Beast Mastery Hunter Guide for Battle for Azeroth

Just thought I’d post that everything has been updated on my Wowhead Beast Mastery Guide and is now relevant for level 120. The guide is more detailed than it has been in the past as Wowhead has really upped their standards for class guides (seriously, this was a ton of work). You can easily access it on any Wowhead page by hovering over the Hunter icon at the top, but I will link all the pages of the guide here too for convenience.

  • Overview Guide: Basic overview of the class and spec, best races, and major changes from Legion
  • Quick Start Guide: Intended for someone making a Hunter alt who wants the bare bone basics
  • Hunter Pet Guide: Guide to all the changes to pets in BFA.
  • Talents Guide: Details on all talents and recommended builds, along with simulations of all the talent tiers (includes some war mode stuff)
  • Rotation and Abilities Guide: Priority lists and openers, as well as details on all offensive, defensive, and utility cooldowns. Plus some advice on how to handle things like Frenzy stacks.
  • Stat Priority Guide: If it were up to me, this page would just be a tutorial on how to sim your character. Stat priorities are vestigial and I don’t like using them, but people expect them in a guide and Wowhead wants them, so here they are (even though I recommend you ignore them and sim your gear instead!)
  • Gear Guide: Recommended loot from dungeons, raids, and world bosses. BiS lists are another relic of guides past, but people still expect them even though you have little control over what falls into your bags in a personal loot-only world. The most interesting part for most people is probably the trinkets. For now, those just cover dungeon trinkets since none of the others will be available for a few weeks (they’ll be added before then).
  • Azerite Guide: Details on every available Azerite power and simulations to show you the best powers from each ring. There’s also a few example pieces of Azerite gear with good powers, and a link to Wowhead’s awesome Azerite Finder tool.
  • Enchants and Consumables Guide: The best enchants, gems, and consumables for Beast Mastery. Fun fact: Hunters have more choice in weapon enchant than any other class since we can use regular enchants plus 4 different engineering enchants on our ranged weapons.
  • Macros and Addons Guide: A fairly large selection of useful macros for a BM Hunter as well as lots of recommended addons.
  • Weakauras Guide: A selection of useful Weakauras for BM Hunters.
  • Simulations Compilation: This page compiles all of the sims used throughout the guide onto one page, for those who only care about the numbers.

See, I told you the guide was detailed.

Anyway, I hope you find it useful. Like my previous post on the pre-patch guide, feel free to ask any questions in the comments here and I will answer what I can.

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19 thoughts on “Beast Mastery Hunter Guide for Battle for Azeroth”

  1. Thanks so much for doing this for the community. In Legion, I used your guide not only to help understand class changes as they occurred, but also as a way to refine/review rotation and stats if I felt myself falling into bad habits throughout the expansion. I expect it will remain my go-to guide in BFA. Keep up the good work, there are many, many of us who appreciate it.

  2. Maybe I’m reading all the sites wrong but I need to ask this one directly.

    Using the recommended rotation I find myself frequently focus capping. While this is much more manageable on a fresh 120, with my stats being what they are it’s concerning. Could I really just be getting messed up by the GCD changes or is this something you’re seeing in your experience of well?

    Particular areas of concern are the ST opener, around the second BS. Do the 2nd KC exactly on CD, or do a CD and cap on focus for 2-3 sec. Similar issues around AOTW with the traits. Dont even get be started on Chim.

    I like how I’m rarely starved, but it makes me feel like a bad hunter

  3. Which pets are you going to tame in BFA? And why? is it because of a special stat , the way it looks, the journey to acquire it, or because it matches your transmog?

    1. I haven’t done much new taming in BFA to be honest. I’m finding it very hard to live without a Clefthoof for world content, and in dungeons its Spirit Beast all the time. One I did tame which was neat with the new gryphon models (well, they were added in MoP but this model wasn’t tameable until now, plus new colors). The new types of raptors are also awesome, as is Sabertron of course. If they ever tune Animal Companion to be a little more competitive, I’d be able to use some more of these new pets while keeping the “useful” one as the main pet.

  4. Hey Bendak! I can’t tell you how happy I was to find your blog still going when I came back to WoW with intent and started checking up on my buried wow bookmarks. So many people gone 🙁

    I can only think of a couple people whose take on hunters I valued as much as yours, and they’re long gone. Thanks for this guide, it got me off and running quickly.

  5. I have a quick question regarding
    Should I cast a barbed shot and then use AotW to gain back 2 charges again or should I use AotW first and it will give me an additional 3rd charge or would that waste the additional charge if I already have 2 full charges?

    Let say for opener, we use AotW just before the pull since it reduces GCD. With this trait, do we have to wait for the pull, use crows, use BW, use a Barbed Shot and then use AotW?


    1. It’s covered in the guide, but yeah you want to use AOTW when Barbed Shot is already on cooldown so you can take advantage of the extra charge. That includes changing your opener a bit (instead of pre-casting AOTW, start with a Barbed Shot then continue normally).

  6. Hi Bendak. Just saying as an update, but the current-to-get BiS gear should be updated to show the Uldir Leatherworking gear that can be made now.

    1. Yeah, that’s nice to have, but I’m not listing profession gear in those lists (or BOE world gear for that matter). I did talk about the Fathoms trinket, but that has no profession requirement and it’s a real outlier. I do the “BiS” lists begrudgingly, but I don’t think they are very helpful overall. You equip the best of whatever happens to land in your bags, right? Not a whole lot of control besides those two bonus rolls per week (and those mostly boil down to “go for the best trinket or weapons, then azerite”). But you are right I could have had a profession section somewhere since it’s a valid question for those who are either willing to switch or have a new Hunter. Will look into that for the future.

  7. your hunter gear guide for rec gear for from dungeons , perhaps even raids is incorrect as of now thunderous blast out performs dagger in the back

    1. Which piece do you mean?

      All 3 of the dungeon recommended pieces have Primal Instincts. One of them also has Thunderous Blast, and that’s the *only* piece of Hunter gear in the game with that power (not counting random world quest rewards). One of them in the list does have dagger, but it also has Primal Instincts.

      I purposefully recommend Primal Instincts for general use, with the exception of that one thunderous blast piece if you’re extremely lucky to get it at a high level from your weekly chest.

      Unfortunately you can’t just get Thunderous Blast on all your stuff. It’s one piece, and its only source (above 340) is from your weekly M+ cache.

  8. Dude. I need that hunter transmog in this picture! Is there any way you could post a source of your transmog items please? 🙂

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