Warning It appears that you may be blocking the ads, and we are fine with it (read more here). That said, it would really be awesome if you decided to whitelist our website or make a donation :) You can also send us Bitcoins (1DEkropiHPWBmfJxogFaXQscfzhmdpTti4)!

Survival Hunter DPS Guide (Legion 7.1.5)

Last updated Today at 19:07 by Azortharion 270 comments

Table of Contents

General Information

Welcome to our Survival Hunter DPS guide for World of Warcraft Legion 7.1.5. Here, you will learn everything you need to know about playing a Survival Hunter in a raid environment and in Mythic+ dungeons.

About Our Author

This guide has been written by Azortharion, the main theorycrafter of the spec. He is also an accomplished player who raids in Vanguard. You can also watch his stream on Twitch.

1. Class Overview

All the specs have very similar single-target output in patch 7.1.5. Survival has at long last been promoted to a very capable melee spec with a deep versatile toolkit, and perhaps more importantly, different, viable types of playing. It can either be very easy, or very complex without suffering very much either way. It has the strongest burst AoE potential of the Hunter specs, and it has very low reliance on Legendaries compared to the others. In terms of viability, Survival is finally not lacking anything major, but its playstyle might still be off-putting, especially when trying to play it competitively.

2. What Has Changed in 7.1.5?

The changes for Survival in 7.1.5 are primarily based around some tuning changes to certain talents, as well as attempting to enhance the power of Survival's traps, since Beast Mastery and Marksmanship are both receiving traps as well.

Changes made to Survival in 7.1.5 include:

  • Lacerate Icon Lacerate no longer has a cooldown.
  • Waylay Icon Waylay is a new Survival-only passive. It introduces a new mechanic to traps that cause them to be fully armed and extra powerful if they are not activated within 2 seconds of being placed. Explosive Trap Icon Explosive Trap causes the target to miss their next melee attack after stepping on the trap. Steel Trap Icon Steel Trap deals 500% increased damage if it is triggered by a target that is not already in combat (such as when engaging rares in the world). Tar Trap Icon Tar Trap reduces movement speed by 70% for 4 seconds after stepping on the trap (where it is normally 50%). Finally, Freezing Trap Icon Freezing Trap will not break due to damage for the first 4 seconds after being triggered.
  • The level 15 talent Way of the Mok'Nathal Icon Way of the Mok'Nathal's damage-increasing buff now lasts 10 seconds, up from 8 seconds.
  • The level 30 talent Snake Hunter Icon Snake Hunter's cooldown has been increased to 2 minutes, up from 1:30 minutes.
  • The level 45 talent Farstrider Icon Farstrider has been removed for Survival. Instead, you can talent into Disengage Icon Disengage, allowing Survival to use Disengage just like the other specs can.
  • The level 60 talent Improved Traps has been removed, and replaced with Guerrilla Tactics Icon Guerrilla Tactics which further amplifies the effects of Waylay Icon Waylay. Freezing Trap Icon Freezing Trap will not break for the first 6 seconds, up from. Tar Trap Icon Tar Trap reduces movement speed by 90%, up from 70%, for 4 seconds. Explosive Trap Icon Explosive Trap causes the target's next two melee attacks to miss, up from 1, and it deals 50% additional damage.
  • The level 60 talent Caltrops Icon Caltrops' damage has been increased by 100%.
  • The level 75 talent Sticky Bomb Icon Sticky Bomb's cooldown has been decreased from 30 to 25 seconds.
  • The level 90 talent Butchery Icon Butchery's damage has been increased by 20%, and its cooldown has been reduced to 12 seconds, down from 15.
  • The level 90 talent Serpent Sting Icon Serpent Sting damage has been increased by 32%.
  • The level 100 talent Expert Trapper Icon Expert Trapper's effect on Tar Trap Icon Tar Trap has been buffed, as it now has a 100% chance of rooting the the target that steps into it for 4 seconds.
  • The level 100 talent Spitting Cobra Icon Spitting Cobra's damage has been increased by 500%.
  • The level 100 talent Aspect of the Beast Icon Aspect of the Beast's Ferocity-specific DoT damage has been increased by 100%. The Tenacity-specific effect now reduces pet damage taken by 30% for 6 seconds, up from 15%.

3. How Does it Work?

  • Focus is the primary resource. It is generated passively at a base rate of 10 focus per second.
  • Mongoose Bite Icon Mongoose Bite is the main ability. It has 3 charges that each take 12 seconds to recharge. When you first cast it, it applies a 14-second buff that increases the damage of consecutive Mongoose Bites by 50% per stack, stacking up to 6 times.
  • Flanking Strike Icon Flanking Strike is the main "use on cooldown" ability. It deals high damage on a short cooldown, is quite expensive, and it has a high chance of giving you an additional charge of Mongoose Bite Icon Mongoose Bite.
  • Raptor Strike Icon Raptor Strike essentially serves as a focus dump when there is nothing else to do, or when you are about to cap focus. When using certain talents like Way of the Mok'Nathal Icon Way of the Mok'Nathal or Serpent Sting Icon Serpent Sting, it serves the additional role of refreshing the buffs/debuffs of those talents.
  • Lacerate Icon Lacerate is a simple DoT that should be kept up at all times.
  • Explosive Trap Icon Explosive Trap is a high-damage ability that is used on cooldown and manually placed with the mouse.
  • Fury of the Eagle Icon Fury of the Eagle is the artifact ability. It deals extremely heavy damage on a 45-second cooldown. It is channeled over 4 seconds, and scales with stacks of Mongoose Fury Icon Mongoose Fury.

4. Strengths

  • Extremely powerful burst AoE
  • The lowest reliance on Legendary for good DPS out of the Hunter specs
  • Flexible toolkit, different viable playstyles (with the complex one being the best)
  • One of the best utility specs in the game.

5. Weaknesses

  • Fairly complex spec to play optimally.
  • Switching targets is a chore, most damage requires setup of some kind
  • Still not as potent DPS as many other melee specs, with fewer spots to compete for than ranged specs.

6. Viability in the Current Patch

Survival Hunters have been rather unwanted by guilds and the community in general so far in Legion — with its complexity and the other specs being so good at what they do, Survival has only been played extensively by a very small subset of players. With Patch 7.1.5 and especially the recent buffs to its main abilities, Survival is now on par with the other Hunter specs in single-target output. It stands out from the others with much stronger utility, especially for dungeons, and very powerful, no-nonsense burst AoE in the form of Butchery Icon Butchery.

7. Contents

To make it easy to navigate the guide, we have split it into 9 pages:

8. ChangeLog

  • 18 Feb. 2017 (gear page): Updated legendary ranking.
  • 18 Feb. 2017 (rotation page): Added another clarifying paragraph to the rotation.
  • 18 Feb. 2017 (simulations page): More sim updates.
  • 16 Feb. 2017 (talents page): Level 30 talent rewording. Slight change in Level 15 recommendations.
  • 16 Feb. 2017 (simulations page): Sim updates.
  • 16 Feb. 2017 (gear page): Added link to trinket sim spreadsheet. Updated Legendary rankings. SimCraft's implementation of Aspect was fixed, vastly improving Call of the Wild.
  • 13 Feb. 2017 (gear page): Added new trinket sims. These sims test trinkets at a ton of different item levels, color coded for easy comparison.
  • 11 Feb. 2017 (gear page): Updated BiS legendary to Call of the Wild after SimCraft's issues with Aspect of the Eagle were fixed.
  • 08 Feb. 2017 (gear page): Updated "trinket to look for section", and legendary rankings + Frizzo description.
  • 08 Feb. 2017 (rotation page): Rewrote rotation. Updated opener slightly.
  • 07 Feb. 2017 (rotation page): Update Survival opener. So. Many. Buttons.
  • 07 Feb. 2017 (enchants page): Updated potion recommendation (with gear, Prolonged becomes better, and with Nighthold gear it wins for all situations).
  • 07 Feb. 2017 (easy mode page): Updated stat priority and rotation slightly.
  • 07 Feb. 2017 (stats page): A more nuanced, detailed talk about stat priorities for Survival.
  • 07 Feb. 2017 (talents page): Updated talent cheatsheet recommendations slightly.
  • 07 Feb. 2017 (gear page): Trinket sim update.
  • 05 Feb. 2017 (simulations page): Update racial sim.
  • 04 Feb. 2017 (talents page): Recommended Steel Trap for pure single-target.
  • 28 Jan. 2017 (talents page): Update several talent recommendations.
  • 28 Jan. 2017 (rotation page): Updated Survival opener.
  • 28 Jan. 2017 (artifact page): Expanded slightly on relic choice.
  • 28 Jan. 2017 (stats page): Updated stat weights.
  • 26 Jan. 2017 (rotation page): Added set bonus talk.
  • 26 Jan. 2017 (simulations page): Added Legendary trinket.
  • 26 Jan. 2017 (gear page): Updated trinket sims with all the changes in hotfixes since 7.1.5. Updated BiS list accordingly. Added information about second-best tier item slots in case you have a Legendary that breaks the set. Updated legendary ranking.
  • 19 Jan. 2017 (this page): Updated viability section, strengths and weaknesses.
  • 17 Jan. 2017 (gear page): Updated trinket sims. Add BiS list.
  • 14 Jan. 2017 (gear page): Update Call of the Wild description. Add Legendary trinket to description (but not ranking yet).
  • 14 Jan. 2017 (rotation page): Add Caltrops to opener.
  • 13 Jan. 2017 (gear page): Legendary boots give 25 focus, not 15 now.
  • 13 Jan. 2017 (enchants page): Updated to Haste food/gems/etc.
  • 12 Jan. 2017 (talents page): Changed wording on some changed abilities. Removed note about pet specs and special abilities as they are no longer relevant.
  • 12 Jan. 2017 (this page): Added Explosive Trap damage increase to Guerilla Tactics mention.
  • 12 Jan. 2017 (easy mode page): Updated stat priority and talent recommendation to be even easier.
  • 12 Jan. 2017 (rotation page): Put Caltrops in the rotation, removed note about Lacerate cooldown, updated best usage of Caltrops and Lacerate as a result.
  • 12 Jan. 2017 (gear page): Fresh trinket sims. Update Legendary ranking.
  • 11 Jan. 2017 (artifact page): Updated best AoE relic to Hellcarver.
  • 11 Jan. 2017 (stats page): Updated stat priority and removed Agility from the listing as it does nothing but confuse at this point.
  • 09 Jan. 2017 (easy mode page): Checked and confirmed for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 09 Jan. 2017 (this page): Updated for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 09 Jan. 2017 (gear page): Updated for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 09 Jan. 2017 (enchants page): Checked and confirmed for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 09 Jan. 2017 (stats page): Checked and confirmed for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 09 Jan. 2017 (artifact page): Checked and confirmed for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 09 Jan. 2017 (rotation page): Updated for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 09 Jan. 2017 (talents page): Updated for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 09 Jan. 2017 (simulations page): Checked and confirmed for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 09 Jan. 2017 (addons page): Checked and confirmed for Patch 7.1.5.
  • 19 Dec. 2016 (talents page): Slightly improved our assessment of Butchery.
  • 18 Dec. 2016 (easy mode page): Added easy mode for Survival Hunters.
  • 08 Dec. 2016 (enchants page): Added note about Potion of Prolonged Power.
  • 08 Dec. 2016 (this page): Updated strengths/weaknesses and viability to be more realistic for current content.
  • 11 Nov. 2016 (simulations page): Added food sims.
  • 08 Nov. 2016 (rotation page): Opener update.
  • 06 Nov. 2016 (stats page): Updated Pawn string and stat priority.
  • 06 Nov. 2016 (talents page): Updated tier 15 and 30 talent recommendations/discussion.
  • 06 Nov. 2016 (enchants page): Changed enchants to Versatility, following stat priority change.
  • 06 Nov. 2016 (rotation page): Added Throwing Axes back to the rotation since it is still worth using in some situations.
  • 30 Oct. 2016 (talents page): Removed talent table at the beginning of the page.
  • 29 Oct. 2016 (rotation page): Patch 7.1 update with ability buffs and Way of the Mok'Nathal being the recommended talent.
  • 29 Oct. 2016 (stats page): Updated Pawn string for Patch 7.1, added note about how the top 3 stats are very close together in value.
  • 29 Oct. 2016 (talents page): Further Patch 7.1 updates regarding the Level 15 talents. Also added modified that pet section.
  • 29 Oct. 2016 (enchants page): Changed enchants to Haste.
  • 27 Oct. 2016 (stats page): Updates to Mastery description and value.
  • 25 Oct. 2016 (simulations page): Updated all sims and introduced a potion sim.
  • 25 Oct. 2016 (talents page): Updated for Patch 7.1.
    • Updated Animal Instincts's description and added a note that the talent needs more extensive testing before its strength can be more properly assessed.
    • Updated Posthaste's duration. Was changed in Patch 7.1 to be 5 seconds (down from 8).
    • Trailblazer replaces Dash.
  • 25 Oct. 2016 (rotation page): Updated the paragraph about Animal Instincts, following its change in Patch 7.1.
  • 17 Oct. 2016 (stats page): Ordered statistics explanation in order of priority because OCD.
  • 12 Oct. 2016 (enchants page): Switch potion to Old War as it should be.
  • 11 Oct. 2016 (rotation page): Slight opener change.
  • 09 Oct. 2016 (stats page): Added some notes to clarify frequently asked questions.
  • 02 Oct. 2016 (stats page): Updated stat prio to be in line with Pawn weights as it should.
  • 18 Sep. 2016 (enchants page): Now advising Mark of the Hidden Satyr instead of Mark of the Claw for neck enchant.
  • 13 Sep. 2016 (rotation page): Added Raptor Strike as a focus dump in the rotation.
  • 08 Sep. 2016 (rotation page): Put Fury of the Eagle in the Survival opener.
  • 07 Sep. 2016 (talents page): Added Pet Talent section, which was missing from the guide.
  • 06 Sep. 2016 (rotation page): Updated Survival Hunter opener to get the most out of the buff to Mongoose Fury (12s > 14s duration).
  • 05 Sep. 2016 (rotation page): Updated Fury of the Eagle guide.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (simulations page): Added.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (stats page): Updated for Legion's launch.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (addons page): Updated for the Legion expansion.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (this page): Updated for Legion's launch.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (enchants page): Updated for Legion's launch.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (talents page): Updated for Legion's launch.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (rotation page): Updated for Legion's launch.
  • 29 Aug. 2016 (artifact page): Added.
  • 18 Aug. 2016 (stats page): Updated stat weights after Mastery got buffed by Blizzard.
  • 29 Jul. 2016 (rotation page): Better rotation.
  • 28 Jul. 2016 (talents page): Updated stuff for the Caltrops row of talents to make it much clearer.
  • 27 Jul. 2016 (rotation page): Updated opener slightly.
  • 25 Jul. 2016 (talents page): Fixed error with Expert Trapper opinion.
  • 23 Jul. 2016 (rotation page): Removed talents from rotation to simplify it, added notes about handling Mongoose Bite stacks that should be easier to understand and put into practice.
  • 19 Jul. 2016 (rotation page): Added opener.
  • 19 Jul. 2016 (talents page): Explained in more details why Snake Hunter is so much better than the other Level 30 options.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (this page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (talents page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (enchants page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (stats page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (addons page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
  • 18 Jul. 2016 (rotation page): Updated for the Legion pre-patch.
Force desktop version
Force mobile version