Freezing Arrow for Non-Hunters


I love you all. You tank for me, you heal for me, you provide lotsa DPS alongside me. I respect you and appreciate you and we’re buddies. But I’ve been running into a little problem in some instances and heroics I’ve been running and it’s caused some confusion and panic and at least one messy wipe, so it’s time to discuss it.

At level 80 hunters get Freezing Arrow, which allows them to trap something at range.

“Oh cool, trapping just got easier for hunters and they can trap casters now, right?”

Well… sorta. But there’s something very important to know about Freezing Arrow.

If you ask a hunter to open a pull with Freezing Arrow, do not expect that hunter to be able to chain trap afterwards.

To understand this more fully, let me give you a little bit of background info on trapping. A max-rank trap lasts 20 seconds, and the cooldown is 30 seconds. To get around this, the hunter works with two very important things: time and space. She lays down her trap and before she starts the pull, she waits a bit to allow her cooldown to tick down to ensure she will be able to have a next trap ready. Then when she pulls, the act of the mob running towards the trap gives her more precious time. When she does her next trap, she runs far enough away that the mob will, again, have to run, which will give her more time.

Given enough time and space, a skilled hunter could theoretically trap like this indefinitely, despite the cooldown limitation.

Freezing Arrow takes those things away. Say there is a group of four and you want one trapped. The hunter traps one and immediately that aggroes the three surrounding mobs. The hunter is given no time and because the mob was immediately rooted in place without having to run, she is really given no space either. When the trap breaks she will still have 10 seconds left on her cooldown– and cannot trap again.

Now this is fine if all you needed was one mob out of the way for 20 seconds. But if these are hard-hitting mobs and/or the healer is a little undergeared, or something else goes wrong… well, the hunter can’t help you out for 10 seconds. And it’s not her fault. It’s simply the limitations of her abilities.

Now are there exceptions? Well, of course. Deep Survival hunters get a trapping talent that will help them out a little here, and Marksman hunters have Readiness which means they can trap twice in quick succession. But even these exceptions have limitations. Be sure you check with hunters before starting a Freezing Arrow pull to see if they have these talents or are even comfortable trapping this way. For some of us old-schoolers who did it the old way for a long time, we’re still sort of practicing with this newfangled arrow.

One other thing– Freezing Arrow can miss. It’s not like the rest of our shots, it’s more like an “AoE”. Not a big problem if the mob is standing still, but potentially a problem if the mob is moving around a lot.

Okay, that’s all from Pike for now. I really wanted to get this out there because I seem to keep running into it being a problem. Just remember that as a general rule, you shouldn’t ask a hunter to open a pull with Freezing Trap if you want it chain-trapped. And if the hunter volunteers to do so, and they are a BM hunter… then, well, tell ya what, I’ll make a “Freezing Arrow for Hunters” post soon and you can direct ’em here. =P

31 thoughts on “Freezing Arrow for Non-Hunters”

  1. Yes, we definitely can’t chain-trap if we’re opening with a Freezing Arrow, that’s for sure. But if circumstances allow, it’s possible to drop a trap in front of the mob we’re trapping, assuming that there is room for it and that the mob will be running at least a few feet towards a determined direction. So it could be possible to chain trap…just a lot more difficult.

    The problem I’ve run into with Freezing Arrow is when I’m given a target on the fly in the middle of the fight to trap. I have no problem (usually) aiming and freezing the thing from afar, but nobody else in the group seems to care that it’s been frozen and just break it anyway. And then it aggros on me and I have no trap cooldown and it’s pain or feign. ;_;

  2. I still can’t think of a real reason to use that damn ability.
    Like you said, it gets rid of all the chain trapping ability we had before. And that arming time could be about the most annoying thing ever.

    The only way I could see this working for some people is if the frost arrow guy opens with it, and then waits for the duration to go up. When it’s about to, if you’re BM, send in your pet to tank for a few seconds while your arrow CD goes out, then trap the bugger again.
    If your MM, you have readiness, but I think that just going back to your roots should work to. Silencing shot, Concussive shot, and then trap him using your normal traps.
    Surv could do it through the lowered cooldown, and the use of scatter shot. When the duration is up, Scatter shot, then freezing arrow again.

    Just an idea. Rip it to shreds everyone!

  3. Actually, I think the best use I’ve made of Freezing Arrow is to backup my husband’s sap target. I don’t have to stop dps and run over to drop a trap, instead just tossing it over when I think the sap is about to wear off. It works pretty well then.

  4. ‘We can trap casters now?’

    Er .. well we MMs have always been able to do that. Worth our weight in Wow gold in the likes of the Moroes fight we were.

    Silencing Shot


  5. so, I suppose this could all change with duel specing. Be a BM hunter with occasional Sur for CC? idk. still not 80 so I haven’t been able to play with freezing arrows.

  6. Freezing shot bugs me, to be honest.

    Before 80, if anything was getting CC’d, it was usually a melee, and if not, I’d ask if they would mind marking a melee instead. If they did, I sucked it up and ran up and froze them.

    Now that I’m 80, everything that I get asked to CC is a caster, so I just can’t chain trap. I like chain trapping! It’s a tonne of fun if you can pull it off, and of course, it keeps mobs out of the game for a good while. But, alas, tanks want those pesky casters frozen.

    It’s not really been a problem that’s made fights more difficult, but… but… the fun of chain trapping! :'(

  7. @Faulsey: Tanks probably want the casters trapped vs the melee because spells go through armor more effectively than melee hits do. 🙂

  8. Indeed, but if you kill the caster first, and have a melee frozen for most of the fight, as opposed to a caster frozen for 20 seconds, you’ll probably take less damage overall.

    Maybe. XD

  9. I agree with Faulsey. That seems to make the most sense to me.

    Maybe it’s a smart idea to lay a trap in front of the mob instead of on it…
    Or misdirect?
    That won’t work…

  10. Pike! You tell ’em! And I HOPE they listen…..I have run into a lot of cases of some wanting a chain trap with freezing arrow. Or even worse, they want me to use it on a mob AFTER they have made the pull…..You can guess the results of that one. Thanks.

    Gunsnbutter Excelsior/Uther

  11. I do a lot of shenanigans with Freezing Arrow and manual trapping to pull of some fantastic double- and triple-traps (if I fire Readiness).

    But it’s more for show than practicality. >_>;

  12. Ugh yeah, I’ve never been very enthused at the sound of Freezing Arrow… I haven’t got to 80 yet, but I’ll be interested to see how it works. If you place a trap within aggro range of group of mobs, will they aggro on you? Or only when the trap is activated?

    I was going to write that maybe Camouflage would have been a better talent… but, after thinking about it more, I think it’d be the exact same trapping situation (placing the trap in the melee’s path and on top of casters).

    Either way, I think the game designers might have overlooked how absolutely critical that the extra cooldown time is for hunter CC.

  13. Just a little correction: Deep Survival does not only “helps a little”.
    Trap Mastery gives 30% more duration: 20 -> 26 secs
    Resourcefullness gives -6sec CD: 30 -> 24 secs.

    The trapped target stay trapped for eternity, without becoming untrapped for even a milisecond, so not even able to cast an instant spell.

    Survival tactics give +4% hit chance (practically no early brake or resisted)

  14. Survival tactics give +4% hit chance (practically no early brake or resisted)

    Not entirely true. Even though physical Hit is converted to a percentage at a higher ratio than spell Hit is, a Hunter geared for 8% hit (raid cap) AND bearing Survival Tactics is still going to face issues. 262.32 HR nets you 8% physical Hit, but with the 4% bonus from Survival Tactics, it still puts you at only 14% spell Hit, which leaves you about 3% short in a raid environment.

    Though yeah, on anything below level 83, you’ll be golden.

  15. Thank you for opening up discussion about Freezing Arrow.

    I’ve always clung to the simple truth: the best form of Crowd Control is Communication.

    The whole party/raid needs to understand the dynamics of the situation. You’ve captured one of the biggest things that Freezing Arrow does to us here: chaining is substantially reduced.

    There is one other profound difference from good old Freezing Trap that we need to spread word on.

    With Freezing Trap, the hunter lays the trap, waits a little bit, then the tank pulls, and the Hunter peels off her mob from the incoming pack of baddies and into the trap.

    Freezing Arrow doesn’t really work like this. If the tank pulls and then the Hunter fires the arrow, there’s a high probability that the arrow will land behind the mob. And now we have a fight with 4 mobs beating on the tank, and an unused trap sitting 15 yards behind them, and a Hunter with traps on cooldown for 30 seconds.

    Freezing Arrow works nice to start off the pull, generally nailing the mob you want. Then the whole pack heads for the hunter, and the tank nicely AoE picks up all the mobs.

  16. It would seem apparent at this point that survival is the only tree capable of chain trapping with this ability… with ease, anyway.
    And if they’re specced into traps.

    MM Hunters can do it too, although not as easily.

    I don’t think BM hunters can do it unless they have their pet tank for a couple of seconds.

  17. The only use I get out of freezing arrow is for tagging an extra mob while attacking another one while I’m doing my Sons of Hodir daily. Many people see the frozen mob and assume it’s already tapped (even though freezing arrow does no damage, and therefore does not tap it) and move on. I’ll stick to trapping the old-fashioned way.

  18. MM Hunters can do it too, although not as easily.

    Yeah, once every 3 minutes 🙂

    I use Freezing Arrow for “OH GOD ADD, TRAP IT NOW” trapping, and “hey guys, check this out, I can trap three mobs :P” trapping.

  19. Hehe…

    I was going to sya you could mix regular chain trapping and Freezing shot together.
    Freezing shot start.
    Then when it’s about to break, you begin by silencing the mob, that’s 3 seconds. 6 to go.
    Then you uh…. well, you take it like a man I guess.

    Or you use the 3 minute CD “OH GAWD SHIT HIT THE FAN” button. As you already said.

  20. Eh, Readiness is not just a “OH GOD, UNIVERSE IS ON FIRE, FIX IT” button. It’s also a “HAHAHA SUCK BACK TO BACK 14K CRITS, BIATCH” button, a “lol check this out, three traps” button, AND a “OH GOD, UNIVERSE IS ON FIRE, FIX IT” button. 😉

  21. Freezing Arrow certainly feels like a bit of a novelty at this point. But I find it, if not always practical, incredibly fun in a a PvP situation. The next time you’re playing Warsong Gulch and you’re trailing a flag carrier, try popping one of these bad boys forward into their path for a good time.

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