TBC Classic Survival Hunter Stat Priority
On this page, you will find out the optimal PvE stat priority for your Survival Hunter in TBC Classic. We first present the stat priority, before delving into more complex explanations.
Stat Priority for Survival Hunters
- Hit chance until 2% (Raid Hit Cap);
- Armor Penetration;
- Attack Power.
Stats Explained for Hunter
You will notice that Survival Hunters actually have a very different stat priority than the other two Hunter specs. This is because of Survival's talent, Expose Weakness. Most raid groups will always try to bring one Survival Hunter, and it is purely for this debuff. Basically, the more Agility you have, the more you lower the target's armor for the entire raid. This makes Agility far and away your most valuable stat, which is also in part because of the Lightning Reflexes talent, which scales your Agility even more. Crit is also quite valuable because Expose Weakness is only applied when you crit, which means more crit gives you a higher uptime. This stat priority is mostly about increasing raid DPS, not your personal DPS.
You may also notice that the hit requirement is noticeably lower. This is due to Survival's talent Surefooted which gives you a flat 3% hit. On top of raid buffs, this means you will only need 2% hit from gear to be raid capped, which is easily achievable without needing to prioritize it. In other words, you should primarily focus on Agility and Crit on your gear.
As a Hunter, your ranged attacks cannot be parried or be glancing blows; your attacks can only miss or be blocked. Against targets your level, you have a 5% chance to miss attacks. Raid and dungeon bosses are considered to be 3 levels above you, meaning your chance to miss attacks is slightly higher at 9%. Reaching the cap on hit means having a 9% increased chance to hit which equates to 142 hit rating. Thanks to your Surefooted talent however, you only need 6% hit from other sources as the talent gives 3% hit. In raids as well, thanks to the buffs from Balance Druids and Draenei, you should only need 2% hit. Until you are hit capped, this is your most valuable DPS stat, but only for your own personal DPS.
Armor Penetration allows you to ignore a portion of your target's armor. Armor has diminishing returns, however, meaning Armor Penetration has increasing returns for the lower you can get a target's armor. Ignoring armor against a low-target is significantly more damage than ignoring the same amount of armor against a high-armor target. This will not affect your decision-making process for gear much in PvE, but is worth knowing for how the stat works. Overall, this is a strong stat regardless.
As a Hunter, 1 Agility gives you 1 ranged Attack Power, 1 melee AP, a small increase to your chance to critically strike (40 Agility = 1% Crit Chance), 2 armor, and a small increase to your chance to dodge. Agility will be your main source of Attack Power and is going to be your most common stat found on gear, as it is your best primary stat.
Survival Hunters specifically value Agility because of the Expose Weakness talent and the Lightning Reflexes talent. Expose Weakness is your greatest contribution to any raid, which means maximizing your Agility is always going to be your highest priority to make the Expose Weakness debuff as strong as possible.
Attack Power increases the damage you deal. The damage of all of your abilities and attacks are calculated based off your AP. It is important to note that ranged attack power and melee attack power are separate stats. If something increases your attack power, it affects both, but sometimes items will specify either ranged or melee attack power, which only affect your ranged and melee attacks respectively.
When you deal a critical strike, your attacks will do 100% increased damage. As a Hunter, this is slightly higher due to your Mortal Shots talent, which increases your damage from critical strikes by 30%. More importantly though, Hunters use Kill Command as one of our core abilities. This ability is only usable after you crit, which makes crit quite valuable since more crit gives you more uses of Kill Command. This makes your chance to critically strike with attacks quite important, but you also gain a large amount of crit chance from your Agility. For crit rating, about 22 crit rating is a 1% increase to your crit chance.
Survival Hunters specifically value crit because of the Expose Weakness talent. Expose Weakness is your greatest contribution to any raid, which means maximizing your Agility is always going to be your highest priority to make the Expose Weakness debuff as strong as possible. Similarly, maximizing crit is important because more crit means more uptime on Expose Weakness, which is also quite important.
Stamina increases your health, and is important for your survival. A higher amount of health means that you can take more damage before dying, which gives healers more time to heal you during raids or dungeons.
Intellect increases your Mana pool and your chance to critically strike with spells. Spells refer to magic damage, and none of the Hunter abilities that you use in your normal rotation count as spells in this context. The increased Mana pool is useful to make sure we never run out of Mana during a fight.
Mp5 increases your Mana regeneration, even while in combat. This is actually a decent stat since we can run into Mana issues on longer encounters, but we also do have Aspect of the Viper.
Spirit increases your out-of-combat health regeneration and your Mana regeneration. Your Mana regenerates according to the 5-second rule, which is easy to follow for Hunters because your spells are used when you open on an enemy and then you will finish most enemies off with Auto Shot, allowing your Mana to naturally regenerate. Spirit is ranked low because you should not normally be losing much health, due to your pet tanking, and you can naturally regenerate most Mana if you use the correct rotation without needing additional spirit.
Lastly, Strength increases your melee attack power. This is not useful to hunters since the majority of damage we deal is ranged damage, which is unaffected by melee attack power. There are small exceptions on some bosses and encounters where you can occasionally use melee attacks between shots, but these are rare enough that you should not gear for them.
- 25 May 2021: Guide added.
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