Survival Hunter Leveling Guide From 1 to 70 for TBC Classic

Last updated on May 19, 2021 at 18:01 by Impakt 2 comments

On this page, you will find our level-by-level Survival leveling guide for TBC Classic. Make sure to use the slider to make the guide adapt to your level. For more general leveling information, please refer to our Hunter leveling guide. We also have an Marksmanship Hunter leveling guide and a Beast Mastery Hunter leveling guide.



Survival is a viable Hunter spec at Level 70 for PvP and Raiding, but is far worse than Beast Mastery for leveling. One of the main issues that you will run into is that your pet cannot hold threat well, and with Survival this problem becomes even more severe. For dungeons Survival can be good since you are not relying on your pet to tank, but your pet will be doing a large portion of your damage while leveling due to a lack of real stats. This means Beast Mastery is also going to do the most damage. It is possible to level as a Survival Hunter, however, but know that it will be worse than Beast Mastery in almost every regard.


Leveling Rotation, Talents, and Trainer Skills

Move the slider below to make the guide update to your level!

Level: 70

Leveling Talents

  • Levels 10 to 12 — 3 points in Hawk Eye IconHawk Eye
  • Levels 13 to 15 — 3 points in Monster Slaying IconMonster Slaying
  • Levels 16 to 18 — 3 points in Humanoid Slaying IconHumanoid Slaying
  • Level 19 — 1 point in Improved Wing Clip IconImproved Wing Clip

The extra range on Hawk Eye IconHawk Eye is quite nice for pulling enemies. Monster Slaying IconMonster Slaying and Humanoid Slaying IconHumanoid Slaying are both solid damage increases; just make sure you are tracking whatever the mob type is that you are killing at the time. The final point is filler, so feel free to put it anywhere. Improved Wing Clip IconImproved Wing Clip can be useful for both disengaging and PvP.

  • Level 20 — 1 point in Deterrence IconDeterrence
  • Levels 21 to 24 — 4 points in Survivalist IconSurvivalist
  • Levels 25 to 27 — 3 points in Surefooted IconSurefooted
  • Level 28 — 1 point in Survivalist IconSurvivalist
  • Level 29 — 1 point in Improved Wing Clip IconImproved Wing Clip

Deterrence IconDeterrence is a great defensive cooldown and worth picking up immediately just to have. Survivalist IconSurvivalist is not required, but is nice for the health increase. Surefooted IconSurefooted is the most important talent in this group, as the 3% hit chance is quite useful. The final 2 points are filler; you can just put them wherever you want.

  • Level 30 — 1 point in Counterattack IconCounterattack
  • Level 31 to 33 — 3 points in Killer Instinct IconKiller Instinct
  • Level 34 — 1 point in Survival Instincts IconSurvival Instincts
  • Levels 35 to 39 — 5 points in Lightning Reflexes IconLightning Reflexes

Counterattack IconCounterattack is incredibly useful for disengaging from enemies that get too close. Killer Instinct IconKiller Instinct and Survival Instincts IconSurvival Instincts are straightforward damage increases, but dump 5 points into Lightning Reflexes IconLightning Reflexes as soon as possible. This is one of the strongest talents in the whole tree.

  • Level 40 — 1 point in Wyvern Sting IconWyvern Sting
  • Levels 41 to 43 — 3 points in Expose Weakness IconExpose Weakness
  • Level 44 — 1 point in Survival Instincts IconSurvival Instincts
  • Levels 45 to 49 — 5 points in Master Tactician IconMaster Tactician

Wyvern Sting IconWyvern Sting is an instant-cast, ranged-CC ability that is unbelievably useful in the open world and for PvP. This is a must-have as soon as you can get it. Expose Weakness IconExpose Weakness is the most important talent in the tree for max-level content, as this is the only reason people play survival in raids since the entire raid will benefit from it. This is still strong while leveling, and is even better in a group. Survival Instincts IconSurvival Instincts and Master Tactician IconMaster Tactician are more damage increases, so dump your points into them.

  • Level 50 — 1 point in Readiness IconReadiness
  • Levels 51 to 53 — 3 points in Thrill of the Hunt IconThrill of the Hunt
  • Levels 54 to 58 — 5 points in Improved Aspect of the Hawk IconImproved Aspect of the Hawk
  • Level 59 — 1 point in Lethal Shots IconLethal Shots

Readiness IconReadiness is a decent cooldown just to have, and is worth picking up. Finish off the tree by picking up Thrill of the Hunt IconThrill of the Hunt before moving into Beast Mastery purely for Improved Aspect of the Hawk IconImproved Aspect of the Hawk. The attack speed it gives is well-worth the investment. Finally, we go into the Marksmanship tree for Lethal Shots IconLethal Shots.

  • Levels 60 to 63 — 4 points in Lethal Shots IconLethal Shots
  • Levels 64 to 68 — 5 points in Efficiency IconEfficiency
  • Levels 69 & 70 — 2 points in Go for the Throat IconGo for the Throat

Finish off Lethal Shots IconLethal Shots, then put 5 points into Efficiency IconEfficiency for better Mana efficiency. You can choose to put these points into Improved Hunter's Mark IconImproved Hunter's Mark if you are doing dungeons with melee players, but this is not worth it while solo. Go for the Throat IconGo for the Throat is another huge DPS increase for your pet.


Leveling Rotation

  1. Command your pet to attack the target;
  2. Hunter's Mark IconHunter's Mark;
  3. Kill Command IconKill Command whenever available;
  4. Auto Shot IconAuto Shot;
  5. Steady Shot IconSteady Shot;
  6. Auto Shot IconAuto Shot;
  7. Serpent Sting IconSerpent Sting;
  8. Steady Shot IconSteady Shot;
  9. Auto Shot IconAuto Shot;
  10. Arcane Shot IconArcane Shot if you are fine on Mana;
  11. Multi-Shot IconMulti-Shot if you are fine on Mana;
  12. Auto Shot IconAuto Shot until the enemy is dead.
  13. Alternate Auto Shot IconAuto Shot and Steady Shot IconSteady Shot until the enemy is dead.

The key at any level is getting as many auto shots off as possible before the target reaches you. The best way to accomplish this is by kiting backwards, moving in between each shot. At Level 8 Concussive Shot IconConcussive Shot can help with this.

Do your class quest to get your pet. Once you have your pet, your kill speed and efficiency should become much better. Make sure you are careful with your threat, and try to let your pet tank whenever possible.

Multi-Shot IconMulti-Shot is a powerful attack, but can cause you to pull aggro off your pet if you use it on multiple enemies. It is incredibly powerful, but losing auto shots from enemies running into your dead zone will be a bigger damage loss.

Do not forget that Counterattack IconCounterattack is a great way to get away from enemies that get into melee range.

Feign Death IconFeign Death is a great way to drop threat while fighting enemies.

Wyvern Sting IconWyvern Sting is an excellent crowd control tool.


List of Trainer Skills to Buy

All Hunter specs benefit from upgrading the same skills, so our list of skills to buy from trainers is the same, regardless of the spec. For this reason, you will find that list in our general Hunter leveling page.



  • 19 May 2021: Page added.
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