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Hunter patch notes from Warlords beta

Below is a consolidated list of hunter changes from the Warlords of Draenor beta.

I will be updating this post every time new patch notes or major revelations from blue tweets are released (the latest updates will be in red). I’ll also bump it to the front of the blog when any major updates happen.

Last updated: August 22, 2014
Probably one of the final updates.

Hunter Changes — General
  • Aspect of the Hawk has been removed. Its DPS benefit has been baked directly into abilities. Aspect of the Iron Hawk has been renamed to Iron Hawk and now just provides 10% reduced damage.
  • Aspect of the Cheetah and Aspect of the Pack remain, but they are just regular abilities you can toggle instead of Aspects. They now share a 10-second cooldown.
  • Dismiss pet now ignores line of sight. This will allow us to dismiss our pets when they get stuck in a place we can’t reach them (like the boxes in Spoils of Pandaria).
  • Hunter pets now have a 1 second global cooldown.
  • Explosive Trap now applies a DoT to all targets instead of being a ground-based effect.
  • Mend Pet and Revive Pet are now the same button, and toggle based on the status of your pet (dead or alive).
  • We will get a “Draenor Perk” every level from 91-99. This is a passive effect which is different for each spec. See the list of all perks at the bottom of this post.
  • Misdirection now lasts for 8 seconds, up from 4.
  • Growl now has a 30 yard range.
  • Kill Shot heals you for 15% of your maximum health if you deal a killing blow with it.


Stat Changes
  • Hit and Expertise removed (like you didn’t know already). You will always have a 100% chance to hit.
  • Agility no longer provides an increased chance to critically strike with ranged attacks or abilities.
  • Hunters will have a 15% base chance to score a critical hit (without any crit rating). Classes which do not use agility only have a 5% base crit chance.
  • Each point of Agility now grants 1 attack power instead of 2.
  • Weapon Damage values on all weapons have been reduced by 20%.
  • Attack Power now increases Weapon Damage at a rate of 1 DPS per 3.5 Attack Power (up from 1 DPS per 14 Attack Power).
  • All base damage has been removed from spells.
Removed Abilities
  • Aspect of the Hawk
  • Cower (pet ability)
  • Rabid (pet ability)
  • Hunter’s Mark
  • Lock and Load (see survival changes below)
  • Lynx Rush (talent), being replaced with Stampede
  • Rapid Recuperation
  • Serpent Sting and Improved Serpent Sting (see survival changes)
  • Widow Venom
  • Scatter Shot
  • Silencing Shot
  • Scare Beast
Crowd Control Changes
  • Hunter pets no longer have crowd-control abilities with a few exceptions (some pets have movement speed reduction only).
  • Entrapment’s Root effect now shares Diminishing Returns with all other Root effects.
  • Traps and trap launchers no longer have an arming time and can instantly trigger.
  • Traps can no longer be disarmed.
Pet Changes
  • Most pet crowd control abilities have been removed.
  • Some buffs exclusive to exotic pets can now be used by non-exotics, such as heroism/bloodlust which can now also be cast by Nether Rays.
  • Pets which lost CC abilities have gained raid buffs or debuffs in most cases.
  • Some exotic pets received new special abilities on top of their buffs.
  • 3 new pet families: Hydra, Riverbeast, and Hook Wasp (exotic)
  • Several raid buffs provided by hunter pets have been turned into auras that automatically apply.
  • Pets which provided Magic Vulnerability debuff now provide a 5% Multistrike buff.
  • Pets which provided Physical Vulnerability debuff now provide a 3% Versatility buff.

To see a detailed list of the pet ability changes in Warlords, check out this post.

To see a detailed look at the new pet families, check out this post.

Survival Changes

Blizzard is trying to give survival hunters a clearer identity. Their damage will be less bursty than the other specs but they’ll be the only spec with powerful DoTs, powerful traps, and extra survivability through their dual camouflage perks.

  • Black Arrow now naturally has a chance to cause the Lock and Load effect, and you are guaranteed at least one proc from each cast.
  • Serpent Spread has been renamed Serpent Sting, and remains a passive for Survival Hunters. It causes Multi-Shot and Arcane Shot to also apply the Serpent Sting poison, which does instant and periodic damage.
  • Kill Shot is no longer available to Survival Hunters.
  • New passive: Survivalist – heals you for 15% of your max health over 10 sec when you kill an enemy. Also grants 10% increased multistrike chance.

To see a more detailed analysis of survival hunter changes, check out this post.

Marksmanship Changes

Blizzard is turning marksmanship into a slower paced, harder hitting spec to differentiate it from the spammy nature of the others. One of their most defining new perks is the ability to deal damage from farther away than any other spec (45 yards).

  • Aimed Shot is now the sole focus dump for marksmanship hunters.
  • Aimed Shot can now be cast while moving without a glyph.
  • Aimed Shot no longer interrupts Auto Shot (they will still fire during casting).
  • Thrill of the Hunt now also reduces the focus cost of Aimed Shot.
  • Rapid Recuperation has been removed.
  • Rapid Fire is now a marksmanship exclusive cooldown. It also activates Careful Aim for its duration, regardless of the target’s health.
  • Chimaera Shot now hits up to 2 targets, and deals either frost or nature damage.

To see a more detailed analysis of marksmanship hunter changes, check out this post.

Beast Mastery Changes

Beast mastery has no significant rotational changes other than the removal of Serpent Sting and Rapid Fire. Their prowess with pets is being further emphasized through perks and new pet abilities.

To see a more detailed analysis of beast mastery hunter changes, check out this post.

Talent Changes
  • Lynx Rush in the level 75 tier has been replaced with Stampede.
  • Aspect of the Iron Hawk is now just Iron Hawk due to the removal of Aspect of the Hawk.
  • A Murder of Crows has had its cost, damage, and cooldown all reduced by 50%. Additionally, the cooldown will instantly reset if a target dies while AMoC is ticking on it.
  • Fervor has been removed. It has been replaced with Steady Focus. When you cast Steady Shot or Cobra Shot twice in a row (or Focusing Shot once), you gain 50% increased focus regen for 10 sec.
  • Thrill of the Hunt now affects Aimed Shot and its chance to proc is based on the focus cost of the shot used. The greater the focus cost, the greater the chance to proc.
  • New Level 100 Talent: Exotic Munitions Allows you to modify your ranged weapon to use exotic munitions:
    • Incendiary Ammo
      Arms your ranged weapon with exotic ammunition that lasts for 1 hour. Each autoshot deals 20% additional weapon damage as Fire to all enemies within 8 yards of the initial target.
    • Poisoned Ammo
      Arms your ranged weapon with exotic ammunition that lasts for 1 hour. Each autoshot deals (200% of Attack power) additional Nature damage over 16 sec. When this effect is refreshed, the remaining damage will be added to the new effect.
    • Frozen Ammo
      Arms your ranged weapon with exotic ammunition that lasts for 1 hour. Each autoshot deals 40% additional weapon damage as Frost and reduces the target’s movement speed by 50% for 8 sec.Only one exotic munition can be active at one time.
  • New Level 100 Talent: Focusing Shot – Carefully line up a shot at the target that deals 100% weapon damage and prepares focuses you, generating 50 Focus. Cannot be cast while moving. Replaces Steady Shot and Cobra Shot. Also triggers Steady Focus and Master Marksman for Marksmanship Hunters. 40 yd range, 3.00 sec cast, Requires Ranged Weapon
  • New Level 100 Talent: Adaptation (beast mastery only) – Increases the effect of your pet’s Combat Experience to 70% increased damage. Your pet now gains the following abilities, regardless of its active spec: Spiked Collar, Roar of Sacrifice, Cornered, Boar’s Speed, Last Stand, Blood of the Rhino, Great Stamina.
  • New Level 100 Talent: Lone Wolf (survival and marksmanship) – Increases all damage dealt by 30% when you don’t have a pet active. You will be able to choose one of 6 major raid buffs to bring in lieu of the pet buff (source). The following talents and abilities will not work for a Lone Wolf hunter: Master’s Call, Intimidation, Blink Strikes, Spirit Bond.
Draenor Perks

These are passive bonuses granted every second level from 92-98 and they vary by spec. You will get one of these randomly each level. By the time you hit 98 you will have them all, and at level 100 you will get your new talent.

Beast Mastery

  • Enhanced Camouflage: You heal 3% of your maximum health every second while Camouflage is active.
  • Improved Focus Fire: Focus Fire now also grants 2% increase to attack power per Frenzy stack consumed.
  • Improved Beast Cleave: Your pet’s attacks strike nearby enemy targets for an additional 25% of damage done while Beast Cleave is active.
  • Enhanced Basic Attacks: Your pet’s basic attacks have a 20% chance to reset the basic attack cooldown and make the next basic attack free.



That’s all for now, but stay tuned for more soon! You can view the massive patch notes in their entirety here.

– April 3, 2014 — First version of patch notes
– April 18, 2014 — First patch notes update from Blizzard
– April 30, 2014 — Updates from a Celestalon tweet
– May 9, 2014 — A couple minor updates regarding Focusing Shot and Lone Wolf.
– May 22, 2014 — Added new level 100 talent, bear trap, and more from new alpha build.
– May 29, 2014 — Kill Shot changes and new Survivalist passive added.
– June 13, 2014 — Patch notes update.
– July 20, 2014 — More updates
– August 22, 2014 — Should be one of the last major updates

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28 thoughts on “Hunter patch notes from Warlords beta”

      1. No spec will be able to manually cast serpent sting anymore. For Survival, Multi and Arcane will auto apply it. BM and MM no longer have it at all it looks like.

  1. Taking out Hunters Mark? I hope this doesn’t make the cut. Many of these changes really make my beloved main feel very foreign.

  2. i’ll miss the hunter’s mark visual effect… and im concerned about my favourite spec, survival 🙁 but MM changes look great

      1. slept over the first reaction … now i’d say yes, it was mostly the Kill Shot removal and l&l from traps. But now i see surv looks like the hunter DoT spec and i can live with that. I’ll probably use Lone Wolf to complete the feeling of being Affliction Lock with Sacrifice 😛

        if surv will be again “the” pvp spec they can consider to leave Hunter’s Mark to surv only, to compensate the no burst/no execute, and maybe give us back a melee trick – a bow version of Wing Clip maybe? it would be fun!

  3. Removing distracting shot is a mistake. Increasing the range on growl might compensate a little for it in groups/raids but not for solo play.
    Hunter’s Mark should stay as a cosmetic effect. It’s too Iconic to loose. I also wonder how this affect taming the hidden pandaria rare pets.
    I like the Camo perk for SV (or should we now call it Camo-form ?) and the Enhanced Shots perk of MM.
    It looks really unclear what is happening to pet family abilities. It would have been nice if they mentioned their pet-plans.

    1. I’m curious about pets too. For example, they removed melee haste from Serpents and Hyenas, and now only Sporebats can provide the new 5% unified haste buff? Why not just make Serpents and Hyenas provide this new haste buff too? Unless they have other plans…

  4. I still don’t get a real sense that MM will be competitive again. Part of what I loved about MM in Wrath was it’s CD management and how distinct the shots were. Aimed shot was our mortal strike, and chimera would have an effect based on the sting you applied. Readiness, silencing shot, and rapid fire are gone.

    I also don’t understand removing kill shot from survival. For the longest time, survival had a buffed kill shot over other specs. Improved entrapment and traps might make it the go to pvp spec.

    The level 75 tier is now a mess for BM. Having to make a choice between zoo and blink strike seems a bit unfair, especially when blink strike solves a lot our pet pathing issues. Anyways, a lot of these changes are good but hope we work out all the kinks during testing with constructive feedback.

    1. I kind of like the marksmanship changes (especially some of the perks), but one thing I will agree with is Chimera Shot. It was named that because it did something different based on your sting. Now it seems completely vestigial. Almost makes sense for it to go physical damage and make MM pure physical.

  5. A lot of changes to digest, but I think the overall direction is good. This will finally make the specs different from each other.
    Although I will miss most of the abilities being axed, I’m looking forward to see how it will play out.
    The only thing I don’t like is the random perks gained each label between 91 and 100. I dint like random, I’d prefer to be able to choose between a few each level.

  6. i am really hoping for more distninguished specs. right now it is often two specs sharing the same thing. i was expecting more differences, like arcane shot gone for BM as well, but something more BM specific. also HM gone is kind of sad, it was useless clutter in pve but helped somewhat in pvp. also, the visual. hoping for at least a minor glyph that applies it.

  7. Here’s to hoping that, with all the pets that got their CC removed that either (a) they all get buffs to help diversify pet choices or (b) they let us choose a buff/spec for our pet that does the same.

    1. Agreed. We have so many pet types available, it’d be a shame if only a couple are optimal and every hunter is running around with the same pets out.

  8. Don’t like that Scatter Shot is going away because it acted as a second interrupt which was helpful in soloing (and PvP). They’re “supposedly” changing the trap mechanics, so it’s not needed for that anymore, but we’ll see.

    Don’t like that Cower is going away, since that reduces pet survivability for soloing and pet tanking. We’ll have to see how that plays out.

    As venadin mentioned, Stampede vs Blink Strikes will be something to keep an eye on.

    Hunter’s Mark not being available to track a stealthed character will also require some other mechanics to change. Hopefully, Blizz will address those.

    The other changes seem fine “on paper”.

  9. Right now you need Hunter’s Mark to tame the Pandaria rares. Beyond that, it’s such an iconic Hunter ability that I’d really hate to see it go. Kind of feel the same way about Serpent Sting, but the other changes seem interesting. I just hope that playing without a pet does not become the “best” raiding spec and force some hunters to take that talent.

  10. While I’m going to miss Rapid Fire I’m excited about the other changes.

    Serpent sting was boring and hunter’s mark was already applied automatically by arcane and signature shots so why not remove it?

    As far as the draenor perks I think it’s important to point out that by the time we hit level 99 we’ll have all of them. It’s not a situation where we’ll randomly get 5 from a possible 10, rather we’ll get them all but the points at which we get them will be random. Which will add some variety to leveling and a little excitement wondering what you’re going to get next, at least until you get to level 98.

  11. I feel I will stay SV for a bit, until I learn more. really hope that Lone Wolf talent works… it seems pets are getting nerfed… or re-worked? Just talks about removing tons of debuffs they do, but what about the buffs? Will have to wait and see.
    I want to switch to Lone Wolf MM so bad… but of course, I’ll have to wait to see which is the highest DPS raid wise, and just hope! Unless they are all within .5% DPS xD

  12. I get the feeling that SV will be top-dog during WoD, you’ve got potential for constant healing uptime with the Camouflage buffs, continuous DoTs with Serpent Sting being an extension of Arcane Shot and it looks to be the easiest of the three to play.

  13. Lets see what it will be, we do still not know yet how damage will be spread between shot.s
    still, I’m worried about the survival spec which has only 5 perks that increase damag while BM has 9.

  14. Hi Bendak, jsut a little concern I am confussed about, in “aimed shot cast on moving thing” the part with “no longer interrupts auto attacks” was lined over.

    Does this means it WILL interrupt auto attacks????

    1. if you refresh the post that should be removed now. Celestalon just tweeted that was a mistake in the patch notes. Aimed shot still does NOT interrupt Auto Shots.

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