Niix

In Depth Pre-Expansion Hunter Guide. (All Specs)

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Changelog

 

10-29-14: Changed Focus Fire section for BM.

10-24-14: Added best races for each spec.

10-23-14: Updated Talent Recommendations for MM and BM. 

10-21-14: Added Weapon Rankings for MM, and SV. Updated MM opener.

10-20-14: Added Weapon rankings for BM..

10-18-14: Hotfix updates. BM takes the lead.

10-16-14: Added new Sniper Training Weak Auraas well as changed mistakes in the BiS gear list for all three specs.

10-15-14: Changed recommended 60 talent for MM from Thrill of the Hunt to Steady Focus. 

 

 

Introduction

 

Hello my fellow hunters. In this guide I will be going over the rotations for each spec for Patch 6.0. I will also cover stat changes and what stats you'll want to look for as well as gemming and gear choices. This information is for 6.0 only and I can't stress that enough, this information will likely change when WoD drops and will be kept up to date when it does.

 

Wanna give a quick shoutout to Azortharion for 95% of the BM information and stat priorities. Check him out over on MMO-Champion where he is very active.

 

 

Table of Contents

 

 

1. Enchants.

 

2. Gemming.

 

3. Marksmanship.

 

4. Beast Mastery.

 

4. Survival.

 

5. Talents.

 

6. Opener.

 

 

 

Enchants (6.0)

 

The enchants are still the same.

 

Boots: Blurred Speed

Gloves: Mastery

Cloak: Accuracy / Critical Strike

Bracers: Agility

Shoulders: Tiger Claw Inscription

Legs: Shadowleather Leg Armor

 

 

Gemming (6.0)

 

Agility has been gimped incredibly come 6.0 so hunters will be opting to take secondary stats over mainstat. Since the stat priorities for all three specs have the same first stat you'll want the same gems across the board. 

 

Red: Crafty Vermilion Onyx (+10 Haste, +10 Crit)

Yellow: Smooth Sun's Radiance (+20 Crit)

Blue: Rigid River's Heart (+20 Crit)

 

The reason that we use the Haste/Crit gem for MM is because there is no Crit/Mastery gem, or even a +10 Agi, +10 Crit gem for whatever reason. So we will be able to swap specs without re-gemming now.

 

 

Marksmanship

 

I'll leave out what we lost and focus mainly on how the new changes are to be dealt with. So first off since we don't have Arcane Shot anymore we no longer have to differentiate between when to use Aimed or Arcane. So our rotation got a lot easier with that small change.

 

The priority is fairly simple:

 

  1. Chimera Shot
  2. Kill Shot
  3. Barrage
  4. Aimed Shot
  5. Steady Shot

 

Pretty damn easy, cus those are our only 5 buttons. So this rotation isn't even so much a rotation, because it's super hard to mess up honestly. The skill gap comes in with managing our new Mastery.

 

Mastery: Sniper Training: When you stand still for 3 seconds, you gain Sniper Training for 6 seconds, which increases your damage, shot range, and critical strike damage by x%.

 

The play style of the spec is like nothing we've seen before. Consistent movement unless in short 3 second bursts will be punished. Standing still is imperative to performing well as MM, you'll ideally want a 100% uptime on Sniper Training, but for the average player, anything above 90% I would consider good. 

 

 

Sniper Training Bar Weak Aura.

 

This weak aura will show you four things. If the main bar is green your buff is applied. If it is yellow, your buff is draining. If it is red, you want to stand still. The two black bars going vertically across the bar are the 4 second and 3 second markers. You'll want to stop moving somewhere in-between those two for maximum up-time. The timer is the duration left on the buff reapplying once you stand still again.

 

 

As for our stat priority, you should aim for these stats:

 

(6.0) Weapon Damage > Agility > Crit > Haste > Mastery

 

 

This makes our BiS gear the following pieces:

 

Helm: Tier

Neck: Gleaming Eye of the Devilsaur (Thok the Bloodthirsty)

Shoulders: Tier

Cloak: Legendary

Chest: Ancient Archer's Chestguard (Spoils of Pandaria)

Bracers: Dagryn's Fuselight Bracers (Galakras)

Gloves: Tier

Belt: Arrowflight Girdle (Spoils)

Legs: Tier

Boots: Puddle Punishers / Ravager's Pathwalkers (Immerseus / Nazgrim)

Ring 1: Swift Serpent Singet (Galakras)

Ring 2: Reality Ripper Ring (Norushen)

Trinket 1: Haromm's Talisman (Dark Shamans)

Trinket 2: Assurance of Consequence (Sha of Pride)

Weapon: Hisek's Reserve Longbow (Paragons)

 

 

AoE: 

 

2-3 Targets: Single Target rotation.

 

4+ Targets: Multi-Shot spam. Chimaera on CD. Explosive Trap if adds will live for 18 seconds.

 

 

MM Weapon Rankings / ST Sims:

 

HEQ3hcW.png

 

 

Best Races:

 

E1gsvya.png

 

 

Beast Mastery

 

Our rotation for BM is almost entirely unchanged, the only thing is that we don't have to manage Serpent Sting at all anymore so there's very little to worry about. 

 

The priority is:

 

  1. Kill Command
  2. Kill Shot
  3. Focus Fire*
  4. Barrage
  5. Arcane Shot
  6. Cobra Shot

*Focus Fire should be used on cooldown UNLESS there is less than 3 seconds of Bestial Wrath left, where you would no longer benefit as much from the haste, and your pet wouldn't get a 2x damage basic attack.

 

 

Our stat priority for BM will look like this:

 

(6.0) Agility >= Weapon Damage > Crit > Mastery > Haste

 

 

This makes our BiS list the pieces below:

 

Helm: Tier
Neck: Gleaming Eye of the Devilsaur (Thok the Bloodthirsty)
Shoulders: Tier
Cloak: Legendary
Chest: Ancient Archer's Chestguard (Spoils)
Bracers: Bracers of Infinite Pipes (Siegecrafter)
Gloves: Tier
Belt: Arrowflight Girdle (Spoils)
Legs: Tier
Boots: Minelayers Padded Boots (Juggernaut)
Ring 1: Ring of Restless Energy (Malkorok)
Ring 2: Swift Serpent Signet (Galakras)
Trinket 1: Haromm's Talisman (Dark Shamans)
Trinket 2: Assurance of Consequence (Sha of Pride)
Weapon: Kor'Kron Hand Cannon (Malkorok)
 
 
AoE: 
 
2 Targets: Beast Cleave should be maintained as much as you can without delaying Kill Command to maintain it.
 
3+ Targets: Beast Cleave takes priority over Kill Command, continue to cast Kill Command as much as you can.
 
9+ Targets: Multi-Shot and Cobra shot exclusively.
 
 
BM Weapon Rankings / ST Sims:
 
VGKFHkG.png
 
 
Best Races:
 
Xh7Zrv9.png

 

 

Survival

 

Gonna start this off by saying that Survival is one of the lowest performing specs in the game with the 6.0 patch. Current sims should be taken with a grain of salt but considering how far behind the other specs it is we can tell that it is going to be absolutely terrible. However I know there are people here that will still continue to play it regardless.

 

The priority is unchanged other than the loss of Kill Shot and Serpent Sting:

 

  1. Explosive Shot
  2. Black Arrow
  3. Barrage
  4. Arcane Shot
  5. Cobra Shot

 

Our stat priority is unchanged:

 

(6.0) Agility > Weapon Damage > Crit > Haste > Mastery

 

 

BiS list has changed slightly from 5.4 and is as follows:

 

Helm: Tier
Neck: Gleaming Eye of the Devilsaur (Thok the Bloodthirsty)
Shoulders: Tier
Cloak: Legendary
Chest: Ancient Archer's Chestguard (Spoils)
Bracers: Bracers of Infinite Pipes / Dagryn's Fuselight Bracers (Siegecrafter / Galakras)
Gloves: Tier
Belt: Arrowflight Girdle (Spoils)
Legs: Tier
Boots: Puddle Punishers / Ravager's Pathwalkers (Immerseus / Nazgrim)
Ring 1: Reality Ripper Ring (Norushen)
Ring 2: Swift Serpent Signet (Galakras)
Trinket 1: Haromm's Talisman (Dark Shamans)
Trinket 2: Assurance of Consequence (Sha of Pride)
Weapon: Hisek's Reserve Longbow (Paragons)
 
 
SV Weapon Rankings / ST Sims: 
 
J9ZRodq.png
 
 
Best Races:
 
6dYWzPj.png
 
 
Nothing else to note here for SV.
 
 
Talents
 
BM:
 
Immerseus: Dire Beast, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Protectors: Dire Beast, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Norushen: Dire Beast, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Sha of Pride: Dire Beast, Crows, Barrage
Galakras: Dire Beast, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Iron Juggernaut: Dire Beast, Crows, Glaive Toss
Kor'kron Dark Shamans: Dire Beast, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Nazgrim: Dire Beast, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Malkorok: Dire Beast, Crows, Glaive Toss
Spoils: Dire Beast, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Thok: Dire Beast, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Siegecrafter(belt): Dire Beast, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Siegecrafter(platform): Dire Beast, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Paragons: Dire Beast, Crows, Barrage
Garrosh: Dire Beast, Blink Strikes, Barrage
 
MM:
 
Immerseus: Thrill of the Hunt, Stampede, Barrage
Protectors: Thrill of the Hunt, Stampede, Barrage
Norushen: Thrill of the Hunt, Stampede, Barrage
Sha of Pride: Thrill of the Hunt, Stampede, Barrage
Galakras: Thrill of the Hunt, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Iron Juggernaut: Thrill of the Hunt, Stampede, Barrage
Kor'kron Dark Shamans: Thrill of the Hunt, Stampede, Barrage
Nazgrim: Thrill of the Hunt, Stampede, Barrage
Malkorok: Thrill of the Hunt, Stampede, Barrage
Spoils: Thrill of the Hunt, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Thok: Thrill of the Hunt, Stampede, Barrage
Siegecrafter(belt): Thrill of the Hunt, Blink Strikes, Glaive Toss
Siegecrafter(platform): Thrill of the Hunt, Stampede, Barrage
Paragons: Thrill of the Hunt, Blink Strikes, Barrage
Garrosh: Thrill of the Hunt, Stampede, Barrage
 
 
Opener
 
MM:
 
Your opener should look something like this. 

 

  1. Aimed Shot
  2. Chimaera Shot
  3. Stampede / Only Rapid Fire if AoC procs
  4. Steady Shot
  5. Steady Shot
  6. Rapid Fire / If AoC hasn't proc'd yet
  7. Aimed Shot / ( Barrage only if 2+ targets. On single target - otherwise delay until after Careful Aim (sub 80%))
  8. Proceed

 

BM:
  1. Dire Beast
  2. Bestial Wrath + KC
  3. Murder
  4. Barrage / Glaive
  5. Proceed
 
 
SV:
 
 
WoD
 
When WoD releases all of this information will be scrapped in favor of the new tier as well as level 100 talents will be added. I will do my best to keep this updated as 6.0 gets into full swing.
 
-Niix
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You might want to add that Accurate Imperial Amethyst also provide haste+crit, so buying whichever proves to be cheaper should be used.

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One thing concerning enchants, assuming the datamining I am seeing is accurate...

You suggested:

Boots: Blurred Speed

 

But Enchant Boots - Dexterity appears to give a higher Agi bonus

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=37603#can-be-placed-in

 

Not sure if 3 Agi is worth the loss of the minor speed boost or not, but pointing it out nonetheless.

Enchants are in flux right now, as for some gear pieces, the cata enchant is "best", for others the wrath one is "better", but we won't know really until it droops tomorrow and if Blizz will hotfix this (which they likely will, would be odd otherwise).  If you want to go farm cata and wrath mats for those enchants, go ahead, but be prepared to switch back to MoP enchants if they do fix this.  The same goes for food and flasks.

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Enchants are in flux right now, as for some gear pieces, the cata enchant is "best", for others the wrath one is "better", but we won't know really until it droops tomorrow and if Blizz will hotfix this (which they likely will, would be odd otherwise).  If you want to go farm cata and wrath mats for those enchants, go ahead, but be prepared to switch back to MoP enchants if they do fix this.  The same goes for food and flasks.

 

Enchants are a really touchy subject because Blizzard failed to see that old enchants are going to retain more value than I think they realized. Currently Mongoose is the best enchant for melee DPS, which I highly doubt is intended.

 

As for gems, the reason I have it as Smooth for crit instead of Rigid is because more people are familiar with the Smooth gem being crit. And I'm not sure whether or not Blizzard is going to remove the duplicates of gems.

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After looking over the guides for the three specs I would highly recommend ignoring them for the time being as they have a lot of misinformation, namely the fact that it states Steady Focus is bad for MM which is incorrect, as well as listing Glaive Toss above Barrage for single target DPS. As well as the stat priority being very wrong, so if you're looking for the information relevant to the patch on the 14th of October, please refer to this post.

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Little confused on a point in Beast Mastery. You mention TED procs specifically, but list Haromm's Talisman and Assurance of Consequence as BiS. Is Ticking Ebon Detonator no longer BiS in a post-6.0.2 world for BM, or was this an oversight? Thank you for your time.

V/R

Vala

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Little confused on a point in Beast Mastery. You mention TED procs specifically, but list Haromm's Talisman and Assurance of Consequence as BiS. Is Ticking Ebon Detonator no longer BiS in a post-6.0.2 world for BM, or was this an oversight? Thank you for your time.

V/R

Vala

 

Let me give that a check actually, will update accordingly. Thanks for the heads up.

 

Edit: Holy crap thanks, I completely forgot that I included TED procs.

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Greetings Niix,

No problem, glad I could help!  Something else I noticed, if I may: you mention no agi/crit or crit/mastery gems under Gemming.  Are the following not viable in 6.0.2?

 

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=76643

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=76577

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=76658

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=76592

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=76680

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=76614

 

Thank you for your time and efforts!

V/R,

Vala

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Are hybrid gems still better than pure? I would assume that getting a double-dose of the preferred stat would be beneficial but I haven't looked in to this at all.

 

Something else I noticed and would like to be confirmed: If agility is so bad now that we would lose 5 points of it to gain 10 points of haste (which is not even the best stat!), then shouldn't agility be moved further to the right in the stat continuum? Unless this is one of the corrections you'll be editing.

 

Thanks for the guide, Niix.

 

EDIT: Patch is...patched and game is back online. One of the first things I've noticed is http://www.wowhead.com/spell=165389 giving BM more mastery. And now that I think of it, that's what a read about BM changes coming for WoD. I'm a little confused how it's become our worst stat now.

Edited by Lunaboreal

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Greetings Niix,

No problem, glad I could help!  Something else I noticed, if I may: you mention no agi/crit or crit/mastery gems under Gemming.  Are the following not viable in 6.0.2?

 

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=76643

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=76577

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=76658

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=76592

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=76680

http://wod.wowhead.com/item=76614

 

Thank you for your time and efforts!

V/R,

Vala

 

Yeah the thing is we would never use a hybrid gem like that in a blue slot when we can gem a rigid and have +20 crit. The agility/crit gem just doesn't have enough stats.

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Edit: Changes to talent choices for SV and MM as well as BiS list changes for MM because of a stat priority update. Our current stat priority for all three specs is Crit > Haste > Mastery.

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Hi Niix,

 

So following the 12% buff on the 3 Survival abilities, what spec do you think is better overall for patch 6.0.2?

 

The numbers leave Sims like this.

 

14700 MM

13600 BM

12700 SV

 

Unfortunately I lost the link to the sim because it was in IRC. With that being said I'll be playing MM tonight. BM possibly for some fight. Not going to touch SV personally, not a huge fan of how dumb to play it is now.

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Well with an almost 16% loss in DPS it wouldn't be viable anyway.

It was clear MM would come out on top in WoD but i didn't think it would outperform BM already.

As a side note, I must say that personally i'm not looking forward to playing without my pet come WoD. It sure looks like that's what it's going to come down to.

Edited by Bloodtusk

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Well with an almost 16% loss in DPS it wouldn't be viable anyway.

It was clear MM would come out on top in WoD but i didn't think it would outperform BM already.

As a side note, I must say that personally i'm not looking forward to playing without my pet come WoD. It sure looks like that's what it's going to come down to.

 

Yeah Lone Wolf is definitely simming higher currently. I can't imagine that another talent is going to pull ahead.

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Kinda new to the game, I left in Cata, and just came back--so this might be a stupid question.

 

But with crit being so important now compared to agility, is Mirror Scope better than Lord Blastington's Scope of Doom?

 

The BiS scope is the Gnomish X-Ray Scope ATM. It will be fixed in the next couple days so change with caution.

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Thanks for the guide. I'm a newer player that's only been around since Pandaria and I've mained a surv hunter the entire time. I'm pretty bummed that they nerfed my only real character to the bottom of the pack. Oh well.

 

I tried BM first, but couldn't get the timing right between managing RF and BW. The guide says to RF outside of BW if you have 10+ seconds left on your BW cd or there are less than 3 seconds left on your current use of BW, correct? I guess it's a little confusing to me...if you're not supposed to use RF with less than 3 seconds left of BW, when do you use it next? As soon as BW ends? If RF is off cd and BW just ended that would seem to trigger the condition of using it when BW has more than 10s left on cd, but then why not just cast RF with that 3 seconds left so it comes off cd earlier next time? Do they stack abilities? If so, why use them both anyways? Do you save it for some better opportunity later? Coming from the previous SV mentality, where you use everthing once it's up while managing focus, this is pretty perplexing to me.

 

It would appear that BM is a lot closer to the SV playstyle than MM will be, so I think I'm going to try and pick it up. I guess I should also learn the MM playstyle, but it just doesn't feel like a hunter to me. If we're supposed to not move and get rid of our pets to become a physical caster, what's the point if your damage is terrible compared to actual casters? It would appear that a MM hunter would have no particular advantage over a mage in raid dps mobility wise, but gets to do crap damage with no obvious tradeoff. Am I missing something?

 

Also, when you said that Sv hunters got a last minute buff, where did you get that information?

 

Thanks for the help

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Heres a link to the lasst minute hotfixes:
http://www.mmo-champion.com/content/4410-Patch-6-0-2-Live-This-Week

I agree that the MM playstyle seems to betray the nature of being a hunter, although the more I play around with it the more comfortable I am with keeping Sniper uptime.  3 seconds is actually a pretty decent window to move, especially if you use DIsengage with Posthaste.  I ran SoO Heroic last night and most fights seem fairly easy to keep 90%+ uptime on.  Overall, MM DPS seems a bit behind my Ranged DPS guildies but not terribly so.

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I tried BM first, but couldn't get the timing right between managing RF and BW. The guide says to RF outside of BW if you have 10+ seconds left on your BW cd or there are less than 3 seconds left on your current use of BW, correct? I guess it's a little confusing to me...if you're not supposed to use RF with less than 3 seconds left of BW, when do you use it next? As soon as BW ends? If RF is off cd and BW just ended that would seem to trigger the condition of using it when BW has more than 10s left on cd, but then why not just cast RF with that 3 seconds left so it comes off cd earlier next time? Do they stack abilities? If so, why use them both anyways? Do you save it for some better opportunity later? Coming from the previous SV mentality, where you use everthing once it's up while managing focus, this is pretty perplexing to me.

I assume you mean Focus Fire, not Rapid Fire (RF), since RF is only available to MM hunters.  And to put it simply, yes you use FF after BW ends if you don't need the extra focus regen during BW (with ~3s remaining ofc).  

 

It would appear that BM is a lot closer to the SV playstyle than MM will be, so I think I'm going to try and pick it up. I guess I should also learn the MM playstyle, but it just doesn't feel like a hunter to me. If we're supposed to not move and get rid of our pets to become a physical caster, what's the point if your damage is terrible compared to actual casters? It would appear that a MM hunter would have no particular advantage over a mage in raid dps mobility wise, but gets to do crap damage with no obvious tradeoff. Am I missing something?

 

 

I agree that the MM playstyle seems to betray the nature of being a hunter

Broaden your definition of hunter.  Its a marksman, which is still a type of hunter throughout lore.  The idea of a marksman is that they stay still in order to ensure maximum damage to their target.  The change to the mastery (sniper training), exemplifies this change to MM playstyle.  You also have the 3s to move without loosing uptime of sniper training (and thus no lost dps), and all abilities are castable while moving vs a mage where their dps will drop unless they use a movement cd.  Hunters also bring a raid-wide movement cooldown.  Getting rid of your pets is a level 100 decision, so you won't have to worry about that for another month.  And in all honesty, it just furthers the idea of being a marksman (or a lone wolf, as they're occasionally called).

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Hi again Niix,

 

You recommend pretty much Thrill / Stampede / Barrage throughout the board.

 

But the MM opener you recomment contains 2 Steady Shots in a row at a point. Is this to build focus or were you looking at Steady Focus at the time?

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      i probably specced for mostly single target and think I've been doing fairly poorly for AoE damage compared to other people around my ilvl. Although I know to use multi-shot to refresh beast cleave I probably spam multi-shot more than the 4 secs needed, don't really use dire frenzy effectively, use titan's thunder basically whenever it's off cooldown, don't really know when I'm meant to be using aspect of the wild or whether I should be using beastial wrath in AoE fights. Should I be using murder of crows in AoE fights as well or is it just a waste of focus?
       
      For single target I think I'm doing alright so far (only recently got the legendary boots so not sure how much the kill command cooldown should affect my rotation). Still don't really know when the best time is to be using aspect of the wild but I was basically doing the same as the icy veins guide. My opening sequence is usually something like Murder of crows, beastial wrath, titans thunder, then just kill command, cobra shot, kill command cobra shot etc.
       
      Looking at icy veins guide I think I'm meant to be doing murder of the crows, beastial wrath, dire frenzy, titans thunder, then another dire frenzy straight away, aspect of the wild then normal rotation. After that it's just kill command/cobra shot I guess. While beastiality wrath is in effect should I only be spamming kill command/cobra shot for the quick cooldowns or should I still be using dire frenzy during this time? I use titan thunder when it's off cooldown and dire frenzy whenever it has 2 stacks. I usually just used murder of the crows when it was off cooldown but the guide seems to indicate that I should wait the extra 30 seconds and time it with my next bestial wrath. As for aspect of the wild I usually forget I even have this move and don't use it effectively, do I wait and combined it with bestial wrath? Wait and use it when I'm low on focus? Or use it as soon as it's off cooldown?
       
      Thanks for listening to my rambling and hopefully thanks for your reply.
       
      P.S. It's probably more of a personally choice or situational choice I guess but should I be talenting myself more for AoE for mythics. Example, one with the pack, volley, aspect of the beast?
       
       
       
       
       
    • By Sharken808
      Hey guys,
      Before you start any transmog farm ensure you have the following addons:
      https://mods.curse.com/addons/wow/lootappraiser
      https://mods.curse.com/addons/wow/tradeskill-master
      The farm i will be doing is located in the vanilla blackwing lair raid,
      This can be done with only a few characters as you require 2 things:
      - A way to drop combat such as invisibility or feign death
      - Magical damage such as arcane explosion for mages or hunter trap 
      the best option is still to use mage and even better would be a nightelf mage as you would have shadowmeld and invisibility.
      A detailed video on any information you may need.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fiboRlLf-zY
      Thanks for your time and i hope you get some nice stuff.
    • By Athenior
      "For AoE there are two options. The first of these is Loramus Thalipedes' Sacrifice, further increasing the power of  Fel Rush for each subsequent target you charge through, though recent changes have diminished how powerful this is. 7.2 has extended this to apply with the first target hit, but are still unremarkable."
      This may sound stupid but I was hoping someone could just help me clarify this last sentence of this section. "7.2 has extended this to apply with the first target hit, but are still unremarkable." I'm a bit confused as to what this means. Is this sentence saying that the damage is "unremarkable" in a good way? Or bad way? I've just received the legendary boots and am trying to see if they're a good choice in fights with a lot of adds. 
      Thank you for your time.