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Warlords of Draenor: Game system changes & hunters

The latest WoW Dev Watercooler talks about some of the upcoming game system changes, but a lot of it seems to be stuff we already know (at least those of us who gobble up every morsel of WoD information we can find). The highlights, as they relate to hunters, are as follows.

Stat Squish and Items

Currently, gear and character power progress linearly from levels 1-60, and then exponentially from 61-90. In Warlords, they are changing this so power progresses linearly from 1-85, and then exponentially thereafter. The power curve will also be a lot less. They are confident this will not affect old world soloing, but in order to guarantee it they are implementing a system to further increase your power against lower level targets. If you’re critting for 450k now, you’ll probably be critting for around 30k when patch 6.0 drops. Spells will no longer have any base damage component (e.g. Aimed Shot) and instead will be pure weapon damage scaling or attack power scaling. The previously announced stats, Amplify and Cleave, have been put on the back burner (source). The main secondary stats in Warlords will be crit, haste, mastery, readiness, and multistrike. (Note that Readiness is the same effect of Assurance of Consequence and Multistrike is the same effect of Haromm’s Talisman — both of these trinkets will get converted to the new stats in 6.0).

Racial Abilities

Racials are being rebalanced so that some races aren’t too powerful compared to others.  They don’t like when high-end players feel forced into a particular race. Celestalon has been tweeting out specific changes. Here’s a few hunter relevant ones:

  • Dwarf racial Crack Shot is being changed into Might of the Mountain which increases critical strike damage bonus by 2%. This is equivalent damage to the Worgen’s straight 1% crit, just in a different flavor. Stoneform now removes curse and magic effects as well (but it cannot be used while CC’d).
  • Night Elves get a new trait called Touch of Elune which increases their crit by 1% during the day, and haste by 1% during the night. Quickness will also grant a passive 2% movement speed.
  • Humans are getting a passive boost to two secondary stats of their choice.
  • Draenei’s Heroic Presence is being changed into a boost to your primary stat.
  • Blood Elves are gaining a passive 1% crit.
  • Troll’s Berserking is getting nerfed to 15%.
  • Taurens get Brawn which increases crit damage bonus by 2% (same as new Dwarf racial). Endurance is changed from health to stamina.
  • Orcs will keep Blood Fury, but Hardiness is getting nerfed to 10%. No word on pet damage racial yet.
Ability Squish

Abilities shall be cut. They will be outright cutting many abilities, and more abilities will be restricted to specific specs. They will be focusing on cutting two types of abilities. Firstly, they will be cutting some of the buttons we hardly ever use (I can see stuff like Widow Venom and Distracting Shot being prime candidates) and they will be reducing the number of DPS cooldown buttons to reduce burst damage and simplify things. In the case of cooldowns, I believe something like Rapid Fire is much more likely to be cut than Stampede, but who knows! These are the abilities we know will be cut from hunters so far (I will update this list if any more are tweeted out by Celestalon or Holinka tonight):

Crowd Control Reductions and Changes

CC is getting toned down a lot in Warlords. Many types of CC are being removed outright, and the rest will share diminishing returns categories to lower their effectiveness. Here are a few points relevant to hunters:

  • Silencing Shot and Scatter Shot removed.
  • Traps are staying and will now arm instantly, meaning if you place one underneath an enemy it will immediately trigger (currently there is an arming delay).
  • Pet-cast CC is being removed or drastically reduced. Wouldn’t be surprised if all hunter pet CC was removed.
Not much new here

Aside from the few specific abilities mentioned, there’s not a whole lot new here outside of the blue tweets. We may have to wait for the first beta patch notes to get to the real meaty stuff. Until then, it’s hard to speculate on how this will change hunters. If any more blue tweets relevant to hunters come in tonight I’ll be updating the post.


7 thoughts on “Warlords of Draenor: Game system changes & hunters”

  1. Traps now arm and activate instantly? So, when I shoot snake trap or ice trap, it automatically spawns snakes or an ice slick regardless of whether an enemy runs over? How does freezing trap work then? If I miss, does it do nothing?

  2. I’d rather have rank scatter shot as a talent with binding shot and intimidation, or as alternative to intimidation for pet-less hunters. Wyvern sting is of course nice as secondary cc, but never felt in place with the other two.

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