mobs that are on screen visually, the harder your computer has to work to keep up with refreshing the display and the location of each mob.   If you have a fairly new computer this may not be a problem, but for many of us, with computers that are more than a few years old, as the number of mobs on the screen increases, playing becomes slower and more like a slide show.

If you have ever kited, also you will know that you may start seeing your health decrease for no visible reason when a kite becomes spread out and dispersed and you are trying to view it in a zoomed out 3rd person view.    Babaente believes what is happening is that dispersed mobs you pass by are hitting you, but your display is not showing them accurately due to lag.

Thursday evening Babaente tried some experiments and has come to several conclusions related to this.  You can maximize you likelihood of  not getting hit by laggards and dropouts by most obviously keeping your kite to a size that you can manage and keep together.  Another action that seems to work well for Babaente at least, is stop using a greatly zoomed out view, and instead use one that is behind and above your toon, and zoomed out just a little ways. She has it zoomed so that she does not see the mobs unless they are within a few feet of her.  This proves useful in that as long as she can’t see them, she knows they are a safe distance behind her, if she sees them, its not time to stop.  The main benefit though, is the framerate stays crisp and smooth, since your computer has to display fewer moving mobs.

Do not rely on the screen to keep track of the mobs in the kite, use the mini-map for that.  Then learn how to measure of how many paces, or seconds or any measure you like  for your toon to run between nuke casting stops.

Babaente has been kiting using the Playful Cub morph, so she has been counting off the lopping strides of her big cat form.  While the kite is new and has most of its health, she counts off 7 hops of her cat form before stopping to cast.  She found this works well and preserves her nano.  She found that stopping more frequently, every 6 hops, while it killed the kite faster, would sometimes put her nano use at a greater rate than her Humidity Extractor buffed nano delta replenishes it.  At 7 steps per cast, it seems to be about even with her nano replenishment.    When the kite is near the end, and the remaining mobs are down to less than 25% health, she may switch to casting once every 6 hops.

She went the entire evening without a single ‘mystery hit’ while kiting using this method and in doing so, gained another level for herself and Tireen (putting her at 52 and Tireen at 47).

So Babaente was feeling good about mastering these new tricks, but she is still puzzled by a different kiting aspect.  Usually she can rely on the two settings auto-target mob, and auto-attack mob to target the hostile mob closest to her, and switch to attack mode on that target.  This seems to work about 3/4 of the time, but in about a quarter of the time, it fails, with drastic results.

When it fails, here is what happens.  She may be leading a decent sized kite with her mini map and display clearly show a mob in the kite is targeted and attack is activated, and then she stops to cast a nuke, and not only does the nuke not cast, but, she auto turns around in the direction of the kite.  If this catches her too much by surprise, it is sometimes impossible to avoid the mobs by turning direction and running again soon enough, resulting to a major health ding.   Once it starts happening, she then has to start manually using her next hostile target key and attack key to select the healthiest target and activate attack mode on it.    She may experiment with turning auto-target and auto-attack off on their next outing, just to see if that will give better results.




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