Legion Hunter Preview: First impressions and feedback

Remember during Warlords of Draenor’s development when Blizzard was talking  about “spec differentiation?” It almost became a buzz phrase. They sort of delivered, but not in a way that mattered much. At their core, the 3 Hunter specs were still the same. We had a Focus generator, a Focus dump, and a signature ability. The “differentiation” was Marksmanship having a cast time on its Focus dump (and having to stand still) and Survival having DoTs, while Beast Mastery remained relatively untouched.

Well, I think it might be for real now. I can’t say for sure until I get my hands on the beta, but from what I can tell the specs sound almost completely different — not just the core mechanics but their fantasy as well (that’s this expansion’s buzz word, by the way).

You can read the post for yourself here. Blizzard shares their basic philosophy for each spec and shows us some of their core abilities. It’s enough to go on for a first round of feedback (plus it’s the first real Hunter news in months), so let’s get started.

Note I also have some quotes in here from one of the Senior Game Designers, Andrew Chambers. He was kind enough to answer some Hunter questions in a reddit thread. Remember these are candid comments, and nothing is set in stone.


Beast Mastery

My first impression when I read through these changes was panic. Change is scary. No active Focus regeneration? What the hell is going on here?! Take a deep breath and try to picture how this might work.

Cobra Shot
30 Focus, 40 yd range, Instant
A quick shot that causes moderate Physical damage.

Cobra Shot is now what appears to be our Focus dump. It’s basically Arcane Shot with a new name (but why is it physical damage if it’s called Cobra Shot?) Nothing much to say here.

Kill Command
20 Focus, 25 yd range (from pet), Instant, 6 sec cooldown
Give the command to kill, causing your pet to instantly inflict strong damage to its target.

Kill Command looks relatively unchanged. It just costs half the Focus.

Dire Beast
40 yd range, Instant, 10 sec cooldown
Summons a powerful wild beast to attack your target for 8 sec. Each time the beast deals damage, you will gain 4 Focus.
Summoning a beast reduces the remaining cooldown of Bestial Wrath by 15 sec.

Wild Call
Your critical strikes have a 30% chance to reset the cooldown of Dire Beast.

I placed two abilities here to give some context, because the accompanying passive is really important.

Before we talk about mechanics, just picture what this ability is going to look like. BM Hunters will quite literally be summoning a constant stream of beasts. And yes, it sounds like they stack if you get lucky with resets.

This really feels like Beast Mastery to me. Always having multiple pets summoned is what I want this spec to be about. I’d like to see some ways to customize this new Dire Beast, either through glyphs or talents. Developer Andrew Chambers commented on the possibility of pulling Dire Beast pets from our stables:

Originally Posted by Andrew Chambers (Official Forums)
Theres tech required for this but its already in the works, likely built into a talent.


No more Focus generator?

Blizzard’s reasoning for removing active regen was the following:

“Previously, Cobra Shot filled all of your free moments in combat, leaving no time for managing your pet, which should be a defining characteristic of Beast Masters.”

The core mechanic of not overspending Focus so you have enough to use Kill Command on cooldown is still there, it just sounds like you won’t be button mashing in the downtime. I am really, really used to maximizing my global cooldowns, so this could take some getting used to.

No GCD spamming? What?
No GCD spamming? What?

The part that was interesting to me was they want us to focus more on managing our pets. Really cool in theory (hello, Eyes of the Beast!), but unless we get some better tools for managing our pets, I don’t see how it’s going to be anything different than what it is today.  One thing that could help is better reaction times from the pet. Sometimes when you command the pet to switch targets or pull back, it feels kind of laggy. I’d like to see the “move to” command improved upon. Maybe something along the lines of: go over there and attack things in the general vicinity, but don’t run off too far.

It’s also worth noting that there could be talents that change up the Focus game. They mentioned “hundreds” of new talents (since so many will be spec-specific talents), so who knows what’s in store?Maybe there will even be an option to talent into an active Focus regen shot?

Update: Base Focus regen should be quicker than it is now, to make up for the loss of Focus generators. Currently they have it set to 10 Focus/sec.



They threw us a bone with one talent example, here it is:

Way of the Cobra
For every pet or guardian you have active, Cobra Shot deals an additional 5% damage.

Basically, the more pets you have out, the more badass you are. Cool. You’ll always have at least two pets summoned, but in some cases it could be more like 3-4 pets. Oh, and have you forgotten about Stampede? Assuming that’s still in, Cobra Shot is going to hit like a Mack Track during Stampede. Keep in mind talents like this will probably be competing against an active talent and a proc talent (at least that’s the gist I got from BlizzCon).

They mentioned BM’s Mastery which has not changed, it’s still bonus pet damage. Bestial Wrath is also still a core component. Focus Fire is gone.

I love pets

I will say this: I love the new Dire Beast Focus mechanic as long as there are talent options for me to make things a little more active. Throw in a couple active DPS abilities and things might round out a little better. I need to get my hands on it.

The idea of constantly summoning beast after beast is what sells this for me. One of my biggest wish list talents for Beast Mastery has always been the ability to permanently summon two pets. This isn’t that, but it’s close.



The new melee Survival Hunter is basically one big nostalgia trip to vanilla WoW. Raptor Strike, Mongoose Bite, Wing Clip, and Lacerate (only they promise it will be good this time) all make a return.

One important thing to mention up front is that Survival now holds exclusive rights to traps. This is where they belong. As long as the other specs get suitable replacements, I see nothing wrong with this.

Core rotation

Survival has no controlled Focus regeneration at all (with the exception of possible talents we don’t know about yet). Instead you will have a Focus-free ability to use while Focus pools up.

Raptor Strike
20 Focus, Melee Range, Instant.
A vicious slash, dealing moderate Physical damage.

35 Focus, Melee Range, Instant, 10 sec cooldown
Tear a wound in the target, dealing heavy damage over 12 sec.
Developer Comment: We promise it will do good damage!

Flanking Strike
20 Focus, 25 yd range (from pet), Instant, 6 sec cooldown
Give the command to kill, causing your pet to instantly inflict strong damage to its target.

First of all, I want to clarify the Flanking Strike ability. According to developer Andrew Chambers, the ability is actually intended to do the following:

Originally Posted by Andrew Chambers (Official Forums)
Slightly out of date, we are constantly working in this stuff. It [Flanking Strike] will be an attack with you and your pet attacking at the same time.

Flanking Strike being a coordinated pet and hunter attack actually sounds pretty neat.  I’m hoping it’s differentiated from Raptor Strike more than it looks with these placeholder numbers though.


So what are you going to be doing when you don’t have any Focus to spend?

Mongoose Bite
Melee Range, Instant, 10 sec recharge, 3 charges
A brutal attack, attempting to sever the enemy’s limbs, dealing strong Physical damage.
Each consecutive Mongoose Bite dealt within 3.5 sec of the last will deal 50% increased damage, stacking up to 6 times.

Mastery: Hunting Companion
Your pet’s attacks have a 20% (with Mastery from typical gear) chance to grant you an additional charge of Mongoose Bite.

It sounds like the gameplay goal here is for the player to weave their Focus spenders in between Mongoose Bites, and to delay them as long as possible to build up the increased damage stacks. There’s also some burst potential here for PvP or high priority targets.

Originally Posted by Andrew Chambers (Official Forums)
Its more split 50/50 between hectic weaving between MB and other skills while trying to proc more charges, and more steady usage of other skills while waiting for MB charges to build up. Its hard to express gameplay in words.

It’s really hard to comment any further without trying it. I am unsure how much downtime there will be, because like Beast Mastery it’s hard to imagine huntering without maximizing GCDs. Talents are still an unknown factor though. Celestalon mentioned that the majority of talents will be throughput talents, which means they affect your damage dealing in some form.

5-40 yd range, Instant, 15 sec cooldown
Hurl a harpoon at your target and pull yourself toward them, rooting them in place for 3 sec.

Wing Clip
30 Focus, Instant
Maims the target, reducing their movement speed by 50% for 15 sec.

Harpoon changed a bit from what was originally announced at Gamescom. Before it was more like a death grip, but now it’s like a grappling hook. I can already hear raiders grumbling about it being less utility than death grip, but to me this sounds way more fun. Pretty sure we suggested this exact thing on the Hunting Party Podcast too. Either someone’s listening, or great hunter minds think alike. 🙂

Lastly, here’s a Survival talent example:

Snake Hunter
Instant, 1 min cooldown
Instantly grants you 3 charges of Mongoose Bite.

Pretty strong cooldown! It will allow you to build up the max amount of Mongoose Bite stacks (6) every minute. Should be some fine burst damage (something Survival lacked in Warlords).

Not sure if melee hunter is for me

My opinion remains the same on melee hunters: I will definitely play one, but I don’t see it being my main.  I have a hard time believing I’d enjoy it more than my beloved BM, but who knows? The coordinated hunter/pet attack sounds interesting and is right up my alley. The rotation also sounds like a lot of fun, but I need to play it.

I also still have one unanswered question: What the heck happens in 7.0? I don’t exactly have ilvl 715 polearms kicking around in my bank. 😉

Art by TamplierPainter


According to Blizzard, they were seeing the majority of Marksmanship Hunters take the Lone Wolf talent in Warlords of Draenor, so they made it permanent. I think that was less about not having a pet, and more about it just doing way more damage and being way more useful in the current raid encounters.

The removal of pets is going to upset some, but I guess sacrifices have to be made to really make the specs feel different. Still, I wouldn’t be opposed to a talent that’s the opposite of Lone Wolf: Reduced damage for having a pet out.

Core rotation

Marksmanship is unique in that it’s the only spec which retains active Focus regeneration. There is still some encouragement to stand still, but in a less annoying way (IMO). We also have a whole new mechanic based on a revitalized Hunter’s Mark.

Arcane Shot
40 yd range, Instant
A quick shot that causes moderate Arcane damage, and generates 5 Focus.

Seek Vulnerabilities
Targets hit by your Arcane Shot and Multi-Shot have a chance to be marked with Hunter’s Mark for 6 sec.

Marked Shot
30 Focus, 40 yd range, Channeled
Rapidly fires a shot at up to 3 targets affected by Hunter’s Mark, dealing strong Physical damage. Usable while moving.
Also exposes vulnerability in the target, snaring them by 15%, and increasing Aimed Shot damage done to the target by 25%. Lasts 10 sec, and stacks up to 3 times.

Aimed Shot
50 Focus, 40 yd range, 1.5 sec cast
A powerful aimed shot that deals strong Physical damage.

OK, let’s break this down. We have Arcane Shot as our new Steady Shot. Besides the name change, it is now instant and generates less Focus. Aimed Shot is still here as the Focus dump, but you now have to stand still while casting it (it’s a short cast though). Chimaera Shot is probably gone.

What’s this Marked Shot business though?

Marked Shot ;)
Marked Shot? 😉

Holy smokes, Marked Shot sounds like a lot of fun. Not only is it good for 2-3 target AoE, but it has use in single target as well with that stacking Aimed Shot buff. Plus it slows the enemy down, which will be important when you don’t have a pet.

My main concern is the Seek Vulnerabilities passive. With the RNG aspect, we will need a solid telegraph to let us know when an enemy gets marked. You’re never going to see it in the chaos of a raid environment. If Arcane and Multi-Shot were guaranteed to apply it, it would be less of an issue. Then it would just be a setup move before you unleashed your Marked Shot.

Bye bye, old Sniper Training

Mastery: Sniper Training
Critical strike damage and range of all shots is increased by 12.5% (with Mastery from typical gear).

Originally Posted by Andrew Chambers (Official Forums)
No more standing still requirement. Trade off though is you have to stand still while casting aimed shot. Fits the fantasy better.



Abilities that Survival used to have are being re-purposed into Marksmanship talents, including Black Arrow and Lock and Load!

Lock and Load
Attach an explosive charge to Aimed Shot, dealing strong additional Fire damage to the target and all enemies within 4 yds.
Your ranged auto attacks have a 5% chance to trigger Lock and Load, causing your next 2 Aimed Shots to cost no Focus and be instant.

So, AoE damage plus free Aimed Shots. That’s one epic talent. Curious to see what kind of twist they put on Black Arrow.

If you’re wondering about survivability without a pet, Andrew Chambers had this to say:

Originally Posted by Andrew Chambers (Official Forums)
Snares are an integral part of your rotation now. If survivability in the wild is an issue we will address it, but i want you to feel very high risk/high reward.

So, I’m a bit torn on Marksmanship right now. These abilities sound so cool, but no pet? Argh. I wonder if at the very least we could summon one of our pets as a non-combat pet. Maybe that doesn’t fit the fantasy, but a lot of existing Hunters have spent years building up their stables. It’s a big ask to say if you like Marksmanship you are saying goodbye to the pets you’ve collected over the past decade. Yeah, there’s tri-spec now, but I suspect we’ll be swapping specs a whole lot less because of artifact weapons.

Update: A new MM talent for you Sylvanas fans…


You made it this far?

I’m excited. These class changes plus all the other stuff announced has me in a pretty optimistic mood. The only downside is how far away Legion is. Yikes.

If you’re not liking the changes or are worried about what you see, I’d encourage you to send that feedback to Blizzard in a constructive manner. I’d also say you should consider waiting a few weeks to not only let it settle in but see what the talents look like, as I think they’re going to have a large impact on the gameplay.

To finish this off, I have a few more quotes from Mr. Chambers that you might find interesting:

Re: The potential return of Eyes of the Beast

Originally Posted by Andrew Chambers (Official Forums)
I can look into it, from an engineering standpoint it was a total mess and really broken. If we can re-engineer it safely then maybe, but no promises.

Re: Barrage

Originally Posted by Andrew Chambers (Official Forums)
Sticking around, but will be more AOE focused like it looks.

Re: The potential return of Volley

Originally Posted by Andrew Chambers (Official Forums)
It may come back as a talent for the other specs, doesnt make sense for survival having a melee weapon.


OK, I think that’ll do it for now. This might be the longest single post in the history of this blog.

P.S. Is Kill Shot still a thing?

(Awesome Rexxar header image by Sergey82m)

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43 thoughts on “Legion Hunter Preview: First impressions and feedback”

  1. Wow, there is so much information and so little that we know from that information!
    I’m very excited and would love to get my trigger finger on a spec for a test drive.
    Is it naïve of me to think that one spec might be better for aoe and another for single target and that the raid configurations will dictate which spec that we will play?

  2. I am really excited about these class changes, as it will finally give the hunter specs more visible differences.

    I am especially loving the BM changes, I always loved BM but that sounds awesome. I hope there can be a glyph to change your dire beasts into duplicates of your current pet, something about attacking with a whole pack of raptors seems really appealing after seeing Jurassic World. My only worry though about it is whether our pets individually will feel less special now as BM now that your pet is now one of many beasts you summon.

    Of course SV also seems really closely bonded to their pets as well lore-wise.

    As for MM I see a bunch of MM hypocrites complaining about losing pets on the WoW site. First you wanted them gone now you want them back? Suck it up or roll one of the true hunter specs instead of being like a rogue with a bow.

    1. MM hunter here, and as much as I love my pets, MM still looks awesome to play, am loving the potential of these changes. I only keep my BM spec around because of the pets, but I rarely use it any more. Don’t know anything about hunters on the WoW site complaining, at least the MM get the bows. If we had to go with that awful looking shotgun thing, I might delete my too and reroll something else.

    2. Not all MM hunters called for a petless MM spec. As Bendak and others have stated, many took LW simply because it was simple and a large DPS increase.

  3. Great post Bendak! I am so excited I am shaking! I NEED the beta like yesterday, I min/max pretty hardcore so I just HAVE to see everything! Also more on Andrew Chambers potential return of volley, someone commented about if SV could have Javelins fall from the sky instead of arrows and he seemed to really love the idea and said he would sleep on it! I for one hope he wakes up with it stuck in his head and implements it.
    So I am waiting for some clarifications in the coming weeks like:
    What about Chimaera shot?
    What about Kill shot?
    What about Serpent Sting?

  4. My problem with this is: Random beasts, which means no control and they aren’t “my” pets. Are we able to control when and if they appear? I’d prefer a stronger bond with MY pet, which is what “Beast Master” implies. And the gun thing. I’ve cancelled my account and put these changes as the reason.

    1. The dire beasts aren’t really pets, you still only have one true pet. Also you can just transmog your gun or switch specs if it bothers you so much. SV is still really close to their pets, enough so I might dabble with it even though I don’t like melee.

      Well if you are going to be so negative over something so petty, enough so you would rather not play at all, I say “good riddance”.

  5. I’ve been MM since Vanilla, with the same pet I first tamed still a regular
    companion. So I’ll be MM for Legion, but I liked the suggestion about
    reduced damage for having a pet out.

    Just because some of us do not and will not play BM, does not mean that
    we are not just as fond of our pets as those that do.

    I guess I like most of what I have seen for us in Legion so far.

  6. I am extremely concerned by the lack of CC options for anyone outside Survival, and the fact that it’s only mentioned in passing: ‘—other specs will receive forms of crowd control and AoE damage suited to their distinct characteristics.’ This says to me they haven’t worked out what to do yet ^^

    Needless to say, anyone who decided to keep 3 Artefacts up and play all the specs already has my undying admiration. This is gonna be a HUGE change for me and I’m already doubting my ability to do BM justice.

    We will see.

    1. I think a lot of CC will probably come through the new PvP talents. Blizz hasnt even published regular talent trees, so I guess we have to wait for quite a while till we know if worries regarding CC are unfounded or not.

  7. I am trully amazed on how many Hunters prefer to lose their ranged weapons than their pets… Seriously… I’m playing SV+LW right now and I’m loving it. With the set bonuses it’s really getting up there in the charts. I almost don’t need to switch to BM to kill some rares (unless they’re very tough). And now I’m sure I’ll be losing all of that as soon as 7.0 drops. Well… 7.0 will be the time for someone who never played MM finally make the move and never look back…

    1. I’ve played SV almost exclusively since early WotLK. I switched to MM as soon as we heard SV was going melee. At first I was very angry about it and didn’t play much for a few weeks. Now that I am getting the hang of MM (only played in TBC while leveling), I like it. However, I still miss the SV gameplay. MM still seems slow and rigid in comparison. I am happy that some of the themes so post TBC SV are coming to MM via talents!

      I would say go MM now, except it looks like it will play a lot differently than it does now. So I guess it makes no difference.. just play what you find fun ATM.

  8. Overall I like the changes and appreciate what Blizzard is doing. With that being said, instead of BM summoning more and more pets I would rather have it proc a damage dealt increase and taken decrease to our main pet. So maybe the pets would work on stages, instead of one extra beast maybe a plus 10% damage buff and taken reduction, stage 2 would be 20% etc. Potentially could give us better pet control because that is the biggest downfall for BM for me currently, pet travel time in raids. Leveling or questing mobs it is not an issue for me but boss switching or adds swapping is too much of a dps loss. And GCD control will be a challenge for me !

    SV as melee is still kind of a disappoint to me. Wish they gave every class a 4th spec instead.

  9. Nice overview of all the changes. Seems the Blizzard blog was already a bit outdated when they posted it. I guess that means we can expect lots of iterations. I’ve yet to process all the information so here are just some initial thoughts.

    It looks like they don’t really plan to go for the save option of keeping BM and MM more or less the same as they are now.

    BM looks really interesting. It may not get 2 “real” pets but at least it’ll have multiple beasts around.

    I expected a Lock-and-Load like talent for MM but it looks they also improve the core play-style with an on-demand instant cast shot which I missed in WoD. Hunter’s mark making a comeback as a visual effect is nice as well. The only thing I really don’t like is the name “Arcane Shot”. I really wish they would abandon that name since it has nothing to do with the fantasy of being a hunter. Sadly we have to sacrifice our pet to play MM because it looks really interesting.

    It’s nice to see the developer comment for Laceration and the old melee ability names making a comeback. It will be interesting to see if creative use of Harpoon might allow us to get to places other people can’t come 😉

  10. I really think all those changes looks really solid, I will probably try to play around with all 3 specs.
    Can’t wait for beta and I hope I can get the chance to play those changes asap =]

  11. Thanks for the write-up! I’m excited to try playing all the specs.

    I really hope they add a way for MM to have a pet out — even if it doesn’t do damage. I’m fine with most people NOT wanting it out at all, but maybe a choice in one of the talent rows that lets you summon a pet to get it’s “extra” ability (i.e. heroism, battle rez, spirit mend) without it actually running into the fray. I’d even settle for just having it out with no benefit (which maybe could be a glyph?).

  12. well this clarifies it the Hunter I love is dead. Trying not to be the sky is falling guy.. but its hard not too. To put it another way:

    (1) I like focus generation now, i enjoy that playstyle.
    (2) I hate aim shot cast time…MM is only good now because of the 4 set bonus and instant aim shots.
    (3) I HATE the lone wolf talent.

    this leaves me with what? BM is different playstyle, Surv is a whole new ball game and MM…got that stupid cast time and no pet.

    All I am saying is i like how i play my toon now and how i play it now will no longer exist in Sept. Am i the only one feeling alienated?

    1. Out of the three choices BM looks the best…but they way you describe it…”what to do with your hands”. That is not appealing at all.

    2. I guess we have to wait and see how things play out.

      What we see here is really the basic rotation for each spec, and it seems they designed it specifically so that there is a lot of dead-time in our basic rotation which they can fill up with talented abilities. They could add a lot of play-style differentiations through talents, like Lock-and-Load for MM.

      BM’s focus regen is changing from a cast-time (cobra-shot) ability returning instant focus to an instant cast ability (Dire-beast) with focus regen over time. In the end what probably matters will be how fast focus is gained and what you can do with it.

      Similar to how they add some of the current SV abilities like Lock-and-Load/Black-Arrow to MM as talents they may add talents to BM which allows you to mimic BMs WoD rotation.

    3. I liked how I played my toon before the mass over hauls from the previous expansions, and after going back and playing some private servers that where vanilla, bc, and wotlk i realized how wrong I was. So changes even though scary can be good.

      So this shake up is not the first time its happened. All you can do is try it out when it comes along. I for one am excited, after 10 years playing the class in WoW this shake up is great.

  13. I really like the changes so far, I think they accomplish the goal of unique flavor per spec well. I look forward to the testing and iteration of these and the talents.

    I do have a concern on Dire Beast. The whistling sound when summoning currently is somewhat annoying to go off every 30 seconds, and it will be horrible every 10. I hope that audio cue will be changed to be more acceptable for a frequent cast.

    I’m also concerned that raid design will make Marksman “Mandatory” again in the proposed form. With so many fights in HFC that frequently had 2 or more mobs adjacent, MM was significantly ahead of other specs in throughput by its design. Even skillful play of other specs could not come close to compensating because the gap created by spec design was so wide.

    With the wording on Marked Shot and Lock and Load, I’m afraid of a repeat of this situation and hope it is addressed during the numbers tuning. I realize that perfect parity won’t happen, but I really hope it’s not the very large disparity that is the current situation with MM and other specs in HFC currently.

    1. SV still has a pet that chances are will still have tanking talents. So the target is focused on the pet and you are in melee behind it.

  14. I would imagine that I’ll be sticking with BM for another expansion. DB needs to summon the beast at the target, not the hunter. (My tier fell boar always takes a two-beat break at my side before ambling over to the target. Drives me nuts.) The regen component of DB also needs to be passive, not on attacks. There are times that pets can’t hit something either due to mechanics or bugs and we shouldn’t be at a loss in such instances. If the beast is out, we need to be increasing our regen.

    I can’t imagine that I’ll ever play Survival. If I wanted to melee, I’d be a rogue. I might play MM in raids if it is the best DPS, but probably never solo.

    Ultimately, this is a supposed increase in choice that would probably have been an actual increase if it was being introduced ten years ago. Now, it is mostly putting me into a one-spec or perhaps two-spec box.

    Whether I’ll be playing WoW in Legion is still tied to a non-hunter issue. If flying at 110 is in at launch and not patch-delayed, I’ll play. If not, I’m out. I don’t care if we need to finish zones or quests to fly, but if it is otherwise delayed, I’m through. WoD has been much, much more fun since I can fly again. Before, it sucked.

    Okay, WoD still sucks, but there is a lot more for me to do that is a lot less annoying doing it while flying.

    1. Totally agree on the flying. Since coming back to WoW after a 4 month break i love the fact i can actually explore WOD.

      Removing flying from WoW was the worst idea ever.

  15. I am seriously excited for all these changes and while I know it’s early days, what strikes me most about all the specs is that, regardless of their range and presence of pet, they all sound like a *lot* of fun to actually play.

    BM: I’m surprised fewer people noted Dire Beast shaving 15 seconds off Bestial Wrath’s cooldown. Even if that’s subject to change, more BW means more chances to mash buttons with abandon, and assuming our focus regen is handled properly (DB will not be our only means of focus regen according to Mr. Chambers on the subreddit), we don’t need to deal with that horrible, languid, “yeah you’re stuck doing this and can’t really plan ahead because all your other buttons don’t work now” mess that is focus regen now.

    MM: MM annoys me. Not because it isn’t good, but because I was all set to give up on the spec utterly and then Arcane Shot got changed. Seriously, Aimed Shot’s cast time is much shorter than any of our current cast times, and with Arcane Shot being instant *AND* regenning 5 focus each time, I can button mash to my heart’s content while I plan out what to do next. What I especially love is how all the shots work together: Arcane Shot applies Hunter’s Mark, which is exploited by Marked Shot, which buffs Aimed Shot which depletes so much focus that you need to start casting Arcane Shot again, but that’s okay because you can stop when you *need* to, now when some damn cast timer says you will and in any case. There’s no “priorty shot because damage” everything melds seamlessly together. Let me have my pet for visuals and I may just stick to MM for the entire expansion (once I’ve test out all the specs obviously).

    SV: Survival sounds amazing. I love the idea of weaving your focused abilities around Mongoose Bite and I love the new mastery, all I would do is significantly increase SV’s base focus regen and meld Raptor and Flanking Strike together, so that we have some control over generating Mongoose Bite charges. Fix this and I will be utterly spoiled for choice and deeply, deeply annoyed if they don’t offer a *significant* catchup mechanic for our artifacts, because I’m looking forward to playing each spec for its feel, not how much damage it does.

  16. I still find myself liking survival very much. If tuning doesnt go horribly wrong, Im almost certainly going to main it.

    But MM is somewhat of a disappointment. It already had a pretty well defined spec identity and in my eyes, merging it with old-SV abilities waters the spec identity down. I guess they can afford that, now that the specs differ so severely from one another, but I still would have prefered to see the MM playstyle refined instead of changed.

    But all in all I must say that blizz succeeded in differentiating the specs. Respect!

  17. Like you, I love my BM hunter. I love being able to go out and solo stuff and BM is custom-made for that. However, I’m a bow guy and it really bugs me that the bow and gun are not interchangeable. Also, I see things in each spec that I would love to do so I see the tri-spec working for me. I know my wife will LOVE Survival now. She really misses her melee ability.
    So, the question becomes how the artifacts work. If changing spec changes the artifact on the fly, no problem. If we only get to pick 1 artifact and the other 2 specs are SOL on the main weapon, then that would be a problem. I guess eventually, Blizz will inform us as to how this is being handled.
    On a side note, c’mon…even Alliance hunters had to love seeing the Dark Lady unleashing those shots alongside your King in the cinematic. I love Sylvanas but I have a bad feeling about the end of this x-pac. Can we say Lich Queen? Thoughts?

  18. Irony: Finally getting “tri-spec” — and having no more use for it. Melee hunter? Not for me. Giving up my loyal companion as a marksman? Sorry, but no. And I’m not even sure if “well, there’s still BM for you” (is it?).

    When I fell in love with this class it was for the whole package: Ranged, mobile non-caster DPS (well, mostly, kind of, you know what I mean), pets, traps, ammo (I know), tracking stuff, leveling / training / feeding pets, aspects, lots of support tools, and yes, melee abilities, too, etc., you name it. Even when I “had to” switch specs, or, especially in that case: All or at least most of it was there. The specs had a different emphasis (e.g. better pets, range, traps) but after all… it felt like “the hunter”. It feld “home”. I appreciated that. And sure, I’m mostly talking about the pre-WoD experience here. Maybe even a rose-tinted past that never existed outside of me.

    With that in mind and all those changes coming and trying so hard to scream “Look, more variety! More choices!”… What to play if you’re the MM & SV kind of hunter who enjoys _shooting_ a pretty rifle / bow AND a furry companion? (No, overwhelming the target by constantly throwing spawned pets and snakes at it won’t fill that gap for me, sorry).

    Feeling a bit lost. Anyone else in the same boat?

    1. Totally agree. Long time SV hunter, but what do I need to play my Hunter? 1 – a pet (so no MM), 2 – ranged (so no SV). The BM as described doesn’t sound like my type of play style either. My one hope, add a pet to MM for leveling/soloing. Guess I just have to wait and see what legion brings.
      FWIW, I have a bunch of level 100 hunters, a level 100 Warlock and a level 100 rogue. Forced myself to get the warlock & rogue to 100 for garrisons/professions. Haven’t even bothered with a shipyard for the rogue because I despise melee so much. (only reason I made the rogue was for the insane title). Been working on my warlock’s shipyard lately though. Hmmm, warlock has pets, is ranged…. Please don’t make me main a warlock in legion…. Although I don’t know what legion holds for warlocks either, perhaps that will all change too….

  19. I am crazy excited about EVERYTHING so far. I will be trying out survival even though BM is probably my heart and soul. So far everything I’m reading about the other classes sounds good too; my Alt urge is starting to flare up again…

  20. I’m trying to stay positive. I don’t know what to think really. It all looks really good, but I’m afraid of getting my hopes up too high and then something being nerfed into the ground or translating horribly into gameplay. I’m also worried about BM. Being able to possibly have 7+ pets all out at once is amazing, but even with all but one of them being on timers that will have them constantly disappearing, that has the potential for a lot of pets to all be out at once. If you have a lot of BM hunters in a group, how much lag and annoyance is that going to cause? I also feel like they are killing the hunter for a lot of people. We finally have tri-spec and no need to ever play it. I have no interest in being SV and I’m not giving up my pet, even if I could be cool and pretend I’m a Ranger. That leaves BM only for me. If they break it, then the Hunter is dead and I will be sad. They’ve made the specs so different now that I don’t feel like I have choices anymore because the differences are so against my gameplay.

    I’m trying to stay positive because I know that I can’t form a proper opinion until I start seeing info from beta (if I can’t get an invite myself). It’s not fair to judge it entirely before beta starts and we can really see it in action. I’m having trouble not being nervous about it though, to be honest.

  21. What I’m most concerned about is surv’ being the one and only trap spec’ A lot of ifs and beta tests but if traps are indeed taken away from the other two specs, how in the world are the rest of us going to be able to tame those pets that require a ice trap to capture? Sure a lot of us at max level already have them but a fresh face, they have to use a ice trap to capture but its a exotic, how does this work. I’m sure a lot of people use a ice trap to keep them from interrupting a tame on a hard hitting animal. Fireland comes to mind, as well as Pandara with the hidden rares. Please tell me I’m not the only one concerned. Dungeons, we’re always asked to ice a mob or two, are we not going to be able to do that unless we’re surv’ spec now?

    1. @Bytail, well, there is n-spec now, so you just switch to Survival and bam! Traps. Perhaps you can’t trap exotic pets with traps now, but perhaps that’s intended… it should be a little harder to tame exotic pets!

  22. So I have a question, it doesn’t seem to be listed anywhere, is Chimaera shot gone? Maybe marked shot is the replacement?

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