WotLK Classic Survival Hunter Rotation, Cooldowns, and Abilities
On this page, you will learn how to optimize the rotation of your Survival Hunter in both single-target and multiple-target PvE situations in WotLK Classic. We also have advanced sections about cooldowns, procs, etc. in order to minmax your DPS.
In Vanilla and TBC, Hunters had to deal with clipping auto shots, resulting in a complex rotation revolving around weaving in abilities optimally between autos. In Wrath, auto-shot clipping is finally gone. You will always auto-shot normally, even while casting Steady Shot. This means our rotation is now far simpler and easier to manage, falling back to a basic priority list.
Always start by ensuring all the required buffs are active, you have Aspect of the Dragonhawk up, and Hunter's Mark is on the target.
- Kill Shot
- Explosive Shot
- Kill Command
- Maintain Serpent Sting
- Explosive Trap, or Black Arrow if trap weaving is not possible
- Aimed Shot
- Steady Shot as your filler.
Kill Command is off the GCD. You can simply macro it into other spells to ensure you always use it properly.
Lock and Load Procs
When Lock and Load procs, you are able to use three Explosive Shot back-to-back. Normally the DoT from your explosive shot would override the previous cast, but we can avoid that by down-ranking Explosive Shot casts. Whenever you get a Lock and Load proc, you still still follow the priority list above, but outside of when Kill Shot is available you can just spam Explosive Shot as follows.
- Explosive Shot Rank 4
- Explosive Shot Rank 3
- Explosive Shot Rank 4
Different ranks of Explosive Shot have different DoTs, meaning they will not clip each other. This is the fastest and highest damage method of using your Lock and Load procs.
Explosive Trap does significantly more damage than Black Arrow, even on just one target. If you can play reasonably close to melee range, running into the boss for a second to drop a trap is going to be more damage than using Black Arrow. This is not always possible due to fight constraints and with some larger boss models, but if possible is always worth doing.
Hunter AoE revolves entirely around two buttons: Explosive Trap and Volley. Volley is significantly more powerful in Wrath than in TBC, and actually makes Hunter AoE some of the strongest in the game. Properly setting up an Explosive Trap into Volley spam on an AoE pack will do absolutely incredible damage that very few other classes can even hope to compete with.
Hunters have several cooldowns that can be lined up for huge burst windows. While the actual timings may vary per fight, in general you should line up all of these on pull and then use them on cooldown afterwards, overlapping them when possible.
- Rapid Fire is a Hunter's most important cooldown. It increases your ranged attack speed by 40% for 15 seconds.
- Call of the Wild is a cooldown that Ferocity pets can talent into. It gives both you and your pet 10% more AP for 20 seconds.
- 17 Jan. 2023: Updated for Phase 2.
- 01 Sep. 2022: Page added.
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