Today’s beta build brought a few interesting changes (along with some nerfs) that are worth talking about.
- Kill Command damage buffed by 20%.
- Chimaera Shot now deals 180% weapon damage per target, down from 265%.
- Dire Stable now generates an additional 12 Focus, up from 8.
- Killer Cobra now has a 100% chance to reset the cooldown of Kill Command.
- One With The Pack now increases the chance for Wild Call procs by 15%, up from 10%.
- Hati’s death cooldown is now 30 seconds, down from 2 minutes.
Buffs all around for Beast Mastery with the exception of Chimaera Shot. It seems like they really don’t want it to be the default choice. I think they already succeeded in that with previous buffs to Stomp and Dire Frenzy, so I’m not sure this nerf was necessary. I felt like all 3 were pretty powerful in their own ways and relatively balanced.
The most interesting change here for me is the one to Killer Cobra. A couple of months ago, one of the builds actually had Killer Cobra function like this and it was pretty nice. It felt more powerful, as a level 100 talent should be. I think this could make it a much better competitor with Stampede. It makes Bestial Wraths a whole lot of fun. Tons of Kill Commands! The One With the Pack buff is nice but I still doubt it’s enough. Not while the majority of Wild Call procs are mostly wasted.
The buff to Hati’s death cooldown is a very welcome one. I’d still rather have control over resurrecting Hati myself immediately with Revive Pet, but at least it’s no longer a full 2 minute wait to get Hati back.
- Lock and Load now has a 8% chance to proc, down from 10%.
- Steady Focus now increases Focus regeneration by 25%, up from 20%.
Lock and Load is no longer a level 100 talent so I’m not surprised to see nerfs like this. Flat proc chances have no bad luck protection (like RPPM) so you’re going to see some bad streaks, but of course you’ll also see some good streaks.
Steady Focus was sort of dead to me as soon as they made it require 3 Arcane Shots in a row instead of 2. That’s over 4 seconds of global cooldowns, which is just too much for my taste. However, if you’re pairing this with Sidewinders (which activates it on a single cast), this is a nice little buff.
- Explosive Trap damage nerfed from 500% attack power to 350% attack power (for both initial hit and the DoT)
- Flanking Strike’s damage nerfed to 200% physical damage, down from 250%. This is the Hunter’s portion of the damage. Pet damage is unchanged.
- Lacerate damage nerfed from 1159% attack power to 960% attack power.
- Mongoose Bite damage nerfed from 315% physical damage to 250%.
- Dragonsfire Grenade nerfed from 960% attack power to 800% attack power.
- Snake Hunter’s cooldown increased to 1.5 min, up from 1 min.
- Throwing Axes damage buffed to 250% attack power, up from 200%.
Nerfs ahoy! I haven’t been playing much SV lately so I don’t know how justified these are, but from what I hear the spec was doing pretty nice DPS in dungeons and raids. One thing I do know is that Explosive Trap was doing a boatload of AoE damage for something with no Focus cost, so that one isn’t too surprising.
No real changes other than raw DPS numbers, other than the Snake Hunter cooldown nerf.
It’s still far too early to say which spec is going to be doing the most DPS at the start of Legion. In past expansions, I’d say the specs played closely enough that switching for the best performance was no big deal. In Legion, the specs are completely different. You may love one and hate the other. My advice is to hop on the PTR (or wait for the prepatch) and thoroughly play with all 3 of them. Don’t just attack target dummies, but go into Tanaan and kill some elites, do some dungeons or raids, and get a good feel for each. Yes, one spec will have more DPS potential in the end — that is unavoidable — but if that spec isn’t your favorite there’s a good chance you won’t have much fun playing it. If you like all 3, then by all means get ready to make your decision based on numbers if you want… but it’s still too early for that. 😉